Sunday, February 21, 2021

Being Prepared

In light of the entire earth being on the brink of collapse, new climate disasters popping up every day, it is so important to take all available precautions to keep your home and family safe. This can involve many things. 

Keeping a supply of emergency food and water, in case of a storm or other disaster that cuts you off form supplies is a really smart move. A stock of candles, batteries, gas (if you can), a tent, generator, first aid kit, etc, can all be the difference in survival should a tragedy occur. 

There are many other ways in which it is wise to be prepared, though. Some other examples are hurricane shutters, reinforced closest, waterproofing in basements, in case of flooding, and more. Another thing that can be very useful if you are in an area prone to earthquakes (or even if your area isn't, normally, since disasters are starting to occur outside their usual rage) is earthquake retrofitting

Seismic retrofitting can provide invaluable protecting in the case of siesmic activity. It is also a really good idea when looking into new constructions or remodeling, to go with a company that can add the earthquake preparedness measures in the initial work, so you don't have to do it again later on. CES 4 does retrofitting and new constructions as well as garage conversions and more. I have always loved the thought of converting a garage into more living space.

CES 4 has locations in CA and FL. While earthquakes are not a serious concern here in FL, I still want to look into safety options and maybe add some preventative measures. Hurricanes cause damage too, and we definitely get those, so I am interested to see what kinds of modifications are available for our home.

I had already been becoming more interested in preparedness recently, but the impact of these winter storms in TX and other more southern areas has made me even more motivated to make sure our family is as prepared as possible for any impending catastrophe. It is always better to be prepared and not need it than to need it and not be prepared.

My heart goes out to all of those who are suffering currently. I am sorry that local and national public servants have let you down. I wish we lived in a world where all basic human needs were met and lives were placed over policies and profits. It is heartbreaking that it is not the case, and it is so easy to feel defeated in the face of such things. But we can still make a difference and still help one another, even if the scale may not be as grand as we wish.

As many heart-wrenching stories as I have seen some out of these disasters, I have also seen many inspiring things as well. There is so much suffering, all over. But there is always more good in the world than we are shown. It is important to focus on finding the good and being the good. Be safe, everyone.

Plan for Tomorrow with Benjy Grinberg

With the world being so upside down right now, it is so easy to forget about planning for the future. It is so easy to get wrapped up in just surviving, living day to day and getting through this pandemic, that you lose the drive to move forward. It is understandable, and just getting by is a huge task in itself. If that is all you can do, that is more than enough.

However, it is important, if you can, to still make plans and work toward the future. Not only can it help give you hope in the present, something to look forward to, a semblance of normalcy, but one day, when we do come out of this, it will be very important that there is still a place for you. That comes from planning in the present. If you wait until this is gone to make plans, the ones that didn't wait will all be ahead of you.

This can be in anything, really, career moves, starting a business, anything. But I think it could be most important in education. There are deadlines for applications and things that need to be done now in order to have a place for later in the year and sometimes even the following year.

It is especially important in terms of financial assistance. There are only so many scholarships available, and there are many students vying for them. They are not only available through universities, though, or other obvious sources. Be sure to look into all the options for aid, even smaller ones.

For example many businesses offer scholarships from a couple hundred to a couple thousand dollars. One specific example is Benjy Grinberg, who offers a $1000 scholarship. There is a form you can fill out right on his website. It requires a short, 750 word, essay explaining your passions and ambitions. The specific question is: “What is a passion or hobby of yours, and what role does it play in your educational journey?”

I love the question. I've always thought that stats and figures were not a true measure of a person, even in things like education. Getting to know the heart, passion, and character of someone is far more important, in my opinion. No one changes the world with intellect alone, it takes a desire to make a positive impact.

The only requirements to apply for the scholarship, aside from submitting the essay, are being a high school student accepted to a college or university, or being currently enrolled in a grad or undergrad program.

This is just one of many options available. Make sure that if you are a student or know a student, you look into every possible source for scholarships and financial aid. There are also grants that many people can qualify for.  

Remember, it is important to keep working toward your dreams and goals. These trying times will not be around forever and a solid plan for the future will ensure that you are thriving once it passes. But, again, there is nothing wrong with just surviving, either. And if you do fall behind, it's not the end of the world. You can always catch up. Besides these classifications of "on target", "behind" are all actually arbitrary, and all that matters is that you are in a good place.

I wish you all the best of luck in any goals you are working toward. Stay safe and remember to always be compassionate.

Tuesday, February 16, 2021

Renting? What You Need To Know

 If you are looking to rent an apartment, there are many factors that need to be considered. Of course there are the ones that everyone knows, like setting a budget and making sure to look at the place before you make a decision. But there are a few other things that are equally important and sometimes overlooked. 

It is very important to read the lease and ask questions. Make sure you know exactly what is expected of you and of the property owner or property manager. For example are household repairs your obligation or is it the responsibility of the owner. 

Most times, with rental properties, standard repairs are the duty of the owner. So if your water heater breaks down, you call them to take care of it, instead of having to handle it yourself. That is one of the main perks of renting.

That's why it is important to be clear on those responsibilities before signing the lease. There can also be expectations set for you, the renter, such as no pets, no smoking, must maintain your yard/grass a certain way, etc. Making sure the benefits are equal/greater than the drawbacks is pretty important.

Another vital tip is to know the value of property in the area. Just because you might find something you like, in your budget, that still does not necessarily ensure you are getting a good value. Renters can overpay for a couple reasons. One is desperation. That one is tougher to avoid. If you need a place quickly sometimes you might take something less than desirable just to secure something.

Sometimes security deposits play a role in this. Most places require first, last and security, but some don't. So a place that requires only the first month and a small security deposit might make all the difference. A person may need to accept a place that is more per month simply because the initial move in cost is more affordable. A lot of people are privileged enough to not understand that. 

Another reason people overpay, though, is simply because they are not well enough informed to realize that the cost is too high for the area and/or size/quality of the property. In this instance, the best course of action is to use resources to research ad become informed.

I recently learned about Zumper and it is a game changer. Not only does it show you the average rent in the specific city you are looking to rent in, but it allows you to sort by location, bedroom count, pet policy, or even amenities. You can search houses, condos, apartments and even rooms for rent.

I am not currently looking to rent, but I wanted to compare nearby cities to our city. According to Zumper, the average rent for a 1-bedroom apartment in Miami, FL is currently $1,575. That is higher than our city. So if I had tried to look for rentals without researching, I would automatically assume that all the places were overpriced. That is why being informed is imperative.

If you are looking to rent you can submit digital rental applications and credit reports. With real-time alerts, you will always be viewing what is actually available, and you can get alerts to be the first to know when new listings are added.

Being informed is always the first step in any endeavor. And the best way is by utilizing all the resources available to you.

Tuesday, February 2, 2021

Under The Barnyard Light - Book Review + Giveaway

Most of you probably know that book reviews are not a huge part of my repertoire. So that makes today an exciting chance of pace. I recently received a cop of Under The Barnyard Light. It is such a lovely children's book.

I adore this book for several reasons. The most prominent reason is the beautiful illustrations. To me that is imperative for a kids' book. The story is very sweet, and the subtle rhymes are great to make it interesting, without it being too much.

I really like that there is not a huge underlying theme to the story. Though, grand lessons can be a really good thing, too, most of the time. Sometimes you don't need to learn a lesson. But I also like how this has a very organic way of highlighting responsibility for children. It's not being 'taught' -- instead it's just shown. 

Not that this is generally an important factor, but I love the size of this book as well. Not only the length, which is fairly short, making it great for not losing a child's interest, but the actual dimensions of the book. That and the hard cover make it the perfect "table book". That also makes it good for parents reading it to a child, so both can see well.

All else aside, this is just a sweet story about a young girl and her beloved animals. It is enjoyable for children while not being grating foe adults. What a magical book for families to enjoy together.

If you think this is a book that your family would enjoy, you can enter to win a copy, via the form below. Good luck!

Monday, February 1, 2021

Hair Units - Things You Should Know

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If your hair is thinning or going bald in certain places, a hair unit might be the best option for you. However, there are some important things you should know about this attachment before getting one. So, without further ado, let's get right to it.


What Is A Hair Unit Anyway? 

A hair unit, also known as a man weave, is a modern attachment designed for people with hair loss problems. It can be made from either real or synthetic hair. 

What Are The Benefits of Getting This Attachment? 

Things like alopecia and pattern baldness aren't fun, especially if you are still quite young. We all consider baldness as a sign of ageing. Going bald at a young age definitely doesn't help matters. With a wig unit, you can cover up any signs of hair loss. This will help you feel more confident about yourself when you interact with other people. 

Human Vs Synthetic Attachments 

Different people will require different types of wig units. Most of them are made from either synthetic or human hair. Each type has different advantages and disadvantages. Here are some of them: 

Human Attachment Advantages

Looks Natural
These kinds of units are made of human hair (obviously). This means that your wig will have a more natural feel and look.

These wigs can be dyed, curled, straightened, or permed. However, it is advised that you consult your stylist before trying anything. A stylist will be able to show you the most effective and efficient methods of styling this kind of wig.

This type of wig is a lot more durable than its counterpart. It can last up to three times the lifespan of synthetic wigs. Different Textures This kind of unit comes in various textures. This makes it easier for you to find a perfect match for your real hair. Visit to learn more.


Difficult To Maintain 
These wigs come with the same hassles attached to having natural hair. You have to wash, re-style, and condition it regularly to keep it in healthy condition. 
This type of wig can get damaged easily from brushing and using certain styling tools. Always consult a stylist before attempting anything like this. 
Even though you may find a wig with the same texture as your hair, it doesn't mean it will be a matching color. The chances of finding a wig that matches perfectly with your hair's color are very low. 
Since it comes from genuine human hair, this kind of unit tends to be a lot more expensive than synthetic wigs. 
Human hair feels noticeably heavier than synthetic. However, this may not be a problem for some people. 
Affected By Weather 
These types of units can get limp, dry, or frizzy depending on what kind of weather you have in your area. Click here to learn more. 

Synthetic Wig Advantages 

Easy Maintenance 
Unlike its counterpart, synthetic wigs are easy to style and maintain. They also maintain their style and original shape even after being washed. 
Synthetic units have a ton of different colors for you to choose from. This can be a great option for you if you want to try something different.

More Affordable
This unit costs significantly less than its counterpart. This is a better choice for those on a budget. 
Not Affected By Weather 
Unlike its counterpart, synthetic units retain their original style and shape in different weather conditions. 


Can't Be Dyed 
It's not advisable to attempt dyeing this type of unit. Regular dyes don't stick to the wig's fibers. On top of this, the chemicals can ruin the wig. 
Unnatural Look 
This one depends on the quality of synthetic wig being used. Lower-quality synthetic wigs often give off an unnatural shine. 
Short Lifespan 
Synthetic wigs have a much shorter lifespan than human attachments. 
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Frequently Asked Questions 

Can Women Get These Attachments As Well? 
Don't let the term “man weave” throw you off. Women can also use these attachments to help with hair loss conditions. 
Will Any Surgery Be Required When Getting This Attachment? 
Contrary to what some people think, installing this attachment does not involve any surgery. 
How much Does A Wig Unit Cost? 
The price of a wig unit depends on the type, style, and quality. However, units tend to cost anything between $200 and $700. It could end up being much more than this if you want to go for something like a dreadlock unit. 
How Long Do Units Last? 
This depends on the type of wig and how it was maintained. Synthetic units can stay for up to 4 weeks before needing complete replacement. On the other hand, if you have a human attachment and maintain it well, you can expect it to last up to 4 months or even longer. How Long Does It Take To Fix? The length of time it takes to fix greatly depends on the kind of unit that is being used. However, the average time is between 1 and 3 hours. 



Overall, wig attachments are great for enhancing your look. These attachments can greatly benefit those suffering from pattern baldness. Keep in mind that there are different types of wig units. Each one has different pros and cons. However, if well maintained, you can expect them to last.

Valentine's Day Gift Guide

Welcome to the 2021 Valentine's Day Gift Guide!! I am very excited about the wonderful items that are included this year. 




Plush toys are always a staple for children's gifts, especially on Valentine's Day. There are always an abundance of bears and love bugs and whatever other heart themed animals. But Mixaroo is so much more. This is the perfect soft, cuddly friend to stay by their side the whole year. Not only is it a companion, it is a exercise in creativity. 
With removable ears, tails, hair, etc, the toy can be customized to the child's taste. And since they are velcro, it is easy to change it as often as the mood strikes. This toy is seriously adorable. It's one of my favorites this year. 

Big Feelings Pineapple

I think I just really love customizable toys. This darling pineapple has all the fun and nostalgia of Mr Potato Head, but re-imagined. It really puts a focus onto the feelings, so it is as much a learning opportunity as it is a great time.

I really love this because my son is on the autism spectrum, so he struggles with picking up feelings in others and also with expressing his own feelings. With Big Feelings Pineapple, he can learn to recognize the way emotions present in expressions. My son and my daughter both love this toy, and so do I. 

Vlad & Niki

I really love gifts that are practical and fun. These super cute soft blankets from Vlad & Niki are the perfect example of that. The prints are so vibrant and fun, and they are the perfect size for kids. They are perfect for cozy movie nights on the couch or a great accent to a reading corner. They would even make a great wall tapestry. 



Highland Titles

Do you ever feel like your significant other should be treated like royalty? Or, if not royalty, at least nobility. Luckily, there is a gift that is perfect for that. With Highland Titles you can make your partner (or yourself, or anyone you care about) a Lord, Laird, or Lady.

With Highland Titles you are purchases small plots of land in Scottland. Owning land there makes it legal for you to claim one of the land owner titles. With this proof, you can even change your legal documents to reflect your new title. My husband most likely won't go that far, but he LOVES being able to call himself "Lord".

Groovy Groomsmen Gifts

Groovy Groomsmen has a ton of great gifts for the man on your list. Specifically, the Woody Pallin Watch is a favorite of mine. I love wood watches, especially dark wood. This one can be customized with Initials, dates and Roles. If it's not for a groomsman or similar, the "role" section can easily be left blank or replaced with a nickname or short message.

This is a beautiful watch. It is very well made. Personalized gifts always hold a little bit more meaning, and this is certainly no exception. 


 GnL Accessories

Handbags are one of my favorite accessories. I have a slight (or maybe not so slight) obsession with them. I prefer larger, shoulder size bags and totes. The Althea Black Tote Bag from GnL Accessories is everything I want in a bag. It is so gorgeous. It is neutral but has enough accents to still be striking.

The size is perfect and the quality is amazing. It is named after the Greek Goddess of healing. In my opinion the name is so fitting.

The style and quality are not the only things that set this bag (and company) apart, though. It's the commitment to ethical, sustainable fashion. The bag and all GnL products are vegan, organic, cruelty-free, eco-friendly and fair-trade. Look good and do good. 

Bridesmaids Gifts Boutique 

I love gift boxes. And I really love personalized gifts, so this gift box from Bridesmaids Gifts Boutique is a fantastic choice. The Lets Stay In box includes a lace robe (in choice of 3 colors) and a 12oz insulated stemless wine cup (in choice of 5 colors, with personalization). The items come in a 10x10 gift box with white paper shred. The top of the box gets the same personalization as the cup, and it can be up to 12 characters. 

This is the perfect self care gift for any woman you may be planning a gift for. 

Number 4 Hair Care

Again, we are back to practical gifts that are also enjoyable. Enter No. 4 Hair Care. These products are amazing qaulity to leave your hair looking and feeling amazing. And when you look good, you generally feel better about yourself. So it is the gift of hair care, self care and self-esteem all in one. Can't beat that. 

This Heart Your Hair Box has it all, too. It contains 7 different amazing travel sized products: Hydrating Shampoo, Hydrating Conditioner, Fleurs De Temps Body Lotion, Reconstructing Masque, Super Comb Prep & Protect, Smoothing Balm, Non Aerosol Hair Spray. Plus packette portions of 5 other great products. 


Sully & Vanilla

Food gifts are always great for anyone. Everyone loves food, especially sweets. These confections from Sully & Vanilla some of the best I've ever had. Not only are the amazingly beautiful, they taste incredible. The Linzer Heart was to die for. But every single morsel was perfection. The only drawback is if you're trying to diet, you will surely fail with access to these delectable goods. But, it will be worth it.

Sully & Vanilla is women owned and offers a huge variety of treats in themes to match any occasion. Check them out!


Food again, what a surprise. There is a reason food makes the perfect gift for anyone, though. Food is not only a necessity, but it's an indulgence. Gifts that can be consumed are much more likely to be enjoyed than flowers that die or stuff that sits around and takes up space.

GoNanas is awesome because it's treats and a experience gift, all in one. baking, especially together, is a lot of fun, especially with amazing mixes that make it fool proof. In the end, you get quality time and a delicious banana bread that is vegan and gluten free, so it can be enjoyed by almost anyone, even many with dietary restrictions.