Monday, October 16, 2017

Introducing Fama @famahire

I love companies that are all about solving problems. 

I tell my college students every year that if there's one thing I want them to get out of my classes it's to be able to solve their own problems.

  • If my students don't have the money to buy a canvas or illustration board to paint on, then cut down cardboard to work on. 
  • If a certain art technique isn't working how they'd like, figure out how to make it pan out. 
  • Dive into coming up with an idea, and make that idea transform into a concept. An idea is just the spark of something. A concept is when an idea is executed through the technique, and medium chosen.  
Fama gives online identity analysis. They provide solutions to some of the toughest problems. They turn online identity data into actionable insight. 

Employers can gain information about individuals, and their online presence.

It is hard coming up with a name that is unique, and fits a person. When I first started blogging I used the name Planet of the Apels. It was already in use, and I didn't even realize this. It's hard to think, and find something different. When I changed the name of my site I wanted something that tied the two together. I kept my name in there. It may be considered risky, but I wanted something that spoke for my family. An Apel a Day we became.

One of the hardest things about manual social media screening is finding the right profile. Fama helps with that.

Having a presence is much more than a name.

  • It's behavior
  • It's how things appear
  • It's who you want to market
Fama works to develop these customized elements internally.

Data is important, but what if you could take collecting data further? Fama has a team that is capable of gathering comparative analytics. Making things consistent throughout your site, and social media is important. It builds a framework, so people know what company or who to trust.  

Fama gives you a Social Media Background Check. Go check them out!

It's always good to look over resources. Fama has many!
  • Legal Book - Lawyers weigh in on the legal aspects of social media screening.
  • YouTube - Watch videos with experts on business and social media use.
  • Case Studies - Examples that have worked in the past really helps to understand what you're about to get into. 
  • Twitter - Innovative knowledge about social media, and where it's going.
Do you like social media? What's your favorite platform? I find myself on facebook the most.

Disclaimer: Fama helped to sponsor this post. They did not influence me to write this post. This post was written by me. I only review things I think my family, friends, or readers would be interested in.

We Need a Bigger Couch

This weekend we took in our nephews: Evan (age 12), Elijah (age 9) and Edison (age 3). 

It's great that 2 of my nephews are only a few months apart from my boys. We used to watch them a few days a week when they were itty bitty. They are certainly not strangers to the Apel house.

Their brother Emerson (6) is still in the hospital battling seizures. They keep trying different meds, which have all kinds of side effects. Emerson has been sleepy, but can't sleep. The boy needed O2. He can't go to the bathroom, so they put in a catheter. His skin and lips are dry. Then just tested his thyroid, and it's on the underactive side. My sister keeps wanting to know the meds they put him on, and why. They look at her with a blank stare. She has her masters in nursing education. She keeps that under wraps just in case they expect her to do everything for Emerson. A few doctors are talking about sending him to an Epilepsy Center, which the closest one my sister would send him to is in Cleveland, Ohio. YIKES!

With all that stress we tried to be upbeat with Emerson's brothers. 

I forgot how much a 3 year old loves to help! He gathered produce from our garden with Travis. He helped me make a cake for Cake Walk at Isaak's school, and he helped me make Lego Gummies. Edison was much more excited about chores than my boys. Ha!

It's good Edison had fun. I can't imagine the stress in his little life with his mom and brother always at the hospital for a week. It doesn't look like they are coming home anytime soon.

Edison loves Isaak! I asked Edison, "Where's Isaak?" He responded with, "You mean my buddy?" I said, "Ya him." He went to get Isaak for me.

These boys seem to all get a long very well. 

It looks like we could use a longer couch! I'd love to go shopping for a Living Room Furniture Set! I'd love to get a 5 Piece Sectional Living Room Set! Then the boys could spread out a bit.

If I had a sectional, I'd have plenty of room to put the boys in blankets, and toss them up onto the couch. Isaak still thinks he's small enough for a blanket toss. Trust me he's getting heavy. My nephew Edison is the perfect age for that though! It is pretty fun!

What piece of furniture would you like to replace? 

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Making a Fall Leaf Bowl

I have a little secret to reveal. I've been writing posts for I wanted to keep it hush hush until they posted my first post. Our focus is going to be crafts. I have a lot of ideas. A whole list of them actually. Please hop on by their site, and make a comment. They and I will really appreciate it!

Don't worry I'll let you in on the crafts on here as well. As long as I use different pictures, and write it in a different way I can share! I took tons of pictures. If I've seemed more absent it's partly because I've been writing for, and partly a mess of other things that life has thrown at us.

The first craft we worked on is:

It's been back and forth weather here in Nebraska. Last week it rained most of the week, the week before that it was summer like weather, and now it's finally starting to feel like fall.

Nebraska does have 4 true seasons. The leaves do turn colors, but there's a lot of brown crunchy ones on the ground as well.

Since Isaak and I started this project a few weeks ago, there wasn't a lot of variety on the ground for leaf colors yet.

I've always struggled with what to do with Isaak. He's a needy child in the fact that he loves doing things with people. Mica on the other hand is fine as long as he has books to read or Legos to play with. Isaak has always enjoyed both arts and crafts. Let's face it, the selection for boys is slim! I think making up crafts to do with him will both stimulate his creativity and fill that need to do things with someone.

Step One: Buy or get a flexible plastic bowl. Usually the cheaper the better. You want it to be really flimsy. We reused a bowl from a craft kit: Craft-tastic Paper Bowl Kit by Ann Williams. You don't need to have this kit to do this fun project. If you get the kit it's $16.99 at Target. You can reuse and reuse the bowls that come with the set.

Here's a bowl Isaak made from the set:  
The bowls were cute, but they had a lot of girly patterns and colors. We took the process, but added our own twist to it. Here's the bowl from the kit. It's really flimsy. The cheaper the bowl the better!

Step Two: Since there wasn't a lot of fall leaves here just yet, we used fabric leaves. I've had them for a long time. My sister gave them to me from Oriental Trading Company.

If you have lots of  fall leaves there's no need to buy anything. Get outside, and get some leaves.

Step Three: I helped Isaak combine some glue with water. You can use either Elmer's Glue or Hodge Podge You just want it thin enough to paint on bowl with a brush or foam brush. We even used our fingers to slather the glue on.

Step Four: Just dip the leaves in the glue, and put it on the bowl. Try and keep the leaves fairly flat, and overlap them.

Keep overlapping the leaves. We did a few layers. I liked the variety of colors, but one single color could be cool as well.

Step Five: Isaak loves glitter, so I mentioned that he could add glitter glue to the bowl. He was so happy to add glitter. You could add acrylic colors to it, or leave it. I could see doing the whole bowl in red leaves, and painting gold paint on it as well. *Note if acrylics won't stick to the leaves, you can add just a drop of dish or hand soap to the paint. That helps it to stick.

We painted a 2 layers of glue over the fabric leaves just to make sure the bowl would be sturdy, and not floppy.

Step Six: Give it plenty of time to dry! We just let it be for a day. It may be ready to peel up before then. But why rush a good thing? Don't peel the bowl up if the glue is still wet.

Step Seven: When the bowl is dry, peel the leaves up around edges. This is where it's vital to have a flexible bowl. You could have a hard plastic bowl, but it may be part of the design. I'm not so sure you could peel the leaves off of it.

Like I said the cheap bowls can be reused. Isaak's already talking about making a paper bowl for his teacher for Christmas.

Isaak was so happy with how it turned out!

Can you see the glitter?

Isaak opted to put acorns and pinecones in his fall leaf bowl. What would you put in it?

I like that this craft can be done by boys or girls. It's fun for adults or kids. It's really great for anyone!

Saturday, October 14, 2017

HEALTOP - Feel Great Review

I'm always on the look out for natural products that my kids can use. Mica's entering the stage of pimples. So far he's only gotten small ones on his nose. I try and push that he needs to take good care of his skin.

This is where healtop helps! Their products are natural all the way!

Packages That healtop Offers:

Infant Package - 6 Natural Essential Products For Infants. The Products Are: Herbal Baby Powder, Natural Diaper Cream, Natural Vitamin C, Clean (Herbal Cleaner Of Rooms) And Baby Colic Natural Supplement.

Toddlers Package - Products Are: Natural Vitamin C, Winter Relief Natural Supplement, Vermor Supplement For Intestinal Warms, 2 Amazing Natural Skin Care Products Silky Feet And Soft Lips.

Moms Package - A Bundle Of 3 Amazing Products For Moms, Everyday Face Care 100% Natural Face Serum, Body - An Amazing 100% Natural Body Cream And Slim A Natural Supplement To Support A Diet Process.

Teenagers Bundle - 2 Products For Treating Acne And Oily Irritated Skin And One For Athlete Foot.

I could have gotten the Moms Package, but I opted to have Mica try the Teenagers Package. He's only 12, but will be 13 (teen) soon enough. This set is $49.81. If you buy each thing separately - they are more than they are all together in the bundle pack.

The set came with 3 different products: 

1. Skin Repair - Helps repair the face, and balance the skin.

2. Sweet Feet - Helps with Athlete's Foot.

Clear Skin - Helps clear blemishes. You could even apply it on the upper back if needed.

I'm really glad I got this set for Mica. I want to keep encouraging him to take care of his skin.

Which package would you pick? 

Disclaimer: I received the teen bundle to review in exchange for writing this post. HEALTOP and US Family Guide did influence my writing, or future review.


HICKIES are no tie elastic shoelaces. They are great for running, hiking, or sports because you won't have to stop what you're doing to tie your shoes.

Kids are Hard on Shoelaces:

Isaak in particular is horrible on the knees of his pants, and shoelaces. He's just the typical boy with clothing. Mica never was a rough and tumble kid. At least Mica was born first, and his clothes can get handed down. I'm always saying, "Isaak get up and walk on your feet, not your knees." and "Isaak tie your shoes!" I really hate when he's playing basketball and his shoes are untied.

If you're like me, and you get after your kids for needing to tie their shoes everyday before they step out of the house, you'll want to try HICKIES.

Hate stopping to tie your own shoes mid-walk or run? HICKIES products turn any pair of sneakers into convenient, comfortable, and stylish slip-ons that are perfect for any activity from a small activity to a rugged workout.

A Great Stocking Stuffer:

HICKIES sent me a set of kids and adult HICKIES. They work great for Stocking Stuffers for Christmas time.

One set is for kids and the other is for adults. I have to be honest that I don't know if Isaak will wear them. They have pink, which he does like pink, but with his age he may see them to be too girly. 

Mica is in men's shoes, so the grey pair could go to him. 

I had a a problem with the HICKIES in my own shoes. All my shoes have metal clasps that the laces go in. The HICKIES were so loose in them. I had to put them tight just to get pictures for the review. 

I feel kind of bummed that the kid ones won't work for Isaak, and even more bummed that the adult ones won't work in my shoes because of how my shoes have the metal things in there for the laces. 

They were easy to put in, but no way to tighten them if needed.

They make it look like they fit so well! Maybe they would fit great in Mica's shoes. Features: 
  • One size fits all. 
  • Elastic material keeps shoes secure and comfortable. 
Never tie again! Play uninterrupted. Fun look, without messy knots and bows. Adjustable tightness. Quick and easy - simply slip on and off.

@Hickies Never Tie Laces on 25% off w/ code USFAM now thru Sept. 20th! .@usfg

Disclaimer: I received 2 sets of HICKIES to review in exchange for writing this post and a follow up review. HICKIES and US Family Guide did influence my writing, or future review.

Friday, October 13, 2017

@MapleHolistics Tea Tree Oil Shampoo #Giveaway

I have to be careful about what I use on my hair and body. I try and not use anything with sulfates in it. I just find when I use products that have sulfates in it I get more skin irritations.

Maple Holistics makes one of the best shampoos I've used! It's Tea Tree Oil Shampoo.

Usually when I use sulfate free shampoo I have to wash my hair twice. Other stuff just doesn't seem to foam up. This shampoo does!

Why Would You Want to Stay Sulfate Free?
  • Sulfates strip your hair of its natural oils
  • If your hair is colored and you use shampoos with sulfates the color won't last as long
  • Sulfates make your hair dried out and frail
  • Sulfates may irritate your skin


I was expecting no red flags. It is way better than other shampoos in the stores. There are a few ingredients in the beginning of the list that are questionable: 
  • Sodium Cocoyl Lsethionate - is milder than sulfates. It's an agent that makes the shampoo foam.
  • Cocamidopropyl Betaine - is a thickener and an agent that makes the shampoo foam. It's derived from coconut oil and dimethylaminopropylamine. It can cause skin irritation, although the government says it's safe to use.
  • Sodium Lauroamphoacetate - Is a mild cleaning agent. It is a toxic ingredient.
Those are just the first 3 ingredients.

There are a lot of great ingredients as well: 
  • Argan Oil
  • Tea Tree Oil
  • Lavender Oil
  • Rosemary Oil
  • Jojoba Oil
  1. Rinse your hair
  2. Massage a quarter-sized amount throughout the scalp
  3. Let it sit for 2 to 3 minutes
  4. Rinse
It was really easy to use for sure!

Cost: $25 on sale for $8.95!

About Maple Holistics:

They aim to make their products to be natural. This will improve one's health and enhance your hygiene experience.

They strive to be sulfate free and BPA free.

They make their products right here in the United States.

What Else Does Maple Holistics Sell:
  • Oils: Almond, Apricot, Argan, Argan Oil Shampoo and Hair Conditioner Set, Avocado, Assuage Beard Oil
  • Lubricant: Berry Flavored, Cooling, Mint and Personal
  • Soaps: Botanical Therapy Shampoo, Tea Tree Oil Shampoo, Castile Soap, Eucalyptus with Bubble Bath, Lavender with Bubble Bath
  • Dead Sea Salts: With Lavender, With Eucalyptus, 
They even sell food!
  • Berries: Goji Berries, Milberries
  • Nuts: Brazil, Macadamia, Pistachio, Almonds
  • Seeds: Flax, Pumpkin
  • Honey
  • Essential Greens Superfood
You can sign up to get free products from Maple Holistics here.

Win the Same Tea Tree Oil Shampoo I Reviewed:
Rules: You must be 18 years, or older to claim this prize. Please get back to me within 48 hours if you win this giveaway, or I'll have to pick another winner. No PO boxes please. This is a US giveaway.
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Disclaimer: I got this Tea Tree Oil Shampoo in exchange for an honest review. This company didn't influence my review. I only review products I think will fit my family, or my readers.

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Halloween Witch Hat Review

I love Halloween. Actually I like all holidays. I just think they are fun.

Since I work at an art college students really get into dressing up. Artists love to make things, so maybe that's why they get into dressing up so much.

I tend to work with what I have to create a costume that's unique. I think this year I'm going to be Pac-Man. I have yellow face paint for my face, a yellow swim cap to make my head look round, and I've been punching out lots of dots and cut out ghosts out of colored vellum with sticky backs.

All throughout this month I'm going to wear a Witches Hat during lecture. How fun that will be!

I think my work even has an old broom I can carry into class with me. The students will love it!


This hat is pretty comfortable. It a polyester fabric, and can be hand washed.

The hat can hold its shape pretty well. I like it bent down too.


  • I got purple with black to review. 

  • It also comes with orange and black.

  • Then there's a black matte color with black lace. 

I really like all the above colors. I'm certainly satisfied with the color I got to review.


  • A lot of lace.

  • A flower with a bow.

  • A big spider! 


It's kind of pricey for an accessory: $39.90, but get this the set comes with not 1, not 2, but 3 hats!

I have 2 hats I get to share with my sisters.

What are you going to be for Halloween? 

Disclaimer: I got three witch hats in exchange for an honest review. This company didn't influence my review. I only review products I think will fit my family, or my readers.


The opinions on this blog are my personal take on products and topics relating to motherhood. This blog is a personal blog written and edited by me.

I am not compensated to provide opinions on a variety of topics. The views and opinions expressed on this blog are my own. If I claim to show knowledge of certain topic or product I will only endorse products or services that I feel, based on my expertise, are worthy of such endorsement.

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