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Friday, October 12, 2012

The Day of the Gum Ball

A long, long, loooong time ago my mother and her best friend took four of their children to watch a Disney movie. I was one of those children. I don't remember which Disney movie we watched, but I remember part of the day vividly.

It was beautiful. The sun was shining. And I was happy. 

We had been walking down the street after Bonnie's mom, Theresa (you now know where I got my name), and my mom had stopped at a gum ball machine. What a treat! We NEVER got gum balls! This day truly was magical! All four of us plopped the gum into our mouths and continued on.

And then one of those defining moments occurred – you know, the ones Dr. Phil talks about? – "defining moments" that impact you so profoundly, they stay in your long-term memory forever and affect everything you do from that point on? From the "Day of the Gum Ball" moment on, I would question EVERYTHING, because that moment shaped the rest of my life. And it took place right there on that Chicago street when I was only five years old.

Seconds after we had put the gum into our mouths, Bonnie pulled from her mouth a perfectly shaped miniature toy dog. I was amazed – and perplexed.

"How did you do that?" I asked Bonnie, who was a year younger than I.

"I don't know. It just happened."

She must have used her teeth, I reasoned, so I used my teeth and tried to carve a little dog toy. I pulled the gum from my mouth and hoped to marvel at my creation.

Sadly it was just a glob of gum. 

But I didn't give up. Over and over and over and over again, block after block after block, I tried to sculpt a toy dog with my gum, biting around what I hoped would be its head and rolling between my tongue what should have looked like a tail.

Every few steps, I pulled the gum from my mouth, hoping to marvel at my own exquisite creation. Finally, after being scolded, "KEEP THAT GUM IN YOUR MOUTH!" I had to accept the sad truth – Bonnie was extraordinarily talented, and the only thing I could use my teeth for was chewing.

Later (I don't remember how many years passed), my "aha" moment arrived when I noticed tiny little toys in a gum ball machine. Wasted hours spent trying to create a gummy masterpiece – wasted hours wishing I could be as creative as my 4-year-old friend, Bonnie, because there it sat, taunting me from the inside of a gum ball machine – a perfectly shaped miniature toy dog!

To this day, when I see the wheels in a child's head spinning, I know that child is asking, "How did you do that?" as the child tries to reason how things work in this world – all thanks to "The Day of the Gum Ball." 

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Video Chat with a Celebrity!

Thirty years ago, if a fan wanted to reach a celebrity, she had to write a letter. Fifteen years ago, fans could reach their idols through email. Today fans can reach celebrities through video!

How? By signing up with Celebstir! Celebstir is a new social networking site that gives its members the opportunity to interact with celebrities through live video chats, but it also gives members a chance to become celebrities themselves. According to the Celebstir site, "Celebstir is a website that gives its members a platform for promoting themselves." 

Make professional connections with rising talent by joining Celebstir, where you can follow celebrities, contact celebrities, or even become a celebrity yourself and interact with your peers. Are you a musician, an athlete, an actor, or an artist? By showcasing your talents and abilities, you gain not only exposure, but also the ability to influence others. Why not give Celebstir an opportunity to promote YOU! 

Join Celebstir now if you want to interact with Olympic Gold medalist, Conor Dwyer, on October 10, 2012. If you miss that date, you'll have other opportunities to interact with celebrities from a variety of genres – with your own web cam – whether you're a fan of sports, screen, stage, music, or art. 

Want to keep up with Celebstir? Like them on FaceBook!

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

How I Cut a Cold Down to 3 Days!

As an asthmatic, I am particularly sensitive to colds. Once they run from my head to my chest, I'm in trouble. When I discovered a method that helped prevent my colds from becoming asthma attacks, I wanted to share that information with other asthmatics, so I wrote an exhaustive article that explained How to Prevent Colds from Becoming Asthma Attacks (click the link to read).

Recently, however, when I came down with yet another cold, rather than bring out my usual arsenal of weaponry (as discussed in the article), I decided to experiment. And the experiment worked!

In the article linked above I list two items that I used only occasionally to help prevent my colds from worsening. This time I wondered how using only those two items might work.

Every morning and every night, when I discovered I had a cold, I used the Neti Pot and took a Mucinex tablet. I find the Neti Pot disgusting to use, by the way, but by following this method, my cold, which generally lasts a week to ten days and often attacks my lungs, disappeared by the third day – and it never made its way into my lungs! Had I found the cure for the common cold?

(This ad shows what a Neti Pot looks like):

Of course not, but I did discover a way to lessen the number of days I suffered from a cold. And I successfully prevented the cold from damaging my lungs. Maybe it will help you too.

Use of the Neti Pot requires you to mix lukewarm water with a saline solution and fill the pot to a certain point (Neti Pot instructions will clarify). You must clear your nose before using it, then tilt your head over the sink while you gently pour the mixture into one of your nostrils. Switch nostrils. You might have to interrupt the procedure to clear your nose. At least three times, I had to set the pot down and grab some tissues, but by the third day, my cold was gone. I continued to use the Neti Pot for an additional three days though (just in case the cold returned). 

(Mucinex is for adults and children): 

Yes, I rested, and I drank plenty of fluids. But I was determined to follow this practice, reasoning that by clearing the nose of germs, I was creating an inhospitable environment for germ reproduction. Perhaps I was right in my thinking, because after only 3 days, I was cold-free.

The Neti Pot, combined with Mucinex, cut my cold down to only 3 days. Try it and see if it works for you.

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