Monday, August 29, 2011

Be Enough Me: Gratitudes and Acknowledgments

I have been unemployed since February - that's six months now (six months and 12 days but who's counting?) that I feel have been poorly planned maybe due to my countless list of projects, activities and things I wanted to be able to do being off work, now having "all the time in the world" to be able to get them done.  I've hit this six month mark quicker than I thought I was going to without getting much done - it's staring me straight in the face and hitting me hard this week because the kids started school and so the time seems really wasted.  I am a professional time waster.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Best Part of Wakin' Up™- Folgers Review and Giveaway {CLOSED}

AND FINALLY WE HAVE A WINNER!  Sorry I was late on this but I couldn't get to my comments earlier because of a technical difficulty.......and the winner is:  Kristen O'Donnell congrats!!

The Best Part of
Wakin' Up™
 is about to get better!

As I told you earlier in the week, the folks at Folgers®  contacted me about their new product unveiling event which I hope you liked their Facebook page to RSVP for the event to get your own little prize!  They also offered to send me the new products to sample and review including their new Instant Packs and the convenient Coffee Filter Packs.  I don't love anything more than getting coffee in the mail so I couldn't turn this down.  Hello - free coffee is only the beginning people and just like the Bozo Grand Prize Game, someone will be winning matching prizes to what I've received!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Save the Date - A Coffee Unveiling

If you haven't already gotten an invitation this week, consider this IT and the one you want to make sure you attend..especially if you like coffee...

I have been contacted by the folks at Folgers® to let you know they are unveiling two new products this week they think you will love - so much that they are doing a whole exclusive EVENT this Friday, August 26th at NOON ET on Facebook and you won't believe how easy it is to RSVP!

Monday, August 22, 2011

Bloggy Bootcamp - Takeout Version

Blogging ConferenceThis past weekend I attended Bloggy Boot Camp in Chicago which as a first timer, I was nervous of course and all my own fears of judgement came into play.  The fact that I would have to be social which is hardly one of my strong points scared me the most because I am the most likely to inevitably insert my foot directly in my mouth which I'm sure I did at some point in one conversation or another and you know what?  It was all okay.  

Once I started meeting people and realizing we all shared things in common, we were all putting ourselves out there, my fears went away and I was able to take things in.  I felt comfortable in this space and more like I had known some of these people all along than the awkwardness of just meeting someone new.  These people actually got me and there was not much for awkward silences - there was too much happy networking going on!

It's damn near impossible to put into words any information given at a conference like this which really is why you should think about going to one. I am more of a squirrel than a sponge so I know I only absorbed so much but here's part of my fast food takeout version:

We were told to take away three things and my three things today are a result of a slide that LaQuishe Wright @qfromctu (if you don't already know this girl, look her up) showed in her presentation which read:

-Mama absolutely knows best.
-Don’t be afraid to make your own path.
-Ignorance can truly be bliss.
-Write from the heart
-Having a vision and a support system is KEY
-Dream BIG or go home
-Pay it forward.

Always remember you get what you give…
And you can’t make everyone happy

From this I take away three important things:
  1. I am the most blissful person you will ever meet.
  2. The true way to make my own path IS to write from the heart.
  3. Finding a support system that supports my vision while encouraging me to go for my dreams truly is the key and also a process.

Tiffany Romero @TiffanyRom and Francesca Banducci @SitsGirls did an awesome job of providing us with really great speakers.  I really feel like I took three inspiring things from each of them!  Now I just need to narrow it down and figure out where it is I want to be successful..

"Wherever you put your emphasis and attention is what you will be successful at."
-Tiffany Romero

What is it YOU are being successful at?  
What would you like to be successful at?

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Down the Aisle - Ten Years

On the last day of this month, my husband and I celebrate 10 years of marriage and since Natalie at Mommy of a Monster has a linky up this week called Down the Aisle bragging your favorite wedding photo I thought I would showcase this one that had nothing to do with the photographer.  

It was taken by one of our good friends and then photo shopped but I love it because to me it represents our universe joining as one.  That and the fact that it was an intimate moment the photographer didn't catch. 

It is not in a frame in my house like the others nor is it even printed out...I did have it printed on paper and stuck to the side of the fridge until it got wet. It was created and put onto a disk for us by our friend and only exists online at the moment but I am thinking about printing it for our anniversary.

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Tuesday, August 16, 2011

52 Weeks of Happiness - Week 24

Happiness is...a family shopping trip with mom

Where we can act like silly kids and make faces obviously..she snuck that face in there at the last minute of course..

Sunday, August 14, 2011

What's Wrong With Me??

Do you need a list?  Probably would take too long.


I have numerous things that could be wrong with me just in any given day including but not limited to headaches, not enough caffeine, cramps, that knee thing, accidental paper cuts, broken nail, MY EYE!  

This could become a whole series of What's Wrong With Me..  

Being my own worse critic, that would be an easy thing to do..for me much easier than coming up with a list of fantastic things about me which I can totally come up with, of course, it would just take a little longer..and not so much of a series..more of a one hit wonder of sorts.  

If you ask most people that know me in real life and by most I mean the ones that call me on the phone, they will tell you that I don't answer the phone.


I don't.

Hardly ever.

My mom has left me messages including the word bitch.  Lovingly of course.
My sister pretty much quit calling.
People leave messages on my facebook wall telling me to call them.
My own relatives even.

I don't even want to know what my husband's family says...
Even my husband bitches at me, more about the fact that his mother thinks there is something wrong with me because I don't answer the phone..
I've been asked, "What's wrong with you that you can't answer the phone?"

It's pretty serious. 
People are actually surprised when I answer the phone, telling me they were ready to leave a's kind of like winning the lottery.

Even back in the day when I had my Swatch phone with two receivers and three way calling, I was just not that into it.  I never chatted on the phone for hours on end in high school -  my mom will probably tell you different because I remember being on a call and my dad unplugging the phone from the other room but that only happened once.

I have my reasons listed HERE

It really goes deeper than that and it's not even about who's calling. People get offended thinking I am targeting them or ignoring them because I don't like them only I do it to the people that I like just as often.  Once people realize it's NOT about them, we get along much better.  Look, if I don't have a half an hour to spend on the phone with someone and it's you who will definitely talk my ear off for at least that long, I am not picking up.  

That's it.  

I do not need to hear blah blah blah about your drama when I've got enough crap of my own to deal with.  Drama brings me down and if I'm sitting on the other end saying "Uh Huh" the whole time, it's not my cuppa joe.  It's a waste of my time and maybe I'm just talking to the wrong people.  I understand the need for a supportive friend on the other end - I have no problem doing that and lending an ear when needed but who put it in the rule book that I have to pick up every time the phone rings?  Is it written somewhere that there is something wrong with a person that doesn't pick up their phone on a regular basis?  There probably is and I just missed the memo like usual.  Maybe there is a support group I can join to help solve this obvious problem.

I cringe when my house phone rings because I don't have Caller ID anymore and 9 times out of 10, nobody is there when I do pick up..or it's a recorded message from some politician.  I have picked up my husband's cell phone while it's ringing and bring it to him, holding it like a foreign object in my hand.  I do not let the phone dictate what I am doing nor have I ever dropped everything to get to the phone.  Most times I'm just doing something better than talking on the phone - which reminds me I need a bumper sticker that reads: "I Would Rather Be Tweeting."

So THAT's what's wrong with least for most people that would be their #1 thing on the list.  I prefer to consider myself evasive. Not rude. I am sorry if this is offensive to you and maybe it makes me uncouth..Not to the point where there's something wrong with me.  If picking up the phone is wrong, I don't wanna be right.

What's Wrong With Me??

What's Wrong With YOU???

I think that answer depends on who you ask that question to.

Have you ever had this question asked about you or better yet to your face?
Who do you think has the longest list of What's Wrong With You?

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Saturday Shorts - Before and After

Pardon me for talking about Sky Diving again...I have a last post coming with the rest of my still shots because there is a story behind me getting those taken by the company, which I just got this week - finally but totally worth the wait for sure...

I jumped back on July 16th at SkyDive Chicago and you can see the first part of the story including the video of the jump HERE

This is us before we jumped...

Here is us after...

Does it look like we were just going 120 miles per hour?

I did not doctor up or change either of these photos before putting them up here - I really think the last one is a keeper with how bright it is despite my 11 chins...that and we really need to learn to smile don't you think?

I hope you have a great Saturday and the weather is still warm enough for you to wear your shorts!  

Enjoy your weekend!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Love Via Music - Dave Owens the Real Story

Somewhere along my own personal Twitter journey, I met a cute and sweet little married couple who took me a minute to figure out they were a couple. You know, I am not quick that way - or anyway really but I think I talked to Mallorie Owens first possibly after one #Wineparty Friday and we got talking about music.  One thing led to another and Dave Owens sent me a FREE CD to check out and review for him which he signed with a nice message.  Dave is a downright nice guy from Tennessee who I mistakenly thought was from Chicago because I'm from Chicago so I lean that way and he wrote a song called Chicago....hello, I told you I wasn't real quick, right?  It still had me feeling alright..

Now I've never claimed to be a music expert, or any expert for that matter - you know jack of all master of zilch - but I've listened to my fair share and I love when it comes so easy for people - Dave Owens is one of those real down home people who it comes easy's real music and flows naturally.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

A Street in Paris 52 Weeks of Happiness - Week 23

This picture was taken in October when we were in Paris on one of our European tours...France always makes me smile ..

Enjoy your Tuesday and link up - I want to see what brings you happiness!!

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Saturday Shorts - Family Reunion

Being out of town last week for a Family Reunion kind of set my schedule off but it doesn't take much to do that these days with my ADD - don't deny it, you have some too, everyone has a little some just more than others.. here's my Grandmother - the youngest of 12 children herself at 90 years young with her six children of her own - my mom is to the left of her in black.

There are 10 grandchildren, only 5 of which were there and 14 great-grandchildren here are half of them pictured
(can you even imagine great-grandchildren?)

The only picture I regret not taking which I usually take whenever we go up to visit is a four generation picture with Grandma Iowa , My Mom, myself and my daughter.  My grandmother did tell me that she hesitates to tell me that she thinks her health is improving.  She has had some medical issues the last couple of years and drove her car up until last summer - she's 90 years old for cry eye! She has been ready to go for awhile and I am okay with that until it happens so it will be the rest of us that have to get used to the idea...

I'm still trying to wrap my head around great-grandchildren..

Have a great weekend and wear those shorts!

Friday, August 5, 2011

Bloggy Bootcamp Here I Come!!

On the morning of July 15th, I found an intriguing tweet that I decided to take my chances on...

With all the talk about BlogHer and other conferences going on, I was hoping to get to one in the Chicago area but when I was looking I didn't think I had the money or the time.  With this single tweet, I suddenly put the kabosh to both those natural reaction NO thoughts!  I made up my mind that this was my opportunity and I had no other choice but to at least go for it.

I contacted @ElleMarieH to find out the details telling myself whatever would happen was meant to be, for her to tell me someone else was also interested and contacted her first.  I put a little pressure on by telling her I had cash money because I know how that works in certain situations, and after only three short weeks, I now have in my possession the ticket to the event of my blogging lifetime!  

Social Marketing for Women

I am excited and nervous at the same time about this because I am not a social person at all - ask any of my friends or family - I barely answer the phone.  This is why I blog, it's not as social in that I don't really have to get off my butt and physically talk to people, or you know, get dressed and look appropriate for public neither of which is my forte.  So this will be a big thing for me both in my blogging level and truly at a social level being more intimate a setting than BlogHer, I probably won't have much opportunity to hide in a nice little corner staying inside my comfort zone being a people watcher (or anti-social, you can feel free to make that call).

So I spent a bunch of time designing cards for my non-business blog that I may or may not decide to pass out because I'm not really sure it's even appropriate for me to do that when I am not promoting a business in the first place..or a brand or a niche of any kind really.  I just talk about coffee and the kids, I don't even have a sponsor - nor have I tried to go about getting one.  So why did I decide I had no other choice but to go again?  Am I just filling up space where a real blogger should be?  I know there will be so many things that don't even apply to me not having a brand or really, let's face it, a clue! Now that I actually am going, and because I got my ticket it's really real, my fear is creeping in here and I am breaking myself down in front of you - did you just see that happen??

Thanks fear, I am good..see you next time kthanksbye.

I know that this is all happening for a reason (or the person who contacted first would be going, right?) and I will learn a tremendous amount of things to help me as a blogger which I will of course pass on to you. There are people that will be there that I feel like I already know and would love to meet so this will be a completely different approach to a social atmosphere than any I've experienced so far.

A big thank you goes out to @ElleMarieH for selling me her ticket - the process was really effortless and to @Sheswrite for retweeting because I wasn't following the #BBCHI hashtag - ah the power of Twitter!

I will hide my nervousness with excitement as often as possible and be open to all the opportunities presented even if they are hidden as something else without leaving early or throwing up...that's my goal.  

Growing a Blog - Summer Blog Social

Even though I have been blogging for a year and a half, I still feel like a novice in a lot of areas.

In this year and a half, I took a good 5 month hiatus after our little run in with Lake Michigan which hurt my following and any connections I had made on twitter so when I came back, it was like I was starting over again.  I wanted to be able to share some things with brand new bloggers that I have learned since returning this past March..

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

10 Things - The Paradigm Edition - Life's Little Instruction Book

This is on the wall above my tub because I believe it - along with help from the wine, candles and bubbles of course - helps relax me while I'm in there and I've proven it to be true to myself many times.  If you haven't tried changing your thoughts, try it once and see what happens.  I think the following list is a reminder of just how powerful words really are.