Life after 60 – Adventure

Good Causes

Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation

by on May.01, 2010, under Good Causes

Please visit the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation and learn how you can help

(Editor’s note – this is a press release taken from shown in its entirety for educational purposes. Please visit their site for additional information.)

Type 1 Diabetes (Juvenile Diabetes) Facts

Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease in which the body’s immune system attacks and destroys the insulin-producing cells of the pancreas. While its causes are not yet entirely understood, scientists believe that both genetic factors and environmental triggers are involved.

Affects Children and Adults
Type 1 diabetes usually strikes children, adolescents, and young adults, but it can be diagnosed in adults as well. It comes on suddenly, causes dependence on injected or pumped insulin for life, and carries the constant threat of devastating complications.

Needs Constant Attention
To stay alive, people with type 1 diabetes must take multiple insulin injections daily or continually infuse insulin through a pump. They must also test their blood sugar by pricking their fingers for blood six or more times a day. While trying to balance insulin doses with their food intake and daily activities, people with this form of diabetes still must always be prepared for serious hypoglycemic (low blood sugar) and hyperglycemic (high blood sugar) reactions, both of which can be life-limiting and life threatening.

Not Cured By Insulin
While insulin injections or infusions allow a person with type 1 to stay alive, they do not cure diabetes, nor do they necessarily prevent the possibility of the disease’s devastating effects, which may include: kidney failure, blindness, nerve damage, amputations, heart attack, stroke, and pregnancy complications.

Difficult to Manage
Despite paying rigorous attention to maintaining a meal plan and exercise regimen and always injecting the proper amount of insulin, people with type 1 diabetes face many other factors that can adversely affect efforts to tightly control blood sugar levels. These factors include stress, hormonal changes, periods of growth, physical activity, medications, illness/infection, and fatigue.


  • As many as three million Americans may have type 1 diabetes.
  • Each year, more than 15,000 children – 40 per day – are diagnosed with type 1 diabetes in the U.S.

Warning Signs
Warning signs of type 1 diabetes may occur suddenly and include:

  • Extreme thirst
  • Frequent urination
  • Drowsiness or lethargy
  • Increased appetite
  • Sudden weight loss
  • Sudden vision changes
  • Sugar in the urine
  • Fruity odor on the breath
  • Heavy or labored breathing
  • Stupor or unconsciousness

What is it Like to Have Type 1 Diabetes?
Ask people who have type 1 diabetes, and they will tell you: It’s difficult. It’s upsetting. It’s life-threatening. It never goes away.

“Both children and adults like me who live with type 1 diabetes need to be mathematicians, physicians, personal trainers, and dieticians all rolled into one. We need to be constantly factoring and adjusting, making frequent finger sticks to check blood sugars, and giving ourselves multiple daily insulin injections just to stay alive.”

– JDRF International Chairman Mary Tyler Moore

“This disease controls our lives with all the pricking of the fingers, shots, high and low blood sugars; it’s like being on a seesaw. Without a cure, we will be stuck on this seesaw ’til the day we die.”
– Tre Kawkins, 12, Michigan

“I never realized how much of my day would be spent dealing with
this disease and all of its challenges.”

– Patrick Lacher, 13, Connecticut

“A cure would give us freedom to carry on a normal life without
taking a break to check our blood or have a snack.”

– Asa Kelly, 16, North Carolina

Type 1 Diabetes, 2004; KRC Research for JDRF, Jan. 2005

For more information, visit the JDRF Web site at or call 800-533-CURE.

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Global Sex Trafficking | Domestic Trafficking of Minors

by on Apr.24, 2010, under Good Causes

This is a serious and heartening subject to watch and learn about, but you can help and make a difference. You can do this by volunteering in your community or even with a donation. There are many venues to help just do a search for sex trafficking. One organization that is dedicated to helping eradicate trafficking is Shared Hope. Stop by their site for a visit.

Something important to know is that the “prostitute” on the street or “illegal” working in construction, factories, restaurants or even the runaway may not be who you think, but may actually be a slave of human trafficking.

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Laurie Brosius guest post for Martha Decker & Breast Cancer with info on HotelsCombined

by on Feb.21, 2010, under Good Causes

Last month I received an e-mail from with information on their Spread the Word for Charity campaign.

Note from Mardeck – this post is provided by Laurie. Be sure to visit her blog La Vie de Laurie for more information. This is not her first year on the Three Day walk for breast cancer and is commended for all her hard work.

By letting your friends know about their awesome site, they will make a monetary donation to your choice of three very worthy charities. Currently they are supporting the World Wildlife Federation, Make A Wish, and World Vision. I immediately took to Twitter and Facebook and helped spread the word.

They were also kind enough to offer to sponsor my Susan G. Komen for the Cure 3-Day walk in November by contributing donations for friends and family that I refer to their website and program. It is easy to help and costs you absolutely nothing except a few minutes of your time and clicks of your mouse! Here is how you can help me and Susan G. Komen for the Cure:

Become a fan of HotelsCombined on Facebook, and they will donate $5. You can mention in their comments that you are supporting me and Susan G. Komen.

Tweet the following message from your Twitter account and they will donate $10:
Please RT @laurie_pooh: Check out! I’m spreading the word and supporting Susan G Komen

Write a quick blog post like this one about HotelsCombined and their charity program (you can mention me and my walk too), and they will donate $20.

The best part? You can do one, two, or all three of the above. So won’t you help me spread the word and help me earn more donations to end breast cancer forever?

I love that is a green and socially conscious company. What do they do? I am so glad you asked! They are a search engine that consumers can use to find hotel availability and rates. Their site allows their users to compare prices and offers from multiple merchants which means you don’t have to go to any other websites to find the best deal on your next hotel stay. Once you find the supplier suitable for your needs, they link you through to the supplier website to book directly. They offer a “complete picture” for any hotel that can be booked on the Internet, and are not paid to promote any particular website or hotel.

Go check them out for yourself. I plan on booking my next hotel through them (I found a ridiculously great rate on a room at the Paris hotel in Las Vegas!), and you should too. Want to help spread the word? You can get a nifty badge (like the one below) on their website. It couldn’t be more easy to make a donation to a wonderful charity and not even have to open your own wallet.

Thank you to those of you who have already helped, and especially to HotelsCombined for this wonderful opportunity!

I recommend and sent $35 to Susan G. Komen for the Cure!

You can shout and help too.

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Courtney Benefiel Drinks Blu Frog & Ribbits

by on Dec.06, 2009, under Good Causes

I think this video speaks for itself. Blu Frog is a tasty and healthy energy drink. Tested and tasted by Courtney Benefiel. She is one of the most energetic people I have ever met. If one could bottle Courtney, they would be a billionare! We got to  know each other face to face this year at in Orlando at Izeafest which was one of the wildest and craziest conferences I have ever attened. Can’t wait for next year. I first made contact with Courtney, who is RideToRemedy, while wandering about Twitter.

Courtney is a strong competitor in the bicycle field. Lance Armstrong better look out. Her web site Ride to Remedy is chalk full of info about racing. It is also about breaking the chains of diabetes, which she has. Courtney describes her mission on her website like this, “A year ago (May 2006), I decided that I was going to take care of my diabetes because I wanted to go skydiving and couldn’t do so without proper care of this hideous disease. With that goal obtained, my next goal was getting on the insulin pump, I had to show that I was capable of 7-10 blood checks a day, that I was going to watch my carb intake, that I was going to take insulin when I was supposed to (I have a history of not doing so). Being on the insulin pump gave me the power to be athletic and with that power I set out to prove that I have control.

When I completed my first ride in Southern, CA I was immediately craving my next ride. I had proven my point; I could control my diabetes and within that control, be athletic. What I spent the better part of 15 years missing out on, I wanted others not to miss. There’s no reason why diabetes should restrict anyone at anytime and while controlling it is an answer, it isn’t the answer. And that is why I ride and want to ride. I ride to find the cure, the answer to diabetes.” There is a ton of information about diabetes on her website.

We got together when I visited her home town and I brought her a six pack of Blu Frog. It’s healthy energy drink with no artificial sweenters or sugar other than that provided by the fruit. For more info on Blu Frog as a drink or as a way to make money be sure to click on the Blu Frog on the top right of the page.

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Azim Jamal & MarDeck at IZEAFest on Power of Giving

by on Nov.11, 2009, under Books, Good Causes, IZEA

While I was at Izeafest I met this very interesting person, Azim Jamal. He was once a corporate employee, but discovered the power of giving. Now he is trying to spread the word around the world. He explains this in the book “the power of giving.” Mr. Jamal and Harvey McKinnon collaborated together together on the book. They completed it and it was published by Penguin Group. I was not the only person interviewed at Izeafest. Other interviews can be found on Viddler and at YouTube with other conference attendees.

The idea of Mr. Jamal’s book is to teach you how giving back enriches everyone and how to create abundance at home, work and in your community. What I enjoyed while reading the book is that it shows the reader how to give back without spending money. There is much more information about the power of giving on the website. Mr. Jamal has his own website for information about him. This is a really interesting book and one to give friend or family. Especially if they are not one to give of themselves!

If even half the people who read the book follow some of the advice within its pages, the world would be richer and a much quieter and safer place.

Mr. Jamal and Mr McKinnon come from Canada. Mr Jamal has been volunteering an average of 20 hours a week for the last 25 years. Mr McKinnon has been a fundraiser or organizations such as UNICEF and Amnesty International. You can find out more about Mr McKinnon at his website.

I can tell you there are many ways to help within your community. You don’t have to go around the world or have a lot of money to help. There are shelters, soup kitchens, volunteer fire departments, libraries, schools, museums, nursing homes and many other places you can help and make a difference. Then there are plenty of service organizations that continually welcome new members. Some of these are the Lion’s Club, Kiwanis and so on.

I have volunteered for years and it has made my life rich and given me peace within when something good happens to another person or family. Through the years I have been involved with my children’s school. I was a room mother and on the Parent Teacher Association. I have been with the Kiwanis. We had several programs to serve the community. Getting up early in the morning to put together Thanksgiving boxes and Christmas baskets is an experience that is rewarding. I have received a lot in life and have always believed I should give back to my community wherever I live. I was on a Board of Adjustment in one city and on the Planning and Zoning Commission in another. These are volunteer positions and can help the community in a variety of ways. I spent years as a rescue diver and firefighter with my local volunteer fire department. While often it was sad seeing other people loose homes or property, it was a wonderful feeling when we were able to save the homes. I even spent several years as a reserve police officer. While working side by side with paid officers, I did it without pay. In Texas a reserve police office has the same training and is identical to the paid officer, except there are no benefits or pay involved. Some people join the armed forces for the same reason, to contribute to society and make the world a better and safer place for everyone.

While I was in law enforcement as a paid officer (I made the switch years ago and am now retired) one of my passions were kids at risk. I had a policy of making myself available 24/7 if the child needed help or to talk. They would call dispatch who would then locate me and I would call the child back. Texas Department of Criminal Justice has an interesting program that many of these kids participated in while I was with the police department. It is called Operation Outreach. While many children ages of 10-17 were ordered by juvenile court to attend, our police department took many children through the program at the request of concerned parents. The kids and I would go toa state prison for the day. They would go through a day similar to one of an inmate and some would come back changed for the better. One of my favorite successes is a girl I had known since she was in diapers. Her family background is one of drinking, fighting and jail. That went back several generations. Her mother wanted to break the cycle and her dughter started to run with gang memebrs in high school. On the day she whent throug the program I asked her mother to let her bring her “colors” with her. I let her bring it to the prison and she spent the day treated like a gang member. It was not pleasant. Ofcourse when she was searched befor entering the prison her “colors” were removed. (I had talked to the sergeant who runs the program before we came about her bringing the bandana) Seemed as thoug the entire prison knew what gang she was trying to run with and treated her accordingly, albiet from a distance. The success came after we left. She got her bandana back and hung it up in her room to remind herself of why she did not want to go this way. She graduated from high school while many in her family did not, got into the medical field, married a paramedic and is living a good life. That makes you feel good when you realize how one day can make such a difference. She stayed in contact through the years so we would know how well she is doing and  yes, I received a few phone calls from her or her mother when they hit rough patches.

I know quite a few Y generation individuals who have told me, “If I don’t get paid for it, then I’m not doing anything.” Of course I’ve heard it from my generation too. It can be quite difficult to put into words the satisfaction that comes from giving. Maybe if a person like this gets a gift of this book their mind can be changed enough to try at least once to give of themselves.

Mr. Jamal’s and Mr. McKinnon’s “power of giving” can be found on Amazon from $10.04 to $4.86 . To learn more about Mr. Jamal on Amazom you can visit his Amazom page.

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Spy Girl Receives New Training in Dallas Texas at Fair Park

by on Jul.09, 2009, under Good Causes, Life in General

New trick -disguises

New trick -disguises

Whitney and her Paw Paw spent the day on their own adventure in Dallas at the Museum of Nature & Science learning how to be a good spy. The CIA and MI-6 helped with the exhibit and training information. You can get tickets for the training online. They had a blast. The training covers the science of spying. This includes honing powers of observation, using a secret identityand completing a Secret Misson. Whitney took in all the training. Later in the evening she decided she was going to “become” her grandmother and gathered up several items her grandmother may wear or use.

AKA Granny Spy was born

Who IS this person?

Who IS this person?

 This new person, Granny Spy, wandered about the house unnoticed. That is until the spy began leaning in close to folks while emitting an odd “beep beep” sound from deep within the disguise.

 The day was a great learning experience I think any child would enjoy and the museum is not paying me to talk about the spy progam. The museum even has spy overnights for the kids this summer and mystery dinner events. Support the museum by attending an event or becoming a member.

During the day Ken and Whitney also visited the IMAX theater and went digging for dinosaur fossils inside the museum and not outside in the extreme heat.

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Locks of Love & Bye Bye My Hair

by on May.03, 2009, under Good Causes


Off to Locks of Love with Love

Off to Locks of Love with Love


Well,  I did it. This is something I have talked about doing for years. At 54 I decided it was time and I’m very happy with short hair. Besides, it grows really fast if I change my mind! It was a good feeling to pack up my 16 inch thick braid and take it to the  post office. If you have long hair this is a great case to help with and it only costs you what the USPS charges for the mailing. The benefits are great….


Here is information from Locks of Love on how to cut it, what to do with it and where to send it:

Locks of Love is a public non-profit organization that provides hairpieces to financially disadvantaged children in the United States and Canada under age 18 suffering from long-term medical hair loss from any diagnosis. They meet a unique need for children by using donated hair to create the highest quality hair prosthetics. Most of the children helped by Locks of Love have lost their hair due to a medical condition called alopecia areata, which has no known cause or cure. The prostheses we provide help to restore their self-esteem and their confidence, enabling them to face the world and their peers.

There is a donation form that can be used when sending your hair. It’s easy to print it out and include in the envelope.

Here are tips for what qualifies, what doesn’t and how to send your hair:

Please Note:  Anyone can cut your hair as long as the guidelines listed below are followed.  They encourage all of thier donors to go to a salon they are already familiar with to ensure their comfort when donating.


  • Hair that is colored or permed is acceptable.
  • Hair cut years ago is usable if it has been stored in a ponytail or braid.
  • Hair that has been bleached (usually this refers to highlighted hair) is not usable.  If unsure, ask your stylist. We are not able to accept bleached hair due to a chemical reaction that occurs during the manufacturing process. **If the hair was bleached years ago and has completely grown out it is fine to donate.
  • Hair that is swept off of the floor is not usable because it is not bundled in a ponytail or braid.
  • Hair that is shaved off and not in a ponytail or braid is not usable. If shaving your head, first divide hair into multiple ponytails to cut off.
  • They cannot accept dreadlocks. Their manufacturer is not able to use them in our children’s hairpieces. They also cannot accept wigs, falls, hair extensions or synthetic hair.
  • Layered hair is acceptable if the longest layer is 10 inches. 
  • Layered hair may be divided into multiple ponytails.
  • Curly hair may be pulled straight to measure the minimum 10 inches.
  • 10 inches measured tip to tip is the minimum length needed for a hairpiece.
  • Printable Guidelines (PDF)Please Note:
  • Shorter hair will be separated from the ponytails and sold to offset the manufacturing costs. Although the shorter hair cannot be used in the hairpieces, it still greatly helps to reduce costs.
  • Gray hair will be accepted and sold to offset the manufacturing costs.
  • Colored hair is not usable if it is colored over bleached hair.


  • 10 inches measured tip to tip is the minimum length needed for a hairpiece.
  • Hair must be in a ponytail or braid before it is cut.
  • Hair must be clean and completely dry before it is mailed in.
  • Place the ponytail or braid inside of a plastic bag, and then inside of a padded envelope.
  • If you wish to receive our personalized thank-you card, please fill out the hair donation form, or write your name and address on a full size separate sheet of paper and include inside the envelope. They cannot acknowledge donors who do not send their name and address according to these instructions.
  • All hair donations must be mailed to Locks of Love at:234 Southern Blvd.
    West Palm Beach, FL 33405

I got the above information from the Locks of Love website.

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