MLM Schemes…

August 11, 2015

If you’ve perused my blog, you’ve probably seen my previous post on my efforts to find a way to generate some income while being a stay-at-home mom. I’m still dutifully working towards that goal and have found a few ways that seem legitimate if I can manage to put the time/effort in while taking care of a new baby. Unfortunately, something that I’ve noticed is that there seems to be this trend towards taking advantage of a mother’s desire to stay home by making moms feel “empowered” through “women-focused” business models and scams. I think that most moms can spot common scams pretty quickly (envelope stuffing, etc.), but these multi level marketing schemes seem to really sneak through the filters of even the most educated and well-rounded women. With their promises of abundant income, “fun” work, and awesome bonuses (i.e. vacations, cars), MLM schemes seem to be taking over mom’s groups and the social media pages of mothers everywhere.

What’s so bad about MLM businesses? Well, as a person who has never become an “independent distributor” myself, I have to preface this by saying that my opinions are based solely on observations of friends and family over the years, and not of any personal loss due to a MLM. With that said, I have know many people who have joined one of these “teams” to sell things such as Pampered Chef, Scentsy, Cutco Cutlery, some fancy vacuum of one sort or another, Arbonne, etc. and I have known exactly ZERO people who have managed to make and sustain a legitimate revenue flow from any of these “businesses.” I have however, seen them all go through the same process. First, they discover this amazing opportunity to change their lives. They are convinced that they will sell these amazing products and be business owners which will allow them the freedom that they desire and that they will be able to quit their jobs, etc., etc. They then dive head first into the business. They make a monetary investment. They watch inspirational videos. They post endless marketing ads on their social media sites, on their cars, on their lunchboxes, and anywhere else that they can find. Next they start telling all of their friends and family about how they’ve been invited into this exclusive club and push for them to try to product, book a party, and join the club as well (because those of us who refuse are just stupid…right?). It is at this stage that they are so obsessed with their new venture that they fail to see how annoying they are becoming and they ignore all the time/money that they are investing because they are so convinced that it’ll be worth it in the end. Parties are booked, product is sold, teams are formed, and MAYBE a slight profit is made. Fast forward a few months and you’ll find someone who has run out of friends/family to sell to, who has realized that they are spending more than they are making, and who is desperately trying to keep up the charade because they are convinced that it must be THEM that is failing, not the business model itself. Shortly thereafter and very quietly the once excited and motivated “business owner” quietly lets go of the dream and stops even trying. The end.

Why then do these things continue to plague our communities? Why am I invited on a regular basis to yet another “party.” Why am I constantly bombarded by a new friend/family member wanting me to join their team? It’s simple really. We all want the dream. We all want to do something fun for a living that provides us with unlimited income and freedom. Unfortunately, these MLM schemes are playing on our hopes and dreams to sell us the improbable. Is there the occasional person who truly makes money with one of these things? Probably. I’ve heard of many, but met none. So for now I’ll continue to believe that in order to truly make money from home, I’ll need to work hard and avoid scams and schemes that promise the too-good-too-be-true scenario.

I’d love to hear your opinions on this. Have you been part of a MLM?

 


Raising Future A-holes.

August 4, 2015

http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/local/wp/2015/08/03/aclu-files-suit-against-sheriff-who-allegedly-handcuffed-disabled-children-at-school/

This morning I came across this article about an officer who handcuffed a “disabled” child and of course the uproar that is following. First I’d like to point out that this happened months ago. Why are we just now hearing about it? Must be a slow news day for those who are easily offended…

Basically, if I understand it correctly what happened here was that the officer was called to respond to a child who was out of control. When the child began trying to assault the officer, the officer decided to put him in handcuffs and required him to calm down and ask nicely before they could be removed. Sounds logical right? I mean, if an adult hit an officer he wouldn’t have the option of just asking nicely for the cuffs to be removed. In fact, if a “normal” child had acted in an aggressive manner, we might not be having this discussion at all. So, why is this a big deal? Well, this child is “disabled.” Having been diagnosed with PTSD and ADHD, he is considered disabled and so it seems that the officer should have just allowed the child to hit him and continue with his out of control behavior. I mean, we all know that labeling someone with a mental condition excuses them from the consequences of their actions. Right? Right? This system of labeling people as disabled the very moment that it is realized that they aren’t 100% by-the-book “normal” is part of the problem in our country right now. Here we have a child who was acting in an out-of-control manner at school. Because he is “disabled” should he be excused from that behavior and the consequences that follow? Ok, fine. Let him run around like a little jerk and learn that all he has to do to shut people up is remind them of his “disability.” That ought to lead to a well adjusted adult. Sure! While you’re at it, don’t forget to teach him that if for any reason, ANYTHING doesn’t go his way in life, to find someone to blame and to claim that he is being discriminated against. That’ll really round him out as productive human being.

Has everyone forgotten that this generation is not our first go-around? I mean, society has been here for quite awhile. People have been abnormal since people have existed. I can guarantee that there has never been, nor will there ever be a society where each and every member is 100% equal and well-adjusted in the same way. And what have these people had to do in the past? Well, at one point those who acted out-of-sorts were thrown into state hospitals to live out their days. I don’t think THAT is necessary. And, I must point out here that the kid in this article (and the one’s that I’m directly referring to) are not suffering from severe intellectual disabilities. That is an ACTUAL DISABILITY. The people that I’m referring to have CONDITIONS that they can work with. I’m not saying that it’s fair, easy, or fun to have PTSD, ADHD, Bipolar, or any other mental condition, but they are just that. Conditions! A person can learn to control their actions and suffer consequences with these conditions in the same way that someone without it can. And THAT my friends, is what we did until recently. We spent a little extra time helping these kids to adjust so that they could live in and understand our society WITH their disorder. Why are we suddenly taking the back seat and just excusing them from the effort that it takes to function as part of a community?

I also would like to point out that people are up in arms about this officer cuffing this child, but the video was taken by a school official who is not heard protesting the officers actions at all. Maybe it is because the child needed to be restrained at that moment. Maybe we need to stop hearing a tiny piece of the story and then freaking out before knowing all of the facts. Maybe we need to stop assuming that everyone is out to get someone. Sometimes we are just humans who are dealing with situations in the best way that we know how. Sometimes there isn’t an ulterior motive or bias playing a part. It just is what it is. Let’s try to see it that way.


This is News?

July 25, 2015

Anyone who knows me well, knows that I go through periods of time where I refuse to watch programs about or even discuss current events. Usually my boycott is based upon the infinite amount of negativity plaguing our media. I mean, 12 stories about murder, rape, robbery, war, and hate with one “inspirational” story thrown in about some poor single mom with 4 children to 3 different men who managed to graduate from a 9 month “college” program for medical billing all while on the taxpayer’s dime just doesn’t do it for me. However, when I do go on a “news hiatus” I find that I feel disconnected somehow. So, I go running back and always wind up in the same news slump as before.

This time however, the news has changed. Oh, yes ladies and gentlemen, there has been a definite shift in our media programming this time around. Sure, we still have our murder, rape, child molestation stories. Unfortunately those aren’t going anywhere anytime soon…ratings people! But now…now we’ve got the mass of media covering total smut about how OFFENDED people are and how our country just isn’t giving enough free stuff to those with a strong sense of entitlement. (Can you here the whine in my voice?) Pa…leeeeeeese! I am so over it! It’s almost time for another vacation from the “real” world of mainstream media.

What really bothers me is that new things are not being reported on. That flag that is suddenly so offensive has been there for decades! Minimum wage was never meant to provide you with the type of lifestyle that a college graduate or CEO has! And you’re right. Some people ARE racist. So. Freaking. What!

What we need is to turn back time a little bit. We need to back up to a period when the majority of people understood that the world did not revolve directly around them. A time where society was made up of people with a backbone, some common sense, and a work ethic that made them turn their noses up at handouts. A time where we could all be free to say what was on our minds and display our beliefs without issue. A time that was frankly, less annoying.


Becoming a Stay-At-Home Mom

July 25, 2015

For the readers who don’t already know, I am anxiously awaiting the arrival of my first baby. Woot Woot!! My husband and I couldn’t be more thrilled about this addition to our family (and what really feels like the START of our family), but of course we have many concerns. One of which, probably the biggest, is finances. With my pregnancy I have been on physician-ordered bed rest for several months now. During that time I had to use the FMLA program through my work in order to protect my position and insurance. That lasted for 12 weeks and once it was exhausted I started to use the un-paid Short Term Disability program (which basically only offers benefit protection, but not job protection). Because I was pregnant, although not yet on bed rest, before my one year mark in that position, the Long Term Disability program has denied me due to a “pre-existing condition.” What does all this mean? Well, as it was explained to me by hospital administrators, the exact moment that the baby is born my “disability” will cease to exist and so at that very moment my job and my insurance will be terminated (unless I can somehow return to work the very next day). Well, THAT’S not going to happen.

So now what do I do? I always wanted to be a SAHM, so I am trying desperately to turn this “situation” into an “opportunity,” but I’m finding it difficult to find legitimate ways to earn an income while being at home with my little one. I am a very motivated person and have never turned up my nose at a challenge, but I also need to be realistic. As I peruse job sites for remote or telecommute options I find many things that require an open phone line (basically taking phone calls at home) and I’m just guessing that with a baby in the house, that would prove to be a poor fit. Outside of those options what I find just seems to be scammy and salesy. I want something legitimate. I don’t want to sell my friends and family some kind of diet pill, or depend on crafting skills and blogging to try to push items through Etsy (although I’ll point out that I do have an Etsy shop and plan to get back to selling some of my home-made creations). I just cannot believe that during a time when so many companies need to save money and technology allows us to do just about anything from the comfort of our laptop, that it is so difficult to find a position. I’ll point out that I have an administrative degree with years of experience in administration, billing, customer service, and accounting. I then went on to gain my Real Estate License and then work my way through nursing school where I earned my RN. I am qualified for lots of things! I just don’t wish to drive to an office and leave my baby in daycare to do them!

So, readers. Do you have any suggestions? I would really love to hear from someone who actively works from home, earns a living, and finds what they do to be (at least in some part) enjoyable. Am I just being un-realistic?


Down the Rabbit Hole by Holly Madison

July 24, 2015

Hello readers (all 2 or 3 of you)! Sorry for my hiatus. It seems that my love for writing has been long interrupted by things like getting married, graduating from nursing school, and making a baby!🙂 I fully intend to come back with a vengeance though, and I have lots to say!

I figured a book review would be a great way to get started again. Especially since this one is fresh in my mind! In fact, I just finished it a few days ago and it only took me about two days to get through. I love when a book is that good! Down the Rabbit Hole by Holly Madison chronicles Holly’s life as “Girlfriend #1” to Playboy Editor-in-Chief Hugh Hefner. This was an easy pick for me considering that I’ve written about Hef in the past (Why I’m in Love with Hugh Hefner), and have also read Bunny Tales, Kiss and Tell, and Sliding Into Home. I don’t know what it is (or should I say WAS), but I have had a long-time fascination with Hef and the mansion.

This book was a real eye-opener for me! I feel like my Hef obsession started at such a young age that I never stopped to consider WHY someone would have multiple girlfriends, and why those beautiful women would bow to him in the way that they did/do. I, like so many others assumed that it was because he was so charming and lovable and that his lifestyle was such that no person who was privileged enough to enter ever wanted to leave. As an adult I should have realized that something was wrong with that picture. As much as we all want to believe it, nobody’s life is without problems, and the more fantastic it seems the more likely that those problems are big ones! Holly’s honesty throughout the book gives a great look into what life really looks like for Hef’s “friends” and concubines and without the dusting of glitter that many in the past have tried to give it. In the end I walked away from this book with a much more honest view of what goes on behind mansion walls. I no longer see it as the fantasy I’ll never be lucky enough to experience. I’ve realized that save for the on-site Zoo and seemingly infinite sunshine and warmth of that region, I have nothing to be jealous of. In fact, I’m even more appreciative of my normal (and quite boring) life.

I have to say, I was apprehensive about purchasing and reading this book after reading Sliding Into Home. Nothing bothers me more than someone being given a book deal who can’t write (not that I profess to be author of the year). Isn’t that what we have ghost writers for? Anyway, that one was a struggle to finish and I worried that Down the Rabbit Hole might leave me with the same remorse. I mean, it’s easy to believe that a woman whose worth seemed to come purely from her beauty and ability to satisfy America’s most loved geriatric wouldn’t (or couldn’t) be highly intelligent. Fortunately, I was pleasantly surprised! Holly is well-spoken with a lovely flow that keeps you wanting more!

Readers: Have you read it yet? What do you think?


Why I’m in Love with Hugh Hefner

January 31, 2014

I often get very strange looks from friends when I confess my undying love for the original Playboy himself, Mr. Hugh Hefner. What I can’t understand is why more ladies aren’t in love with him. He has it all. Sure, it’s all wrapped up in a wrinkly little package all smothered in baby oil (according to Bunny Tales), but who cares! He’s Hugh Hefner! He is amazing!

First, he just oozes power. He is self-made, extremely successful and has been wildly influential on our society. I like that.🙂

Second, he loves animals. I could never be with a man who didn’t love animals (and I don’t just mean for dinner or gross donkey shows). Men should REALLY love animals. Seeing Hef all snuggled up with a puppy is a huge turn-on! I want some cuddle time in there too!

Thirdly, he has the life I dream of. He lives in a warm climate where sunshine fills his beautiful landscapes daily, he is surrounded by beautiful women (I like to look at beautiful people too), he travels , and most of all (despite his image) he spends more time at home playing board games than out in the clubs acting foolish. Why wouldn’t I want that life?!?!

Realistically, I’m very happy with my life. I love my fiancé and can’t wait to get married. I love my pets, my home, my family, and am excited to begin my career. But, when I daydream about a life in a faraway land…I’m always at the mansion with Hef, wrapped up in soft pajamas and playing a leisurely round of dominos with him and some beautiful girls.


I Passed!

January 31, 2014

I couldn’t wait to say those words! I passed! The NCLEX was horrible! I always heard mixed reviews about it. Some said it wasn’t bad, others told me it was the worst thing possible. Unfortunately, the latter was right. It was terrible! Honestly, I can’t believe I got through it. I mean, I knew I would physically finish taking the exam, but I was certain that I had failed. It shut off after 75 questions and I figured, “well, I’ve finally failed an exam.” It was like nothing I had ever taken before and certainly not what I had prepared for. I can’t even give any good advice about it. Partly because I’m bound by law not to talk about the questions, but also because I think you either know the information or you don’t. Studying will always make you more knowledgeable, but there’s no way that someone could study specifically for the NCLEX. It’s just not possible. In fact, I’m a little annoyed that I stressed so badly in the days leading up to the test. I should have just relaxed a little and laid off of the practice questions. It just made me anxious, and didn’t help at all.

I will say, that as far as the “Pearsonvue Trick” goes….it worked for me. I tried to re-register after and got the “good” pop-up. 48 hours later I found out that I had passed. I guess it’s pretty accurate.

Anyway, I’m just glad it’s over. I’m satisfied that I did well, completed my nursing program, and can now move on with my life. I haven’t felt this peaceful in over 2 years!

YIPEE!!!!


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