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Wednesday, May 4, 2016

How I Prep My Car for Summer

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser.  All opinions are mine alone. #SummerCarCare #CollectiveBias

Summer is my favorite time of year especially when it comes to driving my car.  There's something oddly satisfying about driving my car with the windows down and the music on full blast.  I actually did that the other day when I drove to get a pedicure for myself - summer prep of course because I need to wear cute open toed shoes! Speaking of summer prep, you toenails aren't the only thing that needs to be prepared for the nice weather.  That's why I've put together a post on all the ways I prepare my beloved Honda Civic for summer time!

|Scrub It Down|
Everyone wants to drive a nice shiny car so get out the hose and bucket or head to your nearest car wash.  When washing your car make sure you take your time especially when it comes to rinsing off all the suds so you don't leave spots on your car.  Also, pay attention to your wheels so you can clean any brake dust out of them.  I also hand dry my car so that I don't have water spots.  Trust me, the cleaner the outside of your car is, the more proud you'll be to drive it around this Summer.

|Clean the Inside|
Did you know that some people literally never vacuum out the inside of their car?  That's a scary thought.  Just think of all the dead skin cells, hair, dust, dirt, trash, crumbs, and who knows what else that can be in there.  No wonder some people are a sneezing mess when they drive!!!

Start by dusting the interior surfaces like the dash and steering wheel with a microfiber rag.  I then use water on a new microfiber to go over the dash again and get any residue and dirt off.  This way all the dirt and dust can fall to the floor BEFORE you vacuum. 

Next, clear all the trash out from the inside of your car. If it can be pitched - PITCH IT!   Then you can vacuum everything from the seats to the floor.  I also remove my floor mats so I can clean under them. 

|Check Your Oil|
While you're pampering your car, this is a good time to check the oil level.  Pop your hood and pull out the dip stick to check the levels.  Make sure you're on a flat surface when you do this.  Make sure your oil is at the correct level and consider getting an oil change depending on what your owner's manual says and when you last got one done.

|Check Your Tires|
It's dangerous to drive around with low air pressure in your tires because you can pop one and end up with a flat tire on the side of the road.  Check your owner's manual for the appropriate level and stop by a gas station to use their air machine to fill your tires to the correct levels.

|Replace Your Air Filter|
Air filters are so crucial in a car because it's like the engine's first line of defense.  A clean filter improves the air flow and keeps dirt and dust from getting on and damaging your engine.  Ensuring you have a clean air filter can increase acceleration, horsepower, and overall performance.  The best part is - most air filters can be installed in five minutes or less with a few simple tools.  I picked up a FRAM Extra Guard Air Filter from Walmart. FRAM recommends charing your air filter every 12,000 or once a year.  Make sure you follow recommended change intervals as noted in your own vehicle's owner's manual.    My old one was so filthy. BLECH!!! Replacing it was super easy.  You just have to: 
[] Remove the filter cover by loosening any clips or fasteners.

[] Remove top of Box Cover
[] Take out your old filter. 

[] Clean up any dust or debri left behind.
[] Install new filter and make sure it's pushed in securely.
[] Replace the cover and fasten into place. 



You can find FRAM Extra Guard Air Filters in the Automotive Section at a Walmart Store or Supercenter.

Just remember that taking pride in your car will not only make it look better but it will make you feel better about it.  

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Tuesday, May 3, 2016

10 Reasons I Dread Grocery Shopping

I'm not even kidding with the title of this post.  Over the years I've become more intolerant of grocery shopping and it's not because of the prices at all.  It's the effort and the stuff I gotta deal with when I do it.  So I decided to dedicate an entire post to 10 of the reasons I dread grocery shopping and try to avoid it. I'm serious...I am even growing my own veggies just to cut down on how many trips I have to make. 

1| The parking lot.  I'm serious.  The parking lot at most of the stores I go to for groceries is stressful enough to make me throw hands up and go back home.  Cars are just zipping around, in and out of parking spots as if they don't care if they run over a small child.  People are texting and walking so they don't bother to notice you're waiting for them to cross as they sit there for 10 seconds on their phone.  When people walk down the parking row, they walk 5 wide rather than single file.  Come on, now... I gots to get by... MOVE!

2| No one cares about pedestrians.  Maybe I'm hypocritcal (ha!) but when it's my turn to go through the crosswalk, it's as if I'm invisible.  Sometimes I wonder if I'm already dead and a spirit and that's why no one can see me.  They just go cruising on through, making me want to scream obscenities at them.

3| Carts. UGH, carts.  I always end up getting one with the most ear piercing wheel.  Like can't you hire somebody to repair these stupid ass things?   And if it's not squeaky and loud, it's jerky.  I can't even push it smoothly through the store without feeling like I'm riding a dirt bike.  One time, I got so pissed off that I grabbed my purse out of the cart, shoved it into a random aisle, stomped my way to the front, and grabbed a new one.  Yep, I was a psychopath that day.

4| Produce is always cramped. I swear to God, every freakin time I go to the produce section it's like manuevering through a crevice in a rock.  Move your EFFIN cart so I can get to the bananas people.   It shouldn't be this hard to pick out fruit.  COME ON!!!

5| Aisle hoggers.  They bring their cart into an aisle, see what they need, then leave their cart to get it.  Their cart is in the middle of the aisle so no one can get around on either side.  Then they stand to the side of it to get the item they need. Then they are staring and reading boxes all while I'm standing behind their cart.  Then if I say excuse me they don't hear me.  So by that time I'm livid and I just push their cart out of the way. Whoops.

6| Slow pushers.  It's like slow drivers all over again.  MOVE!!!!!   When you come out of your aisle don't just stand there.   Keep moving so the rest of us can get in.

7| Kids.  Please don't let your kids run back and forth in front of everyone while they are walking through an aisle.   I know it's hell to have to bring kids with you anyways to the grocery store but please at least try and keep them in line.  Sometimes I wonder if I'm the only one that sees these invisible kids because the parents definitely don't even say a word to them. And if it's that impossible to grocery shop without kids, just do grocery delivery.

8| Finding a register.  It's you keep walking to see if there's one with a shorter line?  No, because by the time you go to another line, and see it's too long, you'll turn around to go back to the original and see that more people got in line so now you're just screwed. Pick a line, pick a magazine, and just be patient. 

9| Getting out to your car is a challenge. If it's windy and you have your bags blowing, be prepared to chase sh*t down.  Also, be prepared for people to not look when they are backing out.   Then you have to load your groceries into the car, break a sweat, and realize how bad you smell.   Then if it's summer, you get into a hot ass car and nearly suffocate before you can get the key into the ignition.

10| Maneuvering home.  Not only is it a bitch to get out of the parking lot once again, but every turn you make you can hear your groceries go flying. Then it starts to anger you so you by the time you get home you're exhausted and you still have to lug everything in and sweat again and then put it all away.  AHHHHHH!

So now you see why people hate grocery shopping!!!!

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Monday, May 2, 2016

12 Annoying Things Coworkers Do

Working in an office is like nothing else. There are all types of personalities and pet peeves in an office. So today, I'm celebrating all of those by putting together a hopefully relatable post.... 12 things coworkers do to piss you the hell off!

1| They call you right after they send you an email.  Okay, so you just sent me an email and then you call me to tell me that you sent me an email and ask if I read it yet.   No! Knock it off.  Your 2 options are either 1. Turn a read receipt on if you wanna know if I read an email and 2. If you're just gonna call me to tell me what the email said, then don't even bother sending me an email.   Actually, it would be ideal if you just send me an email and wait like a normal person for me to read it and respond.  Phone interruptions are a pain in everyone's ass.

2| Standing at your desk talking for excessive amounts of time.  I do have things to do ya know?   Especially when you have an administrative position you have emails flying in every minute.  But it's cool - continue to stand here telling me about your f&$*ing experience standing in line at the store last night.  COME ON!!!!!!

3| Talking really f*$&%ing loud.  Inside voices please. What are we in frickin kindergarten again? Do I need to ask you to put your head down because you can't follow rules and keep your voice down?

4| Complaining about the smell of food or perfume. Yea like we don't already smell it ourselves.  Sit down like the rest of us. You don't have to run around shouting "do you smell that? Oh my God."  As long as you aren't smelling poop - just shut up.  Oh and if you don't like smelling cologne or perfume, well.. too bad.   It's called personal hygeine.  We like to wear deoderant and perfume.  Get over it!

5| Standing next to someone's cubicle having a personal conversation that doesn't involve them. Hey, can we take that elsewhere? 

6| Judging you for having a second piece of cake.  "Oh look, Susie's having seconds." Yea thanks for noticing, jack ass.  Stop judging me!!!!

7| Judging you for NOT having cake.  I love how people berate the healthy folks that don't want to partake in junk food celebrations.  Good God, talk about peer pressure.  Are you gonna ask me to do drugs with you too? Because you might as well sucker me in to that as well.

8| NOT washing their hands.  Dude, you work in an office.  If you don't wash your hands after you go to the bathroom, people WILL notice and they WILL talk.  So chances are, we all know who you are.  Not only that but how rude, do you really want to get us all sick? Okay, well I'll remember to cough right on your face once I catch something!

9| Making you feel bad for being younger than them.  I'm sorry my parents didn't bump uglies sooner so that I could be born closer to when you were and could understand whatever the hell show you are talking about.  Next time you ask someone if they know about that show, and they say no, there's no need to say "Oh you're way too young." Just be like.. "Oh I must be old as f$*%".

10| Micromanaging everything.  I hate micromanagers.  If you want your employees to get sh*t done, tell them briefly what you want and back off. Sitting at their cube all damn day is not productive.  Calling them 20 times is not productive either.  Having daily meetings is DEFINITELY micromanaging. 

11| Asking someone else before using your own brain.  Okay, so before you ask someone a question, pause, take a deep breathe, and ask yourself if you already know the answer.  Nothing makes you earn the title of "pain in my ass coworker" more than asking a dumb question. Oh and PS - if I have to google something for you, just know that YOU should have already googled it.

12| Coming into work when you're sick.  Really? That's the biggest F U.  Again, I'll be sure to sneeze on your keyboard.

So did I miss anything?

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Tips for Getting the Most Out of Your Test Drive

This review was made possible by iConnect and Autotrader.  I was provided compensation to facilitate this post, but all opinions stated are 100% mine.

Deciding to purchase a car is a big deal but test driving any vehicle before you buy it is vital to any decision.  Of course the next question is, how do you know which vehicles to test drive?  Well, Autotrader has announced the 2016 Must Test Drive Awards to help you with your choices.  They already get the chance to drive lots of cars so they decided to choose 10 vehicles to recommend to consumers for test driving. 

So how did they come up with their list? Well, they look for 3 major things during the test drives which are performance, comfort, and handling.   The vehicles selected are ones that can change the way the consumer perceives the model or even the entire brand. 

So the list of Must Test Drive Vehicles for 2016 is:
2016 Chevrolet Malibu
2016 FIAT 500X
2016 Honda Civic
2016 Kia Sedona
2016 Lincoln MKC
2016 Mercedes-Benz GLC300
2016 Nissan Titan XD
2016 Subaru Legacy
2016 Toyota Prius
2016 Volvo XC90

Soooo can you guess which winner I would most want to test drive? Well, of course the 2016 Honda Civic!  It has a fabulous interior with a very impressive list of available equipment options.  Of course Honda keeps with their best traits of having reasonable pricing, different engine and body style choices, and durability. 

Even if that's not your top pick, you can certainly still find another car from the list that's going to make you happy.  The best way to find out is to test drive it yourself.

With that being said, there are a few things to keep in mind during your test drive. 

Come prepared: Just like how you normally drive a car on a daily basis, you should bring along the people and items you travel with.  So if you have a kid and a car seat, bring them along so you can see how well the seat fits.  If you have kids that play sports make sure they bring all of their gear along so you can really see if the car you're test driving has enough room for you and your family's needs.

Find a new route: Test drives aren't long lasting so you want to make sure you come up with your own route rather than the usual one the salesperson goes on.  Go through neighborhoods, on highways, and feel free to join in on rush hour traffic.  This way you can see if the car does well with stop-and-go traffic or busy highway traffic. 

Embrace rough roads: You always want to make sure a new vehicle is good with tough surfaces so look for the bumpiest route you can.  This is an excellent way to determine if a car has a comfortable or way-too-bumpy ride.

Embrace curves: No, seriously - find the nearest backroad with plenty of curves and pay attention to how the car does on each curve.  Some cars are too top heavy and others make you sick to your stomach.  Make sure you ask your passengers how they feel as well.

Try parking the car: Of course you want to make sure you can fit your car into tight spaces so try parallel parking or backing into a parking spot. 

Technology: If the infotainment system is an option make sure you test the maps and connect your phone to see if it's really easy or not to answer texts, make calls, and interact with your phone. 

So which of these vehicles do YOU want to test drive?

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Friday, April 29, 2016

Chewy 30 Day Challenge [Final Thoughts]

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So this is the final post in my 30-day challenge from Chewy where I fed my Chihuahuas Dr. Tim's Kinesis All Life Stages Food.  They did so well on this food! I am so impressed with the all natural ingredients and the overall smell, texture, and size of the kibble.

I've noticed a great energy level in all of my dogs over the past 4 weeks.  When I'm working out in the basement I can hear them running around chasing each other and wrestling on the floor above me.  Their bodies are definitely full of the proper fuel to allow them to run and play. 

Rocky is no longer a picky eater and he is maintaining a healthy weight which is important since he has a heart condition. 

I am so impressed by Dr. Tim's food and I have been recommending it to several friends.  When you feed a high quality food you get high quality results.  Nutrients get absorbed into the body so they can do all of the things they are supposed to.  They go to the bathroom (number 2 ) just twice a day and honestly, when I forget to clean up after them the rain just washes it away in a few days.  Remember, all natural ingredients means it literally will break down naturally too!

If you are looking for a high quality dog food I suggest Dr. Tim's!

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