Thursday, May 27, 2010

Mary, Mary quite contrary, how does your garden grow?

With dandelions and clover leafs and weeds all in a row.

Hey neighbor! Not you across the street, you next door. Congratulations on your garden of weeds.  Looks great.  The woman who owned the house before you would be mortified to find out that you pulled up her entire perennial garden which took years and years to cultivate, full of love from her deceased Aunt, only to be replaced with this:


I'm sure the  3 foot high Hairy Fleabane is much more attractive to the cul-de-sac than say the  Phlox or blooming Cone Flowers that used to stand there.

I know they won't read this because they don't know who I am, what my name is, or the fact that I even exist...but to the other neighbors that might see Grab a weed on your way by next time, will you? Maybe if we pull them up one at a time they'll eventually be gone and I can sneak in some real flowers in the middle of the night for next year...sigh.

Very funny side note. I did a quick Google search for "Weed Names" so I could speak intelligently about the dandelion infestation and was laughing at all the marijuana results that came up.  Never knew the hash had so many names. In case you're curious: Street Names for Marijuna - aka Weed Names from Google

Monday, May 24, 2010

Winner, Winner, Chicken Dinner

I tweet. A lot. At least for me it's a lot. For some it may not be much and for others it's insane.

I have followers that are from my Mom network. I have followers from my Business network.  And then I just have followers. Not sure who some of them are, but I don't care. If they get any value from what I tweet, well then I'm glad to oblige.

I also follow a bunch of people. Smart people. Funny people. Celebrities. Sports fans. Beach lovers and foodies. There is usually a common interest and a reason to engage.

I often get asked by folks who aren't sure if they should join Twitter how it can work for them - that applies to both individuals who are looking to be social and businesses looking for prospects.  I can't explain what it can do for you personally, or professionally, but I did want to share my latest Twitter story to give you something to think about, if you are on the fence.

So, here is my personal case study on the joy of Twitter:

I was reading through my stream of tweets  recently, catching up on news, information, jokes, and updates when I saw a retweet (fancy term for copy and paste) from someone mentioning an iPad contest.  I checked out the link in her tweet, read the rules, and learned all you had to do was retweet the same message/link and follow the President of a company on Twitter and Voila! you'd be entered.

Not hard at all. I didn't have to provide field after field of data on some form about myself or my company.  I didn't have to "like" a fan page on Facebook.  I just had to follow a guy who seemed pretty intelligent and could actually provide some insight and tips for my job and then let others know I followed him in case they wanted to join in.

The result?  Check it out for yourself:

In conjunction with our sponsorship and presentation at Silverpop’s recent Annual Client Summit in Atlanta, The Annuitas Group connected with almost 1,000 B2B marketing professionals both attending and not attending the conference. We did so by encouraging marketers to follow Carlos Hidalgo, President and co-founder of The Annuitas Group, on Twitter, and to enter to win an iPad. Congratulations to @christinelexa, the winner. 

On the business side (NO they did not pay me for this post - although in all honesty if I hadn't won I wouldn't have shared this story) this an example of how Twitter can increase prospects and is also about why community is important and how one satisfied person in your network can generate some brand awareness by simply bragging, "Hey!! I won an iPad from Annuitas Group!!" And you never know how many people that one person touches when it comes to social media (for example,  I have over 1,000 people following me and you never know how many those 1,000 have).

On the personal side, I took my iPad to bed last night - so that one little tweet was totally worth the 2 seconds it took to cut and paste 140 characters!  Now, to think of a clever name for it because iPad is lame on so many levels...

Friday, May 21, 2010

I'm a PC. Well, maybe.

My whole life I've only known Microsoft and Dell (or IBM) as a source of electronic amusement. Web browser. Email. Solitaire. I was good.

Today, I discovered the iPad.  The ingenious little tablet from, dare I say, Apple!!

I can't describe what is happening on my desktop right now - it's beyond words.

I'm learning all about the world of "Apps", and my God I may never return from my iPad journey.

I'll share with you how I got this wondrous little iPad in another post soon (hate me, because it was free).  Assuming you can tear me away from the Eye Chart App. I kid you not - I can test the kids eye sight from this glowing, beautiful baby.

So for now, that's all I have to type on this cruddy, IBM laptop with it's archaic keyboard.

Hey Sierra, welcome to 2010...

Monday, May 17, 2010

Friends and family and Bloggers...oh my!

I can honestly say this weekend was perhaps my most favorite weekend so far in 2010. No offense if we've had fun together this year, but I really enjoyed my weekend. It was the perfect mix of relaxing and chaotic, with a dose of silly thrown in for good measure.

Friday I met two of my former colleagues for a girl's lunch and we caught up on all the fun gossip and stories. Can't beat gossip! Plus, I hadn't had a lunch date in a long time so it felt great to get out of the house.

That evening I tortured my daughter by insisting we go to a Pizza place for dinner because we had to be quick so we could run errands, including buying birthday gifts for 100  kids (ok, only 2) and my kids wanted to buy something with left over gift cards from Christmas (out of sight out of mind makes for fun 5 months later).  But she can't fathom not going to a sit down restaurant.  Who spoiled that child? 

Saturday was gorgeous out!  Little breezy but little man got his uniform for T-Ball.

Go BRAVES!  Smart organizers for T-Ball don't put anyone on a Red Sox or Yankees team in an effort to keep the peace. My guy still cried when he found out he couldn't be a Yankee...I know, that's all sort of messed up since we live in Boston.

Saturday night I met some bloggers in real life! That's right, in the flesh!  Including my dear friend of over 10 years, FairlyOddMother, who apparently knows nothing about me - no, I do not live in Mendon and did not work for State Street.

Then this awesome lady always cracks me up over In the Trenches of Mommyhood.  As does Chicky Chicky Baby who not only can make you laugh but can roll her "r" pretty good for a white chick.

I was thrilled to meet some new fabulous ladies including  Bossy herself, Shes Just Another Manic Mommy (and we share a name) and Angela who blogs as MommyBytes and insists she's seen me before, to which I promptly responded, "They promised they burned that tape."

After sleeping off my 1:30 a.m. arrival home on Sunday morning, I did nothing the rest of the day. Yeah. You read that correctly. N-O-T-H-I-N-G.

Ok, I ran to BJ's for milk and gas. Then promptly sat my behind down outside and did nothing...ok, I weeded the garden and mulched a little.

But that's all. Nothing else. Ok, ok! I may have trimmed all the long grass along the house and fence. But that's it!

The kids played so well all day - and then in the afternoon had a water balloon fight with their Dad which they were still laughing and talking about a bed time. Took an hour to get them filled, and 30 seconds to throw them all, but they loved it!

So you see, it appears the spring of 2010 is turning out to be pretttty good around here. I hope you had a nice weekend as well. Here's to continuing the trend: *Clink*

Friday, May 14, 2010

Can I ask you a question?

Hey Mothers!  Can I just say, I mother from the gut. Go with the flow. Do what feels right.

If you ask me the right age for anything, I won’t know.

What’s the right age to let kids play outside alone?  Or go into a public restroom alone? Or take a shower alone? Or use a stove?

I haven’t a clue. And the main reason is that each child is different. Each situation is different.  And each Mom is different.

So if you ask me, I’m gonna say,  "You’re guess is as good as mine."

But don’t expect me to bend my rules to meet yours.  Cuz we all know what’s good for the goose isn’t always good for the hen.

Ok, I made that saying up.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

I wasn't raised in white America

Baby oil. The smell of coconuts. Reflective mats. Boom boxes. Bain de Soleil without an ounce of SPF in it. Florescent Body Glove bikinis. Ray Ban Wayfarers. Sun. Sun. Sun.

For me, those are the memories of summer as a teen. In 1984, tan was the way to be. I mean, come on, who didn't want to be Christie Brinkley?

 As genes would have it, my freckled white skin would never tan.  It would just burn and peel - several times - over the course of a summer. I'd only get fried on one side because I'd fall asleep on my back and forget to flip. But that was okay - I would lay on my stomach next time and was on my way to being "tan".  Wait? Was I?

No, not really. I was just red, then dry, then red again. But maybe it's because of those fun, teenage memories on the beaches of the North Shore that I adore a little sunkissed glow on my skin.  The time when my freckles start to pop a little, and my feet get flip flop tan lines.

I KNOW - I KNOW. Bad sun. Bad. I don't want to like it. I mean, I could be a really good white girl if I abstained completely. Like Nicole Kidman or Anne Hathaway white.  But I grew up with a Mom whose skin tanned as soon as the calendar flipped to May - she didn't even need to be in the sun! I just longed for that deep, dark glow.

So as I get older, I try to be smarter. But I am quite excited to see a little "watchband line" on my wrist this mid-May as evidence I've been in the sun. And as I've learned recently, Vitamin D deficiency is a real thing (3 friends in one month were diagnosed!), and we couldn't have that, now could we?

Lather the kids in SPF 50, but leave me to my own devices. I swear, you won't ever see me wearing a bikini again and I put the reflective mats away...for good.  The Bain de Soleil...well....

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Glad you joined me

Hi! How are you?

Yes, you.

Over there...I see you.

You may just be lurking in the background, but that's totally fine. I'm glad you stopped by. Don't feel like you have to comment...I'm just happy you come by to see me every now and then.

I don't say thanks enough to the readers of my blog. So, thanks. You make writing fun.

I'll see you again soon. As soon as I can clear out this writers block. How can *I* have nothing to say?

Bye for now.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Thank you Mom

We've been busy. Busy in a "how-did-it-get-to-be-9-at-night?" kind of way. Busy in a "when-is-the-last-time-the-kids-took-a-shower?" kind of way. You get it.

So while I had a minute I wanted to take this opportunity to say Happy Mothers Day to all the wonderful, talented, warm, loving, caring, generous, fabulous, stupendous Moms I know out there!

May you have a relaxing, stress free, kids-get-along-all-day  kind of day....I'm sorry, I can't type that without laughing...but you know what I mean...

And to my Mom, a very special thank you.  Now that my kids are school age (and trying to insert their independence like a bull in a china shop) I sit and reflect on my childhood a lot more and I think, "What did my Mom do when I was this age?"  And more often than not the answer is: she let us be kids.

She would quietly stand in the background as my brother and I fumbled through childhood.  She didn't always butt in, tell us the answer to every question or try to control our every decision.  She would watch - I always knew she was watching - but would only emerge when she knew we needed a hug, a band-aid or a kiss. Sure, there were fights, stomping, and door slamming - but what I remember most from my childhood are the laughs, giggles and smiles.

So thank you mom for mothering.  Thank you for letting us get dirty without freaking out; for keeping treats on hand for when we needed a pick-me-up; for providing for us even when it was hard to provide for yourself; for saying "no" when we wanted to hear "yes" and especially for teaching us the value of respect, love and compassion.

Happy Mothers Day. I love you.

Your Daughter

Monday, May 3, 2010

Chuckle of the weekend

Sister: I don't like this cherry drink.

Brother: I'll drink it.

Sister: Let me wipe off my germs.

Brother: You don't need to. We're Spanish!!

We think the word he was going for was "siblings". But one never knows...the Latino card gets used at the oddest times in our house.