Thursday, June 23, 2016

Fibro and noise -- It's more than just an annoyance

I have a love/hate relationship with summer. Actually, I think I prefer winter. There. I said it. I know my views on this are not popular. And let me specify -- I do not like winter sports, so it's not about the skiing. I don't even like being cold. But I hate being hot. Hate it.

While I love the flowers, the songbirds, and being able to be outside to read and write and drink my coffee, there are two things I simply do not like about summer. I've already mentioned the first one -- the heat. The second one is the noise. Good lord, summer is noisy!

Not only do I prefer quiet, my body craves it. An excess amount of noise actually makes me sick. Even the laughter of my grandchildren, if it gets too loud and goes on for too long, will start causing me pain. Really. There is plenty of research to back this up, but it took years of suffering for me to discover it. I already knew my sensitivity to chemicals could trigger a flare up. But, until recently, I never realized the effect noise had on my condition. 

Summer noise -- multiple lawnmowers going at once, loud music, children playing in their yards, dogs barking (that one is the worst). I wish I could put into words what those things do to me. Thank God for air conditioning. At least I have the option of closing the doors and windows and shutting out some of the sounds.

According to Sarah Borien in her article, Fibromyalgia and Noise Sensitivity, "Noise has a big impact on a lot of fibromyalgia patients. We experience heightened sensitivity to touch, light, smells, temperature and noise. Noise can increase our pain, cause headaches and leave us feeling exhausted."

She continues, "There are some noises that will be painful to your ears, whether you have fibromyalgia or not. That ambulance siren, the pneumatic drill in the pavement, the screaming baby in the waiting room -- anyone who can hear is likely to flinch at these sounds. But fibromyalgia patients are likely to do more than flinch.

Not only is the sound likely to cause us physical pain, but they take their toll on our mental state as well. Our bodies tense at these sharp sounds and we struggle to remain calm or relaxed around heightened noise.

We're also exhausted; fibro fatigue means we're less able to remain strong and deal with these noises rationally. We don't have the physical strength or the mental strength to ignore the sounds like our non-fibro friends might."

Thank you, Sarah, for explaining what my body has known for years. It's not all in my head. There actually is a physiological thing happening here. 

So when I retreat from the noise, or I tense at the barking of a neighbor's dog, or I ask my husband (most likely in a not-so-nice way) to turn down the music, there is a reason... a pretty darned good reason. 

Back to my original point: I have a love/hate relationship with summer. And I've finally come to terms with why I love winter -- it's all about the quiet.

Today, I'm honoring my body by having the windows closed tight and the AC running. No, it's not the most eco-friendly thing I can do. But sometimes, I simply have to pay attention to my body's needs. Right now, it needs an extra dose of silence.

Monday, June 20, 2016

Freshly Picked Moccasins Giveaway!

Okay, I admit it. I'm particularly fond of this giveaway. After all, who can resist these adorable moccasins? I mean... really?!


Sponsored By: Freshly Picked

Hosted By: Love, Mrs. Mommy

Co-Hosted By:

Tales From A Southern Mom

Deliciously Savvy

1 Lucky Winner Will Receive: 

Winner's choice of ANY pair of soft sole moccasins! 

Solid or print - $60 RV!

 Be sure to check out Love, Mrs. Mommy's Freshly Picked review HERE!

Open To US - Must be 18+ to enter 
Giveaway Dates ~ 6/20 9:00 AM EST through 7/4 11:59 PM EST 

Sponsor regulation: The winner cannot have won another giveaway including a pair of Freshly Picked moccasins in the past 60 days.

Good Luck!

Disclosure: Love, Mrs. Mommy and all participating bloggers are not held responsible for sponsors who do not fulfill their prize obligations. Love, Mrs. Mommy received a pair of Freshly Picked moccasins at no cost to facilitate the above-mentioned review. This giveaway is in no way endorsed or sponsored by Facebook or any other social media site. The winner cannot have won another giveaway including a pair of Freshly Picked moccasins in the past 60 days. The winner will be randomly drawn by Giveaway Tools and will be notified by email. The winner has 48 hours to reply before a new winner will be drawn. If you would like to participate in an event like this please contact LoveMrsMommy (at) gmail (dot) com.

Friday, June 17, 2016

Adorable & Completely Customizable Birth Announcements from Basic Invite!

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post.

There isn’t anything more exciting then being a new mom. Having your bundle of joy finally arrive is something you want to tell the world! And what better way than with a birth announcement? Birth announcements are a trendy way to share with your loved ones the birth of your son or daughter. You can find birth announcements online on sites like Basic Invite! The cool thing about all of Basic Invite’s birth announcements? They are all 100% customizable!

Basic Invite is one of the few sites that allow customers almost unlimited color options and instant preview online. Once you select your favorite birth announcement design you can change the color of each element on the card to over 160 different color options. You can make sure the card is exactly how you want it down to the littlest detail, and even add a photo of your brand new baby!

Another way to make your birth announcement stand out to your family and friends is the over 40 different colored envelopes Basic Invite offers. Instead of choosing a white envelope you can adorn your announcement with a dreamy pink or a soft blue! All of Basic Invite’s envelopes are peel and seal, so you can quickly and securely get them closed without having to lick each one. Your family and friends will be so excited to receive such an adorable envelope in the mail, only to find the news of your precious baby inside!

To ensure you’ll love the birth announcement you create, Basic Invite offers custom samples of your actual invitation so you can see how exactly how it will print as well as the paper quality!

Being a new mom is definitely something to brag about. Share the news of your new bundle of joy to all of your family and friends with a customizable birth announcement from Basic Invite! You can also find baby shower invitations, first birthday party invites, graduation announcements and more! Head over to Basic Invite now to get started on creating an announcement your loved ones will cherish forever!  

So how would you like to not only get the cutest baby announcements available, but also get them for 15% off?!

The kind folks at Basic Invite are offering this exclusive discount to the Green Grandma community. Just enter the code 15FF51 at checkout! 

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Reflecting on the tragedy in Orlando -- What would Jesus do?

Image courtesy of George Hodan

It's been hard to shake the feelings of horror that we all felt this past Sunday as we learned the news about Orlando. There are so many whys, countless what ifs. And, of course, so much sadness.

Our pastor started off the service on Sunday praying for everyone affected by this tragedy. There are parents and grandparents, uncles and aunts, cousins, friends, co-workers, neighbors. A multitude of people united by this senseless event. Personally, I didn't know any of the victims in Orlando. But I'm heartbroken nonetheless. I'm heartbroken for those who lost their lives and for those who experienced the horror and lived to tell about it. I can't imagine their nightmares, their monsters-under-the-bed. And I cannot for the life of me fathom the cruelty of those who judge.

Going back to the popular question of not too long ago: What would Jesus do? Judge? Oh no. He covered it all at the cross. And He calls us to be His hands and feet. He calls upon us to spread His Good News. But far too many are spreading hate instead and that, my friends, is perhaps an even greater tragedy. 

My understanding of the Savior paints a picture of compassion and love. What would Jesus do? I believe he'd be there in the midst, embracing and weeping with those around Him. That's the Jesus I know and love. That's the Jesus who gave up His life for you and me and every one of the victims who died at the hands of hate. 

I am brokenhearted. And Jesus is right here beside me, holding me as I weep. 


 I welcome your thoughts below.

First Alert Carbon Monoxide Detector Giveaway!

Several years ago, my husband worked with someone who lost his sister and niece due to carbon monoxide poisoning. She'd parked the van in the garage and somehow forgot to turn it off. Her son was found dead on the couch and she was at the bottom of the basement steps, apparently trying to get out to the garage. It was too late. A carbon monoxide detector could have saved their lives.

Do you have a carbon monoxide detector in your home? If not, perhaps it's time to install one. Carbon monoxide is a silent killer that can be easily detected with a simple, small alarm unit. Carbon Monoxide is an odorless, colorless and tasteless gas that is nearly impossible to identify without a proper detector and it is the single largest cause of accidental poisoning. The CDC reports that over 15,000 people each year are treated in emergency rooms for non-fire related carbon monoxide exposures. First Alert is a leader in the world of home safety and their CO detectors are just what you need for peace of mind and for your families safety.

I'm happy to join some other great bloggers in offering you a chance to win a First Alert Carbon Monoxide DetectorThe giveaway runs through June 30, 2016 and winner will be chosen on July 1 and contacted via email. U.S. only. 18+.

Just enter below. And good luck!

MamatheFox and all participating blogs are not held responsible for sponsors who fail to fulfill their prize obligations.

Saturday, June 11, 2016

SnuggyBaby Cloth Diaper Giveaway!

Cloth diaper shopping can be addictive. All your CDing mamas out there know what I'm talking about. There are so many adorable prints available and your baby just has to have all of them. Right? Of course, that's not practical. But adding a new one to your collection is always fun.

SnuggyBaby makes amazing cloth diapers and baby carriers. They are proudly made in the USA with American materials. Each product is CPSCIA compliant and their carriers are approved by ASTM standards. 

Without a doubt SnuggyBaby is a brand you will fall in love with. Their cloth diapers are 2-in-1's with 2 special features not found in other cloth diapers -- their butt snap (great for newborns and tiny babies) and their super wide insert for extra coverage. 

Read more about these awesome diapers in MamatheFox's full review which can be found by clicking here. 

Now you have a chance to win a $35 gift card to SnuggyBaby so you can pick a cloth diaper (or something else) of your choosing! With all their amazing prints you will have a blast picking out your new diaper! 

MamatheFox and all participating bloggers are not held responsible for sponsors who fail to fulfill their prize obligations.

Friday, June 10, 2016

Let's get this straight: A hybrid is a NOT a GMO

There is this utterly ridiculous meme floating around right now that has me fuming. Actually, I get upset every time a meme flaunts inaccurate information or downright lies. Usually, that happens with the political memes. But this one, created by /u/fleabargain and shared on the site I f***ing love science, paints non-GMO proponents as idiots. And I, for one, take offense at that. Especially since it's untrue.

Photo courtesy of Darren Lewis

The meme states: "Somewhere in the world right now, someone is complaining that GMOs are "unnatural" while eating seedless grapes." How stupid can the writer of this meme be?? GMOs are unnatural -- they're created by combining DNA molecules from different sources, which alters the genes of an organism. This is through bio-engineering. Does that sound natural to you? In most cases, the DNA is not from anything resembling the original organism. This cannot occur naturally.

So how do seedless grapes (and other seedless varieties of fruits) come to be if they're not genetically modified. They are hybrids. A hybrid comes from the cross breeding of similar species and this process has been used for more than 150 years and it happens through cross-pollination.

In the case of seedless fruits, they come from plants that are haven't been fertilized by pollination or have been pollinated, but don't produce mature seeds. It's as simple, and natural, as that.

Hopefully, I've clarified some things for you so you can battle the ignorance of the pro-GMO propaganda, too. 

Rant's over. Have a good day!

Thursday, June 9, 2016

Another life-changing event

What a week. On Saturday, while out shopping at garage sales with my daughter and her 3 children, I received a call from my husband.

"I'm sorry to bother you," he started. 

He sounded awful and my stomach dropped. Oh no, I thought, someone else has died. "What's wrong?" I asked.

"I'm going to the hospital. I'm having a heart attack."

My own heart stopped for a moment when I heard those words. "I'll be right there." I turned and told my daughter, who quickly whisked the kids into the van. We strapped them into their car seats and she headed toward the hospital. "I think I'm going to throw up," I said.

* * *

I grew up in a home where the term 'heart attack' was quite common. My 45-year-old father had his first 2 major heart attacks when I was just 7. Doctors gave him the dire prognosis that he had only 5 years, at most, to live. Life changed in my household. A sage doctor refused to give my 38-year-old mother medicine for her nerves. Rather, she gave her advice: "Go out and get a job. Get your driver's license and do everything you can to provide for your 3 daughters after he's gone." And that's just what my mother did. I was a latchkey kid long before the term was invented.

My dad survived 11 more heart attacks in the following 18 years. He died, presumably of his 14th heart attack on Mother's Day, 1982; one month before I gave birth to a little girl, whose birthday happens to be today. My childhood and teen years were full of ambulances and hospital visits. It was so much the norm for me that, as a young adult living 250 miles from home, I would hear a siren and think Dad was on his way to the hospital again. Like I said, heart attacks were the norm for us.

Perhaps that's why my husband's recent heart attack has me reeling. Yes, thank God, it was a mild one. Just like the one in February 2015. He's home now and going to be fine. But I'm still shaky inside. And I still feel like I'm going to throw up. You see, it's about history for me. His heart attacks awoke the sleeping giant of fear in me. I remember the fear of coming into my childhood home when I saw my dad's car in the driveway when he was supposed to be at work. Would I find him dead on the floor? I laid in bed at night listening for his breathing -- my dad's snoring was a comfort to me. When it stopped, I would lie in bed and debate whether or not to go into his bedroom to check to see if he was alive. Let me tell you -- it was a hell of a way to grow up.

Yesterday, I had to take my daughter for a medical test, so I left Bill home alone. He'll be fine, I thought. When I called him to check in, there was no answer. He's fine. He's probably sleeping. An hour later, I called again. No answer. I checked the home phone messages. There was one from my son-in-law. I realized Bill didn't answer that call either. Panic started rising inside of me. Panic and self-reproach for leaving him alone on the first day out of the hospital. I tried to maneuver detours and traffic, desperately trying to make it home. I called again. And again. And... finally, he said, "Hello." Tears burst forth from decade's-old reserves. He had been outside. He didn't hear the phone.

Even now as I type this, tears are streaming down my cheeks. And as I share this, I just want you to understand that my life changed with that first heart attack of his last year. A second one stirred up the feelings once again. While I used to blog 6 days a week, my posts have been sporadic. I guess priorities changed a bit. But it doesn't mean I don't care about the blog or the Green Grandma community. Sometimes, however, I find I need to care for myself more. Bill's heart attacks knocked a bit of life out of me. After all, heart attacks don't just happen to one spouse. They happen to both.

Sharing a bit of my story,

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Outdoor child's swing GIVEAWAY!

Eastern Jungle Gym High Back Full Bucket Swing Giveaway! ($89 RV)

Sponsored By: Eastern Jungle Gym

Hosted By: Love, Mrs. Mommy

Co-Hosted By:

1 Lucky Winner Will Receive An:

Eastern Jungle Gym High Back Full Bucket Swing ($89 RV)

The High Back Full Bucket Swing is constructed of durable materials and designed with your child's safety in mind. A unique, high backrest for extra support sets this swing apart. It is fully enclosed and it features plasticol-covered steel chains -- much stronger than rope -- to protect fingers.

Be sure to check out Love, Mrs. Mommy's 
Eastern Jungle Gym review HERE!

Open to US -- Must be 18+ to enter
Giveaway Dates 6/8 12:00 AM EST through 6/22 11:59 PM EST

Good Luck!


Disclosure: Love, Mrs. Mommy and all participating bloggers are not held responsible for sponsors who do not fulfill their prize obligations. Love, Mrs. Mommy received a swing set at no cost to facilitate the above-mentioned review. This giveaway is in no way endorsed or sponsored by Facebook or any other social media site. The winner will be randomly drawn by Giveaway Tools and will be notified by email. The winner has 48 hours to reply before a new winner will be drawn. If you would like to participate in an even like this, please contact LoveMrsMommy (at) gmail (dot) com.

Saturday, June 4, 2016

Burps & Boogies Giveaway!

Win $25 to Burps and Boogies! 

Baby Photo Props & Outfits Giveaway!

Sponsored By: Burps and Boogies

Hosted By: Love, Mrs. Mommy

Burps and Boogies has the most adorable baby photo props and outfits! They are the perfect go-to source for anything and everything you would want for birth announcement pictures and more! Don't forget about baby shower gifts! Make sure you're the hit of the party with a Burps and Boogies outfit!

1 Lucky Winner will receive:
$25 to spend at Burps and Boogies!

Open To US - Must be 18+ to enter
Giveaway Dates ~ 6/4 12:00 AM EST through 6/25 11:59 PM EST 
Good Luck!

Disclosure: Love, Mrs. Mommy and all participating bloggers are not held responsible for sponsors who do not fulfill their prize obligations. Love, Mrs. Mommy received nominal monetary compensation to host this giveaway. This giveaway is in no way endorsed or sponsored by Facebook or any other social media site. The winner will be randomly drawn by Giveaway Tools and will be notified by email. The winner has 48 hours to reply before a new winner will be drawn. If you would like to participate in an event like this please contact LoveMrsMommy (at) gmail (dot) com.

Friday, June 3, 2016

Vinegar Fridays -- Toenail fungus, anyone?


For those of you who haven't been around for long, the above acronym means Thank God it's Vinegar Friday! Vinegar Fridays used to be a regular feature here on Green Grandma. After the book, however, I slowed it down to the first Friday of every month. 

If you're not familiar with the book, I thought I'd share some of it with you in hopes, of course, that your interest will be piqued enough to buy it. Right now, it's only $6.99 on Amazon, which, quite honestly, is a steal!

Fully indexed, the book is divided into chapters, such as Coffee, Tea or Vinegar?; The F-word; No More Tangles ... and No More Tears; Snuggle-free and Loving It; and more! There are even some recipes thrown in.

In Chapter 2, The Whys of Vinegar, I explain the dangers of using some common household chemicals like

  • ammonia
  • bleach
  • formaldehyde (yeah, it's hiding in disinfectants, furniture polishes, detergents, and more!)
  • glycols
  • lye
  • naphthalene
  • petroleum distillates

Those are just some of the reasons it's advisable to ditch the cleansers and switch to vinegar, especially if you have children, pets, or folks with chemical sensitivities in your home.

Concerned about getting things really clean and sanitary without the use of bleach? Don't be. Distilled white vinegar can do the job. My husband and daughter even cleaned my mother's basement with vinegar following a flood that filled it up with 4 feet of dirty water. Years later, no sign of mold whatsoever!

Have you ever heard of anyone getting a rash or skin infection after being in a hot tub? Well, guess what. Vinegar could have prevented that. I discuss the problem of hot tub rash and other problems in Chapter 5, What is that Lurking Under all those Bubbles? What is it indeed? How about fungi, staph bacteria, and ... yuck ... fecal bacteria. Thank God for vinegar!

Someone recently asked me if vinegar could cure toenail fungus. "Of course, it can!" I told her, although I did caution her that not every remedy works for everyone. In Chapter 8, Beauty is in the Eye of the Beholder ... Or in that Bottle of Vinegar, I offer the solution: "If toenail fungus is an issue for you, try this:

Soak your feet for about 15 minutes every day in a solution of 1 part distilled white vinegar to 2 parts water. According to the Vinegar Institute, this is a slow, but effective process."

I hope it helps her. This chapter also includes the recipe for Martha Washington's facial mask -- the one that caused her skin to glow and supposedly was responsible for the president's initial attraction to her.

There's so much more in the book and, naturally, I'd love for you to add it to your library. If you already have the book, I hope you're enjoying it and benefiting from the advice and tips. I'd be ever grateful if you'd post a short review on Amazon, by the way. 

Click here to buy the book and then, if you don't mind, let me know in the comments below that you did so. Thanks so much! The GG community is the best!

Thursday, June 2, 2016

Need a gift? Earth Mama Angel Baby to the rescue!

Disclosure: This post includes affiliate links.

 Who knows someone who's having a baby? Most of us, right? Do you ever struggle with finding the perfect gift? Well, struggle no more! One of my all time favorite companies has the answer. And, by the way, the reason they're my favorite isn't just because they have organic, non-GMO, safe, and effective products for babies and their mamas. Nope, that's not the only reason, although it's a good one! The other reason is because their staff is simply the best. They care about their customers unlike any other company I know. And that says something.

But back to the baby gift.

Just found out a friend, relative, or associate is pregnant? How about a bundle of goodness for mama as she wades, or waddles, through her pregnancy and beyond?

Or how about a gift for the nursing mama?

And, sadly, sometimes a baby gift or new mama gift isn't at all appropriate. What do you get for someone who is experiencing the unimaginable loss of their precious little one? Well, of course, the mamas at Earth Mama Angel Baby have that covered as well.

Earth Mama Angel Baby Healing Hearts Comfort Kit

There are smaller bundles or you purchase individual products for whatever the needs may be. I'll just assure you, you cannot go wrong with any of the products from Earth Mama Angel Baby. Like I said, they're one of my favorites!

Happy shopping!

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Doing our part to save the bees!

As you know by now, I'm a huge fan of bees. Of course, I'm not allergic to them (at least, as far as I know), so I don't have the same concern that some of you have. Allergies or not, the fact is we need bees.Without these pollinators, we're doomed, although I strongly suspect Monsanto already has developed artificial pollinators so they can save the day after all the big bee-killing corporations have killed all of our bees with their chemicals and GMOs. But that's a side issue.

Yesterday, someone from Penn Environment knocked on our door. It was not a good time for me to talk, but the individual asked for me by name, so my husband called me out of my office. Of course, the young man wanted a donation or at least a commitment to become a monthly donor. He told me all about the demise of bees -- "Millions of bees are dying each year, in the U.S. and around the world, with alarming consequences for our environment and our food supply." Yes, yes, I know. He continued, "We rely on bees to pollinate 71 of the 100 crops that provide 90 percent of the world's food, like chocolate and coffee." He was really trying to pull on my heart/purse strings with that one. "The bottom line: No bees, no food."

I told him I know all about this and that I actually write about it and try to inform others about the problems with neonicotinoids -- which, by the way, I mentioned, but he did not. Was it possible I knew more about the problem than he did? I let him know about the bee-saving campaign we successfully waged against Home Depot and Lowe's regarding the use of neonics in their plants -- he was clueless. He did, however, tell me about the push by Bayer, Dow Chemical, and Syngenta for even more chemicals that would have disastrous results. These huge corporations are using their power, money, and clout to try to stop the bans we're pushing for against the neonics and other chemicals. He handed me a flyer and here is part of what it says:

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has committed to phasing out these pesticides on the public lands they manage. Seattle, Minnesota and Oregon have all agreed to take some form of action against neonics. Some companies are taking action as well. 

In order to restore bee colonies to health, we need the Environmental Protection Agency to step up and take the lead. We're in the midst of an unsustainable die-off in bee populations, but right now we're letting big agrichemical companies use more of the chemicals that are known to kill bees. That has to change. Now.

So, what can you do? I encourage you to do your part in educating those around you to the dangers of neonics. Ask your local gardening shops if they use them in their plants and if they don't know what you're talking about, assume that they do and don't buy from them. We need to be proactive.

The other thing you can do is offer financial support to organizations like Penn Environment. Visit them on the website ( or send a check to 1831 Murray Ave. Ste. 219, Pittsburgh, PA 15217. And do me a favor -- tell them Victor Dryer sent you. He's the young man I spoke with yesterday and he's working hard to raise both awareness and money to help save the bees. And, if you wouldn't mind, mention Green Grandma. I don't get anything out of that; I'd just like them to know I'm doing my part, too. 

Together, we can save the bees!

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