Category Archives: Blogs

Many Great Bloggers Include Blog Links to Posts/Articles They Love

f15bc5871a4eeeef6f1a2bd3c017b21dI love the quick links that bloggers provide when they find great posts. They don’t fit into a neat category or index and I love the randomness the most.

1.  From  The Art of Simple: “Weekend Links”:  by Tsh

2.  From Dooce: “Stuff I found while looking around“:

Liv and Phileas’ photo stream on flickr. Coco is super jealous.

How Much Caffeine Before I End Up in the E.R.?

What If the World’s Soil Runs Out?

A rough calculation of current rates of soil degradation suggests we have about 60 years of topsoil left. Some 40% of soil used for agriculture around the world is classed as either degraded or seriously degraded – the latter means that 70% of the topsoil, the layer allowing plants to grow, is gone.

Hilarious bad lip reading of NFL players

Los Angeles Overreacts to Cold Temperatures

Andrew Sullivan’s quote for the day:

Every straight person already knows everything important there is to know about a gay person’s needs and loves and lives. Just look in the mirror. We are human before we are gay or straight. We are you.

The Inspiration Archive, collected by Teodorik

This is hilarious, but now I’m going to have nightmares for, oh, the rest of my life.

2013 New Years resolutions illustrated

- I can guarantee you that before this happened not one of these three people ever left a bad tip.

This. This is for Cami.

Max Sebald’s Writing Tips: You sometimes need to magnify something, describe it amply in a roundabout way. And in the process you discover something.

3.  From The Daily Muse: “Best of the Web-February 16, 2014“:

Work Hard

  • I Followed My Own Productivity Advice for a Week (Fast Company)
  • How to Get Past the Excuses That Are Holding You Back (Alexandra Franzen)
  • What to Do if You’re Stumped During an Interview (POPSUGAR)
  • 5 Ways to Make Sure Your Boss Knows Just How Awesome You Are (The Daily Muse)

Live Smart

Play Often

  • How to Watch the Sochi Olympics Online Without a Cable Account(Lifehacker)
  • Personalized Print Guides for Showing Your Friends Around New Cities(Springwise)
  • How to Bring Paris Into the Bedroom (and Other Breakfast in Bed Ideas)(Fathom)
  • 5 Fabulous (and Cheap!) Work Looks From Refinery29 (The Daily Muse)

Business Blogs Help Us to Expand Our Big Picture Overview

496631023_5d8e50a068_zAbout creativity--From Fast Company– “Can Creativity Really be Taught?“:

But what’s all this hoopla about creativity about? Can it really be learned? Gerard Puccio, chairman of the International Center for Studies in Creativity at Buffalo State College seems to think so. “You are seeing more attention to creativity at universities,” according to Puccio. “The marketplace is demanding it.”

A partner at the publishing company FourSight, Puccio has created a four-prong method used by businesses and in classrooms to help promote and demystify the creative process. According to FourSight, individuals each tend to gravitate toward one of four of these steps as their primary mode of thinking. Understanding which one of these four steps you most gravitate toward, according to them, can help you and your team strike a better balance:

1. FIRST, CLARIFY.

This involves identifying the problem or challenge at hand. Knowing what question to ask is key so that you know what problem you’re addressing. “If you don’t have the right frame for the situation, it’s difficult to come up with a breakthrough,” says Puccio

2. BEFORE YOU CREATE, IDEATE.

“Ideating” is just a bit of puffery for what’s essentially brainstorming or throwing ideas out there.

3. BEGIN TO DEVELOP.

When you enter the stage of developing, you’re building out potential solutions. Part of this process may very well involve failing and having to start from square one. Be prepared.

4. IMPLEMENT IT.

Convincing others that your idea is worth its salt is where implementing comes into play.

While creativity itself can’t be taught, proponents of creative studies programs believe they can offer techniques that get you thinking in new and exciting ways.

About branding–From Entrepreneur-“The Pitfalls of Personal Branding” by Steve Tobak:

One of the key tenets of personal branding is to build an identity that stands out and gets noticed. At least, that’s the theory. The problem is that the pursuit of attention can be a slippery slope that ends with your virtual persona doing serious damage to your real reputation.

Here are a few things to keep in mind so you don’t end up making the biggest mistake of your life without even realizing it:

The internet is forever. I just don’t know how else to say this in a way that really gets through to people. If you wouldn’t want it to show up anytime someone Googles your name between now and the end of time, don’t say it, do it, or post it.

Not all PR is good PR. Not only is the age-old rule “any PR is good PR” not true, it’s even less true today than it’s ever been. Don’t believe me? Some day I’ll have to tell you how I once got Bill Gates really POed and nearly destroyed a key relationship with Microsoft.

Keep your dysfunctions where they belong … buried in your subconscious. We all have issues, but some people insist on taking them out and displaying them to everyone wherever they go. Don’t be your own worst enemy.

Promote your genuine talents, not your delusions of grandeur. One of the Vanderpump Rules people gets up on tables and sings every chance she gets. The only problem is she has a terrible voice, at least in my opinion. It’s great to have aspirations, but there are smarter ways to explore your potential than doing it in front of a million viewers.

Try not to be ludicrous. You can proclaim yourself a social media guru (like you’re the only one), the CEO of a one-person company, or an entrepreneur because you once sold a comic book on eBay. It’s annoying, but not career-threatening.

About working from home–From the home page of Workshifting:

  • Work is no longer tied to an office or a cubicle. We are more connected than ever. It’s just as common to work from coffee shops, hotels, airports and home, as it is to work from the office. We are here to provide you with the tools, tricks and tips to effectively work from anywhere.
    Over 80% of employees say they maintain a better work-life balance by telecommuting. We know we do!
    By encouraging workshifting, employers can lower real estate, turnover and absenteeism costs, while increasing employee productivity. Employers can reduce their carbon footprint and fuel usage, saving employees thousands of dollars every year in commuting costs while attracting the best and the brightest, regardless of where they live.

Tips and Tricks From Some of My Favorite Food Bloggers

3871464899_7670cd7985_zFood blogs are my favorite place to read about how cooking can be made easier. I grew up in a large extended family so have always cooked for an army. But now that I live alone, I have had to learn how to cook on another level. I like this new way better as I don’t have a refrigerator full of half-eaten food. Some tips and tricks for today:

1.  From Chocolate and Zucchini (10 years old): “How to Organize Your Multimedia Recipes” :

Digital: 

  • There’s a slew of free apps that offer variations on the theme of one-stop organization, the best of which have app components so you can use them on laptops, tablets, and smartphones. Pepperplateand Tastebook are both food-centric; as Mar says, “you can download recipes from various food websites and also enter recipes manually.”
  • Evernote doesn’t have a food focus, but Pegeen loves it because, like the others, it’s free and multi-platform — plus she can use it to store scanned handwritten recipes along with her typed online recipes. For those she hasn’t scanned, she still makes a quick Evernote entry with a note on where to find it: “That way, the recipe title shows up alphabetically, and tells me to go look in the paper file.”
  • Multiple members are fans of Eat Your Books, which helps you search through recipes in your own collection — especially helpful if you have a sizable stockpile of cookbooks.

Paper: 

  • LE BEC FIN prints everything out, stores each recipe in clear plastic sleeves, and files them away. In addition to protecting recipes from sauce spatters, the sleeves protect scraps of paper until you have time to type them up. Diana B does something similar, increasing the font size beforehand so her recipes are easier to read when she’s “dancing around the kitchen.”
  • Savorthis uses a similar system, using a huge binder as a recipe catch-all: “While I love what digital can do for so many things in life, I am still much more fond of this food-splattered binder. And when in a real pinch, I don’t often have trouble finding the recipe online.”
  • Whenever Pegeen cooks from an online recipe, she prints it out and “tapes the printed sheets in a row along the front of the kitchen cabinets so I can read continuously without the recipe taking up room on the counter.”

2.  From A Couple  Cooks: “Get Your Snack On”: Some great healthy snack recipes–

Spiced Roasted Chickpeas
by: a Couple Cooks
Makes: About 4 cups
What You Need
  • 2 15-ounce cans chickpeas
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1½ teaspoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • ¼ teaspoon smoked paprika
  • ¾ teaspoon kosher salt
What To Do
  1. Preheat your oven to 375F.
  2. Rinse and drain the chickpeas. Place them on a towel and pat gently to dry. Remove any loose skins. (If desired, you can remove skins from most of the chickpeas, but we tried both ways and didn’t find a large difference in the final product.)
  3. In a medium bowl, stir together chickpeas with 3 tablespoons olive oil, 1½ teaspoons chili powder, 1 teaspoon black pepper, 1 teaspoon cumin, ¼ teaspoon smoked paprika, and ¾ teaspoon kosher salt.
  4. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Pour on chickpeas and spread them out so that they are in a single layer. Bake for 45 to 50 minutes until crispy and dry, stirring every 10 to 15 minutes.
  5. Allow to cool. Store in a sealable container in a dry cupboard; keeps for about 1 week.
Notes
Adapted from My Recipes
Another recipe for healthy snack:
Honey Sesame Almonds
by: a Couple Cooks
Makes: 2 cups
What You Need
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2 cups roasted almonds (unsalted)
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • Scant ½ teaspoon cayenne
  • ¼ cup sesame seeds
What To Do
  1. Preheat the oven to 350F.
  2. Place 2 tablespoons honey in a small, microwave-safe bowl or pitcher and microwave for 15 seconds.
  3. In a bowl, mix the honey with the remainder of the ingredients.
  4. Cover a baking sheet with parchment paper. Place the mixture on the baking sheet and roast for 10 minutes. Allow to cool fully, then break apart almonds gently.

3.  From Inspired Taste: “Classic Banana Bread Recipe”:

Classic Banana Bread Recipe
Prep time
15 minutes
Cook time
1 hour
Total time
1 hour 15 minutes
For the best, most flavorful bread, the bananas need to be ripe — overripe, brown and speckled is even better. Nuts are completely optional for this. We love the bread both ways, but do enjoy the extra crunch from a handful of walnuts or pecans.A note on pan size: We use a 8 1/2- by 4 1/2-inch loaf pan; if you only have a 9- by 5-inch pan, start checking for doneness 5 to 10 minutes earlier.

Yield: 1 loaf, 8 slices
You Will Need
  • 1 1/2 cups (210 grams) all-purpose flour (we use Gold Medal)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 3 medium bananas (heavily speckled or even black bananas are best)
  • 1/2 cup (113 grams or 1 stick) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
  • 3/4 cup (150 grams) packed light brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup (50 grams) walnuts or pecans, toasted and chopped, optional
Directions
  1. Center a rack in the oven and heat to 350º F. Butter and flour an 8 1/2- x 4 1/2- x 2 1/2-inch loaf pan. Place the pan on an insulated baking sheet or on two regular baking sheets stacked on top of the other.
  2. Make Batter: Whisk the flour, baking soda, salt and cinnamon together, set aside.
  3. In the bottom of a medium bowl, mash bananas into a chunky paste. Whisk the melted butter, brown sugar, eggs and vanilla into the bananas until blended.

Photo credit.