Saturday, April 22, 2017

DIY Backyard Ideas: Spring 2017

With spring right around the corner, one of the best ways to gear up for the season is by sprucing up your backyard. Spring is recognizable by the colors, the flowers, and the endless DIY opportunities and today we’ll be going through a few of our favorites for the 2017 spring season. It’s a great time to open up your doors and get outside.


Gardens are a classic staple for the warmer seasons, and with the blooms expected in spring 2017, gardening is a perfect tool for revamping the outdoor areas of your home. Whether you’re planting a raised vegetable garden, creating a colorful door wreath out of homegrown flowers, or adding colorful marbles into the fencing around your garden – these projects are a perfect starting place for your spring creativity. Our favorite garden project for spring 2017? Decorating an outdoor fence with colorful marbles – here’s how!

·         Marbled Fences
Begin by finding your favorite marbles at your local craft stores. We recommend using newer marbles that are somewhat transparent. Next, determine the bit size you’ll need to bore a hole in whatever fencing you’re decorating. You’ll want the drill hole to be slightly smaller than the marble so it’s snug and less likely to fall out (we recommend practicing on scrap pieces of wood until you get everything just right). Next, go to town! When the sun hits your newly set marbles, it will create beautiful colorful lighting throughout your yard or garden!


As the nights get warmer and the sun stays out longer, there is nothing better than decorating your outdoor patio areas to make get-togethers even more enjoyable! A few of the trends for spring 2017 are Mason Jar lights, rope swings for the kids, and DIY outdoor chalkboards! The best and easiest outdoor décor idea that we’ve found this year? Rope swings – here’s how!

·         Rope Swing
Head over to your local hardware store and stock up on about 20 feet of “natural” rope (it won’t stretch like nylon will), a carabiner, and a packaged piece of round pine. Drill a hole through the center of the pine and weave your rope through. Knot the rope (we recommend a tree-climbing knot) through the seat and at the top. Wrap the rope over a sturdy branch, clip the carabiner to the hanging rope, and swing away!

Flowers are the biggest sign that spring is around the corner – and we recommend utilizing these blooming beauties as much as possible! There are endless amounts of creative DIY projects for this – however for Spring 2017, we’ve narrowed down our favorites to converted colander planters, dried flower candles, and zinnia pine cones! Our favorite? Zinnia Pine Cones – here’s how!

·         Zinnia Pine Cones
Pine cones are abundant this spring, and there are plenty of fun projects to use them for. If you’ve ever flipped a pine cone upside down, it resembles a beautiful Zinnia flower. Collect up some pine cones from your backyard, flip them upside down, and paint them with your favorite acrylic paints. Display them in a centerpiece or hang them with some outdoor lights, and your back yard will be beautifully decorated this Spring!

Spring 2017 is bound to be a great season! Utilizing some of these ideas will help you revamp, redo, and fall in love with your backyard area all over again. Start off the warmer seasons in style!

Friday, March 3, 2017

How to Choose the Right Charity for You

Finding the right charity to make a donation to is a difficult task indeed. There are so many stories of fraud and trouble with well-known charities that you can’t be sure where your money is going anymore. According to, the best way to start your search for a good charity is to start with a broad search. There are many good recommendation websites online that you can refer to when starting out. Use these sparingly to try and narrow your list of possible charities down a little. Don’t be too dependent on these websites, though.

Start Conducting Phone Interviews

You can either call the charity you have selected from the bigger list and ask them questions, or you can request a meeting to get a general idea of how it operates. Charities have special departments called development departments. The personnel in these departments have the job of fostering a relationship with potential donors. If you plan on making donations in the long term, you should do research, and do as much of it as possible.
While you are at it, take a look at the annual report of the charity. This report is public domain and will be a good indicator of how dedicated the charity is to its overarching mission and principles. Does your charity of choice have an aura of courage in its annual report or one of caution? Does the message it delivers inspire you? Always check the hard facts before making a decision.

Inquire About Their Goals and Progress

When you talk to the representatives at the charity, ask them to provide you with actual data and analytics that support their claims of progress towards their mission objectives. Ask them what metrics they use to measure their success and whether they would call themselves successful. If the charity doesn’t have the slightest idea about the data they collect, they probably won’t be a good option for you.
Sometimes, though, it can be an issue because the organization’s effectiveness won’t be directly related to the problems they solve. For example, if their mission is to solve a problem that will take a while to resolve, they might seem like they aren't making any real progress. In cases like these, ask for their short-term goals and statements of what they have accomplished so far.
A good example of this is if a charity has a mission to provide better education to children in Mogadishu. They may not be able to completely solve the problem but ask for statistics of students who have passed exams due to the schooling given by charity funding.

Charities Need Some Business Sense

Most charities try to appeal to your softer side. Many people donate without a second thought when shown an image of a starving person. By bringing business strategies into the decision-making process when selecting a charity, you gain some useful insights into which companies are doing work that matters and which are doing nothing to achieve their goals.

Thursday, March 2, 2017

The Advantages of Laser Hair Restoration

Do you know what laser hair therapy is? It is one of the most quickly rising new technologies available in the field of hair regrowth and restoration. Back in the days before this technology,  the only way to treat hair loss was by applying a topical treatment or through surgery. Such as the one described on, it came to light. While the surgery wasn’t too risky, there was always the risk of infection or complications developing.
    1. How Does Laser Therapy Work?

In laser therapy, one of the biggest differences is that it isn’t invasive, unlike surgery. To remedy your hair loss problems, a soft laser light that uses low amounts of energy is shined onto your scalp to treat your hair loss problems. It can be used to treat baldness, thin hair, and many other issues that arise with your hair and head.
The light causes the circulation of blood in your scalp to increase, which in turn prompts your hair to grow faster and thicker, due to the energy transferred to your scalp cells. Since the procedure uses a special low-energy laser light, you aren’t at risk of damage to sensitive organs either. Some older technology would use heat to stimulate circulation. While this worked to a limited extent, it would still be rather risky.
    1. What are the Benefits of the Laser Therapy?

There is an extensive list of bonuses from using laser hair treatment over traditional methods of treating damaged or lost hair. It significantly reduces the number of treatment sessions as huge advantages. In fact, a single session has been shown to increase your circulation by 50% of what it used to be.  
In addition to this, the results differ from conventional treatment methods – hair that grows due to this form of therapy is glossier, softer, and has more volume. It is also more elastic and resistant to breakage. If you go to a salon for hair treatment after growing hair through laser therapy, you gain the added benefit of increased protection against the ravages of chemical scrubs and dyes on your hairs.
    1. Can Everyone Benefit From Therapy?

According to the statistics, over 80% of people who get their hair treated in this manner see their hair loss issues come to a stop. You can’t do one session and hope that your hair loss stops, though. If you want to see the best possible results, it becomes necessary to go through multiple sessions with a specialist. Always talk to your doctor about potential risks to yourself, if you go through with such a therapy session. Remember that not everyone is viable for treatment, too.

No two people are the same. Your scalp doesn’t work or react in the same way that another person does. While laser therapy works for most people, it is highly possible that it won’t work for you individually. However, the typical time frame over which you can see results is about one month after your first treatment. Just remember that no matter what the outcome is, you are as beautiful as you believe you are!

Saturday, February 25, 2017

My Forbes Debut

I never thought I would see my name in a Forbes article, my less my face, but that is exactly what I woke up to this morning. I am beyond excited and can't stop smiling. Please read and share!

Navigating Self-Publishing Or What Two Successful Business Women Call Indieworld

"If you want something done right, do it yourself."
~Charles-Guillaume Etienne
“A funny thing happened on the way to my retirement…” It’s the first sentence in Julie A. Gerber’s and Carole P. Roman’s book, “Navigating Indieworld: A Beginner’s Guide to Self-Publishing and Marketing Your Book.”

Read the rest of the article HERE!

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

New Book Release!

Mirth Defects by Clint Forgy is one of those books that reminds me of Forrest Gump's famous box of chocolates: "You never know what you're gonna get."

Hysterically rich and with a vivid voice, Forgy writes a story of JD Ferguson, a young boy growing up in middle America in the early 70's, born in a small town in Iowa.Forgy begins his novel with JD's birth. He arrives with the clarity and sarcastic wit of an old soul, entering this world as if he's ready for action, and indeed he is. This is the story of JD's life and how his world evolves; the highs and lows, the rites of passage that bring him to manhood.

This is no boring accounting. It's fun, lush and complex, laced with humor, and filled with soft memories of riding bikes up and down a street in the hazy twilight. JD has it all. The agony of a boy's kindergarten crush, first kisses and the tender passion of young love. The story is rich, as real life as it can get, astoundingly insightful and side-splittingly funny.

Forgy is a brilliant author with the rare skill of growing JD's voice from boy to man. His delightful sense of humor and flair for dangerous pranks left me breathlessly reading, wondering how JD and his cohorts would escape unscathed. The cast of characters includes JD's younger brother Bob, his best friend Gasser, and the lovely Lana.

Roadapple Ridge is a town of possessed of fodder, ripe for Forgy's pen. JD and his cohorts leap from scrape to scrape, with JD's sharp mind constantly outsmarting the locals. At times, it reads like those old Keystone Cops silent movies. The only sounds were my chuckles. It's a special book that makes you laugh, even better when it makes your eyes sting, and Mirth Defects has the distinct honor of doing both.

Forgy is a wonderful writer, stepping forward to give a voice to the twilight of the twentieth century. Dinner was eaten with your parents, you rode your bike until the stars were out, and you went steady instead of hooking up. Despite his rough and tumble ways, JD has a sweetness. While he may court trouble, he knows when to do the right thing. Better than that, he knows when to say it. He tells his girlfriend, "If you think you're ten foot tall then you are," letting us know he has become a man. When his grandfather dies unexpectedly, JD says, "I'm trying to hear him breathe one more time." That line undid me, voicing true grief in a way that says it all.

Near the end, JD laments,"You can't always get what you want but sometimes you get what you need." Mirth Defects manages to do both, giving the reader everything they want as well as what they need.

Happy Reading!
Carole P. Roman

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Brain technology sheds light on Autism Spectrum Disorder

Not much has changed in the way we approach special needs education for children. However, one special needs doctor has developed a program that she believes will greatly improve the way in which special needs children learn.

Dr. JoQueta Handy, Ph.D, CCC-SLP had developed a program, the Children’s Opportunity for Brilliance, or COB model, that focuses on a child’s strengths in order to better understand how each individual responds to different learning strategies. In congruence with the COB model, Handy also partnered with several institutions to augment her program’s effectiveness. Some of these technologies include:

Quantum Reflex Integration: Based on research conducted at Harvard Medical School, Bonnie Brandes developed this technology, which uses low-level lasers on the head and body to grow stem cells through the hypothermic effect created by the laser. At the Brilliant Learning school, results have been seen on EEGs in as little as six treatments.

Interactive Metronome: This technology was originally developed for Olympic athletes but quickly advanced into the academic realm. It is used to prepare the brain for learning by stimulating the temporal lobes of the brain. It also helps with speech, attention, and reading fluency and comprehension.

Quantum Biofeedback: This scan determines the diet and supplements each individual needs to balance brain chemistry for better sleep, concentration, and overall health.

In its current form, the special needs education system is indeed a broken one. However, through individual attention within the COB model and a celebration of the uniqueness of every child, Handy believes this broken system can one day be fixed to ensure the potential of every student is recognized.