Dinosaurs are Real! – where “Jurassic Park” meets “Toy Story”

Best idea I have seen in a long while. We can all benefit from a little make believe.

Life Is Too Short

According to these parents.  You have to see the whole thing, there is more.  I love this kind of make believe.


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We should have ONE day without shopping

Good old New England, it’s illegal for many store to open Thanksgiving Day in 3 of our states! People have three other days to shop, we don’t need Thursday. For the chains that open elsewhere on T-day, I’m boycotting them for the rest of the year.

Open in Morning: Best Buy, Kmart, Lord & Taylor
Not open til evening: Walmart, Target, Macy’s, Toys “R” Us, JC Penny, Kohls, Old Navy, Gap, Banana Republic, Sears, Office Depot, Office Max, Michaels

Pier One, Nordstorm’s, TJ Maxx, Marshalls, Sam’s Club, Burlington Coat Factory, Costco, Ross Stores, Lowe’s, Von Maur and Cabela’s, Barnes & Noble, Home Depot, Radio Shack


A Successful Marriage

I wish I knew the recipe for a successful marriage.   Although I think the recipe is different for every couple, I have been collecting tips and ideas that may be common to all couples.

480304_10151037275888859_59169761_nThey research by Psychologist John Gottman on relationships shows that it’s okay for couples to fight, and that some disagreement can even be healthy.  The key is there must be enough positive interaction to outweigh the bad, with a ratio of 5 to 1.

This couple shares the secret to surviving 75 years together, “you have to speak each other’s language.”  What they mean is that you have to really listen to what the other person is saying.  Researchers agree that this one behavior is a driving force behind a lot of mental health issues in relationships.  The act of listening helps your partner feel supported, connected, understood and builds them up to be able to support you in return.

A younger man received similar advice from his father, and explains how this helped him understand that Marriage Isn’t for Him…  but rather it’s about making it the best possible experience for your partner.  I love the question from his wife and think that may also be helpful in my personal relationship – “What does it mean to love selflessly?”

Maybe you have figured out how to make your own relationship work.  These people write about the lessons learned during the first year of marriage.   Please share this with people who may benefit from these ideas, especially people living in these areas of high divorce rates.


Being Tardy – how much is okay?

How did it get to be okay to be late for everything?  Yes I’m one of those people who gets really annoyed when people are late.  Even for 5 minutes.  If we agree to meet at 7:00, I will try to arrive a little early out of respect for your time.  Why can’t others do the same?  While waiting I can spend time reading on my phone, or check Facebook.  But if people are going to be 10, 15, 30 minutes late or more, then I could have used that time for something productive.  Sure this may sound like Common Sense, but it’s not Common Practice.

being-on-time1I have friends who are notoriously late.  Sometimes and hour or more.  Know that I know this, I plan our meetings for situations where it does not matter if they are late.  For the people who are habitually late, it’s always something they didn’t expect to occur that caused them to be late.  Like this person who might have to respond to an email on the way to a meeting, etc.

I’m sorry, but it’s everyone’s responsibility to manage distractions.  The internet and cell phones provide instant access to people, which has resulted in the sense of immediate access.  We treat every situation as an emergency.  Maybe this immediate contact gives us a sense of being important and that we have to respond immediately in order to remain relevant.  But what is that doing to our ability to respect other people’s time by showing up at the agreed time?

I totally lose my cool when I’m running late.  Last night I was scheduled to present to a group of high school students.  I planned to arrive 15 min. early.  Traffic was worse than I have ever seen, and then the google map sent me to the wrong block on that street.  I arrived about 7 min late and was beyond frustrated.  Luckily, the organizers has people arrive 15 min early because of this Common Practice  in the US.

Please vote for the Best Design


past entry

CANstruction is a cool event where people design something out of canned food.  My company participates in the Boston event, you can see all the photos and vote by the end of Oct 15th.  When looking at the page of photos, click on the photo to see the name of the company and the name of the design to see who you want to vote for.

And go find a CANstruction event in your city…

past entries

past entry

I’m Reading a Book…

Yes, this is a real book.  It has paper pages that you turn to see the next chapter.  I can take this book anywhere, and it never runs out of power so I can read it anywhere.  On a sunny beach, during take-off and landing, and in the bath if I’m careful.

reading-in-the-bathNow I happen to own this particular book.  But I also love to get books from the library too.  Thanks to Benjamin Franklin for creating the free library system, we can use books to travel to a new land, to imagine the impossible, to learn the story and lessons from important people, or to teach ourselves something new.  In fact, that’s why Benjamin Franklin created free libraries, so that poor people can get themselves out of poverty by learning a skill or trade.  At the time, books were only available to people with money who could afford to purchase them or join subscription libraries.

So books can help people lift THEMSELVES out of poverty!  But you have to be able to read first. Illiteracy prevents people from reading street signs and bus signs to get around efficiently, from doing simple accounting to make sure they are getting the correct change for a purchase, or from reading the religious manuscript that guides their life.

buildon-worldwide-mapI know a group that has built over 500 schools in rural areas of developing countries around the world.  Right now, 85,060 children, parents, and grandparents attend those schools and learn to read.  First, buildOn meets with the community members and they elect 3 men and 3 women to form a committee.   The committee works with buildOn to coordinate all the details.  Before the construction starts, all of the community members sign a covenant along with the buildOn members, that promises to send boys and girls in equal numbers to the school and other policies.  buildOn works with the local government to ensure that an educator is provided for the school.  After 22 years since the first school was built in a Malawian village, that community now has 4 more just like it that they built themselves.  Students from those schools are able to learn to be teachers, etc.   It has also improved the standing of women in the community, who are in turn speaking out against some of the awful practices committed against women.

So go read a book, and remember how lucky you are to be able to read.

Love and Marriage…

first-date-worries-400x300Two really good talks about love and marriage:

Ester Perel gives a summary of her book Mating in Captivity, explains how in love we seek security but in romance we seek adventure.  How do we achieve both in one partner?  This is basically the theme of the story Anna Karenina, who struggles to be faithful to her loving husband or give is to her passionate lover.

Jenna McCarthy talks about some of the universal secrets of successful relationships.


This PBS documentary provides an interesting history of marriage.

How much is 2,000 calories?

Wow, I’m not surprised by the info, but I am shocked by the visual representations of how little it takes to get to 2,000 calories.

Life Is Too Short

If you have ever counted calories, it’s amazing to see how many can be packed into a small tasty treat.  This video 2000 Caloriesshows us how many Big Macs, or bananas, etc. it takes to eat 2,000 calories.  For some foods, it’s hardly considered a day’s worth of meals.  Of course, serving sizes are out of control, and yes they have a video about that too.

They also remind us to beware of sugar amounts.  I recently heard that low fat foods are made tastier by adding sugar, confirmed by this short video.

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