Product Review, Giveaway and Blog Move!

13 Dec

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Hello Friends! So, I’ve moved my domesticgeekgirl.wordpress.com blog to a self-hosted blog at domesticgeekgirl.com. Apparently WordPress is going to move all of your subscriptions over, but, well, they’ve yet to do so. Hmmm. So while I don’t need you to DO anything to keep on following me (and you know you want to), until WordPress actually makes the switch, I won’t be showing up in your WordPress Reader and you’ll have to visit me at domesticgeekgirl.com to see my updates.

To celebrate my move, I’m hosting a product giveaway with Kidecals.com! You’ll have to visit my new blog at domesticgeekgirl.com to sign up! And please do! The more successful my giveaway is, the more likely I’ll be to get more product to review. And free stuff = win for a stay at home mom! Haha!😉

CLICK HERE TO SIGN UP FOR THE GIVEAWAY, AND TELL YOUR FRIENDS!

Wordless Wednesday – December 11, 2013

11 Dec

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Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Abortion

10 Dec

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Check out this old school photo of me back in my going-by-my-maiden-name pro-life activist days! Look at that slightly androgynous hippy chic awesomeness I exude! Ohhh yeah.

So I was looking over some of my old conservative / pro-life / First Amendment opinion columns and thought I’d repost some of them here on my Domestic Geek Girl blog from time to time. I mean, my random articles and commentaries are currently splattered randomly on the interwebs, but they’re not really located all in one place on the web ever since I retired from full time activism and have instead settled into attending the occasional right-wing brouhaha from time to time.

This blog is, and most likely primarily always will be all about babies, domestic duties, health, home, generic wellness and my budding green living lifestyle and, as always, random acts of geekery. But you all know I’m a hopeless bitter clinger, so expect the occasional “Politics & Patriotism” post from time to time, especially as I flesh out my blog with some old school rabble rousing goodness.

Anyhoo. Here’s a piece I wrote for The Examiner back in January of 2011. ^_^

Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Abortion

What with the delusions of deity and supremacy running rampant in Washington, I figured I’d like to brush up on some good ol’ Constitutional and Declarational 101 amidst all the Obama administration shenanigans. So let’s just cut to the chase:

The role of the government is to protect life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. And in that order.

The now-famous “right to privacy” which secured the “right to abortion” in the Roe vs. Wade trial is not actually in the Constitution or the Declaration. When it was worked into the document to validate legalized child slaughter, the “right to privacy” actually fell under the category of “the right to happiness”.

Now. Let’s go over our numbers again. In the scale of rights, life is first. Liberty is second. And happiness comes last of all the fundamental rights.

This is why stalkers aren’t free to pursue their happiness of stalking, murderers aren’t free to pursue their happiness of murdering and – logic would dictate – abortionists should not be free to pursue whatever twisted happiness they derive from violently dismembering thrashing babies in the womb.

The right to life is superior to the right to privacy; therefore a fetus’ right to live supersedes a woman’s right to privacy. I’m not going to exhaust myself doubling the length of this article with biological facts and common sense tidbits that indisputably prove the life and humanity of the fetus. I’ll just assume that everyone reading this has an elementary school level of education and continue on.

The hierarchy of rights is really very simple, and well established in our nation. This is why registered sex offenders right to privacy is overshadowed by the rights of the people to be safe from Pedro the Candy Peddler. Sex offenders have lost their right to privacy, because they have violated the superior rights of someone else.

This is also why – to the dismay of many of Planned Parenthoods male supporters – child pornography is prohibited on private computers. (Planned Parenthood still has trouble grasping this one as well, judging by their proposal to the 2010 U.N. Convention on the Rights of the Child, where they pushed for the “right” of children to be able to “express themselves sexually” – including being participants in pornography and prostitution.) But, no matter how wistfully PP may salivate over a world where every 8 year old is a kinky little slut and all 12 year olds are veterans to the abortion stirrups, the Constitution is still abundantly clear: Even in the privacy of your own home, you can’t view children being sexually exploited because the child’s right supersedes the adults’ right to privacy. (This comes as a crushing blow to David Ogden, Obama’s hand-picked Deputy Attorney General, who is adamantly pro-child pornography. Hm. Constitutional retardation must run in the party?)

No matter how private the abortion clinic may be, no matter how private the abortion chair is and no matter how private the sex life of the mother, no amount of “privacy and / or happiness” supersedes a child’s right to not be decapitated and raped with a giant suction tube.

If we are to apply Constitutional law in its entirety and preserve the documents that ensure our God-given rights as Americans, we must insist that the government do its duty in protecting children in the womb, just as it is the government’s duty to protect children from being molested, women from being raped, or any other violation of unalienable rights.

Petulant feminazis don’t realize that when they rail against the government potentially taking away “their abortions” by enforcing the Constitution, they are joining the ranks of those who railed against “their slaves” being taken away by that same pesky document. No one has or has ever had an inalienable right to harm another human being. To do so is un-Constitutional, lawless, selfish, and in the case of abortion – cold blooded murder.

Come on people. These truths are “self-evident”. (That’s Founding Fathers speak for “no duh”.)

Visiting Family in Central California

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So here I am, writing from my broken laptop in California, watching reruns of Chopped and trying to love on all the cats like there’s no tomorrow. It feels just like every day I spent in my second trimester of pregnancy waiting for Jonathan to get out of boot camp. Not kidding. I spent the whole time trying to tune out the TV and gather my thoughts, and failing miserably, and as a result  just churning out rambling blog posts and run on sentences and trying to remember why I’m staring at a text box and… anyway. Allow me to share my visit to California thus far via Instagram! Cuz it’s really not gonna happen any other way. (And forgive me for the rambling. We’re watching Kid Snippets on YouTube now.)

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Tessa and I spent the morning yesterday lazing around the apartment with Jonathan, not getting packed till the very last minute. We barely made it to the airport in time, because what kind of adventure starts with timeliness and promptness and all that boringness? Not baby Tessa’s first adventure, that’s for sure!

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Tessa was completely enthralled by all of the people in the airport. If I suspected before that she is a freakishly, abnormally awesomely chill baby, I know it for a FACT after yesterdays travels. With 8+ hours of travels, Tessa did not cry ONCE! She flirted with everyone, got a trillion compliments on her pixie hat, and had every passenger on the planes going on and on about how cute and calm and wonderful she was. She was giggling and chattering and watching the world when she was awake (which gave me great company when I’d finished reading through the two books I’d brought) and she was sleeping snugly and soundly in her ring sling when she was conked out. It was the easiest thing on the planet! Tessa kept watching the passing clouds out the window, completely entranced. She gets so focused and calm when she’s encountering something new. She’s already such a smart baby. Have I mentioned how much I just love her!?!?

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My flight was about 40 minutes behind schedule. Which meant I left my dear friends (whom I’d never before met in person, haha) waiting at In and Out Burger for awhile. I first “met” Josh and Kristen when I was looking for breast milk donations for baby Tessa awhile back. Kristen provided Tessa’s early colostrum heavy milk and has become one of my favorite people. We like to tease each other about how we’re mutual blog / Facebook / Instagram stalkers. I am so blessed to know this lovely couple and Tessa is blessed not just with amazing nutrition, but with an amazing Auntie and Uncle in Southern California! I was so dang excited to meet these guys!! We spent so much time visiting we didn’t hit the road for Hanford till.. what? 8ish? I think?? (I stole some of these Instagram images off of Kristen’s page.. cuz I’m baaaad like that.)

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So when we finally hit the road, my mom was all like, “Waaah wah waaah, I have to pee!” So we started to pull over at the nearest exit (Lyons Ave in Valencia) and then we realized, hey! Dennis from Billy Hill and the Hillbillies at Disneyland usually plays with his bluegrass band The Grateful Dudes on Saturday nights at a pizzeria right off of Lyons, let’s see if they’re still playing! And lo and behold they were! We stuck around for an hour or so to listen to the band and catch up on old times, then when we hit the road for the Central Valley it was well past 10pm. See? Timeliness = BORING.

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After much coffee and soda and other unhealthy caffeine laden beverages, we finally made it home past 1am. Lots of visiting and settling in ensued and finally, around 3:30am, we headed to bed. Look at Tessa, all snug as a bug in her borrowed bassinet!

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This morning we headed to Marshalls so I could buy the Christmas gifts for family that I didn’t have room to pack in my bags. Jessica had fun trying out the ring sling with Tessa. Check out their matching penguin hats:

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My brother Jeremy and his lovely wife Angie visited from the coast to meet baby Tessa for the first time. Tessa LOVED them. It just kind of dawned on me today… she’s going to have an auntie and uncle that are going to spoil her rotten.

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We headed over to Grandma Ree and Steve’s house in Lemoore for a kind of impromptu family reunion. Look, here’s my brother, me and my sister as babies!

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Grandma Ree and Steve meeting baby Tessa for the first time!

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THEN! My Aunt Peggy stopped by and Tessa got to meet her Great Aunt. It’s funny to me that Tessa was an angel on the flight -didn’t fuss or cry ONCE – but once we got to visit with family she decided to go all teething infant on me and drool on everyone. She got a tiny bit of a fever today, and kept trying to bite everything (but mostly her overalls). But still, Tessa was being a super cutie, and loving on everyone with her perpetually alternating “oh!” and “wtf?!” faces.

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After the family get together, we all headed back to my old apartment (now my dads super secret lair) and spent some more time loving on Tessa. My mum sniped this shot of all three of us “kids” with the first grandbaby. I can’t wait till Tessa has some cousins to play with!

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Anyway, I’m going to head to bed now. SO. VERY. TIRED. It’s only been a day and a half and we’ve already had some fun little adventures. Sorry for the rambling nature of this post. I’m tired, I’m distracted, and I’m… I can’t even remember what I was going to say. Yeah, that’s my cue for bed time. Goodnight, ya’ll!

Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft Closed Beta

6 Dec

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Oh frabjous day! I got selected to play the Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft closed beta for the Americas!

Not gonna lie, when I saw “Blizzard Entertainment” in my inbox, I had the knee-jerk reaction of any World of Warcraft / Starcraft / Diablo gamer – “Awww crap. I’ve been hacked. SON OF A…!!” Seriously, even with an authenticator my account is apparently highly hackable. For any of you looking for an easy target.

Anyways, if Sword Art Online has taught me anything, it’s that you never turn down a closed beta invite, as it could mean life or death if any WoW head honchos decide to go rogue. I mean, Greg Street just resigned… coincidence? I THINK NOT. But I digress.

So invite in hand, I spent the morning neglecting my housework and wasting more time than I care to admit puttering around with this new toy.

First off, I love the imagery. I love the soundtrack. And as always, the voice acting is superb. (Millhouse Manastorm sounds like half a dozen card players I knew back in my Young Jedi Star Wars gaming days.) “Ohhhh, just you wait! When I have enough mana….!”

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Overall, the game is insanely simple and frighteningly addicting. It’s basically just a digital version of a collectable card game, very much like Magic: The Gathering. You draw cards from your deck, each with a mana cost and attack power / spell / action, and you get to play them based on your mana level which increases with each turn. The cards either directly attack the opponent, summon minions to attack the opponent or performs a unique function, like allowing you to draw more cards or get more health. The deck of cards you work through is designed by the player, which gives this frighteningly simple game a great degree of strategy… and potential to be very costly if my husband starts playing. Cuz when you awaken Freeman gaming rage, card games ain’t cheap, lemme tell you.

What it boils down to is your ability to design a deck and your tactical choices during the game with the cards that turn up in your hand. Again. It’s crazy simple, and loads of fun.

Anyone else had a chance to play the closed beta? (Or plan to play the open beta when it releases later this month?)

How To Cure Cracked Heels From the Inside Out

5 Dec

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Awhile back I posted about my post-pregnancy struggle with cracked heels and how a weekly Apple Cider Vinegar & Eucalyptus Foot Soak has helped me. While my feet have drastically, and I mean DRASTICALLY changed – my cracks were so bad they were painful and bleeding at times – I’m still on the warpath to baby soft heels.

I’m at the point where my feet are soft, with the faintest traces of lines, but if I stop moisturizing my heels for a couple of days I’ll start to see the lines deepen and begin hardening again. So clearly, soaking my skin till its spongy, scrubbing my heels raw and then slathering on artificial moisture isn’t going to cut it for an actual long term “fix”. I realized I need to get my skin to a place where it can do its job without me feeding it a jar of lotion every month.

So, as always, I became the great Google detective and tried to unravel this mystery of the perpetually cracked heels. And here’s what I found:

Cracked Heels Need To Be Treated From the Inside

Cracked heels occur when unhealthy dry skin around the heel responds to pressure from the weight of walking, or even standing, and the skin simply splits. It could be due to sudden weight gain (like pregnancy), skin that has lost elasticity with age, or just a result of ongoing dehydration.

To understand the problem with dry skin that won’t dehydrate with lotions alone, you have to understand the basic nature of the skin on your feet.

The outer layers of the skin on your heels are designed to provide a natural barrier function, which consists of substances such as oils, cholesterol, fatty acids, ceramides and hyaluronic acid. The stratum corneum, the very top layer of the epidermis on your heels, is made up of cells that grab water using your body’s own natural moisturizing factors, amino acids and other molecules that are designed to absorb water and lock it inside the cell.

Without your body producing its own natural moisturizing factors, it simply CANNOT maintain or absorb the moisture you feed it through foot lotions and oils. At least not in the long term. It’s like trying to pour oil into a cracked cup. You may be able to fill it to the brim (look how oily and shiny my feet are!) but it will all eventually seep out (why are my feet so dry AGAIN?!).

Anyway, the health of the skins natural barrier function is crucial to provide lubrication and protection to your feet. If the barrier becomes damaged or impaired, like in the case of cracked heels, dehydration results. So the only way to get rid of cracked heels for good is to rehydrate the skin – from the inside out. Here’s how:

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Drink Lots Of Water

How It Helps – Sufficient water intake is critical in maintaining healthy cell metabolism. A dehydrated body can’t repair existing superficial epidermal dehydration. The fact is that skin is an organ, and just like any other part of the body, the skin on your heels is made up of cells. And skin cells, like any other cell in the body, are made up of water. Without water, the organs will certainly not function properly or at their best. If your skin is not getting the sufficient amount of water, the lack of hydration will present itself by turning your skin dry, tight and less resilient, which on your feet means lots of lovely cracks and fissures.

Other Health Bonuses – Drinking water helps maintain the balance of body fluids. Your body is composed of about 60% water and the functions of these bodily fluids include digestion, absorption, circulation, creation of saliva, transportation of nutrients, and maintenance of body temperature. It’s pretty much vital to life.

How Much To Drink – The unfortunate truth about drinking water and your cracked heels is that water will reach all the other organs before it reaches the skin. So if you are chronically dehydrated (*cough*me*cough*) you’ll have to really up your water intake to help your body regulate itself and hydrate your poor heels.

While the “8 cups a day” adage is under some debate – some medical professionals say you need less, some say you need as much as 9 to 13 cups a day – it’s best to err on the side of drinking too much water, especially when it comes to seeking tangible results in your skin. Aim for as much water as you can stomach. (It’s extremely hard to overdose on water. Most cases of water intoxication include athletes guzzling after a strenuous workout in the heat.) A good rule of thumb is to drink so much water that your urine has little to no color.

I blogged about my recent water splurge and the importance of drinking filtered water here.

Take a Daily Multivitamin

Not only is this a good idea for your overall health, but multivitamins contain some heavy hitters in the healthy skin arena. Take a multivitamin that contains:

Zinc –

How It Helps – Zinc is a mineral that has been likened to a 24-hour, on-call skin mechanic. It helps repair damaged tissues and heal wounds. Without Zinc, your body’s (and your cracked heels) inside and outside repair time go up. Research suggests that Zinc is particularly effective in treating topical irritations such as cracked heels by helping the cells regenerate.

Other Health Bonuses-  Consuming Zinc ensures proper immune system function, and promotes the maintenance of vision, taste, and smell.

How Much To Take – A daily multivitamin should have 100% or more of your daily requirement of Zinc (ranging from 11-50mg daily depending on who you ask), although you can also boost your Zinc intake by consuming oysters, red meat, poultry, seafood and fortified breakfast cereals.

Vitamin C –

How It Helps – Vitamin C, also known as ascorbic acid, is key to the production of collagen, a protein that aids in the growth of cells and blood vessels and gives skin its firmness and strength. Vitamin C also helps your skin repair itself – as an antioxidant it slows the rate of free-radical damage. Free radicals are unstable molecules that damage collagen and cause skin dryness and fine lines and cracks (like in your heels). New research shows that Vitamin C not only neutralizes free radicals, but also reverses DNA damage in some cases.

Other Health Bonuses – Vitamin C protects against immune system deficiencies, cardiovascular disease, prenatal health problems, eye disease, and even skin wrinkling.

How Much To Take – While a multivitamin usually contains 100% of your daily Vitamin C requirement (75mg to 120mg, depending on who you ask) Vitamin C is one of the safest supplements to boost up on – the safe upper limits being well over 2,000mg a day. Medical professionals recommend that when taking Vitamin C as a means to boost immunity or skin hydration, it’s best to aim for 500mg daily. I take an additional supplement of Vitamin C with Natural Rose Hips (extra antioxidant boost), in addition to my daily multivitamin.

Vitamin B6 –

How It Helps – Just like Vitamin C, B6 promotes healthy skin by counteracting damage caused by free radicals – molecules that break down healthy cells and contribute to aging and dehydration.

Other Health Bonuses – B6 stimulates co-enzymatic activities, protecting the immune system, and having positive effects on metabolism, premenstrual syndrome, hormone control and emotional disorders.

How Much To Take – A multivitamin should have 100% of your daily requirement of B6, ranging from 1.3 to 3mg, depending on who you ask. You can also boost your B6 intake by eating poultry, fish, and organ meats.

Increase Your Omega’s With a 3-6-9 Supplement

Omega 3, 6 and 9 contain essential fatty acids that are required for good health and hydrated skin, but cannot be synthesized by human body. They MUST be obtained from food or supplements. There are many over the counter supplements (often called 3-6-9 supplements) that cover all of your Omega needs in just one pill.

Omega-3 –

Among the must-have foods for healthy skin, Omega-3 fatty acids – the “good fats” – are well known for for promoting hydration and skin health. Omega-3 fats improve the moisture content of skin by improving cellular health and functioning, and help skin to maintain a smooth, elastic texture. Without essential fatty acids, too much moisture leaks out through the skin – for instance, the perpetually dry cracks in your heels. In short, taking Omega-3 internally as a supplement is as good as or better than applying cosmetic moisturizers.

Omega-6 –

Consuming oils rich in Omega-6 fatty acids can alter the fatty acid composition and eicosanoid content of the epidermis. Studies have shown that diets rich in the Omega-6 fatty acid linoleic acid are associated with less skin dryness and thinning. Both Omega-6 and Omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids play a critical role in normal skin function and appearance.

Omega-9 – 

Omega-9, sometimes called oleic acid, aids in the proper functioning of the other necessary fats. If there is a deficiency in Omega-9’s, the other Omega’s can’t do their job properly. A deficiency usually manifests in dry skin, hair loss, and decreased fertility. If you are boosting your Omega-3’s and Omega-6’s, boosting your Omega-9’s is a must!

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Where To Get Your Omega’s

Fish Oil – Fish Oil is a great source of Omega-3’s. In addition to promoting healthy skin, it also helps aid weight loss, promotes healthy pregnancy, fertility and boosts immunity. Regular consumption of Fish Oil capsules has been proven to help in reducing moisture loss from the skin.

Flaxseed Oil – Cultivated in Babylon as early as 3000 BC, Flaxseed Oil has been called one of the most powerful foods on the planet. In the 8th century, King Charlemagne believed so strongly in the health benefits of flaxseed that he passed laws requiring his subjects to consume it! A good source of both Omega-3 and Omega-6, preliminary studies show that Flaxseed Oil may help fight heart disease, diabetes and breast cancer in addition to boosting skin health!

Borage Oil – Borage Oil is derived from a wildflower commonly called the “starflower”. It is rich in Omega-6’s and is well known for its skin hydrating properties. A study by the Institute of Experimental Dermatology in Germany found that women who took Borage Oil supplements for 12 weeks experienced an overwhelming increase in skin moisture and hydration that exceeded that of drinking water alone. Borage Oil is also known to decrease PMS and menopause symptoms in women. Can we say win?

Evening Primrose Oil – A good source of Omega-3 and Omega-6, Evening Primrose Oil has been called the most sensational preventive discovery since Vitamin C. It’s most commonly known for it’s positive effects on women’s health, however the gamma-linoleic acid, linoleic acid and other nutrients in this oil are essential for cell structure and improve the elasticity of the skin.

Black Currant Oil – Black Currant Oil is an anti-inflammatory, antiviral and antioxidant. Rich in Omega-3 and Omega-9, this oil also aids immune systems, womens health and urinary tract health.

Be Consistent

These are the steps that I am personally taking to combat my dry, cracked heels from the inside out. I’m aggressively drinking as much water as I can stomach every day, I’m taking a daily multivitamin and I’m taking an Omega 3-6-9 supplement that contains every single one of the oils listed above. I’ve been at it for about three weeks now, and I’m seeing improvement every day, combining both internal and external approaches.

If there is an internal remedy or approach you take to cracked heels that I don’t have covered here (this is by no means an exhaustive list!) please let me know and share below!

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Wordless Wednesday – December 4, 2013

4 Dec

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