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Anatomy of a Sick Day #WordfulWednesday

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

This morning I pulled up to the children's preschool at 9:00 am on.the.dot. and Marlie starts to complain of a stomach ache. I try to gauge if it's from gas by asking if she needs to poop. She just repeats that her tummy hurts. I ask her if she wants to try to go to class and have the teacher call me if she still feels bad, but she insists she has to go home because she is "not feeling well" (her words) and she starts to cry. She never wants to skip school so I figure she must really be sick.

I unstrap both kids and drop Desmond off at his class. Back in the car Marlie asks if we can go by the store to buy some "corn on the stick" because it will make her feel better. O_o . Okay. At the store she helps shuck four ears of corn and I am starting to think that I have been had.

sick day

Back home she literally watches the pot boil for the corn on the cob. I decide to go ahead and fricassee some chicken breasts for lunch. She eats a whole chicken breast and two ears of corn. So much for the tummy ache. I think she was just hungry. Then she asks to watch TV until I remind her that she is sick and should be resting. She starts to whine. It's only a little after 11 am and I need to think fast. I tell her to grab her tea set and we make "tummy tea."

By noon she is "well" enough to do a craft project and play outside. Miracles! I get to watch most of General Hospital in peace which is important because they finally revealed the identity of the mystery man lurking about town. >>It's Franco<<

At two o'clock I throw in the towel and let her watch television. It's only for an hour before we have to go pick up her baby brother anyway.

How do you spend sick days with your kids? Does yours also make a miraculous recovery when the get home?!

Morcom Municipal Rose Garden: #Oakland Summer Bucket List

Monday, May 27, 2013

I am always going on and on about how great Oakland is. But it's better to show and tell. This summer my family will be exploring Oakland's most popular sites and some hidden gems:

Morcom Municipal Rose Garden: This 7-acre floral oasis is tucked away in North Oakland on 700 Jean Street off Grand Avenue adjacent to the Piedmont, California border. It is home to dozens of roses that bloom from May-October and is fragrant as it is beautiful. We witnessed just how intoxicating this enchanted garden can be while watching a middle-aged couple make out on a bench like two hormonal teenagers. The facilities can be rented for weddings.

Morcom Rose Garden
Visit to the Amphitheater of Roses on Saturday May 25, 2013

IndieFlix.com 2-month Subscription #Giveaway 10 Winners WW!

Thursday, May 23, 2013

I recently did a post about IndieFlix.com and one of it's most popular films, Finding Kind. Now I am giving away away ten (10) two-month subscriptions to the site!
indieflix logo and tagline
Image Credit: IndieFlix.com
IndieFlix (indieflix.com) is a community of independent filmmakers and fans that gives viewers access to more than 4,500 shorts, docs and features that have often only been available on the festival film circuit.
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Feed Your Inner Movie Geek with IndieFlix (Giveaway Coming Soon!)

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

I like a good superhero blockbuster as much as the next fanboy but indie films hold a special place in my heart. Sadly, film festivals are no longer pageants for independent filmmakers as major studios muscle in on their territory.

indieflix logo
Image Credit: indieflix.com
Thousands of brilliant, creative minds submit their works to festivals, hoping to find meaningful distribution yet fewer than 1% actually do. But there is a new game in Tinseltown hoping to level the playing field. Founded by filmmakers, IndieFlix is part champion, part curator; our mission is to democratize distribution and provide significant revenue for filmmakers.

IndieFlix is the Netflix of independent films, giving viewers access to more than 4,500 shorts, docs and features that can be streamed on your PC, Mac, Xbox, Roku, & Mobile for $6.99/month. Filmmakers get paid for every minute someone watches their film on the site. So your subscription is directly supporting independent film-making! Connect with IndieFlix on Facebook and Twitter.

IndieFlix screenshot
Image Credit: indieflix.com
IndieFlix has thousands of films, but there is one special film I want to share with you. It was made by Lauren and Molly, BFFs who traveled around America on a mission to uncover the hidden truths about girl-on-girl bullying. The result is Finding Kind, a documentary of that journey and of the filmmakers’ quest to take these experiences and find a common ground of kindness and mutual respect.
Finding Kind film banner
Image Credit: findingkind.com
This film stirred up a lot of emotion for me because I was bullied in elementary and middle school. The film's message is similar to Mean Girls--we must stick together and stop tearing each other apart--but Finding Kind digs deeper into the emotional wounds of bullying and offers some real healing. It is a must-see for all girls and even women! Watch Finding Kind on IndieFlix through its extended playing date of May 31 and then connect with the film on Facebook and Twitter.

What began as an idea for a documentary about girl-against-girl bullying, ultimately became the Kind Campaign, an internationally recognized movement, documentary, and school assembly program based on the powerful belief in KINDness that brings awareness and healing to the negative and lasting effects of girl-against-girl “crime.”

Finding Kind has toured around the US and Canada in over 350 schools and communities. The Kind Campaign curriculum is available for year-round use in schools and communities. HOST A SCREENING THROUGH INDIEFLIX.
Finding Kind School Screening
Image Credit: findingkind.com

If Dogs Could Talk (VIDEO)

Monday, May 20, 2013

It is often said that dogs are man's best friend. If your best furry pal could talk, what would he say? Check out this hilarious new ad for Dogswell Jerky Bars to find out what's really on Fido's mind:

So a talking dog would ask for food. It doesn't take a mind-reader to figure that out. But don't just give your pup any old treat. Dogswell, a super premium brand of pet food and treats is launching improved recipes and fresh, vibrant packaging for their complete line of Jerky Bars. The new product contains more protein than before and features real food ingredients that pet parents can see. The breakdown is simple: 85% protein, 15% fruits & veggies and 0% bad stuff.

Jerky Bars fresh flavors include: Chicken & Veggies, Lamb & Veggies, Salmon & Veggies and Turkey & Veggies. Jerky Bars are available for purchase online and in select retailers throughout the United States. For more information or to find a store that carries Dogswell near you, please visit www.dogswell.com.

Dogswell is even providing a special $1 off coupon so your pooch can sample these yummy treats. Just Like them on Facebook to receive this offer: $1 off Jerky Bars
Disclaimer: this is a Fashionista Events opportunity.

Happy Birthday to Me for the 37th Time

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Yesterday was my 27th 37th birthday. Happy Birthday to me!

I didn't do this post earlier because I was lazy not because I am bummed about getting older.

For me, the big 3-7 is an unremarkable birthday so I celebrated in a befitting manner. I didn't have a big party like the one I had when I turned 30. I also didn't have a mini nervous breakdown like the one I had when I turned 35. We (just hubby and me)went to a dinner theater to see OZ the Great and Powerful. It was a nice evening and low key.

I did make a couple of birthday resolutions (which is NOT the same as New Year's resolutions). Teresha, I said to myself, you need to quit worrying so much and put yourself first more often. So my birthday present to myself this year is to: 

Relax More
Be Selfish on Occasion
I think I can do that!

Mother's Day Hangover #WordfulWednesday

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

I don't know about you but am still recovering from my Mother's Day hangover. My family did SO MUCH on Sunday. Here's how it went:

7:00 am I awaken by kids and greeting cards. Sweet, but sleeping in would have been even nicer. No rest for the weary I guess

8:00 am We are walking to breakfast in order to beat the brunch crowds. I see a few dads out with their kids alone and I wonder if the mommies are still in their warm beds. I feel a pang of envy as I swat Marlie's hands from digging into the food on my plate for the umpteenth time.

Rockridge Letters
Mother's Day Photo. As usual, I am behind the camera.
9:15 am Marlie wants to play on the letters around the corner. I thought this was my day. Silly me.

10:00 am Back home and Damon prepares the picnic basket for my Mother's Day outing of strawberry picking and lunch.

11:00 am pack up the kids and car and head across the bridge. we drive through San Francisco to the California coast and then head south of Pacifica. The coastline is gorgeous. It is a slow (traffic) but peaceful drive and the offspring sleep most of the way.

1:00 pm We arrive at the organic berry farm after getting turned around because Google Maps cannot differentiate between two roads with the same name. Go figure. Note to city planners: there are enough words in the English language to avoid this problem.

1:15 pm We pick strawberries for a while which is fun. But the kids are hungry and it is freezing (perfect opportunity to give me my Mother's Day gift of a new spring jacket).

2:00 pm We park at a nearby beach for our picnic. It is delicious. We chow down while we watch the kite surfers defy the laws of gravity. Then we hit the road for the return trip home but, oh, it won't be as breezy.

3:00 pm As we drift north on Highway 1 I learn that road trips with two small children takes a lot of stamina. Desmond is having a crying fit and Marlie needs to use the bathroom. There is a traffic accident and a section of road where the two-lane highway becomes one causing a significant delay. Our 1.5 hour travel time doubles.

6:00 pm we are finally pulling up into the driveway and I have a headache. I want to flop on the couch but there is tidying up to do, baths to give, and children to put to bed.

How did you spend your Mother's Day? Enjoying alone time or celebrating with family? 

Hip Hop Grooving with the Far East Movement #MacysAPAHM

Monday, May 13, 2013

*I am a member of the Everywhere Society and Everywhere has provided me with compensation for this post about Macy's Asian Pacific American Heritage Month event. However, all thoughts and opinions expressed herein are my own.*

This past weekend I jammed to the sounds of the Far East Movement at Macy's Asian Pacific American Heritage Month event and let me tell you that mama can still bust a move! The best part was watching Marlie enjoy her first live musical performance. She loved being in the front row and the "crazy dancing."
Macy's Asian Pacific American Heritage Event San Francisco
FEM fans gather for their Q&A session at Macy's Union Square. 
Scoop: the guys do Insanity workouts to stay in performance shape!
You might already be familiar with the four dapper young men from Koreatown, LA who burst onto the music scene in 2010 with their bumping platinum hit "Like a G6" and in the process made history as the first Asian Americans to achieve a #1 record. But their back story is just a thrilling as their pan-global fusion rhythmic beats. They started out as interns at Interscope Records, played to crowds of 15 people in local cafes and, ten years later, they are successful recording artists with a one of the world's most eclectic fan bases.
Far East Movement performs at Macy's
FEM gets the crowd jumping
The Far East Movement sound is a blend of several genres they call electronic pop rock. It's very infectious, especially when performed live! I was signing the tunes all the way home. Kev Nish, Prohgress, J-Spliff, and DJ Virman are high energy so you better warm up before you go to one of their shows. These dudes can rock!

The Best Mother's Day Gift is a Healthy Baby and Mommy

Saturday, May 11, 2013

*I wrote this post pro bono. I did not receive gifts nor monetary compensation for sharing this information. All opinions expressed are my own.*

Happy Mother's Day! I think I speak for all mothers when I say the best Mother's Day gift was the day you became a mom. So this day is very special for us. It honors the strength and sacrifice it takes to be a mom. It's truly a labor of love! That's why I am taking time out from celebrating my personal journey into motherhood this weekend to raise awareness for prenatal health.

A healthy pregnancy and early childhood is not something to take for granted. Most likely you had a obstetrician or midwife inform you that deficiencies in iodine, folic acid, iron and other vitamins and minerals can cause serious harm to mothers and babies, but many women aren’t aware of the problem because they lack access to prenatal care and prenatal vitamins.

The infographic below breaks it down. The statistic that struck me the most is that "poor nutrition is the underlying cause of 35% of all childhood deaths each year." This figure is unacceptable to me because it is a preventable tragedy, especially here in the United States. The U.S. was recently ranked 30th among the best and worst places for mothers and babies because nutritional deficiency in pregnancy still affects a significant number of mothers in our own country. It makes me realize how lucky I am to have had such excellent prenatal care and given birth to two healthy, beautiful babies.

But there is hope for all mothers-to-be. The following nonprofits are working to nourish babies and mommies around the world:

  • March of Dimes: helping moms have full-term pregnancies and research the problems that threaten the health of babies.
  • Future Fortified: a global campaign to help millions of women and children around the world access to the essential nutrients they need to lead healthy, enriched lives.

  • UNICEF-GAIN: working to reducing child and maternal mortality rates in the developing world.

The Kids Are Alright #WordfulWednesday (PHOTOS)

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

The sporadic posts are driving me crazy! I miss blogging but this mama is busy trying to get a job, which is a full-time job. The bad news is that I am still unemployed. I didn't get that job I was interviewing for. The good news is that I have an interview with another organization next week, one better aligned with my experience and interests. Say a little pray for me! Once I am settled into working, I am going to figure this blog thing out. Meantime, I wanted to share some recent photos and updates of the kiddos. They are blossoming like spring buds.

pretend play rocket ship
playing rocket ship
head over heels gym tumblers stacking tower with blocks  

Marlie is busy with preschool, gymnastics, and working her parents last nerve. She has added some new gear to her Terrifying Threes toolbox included stomping with her arms crossed, staying up until 10 pm every night, calling her daddy stupid, and telling me she hates me. Oh, that last one cut me deep like a stabbing to the heart. I didn't go off on her or punish her because she was obviously repeating something she heard and wanted to see my reaction. I don't believe she is fully aware of the emotional consequences of that word. I responded like any other time she says something that is not nice. I didn't want to overreact and unintentionally give that word power less she start using it on a regular basis as a weapon to hurt people.

eating a chicken leg mickey mouse brownie cake  

Desmond has finally stopped crying when I drop him off at his class. This is a huge milestone. It is also wonderful to and see him smiling when I pick him up. He has two more teeth coming in and he's been using his chompers to pick a chicken leg clean and bite all of us. He's been capitalizing on being the baby of the family. He likes upsies and following his sister around. She sometimes indulges him by letting him play pretend with her like rocket ship or mailman.

visiting Lomard Street San Francisco
Marlie at the top of Lombard Street, the most crooked street in America

We've been taking advantage of the sunny California weather every weekend...sightseeing in San Francisco and backyard pool parties!
backyard pool party
Pool party, baby! It was a cool party!

Mother's Day Gift Ideas for the Conscious Mom

Friday, May 3, 2013

Mother's Day is one of the most commercially successful holidays in America, but that doesn't have to diminish the spirit of the occasion. Instead of buying mom flowers, look for gifts with purpose and meaning. I was honored to receive the Imagine We Are Linked, Not Ranked bracelet designed by Gloria Steinem from www.MaidenNation.com for review.

Gloria Steinem designed bracelet
Global bracelet designed by Gloria Steinem
This beautiful bracelet is sold in a set of four (two solid, two with words) and is made in the USA from agate stone, wood, silver metal beads with class alphabet beads for $48. All proceeds from the sale of the bracelets benefit feminist.com, which offers people around the world access to information and support. It's the perfect gift for the conscious mom!

global bracelets
Jewelry that sends a powerful message
Maiden Nation was founded on one basic principle: empowering women through ethical fashion. Their designers are of the moment, their products are ethically sourced, and profits are reinvested into women’s entrepreneurship projects. The goal is to create a marketplace where items are designed with both beauty and social consciousness in mind.

You can become a Maiden 'citizen' by signing up and sharing your skills with the ever-growing community of other female designers. Maiden designers showcase their work, Maiden activists share their causes, and Maiden citizens connect over their ideas and goals. And soon, Maiden Nation will have the ability to connect you to investors and empower you as a female entrepreneur if you choose to participate.

Connect with Maiden Nation on these social media networks: 

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