I feel like I am constantly on the hunt for perfect hostess gifts. Why? These days:
– “White Sugar Phobias” – nix the holiday cookies
– “Household Nut Allergies” – nix the mixed nut assortment
– “Vino Dilemma” – Red? White? Not wine drinkers? Oh vey…
The 2013 Holiday Par-Teh schedule is PACKED and my hostess gift problem is solved. Thankfully, MotherStucker has discovered O-LIVE Extra Virgin Olive Oil!
O-LIVE is available nationally and can be found at your local Target, Kroger, Bi-Lo, Wegmans, AGB and more. Pick up your 2013 holiday hostess gifts on your next grocery trip and WIN a O-LIVE GIVEAWAY GIFT BASKET for YOU here:
ENTER TO WIN! Entry open 11/21/13 (midnight) and will close 11/26/13 (midnight). O-LIVE GIVEAWAY GIFT BASKET contains utensils and ingredients for an Italian dinner (pasta, colander, O-LIVE, etc) valued at $30! Read more about O-LIVE & CO. on their website at O-LIVEandCO.COM
-Plant trimmings (eucalyptus for today, try greenery that you have available!)
-Wreath frame (available at any craft store, or use an old wreath)
-Yard trimmers (for the heavy duty branches)
-Ribbon or decoration of your choice
Saturday afternoon, a neighbor was trimming her eucalyptus bush. The eucalyptus trimmings looked gorgeous and smelled even better, so I decided to put them to use. My holiday wreaths of artificial pine are an eyesore at best. Time to up cycle and free cycle!
I started but removing the dusty (fake) pine from it’s metal wreath backing. Left with a wreath skeleton, I trimmed the eucalyptus pieces down to a manageable size (approx. 2.5 feet) and began to weave the trimmings through the wreath frame. Once the entire wreath circle was entwined with eucalyptus, I simply added more where needed. Popped on some ribbon and that’s a wrap!
OtherStucker Difficulty Level = 1
5. Chuck Norris
Eucalyptus P.S: Before cocktail hour later that Saturday, I decided to tweet my project success complete with picture (not as cute as the doggy Delores picture above!). DAVID BROMSTAD -THE COLORSPLASH HGTV DESIGNER GUY – favorited my Eucalyptus tweet and then tweeted to me, “@christystucker Amaze!”. So yes, I can die happy now 😉 XOXO, MotherStucker
Looking to stretch your budget, without having to take on a second part time job, or cut back on your groceries? One of the best ways of doing this is cutting back on your electric bill. A lot of people don’t realize that with just a few simple measures, we can reduce our electric bills significantly, which is not only good for your wallet, it’s good for the environment too!
Lights are one of the main reasons we have an electric bill. We use them constantly – and often – unnecessarily leaving lights on is one of the primary mistakes in regards to electric bill efficiency. The first step to cutting back on any electric bill is remembering to turn off the lights when you leave a room, also, check before you go to bed and make sure you aren’t leaving on porch lights. Finally, check the lights in your house and make sure they are all properly working. It is easy to overlook a light that we believe is off, when it is actually on and the bulb isn’t working.
Cut down on the Wattage
Cutting back on wattage will save you money throughout the month. When you go to the store, seek out energy efficient light bulbs and cut back on your wattage. Do you really need that 100 watt bulb in your bedroom, when you can just as easily get away with a 60 watt bulb?
A/C and Heat
Cutting back on A/C and Heating preserves a lot of electricity use in our homes. Instead of having your AC on 68-70, try letting it go up to 72-74. In fact, automatic thermostats often run up our bills, because of the tendency to cut on and off every time it detects a temperature change (opening a door to the outside, etc). This is probably the biggest money saver you can make by cutting back on
Cancelling your Cable Subscription
This may seem like an extreme suggestion, but it’s actually quite practical. Most of us do not have time to sit around and watch hours of television, yet we pay $60 + a month cable bills (even for basic packages), this results in a lot of money being unnecessarily wasted. Want an alternative to cable? Try Netflix for $7.99, which will allow you to stream movies and shows on demand. Netflix is a great choice as they have constantly been adding their own TV series
Cutting Back on Water Consumption
In many places, the water bills can get outrageously expensive. The first step to making sure you aren’t overpaying for water is making sure there aren’t any leaks. Make sure you go around and check your toilets, sinks and bathtubs and listen for any dripping sounds. If you don’t find anything, you’re probably safe and can assume there aren’t any leaks in your water system; unless your bill suddenly becomes disproportionally high one month.
The next step involves limiting your water consumption. When you turn on water facets, make sure to turn them off once you’ve finished what you are doing and never allow your faucets to run on their own unattended. If you’re washing dishes, fill up the sink just enough to submerge your dishes in a small pool of water. Take showers, not baths! Research into water consumption actually shows that a full bath uses up to 80 liters of water, where as a shower lasting about 5 minutes uses only about 34 liters of water. However, make sure the showers you’re using aren’t power showers; these showers use over twice as much water as a normal shower does.
If you follow these tips, you’re sure to save a good amount of money every month on your utilities!
Do you have a runner on your holiday gift list? MotherStucker (a runner herself) recommends “The Runner’s Choice” by Trusted Health Products – MotherLoad Holiday Giving Guide #10: The Runner’s Choice – November is National Running Safety Month and MotherStucker cares about the health and safety of the runners you love.
Runner’s Choice is for the discomfort of sore feet. As low as $16.64 per 60ml bottle (that lasts at least 6 months!), it is designed for people that are on their feet all day or for people who run 3 miles or more at a time. Made in the USA, The Runner’s Choice, is scientifically formulated with 100% natural botanical oils of almond, eucalyptus, eucalytol, wintergreen, peppermint, and spearmint. Unlike many commercial creams and lotions, the botanical oils in The Runner’s Choice are very easily received through the pores in the skin, with simple topical application, and no rubbing.
Order yours here – MotherLoad Holiday Giving Guide #10: The Runner’s Choice – Pass along the safety tips below to your jolly joggers this holiday season!
1. Carry a cell phone – It might feel a bit cumbersome to carry your phone on a run, but in the event you need it and there aren’t other people around it could be a lifesaver.
2. Let someone know where you are going – Before you take off on your run, let someone know where you are going and what time you plan on returning. Tell your husband, send a text to your teenager or send a quick email to a friend letting them know what route you are planning to take and how long you should be out.
3. Light up the night – Runners are hard to see at night and can be easily overlooked by a tired or distracted driver. Wearing reflective clothing and lights makes it much easier for drivers to spot you. Also, wearing a headlamp or carrying a flashlight can help you avoid potholes and other hazards in the road.
4. Listen up – Turn down the music, wear headphones in just one ear or, best yet, don’t listen to music at all. It’s important to hear what is going on around you, especially when it is dark and you can’t see your surroundings as well.
5. Power in numbers – Running with a friend or Fido is not only more fun, but also safer. If you don’t have runner friends or a dog ask a friend to bike along you while you run.
SantaGraphs are fun personalized autographed pictures of Santa. Send an 8×10 glossy picture of Santa with your personalized message to your friends, family, coworkers and loved ones! – See more at: http://www.santagraphs.com/
Green Kid Crafts delights kids and their parents with fun, creative and earth-friendly craft activities, delivered right to the front door! Every month’s Discovery Box is packed with unique and engaging activity kits designed to foster a child’s creativity and confidence while developing their respect and love for the environment.
Appropriate for ages 3-8, Discovery Box projects are reviewed by experts, kid tested and parent approved for fun. I was thoroughly impressed with the overall value and attention to detail of our Discovery Box. Perfectly age appropriate containing additional suggestions for extended play and learning – plus re-gifting possibilities through the crafts made!
Subscriptions are available in month-to-month, 3, 6 and 12 month durations, and also make great gifts! Every purchase you make with Green Kid Crafts supports sustainable business, and a portion of each sale is donated to environmental organizations.
MOTHERSTUCKER EXCLUSIVE SPECIAL SALE for your traveling family this November! SAVE 25% ON ALL SINGLE DISCOVERY BOXES – Great for air and car travel! The day before Thanksgiving is the busiest travel day of the year. Keep the kids entertained while traveling. Win-Win for parents and kids; plus these boxes now qualify for free shipping! Order by clicking on the Green Kid Crafts ad to the right —> (might need to scroll down a bit!).
Believe it or not, the first MotherLoad Holiday Giving Guide idea for 2013 made it to the top of the list in late September of this year. OtherStuckers, this is a “Beautiful” story.
As a woman in my late thirties, I have been using facial skin care products for 25+ years. As Mrs. U.S. of A Globe 2005 and Mrs. Kentucky 2009 please realize I experimented heavily with any product I could get my hands on. I needed perfect skin – no exceptions. At the very least, I wanted the best possible skin I could achieve. As you might imagine, I was disappointed with every single product I tried.
Without any good options, I settled onto products that bounced my skin from one extreme to another. Does dry/unexplained breakout/skin fading/too oily/premature wrinkles/hyperpigmintation/blackheads look familiar? I struggled with at least 2 issues at a time (up to all 7 simultaneously sometimes) and thought I would just have to put up with it.
I never imagined a facial skin care product that would have my name (YOUR name too) on the bottle itself. More shocking is that what is inside the bottle actually makes skin beautiful.
Skin care has been revolutionized with “Beautiful”, the world’s first skin supplement. It actually feeds my skin (and yours!) what it needs in order for it to be luminous and healthy. Beautiful uses a rare combination of live fruit, nut and plant extracts to feed your skin cells and promote youthful, moist skin.
In all honesty, the use of “Beautiful” requires a brain shift. Thinking of applying oil to my skin seemed extremely unconventional. Soon, other shifts began to happen. I noticed that I didn’t feel the need to wear make-up as often (because I had less and less to cover up!). Even when I did apply make-up for a special occasion I realized I was using less makeup — due to having less to cover up overall — plus the make-up itself now reacted better with my skin.
When I wear make-up it now glides and blends over my skin instead of sitting on top of my skin like a mask. I use only 2 products – the Beautiful AM Moisturizer and the Beautiful PM Revitalizer. Both products can be purchased together in a .5 oz set for $44.94. I use approximately 3 drops of Beautiful AM in the morning and Beautiful PM in the evening, meaning this size/set will last you at least 2 months.
What a perfect gift for all the beautiful people in your life – Mom, sister(in-law), aunt, BFF, daughter – don’t forget YOU. Order yours by clicking this link: MotherLoad Holiday Giving Guide #13: Beautiful – Use now to look your most beautiful for upcoming 2013 holiday season festivities!
MotherStucker thinks the scariest part of Halloween should be the trip to the costume store. This year I was chased around the aisles by a sketchy clown while attempting to find a pirate costume for my big ghoul and a kitty cat costume for my little monster. I told the clown (…shiver…) that this wasn’t my first Halloween rodeo. In fact, 2013 marks my 11th year as a Trick or Treat supervising parent. Everyone loves a good scare on Halloween, but not when it comes to child safety. Throughout the years I have picked up several effective tips that parents can share with kids to help reduce risks on Halloween night (and beyond!).
MotherStucker’s Trick or Treat Two Cents’:
BOO DO Develop a planned Halloween route and practice your route before the big night. Watch for traffic patterns and pick a path that is pedestrian friendly. Share your plan with your little monsters so that the group has clear expectations.
BOO DON’T Select a costume that doesn’t fit properly. Make sure it is the right size to prevent trips and falls.
BOO DO Decorate costumes and bags with reflective tape or stickers. Since masks can sometimes obstruct a child’s vision, try non-toxic face paint and makeup whenever possible.
BOO DON’T Let children under 10 trick or treat without adult supervision. Just don’t.
BOO DO Use glow sticks or flashlights to help see your path and to help drivers see you.
BOO DON’T Cross the street between parked cars or those that are turning or backing up. Teach children to use crosswalks whenever possible and to never dart out into the street.
BOO DO have active (often) communication with your big ghouls (age 10+ at your discretion) that are mature enough to be out without supervision. Keep Track of Your Kids This Halloween with the MamaBear App — Kids love that they can check in with parents using emoticons — Parents love the map locator feature plus alerts when your kids arrive or leave places you set. Remind them to stick to familiar areas that are well lit and trick-or-treat in groups. Happy Halloween!
This MotherStucker likes concepts that are as easy as A, B, C. The basic info: Teespring is beyond a problem solver. It is the solution. Here are the answers you need to know:
Teespring is a crowdfunding platform for groups, causes and communities to design and sell custom apparel.
1. Anyone can come and design a shirt which they can then sell via Facebook, Twitter or anywhere else online. The seller keeps all of the profit the shirt earns. People use Teespring as a fundraising tool or just to earn some extra money. The best part is the shirts don’t print and ship until a set end date determined by the seller. This means you pay nothing upfront, take no risk and don’t have to deal with the hassle of ordering the right number of shirts. You can launch your campaign at http://teespring.com. Remember, you can use a design of your own, or choose from the 1,000s of graphic TeeSpring provides for free!
2. Share your Teespring campaign with your twitter followers, Facebook friends and fans and email subscribers to collect pre-orders towards your goal. Pre-ordering is free! Buyers will only be charged if the goal you set is reached. MotherStucker designed a T for my neighborhood – the quality of T’s available are top notch and the Teespring site is not only easy to navigate but fun! I’m excited that proceeds from the MotherStucker designed shirt for the neighborhood will go to charity and we are well on the way to reaching our Teespring goal. MotherStucker’s link: http://teespring.com/lakeridge
3. You can continue to sell past your goal. Once the time limit ends (you set the parameters), Teespring handles printing and shipping. Teespring then sends you a check for the profit! Give yourself an A for effort — earn your place on the MotherStucker honor roll with Teespring — Class dismissed 😉 http://teespring.com
(Posted on October 22, 2012 by Bourbon & Beans www.bourbonandbeans.com)
Christy Stucker is a fireball – pure and simple.
A native Kentuckian, wife, mom, blogger, and former Mrs. Kentucky America / Mrs. U.S. Globe winner, Christy has shown that she has the passion and determination to make her dreams come true. But she’s just getting started.
When Christy came in to our office last week in a bright pink studded jacket and rush of bubbly excitement, we knew she was someone we wanted to work with. We sat down and chatted about how she got where she is. When asked where she wants to be next year, she said that very question was written on her mirror in eyeliner – a reminder to always be thinking of the future.
In March of this year, Christy began her blog, The Mother Stucker. Geared toward feisty and fashionable moms, her frequent posts include women’s and household product reviews, vacation ideas, family-friendly recipes, chic style and her own entertaining and well-written viewpoints. She plans expand her role as a professional promoter and to continue her charity work.
November is an exciting month for Christy, as she gears up for a holiday charity event in the Ukraine. Each year, the Mrs. U.S. of A Globe Travel Team brings “Christmas to Kids” in the winning contestant’s home country. In December 2012, Christy will travel to an orphanage in the Ukraine and bring blankets, pajamas, holiday outfits, teddy bears and a special personalized toy to over 90 children.
This year Christy decided to bring “Christmas for Kids” to Kentucky, too. She and the Mrs. Kentucky America travel team will deliver gifts to over 50 boys and girls at the Appalachian Children’s Home in Knox County.
To get involved, check TheMotherStucker.wordpress.com for updates and/or email MotherStucker@gmail.com for more information.
Name: Christy Stucker
Location: Lexington KY
Occupation: The Mother Stucker (Brand/Blogger)
Approximate Age: 35
In the words of Theodore Roosevelt, “In any moment of decision, the best thing you can do is the right thing, the next best thing is the wrong thing, and the worst thing you can do is nothing.” Right or wrong, I go with Willett / Maker’s Mark!
Garbanzo Beans (Ceci Beans) – hands down! I use them in a Mediterranean stew recipe, flatbread appetizer, in salads, etc.
Are you from Kentucky? Where?
Proud to be a lifelong Kentuckian! I grew up in Northern Kentucky, graduated from The University of Kentucky, spent 6 years in Louisville and have been back in Lexington since 2006.
Do you consider yourself to be sassy?
What gets you out of bed in the morning?
Strong abdominal muscles and unwavering conviction – allow me to explain. I have a Tempurpedic bed. When you push down to roll over, nothing happens. It’s like being in quicksand (you about need a crane to get out of it). They don’t make a big point of that in the commercials. So, every day I feel as though I am closer to my personal goals – one of those goals being six-pack abs.
What is the biggest business challenge you face right now?
Whose turn is it to make the Starbucks run?
What’s a great book/movie you recently read/watched?
I really enjoyed “Five People You Meet in Heaven” by Mitch Albom. I think about my (possible?) 5 connections every day. I also recently read “Outliers” by Malcolm Gladwell and am working on completing my 10,000 hours as he suggests….
When do you know it’s time for a vacation?
Red flag: When I start making fantasy itineraries on travel sites. May I suggest VirtuallyThere.com
What’s one of your leadership secrets?
Clear and concise communication is of utmost importance. Especially when answering the questions “Where are we going?”, “How are we going to get there?”, and “What is my role?”
When you’re off work, where can we find you in Lexington (or surrounding areas)?
Some fall/winter favorites: Keeneland, Churchill Downs, Andover Country Club, Red River Gorge, etc.
What do you look for in an employee or business partnership?
I look for “fire” in their eyes as well as “laser” focus. I’ve discovered that when my team concentrates on one important aspect of our business (and give it all we’ve got!) we are exponentially more productive. Splitting our focus only creates opportunity for becoming overwhelmed and missing details. I want employees and partnerships that give the important aspects of our business our FULL attention for a designated period for phenomenal results.
What’s a quote or saying that gets you through the tough days?
“You will find joy in overcoming obstacles.” – Helen Keller
How do you relish your successes?
Champagne. Apply liberally. 🙂
Why is it important to buy from local businesses?
The Mother Stucker buys local because it makes sense (cents!). Competition and diversity leads to more consumer choice in Lexington. I also appreciate the opportunity to make new contacts in my hometown!
How ugly is your bank issued debit card? I speak from experience. Mine is black and orange and well-worn all over. Nothing like the super stylish cards pictured below! See for yourself and even browse card designs by category at http://www.card.com/?afid=178/ I searched “fashion” and found over 119 options. See what is available in other categories too (nature, cityscapes, sports, causes, etc.)! Thousands of cool, unique card designs to choose from, including brands like: Garfield, Popeye, Betty Paige, James Dean, Care Bears, Walking Dead, Star Trek, Autism Awareness, Breast Cancer Research, Shark Week, Where’s Waldo, Doodle Jump, Three Stooges, Nancy Drew, etc.
CARD is the prepaid debit card that’s fun to use. NO Credit Check plus you can use everywhere Visa® or MasterCard® are accepted. Access ATMs worldwide plus NO overdraft fees or late fees. Your new card is free to order, activate and load. I like that my fashionable new card is safer than cash with 24/7 support including Visa’s fraud protection and 100% FDIC insurance on funds.
-Free app and check deposits from your smartphone
-Free direct deposit
-Free card-to-card transfers, any time, anywhere, in seconds
-No credit check and approval in seconds
-No check cashing fees
-22,000 in-network ATMs
-Order yours today http://www.card.com/?afid=178/
-It’s everywhere you want to be! XOXO, MotherStucker
As my first ever trip to Mexico approached, I made 3 rules for myself in regards to my time south of the border.
1. I do not want to go to a Mexican Prison.
2. I do not want to go to a Mexican Hospital.
3. I do not want to participate in any activities which might lead to an excursion at a Mexican Prison and/or a Mexican Hospital.
As the plane touched down on Mexican soil, my travel entourage foursome began to make plans for the day. Mr. MotherStucker and I were enjoying time away from our OtherStuckers with another couple possessing an equally funny last name*. As a group we decided the boys would go play golf at the resort while my fellow Mother* friend and I would take the rental car in search of a nearby grocery –or retail therapy – whichever we were to encounter first.
My excitement to be in Mexico for the first time was palpable. In the spirit of the occasion I had put on my most festive dress. I was colorful and cool in my (tiny) cotton dress as I also had made the decision earlier in the day to go commando. Don’t judge me. Mexico is hot!
THUD! An extremely loud noise echoed through our microscopic Mexican rental car. Thud…Thud…Thud…Thud. MotherStucker! We blew a tire on the highway and immediately began searching for a place to pullover. Concrete walls lined the 4 lane road with only one break visible ¼ mile ahead. The area was sketchy at best and I began to wonder what sort of building we would be stuck in front of and for how long.
As we coasted off the highway onto the dirt road’s building entrance I panicked. The next several hours aren’t good. So not good in fact that my mind has blocked a large portion of the experience.…This is what I know for sure.
I am stranded at a Mexican Prison with my fellow female traveler.
I promised myself I would not go to a Mexican Prison. There were only 3 rules!
Yo no hablo español.
No calling or texting possible on our phones as we were ‘too busy’ to secure an international calling card before leaving home.
Prison guards with machine guns pointed at us.
Promises to God I will change a few things moving forward.
No hub cap key in the rental. We are unarmed and unable to change the tire ourselves.
This is a shi**y trip.
My only option for a rescue is an unmarked car that has shown up hours later at the entrance to the Mexican Prison. The driver of the car doesn’t speak English but points to the rental car company folder I’m death gripping to my chest, then points to himself. He walks to his own equally microscopic vehicle and gestures for us to get in with him.
I prayed. A lot.
Upon arriving at the rental car company building I launch myself at the first English speaking employee I hear/see to explain we need help! I thank our rescuer to the best of my ability and continue to sob as we receive a new rental car. I nickname this new rental, “shoe” because for my remaining Mexican Vacation I keep mixing it up with my other shoes, as it is approximately the same size.
Meanwhile, back at the resort the boys are finishing up 36 holes of golf. As my gal pal and I explain what we have been up to, our hubbies faces fall into despair. They knew at that moment that they were never going to hear the end of it…
Luckily, I never ended up at a Mexican Hospital. At least, not on this trip.
*Name have been withheld for witness protection purposes. Trust me, even weirder than Stucker. Bless her heart.
Nearing their diamond 65th anniversary, the Appalachian Children’s Home (501 c 3 non-profit) has experienced a change-up that enables the entire ACH team to go extra innings in the practice of helping kids. In past seasons — namely 2001 — ACH was in danger of striking out. The outlook was dismal with only $210.00 in the ACH checking account in addition to state and federal seizure notices (due to unpaid payroll taxes) amounting to a ballpark debt figure of $100,000.00 with penalties.
ACH needed an ace and they found him in Steve Yeary. Steve accepted the position of President at ACH and put nearly $45,000 of his family’s money to pay past due bills. Yeary set the children’s home up to score by forming “fee for services” contracts in 2001 that still sustain the home today. Yeary then began pitching his vision for ACH to churches and individuals.
Prior to 2001, $35,000 was the most successful financial year the home ever had. Within his first year of play as President of ACH, Yeary had procured $600,000 in receivables. Today Appalachian Children’s Home is in a league of their own with a budget of $2.9 million including an annual audit review of finances. All donations go to resident children’s needs.
ACH holds 2 state licenses — long-term care residential and an emergency shelter — additionally they are nationally and internationally accredited by the Council on Quality & Leadership. 2009 was a pennant year as ACH was voted nonprofit of the year by the Kentucky Highlands Corporation, Eastern Kentucky University, and The Center for Rural Development.
Appalachian Children’s Home accepts kids from every county in Kentucky between the ages of 11 and 18. Every child is referred to ACH by social services. Bases are loaded at ACH with 53 staff team members and up to 52 child residents. Knox Appalachian School is a public school located on the ACH campus. It is staffed by 5 full-time teachers and a Title I Coordinator. ACH/Knox Appalachian School was the pilot program for the Plato learning system and each student has their own individual I-Pad. Students work on a curriculum based entirely on their learning need and ability.
This new season at ACH allows all players to step up to the plate! ACH’s 150 acre campus includes a 2 acre stocked fishing pond, a nationally licensed horseback riding instructor and 4 Tennessee Walking Horses. Students from Eastern Kentucky University, Union College, and Lincoln Memorial University complete internships each semester on the Appalachian Children’s Home team roster. Many former ACH residents have gone on to become teachers, state government officials, business leaders, pastors and other various professional occupations. Winning Streak? Even a rookie can recognize the strategy of a champion work ethic. Go team ACH!
Photo: Appalachian Children’s Home Staff Leader Group 2013
“I’ve learned to call things as I see them. My philosophy of life is simple, with a vital, driving force: I believe in my God, my family, my country, and baseball. Including baseball may seem out of place in this statement, but I firmly believe that baseball, more than being just a national pastime, has been officially bound up with American life, certainly with my own. It helped develop me physically as a boy. It taught me teamwork and an ability to cooperate with others. Another thing, it taught me to try to play according to the rules of the game. This has helped me throughout life.” -Umpire Ralph “Babe” Pinelli
Although I applied to be a contestant on Blogger Idol 2013, sadly I was overlooked for a top 13 slot. Can’t win them all – right? The concept still appeals to me — (pauses to put on my big girl panties) — therefore I will be following along (Stalking?) the weekly Blogger Idol 2013 assignments. The Blogger Idol gods have handed down the “Week Two Play-at-Home:” Did You Commit a Crime? http://blogger-idol.com/
MotherStucker doesn’t have to follow the Blogger Idol 2013 rules to a “T” because… well you know (pout). The requirements of this “Week Two” assignment are best filled by my recent 6 week stay at an extended stay hotel. Hubby, daughters, Delores the dog and I started the experience excited about daily bed sheet changes and zero personal housecleaning responsibilities. The hooneymoon with the hotel was soon over when cookies and beer began to disappear from our micro-fridge. http://motherstucker.com/how-to-survive-an-extended-stay-hotel-part-i/ Who was Disturbing the Peace?
The dirty laundry began to pile up and although I never suspected Money Laundering, MotherStucker might have created a Domestic Violence disturbance in the hotel laundry facility. http://motherstucker.com/how-to-survive-an-extended-stay-hotel-part-ii-laundry-edition/ Wholeheartedly, I admit to Aiding and Abetting my blog though my interactions with fellow hotel guests. http://motherstucker.com/how-to-survive-an-extended-stay-hotel-part-iii-weekend-edition/ Seriously, who can make this stuff up? Identity Theft? My ass!
As our extended stay hotel check-out date drew near, my frustration with one particular hotel guest nearly led to an Assualt and Battery charge over the drying of her personal clothing on EVERY available outdoor chair. http://motherstucker.com/how-to-survive-an-extended-stay-hotel-part-iv-of-iv-martinizing-magnanimity/ Instead of Stucker-Punching said hotel guest, I decided to try my hand at Public Intoxication…
These pumpkin pancakes are a cinch to prepare, because they start with a baking mix, such as Bisquick. If you want really fluffy pancakes, substitute 1/4 of seltzer water for 1/4 cup of the milk.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Yield: 8 – 12 servings
3 cups baking mix, such as Bisquick
3 large eggs
2 cups milk
1 15 oz. can cup pumpkin puree
2 Tbsp. sugar
2 tsp. cinnamon
1. Preheat a large frying pan over medium-high heat.
2. Whisk together all ingredients until well-combined, but do not overmix.
3. Let rest for 10 minutes.
4. Ladle quarter-cupfuls of the batter onto the griddle. Cook until the edges of the pancakes start to set and bubbles start to form on the surface of the pancakes.
5. Flip. Cook another 1-3 minutes until pancakes are golden brown on the other side.
6. Serve immediately with butter and syrup.
Although I applied to be a contestant on Blogger Idol 2013, sadly I was overlooked for a top 13 slot. Can’t win them all – right? The concept still appeals to me — pauses to put on my big girl panties — therefore I will be following along (stalking?) the weekly Blogger Idol 2013 assignments. http://blogger-idol.com
The Blogger Idol gods have handed down the “Week One Play-at-Home:” Write Your Own Eulogy.
MotherStucker doesn’t have to follow the Blogger Idol 2013 rules to a “T” because…well you know (pout). This requirements of this assignment are best filled by the short and not so sweet words of my ex.
“No matter how good she looks, someone out there is tired of her shi*.”
In People Magazine’s “Most Beautiful People” celebrities like Drew Barrymore, Jessica Biel, Eva Longoria, and Rosario Dawson took it all off – their makeup, that is – for the camera. Could you be so brave? Does being seen in public without makeup make you self conscious or even queasy?
If so, I invite you to challenge yourself! The mission: Go without a stitch of makeup for seven days: No concealer, powder, foundation, eyeliner, mascara, lipstick, nada. Also no hiding out at home – participants must show their bare faces to the public. Need motivation? Could going without makeup be better for your health?
The Campaign for Safe Cosmetics is a coalition of public health, educational, labor, religious, environmental and consumer groups with the stated goal of protecting the health of consumers (and cosmetic workers) by requiring the health and beauty industry to phase out the use of chemicals linked to cancer, birth defects and other health problems and replace them with safer alternatives. To date, over 400 manufacturers, distributors and retailers have signed the pledge. To check out the list of companies go to http://www.safecosmetics.org/companies/signers.cfm
Start your own trend by going without makeup often! I challenged myself and gone from “never leaving the house without “my face on” to now “usually out and about with no makeup” over the past month. My cashier at the grocery store now recognizes “the no makeup me” and seems unphased by my naked face. Go Naked!!! I look forward to seeing your face!
“The latest craze sweeping the country is ethical, eco-fabulous, social and fun. Welcome to the future of fashion.” Jess Cartner-Morley, Marie Claire Magazine
Swishing is the party version of a free, second hand, clothes swap! It is a fun and organized way to clean out your closet, get together with good friends, and trade out your unwanted clothes. The added advantage of clothes swapping is that it gives party-goers the opportunity to share in food and drink plus indulge in the art of recycling by serving as stylists for one another. According to the EPA Office of Solid Waste, Americans throw away more than 68 pounds of clothing and textiles per person per year, and clothing and other textiles represent about 4% of the municipal solid waste. Of course, this is also a great opportunity to build community and make a difference!
The basic rules for a Swishing Party are as follows.
1. Choose a location that has some space as you’ll have a people trying on outfits and flinging clothes left and right.
2. Invite all your friends through Facebook or an Evite. Tell everyone to bring clothes they are tired of or don’t fit. Bring shoes, belts, accessories, clothing, whatever, as long as they are still in good condition. Remember one person’s old clothes are another’s dream outfit. Everyone must bring at least one item of quality clothing.
3. You can get as fancy or as informal as you want to display clothes, (usually, at our parties there are so many clothes they end up as heaps on the ground). Have a number of mirrors available throughout the room. When everyone arrives, it is essentially a free-for-all. You can wait for everyone to get there if you have punctual friends, but don’t wait for too long. Consider a ½ hour “browsing” time before the swish opens…
4. Generally, whoever claims something first has dibs. If there is a conflict between people as to who gets a piece of clothing, each person models the item for the group, and the group votes for who it looks best on. Another rule is that you should never feel obligated to take something unless you love it.
5. Remember no scratching, spitting or fighting.
6. At the end of the party, each person will go home with treasures and wonderful finds, but there will also be lots of leftovers. Whoever hosts the party is responsible for taking all these items and donating, upcycling or selling to consignment.
Rustle up something fabulous with new and old friends!
Here are 4 outfits I wore to BloggyCon 2013 from my latest SWISH*!
*Paired with J. Peterman button down Pic 1, Express leather jacket Pic 2, H&M jeans Pic 3, White House Black Market stilettos Pic 4
“O, it sets my hart a-clickin’ like the tickin’ of a clock,
When the frost is on the punkin and the fodder’s in the shock.” – James Whitcomb Riley
You can take the MotherStucker out of the country, but you can’t take the country out of the MotherStucker! Bring on the FodderShock ;)(Translation – Tall dried cornhusk decor for my city slicker OtherStuckers!)
Do one thing today that is good for your health! Take a long walk, eat a super healthy meal, get a good night’s sleep, etc.! 😉 XOXO, MotherStucker
When Jabu’she challenged this MotherStucker to try their anti-aging skin care products, they might not have known exactly what they were getting into. This summer I have moved 300 miles, experienced the process of building a new home, had a milestone birthday – all while living in a hotel with my entire family. Stressed much? Challenge accepted!
Sold in the most prestigious stores in Sweden for over 10 years, the Jabu’she skin care line has been awarded with the 2004, 2005 and 2010 beauty product of the year, according to Svenska Arets Hudvards, the leading Swedish retail association.
First I tried the Repairing Overnight Anti-aging Moisture Mask, and not a moment too late! The mask goes on as a cream that rehydrates my skin and smoothes fine lines. Jabu’she moisture mask helps my face regain its fresh youthful glow and has a calming effect on my super-stressed skin. I leave it on for at least 15 minutes, then wash off. Suitable for all skin types.
Next I tried the Jabu’she soft 24 hour cream. Daily use helps my skin by minimizing the appearance of fine lines, pores and hyperpigmentation. Contains the unique formulation QAL-100 which has antioxidant properties. Apply morning and evening after thorough cleansing.
The complete Jasbu’she Product line includes:
· 24-hour cream – $44.95
· 24-hour cream, soft $39.95
· 24-hour eye cream – $34.95
· Anti-wrinkle serum – $49.95
· Eye lift serum – $39.95
· Cleansing lotion – $29.95
· Facial tonic – $31.95
· Moisture mask – $39.95
Available online at the Jabu’she website www.jabushe.com or amazon.com – Motherstucker readers receive 25% off using code SKIN25 through 7/31/13!
Good news OtherStuckers! I’m more than halfway through my stay and am learning an incredible amount about my fellow guests! I have met some of the nicest people I’ve ever encountered as well as some insanely bizarre characters. Monday through Friday at an extended stay hotel is fairly quiet with low guest traffic. Weekends are an entirely different story. Friday afternoons I have been known to sit in the lobby and await the weekend visitors with the anticipation of a kid on Christmas morning! Here are some of my favorites to date!
-The Red Business Backpacks:
Every member of this crew is tall, thin, courteous and so intelligent it shows in their outward appearance. Each member wears a red backpack at ALL times that appears to hold a laptop computer and other assorted electronic equipment. I have no idea what they do or why they are here but it seems very “Men In Black”esque… I probably have already said too much.
-The Lacrosse Team:
Four teams of pre-teenage boys arrived with sticks and balls galore. I sighed and braced for late nights of hotel hallway game noises and boy smells. Much to my surprise the boys were extremely well-behaved. The lacrosse parents however came to party! I witnessed “40 Something Dads” doing things I would expect to see in a “Girls Gone Wild” video. I can’t lie, I was sad to see the Lacrosse team go.
-The Wedding Party:
The night before the wedding party arrived the hotel posted “Noise Policy” updates at every entrance, under guest doors, in the elevators and at the check-in desk. I could hardly wait to see who would arrive! My right eyebrow stayed perfectly lifted in disbelief all weekend when I realized the wedding party were a devoutly religious family from the East Coast. They were lovely and failed miserably at providing the level of entertainment to which I have grown accustomed.
-The Shirtless Cowboy:
I’m not sure where he parks his horse, but every Friday evening he rolls in to the extended stay hotel. He sits on the hotel patio talking on his phone, smoking cigarettes in a cowboy hat and a pair of jeans. Don’t get excited — this is not the sort of cowboy you would wish to see shirtless — or on your patio for that matter. He also enjoyed the Lacrosse team too much. Mama’s don’t let your baby’s grow up to be cowboys!
Together MOMS we are going to make 2013 THE summer to remember! Your first weekly challenge MOMS is to make a NEW Girlfriend at the pool. I met my best friend last summer at the pool and she has made every aspect of my life better 😉
Swimming and chatting with your new gal pal is great exercise plus a super stress reliever. When is the last time you swam with someone your own age? Keep a MotherStucker in the loop and let me know how it goes! This post dedicated to my forever best friend Ella Karch!
Tomorrow marks the first week completed in the Extended Stay Hotel! I’m not going to lie — housekeeping and a hot breakfast are fantastic — but this “homeless” in a hotel experience is not for the faint of heart. Last night I nearly lost my MotherStucker mind in the hotel laundry room. Here are some Laundry Edition tips to ease your experience:
1. Be mindful on the time your washer takes to complete a cycle. My extended stay hotel has 3 washers for guests and one particular guest decided to use all 3 washers at once and then leave her wet clothes for hours after their cycle completed.
2. At this point may I suggest you attempt to use the laundry facilities as early in the day as possible? Many extended stay hotel guests leave during the day for work/errands which is likely to free up the laundry room. Likewise, starting your laundry late in the day may lead to an all night experience if you encounter another guest who happens to be exercising #1 (Above).
3. Be mindful of the time you dryer takes to complete a cycle. My extended stay hotel has 3 dryers for guests and one particular guest decided to use all 3 dryers at once and then leave her wet clothes for hours after their cycle was complete. Yes, OtherStuckers it needs to be stated. After the hours the original dry cycle was completed she actually decided to try another cycle for all 3 dryers. Sigh. Your personal (wet) clothing items held hostage in an extended stay hotel laundry room is entirely uncool.
4. Note folding areas: Counter Space in the laundry or even your own hotel room bed? The hood of the washer or dryer aren’t great places to fold your laundry (especially late at night) (as other MotherStuckers are desperately trying to launder their own garments).
5. Research nearby full service laundry facilities…… 😉