Tuesday, July 31, 2012

BlogHer 12-THE NYC Prepare

If I can be completely honest here, I do really love BlogHer and all that it is about. Having said that, when I initially thought about attending-to be honest the fact that the host location was the most amazing city on the planet was the selling key. I have been to conferences and trainings before and I really enjoy them, but to do it in the city that doesn't sleep? That is the bonus. My family lives in Long Island so it was just another reason to go. 

I actually booked my conference ticket and my flight on the intention of maybe I can convince Beauty Mommy to go with me, but if not...it would look like it would be a solo date for me and the Big Apple. I have already told you how Megan was fortunate enough to have her company support her to go and then things really started taking place. She has done a way better job at this than me, describing the food,  beauty and the cocktails that we will be indulging when we get there but I wanted to talk a little about what I am doing personally and professionally to get ready.

I am excited for the BlogHer conference, but I can't WAIT for the opportunity with the Rockettes on Friday morning...it will be a life changing experience.

I have had some great advice to take heed here and here, This morning with some prep of my own. 

1. Make a plan but don't stick to it....but at least have an idea where you are going, what you want to do and what you want to accomplish. For you, your blog, your experience.  

2. Take the time to clean up your blog so it is a true refection of yourself. If nothing else, please make sure that there are multiple places on your blog to be contacted. How annoying when you want to reach out to someone and your only way is to hope that they read their comments?

3. Know that it is Restaurant Week and you can eat at the most fabulous places at a price you can afford. You can get more information here

4. Download apps that help you get around NYC, it is like a grid and it isn't that hard...but instead of blowing your money in a cab because you don't want to deal with it (I am most guilty), use the Subway...its an experience. PS-if you are taking a cab, you may want to walk away from the Front Entrance of your hotel...just a little tip, because some (not all) cab drivers will take quite advantage of you not knowing where you are going and take the LONG way. Don't get taken for a ride while you are being taken for a ride. 

5. It is NYC, not Afghanistan...be safe and savvy but not paranoid. Seriously, not to be unkind, but some people are posting safety paranoia worthy of a third world country. Be aware, keep your hand on your bag, and look alive baby...and don't go down dark alleys in the middle of the night.

6. Take your vitamins, emergen-C...germaphobia PSA 

7. Pick one experience that will mean NYC to you and do it. While you are here, schedule some NYC time, just to say you spent a couple of minutes outside the four walls of the Hilton. So SO SO much to do. 

8. Buy stock in 5 Hour Energy drink-you are gonna need it.

9. Contrary to popular belief, New Yorkers are friendly and will answer your direction questions. Just ask. 

10. Spend time with the conference guide. The girls at BlogHer have spent a great amount of time putting together this for us. Peruse, Highlight and Study.

11. Bring a sweater because it gets chilly. 

12. Stop begging for the party invites....really...so, it is easy to get swooped up in the party mode. I know some of you have children and husbands are ready to get a little loose...but begging for invites? It doesn't serve a purpose...it really doesn't. Again, BlogHer has provided plenty of opportunities for you to brand and socialize, utilize and take notes for next time. 

So there are my thoughts....this is my first BlogHer conference, but I have been to NYC a million times and I wish someone told me these kind of things! 

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July Foodie Pen Pal Reveal

Last month, I didn't have to write about my package because neither my giver nor my sender had a blog. I was excited for this month when Becky wrote me. Her blog is fun and it was a great match this month as I love cupcakes (she is a baker) and she is a runner too! She is also from Norman, OK which is a beautiful city! When I got Becky's package, it had the most thoughtful recipe: a sweet potato enchilada which I have never tried to make or to eat and I am really excited to try it. She had no way of knowing but  red Twizzlers are a staple at our house. Its our favorite! Thank you Becky! You can follow her on Twitter here

How did she know this was my favorite??

I am almost scared to open because I know i won't put it down

Makes the world go round

I can't wait to try her recipe

Love Target Salsa!


The Lean Green Bean

This blog should make you join the fun! Here are the Foodie Penpals details:

-On the 5th of every month, you will receive your penpal pairing via email. It will be your responsibility to contact your penpal and get their mailing address and any other information you might need like allergies or dietary restrictions.

-You will have until the 15th of the month to put your box of goodies in the mail. On the last day of the month, you will post about the goodies you received from your penpal! 

-The boxes are to be filled with fun foodie things, local food items or even homemade treats! The spending limit is $15. The box must also include something written. This can be anything from a note explaining what’s in the box, to a fun recipe…use your imagination!

-You are responsible for figuring out the best way to ship your items depending on their size and how fragile they are. (Don’t forget about flat rate boxes!)

-Foodie Penpals is open to blog readers as well as bloggers. If you’re a reader and you get paired with a blogger, you are to write a short guest post for your penpal to post on their blog about what you received. If two readers are paired together, neither needs to worry about writing a post for that month.

-Foodie Penplas is open to US & Canadian residents. Please note, Canadian Residents will be paired with other Canadians only. We’ve determined things might get too slow and backed up if we’re trying to send foods through customs across the border from US to Canada and vice versa.

If you’re interested in participating for August, please CLICK HERE to fill out the participation form and read the terms and conditions. You must submit your information by August 4th as pairings will be emailed on August 5th! You will receive a confirmation email from me within 24 hours if you sign up. Pin It

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Skinny and Clean-Seafood Pasta

One of my favorite things to do is cook Italian. Actually anything with garlic and oil is ok with me. I make a really fun sauce with my homemade canned tomatoes, but sometimes I like to lighten it up with a garlic and oil sauce. This is not for the weak or if you want good breath any time soon...but, it is worth it. As a disclaimer...there is not a ton Skinny and Clean about this recipe but every girl likes to cheat now and then...I offer you the healthiest version I know:
This will serve two with leftovers-
1 lb scallops
1C of pre cooked frozen shrimp and defrosted-sprinkle with garlic powder
Bunch of Fresh Parsley(dried will not do for this recipe)
5-6 Cloves of fresh Garlic...save yourself the aggravation and get the pre-peeled...yes, it is a little more but we are busy, and who has time for such nonsense??
One lemon
White wine-in a glass for you to drink, and maybe a little on the side for you to put in the dish
Olive Oil
2TB stick butter or margarine.
One lb of Pasta-I am a big fan of Dreamfields Pasta, Linguine or Spaghetti-using this takes a lot of guilt away, it has fewer digestible carbs, and about the same high fiber as whole wheat pasta, It tastes awesome and you will never know the difference trust me! 
Something good on your Ipod, this is a feel good meal and you must set the stage...whether it is Carla Bruni, Frank Sinatra, Florence + the Machine or my newest favorite The Lumineers


Pour some wine, set up your music and rinse your scallops. Put them on a paper plate (I am lazy, saves dishes and season them with garlic powder and Cavendears, I also like Seafood Magic.


In a food processor take your garlic and parsley and process it so it is finely minced.Heat a medium sized frying pan over medium heat and add olive oil and two slabs of butter. Add your garlic/parsley mix and simmer for about five minutes till the onions are clear. Then take a little wine out of your glass and add to your mix and cook for another couple of minutes. You should start to boil the water at this time. 


This is when you have to pay attention. Add your scallops to your garlic parsley awesomeness and under medium heat begin cooking the scallops moving the mixture over the scallops to cover them. You may need to add a little olive oil. After about 4 minutes flip and re-season. At this time your pasta should be underway, you want to time everything to come out at the same time. You want the scallops to be white...be careful they can get overcooked quick. Right before the scallops are done, throw in the shrimp and get them into your mixture. Since they are already cooked, they just need to be heated through. 

I usually drain the pasta and add it to the frying pan, it is just easier. Mix well and add olive oil and maybe a little bit of margarine or butter to loosen it up. You want the consistency to be wet, not soupy.  Mange! 

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Friday, July 27, 2012

Running Etiquette

Respect, Yo
Since I have been running, I have noticed a huge lack of respect on the road. I run first thing in the morning and for the most part the faces are starting to look familiar. There are walkers and dogs and bikers and other fellow runners.

I am extremely cautious of my surroundings when I am running, for a couple of reasons. For one, I am by myself and it is early so there is always safety to consider. I also like to listen to my music pretty loud to give me motivated and I certainly don't want to be caught by surprise from someone biking or running behind me. I also check behind me every so often and I make a point to stay on a pretty straight path. That is how I show respect to the road that I am on. Having said that, I am shocked how some people do not have the same decency.

Very often, I find myself playing chicken with walkers...instead of moving to the side, they walk right in the middle and right towards with me as if they dare me to keep going. I sometimes either stop dead in my tracks and let them by or risk injury pulling myself on the grass while I let these inconsiderates walk on by. It would seem to me, that as I am RUNNING they would have a little common decency to let me by as easy as possible.

Another thing that I find incredible is running on the beach. I am blessed to have the World's Most Famous Beach. Even though I am not entirely sold that running on the beach is awesome, it really is amazing that people are not minding their children to stay out of way of other runners. Adults arent any better. You really have to wonder how anyone thinks taking the right of way from a runner is polite. Not to mention dangerous...it's a matter of inertia to not hurt yourself or them if you collide.

Maybe this is something you never thought of..because I don't think I ever did before I started running.But, please be kind to runners when out and about, we would appreciate it! Pin It

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Trendy Testimonial-My First Birchbox

Like any girl, I love beauty products...almost to an obsessive level that only me and the lady who cleans my house will disclose. When I heard about Birchbox, I knew I had to be a part. I used to be a part of a really fun monthly subscription service that did handmade items, but Birchbox sets the bar high...it samples a lot of top line beauty products with some surprises sprinkled in. You can go here to sign up...and there is a short waitlist but once you get in, GET IN!

From the website: Birchbox is the best way to discover new grooming, beauty and lifestyle products. Sample top products from high-end brands, get expert advice, buy new favorites and earn points with every purchase.

Here is what came in my Birchbox:
This month Birchbox teamed up with Glamour Magazine-pretty packaging! 

Can't ever have enough bronzer-from Ada Cosmetics


I love love love Dirt! Sow+Reap=Heaven


Should really be called Eau de Awesome instead of Eau de Flirt-Love Harvey Prince


Bonus! Free Headphones! Perfect for BlogHer! 


I am really excited about LaraBar Uber...I have read about them but haven't found them in stores yet!

TheBalm Stainiac will be perfect for summer and minimal makeup

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Sunday, July 22, 2012

Are You Addicted To Social Media?

A really great article came out today from Social Media Today-55 Signs That You Are Addicted To Social Media and Twitter. Some of them were fun and silly but didn't resonate (I don't have children), but some of them really hit home.


7. You no longer have patience for people who tell you “my clients are not on social media.”
I just don't understand why every business does not utilize the mostly free tools that Google, Facebook, Twitter, Foursquare, Yelp, etc. gives you to maintain your online presence. The only well spent money to lay out would be to hire someone to run it for you.

8. You turn down as many clients as you take on due to the “not going to sell you on social media factor.”
I have a client that is very close to getting the thanks but no thanks phone call from me. This very nice but older man calls me every month...every month!! to ask me how the Blog thing is coming along. Disclaimer: I don't do any blogs for them, just Facebook. He also consistently asks for my fax number and initially wanted me to mail him an invoice not electronically deliver. I understand old school but come on!

19. Someone has stalked you at a local establishment and asked for you by your Twitter handle.
True story, back in our Fashionistas days Megan and I were tweeted that a fellow Tweeter was at the Racetrack and wanted to meet us. The first drink went ok, the third and fourth...not so much. We were so excited that we had an actual fan of our website that we crossed the line big time. To the point of a very stern talking to from someone who has real fans and stalkers on the boundaries and safety of meeting someone that you dont know. I blame the vodka.


22. You have accepted the fact your brain now thinks in 140 character segments.
One of the first things that I do when I meet a new client is kinda of give them a quick assessment. More often than not, their posts on Facebook are WAY too long! I am glad that the 140 character thought process is in place. I think short, sweet and to the point. Am I the only person that actually likes figuring out how to get it all to fit??

29. You still cringe when clients and partners introduce you at speaking engagements and events as the “social media guru.”
It is not that I cringe, per say...but it is funny that this came up on the list. Because I get called that a lot. It doesn't bother me, it is actually kind of flattering and a little funny. By definition, a guru is a spiritual teacher, esp. one who imparts initiation. But, when I hear Guru, I can't help but think of nag chamba and Mike Myers.




35. You are what you tweet and proud of it.
 I have said this a million times but I am so thankful the world I know locally is not on Twitter. Twitter is the only place (for now) I can say whatever I want and know that it is truly me and my thoughts...however unkind or silly it may be.


40.  You know businesses in your local city who are less than a year away from going out of business because they have failed to adopt new media.
This is advertising as a whole for me. I see businesses go under all the time and more times than not, had they advertised properly...maybe not. Not that I can be solely responsible for keeping someone in the black, but top of mind awareness is key and you aren't gonna get that anywhere better than on Social Media.


So, there are the ones that resonate with me..take a look at the list and let me know what ones makes sense to you!




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Friday, July 20, 2012

Skinny and Clean-Kale, Swiss Chard, Chicken, and Feta Salad

It is getting to the point that I may have to have a section of my blog just for kale. But this recipe is special. The beau has been gone all week and I have been really lazy with the grocery shopping. After a good run yesterday morning, I went to yoga last night and when I came out of some delicious Yin...I had a text message-Kale and Chicken Salad for dinner. I actually thought he was joking. But, turns out I came home and the house smelled like a restaurant. 

We were able to use our organic kale that we had leftover from our Front Porch Pickings. We didn't do the Swiss Chard, but the next time we make it we will...also think that we will use goat cheese instead of feta...the dressing is AWESOME. Check out the recipe here.

  • Dressing:
  • 1/2 cup cider vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano (optional)
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  •  


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Thursday, July 19, 2012

Thank You Hootsuite, Adds Google + and Easier Scheduling

Sometimes things just work in your favor...today when I logged into my Hootsuite account, I was greeted with some good news. They have a new Chrome extension called Hootlet...this enables you to click on the icon when you are on a website and a new window pops up allowing you to schedule a post without leaving the page. Brilliant. They also now have a suggested scheduler of sorts where they will schedule it at the best time for highest optimization (looks to me like you can only do that for the current day. I have been using it all day and this is going to save me a TON of time. Check out their video walkthrough.

If that wasn't enough, I received this in my Inbox today:  


We’re excited to announce that Google+ Pages is now available to all Free, Pro, and Enterprise users! To add Google+ Pages, access your user profile from the side menu, then select “+ Add a Social Network” under My “Social Networks” Catch their announcement here 

 Holy Cow. So exciting. So now these pages that I am too lazy to go into and post on can be done from one click in Hootsuite. It is things like this that can really make a girls day. 

Big Score Hootsuite! You made this girl very happy! 
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Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Katie Couric To Visit BlogHer 12

I am a big fan of things that happen for a reason. I signed up for BlogHer12 by myself blindly because I thought that for sure this is the place for enlightenment. What else would happen to you when you join thousands of like-minded people in my favorite city in the universe? I mean, I walk up the steps out of Penn Station and start misting over every single time. So I knew I was in the right direction by committing to go, even if it was by myself. 

Then by the grace of God, my best friend said a couple of magical words: I wonder if my company would support me to attend this. They said yes, and that inspired her to get rebit by the blogging bug and now we are both knee deep inspired to blog and blog often in preparation of this great weekend in August. By the way, if you want to check out her awesome blog -I Run For Wine, it is here.  

So off we went, just like back in our Racing Fashionista days, using the power of Twitter to make some friends and connections in time for BlogHer12...we are starting to make amazingly detailed itineraries that would make a lay person shudder and signing up for all the social activities we can get our hands on...within reason and without begging because we have been warned smartly by the fabulous Joey Fortman-that is LAME.  

What are my expectations of BlogHer12? 

1. To Be Inspired
2. To Better My Blog
3. To Better Myself

So, after all of our ducks are in a row...the keynote lineup starts trickling out...I couldn't believe that Martha Stewart and Katie Couric was speaking at our event. Excited for Martha because of her entrepreneur awesomeness but I hold a special place in my heart for Katie. First, I am a life long fan of the Today Show...wake up and watch it every single day...but I am so excited to see Katie in person to hear about her awesome new show! Her approach is relatable and I just know most if not all of my expectations above will be satisfied from hearing her keynote. 


Check out this adorable hello to us attendees at BlogHer12...just an inkling of how awesome the weekend is gonna be! 


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Monday, July 16, 2012

Target + Neiman Marcus= Angels SInging

I actually had to sit on this for a couple of days to get my breathe back...Because when I read the press release, I couldn't believe my eyes. Neiman Marcus + Target have made out and are having a baby for my birthday.

Ok, so that is not exactly true...but my God...Target has had some pretty impressive collaborations-like Jason Wu and Missoni but this may take the cake. According to the press release, Two of their most beloved brands—Target (of course) and Neiman Marcus—are teaming up for an unprecedented limited-edition holiday collection of gifts featuring 24 of America’s most preeminent designers, all of whom are members of the CFDA.

Ranging in price from $7.99 to $499.99, with most items less than $60, the collection boasts an impressive designer roster:

Alice + Olivia, 
Altuzarra, 
Band of Outsiders, 
Brian Atwood, 
Carolina Herrera, 
Derek Lam, 
Diane von Furstenberg, 
Eddie Borgo, 
Jason Wu, 
Judith Leiber, 
Lela Rose, 
Marchesa, 
Marc Jacobs, 
Oscar de la Renta, 
Philip Crangi, 
Prabal Gurung, 
Proenza Schouler, 
Rag & Bone, 
Robert Rodriguez, 
Rodarte, 
Skaist-Taylor, 
Thom Browne, 
Tory Burch and 
Tracy Reese.

At the risk of being dramatic, there is a good chance that December 1st may be the greatest shopping day of my life. Each designer makes me want to sit in a corner and rock back and forth at the thought of it all. I thank my lucky stars that I live in Daytona Beach and not a bigger city so I WILL have my pick of the crop. I also have insomnia and have gotten extremely good at taking these sales to online hysteria. Who needs sleep when I have DVF dresses at Target prices (please, please, please!)

I CAN NOT WAIT FOR THE LOOK BOOK

And by the way, my birthday is December 3, I just made a WHOLE lot of people very happy because all I want are Target gift cards. I may just have a sleepover as a birthday party in front of the Target. Are you in??

Update: Target just released the You Tube video for this event-worth every second to watch!

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Tuesday, July 10, 2012

You. Are. Enough

I was reading Kimberly Wilson's blog today about feeling untapped. The last line of her blog is the title of this one and it resonates. It must be in the air because lately I feel like I have been chasing that stupid rabbit round and round the track with not much to show for it. I keep saying if I had more time, I could get more organized, be more productive, have a better plan about so many things.

Like:

I still haven't written my Right Brain Business Plan....

I still haven't analyzed all my clients to see how I can do this all more effectively

I have private and secret goals that I can't seem to make to the paper.

God, I can't even blog as much as I want to.

And not for nothing but if someone as superhero-like as Kimberly is feeling untapped we are all extremely screwed indeed.

She asks us to ponder:

How will you live a remarkable life in a conventional world?

I am gonna have courage
I am gonna set goals
I am gonna apply myself
I am gonna make a difference
I am gonna have a little faith
I am gonna keep running
I am gonna figure it out.

Thanks for the reminder KW..now go get to retapping for the ones who you inspire,silly! Pin It

Monday, July 9, 2012

Weekly Running Awesomeness

Thought it would be fun to share what I will listening to this week when I run.Whenever I am in the car or somewhere and here a good song I like to run to, I save it into a main Spotify list that I call Run Like Your Ass is on Fire. I try to put all the songs in here and then make playlists from there based on how long I am running. This is this week's playlist-hope you like it! Be easy on me, it has been a while since I had to program music for a living!

Week of July 9th

 

So what is on your must hear running playlist this summer??

This Week in Runs
I have a new PR 12:23/mile...slow but steady turtle! With my new running group, I ran twice and once by myself.


First Group Run with the Turtles

I get extra points, this was after the Fourth of July! 

I also think getting my run on after an amazing
night of drinking with friends deserves props


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Sunday, July 8, 2012

Skinny and Clean-Roasted Japanese Eggplant

I was excited when my Front Porch Pickings this week included baby eggplants. I knew I had to think of something awesome to do with them but I didn't think that making  my normal Breadless Eggplant Parm was gonna do it.

Instead I roasted them and threw them over pasta, its one of the best meals that I have had in a while.

Set oven to 425 degrees
Take the eggplants and cut the stems off and then cut them in half.
Line them up on a cookie sheet and spray them liberally with garlic powder salt and pepper, oh and some Cavenders. Drizzle with olive oil
Roast them for 20 minutes
Take them out of the oven and add more olive oil, six cloves of garlic, bread crumbs and some more salt.
Roast them for an additional 5 or 7 minutes and throw them over pasta...adding olive oil and parm cheese and red pepper and get ready to have a really healthy good for you meal!! Pin It
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