Friday, October 24, 2014

Saving Money On Surgery

Medical bills are hard to save on. Discount medical care, coupons, etc are not really much of an option.

But we learned this week that there is one simple way to save, esp on big stuff, like surgery.

#1 Money Saving Tip on Medical Bills: 

Get a second opinion. 

This week David was scheduled to have surgery under general anesthesia.  A visit to the dr about some growths that looked a bit concerning led to the diagnosis that he needed them removed, one was possibly life-threatening and the other was too painful to remove in the office and would require general anesthesia to correct.

After my bought with cancer and the experience of a second opinion saving my life, we learned that those second opinions are sometimes very important. Esp on the big stuff, like, chemo, surgery, etc.

This second opinion saved us a big junk of change, at least $2000+ if not more. The dermatologist took care of the concerning growth in the office and let us know the other one was not an issue. $156 for the visit.

Even if it is not comfortable, you feel like you might be being disloyal or rude to your doctor, get a second opinion. Once it saved my life, as I was about to receive the wrong chemo agents and didn't know it until I went to another doctor. This time, David was spared a financial strain that we seriously could not afford and the time spent recovering from surgery, etc.

Thankfully, sometimes you can save money just by asking.

Saturday, August 30, 2014

What Is This L'BRI Stuff?

I have been busy talking about and sharing my newest venture with everyone on Facebook, around town, etc.
And then this thought hits me... My blog!!! I haven't shared anything about L'BRI on my blog!

I am now a L'BRI PURE 'n NATURAL consultant. I have been a consultant since April 2014 and am just loving it. Seriously having a blast with it. I have never done anything like this before, and didn't know I could be good at it. 

What is L'BRI? (Pronounced, "La-brigh")

L'BRI is an aloe-based line of natural skincare and makeup products as well as some health care products. It is paraben and SLS-free, no drying alcohols, no mineral oils, no glycols and no artificial fragrances or colors. They use only the highest quality ingredients. 

L'BRI was started in 1998 by Brian and Linda Kaminski and is still owned by them. They went from working out of their basement to today, where they are a multi-million dollar company. They still own the company 100% debt free and today have about 5000 consultants nationwide. It is a huge opportunity to hop in on, contrasting with 3 million for MaryKay.

So, why am I doing this? Two reasons. Okay, three.

1. L'BRI changed my skin. Seriously, no way around it. I am, for the first time in my adult life, not dealing with breakouts on my face all the time. It is still surreal to write that, but it is true. I have had strangers come up to me, even in my 20's and 30's and ask if I have ever heard of ProActive. Meant well, lacked tact. For the first time I can remember since I was a teen, I don't hate my skin. I am still amazed at how soft it is and how much it has changed. 

2. I want EVERYONE to know about this!! I am serious. I know that L'BRI is what every woman is looking for. It is amazingly effective, it is safe. And it is affordable. L'BRI is very gentle and artificial colors and fragrance free. Many people with skin conditions or very sensitive skin can use L'BRI. Very few people are ever actually allergic, and in fact, so many who are allergic to other brands, can use L'BRI. If it was on the shelf in the retail store, I would tell the world, "I found it!"

3. I want to make extra money! Yup, just like lots of other folks, things are tight. And I have a list of things that need money to do them. So, me telling the world about L'BRI pays? I'm in! I get to talk about the stuff I love, work and learn from great people on my team, play with and share makeup and skincare stuff that is high end quality at a price that most people can afford, and get PAID to do it? All for it! 

Check out my website for more info! Http:// Order 4 weeks worth of free samples for the price of shipping right from my site!

I also have a Facebook page at Check it out and like the page to stay updated!

So there you have it! I would love to hear your thoughts! Have you ever heard of L'BRI before? And what is important to you when you look for skincare products and cosmetics?

Sunday, May 25, 2014

First Post Of The Year

Every good blog has a focus, a topic and regular posts. Or at least that is what I read on blogs where the point is to help bloggers succeed.

I think I am doing pretty well with mine.

Topic- My life happenings and thoughts. That works, right?

Focus- Random stuff in my life. That qualifies, I am sure. If I wrote more about my life happenings, I would have even more random material.

Regular posts- Check. One post every six months to a year, sometimes a burst of posts followed by a long silence. Yep, I think my readers know what to expect. 

Okay, I am being a bit silly. And really do wish I posted more regularly. Sometimes I let my lack of posting, focus and post regularity be something that has a right to be on the list. You know, the list of stuff I am failing at. The one that is supposedly okay to pound on me daily, jumping around in my head like a wild war dance, screaming, scolding, taunting me with all the to-do's that will never be done.

And as I sat down to *finally* bang out a post, ready to apologize, ready to accept the shame and move on, resolving to somehow find the magic spot of blogging success being more focused, more regular, etc., I just realized the silliness of letting that list of failures dominate me. Do I want to have a better blog? Yes. But I need to shake off the condemnation of what I am not accomplishing, and move beyond it. Better still, I need to burn the hopping, screaming list, or at least burn it in my imagination, (finding time to find all my to do lists, make new ones, find the time and place to then cermoniously burn them, etc,......isn't going to happen at this season of my life), and stop listening to the accusing.

So, hopefully, this won't be a lonely post at the top of my blog for the next 8 months. But if it is, and you are reading this at Christmas or New Year's, I am not going to fret and stress about it.

Random. It is even in the title of my blog. 

So, in a way, I just checked that off the list. :)

What can you check off your list?

Photo credit-

Thursday, June 20, 2013

FREE Blogging For Profit Class

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 A class manual – packed with 60 pages of information that will help take the overwhelming out of starting your own blog
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 Save yourself a lot of time, trouble, and money – learn from my own experiences what to do and not to do. Go here to sign up for the FREE 4-week blogging class.

Monday, June 10, 2013

How I Save Big At

I work to save $$, so when I shop, I look for how to save the most. Tonight I shared with someone in an online group one way I save on purchases I make shopping online. Since I had it all written out, I thought I ought to go ahead and share it here as well. 

Vitacost is the site I purchase vitamins, food and personal care products from the most. I make an order about every month or so...they usually have what I want, I can get free shipping, usually get it cheaper than in most stores, and never have to leave my house. I jump through a few hoops to get what I want, but honestly, it is more of a process to write about it than for me to do it now that I have this system in place for me to use. I took a few pics to show you exactly how to do what I I do.

First, I became a member at I save 4% per order at Vitacost by going through the ShopAtHome site to make my purchases. I get mailed a check when my total savings reaches the $20 mark. It is not a gimmick, it really works. I have saved almost $300 in the 2 or 3 years I have been doing this. Vitacost is not the only site I save on through ShopAtHome. The other day, I renewed my Norton protection, but went through ShopAtHome to do it. I saved $20 by using a coupon from the site and another $11 from the cash back savings!!!

When you sign up, if you use my email in the referral, we both get a $5 credit to our accounts. If for some reason it doesn't show up, let me know and I will contact them, or you can. They will definitely make it right. My email is

Here is how to sign up for account, in pictures...

First, go to,...

Fill in your info and my email, which is

Once you log in to your account, you should see a $5 credit to your account in the upper right hand corner. If you don't see it, you can still get it, but will have to contact customer service and let them know that the system didn't credit you. This usually only happens if you use one of the social sites to set up your account...

When you are ready to place an order, go to, and search for the site you want to make a purchase from. 

Click the 'Shop Now' button. 

You will be taken to the site to shop. It will usually open up in a new tab. 

Just shop as usual, and then place your order. Usually within 1-3 days, you will see a credit show up in your ShopAtHome account.

Also, on your first Vitacost order, you can get a $10 off credit when you sign up for an account using my link. I get a credit as well...and if you tell other friends using your link, you can get more $10 credits.

Here are a few quick pics showing how to get $10 credit at

On the next screen, fill in my email,

Click on the green, "Unlock Your Deal" button...

Now fill in your info,

That's it! You will get a discount code to use on your order!

I also got an extra discount at vitacost the other day by shopping on my iPad. They sent me a promotional email letting me know that I could get a discount for a short time by using my ipad to shop on their mobile site. I went to, clicked through to Vitacost, clicked through to the mobile site, shopped, then checked out. I got ShopAtHome credits and a coupon code from Vitacost to use on my next order. So, watch your emails! 


I hope this was helpful to you. If you found this tutorial to be helpful, or if you have any other great tips to share for saving money online, please leave me a comment below! I love comments and love learning about great ways to save!

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Do You Want To Be A Butterfly Or A Freak?

This is from the book, "48 Days To The Work You Love," by Dan Miller. This quote is found on page 24- 25. I really liked this. I hope it ministers to you like it did me....

"The man found a cocoon of a butterfly. One day a small opening appeared. He watched the butterfly for several hours as a struggle to force its body through that little hole. Then it seems to stop making any progress. It appeared as if it could go no further. So the man decided to help the butterfly. He slipped off the remaining bit of the cooking. The butterfly then emerged easily. But it had a swollen body and small shriveled wings. The man expected that the wings would enlarge and expand to support the body, which would contract in time, but neither happened. Instead the butterfly spent the rest of his life crawling around with a swollen body and shriveled wings. It never flew. What the man, in his kindness and haste, did not understand was that the restricting cocoon was God's way of forcing fluid from the butterfly's body into its wings, so that it could fly once  free from the cocoon. Sometimes struggles are exactly what we need. If God allowed us to Go through our lives without any obstacles, it would cripple us we would not be as strong and we could never fly!"

Friday, May 10, 2013

Mind Mapping

EROP Mind Map

I am sure much of the world  already knows about the wonders of mind mapping.

I didn't.

I can't tell you how excited I am to learn about this amazing tool.

Did I mention I was excited?

If you are unfamiliar with mind mapping, like I was, it is, in a nutshell, a method of laying out data in a non-linear way so you can see large amounts of data at a glance. It is essentially a picture of data organized much like your brain organizes it, through connections.

Mind mapping can be used in many ways to help you mange data.

You can use it to take notes, organize a project, communicate a plan, organize a  brainstorming session, organize a presentation or speech, memorize information, etc, etc.

As Tony Buzan, who is responsible for popularizing the term, 'mind mapping', said, it is a "tool of geniuses." It is a method that has shown up in the journals and work of great minds of the past such as Leonardo DaVinci and others. A mind map is a way to put things down on paper in a way that is much closer to how your brain actually thinks, with makes it easier to get it down as well as easier to sort through the data. It is esp great for visual learners, although I think it can work very well for the other learning styles as well.

You can use a pen and paper, a white board, or software designed for the purpose. They can be elaborate or simple.

Since stumbling onto the concept of mind maps and learning a bit on how to use them last week, it has been amazing how this simple tool has impacted my life.

So far, I have used mind maps to:
Create accurate pictures of the long range and short range to-do lists that float around in my head. The stuff that would normally require flipping here and there in my planner to write down, is all on one page in my notebook. I can easily add to it at any moment. I look at and think, "Wow. THAT'S why I have felt like I had a lot to do and it was so complicated...." Now I can see it, and am hopeful to actually make progress, because I can a plan, not just a list.

Create and then communicate plans of action on how life needs to happen and function in a season that is frankly, hard to function in right now. I may be the only mom who has this issue, but I very often find myself feeling like I am the only one that sees the plan. In many ways, I am. I have said many times, "I wish I could show them the picture in my head so they could understand!"  I have tried to follow the great advice of other moms and get the info out where they can see it in form of charts, schedules, etc. This had had some measure of success, but has been a bit of a struggle to get people excited about. And it never really communicated the real picture in my head. This past week, I did it. I drew a picture of how things need to happen right now in our home and why. They got it. It was great for all of us. (The picture at the top of this post is from our first home managing mind map.)

Take notes on short research projects and webinars.Haven't used the mapping for this a whole lot yet, but am excited about the potential I see for it. I have always been a terrible note taker. I predict mind mapping will be a simple and yet massive tool to help me take better notes in any setting and hopefully retain the info better.

Map a passage of Scripture. This was fun, and really made me think through the passage. When you are reading and mapping the connections that are laid out in the text, there is a richness that emerges. I am looking forward to learning more about using mind maps for Bible study.

Here are a few things I found to be helpful in learning about mind maps.

Google- Google "mind maps" "mind mapping" "how to mind map" "mind mapping uses" Blogs, websites and videos galore will pop up.
YouTube- YouTube was a great resource for me in learning about this. Esp as a visual learner, seeing it done was, well, worth a thousand words. Put the same searches into a YouTube search box. The results that mention Tony Buzan are esp helpful. This site has a gallery of mind maps that show some of the more elaborate  types of mind maps you can create.

Do you mind map? I would love to hear how you use mind mapping or other visual aids to help you organize your brain! Leave me a comment!