Tuesday, December 18, 2007

I'm an addict...

I am totally addicted to the Open Photo Contest. This is a photo contest put on by Open Source Photo ( a totally awesome forum by David Jay) where you get to vote on your favorite picture out of a series or four images. Photographers can register and upload their images to be in one of the contests. Currently there are 6 running categories which included: Stellar Brides, Traveling, Engaging, Prepared, Family Time & OPC Beta Contest. Four images are displayed at a time and you vote for your favorite of that series then voila! a new set comes then an new one and a new one and well you can see how this can get addicting. The winning photographer's get some nice prizes and are featured on the right colum of the page. Thier are some amazing photo's sometimes it's hard to choose which one you like best. Try it out for yourself but be warned you may be sitting in front or your monitor for a loong time ;)

Thursday, December 6, 2007

C is for cookie ... and Cancer!

Cookies for Kids' Cancer

"Tastes as good as it feels"

The Band of Parents Bound by Hope is a wonderful website started by parents with children that have been diagnosed with neuroblastoma. Parents that are devoted to providing awareness and funding for theirs and other children stricken by this rare and deadly pediatric cancer. Once a year they sell cookies for a limited time in hopes of raising money for this horrible disease. Chocolate Chip Oatmeal, Citrus Shortbread and Snickerdoodle are sold by the dozen for $30. Admittedly a little pricey but when considering the money goes to help save the lives of children it's more that worth it to pick up a dozen or two.

These mom's and volunteer's are hoping to bake and sell more than 8,000 cookies. What would you do if you were told your child had a cancer for which there was no known cure? Surprisingly pediatric cancer is horribly underfunded and certain rare strains get little to no research support. Only 30% of children diagnosed with neuroblastoma survive. Funding is crucial in providing hope for these families! Buy some cookies to enjoy or donate now. Cookies are only available from December 2nd through the 16th so order yours now!

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

I've been Compromised!

This Weekend I became a victim of Debit Card Fraud! Crazy Huh? The low down dirty criminals actually produced a dummy copy of my card and used it at an ATM to withdraw money from my account.

First off it's hard to believe that it's actually possible to do this but then to think that there are people with morals so low as to actually carry it out is mind boggling. I was lucky to have caught it pretty early, however they did get 3 transactions threw before I noticed though so that's pretty scary. The lady I spoke with in the fraud department at Bank of America said that this is a HUGE increasing problem in Washington state and that 85% of the cases of debit card reproduction are obtained through gas stations. Crooks are able to put a little chip in the card reader and get your card info and pin! Gas stations are a good target because many people use their cards there and the card readers are less monitor than say in store swipers. I was also told by BOA that you should always run your debit card as a "credit" rather than a debit if you can. It comes out of your account the same way but the crook only gets access to your card number and not your pin. Once they get your pin they can get actual cash and that is much harder to trace and prosecute if caught.

So my lesson learned is don't use your pin unless you absolutely have to, you never know who can gain access to it. Also be vigilant is checking your account's and know what's going on with your money! You never think it's going to happen to you but take it from me it can!

The picture above was obtained from Kids Bank.com it is the funniest little site geared towards teaching little ones about finances.