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Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Mother In Law MIA

During Frankenstorm (my favorite nickname for Hurricane Sandy) we lost my MIL. We can't find her. She hasn't called, hasn't texted and frankly we're worried. She lives near the Jersey Shore and they were hard hit by this most recent high powered storm. 

We are hoping she's headed to a local shelter with some of her neighbors. We tried reaching some of them but can't get an answer from their homes either.

We tried to get her to evacuate before the storm but she didn't want to leave her home. I understand, she's comfortable there. But since I remember a storm that hit in  '62 or so (when I was a child) and I saw the photos of the devastation then, I'm concerned.

I am hoping she didn't try to get in her car and drive to a shelter. I'm hoping her house wasn't the one I heard the governor talking about that was found floating down Highway 35 (which is a few blocks from her house). I know the statistical probability of that one house being hers is very low, but... still we worry.

This whole situation points up the reason we all need a network of people to contact in case of emergency. A contact manual or even just a cell phone loaded with emergency numbers.

I hope your family survived the storm. Better yet, I hope they didn't live in the areas affected by it. But just in case of a future emergency, consider putting together a manual of info they'd find useful if another Frankenstorm came along.

Hey Mom, phone home!

Monday, October 29, 2012

Charging In The Storm

Worried about recharging your cell phone battery if you lose power at home?  @NBCPhiladelphia tweeted and @Joshpt0 retweeted you can charge your phone using your car as long as you have a car charger (obviously!). Ingenious!

I never use my car charger but this would be a good time to dig it out! My phone is sure to need it!

Hate using my cell phone for internet/tweets etc. but it's a good way to keep it charged for emergency contacts. Thanks!

The Sky Turned Blue

If you live in Delaware County you  may have  noticed a blue light in the sky. No, it wasn't lightening, a transformer blew up in or near Darby PA. Unfortunately, this means the residents of parts of Darby will be without power. Not sure yet what this means to shelters in the area. Stay tuned, I'll update you if I find out anything new.

08:48 Signs of transformers blowing near Westbrook Park. Lights out on Oak Avenue in Clifton Heights. Residents report seeing signs of fried transformers all around the area.

Live from Drexel Hill

Are You Essential Personnel? You Might Be Surprised

Hurricanes and snow storms change the definition of essential personnel. The hurricane today is one of those days when you really hope your employer doesn't consider you essential personnel.

Formerly my definition of essential personnel were people like nurses, doctors, police, firefighters, and other emergency personnel. But essential personnel has come to mean 'whoever your boss can force into either staying at work or coming into work even in extremely hazardous conditions.' Should a casino worker be essential personnel? Should a retail sales person? My answer to this is NO!

Essential personnel should be needed for the health and welfare of the community. This does not mean the manager of the local convenience store should be essential personnel just because you need ice. It doesn't mean if you work at a casino they should be able to keep you at work.

It does mean if you go to the Emergency Room there should be staff there to care for you. Or if you need the police they will have as many officers as possible on duty to eliminate extremely long waiting periods. Or if you have a medical emergency ambulance personnel will be on duty.

Did your boss call you in to work stating the 'essential personnel' rules? Just out of curiosity what job do you perform that is so essential that you had to risk your life driving on the roads in hazardous conditions.

Where Are All The People?

Where are all the people? Well this morning they are probably home in bed, but yesterday I know where a lot of them were! I was driving down Baltimore Pike past the Wine and Spirits Shop in Springfield PA and I wondered why the parking lot was mobbed. Then it occurred to me, STORM PARTIES.

Yes, some people, instead of hitting the grocery store were hitting their local liquor store to stock up...just in case (or by the case as I saw). Bad weather brings out all the crazies at the food store, obviously they hit the liquor store as well.

I didn't stop in at the Wine and Spirits Shop, there wasn't a parking space to be seen (and I didn't want any wine or other spirits) but wow, I was amazed at the number of people who were obviously planning on being marooned for a long time based on the quantity of liquor they were buying.

I guess it never occurred to me that stocking up on liquor might be one thing many people consider part of their 'emergency preparedness.' No first aid kits or generators for them, nope, give them those cases of alcoholic beverages of their choice!

So I hope they are all enjoying their wine and other spirits... Different strokes... This blog post was written by the woman who has a bottle of rum at her house, for the sole purpose of making rum cake! So I guess that is why it never occurred to me to make a wine run! Hope everyone enjoys their Frankenstorm partying!

More Water Where?

With all the emergency preparedness happening I am not sure where there is more water, indoors or out. It seems my house has ended up with six cases of water...per person!

If the storm doesn't float us away drinking all that water will.  I made the mistake of sending someone (who shall be nameless) to the store for me for some bottled water. Fine. But I said get six bottles of water... obviously there was a huge misunderstanding! Six bottles turned into six cases of 32 bottles each per person!
I'm the first to admit I drink a lot of water. But...but... not 198 bottles in a few days! Or even a week.  Or two. Or more. So now I have so much water I could refill the cases at a convenience store! The good news, I have plenty of water. The bad news, my grocery budget got seriously depleted for items I didn't need.
Preparing for a storm is serious business. We all should consider having some products ready for a storm each season. Get an extra first aid box (be sure to keep your antibiotic ointment current). Keep some dry soups, jerky, peanut butter or whatever your favorite storm food is on hand. Have a lighter, some candles, flashlights, and all the other things you'll need in case of prolonged bad weather. But don't buy as much water as we did... bad idea. Yes, I'm smiling now, but when he came in the door with it...not so much.

All Alone In Frankenstorm!

The storm, whether you call it 'Sandy' or 'Frankenstorm' has resulted in many people being isolated and away from the rest of the family and friends. Isolation. Not a good thing. For anyone. Especially in a weather emergency.

And then I remembered. Upstairs at my house, all alone, there is... (Well the good news is, it is NOT my mother! She's a smart woman, she's not where the storm can reach her.) It's my daughter's wedding gown. And the wedding gown, like many people in this storm hangs alone. The dress is the lone occupant of the upstairs of our house.

 My daughter, husband and I all decided our best option was to sleep downstairs--but I woke up at 3AM and realized we had left my youngest daughter's wedding gown upstairs. Upstairs where if we get a roof leak it will get damaged.

It was the last thing I thought about as I was getting my house 'storm ready.' No one on the news reminded me to move wedding gowns to a safer location. Frankly I forgot it was up there. Why didn't she keep it at her apartment? Now I have one more thing to worry about.

If I evacuate I can see it now, my husband, my oldest daughter, my guinea pig and 'the dress.' Come on, stop laughing, how could I leave it? But somehow I doubt the people at the shelter will be thrilled. They won't be thrilled with my pet, let alone "the dress." There I'll be, the old lady with the cane, the guinea pig cage in tow and a wedding gown thrown over her shoulder--please pray my roof doesn't leak and we don't have to evacuate!

I wouldn't be so worried if our roof was in better shape. It survives normal storms but this one, I have some serious doubts. So if you see a woman at the shelter where you are, wedding dress and guinea pig in tow, well, you'll know it's me. Come over, say hi, and offer to hold the dress for me, just for a minute. Do you know how heavy those things are?

Thankfully her wedding isn't this weekend. I feel so sorry for brides who were supposed to get married this weekend. Usually this is the perfect time of year to get married--not this year. Not if you live anywhere on the east coast of the United States.

I'm thinking, wedding insurance might not be a bad idea. Her wedding is in February. Yes, it is time to buy some wedding insurance. Just in case we get a big snow storm and she can't have her wedding that day.

So, if the dress survives, Tuesday or Wednesday I'll be on the phone getting quotes for insurance. One more wedding expense... If it doesn't survive, I'll have to break the news to my daughter... not so good. Brides don't take kindly to ruined wedding gowns.

Yes, it's been moved now. (I dragged it down the steps in the middle of the night so it could 'sleep' with the rest of the family.) So it wouldn't be isolated and alone if we got leaks. I'm not sure it will save the dress if we get leaks downstairs but I've done my best... one more time.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Fun During Frankenstorm

Who is coming to your door (well your cyber door) during hurricane/tropical storm Sandy (better known as Frankenstorm?) Ding Dong! AVON calling! Yes, it may be pouring rain outside but AVON ladies (and men) are always available. (We are better than the US Mail!)

I admit, this storm is going to be hell! For all of us. So what do we need most? A little retail therapy! Yes, as long as you have a battery in your computer or cell phone you can shop. During any storm some stores stay open 24 hrs (or at least online they do!) And it's so more comfortable to shop from the comfort of your own desk chair.
My store will be open, ready and waiting to help you look and feel beautiful. Yes, you can buy AVON during any storm. You can even get it delivered to your front door, no need to have an AVON rep drop it off. I know, sometimes it's hard to find an AVON lady (or man) when you need one. So bookmark this story so you can find one anytime!

How do you get to my store? Here is the address. And the store is lookin' good this week, Bon Jovi is on the front page. I don't know about you, but just looking at that man is enough to make me feel better! I do love eye candy! AVON's newest fragrance is Unplugged by Bon Jovi so you'll see him around a lot. There is also a men's cologne coming out soon, so keep your eyes open!

If you visit my store you can browse every current AVON catalog. Just click on the words eBrochure along the top of the page and the various catalogs will show up. See how easy it is?

Also there is free shipping for $30 orders! Code FS30REP. So take some time and start your holiday shopping during the storm. 24/7 any day, any time, any weather. AVON and their reps really love you!

Fighting Frankenstorm!

As most of you know our area is in the path of Sandy, a tropical storm/hurricane depending on which weather forecast you are listening to. All of us are scrambling around trying to secure items that are outside and get ready for a possible three days of power outages and nasty rain and wind. Here are a few of the things you might want to think about doing (it's never too late to start unless you're at the shore and under mandatory evacuation.

  • Matches or something similar to light candles. The last storm (yes, I'll admit to it, we didn't have any matches. Which of course was my fault, I made my husband quit smoking. While in theory it was a great idea, it meant we didn't have matches! Yikes!)
  • Batteries for a battery powered radio, clock, or flashlights. (with backups!)
  • Food that doesn't need refrigeration. Peanut butter? Beef Jerky? Or something you can keep heated up with Sterno.
  • Bottled water.
  • A list of emergency phone numbers programmed into your cell phones. Police, ambulance, contractors, tree surgeons, electricians and plumbers, heating contractors and your insurance company. Your phone numbers for family members.
  • Rake up leaves that might block sewers once it starts raining. This is critical.
  • Have a first aid kit and be ready to use it.
  • Have you ice maker keep making ice. Just keep emptying it into zip lock bags. The fuller your freezer the longer your food will last. Have a cooler? Some of those cold blocks you freeze in the summertime? Be sure to have those on hand too.
  • Have a basement that floods?(I know mine will if my sump pump isn't working) which happens whenever our electricity goes in the middle of a storm. Either get a pump with a battery back up, or better yet a generator(which will likely cost a fortune.) Also be sure to get a supply of buckets and mops for cleaning up water.
  • Bring in or tie down: trash cans, grills, patio furniture or anything else that's loose outside.
  • Park your car in your garage or away from large, older homes without a garage park your car as far from trees as possible. This storm may knock down some of the older trees.
  • Pack an emergency kit in case of evacuation. All medications, toothbrushes/paste, whatever you think you might need. A first aid kit would be a good idea. Take emergency documents with you. (See
This is by no means a comprehensive. Be safe. Be dry.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

When Was The Last Time You Said 'I Love You?'

Today families that were once close geographically live hundreds if not thousands of miles away from each other. We lose touch with brothers, sisters, aunts, uncles, cousins and parents.

While the Internet has allowed us all the ability to connect via email or Skype, sometimes it's not the same as 'being there.' And sometimes we don't take the time to connect. We are so....'busy.' How sad!

There's no way to replace that hug, being there in person, or knowing that your closest family live down the street or five minutes away. What I call 'touching distance.'

Several years ago I was watching a talk show, I don't remember which one since I usually blog while the TV is on in the background. It might have been Oprah, but the guest or maybe the host asked 'when was the last time you told someone important to you that you love them.'

Wow, I thought, I am SO GUILTY! I presume they just know. Even when we see each other we are so busy catching up on each other's lives we don't take the time to 'say it.'

Whether it's your son or daughter, your husband, your mom, dad or the rest of your family, often we forget to verbalize those three little words that have such power. Power to heal. Power to support. Power to help in times of stress and distress. Too many times we face regrets after the loss of a loved one that we didn't say 'I love you,' and let our family members know that no matter how far away we may live, or how little we see each other, we still care and are there for them.

After the show aired I took the advice to tell my mom and other family members I loved them. In each situation it ended up with the two of us tearing up and hugging each other. I guess I'd been guilty of not saying it, not showing it, not letting them know just how much I cared.

So if you haven't told your family or good friends you love them, take some time to share your thoughts with them. You will feel good, they will too. After all, who can resist a hug fest and love all around?

Don't wait, sometimes your love will be what helps them through the toughest times when it seems like there's no end to a problem.

Also you never know when it might be the last time you see that person. I lost my dad suddenly as a teen, I went to school one morning and came home to find he'd died. I wondered when was the last time I'd told him I loved him? I was a typical teen, self-involved, not given to telling my parents how much I loved them. I regret not saying it before we left the house in the morning. Hearing that one last silly joke, or getting that last chance to be 'Daddy's Little Girl.' I missed that last chance to tell him, to show him I cared no matter how often we might have disagreed. Don't miss your last chances, you never know what might happen.

So don't put it off. Tell the people you care about that you love them. There's no time like today. Now!

Friday, October 26, 2012

Holiday Fun For The Family

The American Swedish History Museum celebrates the holidays with some great fun for your family. On November 6, from 10 am - 5 pm Sweden's leading shop for children's wear will join the Swedish History Museum and present a Sample and Warehouse sale of garments made by POLARIN O. PYRET.
POLARIN O. PYRET is a classic children's brand of clothing known for durability, comfort and quality. The Sample sale will offer their clothing at up to 75% off regular prices (size newborn to 12 years old.) There will be refreshments, a Swedish fika and free admission to the museum.
Help support the Museum and get some of your holiday shopping done!
One December 7, at 6 PM join the ASHM for a traditional Swedish feast complete with a Christmas Market selling holiday items and baked goods. (YUM!) Tickets are $45 for members, $55 for non-members. Come visit the museum for a very special Swedish holiday tradition. Drinks (a cash bar) and an authentic Christmas smörgåsbord dinner are followed by the Lucia procession.   Register by phone by December 3, 2012.
If you can't make it on Friday, come Saturday, December 8 11:30 am to 4:30 pm for the family friendly Lucia processions at 1 pm and 3 pm. The Christmas Market will include favorite holiday deli items, Christmas decorations, gifts and bakery items. The Christmas Cafe will be selling holiday foods and sweets. While reservations are not required, tickets can be purchased in advance online.
On December 15, there will be a Holiday Concert at the ASHM. Singers will perform classic Swedish classics and some American favorites with a Swedish twist. Glogg and cookies will be served free with museum admission.
Planning a holiday party? The museum can be rented and is the perfect venue for a holiday party that is 'just a bit different.' Tables for cocktails and appetizers can be set up in the lobby and among some of the exhibits. There is a dining room. The museum is handicapped accessible but call ahead, it is a little tricky to find the door.
Come see this local museum that too many of us miss! It will be both educational and fun for the kids. Check out their web site and call for additional information and other events.

Appetizer To Die For

If you're like me you are always on the lookout for a new appetizer recipe. While this one is a couple years old, it still is one of my family's favorites.

To make this appetizer really easy you need some mini phyllo(fillo) shells. Athens Foods make them or if you really have a lot of time you can make your own. My suggestion, splurge on the shells. Check the freezer aisles in your favorite market.
The next ingredient is some fig jam... yum! OK, I know there are some of you who are thinking Fig Newton filling and going 'yuck!'  Trust me on this one, you do want to try this appetizer even if you HATE Fig Newtons. You can buy fig jam at Whole Foods, but I like hitting my closest Home Goods store or Marshall's and picking it up there (bargain is my middle name!)
Next you need some Gorgonzola cheese. The crumbles that Treasure Cave sells are perfect for this recipe. Again, not my favorite in large quantities but mix it with the fig jam -- You will feel like you've gone to heaven! Actually you aren't going to mix them together, but put some jam in the phyllo cups, top with some Gorgonzola, and heat until cheese melts somewhat and the jam is warmed up. Remove from your oven (if you have a small toaster oven it's perfect for making these!)
Serve and listen as your guests rave! I love this recipe for Thanksgiving because it's fast, easy and you don't have to use your big oven for it, the tiny toaster oven does the job. This means you turkey and other dishes can cook while you make your appetizers. Enjoy! (Oh and be careful, that jam gets HOT!)

For links to other ideas for appetizers for Thanksgiving visit Confessions of a Stay-At-Home Mom, Redefining the Modern Day Donna Reed.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Politics, Blogging and the Presidential Race

I've debated whether to bring politics into my blog. I know, sometimes I give a line or two to something political but I've never put whole blog posts behind a candidate before. I've decided it's time to be up front about my personal political opinions.

Can I change your vote? No, only you can change your vote. I just wanted to share why I support President Obama for re-election. If that changes your vote, great. If it doesn't, that's fine too. Just get out and vote! No excuses!

So why do I support President Obama?

I support our President because as the owner of my own small business I believe it's wrong that GE pays less in taxes than many small companies. No more corporate welfare on my tax dime.

I support President Obama because I want to experience peace for the first time in years. Imagine what we could do with all the military spending if we applied it to social problems or to developing energy within our own country.

I support President Obama because I do not want the government deciding what I can or cannot do with my body. I want all citizens to have a choice about their own bodies. I want there to be choice--for everyone.

I support our current administration because I recognize that despite the current hard economic times, the significant deficit was not caused by President Obama. He inherited economic hard times from the Republicans.  He inherited military costs from previous administrations. To expect one man, in one single term to turn around the problems is unrealistic.

I will admit, my family has been hit hard by the ongoing unemployment in the country. Both my husband and I lost our jobs at almost the same time. Despite looking hard for jobs it took 2 or 3 years to find new jobs. We were the unemployed who were no longer part of the statistics. We were the long term unemployed, over 55, and were having a tough time. But we did come through it. Other families have as well. Yes, we were all hurting, many of us still are. None of us came out unscathed. But the opposition wants to provide more breaks for big business--tax breaks, support in subsidies etc. I cannot support that.

I trust President Obama. I know, he's a politician. So I admit, my trust is limited. But I believe he has the ability to turn things around and is working toward it. He has been very successful working with other world leaders in conjunction with his Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton. He is respected by other world leaders. I am less sure that the opposition has a clue about foreign affairs.

I support President Obama because I have two disabled adult children. I need the social supports to remain in place that they need. I trust the President to maintain benefits for those who cannot care for themselves.

Now you know why I support President Obama for re-election. Of course I could give you more reasons, but I don't have a month to write this blog post. But let me know why you support the President. Or if you don't, why you don't. Any politely worded comments will be published. Spam or rudeness will not.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

What College Is All About

Today I was reading a post by another blogger, Kelly Raudenbush, who writes a blog called I Overthink Everything, My Blog Is A Prime Example and her post about her child in 5th grade math class. It immediately resonated with me, reminding me of my days in high school where I fought a battle trying to learn how to balance equations in my freshman Physical Science class.

I had gone to an eight room Catholic School that was way behind in both math and science. So when I hit high school it was difficult to keep up. I went from being one of the students at the top of my class who never had to struggle to desperately needing help. No matter how much tutoring I got, I just didn't 'get it.'

My confidence in my ability to do well in science classes was seriously undermined, but especially in chemistry and physics. I managed to escape high school and college the first time avoiding those classes, but when I went back to college as an adult I had to retake science classes because mine were 'out of date.'

So I hit Biology class first thinking 'OK, I can do this one.' But in the first month we had to balance equations. It sent me into a tailspin. I was certain I would fail before I started. I dreaded class. But I went (the habits of a lifetime of not skipping classes was still highly ingrained.)  Amazingly enough it was a snap. I COULD do it. I finally got it.

Why hadn't I been able to manage to learn it before? One word: FEAR.  Fear of failure. I spent so much time worrying I would fail when I was in high school that I couldn't get past the fear to learn.

So today, when I face something I've never done before, or am scared of doing, or think I might not do well, I remember the REAL lesson I learned in that college Biology class that had nothing to do with chemistry or biology. I learned that by letting fear paralyze me I was letting it control my life instead of me being in control. As an adult I like being in control so I have to give up the fear and move past it.

While I've never had to balance equations in my everyday life, facing our fears is something all of us do in our lives. So when someone tells you about the value of a college education...listen. College isn't just about the classes you take, it's what you take from class. Listen to them, they're right. (Even if they are your parents!)

Monday, October 15, 2012

Today Is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day

Today, October 15 is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day. I know many of you have experienced this devastating tragedy in your lives, those who have not will never really understand how we feel.

We all have our own stories. Some of us lost our baby early in our pregnancy, others lost their baby much later--no matter when it happens it is devastating. We all handle it differently. But inside all of us are crying, all of us will never forget the baby or babies we lost. All of us have those moments when we stop and think of our child who we never held in arms and got a chance to cuddle with, to watch take his or her first steps, head off to school.

My husband and I lost our 2nd child. My oldest was almost two which was just how much space we'd planned on between our children--unfortunately the best laid plans... On Mother's Day my baby suddenly stopped moving, she wasn't kicking or rolling around. I went from feeling her playing soccer inside me to never moving again.What happened?

The umbilical cord consists of three blood vessels. Two arteries carry venous (no oxygen) blood away from the fetus while a vein carries oxygenated blood to the fetus. When my baby was formed she had one artery, and one vein. One of them collapsed resulting in no oxygenated blood getting to my precious baby.

The hardest part? I was nearly eight months pregnant. So close to having a healthy happy baby.

My physician told me it was 'just bad luck' and that my body would automatically expel my baby so he didn't want to induce labor. So for over a month I walked around, looking like a mom who was about to have a new happy and healthy baby. You know how it is, people you don't know come up at the grocery store or the mall and ask you when you're due date is or comment on your new addition.
Unfortunately they had no way of knowing what had happened, and I couldn't just tell a total stranger the whole story, they were just trying to be nice.

Finally after a month I went back to my doctor and insisted he induce labor. Psychologically I just couldn't take it anymore. The labor took forever. I was in hell, physically and psychologically. My husband had been with me all day and the nurse sent him home saying I wouldn't need him. As soon as he left they upped my dose of Pitocin and I delivered in an hour. My doctor or one of his partners wasn't even there. Just some nurses. I really needed my husband there. Them sending him home was the ultimate cruelty. They knew they were going to push the delivery but sent him away when I needed him most and when we needed each other most. Suffice it to say there are some hospitals and doctors I'll never go to again.

Their next cruelty? They sent me to the floor with all the moms with their new babies! And bombarded me with their chaplins pushing me to talk about my feelings. The things I wanted to say to them were not something I wanted to say to anyone who was a priest or minister.  I had come to grips with the loss of my baby, what I had not come to grips with was the cruelty of the medical establishment in the hospital I was in.

Is my story unique? No, of course not. Women lose babies every day. But I felt violated by the way the medical establishment treated me.

The good news?  A few years later I had my third daughter. She didn't take the place of the baby I lost. But I was able to carry her to term without problems.

To any woman out there who has lost a child, nothing I can say will make up for it, so instead, a hug, from someone who has been there. Maybe not in your exact shoes, all our stories are different, but we all have many of the same thoughts and feelings.

To those who have never lost a child but know someone who has, just be there if they need to talk, send a card, but the one thing every woman I know who has lost a child doesn't want to hear "I know how you feel" when in fact, unless you've lost a child you have no idea how I feel. So no platitudes, just prayers.

And on Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day think about your friends who have lost a child, or think about the child you lost and remember them. I count myself fortunate to have only lost one child, I know so many other women who have lost many more before successfully carrying a baby to term. So today, I'm remembering my special little girl lost and honoring her memory by writing this post, hoping it helps someone else through a difficult time.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Give To The Green - Find Out How

Photo courtesy of the Camden City Garden Club

Now that the Community Giving Day sponsored by Whole Foods is past, don't forget to add the Camden City Garden Club and the Camden Children's Garden to your list of annual charitable donations.

If you've never been to the gardens be sure to take your children, grandchildren or friends to see the garden. While you're in Camden visit the Aquarium for a well rounded day of fun mixed with education (the kids will never notice the educational info they are getting, they'll be having too much fun!)

Thank you to Whole Foods for sponsoring the Community Giving Day and thank you to all the members of the community who took part in it. I hope some of you were able to join your local Whole Foods Market in supporting this wonderful cause.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * 
Orignal Post:

Whole Foods has designated three dates in October as "5% Community Giving Day." Five percent of their net sales on the specific dates listed below at specific stores will benefit the Camden City Garden Club and the Camden Children's Garden.

Please consider supporting the Camden City Garden Club and the Camden Children's Garden by shopping at the following Whole Foods locations on:

October 16

Marlton, NJ

Princeton, NJ

South Street, Philadelphia, PA

Callowhill, Philadelphia, PA

Glen Mills, PA

Devon, PA

North Wales, PA

P Street, Washington, DC

October 17

Jenkintown, PA

Plymouth Meeting, PA

October 18

Wynnewood, PA

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Nike Killing Kangaroos

Photo courtesy of Bubblews

Did Nike kill kangaroos to make kangaroo leather to make your soccer or football shoes? If you're like me you have been happily wearing and buying many of these shoes without knowing that Nike (and Umbro) slaughter millions of kangaroos in Australia every year to make your soccer shoes.

Millions of children and adults play soccer every year, some of them going so far as to buy special shoes for the sport. Unfortunately, Nike (and Umbro, the soccer specialty company owned by Nike) make some of their soccer shoes (or football shoes depending on where you live) from kangaroo leather.

The kangaroos are not slaughtered humanely, and worst of all after many of the kangaroos have been killed, baby joeys are found dead in their mothers' pouches. If the joeys aren't already dead many are either stomped on to kill them or beaten with sticks or smashed against vehicles because their skin is of no  use to Nike. What kind of company supports this?

Everytime I think of this horrible death for these proud animals and the waste of animal life I get madder. The ridiculous thing is Nike actually makes an alternative to the leather from the kangaroos known as 'Kanga-Lite.' This product offers an excellent alternative to kangaroo leather that does not impact the performance of the athletes. Nike can stop using kangaroo leather and still produce quality soccer shoes. Some of their best models, the CTR360, Total90 Laser IV, and Mercurial Vapor VII are good choices for families looking for a synthetic soccer shoe for recreational soccer.

Wayne Rooney of the Manchester United, Landon Donovan, captain of the Los Angeles Galaxy and Ronaldo, (recently retired) from Brazil all wear or wore Nike cleats where no kangaroos had been slaughtered. If you look at their stats, it seems obvious that the non-kangaroo products used on their cleats certainly didn't have a negative impact on their performance on the soccer field.

If you want Nike to stop using kangaroo leather and start using only animal-friendly high functioning synthetic alternatives be sure to let the company know your opinion. And most importantly, vote with your wallet. Don't buy soccer shoes/cleats made with kangaroo leather. Look for the synthetic models and buy those--vote with your wallet. As a business the one thing that will make Nike sit up and take notice is when their customers refuse to buy the kangaroo leather products.  Write to Nike and tell them why you aren't buying their kangaroo based products, or worse, why you have decided to buy from a competitor as long as Nike continues to use kangaroo leather in thier products.

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Ceramics and Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation

Are you creative? Or just interested in finding a fun way to support JDRF (Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation?) Come out and join Paula Regalis Todd and friends (young and old) for a night of fun at Color Me Mine in Glen Mills PA.
The Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation  "is the leading global organization focused on type 1 diabetes (T1D) research. Driven by passionate, grassroots volunteers connected to children, adolescents, and adults with this disease, JDRF is now the largest charitable supporter of T1D research."
The goal of their research is to improve the lives of anyone affected by T1D by accelerating progress on the most promising opportunities for curing, better treating, and preventing T1D. JDRF collaborates with a wide spectrum of partners who share this goal.
"Since its founding in 1970, JDRF has awarded more than $1.6 billion to diabetes research. Past JDRF efforts have helped to significantly advance the care of people with this disease, and have expanded the critical scientific understanding of T1D. JDRF will not rest until T1D is fully conquered. More than 80 percent of JDRF's expenditures directly support research and research-related education."

So come out for an inexpensive night of fun with friends (the more the merrier) to support JDRF, it's a great cause. There will be donations from the Phillies, Mary Kay, Tastefully Simple, and Skinny Girl. Donations are welcome if you can not make it. A link for donations directly to JDRF is being set up and will be posted when available.
Personalized bracelets being made, which are $5.00 each, the money will go directly to JDRF.
So whether you are personally effected by T1D or know someone who is, or just want to come out and have fun, come to Color Me Mine on Sunday, November 11, 2012.