Monday, July 25, 2011

Over the Edge: Fundraising for NY Special Olympics

As many of you may know, I have recently joined my friend, Kevin Marshall, in an effort to both raise a whole bunch of money for the NY Special Olympics, and have ourselves thrown off the Crowne Plaza in Albany NY. (And by thrown I mean, in harnesses, and we get to rappel our way down.)

Anywho... donations have been moving along nicely, but it is now our goal to be the NUMBER ONE fund-raising team. Instead of the number two spot, which we now
occupy. So we're asking your support!

Kevin has promised his those donating to him various promotional give-aways for certain levels of donation, and I thought I would do the same for those donating to my campaign!

In order to sweeten the pot (quite literally) I will now beg for donations by bribing with baked goods. That's right, I will bribe you (or your office, or team or what-have-you) with tasty, tasty baked goods for your donation.

- For a $50 donation, I will bake & send you 2 dozen cookies of your choice
- For a $100 donation, I will bake & send you a cheesecake or pie of your choice
- For a $250 donation, I will make & send you you one baked good or 2 dozen cookies of your choice every week for a month!


- The rules -
1) - When you make a donation - use your name & amount - so I can verify that you get delicious baked goods. Also specifying the kind of baked good you would like in your name on the donation - that would be helpful!

2) - Cheesecakes are kind of not-so-mailable. And I hear the United State Postal Service really doesn't want me mailing them. So if you're long distance, please choose cookies or a pie.

3) - If you have already donated one of the said amounts - just get in touch with me to arrange for baked deliciousness delivery.

4) - If you have already donated $20 and donate another $30 - that counts! Just get in touch with me when you make a second donation to arrange for delivery of tasty baked goods.

5) - I reserve the right to take up to 2 weeks to get your baked goods to you. Because if a LOT of folks donate at once, while I'm an awesome baker, I really can't envision making more than a few baked goods in one evening. I have a job and such y'all.

6) - You can also COMBINE efforts. Say you make a $10 donation, and convince 4 people in your office to do the same. ... Just let me know everyone's name and what office you're at - and your office gets cookies!

- The Options -
Cookies I am capable of making
- Chocolate chip cookies
- Snickerdoodles
- Scotchies (Oatmeal butterscotch cookies)
- Mallo-mar cookies (they have marshmallows in em)
- Peanut butter cookies
- Sugar cookies

Cheesecakes I am capable of making
- NY Style Plain Cheesecake
- Pretty much any BERRY cheesecake (straw-, blue-, rasp-, black-, etc-berry)
- Chocolate swirl cheesecake
- Butterscotch or caramel swirl cheesecake

Pies I am capable of making
- Chocolate Pecan Pie
- Apple pie (regular or dutch version)
- Peach pie
- Pear pie

Also, I can make brownies if you do not prefer cookies or a cheesecake/apple pie combination of deliciousness called Apple Torte.

*** Feel free to ask me to make some crazy baked good of your choice that you do not see on the list - I'll let you know if I think it's possible, or if it's something out of my skill range ***

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

The Kindle may Kill Textbook companies!

Yesterday I blogged about how the Kindle & other E-readers most likely led to the demise of Border's Bookstores. I found that story kind of sad, but I find the Kindle's latest development nothing short of AWESOME! It turns out that Amazon is going to offer rentals of textbooks through the Kindle.

So instead of students paying $700-$900 on books for a semester, and then being able to sell them back to their college bookstore for a measly $100-$300; students will now be able to rent books from Amazon at a savings of up to 80%. Amazon states that it will have in excess of 10,000 textbooks ready to rent for the Fall 2011 Semester for students.

Neat features include that a student gets to pick a rental time. Anywhere from 30-360 days, which they can extend for a day at a time. So, if as in the case of SUNY Oswego, if your final gets snowed out you can continue to plug away at studying for ONE-MORE-DAY if you need to.

Also great is the fact that Amazon is extending its Whispersync technology, allowing students to keep their notes and highlights in the Amazon Cloud, even after the point in time which the rental expires.

Perhaps greatest of all is the fact that as with all other Kindle books, Kindle Textbooks will be “Rent Once, Read Everywhere,” capable. So students can rent it on their Kindles and then read it on their: computer, iPad, iPod touch, iPhone, Android phone, BlackBerry, etc. etc. etc. This will eliminate lugging around anywhere from 25-50lbs of textbooks. And its a bonus that you aren't relegated to the small Kindle screen, but that you can read the book on your larger computer or laptop screen if you would like.

I only wish that had this available while I was in law school. It would have saved a boatload of money and back pain.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Video killed the Radio Star...

and the E-Reader killed Borders.

Borders announced recently, that despite all efforts to return to profitability or to sell the store to a company that would keep it operational; it is now having to sell the company to a liquidation company. Borders will shut the doors on its remaining 399 stores and let go its 10,700 e-employees.

Many blame this on Border's lack of a popular e-book system. Such as Amazon's Kindle, or Barnes & Noble's NookBook. While Borders did promote the Kobo, it turns out it only owned an 11% share in the company, and that Kobo, is not solely reliant on Borders to provide it with content. PC Mag reports that even though Borders is going under, Kobo is likely to keep on keeping on.

I find the whole thing kind of sad. Even though I own an e-reader, (a Kindle) most of the time I prefer real, hard copies of books. I have hundreds of books in my home and tend to reserve e-books for textbooks or newspapers or books I normally wouldn't purchase, but would read on an airplane.

I was a bigger fan of Borders than I was Barnes & Noble, and Borders always had good coupons & clearance books. I will be sad to see them go. But glad that Barnes & Noble is still holding its own, and that bookstores on the whole have not gone under completely.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Not so much stupid lawsuits, as a travesty of justice.

So, although all the comments have already been made, I thought I'd give my two cents on the Casey Anthony situation. I realize that many people think it's none of their business. But it does kind of bug me that a murderer is walking free.

Now she may not have meant to actually KILL the baby. But I believe that she at least tried to knock the kid out with chloroform so that she could go clubbing, and accidentally killed the kid.

I also agree with the news media that said the prosecutor made a brilliant remark too late. He said that every lie she told served a purpose, and that each lie GOT her something. And I believe that if the jury had heard that in the opening statement, they may have thought about it more often during the trial.

I think the prosecution also should have played for manslaughter instead of murder. If they played as if they sympathized with the baby-who-had-a-baby, the jury might have been swayed. Played as if they were very sorry for Casey as well as Caylee. And then Casey might have done 10-15 years.

I think it speaks volume that Juror 3 was quoted as saying "I did not say she was innocent. I just said there was not enough evidence. If you cannot prove what the crime was, you cannot determine what the punishment should be."

So not even the jury thinks she's INNOCENT - they just think there was not enough evidence to prove guilt.

I think that it's sad that she's going to walk free, and undoubtedly try to have another kid, cause she's psychologically disturbed and thinks that she'll be a good momma this time.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Celebrate the 4th of July with Veteran Discounts

This 4th of July, I thought I would point out all of the fantastic locations that give our veterans a discount, in thanks for their service to our country!

Aeropostale – 10% off with military ID
Amtrak – 10% off with military ID
AT&T – 10-15% discount off monthly bill, valid military ID required
Avis – 25% off with military ID
Champs Sports – 10% off with military ID (may vary by location)
DSW Shoe Outlet – 10% military discount 1st of every month (may vary by location; in-store only)
Express (clothing store – 10% off with military ID
Foot Locker – 20% off with military ID
Gap – 10% military discount 1st of every month (may vary by location; in-store only)
Geico – Discount varies, valid military ID required
Home Depot – 10% off with military ID
Hooters – 10% off with military ID (may vary by location)
Hot Topic – 10% off with military ID
IHOP – 20% off with military ID (may vary by location)
Lady Foot Locker – 20% off with military ID
Longhorn Steakhouse – 10% military discount
Lowe’s – 10% off with military ID
Macy’s – 10% off on the first Tuesday of every month (may vary by location; in-store only)
Maurices (clothing store) - 10% off with military ID
Meineke – 10% off parts with military ID. In store only
National Car Rental – Discount varies, valid military ID required
Old Navy - 10% military discount on the 1st of each month with military ID
New York and Company - 15% off military discount
Payless Shoe Source – 10% off with military ID (may vary by location; in-store only)
Pep Boys – 10% off with valid military ID
Regal Movie Theaters – Matinee prices for all show times. Requires valid Military ID (may vary by location)
Spencers – 10% off with military ID
Sprint – 10-18% off. Sprint will also put a “hold” on your line when you are deployed, if you provide a copy of your orders, so you still have the same number when you come back and you do not have to pay a monthly fee while deployed
T-Mobile – Discount varies, valid military ID required
Verizon – 23% discount on monthly bills. Applies only to the military member’s primary line
Walgreens – 10% with military ID every Tuesday (may vary by location)

There may be more local discounts available to you. For instance my local hardware store offers veteran discounts as well... but this is a fairly complete nationwide list.
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