The Devil's in the Details

I hate cleaning. (Big surprise, I know.) There isn't much I won't do to avoid it. I've made lame excuses, faked injury, even pretended I don't notice the gi-normous piles of both clean and dirty laundry preventing us from fully opening our bedroom door.

What's that? Oh, you want to know about the whole "fake injury" thing. Well, alright...but you can't tell DH. This was early on in our marriage, and I've always been known for my clumsiness. When DH came home after being away for a week and the house looked exactly the same as when he left, I knew he'd be pretty peeved. I quickly threw myself onto the couch and dragged a blanket over my legs. I put on a suitable expression of noble suffering, of course. When asked, I told him a whopper of a lie about slipping on ice in the kitchen. This really wasn't fair, as I actually had twisted my ankle earlier in the week, so at least I looked injured, but I'd been walking on it just fine for the last three days. Still, the site looked suitably bruised and swollen enough for my trickery to be plausible. All loving concern, DH certainly made no complaints about my housekeeping. Of course, these things tend to backfire, because I was coddled and hobbled for the next couple of days, while the house fell further and further into what I'd have to call a god-awful mess. DH just isn't the kind of guy to do the cleaning for me. Nope - he just left it 'till I was "able" to do it myself. Ah, well. I never tried that one again.

These days I still don't enjoy cleaning, and I especially hate my huge, clunky upright vacuum. It's outrageously heavy, and like most appliances, it's a total energy suck. (Mine and B.G.E.'s)

Enter the Dirt Devil AccuCharge. It's a slick new device from the folks at Dirt Devil. Because of it's high-tech charging system, this baby actually reduces energy consumption by 70%. That's impressive to say the least. It's even the first cordless vac to be Energy Star rated. (When I think Energy Star, I think major appliances. A vacuum? That's just cool.)

Notable Features of the Dirt Devil AccuCharge:
  • Longer Battery Life
  • Charges 2X Faster
  • Utilizes 70% Less Energy
  • Energy Star Approved
  • Cordless Rechargeable Convenience
  • Powerful 15.6 volt Cordless Vac
  • Bagless
  • Weighs just 5.84 pounds
  • All Surface Cleaning: Motorized Brush for carpet cleaning and Brushroll Shutoff for safe bare floor cleaning
  • Fold-away handle for convenient storage
  • Charging stand
  • 2 Year Warranty

I really think you should check this bad-boy out, 'cause you know...
the Devil's in the details.


Sponsored by Dirt Devil AccuCharge
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Is there a Mommy, er... Doctor in the House?

My Owie
You know that when your kiddos have an owie or boo-boo, they come crying for Mommy. And who better? You know how to soothe, and ease and whisper love, and all that. Unfortunately, you're, (or at least I'm) not an actual doctor. Step in MommyDocs.

Jamie A. Freishtat, M.D., and Rachel L. Schreiber, M.D., FAAAAI; based out of Maryland, are certified and celebrated pediatricians, who just happen to be Mommies. Very cool Mommies with an understanding of how a net-savvy modern momma like myself likes to get her kid's health info. You know, the easy way.

With podcasts, videos, blogposts, Q & A, articles, tips, useful web-links, an Ask the MommyDocs page (My fave), this sit is chock-full of the kind of info any mom could use. Seriously - I know you'll be hooked, so check it out.

In fact - next time you're at the pediatrician's, why don't you mention MommyDocs to the other parents in the waiting room? It's trickle down theory, folks! You'll spend less time asking the pediatrician for extra info, the other parents will also take up less time, and bobs-your-uncle I, uh, I mean, you ... You will no longer spend 45 minutes in a room with nothing but some rubber gloves, tongue depressors, a 2 year old BH&G mag and a cranky toddler for company. (Quick glimpse into my world, friends.)

That being said - here's a little something for ya to help make your summer a little easier, (in general health anyway. Nothing can be done about the late July too-hot-to-go-out-and-all-of-their-friends-are-at-camp-or-whatever-so-they're-

Simple Summer Safety Tips from the MommyDocs :

Have a Sun Protection Strategy: The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends sunscreen with a minimum Sun Protection Factor (SPF) of 15. Look for products that provide "broad spectrum" coverage to protect against both UVA and UVB rays. Use this sunscreen routine with your child--daily application 30 minutes before going outside and reapplication every 2 hours (or sooner if swimming, toweling off, or sweating). Creating a routine will establish good habits for the future. In addition, don't forget a wide brim hat, sunglasses with 99-100% UVA/UVB protection, and sun protective clothing.

Keep Pests off Your Little One: In the summer, many insects can bite or sting your child. For pesky mosquitoes and ticks, consider a DEET containing insect repellant. Apply sparingly to exposed skin (avoid backs of hands and around the eyes and mouth) and/or to clothing once a day. As the percentage of DEET goes up, the duration of action increases. To prevent unnecessary exposure, always use the lowest percentage that will last for the planned length of time spent outdoors. Never go above 30% or use on children under 2 months old.

Keep the Pool Cool and Clean: Small yard pools provide a great way for kids to have fun and cool down when the temperature rises, but they can also harbor germs, such as bacteria. To keep the pool free from unwanted "swimmers," after each use disinfect it with bleach by cleaning with a solution of ¾ cup regular bleach to one gallon of water, then rinse well and dry thoroughly. Safety must: Always supervise children regardless of age when they are around any water; whether it's a bucket, a small backyard plastic pool, or the local community pool.

High Heat Means Hydrate: Excessive heat exposure may cause your child to experience a heat-related illness such as heat cramps, heat exhaustion, or even heat stroke. How to prevent this: take breaks in the shade, avoid playing outside during peak sun exposure hours, and drink, drink, drink! Make sure your child is taking in plenty of fluids before he become thirsty.

Rid Rashes and Relieve Itchies: Running through the yard in bare feet, taking a nature walk on a trail, and picnicing in the park are some of the joys of warmer weather. But all of this outdoor activity can expose your child to a host of plants including those which cause poison ivy, poison oak or poison sumac. If an allergic reaction occurs, ask the pediatrician about an oral antihistamine and/or a topical skin care product such as a steroid cream or calamine. If the rash is extensive, looks infected, or is not getting better, call your doctor right away.

In case you'd like this in a printable format, click on Summer Tips PDF. (Really, print it out and hang it on the fridge. No, not with the chinese-food menu, jeez, people.)

Now, I have to add this little caveat: MommyDocs is in no way a substitute for a doctor's visit. If you have a real concern for your child, please contact your pediatrician immediately. But if you always walk out of the office kicking yourself for not asking about this, that or the other thing, MommyDocs is the place for you.

Oh - just so you can see that these are real people, with real qualifications, here's a video of their appearance on a Local CBS affiliate news program:
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En espanol, por favor

That's all, I just thought this was so funny - I had, had, had to share! (Remember my intro?)
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California's Strawberry Dreamin'


"Yum. Yum, yummy, yummy, yum, yum." That is a direct quote from my 3 year old daughter when she bit down into her first summer strawberry. It sounded remarkably familiar, as I remember saying something like it as a child. For a little while we lived in a house with a large garden, and my brother and I eagerly awaited the strawberry ripening. When at last we were allowed to pluck the ripe sweet-tart berries, the generally approving noises were quite the same as my Liv's.

There is nothing in this whole world that quite compares to strawberries. It's nearly impossible to finad a kid who doesn't love them. The best strawberries, though? They come from California, thanks largely due to the California Strawberry Commission.

The California strawberry industry developed a comprehensive food safety program in 1996 to provide consumers with the highest level of confidence in California strawberries.

Some neat California Strawberry Facts

  • Total California strawberry acreage: 35,696 acres.

  • If all the strawberries produced in California this year were laid berry to berry, they'd wrap around the world 15 times.

  • 87% of the strawberries consumed in America are grown and harvested in California!

  • Within 24 hours of harvest, the strawberries are loaded on refrigerated trucks for delivery to local supermarkets across the country, so that the berries reach consumers in fresh-from-the-field condition.

  • The California Strawberry industry eploys more than 80,000 men and women.

  • California grew over 14 billion strawberries just last year!

  • Packed with Vitamin C, and with no fat, California strawberries are an incredibly healthy snack!

If you're interested in more great facts about strawberries, or the Calfornia Strawberry Commission, check out their website,

Also, if you've got kiddos chomping at the bit to jump on your computer, (hey, mine is!) you could direct them Strawberryville, a super-cute and fun, kid-friendly site, geared toward 5 - 7, and 8 - 12 year olds. There are games, nutrition facts and strawberry-related trivia that's guaranteed to provide some wholesome distraction.

I thought I might go ahead and include a strawberry recipe. I think you'll love it! ('Cause it tastes soooo yummy, and it's like ridiculously easy to make.)

Balsamic Strawberries 'n Ice Cream


1 tablespoon butter
2 cups fresh strawberries, hulled and halved
1/4 cup sugar
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
4 scoops vanilla ice cream

Melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the strawberry halves, sugar, and balsamic vinegar. Cook until the strawberries are heated through.
Place scoops of ice cream into pretty dessert bowls.
Spoon strawberries over the ice cream and serve.

The balsamic vinegar really brings out the sweetness of the strawberry, but somehow mellows it at the same time.

The best way to store fresh strawberries is in a large container with a dry paper towel at the bottom. (Don't wash them until ready to eat, or cook with, in order to prevent mold.) Just before using, wash strawberries with cold water, but gently. Strawberries taste best at room temperature, so let them warm up on the counter before serving.

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George, we malcontents will miss you

"Not only do I not know what's going on, I wouldn't know what to do about it if I did." George Carlin

It was quite literally the very first thing I heard this morning. DH's alarm is set to some radio talk show, and when it went off the words "George Carlin died this morning" slammed into the room with the effect of cannon shot, as our eyes flew open, instantly alert.

George, born May 12, 1937,whose stand-up style, according to his mother was " filthy, blasphemous, (and) anti-American", is gone. I think the world is a lesser place without the man.

I think his best known riff is the "Seven Words You Can Never Say on TV." I won't list them here, but if you don't already know them, you probably don't want to, anyway.

Maybe you're wondering why, as a good Christian woman, I might still call myself a fan of an adamant non-believer. George was a master of verbiage, something any literati can appreciate. He was king of getting to the bone; that is, he swept past all the hooey, and just spoke his mind, whether for good or ill. I didn't always agree with the man, I'm sure he didn't expect anyone to. However, I appreciate the basic honesty in his humor, and I know that even subversive personalities have a place in our world. I just don't think there is anyone able to fill this great man's shoes.

For a look back, check out Have you ever played ask george?

I'll leave you with his own words...
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The Trouble with Tribbles, I mean Technorati

Hee, her, ha. *sigh* If you aren't a Star Trek fan, then you just think I'm weird. But that's okay with me friends. (As if you hadn't already figured that out by now.)

Maybe you've noticed that my Technorati ratings aren't all that; (and severely lacking in bags of potato chips, as well.)

If you glance to the left, there is a technorati me button in my sidebar. I also provide helpful labels at the bottom of each post. And yet, my ranking goes pretty well nowhere. No authority to speak of. This is no way reflects the quality of my writing good folk, just that I'm kinda sucky at web-presence. Soooo...

I'm jumping in on an experiment that will help up my page-ranking, and give me some auth-or-a-tay. You can do it, too! Want backlinks, pagerank, and prestige? (Aw, you know you do.)

Brad Blogging came up with an easy, but innovative way to increase your blog’s Technorati Authority. These are the 4 simple steps to glory:

  • Make a blog post and copy the list below after the line.
  • Include your link at the end of the list.
  • In order for Brad Blogging to know that you have joined with his experiment, you have to make a comment from the original post.
  • Sit back and watch your Technorati Authority Increase…

*–Copy Here - Technorati Authority–*

1. Brad - Daily Blog Tips For The Masses
2. Daily Blogging Tips At The Daily Rambler
3. Blog Chews - Blog About Anything
4. Steve v4.6 - Big Made Small
6. Indo - Find the Latest Contest Here
7. POTPOLITICS-We Smoke the Competition
8. ATA -
9. Dolly’s Daily Diary
10. The Tech Juice - Tech Tips And More
11. Wendy’s OBA, Blog Tips & Tricks
12. Wendy’s Reel - Fact And Fancy
13. A Grateful Heart
14. 50+Whatever..Just some Ramblings in Life
16. The Blog for DesignCreatology
17. Contest Whiz - The Blog Contest Expert
18. About Blog Contests
19. Esmeraldasblog - Como aumentar la Authority de Technorati
20. Best Widgets for free - Blog Widgets
21. New life by Pitonizza
22. Todo Seiya - Como aumentar la Authority de Technorati
23. Blog for Spanish Readers
24. The Blogger And The Blog
25. Hero Help
26. Makmalcyber
27. Forex Study
28. Techyplus
29. 8
30. Darn Good Reviews
31. Blogger Tips - DotBlogger
32. Lilyruths This and That
33. That Blog 4 Me
34. Pinoytek - Make Money Online and SEO Blog
35. Snigit(blogspot)
36. Snigit(.com)
37. Best Of The Web
38. Swat the Fly
39. Area3000
40. Shut Up And Eat
41. Find Torrent Blog
42. Cebu in the World
43. Web Design
44. Trestin Adventures
45. Ask Trestin
46. Trestin Autobiography
47. Trestin Ideas
48. Trestin Gallery
49. Trestin Games
50.(Impressive Results!) Trestin Hall Of Fame
51. Trestin History
52. Parnell Forever
53. Trestin Political
54. Trestin Spiritual
55. Trestin Sports
56. Trestin Store - Yep, Each One Of These Are Different Blogs.
57. The Ordinary Agung
58. Il blog di Luca Marchi
59. What About Brazil?
60. Shri Rada Blog
61. Hawaiian Travel Blog
62. Hawaii Cruise Superstore
63. GadgetHeat!
64. Over The Sky
65. Yavinator log
66. I Travel to Work do you?
67. The Home Page of Tony Smith, Writer of Comic Books, Articles & Screenplays
68. Ultimate Credit Online
69. The Rhythm of Write
70. A Hoosier Family
71. Analyzed Marketing Solutions
72. O2S Media
73. Project Swole - Fitness and Nutrition
74. Life is simple, Don’t make it complicated
75. Yet Another Blog from Marco Ciacci
76. Freebies, Making money and More
77. Babysitter On Board
78.Vhiel’s Corner
79. Anything and Everything in Between
80. Designs By Vhiel
81. Can of Thoughts
82. Only in Silence
83. Everything Nice!
84.Reference Notes
85. It’s a woman’s world!
86. Ramki’s Blog
88. Picture Clusters
89. Maiylah’s Snippets
90. My Wanderings
91. Confessions of a Supermodel Wannabe
92. Tiklaton: We are the Witness!
93. O'Joy of my life...

94. *Add your link right here!*

*– End Copy - Paste This List And Join! –*

Now: You must remember to comment on the original post at Brad Blogging. Get on it!

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Sparking, Socially

Do you guys remember what sparking used to mean? Technically, the word means to produce, or throw off sparks. But in the olden days, it was colloquially meant as cuddlin' up with someone.

Did you know that your blog can spark? Shuuure. It's a site called SocialSpark, where your blog can cuddle up with other blogs, and I'd love to tell ya about it.

Social Spark is the brain-child of the folks at IZEA, Inc.

Ever heard of PayPerPost? Maybe Zookoda? Or Bloggers Choice Awards? How about RockStartup? That's all IZEA. They're a social media marketing company. SocialSpark is the world's first Social Marketing Network. I know I don't have to explain social networking for you, and you can guess that social marketing is a way to bring advertising dollars into your pocket, as well as extend the reach of those advertisements. Maybe the boss can explain better:

Ted Murphy, founder and CEO of IZEA says of this newest endeavor: "We have taken our highly successful PayPerPost model and flipped it inside out, creating a completely new model for social media advertising that extends beyond sponsored posts and opens up a wealth of new opportunities," adding, "We have created a social network that not only is free for advertisers to join, but also encourages advertisers to reach out to our community and build a network of people to help promote their brand. It's the first social network that is designed from the ground up to be advertiser-centric, while preserving the free, managed flow of user information common within other networks."

How does it work?

Bloggers can register for free at to create online, searchable public profiles.

Here's a glimpse of an individual blogger's profile.

This is today's featured blogger, who's a real hot-dog when it comes to presence on the site.

Bloggers can share information, interact with each other, issue ratings, create networks, etc. Like any social network, you've got friend lists, comments, faves, you know the drill.

There's lots to see on the site, like the community Videos section. I've got a cute video for you to watch, featuring the folks behind it all. It's called IZEA Beatbox:

Now for the makin' moolah part (or monetization of your blog, if you prefer). Advertisers are encouraged to provide information about their product or service, and post it in the marketplace. In return for an honest review of said product or service, they offer monetary compensation. These are called "opportunities".

Have a look-see at what an opportunity looks like:

Let's say you feel you can write an honest 200+ word post/review of this product. (And the idea is that it must be honest! You may not love said product, but don't shine on your readers, they trust you.) You'll sign up for it and you usually get about 12 hours to make your post. When you've done that, you let SocialSpark know, and you'll get paid your $12.00. Of course, you have to meet the necessary requirements. (It's gotta be long enough, readable, etc.) If the post is still live after 30 days, there'll be a sweet little addition to your PayPal account. don't have a PayPal account? Whyever not? Go get one, silly. It's free! (After you're done reading this of course...)

So easy, so fun. What kind of company will pay you to review their products/or services? Jeez, you're just full of questions aren't you?

You've got everything from DirtDevil to VO5 to Reader's Digest to Criss Angel; (yes, the oddball magician guy.) Reputable companies, every one. They're trying to promote a particular goodie, and they know that your audience is interested in the stuff you like; ('cause well they've agreed to be your audience, see?) knowing all the while that the long reach of the world wide web is a very good thing, as far as advertising via blogs go. Now,may I say, easy-peasy? Oh, good.

I especially like the site's Code Of Ethics. The team behind this hot 'lil meeting place is just not kidding. They want to provide the community with paid post opportunities, but also want to maintain confident relations with the sponsors. To that end, they work very hard to protect everyone involved. Here are the high points:

  • 100% Audit-able In-Post Disclosure (lets readers know that the post has been paid for)
  • 100% Transparency (no hiding who's working with who, which helps keep people honest)
  • 100% Real Opinions (it's that honesty thing again, and I love it)
  • 100% Search Engine Friendly (keeps the powers that be from penalizing you)

Isn't that nice? Can you see why I'm so willing to get behind a company like that? Also, I especially like it when there's an obvious sense of humor behind all the techie stuff. For illustration, refer back to the beatbox video.

Last but not least, I must say that even though this is a paid post, I would have rhapsodized over SocialSpark anyway. I'm that excited about the whole thing. So there you have it. Register now and Spark away, people! (I'll be your friend!)

Sponsored by SocialSpark
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Toilet Talk, on Monday?

So, it's been a long week. I hosted a playdate for my Baltimore Moms Meetup group on Saturday.

Overall I wouldn't say my house was overly unclean. (About the average for a mother of young ones, she says defensively.) But it was certainly overdue for a spring cleaning purge. What that translated to was roughly four days of non-stop scrubbing, polishing, sorting, tossing, get the idea. I ignored my children. I fed my husband leftovers, and when those ran out, he was left to fend for himself, and God have mercy on his soul if he should make a mess in my sparkling kitchen. (Which of course he did, and the bathroom as well, so of course I had to do them both all over again, grrr.) Okay - I'll admit that I knew there was no real way to keep those two rooms clean for more than thirty minutes, so I wasn't really upset, but it sounded good, you know?

I want to talk about that bathroom, real quick. Specifically, about what I used to clean the toilet. (Oh, all right, it isn't sexy, but I did get a thrill.) Up until recently, I've been using "The Works" toilet bowl cleaner, 'cause, well, But it is noxious. You have to be able to vent the room, otherwise it might fry your brains. Well, maybe not, but still.

You may have read about my quest for simple but effective eco-friendliness in my home. You can look back here. I've heard good things about Clorox's new eco-friendly cleaning product line, Green Works. I thought I'd give it a try, even though I have a natural scepticism regarding natural cleansers. (Blame it all on Ma, she's the one who taught me that if you haven't trashed your hands, it's not nearly clean enough.)

I've been disappointed a time or two, by "natural" household cleansers touting their effectiveness, so I wasn't expecting much; but in all honesty, I was amazed by Clorox Green Works natural toilet bowl cleaner. (See photo to left.) Very reasonably priced at $2.79 at Target, and $3.19 at Giant (a local grocery store). Bargain hunter that I am, I'll bet you can guess where I actually purchased it.

Also, it smelled great. I mean, it smelled good enough to be some kind of snazzy spa hair treatment. Kinda like lemony-coconut. Makes sense considering that the ingredients are:

  • essential lemon oil,

  • glycerine,

  • coconut-based cleaning agent(nonionic surfactants, alkyl polyglucoside),

  • filtered water,

  • natural thickener (xanthan gum),

  • blue and yellow colorant,

  • lactic acid, citric acid

And that's it! I repeat, that's it!

So - it's inexpensive, it smells good, it isn't full of sixteen-letter, nine-syllable chemicals. You might wonder, does this gloriously-scented stuff actually work? You bet it does! Clorox is known for being hard-core, right? I mean, it's practically synonymous with bleach, (ie, when you hear the word bleach, you think of Clorox) the hardest hitter in your cleaning bucket. (As an aside there is no bleach in green works, see ingredient list above.) So, I really should not have been surprised by the cleaning action of Green Works. Even so, it left my toilet sparkling & fresh-smelling; and left me headache free. Hands down a winner 'round here.

Especially as the non-toxic qualities of Clorox Green Works natural toilet bowl cleaner makes my life that much easier. Now I can scrub the toilet while the three year old water-bug (that'd be my daughter) pretends she's a whale in the tub, without frying her brain. (I love multi-tasking!)
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Voting is Super

Aaah, Tuesday. It's one of my favorite days of the week. I'll bet you can guess why that is. It's my political day. I come from a long line of Democrats, so it's no wonder that when I turned 18, I was rarin' to hit the polls and cast my vote for Billy-Boy. (That was 1996 folks, and the livin' was e-z.) This over-long battle for the Dem nod has been wearing on everyone concerned. I'll bet you can guess why I am so happy right now, right? If you've been reading my blog, you may have noticed my growing appreciation for a certain senator from Illinois. Now that he's wrangled the nomination from Mrs. Clinton there has been a lot of joyful noise over at my house.
(Though as a woman, I do feel somewhat saddened by the loss of a prospective feminine White House.) Still - I genuinely prefer the political stance of Barack Obama.

vote for Obama
One thing I keep hearing about Mr. Obama is his too-brief experience. Certain interested parties would have us believe that the man is a fumbling novice, and barely capable of pressing his little yea or nay button.

Let me tell you some things about the man's voting record.

In 2007:

One of his very first votes was a yea: To amend the Ethics in Government Act of 1978 to establish criminal penalties for knowingly and willfully falsifying or failing to file or report certain information required to be reported under that Act, and for other purposes.

Yea: A bill to provide greater transparency in the legislative process. (McCain voted Nay.)

Yea: To increase the penalty for failure to comply with lobbying disclosure requirements.

Yea: To prohibit lobbyists and entities that retain or employ lobbyists from throwing lavish parties honoring Members at party conventions.

Yea: A bill to express the sense of Congress on Iraq. (McCain declined to vote.)

Yea: A bill to make the United States more secure by implementing unfinished recommendations of the 9/11 Commission to fight the war on terror more effectively, to improve homeland security, and for other purposes.

Yea: A resolution expressing the sense of the Senate that no action should be taken to undermine the safety of the Armed Forces of the United States or impact their ability to complete their assigned or future missions.

Yea for: A concurrent resolution expressing the sense of Congress that no funds should be cut off or reduced for American Troops in the field which would result in undermining their safety or their ability to complete their assigned mission. (To both of which McCain declined to cast a vote.)

Nay: To strike language that would tie the hands of the Commander-in-Chief by imposing an arbitrary timetable for the withdrawal of U.S. forces from Iraq, thereby undermining the position of American Armed Forces and jeopardizing the successful conclusion of Operation Iraqi Freedom. (McCain, not surprisingly, voted Yea.)

Yea: To remove $100 million in funding for the Republican and Democrat party conventions in 2008. (Again, Senator McCain abstains from the vote.)

Yea: To provide additional funding for certain programs under the Adam Walsh Child Safety and Protection Act of 2006, by increasing funding for the United States Marshals Service to track down convicted sex offenders who have failed to register as a sex offender as required by law and by increasing funding for United States attorneys to prosecute child exploitation and child pornography cases as part of Project Safe Childhood. (I should mention here that John McCain voted not at all in the month of April, 2007, nor for most of May, as he was campaigning at the time.)

Yea: A bill to invest in innovation and education to improve the competitiveness of the United States in the global economy.

Yea: To ensure the safety of human and pet food; and concurrently

Yea: To provide for the importation of prescription drugs.

Yea: A bill to provide for the conservation and development of water and related resources, to authorize the Secretary of the Army to construct various projects for improvements to rivers and harbors of the United States, and for other purposes.

Yea: To require the consideration of certain factors relating to global climate change. (Though it didn't pass.)

Breaking Light Vote
Yea: Expressing the sense of the Congress that no action should be taken to undermine the safety of the Armed Forces of the United States or impact their ability to complete their assigned or future missions.

Yea: To ensure that the renewable fuel standard does not harm the environment.

Yea: To ensure agricultural equity with respect to the renewable fuels standard.

So far, you can see that he votes for our soldiers, but not necessarily for the war. He also tends to vote for fiscal reform, tighter control over federal programs, and eco-friendly legislature.

(As an aside, I noticed that McCain often abstains from voting when the subject is Medicare, Social Security, and energy tax provisions)

This is only January through May of 2007. I'll post tomorrow with more.

My point though, is that unless you are willing to look it up yourself, Don't believe everything you see in a paid advertisement! Or, worse in so "helpful" chain-emails.

Vote for Obama
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What's been keeping me so busy lately?

My new business website: CMW Professional Services,

and some good times with my kiddos:

This first one is my backyard. I had the bright idea of filling up the baby pool so Liv and her BFF could splash around. Instead they chose to create a mud-hole. Obviously they had a great time.This next collage is a trip to Larriland Farm, with a group of friends, where we scooped up some (5 pounds, and gone in three days!) of the most incredibly delicious strawberries I have ever tasted, no exaggerating. They use something called Integrated Pest Management, or IPM - and it so works!

So - you can see that I've had a lot going on. Now today, we are off to meet Elmo and Abby Cadabby at Arundel Mills Mall...

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Crazy in Love

So yesterday was my 30th Birthday. Because of the maudlin content of my last post - I thought I'd post about one of my greatest blessings.

This is Switchfoot's cover of Beyonce's Crazy in Love - cute. 'Cause I am, with:

My husband. I can't thank God enough for him. Sure, I complain occasionally, (I certainly wouldn't call him perfect, but remember dear readers - I am definitely not perfect either) but overall, that man I married nearly five years ago has given me all the best things in my life - my children, my home, a sense of belonging. He cherishes me. It's amazing really, for a girl (can I still call myself that?) who never expected to be loved like that, to live like this. He chose our wedding song, and it's so perfect - I get all warm and fuzzy whenever I hear it.

Lauryn Hill's cover of Can't Take My Eyes Off of You (Originally sung by Franki Valli)

Last night he took me to see a play at the Lyric Opera House, called David's Rock. He even wore his suit, (jacket and tie people!)

My oh, my - if all a woman could ask for is a man who tries, (just makes an effort), than I have every woman's dream. He's funny and confident and affectionate. Lucky, lucky me.

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