I don't proofread my posts before I publish them... cause I keep my thoughts au naturale.

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Dear Wendy's


Well, hello there, Wendy's! It's me, hamsterkitten.

In answer to the old lady's question, "where's the beef," I have her answer. The beef is here and it lies with me. Cause I, Wendy's, have a beef with you!

Now, there is nothing good that comes out of sheer negativity, so let me start by singing your praise. I appreciate that your buns are not dripping with grease as some of your competitions sloppy buns tend to be. Your meat is never frozen. Okay, not sure how that makes a difference in taste, but I'll take your word for it. But, your best attribute lies in your variety. As a mom who hates resorting to fast food as it is not overtly nutritious, I like to have the option of getting my family something to eat that is not coated in a gallon of salt. Therefore, being able to get my kids a meal that has mandarin oranges and milk and myself a meal that has a caesar side salad or baked potato makes my mom meter set to "A Okay."

Now, herein lies the beef. What in the world are you thinking in regards to the toys that come in your kids meals?! Whomever works in your marketing department that chooses these needs to be FIRED. Okay, maybe not fired because this is a tough economy and I don't want to see anyone out on the street (except the AIG people). But, he or she deserves a prompt throttling and a tsk, tsk, tsk.

I have maybe frequented your establishment with my children six times in the past year (if that.) Each time, I have been severely disappointed with the "prize." You try explaining to a 3 1/2 year old what she is supposed to do with a CD ROM. Why would you want to promote children sitting in front of the computer? I mean, they're already eating fast food and with childhood obesity what it is, wouldn't you want to promote something like using their imagination or heck, even a bouncy ball would suffice!

I can't remember the last time there was a good toy in the kids meal. I have resorted before in asking to see the under 3 toy because it is actually something she could play with.

Perhaps I am the lone thinker on this issue, but I doubt it. But I'd venture to say that there is at least one person out there who will choose Burger King over Wendy's just so their kid can have a better toy. I was wrong once in 1981, so it isn't an impossibility.

Thank you for your time and keep on keepin' on! Mandarin oranges are scrumptious!

Sincerely,
hamsterkitten

Monday, March 30, 2009

The Ups and Downs of Internet Communication


Ah, the wonderful world of the internets. (We miss you, G.W., lol)

Ever since I started my blog in late November, I've become a machine of useless social media knowledge. I started using Twitter around the same time as I started my blog because I was told that to not tweet was to be a useless stain on the Gucci dress that is humanity.

So, I embarked on the whole Tweeter/Blogger past-time and have since come to several conclusions about the good, bad and ugly of internet communication.

On a side note, I am a pop culture fanatic. I live in a small town in Iowa and don't want to be thought of as a corn growing, pig wrangling, toothless farmer. Not saying that many Iowans are, just saying I know the stereotype is out there and I don't want to add to it by being out of the loop with the rest of society.

So, here's a few things I've learned:

1) Don't trust anyone.
Now, I haven't sponsored any Nigerian princes or anything like that, but it never pays to get your hopes up about something until it has actually happened. All that happens is the person on the other end drops off the face of the earth and you're wondering what you did wrong. You did nothing wrong, some people are just commitment-phobes.

2) A good blogger reads other people's blogs. You would have to be awfully cocky to just assume that if you write it, people will flock to you in droves. Just like a good author needs to know what other people are writing, a good blogger needs to do the same. My theory is that if you're a fun person to tweet with, you probably have a blog worth reading. So, I love to check out new blogs and find myself subscribing to them left and right. It enables me to see what they're doing right and also get a few kicks reading their posts. A few that I've come across that I love are:

The Juggling Homemaker
Jackass Letters
His Boys Can Swim
24/7 Moms

3) It's okay to be friendly. So many people that are trying to gain notoriety or fat wallets off their site/blog are robots. Seriously, it seems like they have robots generating their content or their tweets. All they do is shove their guides/tips/training whodads down your throat. And to these people I say, "Boooooring!" I don't want to follow people that are snooze-fests. Nor do I want to go to your website and watch your training videos. I want to talk to people with personalities as lovely as mine! Okay, so we all have different thoughts and you can't please everyone all the time, but I want to get noticed for my witty repartee, not my SEO, CEO, VIP, LMAO, XYZ status.

4) You and google may become best friends. You don't just wake up one day with all the knowledge there is about blogging, tweeting, html, acronyms, etc. If you did, I'm jealous. So, familiarize yourself with google and wikipedia. For instance, I was dying to have a three column blog, but being the tightwad I am, didn't want to pay someone to do it for me. Alas, after many attempts to find my answer on google, I finally found something that worked! I learned to make button links, create my own header, what abbreviations and application names mean on twitter. You name it, I googled it. Knowledge is power and google has made me the Queen of Sheba.

Well, that's enough points for now. Four IS my lucky number, you know! I hope with this post that I might have helped at least one person. If not, at least it gave me something to do to pass the time until the mail gets here.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Friday Rant: My Beef With Girls



So, I've always been a tomboy. Whether I was wearing a dress or jeans, I was a tomboy at heart. In high school, all my friends were guys, I played tackle football with them (until I had to get stitches and my dad made me quit) and I just had more fun with guys in general.

And my philosophy has always been that "girls are backstabbing $%^!@es." I'm 27 years old and still can't stay friends with girls very long. I think it is because most girls I know always have that weakness when it comes to men and I'm a very independent woman. Now, I'm not a feminazi, I just think that women can live without men and shouldn't use them as a crutch.

Now on to the point at hand. I have my good friend Susan who became one of my besties after she dated my brother-in-law. They broke up and I won her. We work well because we talk about anything BUT men.

Then I have this friend who I'll call "Marla." Marla has filed for divorce at least 3 times and her husband cheats on her, calls her fat and demeans her constantly. She leaves him and calls me all the time, but then he suckers her back in and she stops talking to me. Then, when we do hang out, she wants to stalk him and talk smack about whomever he is dating and things of such nature. This is not my thing. I don't like knowing that she is weak. I feel bad for her and her kids and want to be a good friend, but this is a little much for me.

Now back to my beef with girls. If you're an independent woman, terrific, let's be friends, lol. But if you're one of those women who thinks life has no meaning without a man, take a number and if I have room for one of you as a friend, I'll let you know... but don't hold your breath.

Men as friends are always just about fun and living life to its fullest. Not saying all men are great friends, but this is just why I think they make better friends.

Now that I've got that off my chest, I'm gonna relax and go back to my non-drama filled life, sans the crazy women.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

MOTR Money Saving Tip!!!


One way that I have figured out how to pinch a few pennies is to unplug electronic devices when they aren't in use.

Did you know that some appliances are utilizing energy even while they are powered off, just by being plugged in? Most people are unaware of this, so don't think twice about leaving things plugged in 24/7.

Not only does unplugging your appliances when not in use save you money, it can lengthen the lifespan of your appliances and it also conserves energy, which then you could say you are going green!

All those pennies add up. I started by unplugging my laptop at night and keeping many of the small kitchen appliances unplugged until I need them, such as the can opener, toaster, microwave and coffee pot. Then, I started looking around my house for other things and found that I had scented plug ins that were empty and wasting electricity, night lights I didn't need and a VCR I never use. Why keep them plugged in?

And as extra incentive, chew on this: I had lightning strike my house once and it ruined everything that was plugged into this particular outlet in my living room, which included my computer and all its attachments. I should have had a surge protector, but who knows if that would have saved it.

Anyway, try this money saving tip and see if it makes a difference in your monthly bills!

Monday, March 23, 2009

A Writer Writes, Always

I got the title from the movie "Throw Momma from the Train." Where they got the quote, I did not bother to google, lol.

I love writing (and talking) and therefore I love blogging! I would hope you've figured this out by now! I think that writing is very therapeutic and I'm more of a personal writer, but used to love to write fiction, be it short stories, poetry, etc. Now, I'm just about blogging and personal essays.

But, I totally give props to those people who are out there to get their work published or to find a home for their writing. It is hard to get recognized and there are many aspiring writers out there who need a voice! I love creative thinking and writing!

So, if you are a writer and you have a website to promote, let me know and I'll add it to this list. Or, if you want me to read your work, let me know.

As of now, I have two aspiring writer blogs I'd like to promote. Here are their sites:

1) Nick Piersee
2) Hello, Welcome to the Show

Saturday, March 21, 2009

The Great Debate/The Great Compromise



You know, I was reading in my social psychology text about the three facets of love that people seek in a relationship- they are passion, decision/commitment and intimacy. They are also called the defining features of love and are based on Sternberg's triangular model of love. Anyway, the thing that I find shocking is that respect usually does not even come close to topping the list when someone talks about what they are seeking in a partner. Say what?!

Which leads me into the great debate. If you are a stay at home mom (SAHM) and that is because you want to cry just looking at your child's face and you can't imagine parting for one moment with this precious bundle of joy... you're a rarity, an anomaly and I applaud you.

But, if you are one of those women who is a SAHM for some other reason, whether it is money reasons (cheaper than finding daycare while working minimum wage) or because you feel it is your duty, then you probably know what I'm referring to.

Women that stay at home all day long while their husbands are at work don't get much free time. And there is a constant debate on who is working harder. Neither side will admit it, but they both think that they themselves are and think the other one has it much better off. So, when the husband gets home from work, the wife secretly wonders when he is going to take over so she can breathe. And if she acts too pushy, the husband is going to think she is a nag.

I know this because I've been there. I don't like being labeled a SAHM because it's not my dream. I'm a student and plan to work full time when I graduate. My husband would go to work every day and I was envious. Then we'd argue about who had a tougher job, but he would never admit what I already knew- he thought I had it easy.

So, this is where the respect part comes in. If you respect your partner, you want them to be happy and stress free. This calls for a need to compromise. Okay, agree to disagree and realize that you both are overwhelmed and that kids can be a handful, but your kids deserve the best you they can get and a stressed out mom or dad is not at their best.

My husband and I finally came to a compromise (after 3 years, haha) and it was because he was staying up so late to get "free time" that he'd be exhausted every day and I was going to bed at the same time as the kids and getting up at the same times as the kids and thinking "when do I get free time?!" What we decided to do was give the kids a normal bedtime (8pm) and the hubby would take them into the bedroom and lie with them while he watched tv and they went to sleep. He would do this for 2 hours while I got "free time" and then I'd go into bed.

Now, this works great for us because right now we all have to share a room until we get a new house and my 14 month old is clingy and we don't want to let him cry it out.

So our solution may not be exactly what your solution would be, but I urge people in this situation to think about a compromise. Love SHOULD be about respect and you have to open your mind sometimes and think about your partner. My husband and I have learned to compromise about so many things in our six years of marriage that hopefully we can continue on this path.

Good luck if you have these same issues and I'm here if you need an ear!

Vote for my post on Mom Blog Network

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Pondering the Philosophical

So, last night my brother in law came over to visit. He's home from college on spring break. It's always fun because he and my husband and I get a chance to do some deep thinking and have some crazy conversations.

Last night we were discussing atheism vs. Christianity vs. spirituality. I am a big fan of the guy upstairs, but am uber annoyed with organized religion and how crazy it's gotten. I'm also uber annoyed with people that keep telling you they are Christians. They tend to be the ones who exhibit the LEAST Christian behavior! Anyway, not trying to hate on anyone, so I'll move along.

So, my lawful brobie was saying how he is very spiritual, but an atheist. And it was cool how similar the thinking is, but without the belief in God. Cause the Bible leaves me with so many questions, and I often wonder, "what if not everything was covered in the Bible?" or "What if when it was translated 82,000 times, the words got changed around?" Cause, I know that the Bible says there can't be ghosts, but I totally believe in ghosts- and yes, it freaks the heck outta me! And then why is it that people have dreams after a loved one passes in which said loved one visits them and comforts them in their dreams? I believe that it is really the spirit of that person coming to them in there dreams!

Okay, so I'm going to stop now before someone comes after me with a straight jacket, but I want you to do some deep thinking of your own and don't be afraid to question the unexplained!

Monday, March 16, 2009

Wave Shoppe: Your Source for Hawaiian Shirts!!!




Spring is coming, the air is fresh, the grass is turning green, and that means it's time to put away your sweaters and dark washed jeans. And now that you have nothing to wear, break out the flip flops, shorts and treat yourself to a Hawaiian shirt! Wave Shoppe provides quality Hawaiian shirts that never go out of style.

On that note, you should check out their Hawaiian shirts for men!!! They have prints such as original floral and even themed ones like wine bottles, tiki masks, poker themes and firefighters. There's something for everyone! Hawaiian shirts are very flattering and show that you have not only great taste in clothes, but that you know how to have fun.

Photobucket Photobucket

Perfect for gifts or seize the moment and splurge on few for yourself, Wave Shoppe brings you style, comfort and fun all rolled into one!

Friday, March 13, 2009

The Contagiousness of Cleaning

I hate to clean, yet I love when things ARE clean. So, I try to avoid cleaning unless absolutely necessary. I do, however, like to vacuum and do laundry. Those are my two things that I keep up on regularly.

Well, today, my husband was in a cleaning frenzy and everything looked so good, I wanted to clean too! I wanted to open the windows, let in some fresh air and unload some junk. I went through old toys, storage stuff upstairs and rearranged furniture, while dusting and throwing away things that we don't need.

So, I think that cleaning must be contagious. You see one thing that is clean and you think, man, I'd like to see more clean things around here! And on a similar thought, for some reason when I do major cleaning, it makes me want to wash the bed sheets. Because you just can't feel completely clean unless you go to bed on crisp, fresh, bed sheets!!!

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Wordless Wednesday: Belly Button Edition



My son has recently discovered his belly button and is quite fascinated with looking at it... so my daughter has to join in as well!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Adventures of the Smacking Baby

So, to add to the multitude of differences between A and L, L has decided to go through a smacking phase. He's 14 months and has recently acquired the habit of slapping people.

The frustrating thing about this (besides the obvious pain of being slapped across the face) is that he's not doing it because he's upset. He'll do it when he's playing and then laugh. He smacks A quite a bit. I've never experienced this, so it's a work in progress what to do.

My plan is to take his hand and firmly say, "no hit." And if that doesn't work, I'm going to dump mayonnaise on him and feed him to the wolves. What do you think? Anyone have a good suggestion on how to deal with this?

Monday, March 9, 2009

March is Disability Awareness Month

... and in the spirit of promoting awareness, I wanted to blog about how parents can make a difference in the lives of the disabled by teaching their kids how to behave around disabled individuals.

I try to teach my daughter how to deal with people that are different, by not letting it be known that there is a real difference. I tell her that everyone is unique and that's what makes us special. Whether someone acts differently or looks differently, we are all humans and all deserve love and compassion. Sometimes it may take a bit more patience or understanding, but it's never wrong to be friends with lots of people, regardless of their status.

Acceptance is a great thing. Caring is a great thing. As she gets older, and she has questions about particular disabilities, I intend to research them with her, so we can both learn about them.

For more information about this topic or to help support children with disabilities, please visit CVS Caremark All Kids Can.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

My Thoughts On: Legalizing Marijuana

Yes, you read that right! This blog is about my thoughts on the legalization of marijuana. And chalk this also up to an idea to send to Barack on helping solve the national debt. Which, if I might start by a tangent, my husband and I were talking about. Barack should create a website where citizens can come and discuss their ideas for solving the economic crisis or things of that nature. Because what if someone has a great idea?

Anyway, so here's my thoughts on pot. I am one of those goody goody people who has never tried an illegal drug in their life. But, I don't judge people that have. I just think that legalizing marijuana would solve some problems. First of all, from the research I've done and people I've spoken to, it seems like in a lot of instances, alcohol consumption is more harmful than marijuana usage. (In moderation, like everything.)

The government could make some great money off of taxing marijuana, just like they do with tobacco products. And to further their money making abilities, why not have the government start the first marijuana grow farms? Then, we can use that money towards the national debt.

But, when you regulate the sale of marijuana, not only can you tax it, but make it safer. As aforementioned, I have nothing to gain by this being legalized, but I just think it is the smart thing to do. And everyone says that pot is a gateway drug, but isn't alcohol? And I think that the people who are willing to try the hard stuff would do it anyway, regardless of whether they smoked pot first or not.

Okay, well those are my thoughts. I'm sure I'm going to catch a lot of flack for this, but hey, that's the great thing about it being a free country! Everyone is entitled to their opinion, and I respect that!

Thursday, March 5, 2009

My Thoughts On: American Idol


Last season (I have no idea what season they're on) was the first season of American Idol I watched from beginning to end. Usually I watched the auditions and then gave up. And that was just because I wanted to see where "The Soup" clips were coming from. Anyway, I ended up liking many of the people, so watched the whole season and was SO GLAD (in a non-caring kind of way) that it was David Cook and not Archuletta- he annoyed me quite a bit. He reminded me of a Monchichi.

Anyway, this season I like quite a few people, but they haven't made it into the finals. Last night, I was accurate when I predicted it would be Lil Rounds, Jorge and Scott. But, I liked Ju'Not (probably butchering lots of names here) and Felicia. Plus Taylor Vaifanua lived in my town and I was in a class with her at middle school. (Long story, I was a 1:1 aide with a kid in her class.)

So, I was right in my predictions, but sad to see some didn't get into the wild card round. Of the wild cards, I like Megan Corkrey, Tatiana (come on, she REALLY needs it for her sanity) and no one else stuck out for me. I DO NOT like Von Smith. There were several that didn't make it that I liked, like the blonde girl from the third night- I think her name was Kristen... and I also was not impressed with Anoop.

Anyway, I just thought I'd share a few of my thoughts on American Idol. I do like new idol judge Kara and still think that Paula needs to cut back on the meds cause she sounds drunk every night and is quite confused. I don't know if she's on painkillers or what, but scale back, Lady!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Self Proclaimed Google Queen


Knowledge is power and I can't get enough knowledge! (Obviously since I've been in college for almost a decade, lol.) I will find myself randomly wondering things and I think, "why wonder? why not KNOW the answer?" So, I hunker down at the laptop and go to my homepage- google!

When I was young and I didn't know a word, I'd ask my dad. His response was, "look it up in the dictionary." Ah, a wise man. Because, by looking it up, I was more likely to remember than if he had just told me. Thus, that's how I feel today. Why search for someone to tell me the answer, when I can find it myself.

So, I google... or I wikipedia. And with those two sources, I have the world at my fingertips. And I won't give up until I have the answer. That is why I call myself the Google Queen, because if it's on the world wide web, you can bet I'm gonna find it. (If I care enough to look.)

Case in point, I was DYING to make my blog 3 columns. So, after a few different attempts, I had resigned that I was going to have to pay someone to makeover my blog for me. Being a tightwad/cheapskate AND being knowledge hungry, I refused to give in! And lo and behold yesterday, I found what I was looking for, thanks to zimbio.com. I also wanted to learn how to make buttons, which I found googling thanks to accidentalmommies.com. And I appreciate them sharing their knowledge with the world!

And, in that thought, bear with me as I do some heavy construction work to my blog. I'm stoked about the upcoming Twilight Giveaway I'm doing with Tracy @ Book Room Reviews, so I wanted to get my blog in order before it begins. Also, I have several other giveaways and reviews coming up, so I wanted my site to look more like it had a personal touch to it. I'm not completely happy with my picture, but it's a work in progress, so keep coming back for new looks!

Thanks again to all my readers! Love you guys!!