Nov 17 2013
I went to Trader Joe's here in Portland ME about two weeks ago to do my regular grocery shop. It was a Tuesday night at 6:15, needless to say it was crazy busy. I almost got run into twice with a cart, someone walked into me because they were on their phone not paying attention. I was frustrated and beyond annoyed. I thought I had everything on my list and then I realized I forgot something. I went back to get what I needed, and as I was walking back up to the registers, I noticed an envelope falling out of someone’s pocket. I started to yell to get their attention. They did not hear me, I left my cart in the aisle ran to the person that dropped it. He was very grateful and said you have no idea how much this means to me, his rent money was in it. The envelope had cash in it and it said rent on the front of the envelope. He kept thanking me and we walked off. I finished shopping and was waiting in line at the register, the man in front of me was telling the cash register attendant what just happened. The man turned around and said, it was you; you were the one that picked up the envelope, and he kept shaking his head and said he just could not believe it. Then they both started clapping, and more people started clapping. It was really nice but I was a little embarrassed and I feel my face on fire. I honestly felt like, is this really happening? It was something you see on TV or in a movie. I left Trader Joe's thinking I made some people believe for just a moment, that there are decent and honest people still out there in the world. There is no greater feeling than that!
Nov 09 2013
The most important day of shopping is almost upon us! BLACK FRIDAY! Throughout history there have been many Black Fridays (as in 1945, Hollywood Black Friday was named after a riot broke out at the gates of the Warner Bros. Studios!) but the one we all know, and maybe love, is happening this month on November 29th.
I have participated in one Black Friday and I personally do not understand the hype. Why spend a wonderful holiday with family and friends stuffing your faces, dozing on the couch, and reminiscing about that one time Grandpa caught his pants on fire, just to end it all to head over to your favorite local store or mall to sit outside and freeeeeze for hours? Now I know some people live for Black Friday; they’ve got it down to an art. They have all the right camping gear, a planned out schedule of what stores to hit and when. Statistically, more people do their shopping on Black Friday than any other day of the year. The amount spent on this momentous day has been steadily climbing over the years.
Check it out:
2007 – $34.6 Billion 2010 - $45 Billion
2008 – $41 Billion 2011 - $52.5 Billion
2009 – $41.2 Billion 2012 - %59.1 Billion
That’s a lot of billions! So yes, I get it. It’s a big deal. But what about Cyber Monday? Now that sounds like more my style! I can stay home, in my pajamas, and snuggled up to my laptop and shop til my fingers bleed! There’s not an official date of the first Cyber Monday, but instead it’s been a trend that retailers have noticed an increase in sales on the Monday after Thanksgiving. (According to Wikipedia, “’The term made its debut on November 28, 2005 in a Shop.org press release entitled 'Cyber Monday Quickly Becoming One of the Biggest Online Shopping Days of the Year’”.) So why the sales are not as high as those of Black Friday, the popularity is increasing nonetheless.
2007 – $733 Million 2010 - $1.028 Billion
2008 – $846 Million 2011 - $1.25 Billion
2009 - $887 Million 2012 - $1.46 Billion
By the way, all my numbers came from Wikipedia as well. Anyway, I think this year I’m going to give Cyber Monday a go. And just think, the more popular the day gets, the more sales and discounts retailers will offer us! So enjoy your Black Friday, but save some of that dough for Cyber Monday!
Oct 26 2013
This seems like the perfect time to talk about sports superstitions. If you’re a baseball fan, you’ve seen them, the ritualistic taps, pats, tugs and steps that the players do before batting. I love the quote that’s become so popular this year; “it’s only weird if it doesn’t work”!
Since I’m not a die-hard sports fan, I do tend to watch the little details going on on the playing field and I don’t always know what team I’m watching. I do know what sport, however. So there is a baseball player who, after every pitch, steps away from home plate and readjusts his batting gloves. The things look like they fit like second skin, I don’t imagine they shift with every swing of the bat, but he pulls the Velcro closure open, re-sticks it, claps his hands together, picks up his bat, and steps back into his stance. I don’t know his name but his ritual is fascinating and it’s something in this crazy ever-changing world you can rely on.
Now, after reading an article about sport superstitions online (http://www.askmen.com/top_10/fitness_top_ten_60/99_fitness_list.html) I have a better understanding as to why athletes do this. It keeps them focused and it’s all a part of the series of motions their muscles have memorized. To make a change in the sequence or, heaven forbid, leave out a step, would throw their whole balance off. So, no problem if they need to tug their cap, tap their shoes, and spit on their gloves before stepping up to bat. What I would like to know is does this carry over to their fans? Does it really matter to a game that’s being played hundreds of miles away if a fan leaves the chair he/she was sitting in when the grand slam was hit? According to the sports-watching rules in my house, the answer is a resounding YES!
So, before a game on TV begins in our house, it’s in your best interest to pick the most comfortable chair, turn on the lights you would like to be able to read by should you lose interest in the game (because you aren’t leaving the room), have snacks and a cold drink within reach, oh, and use the restroom – extra innings are a killer!
Oct 18 2013
By Andrea Donahue | Corporate Office, Corporate Furnished, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Maine, Georgia, Multifamily, Apartment Living, Health, Travel, Corporate Furnished, Food, Lifestyle, Community, | (0) Comments
Seems like everywhere you go there’s pumpkin, pumpkin, pumpkin! Who doesn’t love pumpkin spice coffee, pumpkin cheesecake, pumpkin bread, pumpkin pancakes, pumpkin soup, pumpkin chili…even pumpkin lasagna?
But how about the good ol’ original pumpkin pie? A staple on many a Thanksgiving table.
Here is a piece of what John Greenleaf Whittier wrote in his 1850 poem entitled "The Pumpkin" :
Ah! on Thanksday, when from East and from West,
From North and from South comes the pilgrim and guest;
When the gray-haired New Englander sees round his board
The old broken links of affection restored;
When the care-wearied man seeks his mother once more,
And the worn matron smiles where the girl smiled before;
What moistens the lip and what brightens the eye,
What calls back the past, like the rich Pumpkin pie?
Let’s enjoy the "pumpkin everything" out there this season while it lasts!
Oct 18 2013
Prep Time: 40 Minutes
Cook Time: 30 Minutes
Ready In: 1 Hour 10 Minutes
"With this recipe, cake balls and cake pops are a cinch By using your favorite flavor of cake mix, you will have a people-pleasing and easy party food."
1 (18.25 ounce) package chocolate cake mix
1 (16 ounce) container prepared frosting
1 (3 ounce) bar chocolate flavored confectioners coating
(Food coloring could be used to make orange pumpkins.)
1.Prepare the cake mix according to package directions using any of the recommended pan sizes. When cake is done, crumble while warm into a large bowl, and stir in the frosting until well blended.
2.Melt chocolate coating in a glass bowl in the microwave, or in a metal bowl over a pan of simmering water, stirring occasionally until smooth.
3.Use a melon baller or small scoop to form balls of the chocolate cake mixture. Dip the balls in chocolate using a toothpick or fork to hold them. Place on waxed paper to set.
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