Not So Fine Print: blah blah blah Sponsored Post blah blah blah Full Disclosure blah blah blah That Thing About Any and All Opinions Being My Own. Moving on…

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Volume and visibility.

The first refers to how much noise we are capable of generating when combining our own voice with our community to bring notice to a particular message; the second is specific to how many pairs of eyes follow the yellow-brick road to the land of Oz. Enough noise and you re-energize your existing audience and hopefully expand your reach with a few new voices. Enough eyes and you see the difference between a ripple and a wave.

The wave, y’all, is when one of your social media friends texts you excitedly because your links have started showing up in Facebook shares from her IRL friends. The wave is what happens when momentum starts working for you, turning that snowball you’ve been working on and turning it into a straight-up avalanche. That’s when you no longer have to bust your ass and begging your friends to help promote your blog post, new book, new product line, or otherwise fabulously fantastical idea, because the ginourmous  bus that just drove by in the middle of Times Square with your blog/book/or otherwise fantastical idea all over it…

…and now you know what validation feels like.

I’m proud to announce that Zuesvision Public-- the company that prides itself on leveling the advertising playing field for the little guys — has selected Aspiring Mama to take part in it kickstarter awareness campaign. In exchange for a blog post sharing the Zuesvision message with you, I get two weeks of bus-sized Aspring Mama ads wheeling their way through high traffic areas in both LA and NYC. II’m not an idiot, so I said yes, but I’m also a hard-ass when it comes to being convinced to sponsor up the blog, so I think it goes with0ut saying that any and all words written on behalf of Zuesvision are my own, right?

(This is the part where you come in.)

Here’s the thing, y’all…we all know that it takes more than hard work and busting our asses to make an actual go of whatever it is we feel we are called to do. An advertising budget and/or pure dumb luck tend to play a big part in who we are talking about and who’s talking about us. Whether it’s building a successful nonprofit like my friend Denisse Montalvan with The Orphaned Earring, getting your glitter on with a new product line launch with a major retailer like my girl, Kathy Cano-Murillo, a.k.a. Crafty Chica, or selling the hell out of their book like friends Rick Najera with Almost White: Forced Confessions of a Latino in Hollywood and Mercedes Yardley with her new release Pretty Little Dead Girls, or if it’s big dreams of bringing your bling to the front lines like my friends Jessica Mazone and Lucy Ball, the struggle is the same: We can write the hell out of the blog posts and share the links on our social media channels like the seasoned social veterans that we are, but we only have so much time to devote to being all self-promotional and shhhtuff.

None of it matters if no one bothers to click the links. We are busy and we’d love an intern and imagine the day when we can afford a reliable assistant to keep us (mostly) on track and of course we don’t have time to click every link from the very friends we’d support at the drop of a hat if we knew they needed it (without having to click the links, of course). So here goes nothing…

I want Zuesvision to succeed. I want to see their kickstarter campaign bring it all home and cheer when the company announces the addition of more digital billboard buses to their fleet. Why? Because we need Zeusvision just as much as they need us. We raise our chances of success when we join forces and who doesn’t think that ginourmous buses inching its way through Times Square with your $99 URL-containing ad aren’t a good idea?

Exactly. 

So pay attention, because I’m about to play hardball.

This is the part where I ask you directly to click the link to Zuesvision’s kickstarter campaign. 

This is the part where I ask you directly to donate $5, because five bucks gets you a single 30-second ad on a bus. (If all the $5 spots are taken, this is the part where I tell you to team up with friends to pool funds for one of the larger sponsor spots because…)

This is the part where I ask you directly to gift your ad spot to a worthy cause. Go with your gut, but I’d like to suggest donating that ad spot you just bought Denisse Montalvan of The Orphaned Earring. She is doing incredible things and this is so much easier than scaling a mountain and shouting myself hoarse on her behalf.

And this is the part where I say thank you. 

Let’s see what we can accomplish together, Internet. I believe in you.

 

 

Welcome to WEEK 12 of #ChingonaFest Fridays on Aspiring Mama!

If you’re new to the blog, here’s the link to the my Latina Dimelo column that sparked the conversation that’s still going strong. The premise is this: I want to raise my daughter to be a Chingona — on purposeLas Tias and cultural backlash be damned. If you like the column, I’d love for you to share with your social media circles, leave a comment on the link, or whip up a happy lil’ Letter to the Editor telling them how you feel and send it off to Editor@Latina.com. You may not think that kind of thing makes a difference, but trust me when I tell you it does.

Have you checked out my past #ChingonaFest ladies? I interviewed myself to mark my year anniversary as Latina Magazine’s Dimelo Advice Columnist right before Lorraince C. Ladish made me look  bad in last week

s interview by referring to books I pretended to read in high school.  Each week, I’m featuring one fabulous Latina who’s moving mountains and raising hell because their stories are worth telling. Twenty questions will be presented to each and 15 will be answered and presented here to you in a Q&A format, like the fancy features in magazines, only with more typos and less airbrushing.

Today’s featured Chingona is …Elisa Camahort Page.

Camahort Page is a BlogHer co-couner  and, amongst other honors, was also a Fortune Most Powerful Entrepreneurs, 2013.

And now? It’s time for the interview!

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Elisa Camahort Psge

Elisa Camahort Psge

 

Pauline Campos: Chocolate or vanilla?

Elisa Camahort Page: Vanilla

PC:  A straight-shooter. I like it. Favorite book and why:

ECP: That’s a tough one, I love many books. Perhaps Eating Animals by Jonathan Safran Foer had the most impact because it articulated a philosophy I already subscribed to in terms that were relatable to regular people who might not have my same activist fervor on the subject.

Pauline Campos: *blinks* My IQ just developed a complex. Do you consider yourself a feminist?

ECP: YES.

PC: There’s that straight-shootin’ again. I like a woman who tells it like it is. Who inspires you?

ECP: The BlogHer community inspires me every day. Every day *someone* tells an amazing story, does something incredibly brave, makes real change in their life, their community, or the world. It’s crazy actually. Crazy how much talent and passion are out there…this despite the regular conventional wisdom proclaiming the death of the very blogging that creates that inspiration.

PC: Who is it you hope to inspire?

 ECP: The BlogHer community has so many new folks still flooding into this space every day. I hope to inspire them to do social media and blogging *their* way. There is no one right way. There is no single one-size-fits-all approach. There is so much opportunity…knowing what you want to grab from that grab bag is important.

PC: I was just gong to say “Anything dipped in chocolate” but I think that you’ve got a T-shirt quote somewhere in that last one. Lemme have my coffee first… Do you dream in color or black and white?

 ECP: I don’t remember, actually. Why, do you know what that means?

PC: Not a single clue. Also? I should Google that one so I have a slightly smarter answer the next time a featured Chingona throws this one back in my court. Speaking bad words redfined… Let’s play word association. I say CHINGONA and you say…?

 ECP: Huh? You’re the chica who introduced me to the term :)

PC: ummmm… *blinks slowly* Well? The short answer is DON’T SAY CHINGONA IN CHURCH. Also, it’s probably not a good idea to yell the word out randomly in public, ‘being as I like you, and and all. Also, did you know “pinche” is a bad word in Mexican Spanish but means “barette” in Chilean Spanish? You’re *welcome*. Why are you giving me the side-eye? Focus, Woman! Quick! One takeaway you want your children to hold onto after they’ve grown and flown the nest…

ECP: Not applicable…no kids :)

 PC: Fair enough. Do you feel “Latina enough”? 

ECP: Definitely not. I don’t even call myself Latina, although I will say I’m Hispanic. But, for example, I never learned Spanish…I think when I was growing up there was a lot more assumption that immigrants would assimilate and less expectations that their children would retain any culture. Add on top of that my family is a mixed family originating from Spanish immigrants to the Philippines. So much of my connection to the culture is through food…which was actually kind of a mix of Spanish and Filipino. And being spanked with a slipper…which I think is more of the Asian side of that equation ;)

PC: Don’t take this the wrong way, Elisa, but we gotta talk. Because every Mexican reading this just choked and simultaneously yelled out “LA CHANCLA”! Anyway, you have the chance to eat dinner and drink wine with one person, living or dead. Who is it, what do you eat, what kind of wine, AND WHY THAT PARTICULAR PERSON? 

ECP: Stephen Sondheim. Why? Because I’m a #theatrenerd and he is completely brilliant and my idol.

PC: You are totally smarter than a fifth grader, aren’t you? *runs off to Google the name the smart lady just said* Do you chew your ice cream? (Or is that just a Me thing?)

EC: That is definitely just a you thing.

PC: Admit it. You think I’m adorable, don’t you? Gimme one Latina stereotype you despise?

 ECP: Oh, I guess it’s the whole kit and caboodle…fiery Latinas, sexy Latinas, spicy Latinas…and then there’s the indomitable Latina matriarch. The problem with any stereotype is that it ignores the diversity within diversity. That Latinas are not a monolithic bloc, just as women aren’t, just as no group is like the Borg.

PC: You win the Internet for using the Borg to bring that last point home, Elisa. *High five* Describe your perfect day.

 EC: Well, it would start with actually getting a full night’s sleep #damnyouinsomnia. Then I would probably chillax with my cat and my iPad full of all the books I never have time to read. I’d be playing music. And my S.O. could join for a couple of great meals of #vegan food!

PC: One Latina stereotype you embrace (or is there one?)

 ECP: Yeah, in case it wasn’t clear, not very into embracing stereotypes :)

PC (grinning):  Nope…everything is crystal…

 

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And there ya have it. To nominate a Latina for a future #ChingonaFest Friday feature, email me at aspiringmama@gmail.com or tweet me with the hashtag #ChingonaFest. And don’t forget to check out my latest Dimelo Advice column on Latina Magazine. Girlfriend needed a reality check…so I gave her one.

Oh! And be sure to send me your questions to dimelo@latina.com.

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Just call me Pollyanna…

 Who like Pretty Pictures? I’m #MexicaninMaine on Etsy and have more art available on Society6. And because it’s actually relevant, check out my Zazzle and Etsy shops for Sassy #ChingonaFest gear! More designs and products coming soon!

Sign up for The Tortilla Press Newsletter!

Follow me on Twitter, instagram, and here’s the FB fan page! I know. You’re *welcome.*

 

 

 

 

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I’m a dreamer. That means I rock the creative side of most anything I do but utterly suck at implementation so even the good ideas take forever to become new realities. Case in point? Creating my line of #ChingonFest greeting cards in my new Zazzle shop. Reader response to my quotes has been incredible and I’ve fielded plenty of requests for ways to bring the quotes home in swag form to show off the Chingona Spirit! Last night, inspiration hit and now the AspiringMama shop is open for business. I’ll be designing prints of my horse photography, greeting cards and buttons with Chingona quotes, and so much more!

Check it out and tell me what you think!

To celebrate the store launch, I’m running a contest!

Up for grabs are:

 

 

Yeah, it's one of my favorite's, too.

Yeah, it’s one of my favorite’s, too.

*  one Celebrate Who You Are Button

I know, total conversation starter...

I know, total conversation starter…

*  one #ChingonaFest Button

I like to chant this silently   to pep myself up in the toy section at Target before telling my kid "No."

I like to chant this silently to pep myself up in the toy section at Target before telling my kid “No.”

* and a set of three Stronger if you Do Greeting Cards.

 

There will be one winner for each prize category listed. To enter, you must:

 

* sign up for my Tortilla Press newsletter (that’s the only place winners will be announced for this contest and any I run from here on out)

* visit my Zazzle shop, take a look around, and head back here to leave me a comment on this post sharing which you like most or what you would like to see added

 

One bonus entry per social media share can swing the odds in your favor, though. All you need to do is share the following on any or all of your social media channels and leave me a separate comment with the direct URL of each link shared.

I just entered to win #chingonafest swag from @pauline_campos ’ new zazzle shop! http://bit.ly/QTMjlO #chingonafest 

I’m excited. You guys are talking to me about online classes and requesting workshops in your city on how to embrace your inner Chingona and raise one of your own (and, of course, the boys who will grow up to love the next generation of self-respecting bad-ass women). It’s incredible and I am brainstorming ways to make things happen. For now? Spread the word and share the love, because without you guys, I’m kinda like the fallen tree in the forest wondering if anyone heard that hilariously improper thing I just said.

And for this week, that’s all she wrote.

 

 

The house was getting chilly. #365feministselfie

I love me a good hashtag. It took a bit of convincing to get me on board for the #365feministselfie movement, but my friend Galit Breen as a way with words. The eye-rolls have been replaced, every day that has passed since the first one, with just the tiniest bit less bullshit and slightly more unapologeticness. Because that’s a word, right?

Martial Arts Mom #365feministselfie

The ringleader of this little Love it Or Hate it project is Veronica Arreola and I’m thinking we’re gonna be hanging out lots at BlogHer14 in California this year. I happen to think anyone who can convince a bunch of random women — who for the most part don’t know each other –  to plaster the selves our significant others don’t get to see until at least one good round of crazy sex has to be made of magic. Especially when you stop to consider how much work we put into getting naked to begin with, what with the perfectly applied makeup, hair that took hours to curl, and  lingerie that cost way too much for the amount of time we actually spent wearing it before it got tossed to the floor … hell, you guys! I think it was six months of dating The Husband before I was comfortable enough to fart.

All this to say that I have issues and we all tend to keep up whatever appearances during our little courting periods before we stop trying so hard.

Russian Red. #365FeministSelfie

Maybe we start out with the bells and whistles. In my case, I wasn’t about to turn the camera on myself unless I didn’t look like shit. And by “look like shit”, I mean no bra, no make-up, no clever Instagram filters or photo editing…

 

5 am.The child has been awake 3 hours. It took me 5 hours combined to write a 500 word column. And I don't care what my face looks like because it doesn't hurt anymore. Oh,.. And an orange did this to me, I think. #365feministselfie

I’ve seen some chatter here and there referring to the #365feministselfie as self-serving and a sad reality for feminism. Now, I want to make it clear that until very recently, I hadn’t even stopped to consider myself a feminist. But I guess writing columns about raising a self-respecting Chingona automatically got me in the club. And I’m okay with that. I figure I have to be if I’m announcing to the world my intention to encourage my little girl’s hell-raising ways.

No red lipstick. I'm okay with this today. #365feministselfie

I also want to make it crystal clear that there is nothing self-serving about this. I’m not posting selfies so you can tell me I’m pretty. Every one of us is taking our own journey throughout the coming year. We each came to it with a predetermined level of individual comfort and we will each have the comfort level challenged as we progress. There’s no way I’d have started off with a no-make-up-full-face-allergic-reaction, even if I instinctively knew my friends and readers would come to my ego’s rescue and tell me how brave and beautiful I am for sharing because that’s not the point.

Mexican in Maine (on a cold day) #365feministselfie

 It’s about dropping the facade, digging deep, letting go of our own self-judgement, and that defining moment when we hit that share button after taking one last big breath. After we pin it and hit publish and share and send on the singular images that, when when combined, reflect who we really are.

You can tell me I’m pretty. You can tell me I’m not.

I’m more interested in what I tell myself as I share that which I would normally hide.


 

For the next few weeks I will be posting one #ApplevsSamsung review from my perspective. I’m not a tech blogger but I am a writer and blogger who relies heavily on tech and my connections to social media. With that in mind, I’ll be focusing on things like one-handed typing to photo, editing, and sharing quality to battery-life and, of course, the snazzy Penny from Inspector Gadget like Galaxy Gear Watch, itself. Check out my previous posts here and here.

When I’m done, I will confidently climb to the top of the highest mountain and declare my loyalty to one. Or maybe the other. Or maybe I’ll just write a blog post and post it on Twitter because that’s easier.

 

A picture of my Galaxy Gear taken with the Note 3 and then transferred to the Note 3 through the Galaxy Gear. I know. My brain just imploded.

I’m a bit behind on my Samsung series, but life (and mostly Latina Magazine deadlines) tend to get in the way sometimes. Now that I’m in the clear for a bit, it’s back to business as usual.

Before I say more, though, I want to make one thing clear in the purpose of these reviews. I am a long-time Apple user and happens to be married to an Android Devotee. I like to call it an InterTech marriage. He hates Apple with a passion and cannot wait for me to cross over to the Other Side. While I love my little iPhone and all it allows me to do in my work with social media, I am not blind to the fact that Team Android has a thing or two up it’s sleeve. Namely, picture quality (and that’s something I can’t ignore.)

I am not a tech blogger. I am a writer and a blogger who lives through social media. I sit down at the laptop to write. Everything else doesn’t tend to happen unless I’ve got a phone in my bra.

That being said, this series may make the Actual Tech Blogger’s eyes roll, but they aren’t my audience. I’m writing this for the social media user with the iPhone who might be wondering if the humongous Note 3 may be worth dumping Apple over. And I know there’s a few of us out there.

It’s been a few weeks now since I started shocking the locals here in Northern Maine while I trek around town with two phones in hand. I’ll be honest in saying that while the size of the Note 3 is a bit on the crazy side when compared to my iPhone 5 S, I recognize how much I’ve come to depend on it since FedEx showed up on my porch. I’m not ready to break it off with Apple quite yet, but I am able to say that I’m seriously considering it.

Here are my favorite Samsung Note 3 features right now:

*The Samsung Action Memo: Think of it as the Post-It Notes you can’t lose. You can access the app then removing the S-Pen from the Note 3. I use ot to manage my Daily To-Do list and for handwriting a new name and phone number, which alone is fabulous because I’m famous for never remembering to add a new contact (which means I’m still getting texts from phone numbers I don’t recognize until I can place the ongoing conversation on the iPhone.) Even better is that my ADHD brain doesn’t have the chance to blink and be distracted by something shiny before adding the information to my phone’s contact list. All I have to do is highlight the name and number with the S-Pen and tap “contact” and boom: I now know who the hell is texting or calling me me.

*The S-Pen: I admit to being terrified of losing this little pen within moments of taking the Note 3 out of the box. But Samsung seems to have thought of everything. If the S-Pen is disconnected for too long, a message pops up reminding you to reconnect it before leaving wherever you happen to be at the time. There’s even a safeguard built in alerting you to if the S-Pen somehow ends up out of range from the Note 3. It works, too. The fact that I haven’t had to drop $30 on a replacement yet is pretty solid proof.

*The Galaxy Gear Watch: There’s a lot more this fancy little watch offers than I am going to mention today, and I’ll touch on some of my favorite features in the coming weeks. For now, I want to thank Samsung for saving my ass and both of my phones by once again paying attention to how the average person uses their smartphone. Even if you happen to keep both the iPhone you still own and the Note 3 on silent because the constant notifications would drive a saint to swear, it’s entirely possible to find your Note 3 remotely with the Galaxy Gear. How? Go to the aptly named “Find Your Gear” option on the Gear and when you tap that little lifesaver, your phone gets its volume turned on for you and won’t stop ringing until you find it and tell the Gear that you found it. I’m eternally grateful to Samsung for helping me not donate the iPhone and the Note 3 to the Salvation Army (along with the pile of old clothes they got bagged up with.)

Oh and one more thing: I refuse to call the Note 3 a phablet. And you can’t make me.

 

Not-So-Fine Print: While I was supplied with the Samsung Note 3, a case for the phone, and the Galaxy Gear Watch, I am in no way obligated to provide anything other than my own opinion on this blog, any of my social media channels, or in any words attached to my name anywhere, ever. But I think you already knew that.

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