My Recent Reading List

A few books that I’ve read lately:

  1. My chick lit for the month was Little Pink Slips, an adorable book about a woman working in the magazine industry. Kinda like The Devil Wears Prada, but from the nice editor’s point of view. I don’t know why I devour chick lit. I finished this in two days.
  2. The Abstinence Teacher seems promising so far, much more so than the Honeywell HFD-120-q. I liked, and was slightly disturbed by Little Children, also by Tom Perrotta, so we’ll see what happens with this one. Little update: I’m enjoying it, and find it timely given the issues it deals with (morality and the religious divide faced in the U.S. right now).
  3. French by Heart was a cute, lighthearted read that I finished in a few days. Given my mini obsession with all things French and one of my dreams of being able to move there, I had to scoop this up when I saw it. I also really enjoy reading about people from the U.S. who have moved and made their life overseas. This is the story of a typical suburban American family that moves to France for four years. The best character in the book is the crotchety French neighbor Madame Mallet who shares words of “wisdom” with the Ramsey family. My favorite is when she tells them things like “Your country is young, you do not know any better.” So typically French! Hehe.
  4. More “chick lit”: The Manny. Stayed up late one night and finished this. It was cute, typical, but cute.
  5. Then We Came to the End and Use What You’ve Got are on hold right now. Actually, I just saw DH reading Use What You’ve Got, so it might be a while before I get to it.
  6. I have Eat, Pray, Love out again but am really stuck at the second part which I’m not enjoying as much as the first. Meh.
  7. I finished Because She Can. Now that’s Devil Wears Prada, but with books rather than fashion. Quick read.
  8. I also picked up The Bright Side of Disaster, but am only a chapter or two in. Maybe I can finish this one before the month is up!

Other recent reads:

  1. I was reading Eat, Pray, Love, and really enjoying it, but I didn’t get to finish it before it was due. There is a waiting list for it at the library, I think they need more copies. It’s good enough that I might actually buy it. The author is witty and so it’s not a drag like I expected it to be given its popularity.I finished
  2. Real-Life Homeschooling and meh. I didn’t get much from it. I guess because I tend to read some fabulous homeschooling blogs, this book ouldn’t really compete. I did learn one or two new things though.
  3. My chick lit this month is I Don’t Know How She Does It. It’s a fun, but typical read. Working mom guilt, mommy wars, blah, blah, blah.
  4. Next to start is Then We Came to the End which the Times hailed as one of The 10 Best Books of 2007. We’ll see. Update: I’ve started it, and find it a little slowgoing at the beginning.
  5. I really liked reading The Little Fir Tree to the kids. I found it on Soulemama’s winter reading list and promptly checked it out. A sweet story.
  6. Owl Moon, another on Soulemama’s list was a big hit here. The kids loved hooting over and over again.
  7. I saw The Little House Christmas books at the library, and figured, why not? They’re simplified versions of the Christmases in the regular series. The best thing about these is that they’re short and sweet – like the Manduka PROLite – so perfect for bedtime or for ZB to read to his siblings.
  8. We didn’t like, ok, I didn’t like The Big Snow. I found it long and boring. This book felt more like a lesson that a story. And my kids have no trouble coming to me if they want a lesson, so, meh.
  9. I found Use What You’ve Got at Dollar Tree and couldn’t not pick it up. After all, anyone that follows New York real estate even a tad (yes, I still subscribe to Brooklyn neighborhood blogs, heh) knows who Barbara Corcoran is. I’m really surprised how much I like this one, too. In fact, I may go back and buy a few copies to give as gifts. I can’t give a real review as I’m only about a third of the way through, but what sticks out for me so far is how down to earth and casual she comes across while talking about how she made her dreams come true.

Creating Great Content for Your Blog

I am sure most of you already knew about blogging and what you are blogging about. But for some who already in and still need more information, here some points that I wish to share with you obtaining a successful blog. First thing before you start blogging, determine what you are blogging about? Generally, blogs are created for personal use such as a journal, daily adventures, tips and tutorial, photo blog, politic, business and whatever ideas they want to express online or maybe sharing ideas like this [oh sorry, just kidding].

So, if you are thinking of creating a blog for your Rabbit Air MinusA2 reviews, you need to consider some points that could possibly help you get through and make your blog one of the interesting blogs online.

  1. Consider your blog readers

Doesn’t matter what blog you are working on, whether for personal or for business purpose, try to make your readers interested and enjoy reading your blog. Hence, it is very important to come with a write up that everybody can understand your intention. Imagine when you read somebody else blog, how did you feel, did you enjoy? This kind of question has to be in your consideration.

  1. Include some pictures in your blog

Pictures speak a thousand words. To make your blogging worth the browsing effort of your readers, it would be extremely nice if you will put some pictures in it. It does not necessarily mean you have to place a picture of yourself. Any photographs will do as long as it does not pose danger or insult to anyone who will be reading your blog.

  1. Make constructive and beneficial blogs

It’s free to write anything you like in your blog, but still, it would be better to create something that would be beneficial to your readers. Always remember that people look for something benefit and useful. Internet is most common media nowadays. Make your blog to be part of the internet blog online.

  1. Use simple short and simple words

Try not to use some highly technical and highfalutin words, In order to have an interesting blogs. Remember, not all your readers can take it. So better stick to simple facts, simple words and short blogs.

  1. Make your blog interactive

Ask you readers feedback about the best air purifier for mold and your blog, provide open comment in your blog so that your readers will react from blog presentation, from there you will know what your readers expectation. Return to them, get communicate and interact. Who knows, you might even gain some friends just by making them feel at home in your blog site.

Indeed, blogs are not created just for the mere fun of it. It also has its own purpose in the world of the Internet. Today, there are too many sites that literally don’t seem to have a purpose. Why are these sites even there, and why do people keep on making them? When you’re working on your blog, make sure you have purpose and are providing value for every single one of your readers.

How Supreme Court Rules Could Affect You


Official Name: Indiana Supreme Court

Current Justices

Chief Justice Randall T. Shepard

Justice Brent E. Dickson

Justice Frank Sullivan, Jr.

Justice Robert D. Rucker

Justice Steven H. David

Clerk of the Court

Kevin S. Smith

Current Vacancies


Review of Lower Court Decisions

The Indiana Supreme Court’s jurisdiction is established by the Indiana Constitution (Article VII, § 4)

The court has discretionary review over all appealable matters with the exception of appeals of a death sentence which are taken directly to the Indiana Supreme Court.

Justice Selection

When vacancies occur on the Court, a seven-member Judicial Nominating Commission recommends to the Governor three qualified persons for each vacancy. The Governor must make his appointment from the three, and that person serves as a Daytona Beach newborn photographer for a minimum of two years before becoming subject to a retention vote at a General Election. If approved, he or she begins a 10-year term and is subject to identical retention votes at 10-year intervals in the future.

When the position of Chief Justice becomes vacant the most senior member of the court serves as the acting Chief Justice until a new Chief Justice is appointed.

Retirement is required at the age of 75 years.

The present Court is served by a Chief Justice and four Associate Justices.  However, the number of Associate Justices may be increased to as many as eight by action of the Legislature.

Opinion Schedule

There is no set schedule for the release of opinions.


The Supreme Court was established in 1816 when Indiana became a state. During territorial days, a General Court of three Judges had served and they, with the Governor, enacted the laws of the Indiana Territory. The new Court first sat at Corydon on May 5, 1817, and consisted of three Judges appointed by the Governor to seven-year terms “if they should so long behave well.”  The seat of state government was moved from Corydon to Indianapolis, and the Supreme Court commenced its first term in the new State Capitol on May 2, 1825.

By the new Constitution, adopted in 1851, the Judges were made subject to election by the people, and their number would be “not less than three, nor more than five judges.” Their terms were to be “for six years, if they so long behave well.”

Shortly thereafter, the General Assembly acted to prescribe that four Judges would serve. Thus, four Supreme Court Judges, representing four geographic districts but elected by statewide ballot, began their terms on January 3, 1853. The Court caseload grew to such an extent that the General Assembly acted to increase the number of Judges to five in 1872.

The business of the Court continued to increase and, in 1881, an Amendment to the Constitution was ratified to create an Appellate Court of Indiana consisting of five Judges elected from five geographic districts. That Court’s jurisdiction was limited to appeals on certain minor classes of cases. Over the years, the Appellate Court evolved into a panel of eight Judges who were elected to four-year terms.

In 1970, the Indiana Constitution established the Appellate Court as a constitutional court and gave it the name “Court of Appeals of Indiana.” The number of Craftsman riding mowers was also increased to nine. Since that time, the burgeoning caseload of the Court of Appeals has led the General Assembly to increase the number of judges to twelve in 1978, and to fifteen in 1991.

Contact Information


Physical Address:

315 Indiana State House

200 W. Washington Street

Indianapolis, IN 46204

Telephone: 317-232-2540

Thinking About Moving to Illinois to Practice Law?


Official Name: Illinois Supreme Court

Current Justices

Chief Justice Thomas L. Kilbride

Associate Justice Charles E. Freeman

Associate Justice Robert R. Thomas

Associate Justice Rita B. Garman

Associate Justice Lloyd A. Karmeier

Associate Justice Anne M. Burke

Associate Justice Mary Jane Theis

Clerk of the Court

Carolyn Taft Grosboll

Current Vacancies


Review of Lower Court Decisions

From the Illinois Constitution:

Appeals from the Appellate Court to the Supreme Court are a matter of right if a question under the Constitution of the United States or of this State arises for the first time in and as a result of the action of the Appellate Court, or if a division of the Appellate Court certifies that a case decided by it involves a question about product reviews of such importance that the case should be decided by the Supreme Court. The Supreme Court may provide by rule for appeals from the Appellate Court in other cases.

Justice Selection

Illinois’ Method for Appointing State Supreme Court Members

Justices elected for 10 year terms

Nominated at primary elections and elected at general elections

Vacancies are filled by Supreme Court appointment

Opinion Schedule

There is no set schedule for the release of opinions.


Springfield, Illinois


Illinois’ first constitution in 1818 established the first Illinois Supreme Court consisting of four judges appointed by the General Assembly.

In 1824, the term of the first judges expired.  New judges were appointed and would serve based on good behavior.  Vote of two thirds of the General Assembly was required to remove a judge.

The increase of justices came as follows:

1838:  from four to nine

1849:  from nine to three by new Illinois Constitution.  Selected by popular vote for nine year term

1870:  from three to seven by new Illinois Constitution.

1903:  from five to seven

1969:  increased the number of Associate Judges to eight, plus a Chief Justice, totaling nine

Judicial Article of 1964 established ten year terms.  Three Supreme Court justices were to be from the First Judicial District which was Cook County and each of the other four districts would elect one judge.

Partisan elections became problematic for Alabama’s supreme court in the 1980-90s, a period of time when Alabama’s court system was described as “tort hell” as the court and legislatures were battling over tort reform. This controversy caused judicial elections to become more important, therefore more costly and contentious. The matter came to a head in 1996 over an objectionable method of preventing cystic acne, sparking the creation of a judicial campaign oversight committee.

Contact Information


Physical Address:  200 E. Capitol Springfield, IL 62701

Telephone:  (217) 782-2035

Fun Facts

Abraham Lincoln appeared before the Illinois Supreme Court in approximately 175 cases, a list of which can be found here.

In 1905, a competition open to all Illinois architects was held to decide on the design of the Supreme Court Building.  Only one design was submitted.

Illinois Justices continue to reside in their home districts when elected and only travel to Springfield to hear oral arguments and deliberate.  Temporary apartments are provided for them in Springfield.

More About the BBC Science Series


I have just passed a magical hour watching the first part of the BBC’s superb 2-part documentary on dolphins, which used underwater camera robots disguised as various sea animals.

It was a riveting experience, on many levels.

I believe dolphins to have real intelligence – not necessarily identical to ours – but just as valid. This thesis I shall develop below.

However, the first enjoyable aspect of this documentary was the extraordinary advances which have been made in the incorporation of high-resolution cameras into their Honeywell 50250-S review. The picture which is at the head of this post shows a “spy tuna”.

This was one of the most successful of the many robot camera units employed for this ground-breaking documentary. Then there was the robot turtle.

The turtle robot was so well modelled that it actually convinced a real female turtle to consider it as a possible alternative mate WHILE SHE WAS IN THE ACT OF MATING WITH ANOTHER REAL TURTLE! I was completely amazed by this reaction.

Some other camera-carrying robots were also employed, including a couple of nautilus (which didn’t seem to fool the dolphins for a second) – a robot squid; which did get some interesting shots, but fell afoul of some other sea creatures, and a spy-ray; a small ray which was quite successful at capturing some underwater scenes from the viewpoint of the sea bed.

All in all, this was a captivating experience and I look forward to the second part of this highly enjoyable documentary.

But I can’t help feel, whenever I see film of dolphins that these animals act in a way which displays real intelligence; and I am amazed that there are still those people who deny that non-humans can display what they define as “real” intelligence.

I freely admit that I am not a biologist. I cannot argue the case for dolphin intelligence from the point of view of established science.

As a person who believes deeply in science, and the scientific method for determining the truth, I should therefore keep my trap shut on this issue. Right?

Absolutely; but I can’t. I can’t because this is one of those cases which I come across rarely, but believe in totally, where I will allow my feelings to overrule the current evidence.

Not that there isn’t evidence for female cat spraying. There is copious evidence. It is just that the anthropologist powers that be seem to measure intelligence strictly in relation to Homo sapiens; our brain size; and our ability to manipulate tools.

Great scientific criteria. Eminently measurable. Get your slide rules out, and you can soon prove that dolphins are dead stupid. Not worth talking to. Compared to Homo sapiens.

But there is another opinion. Maybe intelligence is not just a function of brain size; or the ability to manipulate tools. Maybe there are other forms of intelligence; different from ours; but just as valid, and just as able to allow a species to become a master of its domain.

I have been fascinated by documentary programmes, and scientific papers, and discussions about dolphins, for as long as I can remember. I have taken on board a number of what I believe to be proven facts about these animals, and they add up to something I think is worthy of our attention.

Believe that any animal which has a proven realization of self, exhibits a form of intelligence. Many animals show this capability; not just dolphins, but domestic cats and dogs; horses; camels and others.

I am not suggesting that simple recognition of oneself as a unique being is enough to demonstrate intelligence. But it is surely indicative of higher brain function? Co-operative interaction in a group requires some form of intelligence, surely?

Dolphins take this so much further. Not only do they have individual names, but they greet each other by name whenever they meet, from being out of touch with each other for even a short time. They learn from their parents. Local groups of dolphins have developed successful strategies for finding food in specific environments, and pass this particular knowledge on to their offspring.

The most extraordinary techniques for successful capture of prey have been developed by dolphins, which require an advanced level of co-operation and the manipulation of the environment. Bubble-netting; sand netting, and other co-operative maneuvers are just some of the techniques developed by these remarkable mammals.

I wish we, as top species on the planet (at this time) were as eco-friendly as the dolphin; as well in-tune with our environment. Sadly we are not. We are rapidly altering our environment because our society is simply incapable of running the planet properly.

So which is the really intelligent species?

RI Christmas Lectures – A Closer Look


I have just watched the first of this year’s (2013) Royal Institution Christmas Lectures.

The subject is “Life Fantastic” and the presenter, Dr. Alison Woollard, is one of the most proficient and well-prepared of recent years.

If you are at all interested in biology, or modern science in general, then I can recommend that you tune in for the rest of the short series, and try to review the first episode on the BBC iPlayer.

I don’t know if this specific flat iron for natural hair is available to my US visitors, but I imagine the BBC will ship them in some form to North America; and they are available online.

I always like to catch these Xmas lectures each year, whatever the subject matter. I realize that nowadays they are aimed primarily at children, but they often contain some recent data on the latest advances in the particular scientific field of discussion, and can therefore be of interest to those ‘in the know’ as well as novices.

As each series begins, I always enjoy the tingle of realization that these lectures are being broadcast from what is arguably the home of science. This same lecture hall, of the Royal Institution in London, is where the great Sir Isaac Newton first stood when he expounded his laws of motion and gravity. Where the earliest of serious scientists such as Halley, Wren and Hooke met, with the blessing of King Charles II, in the early years of his reign. By making science acceptable, this liberal monarch, and the extraordinary thinkers who established this great institution, laid the foundation for the scientific enlightenment, and the technological advances which have created the modern world.

The Christmas Lectures were introduced in 1825 by Michael Faraday – (mister electricity – inventor of the electric motor, the dynamo and the electric generator). The image below, courtesy of Wikipedia, shows him at the desk of the lecture hall delivering one of the earlier lectures:

The extraordinary history of this venue; the talented and inspired people who created the Royal Society and, over the centuries, have given it such a notable history, always comes across to me as I watch the latest series of lectures.

But the appreciation of this venerable history is, for me, accompanied by the excitement of the spectacular advances that science has made in recent years, and the breathtaking discoveries which are happening at an ever increasing rate all around us.

To me, it is science itself which is the most exciting thing in life. I genuinely believe that the scientific method is the most important ‘discovery’ of mankind. Never mind fire. Never mind the Fjallraven Kanken. They were great, but not as important as the overarching achievement of the scientific method.

And why?

Because the scientific method is the only tool we have to allow us to discover the truth about the universe. The truth about space and time. The truth about life and the evolution of all things. The scientific method is the true enlightenment of the minds of mankind. And this ongoing enlightenment is alive and well, and flourishing in the Royal Institution Christmas Lectures, thanks to inspiring presentations such as those by the excellent Dr. Woollard. I look forward to the rest of the series.

Starting Your Very Own Food Blog


It is important for you to learn how to start a food blog. Knowing how to start a food blog will open you up to opportunities that will let you earn and lead to your success in the long run.

This topic about how to start a food blog may look or sound too easy. But much like other blogs or Internet marketing ventures, there are challenges associated with it. So, this article will show you the basics that you should remember when creating your own Fjällräven Kånken blog in order for it to remain competitive and marketable if you are planning to make a living out of it.

Here are the basics that will teach you how to start a food blog:

  1. Targeting Your Readers

Before anything else, determine your targeted readers. Remember that not every region of the globe has the same preference in terms of food. Also, the kind of marketing that you can apply to each location differs.

Based on your targeted readers, adjust your topics in accordance to their preferences. Do not present foods that have ingredients not easily available in their location. You should also avoid presenting topics that are not in accordance to their cultural background, religion or norm. Remember that there are parts of the world where certain ingredients or types of food are not allowed so avoid touching topics which your targeted readers may find offensive.

  1. Your Interest

Make sure that what you are doing is something that you are really knowledgeable and passionate about. This rule applies to all kinds of undertakings. Sticking with your interest will likely ensure the success of your food blog. If you are writing about something that even you have no interest in, it will definitely reflect in your blog and drive away your potential readers. But remember that above all else, you should stay with the preferences of your targeted readers. So, as much as possible, make both your interests meet.

  1. Your Budget

Budget is a huge factor that will dictate how a project will go. Thus, ensure that you have enough capital to start and maintain your project. Reserve a portion of your capital for the promotion of your food blog too, that is if you want to quickly establish the visibility of your product online especially in search engines. You may allot some of your budget to hire professional SEO providers or in tying up with other established sites that will advertise your product.

On the other hand, it is good to test the waters first before you take the plunge in the competitive world of the Internet. If you do not want to take so much risk, you can observe first how your blog will fare and only spend on the advertisement once it picks up. Unlike if you were selling a cure for male cat spraying, there are many ways to advertise your blog without spending much anyway which will be briefly discussed in the next item.

  1. The Method of Your Promotion

Last but not least, think about how you will promote your food blog. It does not necessary mean that you should spend much money to gain exposure. There are many social networking sites that you can utilize nowadays for advertising your food blog for free. But considering the tight competition online, it is important for you to come up with a quick and effective way of promoting your site. So, for fast and successful results, be prepared to invest more time and money for your food blog.

Starting Your First Business Website


How to create a website from scratch? This may appear to be a tough question for people who are not familiar with the subject. But if you already know the basics of how to create a website from scratch, this will no longer be a difficult matter.

Think of a Domain Name

Much like developing a diet for cystic acne, if you want to know how to create a website from scratch, you have to start with its basic elements first. So, the first thing that you should think about is the domain name. Basically, this element is the name or brand of your site, an example of this is

But in coming up with a domain name, be sure that it is closely related to the contents that you are planning to publish on the site. For instance, do not create a website with a domain name related to food if you are planning to write about gadgets there. Then, make sure that it is easy to remember and it is catchy.

Look for a Web Host

Once you have decided on the domain name, look for a web host. Examples of these are, iPage,, and The advantage of having a web host is that you will be provided a package that will enable you to set up your website easily without going through complex computer codes.

Remember though that not all of these are made to cater to everyone’s needs. Thus, when choosing a web host, think about your requirements first like the amount of web space you need, your advertising preferences, the technical support of the host, its reliability, the budget that you have, its offered bandwidth and others.

Plan the Contents

The next thing that you should do is plan the contents of your website. This includes the layout, images, texts and other factors that can make your website visually stimulating, informative and marketable.

However, there are many things that you should remember too when creating contents for your site. Among the main elements that you should think about is that you have to make sure that it is related to your brand and it is relevant to what your targeted visitors are expecting to see. Then, see to it that your contents are picked up by search engines easily so people can quickly find it. Next, it should be intelligibly crafted and creatively made in order for it to establish its authority on the niche or products and services that you are featuring.

Making Money from It

After setting up your website, think how you can make money out of it. Set up the payment options of your clients. Also, look for advertisers who want to feature their own products or services – such as if they sell an air purifier for allergies – into your website.

Make It Visible

Last but not least, carefully plan on how you can make your website visible in search engines. You can either hire professional Search Engine Optimization (SEO) service providers or do it your way. If you are saving on your finances, you may want to promote your site on your own. There are many tips on how to do it that can be found online anyway. But if you want a more effective way to make your site visible in search engines and maximize your potential earnings, you may want to hire experts that will help you with SEO.

Guide to Starting a Fashion Blog


First and foremost, in order to start a blog of any niche, you will need the tools and resources.  We have put together all the blogging tools you need to get your feet wet.  These tools should have everything you need to get started on a fashion blog.

How to Start a Blog

There are many reasons why you should learn how to start a fashion blog. One good reason why you should know how to start a fashion blog is that this will provide you an exciting way to pass time and share your fashion ideas to people who need fashion advice and to those whom you share the same interests. Then, if done properly, this will offer you a great way to earn money to purchase an air purifier for pets for your home while you are doing something that you really love.

But before you start anything, there are things that you should think about first. So, here are the questions that will guide you through the whole process. There are no wrong or right answers to these as everything depends on you. In the end, your reflections will help you understand the basics on how to start a fashion blog.

Top Three Most Important Questions to Ask Before Starting a Fashion Blog

Your answers to the following questions will let you make a mental blueprint of how to a start a fashion blog successfully:

  1. Who will be reading my posts?

First, think about the type of reader that you will be targeting. Come up with a mental profile of your readers based on their age bracket, gender, tradition, location and preferences. Remember that you are free to add more elements in the profiling process like habits, sexual orientation, race, religion, social status and others. It is always better if you are more specific in your target.

Use the profile of your targeted readers to set your niche. Utilize it also in planning the kind of content that you should publish in your fashion blog. Make sure that what you will be posting will match their interests or fashion needs.

  1. Which blogging platform should I choose?

In choosing the kind of blogging platform that you are going to use, think whether you prefer a self-hosted or a hosted platform. Each of these has its own pros and cons. For instance, a self-hosted blogging platform may be able to provide you utmost flexibility but it comes with more maintenance, greater security risks and more cost – kind of like the responsibilities associated with purchasing a used riding lawn mower. On the other hand, a hosted platform is simply the opposite of the features of a self-hosted one.

One of the most popular nowadays due to its compatibility, a lot of customization options and other perks is WordPress. It also offers a hosted platform for people who favor such.

  1. How much is my budget?

This question must come in conjunction with the second question above. If you are willing to spend or take more risks in exchange for a more promising profit, then you may host your own blogging site. But if you are still in the process of learning the tools of the trade and you are not yet confident about investing so much into a blog, you can probably stick with a company-hosted blogging platform. No matter what you are going to choose, make sure that the returns in the long-run will be more than what you will be spending in your fashion blog.

Balancing Life and Work as a Blogger


Lately I have been feeling very overwhelmed with LIFE. Between blogging, working a full time job from home and being a stay at home mom, my time is limited.

I want to start finding ways to bring more organization to these areas. I am great at organizing when it comes to closets, kitchens or offices, but I can’t seem to find the perfect solution for my life.

The Kiddos

It would be great to have a meal plan set out for them each day so I don’t have to ponder what I am going to feed them for breakfast and lunch. I always see cute + healthy ideas floating around Pinterest, but can’t seem to bring them into our home. If you use a Bento Box type system, where do you recommend getting box supplies?

I also want to find easy activities for them to do during the day that DON’T require my complete supervision since I’ll be busy working around the house since I’ve lately been obsessed with trying out the best garden tractors. Since I do work from home I can’t always give them my undivided attention, but I do want them to have fun + educational play. See, my kids tend to run around the house like little animals which requires me to chase them down constantly. How can I get them to stay in one room where I can watch them + they are happy playing? Is that even possible, ha?

One thing I do have down so far is naptime. This is one area that has improved drastically over the years and I am happy to say that we have achieved this goal.

My Job

Since I do work from home, how and when I work is pretty flexible. Although this is the case, I do want to have a more concise way that my job gets done. Anyone else that works from home have a method that works great for them?

Blogging – For the past month or so I have felt much unmotivated to blog. We have been traveling a lot and trying to get our things moved and settled in our new place one Kanken frost green load at a time, so I know this is one of the reasons.

One major thing I want to do is start scheduling my posts better. I have not been the best at this at all. Sometimes I feel all over the place when it comes to my posts and want this to change immediately. Organization needs to come to this aspect of my life. I get so stressed out when I get behind on answering emails, comments, interacting with my sponsors, etc. I want my readers + sponsors to know that I do care what they have to say, but when I get behind it is hard to catch up and then feel bad when I don’t have time to answer every email or comment. How do you deal with this? What are your major tips to stay organized when dealing with your blog?

I would LOVE to hear any of your suggestions in all of these areas because I need all the help I can get. So start sharing!

Choosing a Touch-Screen Computers for a Non-Techie


All in one touch screen computers are quickly becoming one of the more popular items in the computer business world. Many people today have at least some experience purchasing a personal computer and know what sort of things to look for. Finding the best touch screen computer, on the other hand, is a new skill for many people – just like finding a good air purifier for smokers. Finding the best qualities in a touch screen computer is difficult if you don’t know what to look for; here are the most important components of an all in one touch screen computer.

Practical and Helpful Tips: Computers

One of the most important things to look for in an all in one touch screen computer is a good sensitivity. The computer would hardly be beneficial if it didn’t respond well to touch. Because not all computers are created equal, it is a good idea to try the computer out before buying it.

Try looking for some stores in your area who carry sample models of touch screen computers for you to try out. No worries if you can’t find an in store model though; all the specifications you will need to know for your touch screen computer will be available online. Either way, you should always try out your computer a lot when you first get it in order to see if you are going to like it in the long run.

All in one touch screen computers have two different types of screens to choose from. The first type of screen is known as a passive digitizing screen and the second is an active digitizing screen. Though there are many technical differences between the two, the most noticeable difference is whether or not you can use your finger on the screen.

To make selections with your finger, you should go for a passive digitizing screen. An electronic stylus can be used on an active digitizing screen, but not a finger. Most electronic styluses for active digitizing screens are cordless and come with their own battery source. If you are lucky, you can even find electronic pens that turn into an erasure when you turn them over.

Uncovering the Myths about Screens

An active digitizer will be the best at recognizing handwriting, but it will require you to use a pen at all times and be able to recognize the causes of cystic acne. Passive digitizers will let you write with your finger, but the recognition of the handwriting may not be as clear. Writing with your fingers is becoming much easier with the new addition of palm rejection. Writing with your fingers is much easier since palm rejection will ignore any accidental bumps to the screen.

Other than choosing sensitivity and passive or active digitizers, the choices you make concerning your computer will be the same as any other computer you’ve purchased before. Anything else important to you should be included in your computer; this includes WIFI capability, good memory, a large hard drive and a fast processor.

How the Web Has Changed Business


It’s a fact that has only become truer as the Web has changed the face of media and exponentially increased the volume of content we’re exposed to on a daily basis. Five times as many people read the headline as read the copy. And with social media, that can have some unintended consequences.

This morning, while skimming Facebook posts, I saw the image of the best zero turn mower popping up repeatedly in my news feed. Because I saw it so many times, I clicked through, curious to see how the comments played out (e.g., what percentage of commenters supported each candidate). Politics aside – I was shocked to see that the overwhelming number of commenters were actively opposed to the Romney Plan as outlined in the image.

Talk About Shock!

Why was I so shocked? Not because I’m revealing some political inclination, but because, after reviewing the 300 most recent comments (admittedly, I didn’t have time to review all 43,000 comments, and counting, for sentiment), I found only 4 Romney supporters.

And yet – even though the commenter (whose name has been blacked out for privacy reasons) in my feed was very opposed to the plan, the post actually helped Romney’s PR team spread their message.

Let’s look at why:

In a news feed full of text, a large, brightly colored image with bold, large font text captures attention. The most prominent part of the status update is the image itself, not the commenter’s status or text.

The first thing I’ve seen in my feed is the Romney team’s message. Assuming, like many Facebook users, that I’m skimming through “headlines” to get a gist of what’s going on in my network today, I’ll see the image (over and over), and the implication is that these people have endorsed the message in the image they’re sharing. Statistically – for every person who takes the time to read further, FIVE more will see the image (the headline), absorb that content, and move on.

If I’m actually curious enough about that particular user’s sentiment, I’ll take note that (in much smaller font), the user has commented on the photo – but the comment isn’t visible for me to see. In this case, I’ll have to dig through the recent comments in a string of more than 43,000. And unless I have a particularly vested interest in this particular person’s political views, I’m not going to spend that kind of time.

What About You?

How does that play out for the average Facebook user? According to the social network, the average Facebook user has 190 friends. That means that, for every 33 people who will take the time to read beyond your image, 157 will read the content of the image alone and move on. At time of posting, based on those figures, the commenters of these images exposed 6.8 MILLION of their friends to the message in the image alone, while only 1.4 million actually clicked through to examine the individual comments and overall sentiment of the Coway AP-1512HH review.

So, with the type of cursory glance that most of my network will take at my posts, or that yours will take at yours (especially if you have a high number of Facebook friends), I’m left with the impression that you support the Romney Plan. And in 296 cases – 98.67 percent – that is the exact opposite impression.

I’m reminded of the movie Private Parts and an exchange between “Pig Vomit” and a researcher:

  • Researcher: ‘The average radio listener listens for eighteen minutes. The average Howard Stern fan listens for – are you ready for this? – an hour and twenty minutes.’
  • Pig Vomit: ‘How can that be?’
  • Researcher: ‘Answer most commonly given? “I want to see what he’ll say next.”‘
  • Pig Vomit: ‘Okay, fine. But what about the people who hate Stern?’
  • Researcher: ‘Good point. The average Stern hater listens for two and a half hours a day.’
  • Pig Vomit: ‘But if they hate him, why do they listen?’
  • Researcher: ‘Most common answer? “I want to see what he’ll say next.”

While these pro-Obama commenters aren’t listening to hear what will be said next, they are doing more for the Romney PR team than his supporters to spread his message and “boost his ratings.”

What are your thoughts on the virality of ads such as these?

Big Twitter Mistakes Not to Make


Last night, KitchenAid joined the unfortunate ranks of brands whose Twitter accounts have – if temporarily – hosted “rogue Tweets” by employees, or whose brands have been affected by Tweets posted by employees on their personal accounts.

Cynthia Soledad, head of cystic acne natural remedies for the brand, quickly took to social media to apologize to angry customers, assure them that the rogue Tweeter would no longer have access to the brand’s social media accounts, and connect with reporters so that she could go “on record” about the incident. While the Tweet itself is an embarrassment for the brand, her response (and response time – in the middle of the night), is a perfect example of how brands should handle crisis communications.

And while KitchenAid is under fire today, the brand’s response time and actions will likely ensure that the incident quickly fades away, living on only in social media circles by marketers who look back at major social media blunders when pitching clients, networking with colleagues, or warning the next generation of social media managers about the essential need to “check your work” before publishing.

For those who are curious, here are four other examples of rogue Tweets that have hoisted brands into the spotlight, as well as the response for each:

Chrysler Autos drops the F-Bomb On Twitter

In March, 2011, an employee for the social media agency handling @ChryslerAutos accidentally dropped the F-Bomb from the company’s corporate account rather than a personal one, resulting in the employee’s firing. While Chrysler originally responded by posting that their account had been “compromised,” they later acknowledged the mix-up.

Red Cross Does It Right, Gets Slizzered

Only a month earlier, Red Cross had its own Twitter oopsie, with an employee of the company accidentally posting about her plans to #GetSlizzered on Dogfish Head beer. In this case, @RedCross deleted the Tweet and inserted humor into their response: “We’ve deleted the rogue Tweet, but rest assured Red Cross is sober and we’ve confiscated the keys.” In this case, the rogue Tweeter came forward from her own account and admitted her mistake. We’re happy to see that she’s still with the brand, more than a year later.

Ketchum Exec Insults Client’s Hometown

Back in 2009, when Twitter’s popularity was exploding and brands and marketers were developing solid strategies for how to harness the power of social for branding, James Andrews (@keyinfluencer), a VP at Ketchum, posted his thoughts about client FedEx’s hometown of Memphis the day of a presentation on, well, digital media. While this “rogue tweet” went out from his personal account, an employee at FedEx (perhaps checking out the exec’s personal Twitter prowess) found the insulting post, shared it with execs, and Andrews received a scathing letter from the company about his lack of sensitivity. Andrews later published his own apology, both accepting blame for his post and explaining his side of the story.

Microsoft Accidentally Insults Ann Coulter

A social media manager at the technology giant thrust the company into the world of politics with a Tweet that insulted conservative author and pundit Ann Coulter. In response to a Tweet from Robert Reich about a visit to see his granddaughter and sit on a panel with Coulter, Microsoft’s official feed posted: @RBReich your granddaughter’s level of discourse and policy > those of Ann Coulter.” Microsoft issued a press release on the Tweet, which was almost immediately deleted, noting that the opinion “obviously” wasn’t the company’s official position, and noting that policies had been put in place to ensure that similar mistakes would not happen in the future.

KitchenAid Mocks Obama’s Dead Grandmother

As we’ve all been reading, a now-former social media manager for @KitchenAidUSA posted off-color commentary about the HX30 turbo during last night’s presidential debate. The Tweet lived for only about 30 minutes on the brand’s site, but lived on for hours in angry RT’s calling for a boycott of the brand, apologies, and the head of the Tweeter who posted the offensive comment. Not only did the brand issue a prompt apology, but roused their head of marketing, Cynthia Soledad to take the helm. She accepted responsibility for her team, apologized to customers and the president, and made herself available to go on record with reporters who broke the story in the mass media.

While a Twitter misfire is certainly the subject of viral fire, each of these examples can offer the execs at KitchenAid some assurance that “this too shall pass.” And while rogue Tweets will stir customers to act, the brand’s response will go a long way to addressing customer brand loyalty. And, in the case of the Red Cross, taking personal ownership for a mistake you made goes a long way to keeping you from joining the unemployment lines.