Friday, January 16, 2009

Winds of change to come?

Being a freelance copywriter is very often feast or famine. I go through certain points of the year where I have a tangible lull, and then have seasons of crazy busy time. Over the years, I've learned how to hold one finger in the air to test the winds. I usually know what's coming. For instance, grant writing and research tends to pick up in the spring. So does direct mail marketing letters, as anyone with an overstuffed mailbox knows. And companies seem to want their business plans authored by October 1.
But I didn't see this coming.
An onslaught of requests for resumes and cover letters has hit my inbox. Like, fifteen this week alone. And these are very educated folks with a long pedigree and they're OUT OF WORK. These are frightening times. Folks aren't just trying to get a better job or move up the proverbial corporate ladder; they are trying to feed families and avoid foreclosure. They have been victims of the cutbacks of late, laid off or just plain fired. (I axed all my fees for the unemployed. There is no way in good conscience I can take money from someone who needs a job.)
It amazes me how many people are one accident or illness away from poverty. I just got my hospital bill from my three-day visit in December: $20,437. How do people without insurance cope? Pay for medicine? Do they sit and have to choose between eating or taking the prescriptions necessary to keep them alive?
Perhaps with this change in our government's administration we can look forward to a windfall instead of a downturn. We need relief on all fronts.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Fave store contest: Milagros

I would have to say that I LOVE Milagros! I call their products my "lotions and potions," and it is truly my addiction. I love the smell and feel of this store. It's open, warm, and inviting which tempts your senses with a divinity to create the perfect scent, or attracts you to the perfect one that has been concocted prior to your arrival. The soaps with a purpose really do their job as described and I adore that you can take any scent and create a layering with the body wash, lotion, and spray. I give gifts of Milagros treasures all the time, and I haven't had anyone not come back for more!

Jennifer Steele
Spinderella's Steals

Fave store contest: Designer Consigner

Mary Reed:

My most favorite local shop in the area of St. Petersburg, fl. is the Designer
Cosigner. The women there are so friendly and personal whenever I go there to shop
for a special outfit or for clothing for work or a job interview or any other type
of shopping buy. I can also be ready to get personal and impressionable help from
the ladies there.
The owner of the shop, Julia, makes me feel very special because I
do shop there a lot because I can always find a bargain and never go over my budget
when I go there to shop.I can talk about my personal happenings in my life and the
friendly ladies there will help me think of a solution or just give me
inspiration.They are an excellent group of women who are eclectic and stylish in
their own way.I hope that their shop is around for a very long time to come in the
future. They let me know when there are special sales as well as when they get in a
special item they think I might like.
Totally great ladies!!!!

Fave store contest: Halle's


Halle's-Trinitry Town Center-Beautiful store,everything to decorate your home year
round or for the holidays. The Cobbled Path ,Race track road.another beautiful

Fave store contest: Cherie's Eklectica

Linnea Barone's entry

I believe one of the best, intriguing gift shops around the Tampa Bay area
is CHERIE's EKLECTIKA, located on Beach Drive. This gift shop sells various
items that you do not find in your ordinary gift shop. I was able to pick up
some Christmas gifts that were great and out of the ordinary. You can spend
hours looking around and reading all the great cards they have. Also i
cannot forget that the staff is great and makes you feel very comfortable!


Sunday, January 11, 2009

Open call: Good ideas for Valentine's Day, anyone?

So I walk into CVS the other morning to get a few toiletries. It was 6 a.m.; the only crazy person out shopping was me. An occupational hazard of being a night crawler.
As I made my way to the register, I happened to walk through the 75 percent off Christmas aisle. Kind of maudlin, really, the way the leftover holiday bits of this and that sat unbought and unwanted, shoved into a corner of the aisle. And right next to that, a garish pink and red display for Valentine's Day. Big stuffed animals holding cards and heart-shaped boxes of chocolates and the like. I found the juxtaposition of these two polar opposite holidays interesting. But are they really so different? Both days of celebration have become overblown, bloated and commercial.
And as I stood looking from the tinsel to the silk roses, I understood that I am just as guilty of contributing. Each year I too get sucked into the whole obligatory candy-coated lacy Valentine's Day thing. Not that I don't relish the chance to remind my husband that he's still the hottest guy on earth. Not that I mind the chance to try and finds words to express how huge my love is for him a la Hallmark.
It's just that maybe all the commercialized stuff takes away from the real thing a bit. What is there about a red heart-shaped box of Whitman's screams eternity? Or roses for that matter? If you only give them once a year to the one you love there's no point.
This year, I am on a mission to be different. But where exactly do I start? This is where you guys come in! I just know you romantics can help me come up with something unique for the ol' February 14 deadline that's barreling down on us all. Comment here, or drop me an email at I'll post your ideas.