Friday, March 22, 2013

hey, saint francis . . .

ok, so yesterday, i blogged about america's worst-paying cities for women.
today, i'm blogging about our country's healthiest cities for women.

from women's health magazine — partnering with men's health magazine —
comes their fifth annual survey of the top 100 healthiest cities nationwide,
ranked according to 41 different categories, like
nutrition, cancer rates and cost-of-living.

#1? well, it turns out if you leave your heart in san francisco,
it will likely be in great shape once you retrieve it.

& here's the rest of the top-ten best:

2. salt lake city, utah. [#1 & #2 worst-paying were utah cities]
3. san jose, california.
4. boise city, idaho.
5. burlington, vermont.
6. minneapolis, minnesota.
7. seattle, washington. [#10 worst-paying]
8. austin, texas. [holler!]
9. st. paul, minnesota.
10. portland, maine.

thrilled but not stunned my hometown, the atx, is among the healthiest;
ten texas cities are included in the top 100,
with lubbock bringing the bottom with a ranking of #67.

& the least-healthiest of the top 100? birmingham, alabama,
where southern comfort food is king ... apparently, for the queen.

image source:

Thursday, March 21, 2013

hey, pope francis . . .

i'm not catholic [thank god].

but i love the concept of patron saints,
good guys [+ gals!] turned super-specific guardian angels,
available at a prayer's notice to help a believer out
with anything from girl scouts to lumbago.

lately, my work flow has been awfully, painfully s . l . o . w.
like, leech-like-money-bleed slow.
& candidly, i'm just about drained dry.

so, today i'm calling upon a sainted trifecta:
nicholas [patron saint of money problems];
cajetan [patron saint of job seekers]; &
john the baptist [patron saint of prosperity],
to send mama some good money-making opportunity.

& while i wait for my prayers to be answered,
i'll send up one more prayer, one of gratitude
that i don't live in one of the ten worst-paying u.s. cities for women.

for the past five years, the u.s. pay gap has remained
essentially unchanged: women earn not quite 79% of what men earn on average,
which comes out to an annual difference of about $10,000 less.

based upon a review of america's 100 most populous metro areas,
24/7 wall st. has identified the top ten worst-paying cities for women.

24/7 wall st. compared the median earnings for the past 12 months
of both men & women working full-time, year-round in the country's
100 largest metropolitan statistical areas, based on u.s. census bureau data.

& i'm seriously relieved to reveal texas has no cities in the top bottom ten.
can i get a yeehaw, y'all?!?

the winner biggest loser [spoiler alert!] was provo-orem, utah,
where being a homeschooling mom apparently pays better than professional employment.
women there earn not quite 62% of what men earn,
which calculates to just about $20k less a year.


here's the rest of the list of cities not to go to for a self-value lift, ladies:

2. ogden-clearfield, utah [women earn 65 cents for each dollar men earn]
3. lancaster, pennsylvania [almost 69 cents]
4. baton rouge, louisiana [69 cents]
5. palm bay-melbourne-titusville, florida [almost 70 cents]
6. colorado springs, colorado [70.5 cents]
7. wichita, kansas [almost 72 cents]
8. bridgeport-stamford, connecticut [72 cents]
9. tulsa, oklahoma [almost 73 cents]
10. seattle-tacoma-bellevue, washington [73 cents]

& again, i'm pleasantly puzzled by the scarcity of southern states represented here.

now i'm wondering how "we" get a patron saint of women's rights named? hmmmm . . .

image source: mary's prayers @

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

celebrate a woman.

what happens on a mama blog
when international women's day
happens during spring break . . .

we honor! we celebrate! we sing! just a dozen days later.

a pair of iwd items i must share,
both courtesy of the huffington post:

she's the reason:

a call to honor the unsung women who have helped shape us,
the ones who changed our life path in some essential way,
who made an important difference for us with their
presence, words, works, kindness or example, but might not know it.

huffpost requested readers to submit their "she's the reason"
stories via email & twitter for future publication up on the website.

but i'm going to go much more personal with mine.
this month, i will write a personal note to three such women in my life
to let them know they're the reason for something i cherish . . . & thank them for it.

wouldn't it be amazing to receive a letter like that? i think so, too.

one woman, y'all:

25 songstresses from 20 countries around the world
come together to sing a song of solidarity.
"one woman" was written for un women,
the international organization for women's rights.

it's beautiful & moving & available for download internationally:

image source: brazilian artiste bebel gilberto.

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

hooray, renée!

my dear friend renée trudeau
— life coach, author & balance facilitator —
has done it again.

her newly released book, nurturing the soul of your family:
10 ways to reconnect & find peace in everyday life
clearly lights ten paths to experiencing greater ease,
flow & harmony amidst the daily navigation of
stressful commutes, homework squabbles, hurried mealtimes &
other challenges so many of us face as modern parents.

tomorrow, in conjunction with & celebration of
the first day of spring, renée is hosting a
book-release party like none other, a
"rejuvenating, joyful & connective evening of self-renewal,
storytelling, exercises & creative play"
based upon the book's themes.

here are the deets:
wednesday, march 20th, 6-9p
mercury hall @ 615 cardinal lane
austin, texas
tix will be $45 at the door

for the price of admission, participants get:
:: a two-hour self-renewal retreat led by renée;
:: wine + bevs with culinary delights by spoon & co. catering;
:: a private house concert by austin singer-songwriter tricia mitchell; &
:: an autographed copy of renée's new book.

a portion of the event's profits will go to benefit
the children in nature collaborative of austin.

for more info about the event —
which is sure to be both amazing & inspirational,
just like my dear friend renée —
click here.

image source: belief network.

Friday, March 1, 2013

atx: keeping pets alive!

a day late & a short shoutout
to austin pets alive!,
a key force behind my hometown's
no-kill badge of honor . . .

february marked austin's second anniversary
of being a no-kill city,
continuing our run of being
the biggest no-kill city in the u.s.

apa! alone saved over 6,000
dogs & cats just last year.

atx: keeping it weird, keeping pets alive
& keeping me proud to be an austinite!

image source: nicole mlakar photography.