Friday, July 31, 2009

Featured Blogger Friday-Sweeps4Bloggers

Tis Friday yet again and you all know what that means! Another featured blogger on The Eclectic Element :D

I tell you, I love to bring to attention bloggers that I love and follow-It's like sharing an extra special treat with ya'll.

So for today, say hello to Valerie of Sweeps4Bloggers on Blogspot! I have been following her since the beginning of my blogging career and have won many a things thanks to her! She has inspired me in many ways and I hope she can do the same for you guys...


Q. What's your name and your blog? What other information would you like to share?

Valerie from Sweeps4Bloggers

Q. Why did you choose that name for your blog?

It was the first thing that came to my mind... thought I'd change it when I thought of something better, but.... it stuck & now that I have a following and business cards, I'm not going to change ;)

Q. Why did you start blogging?

Giveaways! I have been entering (and winning!) sweepstakes for years. I like the personal aspect of blog giveaways - it's more interactive than just filling out a form. The odds are great and it's fun to hear about new products and other people's opinions. After entering other giveaways for awhile, I decided it would be fun to run my own & I love it! I am having soooo much fun! :)

Q. What kind of stuff do you cover with your blog? Is there a specific genre you write about or is the sky the limit?

I like reviewing and giving away a wide variety of products - something for everybody. This keeps it interesting for my readers and fun for me. I'm especially interested in green products and my kids and I are big readers - I welcome all PR pitches.

My blog is a happy place, so I accept reviews for products that I believe I will enjoy.

Q. Name one thing that you love about your blogging job.

Just one??? Giving stuff away!

Q. Name one thing your not so fond of about your blogging job.

Hmmmm..... it would be nice if someone were giving me a big fat paycheck!

Q. What's one random fun fact about you?

I'm training to be the Crazy Cat Lady when I get old.

Q. Inspiration comes in many forms for different people. What inspires you?

My guys.

Q. Any advice for other bloggers?

Do what you love. If you like writing about your family, do that. If you like writing about politics, do that. If you like doing reviews or giveaways, do that. It'll be obvious to your readers, if your heart isn't in it. There are sooo many ways to do a blog - it's a blank slate for you to create whatever works for you :)

Q. Where else can we find you(Etsy shop, other blog, twitter, facebook, etc)?

You can find Valerie:

Twitter @valerie2350

Thursday, July 30, 2009

My Mini Vacation

Hello lovelies!

I'm sorry I haven't been around much today, but I took a much needed break and it has proven to make today one of the best I've had in a long time =]

To start off, I actually went to bed at a decent time last night-I was just so tired(and in pain, but hey, you win some and you lose some), I just zonked out. I woke up this morning feeling pretty good having slept off the pain of the night before, so I was ready for the day! My mum and I where supposed to go out so after getting ready and eating, we left to run errands.

Dropped a few books off at the library. Went to Walgreen's to pick up pictures for a project I'm doing for a friend. Stopped at Lowe's to get some window blinds for our kitchen. It was all pretty great actually-Who knew errands could be so fun!?

Anyway, I stopped at two of our Salvation Armys we have in the area and I was in heaven...I bought myself a new purse AND got some great jewelry for myself and my businesses. Oh and a few hundred books O.o Okay so only 7, but 4 of those are big text books.

Then we had to stop at Michael's for some supplies for a few presents I need to make. That was such a great time because we were stranded in the store due to sever weather(Yay yay yay). You should have seen those clouds! They were just breathtaking...I guess later on there was a tornado that touched down in a neighboring county.

I got a pair of yoga pants that I won awhile ago in the mail today(I know, spoiler), and they are just absolutely mind-blowingly amazing!! Seriously, it's like they were made to fit me :D I'll have to see if I can get someone to take a picture for you guys!

There are other things but I know I'm forgetting. I know I have enough material though for a couple of weeks worth of posts so stay tuned!!

Love and Energies.
Kayla

Jessica's Guide to Dating on the Dark Side*Book Review*


Author: Beth Fantaskey
Genre: Young Adult
Page Count: 368 pages
Publisher: Harcourt Children's Books
Grade From Me: 4 out of 5

Synopsis:

Jessica is just a normal teenager who is a senior in high school with the usual normal teenage problems: trying not to look like a complete idiot in front of boys, getting good grades in her classes and doing her school work, and trying so hard to blend in with everyone else in Woodrow Wilson High School.

That is until the weird Romanian exchange student shows up and turns her life upside down. Now, she has been informed from Lucius, the dark and mysterious Romanian stranger, she is a supposed Romanian Princess and he is her betrothed. Oh, did I mention they both are vampires and they have to get married due to a 17 year old pact? If they don't fulfill the pact, their two families will wage a war against one another and countless vampire and human lives will be lost.

Taken aback by this news, Jessica refuses to believe what has been told to her and she goes on living whatever normal life she has left while Lucius continues to pine for her affections. As she starts feeling something for Lucius, he starts turning away from her. He becomes more dark-More dangerous.

Somewhere along the way between finding out who she really is, feeling strange things both mentally and physically, and a whole lot of teenage drama, Jessica learns to be the person she is meant to, but is it too late to save Lucius from himself?

Thoughts:

I have seen a lot of reviews on this book my many different book blogs and I thought I would give it a try. I feel bad because I really haven't divulged into different authors in a very long time-I was comfortable with my old stand byes. However, that being said and with me exploring new 'territory' so to speak, I really enjoyed this book! It was a quick read for me and even though there was a lot of themes I have seen in other books I have read over the years, the characters and storyline where solid throughout the whole book.

The symbolism behind the story is genius, too. Good vs. Evil, the eternal battle. What really gets to me is the fact that the author gave her characters a choice; No matter how evil or good a person thinks they are, they still have a choice to turn away from the dark and into the light(or vice versa).

This book is definitely worth the read in my opinion and it teaches a good life lesson if you look deep enough into the story.

Health Update Thursday(7/30)

This week has been a rough one for me, but I brought it on myself...I just HAD to eat that bowl of ice cream on Saturday >.<


The funny thing is usually when I eat something I'm not supposed to, I suffer for it, yes, but not to this degree which has me wondering if multiple factors where to blame for my extremely ill state at the beginning of the week.


Sunday was excruciating pain-I hurt so bad that I was near tears the whole day. I knew, as my mother says to me everyday, "If you don't get up and move, it's like taking one step back from getting better." So with that in mind, I forced myself to attempt to crawl and stand. That is when I finally cried.


Monday wasn't as bad as Monday pain wise, but it was very bad fatigue wise. Seriously, I couldn't make it to the bathroom(which is a couple of feet from my room) without taking a few breaks in between. I would take that over the pain though-I'm used to the draining fatigue.


Tuesday is when it started to look up-Yes I was still in pain and I was tired, but that is the story of my life; It's my normal. The insomnia has reared it's ugly head(more so then usual), so I'm lucky to get to bed at 5 am most mornings. But I'm still moving around and exercising so that is good!


Oh and you will never get this-I was so pissed off I was ready to call and bitch someone out. My mum has been waiting for these heart tests for about a month now and her stress test was finally on the 27th. We were all happy because we knew it was something she wanted to get done and over with.


Well the 27th came and she was getting ready when she got a phone call...


Uh oh you say? It was the place calling to say their machine broke and that she is rescheduled to August 20th. AUGUST FREAKING 20TH! Oh I'm so angry I could just go down there and raise holy hell. In fact, I really, really wish I could.


Now yesterday(Wednesday), my mum gets a bill from our insurance telling us that they won't pay for her appointment with the heart doctor or the tests he ordered. Just for the 15 minute appointment alone where he listened to her heart and said she was fine, she has to pay $1,000 out of pocket(keep in mind that is NOT including the two tests or the other doctor appointment she had).


I hate bastards like insurance companies. I really do.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Little Girl with a Heart of Gold



I stumbled across this video yesterday on the AOL homepage and it captured my attention right away-This little girl has done more good for the world in her short time on earth then most people accomplish in the span of their whole lives. We should all take notice and follow her example!

When she grows up and looks back at what she did, she can and will be proud by the fact that she selflessly helped to feed 18,000 hungry people.

Watch and be amazed. I know I certainly was.

Love and Energies.
Kayla

Surprise! A Giveaway on Wendesday!!

I figured that I have hit a routine on The Eclectic Element and If it's one thing that I truly HATE, it's routine. So I want to throw a curve ball at you all ;-)

Max from Krafty Max Originals, who hosted the Swarovski Crystal Anklet Giveaway just last week contacted me with another lovely winnable prize for you all:

Take a gander and this stunning Swarovski Crystal Rosary! Here is some information on the piece itself:

"This hand turned rosary is made in the traditional style. All of the wires, center pieces and jump rings are gold plated. Rosary measures 26” in length and the drop measures 3” in length.

This Krafty Max original will be packaged in an elegant Gift Box that is ready to wrap. A small note card for you to personalize is also included for your convenience."

Here is what you have to do to win:

Rules:

1. You MUST include a way to reach you whether it be an email or blogger URL.

2. Each comment, mandatory and or extra, has to be separate.

Mandatory Entry:

You must visit Max's store, Krafty Max Originals and brows around for a bit. Come back and leave a comment with your favorite piece.

Extra Entries:

1. Follow my Blog(1 extra)

2. Follow Max's Blog(1 extra)


3. Subscribe to Me(1 extra)
*Located on the right-You can't miss it.

4. Subscribe to Max(1 extra)
*Located on the right had side on her blog, too.

5. Follow Me AND Max on Twitter(1 extra)

6. Tweet this giveaway(1 extra)
-Win a Lovely Swarovski Crystal Rosary @ http://bit.ly/xW2BQ

7. Blog about this giveaway including a link to Max's store(3 extra)

8. Purchase anything from Krafty Max Originals(5 extra)


That's 1 mandatory entry + 14 extra entries which = 15 entries total!
Good Luck!

This contest will run until Wednesday August 5, 2009 11:59 pm central standard time. I will contact the winner within 24 hours of drawing their name. You have 72 hours to claim your prize and send me your shipping information. If I haven't heard from you within that time frame, I will choose another winner.

Monday, July 27, 2009

The Ugly Truth*Review*



Synopsis:

"Abby(Katherine Heigl), an uptight television producer knows the 'perfect guy' is out there-Somewhere. Romantically challenged as she is, she refuses to give up that notion of that perfect guy(she even has a check list for potential Mr. Rights). That is, until her path crosses with a stubborn, chauvinistic guy named Mike(Gerard Butler) who runs a show, aptly named The Ugly Truth, all about what men really want from woman. Abby hates Mike from the moment she laid eyes on him(or was it the moment he opened his mouth?), but soon finds herself needing his help to land the perfect guy who happens to have moved into the house next door."


My Thoughts:

Okay. Three little words to describe this film: I. LOVE. IT. Seriously, the fact that two of my favorite actors starred in this film drew me in when I first saw the trailer, but when I saw the movie itself, everything about it just fell together into the perfect, little puzzle that had me in when the credits started rolling.

If you know me, you would know that I'm not a big fan of the comedy genre because none of the movies make me laugh! Very rarely will a film tickle my fancy (and funny bone), but I have not come across one that made me REALLY laugh. In The Ugly Truth, the humor is definitely crude and very sexual, but the whole time I was in the theater myself and everyone around me (and I do mean EVERYONE) were doubled over in hysterics! They were not kidding when they rated it R.

Of course it's one of those boy-meets-girl*boy-and-girl-loath-each-other*boy-and-girl-gradually-fall-in-love type movies, but the fact about that is the writers and director put a whole new spin on the concept-It was very refreshing, actually. Even though my favorite romantic movies start out with the characters hating each other, it gets old after awhile, you know? Let me tell you, I was SO not bored with this film!

This is most definitely one of my new favorites and I can't wait until it comes out on DVD! If you have a chance, don't walk-RUN to the theater and buy yourself a ticket to see The Ugly Truth.


**This is an opinion solely based on my thoughts and opinions of the movie in question and no one elses. I was not influenced one way or another to write the subject matter in this review, so if you don't like it or don't agree with it, that is your choice and I fully respect it so please extend me the same curtsy**

Mailbox Monday(7/27)



Have you noticed that each week goes by really fast when you are waiting on mail? Or is that just me? It seems like just a few days ago that I did last weeks Mailbox Monday and all of a sudden *BOOM* It's Monday again...

Am I nuts, or do other people see it too?
*************************************************************************************

1. I knew I forgot something last week! Remember the Featured Artist Post for NAME of Purple Toes Jewelry? Well she was kind enough to send me a piece of jewelry from her store and I. LOVE. IT!! It's my first piece of steampunk jewelry :D

And probably not my last! Lol


2. I got some really neat(yes, I said neat) stuff from some Indian reservation in Wisconsin I think...They were looking for money (which I would gladly give if I had any myself), but in the process I got a stationary pad with a dream catcher on it, return address labels(in which I yelled, "Yes! I needed me some of these.") and a few awesome note cards having to deal with their culture.



3. I had to reorder some charms for my Healing bracelets because I ran out again! So those came on Thursday with a fun little freebie they threw in for my benefit.

Now I can continue with my bracelets!



4. Heidi from Heidi's Handmades on Etsy(view her feature HERE) sent me some lovely products of hers-I seriously cannot stop smelling the soap I got! I'm still debating on whether to use it or just be content with smelling it all day. Lol








5. Oh and I can't forget I got some tea samples! They look so yummy, I can't wait to try them out.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Slapdash Sunday(7/26)



Slapdash Sunday is a day for your proverbial week 'leftovers.' Is there something you wanted to say, but just forgot? Is there something you want to write about, but isn't worth a whole page? Do you have a random thought, funny or otherwise that needs to be written down?

That is what Slapdash Sunday is for!

*************************************************************************************

1. If you haven't read my Health Update Thursday Post, I am in for a vacation! A few of my Lymie friends got together and said, "Let's fly Kayla out here." So I'm very excited and I REALLY hope I can go! I'm still unsure about the dates, but were gunning for 2 or 3 weeks from now. So hopefully I can go!!!





2. Have you ever noticed how foreign chocolate is WAY better then American chocolate? Like seriously, it's exponentially more flavorful and it's better for you, too.












3. I found a new favorite band!! I was watching 10 Things on abc Family and they had The Filthy Souls on and I just fell in love with their music right then and there :D

Check out their Myspace Page

I can't wait to get a few of their songs from Itunes but I'm too cheap. Lmao.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Betty Crocker Gluten Free Dessert Mixes*Review and Giveaway*

When I first got sick back in the beginning of 2004, I had no IDEA that it would change my life so drastically. I guess I just thought it wasn't that bad until I stopped walking about 2 months later. Ever since I have been through everything imaginable from multiple new doctors and painful tests to different treatments and new ailments. Which brings me to my point of that whole depressing little tidbit of my life-One of those new ailments I referred to is food allergies.

About the ending of year 3, we went to a new doctor(later he would be our most trusted primary physician) and the first thing that he said to do was to go on something called the elimination diet, which would tell me what I was intolerant to food wise. I ended up being dairy, wheat and gluten sensitive along with a couple other things that I choose not to eat.

When the folks over at BlogSpark contacted me to review Betty Crocker's new Gluten Free Dessert Mixes, I nearly fell over in my excitement-I mean, you can never find gluten free anything unless it's at a health food store!

My Sweet Moments package arrived a week or so ago and I was shocked at how much I had been given! The package consisted of:
  • 1 Box of Betty Crocker's Gluten Free Brownie Mix
  • 1 Box of Betty Crocker's Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Cookie Mix
  • 1 Box of Betty Crocker's Gluten Free Devil's Food Cake Mix
  • 1 Box of Betty Crocker's Gluten Free Yellow Cake Mix
  • A Betty Crocker shopping list and pen
  • A Betty Crocker Large Tote Bag
  • Two Free Coupons for any Variety Gluten Free Dessert
Now you can fathom my excitement when I opened that lovely box :D Of course we had to try it out right away, so my sister and I set out to make the brownie mix first, which without a doubt was a big hit with the whole fam! That pan was gone before the night was over-Everyone just kept grazing in and out and sneaking a piece here and another piece there(my sister actually had to stash a few pieces for her boyfriend behind one of our jars because he wouldn't have gotten any otherwise).

The next night was chocolate chip cookies!! See picture below to demonstrate my happiness:

(Happy Faced Kayla)

First off, don't mind the dog in the background(we ended up kicking him out shortly after because he is a shedding freak of a dog).

(Of course I had to be Miss Professional Photographer)

Second, so far, we have done two out of the four desserts, but let me tell you, they are so easy to do and require so little effort, your young one could make them(with your assistance with the oven of course)! All you really need is some essentials like eggs and butter and the mix-Well and of course muscle since stirring is a job no matter what your baking! Lol (Of course I had to write something down with my awesome pen on my brand new grocery pad list).




















My sister doesn't like her picture taken, but I captured her a few times! HA.



Some things my family had to say about the desserts we made so far:

"The cookies taste just like regular ones! You can't even tell the difference."

"The brownies were to die for! So moist and very flavorful."

"I'm so glad that someone other then the health food stores are realizing that gluten sensitivity along with all the other sensitivities are a growing problem!"

(Me enjoying my cookie)

I would have to say that all in all, I'm thrilled that Betty Crocker is coming out with these mixes and actually acknowledging the gluten free community. For that, I have to say a huge thank you because people don't know how hard it is to find food that's suitable to eat when your sick(and food sensitivities are classified a sickness).

Not only are these desserts extremely delectable, but they are fast and easy-It will only take about ten to fifteen minutes until your basking in the aroma and flavor of your cookies, cake or brownies =]

Want a coupon for your own tasty box of gluten free goodness? Just call this number for your to request a free coupon for one of the new gluten free mixes and to also receive information about General Mills growing set of gluten free products: 1-800-446-1898


And thanks to the folks over at BlogSpark and Betty Crocker, one of my lucky readers is going to get a Sweet Moment's Prize Package containing all of the above mentioned products(pictured below)!!



Rules:

1. You MUST include a way to reach you whether it be an email or blogger URL.

2. Each comment, mandatory and or extra, has to be separate.

3. Unfortunately for some people, this giveaway is only open to U.S. Citizens

Mandatory Entry:

Tell me your favorite gluten free recipe

-OR-

Tell me why you feel that more people should be aware of food sensitivities.

**Note: Even if you answer both mandatory questions, it's only worth one entry

Extra Entry:

1. Follow my Blog(1 extra)

2. Subscribe(1 extra)
*Located on the right-You can't miss it.

3. Follow Me on Twitter(1 extra)

4. Grab My Button(1 extra)
*it's to the right side

5. Tweet this giveaway leaving a link in your comment(1 extra)

RT Win a Sweet Moments Prize Pack from Betty Crocker @ http://bit.ly/lZRRi

6. Go to Betty Crocker's Gluten Free Website Page and tell me something you learned(1 extra)

7. Tell me how you have been affected by food sensitivities(1 extra)

8. Blog about this contest leaving a link back(3 extra)

That's 1 mandatory entry + 10 extra entries which = 11 entries total!
Good Luck!

This contest will run until Wednesday August 5, 2009 11:59 pm central standard time. Only open to United States Citizens. I will contact the winner within 24 hours of drawing their name. You have 72 hours to claim your prize and send me your shipping information. If I haven't heard from you within that time frame, I will choose another winner.

Featured Blogger Friday-She Scribes

Happy Friday everyone! Today's Featured Blogger is one that I enjoy immensely-Every time I go to her blog, I find myself enthralled with her life as she posts it. She always has something interesting and meaningful to say!

Not to mention we have some great conversations over our individual postings =]

So welcome Kimberly from She Scribes!

Q. What's your name and your blog? What other information would you like to share?

Kimberly. I'm a mother, wife, business owner, freelance writer & photographer, mini-zoo keeper and of course a blogger. My blog is She Scribes (www.SheScribes.com). I blog about life, current events and whatever is on my mind. I enjoy doing product and book reviews because it gives me a reason to write and I love learning about things I might not otherwise know about. I also love to host giveaways for my readers.



Q. Why did you choose that name for your blog?
Originally I had an idea for a web site that featured ONLY women writers. I was going to let women post their articles (for free) so that other web sites and newsletters could use them (a great way to promote the writers). "She" of course is just another word for a woman/female and "Scribes" is an older term that means someone who writes. Since I already had the name I decided to use it as my blog name since I'm a "She" and I love to "Scribe" (write).


Q. Why did you start blogging?
originally I was going to use my blog to promote my business, Everyday-Occasions (www.Everyday-Occasions.com). I was going to write about the products I offered and other things to promote my business. I quickly found that to be very boring and I started to blog about life, current events and whatever was on my mind. My early blog entries are just a bunch of rambling. As time went on I started to add reviews and giveaways. It just took off from there. I love to write so anything that allows me to write makes me happy.


Q. What kind of stuff do you cover with your blog? Is there a specific genre you write about or is the sky the limit?
I blog about my life as a mom & wife. I also blog about current events and whatever is on my mind. Sometimes I write about serious stuff, other times just silly things like posting a funny video or image. I also do a lot of product and book reviews and host giveaways as often as I possibly can. At times I have several giveaways going at one time. The caption on my the header on my blog says a little bit of this and a little bit of that. That pretty much sums it up.


Q. Name one thing that you love about your blogging job.
I can't just name ONE favorite. I have a couple...meeting new people, writing, networking with other people and companies.


Q. Name one thing your not so fond of about your blogging job.
Getting obsessed with the numbers (visitors, subscribers, followers...). If I see a lot of visitors/subscribers I'm happy as can be. When I see less visitors or if someone unsubscribes it throws off my day. I don't like that I feel that way. I wish I wasn't so concerned about the numbers.


Q. What's one random fun fact about you?
I worked as an intern for a year at a maximum security all-male prison as a "peer counselor". There I facilitated a domestic violence group and co-facilitated a sexual offenders group. My mentor took me places in the prisons others never get to see (school, hospital, solitary confinement, gym). I was even at a conference at our state capital on Victim's Rights, surrounded by politicians, prison wardens and other "big time" people. They even asked me for my opinion on things and cared what I had to say. That was so cool! FYI...I am not a criminal...I was an intern for college working on my degree. LOL!


Q. Inspiration comes in many forms for different people. What inspires you?
My family (husband, my children and my extended family), my friends, life, the world around me. I can look at a Dandelion fluff and be inspired to write something.


Q. Any advice for other bloggers?
You need to work on your blog a lot to gain more visitors and exposure. Don't take it personally if you are not instantly bombarded with a zillion visitors and subscribers when you first start out. It takes time. You need to build up a following. When you are finally well established don't fall into the same trap I have - the numbers! Don't worry about the numbers! Just blog and enjoy yourself. Network with other bloggers. And most importantly - HAVE FUN!


Q. Where else can we find you(Etsy shop, other blog, Twitter, Facebook, etc)?


*Social Media:

She Scribes on Twitter

*Personal Business:

Everyday Occasions

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Health Update Thursday(7/23)

Quite a bit has happened since last Thursday!

First off and most importantly, I have talked it over with my mum and we decided to lay off the Hydrogen Peroxide IVs for awhile. They are just too painful for one and for another I get way too stressed out going for them-If I had a PICC it would be one thing, but that is a whole other catch 22 that I would rather not get into...

Second, Thursday I went for my second colonics treatment with the naturopathic doctor I have been seeing and let's just say: UNCOMFORTABLE! I will spare you all the ugly details on that front. However, I do have to say that this lady really knows her stuff. She is a breast cancer survivor and cured her own cancer with what she does. She is willing to work with us and is actually excited to help us out so I feel very optimistic towards this lady!

I have been busting my ass building up my strength so I can get walking faster. The way I look at it is when I get back up and moving, I'll have a killer body :D Lmao. But seriously, a few Lymie friends of mine surprised me by telling me they are going to fly me out in a few weeks! At first I was in shock, but the shock wore off and I'm just killing myself to get back up and active to the point of being able to go. I still have a few weeks, so wish me luck(I REALLY want to go).

As for my mum she is doing okay-She had to wear a heart monitor for a day and is waiting on those test results. She is also scheduled for another test in a week. What I don't understand is how these idiots can make someone wait for their appointments and tests when they have a HEART PROBLEM! I mean come on!? So far she is still functioning, but the whole thing is really getting to her.

Some random things:
  • I was sleeping for about a week or so pretty good(my pretty good is going down around 12:00 am), but that seemed to have wore off. I'm not sure what it is, but I'll just keep taking stuff until something works.
  • I think I'm going to go back on a diet in the near future. I'll keep you updated on that too.
Thank you all for reading these updates and sending encouraging words. I really, really appreciate them and the fact that you all care!

Love and Energies.
Kayla

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Hunted: A House of Night Novel*Review*

Hunted: A House of Night Novel
By P.C. Cast and Kirstin Cast

To visit the official House of Night Website, Click Here.

Synopsis from Amazon:

"What if the hottest guy in the world was hiding a nameless evil and all he wanted was you?

At the start of this heart-pounding fifth installment of the bestselling House of Night series, Zoey's friends have her back again and Stevie Rae and the red fledglings aren't Neferet's secrets any longer. But an unexpected danger has emerged. Neferet guards her powerful new consort, Kalona, and no one at the House of Night seems to understand the threat he poses. Kalona looks gorgeous, and he has the House of Night under his spell. A past life holds the key to breaking his rapidly spreading influence, but what if this past life shows Zoey secrets she doesn't want to hear and truths she can't face?

On the run and holed up in Tulsa's Prohibition-era tunnels, Zoey and her gang must discover a way to deal with something that might bring them all down. Meanwhile, Zoey has a few other little problems. The red fledglings have cleaned up well--they've even managed to make the dark, creepy tunnels feel more like home--but are they really as friendly as they seem? On the boyfriend front, Zoey has a chance to make things right with super-hot ex-, Eric, but she can't stop thinking about Stark, the archer who died in her arms after one unforgettable night, and she is driven to try to save him from Neferet's sinister influence at all costs. Will anyone believe the power evil has to hide among us?"

My thoughts:

When a friend of mine first told me about this series, I thought 'what the heck.' I had the time and it was about vampires(I have this thing about the whole genre of vampires in general). I got through the first book and it was very good! Not the best I have ever read, but it was extremely entertaining and the writing was freshly different then anything I have read before, which I think adds to the books appeal.

Hunted is the 5th book in the House of Night Series and I was lucky enough to snatch it from the library because it just came out a month or so ago. It took up where the last book left off and I can't say it was the most interesting out of the whole series, but it kept my attention pretty strongly throughout the whole book.

Vampires, love triangles, special powers and untold evil-what more could you want out of a book? It's very easy to relate to the main character because we have all been there before(okay not the vampire and the fighting evil part) with the teenager problems like boys and self esteem issues. Granted, Zoey has to go through a lot more then that when she get's marked, but hey, were all different!

I give this book 3 out of 5 stars

Monday, July 20, 2009

I Was Bad...

Sorry about the lack of postings today-I'm usually good with getting things done!

But my friend had a bonfire for her birthday last night and I did something I wasn't supposed to...

I. Ate. Cake.
>.<

So today I'm out of it(not to mention in a great deal of pain) so I have decided to take the day off.

I shall be back tomorrow(hopefully), but in the meantime, I'm going to work on stuff around here.

Hope you all had a great weekend!!

Love and Energies.
Kayla

Mailbox Monday(7/20)




This Mailbox Monday started out AMAZING! Right off the bat, I got three packages in the mail! My sister even tried holding them out on me-She said I could open one then and one the next day. Lol


* Those three packages where all orders from Etsy sellers(of course I'm going to order from Etsy!). I didn't want to include much detail or pictures because I ordered supplies for some birthday presents I'm planning on completing and people read this blog(you know who you are O.o). But I'm very excited to get started!




I'm actually not sure when I signed up for this offer, but I got a trial sized bottle in the mail on Tuesday. I really wasn't expecting an actual bottle of the stuff(usually they send a little sample pack)! I was pleasantly surprised when it came and tried it right away-very lovely!








I was contacted a while back with an email saying I had won two boxes of Choices Tea and a hat! Well, I couldn't remember entering that contest(now you see how many contests I enter a day), but I was excited! I picked Jasmine Green Tea and Northwest Blackberry Tea. You will be able to see the hat soon ;-)







I know there was more to this week then those things, but at the moment I'm having a little brain freeze so when I think of them, I will add them to next weeks Mailbox Monday!

What did you get in your mailbox this week?

Sunday, July 19, 2009

There's a New Blog in Town.


<a href="http://www.sheblogs.org/index.html?utm_source=blogger&amp;utm_medium=banner&amp;utm_campaign=v1"&
gt;<img src="http://www.sheblogs.org/images/sheblogs-badge-150x150.gif" /></a></div>




There's a new blog in town and it goes by the name She Blogs! Here is a little about the blog from their site:

"Meet SheBlogs, an interactive Web service that CONNECTS women bloggers, including mom bloggers, product reviewers, fashionistas, techies and others, with the public relations and marketing professionals that are issuing the news and promoting the products that women care about most."

I was so thrilled when I saw there was a new blog that set out to help us women bloggers-I signed myself up so fast! Lol She Blogs is still in the beginning stages, but with over 200 registered bloggers already, I foresee it's going to be a big success!

If your a blogger and would like to sign up, just go HERE(If you could when you sign up, put The Eclectic Element in the 'referred by' section).

Do yourself a favor and go sign up! It's a wonderful opportunity that shouldn't be passed up-Feel free to grab the button above and display it proudly on your site!

Love and Energies.
Kayla

Slapdash Sunday(7/19)


Slapdash Sunday is a day for your proverbial week 'leftovers.' Is there something you wanted to say, but just forgot? Is there something you want to write about, but isn't worth a whole page? Do you have a random thought, funny or otherwise that needs to be written down?

That is what Slapdash Sunday is for!

*************************************************************************************



1. Happy 19th Birthday to one of my good friends Breanna! I feel bad because we haven't seen a great deal of each other for a few months, but I hope she has one of the best birthdays anyone could ever wish for :D






2. Related to number one, my sister nearly flipped her lid when she saw what I got for my friend. Well, actually I won it-But the sentiment is still there! Sis threatened to intercept the package before it got to me(which isn't hard to do in my condition) and keep it for herself. Lol




3. I finished reading Twilight for the 5th time and while I'm waiting for my sister and her boyfriend to finish New Moon, I'm re-reading my favorite author, James Rollin's book Subterranean. I figure I should read his books again before I read his latest thriller so I'm up to date(even though I just read the last of his books very recently). If you all have a chance, go and check him out!

The Official Website of James Rollins









4. On Friday my mum didn't feel like cooking so we ordered Chinese and had my sister and her boyfriend go pick it up. Of course with a Chinese meal comes a fortune cookie and after I ate, I opened my cookie and guess what it said....

"ASK YOUR MOM"
(Not.Kidding)

5. Here is a very wonderful article on creating and maintaining blogging friendships I found on Metropolitan Mama's blog while making my rounds the other day. It's very true and a great reference for anyone starting out.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

I Hate Technology: The Aftermath

Due to a few requests, here is a picture of my phone after the incident...


Like I said, kinda cool, right? Although now I can't read my text messages.
(It was worth it)

Unfortunately now I can't stand to look at my phone cause I want to beat it to a pulp >.<

I Hate Technology

I can't sleep so I thought I would pass the time and just write. Write about anything and write about nothing-I don't care and I bet you guys don't either.

You'll read it. And if you don't want to read it, then just click out now(although you might miss the funny ramblings of a tired person).

So how come even though we make technology to where it has a life of maybe 5 years and then we come up with something better and more 'advanced?' Even though things are said to be bigger and better, they really aren't, I can assure you...

They always have something wrong with them and they are CRAPPILY MADE! Take for example a very old car opposed to a brand new 2009 one. Within a year, that 2009 will probably have a whole slew of problems with it, where as the very old car is still bumpin' and grindin' down life's highway(pun intended).

The only reason I bring this up is because my phone is a piece of shit. I was texting on it tonight with my friend and right in the middle of a text message, it shuts off completely. SHUTS. OFF. So I have to turn it on again, type in my unlock password, start typing my text message again, blah blah blah. The only bad thing is, guess what? Halfway through my rewritten text message, it shuts off again. This doesn't happen once. twice. three times. It happened four freakin' times.

Here's a little equation for you:

Shitty phone + Lyme Rage + Insomnia =Broken Phone.

This happened at 1:00 am and I didn't want to wake anyone up by smashing the phone into the wall repeatedly, so in a moment of pure rage I bit into my phone.

Yes, you read me correctly-I bit my phone. Don't judge me O.o

Now my screen is cracked from the inside and even though it looks kinda cool, I can't read anything =/ I can't say I'm upset about it-I knew I was going to go rager on the thing one of these days and it just ended up to be today(tonight?).

Anyone know a good phone?

Friday, July 17, 2009

One Busy Jewelry Makin' Lady*Krafty Max Originals


Welcome our featured artist for Friday, Max of Krafty Max Originals on Etsy!

Max has been a stay at home mother of 3 for the last 5 years and currently lives in the city of Jacksonville in the sunny state of Florida. When she was younger, she used to watch her mother making items for different family members for the holidays and by the age of 5, she was following in her mum's footsteps by stringing beads for my own creations. That was 30 years ago and she she is still at it!

She used to be a 'big dog' in the corporate world a couple years ago, but after her 3rd child was born, both herself and her husband decided it was time she take a break from that world and focus on raising their children. " I always tell people that I'm a stay at home mom who never stays home!" Along with her staying home, she took on the roll of Girl Scout Troop Leader and teaching crafting classes at several local independent living homes(busy, busy lady)!

Max does many, many crafts from crocheting and knitting to anything having to do with a needle and thread to scrapbooking, photography, painting, and of course her jewelry which is the only thing she has taken to selling so far.

Now, being that much of a crafter and entrepreneur, Max averages about 50 craft shows per year! The
last craft show she went to was when she was told about Etsy. "I hadn't heard anything about it at the time, but I was very interested because I was getting very tired of being gone every weekend and working like crazy to set up, take down, stand in the rain and never really make much. There were to many expenses with that many shows..." She started with Etsy in November of 2008 and has expanded in unbelievable ways!

Inspiration for Max comes from what type of beads and focal points she uses. "Strange as it seems, I am a backwards beader! Most beaders pick a design and then look for the focal to match their look, I somehow look at the focal point and deign it from their. I often can see what I want the entire deign (clasp and all) to look like even before I start - sometimes when I just pick up the focal it comes to me. My problem is usually making it match what is in my minds eye." Wow. I have never met someone else that can do that-That's exactly how my mind works too!

Some things to know about Max and her shop:

*She has a
blog that you can check out: Krafty Max Originals on Blogspot
She currently has a contest going on that ends the end of July so make sure you enter!

*Some social media sites you can find Max on are Facebook, Twitter, and her Personal Website.

*Many of her jewelry is customized so she doesn't shy away from custom orders! Just convo her your idea and she would be happy to bring it to life =]


*For payment, shipping, and other important information, check out Marci's Shop Policies Page.


Some advice from Max: "The main advice I can give some else is - don't give up. In this day - and economy - it is really ruff out there. When I first came to Etsy I didn't really make anything happen. Now with all the marketing and work I put into telling people about my creations and 'putting myself out there' I am really starting to grow as a person and a business. Also, I would say, do it because you love it. I make all my jewelry because I love to, not to make money (I would love to be a millionaire) at it. It is my passion, the business come second."


Max has graciously offered one of my readers a beautiful Swarovski Crystal anklet shown below:
Here is a little information on the bracelet itself:

"This anklet has two shades of blue Swarovski Crystals and Sterling Silver Plated findings. Perfect for Blue Jeans or a fancy night out. Anklet measures at 11” in length and can be lengthened if needed This Krafty Max original will be packaged in an elegant gift box that is ready for gifting. A small note card is also included for your convenience so it will be easy to gift."

So here is what you have to do to win this lovely anklet:

Rules:

1. You MUST include a way to reach you whether it be an email or blogger URL.

2. Each comment, mandatory and or extra, has to be separate.

Mandatory Entry:

You must visit Max's store, Krafty Max Originals and brows around for a bit. Come back and leave a comment with your favorite piece.

Extra Entries:

1. Follow my Blog(1 extra)

2. Follow Max's Blog(1 extra)


3. Subscribe to Me(1 extra)
*Located on the right-You can't miss it.

4. Subscribe to Max(1 extra)
*Located on the right had side on her blog, too.

5. Follow Me AND Max on Twitter(1 extra)

6. Tweet this giveaway(1 extra)
-RT Win a Beautiful Swarovski Crystal Anklet @ http://bit.ly/pgwu7

7. Blog about this giveaway including a link to Max's store(3 extra)

8. Purchase anything from Krafty Max Originals(5 extra)


That's 1 mandatory entry + 14 extra entries which = 15 entries total!
Good Luck!

This contest will run until Wednesday July 24, 2009 11:59 pm central standard time. I will contact the winner within 24 hours of drawing their name. You have 72 hours to claim your prize and send me your shipping information. If I haven't heard from you within that time frame, I will choose another winner.

Featured Blogger Friday-Judith B. Designs

I met Judy when I did a feature for her while back and we became fast friends. She has some of the most gorgeous(and I do mean Gorgeous) jewelry designs this side of the internet-But don't take my word for it! Check out her Shop and Website. They are so marvelous, I wish I could create jewelry half as amazing as them!

This past week, we were talking and I asked her to be a featured blogger for this Friday because I feel that her blog should be in the spotlight so other people can view her successes.

So without further delay, say hello to Judy of Judith B. Designs!

Q. What's your name and your blog? What other information would you like to share?

Judy Glende of Judith B. Designs

Q. Why did you choose that name for your blog?

Because it is the name of my jewelry business. My first name, obviously, is Judith and I wanted to include the B which is for Brigitte, which is also my Mom's name.


Q. Why did you start blogging?

Once I started selling on Etsy I learned about blogging in the forums and learned it was a good way to generate traffic to your web sites.


Q. What kind of stuff do you cover with your blog? Is there a specific genre you write about or is the sky the limit?

At first I did not know what to write about...but once you start your life and work just spill out onto the keyboard. I share my jewelry designs and life with all who care to read about it.


Q. Name one thing that you love about your blogging job.

I love meeting new people from all over the world.


Q. Name one thing your not so fond of about your blogging job.


It is something you must keep up almost on a daily basis, you need to keep it fresh so you have interested readers.


Q. What's one random fun fact about you?

I love to play Poker... Texas Hold'em!!!



Q. Inspiration comes in many forms for different people. What inspires you?

I have to say the past inspires me...I love antiques and these are most of my inspirations for my jewelry designs.


Q. Any advice for other bloggers?

Mix it up...people want to know all about you...share your work and life.


Q. Where else can we find you(Etsy shop, other blog, twitter, facebook, etc)?

You can find me at all of these links:

Personal Site:
Judith B. Designs.com

Etsy Shops:
Flap Your Wings on Etsy
Judith B. Designs on Etsy

Social Media Sites:
Judith B. Designs on Blogspot

Judith B. Designs on Twitter
Judith B. Designs on Facebook

Media Sharing Site:
Judith B. Designs on Flickr

phew....that is a lot of places!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Health Update Thursday(7/16)

This week has been a tough one for me, just for the sheer fact that everything is so frustrating and endless(or so it seems at this point).

Due to what happened Friday(don't ask-you would just cringe and squirm in your seat if I told you), I really don't want to go back to the hydrogen peroxide treatments. It's not just because of that one thing, either. It's also the fact that the people at the center don't understand what I'm going through, so they keep antagonizing me, telling me I'm not trying hard enough to get better every time I go back, and if they aren't voicing their thoughts out loud, I know they are judging me. Am I being paranoid? And then there is the fact that the treatments are becoming increasingly painful and I have to get stuck every stinking time I get the IV. This all combined puts a whole lot of stress on me and I dread going back each week; Actually, it's more like as the day draws nearer, I start to panic. I just don't know if I can do it anymore, but I would feel guilty if I stop....Any advice?

Tuesday which was my last treatment, was very emotional for me. I was nervous because I didn't know if they were going to get the vein and when they did get the vein(barely), I was scared that it wasn't in like last time-When they 'hit' the vein and started the IV, It burned like hell because it wasn't really in. Sitting throughout the whole thing was truly painful. My arm is still in pain because of it! Then after the whole thing, one of the doctors chewed me out for 'not trying to get better' and 'using the wheelchair when I don't need it' and that hurt. I got in to the car and burst into tears. He did say some things that I agreed 100% with like I needed to exercise more and whatnot, but he doesn't understand that it's going to take more then a week to get back up for me.

I just don't know anymore! It's that damn catch 22 again: Your damned if you do and damned if you don't. If I could only concentrate enough to be able to read and research, I would be able to put 2 and 2 together and figure something out myself. But I can't.

We are going to talk to a naturopath today(the one we went to last month) and were going to ask her opinion on the matter.

As for my mum, she has been having a hell of a time with getting these tests scheduled. No one seems to think they are too important so they haven't gotten back to her until about two days ago *rolls eyes* That's our medical system for you...She goes for her tests tomorrow in the morning before she has to take me to my appt., so I suppose we will see.

On a happier front, I ordered a walker a few weeks ago and finally got it a few days ago. Ever since, I have been standing up for a few minutes at a time trying to build myself back up. It feels good to be up! I forgot how tall I was O.o And you know what-I think I grew!

If you have any words of encouragement, advice, or anything else, I welcome it with open ears and arms! Thanks for listening to my ranting :D

Love and Energies.
Kayla

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Krafty Max Originals-July Jewelry Giveaway


Win a $30.00 Gift Certificate to Krafty Max Originals on Etsy!!


Ends July 31, 2009

Now, this has a little more of an original twist to entering:

  1. Go to Krafty Max Originals and pick your favorite piece.
  2. Email your choice to max@kraftymax.com -OR-Convo your choice to Krafty Max
  3. You MUST include a way to reach you or your entry won't count!
Your gift certificate will be awarded by August 5, 2009

*Note: Certificate does NOT include shipping

BlogHer Induced Depression

I have only been blogging for a few short months now, but It has gotten me through a lot of tough times, and it's structure that I need now more then ever. I guess you can say in a way, it saved what little peace of mind I have left. I have met some amazing people because of it, as well as, come upon some great opportunities I wouldn't have otherwise had(not to mention all the great stuff I have won through countless giveaways).

So when the first mention of BlogHer 2009 came up, I thought, "Wow, what a great thing! Bloggers from all over getting together like that." It took me a while to realize that it was being held only 2 hours away in Chicago-That's when I got excited! I mean come on, It could be held anywhere else in the United States and it's 2 hours away from me!?

Now that the time is getting closer to BlogHer 2009 and I hear the other bloggers casually(and excitedly) mentioning it in posts and conversations, I'm getting more and more depressed that I, like everything else that usually happens, can't go because I'm too Ill. It's one thing If I was walking-I could possibly go then, I would just need to take a cane and rest a lot. It's a whole different thing if I have to go in a wheelchair.

I keep telling myself to look on the bright side-That I could always find a sponsor and go next year wherever it may be, but right after I tell myself that, there pops up another post of a blogger going.

*sigh*

Sorry for the rant. It just getting to me; I bet I will be fine when it will be all over. Even though I'm sad about not being able to go, I can't wait for all your guy's stories.

Love and Energies.
Kayla

Monday, July 13, 2009

Ice Age 3: Dawn of the Dinosaurs*Review*





Synopsis:
Since Ice Age 2: The Meltdown, life has been going pretty well for some of the characters in the movie and not so ideal for others. Manny(voiced by Ray Romano) and Ellie( voiced by Queen Latifah) the mammoths have become a couple and are expecting a little one, while Diego(Denis Leary) and Sid(John Leguizamo) are finding their lives are lacking.

Seeing how happy Manny and Ellie are, Diego decides it's time for him to leave because this isn't the life he wants to lead. Sid on the other hand doesn't want to leave, but is finding himself increasingly lonely besides the happy mammoth family. When Sid is insulted by his two best friends, he goes off on his own, determined to prove them wrong and finds himself a parent of 3 unhatched dinosaur eggs.

Where did those eggs come from? You and I might ask, but Sid didn't care-All he knew was he was a 'mama.' When Manny finds out Sid has stolen those eggs, he demands they be taken back to where they were found. Of course Sid doesn't listen and unsuspectingly one morning, those eggs hatch.

Before long, the Real Mama comes looking for her stolen babies and in the process of reclaiming them, takes Sid and his friends on another adventure to an unknown and forgotten world full of new and interesting characters, comic scenes and untold danger.

My Thoughts:

I was quite a fan of Ice Age and Ice Age 2, so when I started seeing previews for a 3rd Ice Age, I was very excited. Yes, that may seem very childish, but what can I say!? I'm a kid at heart ;-)

I can tell you I'm a BIG sucker for a real good animated film, and this movie didn't disappoint! Even though it's a threequal(is that what you would call it? Or maybe triqual?), it followed the second movie wonderfully to wear you wouldn't be lost and it also had a new and fresh plot that set it apart from the other two movies.

This is a great movie to see with your family(especially the little ones)! I would suggest if you haven't seen Ice Age 2: The Meltdown, you should invest some time into watching it before seeing this movie because it's one of those you would be missing out on a lot of insider information if you didn't.

It's a very heartwarming film(like most animated films seem to be) and will have you laughing along throughout the whole 94 minutes. The ending is a whole 'Awwww' moment too. Lol

**This is an opinion solely based on my thoughts and opinions of the movie in question and no one else's. I was not influenced one way or another to write the subject matter in this review, so if you don't like it or don't agree with it, that is your choice and I fully respect it so please extend me the same curtsy**
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