Saturday, May 8, 2010

Eden's Ugly Bunna

This is the ugly bunna I crocheted for my niece to go along with her Easter basket for next year. It's been done for a while now but I've been lazy about getting the picture off my camera.

 

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Damn It, Now I Want a TomTom!!!

We have a navigation system, a Garmin my husband bought at Best Buy a few years ago. I LOVE the damn thing! But now, I want a TomTom!!!!! Curse you, George Lucas, for finding more ways to make us geeks want your franchise (waving my fist in the air)!!!!!!



Sniff...sniff...I can't upload those voices to my Garmin.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Looking Into RepairPal.com

This was supposed to be a sponsored post written by me on behalf of RepairPal.com. All opinions are 100% mine. For reasons unknown to me, the company that was supposed to sponsor it keeps rejecting it.

It’s amazing timing to me that I received a link to RepairPal.com just today, considering my husband’s pick-up truck was hit in the street outside our house on Sunday. The damage was minimal, mostly white paint from the boat that was being towed, the slightest dent on the bed, and a slightly bigger crinkle in the bumper. Even more amazing: the guy that hit it came to the front of our house and left his contact information behind in our mailbox, owning up to the accident. (The neighbors were outside when it happened, saw it and copied down his license plate number, just in case.)

But back to RepairPal.com. It was founded in 2007 in Emeryville, CA, by a group of people who through it was expensive and “tedious” to fix and maintain a vehicle. I don’t know, if you describe the reason for your website and service like that, then you’re making yourself sound like a service for lazy people. Sure, auto upkeep can be expensive. Preventative maintenance can take care of problems before they happen (oil changes, fluids, etc.) but it can’t take care of everything, like repairs to a vehicle after an accident.

Repairpal.com has kind if a vague FAQ page and on top of this, they admit two things:

1. Cars older than 1990 are not covered by RepairPal.com, because a majority of cars currently being driven are not that old anymore. After last year’s national“Cash for Clunkers”, I can see how that might be a problem.

2. Some models of cars from 2007-2009 are also not online because of the supposed difficulty in acquiring data on them. Okay, that makes no sense to me. They aren’t talking about 2010 models yet.

An upside to RepairPal.com is that you can create an online account for your vehicle(s) to keep track of the work they need and have had. With so many other sites offering online accounts, this seems like a convenient aspect of their service, provided you can remember another user name and password.

However, I can’t really see too many people in my own life that I would recommend RepairPal.com to. Maybe it’s because we are all settled in our communities that we know where to take our vehicles to for service, if not the dealer we bought them from. How many local service stations offer specials on oil changes? Heck, I could go to Wal-Mart right now and spend $30 to get the supplies I need for an oil change and have my husband do it. Or if I were new to an area and my Blazer needed service, I could also ask around my neighbors on where to go or where to avoid.

One possible target user group for RepairPal.com, in my opinion, might be college students. Students who live on or near college campuses might be kind of a nomadic group once summer comes and they go home. But if they are from out of state, then they might not know where to go for their automotive needs, should they have a car on campus.

But before starting a relationship with a business of any kind, consumers would be better off doing their research before hand. The Better Business Bureau should be your first stop for information. And in case you’re wondering, the BBB has rated RepairPal.com with an A-. The site has had 0 complaints from consumers over the last 36 months, the BBB’s standard reporting period.

So even if RepairPal.com isn’t a site and a service for me, you may want to look into it for your own needs.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Taking Back a Previous Post

On Friday, April 30, I wrote about the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. At the time, I thought BP had gotten the leaks under control. I was wrong.

"As owner of the well, BP is responsible for the cleanup and its costs. It blames Transocean, which it hired to drill the well, for the failure of a critical piece of equipment that was designed to shut off the well in case of emergency...The Deepwater Horizon caught fire April 20 and burned for two days before sinking, with 11 workers presumed dead. Executives from BP and Transocean Ltd., looked "like deer in the headlights" when they briefed members of the House Energy and Environment committee about the accident and response on Tuesday, said Rep. Joe Barton, R-Texas."

Holy shit, the damn thing is STILL leaking!!

So, I'd like to take back a section of my previous post, when I wrote, "In my own opinion, I don’t think this disaster will really affect the public’s perception of BP as a corporation. They are owning up to it and taking responsibility and accepting help."

I mean, COME ON. It's been 15 days...cap it, plug it, DO SOMETHING. At this point, I realize my naivety was keeping me from seeing the big picture. I'm going to make another prediction: this oil spill and how BP has been handling it will become a mandatory case study for Introduction to Public Relations college classes across the country.

And from a practical viewpoint, it would be so much more interesting than the case study I did while in college: the Sucrets company switching over from metal tins to plastic cases.

Monday, May 3, 2010

The Ugly Bunna Returns and Prepping for Easter 2011

I know I've posted on here before about Craftster. I was recently inspired by a free crochet pattern there.

This one was the Ugly Bunny Pincushion. It really was meant to be a pin cushion but I realized this could be a great little stash buster project. I started making one for my sister's baby (picture of that one to follow later on), minus the pincushion parts. As I worked on it, I fell in love with the damn thing. :) It's about 10 inches tall, and I don't remember if I used a G or an H sized hook. But I started to realize how easy it would be to change him up some by turning it into different characters.

So once again, I found myself making a bunny (or bunna, as my friend Nicole would type) for Nicole because she needs another bunna like I need something else Spider-Man related. However, as I worked on a new ugly bunny, I had a brain storm. This would be no ordinary ugly bunna...it would be CTHULHU BUN! Cue the dramatic music!

I think this proves I need mental help.


Front of the bunna, so you can see his ugly face and missing eye.


Back of the bunna, so you can see his tail (which I didn't even think to put one on my niece's bun) and his wings.

When I took it over to Nicole on Sunday, she knew immediately it was a cthulhu bun and even looked through his tentacles to see if there were teeth inside. Of course there were. :)

I've also been mulling over the idea of opening a crochet Etsy store of sorts, selling original patterns and seeing how that pans out. To get ready for it, I've really been trying a few things. My Captain Jack Sparrow pattern would be a part of that store.

After exchanging emails with a local woman I met through Craigslist, I decided to add this pattern as well. She wanted a matching Easter basket for her soon-to-be-born daughter as the one she still had from when she was a kid. She sent me a photo and we decided on a price. She never got back to me, but I decided to make one for my niece, even though I didn't get it done until after Easter.


This was my original take on her basket, based on the photo she sent me. I think it turned out very well and and am very happy with it.



It's been made large enough to hold an empty 32 ounce butter/margarine container, if you wanted it to stand up on its own.