With the summer here at last, moods improved and hopefully we are ready for easy, free beauty  tips we could use to enhance our daily lives.

What are the reasons behind “Beauty Tips Friday? In addition to my desire to share, also the fact that I am a PA Licensed Esthetician. I went to school, passed Board exams and owned and operated a successful skin care business for many years. As some of you know, life forced me to change course, but I could still try to make your lives more “fragrant,” by sharing my knowledge and experiences.

With this in mind,  every Friday, I will write about an easy beauty tip. You, my readers, have a week to ask me your questions and I will post the answers each Friday, together with a new TIP. 

This Friday’s tip is:

How to make ROSE OIL and why?

What you need:

Fragrant rose petals. I only have one rose bush with divinely smelling roses, so I am limited. (use at least a cup of petals or more for stronger fragrance.)

Non-fragrant oil – you could use any non-fragrant oil and I suggest organic. You need a cup of oil.

A glass jar which has a lid.

A crock pot or a sunny place or both.

A strainer

Pick the petals and make sure they are clean. Cut them in small pieces so the fragrance gets out of the petals.

Place the oil in a glass jar and place the cut petals inside the jar, in the oil. Move the petals around, do not shake the jar.

Place the jar in a crock pot in which you poured a few inches of water. Set the temperature at lowest setting. I set it on WARM.

The jar with the rose petals inside must sit in warm water in the crock pot, or in a sunny place for at least 24 hours, so the fragrance is released into the oil. The jar must have a LID so the fragrance stays in the jar.

As I mentioned, I used a crock pot on WARM setting. Make sure it is NOT on high! This stage of the process is important, as this is how the rose fragrance is released into the oil.

After 24 hours, open the jar and pour the fragrant oil into another glass container through a strainer making sure you get out as much of the rose petals divine smell!

Discard the petals and pour the clear, fragrant oil back into the glass, covered jar.

How to use:

You could use it as a massage oil, in skin care products (those uses will be explained in another Beauty Tips Fridays “episode,::)) or  use it on its own, as a moisturizer.


How to test:

Best way to test is by applying a very small quantity of rose oil BEHIND your ear and observing for 24 hours if you have a negative reaction or you just smell nice:)

That’s all for today!

If you have any beauty related QUESTIONS, please contact me and you shall get an answer next Friday! IMG_0161_2tmp_20519-image-385207892

Meanwhile, have a great weekend and enjoy the roses…


Know Your Roots, To Understand Your Branches: True Stories About My Grandparents Lives

They say, one couldn’t miss that which they didn’t experience…

How could a child who never had the fortune of experience a grandmother’s love, miss that experience?

I was fortunate. Partly fortunate, to know and spent time with my grandmother, my Mom’s Mother. She was the only grandmother who was still alive at the time of my birth. The time spent with her remains to this day, one of my most valuable and treasured memories.

How about my other three grandparents, whom I only knew from my parents’ stories and looking at pictures?

My other grandmother, Dad’s Mom, died from a heart attack when she was 50 years-old. My memory of her was the picture of an obese, stern-looking woman. No wonder, she wasn’t smiling, the stories I heard about her and how she raised alone five children, would make anyone cry but also admire her. With the understanding of today, I know she was a strong woman, a tough woman who did whatever it took to care for her children.

What about my Grandfathers?

My grandfathers, on both sides, were more “legend-like” characters, wrapped in mistery. My Mom’s Dad, was some kind of a law enforcement officer during the King’s regime, before the communists took over Romania. His career was never mentioned, as it could have resulted in his family going to jail. He died suddenly, of unknown causes and my Grandmother raised her four children, two girls and two boys mostly on her own…

Things were  not much different when it came to my Dad’s Dad. It is ONLY NOW, as I write this post that I notice a pattern!

My grandparents on Dad’s side, made the focus of many stories.

The most fascinating was about how he and my grandmother met and eloped.

My Grandfather was from Greece and found a job as a tabacco specialist in Romania.

On his way to Romania, he stopped at the boarder to rest overnight in the home of a Lipova family who had several daughters. Lipova was a small village at the boarder with Romania. The people in the village spoke a dialect, not Romanian or Greek, but closer to Slavonic (Ukrainian.) How the Greek communicated with his to-be wife, remained a mistery, or it showed words didn’t matter when instincts, called love, were involved.

The facts which were transmitted over generations, were those of a fairy tale: The Greek, my Grandfather, and one of the hosts’ daughters, Ana, fell in love overnight! The following morning, they eloped never to be seen again in Lipova!

The Greek tabacco grower and Ana, who at the time was 14-years old and didn’t speak Romanian or knew how to read or write, settled in the small Moldavian town of Birlad where my Grandfather had a good job.

At the beginning everything was dream-like! My grandfather and Ana, as a dutiful and fertile wife got pregnant immediately. They must have had an active love life, as she birthed 3 boys and 2 girls within the following 7-8 years. However, Greek men are known to be womanizers and his passion diminished, as Ana got older, fatter and therefore, less exciting!

The Greek grandfather began to arrive home later and later, drunker and drunker, until one night he didn’t arrive at all!

Ana was at the time pregnant with her 5th child, a girl. They waited and waited, but in vain. No trace of the Greek and no one seemed to know where he vanished!

Anna gave birth to my aunt, Stella, with the help of neighbors and friends. Strangers fed the family and everyone hoped that when the winter was over, the Greek father would magically appear!

When the spring arrived, someone found his dead body in a well, in one of the fields often used as a short-cut between the factory and my grandparents house.

It was assumed that my grandfather was so drunk, he tried to walk home in the dark and because snow covered the well, he fell in it and died a sad and miserable death.

This was how Anna became a widow with five children in a foreign town, barely speaking the language, unable to read or write.

My father told me stories from his childhood which stuck with me and gave me strength in the hardest moments of my life. I felt stronger knowing that determination runs in the family! My reasoning was that if Grandmother could do it, so could I! She raised her 4 children doing laundry and ironing clothing for the rich. Two of her sons went to college. The third boy, sadly died. One of the girls, my aunt Katherine, got married to a rich man and had two daughters. In those days, for a woman getting married to a rich man was the ultimate goal and the beautiful girls did, the less fortunate ones went to work. Her sister, Stella, was not as attractive, so she only got married much later in life, and worked as a secretary most of her life.

I started to write this post as memories flooded my mind, because it is a beautiful summer day.

When roses are in bloom, as they are now, I always remember with nostalgia and love the ONLY grandmother I had the luck of spending time with as a child. However, as I began to write, my mind wondered to stories about the grandparents I didn’t know personally, but who are also important parts of my roots and indirectly the roots of my family.

As I kept writing, for the first time I noticed a pattern in my parents’ families of origin: They both were part of families with four children, two boys and two girls and both my grandmothers, as different as they seem on the surface, were young widows and raised their children mostly on their own.  It is for the first time when I recognize and bow with respect to the generational strength proven over and over again by women in these families.

This post  started as a tribute to the only Grandmother I had the honor and luck of knowing but it turned into a tribute to the roots of my family… It ended up to be a story about the grandparents who are the roots I have but didn’t meet…

However, I feel my Grandmother, Olga, my Mom’s Mom, deserves her own story and place. She is the one whose wisdom and love guided me in hard times.  The memories of the time I had the luck to share with her and my aunt, Mom’s sister, Tincuta, continue to influence me positively,  providing strength and understanding.

To know our roots gives us a chance to understand and shape our branches, as they grow into the future.

May God bless both and the knowledge that one couldn’ttmp_20519-image-385207892 exist without the other.

How to Save Money And Still Live Versus Exist

The simple mention of the words money, save, budget cause my brain to freeze!

When I worked in the financial planning industry, helping my clients to budget was  routine. It seemed so simple and doable! It is, but if one never budgeted before, as any change, it could be difficult at the beginning, but worth sticking to it until it truly becomes routine.

Here are some general rules:

1. Keep it simple!

2. Know your NET income.

3. Determine your fix expenses versus variable/ flexible expenses.

4. Shop around for BOTH.

5. Know what to pay first and why.

Fix Expenses are those nagging bills which you don’t have the power to change. However, you do have the option to shop around and use less (examples of fix expenses: mortgage/rent, taxes, health, car, homeowners/renters insurance, water, heat, electricity, cable TV, internet.) You could drive less, use less water and turn off the electricity when you leave a room.  One might argue that you don’t have to have a T.V. or internet, but the reality is, most of us feel disconnected without these conveniences of our modern lives. Personally, I consider Netflix ($8 month) as a necessity to maintain my sanity, so I have it listed under fix expenses, mental health care:)

In truth, the story that follows determined me to write this post and would like to share it with you.

Perhaps I am the only person on Earth experiencing financial difficulties and trying to cut corners, but just in case there are others in similar situations, I am writing about it anyway. If it could  help one person, it would be better than none.

Here is the story:  

My health insurance premium increased to $582.70 every two month (this constitutes just the “supplement part,” meaning, in addition I also pay $104 monthly.) For me, this is a prohibitive amount and the increase forced me to look into alternatives.

I will not go into the details of how long and convoluted the path to a less expensive premium was, but well worth it. I managed to find a similar plan for $131.30 monthly. I hope the saying, “If it looks too good to be true,” doesn’t apply! If we do the math, this change results in an annual saving of $1,920.60!!! Not too shabby and worth it every second I spent on hold with the insurance companies.

In other words, when writing down your budget, take each FIX EXPENSE and take the time to determine if it could be lowered.  Most times, it could.

Other ways you might be able to lower fix expenses:

Check out if based on your income or age you might qualify for a lower rate. If you are over 50, many companies offer discounts (I believe AARP starts giving such discounts after 50)  Another example is Verizon, which based on age and disability offers a less expensive rate for your phone. Please check with Verizon, as I am NOT sure of the specific rules and they change often. Please don’t be mad at me if they don’t offer the discounts which I think they do.)

Car insurance is another example of a fix expense which you might be able to lower, depending on the number of miles you drive, the purpose (is it for work, pleasure, both?) number and age of drivers, taking an online good driver exam, etc) You could also lower your premium when you “bundle” and use the same company for your homeowners insurance as well. If you select a higher deductible (what you pay before your insurance company does) would significantly lower your premium, as you assume more risk.

I guess this is all that comes to my mind about lowering fix expenses…

Let’s move to the fun part: Fluctuating expenses!!!

Examples: Food, gas (transportation,) unexpected house or car repairs, eating out, clothing, toiletries (soap, shampoo, tooth paste, skin care products) hair cuts, etc.


In Central Pennsylvania we are lucky to have plenty of farms. Not only could we buy less expensive food, but also fresh and hopefully, pesticide free.

We know the general rule:

The larger quantity of anything, one purchases, the less expensive it is. This rule is excellent for large families. If you are a couple or a single person, you might not be able to eat the large quantity before it spoils. If you buy large quantities, either buy non-perishables, or share with a friend.

Don’t assume that because it’s Walmart, it has the cheapest prices.

For instance, in Central PA, I find that a local chain, Sharp Shopper, carries for CERTAIN items, better and fresher produce. Most areas have such local stores, make sure you compare.

Purchasing gas. Gas could be a major expense we could not avoid, especially in areas where public transportation is non-existent.

We always have choices. One could just pull in the first gas station and fill the tank whenever it’s  empty. I am not one of these people, and must confess this is a habit my ex-husband carved in my brain so deeply, I am hopeless: I MUST FIND the cheapest gas!!! This could be good or dangerous, if driving around to find the cheapest gas, you run out of gas, as I did!

Let’s say such an example is not realistic, but what follows, is.

. Some people have Sam’s Club Memberships and qualify for gas (purchased only from Sam’s gas station) which is generally cheaper than the average price of gas, by .05 – .06 cents. The grocery store, Giant, offers a similar deal if one purchases a certain amount of groceries.

Several gas stations in my area, offer similar discounts if one pays in cash. Always make sure you read the small print on the sign.

Another general rule, when shopping make sure you remember to look at the very bottom shelves, as well as the highest.

Use Groupons and coupons and similar services which would save you money.

I am not a coupon clipper and always felt guilty when the cashier at the grocery stores asked: “Any coupons?” and I had to admit I had none!

When companies such as Groupon emerged, my problem was solved at last! Groupon could save you money on just about anything, including travel, massages and haircuts. All you have to do to receive their best offers, is,  provide Groupon with your zip code and they would email you the offers in your area. I even use groupons when I travel. If you know well in advance when and where you will be, provide Groupon with the zip code of that specific area, and you will receive pertinent offers. Oh God, I sound like a commercial for Groupon:) Disclaimer: they do not pay me and I do not profit in any way. Just like groupons:))

If after applying all these simple suggestions, one is still behind paying current bills, prioratize what you pay first and always contact the company if you are unable to pay on time. For instance, if you know that your county or borough will turn off your water, pay that bill first. If you are unable to pay the entire amount on anything, contact the company and ask for a payment plan. Generally, it is important to pay your credit cards on time. If you don’t, not only would you incur huge late payment fees, but it may negatively affect your credit history. When you pay a credit card bill, try to pay more than the minimum amount required, as otherwise the interest is so high, it would take you forever and a day to finish paying it.

I just remembered, at the beginning of the post I said “keep it simple,” and this post is already too long.

I hope it helps someone, somewhere in our world and I encourage you to please share with us your saving tips.

Wishing everyone a great weekend. With all the money we saved, let’s treat ourselves to a cone of ice cream. I like Rita’s with or without a groupon. After all, one must have a good reason to save money!

Mom Touching Daughter’s Breasts?????

Breasts seem to be a popular  preoccupation with both men and women, for very different reasons.

However, yesterday, looking at the stats of The Nude Truth,” I noticed that someone searched for “Mom touching my breasts…” 

My motherly instincts or perhaps common sense, alerted me that somewhere in these immense world of ours, A GIRL was confused about her mom touching her breasts. I did not know the place, age or for that matter, anything about who did the search. It could have been a search done for a school project about “good touch bad touch,” or may be not.

I woke up this morning with this girl on my mind and questioning:

Did she get her answer? Why was she searching in the first place? More importantly, IS SHE SAFE?

As a result, I am writing this post about good touch, bad touch and who and under what circumstances is one allowed to touch your private parts.


When I went to school to become an instructor and teach new mothers how to massage their babies, the first thing we learn was to ask the baby for permission to be touched, even if a few months old baby didn’t understand, yet, the mother had to show respect.

This post is written for young people under the age of consent, which I believe is 18 (sometimes 16, but I stick with 18.)

It’s purpose is to give very general guidelines about good touch and bad touch and if you think someone is touching you inappropriately, please speak to someone you trust or a school counselor immediately.

As a general rule,  when you are old enough to wash yourself your private parts, no one should be allowed to touch you.


If you have a medical problem and a doctor must help you. Generally, if touching of private parts is involved, in the exam room a nurse will always be present in addition to your  parent or guardian.

You must feel SAFE. You must BE SAFE and if you question why is this happening, have mixed feelings, fear, are confused, listen to your gut feelings, your instincts. Rarely our instincts are wrong.

Clearly, and I hope, the girl who searched yesterday on the topic of “mom touching my breasts,” searches again. Unless you were in an accident and your mom was trying to see if you are hurt and assess taking you for medical help, or she was applying a  cold compress to soothe your pain because you bumped into a hard object, she should not have touched your breasts or your vagina.

Good touch:

If a mother wishes to show love through touch, she may massage a child’s back, neck, feet, hands, always asking for permission, no matter which part of another person’s body one touches, first show respect.

Skin is our largest organ. Experiments show over and over again the importance of good touch, especially in the first year of life and throughout our lives.

I am passionate for good touch, but equally passionate for protecting the innocent against pedophiles.

Unfortunately, a pedophile could be anyone, even a parent, relative, someone you trust and love. Statistics show such is the case in many abuse situations.

This is why it is important  that YOU keep in mind these rules, so simple, yet hard to follow because how could a daughter admit to herself, her mom is touching her breasts with other than love on her mind? Yet, it happens and if there is a questioning in your “gut,” confusion, or you are asked to keep it a secret, please speak with someone you trust immediately to avoid being scarred for life.

I do know many teens from allover the world follow this blog. I hope you read this post and it helps you or someone you know.

This is for YOU ALL with respect and concern. Your bodies are yours, not to be touched inappropriately by anyone. By respecting your bodies, you respect yourselves.

I hope this post helps the girl who searched yesterday and others in the large world.

Please know, a woman far away, me, is concerned about YOU and wrote this post in hopes you will seek help and feel better!

If you have questions, please write me in private.

Law and Rules!

There are laws, and there are rules. Some serve us, some don’t…

A law is so to speak “written in stone” and hard to change. Rules are the “individual babies” of various institutions. “Babies” the leadership decided to vote in with the scope to boost the good functioning of the institution.

Recently, life forced me to reflect at a deeper level on the topic of laws and rules, as one specific “rule,” affected my life deeply and not in a positive way.

How many times have I heard that one thing or another could not happen, could not be done, because a law, from years before, prevented an action. An action, which under the new circumstances of our lives would have been beneficial to people. Yes, people, as in the very humans (or their grandchildren) who made the laws in the first place. Did it ever happen to you? This realization, made me question:

Do we make the laws or do they make us? Are we prisoners of our own laws?

Furthermore, knowing that the only certain thing in life is CHANGE, how could people change old laws  using a timely democratic system, to meet the present needs of the majority adequately?

Another, less permanent category, are new “rules” (not yet laws) made in principle to “improve the good functioning of a institution and serve its clients.”  The rules are made at local levels  and  at  surface they are made keeping in mind the benefits of the clients.

However,  a personal experience, forced me to look at a deeper level and made me question the true goals of a specific rule…This “rule” affected my life at a very personal level, at a time when I was counting on support and was paying for it.

On a superficial analysis,  the rule seemed  illogical, but on a deeper level, I thought the new rule was not made having in mind the clients’ benefits, but to boost profits to the institution as a primary goal. Hmm… what do the “wise ones” say?” FOLLOW THE MONEY!!!

Generally new rules have the hidden or explicit role to boost profits. Nothing wrong with it, but what if this is a health care facility, even worse, a mental health facility of great reputation. What if these apparently benign new rule, impacts  negatively the lives of people who are already affected by emotional problems? They had the need and the courage to  walk in the facility, answer endless questionnaires, put their most intimate problems on a plate and start treatment trusting their therapist and the system?   How about them? How about if the new rule disrupts a process already hard? What could be the consequences to the very people the facility is responsible to serve and help? I could only speak for myself…

This post might seem mysterious, as I do not name “names,” but the problem of  a rule made by a specific institution, affected me profoundly and  is at the core of what inspired this writing. Why I decided to write about it?

I made a commitment to JUSTICE  and TRUTH and am holding myself responsible to the promise I made:

Always write the NUDE TRUTH. I am still in a process of “discovery” and this post will have a follow up. It will have the same title (plus PART II.)

Meanwhile,  I’d appreciate your opinions on the basic question of laws and rules, who they serve and how could they be changed through a more expeditious democratic system when and if they cease to accomplish the very purpose for which they were made in the first place? Could you think of any such laws/rules, that affected you?

Happy thinking!



Residence Of A Soul

A soul may be…

happy, crushed, sad, numb, broken.

None or all at one time or another.

It may feel as a heavy rock, pulling down

To the bottom of an ocean,

But this ocean is bottomless,

The final destination unknown…

Other times,

The place where we, humans, decide souls go,

Is in a better place,

Or  worse,

Depending on …

what we, as individuals, believe in.

Upon the death of my friend, I had a vision

I cannot see anything,

Rather imagine,

Standing on the edge of a precipice,

at the very edge of it, staring down.

I hope to see into the depth of the place

Where  souls might reside,

and find hers.

What if I loose my emotional balance,

And step forward into the endless precipice,

Where I think  souls find peace?

A passing thought!

Instead, I take two steps back,

In the reality and safety of the Now.

I continue to contemplate and question:

Where do souls reside?

When the time comes,

I wish my soul will be pulverized

In a million particles, so small,

They could enter the hearts of the ones I love.

I know, they will not see it, but feel my presence.

When they do,

I hope they will allow my soul

To rest next to theirs…

before the wind blows it away into eternity…



Motherhood IS FOREVER!!! A Mother’s Day “SPECIAL”

This post is dedicated to motherhood, which is everyday, not only  one day in May.

For the last three weeks or longer,  I have been unable to listen to, or watch anything on the media because of the non-stop ads about Mother’s Day gifts and making it sound as if everyone ever born (one thing is for sure, we ALL came of a Mother) is running to K- Jewelers to buy the “Open-Heart Collection,” or diamonds, or even better chocolates and diamonds. I switched channels but other channels told me stories of discounts for Mom.

My favorite, which made me turn off the TV, not just switch channels: Mom opens a LOT of presents under the watchful gaze of her also perfect daughter. Mom is clearly delighted, yet, she says:”You shouldn’t have!” but everyone knows better! She says that just because, by definition, mothers in TV commercials are PERFECT! That includes humble.

As the mother of two adult daughters raised here, in the world of “every kiss begins with K,” therefore the conclusion is go buy expensive diamonds from K-Jewelers, I have mixed feelings about Mother’s Day and the way we have been programmed to celebrate it, in line with all the other commercial holidays.

I also think of my own mother, no longer on Earth, but whom I will ALWAYS celebrate in MY HEART.

I am thinking back to my childhood, in Romania  where we didn’t have Mother’s Day. So… lacking a randomly (or may be not so randomly) chosen Day to show appreciation for my mother, I showed my love and respect every day, in small but significant ways, as she was aging and fighting cancer.

In my culture, respect for a mother was not a one day deal, but a life-long responsibility, which was not doubted or questioned or commercialized.

We had the knowledge in our DNA that our mothers brought us into this world, nursed us, raised us, were by our side in all major life events, good and bad. Somehow we also knew that our moms were not perfect but they did the best they could with what they had at that moment. We knew somehow without anyone preaching us, what to do to honor our mothers every day when their turn came to be shown love.

Commercials set aside, parties forgotten, please remember every day that without your MOM, there would be NO YOU.

Celebrate motherhood everyday, because  mothers don’t feed us, kiss us and love us one day a year, but every breathing moment for as long as they live!

For me, as I will honor my own mother tomorrow, with the good and the bad times together, I wish all daughters would take a moment to reflect and open their hearts, not to buy from the “open heart collection,” but to simply say:

I love you Mom!” 20140910_124124

Beauty and Aging! Should We Use Cosmetics?

A few minutes ago I read a few very interesting comments on a Facebook feed about Beauty Products. Some swear by the use of Dove soap, some like vitamin C and Retinol, some are of the opinion that nothing works and we should age as God intended us to age.

Since I hold a license in Esthetics (PA) I felt like voicing my opinion and sharing what I know, but my comment was turning into an essay. I decided to write this post and if anyone in that discussion group would like to ask any questions, please feel free. I do not sell anything and will not say I know something if I don’t.

Our skin is our largest organ. Perhaps, vanity aside, God intended that we take care of our body, health, and not suffer at the hand of… dry skin (itching) or  allergies or oily skin and the resulting black heads, or white heads.

I started commenting on Facebook about products and pricing. 

It is not a rule that expensive is better. Why?  Let’s take “Private Label Companies.” What does this mean?  Large facilities, make contracts with various vendors and package the same creams in containers bearing the label of the  various vendors, but the containers are filled with the same cream.  Of course, we are in a free economy, and each vendor will price the products differently.

How to solve the problem?

READ the ingredients. Make sure the active ingredients are  listed in the highest percentage.

Make sure, if you buy a new product, you TEST behind your ear overnight, to make sure you are not allergic.

Many years ago, I bought a book called: “Take Me To The Counter.” I should probably re-purchase it (I hope it’s still available, isn’t everything available on Amazon?) Anyway, what I remember from this excellent book was to make sure I UNDERSTOOD the listed ingredients. In other words, if the names of the ingredients looked like long chemical formulas, to think again before purchasing the product.

Now, that I am inspired, next Friday, I will write a post about different types of skin and how each needs a different type of care.

Feel free to ask your questions.

How To Deal With SPAM Comments!!!

I LOVE Spam comments! They teach me first hand what NOT to do and at the end of the day, I find them funny!

First, I must thank Word Press for their excellent computerized system, which prevents most spam comments to get in the “questionable q. line,” that I take the time to review.

Why do I take the time to read them?

Many times comments are in languages other than English. For instance, I found great comments written in Romanian, my native language, in the “ify” category, just because they were written in Romanian, it didn’t mean they were spam. They were valid comments which I “saved.”

Also,  it may come as a shock, but many people around the world do not write in good English, so I have to play the “guessing” game and respect the effort and make a judgement:


After almost five years of blogging, I developed an “eye” for fake comments and would like to share with other bloggers my observations.

In my opinion, spam could be divided in a few categories. Here there are a few:

1. The “vague” comment: “Great post! Keep-up the good job!”

2. The “critique” comment: ” Have others told you they have  problems with reading your blog, because the “text is running off the page???”

3. Many times THE SAME Site owner who told me they had a problem with text running off the page, would write another spam comment, telling me how “WELL” they could read the post and contradicting their previous statement.

4. The “I  clicked the notify button, and now I receive everyone’s comments, how do I stop it?” Well… there is NO “notify” button:)  so in your dream, click unfollow.

5. The worst kind are the sexual spam comments, the penis enlargement, Russian brides, wives who could be your next door neighbors ready to have discrete sex for a fee.

How do I know? Because I  TRY to click on each side from which a comment comes, to make sure the site is legitimate and it does not promote articles which are not in line with certain values I try to promote. Not that I have anything against large penises, but I will not promote them on my site. Sorry guys.

Some quick ways to scan spam:

Look if the comment comes in response to one of your MOST popular posts, but the comment has nothing to do with the topic. For instance, one of my posts has over 800 comments. It was a scheme I shared a while ago and which “touched” many. As a result many genuinely shared THEIR experiences, but that “triggered” the computerized spam machines too…

Determine if the comment is simply an advertisement for a product and again, it has NO connection to the topic of your post.

If someone comments “I LOVE the video,” on your site, and you did not post a video, that is a problem:)

Then, there are the spam comments asking you how to get rid of spam.

Oh well…I guess, read this post:)

In conclusion, spam, hacking, porn sites, are the down side of an active internet presence. If we don’t want the down side, there is the choice of not having profiles on various networks, or to  do what I’m attempting to do now, which is notice the funny side of the annoying while learning to  limit and deal with it.

The Value Of Pain

It is a beautiful, sunny spring day, in contrast with the darkness in my heart… I inhale the fragrance of liliacs  and let the sun rest on my closed eyes, while my heart mourns the loss of a life-time friend, Diana. The pain inside is greater, and it makes me reflect to the value of all the  events that  my shaped life…

Those of you who know me, also know that life has been a roller coaster,  and for reasons beyond anyone’s understanding continues to keep me guessing: What’s next? Will I make it? Will I swim again or sink? So far, I swim…

As the many events of  life parade though my mind, I remember the good and the bad, the happiness and the sadness, the expected and the planned and the unexpected and the pain it caused at the time it happened. All those events that scarred my soul made it stronger.

Surprisingly, if I draw a line and honestly ask myself:

When did I learn most? What made me a more understanding, open-minded human being, I discover that in fact the worst of times were the best of times. In reality, there was no growth, no change and no lesson during the times when I felt secure, content and had the illusion of happiness.

In contrast, during times of excruciating emotional pain, when faced with losses which we always think could only happen to others, I was forced to get out of my suburban middle-class comfort zone and look life in the face. Divorce? Suicide and its everlasting consequences? Illness? Single parenting? Losses, losses and again losses but with each loss and the pain that came with it, I gained the knowledge of my emotional strength and most importantly,  discovered who my real friends were and are.

It is  magical  how when one is really in trouble, people we thought would be our “rocks,” disappear, but others, who, most times were not with us in  “good times,” appear in our’s lives. I think they are Angels sent to make our pain and confusion bearable and help us learn valuable lessons.

Looking back, I am thankful for all the unfortunate events of my life. They propelled me out of meaningless comfort zones and showed me who loved me  for who I am, stripped of titles and money. Pain taught me to never give up or loose the hope in positive changes and actively work to make it happen! It also taught me, I don’t always win, but as long as I do my best, that’s what counts: the journey, not the destination.

Pain taught me to take the word “CAN’T” out of my vocabulary and always fight for what I know in my heart is right.