Friday, April 24, 2009

Winding Down Another Week

After finding a couple of opportunities worth a nice amount (see the below two posts), I figure I should add a substantial post since I've been a little lax in my writing lately. I don't intend to add to my recent blog series this afternoon -- I'm feeling a bit low on energy and short on time. Instead, I think I'll opt for the tamer posts I usually write. Get ready for more weather!

Earlier this week, we had some pleasant "open window" weather, which essentially means it was comfortable enough to open the windows and let in fresh air. We generally follow the 68-78°F guidelines, so "comfort" to us denotes temperatures outside allowing our internal home temperature to fall within that range. Yesterday, we started to break 80°F, meaning it's getting hotter. Currently, we're sporting 88°F -- where did all my lovely "open window" weather go? Sadly, this is only going to continue as it's the end of April in North Central Florida. We're lucky we still got those temperate days as late into the month as we are. Now, we'll have 90+°F weather to look forward to, along with daily thundershowers and hurricane season. In fact, we have a little over a month to begin compiling our hurricane kit. I wonder when the canned food sales will start this year.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Lost in Translation

Yesterday was free scoop day at Ben & Jerry's. My daughter had a doctor's appointment (read: a shot), so we planned on getting ice cream regardless of her reaction -- she either needed a reward or a consolation prize. It turned out to be a reward, so off we went for her reward. I had decided beforehand that I wanted to get a cone of Phish Food ice cream. Phish Food is reminiscent of rocky road -- chocolate ice cream, swirls of marshmallow and caramel, and fish-shaped pieces of chocolate. I really have no idea what the band Phish sounds like, and I really don't think I'll really ever take the time to try. However, I really love that flavor of ice cream.

My daughter and I got to the shop just in time -- we had virtually no wait. I ordered my Phish Food cone and her strawberry cheesecake scoop in a cup. As the woman handed me my cone, I immediately noticed she got the order wrong. For starters, the ice cream was definitely not chocolate. Not wanting to seem ungrateful on FREE scoop day, I accepted the mix-up, feeling relieved that they at least got my daughter's ice cream correct. I tasted my ice cream and realized a very cruel trick had been played on me -- it was oatmeal crisp. Excuse me? I have a box of oatmeal crisp. It's a cereal in my cabinet. I eat it for breakfast. When I eat ice cream, under no circumstances do I identify the frozen treat as a "healthy" item. We sat down, and I reluctantly began the odious task of eating said ice cream. I helped my daughter spoon mouthfuls of her luxurious strawberry cheesecake ice cream in between horror sessions with my free cone. Thankfully, it included chocolate chips to make up for the non-chocolate-y flavor I had been cursed with.

When we left, the line stretched out the door. My daughter was content with her free scoop, and I discovered that ice cream can come in awful flavors.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Nobody Puts Baby in A Corner

I'll let you in on a little smidgen of information about myself. I'm 25 years old. By the standards set forth in the United States of America, I'm old enough to fight and die for my country. I'm old enough to buy cigarettes if I so choose. I'm old enough to buy alcohol. I'm old enough to rent a car. I'm old enough to get a cheaper rent on my car insurance because I'm no longer in the 16-24 age bracket. I'm old enough to choose to have my tubes tied or my reproductive tract totally removed. Do you know what I'm not permitted to do? I'm not permitted to choose the location, provider, and method in which to give birth. It's quite interesting, actually. In this country, a woman has the right to "choose." I have the right to choose birth control. I have the right to choose an abortion. I have the right to choose adoption. I have the right to choose Plan B. Yet I do not have the right to choose how my baby enters this world. What's wrong with this picture? We are commended for being "brave" to undergo risky procedures in hostile environments. Yet we are berated for expecting to receive mother-baby-friendly, evidence-based care?

I will be embarking on a series of entries detailing my plight with the current medical-model-of-care. I will discuss how my age has affected my care. I will discuss how my income level has affected my care. I will discuss how my desire for true informed consent has affected my care. I will share my frustrations. I will share links to stories that prove it can be done. I will do everything in my power to bring awareness to the currentcesarean epidemic plaguing our country. I will delve into issues of ethics involving the legal field entering into the practice of medicine. I will try to show you just how disgusting this system has gotten. I may isolate myself from some readers, but I don't care. This isn't pretty. This isn't sexy. This is the truth. The truth hurts.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Unimpressed and Unamused

My endeavours to make a profit worthy of Ferenginar have proven to be minimal at best. While I knew YouData was going to be pocket change from the start, I'm a bit disappointed to see that most of my available opportunities with PayPerPost seem to revolve around plumbing websites. I've found a couple of opportunities that require I not mention that the post is sponsored -- well, that's not going to work for me, thank you. I'd prefer to be honest because, really, my content isn't all about reviewing websites and the items they're selling. Apparently, part of the problem lies with my low page ranking and Alexa score. I suppose in all honesty I should be launching marketing efforts to increase my internet presence -- but that also requires the creative energy and inspiration to redesign this entire website.

Friday, April 10, 2009

WhoData? YouData!

A couple weeks ago, a friend of mine shared a link to Basically, YouData offers to pay you pocket change for viewing ads and sponsored links. You sign up, fill out information about yourself, and you start viewing ads. Each Friday, they send out payment via paypal, and they dock a 2% fee (not to exceed a dollar) for the mass paypal transaction. I was a bit skeptical -- I pride myself on sniffing out a scam that tries to pose as a legit deal -- so I waited for her to confirmed that she received money in her paypal account. Last Friday, she did just that, so I signed up on Saturday. Over the course of a week, I collected $6.31 from viewing ads for about 15-30 minutes during the entire week. I didn't have ads everyday, but it's still money. After the transaction fee, I was due to collect $6.19. I received an email this afternoon confirming that my money had been sent, and voila!

My $6.19 richer paypal account!

I also get up to a dollar for each person I refer -- and you can, too. Please check it out: Times are tough, and we could all use some extra change here and there.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

The Difference

I find myself comparing my achievements to those of my peers and feeling rather unaccomplished in life -- for example, a peer working in an office in the next building over has a crisp website layout, a fresh and concise résumé, and several clips under her belt already. I have this stale, old site, a relatively bland résumé, and no listing of my clips. I feel like my web-presence should be presented in a better manner, not to mention my occupational status. I'm still non-benefited (sadly, even the free food one can snag around here doesn't quite count as an actual benefit). I slink back in my chair feeling less than worthy of recognition.

Then I realize there are glaring differences between me and my peers -- I just so happen to have a family of my own to raise and care for. While my peers have plenty of time to climb the clichéd ladder, I spend much of my free time teaching my young children how the world works. It may not be even remotely as glamourous as my schoolmate from high school's interactions with Hollywood's biggest names, but I certainly do derive a high level of satisfaction from watching my children grow and change as individuals. Who says you really have to keep up with your peers in order to succeed?

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Turning Points

Each day seems to bring a new adventure for my generally groggy self. Some days are obviously better than others, but life can be a serious challenge from time to time. Of course, we all experience challenges in our lives -- without challenging, we most certainly couldn't grow as individuals. Growth is a regular occurence in all aspects of life, and life could not exist without growth. I hope to successfully grow as an individual, even if I am the only person who is affected by that growth. I cannot grow taller. I would prefer not to grow wider. I would love to grow in wisdom and knowledge. I would love to grow in grace and dignity. Here's to hoping for the sake of hope. Sometimes, hope is all you need to go on.

Monday, April 6, 2009

The six-word story

Hemingway was once challenged to write the shortest story ever. He came up with this six-word gem -- "For sale: Baby shoes, never worn." In those six words, he successfully tells you that someone is selling a pair of never-worn baby shoes, allowing the reader to speculate as to why those baby shoes were never worn. His success has led to numerous attempts at writing a six-word story. At one point, I took up the challenge myself and came up with this -- "I drank tea today. The End." While I doubt my attempt lives up to Hemingway, I do rather like it. It would seem many stories can be told with a mere six words.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Inching Closer to the Mark

In the past ninety days, I've posted eighteen times -- not including this post. I apparently need to reach the lovely number twenty before I can be approved to make a bit of cash off my writing. I suspect that Tuesday will be the day I resubmit for a fourth try. Yes, my fourth try. Of course, I've not even stopped to take the time to redesign my blog. I must reiterate the purple layout just doesn't seem to suit my needs at this point. While I could switch back to the default layout, I'm reluctant to do so because I'm almost positive I'd need to customize that as well. If I'm going to customize a layout, I might as well make it count.

In other news, it seems my spam filters aren't even picking up very many spambot comments these days. Perhaps one of the zombie networks has been raided by the authorities, to which I would rejoice. Granted, it doesn't take too much effort to rid myself of the filthy little things. ;)

Thursday, April 2, 2009

What's a woman to do when the forecast calls for severe weather overnight? "Be prepared for tornadic activity." Excuse me? Are you telling me that I could be sleeping peacefully in my bed one moment, then hurled to my death the next? Are you telling me I should remain conscious throughout the night, cowering in the closet under the stairs? Are you also telling me it's a Thursday night, meaning I still have one more work day to complete? Please pardom me while I have a meltdown. I live in a townhouse on the corner of my building. Said townhouse occupies the second and third stories of the building. My bedroom is on the third story, which is the top floor. Above my ceiling? The roof. I suppose the doppler will determine my courses of action for the evening. For now, excuse me while I shut down the office for another night.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009


I've begun to formulate a very detailed, thoughtful post that I'd like to publish within the next few weeks. I'm absolutely ecstatic that I've finally gotten some inspiration to write. Writer's block plagued me for much of the past several months, so much so that each post I've done in the past few months feels forced and lack-luster. I've felt like my writing hasn't really meant much, nor have I felt it warranted attention. I feel refreshed to have an idea again.

I would also like to express my disdain for April Fool's Day. I suppose you can mostly chalk it up to a "prank" someone played on me five years ago today, but this "holiday" never really sat well with me. Playing horribly cruel jokes on your loved ones and friends? That's absolutely mean-spirited and hurtful. I don't care how funny you think you are -- it still hurts those people you're fooling. If anyone wants to argue about worthless holidays with me, I will always say that April Fool's Day is the most worthless waste of a day. You think Valentine's Day is a commercial deal? At least it's a day for celebrating love. April Fool's Day doesn't have any warm and fuzzy feelings involved. You don't get into the spirit of giving, you don't get creatively spooky, and you don't give thanks for what you have. No, the whole day revolves around tricking and spotting tricks. It's disgusting.