Monday, December 14, 2009

Franklin Property Lighting, Inc.

This will be the first time I've recommended a company without having officially used their services.
But when the OWNER of a company is so kind to a total stranger, it's a good bet that his business is top notch.

I had spent two hours taping up some vinyl letters just right above a store front. Boss instructed me to do it.
Of course, this was something never before attempted by me.

It was quite a project since the letters were 72 inches across and the sign required a tall ladder to reach it.
Removing the backing was the next step but I knew I'd mess it up. Once they stuck to the sign, the letters were not removable. What to do!?

Wayne,  the owner of Franklin Property Lighting, walked by on his way to another project.
He saw me taping up the vinyl. He could have easily kept walking.

He stopped to give me advice.

Do you know what you're doing? he asked.
Never, I said, truthfully.

He gave great advice of a bunch of stuff the instructions didn't mention.

I looked a bit overwhelmed at the steps.  (Being chided by security guards for doing this during  business hours didn't help my patience either.)

Then he said, hey I do this for a living, I can do the last steps for you.

Oh man what a godsend!

He was totally right with his advice. The letters needed all the tricks of the trade so they would fall down perfectly in place.  And he had a good sense of humor. Because of course the minute anyone gets on a ladder there is an audience of customers.

And now the Black Vinyl Letters look Mah-velous!

Most of all, it was the kindest thing ever for someone to do.  Something that seems no big deal for someone else is a huge deal when my living is depending on good signs and making things look nice on a strict budget.

I sent Wayne a coffee gift card as a thank you since he refused any payment or even a free coffee from next door.  But I insisted on his business card to write a blog entry about his company.  It was really just an excuse to get the company address to send the gift card, but hey, I'd better write the blog entry since I had mentioned it!    And with so many lousy companies out there, it's great to be able to send people his way.

Franklin Property Lighting, Inc
Signage, Neon Lights, Light Poles, Repair and Service



From their Website:
"Franklin Property Lighting Inc. is one of the Colorado front range's premier experts in sign installation, repair and replacement. We have done work for RTD and many major corporations such as Brakes Plus, Napa and Mattress King. Let our knowledge and experience work for you."

Monday, December 7, 2009

Meyenberg Goat Milk

I just wrote this at as a review.

Thank you for carrying Meyenberg Goat Milk at a great price. I can't digest cow milk. I make a kefir-thin type yogurt with it. Takes 24 hours but is easier to mix up since it's already sterilized. Worth the wait. With Elderberry juice added to the yogurt it's my favorite treat and keeps my blood sugar steady throughout the day. I bring it to work for my lunch. In a pinch, the milk alone brings me up from a low blood sugar crash so I can cook something up.

I was surprised when my male cat loved it. He would never touch cow milk. He now begs for the goat milk as I mix it up. If I'm making yogurt and stirring the container he tries to put his paw in it! The milk stimulates his appetite then he eats the rest of his food. He has lymphoma and is doing well as long as he eats but he loses his appetite unless we keep trying foods he loves. So I'm grateful for his health too.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Lampwork Bead Tutorials by Radiant Mind

If you've been smitten by the Lampwork glass bead bug, you will lose your mind at this next review.

Whether a fan of beads, a serious bead buyer, or a designer, you must check out at least one of these PDF tutorials.  Created by the talented torch wielding artists at Radiant Mind's Etsy store.  They are very affordable-- most are only $5 with fast email delivery. So you can get your beauty fix and learn a lot at the same time.

When a bead looks this delicious I truly have to resist the urge to chomp down on them with my teeth.  That's why it's wise to satisfy your sweet bead tooth with these e-Books.

I have one of their Desert Moon beads like the one shown below.  You will have much trouble stopping gazing at these miniature works of art!

There are currently 3 pages worth of tutorials to salivate over at Radiant Mind's Etsy store.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Review: How to Make a 5x7 Photo Book

This  review is only for the basic 5x7 books called Small Autofill Paperback.

For 4 years I've given Photo Books as Holiday gifts.
Every family member has raved about them and ask each year to make sure I keep sending them.
I like the print quality. In the past they weren't as glossy but THIS YEAR they look extra amazing and with a good gloss. I ran out of room for thick photo albums long ago. These take very little room and let me keep track of which year a group of photos were taken. Since most of my family uses the Kodak site, we can easily share and print all family photos.

The Kodak Gallery online site recently changed (Fall 2009). I hate changes like this usually, since I am always too busy learning new things at work to deal with learning new things for my own rare time off.

But these changes make me really happy. I am a graphic artist and website programmer so I have more experience at sites like this, but also have little patience. Please take that into consideration for this review.

The price is right too. Without a promo code my book this year for 30 photos is $16.66. They have great Kodak Gallery promo codes each year too. That's a nice price for something priceless for my family members.

Small Autofill Paperback.
This style of photobook doesn't allow for captions. There is a front cover that lets you type something like "Best of 2009." And a small photo can be added to the back cover to make it look even more professional.

2) Click Join or Sign In
3) Click "Photo Books" on the top right menu (The choices are Photo Sharing| Prints | Photo Cards | Photo Books)
4) Click "Shop Photo Books"

--> I like the LARGE obvious photo links when you start the actual Photo Book Process
5) Click "Small AutoFill Paperback"
6) Click on a black or white Cover design box (this sets the COVER)
7) Click "Select Page Designs" (this sets the PAGES)
--> The other more expensive books have many more choices than black or white

8) Click "Get Started" button on the right
Your uploaded photos will show on the top of the book form.
If new to the site, click the top right button called "Upload Photos"'

The ability to drag and drop the photos on your choice of page is really fun to use.
The Adobe Flash player system is exactly right. (For Once!)
It lets you see the flipping of the pages so you can see the book take shape.
You can rotate the photos, zoom and shift the photos for each page. LOVE THAT!
All photos must fill the entire page for this particular book. (the other book choices will give you other options)
Easy to delete and add new pages.
"Save" button is handy on the top right also.
Click "Add to Cart" when you're done.

You can save the book and come back to it later.
That's a great feature. It was so easy to put together, however, that the project was done quickly on my first attempt.
With the previous system it would take at least 3 sessions and that's when I had memorized the steps.

My only wish would be a gift box. Last year I sent an 8x10 print in a frame for a birthday gift and the recipient was incredibly pleased and certainly the absence of a gift box didn't matter that much. But if they ever offer, I'd pay for that.

Note: 12/14/09 -- just got our 2009 books and we both said WOW when they came out of the mailer! My folks are going to love it!

Rating: 10

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Barbara Sher Forum

Denver PBS TV runs great Barbara Sher programs and totally hooked me on her attitude about life.

She runs a free online forum that has people chatting for years on creative ventures and finding their life's passions without all that goofy fluffy stuff of typical self improvement seminars.

Read the Forum.
You can also listen to her audio tips.
You can read my latest post on the forum. (It's about saving money)

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Aromaleigh Mineral Makeup: Satin Petals Eyeshadow


Aromaleigh Mineral Makeup
Satin Petals Eyeshadow Collection by Aromaleigh
Color: Campanula

Hi Gals, Realized it's been 4 years since I've been wearing Campanula and haven't fallen out of love since. Wear it much of the week. I wear 2L Voile Foundation; have Green eyes and auburnish hair. I use Burts Bees Milk Lotion as a base, let it dry, and it gives it a slightly wet look to the shadow as I apply it with a eyeshadow brush. This Colorado area is a very dry climate causing dry eyelids. Matte shadows sometimes create wrinkles on my dry lids if I'm not careful but never have problems with Campanula. It lasts all day with the same sheen. It draws attention to my eyes but isn't over the top.

Shimmer is sexy but natural. Always glides on perfectly. Creates variations of the tones depending how the light hits the eyes. Eye looks naturally, softly sculpted.

None. LOVE IT!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Vegan Lip Balm: Beads & Botanicals Lip Balms


Vegan Lip Balms by the N.C. Store Beads and Botanicals
(Photo from the store) Wanted to photograph my own collection but they are all banged up from being constantly used! These lip balms are a serious obsession.

Have loved every "flavor". Let's see...Cherry Lime Margarita, Hazelnut Cappuccino, Lime Coconut, Strawberry Cream Cheese Frosting...oh no, so many with exotic names I get lost in a happy flashback trying to remember them. Every one has been a winner. Thought I wouldn't like Pineapple but instead of a harsh tart smell it was smooth and fresh!

Texture is different than the waxy lip balms, even those found at the health food store. These melt into your lips. Feels amazing and is extremely moisturizing!

They contain:
Organic Evening Primrose Oil
Organic Shea Butter
Organic Coconut Oil
Organic Jojoba Oil
Candeulla Wax

I have a lovely habit of scraping my bottom lip with my teeth when concentrating. Have been going thru stressful times. Without these lip balms I'd have nothing left of my lips!

I use a old Eco Lips lip balm holder with a metal clip (a cheap copy of mountain climbing clips). The clip keeps one easily at hand on my backpack or attached to my water bottle while bike riding in the dry Colorado winter weather.

Beads and Botanicals sells their Lampwork Beads online but the Lip Balms sell too fast to list online. Hopefully you can visit the Fayetteville, NC area.

Their Facebook fan page is best to learn about Lip Balms and their other amazing goodies the moment they are cooked up.

Note: Flavors come in seasons. Just like going to a Farmer's Market, plan for your favorites but be prepared to come home with NEW wonderful smells.


A new catalog is being printed! Stay tuned for more info.

Become a fan of the Beads and Botanicals Facebook fan page so you don't miss out!


Sunday, November 15, 2009

Upcoming Posts

An outline of blog entries to come.
(This is to help ME stay focused! Argh! So hard to do...)

Most stores listed have received an order from me every two months for the last 4-9 years. Customer Service and Quality is a serious issue for me. Because money has always been tight and a bad shopping experience would mean going without something much needed that month. Each store below has CONSISTENTLY done an amazing job. Excellence is also a personal quest. Since this culture doesn't reward good work, I'll try to make up for that. And if they were to close down I would be in serious trouble!

IHerb  Vitamins (use code RIS338 for $5 off your first purchase!)
Aromaleigh  Mineral Makeup GREAT COUPONS!
Beads & Botanicals  Beads, Soaps
Sock Dreams  Socks
DirectNic  Web Hosting
Vista Print  Printing
Sierra Trading Post   Discount Name Brands
Great Cosmic Happy Ass  Paper Greeting Cards
Greeting Card Universe   Paper Greeting Cards

Also highlighted will be specific grocery items for those dealing with special diets and recipes. Goats Milk and Spelt flour are an example of those types of products.

The reviews on this blog will go into specific products and why they save me time, money and gain me a few minutes each day to enjoy life. The hope is that you will find ways to do the same.

These are the people who have kept me company over the years.
Beads & Botanicals Facebook Fan Page
Whole Wheat Radio --Facebook Fan Page
Charlie the Coyote
Writer/Actor Wil Wheaton
Totally Unathorized
Aromaleigh Mineral Makeup Forum
Barbara Sher Forum
Miss K's Blog

Ultra picky on music. New and Old songs you probably haven't heard about.

Well then, better get writing then! Stay tuned...

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Well that was a lousy two years

Yeah yeah yeah, good things happened too. But just like everyone else, having to hold 2-3 jobs and ending up covering hours on behalf of every loser burned away the good things too. And frankly made me give up. There goes feeling like I might have been unique.

So forget all dreams. I'm onto enjoying precious moments. Raves like my favorite foods, chocolate, products will begin. And music. When I can find any that doesn't roll my eyes into my head from boredom.

THE EXCELLENT STUFF. ONLY THE EXCELLENT STUFF. When I say Excellent, I mean the things that make life worth living. The stuff that makes one get off the couch when totally tired of living in a senseless world. As in "God life sucks -- do I hear the sound of a chocolate package crinkling? Whoo hooo!"

That's the sound of real living. Yum.