a figure of a woman balancing on a pyramid with the text finidng balance

Past Time For An Update

TimeUpdate Past Time For An Update

This morning, I went to a yoga class. Ok, I was encouraged by Beth and pushed a bit by Marc but I went. It wasn’t that I didn’t want to go, it’s just that I have a lot that I need to do. But, it didn’t take a lot of cajoling because I knew I would be better for it. (Although, somehow, it didn’t occur to me that it had been months since my last one and I would be in pain after.)

I really enjoyed the class. A year ago, I would have focused on blogs that that needed to be written, inventory issues that needed addressing, analytics that needed analyzing, and website plug-ins that needed updating. All very important tasks, of course. Often, as soon as I would sit down at the computer, I’d find myself down a rabbit hole, researching something potentially important but not on the task list. It didn’t accomplish what I needed and didn’t make me feel good

If it’s not mine to spend, who’s is it?

At the beginning of 2018, I decided to be more frugal with my time. I wanted to be more mindful so that I wasn’t wasting it. My goal was to gain the most from it. I can’t believe how much has changed in a little over 12 months.

It started prior to one of our vacations. I had an overwhelming amount to accomplish both personally and for the business. In order to complete it all before we left, I simply set up lists of everything that needed to be done, day by day. It was exhausting but I managed it. By the time that we left, I was confident that every detail was covered and that I could relax and enjoy my trip. I understood then that I could make it through anything if I was methodical and focused.

It was an important lesson. Despite my endless endeavors, I’m finding a balance. I’m happier in the moment, without feeling rushed, even if I’m busy. My to do list no longer scares me (mostly), and I don’t need to push myself to get things done.

Kindness Counts

I thought I would need that internal (and often negative) push, but clearly I underestimated myself. I’m quite motivated in so many areas of my life. It feels good to be nicer to myself. Sometimes, like in the case of returning to yoga, or returning to this blog, it is hard to begin again. That’s why I surround myself by wonderful supportive people willing to give a nudge (or a shove) when they know it will help. (Hi Marc! Hi Beth!)

I’m impressed with how much of a success the past year’s endeavors have been and how much better I feel. I’ve made so much progress personally and professionally. I have less anxiety. I understand my capabilities more. I’m healthier. The business is in a better place, which means we’ve helped more women and donated more to charity.

I haven’t yet begun to think of my next goal. As I consider that my kitchen needs cleaning and it’s time to do laundry, I think inventing my very own Rosie (robot maid from the Jetsons) to make life a little easier might be my next task…

hand held out with a floating heart, text of looking at women's health

A Look Back: Happy Valentine’s Day to my Lady Parts

WomensHealth A Look Back: Happy Valentine’s Day to my Lady Parts

We’re happy to introduce Victoria, our newest guest blogger. She follows our usual form of sarcasm topped with an important message!

There’s a certain stigma when it comes to talking about sexual health. While it’s really no one’s business, it could prompt judgement and assumptions on how sexually active (or inactive) you are or how you practice safe sex. I’ve had HPV once in my past life and it was treated as ‘no big deal’ by my gynecologist – disappearing like a common cold after another routine visit. It was after the second time, when additional biopsies were required, that I realized this was much more serious. I wasn’t sure how to talk about it with those I care about most.*

The first common misconception I realized is that transmitting HPV was possible even in cases where you use a condom. In fact, HPV infections are so common that nearly all men and women will get at least one type of HPV at some point in their lives. The scary part is that there can be no symptoms and men can be carriers as well. (of course, another burden on women to regularly check for this as men currently cannot be tested!) 

Corsets are now optional, Your Health is Not

When my regular pap came back as abnormal, a colposcopy biopsy, cervical biopsy, and endometrial biopsy were required. (I’ll spare the details, google if you dare!) The results of the cervical biopsy showed evidence of grade 2/3 dysplasia cells that could lead to cervical cancer if left unattended. A LEEP procedure was scheduled to remove those unruly bastards on the day after Valentine’s Day. (Don’t forget a “get well enough to have sex again soon” card with my flowers!)

I would also need the endometrial biopsy while under anesthesia for the LEEP. My gynecologist was unable to get an adequate cell sample during the original colposcopy as I was screaming in pain. (There is a wide range of pain tolerance for women when it comes to these biopsies, so if you’re not as lucky to have a kind and understanding doctor as myself, do yourself a favor and find a new doctor!)

Being past of age of eligibility for the HPV vaccine, things started to feel a bit scarier. I analyzed all the extreme cases (please just leave me my precious ovaries!). It wasn’t so much about the idea of being unable to have kids, but the heightened awareness of feeling older, like I was falling apart. On my way to the pharmacy to pick up a pill in preparation for surgery, I was amused when dodging in between the men and women rushing to buy beautiful bouquets to bring home to their lovers when ironically, all I could think about was what my lady parts would be encountering.

Enduring Cupid’s Scalpel

As the anticipated day arrived, I was anxious about every scenario that could pop up in my head. This was my first time getting “surgery”, so much of this was uncharted territory for me. As I confided in the nurse putting in my IV, she said to me, “You’re still young, It is scary… just wait until you get older and the health issues become things you have no control over”. My mind then quickly raced with thoughts about hysterectomies, miscarriages, breast cancer… the harsh reality about all the hardships women face on top of a unforgiving healthcare system. 

Once I reached the anesthesiologist, my answer to ‘how are you doing?’ quickly became ‘terrified’. He had a warm smile and chuckled ‘fair enough’ in response. He kindly explained what would happen next, putting me at ease, knowing the worst I’d encounter is the world’s best nap. The last interaction I remember was the mask over my face, and laughing at what was probably not even a remotely funny joke. 

The great news is the results came back, and there were no further issues! The abnormal cells were limited to a small area that were removed during the LEEP. The endometrial biopsy was negative. The worse has been feeling like I have an itch that I can’t scratch and mild PMS cramps that a quick Aleve can solve. 

Invest in Your Sexual Health

So why did I feel compelled to share this experience? Well, for one, Shari and The Strap Saver have been BIG supporters of women’s health and cancer research. Shari has always inspired me to make my health a priority and be kind to myself (and I mean, this is American health care… prevention is the name of the game). But, by no means is my story anything spectacular or heroic compared to what many women have gone through. I’m very fortunate that I have the opportunity to take preventive measures, as many women cannot afford that chance.

There’s still a stigma around women’s sexual health… you don’t need to make an apology or confession, it’s about fostering open communication for encouraging support in each other’s health and well being. And I’m certainly no expert.. do you research! Women’s health will continue to be an important topic and we need to ignore the stigma, the judgement, and continue to support each other however we can. 

* I know I have the love and support of my partner and close friends. For the record, they are the least judgmental people I know. It’s my own silly insecurities sometimes that get in the way.❤️ 

a girl with a computer sitting on a blue chair looking at 5 yellow stars and the text: let us know what you think

Please, Please Tell Me Now!

Survey2019 Please, Please Tell Me Now!

In the epic words of Duran Duran:

Please, please tell me now
Is there something I should know?
Is there something I should say?
That would make you come my way

And now you’ll have the opportunity! The Strap Saver is now accepting reviews on Google. To tell us (and everyone else!) how you feel, click here, log in with your Google ID, and speak your mind. We want to hear how you liked your purchase and how happy you are with our customer service. We’re excited to share the feedback that we receive.

We know that nothing is more important than the words of your fellow shopper. While we love the Strap Saver and will mention it to anyone who will listen, we certainly understand that you might not take our word for it. With every new product, there is always hesitation. Sure, we offer a “love it or your money back guarantee” and a generous exchange policy, but that still requires effort.

So…. Rescue a favorite bra? Get the perfect fit from a treasured dress or tank top? Get some extra workouts from a tired sports bra? Extend the life of the perfect bathing suit? Think The Strap Saver is the bees knees? Shout it out! Sharing your experience will help to guide your fellow consumers through the wild world of internet shopping to the safe haven of custom-length straps without sewing. (ok, I might’ve gone a little too far there)

We can’t wait to hear what you have to say, so get your Google id and click here. (although, if you have something you’d rather tell us in private, you can always contact us directly through our website or email us.)

If you don’t have a Google id, It’s easy to sign up for one. Just click here! While we don’t endorse Google products specifically, we do use many of them in the day to day running of the company and like anything that helps us get the word out!.

drawing of hands wringing out fabric with water dripping from it, text: no more rinsing

Confessions of a Former Machine Washer

Two hands wringing the water out of a pink piece of clothing with the text no more rinsing

I’ve never liked hand washing my lingerie. It felt like a dreaded chore, similar to having to take out the trash on a freezing cold night, after you’re already in bed. My only experiences were with Woolite, which mean rinsing over and over until all of the suds were gone. I even wrote a post about ways to care for your bras without getting your hands dirty (clean?) to ease my guilt of not taking the time to take better care of my delicates.  You’d think it would be easier to do what I know is right than to assemble a list of work-arounds (which are all good ideas, I promise!) but sometimes I’m a bit stubborn. (ok, maybe not only sometimes.)

This year, at CurvExpo, I met Jacqueline Sava of Soak, a no-rinse lingerie wash. I had heard of these types of detergents, but I’m not sure I fully understood the concept (given the description, not a clue how I missed it…). Jacqueline explained that it was as simple as the product name. The directions were to soak my bras per the instructions and then hang them to try.  No endless rinsing required.

I have used Euclan, another no-rinse wash, which I picked up at Sweetest Sin, my favorite lingerie store. Unfortunately, I was using it in the washing machine which was still prematurely aging my bras with the harsh conditions of the agitator. Even in cold water. Even in lingerie bags. Even with the proper detergent.

Looking back, I think the second hardest leap for me (after the rinsing) was putting my bras in the sink, the same place where I spit toothpaste. Sure, I could clean the sink, but it would never *feel* clean enough. One day it hit me, I could use a plastic tub and quarantine my bras from any potential saliva residue (which is touted as an option on both websites, but I never bothered to look). I set out to try the no-rinse washes right away! It worked just as described, without a residual sud in sight.

I’ve tried both Soak and Euclan and like them both. Hurray Kimmay, one of our lingerie gurus, touted the benefits of Soak on Rachel Ray recently. I trust her judgement. Angela, the owner of Sweetest Sin, has impeccable taste and if she stocks Euclan, it must be good. Jacqueline recommended that I put the different washes in water and then see how they feel on my hand. (which I have not done yet)

My recommendation is to give one or both a try!  I know that they cost more than regular laundry detergent, but quality bras are costly as well. We’re all about extending the life of our lingerie here at The Strap Saver, which sometimes means spending a little more now to save later.

Have you tried the no-rinse lingerie washes?  If so, what do you think?

Also – thank you to both Soak and Euclan for clearly stating “a minimum of 15 minutes” on their website – making it clear that when I get caught up writing a blog entry and my bras stay submerged for 30 minutes or more, I haven’t done any damage.

Images of Shari in a bikini while on vacation in the caribbean with the ext do not let your mind bully your body

What I Like About You!

Shari in a bathing suit in the Caribbean with the words "Do not let your mind bully your body"

A few weeks ago I was on vacation with a group of friends – lucky to be in beautiful Leeward islands of the Lesser Antilles. (who says this blog can’t be educational too?) The scenery was amazing and the food was delicious.

The one “flaw in the plan” was my bathing suit. I didn’t heed my own advice and waited until late July to shop. Given my proportions, the pickings were slim. I ended up wearing something I didn’t love – a bikini. I was grateful to have found swim shorts to wear over the bottoms, but the rest was still very much… a bikini.  

On a particularly sunny day, we took a catamaran ride to Nevis for sightseeing and some time at the beach. A few friends complimented me on the suit and how I looked. I responded with the sentiment that it was the only suit that I could find and at least I’d found shorts to cover up my thighs because… no one wants to see that.

Suddenly, the uselessness of what I’d said hit me. I quickly corrected myself to say I was happy that I’d found shorts because I wasn’t comfortable in bikini bottoms. (I do not condone body shaming in others, and was careful to apply the same logic to myself, even if it was after the fact.) After making a mental note to consider my word choice next time, I continued to enjoy the sun and the sand.

Later that afternoon, as we sped back to St. Kitts, the conversation echoed in my head. It was a beautiful, perfect day, spent in and around gorgeous water. Why was my first instinct to hide my body? Why was I concerned about what impact viewing my body had on others?

I also thought about the first-ever body positivity seminar at CurvExpo in June. Kimmay Caldwell, Hurray Kimmy, who I consider lovely, expressed that she felt her body didn’t fit the expectations of her Hispanic heritage. (at least, that was my interpretation of what she said!) Instead of holding herself to someone else’s standard, she confidently stars in photo shoots in lingerie, proud of who she is and how she takes care of herself. 

Why was I going to let any negativity intrude on my beautiful day? The shape of my body doesn’t make a difference, and doesn’t require an apology. Inspired by Kimmay’s own unretouched images, I asked a friend to take a picture of me just as I was – sweaty, with windblown hair. (full of salt, too, from our swim in the ocean) I work hard to take care of me because I’m worth it and I took time to honor that.

How will you celebrate you in 2019?

purple background with text that reads once upon a time and an alarm clock where the face says making it count

Let’s Do the Time Warp Again!

Finding Time Let's Do the Time Warp Again!

We’re at the end of 2017 and the cycle begins again. Lose weight! Makeover your finances! Get rid of your clutter! Buy better stuff that will help you drop unwanted pounds, balance your budget, and organize your existing stuff! It’s no secret that I think that all of these things are ruses to take our money. I think resolutions, in general, are a setup for failure. You can see my thoughts on here, here, and here.

RockyHorror Let's Do the Time Warp Again!

I am, however, a big fan of self-improvement. Every year I try to pick something in my life that is frustrating me and work on it throughout the year. Two years ago, I removed items and habits that I no longer needed. Last year, I found more stability and routine. (consider this foreshadowing for the next blog in my tax series!  riveting stuff, I promise!) I want to build on these successes.

This year, I want to improve my relationship with time. I constantly feel rushed and pressured to move faster. I know I take on a lot. I have a full-time job and freelance (although not weekly). I am working towards a graduate certificate in digital marketing while attending to many aspects of The Strap Saver. I also try to take care of my health, travel, and have a life. It can feel overwhelming.

Floyd Let's Do the Time Warp Again!After careful consideration, I think that may be the key: it feels overwhelming. Some people seem to move through their to do lists with ease, despite the same obstacles. Maybe it’s about perspective as much as it is about process?

A few years ago I won a coaching session at an entrepreneurship event. I confided my concerns about feeling rushed and less productive than I wanted to be. She suggested that I keep a log of my activities so I could learn where I might unintentionally waste time. It was an eye-opening exercise. How many hours pass without us even realizing? (and not in the good, sit on the beach and watch the waves come in and go out kind of way!)

Now that I’m finding time, the next problem is being overwhelmed by the size of my to do list. Another obstacle is deciding where to start. Sometimes, I end up procrastinating rather than face what needs to be done. I have become better about picking the first thing on the list and taking care of it, even if I don’t want to. (some days the mantra is: suck it up, buttercup!)
cultureclub Let's Do the Time Warp Again!

This dance results in a lot of stress and wasted energy. It adds an unnecessary layer that changes nothing. I am not the type that works harder/faster/better under pressure. Instead, I end up more tired and make careless mistakes. I prefer to be methodical and unrushed.

SimonGarf Let's Do the Time Warp Again!

I think that if I change a few things, I’ll be able to do what must be done, with less stress, and have more down time. I’ll also probably be a healthier person, too. I’ll no longer look at the clock wondering where the time has gone, but maybe see all the hours left to relax and watch the clouds float by.

How can I adjust my attitude so that the thought of tasks do not hold me back? How can I become better prepared so that less time is wasted on deciding? I’ve almost mastered the art of “no” and asking for help. (maybe?)  What else can I do to be more efficient?  Here are some thoughts:

  • Make lists (always a winner with me!) and revisit the lists – it’s ok to decide that something is no longer a priority or even worth doing.
  • Try to make a plan for the next day.  It will help me to start the day with purpose. (With less waffling, unless that’s the plan. Waffles! Yum!)
  • When having trouble prioritizing, or trouble in general, ask for help. An outside perspective can be useful.
  • Remember that being kind is more important than being productive.
  • Put things away when I am done with them. I have a bad habit of leaving items wherever I last used them – and then I waste time searching for them. (It’s not that I’m lazy, it’s that I’m not mindful. Once I’m done with something, I’m on to the next task and simply forget. Mindfulness, in general, is not my strong suit.)
  • Sometimes it’s ok to call in sick and hit the beach, even to your own to do list.

Croce Let's Do the Time Warp Again!

As I mentioned, I juggle a lot of projects. Is this the right way to spend my time? All of this takes away from my time with Marc and my friends. Does anyone look back at their life and wish that they had worked more?

Marc and I have discussed this many times. The freelance work doesn’t take up a significant amount of time and gives me some financial freedom to travel. I’m learning useful things in my graduate classes that are helping me in my day job and have led to improvements in our site. If our customer has a better experience, it helps us to raise more money for the Breast Cancer Research Foundation. I have specific goals and am making progress towards them.
I hope that by improving my relationship with time, by spending it carefully, mindful, I will have more opportunities to relax while still achieving my goals. I’ll report back in a year!

What did you improve in 2017? Do you have any plans for 2018?

GREAT NEWS!  For first three months of 2018, donations from The Strap Saver to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation will be matched, up to $5000. This means that we will raise $1.50 for the first Strap Saver in every purchase and $1.00 for each additional Strap Saver.  We have a chance to make a big contribution in a short period of time, so let’s get shopping!  Offer expires March 31, 2018

feet in red and green warm socks on a wooden bench with a mug in a knitted cozy in front of a fireplace, the text reads unwind and relax

Reflections on Christmas Wrapping

Feet in warm red and green socks and a mug in front of a fire with the words unwind and relaxThis time of the year can be hard – it moves so fast and there’s just so much cheer. It can be overwhelming for those that celebrate as much as on those that do not. There was even a study on the negative effects of non-stop Christmas music.  It can cause stress by adding pressure to produce the perfect holiday. (and still, no ninjas to help us through….)

Before you think this is a bah-humbug blog, please read on. As I don’t usually post on Christmas eve (our usual Sunday publishing schedule), I’m reflecting on this long holiday weekend and what I see around me. (In addition to the religious significance, we stick to party rules here, no religion or politics!) For me, the best Christmas advice came from my favorite holiday song, Christmas Wrap, by the Waitresses.

The main character had a year that was a “busy blur.” It was full of missed opportunities: no time for lunch dates, car breakdowns, awful sunburn. Despite having multiple invitations, she needed to catch her breath, so she chose Christmas as her time to unwind. She was going to take care of herself, regardless of what she was “supposed to be doing.”

Yeah, I know the song is also about meeting a guy and the world’s smallest turkey (thanks A&P!), but that only comes after she’s decided to do what she needs for herself. She didn’t do what everyone else was doing just because of expectations. If it’s hard now to buck the norms, imagine how much harder it was in 1981? (That was a long time ago. Oy, I feel old now.)

In the US, Christmas is one of the few days where most of the outside world stops. Stores are closed. Often, there’s no place to be. Instead of being down on the holiday if it’s not for you, why not pick what’s important to you and do that on this day? It’s a great time to enjoy the quiet, reflect on the last year and celebrate what went right. Or, gather all of the movies that you missed over the year and watch them back to back. (I recommend Wonder Woman, a movie about kicking butt for what’s right.) Take some time to get back to a favorite hobby – providing it’s indoor or cold weather if you live in the northern hemisphere! Another option to clean out a closet or a room and let go of some things that you won’t need in 2018.

Christmas doesn’t have to be all festivities and eggnog, unless that is what you want it to be. Make 2017 the year that you do Christmas right this time.

 

Breast cancer research foundation logo

Breast Cancer Research Foundation, Choices & a Cure

Breast cancer research foundationAbout 2 months ago, Cancer Research UK published a study stating that breast cancer can recur up to 20 years after the initial diagnosis. According to the results, the probability of a metastasis occurring later directly correlates to the size of the original tumors and if cancer was found in the lymph nodes. The researchers were surprised that the cancer could remain dormant for so long.

When my mother was first treated for breast cancer in 1998, we were told by her doctors that 7 years was “cured”. In 2005, I remember having a small celebration via telephone. She was free! According to this new study – and what they found in her 16 years later, she was not. The doctors were making the best decisions that they could with the information that they had at the time.

I don’t know if she would have done anything differently if this study had come out 5 years earlier. My mom was already doing everything that was recommended. She went for her yearly mammograms and performed monthly self-exams. Would she have had more detailed scans? I believe she was part of the trials for tamoxifen but had to stop it due to complications from other medical issues. (which I do not have, should I ever need to try a similar drug therapy) At the time, the doctors just didn’t realize that they should be looking deeper.

Beth and I have decided that we want to do our part. We’re hoping to help overcome the lack of funding for research. Starting in November, The Strap Saver joined forces with the Breast Cancer Research Foundation to help raise awareness and money for research. Stage IV (the stage that takes so many women from us) is underfunded and the BCRF has pledged 30% of their grants (almost $18 million) for advancements in this area. In addition, BCRF has established the Evelyn H. Lauder Founder’s Fund, the first large-scale and largest privately funded multi-year international program dedicated to understanding the biology of metastasis (in addition to funding other important research).

We’re hoping to help be the light in this otherwise dark subject. Five percent of all sales, retail and wholesale, will go to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation. (So, if you haven’t, it’s a great time to pick up some Strap Savers!) If you already have all of the Strap Savers that you need, but love Amazon, go to smile.amazon.com and pick BCRF as your charity. Amazon will donate 0.5% of the purchase price of eligible items. If you’re like us, you’re shopping there already and the prices are exactly the same so it’s an easy way to help. Maybe next year BCRF will be able to donate more to Stage IV research. We’ll be one step closer to never again losing another person to this awful disease.

We also know that you are trusting us with your money, so we have vetted the Breast Cancer Research Foundation. Ninety-one cents of every dollar is donated to research. Charity Navigator gave them an A+ and Charity Watch gave them 4 out of 4 stars. BCRF has the highest rating of any breast cancer charity. In addition, I had the opportunity to meet with Dr. Susan Domcheck, a member of the Scientific Advisory Board, personally. She was my doctor for the DNA study at University of Pennsylvania. She was both capable and kind. From my interactions with her, it’s clear that she wants to make a difference.

Shop with us, shop with Amazon, or donate directly – do whatever you can to help this great organization find a cure.

a storefront of la belle, in Alesund, Norway

Bras Around The World: Norway

0621171553 Bras Around The World: NorwayIn June, I had the opportunity to visit one of the few places in the world that experience the midnight sun, Norway. It is an amazing country, known as the land of the fjords, the Vikings and the trolls. (If you’re looking for Frozen reference, you might as well stop reading right now1).  The trolls didn’t impress me, but the fjords and the descendants of the Vikings definitely did. Many Norwegians are quite tall. And blonde. And beautiful.

0621171524 Bras Around The World: Norway

Alesund, Norway

I can’t travel somewhere without taking a peek inside of a lingerie store. We stumbled upon La Belle, a pretty shop on one of the main streets of Ålesund. Once inside, it was quite large and looked like any lingerie boutique that I might find in the United States. It was pretty, feminine and welcoming. They had many of the same brands that we find in our small boutiques: Marie Jo, Freya, Fantasie, Wacoal. There was one German brand that I didn’t recognize but I didn’t take a photo or write down the name. I really wish I had, it was beautiful. (I’m also wary of the staff thinking I’ll see it here and then buy it online!)

The woman behind the counter was very friendly although her English was limited, as is my Norwegian. (I know important words, like iskrem! – ice cream) We managed to communicate and I told her a little about the Strap Saver. I can’t tell if she wasn’t impressed or didn’t understand. (you have your answer to that, I have mine) We were able talk about the bra culture in Norway.

DSCN1132 Bras Around The World: Norway

Sightseeing in Geirangerfjord, an hour from Alesund. It was a long day!

She said that fancy bras were popular but that she found that many Norwegian women often wore a size too small. She wasn’t sure why. The saleswoman also said that the customers who came in from other parts of Europe, especially Eastern Europe, understood their size and were able to find what they needed quickly.

When asked the hand-wash vs. washing machine question, she emphatically said hand-wash. I wonder if putting bras the in the washing machine is something only Americans do. Maybe European machines don’t have the “delicate” cycle that we claim works just as well as hand washing (but, doesn’t). Is having a washing machine with enough buttons to launch the space shuttle is also only for Americans? Europeans don’t tend to be as concerned with bells and whistles – and space is at a premium.

I did notice the boutique prices were similar once converted into USD, which surprised me given that the cost of living in Norway is much, much higher. (2 burgers, fries and a soda at a walk-up counter was $25!) I wish I had thought to find a department store or even a discount store, to compare the quality and cost. I was too busy staring at the fjords, eating cheese, and driving on some pretty crazy roads (well, riding and navigating, Marc did the driving). It is hard not to in such an amazing place.  If I’m ever lucky enough to go back, I promise to find more information.

Have you ever been to Norway?  What was your favorite spot?

1Yes, Arendelle is loosely based on Norway but even the 8-year-old girl traveling with us got caught in the beauty and forgot the Disney story – you know, the one where the sister without the magical powers, cool dress, or song is the true hero….

A frog in a planter with pepper plants

Waiting for the Summer Harvest

0430171204 Waiting for the Summer HarvestLately, it’s becoming been harder and harder to keep up with this blog. It’s not that I don’t have things to say – we all know I never am lacking words. It’s just that the ones that I do have don’t feel right. I try to take care to speak in a light, funny (at least to me!) way, even for more serious topics. Right now my jokes feel flat.

It’s not because the business isn’t going well – it is. I’m caught up on the books! (promise kept, so far anyway!) We’re moving forward with new ideas for social media and paid search campaigns. Our communications channels are strong and we’re sharing important messages that we think will interest our customers. Saving straps is a way of life! (nope, not really… but caring enough about how your clothes make you feel IS a way of life and The Strap Saver can be part of that.)

I’m definitely not done speaking. (Stop laughing. I might actually stop talking someday…) There are still so many subjects to explore. We’re working on the Top 10 Straps to Save. I have another blog about what it’s like to have a breast MRI (spoiler alert: my results were clear) I am working on a few additional installments of “Bras Around the World” but I’m not sure I’m doing this with my usual joie de vivre – and frankly, I don’t want risk boring either of us.

I think I need a slightly less demanding blog schedule while I find my voice again. (unless you’re out there, Cindy, and you have a moment to ask Santa when you see him…) I don’t want the blog to go unattended and not say why. For now, I’m going to keep tending to the business – much like my newly planted container garden – and publishing when I can.  More to come once the flowers are in bloom and I fully reclaim my verbose, sarcastic self!