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 P√®re 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!

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Are Good Manners Dead, or Just Struggling to Have Life?

Are good manners dead, passé, or just a little forgotten? What do you think?
The great actress Lillian Gish (1893-1993) once said, “You can get through life with bad manners, but it’s easier with good manners.” (Notice she lived 100 years–obviously her philosophy held her in good stead!)

So what are good manners? Is it using the right fork, not chewing with an open mouth, and in all general respects not being rude and uncouth?

According to Emily Post, the guru of both good manners and proper etiquette,  “manners are a sensitive awareness of the feelings of others. If you have awareness, you have good manners, no matter what fork you use.”  She lived from 1872-1960 and died just shy of 88-years-old, causing us to ponder, once again, whether a life philosophy that involves treating others well may equate to longevity.

So as I see it, good manners are about two things: 1) trying not to offend others with your sensibilities and etiquette (or lack thereof) and 2) treating others as you yourself would like to be treated–extending courtesy and thoughtfulness with liberality.

Arnold H. Glasow (1905-1998, 93-years-old … are you seeing a pattern?) once had this to say, “People with tact have less to retract.” Or as Cordell Hall so eloquantly put it, “Never insult an alligator until after you have crossed the river.”

So it looks like the fruit that you’ll reap from good manners is far reaching, never wasted, and might even cause you to live longer; which is reason enough to make it something to work harder at.

We don’t need to back track in time to Sense and Sensibilities overly cautious way that people related to one another (tip-toeing with gentility to never offend); but it would be nice if we could make more effort to be mannerly and thoughtful, since our culture in general has become very cold and callous. Any thoughts?

Here are five things that YOU can do to have good manners:
  1. Always hold the door open for anyone walking behind you.
  2. NEVER throw your gum out anywhere but the trash can.
  3. Don't interrupt others when they are talking.
  4. Never monopolize a conversation, be sensitive and let others talk too.
  5. Don't have double standards...expecting from others what you don't do yourself.
Here are five things that EMPLOYERS can do to have good manners:
  1. Always give new employees at least three months to prove themselves. Anything short of that is not only bad manners, but incredibly unfair.
  2. Permit new employees to have that first week as a "orientation" week, allowing them extra grace to adapt and get used to their new environment and co-workers.
  3. Never reprimand an employee in front of someone else. Always do it in private.
  4. Don't demean an employee in front of others, because it makes you look bad and the employee feel bad.
  5. If you have an employee that is giving you problems or not doing their job properly, then give them three warnings over a period of about one month.  This means you'll be operating from the "three strikes you're out" rule, which keeps it fair and means you'll have no guilty feelings about it afterwards.
Here are five things that EMPLOYEES can do to have good manners:
  1. Show up for work on time every day and give 100%. Show up looking neat and tidy.
  2. Have a good attitude and don't complain about your job.
  3. Never call in sick unless you are sick, and if you do have to call-in, do it first thing in the morning.
  4. Never talk bad about co-workers. It's in poor taste and will always come back to bite you in the butt.
  5. Do not take care of personal business at your job. Take care of that on your lunch hour.
Here are five things that COUPLES can do to have good manners:
  1. Call if you're going to be late for a date or going home.
  2. Never leave your messes for the other person to clean up. (You don't have a personal maid, you have a mate!)
  3. Men, don't check out from a conversation when you know your wife or girlfriend is talking about something that matters to them. FOCUS!!
  4. Never yell at your significant other or they may find someone else to be significant with. Not too many people can take being yelled over the long haul.
  5. Don't be over-demanding when your mate is sick or feeling bad. Cut 'em a break!
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Stop Marriage Divorce eBook: CLICK HERE

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You can find the quotes that I used in this article in the book below. I have it in my personal library and it's one of my absolute favorites!


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Lillian Gish on Wikipedia

Emily Post Official Website

Arnold Glasow Quotes on Brainy Quotes

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Dare You to Stop Drinking Coffee and Possibly Eliminate Acid Reflux

Oh-no, there it is, that all-too-familiar slow burn coming up into the throat. Where the heck is the fire extinguisher when you need it? Wasn’t that little pill supposed to do the job and eliminate that flame?   Oopsies (as Mayhem would say), it’s not working!

Are you one of those people who is all too familiar with the slow burn invading your throat? Do you suffer from acid reflux disease or acid indigestion? Are you an avid coffee drinker? If so, you may want to give up the java juice. I know…I know…that’s a fate worse than death, right? Oh come on, it will only hurt for a little while, and might just remove the bigger hurt permanently!

I myself was having quite a few problems with acid reflux while still taking Prilosec (omeprazole). Feeling a bit desperate I thought, well, coffee is kind of bitter and hard on the digestive system so I’ll give it up and see what happens.

Voila!  It’s now been three weeks and for the most part all my acid reflux/acid indigestion is GONE! Sure I’m missing my beloved coffee, but I’d rather feel good than have my coffee fix. The pain of the acid reflux was more than the pleasure I got from my java. Plus now I’m drinking healthy organic teas, and I’ve got to say, it’s been kind of fun discovering new and flavorful teas. I only drink decaffeinated though, since caffeine also triggers acid problems.

There are several food and drink items considered “triggers” for acid reflux. And while coffee is one of them, medical research has determined that coffee does not actually cause acid reflux. In other words, if you don’t already have acid reflux, then it will not cause the condition. It only affects those that have the condition, causing it to flair up more, and caffeine, specifically, is known to be a trigger for those prone to heartburn.

Coffee isn’t the only culprit though—here is a list of other trigger foods that inflict the flame and the pain:

Juices: orange, lemon, lemonade, grapefruit, cranberry, and tomato
Vegetables: french fries, raw onions
Meats:  ground beef, marbled sirloin, chicken nuggets, buffalo wings
Dairy: sour cream, milk shakes, ice cream, cottage cheese
Grains: macaroni and cheese, spaghetti with sauce
Drinks: liquor, wine, coffee, decaffeinated regular tea (like Lipton)
Fats/Oils: creamy salad dressing, oil & vinegar
Sweets: butter cookies, brownies, chocolate, doughnuts
Snacks: corn chips, potato chips

If any foods on that list cause consistent heartburn for you, then try giving them up and see what happens. Plus you can use a second line of defense by taking papaya enzyme tablets. There are quite a few good ones out there, but American Health puts out Super Papaya Enzymes Plus, which is very effective and totally good for you. Look for them at your local health food store or online.

Needless to say, the more God-food (food in its most pure form) you eat, the more balanced your stomach will be. And the more man-made foods you eat, the more apt you are to have indigestion and acid problems.  So the closer you can get to eating whole foods, the closer you’ll get to having good digestive health. Two easy rules: buy most of your foods from the outer perimeter of the grocery store (not the inner isles) and the fewer ingredients a product has (look at the label), the better.

GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease) is so prevalent that it is estimated that nearly half of all adults have it. And while many a case of GERD can be aggravated by foods, it is not just food that can kick it into gear. If you have a hiatal hernia that too can cause a host of digestive symptoms, acid reflux being one of them. You can find out more about that at Joyful Living Services , where Stephen H. Horne has written an excellent and informative article highlighting causes, symptoms, and ways to correct.

If you don’t have time to read that article, here are two very important pieces of information. One, find a chiropractor that knows how to adjust a hiatal hernia, and two, use the herb slippery elm to help absorb the digestive secretions and prevent their traveling back up the esophagus and burning it. 

But let’s revisit the topic of food again…our bodies want fruits, vegetables, legumes, nuts, whole grains, dairy, and water. What we actually feed them is mostly man-engineered foods. Food (and I use the term loosely) that would stay “fresh” in the can, box, or bag for months and even years. Our temples are screaming for authentic and real FRESH FOOD…food that would rot quickly if left in the air and off the vine!

I’m sure there are probably more things that factor into acid indigestion, but one of the heavy-hitters is food, so the more whole food you can have in your diet the better. My rule-of-thumb is to eat 80% healthy food and 20% non-healthy food.

Education combined with action will cause you to find the solution to your personal digestive health, and natural cures are always optimum; so if the above suggestions don’t turn the key, here are some other resources listed below.

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