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Showing posts from March, 2017

Rock & Roll Saved My Soul: An Excerpt

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Dear Reader,
I wanted to explain a bit about this book: where the idea came from and why we’re doing this.  Music has always been a part of my life, as far back as I can remember.  I’m sure the same is true of you.  It’s in our schools, television, movies, and the radio.  It’s hard to avoid, but who would want to, right?   I am not the first to admit that music has gotten me through a lot.  It’s been there for me when no one else was or could.  There’s always that one song, that one band that gets you on a personal level. 
For me, there have been numerous bands that have had that effect on me.  The most recent being Frank Turner.  It is this man that sparked the idea for this book.  He is an amazing musician, and just an all around awesome guy.  Upon hearing his song “I Still Believe” it got the wheels in my head turning.  The song is about how music can save your life.  I started thinking about all of the times that music has saved my life.  We all have those stories.
The more I though…

What It's Like For Me When I'm Not Okay

What It's Like For Me When I'm Not OkayByM.W. Leigh 
Please be advised that some content in this article may be triggering.
Today it's 3:50AM. I just got off the phone with a friend in a different timezone so she could go to bed at a somewhat normal time. I told her I love her and goodnight, not only because she’s my best friend, but because I needed her to validate that the anxiety and depression are lying to me.
I've never really laid it all out before in my own words. So here I am. Sitting in my room in the very early morning, I'm watching an anime movie I’ve been looking forward to and trying to get rid of the sinking feeling in my stomach: the one I always get. It's like the feeling you get when you're leaning back and a chair and you almost fall backwards… it's like that but it's constant. Telling me something horrible is going to happen but I don't know what. I take my xanax, and I hope one MG will be enough to calm me down. However, even if…

The Sounds of Advice #37: Spring Cleaning

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Spring cleaning tips and tricks:
Aisling: Designate a day for each room or even a week for each room if you have bigger projects in mind. Make a list so you don't forget anything. Take breaks as needed. Declutter as you clean so you don't have as much to clean. 
Even if you only have 10 or 20 minutes to clean, fit in as much as you can. Little by little it makes a difference!
Sandy: Take your time in doing the house! Do a room a week if you need to. Just make sure to go through everything getting rid of things you don't need or forgot you had until you came across it. This will help will getting rid of clutter as well for room you might need! Take breaks when need and don't overwhelm yourself. :)
Kate:  I'm the google queen when it comes to research. Usually that's how I end up answering the advice questions when I'm stuck. There are so many tips and tricks out there! I found one particularly interesting photo gallery on the Good Housekeeping website. Instead o…

Everyday Miracles and CDH

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What is Congenital Diaphragmatic Hernia (CDH)? (CDH) is a birth defect of the diaphragm. The most common type of CDH is a Bochdalek hernia; other types include Morgagni hernia, diaphragm eventration and central tendon defects of the diaphragm. Malformation of the diaphragm allows the abdominal organs to push into the chest cavity, hindering proper lung formation.
CDH is a life-threatening pathology in infants and a major cause of death due to two complications: pulmonary hypoplasia and pulmonary hypertension. Experts disagree on the relative importance of these two conditions, with some focusing on hypoplasia, others on hypertension. Newborns with CDH often have severe respiratory distress which can be life-threatening unless treated appropriately.


RRSMS has teamed up with the lovely Andrea Stenlund to raise money for CDH awareness through the anthology Everyday Miracles. All proceeds will be donated to CHERUBS.



Question of the Day #45: Marrying Musicians

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Gina: There's a couple.
Kate: Danny Bemrose of Scars on 45 
Sandy: This is so hard. I would have to say Chad Kroger though. He is yummy!

Melissa: Jared Leto. Because he's infinitely perfect. 
Renee: None
Aisling: Umm...I'd say Ryan Tedder
 Twinkle: Enrique
Sid: Oh dear, that's a hard one. Maybe Ed Sheeran. 
Arminta: Otep
Lori: Adam Levine from Maroon 5 or Donnie Wahlberg from New Kids on the Block
Radeyah: Mmmmmm. I don't think there are any right now that I'd want to marry. Lol!

The Sounds of Advice #36: Hobbies

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How to find and learn a new hobby:
Aisling: Research some of your interests. If any appeal to you that have hobbies you could practice go ahead & give it a try. It could be anything from reading, to painting, to hiking. When it comes to hobbies the sky is the limit!
Sandy: Best thing I would do is go places and look at things (hobby lobby, Michael's, Walmart) look around st things. If you see something that you might like. Get it and try it. You won't know for sure until you try it out.
Kate:  
1, Look to Your Past
Are there things you enjoyed as a kid that you might still enjoy as an adult? Maybe you had an awesome record collection, loved to sew clothes for your dolls or were always out on your bike. Those are all things you could pick up again as an adult that would make great hobbies.
Or there may be hobbies in your home right now that you started but have recently neglected. Maybe it’s time to finish that crochet project or pick up the guitar again.

2, Go on a Scavenger Hunt

Invisible Illness: Migraines

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What is a migraine?  A migraine can cause severe throbbing pain or a pulsing sensation, usually on just one side of the head. It's often accompanied by nausea, vomiting, and extreme sensitivity to light and sound.
Migraine attacks can cause significant pain for hours to days and can be so severe that the pain is disabling.
Warning symptoms known as aura may occur before or with the headache. These can include flashes of light, blind spots, or tingling on one side of the face or in your arm or leg.
Medications can help prevent some migraines and make them less painful. Talk to your doctor about different migraine treatment options if you can't find relief. The right medicines, combined with self-help remedies and lifestyle changes, may help.

Symptoms: Migraines often begin in childhood, adolescence or early adulthood. Migraines may progress through four stages: prodrome, aura, headache and post-drome, though you may not experience all stages.
Prodrome: One or two days before a migraine…

Question of the Day #44: Musician's Physical Attractiveness

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Gina: No

Kate: No, but it doesn't hurt lol (I'm kidding) Honestly, half the time I don't have a clue what any of them look like unless I've seen them live.

Sandy: No, I can't tell you how many times I have finally seen the singer after listening to them for a while and going I had no idea they looked like that. Lol

Melissa: It's definitely much more nice to look at, but for real ... If you have an amazing voice/vocal range, or you can play the crap out of an instrument, it really doesn't matter.

Renee: No

Aisling: Not really

Twinkle: Nope

Sid: Not really

Arminta: No, but it is an added bonus of going to see them live

Heather: Not for me

Lori: Nope

Radeyah: No it doesn't


The Sounds of Advice #35: Gardening With Minimal Space

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How to create a garden with minimal space:
Aisling: If you have limited space but would like to grow some plants here are some ideas. 
1. Use windowboxes. If you have no outdoor space, windowboxes are great, especially since the plants will get plenty of sunlight.
2. If you have railings that can hold longer planters this is another way to utilize small space. 
3. Garden vertically if you have wall space outdoors that can be utilized such as a trellis or a multi pocket fabric wall planter.
Sandy: Egg cartons work great for starting everything not the paper ones though. Then they have small planter boxes you can get that you could transfer them too. Just have to pick plants that aren't huge! Other than that you can easily have your own little indoor garden and don't have to worry about frost if you live in a cold place.
Kate: Pintrest is a treasure trove of ideas, but sometimes it can be a bit overwhelming, especially when you don't know where to start. It is a great place to sta…

Invisible Illness: Scoliosis

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What is Scoliosis? Scoliosis is a sideways curvature of the spine that occurs most often during the growth spurt just before puberty. While scoliosis can be caused by conditions such as cerebral palsy and muscular dystrophy, the cause of most scoliosis is unknown. Most cases of scoliosis are mild, but some children develop spine deformities that continue to get more severe as they grow. Severe scoliosis can be disabling. An especially severe spinal curve can reduce the amount of space within the chest, making it difficult for the lungs to function properly. Children who have mild scoliosis are monitored closely, usually with X-rays, to see if the curve is getting worse. In many cases, no treatment is necessary. Some children will need to wear a brace to stop the curve from worsening. Others may need surgery to keep the scoliosis from worsening and to straighten severe cases of scoliosis. Symptoms:
Uneven shoulders
One shoulder blade that appears more prominent than the other
Uneven waist

Question of the Day #43: Band Member Names

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Gina:For the most part
Kate: Not always
Sandy: I know most of them, not all though.
Melissa: I'm sad to say that I don't know the names of every member of all of my favorite bands. 20 years ago? I'd probably be saying something different. All the lyrics I had memorized, too. To be a kid again. *Sigh*
Renee: No
Aisling: No I don't. 
Twinkle: Mostly
Sid: I'm afraid I don't really. I'm bad with names. 
Arminta: No, some but I'm generally terrible at remembering names. 
Heather: Nope
Lori: Most of them
Radeyah: I do not!
Colleen: Not usually
Jen: Depends on the band

The Sounds of Advice #34: Organization Techniques

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Organization techniques for work and home:

Aisling: Only keep important paperwork in folders or a filing cabinet. Throw all junk papers away. Avoid cluttering up desk or table space by immediately putting papers where they go so they don't pile up.  Utilize space under the bed for storage totes.  If you have some empty wall space set up some shelves to create more storage space if needed.
Sandy: If you have the room at home to get those storage with the different sized boxes that works. If you have smaller things tackle boxes work well too! For work if you have your own desk at work just get a paper slots. That way you can order them by things that need to be done asap at top and the others in importance.
Kate: I am the worst when it comes to organization, because I have a lot of things all crammed into a small space. I do try though. And this is what I've done to help make things a little less cluttered. I started by going to Dollar Tree and bought a wide variety of organizational…

Invisible Not Imagined: Anxiety (an excerpt)

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Today I'd like to share an excerpt from something I am working on for the Invisible Not Imagined. It is yet untitled and very much still a work in progress, but I want to show people an example of what we're looking for. 


For me anxiety feels like being trapped in one of those giant hedge mazes. Every turn a dead end, each one bringing me closer to laying on the ground, curled up in the fetal position, crying. The panic attack does eventually subside, but I'm still stuck in the maze. Though, now I'm lucky because of Richard. Because I don't feel quite so stuck if he's standing at the edge of the maze, shining a light through, showing me the way out. He calls out words of encouragement and reminds me that I'm not alone. Some days I still find myself back in the maze, but I know there's a way out.

Please ignore the due date, as we are still accepting submissions! 

March Band of the Month: Capital Soiree

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Rock and roll pop music from Chicago-- Active since 2013, Capital Soiree has played at venues such as Beat Kitchen, Subterranean, Metro (Chicago), Bottom Lounge, House of Blues Chicago and many others throughout the Chicagoland. 
Our new EP "Next Weekend" is out now on Spotify, iTunes, Soundcloud, and Bandcamp

Albums:  Next Weekend EP
Social Media:  Facebook Soundcloud Bandcamp
Where to Buy Music:  iTunes

March Volunteer of the Month: Aisling Spofford!

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Volunteer of the Month: Aisling Spofford!!!
My name is Aisling. I’m married to my high school sweetheart & we have three daughters. I played the violin when I was in middle school. I’m a terrible singer but I sing anyway. Someday I hope to learn how to play the guitar and the piano. My hobbies include reading, writing, scrapbooking, hand taming my two parakeets, taking pictures, playing Nancy Drew PC games & going for walks.
A message from the RRSMS Team:
Kate: I am so glad that you are a part of the team! It wouldn't be what it is today without you. I know I can always count on you. Thank you for everything that you do! Love you!!

Heather: Thanks for your hard work, Aisling! I'm glad you're a part of the Rock and Roll Saved My Soul team.
Sid: Aisling, thank you so much for your hard work at Rock and Roll Saved my Soul! I have very much effort enjoyed working with you.
Andrea: Aisling, thank you so much for your hard work and dedication.  You are extremely talented and w…