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Polyvore + Pinterest = A Cure for Shopping Addiction

Last week, I saw a link to an article about how Pinterest can curb the urge to shop. After I read the title, I knew it was true, at least for me. Since I started using Pinterest in earnest, and combining it with my use of Polyvore, I have shopped significantly less. In fact, I am in danger of losing all my Foursquare mayorships at the mall.

For me, the most therapeutic part of the shopping experience is not the buying, it is the finding. To look through a store and find the one perfect thing I had in mind provides a lovely thrill. Browsing is pretty nice, too. Looking through lots of things to find a hidden gem of something on clearance, or a brand new thing that I have never seen before gives me a great feeling. I can replicate those feelings on Polyvore and Pinterest.

For example, I spent an hour building this set on Polyvore. I knew exactly where to buy several of the things in this set, but now that I have found them, I don't necessarily need to buy them.

My Closet Needs This

 

Well, I do need a denim pencil skirt and some new panties.


What I wore... on Polyvore

What I Wore: 1/13/12

 

You've no doubt heard of Pinterest by now. I really like it. (Leave me your email in the comments if you need an invite.) But, Polyvore, have you heard of that one? That is really starting to suck me in. Lately, I have been recording what I wear each day. I've used it to help a friend choose accessories for an event. I've also created sets of things I love (bags, boots, rings).

I'll be posting my outfits here as well, but please follow me at Polyvore if you use it.


What I've Been Reading (Links Galore)

After I finished the Hunger Games Trilogy, I moved on to the Vampire Academy series. Hunger Games kept me hooked from start to finish and was excellent. I recommend it to anyone, unless you are staunchly against post-apocalyptic fiction. I didn't take to the Vampire Academy series right away. Once I got into the second half of the first book, though, I found it entertaining. There is one book left in that series, which will be released in December. Yesterday, I started reading The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin on the Kindle app on my iPhone.

Online, here are the things I have read and bookmarked:

Cheap Styling Products for Curly Hair [That Work]

A list of popular weight loss surgery posts on Journey to a Healthier Me

Roundup: Social Media Monitoring Tools

 


10 Tips for BlogHer '11

I returned home from BlogHer '10 today. One year from now I am not going to remember nine out of ten of the following tips, so this is really more of a note to self than anything else.

  1. Bring Tums
  2. Go Wednesday to Sunday, but leave late on Sunday and take Monday off of work
  3. Wear your hair up for parties because it gets HOT in there
  4. Eat before parties because you will DRINK
  5. Or, skip the parties and do more things in town with your friends
  6. Bring your own Diet Pepsi because the dude at the Diet Pepsi booth is only handing out samples as if there was a single person at the conference who might be thinking, "Hey, I wonder what Diet Pepsi tastes like."
  7. Attend some sessions, you jackass
  8. Bring pre-cut moleskin strips (again) to prevent blisters on your feet even though you brought comfortable shoes to wear
  9. Scope out all hair, make-up, and spa services as early as possible because they have sign-up times that fill up quickly
  10. Don't share a bed

Bonus tip: Get new luggage. That $15 carry-on you bought at Sam's Club in 1995 has reached the end of its life.

Related: 10 Things: A Very Short Guide to BlogHer


31 Days in October, 31 Posts on the Opinions Blog

I've had 31 opinions in the last five minutes, so there is really no excuse for the neglected state of this blog. To get it going again, I have decided that I will put a new post every day in October. I have a couple DVD reviews coming up (and a giveaway), some product reviews, some opinions about marriage and family, and hopefully answers to some reader questions.

Need an opinion about something? Ask away.


Tim Gunn Has a Peeve

At the BlogHer conference, in the expo hall, Tide and Bounce had a booth. On day two of the conference, they had Tim Gunn of Project Runway there autographing headshots and getting his picture taken with fans. I have only seen Project Runway and that other makeover show he did a few times, so I was planning to go to a session, but my friends wanted to meet him and I wanted to hang out with them, so I waited in line with them. Some of those ladies were crazy nuts to meet Tim Gunn. One lady just about had an orgasm when he said he liked her outfit.

When it was my turn, he said hello, and I think he shook my hand. He asked my name and how to spell it. I asked him to please make it out to Joanne instead since she LOVES him but was not attending the conference. After that, I didn't really have anything to say to him. He asked me what my blog was about. I told him The Peevery is a group blog where we post about all the little things irritate us. He thought that was funny.

See? He's cracking up. It was all in my delivery.

Michelle, you are so hilarious!

I said, "We have a fashion category. One of Joanne's biggest pet peeves is words on asses." He cocked his head to the side a little, like, "Huh?" and I said, "Like Juicy Couture where it says 'Juicy' across the ass."

Tim Gunn lit up and said, "Don't get me started. It's ridiculous! Ridiculous!" Then we posed for our official picture. I might use this as my Christmas card this year. Even though I am mortified at my hideous outfit which will never be worn again.

I'd just had a baby four weeks earlier.

After our picture was taken, he asked me what my blog URL was so that he could visit it because he thought it was funny. That's when I had my orgasm.

Tim, don't cyberstalk me.

(Thanks to Kate the Peon for taking a picture right at the moment he asked me for the blog URL.)


I Met Tim Gunn Wearing K-Mart Pants and Other Totally True Adventures from BlogHer 09

The main reason I went to BlogHer was to meet some of the Peevers who have been posting on The Peevery (my main blog, for those of you who are new here) for years and who I have never met in person. I was hoping to meet more readers but I was only able to connect with Neilochka from Citizen of the Month. There were five of us Peevers there; three at the conference and two galavanting around town.

If I had gone alone, I would have had an entirely different, much more boring experience. I am not outgoing when it comes to meeting new people and I doubt I would have met any who hadn't spoken to me first. I wouldn't even have had as good of a time as I did walking the expo floor, because I was with Jen14221 most of the time and she talks to EVERYONE. Thanks to her, I found out way more stuff from the exhibitors and I got way more stuff from the exhibitors. This is where I admit to being a whore for free stuff. I am so aware of this aspect of my personality that I packed an extra bag to bring home all the free stuff I was going to get. And I shipped a box of free stuff home. (It arrived today. Yay!)

I am not a mommyblogger and I will admit to being as judgy about some of them as the bloggers to whom I linked in the previous post. For instance, the lady who let her baby crawl on the floor of the airport, and the lady who breastfed her baby while standing in the middle of the ballroom during a morning keynote, and the snotty bitches in the elevator who couldn't even be bothered to smile back after they returned from their fancy private sponsor party.

The highlights of the conference for me had little to do with the conference itself other than the fact that it made these moments possible.

Highlights:

I had dinner with Joanne, Kate the Peon, Jen14221, and Blaugra at Frontera Grill. I'd seen Rick Bayless on Top Chef Masters and wanted to eat at Topolobampo, which had been named the best restaurant in America, but it seemed too fancy so we went to the more accessible Frontera Grill. I ate the tongue tacos he won with on Top Chef. Delish! Blaugra and Joanne even tried them after some bullying by me.

I saw my schoolfriend, Liz (BabyBlooze), who was there with HP, a corporate sponsor of BlogHer 09.

I had my hair styled at the Sauve booth by Anna Vidito of Lukaro salon in Beverly Hills. She taught me a fantastic and totally easy technique for making my wavy hair look polished, instead of messy like it normally looks. I will be going to Anna for my cuts from now on.

I got a picture of Rick Bayless at the National Pork Board booth. I was going to tell him how much I enjoyed the tongue tacos but some food blogger was hogging his time and I didn't feel like sticking around.

I picked up all kinds of swag that is totally useful: deodorant, hair styling products, a cold Diet Pepsi, cute Playskool toys, Strawberry Shortcake dolls, Mr. Potato Head, nylon reusable shopping bags.

I entered to win prizes that would be totally useful if I managed to win any of them: laptop, vaccum cleaner, washer and dryer, and someone to come to my house every week for a year to do my laundry. Seriously.

I met Tim Gunn and he wants to read my blog. (That is going to be a post of its own, coming soon.) And, yes, I was wearing K-Mart pants when I met him. Boo hoo.

I got a picture of Paula Deen at the Wal-Mart booth but, I swear, more people wanted to meet her than Tim Gunn and there was no way I was going to even get close enough to say hi.

I drove around Chicago with Blaugra in a new Chevrolet Camaro thanks to Chevrolet and MotherProof.com who brought various Chevrolet vehicles to the event.

I met up with a friend from high school who lives in Chicago and found out I was there from one of my Facebook status updates. It was great catching up.

I drank lots of free booze.

The best part, though, was getting to meet Blaugra and Jen14221 in person, and seeing Kate the Peon and Joanne again. We've been online pals for years through The Peevery and we had a great time together in person. I hope we can make this an annual thing, whether at BlogHer or not.


BlogHer Recap of the Recaps

Why would I want to read recaps of a conference that I actually attended? Because BlogHer is a two-day hyper-stimulating, activity-filled, mega-adventure that would be impossible for any one person to experience fully. Here are all the recaps I happened across. If you know of any other good ones, please link to them in the comments. Mine will be up soon.

Fellow Peever Blaugra recapped her experience.

Twenty Four at Heart had a great time and is going back next year.

Angry Julie Monday did the 5K fun run as did my childhood friend BabyBlooze. (I saw my friend at this conference for the first time since 1991... I think. It was great reconnecting in person.)

Fresh Vintage recapped day one but not day two. She sells cool vintage stuff on Etsy and had a display table at the conference.

Neilochka recapped his experience including the session he presented on storytelling.

This guy says it's not a lecture about how frivolous your blog and life are but it kind of seems like it is.

This lady says the marketers behaved themselves while some bloggers acted shamefully to get free stuff.

This blogger witnessed the lady involved in the #nikonhatesbabies scuffle that ended up on Twitter and urges you to get your facts straight before you participate. (MWW/Nikon respond)

This newish blogger seems a little judgy about people who like free stuff and people who would rather go to a session about writing than activism. I was actually out driving the Camaro that Chevy brought to the even during that session, guzzling gas like there was no tomorrow.

This arm was manhandled by other bloggers trying to get at free stuff.

Some loser tried to blackmail the Crocs guy because he ran out of Crocs and she wanted a free pair. To that I say, "What? There were free Crocs?"

More mommyblogger discontent from this lady, but she was glad she saw her friends.

This one says she isn't being judgy but she kind of is and she no longer wants to be associated with mommybloggers.

Maybe we should take a moment to remember that it takes all kinds of people to make the world go 'round.

This blogger brought her baby and had a pleasant experience.

This lady doesn't like to label herself - I think I have peeved about that before; I love labels - so don't even think about calling her a mommyblogger because all mommybloggers are greedy swaghounds with no sense of decency. Or something.

This blogger was disappointed and didn't find people with whom she could connect.

This lady and her friend met Paula Deen.

This professional blogger had a positive experience and links to other bloggers who already have nine billion followers.

And, at the end of it all, BlogHer wants to hear from everyone about what to do better next year.


I love Twitter; it just got me cake.

@talleyklotz posted:

Omg!! We just met Chrystal of @KissMyBundt in West LA. She is amazing & so r her bundts! Thank u for talking to us for so long!


I'd heard of this place, but I hadn't been since it is a bit far from the office for a lunchtime jaunt. I clicked on their link and read some of their tweets. When I got to the one about pineapple upside down cake being on the menu today, I texted Amy (@talleyklotz) as fast as I possibly could to ask her if she would get one for me if she was still there. I think she had already left but had purchased a mini bundt in that flavor that she would save just for me. End result is the same: Twitter got me cake.


Online Coupon Codes

When shopping online, I never have an online coupon code provided to me by the store at which I am shopping, so it's a good thing that I can just Google it. If you haven't done this before, you are really missing out on some savings. I just saved 25% off an online shopping order by Googling "Avenue coupon codes." Wherever you are shopping, before you checkout, type the name of the store plus "coupon codes" into Google. You might have to pick through some sites before you find a code that looks valid and applies to your situation, but it is worth a few minutes of your time. I don't have loyalty to a particular site, but retailmenot.com has been coming up a lot in my searches lately.


Matt Nathanson and Corey Smith on Pandora

Last year, I recommended Pandora Internet Radio for worktime listening. At the time, I was primarily listening to my Gin Blossoms station. An artist named Matt Nathanson came up often enough that I began to recognize his name and soon started a Matt Nathanson station. That has become my go-to station. It is mellow and pleasant and doesn't interfere with me getting work done. An artist named Corey Smith popped up occasionally on my Matt Nathanson station. His song, "Something to Lose," is one of my favorites. I just love it. Doesn't matter what I am doing or what I am feeling, it never fails to put me in a better mood. I have a couple iTunes gift cards left from Christmas and I am planning to use it to stock up on tunes from these two. 


Blog Comment Wars

Anonymous asks:

I recently had some heated debates on my blog between commenters. Not only on the blog but on my Facebook page too.  I tried to intervene with a friendly, "Ha ha, let's move on. We should all hold hands," but it continued.

I welcome the opportunity for debating, and I like to see opposing views, but I don't "cotton" to mud slinging as they say.

My question for you, at what point should the blog owner intervene? The commenters are a mixture of family members, long time friends, and new social networking friends.

I think every blogger is different. Knowing that you have a feel-good sort of blog that doesn't necessarily incite debate, I think you could intervene much sooner than someone who had blog for the specific purpose of gathering opposing viewpoints.

In your specific case, I would intervene as soon as one of the following happened:

  • I thought someone's feelings could be hurt
  • The argument turned personal and was no longer about the issue
  • I became annoyed by the continuation of the argument

Regarding the blog, I would, in very clear terms, tell the participants that their argument was over. Depending on the situation, I would possibly email the participants directly before addressing it in the comments. I would likely do that if it was something kind of serious. If it wasn't so serious, just annoying, I would probably address it only in the comments. At that point, I would say that I would delete any comments that continued the argument, or I would simply turn off the comments on that post. I would also delete any posts that had already been made that I felt crossed a line. It is your blog and you have the right to do whatever you want on it.

Regarding Facebook, I am not sure what can be done there. If the arguments were taking place on your profile, I would consider deleting the original item that started the argument. Alternatively, you could try to end the argument with a clearer, less joking comment than the one you used originally, such as, "If you two don't knock it off, I am going to have to unfriend both of you for awhile." Then do it, if necessary. If you didn't want to do any of that, your only option is to ignore it. I think you also have to ignore it if the arguments are taking place on their profiles, not yours. You could message each of them separately asking them to stop, but that is about all you could do.

I hope this was helpful. Does anyone else have a different idea?


Dissenting Opinions

In light of recent events, I feel that I should offer up an opinion on opinions. I am completely open to dissenting opinions and welcome both the opportunity to learn something new and the challenge of convincing people to change their minds.

I have one rule: you must make reasonable, intelligent, relevant arguments without resorting to personal attacks.

If you break that rule, I will never, no matter what your opinion, change my mind to your way of thinking. If you cannot support your ideas with an articulate description of your thoughts, you are just wasting my time.


bankrate.com

Bankrate.com is another site that has handy little calculators. I used to work at a real estate listings web site and I currently work at a consumer automotive web site and still I always go to bankrate.com for their loan calculators. I mostly use the mortgage calculator and the car payment calculator, but I also go to bankrate.com when I want to get an idea of what current interest rates are in my area.


paycheckcity.com

I love paycheckcity.com. They have a paycheck calculator that gives you your net pay if you enter your gross pay. It figures out all the taxes, etc. It is awesome for review-time speculation. If I get a 4% raise, I will get this much extra per paycheck, but if I get 5% I get this much and if I get a promotion with 15%, I will be swimming in it!

I was using paycheckcity.com today to see how changing the deductions on my W-4 would affect my paycheck. Did you know you can claim 10 deductions even if you don't have 10 kids? Of course you did. You're smart like that.


Blog Stalker

Anonymous asks:

What can I do if someone is reading my blog and possibly other blogs I visit, who only serves to cause trouble? I'll give you an example: my husband's ex-wife who is mean and lies.

Most blog platforms allow you to block an IP address from visiting your blog. If you are able to determine her IP, just block her. She will still stalk you on other blogs, but you will at least be safe on your own blog. You could always change the screen name you use on other blogs to something like, "My Husband's Ex is a Crazy Stalker." She might know it is you, though.