Monday, August 12, 2019

My Bucket List is more complete than I thought!

Summer’s almost over and I got more accomplished on my bucket list than I thought I did, and this weekend’s going to be the final end to the beautiful bucket list items. I never got around to some of the things on the list, but I’m happy I at least accomplished a few items.

Some of the ones I actually accomplished are:

1. Take a trip to the local book store and 2. SummerBucket List with a twist
These two were the most fun things about summertime. I had so much fun reading books, and browsing the local book store free book area. I may have to go about doing that again. It was a pretty interesting concept, and the reasoning for doing it was pretty awesome. If people knew what books were already in their grasp and read them, it would be an interesting place.

When you hidden clearance shop the world is your oyster. I had a chance to do this the last few times I was at Wal-Mart and enjoyed the thrill of the hunt. I even learned that there was an online group just for the hidden clearance and saving money, if I actually looked for the group. Now I've immersed in the world wide Wal-Mart shopping. Who said Wal-Mart shopping was a bad thing?

8. Stare at the stars
Despite the weather in Michigan being pretty damp and dreary we had a few days where I could actually look at the stars. I don’t know my constellations for the life of me. All the stars look the same. But it gives a new spin to what my blog tag line says. I need to reach for the stars more often.

11. Try A New Gluten Free Meal
I’ve actually tried a few meals, and some new ideas, I’ll share them eventually, but there were so many different things I’ve made and tried. I even tried new snacks. The gluten free world isn’t as scary, it was actually quite fun and exciting. It shall be a weekly thing.

I recorded a video and got almost out of being camera shy a little bit. I have never been confident enough to talk to people or on camera, and once I had a company I did a video for tall me if I couldn’t pronounce the product properly to remove the video. But thanks to Vive it was fun again. I might be doing more videos in the future.

22. Go barefoot all-day
I’m starting to hate socks. They’re so uncomfortable. Unless it gets cold out and I need slipper socks, I’m not going to be wearing socks as often anymore. Then to think about not wearing shoes, it’s really worth it.

23. Dollar Tree Inspired Pedicure—turned manicure
I bought some nail polish and some other stuff the other day and decided against painting my toenails black. Not that I didn’t want to, but my toenails had a problem with ripping below the bed lately and the pain involved didn’t even seem worth it, so I didn’t paint my nails after all. I don’t know if it has to do with going barefoot more often, or what but I loved painting my finger nails and making them look pretty. I’ll share pictures eventually.

Sunday, August 11, 2019

After 8 years you're still on my heart

My life changed on this day 8 years ago. I was 15 weeks with my very first son. On this day 8 years ago, I was in the hospital with tears in my eyes and pain in my heart. Never once had I ever had anything this live changing happen in my life, never once have I felt so much emotional pain and so much emotional pain all mixed together. Eight years ago, we medically induced my pregnancy, it was the day I said hello and goodbye to my handsome son. 

Some history about my son

I found out I was pregnant on June 14, 2011. I was ecstatic, I was told that if I ever became pregnant it would be extremely difficult, so to hear that I was going to finally be a mother. I was excited. I couldn't wait to meet my baby, whenever he or she was going to be born. My miracle baby. 

A few weeks later, I had my ultrasound, I was so excited to see my son move around on the screen. I was confused about why I didn't get any photos, but I figured it was something nice the doctor was going to do or it wasn't time for photos. I was just ecstatic to see the baby move around. 

The doctor called me a few days later and asked my husband and I to come in, the same day I got a whole packet in the mail about, "DNA, and genetic testing." I was really confused about what was happening. But tried not to let it get to me. I shouldn't be worried when I was pregnant. I knew it wouldn't be good on the baby. 

But once I saw the doctor my whole world changed. She said there may have been something wrong with the baby, she showed us an ultrasound photo of his skull and explained that there was something missing and that there may be part of its skull missing, or it could the way that the baby was laying. I tried to keep positive that it was how it was laying. But she said she had referred us to the high-risk doctors and they'd get ahold of me. Those were the papers I got earlier that morning, that I knew nothing about. 

It wasn't even a day later I was at the high-risk doctor's, nervous, my heart was in my throat and I was trying not to get emotional. They asked me my whole medical history, checked my vitals and did a ton of other stuff that I hardly remember happening. Then they led me to the ultrasound room. The room had many monitors so that the parents could see their baby on the screen.

The nurse checked the baby on the ultrasound. And for a split second, I was hoping tha the doctor was wrong and that this second opinion proved that our son was normal.

That excitement was short-lived though, the doctor came in and laid on the news that what our son had was a fatal birth defect called anencephaly. Anencephaly is a neural tube disorder, that causes the neural tube on the baby's head to not form. Because it doesn't form and there's no bone to protect the brain every time my son hit my placenta or my placental wall pieces of his brain would come loose. She explained if he went full term, he more than likely would be born stillborn or he'd die from respiratory failure, and since he had a fatal condition the doctors wouldn't do anything much to save him.
I then was given an option to go full term give born to a son who may or may not be a life when he was born or medically induce and try for a baby again. To be given a choice like that felt heart-wrenching. What choices did I have, they were both going to end in sadness.

After a bit of thinking, I decided going full term wasn't what I had in mind. I didn't think that I'd be mentally strong enough for a few more months just to deliver a baby who wouldn't make it. So we went with the option of medically inducing.

On August 10, 2011, I was medically induced in a hospital room in the labor and delivery wing. The physical pain was nothing, possibly because they had me hooked up to a pain pump so the pain wasn't so bad. It was the emotional pain that really drained me. I wanted to leave the room, I wanted everything to be normal. I go from being told that it would be difficult to have my own baby to possibly losing the only chance I had at motherhood.

August 11, 2011, our baby was born. I never really had a chance to say goodbye to him. But despite that, he was loved, he was my firstborn and will always be my firstborn. It changed the way I understood life and understood being a parent went. But since then, I've had two other amazing children that I wouldn't trade for the world. 

Time for an Angelverery

I said it on my Facebook a bit ago the funny thing about losing a child is, that it feels like it happened yesterday, but at the same time it feels like it was so long ago. At this point in my grieving process, I'm aware that my son's body more than likely isn't in its full form in the ground, and may not even be there after all the decomposition. So today is just memories and sadness. 

I'm not the best at talking about this. And as much as I try to talk about it, it hurts even more, but I know I have to do this to heal and feel better. 
Our Life Under Construction                                                                   

To all other parents of Angel Baby's 

To any parents of an angel baby. If you need someone to talk to I'm here for you and you're in my heart. and prayers. 

Friday, August 9, 2019

Puppy Cliff Hangers in Oh no, George!

Oh No, George is a children's book that lives them with a cliff hanger. A pretty nifty cliffhanger! I never saw a cliffhanger in a book meant for children until now, but the reason behind it was almost genius.

Oh No, George! is a book about a dog, who's trying to be good, but sometimes misbehaves, he's eaten a cake and knocked down flower pots. He's really trying to be a good doggy. But being a good doggy can be really tough if you know what I mean. There's so many things to do and life is too short to listen all the time. Am I right? Freya, Alec and Monkey all agree with George's issue and they're cats!

The book ends on another one of George's antic's this time, it's the child's turn to decide if he followed through or not. There's tons of room for discussion, or even turn it into an art activity as suggested in the back of the book. Whatever way works for your child.

Hopefully Oh No, George! Teaches your child to do the right thing, and to understand why doing the right thing is good. It's what the book is meant for. 

Are there any other books for kids with cliffhangers that you enyjoy?

Thursday, August 8, 2019

World Cat Day from my three buddies

It’s World Cat Day and the cats wanted to talk about the holiday a little bit. The cats asked for it, so instead of doing a taggy thing today I’ve let each cat give time to give 7 facts about themselves. Nobody wanted to model for the holiday so here are pictures of your fuzzy buddies from last week. We'll get more photos soon!

From Freya’s Mouth

  • Freya Fact 1: The humans here say that my markings are interesting. I have one tan paw, a half tan chin, oh and I have two little white spots on my belly.
  • Freya Fact 2: Alec still thinks I’m his ma-ma, and I’ve told him, that I’m not, but I’ve been actually teaching him how to be a big kitty lately, and not to be an ungrateful cat.
  • Freya Fact 3: I have a kitty crush on Sylvester, human girl turns on Sylvester and I can hear him from a mile away so I come running.
  • Freya Fact 4: I don’t meow a lot. The only time I meow is when I have a toy or my string and I want to show the humans when they’re busy.
  • Freya Fact 5: I like to kneed human girl’s blanket every night right before she goes to sleep.
  • Freya Fact 6: I likes to sleep in boxes in special hiding spots. Nobody’s allowed to bother me when I’m in my special hiding spots. Not even girl human.
  • Freya Fact 7: I’m the only kitty cat that’s allowed to smelly, smell human foods. Alec will try eating the foods if you let him smell. I only like to see if the human’s foods are safe for them to eat.

Alec’s Fan-tics

  • Alec’s Fan-tic 1: My whiskers are both black and white. Girl human says it makes me distinct like Freya and Monkey. They don’t have normal cats.
  • Alec’s Fan-tic 2: I like sleeping upside down when I can. It’s more comfortable that way. Freya told me not to do that, because it’s not safe and it makes people think you trust them or something. I don’t really understand, but I like sleeping upside down.
  • Alec’s Fan-tic 3: Every time I hear people in the hallway I get excited. I think they’re here to visit me. They’re not though. They’re just neighbors going to their apartments.
  • Alec’s Fan-tic 4: I like trying to lick condensation off of bottles and cups. I get yelled at for it!
  • Alec’s Fan-tic 5: I understand my name now. I know my name is Alec, but sometimes I don’t listen and will ignore people.
  • Alec’s Fan-tic 6: I’m still not good with my manners yet. I’ll walk up to people and cry so that they’ll feed me they’re food. Freya’s right I can’t smell other kitty cat’s foods they’re afraid I’ll eat it.
  • Alec’s Fan-tic 7: I’m extremely opinionated, maybe even more so than Freya.

Monkey’s Moments;

  • Monkey’s Moment 1: I’m an old man, I’m almost 18 years old. Humans say that’s pretty old for a kitty cat.
  • Monkey’s Moment 2: I’m not as friendly as Alec and Freya, but I’m still a pretty cool kitty cat. I like being alone under the bed a lot. It’s cool and quiet.
  • Monkey’s Moment 3: I like to headbutt Freya for attention. Freya hates it, but she puts up with me anyway because she says I’m annoying.
  • Monkey’s Moment 4: Once I peed on the human girl when she was sleeping. Man human yelled at me. I’ve also puked in her shoe once as well.
  • Monkey’s Moment 5: I’m a ticked tabby. I've been told being a ticked tabby isn't very common when it comes to cats who are not purebred cats.
  • Monkey’s Moment 6: My original girl human abandoned me when she left the man human, and the man human said that he didn't have the heart to kick me out or get rid of me when she left, so that's why I still live here. 
  • Monkey’s Moment 7: Just because I don't blog like Freya and Alec doesn't mean that I'm not loved. I'm loved a lot, I don't like blogging a lot though. I don't want attention if you know what I mean. It's not really my thing.

Tuesday, August 6, 2019

Why I quit writing for content mills

Being able to write articles for people had always been my dream. Wellbeing able to write something that people would read had always been my dream, articles were part of my dream, to a very small degree. That's when I heard from a friend about the world of content mills. Sites where you'd write an article and you'd get paid for it.
give up GIF by ATTN:
Getting paid for writing, doesn't that sound exciting?

I only wish I wasn't that stupid and fell for my friend's piece of advice that went along with her explanation of content mills. She told me it could be a starting point if I really wanted it to be, but it's not a good idea to get caught up in it. I'll explain why I quit doing it and why I'm sticking to blogging and writing my first novel for right now.

Very little pay for tons of work with very little time
One of the first articles I was to write as an 800-word article for only $2.50 and that was putting it nicely. I had only two days do it and two other articles to write. The topic was something that I had no clue about, which meant I'd have to research, research, research and hope that I understood the topic well enough to write an article that made sense.

Writing about a certain topic is tough
I don't know if it's just me or other people who write. If you're forced to write about something you know nothing about, it's obvious when you write an article or talk about something. I can write about something I know little about, but it's obvious when you read through my article I wasn't well versed on the topic. My verbiage may be a bit choppy, and the article isn't as in-depth as I would go if it were a topic that I knew about.
confused pokemon GIF
People are rude
This goes along with the last topic and the next topic altogether. It's actually why I quit writing for content mills. My last article was about robotics or something along those lines. I knew nothing and i was to push out an article in 24 hours. I wrote what I knew just to be told that it was obvious that I didn't know how to write in English and that English wasn't my native language.

I get it, I understand people aren't always going to be nice and I'm going to get that person that doesn't like what I wrote, but when writing is my livelihood, the way the person wrote it was mind-bogglingly crazy. It really made think, "Do I not have the concept of the English language?"

The customer service sucks
I was stupid the day that that happened and messaged the customer service lady. Mainly because I didn't know if with a comment like his if she'd like me to retake the English portion of the entrance exam that I took to get in the content mill (I passed with flying colors). Just to be told that she could understand why the person said what he did and that my writing was horrendous and to quit being a f*** baby about it. Her words, not mine.
rude phone GIF
The last straw
At the time that I was having all of these issues, I was in the middle of my health diagnosis. I wasn't sure what auto-immune disorder I had, or if I had any. With that, it ended up causing my fibromyalgia to flare so badly, and my brain fog to get so bad, that I couldn't write a coherent sentence even if someone made me write something.

Do I miss content mills and making a few dollars writing about stuff I could care nothing about? Not one bit. I like being able to express myself on my own accord, even if I don't make money doing it. Money isn't why I got into writing anyway. I wanted to write and allow other people to read my writing because it's what makes me happy.

Monday, August 5, 2019

Yet more snackel box ideas...and more to come at a later date

From the day someone on Facebook mentioned the Snaklebox for their children, to now when I'm still playing around with an idea about what kind of contenders I want in my box. I wanted a good balance between sweet and savory, but I also wanted it vegetarian, dye-free and gluten-free. I wanted it as natural as possible. That's why I'm waiting until the end of summer (September 23,) to unveil the box and all of its other contenders soon. 

From the stuff I tried in the past to now, here are some of the contenders. You may have seen them on some of my previous posts and some of the stuff may be new but I wanted a more compiled list. And because each and every day is learning experience. When you go gluten-free, you learn a lot about what you can and can't eat. And of course some days are tough but with a snakel box, I feel it may be a lot easier. 

Chocolate Chip with Caramel Awake Bar

It wasn't the first time that I've had an Awake bar with caffeine when I bought it the first time. This won't be my last. From the melt in your mouth feel from the chocolate to the caramel hits you hard. It's exactly the type of snack that I need right when you need it.

Peanut Butter Larabars

It took me a while to understand and enjoy Larabars it's not that I didn't like them or didn't see the wow factor in them. But more or less, I didn't know how a peanut butter bar would actually fit into my daily diet or into my diet at all. It wasn't until the whole brainstorming with stuff I'd like to put into my snackle box for the week to snack on.  After watching my diet, I've noticed a trend. there are days, like my migraine days that I don't want to eat much. A Larabar at least keeps my stomach a little bit calmer.

Clancy Stackerz with Cheddar Cheese Potato Crisps 

These are a lot like Pringle's just as tasty, but gluten-free! While their choices are limited unlike Pringle's many different flavors, they do have Cheddar Cheese, Sour Cream and Onion and Regular, a lot like Pringles. Yeah, and they're the right one you pop one you just can't stop. And now I don't have to stop missing Pringles. I'll just have remind myself once my Stackersz are gone from my box I can't go refill the box to have more for later. It's not how it works.

Mi-Del Chocolate Sandwich Cookies

The tears filled my eyes when I learned that I may not ever get to have Oreo's ever again. Oreo's and I were like friends. But when I found the Mi-Del Chocolate Chip Cookies, I realized that there might not be a chance to miss Oreo's these cookies are close enough to the real thing, and if I had a snackel box that was for someone who wasn't gluten-free, I'd still put these yummy cuties right in the box. 

Whenever Bar

My mom has mentioned more than once that one of the go-to things for her, when she's not hungry and needs a snack, are those Belvita Breakfast Biscuits, and unfortunately, as luck will have it, I can not have any breakfast bars. I need the next best thing; Whenever Every Day Bars in my favorite flavor combination, chocolate chip and peanut butter.

The Gluten-Free Bites

They jelly is a bit meh, but the peanut butter is what makes these bites wow! Sometimes you can look over a flavor to enjoy the other flavor, but that's only sometimes. This is one of those sometimes moments. Thank you the Gluten Free Bites

Vive's Cookie Dough Bits

Vive has changed my life, I have to admit it. I sucked at taking photos of their food, but the video I had done a few weeks ago was fun and well worth it. If I could fill my whole snackle box with Vive cookie bites I would.  If you want to watch my Vive video check it out here.

Enjoy Life Chewy Bars: Caramel Blondie Bars 
These bars are so tasty, they're soft-baked, easy to eat gluten-free and something I've actually enjoyed eating befoe going completely gluten-free. I tried them once before the whole diet change and was like, "Holy cow, these are actually good. I have no clue why I haven't heard about them before." 

For those who've tried these snacks are they a yes or are they a no go for a box for you? Better yet can you name some snacks you'd include into a dye-free, gluten-free, vegetarian snack box? I want my box to look amazing next month. I'll try to include everyone who gives their input.

Sunday, August 4, 2019

15 Inspirational Quotes to Get You Trough the Week

What songs, poems or verses inspire gratitude in you? Was a question asked on one of my Top 5's a few weeks ago? Well, I needed some more time to reflect on life and feel grateful, especially all of the stuff happening in the world right now. I know I should be more grateful about life, but I'm not. I'm sure I can't be the only one having their gratefulness bottle turned upside down to let all the little tidbits of gratefulness out that were once there.

My plan is to at least two of the below gratefulness quotes to focus on a day for the next week, to refuel myself, and to realize how grateful I really am for being here right now.  I'm going to have to ask myself all of the questions I was going to answer before, to refocus to put life back on course. For me and everyone else like me here are 15 quotes to help you through the week.

"When you reach for the stars you may not quite get one, but you won't come up with a handful of mud either." Leo Burnett

"It is our choices...that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities." J. K. Rowling

"Inspiration does exist, but it must find you working." Pablo Picasso 

"True strength lies in gentleness." Irish Proverb

"The only normal people are the ones you don't know very well." Joe Ancis

"As distance tests a horse’s strength, so does time reveal a person’s real character." Chinese Wisdom

"Success is not the key to happiness. Happiness is the key to success. If you love what you are doing, you will be successful." Albert Schweitzer

"The difference between a successful person and others is not a lack of strength, not a lack of knowledge, but rather a lack of will." Vincent Lombardi

"Increase your personal power through positive and powerful communication. Recognize and eliminate negative self talk. " Caterina Rando

"If your compassion does not include yourself, it is incomplete." Buddha

"If you want others to be happy, practice compassion. If you want to be happy, practice compassion."  Dalai Lama

“Learn to value yourself, which means: fight for your happiness.” Ayn Rand

"We May Encounter Many Defeats But We Must Not Be Defeated.” Maya Angelou

"Never bend your head. Always hold it high. Look the world straight in the eye."Helen Keller

"Stay close to anything that makes you glad you are alive." Hafiz