Thursday, March 31, 2011

Too Sexy

I don't want this blog to be a place filled with rants and complaints, but this one seems too relevant not to mention. Am I the only parent out there who is alarmed by the number of racy/suggestive/inappropriate commercials on television? My son might be too young for TV (although he does enjoy watching a good basketball game) but I'm already looking ahead to a few years from now.

Why does Carl's Jr. find it necessary to use a beauty queen in a bikini to sell a turkey burger? Why does Jack in the Box use a character that says "call the doctor, it's been more than four hours"? Why does Twix try to sell a candy bar by featuring a man cheating on his wife, and eating Twix to avoid being caught?

These are products that don't have anything to do with sex appeal, yet companies are sending the message that they do. It's like saying "if you want a girlfriend who looks like this, you'll buy our burger" or "if you want a beautiful wife, and you want to get away with cheating on her, you'll buy this candy bar". I already think kids are concerned with beauty and sexiness at too young an age; with these types of messages on TV, how could they not be?

Sure, we should closely monitor the programs that our children watch. But I've seen these commercials during "family friendly" shows, like Wipeout and American Idol. I don't think a family should have to watch women strutting in lingerie during a commercial break for a singing competition show. We should feel comfortable sitting down together to watch TV, without a trigger finger ready on the remote.

 Sometimes I see an advertisement that makes me want to call and cancel our cable subscription. I'm sure I could live without Jeopardy! and Chopped. On the other hand, I wonder if ads like these are inevitable, and if  it wouldn't be better to do less censoring and more explaining. Thinking about how to handle this can be a little overwhelming, which is why I'm glad we've got a couple of years before we have to make a decision.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011


In the last two weeks I've won:
- a personalized wipe case
- $75 worth of jewelry to the super cute website Belleza Mia
- a bottle of Purex with Zout
-A bottle of Smelly Washer washing machine cleaner
- a bottle of Purex Crystals fabric softener
- $50 to Retro Planet

Let me begin by saying that I am NOT a lucky person. However, I've recently discovered a large network of what I like to refer to as Mom Blogs. There are dozens of mom bloggers out there whose goal it is to make life just a little easier for the rest of us. They blog about exactly which coupons to pair with which sales at which stores to maximize savings. They blog about where to get free samples. They blog about what they're doing to save their families the most money.

Many of these bloggers review products, and then host giveaways for their followers. The giveaways range from granola bars to handmade hair bows to facial moisturizer to children's music CDs. A few weeks ago I spent several hours entering all the giveaways I could find for products I'd actually use. One by one those giveaways are ending, and I'm actually winning some of them!

The best part is, the majority of the giveaways are super easy to enter. And no, you don't have to scour the web to find these great prizes; many bloggers compile lists for you. My personal favorite site for that is Money Saving Mom. Good luck!

Monday, March 28, 2011

What I Know So Far

I may be only 24 years old, and I may be new to this whole motherhood thing (if we don't count "raising" my husband), but I've already got a couple of things figured out.

First of all, I know that our expenses and bills always seem greater than our income (from what I gather, this seems to be a common problem). Because of this, I've developed something of an obsession with saving money via coupons, free samples, giveaways, and sales. As I get better at all of those things, I hope to share my progress right here.

Second, I've learned that all of those cliches about parenthood are true. I never knew I could love someone this much, it's the best thing that's ever happened to me, I can't imagine life without him, etc. In the five short months that I've been a parent, I've come to see the world in a different way. I see the way I want the world to be, the world I want to raise my son, and my future children, in. Being a mom has made me realize that there are certain lessons I want my children to learn.

For instance, I want to teach them that life is as great as you want it to be, and you can choose to be happy with what you're given. I want my kids to know that, even though we'll probably never have a lot of money (I'm still holding out for that lottery thing), we can still have fun. I want them to learn what it means to give of yourself. I want to teach them to love Jesus, and to be that love to others.

So the things I know take up about three paragraphs. The things I don't know will, presumably, fill this blog for years to come. I have so much learning to do. My goal is to use this space to share what I learn, and to glean knowledge from anyone that offers it.