On #FF, Good Guys Finish Roughly 47th

Alas, another slow writing week. I did find a minute to get Turn Around Tuesday out the door. I also stopped by my friend’s place. Glad Doggett indulged my need to rage against the witch for a spell. My traipsing around the interwebs was also stunted by my fascination with google+ and a MOUND of work. But I am not complaining about either. Google+ is turning out to be super slick and I am always thankful for my job.

The kids go back to school soon. It has become pretty evident that I have got to get a handle on my schedule or the whole thing is going to spontaneously combust all over my calendar and minivan.

In times like these, it is great to know that regardless of life’s ebbs and flows, there are still an abundance of

Simply. Nice. People.

And, to show you how truly awesome today’s #FF is – they aren’t just nice – but they are crazy smart too 🙂

@CWaterhouse – Calie blows the whole notion of Internet Interactions being impersonal and fake. After vaguely circling each other online and meeting briefly at ReTech South in 2010, Calie and I have managed to maintain a fantastic friendship. A big brain and a bigger heart, Calie is one cool chicha.

@mikelyon – New construction is a slightly different animal than the traditional real estate business I formerly practiced. I had the pleasure of meeting Mike while fire hydrant drinking at my first International Builders Show earlier this year. Since then, Mike has never failed to be a wealth of information. He pointed me down the path to great video emails which improved my ability to communicate with customers tremendously. His twitter feed is always full of neat new shiny – my favorite to date being The Email Game. Regardless of your industry, this follow is a good one.

@donnacutting – We share the same birthday. After that, seriously, what else is there? Well, in the case of Donna – TONS! This customer service diva blends witty, insightful and plain common sense into a jam up package. Author of The Celebrity Experience: Insider Secrets to Delivering Red-Carpet Customer Service, Donna’s twitterings inspire and motivate.

@ChrisCree – I would bore you to tears if I sat here and told you all the eleventy BILLION ways this guy has made me smarter. In any location, Chris would be considered cutting edge. But in our little corner of the country, Chris was light years ahead of most in the Social Media arena. The only place Chris knows to come from is contribution. One of the most stellar individuals I know.

@travisro – Another ReTech South win. I became aware of Travis during the Twitter interactions leading up to the 2011 conference. As a main stage presenter at the conference, his fresh approach and smart delivery interested me. When I met his wife, Lisa, and realized he could also snag the attention of the smart and beautiful woman, I was a fan!  Travis and Lisa were one of my favorite meets of ReTech 2011. Fresh, fun and encouraging – winning combination.

@mb168 – This guy is good for…well…whatever. If you are a coastal Georgia local, Marc is a must follow. This is also true if you are a techie, chef or Disney enthusiast. Never at a loss for great twittersation, Marc has been a great resource for tech wonderings and general funnies.

And while I appreciate the pros and cons of Klout – I thought it was fun to note that these guys have an average score of 47. Without nauseating over indulgent spammy content, these super nice, awesome examples of twitterificness still tag in the numbers. That is as it should be…Simply. Nice. People. FTW 🙂

 

Twitter + RSS = Awesome #FF

It has been a crazy week. In fact, I just noticed that outside of Turn Around Tuesday, this Follow Friday article is the only thing I have written. I was really shook when I realized I didn’t have any new, meaningful interactions on the interwebs – mostly because I haven’t been there.

But, I have been keeping up with my RSS feed (mostly – three days back is acceptable, I think). So for this #FF, I offer you

Tweeters Who Rock Awesome Blogs

And please, before we go any further…Yes, it finally donned on me to screenshot versus taking the picture with my phone. Yes, I should have thought of sooner. Yes, I feel rather sheepish about it. But alas, you didn’t mention it either.

@TheBloggess – This beautiful slice of funny was discovered on a day I just needed a laugh. Glad Doggett, my personal joyologist, was there in a jiffy – with a Big. Metal. Chicken. Yes a big metal chicken. I can’t remember the last time I laughed that hard but I have laughed like that again since. Who writes this kind of stuff for an anniversary?

I’m pretty sure Victor and I just had a fight that he wasn’t even awake for. Which is a little disrespectful, in my opinion.   But fine. I forgive you, Victor. Because your bizarre (probable) feelings about octopuses and anuses are worth my patience and understanding. I love you even when you’re being ridiculous and purposely contrary.  Please try harder tomorrow when you’re awake.

@billdawers – A Savannahian must. Bill is a super smart guy with a wealth of Savannah insight. He does an amazing job aggregating some really great information and putting it into a usable, applicable and interesting  format. Interestingly enough, I don’t know Bill “IRL” which is odd…but his RSS is jam up!

@DinnerLoveStory – Encouraging families everywhere to bring dinner back to the table – at least most of the time. Jennifer and Andy accomplish the best balance of “hey, you know this is a good idea” with “yeah, it’s work – we will help make it easier and not beat you over the head with your shortcoming.” Beautiful. Awesome dinner ideas and fun ways to get the family involved in the joys of great food.

You can assume I know how busy you are and how many other things are ahead of “thaw chicken for dinner” on today’s to-do list. I will never fault you for firing up a frozen pizza when you can’t bear to turn on the stove. I will never judge you for not coughing up the extra bucks for the organic broccoli. And I will never promise you that family dinner is something that can be figured out in five easy steps!

Caffeinated OC Mommy – Sing with me! One of these things is not like the other…one of these things just isn’t the same. Yeah, as far as I know, this SoCo maternal does not have a twitter account. I don’t care – she is the STUFF! Her well thought out advice for Mommies in the summer was PRICELESS! I so want to have coffee with her…but her identity is fairly elusive…

@adaddyblog – Since I had a mommy blog, I wanted to make sure the daddies got their equal time. Not entirely true. This guy had me at the Disney Princess thing. YES!! I am not alone!! This blogging poppa ain’t even afraid to talk about stretch marks. A great read, goodhearted look at the other side of parenting.

@agentgenius – One of the smartest group of real estate minded people on the web. They amaze me on a regular basis with their depth and breadth of information. Techno gadgetry, commercial real estate, housing trends, legislative issues, hot button topics, market ideas – you name it, they got it. Oh, and the head chica is a hottie 😉

Go fill your reader, tell ’em April sent ya, and feel free to add your favorites below 🙂

 

Happy Birthday to ME! Twitter #FF

Yeah, I know we are all supposed to come from a place of contribution and its about what you can give and the authentic social media community is about others before self and that interweb karma will love you. And I follow that – most days…but yesterday was my 35th birthday. So, today’s #FF IS ALL ABOUT ME!!!! (mmkkay – maybe a little about you too 😉

Social Media is always the coolest on your birthday. Cell phone dinging all day with cool little notes from all over the place. It is just awesome. This year, I recalled Todd Carpenter’s article on Facebook friends. We disagree (rather, we choose to handle our Facebook accounts differently). And I also recalled Jeff Turner explaining to a group of gun-shy, social media learners that it is not about technology, it is about behavior.

Those two ideas rattled around in my head and I decided that I would not blanket post on Facebook or mass tweet the “Thanks everybody for a great birthday.” If I were at a party, in a room, I wouldn’t stand quietly and let everyone walk by and wish me a happy birthday then grab a mic and thank them all at once. I would hug and shake hands and speak with everyone.

And if I am going to have large amounts of friends, then I must also agree to interact with large numbers of people. Otherwise, out of common courtesy and respect to others, I would have to defriend or unfollow those who I would not interact with.

So I answered everybody. It was a task, but I enjoyed it. All you great people deserved it. You took time out of your day to make mine special. I appreciated that and I want you to know it.

So, here is my “Happy Birthday to ME!!” #FF

 

@TypeItLoud – One of my favorite bloggers EVER. She has all the right stuff – awesome humor, super smart, lives close by, coolio family (and she thinks I am amazing). Always a great day when one of those folks you admire share in your day. Oh, and she introduced me to Jewish rap, which is cool, and not just anybody can do that!

@fairtaxmom – One of the smartest women I know. This busy mom took the time to video her cutie patootie singing little ole me Happy Birthday. I love those kids…they are as rotten as mine 🙂 In all honesty, this lady doesn’t tweet very much…she should. She is a wealth of ideas and information. I say we all follow her and goad into some more sharing. Come on Carrie, being greedy with that big brain is not very nice 😉

@respres – Married to one of my favorite people in the world. Alright, he is really cool too. And he can sing 🙂 it seems. With a Jack Nicholson type of cool, he sorts through and levels out those things that are over hyped, passed by, over played, under noticed and generally serves as one of my dowsing rods in these funky interwebs.

@donlogana – Honestly, didn’t even know this local news guy had a twitter account. His picture wouldn’t load and I tried to fix it. However, it seemed par for the course as he seems to live for the wacked out. Don wished me a happy birthday…I felt compelled to confess that I stalk his facebook page. Super funny guy and WTOC is fortunate to have him. His twitter feed is full of local news stuff, so a must follow for us Coastal Georgia folks. But every once in a while you get a beauty like this ~

Red Box needs a time limit. If you can’t pick your movie in 1 minute…a fist pops out and punches you in the face.

@thekencookPut me on a radio show, called me “one sharp peach”, and made the video that had me laughing all day. What else do you need? Ok….he is a super smart techie guy, over the top nice, can survive Atlanta, and put me on a radio show (yeah, I know I said it twice – it was just.that.cool.)

@PhilGerb – The Make it Great Guy picked up the phone and CALLED. How uber cool is that?!? Unfortunately I was super swamped at the job. Since that is how I pay for said cell phone that he called me on, I figured I had better get back to work so he could call me again next year 🙂 His twitter feed is full of the same encouraging, make it great stuff.

So there you go, Happy Birthday to me…back to focusing on you next Friday 🙂

New Twitter #FF (or) Why I dig the 120 (or) Proof Mike Mueller is Spying on Me

So, as of late I have been spending more and more time on Twitter and, as a consequence, less time on Facebook. It really isn’t that I love one more than the other. I am just finding more usable information on Twitter (read Twitter makes my brain grow).

Because of the wondrous nature of Hootsuite, I have succeeded in developing quite the organized feed manager. The result, better connections with folks I already like, great information from people I trust on topics I am interested in, and new connections with people I think I might like and trust that I may create a connection with but can deep six with no harm no foul if we decide we aren’t right for each other (it’s not you, it’s me, really).

It occurred to me last night that I needed to resume my #FF (Follow Friday) posts. I also knew that I wanted to introduce you to these folks in a way that 120 just doesn’t handle (yeah, I know 140 – but the RT MAN, THE RT!!) So, I decided that, in the manner of Stilettitastic, I would always create a bloggy post to accompany my #FF. I went to sleep feeling very accomplished with my new idea.

THEN, I find THIS in my fantastic Hootsuite Feed

Before you get all FollowFridayGiggly please read my rant. It applies equally to #FF http://goo.gl/r6NDh (please)

OOOOO….blasted full of constantly great ideas, Mike Mueller takes on Klout in an outstanding way and simultaneously upstaging my wonderfully brilliant idea. BAH – oh well, at least the company is good.

So here is my #FF Stilettitastic style

@startabuzz – This fab female CREATED the word “Stilettitastic” simply because I needed a word. She loves coffee, biscuits and following me. Her hobbies include jam up wordsmithing, taking over the world in a cape, and following me. What is there not to love?

@gladdoggett – If Twitter made cheerleader costumes, this chick would get a free one. An absolute BOTTOMLESS wealth of contribution, Glad lives up to her name everyday. And, she is solely responsible for one of my greatest joys – a 5 foot steel chicken named Beyonce (at least it wasn’t towels).

@JillianRowe – If I could live a parallel life, I would want one like this. She has no idea that I live vicariously through her on a regular basis and she is my constant reminder to have fun. Beautiful, talented, fearless, awesome in my twitter feed everyday.

@Inspired_D – Chica and I go way back. So far back that 6 or 7 years I could’ve written the sentence “I so appreciate this chica for learning me about MySpace blogging. We have been friends forever.” Yeah, I said MySpace. We rocked it. Twitter, we rock it too

@sgourley – I found this guy via TED Blog. I tweeted it, he followed me, I am stoked. Super smart cat, I read a bit of the website everyday to wrap my mind around the work of Quid. The use of data thrills me and my little mind strives to catch it. Also, he reminds my of my crush, Charlie.

@Ribeezie – This guy tried to smear me by suggesting on the interwebs that I am flaky enough to leave $5 coffee on the roof of my car and then drive off. He failed. Folks consider the source with that kind of thing. He is my friend and runs a rock solid project for blogging real estate agents – so, I gave him a pass. He also calls my husband “husband”…yeah, its weird, but its Ribeezie.

So there Mike Muller. Steal my thunder! The least you can do now is share and retweet 🙂

Imitation is NOT a Dirty Word (it isn’t even four letters)

This is the Day 11 Prompt of the #Trust30 challenge.

Day 1 Challenge | Fabian Kruse | Divine Idea

Imitation is Suicide. Insist on yourself; never imitate. – Ralph Waldo Emerson

Write down in which areas of your life you have to overcome these suicidal tendencies of imitation, and how you can transform them into a newborn you – one that doesn’t hide its uniqueness, but thrives on it. There is a “divine idea which each of us represents” – which is yours?

Ok. I am trying really hard to pull the positive intention out of today’s thought. With all due respect to Fabian, I am just over this whole idea. Sometimes hyperbole can be taken too far. This, in my opinion, is one of those times.

Suicidal tendencies…never imitate…really? Sounds a bit…much to me.

Understand, while I do not have the pleasure of knowing him, I can tell by Fabian’s work at The Friendly Anarchist that there are many things we would agree on, some we would not, and some that would just have to be sorted out due to semantics. I think this one may be semantics, but I cannot be sure. So, I will do my best to articulate my point of view.

First, the word “unique” is a can of worms all by itself. According to Merriam Webster, the history of the word “unique” has been a challenged one. It contains in its various meanings both the properties of being sole and without like to distinctively characteristic and unusual. The original definition was found to be “affected and useless.” The word did not come back into popular usage until the latter definition allowed for a greater appropriateness of use.

Therefore being “unique” does not require that you be “sole.” (I feel the urge to now draw a comparison with the word “soul,” but I will spare you the self-indulgence.) “Unique” is simply “distinctive.” And I can assure you, thankfully, there are other pots out there just as cracked as you or I.

Imitation, in and of itself, is not a terrible thing. It is how we teach our children, learn different abilities, get comfortable with new tasks – we imitate those before us. Even when we are breaking out of the box, we are employing tactics of box breaking that have been used before. Since we were a minute and a half old, we cease to ever be able to operate on a wholly blank slate. We are a product of those things we know to have gone before us. Whether we operate in support of or in rebellion against a previous example, we cannot deny the influence of that example.

Representing that divine idea in my authentic self does not require that I push off the positive influences and examples provided by others. I am appreciative of the model to follow, the lessons learned thereby avoiding mistakes already made for a host of new ones I will make myself.

So, I will continue imitating where I feel it is useful and appropriated without fear or guilt of others believing that I am suicidal or in some other way deficient on my own two feet. I am, in actuality, confident enough to appreciate the wealth of ability in both myself and you. Teach me a better way and I will imitate it – and buy you lunch for your ingenuity and willingness to share.

**Photo credit by  David M. Goehring

Yeah, We Got It – You Can Get Belligerent : #trust30 Challenge

This is the Day 10 Prompt of the #Trust30 challenge.

This is the second #trust30 post at MLWFY. You can find an explanation for Day 7 and the post for Day 8 over at My Beautiful Chaos. Day 9 was Tweeted.

Day 10 Challenge | Eric Handler | Your Personal Message

To believe your own thought, to believe that what is true for you in your private heart is true for all men, that is genius. – Ralph Waldo Emerson

What is burning deep inside of you? If you could spread your personal message RIGHT NOW to 1 million people, what would you say?

I understand that being a media junkie can have a negative effect on one’s personal outlook. Oh well – I will just have to remain vigilant. I am an information junkie. I am always on the lookout for a new story, a new view, a new blog, new method, whatever – well, at least new to me.

Living with immediate access to internet and a 24 hour news cycle, this is an easy monkey to feed. But the personal outlook assault is a very real danger. I am not going to name drop those who I feel to be the first offenders – you already know who they are. They never show up to promote anything. But man, they are always looking to tear something down – bashing, fighting, condescending, insulting, slandering, disrespecting, offending. Never mind that they do more to fuel separation, constrain ideas and stunt progress – they just continue to rip away. Nice – that works, we should keep doing that (sarcasm intentional).

I will be the first to admit that there are things that I don’t like I have no problem naming them – The sexualization of today’s children (namely girls) being on top of the list. Ask most people who know me if I can be a snarky smart…well you know…and they will laugh and say, “duh!” I am opinionated and passionate. I believe in a right and a wrong and understand that the gray has to be muddled through. I understand that injustices must be named in order to be righted.

I get it – you can be belligerent. But can you be benevolent?

It makes me nervous when I realize I am dealing with a person about whom I am not sure of the answer. I tend to disassociate when I realize the answer is “no.”

Now, I will name drop. The wrongs of the world are a fact of life. Wasting time and energy raging against their existence is futile – not to mention soul sucking. These folks know that things can be better. They have decided to spend time and energy doing that. The wrongs of the world stir the belligerent in their soul. The goodness of their hearts harnesses that energy into positive creation. And isn’t that the highest and best use of our energy – not to mention soul filling?

Mothers Fighting for Others – Yes, I will mention them as often as I can. This group of fighters saw the injustice. They chose to focus on creating an environment of love, support and empowerment.  Can we rage against the injustice that brought these children to this place? Sure. But what about these children? They need light now – and that’s what MFFO provides. A light, a love, a hope.

What I want for them is simple. I want them to feel loved. I want them to feel safe and secure. I want them to go to school and grow up to be great women. What I want for them is what their Mothers would have wanted. That is it. It’s that simple.

Creative Coast – Those who don’t know Savannah wouldn’t believe half of it if we told you. Like any family, we have our issues – we are working on that. Creative Coast has done amazing things in feeding the diversity and beauty of our beautiful city. The mission statement reads:

To nurture the members of the Savannah community engaged in creative or innovative endeavors and to cultivate an environment in which they can thrive.

Nurture, cultivate, thrive – seriously? How can that NOT be exponentially more effective that continually attempting to condescend and destroy?

Dinner: A Love Story – I love to cook. I have a big family, a big job and little unscheduled time. Some days, getting dinner on the table from something other than a bag or a box might as well be as challenging as milking the cow, churning the butter, killing the chicken and picking the vegetables. But I want to. Lots of us want to.

Meet Jenny Rosenstrach. This chick gets it

DALS is a website devoted (mostly) to helping parents figure out how to get family dinner on the table. You can assume I know how busy you are and how many other things are ahead of “thaw chicken for dinner” on today’s to-do list. I will never fault you for firing up a frozen pizza when you can’t bear to turn on the stove. I will never judge you for not coughing up the extra bucks for the organic broccoli. And I will never promise you that family dinner is something that can be figured out in five easy steps!

Yeah, she could belittle parents like me as parasites attempting to kill the children we secretly loathe. Curse us working moms who put career ahead of family. That would mostly certainly encourage me to listen to anything she has to say, right! Yeah, right after I daydreamed about punching her in neck, I would go find some other cooking momma to appreciate.

TED – Hands down, this group is the best example of building up instead of tearing down. Will TED call out wrongs? You bet they will. Do all the TED folks agree with each other? Nope. Do I agree with every TED idea? Haha – for certain not. But agreement is not necessary for meaningful discussion of ideas. Sharing a value of mutual respect is. And these folks have that crafted to an art. From the website and repeated on their facebook page:

TED believes passionately in the power of ideas to change attitudes, lives and ultimately, the world. So TED is building a clearinghouse of knowledge and inspiration from the world’s most inspired thinkers, and also a community of curious souls to engage with ideas and each other.

Want to get belligerent – fantastic. Can’t wait to hear how that works out for you.

Want to do the really work of benevolence – fantastic. There is certain to be some effectual influence you are going to be proud of.

**Photo credit by Nancy McClure

Left over Lucy : Before and After

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Fried up some eggs and paired them with some left over crusted chicken. Reheated the chicken in the skillet and added just a bit of buffalo sauce.

I love breakfast 🙂

Playing in the dirt requires appropriate princess attire :)

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5 Years, Give or Take : #trust30 Challenge

This is the Day 8 Prompt of the #Trust30 challenge. You didn’t miss Day 6…you can find it on MLWFY. And Day 7…well, I just decided not to do that one. You can see some of my reasoning here. Now on to Day 8…even if it is a tad bit late…

Day 8 Challenge | Corbett Barr | Five Years

There will be an agreement in whatever variety of actions, so they be each honest and natural in their hour. – Ralph Waldo Emerson

What would you say to the person you were five years ago? What will you say to the person you’ll be in five years?

It is interesting that I am asked at this time to reflect back and have a conversation with 2006 April. June 2006 – I was getting ready to turn 30. I was enjoying my final days as a United States Sailor. I had just delivered my third daughter. Change was coming and I was excited.

I had spent so much time away from my family during my last sea duty tour, that I was certain that a stay at home mom gig was in my near future. Once the paydays stopped, the cherrios got sticky and my adult conversation went to nil…I realized I had misjudged my calling (God Bless those moms…I just can’t imagine). I needed a job outside of the home.

So, it was time to job hunt…with a four month old baby, two other children who needed my attention, limited experience outside of the military and a strong desire for a flexible schedule…and did I mention, I had just found out that I was pregnant – again.

In those moments, it is hard to keep your bearings. Imagined pitfalls lurk around every comer. Every mistake or tough choice you ever made comes back to reintroduce themselves. The warrior takes a vacation and the witch voice clocks in some overtime. Oh yeah – and there are the preggo hormones…great cocktail.

I look back at that girl now. I would love to be able to tell her 30 is awesome, babies are resilient, you are way cooler than you think you are, nothing is as scary as you perceive it to be, life is good, failures aren’t forever, your figure will not be shot, you will not starve, your electric will not get turned off, your warrior will return and kick the tar out of the witch – as soon as you decide it is time.

But I know there isn’t a whole lot I could have told that girl. She needed her own choices, her own lessons…but maybe it would have been nice for her to learn them a bit sooner – then again maybe not. Guess that’s why it is so important to love each day for what it is on its own merit. It brings and creates in its own special way. Without it just the way it is, something is lost, something is gained and nothing is the same.

Fast forward 5 years, I am turning 40…I would like to leave a post it that says simply

Other than that, I think she is gonna have it covered 🙂

Home Builders Association of Savannah

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Talking about technology with my fellow HBA members this morning. They are the BEST!