Take The It Can Wait Pledge

 

Disclosure:  This is a sponsored post by Latina Bloggers Connect and AT&T.  However, all opinions are my own.

A couple of weeks ago I introduced you to the It Can Wait movement.  The campaign is educating people  on the dangers  and consequences of texting and driving with videos and personal stories of families impacted by texting and driving incidents.   The movement is championed by several carriers and  has enabled millions of people to take a pledge and make an important lifelong decision for their safety.   The primary goal of the It Can Wait movement is to save lives.  I learned that people who read and send messages are more likely to be in a crash than those that don’t.   I also learned the summer months between Memorial Day and Labor Day—known as the 100 Deadliest Days on the roads for teen drivers.

 

Drive Mode Application

I was able to test a simulation application, AT & T Drive mode app a couple weeks ago and to learn the impact that texting and driving can have on our life.     The texting and driving simulator app is a great way to experience first hand the difficultly someone can have driving a vehicle when texting.

The application is easy to install and test.  The driving & texting simulator  is very realistic and provides real life scenarios of texting and driving.  While testing the application I had a conversation with my young adult child who informed me that it is very common for teen drivers to text and drive.  After researching for myself I found that over 40% of teens text and drive.  

 

You can test the application by yourself  or with  friend at www.itcanwaitsimulator.org.   The application will send you a series of text messages and let you test drive a car.   I urge you to take the challenge by yourself, with friends or your entire family.  Take a couple of minutes today to set an example within your family and community and take the pledge.

Join the movement by sharing your story or trying our online texting while driving simulator.    Go to  www.itcanwait.com and take the no-texting-and-driving pledge and commit to refrain from texting and driving.  For additional information regarding the It Can Wait movement you can follow them on Twitter (#itcanwait) and Facebook at www.facebook.com/ItCanWaitNoTextingWhileDriving.

 

Giveaway

You have the opportunity to win an It Can Wait gift pak.  The gift pak includes a Blackberry Q10 to use with any carrier, a tote bag, a tshirt, magnet.

Just follow these instructions for an opportunity to win:

1. Visit the It Can Wait movement at www.itcanwait.com and let me know what you learned in the comments below.

2. Take the It Can Wait Pledge at www.itcanwait.com and let me know that you did it by commenting below.

3. Share the pledge at www.itcanwait.com and and let me know how you did it by commenting below.

4. Tweet the following:

@Eva_Smith I made a lifelong decision on my safety and took the #ItCanWait Pledge: http://bit.ly/1aPP64A

NOTE:  You can share or tweet an entry once a day.   The winner will be selected randomly.  The giveaway is open to all US residents, 18 and older.  Giveaway ends September  22 at 11:59pmPST.

 

Five Safe Teen Driving Tips

Disclosure:  This is a sponsored post by Latina Bloggers Connect and AT&T.  However, all opinions are my own.

 

Did you know that 75% of teens say that texting and driving is common among other teens? I’ve never witnessed anyone I know texting and driving, but if I did, I would tell them it can wait.  Texting and driving can be fatal, but too many people ignore it.

20130823-231740.jpg

According to statistics over 100,000 accidents occur every year as a result of texting and driving. When most people hear about the statistics, many ignore the facts because it doesn’t affect them. However, as parents and teens who share the road it is an issue that does affect all of us.

AT&T has partnered with several champions to bring awareness to the dangers of texting and driving via the It Can Wait  website.  Since the It Can Wait movement was launch in 2009, more than 2 million pledges have been logged via the website, social sites, facebook and events.   The movement has made a difference in saving lives.  The website has a lot of resources to help teen drivers and adults understand the risks of texting and driving.  

Here are 5 steps parents and teens can take to become safer drivers. 

1. Read the stories of real people affected by texting and driving.

2. Watch the videos of people whose lives were changed in an instant.  The people in the videos are not actors.  The incidents described in the videos really happened.  The videos are available in english and spanish.

3. Take the Pledge.    Go to  www.itcanwait.com and take the no-texting-and-driving pledge and commit to refrain from texting and driving.  

4. Get Involved.  You can also share your promise with others via Twitter (#itcanwait) and Facebook at www.facebook.com/ItCanWaitNoTextingWhileDriving.

5. Spread the word.  No text is worth the risk.  Take action to educate others about the risks of texting and driving.  If you are having a hard time sharing your concerns about texting and driving with friends and/or family, share these resources.   It can wait.  

I decided to get involved with this campaign because I want to help educate others about the risks of texting and driving.   If these resources change one life it will make a difference in the safety of everyone around us. I’m looking forward to standing along side you to make a difference in our communities.

 

 

 

 

 

Question:  Did you visit the website and take the pledge? Will you share the resources with people you know?

Villa Metro Community Grand Opening

Disclaimer:  This is a sponsored post.  However, all opinions are my own.

 

Do you enjoy touring model homes?  I certainly do!  The New Home Company, Villa Metro is a new community of 315 homes featuring contemporary Mediterranean-inspired architecture and sustainable building practices.  The small-town vibe master planned community is located in Santa Clarita Valley and has several amenities including parks, 30 miles of walking trails, recreational gym facilities and easy access to Southern California’s regional rail network, Metrolink.  

Buying a home to raise a family is one of the most important decisions a couple makes.  Villa Metro provides several home buying options to help young families make home buying decisions to meet their family needs.  In addition to the 9 model homes, the community features top notch schools, access to shopping on Main Street, a family friendly pool and tot lot.   Picture your family playing in the park, swimming at the pool, or hiking the walking trails. 

 

Join us on Saturday, August 17, from 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m., as we celebrate and showcase the model community in true Southern California fashion – with food, fun, giveaways and prizes.  Tour  the 9 model homes and see if a  home suits your family needs.   In addition to model home tours, the mediterranean street fair will feature live music, face painting, kids crafts and many Greek-inspired bites and refreshments.  There will also be several giveaway! I’m looking forward to celebrating the addition of this community under the sun.

So come on out and bring the kids and experience what life feels like in #Awesometown.

When:

Saturday, August 17, 2013, 10:00 a.m.- 4:00 p.m.

Where:

21853 Soledad Canyon Rd. Santa Clarita, CA 91350

Directions:

To get to the street festival Exit 1-5 at Valencia Boulevard and continue onto Soledad Canyon Road until you make a left on Prima Way. Follow the signage to the recreation center and model homes.

For additional information:

Facebook:

www.facebook.com/VALENCIAcalifornia

Twitter:

@ValenciaSoCal #VillaMetro #Awesometown

 

 

Question:  What is the most important feature you look for when  buying a home? 

 

Ford EcoBoost Challenge in Pasadena, California

#Ford Escape #ecoboostchallenge #pasadena via ...

#Ford Escape #ecoboostchallenge #pasadena via catalinainla

Have a need for speed?  I got my fix the other day during the Ford EcoBoost Challenge at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena.  It was part of their 13-city tour across the nation where Ford challenges drivers to put their cars up to the test with their competitors.  Bold move Ford.

Since I don’t know how to drive a manual transmission, I took 2 loops around the Performance Academy Track in a Focus ST with a professional racecar driver.  Can you say, WAHOOOO?!!!  (By the way, thanks for the new hairdo.)  I fell in-love with this spunky little car for its smooth comfortable ride and great torque.  The Focus ST took command of the road as we sped along the track, hugging each corner tightly with ease.  I was equally impressed with its ability to pick-up speed.  This engineering comes from the 2.0L EcoBoost engine paired with a 270lb peak torque and 252 horsepower.

#Ford #ecoboostchallenge #pasadena via catalin...

#Ford #ecoboostchallenge #pasadena via catalinainla

Following the Focus ST thrill ride, I smoothed my hair down while strolling over to the EcoBoost Challenge.  All four cars I drove in this round were automatic, so I drove myself.  First off was the Honda CR-V, which was okay.  It struggled to wrap the corners and it had a sluggish acceleration.  Then I slipped into the 2014 Escape – it was without a doubt a much better ride.  Again I noted similar results when driving the Toyota and comparing it to the 2013 Fusion.  Out of all four cars tested, I enjoyed the 2013 Fusion for its ability to hug cornerners unlike the larger profile vehicles.  Clearly, I love smaller cars – with fabulous torque!

Moving on to the Hypermile Challenge, I sat behind the wheel of the incredibly quiet C-Max Hybrid. Vroom, vroom?  Fuel efficiency is high on my “must have” list.  Unfortunately some hybrids still don’t measure up to the strength that its gas loving counterparts excel in.  As with the other vehicles, the EcoBoost technology is the same in the C-Max Hybrid giving it an added bonus of fuel efficiency with a 47 MPG city/hwy.  Wow!

The Ford EcoBoost Challenge is open to the public for FREE!  All drivers have to do is sign-up, here.  Below is a list of the next Ford EcoBoost Challenge:

• August 17 – New York City, Citi Field
• August 24 – Charlotte, Charlotte Motor Speedway
• September 7 – Atlanta, Turner Field
• September 7 – Dallas, Cowboys Stadium
• September 14 – Orlando, Orange County Convention Center
• September 14 – Houston, Sam Houston Race Park
• September 21 – Miami, Gulfstream Park
• September 21 – Minneapolis/St. Paul, Canterbury Park

Put the pedal to the metal and have fun!!

*Disclaimer: All opinions expressed are my own.  Information referenced is based on Ford’s EcoBoost Challenge event program and website.

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Monster’s University Now Enrolling in Summer 2013

 

We had the opportunity to attend a screening of Monster’s University this past weekend.  The movie is a prequel to the 2001 Monsters, Inc. hit.  The long awaited 3-D movie sequel is set on the campus of Monster’s University and explores the relationship between Sulley and Michael when they were at Monster’s University pursuing an education at Scare School.

The plot, movie setting in the college campus and references to college traditions such as the rivalry between college students is also addressed.  The movie also has a lot of silliness, laughter, comedy and lessons learned.

The film will definitely be another Disney-Pixar classic.  My children watched Monster’s Inc when they were youth and now that they are college aged kids they enjoyed it as well in 3-D.  This is also a great movie for families to watch together and talk about the life lessons learned afterwards.   I applaud Disney-Pixar for providing a realistic  and amusing storyline and making the ending a heartfelt lesson.  The movie made me smile, tear up and laugh out loud.

TITLE: “Monsters University”

CREDITS: Directed by Dan Scanlon; written by Mr. Scanlon, Robert L. Baird and Daniel Gerson.

CAST:  Billy Crystal ( Mike – Voice), John Goodman (Sullivan -Voice), Steve Buscemi (Randy – Voice), Helen Mirren (Dean Hardscrabble – Voice),  Peter Sohn (Squishy – Voice)

RATING: G

KID APPROPRIATE: YES

RUNNING TIME: 110 minutes.

OVERALL RATING:  9

TRIVIA:

  • The first prequel to a Pixar film. 
  • Doug Sweetland, who directed the Pixar short Presto, was originally set to direct Monsters University, before being replaced with Dan Scanlon
  • Mike’s parents were originally planned to be included in the story. They would drop Mike off for his first day at Monsters University. However, director Dan Scanlon decided to drop them from the finished film to make Mike seem just that much more vulnerable. 
  • This is the second ever “college” themed film to receive a “G” rating, the first being another Disney film, College Road Trip
  • Professor Knight’s lecture hall is room A113, a reference to a room at CalArts where animation classes are taught. All Pixar films have a reference to “A113”. 

 

 

Celebrate Quality Childcare And Win a Gift Basket #QualityECE

 

Last month I  introduced you to First 5 LA’s, Ready Set Grow program,  a nonprofit that educates parents on  the importance of Quality Care in their children’s lives.    To help parents who need to find someone to watch after their child during these early development years, First 5 LA has launched “Quality Child Care Lasts a Lifetime,” a campaign aimed at informing parents about the life-long benefits of quality early care and education and tips to help them make informed decisions. 

Did you know that children that receive quality childcare are more likely to develop social and learning skills at a younger age?  According to First 5 LA, many parents are not aware the first 5 years of their child’s life may determine the level of success they will reach as adults. It also helps children maintain a better relationship with other children, teachers and adults.  The benefits of early quality childcare continue into adulthood!

The most valuable resource you can provide for your child is a safe and educational environment to stimulate their learning and growth.  As a young mom I didn’t have the type of resources readily available to parents today to make important decisions about child care.  However, I’m thankful  that a resource such as Ready Set Grow exists to help educate many parents on the importance of being proactive when making decisions on your child’s care.

For additional resources stay connected with Ready. Set. Grow via Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/readysetgrowla,   You can also follow the conversation via Twitter by following  @ReadySetGrowLA  or  via  #QualityECE hashtag

 

Giveaway

To celebrate the importance of quality care, Ready Set Grow will provide one of my readers with a learning materials gift basket.

The Ready Set Grow Gift Basket includes the following 10 items:

1-Lap chalkboard
1-Box of chunky chalk
1-Chalk board eraser
1-Small red ball
1-First 5 LA Family guide
1-Penmanship booklet
1-Bilingual “Colors/Colores” book
1-“My Shinning Star” book in English
1-“Tu eres mi Estrella” book in Spanish
1-Harry the Otter book

Please follow the instructions to enter to win:

 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

Disclosure:   This is part of a compensated campaign with  ReadySetGrowLA.org and Smith New Media.   However, all opinions expressed are my own

Wordless Wednesday: New Beginnings

Welcome to Wordless Wednesday! This weeks topic is new beginnings.

I’ve always been a woman that juggles many projects at once, a multitasking mom.  However, during the Spring I take a step back and revaluate myself to ensure that I’m headed in the right direction.  I make sure that I’m taking care of my job and my family, but most important my well being.   I review my entrepreneurial goals to ensure I am not wasting my time on projects that will not help me grow.   I reconnect with friends to ensure we don’t lose touch.    Similar to a garden I prune the dead branches and pluck out the weeds so that all that remains is a beautiful blossom. 

 

Question:  When was the last time you reevaluated yourself so that all that remained is a beautiful blossom?

Tech Tuesday: Balancing Technology, Health & Fitness

As many of us know it takes a lot of time to manage a Social Media, Blogging and Influencer Presence.  However, lately I’ve been feeling a little overwhelmed with work commitments, blogging deadlines and home responsibilities so I decided to do things a little different.  This week I’m going to put some curves in my routine and schedule more ME time.  That’s right, more ME time.  When I started to write this post I was feeling a bit guilty but the more I thought about it I realized that I need to work smarter and not harder.   I need to find apps to help me balance my technology, health and fitness goals.

 

balancing_health_fitness

 

Technology

I’m going to start looking for more technology apps and resources to automate and streamline a lot of the tasks:

  1. Ring it Up app to create invoices on the fly whether I’m the road or taking a break.
  2. Checklist to create checklist for the home, work and entrepreneurship responsibilities. 
  3. Evernote to help me capture my ideas & memories on my mobile phone.
  4. Go Daddy to help me search and purchase domain names.  Yes. I collect domain names.
  5. Yahoo to manage my email overload.
  6. Cohuman to help me prioritize deadlines and delegate tasks.  
  7. WordPress app to help me draft blog post, especially posts that only take a minute to write such as a Wordless Wednesday.   
Health & Fitness
My current fitness passion is Zumbaa.   My membership at an all Womens gym is coming to a close and I’m considering joining a gym that has all the things I love like quiet spaces for women to work out and a separate area for instructor led classes.  I’m really looking forward to this new adventure.   While I wait to find the perfect gym I’m also going to invest in some Smartphone Health & Fitness apps:
  1. MyFitnessPal to track my calorie count and help me plan healthy meals
  2. Lose it! app to journal and track calories goals.
  3. iTreadmill to track steps, distance, speed, calories burned & more
  4. Noom.  Also a great calorie counting app.  However, the coach on this app is really cool.  He’ll send you daily tasks, fun challenges and fun challenges to meet fitness goals.
The next time I get ready to sit in front of the computer, I’m going to ask myself this question:
Sit in front of the computer all night on Social Media OR Extreme Zumbaa fitness?
That’s right I’m picking fitness baby! Zumbaaaaaaaaa!

 

Question:  What cool apps help you balance Tech, Health & Fitness?  How do you make room for fitness with your busy schedule?

Join Us For Help A Mother Out Facebook Chat #HAMO

Did you know 22% of all children under five years old in the U.S. live in poverty and one out of every three families struggle to afford diapers.  These statistics are overwhelming! Access to diapers is a critical resource because it helps prevent the spread of infectious diseases.   Healthy kids don’t have painful diaper rash, fever, loss of appetite or vomiting, herpes, staphylococci, urinary tract infections, jaundice or renal failure. Clean diapers make the whole family smile.

On Wednesday, March 6 at 11am several influential women will be joining forces for a Help A Mother Out, KarmaWell Facebook Chat.  We’ll be discussing parenthood and shopping (and charity too!)  It will be fun and good for your soul.

 

Help A Mother Out is a charity that is near and dear to my heart because they do so may positive things to help families in need.   Help a Mother Out (HAMO for short) was formed with $100 in the spring of 2009 in reaction to media reports about the economic crisis’s effect on young children, families, and mothers, in particular the growing numbers of homeless children and families in California. Reaching out to San Francisco Bay Area shelters, co-founders Lisa Truong and Rachel Fudge learned that the number-one need was not baby blankets, clothing, or even food but diapers—which are not covered under social-safety net programs like WIC or food stamps. So they decided to organize a Mother’s Day diapers-and-wipes donation drive to benefit a dozen agencies serving low-income and homeless families throughout California.  Today they collect and donate hundreds  of thousands of diapers to families in need.  1,042,452 diapers since May, 2009!

 

Facebook Chat Details

What: KarmaWell joins HAMO to chat about shopping, motherhood, charity donations, and the Karma Well app

When: Wednesday, March 6, 11:00 AM ­ 12:00 PM Pacific Time

Where: HAMO’s Facebook Page: http://www.facebook.com/helpamotherout

RSVP HERE:  Help A Mother Out Facebook Chat

Why: Because We Need Your Help. You can change lives.  Invest in women and children.

Who to follow: 

Kate Wilkinson ­ Founder RetroModernMom.com
Ana L. Flores – Co­Founder SpanglishBaby.com / Founder Latina Bloggers Connect, Inc
Yvonne Condes – Editor and co­Founder of MomsLA.com
Eva Smith ­ – Editor Tech Food Life Blog / Entrepreneur
Heather Flett and Whitney Moss ­ Rookie Moms
Kim Tracy Prince ­ HAMO Los Angeles Chapter Manager
Lisa Truong ­ HAMO co­founder

More About KarmaWell:

KarmaWell has partnered with HAMO to do this Facebook chat. Karma Well is an app you install on your desktop browser that will make it so that any time you make a purchase on a website, a percentage of your purchase is automatically donated to the charity of your choice.

Have You Tried the Abdominal Stretch?

Are you looking for the best fitness routines with exercise? The California Milk Processor Board recently launched a new series of ten (10) Hazlo Ejercicio video segments to encourage you to incorporate exercise into your daily routine. The video segments will air on Despierta America every weekday morning from January 7th to January 18th between 7 am and 8 am (PST). The trainer and his assistant will show you how to do fun and easy exercises that you can do at home.

If you miss a segment, you can always visit Hazloejercicio.com to watch more easy-to-do exercise videos and share them with your friends.

Today I learned how to do the abdominal stretch. I get to tighten my abdomen and get a pedicure at the same time.   It’s a lot harder than it looks, but it is a lot of fun.  The best part of all is that I get to tighten up my abdomen and get a pretty pedi at the same time.  I like to refer to my exercise as a “pedi-crunch” or “Adominal pedi”.    The exercise is a lot of fun.  After I complete my exercise  I drink a glass of milk to refuel & recover.  How is that for multi-tasking?

I’ve been following the videos for the past 2 weeks and they’re easy and fun to do alone or with a companion.  The best part is that it makes exercise fun.  I’m start to feel the results!

 

 

This is part of a sponsored campaign with the California Milk Processor Board and Latina Mom Bloggers. However, all opinions expressed are my own.

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