Life... Health... Reviews...

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Use reputation management

Control your online reputation and remove the not-so-nice things about you or your business that may have been splashed all over the Internet. With Reputation Management you can protect yourself, your clients, your business, your brand and your company.

Taking control of your online reputation is important. You don’t want a negative review or complaint, especially one that is untrue, to follow you around the virtual world. And you don’t want something that wasn’t meant for public knowledge out there either. By hiring someone or a company to keep up with your reputation management, you’re taking a proactive approach to something that can get out of hand.

Reputation management companies know all the details necessary to assist you in control your online reputation. They can break down the ethics code to fight and destroy whatever is necessary. It’s important that companies take control of that and using a reputation management company will ensure that you get back your control.

With the spread of social media, having a reputation manager is becoming more prevalent and necessary. Having someone to take care of this for you is not an immediate fix, but may take one to six months to push down negative sites. Being proactive is what you need… so don’t take reputation management lightly.


Friday, October 29, 2010

I'm famous!

image My friend Tina, at Mummy Diaries, hipped me to this and I love it. I always knew I would see my picture and name in lights and magazines… uh, other than my byline. Ta-hee, hee, hee!

I hope you enjoy this ‘cause I really did! * :-)

*For some reason I wasn’t able to get the video to work on my blog, but just click the link to view.


Experiencing the new Carmex Skin Care {review & giveaway}

This post brought to you by Carmex®. All opinions are 100% mine.

For the past week or two I've been using the new Carmex® Healing Lotion and Carmex® Healing Cream to review. I was excited to try these products because Carmex is a well-respected brand and it's always great when a reputable company offers something new.

Both of the Carmex® Skin Care products have a somewhat cocoa butter scent, which is light and refreshing. It's a little surprising at first, but it's not overpowering. The healing lotion, which can be used daily to soothe and protect dry skin, is my favorite. It goes on smoothly and isn't greasy leaving my skin feeling extremely soft. The cream is used to repair rough, dry skin. It has nine healing ingredients and seems to smooth dry heels, elbows and any other area that needs soothing. However, there's a certain texture or something - when I rubbed the cream into my hands the texture and feel wasn't as smooth as the lotion.

I'll definitely use the lotion on a regular basis because it makes my skin smooth and soft, and the price is reasonable at $5.99. What to buy some soon? You can find it at Walgreens stores, and


You want a chance to win a full-sized Carmex Healing Cream? It's easy to enter, all you have to do is leave a comment on this post and tell me know what you like about Carmex products.

That's it. Giveaway is open to US and Canada and ends Friday, November 5th. Winner will be chosen randomly and notified via email (be sure to leave your email address in the comments), and will have 48 hours to provide their address before another winner will be chosen.

Visit Sponsor's Site


Does your child say, ‘I hate you?’ {book review}

When I first heard about the children’s book The Day Leo Said I Hate You by Robie H. Harris, I was intrigued by the story and attracted by the illustrations (by Molly Bang), but I wasn’t sure I wanted to give it to my children because of the title. I know it may seem silly; it’s not that I thought there wouldn’t be a positive message in the book, but – on some level – I assumed my children would take the title as a license to say “I hate you!”

image I was completely wrong. I gave the book to my son for his 7th birthday and I read it to him, his siblings and one of their friends the day of his birthday. (A perfect chance to get children’s reaction on a book I’m reviewing, right?) Well, they were mesmerized by the dialogue between Leo and his mother. They silently listened to the book as I read in my perfect storybook voices. When Leo told his mother that he hates her the children’s faces registered shock even though they already knew he was going to say it.

In the end, Leo’s mother explains to him why it was wrong and hurtful to say those words and tells Leo why she loves him anyway. The book ends with the two of them cuddling and laughing at their own list of things they hate and, ultimately, what they really love.

I really enjoyed this book and I’m glad my children did as well. Here are two things I like the most about it: 1) The images of Leo and his mother are ethnic in appearance. Their skin is tan and their hair dark. It looks like they may be Asian, but at least they are more representative of my children and their friends compared to the majority of children’s books on the market. 2) It clearly relays the message with few words and with colorful and engaging illustrations.

Whether you have this concern with your child or not it’s still a good lesson to teach and a great book to read. If you’ve read it, let me know what you think about it. And, if you plan on buying it, would you be so kind as to click my Amazon link below? I get a small commission for purchases. :-) Thanks!

Disclosure: I received a copy of The Day Leo Said I Hate You!* by Robie H. Harris free of charge to facilitate my review. No other compensation was received. Any opinions expressed here are my own. For more information review my complete policy.

*Released new in paperback next month.


Online cash advance loans

It’s unfortunate that many of us are having financial hardships, but that’s the reality and sometimes we have to do what we need to just to survive and take care of our families. That’s why it’s good to know that you don’t have to go up to your local pawnshop or pack up the kids to go the payday loan office, you can do it write online with

Getting cash advance loans can mean the difference between putting food on the table or paying a bill. It can give you peace of mind to know you have options if you really get into a financial bind.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Retro Runway: Blog Party

Because I love Melissa (Frugal Creativity) so much, I’ve decided to embarrass myself just a little and participate in her Retro Runway: Blog Party. She got me to giggling at her post about the 80s hair and the stirrup pants so I had to search my computer for my own goodies. I didn’t feel like finding photos to scan so let’s see what I come up with.

Retro Runway - Frugal Creativity

Here’s what it’s about: It’s  the blog party where you can show off, laugh at, or groan over the styles that we used to wear.  Share your photos, stories, or both ... whatever you like ... and link up at Melissa’s place!

The first picture I’d like to share is one that was taken in 1986/87 and one of my friends from that time period was nice enough (yes, I mean that sarcastically) to post on Facebook then tag me. Not only do I not remember the picture being taken, I can see that I wasn’t thrilled about it either.


I have no idea what I’m wearing, but I do remember those earrings, the big rose-colored glasses with my initials (that was so IN!) and the hair. It’s when we first started doing braided extensions. Nope, that’s not my hair. I look kind of cute, right? LOL

The next one is almost 10 years later. I can’t believe I used to wear pants like that… styling! I had just started growing my dreadlocks, but I thought I was too cute. And I was still sporting large glasses – although not the same ones as before.

imageLucky for me I don’t have any other 80s pictures on my computer. They’re all safely in a box outta your prying eyes.

Are you going to join in on the party? I wish you would ‘cause I would love to see some retro pics of you. Add your link below and/or visit other participants and have a little fun.



Not shabby at all {product review}

I don’t recall where I saw it first – that link to Shabby Apple. But ever since I discovered the clothing boutique if I see a link to them I quickly click over and peruse the pages of luxurious-looking, unique clothing collections and to-die-for accessories.


And then it happened: A wish come true was waiting for me in my email in box. Sweet Olivia (I added the sweet!) sent me an email asking if I’d be interested in receiving an item to review. I think before I responded I did a little happy dance. Now, here I comfortably sit in one of the best dresses I’ve ever owned.

I’m wearing the Helena, a pink knit dress with cap sleeves and a square neckline (pictured below). This is the description from the site:

Whether you're riding your basket-clad bicycle to the farmers market or making an ethereal entrance at a holiday soiree, this luxurious jersey knit dress will surprise and delight with it's ruffled neckline, ruched bodice, relaxed cap sleeves and floor-length skirt.  No-fuss fabric means it's the perfect dress for travel.image

It’s definitely a dress that can go from casual office to mom errands and a walk in the park or a night out with friends. I think it can be dressed up or down as well as transcend the seasons. Today, it’s about 80 degrees, I’m wearing it with black and tan wedge sandals and a double-stranded black beaded necklace. When it gets a little cooler I’m going to try it with my three-inch wedged, black suede clogs and a fitted jacket.

The only concern would be my legs being chilly. The skirt fabric is a little thin so it may be a challenge finding something to wear under it that doesn’t cause static cling. I had a little challenge this morning ‘cause I don’t have the correct undergarments. I found some no-line undies, but they aren’t the right color and were very visible. Luckily for me I had a half black slip (hey, I was raised in the 70s and 80s!) so that took care of the see through problem. I just don’t like wearing slips and all of that, but otherwise I’m extremely comfortable. I think I’m going to look for a ankle-length, which is where the dress comes on me, silk or satin slip (or something) with spaghetti straps. I know the material will feel just as glorious against my skin as this knit does and it may be that added warmth I’ll need when it’s a little chilly outside. I probably could have stood a larger size (which would have prevented this entire undergarment problem) since I’ve gained a few pounds all from the boobs down!

One of the best things I like about this dress is that it’s similar to a maxi dress (I’ve been wanting one for eons), but what makes this one better is that it’s unique, sophisticated and versatile. I love visiting the Shabby Apple site and looking at all of the selections – including women’s wear, shoes & bags, jewelry & accessories and preteen & girls. Visitors to the online retailer can shop by collection (13 in all including the silk road, the berkshires, central park and baja) or category (14 including sophisticated, black, bridesmaids and flirty).

Here’s a little info about Shabby Apple:

After years of not being able to find stylish dresses that covered enough skin to make you really feel comfortable (without wearing a tank top, cardigan or long slip), owners Emily and CK decided to do something about it. They visited trade shows, marketplaces and designer studios only to discover the problem was not that department stores weren't buying the right dresses, but that designers weren't designing them. Shabby Apple is proud to offer you fantastic dresses that allow you to look fabulous, without having to compromise anything else. A return to what dresses were always meant to be — a one-piece outfit. No need to add tank tops, no cardigans, nothing (except accessories, of course!).

The Shabby Apple team are true to their word: the definitely provide fantastic dresses that look fabulous (I searched the blogosphere and saw quite a few women sporting and talking about Shabby Apple) and it’s now on my list of top places for classy and unique dresses. Shabby Apple is not so shabby at all; nope, not at all.

Disclosure: I received the beautiful Helena dress from Shabby Apple free of charge to facilitate my review. No other compensation was received. Any opinions expressed here are my own. For more information review my complete policy.


Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Garage floor improvements

Don’t tell her I told you this, but my mother is a neat freak. Well, I guess I should say she is particular about the way her home and land are kept so she is extra vigilant in ensuring that it is maintained (how was that?).

I recall my mother using plastic runners on the high-traffic areas of the carpet and putting cardboard down in the garage so it wouldn’t get stained with oils and leaks. Most people don’t do that and end of having a very stained garage floor and, in addition to that, there are the normal scratches, cracks and damage that come with age.

Now there’s a way to transform a dirty garage floor to a creative work of art by using Logo Floor from Modutile. There are many design choices from floor tiles in a solid color or checker pattern to a favorite image, customers can decide on any of the unique designs.

The flooring is easy to install and consists of interlocking tiles that are made out of high impact plastic that weighs about one pound. This flooring can help homeowners keep their garage floors in better condition by creating a barrier again dirt and debris. The flooring is also easy to clean – now that’s something about it my mom would love.

If you could have an image or artwork on your Garage Floor what would you choose?


Andy Andrews books for young & old {book review}

I don’t think I’ve ever come across a book for adults and one for children that contained basically the same information and was told in a way that was entertaining, educational and inspiring for both groups. That has changed. I recently read two books by the New York Times Bestselling Author Andy Andrews that fit the bill: The Butterfly Effect: How Your Life Matters and The Boy Who Changed the World.

image I happened to read The Butterfly Effect first. In fact, it’s a book I’d forgotten I received for review. The theory of the butterfly effect, which was introduced in 1963 by Edward Lorenz to the New York Academy of Science, states that when a butterfly flaps its wings and sets molecules of air in motion, which move other molecules, then more molecules of air it will ultimately start a hurricane on the other side of the planet. Lorenz was laughed at and the theory because somewhat of a science fiction myth.

But, what Andrews points out is that the butterfly effect is real and he uses historic moments and figures to illustrate his point in both books. Words can not do justice to how Andrews tells the stories. From an adult standpoint it is information we already know or have heard somewhere, but not in this manner. As I read The Butterfly Effect I experienced chills as the story went on. The small book is only 109 pages in length and takes about 15 minutes to read, but it is compelling and inspiring. I actually began to believe that the things that I do in my life can have a huge impact on things in the future. A huge positive impact.

image I doubted whether The Boy Who Changed the World would have the same effect on me, let alone on my children. But boy was I wrong. Two nights ago, I read the children’s version, which I gave to Andre on his birthday, to my children (ages 7, 5 and 3) and they listened closely to what I read. The look on their faces was one of amazement and wonder.

When I finished reading the children’s book, which is a softer version of one of the stories from the adult version, my son said, “I want to change the world.”

My 5-year-old daughter agreed. I said, “You can.”

He said, “But I’m not big; I can’t make anything.”

‘You don’t have to be big. You can be like Norman in the book. And remember the boy who made the crutch for his friend? It was just something small. You just have to think of something that you can do for someone else.’ That’s a paraphrase of my motherly advice.

I did clearly tell the children that they can change the world and they can do anything they set their minds to. Don’t worry about it; just keep that in their mind to think about.

In reading that book to them, as well as absorbing the butterfly effect, I think I have in essence caused a shift in the future. The molecules have moved… the molecules are my children. Regardless of what I do with my own life, I’ve inspired them – with the help of Andy Andrews – to think outside of their small world.

I’ll look for opportunities to help them with their world-changing pursuits, direct them to things that interest them and support their passions. Right now I can’t think of a better way to help change the world.

Have you read either of these books?

Disclosure: I received copies of both of the above books free of charge to facilitate my review. No other compensation was received. Any opinions expressed here are my own. For more information review my complete policy.


Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Using quality management software

When I was in military about more than 20 years ago there were a lot of regulations and procedures that needed to be followed, and I’m sure it isn’t any different nowadays. There are probably still just as many, if not more, procedures that need to be followed. The one difference though is most likely how the information is managed.

A lot of companies and organizations use quality management software to assist in tracking processes that require compliance to certain standards such as those required by the Food & Drug Administration. With that software a company is able to monitor all aspects of their processes and report on it. Testing and reporting at various stages is what keeps companies on track, and quality management software does just that.

Do you work for a company or business that uses quality management software?


Monday, October 25, 2010

MicroFiction Monday #54

My friend Diane Estrella always writes the coolest posts. On Mondays she participates in MicroFiction Monday, which is hosted by Stony River. “Microfiction” means the shortest of short stories. Think Aesop’s fables, comic strips, or even jokes: complete stories that can be told in under a minute. We’re invited to write a story about a select picture in 140 characters or less (including spaces and punctuation).

Here’s this week’s picture:


This is my first time participating… Here’s my take:

“What about this one, grandma?”

“When me and grandpa first married we ended summers with friends. This time your mommy was in my tummy.”


Anyone else gonna join in?

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