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Thursday, October 29, 2009

Flowers Help You Beat the Winter Blues

This time of year always makes me a little sad. The winter blues are sneaking up. Fall is in mid-swing and the ability to cultivate outdoor flowers is a thing of the past where I am in the upper Midwest. The landscape gets drearier and drearier and soon snow will fall combined with slush and ice.

One surefire way I've found to beat the winter blues is to fill the inside of the house with beautiful, fresh flowers. Finding them is no trouble at all with 1-800flowers. The fact that I can have them delivered to my door is an even bigger plus since where I live in the rural areas it is a pain to go out to the store and the nearest florist is 15 miles away.

Keeping flowers in the house gives it a fresh spring-like feel during the long cold months. That allows me to forget the cold for awhile and chases the blues away in a heartbeat.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Testing a banner. Not sure if it will work in here

Remodeling with Tile

I think we have settled on glass tiles for our kitchen walls. We have found some very lovely samples now we just have to get all the equipment needed to do a DIY project as extensive, yet common, as re-tiling. I have watched about as many YouTube DIY tiling instructions as possible. After awhile you begin to feel like a pro even before you've picked up a single tile. I remember years ago watching DIY programs on TV. They're still on, but YouTube I think has usurped much of their viewership. Of all the home repair/remodeling jobs tiling is really one of the simpler ones. The biggest concern for us because we have a basement is making sure the flooring on the main floor isn't flexible. That's going to be a pain. We're going to have to pretty much re-floor before we tile. Even that is really just a matter of laying down firm flooring and nailing it on to the existing plywood, but still. Makes me wish we'd looked for a house without a basement.

Boating in the Fall??

I'm very excited. We're going out on a water test for a boat we're really interested in on Saturday (weather permitting. I put that in there so as not to jinx the fact that the weather is supposed to be fine). That boat is about an hour south of us. There is also the plus that the little lake we're going on also has a boat club that the boat's owner highly recommends. Then on Sunday we're going to drive about 2 1/2 north and maybe test a different boat! That one is very promising as well. Between the two I'm hoping to find what we're looking for. If nothing else it could be a really fun weekend. We need a fun weekend after the last few.

Here's a picture of one of the boats we're going to look at:

Friday, October 23, 2009

Stop Negative Information with the Defamation Monitor

Do you ever wonder what other people are saying about you online? Now you don't have to only worry about your reputation on the "street" you have an entire world's population who may know who you are, and are spreading rumors--right or wrong, and usually, like most rumors, wrong. Defamation of character is a widespread problem now that global communication is a simple.

Now you can do something about what is being said. Knowledge is power and you can protect your online reputation by knowing what others are saying in time to stop the tide of negative talk. It is easier to solve a problem when it is starting than it is after it has time to spread.

Once you know what is being said you can stop online defamation by confronting the gossiper, contacting the defamer's host and reporting them, or launching your own positive campaign to set the record straight. Your efforts will be much more successful if you know where the negativity is being spread so you can target those areas.

However, you combat negative information about you on the web any action is better than no action.

Room with a View

This is one reason I want a boat. It has to be a cruiser too so we can spend then night on it because I want to wake up on a brisk spring/summer/or fall morning and see this:

Online Smokes

Even though I quit smoking my son still smokes and comes around now and then. My husband also enjoys a cigar every now and then. With the current prices the way they are and being in an area where shopping is limited shopping for cigars online makes more sense for him. He can find more brands/choices at better prices. I've bought herbal cigarettes online. I don't use them much but every once in a while when my 'quit' gets tough having one helps. No no, not that kind of herb. I never used to like the smell of cigars either, but now I enjoy it. What is even funnier is that I can't stand the smell of cigarettes now.


I was looking for a boat a few months ago but gave up on it because there was way too much going on in my life at the moment. Well, just recently I started looking again... wow, this is the time of year to buy in regards to deals and prices. That's on the upside. On the downside it's a hard time of the year to buy for two reasons. It is impossible to put the boat in question in the water around here to test it so you have to take the word of the seller along with careful ground examination... tough but okay.. it is even harder though because you know you are going to have to wait MONTHS before going out in it. The best I'll be able to do is go out to the shed and sit in it LOL until next April/May.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

New Way To Clean

I'm a little old fashioned. I've always used good old fashioned elbow grease to clean the house. I found out today I've been doing it all wrong! I have to get me one of these. They're called Ladybug steam cleaners (how cute). It kills all kinds of germs from mold and mildew to greasy grime. It even kills bedbugs and mites. It will clean everything from draperies and rugs to sinks and tubs. It uses a super heated water vapor that dries in seconds. There are not harmful chemicals, just tap water, and no abrasive pads or scouring wire. Beat of all, no strength required. It's a marvel and I've missed out on it all this time.

New Tractor

We were out the other day and we stopped and got a price workup for a new tractor with bucket and backhoe. We even got a price on a post hole digger attachment--a near vital addition for us. I'm so tired of digging holes for posts. No more digging. The tractor will do it for us. This is what the tractor looks like standard (the post hole digger would be in place of the backhoe, one is removed to fit the other). Both the front loader and the backhoe are easy on and off attachments.
We're picking it up in two weeks.

Good Insurance Makes The Difference

Considering all the costs my mother-in-law incurred during the course of her cancer treatment the fact that she really didn't have many out-of-pocket expenses is testament to the value of good insurance on top of standard Medicare. She had BlueCross BlueShield, one of the better insurances. I have BCBS too and think it's a great insurance. The great thing about BCBS coverages is that no matter where you get it, the coverage is likely to be uniform to that found elsewhere. If you get bcbsnc coverage it is going to be similar to the BCBS coverage I have in Illinois. Not only that but there are hospitals all over the country and you are covered everywhere with similar practices. I can understand what Obama means about protecting those from shoddy insurance practices, but I think one of the most important things to realize there is a good insurance company won't have such problems. We were sure grateful for the quality and quick payments for my mother-in-law, and for any emergency we've ever had. A good insurance company treats you well.

Sad Travels Home

I had a funeral to attend over the weekend which meant being gone for several days. Even though it was just up by Chicago it made more sense to get a hotel room than to drive back and forth several times. With the price of gas it was actually only a little more expensive to stay up there, and after such long days that were so full of emotion it was worth that little bit to not have to drive. I really would love to move back up to the area up there but it doesn't look like that is going to happen. Even though the situation wasn't nice, it was nice to drive around familiar territory and see the old neighborhood. I didn't take the time to drive by where my old house was (now replaced by a condominium) but just seeing the neighborhood was enough. Another aspect of funerals that while not nice, is nice, is seeing all the relatives you never see otherwise. Even the wedding a few months ago didn't quite have this because it was more of both sides of this family not just this family and the groom's family like at the wedding. As lovely as that was this was more 'home'.

Thursday, October 08, 2009

The Many Facets of RENEW International

RENEW International is a great inspiration. It is an institution designed to help people refocus their spiritual devotion. RENEW International has several programs designed for particular needs: a campus program for young people called Campus RENEW that is an outreach to help those interested in becoming spiritual leaders the help they need to reach those goals. RENEW Worldwide goes to the locations around the globe that are suffering from oppression or other spiritual needs and provides all that those people need to win the fight for their beliefs, or keep them alive in times of great detestation.

RENEW International has a program called Renew Resources that provides the materials that churches, schools, and other spiritual programs need to spread the word. These are just a few of the many wonderful ways RENEW International brings faith and love to those in need.

Forecast of Things to Come?

Rain, rain, rain and more rain. I feel sorry for the farmers with crops still in the fields. Harvest had just started when all of a sudden we were hit by these rains that won't stop. It appears from the forecast that it isn't going to stop anytime soon either. In fact, some news reports have been threatening (yes threatening, in my book it's a threat anyway) snow over the weekend. SNOW... in October. Early October yet. It is insane. If this is a predication of things to come it is going to be a long, nasty winter. I care a lot less than I used to though. With no outside animals anymore to worry about doing feeding and watering daily in the frigid winter I can stay nice and warm inside.

Sunday, October 04, 2009

Getting to the "Big Apple"

Someday I would love to visit New York. It is the mecca for all types of entertainment and the place any self-respecting fiction writer should be familiar with. The trouble with travel to New York is finding affordable travel. Being the mecca for everything it is also the most sought after 'ticket' around. When you are a "starving" artist like myself you need to find the best deals on cheap New York hotels in order to be able to afford the trip. It is worth the effort and the Internet makes it that much easier to do the research. Once you get to the "Great White Way" located smack dab in the middle of the "Big Apple" there is so much for an entertainment enthusiast to do. I'm determined. I'll get there. It may take a few more years, but I will get there.

Yay Entourage

Yay HBO's Entourage has been renewed. There has been some complaining in the fan community over the show's decline in the past season, but I still really like it. I've noticed many of the same issues they complain about. I'm willing to wait and see how the writer's will work it though. Sometimes it is necessary to go through a bit of a lull in order to get the story moving in the direction it needs to go. I still enjoy all of the characters and actually REALLY like the ending of the last episode where Ari bought out his old nemesis' agency where Loyd now works. Loyd is in for some trouble in the coming season.