Find a Donor. On Facebook!


Opening my browser this morning the headlining story was that Mark Zuckerburg has revealed a new Facebook option that allows you to search for Organ Donors.  112 – 113 million people in the United States alone are in need of a transplant. For them and their families the potential of this app to connect them with donors is an answered prayer. Others are more reserved about sharing their medical information so publicly and question the security of their records.

 

 

Myself? I am wondering if  similar applications will soon be functioning through social media. Adoption?

Zombies Run


Hi readers! I found a really great app I wanted to share with everyone who is fighting for  motivation to get out of the house. It’s called Zombie Run! The app teams up with the music on your phone taking you on a ‘real’ survival mission through zombie infested streets in the fictional town, Abel Township and has an interactive storyline. It is a bit on the steep side at $8 but can you really put a price on a fun workout?   I can’t wait to give this a try!

A Shanty Town Collage.


I’ve got a great post for you today that is definitely on its way to becoming a Shanty Town Classic. Staying true to our motto todays post is a collection of odds and ends with a few bits and pieces!

                The first thing I am sharing caught my attention I wrote a similar article about reusing plastic earlier this year.  This is a really good but simple idea and is a great way to repurpose your old plastic bottles. It is called Bottle Dip Irrigation and uses plastic jugs to irrigate your garden and apply water directly to the roots. I am definitely going to give this method a try when I get my vegetable garden started next month. I’ll keep you posted on the results.

 

Spring has begun! Time to break out the cute summer wear! Here are three great articles essential for spring and summer months!

The summer can really take a toll on your hair especially if yours is colored. Luckily you can protect your strands and look great. Grab a silk scarf and head over to 1 Foulard 3 Possibilities for some of this season’s go to hair styles.

Just because you’re not at the beach doesn’t mean you can’t imitate the just stepped of the sand look. Click here for a quick tutorial on cheap and easy beach waves that work great on all hair types.

 

 

 

 

Everyone is worried about looking their best in their swimsuits. Not only does it feel good to be fit it’s also good for your health and mood.  Learn how to get and stay in shape easily without the gym or expensive trainers at Great List.

 

How to get your content shared.


Social media is a fickle mistress that all content writers must woo.

Let’s face it most people don’t want to write a blog if no one is sharing or at the least looking at the content. The web has us under the impression that “If content is any good someone would have already shared it.” Making life for the startup writer like myself that much more difficult.

I like to put myself in the shoes of my visitors. If I look at my blog and see it has over 300 shares I’m much more likely to share what I see as “social proof” than what might be a better article if it only has 60 shares.  My point is no one wants to recommend a post that isn’t popular because they might lose face from their contacts. Finding a page with tons of popular content makes the decision to share that much easier.

This is part one of a series of posts where I will show you how to write captivating articles guaranteed to squeeze shares out of your visitors and transform them into loyal readers.

DO – Keep it short.  People have a very short attention span and many of them prefer to skim a short paragraph and not a page full of text. If you have a lot to say you may want to break your post into a couple different segments. This will engage readers and keep them coming back to your site.

DO – Proof read. Often times if I like an article I will scroll down to see the comments. You can glean valuable information about your readers there.  I’ve found that no matter how good your post is if you have misspelled words or bad grammar it automatically discredits you to your readers.

DON’T – Use the same format in every post. This is something I am guilty of and am working to improve.  I’ve found that people get bored easily so it’s important to switch up the way you display your writing. Some might incorporate lists, while others might be more narrative. Some posts might include a lot of images, while others will be more copy-heavy. Don’t do the same thing every time.

 

Be sure to check back for more writing tips and ways to captivate your readers!

Beach Bodies Workouts


Oldies but goodies. I’ve got a lot of hits on an earlier article Beach Bodies Workouts so I decided to give it a face lift and bring it to the front of the line.  If you want to see more of my early articles you can use the search bar at the top of the page and I’ve also added an archives tab to the right.  Happy Reading.

 

 

1. The Spartacus Challenge.  This routine has really proved its place at the top.  I have completed the workout shown countless times  and can attest to is effectiveness. Be sure to stretch out those muscles while your cooling down or your legs will hate you for a few days!

2. Body Rock.  From every workout available this is still my favorite. While zuzana has stepped to  the side allowing another buff energetic gal to take you through the workouts the quality of the site has remained the same and will always be my go to site. It is perfect for any level and offers recipes and other helpful advice.

3.  All about the six-pack .This is a routine I recently ran across while playing online that I thought was really fun and easy enough even for beginners. This is a quick 12 minute workout all you need is a couch and the will power. This is the routine I have used all along with The Spartacus Challenge and some of Zuzanas routines. Enjoy. 

Sex Education – The New Taboo.


Sex.

Now that I have your attention I’d like to talk about a recent online article that caught my eye.  Amid cries of triumph and in some cases outrage Utah has passed a bill banning sex education in schools. Many concerned parents and faculty members are speculating how this will affect the students and what if anything can be done about it.  Today I would like to delve a little deeper into Sex – The New Taboo.

Will this solve the problem?

 

It’s been joked about in movies for years but is The Talk still a part of growing up? If Utah lawmakers have their way it will have to be if you want your children educated about safe sex.  In a vote that passed 19-10 it stated that: “Human sexuality instruction or instructional programs may not include instruction in, or the advocacy of, the intricacies of intercourse, sexual stimulation, or erotic behavior; homosexuality; the use of contraceptive methods or devices; or sexual activity outside of marriage,” reads the bill, HB 363.

Sex it seems is something lawmakers believe should be addressed at home. I cannot say that I disagree with that view but I can also see huge problems.  According to the CDC one in every ten mothers is a teenager more than nine times that of teens in other developed nations. Pregnancy isn’t the only concern for sexually active teenagers.  More research shows that one in four teenage girls has an STD and girls aren’t the only ones at risk. The rate of boys aged 15-19 diagnosed with AIDs has doubled in the last 10 years with syphilis on the rise as well.  With statistics like this it’s hard not to question the effectiveness of Sex Education and Parent to child communication.

What can you do?

 No matter what your standpoint is on sex education  I think everyone can agree that we want what is best for our children. A major part of educating teenagers about safe sex is to give them information they will use to make potentially life changing decisions.  Just that you are willing to take the time to answer their questions can make a huge impact.

Don't forget to listen!

Ultimately the decision on whether or not to have the talk with your children and how you go about it is up to you.  I urge you to at least let your kids know that they can come to you with questions or concerns. It never hurts to have good communication with your loved ones.

How do you feel about the ban on Sex Education in schools? Will you talk to your children about safe sex and abstinence? Leave a comment below!

 

You can find more information about sex education and prevention at http://www.cdc.gov/

Would you eat this? Soylent Pink in our schools and supermarket!


Having only recently come out of high school I can still all too clearly remember the ‘healthy’ meals that were served daily.  It only took a tentative poke of the fork to determine the majority of these foods were questionable to say the least. Many of my classmates and I were more inclined to order the more expensive option of just fries, at least they looked safe.  A growing movement of people who usually target food places like McDonalds and Taco Bell have now set their sights  on the school cafeteria who it seems has picked up a potentially hazardous ingredient most fast food chains have tossed.

 

I’m talking about Pink Slime the product created “by gathering waste trimmings, simmering them at low heat so the fat separates easily from the muscle, and spinning the trimmings using a centrifuge to complete the separation. Next, the mixture is sent through pipes where it is sprayed with ammonia gas to kill bacteria. The process is completed by packaging the meat into bricks. Then, it is frozen and shipped to grocery stores and meat packers, where it is added to most ground beef.”

 These trimmings have for some time been deemed inedible for humans and were used in dog and other animal feeds. However, Gerald Zirnstein a former US Department of Agriculture Scientist says that a whopping 70% of the ground beef we purchase in supermarkets contains pink slime.  After protests from consumers many fast food chains like the ones mentioned above claim they have pulled the product from their manufacturing process. Unfortunately it appears to have been redirected to the school cafeterias!

Who would do such a thing? Apparently the US Department of Agriculture has shelled out enough to purchase over 7 million pounds of the stuff which will soon be hitting the plate in front of your child in the form of burgers. Just recently the government passed regulations to provide students with healthier meal options that include more whole grains and fewer fats.  While their intentions may be good (the product is treated to kill bacteria’s such as E. coli and Salmonella) the process uses chemicals like ammonium hydroxide which is a common ingredient in cleaners and fertilizers. Despite their efforts “In 2009, The New York Times reported that despite the added ammonia, tests of Lean Beef Trimmings of schools across the country revealed dozens of instances of E. coli and salmonella pathogens. Between 2005 and 2009, E. coli was found three times and salmonella 48 times, according to the Times, including two contaminated batches of 27,000 pounds of meat.”

The USDA still asserts that its ground beef purchases meet the highest standard for food safety. Which leads me to wonder if ammonia treated beef trimmings once used in pet food is now sold in the meat aisle have those standards lowered or have we been eating “mystery meat” all along.  With the odds stacked against it and public outcry on the rise I wonder how long the pink slime will stay on the menu.   What do you think? Is the public introduction of these meat products a safe food source or are we being duped? Will you start packing your kids lunches or are you ok with what some call a healthy meal?