If you are expecting this site to show a person whose house is spotless, with homemade meals and desert made from scratch on the table every night, the laundry always caught up, my kid always acting perfect and handmade gifts given for every holiday, then you’ve landed on the wrong site.

If you are NOT like the person mentioned above and you want to come hang out with someone who isn’t a Supermom either, then you’ve come to the right place.

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Thursday, February 25, 2010

Swagbucks Birthday Bash = More Swagbucks!

Search & Win

Swagbucks is celebrating their birthday by offering more ways to earn Swagbucks and changing how Swagbucks are earned and spent.

Never heard of Swagbucks?

Swagbucks is an online search engine sponsored by Google that rewards you with points for doing what you already do everyday - look at, search, play on the Internet!

You can then redeem those points for gift cards to different places like Amazon, merchandise from many different retailers and more!

Every time you do a search using Swagbucks you can earn points. There are also many other ways to earn points while on the Internet including referring others.

So check out Swagbucks today!

Search & Win

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Identity Theft Prevention Ideas

Search & Win

This was sent to me and I thought I would pass this on.
I agree with most of the advice given here. My personal comments are in red.

Read this and make a copy for your files in case you need to refer to it someday. Maybe we should all take some of this advice! A corporate attorney sent the following out to the employees in his company:

1. Do not sign the back of your credit cards. Instead, put ' PHOTO ID REQUIRED.' (Keep in mind retailers require that you sign your card and can refuse to accept it if it’s not signed. Some do not even check especially since you can swipe it yourself. It really depends on the cashier you get. If thieves have your wallet, they have your photo ID anyway. Credit card companies need to come up with a better way to help keep our cards safe.)

2. When you are writing checks to pay on your credit card accounts, DO NOT put the complete account number on the 'For' line. Instead, just put the last four numbers. The credit card company knows the rest of the number, and anyone who might be handling your check as it passes through all the check processing channels won't have access to it. (True and you can do that and it’s not a bad idea, but remember, every time you make a purchase they have your account # anyway. I pay my credit card bill online and rarely write checks anymore anyway.)

3. Put your work phone # on your checks instead of your home phone. If you have a PO Box use that instead of your home address. If you do not have a PO Box, use your work address. Never have your SS# printed on your checks. (DUH!) You can add it if it is necessary. But if you have it printed, anyone can get it. (I don't agree that you should add your work address and phone # to the check unless you own the company. If you were ever to leave that company you will still get info sent to that address in your name for months to come. You don't want your personal info being sent to work.You should also never need to add your SS# to a check for any reason. Only companies that report taxes, credit reports, etc. are allowed to require your SS# and should never need it on a check. Any other company asking for it doesn’t need it and should provide a customer #, not use your SS#.)

4. Place the contents of your wallet on a photocopy machine. Do both sides of each license, credit card, etc. You will know what you had in your wallet and all of the account numbers and phone numbers to call and cancel. Keep the photocopy in a safe place. (Good idea, but in case you can’t read the small print on the copy of the cards write the info on the copies)

I also carry a photocopy of my passport when I travel either here or abroad.

We've all heard horror stories about fraud that's committed on us in stealing a name, address, Social Security number, credit cards.

Unfortunately, I, an attorney, have firsthand knowledge because my wallet was stolen last month. Within a week, the thieves ordered an expensive monthly cell phone package, applied for a VISA credit card, had a credit line approved to buy a Gateway computer, received a PIN number from DMV to change my driving record information online, and more. (What concerns me the most is that you can change driving record info online. I’m not sure you can actually do that or not, but that should only be allowed to be done in person. There are some things that should not be allowed to do online!)

But here's some critical information to limit the damage in case this happens to you or someone you know:

5. We have been told we should cancel our credit cards immediately. But the key is having the toll free numbers and your card numbers handy so you know whom to call. Keep those where you can find them.

6. File a police report immediately in the jurisdiction where your credit cards, etc., were stolen. This proves to credit providers you were diligent, and this is a first step toward an investigation (if there ever is one).

But here's what is perhaps most important of all : (I never even thought to do this.)

7. Call the 3 national credit reporting organizations immediately to place a fraud alert on your name and also call the Social Security fraud line number. I had never heard of doing that until advised by a bank that called to tell me an application for credit was made over the internet in my name.

The alert means any company that checks your credit knows your information was stolen, and they have to contact you by phone to authorize new credit.

By the time I was advised to do this, almost two weeks after the theft, all the damage had been done. There are records of all the credit checks initiated by the thieves' purchases, none of which I knew about before placing the alert. Since then, no additional damage has been done, and the thieves threw my wallet away this weekend (someone turned it in). It seems to have stopped them dead in their tracks.

Now, here are the numbers you always need to contact about your wallet, if it has been stolen:

1.) Equifax: 1-800-525-6285

2.) Experian (formerly TRW): 1-888-397-3742

3.) Trans Union : 1-800-680 7289

4.) Social Security Administration (fraud line): 1-800-269-0271

We pass along jokes on the Internet; we pass along just about everything.

If you are willing to pass this information along, it could really help someone that you care about.

(Thanks to my brother Mark for passing this on)

Monday, February 22, 2010


Of all the things I've lost, I miss my mind the most.

Recipe - Jello Cake

My son had a birthday yesterday and here is the recipe for the cake I baked him.
Jello cake is a favorite in our family. The jello is marbled throughout the cake and makes the cake very moist.
Typically I make it with a yellow cake, but you can experiment with different flavors.

1 yellow cake mix
1 packet of whipped topping
1 packet of instant vanilla pudding
1 ½ cup milk
½ tsp. vanilla
1 packet of strawberry jello mix

Bake cake in a 13 x 9 pan and allow to cool completely.

Poke holes randomly in cake with toothpick – poke all the way to bottom of pan.

Make jello according to package directions and let cool on counter for a couple of minutes. Do not jell.

In separate bowl, mix 1 packet of whipped topping, 1 packet of instant vanilla pudding, 1 ½ cup milk, ½ tsp. vanilla in large bowl. Beat 2 minutes on high until it thickens and is like whipped topping.

Pour 1 cup of jello onto cake including along sides. The holes you made in the cake with the toothpick will allow the jello to seep in to the cake.

Spread whipped topping on cake and chill in refrigerator till ready to serve. Refrigerate any leftovers.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

A Misquote On Money

Money is NOT the root of all evil. The Bible actually says, the LOVE of money is the root of all evil. Re: 1 Timothy 6:10

That is a big difference. How did that mistake get started? Whoever misquoted the Bible really screwed up a lot of people’s belief about money including mine. I believe God wants us to prosper, not struggle for what we want. Now that I understand what was meant to be said I hope to have a better understanding of how God wants us to view prosperity.

I, like most other people want to be more prosperous and no longer link evil to money. It’s just the love of money that can cause you problems, not money itself.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

How Checking Out Other Websites Can Save You Money - "Money Saving Methods"

In this “How Checking Out Other Websites Can Save You Money” series, I will share with you some of the websites I use to save money. I will tell you what I like and what I don’t like about the site and how I use it save money.

Today, I recommend trying
Money Saving Methods

Money Saving Methods’s author, Carrie is a very busy mom who seeks out all the latest deals the Internet has to offer. From coupons and sales, to surveys and bank offers, she has and does nearly every way you can think of to make money. She even posts her earnings to date in each field! Of course, over 50% of those earnings are from affiliate ads. Still, it’s amazing how much money she earns. She is always eager to share what works for her and she says she never recommends anything she hasn’t tried herself.

If you are looking to get into making side money off of free trials, samples and special offers,
Money Saving Methods is the place to start. Her site is easy to follow and has the different subjects broken down into different categories. She offers help in how to get started and recommends the different companies she has tried. She provides all the how to’s in getting started and has an open dialogue of help if you need it.

Now for what I don’t like.

As like most blogs and websites that cater to this market, there are a lot of ads. I can understand though that is where she makes the bulk of her income. At least her articles are easy to find on the page.

Though Carrie offers great tips on how to do what she does, you must be very careful when embarking on this journey of free trials, etc. Many offers are free up to a certain point, and then they start charging you. Also, many companies want sensitive, personal information from you like home addresses, credit card numbers and social security numbers before you can receive the goods.

Carrie seems to have her personal information out there in a lot of different places. I’m not that comfortable with that level of exposure. I highly recommend you follow her advice closely to prevent losing money or getting hooked up with the wrong company. I also recommend you keep a very close eye on your accounts and credit reports in case your personal information falls into the wrong hands. The more you share your info with companies, the higher the risk of having your identity stolen. That means having to check your credit report with all three reporting agencies at least twice a year and maybe having some kind of alert notification on your credit cards. It is essential when you do this kind of work on the Internet that you keep excellent records. If you are not the organizing type, then this is not for you.

What she does requires a lot of time and work and may not be achievable for some. It requires a high sense of organization and follow through. I recommend starting slow and working your way up as you get better at it. So if you’re up to the work and you don’t mind the risk then I highly recommend trying
Money Saving Methods.

I ask though, that if you are wanting to check out the online printable coupons and other special advertisers to please click on my coupons links and other advertiser links. We all get commissions from your printouts and site visits and we greatly appreciate your support.

I hope you enjoy Money Saving Methods and let me know your thoughts on it.

For the best deals in online printable coupons, check out ours below and on our sidebar!

Coupons Inc.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Friday Freebies

· FREE Eye Exam for Infants till one year old. See my article on The Infant See Program here.

· Earn FREE Rewards every time you surf the Net with Swagbucks here.

· FREE pancakes from IHOP on February 23 from 7AM to 10PM – they are free, but they are hoping you’ll make a donation to the local children’s hospital.

· File your taxes for FREE here – Tax Act

· FREE Crest Whitestrips

· FREE 6 Dairy Queen Blizzards

· Earn double the cash back on a different store every day at Ebates
Ebates pays you to shop online and with tons of stores and all the major retailers, you are bound to find great deals on places you already shop, so you might as well get paid for it! Click Here to sign up for Ebates to receive this great deal!

· FREE Racing Classifieds

· Print Free Grocery Coupons

· FREE Samples

· FREE Underjams

· FREE Pair of Acuvue Moist Contacts

· FREE Pair of Acuvue Contacts for Astigmatism

· FREE Pair of Acuvue Colors Contacts

· FREE Pair of Acuvue Oasys Contacts

· FREE Prilosec OTC

· FREE Baby Stuff

· Free Original Grand Slam breakfast on your birthday at Denny’s Dine in only. Must show proof of your birthday.

· FREE Grocery Coupons

· FREE Dr. Seuss Books

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View ads below for more Feebies!

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Monday, February 15, 2010

Clipping Coupons = $86.40 an Hour?!

Can that be right?
Well, according to this article,
Doing The Math On Coupons you do.

Think clipping coupons isn't worth it? Think again. I average a savings of 40% off of grocery bill every week. Add that up over a month and year and it's equivalent to a small part time job. And my average isn't as good as some Coupon Queens.

You may clip coupons out of the Sunday paper, but don't overlook Internet coupons.
Here are couple links to sites worth looking into:
Free Local Grocery Store Coupons
Click Here
FREE grocery coupons and more
Click Here

Don't forget to check out my side panel for more sites to save you money!

Happy saving!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

I Found My Schedule! (from last year)

When I was first laid off from my job, I immediately re-wrote my daily schedule.

I had the entire 24 hours marked off in time slots with activities, chores, even downtime scheduled right down to the minute. I had daily, weekly and monthly lists and goals.

I came across that list today. It was buried under a pile of papers I’ve been meaning to get to for several months now. Old papers that needed to be sorted, filed, shredded, etc. When I saw it, I busted out laughing. Then I felt this sense of guilt come over me because I have come nowhere near that level of perfection. But it did lead to this post!

What was I thinking? No one can schedule every minute of the day. No one that I know of anyway. I’m not Kelly Rippa! Sure, Electrolux appliances show Kelly Rippa as having a perfect life. Great career, kids, social life, a great marriage and great fitness level, which of course is all made possible because of their products, or so they want us to believe. But come on, who lives like that? The commercials intentionally made to be outrageous in their show of perfection are funny and cute, but deep down I find myself resenting them because there is no way I can even come close to that. Heck, I’m as far from that scenario you can get. Not to mention I can’t afford to buy appliances that can do what they do even in the real world. How do they get burners that hot to boil water that fast?

See, in the beginning I figured with all this extra time on my hands I could totally change me in every aspect. I would magically find ways to make more money. I would become fitter than any of the Olympic athletes. My house would be cleaner than Martha Stewart’s and better decorated. I would cook and bake my butt off – wait, that’s an oxymoron. You can’t be a great baker and have a small butt at the same time. I would be a better wife and mother than June Cleaver or by today’s standards, Kelly Rippa. I would work on all my problems and have them fixed by the end of the month. I guess I was thinking I would improve all these areas of my life within three months, leaving the rest of the year to work on the world’s problems, like eliminating world hunger and achieving world peace.

So, what have I done with my time? Well, let’s see. I have a healthy 2 year old who, with all this snow and cold weather right now has a very bad case of cabin fever. Though I won’t win mother of the year – I dressed him up in his snowsuit, boots, hat, gloves to play for 5 minutes in the almost foot of snow we had, only to watch him fall down and couldn’t get up again like in the scene from A Christmas Story. A good mom would have rushed over to help him up, but I had to snap a picture first, stop laughing, put my camera in my pocket, then pick him up. Oh well, he has to have something to talk about in therapy later in life.

I also have a great husband who I rarely see much of because he works so hard. I know he's my husband because it's the same man that walks through that door every night. I mean, the same man wouldn't keep coming back every night if he didn't have to, right? Hopefully come race season we will at least wave to one another when we see each other in the staging lanes.

My house is spotfull, not spotless. There are spots on the bathroom mirror, floors, carpets, clothes, windows, tv and computer screens. There are some spots that actually make me stop and wonder what they are and where they came from. There are some spots that are older than my son I believe.

As far as working on my personal goals in becoming a better person – let’s just say it’s taking longer than the 30 days I gave it last year. So, as for world hunger and world peace, you will have to get along without me for awhile longer. Though I will try and add more to the local food pantry and promise to count to ten before screaming and hand gesturing at the next driver who tailgates me.

Oh, and if anyone is planning on stopping by for a visit, you’ll understand if it takes me 10 minutes to answer the door. As I brush my teeth, wipe the toothpaste off of the bathroom mirror, stack the dirty dishes into the dishwasher upside down and cram the door shut. I also have to throw all toys, clothes, all the self improvement books and organizing your life magazines, into the bedrooms and shut the doors. You may also hear the back door open and shut real fast. Don’t worry, I’m not sneaking out the back. I’m just throwing the garbage can out onto the back deck that is overflowing with dirty pull ups, last night’s leftovers and today’s soggy Cheerios in it. You may see me run by the windows spraying air freshener and hear the can go sailing down the steps as I open the door. Ignore my toddler who is running towards me with a bewildered look on his face with his shirt on backwards and upside down with one mismatched sock in his hand.

I have it all together, really I do. Kelly Rippa has nothing on me. And when I say nothing, I do mean nothing.

Boy, I’m really rippin’ on her! No hard feelings, Kelly. We know it’s really the appliances that make you great. Just kidding. Really, I am.

Friday, February 5, 2010

I Had To Say Goodbye To An Old Friend

I had to say goodbye to one of my best buddies, my beloved horse.

He was my 21 year old Arabian gelding and it was one of the hardest things I ever had to do.

He had melanoma that I believe was spreading. He also had arthritis that was getting worse along with bone chips from an old injury flaring up. The worse part was I knew I didn't have anymore money to keep spending every month in trying to keep him healthy and out of pain. I had already spent more money than I had coming in. In an effort to keep him, I was getting into money trouble fast. Something I have always preached about not doing.

I just loved him so and was not wanting to let him go.

I have had other horses and pets that I had to put down before, but by far he was the hardest. Was it because he was my last horse? Was it because he was more special to me? Was it because he was the sweetest horse I ever knew? Was it because I felt guilty that I couldn't afford to give him a better life?

I think it was all of the above.

We had been through so much together and having horses had been such a large part of who I was. When he died, I felt a part of me died right there with him. A big part of who I was, was gone.

I can't even begin to tell you about the level of guilt I am experiencing. Even though I had anguished over this decision for months, it still took so much more strength to do than most other things I have done in my life.

I knew his time was coming, I just wasn't prepared to make it come sooner than it did. So many people said it was the right thing to do and it was time - the vet, the farrier, other experienced horse people. Even though it may have been the right thing to do, it still felt so wrong.

I explored other options, even looking into giving him up to someone else who might be able to give him what he needed to extend his life another year or so. I just couldn't bare to give him to someone who might end up not taking care of him or let him linger, suffering way too long. I couldn't stand the thought of him suffering terribly and not having the power do do anything about it.

So when the time came, I sobbed like a baby. Harder than I had for any other. My husband held me and cried right along side of me. We still tear up from time to time. It's taken me these few days just to get up the strength to write about it.

He was beautiful, funny and the fastest horse I ever knew. In earlier years, he would run with a herd of horses who were running at full speed, pass them up, circle around them and pass them again. He would antagonize any horse just to get the horse to chase him. He just loved to run. He never lost an impromptu match race. Riding him at full speed was dizzying. I wished I had been in a position to professionally race him.

At times he could be a handful to ride, because he was so full of spirit and energy, but he never did anything out of spite. He didn't have a mean bone in his body. His sweetness earned him fans of people wherever he went, but also caused him to be always last in ranking when it came to being in a herd. Though he was very spirited under saddle, he was as gentle as could be on the ground. Babies have toddled under him by mistake and he never moved a muscle. His manners were impeccable and he made even the most timid feel at ease around him. Everyone loved him.

I could go on and on, but it's getting harder to do so.

Whenever I come across a picture, or memento of him, I can't stop the tears from welling up. Though I am happy to have had him and feel blessed to have known such a gentle spirit, I feel that I have lost my best friend and may never totally get over that.

I hope those who have known us do not judge me too harshly for letting him go now instead of later. You have no idea how hard this was for me, but I had to think of my family in addition to my horse's well being. Unless you have been where I'm at, you couldn't possibly understand.
Those of you who have been there, I'm sure you understand.

On earth he could fly without wings. Now he's earned them.

I miss you Jay.

"God forbid that I should go to any heaven in which there are no horses."

---Robert Bontine


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