A couple of days ago, I alluded to the fact that I have a backlog of product review and promotion material I agreed to write about. I will make this short, sweet -- and hopfully, somewhat interesting.
"That book looks weird," my daughter noted.
I get it. When I saw the title by my friend, Sarah Maizes (Got Milf?), I had an urge to cover it up. After all, I wouldn't want anyone to think I thought I was anyone's idea of a Mother I'd Like to -- you know.
But -- as indicated in the subtitle*, the book is less about sex than feeling sexy, which are two different things... and the fact that I had that visceral reaction is all the more reason I needed to read Sarah's book.
Plus, it's funny. And if you get it on the iPad or Kindle, no one need see the cover.
(*The Modern Mom's Guide to Feeling Fabulous, Looking Great, and Rocking A Minivan. Amazon.com link here.)
I walked away from one of the BlogHer parties with samples of something called Y-Water, which I can best describe as low-sugar, nutrient infused water beverages (like Vitamin Water, but with less sugar and aimed at younger kids).
I have not been able to entice my teenager to try the stuff, and I haven't done so, either. But earlier this summer, I did try out several shots of a product that sounded like the answer to my bleary-eyed insomniac prayers.
Dream Water is a beverage that has been infused with two naturally occurring substances that play a part in the human sleep cycle: Gamma-Amino-Butyric Acid (GABA) and the enzyme melatonin. The product is being promoted as a more natural alternative to sleeping pills.
Now, I don't have a great history with homeopathic products like Airborne and Oscillococcinum, which I suspect work through the placebo effect. I tend to be skeptical. But I also have discovered some natural remedies that do seem to make a difference, such as the No Jet Lag pills I take when traveling through time zones (which I've been touting online for 10 years -- long before any marketers ever thought to contact me for an endorsement).
I was sent a six-pack of 2-oz shots in different flavors. They tasted good, and on the nights I took them, I did fall asleep rather quickly. Does that mean the water works?
I don't know. But it couldn't have hurt.
One problem: I did wake up after a couple of hours, but that could have been due to the size of the dose. I noted that on their website, they sell the water in larger, 8-oz bottles. I may just order a couple of those and report back to you.
I've had a fairly productive week -- especially when you consider the fact that school started on Monday (and I tend to stumble when we make a transition from vacation to school schedule, and vice versa). And of course, I didn't finish everything on my to-do list...
But I had been chugging along quite nicely on Wednesday afternoon, when my friend Yvonne pulled me into a Facebook chat to ask if I might be free the following day to go to Gladstone's in Malibu for a ride with Ford.
I almost never turn down an opportunity to go to Gladstone's, which is my sister's favorite LA-area restaurant (and I usually needle her a bit when I visit by snapping a shot on my phone and sending it to her).
And as we've been experiencing 100-degree weather in the Valley this week (I know! Whose idea is it to make kids start school in the middle of August??), it did not take me long to decide I deserved to cool off a little. Besides, I thought I could spin this ride into a new for-pay post over at AskPatty.
It turned out that the car Ford was presenting at this gathering was the 2012 Focus, a vehicle I was privileged to test at its product launch earlier this year (which I reviewed here). As I noted before, the Focus has come a long way since its introduction several years ago: it's peppy, economical, and actually attractive.
This particular Ford event was not so much an introduction to the Focus as an outreach to the city's Hispanic bloggers (and since my mother emigrated here from Havana, I nominally fall into that group, even though I rarely write about Latino issues). Ford was particularly interested in introducing us to the second-generation SYNC communications system available in all of their cars -- even entry-level vehicles like Fiesta and Focus.
I have written about SYNC before -- particularly after Ford lent me a Flex to try out for a week (including a road trip to Las Vegas). SYNC and MyFord Touch are the names given to the central communication system that integrates your Bluetooth phone connection, music and nav system, and I think it works better than any I've ever used (even better than the one in the Lexus RX450h I also reviewed).
SYNC makes it easy to pair your Bluetooth phone and download your contacts into the system. You can also seamlessly play music stored on your phone through Bluetooth. But the most advanced part of the system is your ability to control it via voice commands.
The current incarnation of the system understands over 10,000 commands, and it's truly amazing to see -- when the person who is operating it is used to the system's syntax (as when someone from Ford is doing the demonstration). But like any other technology, there is a learning curve. The system requires you to use a certain syntax, and sometimes, you feel like you need to use a second language.
When I had that Flex, I wasn't really able to get it to do much of anything via voice command until I'd had it for a few days. A one- or two-hour drive isn't going to get you up and running on SYNC (and our drive on Thursday was just a quick jaunt from Gladstone's to Santa Monica Pier and back).
At least, I wasn't in the Valley.
DISCLOSURES: I received no payment to mention any of the other products listed in this post, but in some cases, did receive items for review purposes. Amazon.com links to books are included as a convenience. As I live in California, I am no longer affiliated with Amazon and receive no commissions on book sales. Ford treated the Hispanic bloggers to lunch at Gladstone's.