Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Personality Not Included by Rohit Bhargava

If you are someone that does online marketing or is trying to figure out how to brand whatever you're selling, this book is a MUST READ.

*Personality not included,

*Why Companies Lose Their Authenticity-
And How Great Brands Get It Back

by Rohit Bhargava.

I find Rohit's writing style to be very easy to understand, even when he is writing about things that I know next-to-nothing about. And his use of examples to get points across is highly effective as a teaching tool.

The chapter titles are:

Part I
Sign Here to Read This
The Accidental Spokesperson
A Signature is Not Enough
Lessons from the Storytellers
Conquering the Fear Factor
Add Personality and Stir

Part II
The Butler ws a Marketer
New Styles of Marketing
Taking Theory Further

Personally, if you can't figure out how to brand yourself from this book's teaching I don't think that there's much hope for you. And I don't say that to be mean or critical, it's just that Rohit breaks it down in such a way that he really gives one a very clear picture as to what it takes to put personality into your brand and bring not only attention to it, but to get sales as a result of it.

The inside book flap says that this book "is a powerhouse resource packed with bold new insights tha show you how to shed the lifeless armor or your business and rediscover the soul of your brand." I think that sums up Personality Not Included pretty nicely, and if you're someone looking for a way to FIND the personality of what you're trying to sell, this book will take you by the hand and lead you all the way to the finish line!

Want to find it on Amazon? Here's a link to make it easier:

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Basia, Time and Tide is Still a Great Album!

Recently I came across the CD Time and Tide by Basia. I owned it many moons ago (when I was much younger and filled with a bit more vigor ... okay, I'm not ancient, I'm just middle aged and plucking out chin hairs ... too much information, right?!) ... at any rate, it evaporated into thin air over the course of time, so I went ahead and bought it.

How glad I am that I did, cause I've been dancing to it over the last few days with a smile on my face!

The happy jazz melodies make my soul feel light and MOST of the tunes are dance-worthy. My favorites are Promises, Run for Cover, Freeze Thaw, and New Day for You. So if you've never heard this album and you like upbeat dance music, you will love Basia.

Here's a Youtube video to introduce you to her: Basia, Time and Tide and here is a link to buy her album:

Friday, July 8, 2011

Outstanding Oatmeal Raisin Cookie Recipe

Does anyone have a cookbook that looks overly used as this one does? (I lay claim to this one ... testifying that it's recipes have graced my family table for well over two decades). Can I see a raise of hands for all those who have similarly LOVED cookbooks?

Not only can you find time-honored, taste-tested family favorites, but you can sometimes try a recipe you've never made and be utterly satisfied and surprised by the flavor.

That's what happened when I tried this Oatmeal Raisin Cookie last week ... everyone in the family ABSOLUTELY loved it! And the fact that it's semi-nutritious doesn't hurt either ... BTW, you'll find a link for Amazon for this book (yes, it's still being made) at the bottom of this post. Through the years (25+ to be exact), I've used a plethora of the recipes from this book and ALWAYS been more-than-pleased with the dishes.

OATMEAL RAISIN COOKIES (Even if you don't like raisins, which my daughter doesn't)

3/4 cup shortening
1 cup brown sugar (packed)
1/2 cup Splenda (I use Splenda to cut calories)
1 egg
1/4 cup water
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup all purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon cloves
1 cup raisins
1 cup chopped nuts (optional)
3 cups Quaker oats

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Mix thoroughly shortening, Splenda, egg, water, and vanilla. Stir in remaining ingredients.

Drop dough by rounded teaspoonfuls 1 inch apart onto greased backing sheet. Bake 12-15 minutes or until almost no imprint remains when touched with finger. Immediately remove from baking sheet. Store in tightly covered container.

Makes about 5 dozen cookies.  If using self-rising flour, omit salt and baking soda.

Now go get some milk or a cup of tea to enjoy with your scrum-diddly-umpsious cookies!

And for more great recipes you should visit All Recipes (dot) Com

Oh yeah, here is my shameless plug for my recipe book also: Recipes Sure to Please

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Picnic Ideas for an Awesome Outing

Summer is here, so it's a great time to plan a picnic and go to your favorite park. Planning is important though if you want your picnic to be fun and festive. So here are a few picnic ideas to make your next outing a winning event.

First off you'll want to invest in a small sun gazebo (sun shelter) if you are going to a place that has no natural or man-made shelter.  Because no matter how much fun-in-the-sun you want, you'll definitely want a little reprieve from it, and the good news is that sun shelters are not all that expensive.  Basic ones are about $50 at Walmart and Target, and you'll find that this will prove to be the most important item you bring.

Next you will want to make sure you have lots of high UV protection sun cream for everyone; especially if you plan on staying out for the whole day.  And if you are picnicking  in a place where there is swimming available, make sure to apply more sunscreen after going in the water.

Now for the food .... how about homemade potato salad, KFC chicken, some gourmet chips/snacks (like CapCod Chips or Snyder's snacks), carrot sticks with Ranch dressing, and a nice variety of drinks? Sounds great, doesn't it? You can even buy the chicken the day before so that it's nice and cold--that way you don't have to worry about keeping it warm. And labor wise, the only work you'll have to do is make the potato salad and chop the carrots--but the good news is, everyone will feel like they've had a homemade picnic. Super cool, right?

Here is a recipe for a fabulous potato salad:

Cube about 8 lbs of potatoes and cook.  Hard boil a dozen eggs, peel and slice.  Prepare dressing with about 1/2 - 3/4 jar of mayo, 1/4 cup of vinegar, 2 TBLS sugar, dash of water, and 1/8 cup of mustard. Whisk till blended.  Place the potatoes and eggs in large mixing bowl. Season with salt, pepper, and season salt. Add the dressing and mix. Taste.  Add extra anything to taste according to your palette. Voila!

So now that the food is shored up, what about entertainment? Here are some easy things to throw in a sack that will bring hours of fun for all concerned:

    * frisbee
    * Uno card game
    * Phase Ten card game (Never heard of it. Go buy a deck and you'll be hooked!)
    * Yahtzee

Last but not least on the list is music.  All you need to do is bring an old boom box, extra batteries, some fun CDs, and you are set for a picnic extravaganza !

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Isadora Duncan: Unchained In Her Expression of Dance

Isadora Duncan was born in San Francisco in 1878 and fortunate to have a mother that was a cultured pianist.  Early on her mother told her to “listen to the music with your soul.”

Although her parents were unable to lavish monetary blessings upon her, she was raised in an environment of literature, music and dance; and her young life was lifted above her financial station.

Gifted in dance and hungry to share her young passion, by age twelve she was giving dance lessons to children in her neighborhood. So it was little wonder that by age seventeen she was cast in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, an opportunity that caused her family to move to New York.

But in the blink of an eye she went from being hailed as the next brightest star to yesterday’s news—a blow that took its toll but did not completely dampen her hope for a future, for not too long afterwards she packed her bags and sailed for England.

What character of spirit she had to just pick up her young bootstraps and sail across the wide ocean with the hopes that her gift would be welcomed and put to use.  She may have been young, but her spirit was mature and willing.

So by 1898 (when she was 20-years-old) she debuted at London’s Lyceum, where she captivated her audience with unusual and non-conventional dance moves like skipping and running—breathing an unusual life-force into her expression of dance.

Her choreography flowed in an impromptu way, and it was met with eager enthusiasm by audiences across the continent—success, sweet success followed.

While in Greece she spent time teaching a group of children the art of ancient Byzantine dance, and the children, so excited by this, danced their way from town to town in sandaled feet showing off what Ms. Duncan had taught them.  But unfortunately it was met with disapproval, and the townspeople thought Isadora was mad for encouraging such expression.  So once again she ended up financially broke and ostracized.

By 1904 she had found new strength and founded a school for poor children in Germany.  Her idea was to make a curriculum that included art, culture, and spirituality—a school that tapped into the talents of these children less fortunate, but also gave them a well-rounded education.  Little wonder that she ended up adopting six daughters from the group of students that ended up touring the world with her—named “the Isadorables” by those in the press.

To say that Isadora Duncan was ahead of her time is very much an understatement. But she really was a dancer that embraced the natural, and she was very much unafraid to wear costumes that were considered in poor taste and even shocking.  She availed herself to whatever expression of dance that her soul was stirred to bring forth, and the American audiences were both shocked and enthralled.  Never one to withhold “speaking forth” a message with her body, she once performed with bear breasts to protest the corset!

Unleashed poetic and artistic expression is frequently fueled by harsh realities and tragedies, which Ms. Duncan was not unfamiliar with. In 1913 while performing to Chopin’s Funeral March she had a vision of her children’s death—days later they drowned in the Seine.

So while her life was riddled with many challenges, troubled times, financial set-backs, heartbreak, and a general lack of acceptance at many junctures, she still abandoned herself to express who she was as a dancer, a teacher, a mother, and a lover.  She never  held back.  She never gave up.

Sadly she died at the age of 49 in a strange auto accident—her trailing veil got caught in the wheel and broke her neck.  She was buried in Le Pรจre Lachaise cemetery in Paris—leaving all future dancers freedom of movement and freedom of expression!

Monday, May 9, 2011

Cool Baby Names

Looking for a cool baby name? An unusual baby name? A baby name that is a little something outside-the-box? Last names can be very interesting first names. Here are a few to get you thinking, and I’ve also put some first name/last names in the parens just to give you an idea of how they can sound.

Baker (Baker Simpson, Baker Cauldfield)

Baxter (Baxter Arnold, Baxter Blaine)

Blake (Blake McGee, Blake Mitchell)

Butler (Butler Branch, Butler Davis)

Chisholm (Chisholm Grant, Chisholm Franklin)

Dewitt (Dewitt Davis, Dewitt Donaldson)

Farland (Farland Wayne, Farland Gable)

French (French Rivera, French Farnsworth)

Gable (Gable Gibson, Gable O’Brian)

Hart (Hart Mitchell, Hart Jackson)

Hill (Hill Mallory, Hill Davies)

Johnson (Johnson Reed, Johnson Baxter)

Lowry (Lowry Lawson, Lowry Lincoln)

McCall (McCall Myers, McCall Mason)

Merrill (Merrill Tanner, Merrill Stow)

Montgomery (Montgomery Macon, Montgomery Matlock)

Watts (Watts Rialto, Watts Wayne)

Webster (Webster Wilhelm, Webster Rheingold)

Whittier (Whittier Green, Whittier White)

Hope this has been helpful, but if you still haven't found THE name you want, why not check out the Baby Names Dictionary or the products below.

Friday, April 29, 2011

YES, An Excellent Word and Attitude

Jeffrey Gitomer's LITTLE GOLD BOOK of YES! Attitude (How to Find, Build, and Keep a YES! Attitude for a Lifetime of SUCCESS) is a veritable gold vein just waiting to be mined!

I bought it about three weeks ago and haven't been able to put it down. It's one of those self-help books that I'll read over-and-over again, buy copies to give to others, and probably irritate people by imparting its contents to anyone that will listen.

Jeffrey, for those who are unfamiliar with him, is the author of The New York Times best sellers The Sales Bible and The Little Red Book of Selling. All of his books have been #1 sellers on Amazon.com, and he has quite a few of them.

You can open any page at random and get some nugget that will take you on a mission to improve your outlook and approach. Here's one: "You become what you think about all day long." (A quote from Earl Nightingale.)

But don't get the idea that the book is just a bunch of inspirational quotes by Jeffrey and others...no, no, no. It's packed full of things to help you determine where you're at (attitude wise), and how to get to where you want to go. It's for anyone that has ambitions, whether it be in sales or something else.

It's written in a practical, rubber-meets-the-road way that's easy to read, understand, and implement.

He explains the difference between a positive attitude and a YES attitude, and covers 5.5 different elements of the YES attitude. Plus there are quite a few Glasbergen cartoons throughout that will give you a chuckle and drive certain points home.

I'm putting dates in the back of my book, because I want to see where I am 6-months from now, one year from now, etc. I want to track the positive changes in my life and business--well, actually, I want to track the YES CHANGES in my life and business as the result of doing the things I learn from this book.

It will be VERY interesting to see where I'm at when I hit those dates.  I'm hoping I'll have lots of cool things to report about how my YES attitude has altered my life!