With the holidays coming up, I have struggled what to get the girls in the office. We have women ranging from nineteen to fifty working in our office and this makes it difficult to find a gift that everyone will love. I’ve thought of gift cards, but those seem so impersonal. This year, I wanted to get them all something special to show them how much I appreciate all the work they do. But with such a wide range of styles and ages, it seemed impossible to find a gift that everyone would love.
We all work closely together in the top floor of a prominent office building. To get to work everyday, we must go through security. This involves bag checks and walking through a metal detector. While things could be worse, we often feel that these bag checks are a total pain, and are always looking for ways around them.
While thinking of what to get everyone, I came to the realization that I should get gifts that are fashionable, but functional. And I began to wonder if I could find gifts that help us speed up the security process. What takes the most time is the bag searches we must go through. Every day, a security officer has to look inside our bags. If they are overstuffed- as they often are- we are forced to take items out so that the officers can get a clear view of the items in the bag. More then one of the ladies has been late to work due to having their bag searched. And then it hit me, what if I could find them a bag that officers could see inside?
After some searching, I found The Clear Bag Store. Here was the perfect solution for our security woes and my holiday gift problems. I quickly decided to order everyone large clear tote bags. I got the company’s logo printed on the side. I couldn’t wait to get the bags in the mail, but I barely had to wait at all. They came so quickly! Each bag looks great and the colors on the logo are so vibrant! To go with the bags, I decided to get each of the girls clear purse organizers. Each bag has a strong inner and outer nylon lining, which feels tough, so I know the bags wont break. Plus, the clear handbags are strong and will be able to hold a laptop, lunch and other paperwork. The straps are strong, but comfortable to hold. I can’t believe the quality of these bags, at such a low price.
I was so excited about the bags that I gave them to the girls early. They loved them and every single one of them brings the bag to work now. Everyone who works in our building is always complimenting us on our matching bags. The supervisor from the office next store asked me where I got them. I think I’ve started a trend.
The holidays in all their chaotic, busy splendour are upon us once again, and while that means lots of fun, friends and family, it also means rare opportunities for people to take advantage of you and ruin your season. While most problems over the holidays are blessedly uncommon, it never hurts to take some basic precautions while shopping, celebrating, or travelling this year to ensure that nothing crimps your holiday style. As a service to our customers (and everyone else) here are some basic safety tips you should keep in mind this holiday season.
Our houses turn into small hotels and meeting places over the holidays, and our usual routines are upset. Always double check that windows and doors are locked when you leave, in case anyone is waiting for you to leave all those presents unattended. In fact, keep presents away from the windows so no crimes of opportunity are inspired. If you can put lights on a timer and a radio or TV playing while you’re out for long periods of time, that’s best – thieves do ‛case’ homes during the holidays.
When out shopping, keep your bag, wallet, or purse close to you at all times and be aware of it. A nice big tote bag like our Fleur de Lis is sturdy enough that no one will be able to just tear it off your shoulder. Plus, when out in darkened parking lots your keys will be clearly visible and easy to find, reducing your time spent in sparsely populated lots while distracted.
If you’re bumped by someone who rushes away, check your pockets immediately – the ‘bump’ is a frequent tactic for pick-pockets. Also avoid putting bags or purses on hooks or slung over doors in restrooms.
Before the house fills with people, test your smoke and carbon dioxides detectors and replace the batteries. Avoid using candles unless you’re going to be able to monitor them consistently. Test your holiday lights and discard any with worn wiring or that flicker constantly.
If children accompany you to shopping malls or other stores, have a plan for them in case of separation. Older children should have their own cell phone with a basic plan so they can call you in case of trouble. Even so, have a meeting place and a strategy in place for the possibility before you leave the house.
Credit cards are your friends. While paying cash may be an effective money management technique, if a thief makes off with a wallet filled with cash that money is gone forever – as it is if you accidentally drop it. With credit cards, even if the thief makes purchases before you are aware of the loss they are usually made up by the bank and you often will suffer no loss at all.
These are simply general ideas to keep in mind. You know your home and your family best – the key is, think about safety before you celebrate, and then you won’t have to think about it afterwards!
I regularly take my children to visit their grandparents. However, travelling with my three young kids can be a total pain. The eldest boy is eight years old, the middle girl is six, and the youngest boy is just four. This means that when we travel, their bags always end up overstuffed with toys, coloring books, crayons, and snacks. At those young ages, toys seem to be the only essential travel item. This means that my bag ends up filled with actual essentials, ranging from clothes, to hand sanitizer, to tooth brushes and tooth paste, to shampoo, to you name it.
I used to try to fight them on what to bring, but a midafternoon meltdown can often be prevented with the right toy, so I’ve learned to let them pack what they want. However, this often means that their bags end up overstuffed. The X-rays scanners used at my work and at airports do not see details very clearly. Inevitably, at least one, but usually three, and sometimes even my bag, needs to be searched.
I always end up apologizing profusely to the security officers as they pull out stuffed animals, dinosaurs, toy cars, and crayons. The security check table ends up looking like a disaster area.
One day, while heading to work, I saw a woman with a clear bag. The security offers gave the bag a quick once over, after it came out of the scanner, and sent the woman on her way. And that’s when I realized the solution to all my travelling woes.
My friend suggested I check out The Clear Bag Store, where I found the perfect bag for each of my children. They each got their own small backpack. I even got a pink one for my girl. Each child got to pick out a Gutzie to identify their bag with. My youngest son picked the dragon Gutzies while my oldest son picked the Dalmatian Gutzies. My daughter fell in love with the cat and butterfly Gutzies. While the kids love the bags, so does security. Now the security officers can see into their bags much more easily. There have been less instances of needing to empty the bags to see what is inside.
The bags have become so convenient that I ended up buying one myself. The medium diaper bag is the best bag I ever bought. Whether I’m trying to get through security to go to work or I’m travelling to visit my parents with my kids, it takes all the hassle out of getting through security lines. Travelling has become such a breeze now that the security offers don’t have to open up the bags to search them.
Getting through security lines faster has made travelling much easier on my children as well. Travelling can be exhausting for three kids so young, and speeding up the security process has made it much less stressful for them.
Does the NFL just hate bags in general? It’s starting to seem so. Instead of an organised policy that has a clear line to security concerns, the whole debacle is starting to smell like a simple hatred for the convenience of bags of all kinds. In fact, NFL Chief of Security Jeffrey Miller was even quoted as saying ‘We encourage our fans not to bring any type of bags.’ And not only is the NFL’s War on Bags obvious from quotes like that, it’s obvious from the league’s actions as well.
Stash or Trash
The new policy is confusing on many levels. First of all, few teams or stadiums have taken the trouble to clearly post the guidelines or reminders of the new clears bag policy around game days, resulting in many fans arriving to games months after hearing about the new policy – and promptly forgetting all about it.
Second, many assumed that small purses and other bags would be allowed – which they are, but only within very tight guidelines that aren’t easily found anywhere. As a result, many fans are being faced with stern security personnel on game day who offer them standard freezer-style plastic bags and tell them they can transfer their belongings to these bags and either stash their purses and backpacks in their cars – or throw them away.
That’s right, an option being offered fans at the ticket gate is to take the bags they spent good money on and throw them in the trash.
Even fans who remembered the new policy are suffering as they give up on figuring out the requirements and forego bags altogether – resulting in a spike of Lost and Found claims in stadiums around the country as phones, wallets, and other items pop out of pockets when people leap up to react to plays.
Even worse, the bags for sale on the NFL’s official web site are confusing, because many of the bags for sale do not conform to the new policy, but fans might be forgiven for assuming they would, since they’re being sold by the NFL itself. This has led to the occasional super indignity of buying a new bag specifically to take to games and then having to throw it away at the gate.
More and more fans are discovering solutions on the web, however. The Clear Bag Store, for example, has expanded its NFL-compliant offerings to include the His and Hers RUN bags (in black and pink, carefully designed to comply with all NFL requirements (clear plastic, vinyl or PVC no larger than 12 inches by 6 inches by 12 inches). Other options are also starting to pop up as fan frustration with the War on Bags continues to get attention.
In the meantime, the NFL needs to get out there and make the new policy clear and well-publicised so fans don’t get confused and lose their bags to the garbage when they attend a game!
I am an avid crafter. I am always knitting, sewing, drawing, and painting. I am often working on multiple projects at once, and I like to take them with me when I go to visit friends. Usually, I end up shoving all of my supplies into an old backpack. Inevitably, things get lost and my yarn gets tangled, but none of those were enough to motivate me to invest in a better bag. That is, not until I visited my best friend Susan.
Susan needed some help with a craft project of her own and knew who to call. Quickly, I dumped all of my supplies into my old backpack and drove to her house. While there, I set my bag down on her carpet as she showed me the old wooden desk she wanted to paint. I told her I had plenty of colors and reached into my bag.
My hand came up blue. In a panic, I realized one of my paint jars had opened up. Mortified, I lifted up my bag to see that the paint had seeped onto her white carpet! I apologized profusely and attempted to clean it up but with no success. I of course told her that I would pay for a cleaner. Being a good friend, she said I didn’t need to, but of course I insisted, embarrassed that I had stained her carpet.
Then I remembered I drove to her house. Was the paint leaking in my car too? I ran to my car to see a fist sized blue stain on my seat. I groaned, looking between my ruined backpack and my car.
To thank me for hiring a professional to clean her carpet, Susan bought me a multi purpose bag from The Clear Bag Store. At first I laughed about it, but you know what? That bag has come in handy! I moved all my crafting supplies into it the next day. The multiple interior pockets are great for organization. I can sort all of my paintbrushes and knitting needles. The clear bag also makes for easy clean up in the event of another paint spill-it wipes right off! But the inner and outer nylon lining ensures that none of my paints will ever leak out again. The bag also has a handy shoulder strap, as well as handles, so I can carry it whatever way is most comfortable. But the best part of the bag is being able to see everything that’s in it. There’s no more digging around and getting my yarn tangled in everything. Instead, all I have to do is look at what for what I need and reach in and grab it! I loved the clear bag so much that I even ended up buying a clear pencil case so I can always find whatever colored pencil I need in an instant. While I’m sorry I damaged her carpet, I am so thankful that Sue found me a solution to all my crafting woes.
Many sporting events have begun instituting clear bag policies to keep participants and spectators safe. While the NFL clear bag policy has made a splash in the news, other sporting events such as the Chicago Marathon have also begun instituting similar policies.
According to CBS Chicago all runners who want to run the Chicago Marathon will be required to have clear bags and all spectators will have their bags searched. This may seem inconvenient, but after the lessons learned at the Boston Marathon, there is no policy too inconvenient for safety. Bag searches and clear bags are a necessary and effective way to ensure that no dangerous or contraband items are taken to the marathon.
However, marathon runners want to ensure that their bags are sturdy and won’t break. That’s where The Clear Bag Store comes in. Whether a runner is looking for a gym bag or a backpack or a tote bag, The Clear Bag Store has what they need. All the bags come in small, medium, and large, ensuring that the perfect size is available. Unlike clear Ziplock bags, every Clear Bag Store bag is made with stiff plastic, lined with an inner and outer nylon lining. The bags are sturdy and will not tear, and have easy to grip handles, much more then a step from a cheap Ziplock bag. The slick surface of the bags is easy to clean, as dirt and grime can be wiped off with a wet paper towel. Almost all the bags have interior zipper pockets that make organization easy. Plus, with a clear bag, you won’t ever have trouble finding an item again!
Want a family member to be able to spot you from far away? The Clear Bag Store will print your logo. You can advertise for your local business or just put a personal logo on the bag. This way, you can make your bag stand out and be unique, without ever compromising the safety of the event.
While it’s a shame that we need security at community events like marathons, it is understandable. To make security go more smoothly, spectators should think of investing in clear bags as well. The time it takes to search a bag is cut in half. The fact that guards and other spectators can see into your bag at all times also puts many at ease, because they can know that there is nothing dangerous hidden in your bag. Furthermore, the study plastic and nylon will keep your wallet, phone, camera, and other items dry during the rain, meaning you will never have to risk missing a sporting event again due to the weather.
Because The Clear Bag Store offers such a wide variety of bags to choose from, there’s no reason why runners and spectators alike shouldn’t invest in one. They not only increase safety and aide security personnel, they look fabulous.
When the local school district instituted a ‘see thru backpack’ policy, my daughter was dismayed. I on the other hand was overjoyed. As a school security guard, I had recommend the policy and I was glad the school district had listened. The Clear handbags and see thru backpack mandate was going to make my job much easier. Now I was going to be able to check all of the students quickly at the morning check in. I can know quickly whether or not they had a dangerous or prohibited item. Getting all of the kids into the building in a timely manor is a must. The new see thru backpack rule is definitely reassuring. It became much easier to accurately check all students belongings an ensure everyone, including my own daughter and myself, were safe.
In fact, once the policy was instituted, thefts decreased dramatically. Since everyone was required to carry a see thru backpack, it helped to deter deviant minds and also helped to see who was trying to hide a stolen item. Without having to be as concerned about the security of their items, students seam to be reassured by the policy and were able to focus on class.
Get Creative With Your See Thru Backpack
My daughter, being a teenager, was very concerned about the see thru backpack policy causing her to ‘look just like everyone else.’ All throughout her first seven years of schooling, she had used her backpack to express her individuality. Using pins, patches and even paint to make her backpack stand out. A ban on all non see thru bags was seriously going to dampen her unique sense of style. Knowing she would be furious with me for encouraging this policy, I made sure to locate the perfect backpack for her before I told her. I found The Clear Bag Store, that has clear backpacks and clear lunch bags with pink trim. Wow, she absolutely loves it. And I bought myself one too! While all of the other students blended together with a black see thru backpack, our backpacks popped. All the girls wanted one. I’ve even though about buying clear plastic bags wholesale and sell them out of my van.
To allow her to express a little more creativity, I bought her several stickers that she found online. She has wrapped blue rope around the handle, has a very cool flashlight on the zipper pull and has drawn very beautiful flowers on her pink see thru backpack with Sharpie Pens. So, talented. I wonder where she gets that from. Every day, someone new compliments her on her unique backpack. The principle has even held her up as an example of proof that a see thru backpack and clear tote bags policy doesn’t have to squash students’ creativity.
As a school official myself, I have to agree. Clear school bags, safety and creativity all go hand in hand thanks to all the options provided by The Clear Bag Store. My daughter has since come around. She loves that she can see quickly see what’s in her clear school bags, making it much easier to find small items such as erasers and pencils. The one thing she doesn’t like? Her backpack makes her stand out so well that now teachers can’t help but notice when she’s late.
My roommate has a beloved pet snake, Larry. Don’t get me wrong, Larry is sweet (for a snake) but his food makes me queasy. My roommate regularly buys dead mice for Larry, which he stores in the refrigerator. These mice horrify me. They horrify me so much I have made my roommate keep them in a brown bag, so I’m not forced to ever look at them.
One day, while running late for work, I grabbed my lunch and hopping into my car. At work, I threw my lunch into the fridge where I didn’t touch it until my lunch break. This particular day, I was eating lunch alone with a woman who worked in the coffee shop next to our building. We had been chatting lately, and we wanted to get to know each other. Her name was Jenny, and I had been admiring her from afar for a while. It had taken weeks for me to get the courage to ask her to eat lunch with me alone.
So we sat down to our lunch, and I reached into my bag. My hand wrapped around something furry. I froze. Many thoughts went through my head, and I began to pray that I was touching mold as I carefully looked into the bag. My jaw dropped and I felt my stomach flip.
‘What is it?’ Jenny asked, sure I was kidding around. Before I could stop her, she peered into the bag and shrieked. And I mean shrieked. Several coworkers ran in, sure we had been mugged or attacked.
Instead, they saw Jenny throw the bag away, spilling three dead mice across the floor. All of my coworkers jumped away, staring from me to the mice. I was mortified. I tried to explain, but everyone was talking so fast.
‘They’re for Larry!’ I shouted, as if that explained anything.
‘Who is Larry and why is he eating dead mice?’ Jenny asked, horrified.
It took several more tries before I was able to clearly explain that Larry was my roommate’s pet snake. Thankfully, after much explanation, everyone understood how I had made the mistake of taking Larry’s mice and leaving my lunch at home.
That day, I went home and told my roommate what had happened. He spent a good hour laughing. ‘Why don’t you get a clear lunchbox?’ he asked me as a joke.
But I realized that that was a genius solution, and went online, where I found The Clear Bag Store. There I ordered two clear lunch boxes so that I will never again make the mistake of taking dead mice as my lunch.
My coworkers still give me a hard time about that day, but all in good fun. One coworker tried to sneak a fake mouse into my lunch box, but I saw it through the clear plastic sides. As for Jenny, she understood my predicament, but said she probably wouldn’t be eating food from my fridge for a while.
Could clear PVC backpacks be our solution? My twins, Jessica and Jon, have very similar interests. They both joined scouts organizations and both love camping. The only thing they really differ in is taste in clothes. Jessica loves to dress distinctly feminine while Jon loves loose fitting ‘skater’ clothes.
Over a long weekend, both of my kids had separate scouting events to go to. Jon had a camping trip, where he would spend the weekend fishing and learning how to start fires with the other boys in his troop. Jessica had a white water rafting adventure, where she and the other girls would be guided down exciting rapids, ending with a relaxing swim in the river.
The morning they were set to meet up with their respective troupes, we were late as usual. Rushing the kids out the door, I had them toss their backpacks into the trunk of the car. Both of them had matching, black backpacks.
I dropped off Jessica first. She was the last of her troupe to arrive. All of the other girls had already packed the car and were waiting on us. In a hurry, Jessica hugged her brother goodbye, gave me a kiss on the cheek, and snatched her backpack from the trunk of the car. As I was waving goodbye to her, my son glanced at the clock and urged me to hurry. ‘They’re going to leave without me, we’re already late!’
So I drove off, rushing to my next destination. Jon’s friends were waiting for him and he grabbed his backpack, running to the car, apologizing for being late. ‘Have fun!’ I shouted to him as they drove off.
I spent the weekend relaxing quietly with my husband and on the Monday holiday drove to each troupe leader’s houses, excited to see how my children’s’ weekend had been. I wish I had had a camera to capture their long faces.
When I picked Jessica up, she was dressed in her brother’s over sized t-shirt and shorts, which she constantly had to pull up. ‘I grabbed Jon’s backpack.’ She told me through her forlorn expression. ‘I had to wear clothes that didn’t fit me the whole trip and had to borrow someone else’s bathing suit!’
As we drove to pick up Jon, I prepared myself for what may await. As I pulled up the driveway of the troop leaders hours, I saw my son, squeezed into his sisters pink floral tank top. He had tried to survive the whole week wearing just the clothes he left in, but had slipped in the mud and was forced to resort to his sister’s clothes, clothes that were two sizes too small.
Are Clear PVC Backpacks the Solution?
That night, I went online and found the perfect solution to their woes: Clear PVC backpacks. Now, even when they are in a hurry, they are able to determine, without any doubt, which bag belongs to which twin. Never again will my son or daughter be forced to spend the weekend wearing each others clothes. They love the clear PVC backpacks and I am sorry to say, Jon really enjoyed the attention his sisters tank top gave him a little too much.
Travelling with my family can be a nightmare. Because checking a bag has become so expensive, my entire family frequently travels with carry-on items only. This is easy for my son and husband, who would wear the same clothes for an entire week if I’d let them. However, for my daughter, it’s a different story. She refuses to go anywhere without her arsenal of makeup, shampoo, lotion and I don’t even know what else. Every time we pack, she is put into a panic, desperately trying to fit all of her necessary items into a Ziploc bag.
Whenever I bring up the suggestion that perhaps she doesn’t need to pack all of those things, she again panics, fearful that the right product won’t be available in our vacation spot. Instead, she struggles to fit all her beauty products into the designated one-quart size bag.
Often, while going through security, her items are seriously scrutinized. Many guards have raised an eyebrow at how tightly packed her Ziplock bag usually is. On our way to the Bahamas, a security guard even questioned if that bag would really stay closed.
It turns out that question was prophetic. On the trip, her Ziploc bag burst open. An entire bottle of face wash and half a bottle of moisturizer exploded into her luggage. When we got to our hotel, my daughter was in tears as she pulled out her sundresses and new shorts. Almost all had unsightly stains. She was forced to hand wash all of her clothes in the hotel sink while her brother got to go out and enjoy the beach.
To avoid this incident again, I decided to give her a TSA Compliant Carry On Bag. She absolutely loves it. The pink border makes the bag feel fashionable. It fits the TSA guidelines to the T, but the double zipper ensures that the bag won’t come open in her suitcase.
While clear, the bag is also much sturdier then the Ziplock bags we were using. The bag is lined with two layers of nylon, which will ensure the bag lasts for years. The slick, clear plastic makes for easy clean up in the unfortunate event that some of her bottles leak again and the sturdy bag won’t rip, tear, or leak.
The bag has made security go so smoothly for my daughter that I ended up buying the black one for my son, and his and hers bags for my husband and me. They’re handy not only for liquids, but they also make finding things like passports and plane tickets a snap. Before owning this bag, my husband was almost always searching his backpack for his passport and ticket. It was embarrassing how long he could hold up a line. Now he just finds the sturdy clear bag and it has everything he needs.
With these new clear, one quart sized bags my entire family breezes through security. Travel has never been so easy.