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Tuesday, July 24, 2012

All Things Must Pass

It is with sadness and disappointment that I have to say that I am ending this business.  I actually never really got started.

There has been no interest; no visits to my original web site or to this blog.

I thought I had a good idea and that if I worked hard at it, I could make enough money to supplement my retirement which isn't far away.  But, I've been working at this since before October and I haven't made a cent and there's no indication that I will.

So, after a while I'll try to figure out something else to do about that.

My best wishes and thanks to those who have tried to be helpful.  Good luck to all the small, local, independent businesses that I discovered.  I hope you have better success than I've had.

If you visit and the About Us page, you'll see the services that I'm still available for.

The original website at and this blog will remain online for the period that I've paid for.

Lorraine O'Dell, Owner

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

New Jersey Small Independent Business Treasures

So, a friend of mine, who's been trying to advise me on my business, and I have been exchanging emails.  He's trying to help me understand how to get traffic to my sites.  I'm not understanding that yet.

In the midst of this, I sounded off about the economy and middlemen and he responded that he appreciates the middlemen that make it possible for him to have Alaska crab legs, ice cream from Pennsylvania, lettuce from California, etc.    But, here's the thing:  neither he, nor you need middlemen.  New Jersey has just about everything anybody needs - and I've lived and worked in 4 states so I think I have a good basis of comparison.

Just visit my site or read this blog and find whatever you might want from small, independent, local businesses right here in New Jersey, like:  buffalo at Readington River Buffalo Company and pasture-raised beef at Bringhurst Meats in Berlin, artisan cheese at Cherry Grove Farm in Lawrenceville, artisan ice cream like the Bent Spoon in Princeton and handcrafted chocolates like those at Antoinette Chocolatier here in Phillipsburg, and New Jersey Shellfish Co. in Westville where you can get fresh crab.  

I haven't made a dime yet but this is what I want to do, discover and promote New Jersey, independent, small, local businesses. There are hundreds of them; this is just a sampling, and just specialized foods.  I cover jewelry, boutique fashion, natural cosmetics, artisan perfumes, wellness practitioners, spiritual advisers and centers, the arts, crafts, unique activities for adults and children and more.

So, I'll keep working at this for a while longer; trying to figure out how to make a little money at it.

New additions to our database:

Readington River Buffalo Company
Bringhurst Meats
New Jersey Shellfish Co.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Wellness - Metal and Jewelry Allergies

Years ago I bought a pair of wire-rimmed glasses at a flea market. After wearing them for quite a while, I noticed that the skin behind my ears, where the frame wrapped around was red and itchy.  I cleaned the frames really well and even soaked the ear pieces in alcohol to be sure they were germ free.  The metal turned green after a while, the itching developed into a rash.  A similar rash appeared where the metal frame rested against my face at my temples.  The ear pieces turned black.  The rash became infected.  At that point, I went to a doctor and found I had a staph infection at the site.

In addition to this situation, I have encountered, several times in the past, a reaction seemingly to base metals.  I had jewelry that turned my skin green then black, caused a rash and infection set in.  I’m one of many people who can get a rash and infection if the metal button on jeans sits against bare navel. 

I once saw a 60 minutes segment about mercury in dental fillings.  The information about the mercury didn’t concern me so much as the fact that metal dental fillings are alloys of various metals and my mouth was full of them.  I’ve had most of my metal fillings removed and replaced with ‘ceramic’ fillings but not before encountering a dentist who became quite angry when asked about alloy fillings. She did a shoddy job in her anger, the filling overlapped my gum and, within a week, the gum became infected.  I saw a different dentist to have the filling removed and the infected gum treated. 

I don’t know how widely known it is that quite a few people have reactions – “allergies” – to metals.  Some jewelers, whose pieces I admire, use metals that I can’t wear.  Months ago I found a site that sells really gorgeous Wiccan jewelry; all of it made of metals that I can’t wear.

Nickel is apparently the primary culprit but is alloyed with many metals.  I can't wear copper (which is sold as therapeutic).  I have sensitivity to some grades of silver.  Most stainless steel is a problem for me.  I would imagine that bronze, brass, chrome, etc. would be disasters.  Anything that normally is easily oxidized and reactive, that acquires a patina over time, I can't wear.

This extract from WebMD gives a little more detail:

"Allergic Reaction to Metal - An allergic reaction to metal is an overreaction of the body's immune system to a substance (allergen) in a metal. An allergic reaction to metal can cause intense swelling, pain, and itching.

Nickel is the most common metal allergen. Jewelry that does not trigger an allergic reaction is made from:

Stainless steel (grade-300).
14- or 18-karat gold.
Dense, nonporous plastic, such as monofilament nylon, acrylic, or Lucite."

By           Healthwise Staff
Last Revised        September 7, 2010

"It is estimated that about 17% of women and 3% of men are allergic to nickel and about 1 - 3% of the general population is allergic to chromium and cobalt." - Buzzle

So, if you've noticed reactions to jewelry and other metal touching your skin, this is probably why.

Jewelers - be aware and be kind.

New in our Directory:

Union County listings including:

Just Bead Yourself
Betty's Chocolate Novelties
Cranford Vanilla Bean Creamery
Autumn Antiques
Betty Gallagher Antiques
Ken's Antiques
Ann Weiner Miniatures
Badawang Art
Center for Acupunture and Herbal Medicine
Heaven on Earth Massage
Westfield Yoga and Meditation Center


This blog site is a model for our desired web site.  We've come to the limits of this site's functionality and capacity to contain the content of our entire site.  We'll experiment with it some more but, except for the blog, we're unable to add to this site and we're turning our attention to our business plan and learning how to gain traffic so that we can justify further investment in a new web site.

If you visit, please leave comments and suggestions so that we can continue.

Thank you.