Wednesday, September 28, 2016

10 Christmas Songs I'd Rather Not Hear

My Christmas Spirit (yes I have it) is what bouyed me and kept me from drowning in the bottomless pit of worry over the economic prospects of the coming year. Yet, am losing the “spirit” each time I hear some Christmas songs.

The following are my 10 must NOT listen to Christmas songs:

1. You’ All I Want for Christmas

Oh please! Who would believe such a crap? For crying out loud…Me?!? All I want for Christmas are my two front teeth to be made in platinum and embedded with gems. How about diamonds…

2. Merry Christmas Darling

Why don’t you just whisper that in you darling’s ear after you clasp the diamond necklace around her neck? Maybe you’ll get somewhere cozy…

3. White Christmas

Hellooo! There are parts of this planet without snow. Unlike RECESSION, the snow do not reach every nook and cranny of this weird wired world. Don’t you like the color green? My favorite color is red.

4. Blue Christmas

Didn’t I just said my favorite color is red? Sshhhh…hush now.

5. Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer

Okay, I like the color of Rudolph’s nose, that is the only thing I find likeable in this overplayed, oversung and abused carol!

6. Feliz Navidad

Duh?!? Translation please…

7. Winter Wonderland

I’d rather be with Alice in Wonderland. What’s wonderful about freezing?

8. Jingle Bell Rock

Maybe the composer of this particular jingle is “stoned” when this was written.

9. Santa Claus is Coming to Town

When? I hope he brings cash. Tons of it. Then, give it all to Congress, so Congress can bail out every darn company which needed bailing out and leave the taxpayers’ money alone!

10. I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Clause

No, I did not! Mommy died before am old enough to learn the curiosity-satisfying thing called “peeking” or is it “peeping?”

I wish the foregoing Christmas songs will be banned from being played over the airwaves. At least I hope I won’t hear them when they do get played over and over and over…

Tags:10 Christmas Songs I’d Rather Not Hear

10 Christmas Movies for Grown-Ups

Christmas movies are one of the joys of the holiday season, but the majority of them tend to be family films or children’s cartoons. While that’s fine when it comes to the all-time classics, or when viewers are feeling a bit nostalgic and want to rewatch movies from their own childhood, occasionally movie-lovers want to celebrate the season by watching unconventional Christmas films, or holiday films with a more serious edge. That’s where these grown-up Christmas films come into play. They aren’t cartoons, and some of them are quite dark, but they capture the Christmas season in all of its fun, joy and occasional sadness.

No. 10: White Christmas
White Christmas is a holiday classic that tends to be overlooked among the more commercial Christmas films. For many people, however, this Bing Crosby film is essential viewing each December. While it might not hold the attention of younger audiences, the seasonal Irving Berlin tunes are sure to warm the hearts of adult viewers.

No. 9: Black Christmas
Christmas doesn’t have to be all holiday cheer. Sometimes a cheesy horror movie is an appropriate way to celebrate the season, as with this unconventional slasher classic. Skip the gory ­­2006 remake, and watch the fun ­­1974 original instead.

No. 8: Die Hard
Die Hard, a Christmas movie? Sure, and it’s among the best Christmas movies at that. This is a film for those who appreciate holiday sentimentality in small doses, and who would rather celebrate the Christmas season with a little more action.

No. 7: The Nightmare before Christmas
OK, so this Christmas movie is actually an animated film, and I said I wasn’t going to put any of those on this list. But, The Nightmare before Christmas is so gorgeously rendered, so whimsical, and so adult in its themes that it’s almost not really for children at all. Though children might enjoy it, this is really a Christmas movie for adults to appreciate.

No. 6: Christmas Vacation
Enough people consider Christmas Vacation to be a modern classic, that it just had to be included on this list. Packed with often crude humor, holiday cynicism and just a touch of genuine heart, this is a film that adults will enjoy more than the kids.

No. 5: Bad Santa
While the comedy Christmas Vacation may be appropriate for some older children, 2003’s Bad Santa, which shares a few similar themes along with the former’s cynical outlook, is decidedly not. This very dark comedy is good for those who appreciate Christmas films with a little more of an edge.

No. 4: An Affair to Remember
Most people might not associate the 1957 Cary Grant and Deborah Kerr film with Christmas necessarily, An Affair to Remember‘s climactic scenes occur on Christmas Eve, and there’s plenty of holiday spirit to be found around the edges.

No. 3: It’s a Wonderful Life
This list wouldn’t be complete without throwing in a little tradition and nostalgia. Though it’s a Frank Capra film, and it’s full of the little sentimental touches that that director is known for, It’s a Wonderful Life is still a pretty dark and often downright miserable movie, at least before the uplifting ending.

No. 2: Joyeux Noël
Why this 2005 film isn’t constantly in rotation as a new holiday classic is beyond me. Joyeux Noël is a compelling and beautifully shot Christmas movie about the Christmas Truce of World War I. There isn’t anything about this film that isn’t lovely or heartwarming; it’s just perfect for any Christmas movie night.

No. 1: The Apartment
I have my own Christmas movie tradition every year, and it revolves around what, in my opinion, is the truest and most heartfelt Christmas film ever made: Billy Wilder’s 1961 classic, The Apartment. It’s definitely not a Christmas classic in the traditional sense, but it captures the holiday spirit in a way that no other film has ever matched. The Apartment shuns the traditional sentiment that the Christmas season is all about happiness and warmth (though its final moments are among the most human and uplifting ever put on film), and instead focuses on just how isolating and lonely all those holiday expectations can be. Not one for the kids, to be sure, but perfect for anyone who’s ever had to spend Christmas alone.

Any of these movies would be perfect additions to your home Christmas movie collection.

Sources: IMDB

Tags:10 Christmas Movies for Grown-Ups

10 Celebrities that Don't Need Halloween Costumes: Crazy Star Style

Some celebrities don’t need Halloween costumes for Halloween; these stars with crazy style can simply grab any random outfit out of their closet to look like a character (but their everyday wear does make great inspiration for Halloween costumes):

Lady Gaga – Whether she’s draping herself in meat, refusing to wear pants and sensible shoes, or donning a blonde hair bow on top of her head, every single one of Lady Gaga’s outrageous outfits haunting her closet with their spirited style would make great crazy Halloween costumes (and you can bet there will be an army of little monsters roaming the streets this year).

Katy Perry – The queen of kitsch has some quirky outfits of her own that would make great crazy Halloween costumes, although Katy Perry’s candy-covered concoctions and pretty pinup outfits are a far cry from lady Gaga’s futuristic version of kooky. Sure her style might be wild, but it’s hard to complain about a gal that can rock a rubber dress (plus she’s got great complementary arm candy in Russell Brand; with his peg leg jeans and long hair, he looks like the modern version of a debonair corsair).

Heidi Montag – Her wardrobe might not be crazy like some on this list, but Heidi Montag’s mundane style is overshadowed by her plethora of plastic parts. So since she looks like a living Barbie doll, I’d say she’s still one of the celebrities here that doesn’t need Halloween costumes to enhance her look.

Rihanna – Rihanna’s crazy style makes her look like a futuristic mini-warrior with all that hardcore hardware and her ever-changing wild hair. But this tough girl can also play nice; when she tones her style down, she looks like an adorable bird of paradise.

Christina Aguilera – Halloween costumes for women often aim to be sexy and over-the-top, a look this celebrity definitely has down with her everyday wear. Her look is best described as a blend of the old school style of glam goddesses like Marilyn Monroe, Lady Gaga’s wild looks, and porn star chic (hey, when you look like Christina, you can pull off constantly switching between classy and trashy).

Taylor Momsen – Unfortunately, this wild child’s wardrobe screams “streetwalker” just as much as it does “shock rocker” (but at least she covers up a little bit…by slathering black stuff all over her eyes for that rockin’ raccoon look). Most mothers would have heart attacks if they saw their daughters in Halloween costumes resembling her wardrobe, but I have a feeling that this Pretty Reckless girl doesn’t care too much about possibly being a bad influence.

Willow Smith – She’s one of the youngest celebrities in Hollywood making a splash with her style, and it’s not hard to see why this hair-whipper is already a household name. Sure she’s got super-famous ‘rents, but with her super-edgy hairstyle and a look that blends rock and roll, hip hop, and runway fashion, this 9-year-old is definitely blazing her own way in the biz (and her crazy threads make great inspiration for Halloween costumes suitable for a younger crowd).

M.I.A. – This often-sloppy star sometimes looks like a neon rainbow threw up on her, but she can impress with her dress when she hits the mark (at least she keeps things interesting with her wardrobe as well as her words).

Ke$ha – Ke$ha’s style can also be a bit of a mess, but you know Oscar the Grouch would definitely dig her garbage bag dress. And for those looking to turn her looks into Halloween costumes, at least her “slop-rock” style isn’t too hard to imitate.

Snooki – Like Lady Gaga, there’s evidence that this celebrity’s closet is full of looks resembling Halloween costumes, considering that the ‘Jersey Shore’ star’s signature style has been turned into a licensed Halloween costume likely to be popular this year.

So from orange fist-pumping pumpkins to glam girls and bad babes, these celebrities with crazy style are going to have a hard time topping what’s already in their closets for Halloween.

Tags:10 Celebrities that Don’t Need Halloween Costumes: Crazy Star Style

10 Cheap Tricks that Save Money Around the House

Being cheap is no longer considered eccentric. Being cheap, frugal, thrifty (choose your own adjective) is the new norm. Learning new ways to save money around the house is America’s past time, and here are 10 cheap tricks to add to your money saving repertoire.

How To Extend Life of Disposable Razor

Sure the whole idea behind a ‘disposable razor’ is to use it and toss it, but that was so yesterday. Today we re-use disposable razors with this cheap trick. Shake off the excess water from the disposable razor, then dip it in rubbing alcohol and store in a dry place (do not leave razor in the shower). This cheap trick will clean the razor blade, stop rust and add weeks of shaving life to the disposable razor.

Half and Half

All liquid soap products, like hand soap, body wash, shampoo and the like are concentrated and are stronger than necessary to get the cleaning job done. Half the liquid soap products with water or only use half the normal amount to save money.

Air Out Bar Soap

This is a double cheap trick – air out bar soap for a few weeks before using and the bar soap will harden, making it last longer when used without effecting the lather, fragrance or cleaning properties. To air out the bar soap, unwrap the fragrant bars and place in dresser drawers and closets to act as air fresheners.

Clean Clothes

Reduce the amount of laundry detergent and liquid fabric softener used by one-fourth to one-half (experiment with your brand to see which measurement works best) and clothes will still come out clean and soft. Cut fabric softener sheets in half and still get the same dryer results.

Unplug the Dryer

Use the clothes dryer as little as possible. Not only does it increase the utility bill, but increase clothing replacement costs too. The lint in the lint trap is actually small bits of your clothing. The tumbling action of the dryer causes clothes to disintegrate and wear out faster.

Separate Bananas

Separate bananas as soon as you arrive home with a fresh purchase. Bananas produce ethylene gas which causes them to ripen, separating the bunch slows the ripening process down so the bananas will last longer.

Lettuce Longevity

To keep lettuce fresher longer, store lettuce in a large Ziploc bag with a moist paper towel tucked inside.

Mattress and Couch Cushion Flip

Flip mattress and rotate it every three months to extend it’s life span. Don’t just flip couch and chair cushions, swap them around so they don’t become molds of your family’s hinder parts.

Leather Shoe Extender

Have the soles of leather shoes lined with rubber to prevent them from wearing down, and don’t wear them two days in a row. Leather shoes are subjected to foot moisture when worn and the moisture breaks down the leather, giving the shoes a day off between wears allows the leather to dry and will extend the life of the shoes.

Get More Lipstick Uses

Use a lip brush to scoop out the remaining remnants of your favorite tube lipstick. You’ll be surprised how many more applications of lipstick are left.

Tags:10 Cheap Tricks that Save Money Around the House

10 Cheap Ways to Celebrate Dad

You can dish out food, render services, concoct a show, rustle up a gathering, take him back down memory lane, or craft a keepsake. Whether indoors or outdoors, make it his favorite Dad’s Day for years to come with one or several tributes.

(1) Plan a Potluck Brunch
Throw a pot luck brunch where each of the kids bakes, fries, boils or scrambles up a different dish for Dad. For brunch, anything goes. It can be breakfast , lunch, dinner or dessert dishes. Some of you can start the night before. Set the buffet table with tablecloth, and use candles from the dollar store.

(2) Stage a Family Skit
Drape Dad’s chair with fabric to make it look like a throne, and make a crown for his head. Pull down the blinds and turn on one lamp. Then bring out the court jester to tell jokes. A song can follow. And then a poem. If you’d like, you can put on a short play, like one where you act out some of the things Dad told you not to do, but you did anyway. Or a skit that shows the ways he was nice to you when you were mean to him. At the end of the presentation, each of you could tell what you’re grateful to Dad most for. It can be just a sentence or two. He would love it because he seldom hears it.

(3) Throw a Father’s Day Film Fest
Find out what his 3 favorite movies are, yes, even if they’re not in technicolor. Line them up, pop some popcorn, gather his favorite snack, and raise a sign that says, “Dad’s Day Film Festival.” Then crowd around and watch his favorite movies with him. After each film, ask him about the parts he liked best. Don’t just watch the movies, enjoy them– even if they’re wack. He’s always trying to make you watch them anyway. You have to stay all day; you can’t leave. And if it’s OK with mom, have his favorite beer on hand. Or you can simply take Dad to the dollar movies to see an oldie.

(4) Plan a Restaurant Program
Treat him to a buffet restaurant or his favorite fast food joint. Tie some balloons to his chair. Appoint someone to give a short Father’s Day speech. Then you can go around the table and tell what he means to each of you. Be sure you have enough money to pay for Dad’s meal and yours too.

(5) Engage in a Sports Gathering
Take Dad out to the ballgame, to the skating rink, or to the bowling alley.

(6) Plan an Outdoors Event
Pack some snacks and a ball, and take him for a picnic at the beach, forest or park. Organize a family tournament. Plan games like a one-legged race, egg toss, seed spitting, and tug-o’-war contest. Take the camera, snap photos and place them in a Father’s Day Photo Album at the end of the day.

(7) Detail His Car
Clean Dad’s car interior, handwash it and put some air freshener in it.

(8) Become a Faithful Servant
Serve Dad today, hand and foot. And while you’re doing it, address him as “Sire,” “My Lord” and “Your Majesty.” It’s only for one day, and it can make up for all those other names you call him under your breath. When he tells you to do something, smile and respond, “Your wish is my command.” And do it pleasantly, without a complaint! Hold his cell phone for him when it rings, place a napkin around his neck when he eats, stand by and brush the crumbs from his table.

(9) Craft a Homemade Memento
Make him a homemade gift. Create a story book, where you each write down the best thing dad ever did for you & draw a picture of it. (Get some poster paper from the drug store to form the covering for it, and paste a title & some pictures on the front.) Sew his initials into a tie, hand paint a belt, decorate a baseball cap, draw on a T-shirt, adorn a pair of house slippers, take a photo of him while he’s asleep and put it in a frame. Or draw him a Father’s Day card and a put a poem in it.

(10) Feed His Nostalgia
Find out what his favorite toys, candies and comic books were when he was a kid and try to find something similar to cram into a treasure box for him.

Of course, if you’re a single child, you have a lot of work to do by yourself. So get started planning the menu, mapping out the program, or drawing up the best Father’s Day schedule ever.

Tags:10 Cheap Ways to Celebrate Dad

10 Christmas Shipping Tips

The holidays are the busiest time for the post office. People send friends and family Christmas packages in the mail and sellers rush to get packages shipped to customers in time for Christmas. Sadly many packages go lost, turn up missing or the contents inside end up broken. More often then not, it’s because the package wasn’t wrapped right and enough precautions weren’t taken. Other times, a gift package won’t make it to the designated area in time for Christmas, leaving people very frustrated. This article will detail ten tips you need to keep in mind with Christmas shipping.

10 Christmas Shipping Tips #1: Don’t Wait Until the Last Minute

Tip number one is an important one. Don’t wait until the last minute to ship your packages. If you do, you risk the chance of it arriving after Christmas plus if you’re shipping it from the post office; you’ll have to wait in long lines. Avoid frustration and ship all your packages as soon as possible.

10 Christmas Shipping Tips #2: Use Proper Mailers or Boxes

Use proper mailers or boxes to ship your items. For example, if you had a glass ornament that you were sending to a buyer or a family member, you wouldn’t toss it into a manila envelope and put it in the mail because it would get crushed and broken. Instead you’d use a lot of bubble wrap and a box to send it in so it would make the journey in one piece. Whatever you’re sending, make sure that you have the right package to ship it in. Make sure that it fits and isn’t flopping around in it’s package.

10 Christmas Shipping Tips #3: Use Clear Wrapping Tape

I’d received a lot of packages with weird taping jobs. Some people have used colored duct tape and scotch tape. Scotch tape may be good for wrapping presents but it’s not really made to withstand being the only thing to take a package together. Buy clear wrapping tape from the Dollar Store or from Wal-Mart to ensure that your package is safely taped together.

10 Christmas Shipping Tips #4: Use Plastic Wrap

I ship a lot of books to family and friends and a book trading website. One of the things I learned is that plastic wrap isn’t only for food. If you’re sending something that could get destroyed by liquid, wrap it in plastic wrap. It offers double protection and if you are sending a package to someone who lives in a rainy area, you could be saving the contents of the package. Wrap each item in plastic wrap; the person receiving it may just thank you for taking the extra care.

10 Christmas Shipping Tips #5: Print Postage from Home

If you want to save time, printing postage from home is quick and easy. You can print postage from and Then you can simply run the packages into the post office without waiting in line to pay.

10 Christmas Shipping Tips #6: Weigh Item Correctly

If you are printing postage from your home, it is very important to have a scale to weigh the item correctly. If you print postage and then don’t pay enough postage on the item because you weighed it wrong, it will be sent back to you, which will delay the package in getting it it’s destination.

10 Christmas Shipping Tips #7: Highlight Apartment Numbers

Postal workers are only human and sometimes they make mistakes. As a seller on eBay, in the past I’ve had several customers ask me to highlight their apartment number with a highlighter because their postal worker put items in the wrong box and then they never got their package. If you’re sending a package to an apartment, highlighting the number will draw more attention to where it is supposed to go.

10 Christmas Shipping Tips #8: Research the Cheapest Shipping Rate

The economy sucks these days so if you’re shipping a package, make sure that you research and pick the cheapest shipping rate that is allowed for the contents that you are sending. If you’re sending something parcel post and it weighs a ton but is compact, then you might be able to save money by putting it into a flat rate Priority box that will ship for one rate for as much as you can put into the box.

10 Christmas Shipping Tips #9: Pay for Insurance

You should always get insurance on high priced items but especially during the insurance season. Don’t think “Oh it won’t happen to me” because just your luck, it probably will happen to you. It’s always better to be safe then sorry.

10 Christmas Shipping Tips #10: Arrange for Postal Pickup from Home

If you have several packages to ship at one time, then call the post office and set up an appointment for them to come and pick up packages from you. You won’t have to wade through the holiday traffic or crowds and your packages will be on their way to their destination.

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10 College Football Candidates for the 2008 Heisman Trophy

In 2007 Tim Tebow became the first sophomore to ever win the Heisman Trophy. I doubt a sophomore will win the Heisman Trophy again for a long, long time, but there are a few good sophomores in this year’s list of Heisman Trophy hopefuls. These are the 10 players that will probably be in the running for the Heisman Trophy, including two sophomores.

Percy Harvin, Florida Gators
Percy Harvin is a dark horse in the Heisman Trophy race. Not many players will make an impact receiving and rushing like Harvin and some Heisman voters might go to Percy Harvin with their vote when they decide they don’t want to vote for Tim Tebow two years in a row.

Pat White, West Virginia Mountaineers
At one point in time Pat White would’ve been higher on the Heisman Trophy hopefuls list but with the coaching change and all the turmoil around it the Mountaineers might falter a little bit.

Michael Crabtree, Texas Tech Red Raiders
Did Tim Tebow make it ok for sophomores to win the Heisman Trophy? Or will they still have a hard time? If sophomores winning the Heisman Trophy do become a trend then there are few sophomores better than Michael Crabtree. Last year Crabtree was the first freshmen to win the Biletnikoff Award.

Mark Sanchez, USC
If USC beats Ohio State they could run the table again because they have their biggest games at home. But this isn’t the Leinart/Bush Trojans anymore. Mark Sanchez will get Heisman Trophy consideration for being USC’s quarterback but there are question marks on offense.

Sam Bradford, Oklahoma Sooners
Out of the sophomores I like Michael Crabtree better as a player but Bradford has a better shot at the Heisman Trophy. First of all Bradford is a quarterback and second of all Oklahoma will likely win the Big 12 ahead of Texas Tech.

Beanie Wells, Ohio State Buckeyes
If the Buckeyes can make it a third straight National Championship then Beanie Wells will probably be a Heisman Trophy candidate but I’m not sure Ohio State gets through the season with less than 2 losses.

Tim Tebow, Florida Gators
If the Heisman Trophy was decided on performance alone then there is no reason to think Tim Tebow can’t be the best player in the nation again. But will the Heisman Trophy voters vote for him two years in a row? I think at the very least Tim Tebow has to wait until his senior year for another Heisman Trophy because the voters definitely don’t want a situation where he’s got a shot at a third Heisman Trophy if he comes back next year.

Chase Daniel, Missouri Tigers
Chase Daniel is one of the most exciting quarterbacks in the nation and he is on many Heisman Trophy hopefuls list. My only concern is that I still don’t completely buy into Missouri and as we know a team’s performance has everything to do with winning the Heisman Trophy.

Graham Harrell, Texas Tech Red Raiders
The Texas Tech Red Raiders have had a dynamite offense for years and they’ve never really been taken seriously. But with Graham Harrell and Michael Crabtree they have something even more special than usual. If Graham Harrell can lead Texas Tech past Texas and Oklahoma he’ll definitely be a finalist for the Heisman Trophy.

Knowshon Moreno, Georgia Bulldogs
Most people think that the Georgia Bulldogs are the best team in the country, so why wouldn’t their best player be the favorite for the Heisman Trophy? The only problem with Knowshon Moreno’s Heisman Trophy chances is that the Bulldogs play a very tough schedule.

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10 Cheap Fall Date Ideas

Carnival lights, the smell of roasting corn and the sounds of rustling leaves – this the perfect combination for a fall date. However, if you are on a budget, an expensive dinner and movie night can cost a bit too much. What you need is a reliable list of 10 cheap fall date ideas. Revisit this list all season long for plenty of inexpensive date inspiration.

  1. Play darts: The evenings are getting crisp, why not head indoors for a spirited game of darts? You’ll only be out a few beers and you will have a great time with your sweetheart.
  2. Flea markets: Most communities have a walk through flea market. Even if you don’t have a lot of spending money, it’s fun to walk through the vendors booths to plunder for unusual treasure. Make a day of it!
  3. Go for a walk: Find a leafy path and walk it together. You’ll get some exercise and see some autumnal scenery. Who doesn’t love strolling through the leaves with someone they love?Don’t forget to stop for photos with your phone or camera.
  4. Visit a U-pick: Go apple picking or visit the local U-pick. You can pick a pumpkin, watermelon or a collection of inexpensive vegetables.
  5. Take a country drive: Okay, well gas isn’t cheap but this fall date idea is fairly inexpensive. Pitch in for a few gallons of gas then go for a ride in the countryside.
  6. Winery tasting: If you have a winery nearby, call for details about the next wine-tasting. These events are usually pretty inexpensive and make a nice date background.
  7. Plays in the park: Check your paper for a list of what’s happening in your nearby park. Go see a play or bring a blanket and listen to a fall symphony.
  8. Home improvement classes: Call the home improvement store for information on fall home improvement classes. You may have to pay a small fee for the supplies but many classes are free to the public.
  9. Matinee fairs: You can’t beat a fall carnival for fun and romantic situations but it’s not cheap. Instead of paying prime time prices, go during the matinee or hit the midnight fair night.
  10. Taste some candies: Share something sweet, like handmade candies. Head to the candy store and ask for some samples. When you find something you both love, spring for a box of treats.

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10 Cheap Gifts for Your Coach

When shopping this year, don’t forget about your coach. They provide a lot of their time to you, and many go beyond their coaching duties to become real friends to their teams. Here are some great gifts for the coach in your life.

Personalized Football Mug $15

Football Coach

These mugs can be personalized down to the writing, colors and the design. The mugs are each 11 ounces and made out of ceramic. They come inside a gift box for easy gift giving. There are 6 designs to choose from. You add your logo, title, coach name, team name, year, main color, 2nd color, school name and a personal message. They offer 16 different colors to choose from.

Number One Coach License Plate $20

Any Male Coach

This great gift is great for any male coach in your life. There is no type of sport mentioned here which makes this a great universal gift for any coach. This license plate is Blue with red writing. It reads Our Coach is #1 and has a picture of a man wearing a sweatshirt that says coach. He is also holding a clipboard in his hand. They also offer personalization for this product.

Coaches Inspire Softball

Soft Ball Coach

A great present for your softball coach. This softball has a green diamond plate, two bats and a ball printed on it. It reads “Coaches inspire greatness” below the picture. The ball size is 3.75 inches. You can also add personalized writing to this ball.

Personalized Coach Cartoon Framed Picture $15

Little League Baseball Coach

Personalize a great cartoon picture for your coach. You chose the sex of the coach, and the sex of the children. You also customize the sign hanging on the fence with your team name and year. Pick the color shirt you want your coach to wear, which will also match the mat color of the picture. A banner at the bottom says the coach’s name. You can order a frame for this picture for $6 more and a matching mouse pad for $5 more.

Personalized Coach Shirt $15

This shirt can be customized for baseball, basketball, football, and hockey or soccer coach. You can have your coach’s name placed on it with items to match the sport they coach. The shirts are made with cotton/polyester and come in 4 different sizes.

Hockey Puck Gift $15

Hockey Coach

A great gift for the hockey coach in your life. This pick is a regulation size puck. The middle of the puck holds any picture you send it, would be great for a team photo or a funny moment with your coach. You can also customize two lines of text on the puck.

Autograph Shadowbox Frame $25

Football, Basketball, Golf, Cheerleading, Baseball, Bowling, Soccer, Volleyball

This is another great universal gift. You can customize this gift at home. All you need is your team picture and their autographs to complete this great gift. This frame is 8X10 in size, and you choose the mat size to match your picture. This frame comes with 20 different stickers to customize to the sports listed above. Your team signs the included white mat for a great present.

Personalized Mini Volleyball

Volleyball Coach

This volleyball is perfect for your coach. Its 5 ½ inches. They do laser engraving for long lasting detail. You can customize this with your school name, team name, year, logo and coaches name. A great gift for your volleyball coach.

Personalized Newspaper

Any Coach

This gift is truly unique and universal for any couch. You completely customize this great newspaper. You pick the headline, the story and the pictures. Name your newspaper anything you would like. Create your own sales banner. You choose the colors you want your paper printed in. A great gift for any coach who has done more for you then just coach. Let them know just how you feel with this great gift.

Coach Survival Kit $10

Any Coach

A great gag gift for your coach. If you have a coach that has a great sense of humor, then this is the gift for you. The gift itself is only $4 and then add a gift card holder to it, to make it more special. Comes with things like bubble gum to keep the team sticking together, candy watch and much more. You can add a personalized note card with this great gift also to add that special touch.

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10 Christian Rap Artists You Should Listen To

Christian Hip-Hop is an industry that has been growing fast in the last couple of years, and it features many fantastic artists that do not get the recognition that they should. Instead of talking about money, sex and drugs like most mainstream rappers, they rap with a positive message while preaching the Gospel at the same time. Here is a list of 10 artists or groups that you should listen to if you are a fan of hip hop.

1. Lecrae

Born and raised in the South, talented artist Lecrae Moore lived on the streets before giving his life to Christ. His music mixes the message of the Gospel with dirty south beats and the combination creates great music that you just gotta listen to.

2. Corey Red & Precise

New York emcees Corey Red and Precise preformed underground most of their careers before releasing Resistance Iz Futile, an album that has become a Christian hip hop classic. These two in-your-face rappers deliver beats and flow that can rival any other artist, while keeping the message of their music meaningful.

3. Sean Slaughter

Much like his fellow New Yorkers Corey Red and Precise, Sean Slaughter is another in-your-face artist that has a tremendous flow. He is not afraid of being to-the-point, but he also remains committed to bring people to Christ.

4. Mr. Del

A former member of Three Six Mafia, Mr. Del decided to turn away from secular music and continue to rap, but only for Christ. He continues to bring that dirty-south flavor to Christian music, but this time with a positive message.

5. T-Bone

T-Bone is a Christian emcee who has been around for a long time, releasing eight albums during his illustrious music career. T-Bone, Better known for his starring role in the 2003 movie “The Fighting Temptations” and for his amazingly fast rapping, is also a multiple Grammy award nominee.

6. The Cross Movement

The Cross Movement is one of the most popular Christian rap groups. These Philly-based rappers have

used their musical talents to praise God to the fullest, and their talents were nationally recognized as they also have been nominated for Grammy awards.


Probably the most recognizable Christian rap group, Grits have released many hit songs, a couple of which have received international fame. Their most popular song, Ooh Ah, was featured in the movie Fast and the Furious: Tokyo drift, and their song Tennessee Bwoys can be heard often at Tennessee Titans football games.

8. Rob Hodge

Rob Hodge is another Philly emcee that makes quality music. He uses his lyrical ability and great beats to make very good music. He has only released one album so far, but look for him in the future.

9. Trip Lee

Trip Lee is a teenage artist who rose to fame in the Christian hip hop circle during his featured appearance on Lecrae’s hit single Jesus Muzik. Despite his young age, Trip Lee is not ashamed of representing Christ and continues to release great music.

10. 116 Clique

116 Clique got their name from the Bible verse Romans 1:16, which states, “For I am not ashamed of the Gospel of Christ, for it is the power to salvation for everyone who believes…” They live by that verse and preach Christ wherever they go. Some of 116 Clique’s notable members include Lecrae, Trip Lee and Flame.

Tags:10 Christian Rap Artists You Should Listen To

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

10 Commonly Misused Words

Everyday in the English language people subconsciously use the wrong words to convey something in writing, when the wrong word is used it has a great affect on the meaning of the sentence. If you have noticed I just misused the word affect. I should have used the word effect instead of the word affect because; the word affect is used to describe an emotional impact and effect is used to describe a result, a consequence from causation. Using the wrong word in sentences will result in a misconstrued meaning. People use the wrong word so consistently because there are many words in the English language that sound alike and are hard to discern.

All ready and Already

All ready should be used to describe when everything or everyone is ready, and prepared.

Everyone is dressed and all ready to go.

Already is an adverb that means, something has occurred previously, in the past, or that something will have occurred in a certain time.

She already told me that story yesterday.
By 10:00 she will already be home.

Picture and Pitcher

Picture is a noun and it is a photograph a painting, or drawing of an object.

This picture that you made of me is spectacular.

Pitcher is a noun and it is the person at a baseball game who throws the ball to the batter.

The pitcher threw the ball really fast.

Pitcher is a noun and it also means a large jug that is wide in width and narrow at the neck.

He served us ice cold lemonade in a pink pitcher.

Emigrate and Immigrate

Emigrate is a verb that means to leave one country to live in another country.

I will emigrate from my country because it is so terrible.

Immigrate is a verb that means to enter a country to live there.

I will immigrate into the United States to be with my family.

Emigrate is a verb that means to leave and immigrate means to move in to, or enter.

Lay and Lie

Lay is a verb that means to place something down.

I will lay this flower vase on the table.

Lie is also a verb; it means to place oneself down to rest, in a reclining position,

I am going to lie down for a few minutes.

Lie can also be used to describe a location;

Mexico lies south of the United States

Lie also means to say something untrue;

She is telling a lie!

Conscience and Conscious

Conscience is a noun, and it means to have a sense of right and wrong.

My conscience is telling me to admit what I did wrong.

Conscious is an adjective, and it means to be aware and awake.

Since that incident, I am more aware of my surroundings.

Lose and loose

Lose is a verb and it means to misplace something, or to be defeated.

I know we will lose the game.
I will try my best not to lose my money.

Loose is an adjective, and it is used to describe something that is not tight fighting, something that is wobbly.

My daughter’s two front teeth are very loose.
These jeans are very loose around my waist.
The screws in this table are loose.

Personal and Personnel

Personal is an adjective and is used to describe something that is private, not public.

My decisions are personal.
It’s hard to keep my life personal as a celebrity.

Personnel, is a noun that means, employees in a business, the people employed in a business.

All personnel must report to the conference room.
Personnel must dress professionally every day.

Thorough and Through

Thorough is an adjective that describes doing something carefully and fully.

We will give the patient a thorough examination.

Through is a preposition which means to travel across.

We will walk through the lake.

Tags:10 Commonly Misused Words

10 of the Craziest Facts About Coca-Cola You Probably Didn't Know About

10 Of the Craziest Coca-Cola Facts You Probably Didn’t Know About

What you are about to read you won’t find on any official Coca-Cola history site because the corporation would rather keep these facts buried and forgotten about.

The soda giant Coca-Cola has been a favorite drink for millions of people all over the world for the last 100+ years. Through out the years the company has tried everything under the sun to sell their products to whomever they could which has brought a lot of controversy on to them.

In the past 100 years the company has been in trouble with racism, child labor, water depletion and much more. I was truly speechless after some of the facts I heard about and you might be to. So if you got an interest in Coca-Cola then this might be for you!

1. Inventor of Coca-Cola
As many people know, Coca-Cola was established in May 1886 by doctor/pharmacist John Pemerton as a nerve tonic. What you probably didn’t know was that Dr. Pemerton was considered a junkie who was addicted to morphine big time. John died only 2 and half years after establishing the soft drink and trademark.

2. Cocaine in Coca-Cola
Now it’s no big surprise to most people that Coca-Cola’s main addictive ingredient was cocaine. About 60mg of the drug was used in each serving of Coke until 1903 when they company claimed to have removed the ingredient. Funny thing about it is Coca-Cola still uses and imports coca leaves which are pretty much the main ingredient in the production of cocaine. Also some officials for Coke claimed that the use of cocaine in the soft drink was always a rumor.

3. Slogans
Up till the early to late fifties Coca-Cola was believed to have healing properties and with that some pretty unique slogans started to appear on the products. Some you might have heard, others might be totally new to you.

-1886 “Coca-Cola Delicious, Refreshing, Exhilarating” No doubt it was exhilarating when they were using cocaine as an additive.

-1900 “For Headache & Exhaustion, Drink Coca-Cola” Again I don’t know what cocaine would do for a headache but there’s no doubt the drug takes away exhaustion.

-1905 “Coca-Cola Revives and Sustains”

4. Coca-Cola & the Nazi’s
Now as we all know Coca-Cola is an American made soda drink so when I was researching Nazi history for another article, I was totally surprised in what I found. In 1936, Coca-cola sponsored the Berlin Olympics also known as the “Nazi Olympics”. While Britain was at war with Germany the company continued to do business behind enemy lines and advertised beside the Nazi Regime. As America enter the Second World War, German Coca-Cola bottling plants could no longer get the sugar/syrup to make the drink so they invented another drink for the Nazi public called “Fanta”.

5. Coca-Cola and the Civil Rights Movement
Now again when I came across this fact it blew me away. A day before Martin Luther King was assassinated he held a speech asking the people to boycott Coca-Cola and stop buying their products because of the way the black workers were being treated. Supposedly white workers where getting paid a much higher wage for little work where as the African Americans where expected to do long hours and back breaking work for little pay and no chance of advancement within the ranks of the company.

6. Human Rights Violations and Murder in Colombia
In the early 2000’s, Colombia Coca-Cola bottle workers that were with the union started receiving death threats to leave the union, and if they didn’t comply then they would be killed. Shortly after the message workers started turning up dead.

In 2004, a New York City councilor took a fact finding delegation to Colombia. Once there the councilor found that the Coca-Cola workers were the victims of at least 179 major human rights violations and 9 murders.

Then in Jan 2007 a group known as the “Black Eagles” went on TV to tell the Colombian public if union workers and other didn’t stop basically complaining about Coca-Cola’s work ethics then they would be killed.

Coca-Cola was being blamed for not providing a safe work place and for not taking responsibility for their actions which caused or allowed murders on their properties. Some Colombia officials go on to say or imply Coca-Cola is in someway responsible for these murders of union workers or allowed them to happen which they totally deny.

7. Biggest Racial Discrimination Payout
In only seems fair after all the stories about racial discrimination that finally in 2000 after investigations into the allegations the federal government found Coca-Cola guilty of the charges and ordered them to pay the biggest racial discrimination payout in history. Coca-Cola had to pay various victims restitution which added up to nearly $200 million. If you ask me that’s nothing compared to what they should pay for the decades of abuse against their workers.

8. Coca-Cola & Coca Leaves
Although Coca-Cola is suppose to contain no trace of cocaine like officials say, one of the main ingredients is the coca leave which is the main key to making cocaine. It’s a known fact that 8 tons of coca leaves are imported from South America each year by Coca-Cola and if any other regular citizen brought any of this into the states then chances are they would be arrested for drug trafficking.

9. Coca-Cola’s War on Water
I have read some wild stuff about this company but this one I just couldn’t believe.

Years back Coca-Cola launched what some people call a “War” against water called “Just say no to H2O”. What this basically consisted of was the Coca-Cola Company offered its various suppliers like restaurants and so on incentives to push their products on customers when they ordered the free tap water. People eventually found a link on the internet and started sharing it which soon caused the “War” to end.

10. Coca-Cola & Water Depletion in India
Finally, this one had to be the biggest surprise to me. It takes 2 liters of water to make just 1 liter of Coke. In 2004, farmers in India held protests because Coca-Cola bottling plants where basically bleeding the water wells dry. It got so bad that Coke had to start shipping in water to many off its plants in 3rd world countries.

Over 290 billion liters of water are used every year by Coca-Cola around the globe and shows no signs of slowing down. As people in 3rd world countries continue to die because of a lack of clean water, Coca-Cola’s pockets just keep getting bigger and bigger at the expensive of innocent people.

Tags:10 of the Craziest Facts About Coca-Cola You Probably Didn’t Know About

10 New Christmas Traditions for Empty-Nesters

Your kids are now grown and have moved out on their own. Perhaps they are off trekking around the world with college friends during the Christmas holidays. Maybe they have been invited to spend the holidays with their new spouse’s family on the other side of the country. Or perhaps you have shared custody of your children and this is not your year to have them.

You are not quite sure how to celebrate Christmas without the hustle and bustle of making Christmas special for your kids. You may be having a difficult time mustering up the joyfulness of the season. You are not even sure if you feel much like decorating, let alone celebrating. tells us that you may be experiencing what is known as the “empty nest syndrome”-the general sense of loneliness, sadness or grief you feel when your children have left home or are not in need of your day-to-day care. The worst thing you can do if you are facing this life change is to allow yourself to fall into a pit of depression.

As an “empty nester” you now have an opportunity to explore other ways to celebrate the Christmas holidays. Think of things which might not have been practical when you had your children around. Or plan events with friends who are in the same situation as you are. Perhaps you can surround yourself with others who need for you to bring them some joy.

You are now free to start some new traditions, rekindling old friendships and making new ones. Use this time to find the joy, love, and spirit of the season within yourself, and spread that message to others. You will find a new sense of extended family, which will ensure that you never feel alone.

New Tradition #1: Volunteer to play Santa or Mrs. Claus. Go to your local Children’s Hospital and dress up as the jolly elf or his sidekick, and visit the kids who are unable to go home for the holidays. Bring crayons and coloring books or stuffed animals as gifts. You can often get stores to donate some of these things, or stock up during sale times. Stuffed animals in nearly new or pristine condition can often be found at thrift stores, or perhaps you can arrange a toy drive for this purpose.

New Tradition #2: Make and deliver holiday food baskets. Organize a food drive with your friends to make and deliver food baskets to those who might have been laid off this year. If you do not know families in need, contact your church or other local organizations that run this type of program and offer your services.

New Tradition #3: Invite a military member to dinner. If you are close to a military installation, contact the public affairs office or family service center to find out about those single or displaced service members who are not going to be able to go home for the holidays. Have several over to your home for a home-cooked holiday meal. What a wonderful way to show our men and women in uniform that you care!

New Tradition #4: Go caroling. Get a group of friends together and get dressed up in your hats, coats, gloves and scarves. Print up the words to several of your favorite religious and secular holiday songs. Go out caroling in your neighborhoods, or at nursing homes. It doesn’t matter if you cannot sing! People will appreciate your spirit and sing along with you!

New Tradition #5: Host a Christmas movie marathon. Invite your other empty-nester friends over for a day of holiday movies. Have everybody bring a DVD of their favorite holiday movie, old or new. Make sure you have plenty of popcorn, hot chocolate and cider and enjoy this new tradition!

New Tradition #6: Plan a cookie exchange. Invite 11 friends. Instruct each to make 12 dozen of a favorite cookie, packaging one dozen in each package along with the recipe. Each person will go home with 12 dozen cookies, and 11 new recipes!

New Tradition #7: Go to the symphony or the ballet. Your kids probably did not appreciate orchestral music or the Nutcracker as much as you do. Get dressed up in all your finery. Enjoy yourself without having to tolerate their displeasure!

New Tradition #8: Plan a ski trip. Find other empty-nesters and find a lovely chalet in the mountains to spend a few days. For those who don’t ski, enjoy the time in front of the fireplace with the company of good friends.

New Tradition #9: Vacation abroad. Getting to see how Christmas is celebrated in other countries can be a wonderful treat. You could experience a “panto” in a Scottish theatre in Perth, or learn the tradition of the “Julbok” in Gävle, Sweden. Consider staying in a youth hostel instead of hotels; you will be surrounded by college-aged kids from around the world who are on holiday and will be fascinated by you and your experiences.

New Tradition #10: Host an open house/potluck. Instead of slaving away in the kitchen, get a group of friends together for a potluck dinner. Keep it simple so you enjoy the company of your friends.


Tags:10 New Christmas Traditions for Empty-Nesters

10 Commandments of Money Making Blogs

If you’re trying to make money with your blog or website, it’s a good idea to keep many things in mind to maximize your earnings. These concepts include having your blog hosted, using search engine optimization, choosing the best blogging platform and more.

Here’s a look at 10 commandments to live by in the money making blog field.

10 Commandments of Money Maker Blogs 1) Thou shall have your own blog/site hosted. If you want to get serious with your blog or website to make money, make sure you have a great domain name and have it hosted on your own website. Blogger, WordPress and other sites have great free platforms, but they will never provide you the true flexibility you need on their basic free versions.

2) Thou shall use WordPress. Use WordPress rather than Blogger for your blogging software (it’s the way to go if you have your own hosting). Blogger is great for a free start up, but WordPress offers you a ton more flexibility once you’re on your own site. It basically helps you create and mold your site, and has some great plug-ins as well. WordPress is currently at Version 2.3 as of this post. WordPress can be downloaded here.

3) Thou shall not deprive readers of ways to keep updated. Make sure you give your readers a way to subscribe to your blog, both by email and RSS feed reader links. Use and its many features to do so.

4) Thou shall accept comments on your blog. These provide you a way to see reader’s thoughts on your topics, collect feedback and even use it for future material to blog on. Responding back to the comments lets your readers have a sense of connection and feel as if they are part of a community environment. Consider a reader a customer, so comments are their ultimate tribute to your work.

5) Thou shall comment in other areas wisely. There’s a good way to promote and an evil way. Examples of bad ways of commenting include blatant spam, not even referring to the post topic you comment on, or just plain poor grammar and spelling. Act in good faith and judgement when commenting forums or other blogs. The “hey cool blog, check out my link” won’t cut it and won’t make any friends in the blogosphere.

6) Thou shall explore and use the benefits of social media. Myspace, Facebook, Orkut, Gather, Squidoo, etc etc. These sites can all provide you with free internet real estate to promote on and help you connect and network with an audience for your topic. Additionally, they can provide you a pulse of what’s hot within your niche.

7) Thou shall measure your site’s success. Have a way to measure your sites visits/traffic. Google Analytics is recommended. It will tell you traffic levels, locations of visitors (on a nice map), search engine terms that brought people to your blog and more.

8) Thou shall network with other bloggers in your niche topic. This can only help you grow your blog’s success as other bloggers may possibly show you link love or refer to a post you made. Challenge a fellow sports blogger to a NFL sunday football prediction showdown. Then each blogger blogs about the picks. Offer to be a guest blogger or ask for a blogger to guest on yours. There’s many possibilities here to befriend and work with “your competition”.

9) Thou shall learn and harness SEO. A very important commandment, you must strive to make your blog as search engine friendly and popular as possible. Learn the techniques of Search Engine Optimization. Otherwise do not expect search engine traffic or much money to be made. makes for a good resource with tools and articles to help you with SEO.

10) Thou shall constantly strive to improve your efforts. Reinvest money made into your blog/site. Constantly tweak design aspects and research ways to promote. Look into new ways to promote, learn new tools you can use to increase productivity. Doing these things will work to make your blog a better business.

Remember that if you are trying to make money with your blog, that makes it like your full or part-time business. To grow that business takes dedication and hard work. Feel free to use the 10 commandments above as your guide for building a better blog as your business. Commandments #9 and #10 are especially important to always practice, as they will provide you with constant improvement and help you to make your blog the best moneymaker it can be.

Tags:10 Commandments of Money Making Blogs

10 Common People that Were Used by God in the Bible

One of the common themes throughout the Bible is that God uses common people to do his work. To do God’s work you don’t have to be famous, you don’t have to be rich, you don’t have to be good looking. None of the things that are considered important in the world are necessary to do God’s work. Some of God’s greatest workers have been regular people. Here are a few examples.

Common Person That God Used: Joseph

In the Bible Joseph becomes the Pharaoh’s right hand man. Joseph can interpret dreams and he saves Egypt from a famine. Before that Joseph was two things that weren’t all that great. Joseph started his life in Egypt as a slave and later he was a prisoner in jail too.

Common Person that God Used: Moses

If you were a shepherd an your daily work consisted of leading a bunch of sheep around you’d probably be shocked if God not only talked to directly and revealed himself to you but also told you that you were going to lead his people to the promised land.

Common Person that God Used: Gideon

God used Gideon to deliver Israel from Midian but before that Gideon was nothing more than a farmer.

Common Person that God Used: Jephthah

Jephthah is used by God to deliver Israel from the Ammonites. Before that Jephthah was only known as being the son of a prostitute.

Common Person that God Used: David

Like Moses, David was also a shepherd but David also just a boy. David was just a boy when he defeated Goliath and he would eventually be king.

Common People that God Used: Esther

Like Joseph, Esther was a slave before God used her to save her people from being massacred.

Common People that God Used: Mary

Who did God choose to be the mother of Jesus? A famous actress? A celebrity? A great athlete? A famous politician? No, the mother of Jesus was a peasant girl.

Common People that God Used: Matthew

Matthew was one of the 12 disciples and wrote one of the Gospels that told about the life of Jesus. But before Jesus asked Matthew to join him he was just a tax collector.

Common People that God Used: Luke

Luke traveled with Paul giving him a companion to journey with and Luke would also write one of the four Gospels. But Luke was nothing more than a physician.

Common People that God used: Peter

Many of the disciples were just common fisherman and would go on to do God’s work. Peter is the best example as he would be an apostle, a leader of the early church and he would write two letters in the Bible.

Tags:10 Common People that Were Used by God in the Bible

10 Common Facts You Should Know About Bipolar Disorder

Bipolar disorder, also known as manic depression, is a psychiatric diagnosis given to those who have a mental health condition that, in part, is characterized by severe swings in mood from hypomania to severe depression, and all stages in between the two.

Characteristics that are common to bipolar disorder are also common to other illnesses and may be stand-alone conditions. Some of these are: being easily distracted, being restless, impulsive behavior, changes in eating and sleeping habits, or suicide attempts. This can lead to misdiagnosis or failure to diagnose.

While treatable with therapy or medications, bipolar disorder usually lasts for a lifetime. Half of all cases manifest before the age of 25.

There are four types of bipolar disorder: bipolar I disorder, bipolar II disorder, bipolar disorder not otherwise specified and cyclothymia. The types differ in the length and severity of the manic and depressive episodes.

Other illnesses often coexist with bipolar disorder. Among these are substance abuse involving drugs or alcohol, anxiety disorders like post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), social phobia, and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

People with bipolar disorder are also at higher risks for certain medical conditions. They may be causes of the symptoms of mania or depression or be the result of treatment for bipolar disorder. These are a higher risk for thyroid disease, migraine headaches, heart disease, diabetes, obesity and other physical illnesses.

Causes of bipolar disorder vary among individuals, but it tends to run in families, so genetics is one of those causes. Research is also showing an environmental element to the development of the disorder. Life events and interpersonal relationships contribute to the likelihood of onsets and recurrences of the moods related to the disorder.

Proper diagnosis should be made by a medical or psychiatric professional who is experienced in diagnosing and treating the illness. Thorough tests and history of the patient and their family must be taken into account, as well as talking with spouses and close relatives to gain accurate knowledge of the person’s symptoms.

Bipolar disorder can be treated, but not cured. Treatment can give better control over symptoms and reduce their severity.


National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) Website

Wikipedia Article on Bipolar Disorder

HealthyMinds.Org, Website of the American Psychiatric Association

Tags:10 Common Facts You Should Know About Bipolar Disorder

10 Common Puppy Training Mistakes and How to Avoid Them

We all want our dog to be obedient, to listen to us in all situations, but quite frequently, that just doesn’t happen. Why?

1. We make our biggest mistake by not being consistent about training. Training a dog, or puppy, takes a level of commitment that we fail to realize is on-going, all day, every day. We don’t understand that for the dog to learn, we must set the rule and then enforce it. Everytime. It does no good to set the rule that the dog is not allowed to lay on the couch and then allow it to lay on the couch sometimes simply because we don’t feel like enforcing the rule or we think the dog will see it as a one time treat. If you let it lay there once, the dog will see it as no longer being a rule.

2. We fail to understand that a dog is a pack animal. In the dog’s world, there is one, and only one, leader. It can be you, or it can be your dog. Its your choice.

3. We think that dogs think like people. Going back to the couch example…. We let it on the couch “just this once”, thinking that the dog will understand that this is a special treat, not to be repeated. But what the dog sees is that you are an ineffective leader who does not enforce the rules and, thus, you have given the dog permission to disregard this rule when it wants to because it is, in fact, no longer a rule.

4. We don’t know that the amount of patience required during puppy training is such that would test even the most mellow of us. Puppies have small bladders and short attention spans. We must have the patience to repeat, repeat, repeat the training. And then repeat it again!

5. We assume that because we own the dog, it will automatically know that it has to do what we want. That will never happen. If we don’t teach it, the dog won’t know it.

6. We don’t understand that if a puppy or dog turns its nose up at a certain kind of food, we should not keep trying different foods until we find one it will eat. All that does is make the dog picky (and cost us a fortune in dog food). No dog will let itself starve. It will eat the food when it gets hungry whether it likes it or not.

7. We feed our puppy people food. Not only is this very unhealthy for the dog, it sets us up for bad behavior from the dog. Dogs learn the sound of a bag opening or a dish rattling very quickly. To them it will mean “food coming up” and they will rush to beg for it. This can become extremely annoying when your dog is constantly pestering you for your food, stealing it off the counter and being a nuisance around the table when you have company for dinner.

8. We don’t take into consideration that what we consider “cute” behavior in a puppy will not be appropriate behavior in an adult dog and that it should be stopped in the puppy stage. We think it is so adorable that our puppy jumps all over any incoming guest. But it is no longer cute when it is an adult dog and you don’t want it to jump all over everyone. And it is especially not cute when the other person doesn’t want it jumping all over them!

9. We don’t understand how dogs greet other dogs and the possible outcomes of these greetings. It is up to us to learn what can happen and take training steps to prevent undesired results.

10. We think that everyone will like our dog as much as we do and we think that our dog will like everyone we want it to like. Neither of these is true. Just because you think your dog is wonderful, others might not think it… especially if you are an ineffective leader who has no control over your dog. As for your dog liking everyone you want it to like, remember that dogs can tell a lot about a person on the first meeting and if your dog obviously shows that it doesn’t like someone, you might be wise to wonder why.

Tags:10 Common Puppy Training Mistakes and How to Avoid Them

10 Commandments to Be a Better Techie This 2009

Whiz, dweeb, geek, techie, and nerd: these are just some of the charming phraseology used by the media to portray those of us with an animated, if not addictive, fascination in all things related to l.T. But can we actually move beyond this social stamp and be a better techie this year? Here are some tips on how you could get on top this year.

Be curious, be very curious.

Show some initiative and take advantage of any and every chance to learn. Embrace something new or different. Expanding your creative horizons could actually make a phenomenal year and a grave economic atmosphere a little more enjoyable.

Keep on updating your skills.

This may be an old-age advice, but it doesn’t alter the fact that you might be showing off LT. skills that were popular a decade ago. So this year, resolve to update yourself with the latest technology news and subscribe to credible techie newsletters and magazines.

Effectively write your resume.

Recently, tech resumes are piling up. For job hunters out there, it’s vital to construct a strong résumé that will positively stand out from the piles. May it be on an interactive CD or incorporated in a portfolio, your resume should highlight your skills and experience, and what you can do for the company. Your future employer should have the impression that you could be one fine asset.

Don’t hoard all the first-rate technical tasks.

If you’re currently employed and you’re in charge of a certain project, ensure that all of your group mates get the opportunity to dabble on the important technical tasks. Knowing how to stage teammates and keep them on track will definitely boost up your reputation and credentials.

Write if you must.

In connection with the earlier entry, we can’t emphasize further how techies are blessed to be able to know and experience almost all technology has to offer. Some have realized this and have become tech messengers, especially on the web, to help other enthusiasts in buying gadgets, troubleshooting and so on. When you feel like sharing your knowledge, enhancing your writing skills will help you not only in sending your message across, but also in attracting a following on the web.

Learn to communicate in a simple way.

If you chat amongst your group, you wouldn’t mind speaking with all those jargons. But we know that the world doesn’t have techies as its only residents, and there’s a lot of the average kind. So if you want to communicate with other people about the wonders of IT., try using layman terms. When you do need to discuss technical stuff, make sure to provide a definition while you introduce the term.

Dating Success.

The Internet has made dating easier in more ways than one. But as dating isn’t something one can learn from a book or a blog post, some prefer to discover its magic formula by trial and error. You can check out all the social networking sites for dating prospects, but think more than twice when planning to meet up in person. The web allows everyone to create different personas online, and you’ll never know their true intentions. May it be online or in real life, it always pays to be careful.

Take your PMP to the gym.

Having a lifestyle that entails being glued to the PC every single day could cost you your figure. So to avoid being totally of shape, get on that — and burn some fats. You can always bring your portable media player, iPod or otherwise. Also, try Traineo – a cool Web 2.0 fitness and health apps that helps you track your weight eating habits and exercise routines.

Steer away from techie stuffs from time to time.

If you’re already experiencing separation anxiety just within a few minutes of leaving your PC or not being online, maybe it’s time to change your routine. Shut down your PC occasionally and try to live a life through the world outside. A walk in the park with your young sibs, or a chat with friends over coffee, can do wonders to your mental health and heighten your creative energy when you return.

Be humble still We may never know it, but it’s possible that you can do things that can change the world’s gyration Still it’s best to knock off a bit of that pride and try to treat others as you wish to be treated. After all, nothing beats a down-to-earth person in building connections and getting approval from others.

Tags:10 Commandments to Be a Better Techie This 2009

10 Common Gardening Problems and Their Solutions

Some of the appeal of gardening lies in the control you can exert over the little universe you create. Because we are not, after all, divine, almost every gardener makes the same mistakes. Here are 10 of the most common.

1) Wrong plant in the wrong place. Almost every plant prefers sun or shade, heat or cold, moist or soggy soil, drying winds, or protection from wind. Some need morning sun and some need afternoon sun. Know your plant and what it needs. In the fall I have often seen a pretty little aster species growing on shaded east-facing slopes. I bought one and tried to grow it in the nurturing soil of my flat garden, and it died. Too much sun? Too much moisture?

Here’s another example. Pink Lady Slippers are wild orchids, and they grow in certain woods here in New England. However, they are likely to die in your garden. That’s because young plants needs a particular fungus to be present in the soil.

Solution: study up on your plants’ needs.

2) Corollary to Problem #1: Lady Slipper orchids are illegal to dig out of the wild almost everywhere in the United States they occur. Do so and you risk a fine. Check your state’s wildlife division for a list of species that are threatened, endangered or of special concern. Beware the plant police.

Solution: Know your rare species.

3) Wrong soil: Almost all plants have a soil preference: firm or loose; moist or dry, rich with humus or sandy, acid or alkaline.

When I moved to New England from the Midwest many years ago, I marveled at the miracle of mountain laurel and rhododendrons, which I had never seen before. They love the acid soil out here, and won’t grow naturally in the Midwest where the soil is sweet (alkaline). If you must have them, check your soil first and acidify if necessary. The question is: how much trouble do you want to take with your garden?

It seems to me that almost all soil has something wrong with it, at least for the things I wanted to grow when I first started gardening. It took years to turn what I think of as the non-soil substitute in my yard (glacial till) into a loam that supports garden plants. Bags of peat moss, fertilizer, lime, etc, etc. Today I only take trouble with the peonies and the tomatoes. Everything else needs to be happy in so-so soil.

Solution: If it isn’t happy, out it goes.

4) Too large a garden. A big garden can require almost all your spare time. Before you begin to start your Tasha Tudor fantasy garden by tilling up your entire back yard, decide how much time you want to spend maintaining it. My own garden crept down one side of my drive first, then the other side, and across the front of the house, before I realized I only wanted to work on it for a couple hours a week.

Solution: Daylilies, groundcovers and, best of all, mulch. Learn to love mulch.

5) Too small a space. You kept bringing home plants, didn’t you, one at a time, and crammed them all into your little garden square. Now they’re stealing each other’s sun, competing for water and breathing space, and you can’t even see that costly little treasure.

Solution: Learn self discipline.

6) You can’t throw anything out. In February, armed with your seed catalogues, you decide to start plants from seed. You order 10 seed packets, which, planted up, become 10 seed trays. You spend the late winter months rotating the trays from window to window to get enough light, and you cheer on the little sprouts when they germinate. Then in June, you make a terrible discovery: you only need a few of each plant and can’t bring yourself to throw away any of the seedlings. They are like your little children now. Do you try to squeeze everything into your little garden? (Problem #4) Or dig up more garden? (Problem #3) Or give them away? Believe me, life has too many real problems without developing this particular problem.

Solution: Compost them.

7) Invasive plants. Many gardeners have taken on a deceptively shy white anemone, one of the “spring ephemerals”, only to find it rampant in their garden by the next year. Watch out. Bee balm compensates for its easy bloom during the difficult mid-summer months by having monstrous spreading habits. My own mistake is something called aster tartaricus, which spreads faster than loosestrife.

Solution: Study up. If you find your invasive plant likes sandy soil, plant it in heavy soil.

8) Taking gardening too seriously. Your favorite peony blooms one June morning. You pause in awe to take in its perfection, but three hours later an unseasonable heat wave has shattered it and its petals are on the ground. You had waited for this peony all winter. The spring is RUINED for you. Ruined. Ruined. Ruined. This has happened to me three out of every four years. I used to rig little parasols over my peonies, but it didn’t do any good.

Solution: Get over it. I had to. So should you.

9) Beware of utility lines in the ground. Plants share space in the ground with all sorts of utility lines. In a forum on garden problems on, one gardener cut through a line for the home’s oil tank. There are electrical lines, gas lines, cable tv lines and telephone lines in the ground.

Solution: Dig safe. Dig gently. If your shovel hits something, it might not be a rock.

10) Poison ivy

Solution: Be careful. Use Round-up

Sources: A good general resource on all garden issues The Dept of Agriculture’s hardiness map

Tags:10 Common Gardening Problems and Their Solutions

10 Commonly Ignored Cancer Symptoms in Men

The following article summarizes ten symptoms of various forms of cancer that men tend to ignore. If you have any of the following symptoms, please consider seeing your doctor for a complete physical. This article does not constitute or replace medical advice.

1. Upset stomach or stomachache. This is one of the first signs of colon cancer. This can also be a sign of pancreatic and liver cancer, as well as leukemia. Feeling full after a small meal or chronic heartburn is a similar cancer sign. Persistent indigestion can be a sign of esophagus, throat, or stomach cancer. This can also be a sign of liver cancer.

2. Swollen lymph nodes. A lump or swelling in your lymph nodes, especially under your arm or in your neck, which gets progressively larger and lasts for over a month should be seen by a doctor. Swollen lymph nodes are a sign of a change in your lymphatic system, which can be a sign of cancer.

3. Weakness and fatigue. Fatigue happens early in certain cancers such as colon, stomach and leukemia. Fatigue can also come on once a cancer has begun to grow in your body. This can be a sign of many different kinds of cancer, so see your doctor if you have fatigue that doesn’t go away with a few good night’s rest.

4. Rectal bleeding or blood in your stool. This can be a sign of colon cancer. Constipation, diarrhea, and changes in your stools can all be signs of cancer if any of these symptoms goes on for more than a few days. Colon and pancreatic cancer are two types of cancer for which changes in bowel movements is a sign.

5. Difficulty urinating or changes in flow. If you are urinating more often and feeling as if you are not emptying your bladder, this can be a sign of cancer. All men develop urinary problems as they age, but you should not ignore this sign. The most common early sign of prostate cancer is feeling as if you have to urinate and then not being able to do so.

6. Pain or burning during urination, blood in your urine or semen. These are signs of prostate cancer. The blood may just look pinkish or brown, rather than red, so watch for these changes carefully.

7. Erection problems. This is a common sign of prostate cancer. Men might be embarrassed to discuss this with their doctor, but it should not be ignored as just sexual dysfunction.

8. Pain, aching, or heaviness in the groin, hips, thighs or abdomen. These are signs of prostate and testicular cancer. It can be a feeling of downward pulling, a generalized ache, swelling or just discomfort.

9. Testicular swelling or lumps. Testicular cancer is most common among men from the age of 20 to 39. Any change in the size of your testicles should be brought to your doctor’s attention. Early detection is crucial for testicular cancer. Most testicular cancer lumps are painless, although sometimes there is discomfort; sometimes the testicles are swollen but there is no lump.

10. Scaly or painful nipples or chest, nipple discharge. Also watch for changes in the breast area, such as skin dimpling, nipple retraction, or redness or scaling of the skin. All of these are signs of breast cancer. If the cancer is spreading inward it will result in chest pain. Breast cancer in men isn’t common but it does occur.

Source List:

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10 Creative Ways to Seal a Valentine

After you took the time to make or find the perfect Valentine, shouldn’t you find a creative way to seal the envelope? Print out some free Valentine’s Day envelopes first.

10 Creative Ways to Seal a Valentine

Melted Wax

Use the melted wax of a crayon or candle to make your own seal. Drip the wax onto the envelope to make a circle. Let it cool down slightly. Press an initial stamp into the wax. Or draw a heart using a paperclip or pencil tip. Because this seal involves fire, adults only, please!

Craft Leather Tie

Attach a button or a raised embellishment to one side of the envelope. On the other side, poke a hole and attach a piece of craft leather. Thread it though, tying a knot in the non-visible side. Use the length of the craft leather and wrap it around the button to secure the envelope.

Woven Ribbon

Make thin slits in the the outside flap of the envelope. Make similar slits in the part of the envelope where the glue seal is. The slits should not be in the same place, the top and bottom slits should alternate. Thread a silk, red ribbon through the slits, weaving the ribbon in and out of the slits. Tie a knot on the underside of the envelope flap and trim the excess.

Woven Paper

The kids version of the above creative way to seal a Valentine would be to weave a long strip of paper through the slits. Make sure the slits are long enough to accommodate the paper. Make fewer slits than you would for a ribbon, to make it easier for the child to weave the paper.

Sew a Button

Are you hand with a needle and thread? Do you have a pretty or unusual button in your stray button collection? Sew the button onto the envelope. Make a small slit in the envelope to button it closed. Or, sew the button on the flap and seal the envelope in the usual fashion. The button will be a decorative surprise.

Sew it Closed

Another creative way to seal a Valentine closed is to sew it shut with a needle and thread. Even a non-sewer can manage to thread a needle and press the needle through the paper, weaving in and out to seal the envelope shut. This method will work best with a homemade envelope which opens from the top or the side.

Sew a Good Yarn

Children and kids who are too young to use a needle and thread can use a piece of yarn to sew the Valentine shut. Use a hole punch to make the holes for them and they can thread the yarn through the holes.

I Love Shoe(laces)

Another kid version is to close the Valentine with a red or heart printed shoelace.

Lipstick Kiss

So simple, yet intriguing, nothing beats a Valentine sealed with a lip imprint. Put on your signature lipstick color, or pick a red or deep pink. Blot the lips. Try a couple of sample kisses on a piece of paper to find the best shape. Reapply the lipstick, blot, and seal the Valentine with your kiss.

Two Ribbons

Do not seal the envelope at all. Instead, wrap a red ribbon around the envelope, horizontally. Then tie another one in the other direction. Use two different colors of ribbon for variety, including red and pink, red and black, or red and white, for example.

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10 Critical Benefits You Receive by Using Cost Benefit Analysis

When dealing with decisions using Cost Benefit techniques it is very important to follow the proven principles. The health of your company and your reputation depend on it. If these rules are not followed then your decisions could be flawed.

Let’s start, shall we?

Benefit #1. You can compare competing projects quickly and accurately – saving you time and effort.

Cost Benefit Analysis weighs the total expected costs and compares them to the total expected benefits of one or more actions. The outcome of Cost Benefit Analysis is a Benefit Cost Ratio that is used to compare and rank competing investment options.

Once you apply these techniques you will quickly be able to compare and rank projects with confidence knowing that governments and large corporations use these proven principles.

Benefit #2. You can quickly determine whether a project may be VIABLE or UNVIABLE – quickly cutting out unviable options thereby saving you time and effort.

As mentioned above, Cost Benefit Analysis compares the costs and benefits of competing projects and produces a score (Benefit Cost Ratio) which if less than 1 shows that the project is UNVIABLE (all other things being equal).

This can quickly weed out the projects that will not make the cut, saving time and effort for you and others charged with considering these projects and making a final recommendation.

Benefit #3. You will be noticed and you will gain increased recognition if you use this technique correctly – more opportunities for you.

Since this powerful, proven technique can save discussion time, provide more accuracy and confidence, it will be seen as a real improvement. If you champion its introduction you will be noticed and gain recognition.

Benefit #4. You will be able to more confidently join or lead asset expenditure review discussions – more recognition and opportunities for you.

Once you learn and apply this method you can join in discussions at higher levels and feel confident that your skills can add value to the deliberations. Your input will be recognised and appreciated.

Benefit #5. Learning this very marketable technique will provide you with more options in your future.

There are many ways you can apply these techniques.

You could train others in the skill – both to internal and also to external clients.

You could be the assessor of the methodology PRIOR to projects being reviewed by senior management. This will save them time and frustration if they know that someone knowledgeable has already OK’d the maths and reviewed the assumptions for reasonableness.

You may wish to apply for more senior roles in your current employment or try out in other companies.

Benefit #6. You can apply these skills across small to large projects – making you more versatile.

The Cost Benefit principles can be used for projects as small as a PC replacement to underground assets that form part of large multi-billion capital works programs.

Your Cost Benefit Analysis skills are just as useful at either end of the scale.

Benefit #7. You will become recognised as the authority on this subject – more options for you.

Once you learn the theory and can present your proposal with confidence you will be recognised as the authority on this subject. Others will come to you for assistance seeking guidance for their projects.

Benefit #8. You can be sure that your decisions can withstand external scrutiny – saving you worry and concern.

The principles underpinning Cost Benefit Analysis have been in use since the 1960s by both government and big business. As long as you learn these principles from a recognised source, and apply them correctly, you can be confident that your analysis can withstand internal and external scrutiny.

Benefit #9. This methodology is scalable across small to large businesses.

Successful implementation across the business can only add to your marketable skill set meaning more opportunities for you. This skill could lead to consulting work for external clients – be they large or small – or starting your own Cost Benefit consulting business.

Benefit #10. Once this methodology is implemented it can significantly reduce the time taken to decide on competing projects -saving you time and frustration.

If this method is implemented for all investment proposals across the company then the comparison and choice amongst competing proposals is simplified. All other things being equal the project with the highest Benefit Cost Ratio should be the first to be authorised. The value of the business will increase the most by implementing the project with the highest Benefit Cost Ratio.

Bruce Hokin is an experienced accountant (FCPA). His main interests are in better decision-making and Cost Benefit Analysis training. You can find more of his in-depth FREE articles, a FREE Newsletter and FREE e-zines at his website. To sign up for his comprehensive, downloadable Cost Benefit Analysis training program “5 Steps to Cost Benefit Mastery” just go to his website. You could be using this technique in under 2 hours! Available at

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10 Dangers and Health Risks of Being Underweight or Skinny

With skinny and lean people appearing over many magazine spreads and commercials, some feel it’s unfair that others inherited certain genetics. With the newly discovered “skinny gene,” also known as IRS1, studies are showing that people genetically predisposed to be skinny or sometimes underweight are actually at a higher risk for certain diseases and conditions.

Even people who don’t have the “skinny gene,” but are simply skinny or slightly underweight, face certain risks and disadvantages. In recent studies, people with a body mass index or BMI fewer than 18.5 were within a higher-risk group.

Miscarriages and Pregnancy Problems: A study of 603 women found that when they had a low BMI, there were at a 72% greater risk of having a miscarriage during the first trimester. Another study in Sweden found studied 943,000 women. They found that skinny or underweight women were at a greater risk for unrelenting nausea during pregnancy. The researchers are not exactly sure why, but merely see the link.

Male Fertility Issues: Danish researchers have found that there is a relation between a man’s body weight and his sperm quality and count. They found that if a man is underweight, his sperm count is 33% lower than those who are not.

Lung Problems: As women age, skinnier women are more apt to experiencing pneumonia, bronchitis and asthma. Researchers also say that skinny women have difficulty with “growth-factor” hormones. It makes it difficult to sustain the health of the tissues within their lungs.

Accidents: The American Journal of Public Health showed a study done by the Wisconsin Medical College. They studied 22,000 people, and found that underweight men had a higher risk of dying in car accidents, in comparison to those of average weight or above.

Brittle Bones: Researchers found that thinner women have bones that are less dense. A study of 3,383 showed that as skinny women age, they are more likely to suffer from broken hips.

Arthritis: The Mayo Clinic did a study, and found that thin or slightly underweight people have a more difficult time dealing with arthritis. When arthritis occurs, it triples the chances of it causing further inflammation throughout the body.

Heart Disease: A study examined the genetics of 75,000 people. They found that people with IRS1, the skinny gene, are more likely to have high levels of fats in their blood. This increases the chances of heart disease. Researchers warn, “Fat stored internally is worse for you than fat stored under the skin.”

Diabetes: Individuals with IRS1 are not only in a high-risk group for heart disease, but their chances of getting type 2 diabetes increases by 20%. Researchers say that underweight men are most susceptible to this.

Breast Cancer: The Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, Sweden studied data on 6000 women. They found that when the Swedish women were heavier at a younger age, they were less likely to have breast cancer tumors when they become menopausal. However, being overweight later in life increases the risk of breast cancer and of dying from it.

Depression: A study in Sweden found that skinny or underweight men are more likely to commit suicide. Those that are underweight are at a 12% higher risk. Those that are overweight experience a 12% decline in risk for suicide.

The researchers speculate that underweight men might not have enough serotonin produced in their brains.


Underweight Dangers and Health Risks:Disadvantages

Underweight Dangers and Health Risks: IRS1 Skinny Gene

Underweight Dangers and Health Risks: Breast Cancer

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10 Deadly Mistakes to Make that Will Positively Destroy Your Business

Deadly Mistake #2: Not having the right Business Model for your business… IF you have one at all.

“A business what?” I asked. All ready emotionally overcooked and confused, my mind spun and fogged even more when Monica, the marketing coach I had won a 2-hour session from mentioned something about “flexible business models”. And they can be flexible too? This was too much. Not being a business major in college (it was too inundated), I had no idea what she was talking about. Thus began my journey into the amazing world of the conscious business owner (even though I had been there twice before and had screwed up both times. One word, two syllables: Clue-less. Say it with a tune, it sounds better).

Why does one need a business model you ask? Because without one, you have absolutely no idea how to market your business let alone figure out whom you’re marketing to. For conscious business owners, the business models of the mainstream market don’t work so well because they tend to be too rigid – which is a big reason why many conscious business owners tend to avoid them. Not to mention they just seem impossible to figure out. However on the flip side, starting a business without a business model is like trying to build a house without a foundation or building your foundation on marshland instead of solid granite. Which house would you rather live in? Not sure? You’ll figure it out right about the time the water gets to your knees…

So let’s look at an example: Me (I warned you in Deadly Mistake #1 about this…). As a budding Life Awareness Coach, I had just recently signed up for 6 months of Business Marketing mentoring with a woman who has been in direct marketing and conscious business growth for about 25 years. The information and energy she gave during a 3-day weekend has been life changing, absolutely priceless and I continue to expand as a result of it. However, when she sent the mentoring packet to be filled out, my head once again reeled while reading the questions. No wonder I had avoided answering them during the 3-day weekend. I hope Debbie isn’t reading this.

The part we had to fill out stumped me for several days because she asked questions I had not really, really considered before such as: “How much time do you want to spend working in your business versus on your business? “Huh? “Determine what kind of lifestyle you want to create?” “Lifestyle I want to create?” I thought weakly to myself. “If something were to happen to you, who would take over your business?” That was it. I quietly closed the file and turned my computer off. My brain had reached its maximum capacity for comprehension and absorption on the subject, crashed and burned somewhere in the middle of the learning curve and without further ado, had shut down. I reached for my knitting and a cup of tea.

Eventually, I would read over and over again these same questions in other business books and have discussions about them with my conscious marketing coach friend, Monica. In between discussions and readings it occurred to me that not many people give any thought to those kinds of questions, waiting instead until disaster strikes before they realize (if they ever do) that somewhere along the way a huge chunk of the business equation got left out. I eventually came to understand the importance of having a business model, why you want to keep it flexible for personal and business change and growth and why it is so very necessary to dare to dream and envision the kind of life you truly desire because without it your business does not have the energy or lifeforce to survive. Your business is not separate from you; it is an extension of you.

So if you’re a budding business owner or even if you’re one who’s been around for a while, grab a piece of paper, look back at those 3 questions and ponder their implications. And if you find yourself reaching for your knitting and a cup of tea, you know you’ve got some thinking to do.

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10 Complete Untrue "Facts" About Vampires

You know, I am getting really sick of people watching a handful of movies, skimming a few books, ogling interviews and thinking that they are experts on vampires. And hey, before you say, “it’s spelled vampyre” don’t waste the keystrokes lecturing me. I have enough stuff to worry about without trying to act fancy and impress mortals. I’ll leave that for Anne Rice and the Twilight people.

(1) The Swollen Sun One of the biggest fallacies about vampires is that they can’t be exposed to daylight. Come on now, after thousands of years do you really honestly think that we couldn’t overcome something like that? If we can deal with death, reanimation and occasionally losing a body part then sunlight really isn’t that big a deal. OK, there are limits in regards to exposure but nothing a SPF 50 can’t handle.

(2) Garlic I have no idea what lunatic started that. I have to chalk it up to a really old urban legend of some sort. Why not rosemary or parsley? To date no one has been able to tell me exactly what mystical, magical property garlic has. I eat it all the time and well, I am still here. I may need to pop a breath mint or two but other than that, it has no adverse effect on me.

(3) Vampires Make Awesome Lovers Oh, see, just because you died, came back to life and are pretty much immortal doesn’t mean that you are suddenly graced with sexual prowess that will devastate all. Suffice it to say, if you sucked in the sack before you crossed over, death won’t help your sexual capabilities.

(4) Mind Reading If vampires had the complete ability to read minds do you really think they would toy with humans? Yes, there are some that can trace thoughts and images but if a vampire (or anyone) had the capability to read someone else’s thoughts they would be working for some secret sect of the government. And please, don’t throw David Blaine or Criss Angel into the mix. They are cheesy magicians with parlor tricks.

(5) Bloodlust Another completely erroneous, misleading notion. Stop and think about it. The body craves and needs nourishment; just because you are dead doesn’t mean you stop eating although I do admit that I love my burgers and steaks bloody rare. The romantic imagery of vampires locked in a tight embrace and feeding off of each other is just that, a contrived notion to make money from mortals that seek to walk on the wild side.

(6) Vampire Clan I know what you are thinking, no, it has nothing to do with the KKK – completely different clan. Contrary to popular belief there are more than a few different types of vampires. Some are minions that serve elders, others are the newly dead that fumble around thinking they are going to burst into flames if they go outside during the day. That is where your clan comes into play. They aren’t like a family but it is their responsibility to teach you the ropes and ensure that you don’t end up on a slab in the morgue only to wake up and scare the holy hell out of everyone when they try to take your liver temperature and your eyes fly open. There isn’t much loyalty in a clan; as soon as you know the basics you are on your own. Sorry, it’s nothing like “Interview With The Vampire”.

(7) Vampire Rage I once overheard someone say that vampires can rage like weight lifters and body builders that are on steroids. My motto is the same for both groups (the muscle bound and the blood bound) .. if you were a dick before, you will be a dick after. The guy at the gym that drops the weights and picks fights with everyone might be on steroids but you know, there’s a really good chance that he was a total douche bag before he had his first injection. Same thing with vampires; if you were dick-like before the bite, death won’t do much to improve your overall attitude on things.

(8) Transformation While it can be done, it is a physically and mentally taxing occurrence. Morphing into an animal or shapeshifting of any type requires an inherent skill, its not something that you learn from a book. Either you have the talent or you don’t, there is no in between. Role playing games have emulated shapeshifting; there’s nothing pretty about watching someone go from human form to that of an animal. Enough said?

(9) The Vlad ConnectionVlad The Impaler is regarded as the original vampire. While he did have some connections in that department, he wasn’t the first. Vampires have existed since the dawn of time albeit in many different forms. We don’t go around throwing people on pikes, it makes the neighbors nervous.

(10) Coffins Imagine meeting someone, feeling a connection and upon arriving at your domicile they ask, “So, where’s your coffin?” It’s a total mood killer. Coffins are a pain in the ass to get in and out of, even if you have them on the floor, they are still cramped, confining and really restrict your movement if you are one of those toss-and-turn people. Only the newly reanimated sleep in coffins and that’s because they think they have to.

For those that still have some romantic notions about vampires and want to see what their name would be if they were born into blood, you can find your moniker here:

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