Preventing Premature Births – March of Dimes

Purple Flowers

She doesn’t know it yet* I will be joining Mrs. Flinger on May 3rd to walk for Maddie Spohr and for March of Dimes. I have set up my own donation page on the Seattle for Maddie team for a couple of reasons.

  1. I couldn’t find a Portland team to walk with. I know there’s a walk in Portland (on the 26th, my work is walking) but I want to walk with a team for Maddie, not my bank’s team. I’m being selfish about it. I’ll walk in both if I can find a team though. I know there’s a Salem team. I could drive there, too.
  2. I can meet Mrs. Flinger. She can then tell VDog that she got to meet me first. That will make me laugh, ‘specially since I met Mrs. Flinger because of VDog. Yeah, hehehe. (It’s 2:45am, I’m easily entertained.)
  3. I’m allowing myself to feel some true emotions and some super-connectedness with my friends. Some of these women I’ve never met in person, but the connection is still there. Friendship goes past letters on a screen; clearly. We have bonded over tragedy and many have bent themselves backwards to support Heather and Mike. These women have helped make Maddie’s story news with the LA Times.

I work at a bank and know we’re in a recesssion, and so I purposefully set my goal low so my friends, my family, my coworkers and my blog readers don’t feel the pressure, but every single dollar counts. I also set the goal low so that when my generous friends and family contribute and blow my goal out of the water, I am even more amazed at the power of the internet.

You may (or may not) have received an email from me asking for a donation, and if you didn’t but want to donate to the memory of Madeline Alice Spohr, please pass me a buck.

~*~*~*~

*She doesn’t know it because it’s 3am on Easter Sunday and she should be sleeping. Yes, it’s 3am and I’m awake … I can’t seem to shut off my brain tonight but it got me going to Seattle, so heck, 3am is fine with me.

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Spring Clothes

Clothes
Image by K·FREE via Flickr

If you’re anything like me, you’re keeping your wallet close to you and your pennies pinched. The latest issue of Cosmopolitan magazine has found women like you and I seven “ridiculously” good deals and I have to share them. It’d be mean not to!

1. Forever21.com – patent bag – $26.80 (I think the only bag I’ve ever paid that much for was the bag I use daily, a wardrobe staple. Not something red and patent leather!)

2. VSPink.com – printed sundresses – $54.50 (My favorite dress I paid about that much for at the Gap. I’ve worn it at least fifty times and it’s classic and gorgeous and worth it. This dress might be a little to “stylish” for wearing it fifty times, but if you’ve got a penchant for florals, go for it!)

3. OldNavy.com – floral shirts – $24.50 (I love the bright colors … but they really really really remind me of my Grams and some of her old shirts. I don’t know that I could do it.)

4. kiraplastinina.com – hot pink skirt – $39 (Yeah, um, no thanks. I’m so not cool enough for a hot skirt! Also, even with a year of Russian under my belt I couldn’t find this skirt on their website.)

5. walmart.comcolorful jeans from L.e.i. – $20 (No. Please don’t. Please? Pretty please? I’m sharing these things because people like them, obviously, but SERIOUSLY? No one should be wearing yellow denim.)

6. kmart.com – striped blouses – $16.99 (I LOVE this shirt. I want to go to KMart and find this shirt today – it’s that cute, and THAT cheap!)

7. payless.com – gladiator sandals – $38 (1. Gladiator sandals? Really? 2) $38 at Payless? Not quite my idea of cheap.)

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How to read people

Paper Kite
Image by SARhounds via Flickr

According to Joe Navarro, former FBI special agent (I want that job) and author of What Every Body Is Saying, you can learn to read people pretty well with just three little tips.

*If a person smokes or bites her nails excessively, she is soothing herself because she’s stressed.
*If someone preens (wears his hair perfectly styled or has beautifully manicured nails) it’s usually a healthy sign of confidence and self-respect. (I have trouble with this one because my hands/nails normally look like hell (dealing with paper all day) and I am a pretty confident and self-respecting woman.)
*Wearing a locket with a photograph or even a bracelet with someone’s names or initials on it shows that the wearer values relationships, traditions and family. (Or they’re a creepy stalker.)

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Where a single gal gives dating “advice” to dudes

According to a Cosmo web poll, 72 percent of guys have pulled the “slow fade” to avoid breaking up with a girl.

Excuse me? What kind of dude can’t look his girlfriend in the face and say “this isn’t working?” Really. How hard is it? Whether you “pull a slow fade” from her life or just break up with her like a man, it’s going to hurt. DUH.

Think about breakups like band-aids – the faster a band-aid is pulled off, the less length of time it hurts, right? Breakups are kinda like that. Draw them out and they just hurt and hurt and hurt and hurt.

Buck up guys. (To the other 18% of you, good for you. Thanks for not being bungholio-esque!)

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6 Things People Are Talking About Right Now

The cover of Sequins 1, taken from a canvas th...
Image via Wikipedia

1. “Showmances” – Michael Hall and Jennifer Carpenter (siblings on Dexter), Blake Lively & Penn Badgley (Gossip Girl) and Stephen Moyer & Anna Paquin (True Blood)

2. “High/Low fashion” – designers are finally realizing that people like you and I can’t afford a $400 pair of pants, so they find a way to make them cheaper and sell them at target. One particular “star” being talked about includes the First Lady, Michelle Obama. She has fantastic taste in clothes and has taught us to mix our pricey stuff with the cheap and make it look fabulous!

3. “Guys in denial” – aka forgetting to mention their girlfriends, fiancees or wives in their MySpace or Facebook profiles. That idea just grosses me out, really. Skeeves.

4. “Sexual skills: 1 in 3 men wish their partners were better in bed.” (2009 Harlequin Romance Report) And what about what women are wishing? Wonder how THOSE numbers compared!?!

5. “Psychic readings” – Cosmo is saying that this is directly related to the economy. I am saying this is directly related to people feeling a need to waste their money. NO ONE KNOWS THE FUTURE. /rant

6. “Sequined Minidresses” – great, sequins are back. Woo. /sarcasm Apparently paring a sequined minidress with a “blazer and ballet flats” is the way to go. The mental image I’m getting of this outfit makes me glad that I’m a jeans & T-shirt girl!

This post was totally inspired by Cosmopolitan magazine. I love that magazine. I wonder if I get a subscription to it if I can write it off as a business expense? LOL

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Sex education versus abstinence only education

Photograph showing rolled up condom
Image via Wikipedia

I am a Christian woman.
I support waiting to have sex until a person is married.
HOWEVER, I know the majority of people do not believe the way that I do.
I fully believe in educating the majority – those who choose to have sex outside of marriage.

My long-term goal is to go into HIV/AID education prevention … internationally … in places where sex more often than not happens before, after, during and outside of marriage. I want to work in HIV/AIDS prevention with communities and cultures where condoms are taboo. I want to work with women who feel as though they have no say in their own sex life. I want to educate these women on the fact that they have a choice. They can fight.

I recently watched The Education of Shelby Knox on NetFlix (onDemand … oh how I love thee!) and connected so deeply to Shelby’s motivations and goals that I would like to meet her in person to speak with her, to hug her, to offer her my full support as a woman a decade older than her. This week’s goal is to find a way to reach her and let her know that I fully support the works she is involved in to see what else I can do to further the mission that we both share. One of the quotes, from the movie (that I stayed up until 1am to finish!) that clearly resonated was: “God cannot use blind followers.” My eyes are open wide, and I hope that yours will be, too.

Just because I am a Christian woman does not mean that I believe you can’t TEACH sexual education. Abstinence only education does not work – it has been proven time and time again. Abstinence education ALONG with condom and other forms of birth control use on the other on hand has been shown to reduce teen pregnancy, reduce the rate of sexually transmitted infections (STIs/STDs), but still, it is rarely taught within the public education system. This needs to change.

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A humiliating bus stop

Part of me wants to be appalled, but most of me is giggling at the advertising ploy behind it.

You sit on the bench at the bus stop and your weight is clearly displayed for all to see. The gym guilts someone into joining their establishment with creative advertising! Fitness First, a health club in the Netherlands hopes to increase their gym membership numbers by embarrassing the every-day bus rider.

Read more of the original article at Gizmodo!

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Sulu Beauty – Paint & Peel nail polishes

Sula Beauty - Paint & Peel in RubyJust because your nail polish is environmentally friendly doesn’t mean that it has to be boring!

Sula Beauty has an amazing line of nail polish that has eliminated the need for chemical-based removers; their nail polishes are meant to last a few days before you can peel it off!

With both a Sula collection and a Trend collection, these bottles of eco-friendly nail polish are gorgeous and you can find a hue to go with any outfit you’re putting together.

Sula is about highly wearable products designed to compliment you, not define you. Your look and mood changes throughout the day so your products should too: Two different nail colours in one day? With Sula Paint and Peel, Yes! And Yes!

Susanne Lang, founder of Sula Beauty has it right when she says “break rules, set trends and always play pretty.”

Find a store near you that carries Sula Beauty products!

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Running Gear

Boardwalk Runner
Image by San Diego Shooter via Flickr

I’m not allowed to start running until April 28th. That will be six weeks post-surgery, and I am already counting down because sitting on my bum (at least until the 14th) is killing me. I’ve resorted to looking lustfully at new running gear even though on the 28th, I’ll be putting on my favorite pair of Saucony‘s (Grid Fusion 2 – although I will need a new pair soon and may spring for a the ProGrid Hurricane 10) and busting out the hot shorts to take off on a GENTLE run. Yes Dr. Surgeon, I will run gently at first. Promise.

Until then I lust.
*lucy’s impact knee pants
*Nike‘s Dri-FIT Cold/Wind Women’s Running Vest
*Nike’s Dri-FIT Soft Hand Long-Sleeve Women’s Running Baselayer
*UnderArmour‘s Achieve “Mid” Short (mine are falling apart because I wear them under all my workout shorts!)

What kind of workout gear are you lusting after?

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Truvia Trivia

I recently saw an advertisement in Shape magazine for “truvia” that caught my eye.
“Our new sweetener is born from a leaf, not in a lab. Meet the leaf of the stevia plant. The proud parent of our new natural sweetener. We just give it water. We give it sun. Next, we steep it in a process like making tea. Ultimately, this little leaf gives back a recipe for sweetness that’s both delicious and 0-calorie guilt-free. It’s a miracle of nature, not chemistry. Enjoy. Find it at your grocery store. Find out more at truvia.com.

Being the curious consumer I am, I did a little research.
Stevia rebaudiana Bertoni: an herb in the sunflower family (Asteraceae) which grows in Paraguay & Brazil, up to 300 times sweeter than sugar, stevia has a “negligible effect” on blood glucose, in 1991 the United States banned stevia unless it was listed as supplement.

Truvia: consumer brand of stevia made of erythritol (a sugar alcohol) and Rebiana (cleared as a safe food sweetener), jointly marketed by Cargill and the Coca-Cola company.

What I find truly interesting about truvia sweetener is that a Coke is directly involved in it’s creation and it’s marketing. Might the soda manufacturing companies be taking a hit as people recognize their unhealthy and incredibly addictive drinks? Also, on the website, truvia is clearly classified as a non-organic sweetener.

I have yet to try truvia, but if I see it available, I probably will. I’ve tried many (many!) artificial sweeteners and while I prefer to bake with regular ‘ol cane sugar, I prefer Splenda in my coffee or tea right now. Thankfully I’m not sensitive to artificial sweeteners and so I have plenty of choices to keep my sweet tooth happy!

What other people are saying about truvia:
What To Eat’s Marion Nestle: Cargill’s Truvia (Stevia) comes to tow
WebMD‘s Miranda Hitti: Truvia, Made From Stevia, Being Sold Online and in Certain N.Y. Supermarkets
Baltimore Sun‘s Meredith Cohn: It’s called Truvia: The newest sugar substitute comes from the stevia plant
Ruth from Blisstree Media: New in the Market: Truvia Natural Sweetener
Mark from Mark’s Daily Apple: Is Truvia Safe?

What do you have to say about truvia?


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