Saturday, November 15, 2008

Giveaway! Mulberry Moon One a Day Holiday Giveaway

Giveaway promotion! Tell Santa what is on your wish list at Mulberry Moon personalized jewelry and gifts and you could win it in the Mulberry Moon one a day holiday giveaway!

For more information about the November promotion and daily giveaways, visit Mulberry Moon personalized jewelry and gifts.

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Monday, November 03, 2008

10 of the Best Social Media Tools for PR Professionals and Journalists

Here is a really good resource for PR professionals and journalists alike. Social media is really breaking down barriers and is providing real time access for getting the right information to the right people at the right time.

Sarah Evans lists 10 of the best social media tools for PR and it was posted on Mashable last week.

10 of the Best Social Media Tools for PR Professionals and Journalists

Monday, October 13, 2008

Please write to the Army Corps in support of the Georgia EPD’s request to hold more water in Lake Lanier.

The Georgia Environmental Protection Division has sent a letter to the Mobile office of the Corps of Engineers requesting the Corps reduce the minimum amount of flow in the Chattahoochee River at Peachtree Creek in Atlanta by 13% between November 1, 2008 and April 30, 2009. This will reduce this flow from 485 million gallons a day (MGD) to 420 MGD, thereby leaving an additional 11.7 billion gallons of water in Lake Lanier.

The EPD letter requests this action to conserve needed storage in Lake Lanier and states that its modeling has shown that water quality at Peachtree Creek was not adversely affected when the flow was reduced between March and May 2008.

The Corps of Engineers is reviewing this request and is asking for stakeholder comments to be received by October 27 by submitting its online form.

You may also submit your comments to

or send a letter to the following address:

Colonel Byron G. Jorns, District Commander
Mobile District, USACE
P. O Box 2288
Mobile, AL 36628-0001

The Corps' press release may be read at

Friday, October 10, 2008

Say No to Gardasil and Protect Our Daughters from this Merck Moneymaker.

As a mother of two girls, I am very bothered in the marketing behind Gardasil. Big Pharma better watch it because as they try to push for mandatory vaccinations in the name of the almighty dollar, our daughters may suffer for it. The side effects for this expensive treatment (not covered by insurance) range from standard to severe.

Please do your homework when it comes to protecting your children! My girls are not getting this vaccine. My dad is a Dr. in Chemical Engineering and he says there is not enough long term research on the safety of this new vaccine. It's not been proven that it even works.

US Government Mandates Gardasil 

Judicial Watch Uncovers New FDA Records Detailing Deaths in 1,824 Adverse Reaction Reports Related to HPV Vaccine

Is HPV Vaccine to Blame for a Teen's Paralysis?

CBS News: Vaccine Watch: Gardasil Side-Effects?

Gardasil Vaccine: The Damage Continues 

...The vaccine reaction reports keep coming into the National Vaccine Information Center (NVIC) from mothers describing how they took their healthy teenage girls into a pediatrician or gynecologist's office where they were given a GARDASIL shot and, then, nothing was ever the same again. The reports of HPV vaccine reactions, injuries and deaths continue to roll in, not only to NVIC but also to the federal Vaccine Adverse Events Reporting System (Search HPV4 at newspapers, and television stations. And the only response that comes from officials at the CDC, FDA and drug companies when perfectly healthy teenage girls collapse into unconsciousness, suffer a massive seizure, get paralyzed or die suddenly after being injected with GARDASIL is the zombie mantra: "It is a coincidence."

Monday, September 29, 2008

Find Gas in Atlanta

We spent half our day yesterday worried about getting gas in Atlanta. Here is a neat real time Twitter feed with Atlanta people posting the status of gas stations and availability in the area.

Twitter ATLGAS feed

If you Twitter, use #atlgas with your posts about where you see gas

Good luck!

Friday, September 26, 2008


I was thinking about small businesses and how they are especially hit hard in a down economy. I wanted to post some tips that you can do for free that will help continue your business building efforts even in a recession. 

1) Get local with search. - Make sure your company is listed in Google and Yahoo local directories. They are free and you can even link to your web site.

2) Get local in business/service directories - with directories like Angie’s List and CitySearch popping up, be sure your company is listed in the relevant local directories. Be sure to ask customers to write a recommendation for your company as well.

3) Build a local media list at smaller newspapers and start a relationship. Offer advice, take a reporter to lunch. Local media is easier to reach and if you are doing neat things with the community, be sure they know about it. Having an event for charity? Send a media advisory.

4) Remember your employees. PR isn’t all about outside relations - make sure your employees are motivated and happy. You can reward them with small things like praise (employee of the month/quarter), pizza in the office for a job well done, etc.

5) Discover social media. Start a blog on WordPress and talk about your industry, not just the company. Give tips, advice, general observations. Sign up for Twitter, a microblogging site, and follow people that interest you and join the conversation. Create an account in LinkedIn and Facebook and reconnect with old friends and colleagues. You can even ask business questions in LinkedIn and answer others’ questions and be seen as an expert in your field. 

6) Okay, I said five but here’s a bonus tip. Sign up for Help A’s newsletter and get PR queries from journalists looking for sources. But be sure if you answer, that your pitch is on target, short and sweet and do not send attachments. Include contact info in your email and links if needed.

Need help with your marketing and public relations? Contact Jen Marketing for more information.

Jen Marketing

Monday, September 15, 2008

Candles with Meaning - Buy in September and 15% goes to Kids with Food Allergies

I just read about this candle company in a food allergy newsletter. I am going to try it out and knowing that 15% will go towards Kids with Food Allergies makes it even better. It's a safer way to burn candles with no soot so if you have kids, this is a nice alternative to traditional candles.

My daughter has a peanut and egg allergy and I am learning all I can about children and food allergies.

Candles with Meaning

Candles With Meaning offers wickless, flameless candles. The candles use a ceramic warmer that melts wax using a 25 watt bulb. 15% of your order will be donated to Kids With Food Allergies.

Traveling with food allergies pt. 2

We are off to Canada next weekend to see my Grandma. My parents are already there and have been on the nut-free food hunt for us. They found bread and Quaker has six new granola bars that are nut-free and made in a nut-free plant in Canada. It seems that Canada is ahead of the game in many aspects of being aware of food allergies and accommodating people.

I am still afraid of flying with her allergy and the snacks on the plane. We are flying Northwest Airlines and they don't serve peanuts, but the snacks they do serve might have nut in them, so who knows. They will make an announcement at the gate if you ask when you check in as well.
I am still afraid of going to restaurants on our trip. I don't like confrontation and it is my fear that I will bring up my daughter's peanut allergy and they will say everything is fine and then there will be cross contamination and she'll have a reaction. I have restaurant cards that I printed out and hopefully people will be understanding.

I am a new fan of Sunbutter. It does taste just like peanut butter and my older daughter loves it. My allergic one doesn't like it but that is okay since I don't want her to get used to it and then accidentally have pb somewhere else when she gets older. She might associate it with her initial reaction which was from pb.

I contacted Disney for our trip in September. They are great. They have an entire division for special diets. They recommend that you make reservations in advance. Then about 2-3 days before, call the restaurant and remind them about your food allergy. Then when you get to the restaurant, talk to the manager and chef and they will prepare a special safe meal for your child. I have read great things about them. Here is one families' experience with it. I will blog about it after we go.

I bought two books - the Peanut Allergy Handbook which is a small book that you can put with your epi-pen and benedryl. It has pages to put medic-alert info and details on yoru child as well as helpful advice to deal with the allergy and if there is a reaction, what to do. It is also good to give caregivers. I also bought the Peanut Allergy Answer book. I will start reading it this weekend. They are both available on Amazon.

As always, be vigilant and educate everyone! We are in this together. It really does take a village.

Traveling with a peanut allergy

I am preparing to take my daughter on a trip in two weeks on an airplane. I called Delta and Northwest airlines. Northwest does not serve peanuts but their snacks might contain nuts. They will make an announcement at the gate if requested.

I also have to get a doctor's note to travel with her benedryl and epi-pens. It is my fear that they will be taken in security. I will call the allergist's office and post what I learn.

I just ordered two peanut allergy books from Amazon and will post about those too once I read them.

Information is power and learning how to manage it all and read labels is the most important thing for newly diagnosed families.

We had a birthday party for our oldest daughter who turned 5 last weekend. I ordered the Publix cupcake cake and made safe cupcakes for my youngest daughter. So that worked out okay as she broke out in hives from tasting a Publix cupcake a few weeks ago.
Small steps!!!

You know you are getting older when...

You watch the Disney Games and are reminded of the original Battle of the Network stars!

You watch an old Donny & Marie show and are taken back to the days of 3 networks and only a handful of channels.

You remember pong as the breakthrough video game that started it all.

You lived life without a cell phone, the internet and a computer until your 20s.

You hear 80s alternative songs on the easy listening radio station.

Yikes! :)

Some fun links:

You Might Be a Child of the 80s

Are you a child of the 80s quiz

Child of the 80s

Cool 80s stuff

Great Child of the 70s/80s/90s site

PR pitching tips

I came across this post from Margie Zable Fisher and it's a great reminder to all of us PR types how to provide pitches that are on-target.

Now my daughter has an egg allergy in addition to peanut.

Here we go. First, the peanut allergy and now a suspected egg allergy. I gave her a bite of real scrambled eggs and she made a face, spit it out and shivered. I watched her for a few minutes and then she developed some small red bumps or hives around her mouth. I gave her benedryl and started to cry. We are just getting used to her peanut allergy and now we have to be careful with eggs. The weird thing is that she eats french toast sticks and they have egg in them. I called the allergist and set up an appointment in September for another skin test. Poor baby. I hate doing it but we have to know and I am going to check for all the rest of the common allergens while we are there.

The nurse said for now, avoid all eggs. I asked her about the frozen french toast sticks and she said that for some foods like frozen, processed french toast sticks, the egg protein is weaker since it is much further away from a pure egg. It might have been cooked out or the processing weakens it. So what does that mean? Well, no bakery items obviously and no eggs. But everything seems to have egg in it! Some breads have egg brushed on the outside! Here goes my paranoia scale - up and away.

I found a good sheet for egg allergies to avoid so we'll start here. How are you all managing out there allergic moms?

And what about flu shots and other vaccinations with eggs in them? More questions for the doctor I suppose.

Egg Allergy Information

Foods to avoid with egg allergy - print out for your wallet

More egg allergy info

Disney bound, food allergies and all.

Well we are almost ready to go. I will issue a full report upon return. We have a reservation at the Rose & Crown in England at Epcot and will be eating in the condo for most of the week.

I am worried about family giving my daughter unsafe snacks as I'm still educating them of the importance to read labels. We will see how it goes.

I found some one piece swim suits on sale for my oldest daughter today on clearance for $2.80 each. Score! And they are Hannah Montana and High School Musical suits with hair bands. Woo hoo!

Also scored swimsuit coverups for both girls. Is it just me or are some of these girls swim suits too revealing like bikinis? My girls will wear one pieces for many years to come.

Just random thoughts from a pre-vacation panicked mom.

Have a great holiday weekend everyone! Be safe.

Tips for Visiting Disney on a Budget

I married into a Disney family. My father in law is a member of the Disney Vacation Club and we have been fortunate to be able to stay at the Old Key West resort for many years. We like to visit Disney a few times a year if we are lucky. We have found ways to see some sights on a budget and I'd like to share some with you. I just sent this to a friend whose family member is going for the first time. I hope it helps!
Some tips:

Pick up Disney toys/stuffed animals/clothes at Wal-Mart before trip and hide them/bring out during trip.

You can bring snacks into the parks - we brought cereal bars, raisins, etc. They check your bag but it's allowed.

Take the monorail around to the Grand Floridian, Polynesian and Contemporary resorts and walk around each resort to see each theme.

Ask to ride the front of the monorail and kids get a monorail operator license!

Eat at Earl of Sandwich in Downtown Disney - great sandwich, low cost - they even have breakfast.

Walk on Disney's boardwalk - it's just like New Jersey and there are carnival games, etc. Restaurants, a bakery, ESPN zone, a boat ride, you name it! You can see the fireworks at Epcot here too.

Make a reservation for character dining and make it the end of the brunch time around 11 - 11:30 before it ends. You have more time for characters and less people by then. (our favorite place is at the Contemporary - Chef Mickey's)

You can get a mini-fridge and stay at the Pop Century or All-Star resort and you can take the bus.

See the characters at Epcot Character Spot - they are all lined up inside the building and if you go early, there is little wait time.

Go around the world at Epcot - we like to eat at the Rose & Crown in England - make advance reservations - good kids menu, pick out an oyster in Japan and get a pearl - under $20.

Happy trails!