Is this Considered Cheating?

Okay, so here’s how it is… I run three blogs:  Gratitude Geek (you are here), Handmade in Texas (stories about art and artists in Texas) , and ShaKa Studios (my husband and I own and operate a custom furniture business).

Today is day 7 of the Ultimate Blog Challenge, creating 30 blog posts in 30 days.

I run 2 businesses.  Every third week I am down for the count from chemotherapy.  I sleep 10 to 12 hours each day due to fatigue (one of many chemo side effects).

Is this considered cheating?

Time is precious to me.  I am going to count posts on any of my 3 blogs towards the challenge.

If this is cheating, so be it.

I posted an interview with Jordan Park and Anna Moon of Gaia Body Works over at Handmade in Texas this morning.  Go read it. . .  and please leave a comment over there.  That would be super groovy, awesome and delicious.

If you really MUST comment here, then answer this question:  Have you ever cheated?  Do tell. 

Cash Back on Groceries When You Shop with Friends

My friend, Cynthia, introduced me to a rebate app called Ibotta.

Get it?


I bought a…

Haha.  Funny.

Cynthia has used the app to earn cash back on groceries.  Who doesn’t love cash back?

I gotta (get it? Ibotta, gotta) tell you that I suck at remembering to use the darn app but when I do (after I get home from the store) I always find money.  Today, I found $2 on groceries I purchased on Monday.  Imagine how much cash back I’d have received if I’d checked the app BEFORE I went shopping!

Cash Back On Groceries I Already Buy

I really like the “any brand” rebates which apply to all sorts of good stuff I already buy anyway, like apples, bananas and peanut butter.

Okay, so full disclosure.  If you sign up for Ibotta using my referral link, you will receive a $10 bonus, and I will receive $5, after you verify your first rebate.

Start Earning Cash Back

Install the Ibotta app. (Please, use this referral code: bknyldn.  I hate to use the chemo card, but I will.  Chemo is expensive, even with health insurance.  I sure could use the cash right about now.)

Find your favorite grocery store from the list.  I love HEB.

Use Ibotta at most major super market chains.

Use Ibotta at most major super market chains.

Browse the available rebates. Do this before you go to the store. Not after, like I often do.

Earn cash back on groceries you already buy.

Earn cash back on groceries you already buy.

Once you get home, you might need to scan a few bar codes to verify your rebates, so don’t put up the groceries right away. You will also need to scan your entire grocery bill. Don’t throw away the receipt, either.

After you have accumulated $20 to $25 in rebates, you can cash them out using PayPal or Venmo.

Transfer your cash to PayPal or venmo.

Transfer your cash to PayPal or venmo.

You can also have the cash transferred to a gift card:

Or, transfer your cash to your favorite gift card.

Or, transfer your cash to your favorite gift card.

You can also earn bonuses for shopping with friends. It’s all very fun.

Remember, if you use my referral code, bknyldn, you will receive an extra $10 after you verify your first rebate.

Have fun!

Carrie Fisher is My New Hero (Again)

I am a huge old school Star Wars fan.

Let me clarify.

I am a huge fan of episodes IV and V.  The Legacy of the Force book series which chronicles the adventures of the grown children of Luke Skywalker, Leia Organo Solo and Han Solo is one of my favorites.

Rather than rant on and on about how disappointed I am that the new Star Wars film, The Force Awakens, completely threw out the expanded universe created by Star Wars tie-in novelists like Timonthy Zahn, Karen Traviss, and Troy Denning, I am going to share a video clip from a Good Morning America interview with Carrie Fisher.

Carrie Fisher is Hilarious

Her dog Gary almost steals the interview but Fisher quickly takes it back via witty retorts and comedic interjections.

ABC Breaking News | Latest News Videos


Ms. Fisher, the daughter of Eddie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds grew up in the shadow of famous parents. She has been very candidate about her personal struggles with fame, bi-polar disorder, addiction, and weight management.

Carrie Fisher is my new hero.


She is my childhood hero.

Nice the way things often come full circle, eh?

Carrie Fisher Vs. Body Shamers

And for those body shamers out there who have tried to degrade and demean Ms. Fisher, I give you this:

Meme found on Being Liberal

Meme found on Being Liberal

Yes, you CAN make your own chicken stock.

How to Make Chicken Stock Fast, Easy and Cheap

I love making chicken stock.

First off, I’m cheap.  Err, I mean frugal.

Secondly, it tastes so darn good.

I just can’t stand to throw away a perfectly good chicken carcass.  So, I stick them in a freezer bag and toss them in the freezer for when I am ready to make chicken stock.  I also freeze celery tops.  I just stick them in the same freezer bag as the chicken carcasses.

I have a pot of chicken stock simmering on the stove now.  It smells absolutely divine.

If you’d like a tutorial on the CORRECT fancy schmancy chef approved way to make stock, check out this PG-13 primer.   Fair warning!  The dude likes his F-bombs but his primer lays out the basics for making a versatile chicken stock.  He also has some choice words about the term “bone broth.”

However, his stock “recipe” is too many steps for me.  I’m a dump and go kinda gal.  Here is how I make stock:

I literally dump 2 frozen chicken carcasses and frozen celery tops into a stock pot.  Add an onion and some other vegetables and stuff and cover it all with water. Simmer for 4 to 6 hours.  When the bones are all mushy, strain the broth into a new pan and skim any left over floaters.

Yup.  I told you I like to keep it easy.

You are probably wondering what I mean by “some other vegetables and stuff.”

Being the frugal goddess that I am, I just use what I have on hand.  Here are some ideas:

  • Onions
  • Carrots
  • Celery
  • Garlic
  • Turmeric (Adds nice color and spicy flavor)
  • Carrot Greens (Yes, the tops of the carrots add amazing flavor)
  • Parsley Stems
  • Cilantro Stems
  • Bay Leaves
  • Thyme Sprigs
  • Bell Peppers
  • Jalapenos
  • Peppercorns

In today’s stock I added to the frozen chicken carcasses and frozen celery tops:  onion, carrot greens, bay leaves and turmeric.

This same process works for beef stock and pork stock.

I plan to make a nice vegetable soup tomorrow with my chicken stock.  Again, I just use whatever I have on hand.  I like to add organic frozen mixed vegetables to my soups because it’s easy peasy.  I’ll probably add some petite diced tomatoes, great northern beans, and mini pasta shells.  Whatever suits my fancy at the time.

Care to leave a comment?  How about you share your favorite soup recipe?

Make Your Own Chicken Stock (bone broth) Fast, Easy and Cheap Click To Tweet
Yes, you CAN make your own chicken stock.

Yes, you CAN make your own chicken stock.


Tangela Harris | 30 Women Who Mean Business Series

Tangela Harris with AFTER THISSS… offers leadership and life coaching for transitioning women.

Describe your business (work, passion) in 3 to 5 sentences.
I experienced the impact of domestic violence and discovered the real me. Now, I’m navigating women in their journey to discover themselves. There is life AFTER Divorce, Domestic violence, Marriage, Career Change, and the list goes on.

How did you get started in your business?
My ex-husband assaulted me and he is now serving 4 years in jail. That was a terrifying experience and I would not want anyone to go through life happenings alone.

I am a professional hairstylist and I have decided to come from behind the chair. I have been coaching clients for 28 years, so I became a certified life coach. I discovered the authentic me AFTER the assault, so I allowed my pain to push me into my passion of coaching my sisters into their AFTER THISSS… divorce or marriage, birth of kids or empty nest, gaining or losing a job…

What was the biggest hurdle you had to overcome in your business?
My biggest hurdle was disconnecting my emotions from my story and stop seeing myself in my clients story. Domestic violence is real and it leave some real scars. Fear is paralyzing.

How has this hurdle made you better?
It has made me stronger and more resourceful for my clients. I know how my clients feel, I’ve walked in her shoes. But After Thisss… she will soar beyond current and past positions in life.

Top 3 books for personal and business growth?

What does gratitude mean to you?
Gratitude means being appreciative of the chance you have been given and showing it through your actions.

Who do you appreciate? Why?
I appreciate Brandy Woods for giving my family a home AFTER the assault. She didn’t let me stay in my mess. She never judged me, instead empowered me to move forward.

And Larissa Gaines for providing shelter when the police told me to get out-of-town for my protection. She and her family allowed my family to stay with her in Slidell, LA.

Anything else you’d like to add or include?
There is power in unity. No one has to be alone.

Gratitude means being appreciative of the chance you have been given and showing it through your actions. Click To Tweet

Follow Tangela Harris

Tangela Harris | After This.....

Tangela Harris | After Thisss…

Top 5 Most Viewed Blog Posts | 2015 in Review | #blogboost

In business, it is always a good idea to review what worked, and what didn’t, with your marketing efforts.  It’s also quite interesting.

When you are in business, your blog is a marketing tool.  In fact, if you monetize your blog in any way, it is a marketing tool.

Yes, it is.

You can argue all you want that you blog about changing diapers and wiping snot so it isn’t a business.

If you have Google ads in your sidebar, you are monetizing your blog, and it is now a marketing tool.  You are marketing YOU.  YOU are your brand.

Sheesh.  I just totally got squirreled.  Happens to me a lot.

Back to the subject at hand.  The top 5 most viewed Gratitude Geek blog posts of 2015, in order, are:

  1. Chemo Did Not Work
  2. The Capital of Pyramid Schemes
  3. I Am Statements Examples
  4. Why You Need a Chemo Port
  5. Book Review:  “the life changing magic of tidying up”

Dropping in from the Ultimate Blog Challenge?  Feel free to leave a link to your most popular post in the comments.

New Year, New Blog Challenge #blogboost

Happy New Year!

I’ve waffled since I awoke today about whether or not to participate in the January 2016 Ultimate Blog Challenge.  Obviously, at this late hour, I have decide to go for it.

Blog challenges are fun and the UBC community is a good one with good people.  I believe this will be my fourth UBC.

If this is your first visit to Gratitude Geek, hi there and welcome!

My name is Kandas Nesbitt-Rodarte.  I am an internet marketing pioneer; launched a custom furniture website in 1998 with my husband, Shane.  That website is still thriving today.  I attribute relationship marketing to the success of our business, and I blog about that topic, a lot.  In fact, the original intention behind this blog was to share relationship marketing tips.

Then, in April of 2014, I was diagnosed with Stage 1 ER+ HER2+ Breast Cancer and suddenly this blog became a platform for sharing that journey.  In September of 2015, I was told the cancer had metastasized to my lungs.  In December, we learned the treatments are working very well!

I am also a mom, wife, network marketing professional, and president of a national networking organization chapter.

I am going to spend January figuring out where to take this blog next.  You are welcome to help me figure it out.

So, who are you?  What do YOU blog about?  Tell me in the comments.

PS – The groovy photo is the Houston skyline under construction.  I took it from the ladies restroom on the 11th floor of Texas Children’s Hospital.  I thought it was awesome and a great representation of how I feel about this blog now.  It’s a great, beautiful, vibrant blog under construction.