Friday, February 27, 2009




(and if you just got here and didn't have time to play, read on to see what you missed and see what you get to look forward to each and every Friday now on Manic Mommy!)

Introducing another new feature here on Manic Mommy ...

It's Five-Buck Friday where I'll ask a random question and the first commenter to get it correct will win a crisp (or not so crisp!) five dollar bill from me! I already tried this out on Twitter and sent the winner five bucks and it was a lot of fun so I am going to try it out here.

Here are the rules -- you can guess up to three times on the blog. After that, you can't guess any more. I think that's the only rule I have so far. If, for obvious reasons, you know the answer (like for instance, for today's question, if you were with me at lunch today!) then you can't guess!

Other than that, I'll make up rules as we go along.

So, let's play ... FIVE-BUCK FRIDAY!

I went to lunch today at Bar Louie's with six kids and one other adult. There were four kids' meals ordered, two appetizers. Two adult lunches. A shitload of pops. Some side orders of fries.

What was our total bill including the 18 percent gratuity that our server, whose name was Stephanie Rene (of course, when she said her name was Stephanie, I had to ask her middle name too!) charged us?

More clues ... when Diva grabbed the bill and announced the total, I said to her, "SHUT UP!" meaning it was higher than I expected it to be.

And I will post a photo of the receipt as proof after you enter your guesses. So, you might as well go ahead and enter in your three guesses right away! Actually, your best bet would be to enter your guess once, wait a bit and I'll come back in and maybe I'll give more clues like higher, lower, even, odd, throughout the guessing, so maybe you don't want to throw out your three guesses all at once!

Have fun! And let's play FiVe-BuCK FRiDaY!!!


CONGRATS! TO April at OnTheVerge for guessing the right answer, and hey, isn't that an expensive lunch out for two moms and some kids?!?!? AND NO ALCOHOL!?!?

I'll be sending you your FIVE BUCKS April so be on the lookout for your crisp Manic Mommy Five Dollar BIllio! Thanks for playing!

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

"TWoS" DaY

New Feature.
Two Words.
Every Tuesday.
Starting Today
Go Now.

Woke Up
Brushed teeth
Woke Kids
Made lunches
Made breakfast
Kissed Kids
Waved bus
Drank Water
Betty Confidential
FaceBook Check
Called Stacy
Miss Her
Love Her
Cried … cried.
Felt Better
Applied Contacts
Got Period.

To School
First Graders!
They Read!
So Cute
Hi Diva!
Hi Ajers!
Sneaked Hellos!
Left School.
Drove Around
Double Burger
Diet Coke
Upping Iron
Donating Blood
Again Tomorrow!
Need IRON!

Tanning Spa!
Twenty Minutes
Treated Myself.
So Nice.
Quiet Thoughts …
Tanning Bed ...

49 Days
Big 40!
Me Ready?
Hope So.
No Alternative!
Leave Tanning.
McDonald’s Again?
Vanilla Cone?
Why NOT?
Two Points.
Come Home
Write This.
Here Now.

Nap Time?
Really Considering.

Laundry Instead?
Did yesterday.
Thinking … thinking …
Edit Article
“Retiring Ovaries”
… Getting Fixed.

Now Nap?
Twenty Minutes
Bus Soon
This OK?

Sure IS!
Nap Over.
Kids Home.
Plus Two.
They’re Loud.
Homework Time.
Loud Boys!
Sweet Girl
Need Snacks?

More homework.
Tukey Crying.
Bloody Lip?
“Stupid Brother!”
“Hate Him!”
Typical Day.
Every Day.
Nothing new.
Stop Fight.
Make Snacks
Toast Bagels
Cream Cheese
Soft Pretzels
Me: Water

Kids Happy
Me Office.
Some Twitter
Wanna Join?
Go Here:
Know It?
It’s Fun
It’s Addicting.
Like Facebook.
But Faster.
Keep Up?
Get News.

More Fighting …
Out There.
In Kitchen.
I Yell.
A Lot.
Do You?
It’s 4:00
What Now?
Some Work?
Waiting … Waiting …
For Screams.
OK … Quiet.

Tukey's Keyboard.
Puke Noises?
From Instrument.
Age Seven
That’s Expected.
I Guess.

Am Tired.
And Bored.
Want Chocolate.
Will Pilfer…
Found Chocolate
Supreme Dark
More Water.
Half Gallon!

Chocolate Relief!

Should Work.
I Procrastinate.
You know?

Check Email
Nothing New

Another Kid
Is Here.
Tally: Six.

Melty Chocolate
In Mouth.
Happy Me.

Bliss Bliss.

Did BabyZone!

Feel Productive.
Chocolate High.

Oh Yeah!
Forgot This!
I Won
THIS “toy”
From Her
She’s Cool!
Mommy Melee
Gave Blood!

Kids Screaming.
Still More.

More Work

Dinner Time.
Making What?

Hamburger Helper!
So Classy!
Boys Like
Roasted Broccoli
For Me.
And Pasta.

Dinner Over.
Everybody Happy.
Me Included
Drank Water.
¾ Gallon!
Am Full.

Blog Time.
Potty Time
Shower Time.
Work Time.
Eat Frosting.
Diva Too.

More Work.

Done Working.
Tired Now.
Final Email.

Until Tomorrow.

Give Blood?

Last Chance.

I Am!

Pretty Please?

TWOSDay Over.

Peace UP!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

SuNDaY BLooDY SuNDaY, FeB. 22

THIS IS YOUR LAST WEEK TO DONATE for the 2009 Manic Mommy's Virtual Blog for Blood Drive

And here are the wonderful donors for this week!

Hi! My name is Gloria, I'm from Arlington, VA. I read about your blood drive challenge on Pasta Queen's blog and thought it was a great idea. I'm a regular donor anyway, so I just asked them to take a picture with my blackberry for me. It didn't come out too good but they were very busy (thank God there was a good turn out) and I didn't want to ask them to retake it. They hold blood drives where I work every 8-12 weeks, so that makes it pretty easy. I donate blood because it saves lives and I would hope that if I were ever in a situation where I needed blood myself, I would hope that there would be enough because of people like us. My father is a regular donor also and I told him about your challenge, but he forgot his camera when he went! Oh well. Anyway, I have attached my picture, have a great day!


Hi GLORIA! You are gonna laugh because I was JUST driving home from Panera and I was thinking to myself that I was kinda bummed out because I didn't have any donors for this week yet and I got home and HERE YOU ARE! My first donor of the week so you have made me quite happy today! THANK YOU SO VERY MUCH! And a big shout-out to your dad, Allen, too!

Thanks so very much for donating! This really means a lot, obviously you know that! Thanks so much!

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Michelle is an Alum Donor!!!!!

Here is my blood donation picture/entry. Last year I donated on Feb. 2, Groundhogs Day, my favorite day of the year, for the first time in 10 years. And all of last year I spent donating blood as close to my 8 weeks as possible (illness and grumpiness factored in a time or two). In April I managed to arrange a mobile blood drive during our Relay For Life Kick-Off Event. At that event we got 19 pints of blood in four hours! My two good friends that started donating with me on Groundhogs day last year continued to donate regularly as well. We also donated platelets once and plan to do that more but with the nearest donor center being 80 miles away and having 7 kids between the three of us and all three of our hubbies in Iraq it gets tough to find time to sit in a chair for two hours but they do entertain our kids too so it's nice!

So on January 31st this year I was in Michigan visiting my family. My sister and brother and I decided we'd stop in Ft Wayne IN on our way to visit our grandmother to donate blood. My sister is 23 and has never donated before so she was nervous but excited and happy to help save 3 lives! My brother was in the Army and happened to be in Germany when all the cows were mad and that disqualified him. He was very upset but I assured him that the four years he served in the military was just as valuable as any amount of blood he could have donated that day or in the future. My sister and I laughed and donated our blood in the most ginormous blood donor center I ever imagined. The had so many chairs and apheresis machines! I was very impressed. Anyhow, we saved 6 lives and went on to have dinner with a grandma I hadn't seen in over 2 years. Yay me for a great day!

This is me with Shaun.

We laughed together and I gave him a hard time as much as I could in my 30 minutes of interview/donation time. Good times! Good times!

And here's Sabrina--Michelle's sister!

Thank you so much Michelle, and Sabrina too, and to your brother who wanted to donate, but thanks also for serving our country!

And also, special thanks to Michelle's husband Kirke who is currently serving in Iraq. He could use your prayers as his platoon was hit with a bomb this week -- he is OK but one of his soldiers is in serious condition though. Please keep all their families in your thoughts, and remember, these are some of the important reasons why we need your blood!

You can send your well-wishes to Michelle at her blog!

And thank you Michelle for being an Alum Donor and for also spearheading your own events to get blood donors! Every little bit helps!

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~


I work at a local hospital here in Southern California so I see daily the impact that blood donations have on people. I am a single mom working hard to just scrape by, so I don't have a lot to offer others ... but I do have enough blood to share! The hospital sent out an SOS because the blood supply was critically low so I encouraged a friend to come along and donate with me. I can't imagine being a mother who's child seriously needed a transfusion and there was not enough available. This is a wonderful thing you're doing and I hope many, many people get out there and donate ... not just this one time, but every 56 days!

Erin H
Artesia, CA

Erin, thank you so much! You are a busy hard-working mom yet you STILL were able to find the time to donate blood! THANK YOU! (Like my subtle way of guilting anyone reading this to DONATE THIS WEEK PLEASE!?!??! You all HAVE THE BLOOD, do you HAVE THE TIME?

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Hey, Manic-

I have never given blood before (health reasons, horribly small veins, fear, etc.) but your blood drive finally got my pumped up to do it! I made my appointment online with the Red Cross and everything. Then, just to be sure, I checked the requirements. FAIL! I spent last summer working on the judicial system in Papua New Guinea, a country with known malaria incidents, and I have to wait a whole year (that will be July!)

I was pretty bummed out and told my boyfriend, Ryan, about my let-down. So, today, he said he had a surprise for me. And I got a picture of a bag of blood on my cell phone- he gave blood FOR me!!! What a sweetheart!!!

Additionally, Ryan was in a pedestrian accident 3 years ago where he was in medically induced coma for 3 weeks, many surgeries, blood loss, etc., so both of us have decided to give back and give blood regularly. It feels so good! (Yes, this is coming from the girl who hasn't had her blood drawn yet! ;)

He didn't know about the contest, so he doesn't have a picture of him in the chair, so I'm attaching what we do have. I understand if you can't accept this is proof.

Thanks for doing this- too incredible.

Reagan B.
Athens, GA

Ryan H.
Atlanta, GA

Reagan! Totally proof for me! But the only thing is that if Ryan wins the trip to Florida, he HAS TO PROMISE to take you along!!!! That is so awesome of him to do this for you, and how equally sweet to email you the photo! And wow, Ryan, you know the importance of giving blood first-hand as you've had your share of hardships with being in a coma and having your own blood loss-so glad to know that you're OK now! You guys are great and I appreciate it from the bottom of my heart!

So that's IT for this week folks! You've got til Saturday, February 28 to find it in the GOODNESS of your heart, in your veins to donate that ONE PINT, that one pint that could save THREE LIVES, or FIVE LITTLE BABIES' LIVES.


I think you do.

Go ahead. I challenge you.

Shock the hell out of me. Flood my inbox with pictures of you doing something good for someone else. For free. For life. For the rest of THEIR LIVES.

Because, it does. It truly, truly DOES MAKE A DIFFERENCE BETWEEN LIFE AND DEATH.

One week. That's it

You know the drill. Here are all the details to
Manic Mommy's Virtual Blog for Blood Drive if you've been under the Manic Rock.

Peace UP!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009


Monday, February 16, 2009

SuNDaY BLooDY SuNDaY, FeB. 15

Sorry for the delay this week, but even a Manic Mommy has to take some time out for some Valentine fun and OH SHOOT! I just looked at a note on my desk and I owe Christine, Kirsten and Katy and Reagan a sexy CD! I HAVEN'T FORGOTTEN! OK, I did forget, but thank goodness for that piece of paper with your addresses that will forever be here reminding me to make you gals a CD ...

Anyway! On to this past week's awesome blood donors for the Manic Mommy's Virtual Blog for Blood Drive, and if you haven't heard about it yet, WHERE THE HECK HAVE YOU BEEN FOR THE PAST SIX OR SO WEEKS??

Here's the lowdown, with not too much commentary cuz I'm a little bit tired, but great photos and much thanks to all you wonderful awesome folks, and everyone who donates blood until February 28 will be entered into the grand prize drawing for a trip to Sandestin Golf & Beach Resort!

And there are other great prizes to be had, including fun presents and gift cards of varying dollar amounts, thanks to great people:

Melissa at Hope Floats is donating a generous gift card!

My Pal Carlos has donated a check for prizes!

Rick at Organized Doodles who is donating a cartoon from his site!

Karla with a K, who has been a long-time Manic Mommy reader but cannot donate blood because of anemia but is donating a check toward gift cards!

And Jen, who you'll meet down below, is donating an adorable bow purse on page 31 on this site:, which retails for $28, PLUS she also donating a pint of blood! So thank you Jen for DOUBLE-DONATING! : )

And thank you all, and if there's anyone else who would like to donate a check or other prizes toward the Blood Drive, please leave a comment and I will contact you! Thanks to you all for your kindness and donations!

Now on with this week's donors:

Here's ALICIA:

Good morning! I heard about your contest from one of the other blogs I frequently read. What an awesome idea! I have been donating for over 24 years, and am now up to over 18 gallons donated! I go in every four weeks and donate platelets and/or red blood cells. I went through a weight loss program about a year ago and was quite bummed that I was not able to donate for over six months! That is also one of the reasons I have not yet got a tattoo, because I would have to wait a year to donate blood! It is such an awesome feeling to know that you are doing something that could save someone's life! Anyhow, I've attached my picture.

Thank you!
Hesperia, CA

Thank YOU Alicia! When I got MY tattoo at age 35 -- 'nother story for another day, which I probably already blogged about that one, I didn't know I couldn't donate for a year afterward--that bummed me out! Thank you for your donation Alicia! Don't forget to donate every 8 weeks, and also to come back next year for Manic Mommy's THIRD ANNUAL drive too!

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

And we have alum Donald, who generously donated last year too! Thanks "Zolofan!" You look great my friend!

Hi Manic -

Attached is my pic. I am now a 5-gallon blood donor! This was the second time I gave double red blood cells. They talked me into it when I last gave back in September. But you do have to wait for 16 weeks instead of the usual 8 between donations.

I am B-negative, the second-rarest blood type. While I can't be a universal blood donor, I figure I must be useful to the other B-negative people out there.

You can perhaps notice from the picture that the tubes going to the apheresis machine were laying across my lap. My best vein for donating is in my left arm, but the machine was to my right. So if I wanted to, I could look down from my magazine and actually see my blood starting to flow through the draw tube on the draw cycles. The machine alternates drawing blood and returning fluid on 30-second cycles. Kind of weird, of course, because you're used to the tube and donation bag hanging down at the side of the chair, well out of sight!

The phlebotomist who took my pic turned the screen of the machine toward me, in case I wanted to see when it was on the return cycle and I didn't have to squeeze the foam ball. But I also noticed that I could see the progress of my donation, realized that when I was about 420 ml into the donation, they had the machine set to draw 502 ml. There was also an estimated time bar creeping along at the top of screen, it was supposed to take 32 mins.

Turned out I gave 502 ml of red blood cells in 31 mins. Best wishes to you and to all my fellow donors.

Donald B.
Houston, TX

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Hi Manic,

I am an annual (sometimes twice) per year blood donor, as well as a runner who is training for a May half marathon (I've done two marathons with Team in Training and raised more than $12,000 for blood-related cancers, so I am very aware of the need for blood). Your contest came at the perfect time - before I got too into my training and during a blood drive at work! Thanks for the reminders!

Additionally, I am a consultant for 31 Gifts, and I would be honored to donate one of our bow purses as a prize, if you're still looking for prizes. Have a great day!

Jen T.
Robbinsville, NJ

Thank you Jen! Sounds like you do an AMAZING job raising money and spreading the word on the need for blood and helping with blood-related cancers! Thanks for helping out in my cause this year! And for also donating a purse too! That's so very cool of you! Good luck with your training! Run a half-marathon for me while you're at it too! That's something I should put on my list of To-Dos some day!

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Hello. My name is Amanda H. I live an Temperance, Michigan.

I went and gave blood today. I had to take my own picture while I was there because some young man decided to pass out in the chair. I didn't want to bother them while they were so busy.

I don't really have an inspirational story as to why I gave blood, it is just something that I have been trying to do on a regular basis. (and they keep calling reminding me that it is time and they REALLY need my blood - lol). I figure why not donate, I love to do things to help people and what better way then to give them life. I started reading Dawn Meehan's blog and was directed to the Carepages so I guess you could say that those families inspired me. I know that my blood won't save the lives of those children but it can help them in the fight. I hope your blood drive is a success.


Amanda! Your story sounds pretty darn INSPIRATIONAL TO ME! Just the fact that you want to do it to help save people's lives is inspiration! THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR DONATING!!!

And I noticed you have a Tampa Florida shirt on! That's where I was born and my parents now live there again! So that's extra cool!

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Hey Manic-

As I promised, three adorable first time donors - and their stories.

What possesses high school kids to give blood? I'm sure for some it is the idea of skipping out on a class period. For some it may be a right of passage into the "adult world" - sixteen years old are finally eligible to donate. Whatever their reason was - at LHS in Saint Louis on this past Wednesday February 11, a barrage of teens rolled up their sleeves and drained their veins. My daughter and her two friends signed up for there own reasons.

It wasn't just the lure of getting out of a class period (or two), it wasn't even the free stylish pink and white "Hero-Donate Blood" T-shirt, or the free snacks (shortbread cookies,pretzels, raisins and apple juice) ... instead it was about life - saving a life:

Madison A.
"I want the satisfaction of knowing that my blood may save someone's life, so they can hopefully live long and go on to help other people in the world in whatever way they can."

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Nikki B.
"I remember having my blood drawn before I got my tonsils out and thinking this is pretty cool. It didn't hurt. So when the opportunity came up to donate blood at school I decided I needed to jump at the chance to help save a life. And, even though I passed out several times during the day - the Red Cross staff was quick to come to my aid when I was dragged back to the gym - I will give again! A moment of fogginess does not deter."

~ ~ ~ ~
Maddie S.
"To be honest I was in it for the T-shirt. But, in the end if I can save a life then my free cute T-shirt was totally worth it!"

There you have it, three adorable sweet adorable sixteen year old high school girls -the blood donors.

Take Care,

Jodi! What great stories from three very brave and BEAUTIFUL teenagers! I think this is WONDERFUL that they all went for it and donated, and man, I am sooo sorry Nikki passed out throughout the day! Do they know the importance of their act, that they have saved so many lives by doing this, and that since they started donating at such a young age, hopefully it will become second nature to them and they'll donate every 8 weeks! Give them all kisses from me!

I hope all of you who have taken the time to read this post will think, SERIOUSLY THINK about what it means to donate blood, what it REALLY means to share what's INSIDE OF YOU with another human life, to save a PERSON, to do good for another, and think about these people you've just read about, and how easy it was for them to take a short amount of time out of their days to spread the love of humankind. To give of themselves to help to make this world a better place. To give life to another human being who may not have the chances or the good fortune that we have.

Think about it, and if you have the time to spare, you've certainly got the blood to share.

Consider a donation. 1 - 800 - GIVE LIFE.


Sunday, February 15, 2009

SuNDaY BLooDY SuNDaY ...

Because of late-night partying for Valentine's Day and a surprise birthday event for a close friend tonight circumstances beyond my control, this week's Sunday Bloody Sunday's post will be up tomorrow.

Thanks for your patience!

And if you'd like to donate blood, you still have two weeks! Here's where you can find all of the details for Manic Mommy's Virtual Blog for Blood Drive! And don't forget--you can win a trip to FLORIDA for donating a pint of your lifesaving blood!

Peace UP!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009


Win Behind the Bedroom Door on Betty!

When I discovered Paula Derrow's Behind the Bedroom Door, I wanted to shake up a martini and hole up in my own bedroom to read all the sexy secrets these 26 women writers had to share about their sex lives. But the book is so much more than just sexy secrets. It's deep, it's raw, it draws on emotions; sometimes it's hilarious, and it always brings pause for thought. No matter where you find yourself in your relationship, at some point during your reading of Behind the Bedroom Door, you'll discover a moment where you've been there, done that, or at least thought about being there and doing that!

Head on over to BettyConfidential and read the rest of my interview with author/editor Paula Derrow, and then sign up to win a copy here! It does NOT disappoint! But Hurry! You only have until FRIDAY to enter!

Also, while you're at Betty, check out my latest on Crazy Octuplet Mom. Did you see her on Dateline last night? Whoa! What do YOU think about her?

Sunday, February 08, 2009

SuNDaY BLooDY SuNDaY, FeB. 8

Wow, busy week at Manic's Blood Central, and let's just say some of it has not been so grandious, starting with a little bit of "this truly isn't hate mail" --

You guys decide, OK?

I do admire your blood drive. I do understand the need. But, isn't this slightly unfair to those of us who had transfusions that "may be" contaminated? Then we went to Europe for school? We can't donate, unless it is to a family member.

This truly isn't hate mail. I just find this contest extremely discriminating. Good luck though

My response:

I'm really sorry you feel that way. Not meant to be discriminating. Just meant to be a motivation for people who might not think to donate blood to consider donating. Consider this -- am I also discriminating against people who do not read blogs? It's a tough call. I can be discriminating against so many people if we sit and think about it. I'm not trying to be selective here. Just trying to get people to donate. You say you've had transfusions -- aren't you thankful for those people who have donated? What if there was someone who wasn't willing to donate but I've convinced them they should try, and that person had your blood type and he or she was the right type that saved your life? That's all I'm trying to do, not discriminate. I'm so sorry you are not looking at this blood drive in the positive light, in the glass half-full way.

God bless, and thank you for pointing out that you're not sending hate mail, and for wishing me good luck. I just want to save some lives that might not have a chance.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

I forgot last week to mention my two really great friends donated blood, but didn't have their pictures taken. Thanks to Gina and Cathy, who both suffered GOOSE EGGS (bruises and popped-up bumps on their forearms) from donating, and Gina also had a little incident where blood started spurting everywhere. THAT would have made for a nice photo op! Cathy's O-negative, and her blood went directly to a young boy at her church who was having surgery.

Thank you to my beautiful friends!

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

And then we also have Monique, who didn't know about Manic Mommy's Virtual Blog for Blood until after the fact, so she didn't have a photo, but she still would have donated because she was doing it for a very special reason. For her father! Here's what she wrote:

I got the message too late to take a picture but I donated ... I gave via direct donation for my dad who is having surgery in 5 hours (Feb. 2, 2009). He gave me life now; it's my turn to give that gift back to him. It was the first time I have donated and he was there by my side, it was incredible to know that what I was doing was not only saving a life but it's my dad life I get to save. I gave at the Blood Donar Room at UMASS hospital in Worcester, Ma. on Jan. 26. I can't wait to go back on March 23 and do it again, I love the way it made me feel, I can make a difference.

Thanks for making people aware of the need, my eyes are so much more open now...
Hubby donates next week.


My dad is doing fantastic, he is out of ICU and thriving. He was awake for the entire surgery and spoke with the doctor during surgery; they spoke about the game (super bowl) and of good food, however when the doctor explained to my dad they were starting the transfusion his remark was "Oh, great, I used to be mild mannered now thanks to her and her blood I am going to be BITCHY!" I love my dad and I'm thankful he was still joking even while under the knife. He didn't mind being awake, however he said he did not recommend it if you hate hearing the drill at the dentist because this was much worse.

I don't care about being in the drawing as I already got the best dad.

So glad Monique that your dad is doing well, and thanks so much for sharing your story! It's great to see the success of what donating can do for others out there! Way to go Dad! Glad you're doing well! You've got an amazing daughter there! : )

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
My story:
Lynn, Chesapeake, Virginia

A virtual blood drive, that's really a cool idea, honestly.

I had, actually, decided to donate blood before I was directed to your web site (and honestly, I'm not sure how I got there. I read a ton of diet and fitness blogs, so it was probably from one of them...)

Last year, my husband and I started weight watchers, and have totally changed our lives. I have lost over 65 pounds (with ~25 pounds left to lose) and my husband has lost +80 pounds. We both now work out regularly, are doing the 100 push up challenge, and I am in training for a 5K, with the eventual intention to walk in the 3-Days for the cure Susan G. Komen breast cancer awareness drive in October.

However, despite all these staggering changes, I really haven't been able to change my "worthless fat girl" view of myself. In an effort to boost my self esteem, I've chosen 2009 as my jump-off point for my self-esteem and happiness project. While doing research on line about happiness and self-esteem, I came across Gretchen Ruben's Happiness Project blog site. (If you have time, I highly recommend flipping through some of her stuff, it's very interesting...)

Anyway, one of the things she is continually saying is "Do good, feel good." All the "you're the greatest" kind of wordy self-esteem stuff really doesn't help. We all hear the mental eyerolls, or the sarcasm, or think people are just being kind (even when they are being completely sincere; if I don't feel good about myself, someone else's praise isn't going to make me feel much better.) So, thinking about do good, feel good, I immediately decided to give blood.

I've never done it before. For a long time, complications with my weight and other illness gave me a great excuse (why would anyone want my blood, it's all icky...) but really, the truth was, I just didn't feel good enough about myself or about life in general to make the effort.

So, yesterday, Superbowl Sunday, I did.

Talking about it with a dear friend of mine and she decided to join me, so I feel good about my own donation, and that I talked my best friend into going with me! Two pints for the price of one battered ego! Good deal, no?

After I made my appointment, I came across your web site and your virtual blood drive. So, thank you! Also, Felicity, the Red Cross girl who did my draw, thanks you as well. She said that was the best idea she'd heard in a long time, and hopes you get a ton of donors!



Check out Lynn's blog here The Hungry Little Caterpillar. She's really an inspiration! And thanks to Lynn's friend for donating too!

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~~

Manic Mommy,
I don't have a picture of me in the chair. I had a friend take it for me on my cell phone and then I FORGOT TO SAVE THE PICTURE. Please call it New-Mommy brain.

I am not a new donor, but I've only managed to give blood twice ever because of low iron, sickness, or travel outside the U.S. The Red Cross comes to my work every few months and I was so glad to finally be able to give today! And then I found out about your contest (through Because I Said So) about ten minutes before I was due for my appointment!

After having a baby three months ago, and months of OB appointments and being pricked, I didn't figure this pricking was that big of a deal. :) Perhaps I should have done my homework on nursing and giving blood before the donation instead of after--but it IS permissible for the Red Cross as long as you are more than 6 weeks postpartum. And, hey, it gives me a good excuse to eat a huge dinner--nursing plus blood loss! Bring on the beef!

Nashville, TN

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Kirsten at Notes from a Human Napkin donated but didn't take her picture and doesn't need another warm vacation because she just got back from St. Thomas! Yes, I am jealous, but I'm also thankful that she donated just for the goodness of her heart, her suntanned warmed heart, no doubt! Thank you Kirsten!!!

Here's what Kirsten wrote:

Congrats with the donors, you are inspiring. I did go and donate last Friday but I forgot my camera. It's OK though, I just went to St. Thomas ~ I don't deserve another sunny trip! I am vowing to give every 3 months at least from now on. Thanks for the push! :-)

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Thanks for the pint from my very good blogger pal Kim Stagliano, managing editor at and a Huffpo Blogger, who is also an alum donor - two years in a row baby!! I knew she'd have a fun photo to send, and disappoint SHE DID NOT!

Love and thanks KiM!

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Here's Andi!

After FOUR TRIES, SHE FINALLY GETS TO GET PRICKED!!! Here's what she had to go through to give up her pint!

After the fourth try at four different locations, it finally happened! I was able to donate! I was nearly in tears with joy when the guy, Bill, told me I was set to go with a number of 39! I was so happy to be able to give you these pictures and give the best gift that I ever could. If I win a prize, I am going to email Bill and Rachel who helped make these pictures possible!

Thanks, Stephanie for doing this. It proved that patience and perseverance pays off, plus downing iron pills, red meat, and a few cans of spinach. :)

Glad to help! Glad to finally help!

I am so glad that you and I are friends now. I look forward to meeting you in person one day!

Andi B.
St. Louis, MO

Me too, Andi, me too! Thanks so much for your efforts and for also helping to spread the word! And for befriending me on the 'net! So much appreciate you getting out there and staying persistent to offer your donation!

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And here's a great post that Care Aware put up about the Blood Drive -- thanks so much! And isn't that a great poster too? Love it!

Care Aware

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And yeah! WeaselMomma accepted the challenge and donated the pint!

I'm now officially one pint low.

Read her story here.

And now, this week, I am going to call out TWO of you, and these are the two I am challenging to donate blood this week.

March to the Sea -- you're it baby! I know you're out there, reading this blog, thinking about the Cheetah Girls and day dreaming about the day High School Musical 3 hits the stores via DVD, but stop for a minute and think about what if like Zac Efron needed a transfusion in order to get his head back in the game? Huh? You'd take a needle for him, wouldn't ya? So yep, buddy, I'm triple-dog daring you to gimme a pint. And I want a photo to prove it.

And my other victim ... Travis, I know you've had a terrible month. Really horrible month. Your house burned down. You're getting your life back on track. You're choosing new green shag carpeting. You probably could use a break, a little distraction in your day. So, I'm giving you permission to take an hour for yourself, go find the nearest blood bank (is there one near you? Maybe you might get a "get out of jail card on this one) and donate a pint. Let me know if you think you can handle this.

If not, one more to the challenge ... Ink and Beans ... and only because you my friend ... you got me hooked on crackFacebook so you owe me dude. You owe me a pint of the red stuff babe. You stole my soul and gave it to Facebook. I want your blood.

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And finally for the week -- whew! Has it been an INCREDIBLE blood-giving, life-saving week here at Manic Mommy's Virtual BLood Drive or WHAT!?!? We have Mommy Melee!
St. Petersburg, Florida

Before I had kids, I was too scared to give blood. After 9/11 I even waited in line for nearly an hour only to chicken out when I smelled the "hospital" smell of the blood mobile. When I was 10, my grandmother died of ovarian cancer and I spent a great deal of time in hospitals visiting her. That, combined with my insane fear of dentistry (and the smell of surgical gloves) made for one serious wuss.

Then I got pregnant and discovered that you have to give blood approximately 600 times. I got used to it. And I started giving blood in 2007.

A few weeks ago I walked past a bloodmobile and asked how soon after pregnancy I could give blood. They told me six weeks. Since it had only been three, I headed home. But today your blog post reminded me to get with the program. I searched for the nearest location, waited for both my kids to sleep so it'd be easier for their dad to watch them, and then I headed out and gave blood.

Thank you, Manic Mommy. Your virtual blood drive is awesome, and inspiring.

And thank YOU Mommy Melee -- Stop by Mommy Melee's blog because she is currently giving away a very special toy for the ladies, if you know what I mean!

Everyone have a great week, and I hope to see March to the Sea, Travis Erwin, and Ink and Beans here next week a pint short! So everyone who's reading this, please stop by their blogs and tell them Manic Mommy has officially called them out for Blood!


And thanks to all you fabulous donors! This has been the BEST WEEK EVER!

Thursday, February 05, 2009

Special Blood Drive Shout Out!

Last Sunday, on my Sunday Bloody Sunday post, I called out a fabulous blogger that Melisa with one S at Suburban Scrawl had introduced me to. This woman had no idea that Melisa and I had been talking about her, and unbeknownst to her, I basically triple-dog dared, sand-blasted her all over my blogpost subtly suggested that it would be a wonderful thing if she were to consider donating a pint of her lovely blood for the Manic Mommy Virtual Blog for Blood Drive.

I thought, let's see what she brings to the Manic table.

Check this bad ass bloggin' Momma out!

WAY TO GO WeaselMomma!!!!!

We've got a TON of donors to mention this coming Sunday, and I wonder which one of you fabulous bloggers I may call out next? Be ready, it could be YOU!!!! (I'm taking suggestions, so if you want to recommend someone with a high iron count and a good tolerance for needles, let me know of a good candidate in the comment section!)


Peace UP!

Tuesday, February 03, 2009


"Here you try it."

"I don't want to try it ... YOU TRY IT!"

Hey, I know, let's get Mikey to try it!

"Yeah! He'll try anything!


"Sure, he'll try ANYTHING! Even bong hits at parties at USC --

Now that I've been politically incorrect on my blog, let's get to the important stuff - read the previous post on donating blood for Manic Mommy's Virtual Blog for Blood Contest. Note: No bongs required!

Sunday, February 01, 2009

SuNDaY BLooDY SuNDaY, FeB. 1

We've had a GREAT week of donors and I'd like to thank you all! And let's NOT FORGET that you still have THE WHOLE MONTH OF FEBRUARY TO ROLL UP YOUR SLEEVE TO DONATE!

All Manic Mommy Virtual Blood Contest Details are here.

Or Here.

Or Here.

So what's stopping YOU? Nothing stopped these fine people, and they are all now entered to win the grand prize, six-day, five-night stay at Sandestin Resort in Destin, Florida!

So let's meet these latest wonderful people:

Shelly Pepper, Illinois:

Here's what Shelley wrote:

You said my last name makes you smile and I'm betting this email will make you smile too ... I donated blood today! Yes, I am no longer a blood donor virgin ... and we'll just leave it at that. Keeping my fingers crossed cuz' while a gift card would be nice, Florida would be SOOOOO much nicer - I'm sick of this snow!! I told my fiancee he's going back to donate so he can enter too (and you can get another man in your contest!). I made him go with me today as I have a track record of passing out when my blood is taken (no worries - I was fine today!) and to prove to him that it's no big deal - why are men such wusses about stupid stuff? Haha! Hope you get bunches of donors this year (although I shouldn't as that will reduce my chances of being Florida bound! ha)! Well, I'm off to eat me some red meat! Talk to ya later!
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And here's Tiara-Wearing-Melisa-with-One-S, who is an Alum Donor. And Former Manic Stalker Turned Friend. She called me up on Tuesday to tell me she was donating and although I was at my kids' school reading to the first graders (YES! I do volunteer and do cutesy mom things SOMETIMES!), I was able to sneak over to the blood center and surprise her and hold her hand while they jabbed the needle into her arm. What a great gal she is--she teaches spin class, and then comes over all hot and sweaty to give her blood, which flowed really fast they said because she is an exercise guru!

You can read her version here at her blog Suburban Scrawl, which is always funny and I'm sorry Melisa that I don't get over there as much as I'd like to, but I don't want you to think I'm stalking you or anything! : )

After Melisa donated, we sat and had a brownie and Diet Coke and chatted with the gals at Heartland cuz I just love 'em over there, and we caught up on some blog gossip and the usual, and she told me about Weaselmomma and how cool she is, and her husband's awesome Exorcist soup and how they have like more kids than that chick who just had like a bazillion kids. So of course I wanted to know all about this cool new person who calls herself a weasel, so I checked out her blog. Now, that's a clue for you to go over and say hi to weaselmomma and then tell her Manic Mommy said to do so, so then she'll be like, "Why are all these people coming over to my blog to say hello, and then she'll come over here and see why, and that'll be kind of funny, don't you think? Oh, and then she'll read how I am CHALLENGING HER TO DONATE BLOOD! Bwhahahaahahah! WeaselMomma, do you accept this challenge to donate blood?

And YES! I have just decided that every Sunday now, I am going to challenge another blogger to donate blood, even though we don't have many Sundays left, but this challenge officially goes out to WEASELMOMMA, so someone (EVERYONE!) please go to Weaselmomma and let her know she is now challenged to enter Manic Mommy's Virtual Blog for Blood Contest.

And you can thank Melisa with One S for introducing you to me!

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And next up, we have Michelle, who found out about the blood drive through my good friend Dawn at Because I Said So

This is what Michelle wrote:

Hello! I found your blog through Because I Said So (OK, it was your
Sunday Shout Out question! Apparently, that worked!)

FYI, for the TWO of you who don't read Dawn's Because I Said So, she answers questions every Sunday, and I always leave her an obnoxious question asking her something irrelevant about blood donating or something silly so she'll laugh and say, "Manic, you're crazy!" Apparently, this tactic got Michelle to notice the blood drive and she came over to see what it's about and she DONATED! So, thanks to Michelle and Dawn! (PS--Dawn, I left you ANOTHER Sunday Sound Out goofy question TODAY too!)

Now, back to Michelle:

I love seeing all the people in the chairs! It's a great addition to a contest! And even though you didn't convert a new donor with me (I'm a pretty consistent donor), you did convert a new blog reader :)

Thank you!

Thank YOU Michelle! And check out Michelle's blog at naiad-kitty

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And lastly, but NOT leastly, we have Nikki, from NICE, and WARM, and SUNNY Phoenix! I have been FREEZING in Chicago lately so Phoenix sounds SOOOO WARM to me!

Here's what Nikki wrote:

I’ve always been a donator of blood. I started when I was 17 (YAY FOR YOU NIKKI!)and have been an consistent donator at least once a year, except when I had my children. I love being able to help others, and with a blood type of O+, (I'M O POSITIVE TOO NIKKI!) I find myself in high demand. We relocated to Phoenix a few years ago, and I was thrilled to find out that the building I work in holds 3-4 drives a year. It was my time again, and it just happened to coincide with your virtual blood drive. I was so thrilled to find it!

Just as an aside, getting to Florida is not an option for me right now, so please don’t include me in the grand prize drawing. Any second or third prize drawings I would be happy to be part of. Florida is just out of our reach.

No problem Nikki--how 'bout since I'm soooo cold, I'll put your name in and if you win, I'LL GO IN YOUR PLACE!!! HA! I'm kidding! That wouldn't be fair, now would it!?!? I will make sure that your name will go into the hat for the other prizes, just not the grand prize trip to Fla!

So everyone, here you have it! These darling ladies have all saved some lives this week. It was easy for them. No one passed out. It wasn't an inconvenience for anyone. No one complained about anything. They all have beautiful smiles on their faces ... Why don't you go out this week and do ONE SMALL KIND THING ...


All the details are RIGHT here.

Let's see how many of you we can get for next week. Not only am I counting on you. So many others are too!

And there really is a desperate shortage of blood out there, so please, go help!

Thank you!

Peace UP!