Archives for July 2016

Could a Landline Be Your Lifeline? #Ooma

DispatcherAre your children calling from a cell phone or a landline?  And does it make any difference?  Surprisingly, the answer is yes.  According to the latest data, if you don’t have a landline in your home, it could be putting your children in grave danger.

Here’s a shocking fact:  According to an investigation by the USA Today, the chances of 911 dispatchers being able to find you based on your cell phone’s GPS can be as low as 10% in some parts of the country.  With a significant share of cell phone-to-911 calls being placed from within residences—and 45% of Americans opting out of landline coverage at home—countless people are left vulnerable in emergencies.  The question then becomes not why you should have a landline in the home, but why haven’t you gotten one yet?

In the spirit of keeping you and your family safe, I recently partnered with Ooma leading Internet home phone service with reliable E911 technology—to deliver three tips for keeping your home safe this summer in addition to owning a landline. (We have also used the Ooma phone system for years and LOVE it! Very low cost for a lot of value!)


Whether it’s for a small scrape or something far worse, it’s always a good idea to have a first aid kit handy.  People who call 911 from their cell phone are often surprised at how long emergency workers take to arrive on scene.  According to the recent 911 Emergency Response Study, more than one in five cell phone callers feel it takes too long—that’s seven times higher than for people who call from a landline.  If you’re often in situations when only a cell phone is available, consider keeping a first aid kit nearby.


Make sure that no matter where you are, it’s easy for the people around you to call your emergency contacts. Consider posting your own number, as well as first response numbers, on your fridge so your kids know how to reach you and your family, family members who live close by, or the authorities.  Post the name and number of a trusted friend or neighbor, too.  With Ooma‘s home phone system, up to three of these contacts can be notified by text message automatically when a 911 call is placed.  In situations when every second counts, this reliable Internet-based technology could save tens of thousands of lives.


Educate your kids about the sights, smells, and sounds of danger.  If they hear a smoke alarm or see an appliance overheating, advise your children to get outside as quickly as possible.  Planning an exit strategy is key to getting a safe distance away from the house so you can alert a neighbor and have them call the fire department.  Consider making a detailed fire plan with multiple escape routes and keeping a printed copy of your fire plan on visible walls around your house.

For many people, money is understandably a legitimate concern—but when it comes down to it, we really can’t put a price on ensuring that the people we love are safe.  Luckily, first aid kits are both lightweight and budget-friendly, while the price of a secure Ooma landline pays for itself in just three months and costs less than a Netflix subscription on a monthly basis.

Ooma Telo & HandsetGot any 911 emergency stories of your own?  I wouldn’t be surprised.  In the past five years alone, over a quarter of Americans have called 911 with a cell phone, and in that group, there were many dissatisfied callers.  If you’ve got a story you’d feel comfortable sharing, I’d love to hear about them!  Be sure to share your thoughts in the comments below.

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Take the pledge! Farm animals & your health depends on it. #ShopWithYourHeart


Do you care about the quality of the food you eat? Do you care about the way the animals have been treated that become the food you eat? I do!

The ASPCA is trying to bring together people who care and has launched a new initiative to improve the lives of farm animals called Shop With Your Heart.

Now, YOU can make the pledge to be a more welfare-conscious shopper. Everyone who signs the pledge also gains access to an exclusive Shop With Your Heart Grocery List, including welfare-certified and widely available plant-based brands.

unnamed (1)As you may already know, most of the nearly 9 billion animals raised for meat, milk and eggs in the US are suffering in inhumane factory farms. And animals are not the only affected, as factory farms impact human health—they can be breeding grounds for dangerous pathogens and the antibiotics used to prevent disease create the potential for dangerous, drug-resistant bacteria to develop. To fully harness the power of our collective purchases and demand better lives for farm animals, the Shop With Your Heart initiative gives consumers the resources to recognize, locate and demand meaningfully welfare-certified meat, eggs and dairy products as well as plant-based alternatives. – From the ASPCA

IMG_20160722_182040 (1)Join the movement with me and pledge to #ShopWithYourHeart! @ASPCA.

(Disclosure: I received a small goodie bag for this post. All thoughts and opinions are my own.)


CLOSED: $25 Target Card GIVEAWAY + Season Premiere: Born This Way

UPDATED: This contest is now closed. The winner has been sent an email and responded. Thank you for commenting!

I am very excited to share the news about the second season being released for the show BORN THIS WAY which chronicles the lives of a group of young adults born with Down syndrome as they pursue their passions while defying society’s expectations. The series also follows their parents who share their own journey of joy, sacrifice, and unconditional love.


Season 2 of BORN THISWAY premieres Tuesday, July 26 (10/9c) on A&E Network. You can also join the social fun with A&E on Facebook & Twitter following and tweeting with the hashtag #BORNTHISWAY

In honor of this season premiere, I am also running a $25 Target Card giveaway now through August 5th. Comment below with the name or relationship of the person (i.e. mom, dad, teacher) who motivates you the most for a chance to enter to win. (U.S. shipping addresses only)

Enjoy the trailer below to get a taste of this delightful show and the truly amazing people highlighted in it.

(Disclosure: I was compensated with a gift card for this post. All thoughts and opinions are my own.)