Thursday, August 30, 2012

6 Months Free - Working Mother Magazine

I've never gotten this magazine myself, but just signed up myself for this free-bee.  When you start filling out your info, it will ask you to check a bunch of boxes, which I'm confident will result in much spam - I suggest NOT checking any boxes for coupons, emails, etc. - I did not, and it still said I'll be getting my magazine!  To sign up, CLICK HERE

Enjoy a free 6 issue subscription to Working Mother magazine. No strings attached. You'll never receive a bill. This subscription is yours, compliments of

Monday, August 27, 2012

Guest Post: Hope after Mesothelioma Cancer

I was contacted recently by Heather Von St. James, a survivor of Mesothelioma cancer (cancer caused by asbestos exposure).  She asked me about "guest" posting on my blog, to educate parents about this form of cancer and the dangers of exposure to toxic chemicals/substances in the enviornment.  After reading her story on her blog (for more about her storysee, I am happy to introduce to you Heather Von St. James & her guest post below in hopes that it helps others. 

Heather Von St. James offers a message of courage, inspiration and hope to those diagnosed with mesothelioma cancer. In fact she considers herself to be a “poster child for hope after mesothelioma” as she is now a 5 year survivor of this often fatal asbestos disease. This is her story of survival and hope.

Cancer. Just hearing the word inspires a sense of dread, doesn't it? It does for many people. But personally, the word 'cancer' makes me angry-- angry enough to fight. Cancer tried to sink its claws into me at one of the worst times possible. I had just had a baby 3 1/2 months prior, and I was diagnosed with malignant pleural mesothelioma; a cancer caused primarily by asbestos exposure.

Most people, when I tell them, are pretty confused. "Asbestos? Isn't that banned?" is usually the response I get. To answer simply: no. That question is usually followed by the question "where were you exposed?" I don't blame them for being curious, I am by no means the typical asbestos exposure patient. Asbestos exposure-- and the mesothelioma that commonly follows-- is found primarily in older males who have worked with plumbing, heating, and shipyards, as well as electricians and mechanics.

I was exposed to asbestos from my father's work clothes. He was a construction worker who primarily did sanding, drywall taping, and mudding. The dust on his work clothes contained asbestos, and when he came home he brought home microscopic asbestos fibers on his clothes. They were on his jacket, in his car...all covered with a layer of white dust that seemed harmless.

I was rather young when I was diagnosed, 36 years old. The Mayo clinic had only heard of one other case in someone so young. As I've said, the typical mesothelioma patient is much older...but these patients often have wives and children. Once the actual asbestos-exposed workers started pouring in, their families soon followed in droves. Wives were next. Years and years of exposure to their husband's contaminated dusty clothes...doing their husbands' dirty laundry, shaking out the dust-caked clothes before washing them. Then, women who worked as secretaries in schools started to come in. The schools, often decades old, were starting to wear and tear-- and they were made of materials containing asbestos. Of course, this means the next generation of mesothelioma sufferers is starting to show up. I was the start of an alarming trend.

The children were next. Children who went to schools made with asbestos tiles, children who played in one of the millions of homes across America that are still insulated with asbestos fibers, especially in dusty attics that are fun to explore and play dress-up in on lazy sunny afternoons. Children who would race to the door, jump into their father's arms, and crawl into daddy's lap and fall asleep with him on the couch when he got home from a long day of work. Children whose fathers would hold them close, not knowing how toxic of an embrace it was. The more I get involved in the mesothelioma community, the more young patients I am getting to know. These young children are now young men and women in their late 20’s and early 30’s who are starting to discover they have the disease. They're also just starting their lives. Marriages, babies, and new jobs are all being put on hold to beat the disease. Fortunately, more and more advances are being made in mesothelioma treatment.

So, in turn, cancer does not strike fear in me. It gives me the anger, the rage I need to keep fighting against this disease for me, and for my baby. So that I can fight to stay in my baby's life, and be the best mother I can for as long as I can. I, like many others who have mesothelioma, am dedicated to fighting back and sharing my story to spread awareness. Until there is more awareness nothing will change. If my story can offer hope to someone newly diagnosed, or stop someone from living in fear of mesothelioma, then I have done something right.

For more info, see

Friday, August 24, 2012

Free Personalized Card for Grandparents Day

Grandparents Day (did this exist when we were little?  I can't keep up!) is Sept. 9th.  Through August 26th at midnight (Eastern Time), you can score a free card from  Just go to their site, personalize your card, and enter in code: CCK2248 for a free card (& free shipping!).  


Saturday, August 18, 2012

TODAY (8/18) - Silly Safari at the Marion Mall

Sorry for the short minute notice on this one - today, Saturday, Aug 18th at 4:00pm at the mall they are having a FREE activity for kids - a Silly Safari presentation.  My kids saw part of this at the YMCA on Friday & loved it!  Snakes, alligators, etc.... pretty exotic for Grant County!  Not sure where in the Marion Mall - hoping there will be signs when we get there, but thinking it'll be in front of the main JcPenney entrance, so we're going to start there.

Maybe we'll see you there! 

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

FREE Parenting Presentation - August 22nd from 7:00-8:30 p.m

I'm a little skeptical about the claims of this presentation, but on a morning like this morning (where everyone at my house was grumpy and yelling, especially ME), I'm open to any and all suggestions! 

Amy McCready, parenting expert and founder of Positive Parenting Solutions
will be speaking on child discipline strategies for parents and teacher's,
August 22nd from 7:00-8:30 p.m. The event will take place in the Bill Green
Arena (Marion High School) and is free and open to the public. Certificates will be given to all
participants as well as a coupon from Tree of Life and Positive Parenting

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Lowes Free Kids's Clinic - Sat & Sun (Aug 11/2)

The next Lowes FREE kids' clinic is this weekend.  Two options for times on these, but you need to register!  If you don't register, they'll still take the first 50 kids that show (it just helps them to be able to plan).  And, just FYI - a few weeks ago I registered my boys, but when Saturday morning came we were busy and couldn't get there.   We went in late Saturday afternoon, and even though we missed it, they still gave us our kits for FREE  to take home and assemble... but only because we'd pays off!  Also, if you're like me, it pays to register, because they email you a reminder the day before - I need reminders! 


Shrek Dragon Ride

Saturday, August 11 (10:00 AM) or Sunday, August 12 (02:00 PM)
Shrek and Donkey are flying into Lowe’s this week! Bring your child to Lowe’s and they can build Shrek’s Dragon Ride!  Click HERE to register

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

BMV Discount Day at the Indiana State Fair - August 15

The Indiana State Fair is in progress.  August 15th is the BMV Discount Day.  See below for more info and to print out a coupon for each person in your group to receive the discount. 

Click HERE for details & schedule of Indiana State Fair. 

Dear BMV Customer:

The Indiana State Fair is a special treasure and, again this year, we are offering half-price admission on BMV Discount Day. On Wednesday, August 15, your family and friends will be admitted for $5 each. Simply click this link, print the BMV Discount Day coupon and bring it with you to the fair. Please be sure to print one coupon for each person in your group that will be attending the fair.

The coupon is accepted at all drive-in and walk-in gates. Your friends and neighbors can also take advantage of this special offer, so be sure to forward this email to them.

During your visit to the fair, stop by the BMV booth in Expo Hall. If your driver's license is due within the next year, we can help you renew it early. If you have moved or your name has changed, please bring documents that verify your updated information. You can find a list of acceptable documents here.

Our team members can also assist with renewing your license plates and answering questions about BMV services. We look forward to seeing you at the Indiana State Fair!

R. Scott Waddell

Monday, August 6, 2012

40th Annual Van Buren Popcorn Festival - Aug 9-11

This weekend marks the 40th annual Van Buren Popcorn Festival (Aug 9-11) in Van Buren, IN.  The event is advertised as 3 days of family fun, food, and free entertainment.... I'M IN! 

For more info, visit

2012 Schedule of Events:

Thursday, August 9, 2012
  •   4:00 p.m.  Beef or Chicken Noodle Dinner till 9:00 p.m. - Lions Club, Sponsored by AZB Sorority 
  •  4:00 p.m.  Scouts Popcorn Tent Open till 10:00 p.m.
  •  6:30 p.m.  2012 Popcorn Festival Parade
    • Parade Marshal - Past Festival Directors
    • National Anthem - Chasidy Masters
    • Special Guest - Big John Morgan from the WCJC Morning Show
  •  8:00 p.m.  Parade Winners' Announcement's - Popcorn Stage
  •  8:15 p.m.  Crowning of the Festival Royalty - Popcorn Stage
  •  8:30 p.m.  "Spike and the Bulldogs" - Popcorn Stage
Friday, August 10, 2012
  •   4:00 p.m.  Beef or Chicken Noodle Dinner till 9:00 p.m. - Lions Club, Sponsored by AZB Sorority
  •   4:00 p.m.  Scouts Popcorn Tent Open till 10:00 p.m.
  •   5:30 p.m.  Bicycle Parade  (More information)
  •   6:00 p.m.  Kid's Entertainment - "Abracadabra Magic Show" - Popcorn Stage
  •   8:00 p.m.  "Allan & Ashcraft" - Popcorn Stage
  •    8:00 - 11:00 p.m.  "Car-Oke Contest" - In front of Town Hall  (More information)
Saturday, August 11, 2012
  •  6:00 a.m.  Firemen’s Pancake & Sausage Breakfast at Fire Station till 11:00 a.m.
  •  7:30 a.m.  Kernel Klassic 5K Registration till 8:30 a.m.  (More information)
  •  8:00 a.m.  Kernel Klassic Fun Run - 10 years and younger  (More information)
  •  8:30 a.m.  Kernel Klassic 5K Walk/Run - Sponsored by Weaver Popcorn (More information)
  • 11:00 a.m. Scouts Popcorn Tent Open till 10:00 p.m.
  • 11:00 a.m. Childrens Biblical Festival - Van Buren UMC Old Fashion Games and Prizes - United Methodist Church Fellowship Hall
  • 12:00 noon Beef or Chicken Noodle Dinner till 9:00 p.m. - Lions Club, Sponsored by AZB Sorority
  • 12:30 p.m  Fred & Friends Muppet Show - Van Buren UMC - United Methodist Church Fellowship Hall
  •  2:00 p.m.  Big Wheel Race - Big Wheels furniished  (More information)
  •  3:00 p.m.  Pedal Tractor Pull - Tractors furnished  (More information)
  •  4:00 p.m.  Fincannon Memorial Car and Motorcycle Show till 7:00 p.m.
  •  4:30 p.m.  Baby Parade  (More information)
  •  5:30 p.m.  Pet Parade  (More information)
  •  5:30 p.m.  "Silly Safari" - Interactive Animal Show
  •  6:30 p.m.  Bed Race  (More information)
  •  6:00 p.m.  "Meet & Greet Johnny Tin Cap" - Popcorn Stage
  •  7:00 p.m.  "Barbershop Quartet" - Popcorn Stage
  •  8:00 p.m.  "Car-Oke Sing Off" - Popcorn Stage   (More information)
  •  9:00 p.m.  "Hind Sight" - Popcorn Stage
  •  9:30 p.m.  Grand Prize Drawings - Popcorn Stage
  • 10:30 p.m. "Live Street Dance" - Popcorn Stage

Friday, August 3, 2012

TODAY - SYNERGY Event & First Friday Downtown Marion

Have you heard about the Synergy Event happening today in Marion?  All day today at the YMCA in Marion is a forum on poverty, with the goal of connecting people with resources addressing issues of poverty in Grant County.  Tonight at First Friday in downtown Marion (between 1st & 2nd Streets and Adams & Washington right down on the river) will be a FREE family event from 5pm-9pm. This event is sponsored by the Mayor's Office, and supported by MANY organizations, companies & individuals in town.  It promises to be one you won't want to miss!  For more info go to: