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Lifestyle HUMOR from The Rebel Housewife: Anecdotes, observations, experiences
On LIFE AT 30 & BEYOND: kids, family, men, BOOKS, cars, pets, tattoos...NASCAR, Aspergers/Autistic Spectrum Disorder, Virtual/Home Schooling, teenagers, Navy Mom...




Monday
May062013

Happy Mother's Day - Kindle-tastic! $20 OFF

In case you are still looking for the perfect last-minute gift for Mother's Day -- or Graduation! -- I've just heard from a very good source:
This week there is a DEAL on Kindle Fire HD for Mother's Day. The 7" Kindle Fire HD will be $179 ($20 off) until Mother's Day (May 12th). The promo code is FIRE4MOM at checkout on Amazon.com.
Here's a pic of my (reluctant) first Kindle -- and an excellent suggestion for
the perfect first book for Mom's Kindle:
The Rebel Housewife Rules: To Heck With Domestic Bliss! -- also on sale!

And, for my personal take on Kindle (which I now find I can't live without), enjoy:

Rebel Review - Kindle: Love or Hate?


Why Gift Kindle for Mom This Year?

  • Mom is busy and works hard. She deserves a few minutes of me-time! Kindle Paperwhite is a great accessory for busy moms -- Paperwhite fits in her purse and connects effortlessly to another world between the pages of Mom’s favorite book or magazine, not to mention the millions of books available in the Kindle Store (including all the best-selling classics Mom loves). Plus, she won’t keep Dad awake at night with Paperwhite’s unique front-lit e-ink technology; she can read in bed without disturbing his snooze!
  • She could use an extra hand (or two) around the house. Kindle Fire HD 7" and 8.9" are Mom’s favorite helpers, offering the ability to stream cooking videos while playing chef and choose from countless apps and books that keep her up to speed with the latest organizational tips, how-to guides, cookbooks and inspirational novels.
  • Mom already has enough to worry about. Kindle FreeTime for the Kindle Fire family is practically a built-in babysitter for Mom, allowing her to create customized profiles for the kids which allot specific times for what they are allowed to read, how long they can play games for, and more.
  • She could use a vacation (understatement of the year). Whether she's planning a vacation or stay-cation, Amazon Kindle is Mom's ultimate travel companion -- cute, compact (weighs less than a paperback) and #1 on her what to pack list. Kindle’s e-ink technology is a dream on the beach, with no glare. And, if she can only make it to backyard pools this year, she’ll still feel like she’s escaping when she gets lost in her Kindle.
Don't forget! promocode FIRE4MOM - Kindle Fire HD 7" $20 OFF until Mother's Day:
Tuesday
Apr232013

Non-techie Live Blogging: Can Big Data Mitigate Threats?

Tuesday
Apr232013

Live Blogging Adventures: Big Data Week


In a week that includes my 7th grade virtual school student going to a very real-world testing location every day to take the Georgia CRCTs...AND my crazy mother packing up and moving from Georgia to Washington State...AND my 10th grade daughter conquering the world with power smashes and aced serves, playing high school varsity tennis as a sophomore -- and winning! -- in the state championship preliminaries...all this week...

It's also BIG DATA WEEK:ATLANTA!!!
Hosted by Emcien Corp, a company with which I am intimately involved.
[Disclosure: My husband is a co-founder and the Chief Technology Officer of Emcien.]

This is a Very Big Deal, on a level that I, as a non-techie, could not have expected, in terms of international scope, big-corporate participation, the calendar of activities scheduled, and the number of people involved and so very, very enthusiastic about the Next New Thing in Technology: Big Data.

Big Data is everything, from the location & use of your cellphone, to online transactions, to what you put in your shopping cart at the grocery store, to healthcare, to your social media activities. It is mind-boggling, and in many ways downright creepy, how much information is out there, the extent of our individual & collective digital footprint, and how that information can be used.

So, in the midst of CRCTs, State high school tennis competition, and my crazy mom, counting down the days to high school graduation (exactly 30) and my oldest son's departure to the Navy (OMG, exactly 60 days from today)...I am visiting the World of Big Data and live blogging my experiences as a non-techie writer in the techie world. Adventures indeed:



Wednesday
Feb272013

School Shooting - Live Blog Tomorrow

I will update with the link to the Live Blog tomorrow:
Tuesday
Feb262013

Family Cruising - Risk & Reward

Family Cruising - Risk & Reward


by Sherri Caldwell - The Rebel Housewife® - All Rights Reserved.

For more information, contact sherri@rebelhousewife.com.




It happens every time?!?!



December 2011: We got back home on Christmas Day from a fantastic five-night family cruise adventure on Royal Caribbean’s Liberty of the Seas from Fort Lauderdale, Florida to Haiti and Jamaica. Three weeks later, we were horrified to see twenty-four hour news coverage of the Carnival (parent company) Costa Concordia disaster -- the huge luxury liner (so similar to the one we had just been on) ran aground, fell over and partially sank off the coast of Italy. Captain’s error was ultimately found responsible, compounded by uncoordinated and chaotic emergency response and rescue procedures. With 4,200 lives aboard, 32 were lost.

In spite of the risks and dangers brought home by that cruise disaster, the success of our first family cruise led to our second cruise, one year later. We cruised again, because, as it turns out, cruising is, for our family of five, the perfect family vacation with teenagers. And, as my husband points out, it is still safer than the results of an airplane mishap 30,000 feet in the air.

December 2012: We enjoyed an incredible seven-night cruise on the Norwegian Star: New Orleans to Costa Maya, Mexico; to Belize; to Roatan, Honduras; and Cozumel. Our second cruise was near-perfect, with the exception of bad weather, severe wind and high waves in Cozumel, forcing cancellation of all water excursions, including our underwater mini-sub adventure. It seemed like a disaster at the time, albeit a small one, quickly remedied by riding out the storm in port at Señor Frog’s Cozumel, drinking (sodas)(of course)(for the kids, anyway), noshing chips & salsa and playing UNO™.








Perhaps we tempted fate, as we landed in Cozumel on 12/21/12 -- the last day of the Mayan calendar and, some believed, maybe the “End of The World.” All was well, even with big ocean swells all the way back from Cozumel. On the Norwegian Star, cruise staff were well-prepared and took care of sea-sick passengers, dispensing free Dramamine at Guest Services and strategically placing barf-bags throughout the ship. They closed off access to the pool deck and the exterior walkways to prevent mishap. All was well.

We got back December 23rd, to be home in time for Christmas 2012. Eight weeks later, a new cruise disaster captivated the media’s attention and airtime, after an engine room fire on the Carnival Triumph disabled the ship 175 miles off the Yucatan Peninsula. Ultimately, the ship was pushed (slowly) by tug boats into port in Mobile, Alabama. The 4,000 cruise passengers and employees suffered 5 long days of horror without power, in the heat and darkness, low on food and with deplorable sanitary conditions, as toilets overflowed. No one died, but no one would argue this would have been a truly miserable vacation.

Will this stop us from cruising?

No one died. People have survived much worse, for much longer: in captivity, hijackings, pirates, surviving the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina in the Super Dome in New Orleans. All of the cruise ship passengers will be compensated for their Vacation From Hell.

It helps to know the realistic risks and what you might do to avoid or survive in a similar set of circumstances. Believe me, it’s something we have talked about, more than two times.

What could you do? What do we do?

Family Cruising: SAFETY PRECAUTIONS


  1. Reserve outside cabins above -- well above -- the water level.

  2. Take the first-day lifeboat drill and emergency instruction seriously, as a family.

  3. Know where you are supposed to go, in the event of an emergency, and know where everybody is onboard the ship and how to find each other. (Your particular “Muster Station” is indicated on your key card, which you carry with you at all times, even the kids.)

  4. Stay calm and do the best you can. Help others. Make a bad situation better.

  5. Never cruise on Carnival? (I have, but it was 25 years ago, on a very old ship -- never again, since.)

Easier said than done, maybe. But yes, we’ll cruise again. We are already making plans for December 2013. Our biggest concern is choosing between Royal Caribbean and Norwegian Cruise Lines...in our experience, we felt completely safe and prepared for emergencies (as much as you can be), on both of our family cruise adventures. We can hardly wait to cruise again.