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7 Things You Didn’t Know About The Beverage That Rules The World

Despite its reign over your childhood, you probably don’t know much about the Coca Cola Company. This is because they’re actually a fairly low-key brand even with their complete global dominance of soft drinks.

But what if you’re interested in peeling back the curtain? What if you’d like to learn some interesting, shocking and downright unbelievable facts about your favorite carbonated beverage? Here are seven things you might not have known about Coca Cola.

1: Its Creator Was A Drug Addict

John Pemerton was a pharmacist addicted to opiates when he first invented Coca Cola in the late 1880s. Some say he only made it because he was looking for a complimentary drug to morphine, his favorite kind. It all makes sense when you realize that…

2: It Was Originally Made With Cocaine

While it wasn’t pumped into the bottles like some rumors insist, Coca Cola did derive its name from its first two ingredients, coca leaves and kola nuts. Coca itself is the psychoactive alkaloid used to make cocaine. Until the 1920s, when manufacturers changed the formula, Coke drinkers really were drinking coke.

3: The Brand Is Worth Staggering Amounts of Money

You knew they were rich, of course, but some wealth is simply beyond imagining. In 2012, Coca Cola made $48 billion, which is roughly on par with the national treasuries of several small countries. Their total net worth is even more impressive, with current estimates putting it anywhere from $170 to $200 billion. Again, that’s billion with a “B.”

4: Early Consumers Thought It Had Healing Properties

Maybe they were under the lingering effects of the coca leaves. Maybe they were just ill-equipped to handle the fizzy goodness in every glass. For whatever reason, it was an accepted truth for decades that Coca Cola was good for your health, eliminating headaches and providing energy to the exhausted.

5: The Company Stood Up For Martin Luther King Jr.

When bigwigs in Atlanta expressed hesitation in hosting an interracial dinner for Dr. King, the CEO of Coca Cola told them in no uncertain terms that if Dr. King wouldn’t be served, then Coca Cola would pull out of the event and the city. “The Coca-Cola Company does not need Atlanta,” he reportedly said. “You all need to decide whether Atlanta needs the Coca-Cola Company.”

6: The Staff Is An Eclectic Bunch

There’s no “soft drink” degree, so employees at Coca Cola have been educated in everything from finance to fashion design. Even their investors and directors enjoy a sense of whimsy; a certain Bobby Kotick board member is best known for his video game company. Coca Cola clearly values ingenuity and fun.

7: They Once Went to War Against Water

In 2010, Coca Cola decided that too many people were drinking tap water, so they launched a “Cap the Tap” program to pressure restaurant owners into discouraging their diners from drinking anything other than soda. If they absolutely had to have water, Coke suggested selling them bottled Dasani, one of their own brands. Only an avalanche of bad press nipped this campaign in the bud.

So there you have it, some of the most interesting facts and incredible secrets of Coca Cola. Did anything surprise you? Are you suddenly in the mood for a nice can of Coke?


March 19, 2014   No Comments

Paper Claws Your Cat will LOVE

I just posted a fun little tutorial on how to make these paper claws for your fingers. Your cat will LOVE these!  They are super easy to make if you just follow the step by step instructions in the video posted below.  You just need a regular sheet of paper to make each one!

Our cat Rocky was really enjoying an ultra-uber-mega-kitty massage.  Purrrrfectly content!

Here is the video below.  Please SHARE!!

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January 25, 2014   1 Comment

Fan Mail That Makes Me Blush

This letter from one of my readers literally had me all choked up!  Posted below is one of the kindest and most inspirational “thank you” emails I have ever received since I started Momsminivan.  I decided to reprint her letter in it’s entirety (with her permission) and include a link to her etsy shop so I can show her some support too.  And just so you all know, I could never have made MomsMinivan without my amazing readers, so I have to thank all of you too.  –Laurel (momsminivan)

Hi Laurel,
I’m a mom of four.  I am always looking for ways to teach my children creativity and how to have fun “unplugged”.  I didn’t learn very many of these things growing up because both my parents worked and I rarely had time with them.  When they WERE home they would often just sit in front of the T.V.  Now in today’s world, the computer can be an even bigger distraction than our generation had with television.

The internet can also be an amazing tool for good.  In desperation to find my children fun things to do besides video games I went searching for wisdom from other moms.

I am so thankful that I stumbled across your website!  From teaching my children string games, printable games to play in the car and making slime…  I’ve loved every bit of the fun things you share!!!

These are things that help us spend more time together as a family.  And quality/ quantity time with my kids is worth more than anything money could buy!  THANK YOU for making a wonderful difference in my experience of being a mom!

Alicia Rawlins
Come visit my shop: Christian Fine Art


Thank you for taking the time to write to me! I can’t tell you how much it means!  FYI, Some of the activities she’s referring to are from my Momsminivan Youtube channel. 


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January 21, 2014   2 Comments

Auto Insurance in Phoenix AZ

Drivers who need auto insurance in Phoenix AZ can choose from several insurance agencies and insurance brokers. The best ones place their clients’ needs above their own. They work hard to provide the service, stability and prices that drivers expect from an auto insurance representative.

Several factors can make it hard to obtain auto insurance in Arizona. Traffic violations, traffic accidents, driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, auto insurance cancellation and young drivers are common examples. Fortunately, many agents and brokers represent well-known, national carriers that offer prime coverage at low cost rates, even for drivers who have trouble obtaining auto insurance.

Drivers with Internet access can get free auto insurance quotes online. Some insurance agents work with specific insurance carriers, while others agents and brokers work with a variety of insurance companies. Independent agents, for example, work with dozens of insurance companies to find the best rates and coverage for their clients.

Arizona insurance agencies shop multiple providers to find the best coverage for the smallest down payment and most affordable monthly payments. Because they are local, their agents can meet with clients in the office to provide service and answer questions. Many Phoenix agencies also have offices in Tucson, Mesa, Chandler, Glendale, Scottsdale, Gilbert, Tempe, Peoria and other major cities. This gives drivers additional convenience, especially if they move or travel across the state.

Most agencies can provide drivers with inexpensive, SR-22 insurance quickly and easily by phone or office visit. An SR-22 form is a document filed with the state of Arizona that verifies vehicle liability insurance. The form is required when an Arizona driver has a car accident or is convicted of a traffic offense. A judge typically orders an SR-22 to prove a driver’s financial responsibility.

Whether drivers want minimum liability or full-coverage insurance, Phoenix insurance agencies can help them find what they need. Arizona law requires all drivers to carry at least liability insurance, and auto lenders require comprehensive coverage before they approve car loans. Insurance costs can quickly add up, so most drivers need the expertise of professional agents and brokers. With a little time and research, drivers can obtain the right insurance from a trustworthy company.

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January 21, 2014   1 Comment

Hearing Aids for Children

Hearing aids are a must for many people who have a hearing deficiency of one kind or another. A loss of of the sense of hearing can be complete, early-onset, later-onset, or gradual in conjunction with another disorder or condition. Irrespective of the disorder or the amount of hearing loss, there is a hearing aid that can benefit every person.

Hearing Aids For Children

Children who have hearing loss have difficulties in school, socializing with their classmates, and learning rudimentary sounds that other children can learn simply by being around adults and other children. Children who are hearing impaired need a chance to hear as clearly as possible, and the hearing aid cannot be cumbersome or difficult for the child to wear.

Hearing aids can be fitted to a child’s developing ear and allow for the child to continually get the hearing aid fitted as they grow. There is no reason for a kid to feel like they are different than the other kids, and having a fitted hearing aid hides the hearing aid, helps the child with self-esteem, and improves their performance in school. There’s no greater gift than allowing a kid to be able to talk to their peers and interact with their teachers normally.

Hearing Aids For Adults

Adults who may have recently discovered they need a hearing aid or have worn one their whole life can get a hearing that is going to last them the rest of their lives. However, that hearing aid can take on many forms. There are some adults who only need the hearing for conversation in loud places while other adults need the hearing aid all day long because their hearing deficit is quite large.

The adult who must wear a hearing aid for conversations in loud places needs the option to turn the hearing aid up and down as needed. Perhaps they need only a little correction when they are at work, but at a working lunch, they made need to turn up the hearing aid in order to keep up with the conversation. After they return to the office, the hearing aid can be turned back down.

More powerful hearing aids can be fitted to an adult’s ear in order to allow them to have enough correction throughout the day. These more powerful hearing aids can be measured and fitted to the ear just as the hearing aid for someone who needs less correction.

When children and adults alike need hearing aids, they can find the options they need in a fitted and small hearing aid that is not going to be noticeable. Anyone who wears a hearing aid deserves the chance to hear what is going on around them without feeling self-conscious about their appearance or the fact that they are wearing a hearing aid.

Find the best options for hearing aids and fittings at MiracleEar. There are many options for every child and adult who needs help hearing things a little more clearly in their day-to-day activity.

January 21, 2014   No Comments

Easy Tips for Conserving Fuel on Your Next Vacation

Just because summer vacations are over, doesn’t mean that your automobile will get a break. There are always off-season vacations – a good option if you are looking for less expensive trips for you and your family – and the travel-heavy holidays. It is also never too late to begin planning and budgeting for next year’s summer road trip.

Sure, a vacation is a time to live large and throw caution to the wind, but traveling the highways and byways these days is an inexpensive endeavor, particularly when it comes to fuel. Before topping off the gas tank and putting the pedal to the metal with your family in tow, consider the following fuel facts:

  • It’s expensive: The average price of gasoline has been over $3.00 per gallon for over 1,000 consecutive days, marking the first streak of this kind … ever. The average price per gallon is $3.62. And the cost per gallon can increase depending on various factors, from the speed you drive to the weight of your vehicle.
  • It supports our dependence on imports: The United States still relies on other countries for nearly 40% of the oil that it uses at a cost of $300 billion annually. The more gas you use, the more you contribute to this dependence on others and their resources.
  • It impacts the environment: Highway vehicles are responsible for approximately 1.5 billion metric tons of greenhouses gases that are released into the air each year, the most prominent of which is carbon-dioxide. Consider that about 30 pounds of carbon dioxide is emitted per gallon of gas that you burn; simply put, the less gas you burn, the less damage is done to the environment.

Short of cancelling your next vacation, what can you do to minimize your fuel consumption? Rest assured that you can reduce your energy consumption with the following five tips, whether running errands or trekking across the country.

  1. Drive the speed limit: Driving above the speed limit is expensive. In fact, the U.S. Department of Energy estimates that you will pay an additional 25 cents per gallon for every five miles per hour above 50 mph that you drive. Keep in mind that accelerating quickly also burns more gas (up to twice as much, in some cases), so take it slow and steady when the stoplight turns green.
  2. Maintain your vehicle: There are a number of maintenance tasks – several of which you can complete yourself – that will keep your vehicle running well and using less fuel. While you want to rely on your local mechanic for routine (yes, routine!) oil changes, as well as fuel filter and spark plug changes, you should be able to change your air filter and maintain the appropriate air pressure in your tires.
  3. Eliminate extra weight: If you pull a wagon full of heavy rocks, it will certainly take more energy than pulling that same wagon when it is empty. This wagon is no different than your vehicle. The heavier it is, the more fuel you will use. If you have a large family, it may not be as easy to lighten the load, but make an effort to remove any extraneous items that may create extra weight and consider carefully what you are going to pack. If you aren’t going to use it, leave it at home!
  4. Avoid traffic congestion: Avoid high-congestion areas whenever you are traveling, and if possible, drive during off hours. An idling car not only burns fuel, but it negatively impacts the environment. If you do find yourself in a traffic jam, consider turning off your engine rather than idling.
  5. Buy a fuel-efficient vehicle: If you like to travel and you are in the market for a new car, make an effort to purchase a fuel-efficient vehicle. The more miles-to-the-gallon that you use, the less money you spend, and the fewer emissions that you release into the environment. Flex fuel or hybrid vehicles are popular choices for those looking to save money and protect the environment. Although you may pay a little more up front, you will save at the pump. For help selecting a fuel efficient vehicle, check out the vehicle comparisons at

The price at the gas pump is surely the first thing you notice when budgeting for your next vacation or filling up on your way out of town. In fact, it’s almost enough to make you want to close the garage door in favor of a “stay-cation.” A fuel efficient approach to driving and vehicle maintenance will not only ease the financial pain, but can positively impact the dependency on foreign oil and reduce harmful emissions that threaten the environment.

Guest Post by:  Jessica Johnson works for and contributes to the Extra Space Storage blog, exploring various aspects of organizing and storing possessions.

Tags: gas prices, road trips, saving money, traveling with kids
November 21, 2013   1 Comment

Staying Safe this Summer

The heat of summer is in full swing, and with that I present this public service announcement  info-graphic with tips on how to avoid common summer time illnesses. As moms, we know that prevention is always the best medicine! Keep your summer fun with this information on how to avoid dehydration/heat exhaustion, swimmers ear, asthma and allergies, and food poisoning. In addition, here is a whole list of ways of prevention tips and ways to treat different types of insect bites. Keep your summer safe and healthy!

Staying Safe This Summer

Keep it cool and stay safe!

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July 13, 2013   2 Comments

Rationalizing Renting

The reasons for renting a car after flying halfway across the country are obvious; you need transportation once you’ve reached your destination. But what about renting for a road trip? Renting a car may seem like an unnecessary hassle and expense for taking a road trip, but it can have its perks.

Renting a car can really expand the options for the type of car to be driven on the trip. Minivans and SUVs are a great option for hauling cargo and backseat drivers, while coupes and sedans are more fuel efficient and eco-friendly.

Or maybe your old clunker just isn’t as reliable as it used to be. Renting a newer, more reliable car is a great way to get your family safely over the river and through the woods. You can even rent a newer model of the car you already own. We all know learning those little differences from car to car can be annoying. This way you already know where the windshield wipers are, and you are already a pro at operating the stereo system.  Being comfortable in a familiar vehicle is often just the thing to keep you relaxed on your trip, so check out local car rental places like

Whether you’re taking a weekend trip to a neighboring city with your daughter’s Girl Scout troop or driving six states over to go to the beach for a week, renting a car can be a great option for a road trip.

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June 5, 2013   1 Comment

Distracted Driving

This infographic spells out just how dangerous it is to drive while otherwise occupied.  Stay safe! Many accidents are preventable!

distracted driving infographic from ifa auto insurance

Presented By IFA Auto Insurance

May 9, 2013   No Comments

Camper Van vs. Motor Home

camper vanIn a few weeks I’m heading to the Bonnaroo music festival in Tennessee with a group of girl friends. It will be my 5th year in a row. If you’re not familiar with this type of festival, imagine a huge farm swarming with 80 – 100,000 sweaty dirty people, all having a great time listening to dozens of different bands, and rouging it by camping in tents next to their cars with no water or electricity. Just imagine Woodstock, and you’ll understand.

Most attendees are in their 20’s. They have stamina of youth. My gal pals and I trend toward a slightly older demographic. We have put up with too much in our lives to live without modern conveniences for too many days in a row, and frankly we need to rest easy in order to be able to keep up with our whippersnapper counterparts. So we pay the extra money for the VIP parking and bring our party to the party in a vintage motor home RV. We camp in luxury and sleep in air conditioning!

I’ve often considered the pros and cons of and RV verses a camper van for other road trip vacations. There are lots of places to rent vehicles like these in almost any country you visit, for example check out the Drive Now offers for campervan hire in New Zealand.

In the 70’s and 80’s my family had a big Chevy camper van. It was like a mini RV. It had sleeping areas and a cooking unit, and even a small refrigerator, but unlike its bulky motor home cousin, it had all the convenience of being a more normal sized vehicle. It was much larger than today’s minivan, but unlike an RV, it was easy to drive, easy to park, and easier on gas. We made so many memories in our big “Blue Goose” (the nickname we gave our  van). Not only did our family use it for camping, but my mother used it as her regular  vehicle and literally worked out of it as a soccer mom when we weren’t road tripping.

Camper van or motor home, I’m game for having a good time either way! In fact, I hope I see you at Bonnaroo!

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April 11, 2013   4 Comments