28th Feb2011

Monday Mingle: Missing Camera, No Flowers and No American Idol

by Daenel

What’s up with that butt ugly freeze frame? Yikes!

Monday MingleTo see another shot of my new hair, click here…. My hair was done by Cheryl from Cheryl’s Touch in Dallas, PA. If you’re ever in the area, she can hook you up. She also gave me new brows and yanked out waxed my girlstache. WhatYou know you have one too!

Monday Mingle is hosted by Jenn at Eighty MPH Mom. If you’d like to participate, simply create a short vlog in which you answer the questions and then hit up the linky. Don’t forget to grab the badge and leave some comment love for your fellow participants. After all, isn’t that what mingling is all about?

This week’s questions are:
1. Do you have Spring flowers (or any flowers) blooming in your yard right now? Show us!
2. Are you watching American Idol this season? What do you think about the new judges?
3. Tell us something that happened to you last week!

Next week’s questions are:
1. Where do you think you’ll be/what you’ll be doing in 10 years?
2. You are ordering a hamburger at a restaurant (or veggie burger – how do you have it cooked, what type of cheese and what else goes on it?
3. What are the current gas prices like where you live?

27th Feb2011

Mamavation Monday on Sunday

by Daenel

Mamavation MondayThis week I have been a calorie counting, exercise logging, SparkPeople app using machine!  Seriously, I’ve learned so much since I downloaded SparkPeople to my Droid (click here for the mobile download for Droid).  For example, I was drinking a large mocha flavored coffee from a popular coffee place every other day or so until I found out that it was accounting for 45% of my allotted caloric intake.  Forty~five percent is a heck of a lot when you want to eat breakfast, lunch, dinner and, possibly, a snack.  Needless to say, I have since stopped with the ‘ccinos.  That doesn’t mean I’m never drinking one again, (I cannot give up that mocha goodness) it just means that I have to be more aware of portion control and determine what I’m willing to give up for that treat.

I also learned how much fast food can hurt.  On my way to work the other day I realized that I hadn’t had breakfast or lunch, so I decided to stop and grab some fries, a fish sandwich and a coffee, that was a whopping 814 calories!  Duuuude, that is crazy!  I know this may be purely psychosomatic but I also felt ill the rest of the night.  It may be that I hadn’t had fast food in about a week and it wasn’t settling right or it may have been that I was just sick over how many calories I’d consumed in one meal but I felt YUCK the rest of the night.

My 2 for 1 water exchange has been going real well.  Actually, it’s been going better than expected, I’ve also started to drink more herbal tea (Lipton Cranberry Pomegranate Tea, how do I heart thee…).  I had 1/2 a soda this week and couldn’t finish it.  It was my first soda in about a week.  Way too sweet.

In an effort to keep me even more accountable for my food intake, I’ll be participating in the March Food Diary Challenge hosted by Brooke Lippy.  Nothing like knowing that other people are going to see what you’ve inhaled all day to keep you focused…

I exercised 3 out of 7 days this week and on the days that I didn’t workout, I made sure I went over my step goal (which was 5000 per day).  I know my step goal is low but when you figure I’m a librarian and I don’t spend a lot of time on my feet, I thought I’d start low and work my way up, this way I’m not defeated when I don’t make 10,000 steps.  This week’s goal is 7500 per day.

I’ll tell you now, I didn’t lose any weight but I didn’t gain either.  I’m not upset because I learned something about myself and my eating habits, so I consider this a win.

My Stats:

  • Starting weight:  163.2 lbs
  • Today’s weight:  162 lbs
  • Goal weight:  145 lbs

How was your week?  Did you learn anything surprising about your eating habits?

Disclosure:  I did not receive any compensation or this post.  Mamavation is a weight loss support group that uses social media to help women and especially mothers to lead a healthy lifestyle.  You can learn more about Mamavation by visiting the website, following on Twitter or liking on Facebook.

24th Feb2011

Facebook App Lets Commenters Easily Share Posts

by Daenel

Have you noticed the nifty little Facebook comment space located just above the comments section of my blog?  It’s a nifty little app that I created on Facebook and it allows people to comment and share your post on their Facebook page in one swoop.  This is a great way to get new readers!

WordPress users, the directions are very easy to follow:

  1. Go to Install Plugins from your WordPress Dashboard
  2. Search for “Facebook Comments for WordPress” and you’ll find step~by~step directions

However, before you get started, you’ll want to create the following:

  1. Privacy Policy (here’s mine)
  2. User Agreement Policy
  3. Avatar for your app (I just used a smaller version of my blog badge)

Once you’re finished, activate the plugin and you’ll end up with a box that looks something like this:

To see picture details, just click them

Facebook for WordPress Comment Box 1

If the commenter is logged into their Facebook account while they’re visiting your blog, they’ll have the option of commenting under their Facebook name (you do not have access to their Facebook information, although you will have the ability to send them a message through Facebook).

Facebook for WordPress Comment 2

The comment will then post to your blog and look something like this:

Facebook for WordPress Comment 3

The link to your post will then appear on their Facebook profile page and look like this:

Facebook for WordPress Comment 4

Do you think you’ll be adding this app to your blog?  What do you think will be some of the benefits?  Drawbacks?

23rd Feb2011

Pedestrian Rage? Yeah, I Got That

by Daenel
Shopping Rage

Image by Microsoft Clipart

When I was little my sister used to say I was like that cartoon character, Taz, spinning my way through life, laughing and carrying on while totally unaware of the destruction I left in my wake.  Hmmmm….  Now does that sound like me at all?   Anyway, when I read this article on iVillage about pedestrian rage, I thought about my sister and Taz.

First of all, let me explain, I don’t live anywhere near the busy streets of New York nor do I live within walking distance of anything remotely resembling a large city, in fact, traffic is often stopped because cows crossing.  Yes, I’m serious.  But there are times when I must venture into the city and come in contact with shudder people and that’s when I remember that people are one of the reasons I no longer live in the city.

I don’t mine the lovers holding hands and strolling through the stores.  Little people being dragged behind their parents doesn’t bother me.  Elderly folks shuffling to and fro are fine.  But what bothers me…what infuriates me…what boils my blood are people who come to a dead stop in the center of the aisle at the store.  Honestly, I wouldn’t mind if they stopped because something on a shelf caught their eye (I’ve been known to freeze at the sight of anything monkey related) but what bothers me is that they come to a halt with their shopping cart in the middle of the aisle so they can start talking real loud on their cell phones about stuff no one but their doctor should know.  Grrrrrr….  Then they turn around and give me dirty looks when I say “Excuse me” so I can pass.

Duuuuude, you’re the one who’s breaching all sorts of etiquette:

  • Disrupting the flow of traffic
  • Talking about personal business in a public setting
  • General buttheadedness

The proper thing to do is to move your cart to the side and then start talking or, better yet, tell the person you’ll call them back.  Trust me when I say, no one wants to hear about your rash, in fact, it’ll totally skeeve people and make them want to hit you with their carts and run.

Now tell me the truth, this is just between us, I’m not the only one who feels this way…  It bothers you when people just stop in the middle of the walkway too, doesn’t it?  Or are you one of those people?

22nd Feb2011

Monday Mingle: Groceries, Retirement and Other Ramblings

by Daenel

To see another shot of my new hair, click here…. My hair was done by Cheryl from Cheryl’s Touch in Dallas, PA. If you’re ever in the area, she can hook you up. She also gave me new brows and yanked out waxed my girlstache. What? You know you have one too!

Monday MingleMonday Mingle is hosted by Jenn at Eighty MPH Mom. If you’d like to participate, simply create a short vlog in which you answer the questions and then hit up the linky. Don’t forget to grab the badge and leave some comment love for your fellow participants. After all, isn’t that what mingling is all about?

This week’s questions are:
1. How do you compile grocery list – by an inventory, or writing things as you run out?
2. At what age do you plan on retiring (or your spouse retiring)?
3. What do you plan on doing when you retire?

Next week’s questions are:
1.  Do you have Spring flowers (or any flowers) blooming in your yard right now? Show us!
2.  Are you watching American Idol this season? What do you think about the new judges?
3.  Tell us something that happened to you last week!

20th Feb2011

Mamavation Monday on Sunday

by Daenel

Mamavation MondayConfession time:  for the few days I haven’t done anything overly strenuous as far as exercising goes.  I worked out with a couple of DVDs and I did my normal walking (just upped it a tad so I felt like I was accomplishing something).  And my eating has been horrendous.  I’m back to fast food before I head off to work again after my evening shift at the library.  It’s just so darned convenient.  I’m not making excuses here, just stating the facts.

Like many people I kept saying “I’ll do better on Monday” or “I’ll start again tomorrow.”  Well, you know what?  Tomorrow isn’t promised…  I need to live my healthiest life from moment to moment.  No more waiting for tomorrow.

I’ve downloaded the Sparkpeople app to my Droid and I’m using it to track my meals and activities.  I was using Live Strong but I really prefer being able to use an app to plug in information rather than having to go to the website.   I have a case of water and have committed to a 2 for 1 ratio ~ for every 8 oz cup of coffee I drink, I have to drink 16 oz of water.  I drink a lot of coffee, so I think this ratio will help me.

As far as meals go, breakfast and lunch will continue to be my heaviest meals of the day with dinner being a salad and fruit or something along those lines.  There’s nothing worse than going to bed on a full stomach.

Yesterday I saw my gym membership fee come out of my checking account and realized that I’m wasting $10 a month, so it’s back to the gym I go.  I really enjoy using the treadmill, especially right now with the weather being all janky and everything.

My Stats:

  • Starting weight:  163.2 lbs
  • Today’s weight:  162 lbs (-1.2 lbs)
  • Goal weight:  145 lbs


This week’s blogging carnival is sponsored by Fit Studio.  One blogging carnival participant will receive a Fitness Basket with Weider PowerSwitch Adjustable 25 lb. Hand Weight65 cm Fitness Ball, and Sportline Elite Fitness Pedometer.  Answer the following question in your blog post and link back to the Fit Studio website.  Link up your post here to share with others.

Question: What motivates you to get going and what keeps you going?

Well, since my motivation has been lacking for the last few days I’d have to say nothing but what has put my butt in gear are 2 things:

  1. Seeing that $10 come out of my account and knowing it has been coming out for a year and I haven’t set foot in the gym in 10 months.  That a $100 that could have bought me a pair of shoes.
  2. Trying to squeeze my butt into my favorite jeans on Saturday night and realizing that no amount of wiggling was going to get them up over my hips.

Disclosure:  This post is sponsored by SEARS FitStudio and I’m writing this to be entered into a giveaway hosted by Mamavation and sponsored by Sears.

19th Feb2011

I Have New Hair

by Daenel

I Have New HairWhen I was younger, nothing gave me more excitement than changing my hair.  One minute I was shaving one side bald and the next I was dying it black. And as an adult, nothing has changed.  My hair is still my greatest accessory.  Hair color can change my mood and my attitude almost as quickly as a new pair of shoes.  It’s truly a wonder I have any hair left considering how often I’ve dyed it, cut it, relaxed it, etc.

For a while now I’ve been trying to figure out what to do to make my hair different.  I’ve been some form of burgundy for a few months now and I desperately wanted a change.  I had tried putting a purple streak in my hair but it didn’t show up as well as I had hoped.  So my friend, Cheryl, a beautician, told me that she’d help me out.  So I made an appointment at her salon, Cheryl’s Touch, and had her add red streaks to my hair.  I decided against the purple because I thought it may be a little too much for me.  I’m so happy with my decision.  I love love love it!  I feel so bold and funky now.

What do you to change your look?  Do you cut your hair?  Dye it?  Experiment with makeup?

17th Feb2011

The Handwriting Meme

by Daenel

It’s so funny that I stumbled across this meme on Allie’s blog, Wardrobe Oxygen, because Miss 17 and I were just talking about how writing is becoming a lost art.  Seriously, when I teach classes at the college, I just want to dedicate a couple of classes to writing basics ~ you know, mostly how to write so that I can read what the student has written.  As much as I love technology, I hate what it has done to penmanship.

My mother taught me how to print and my father taught me how to write in cursive.  My mother is left handed, I’m right handed.  This was no easy task for her.  She used to turn the paper upside down so that she could write and, well, that’s how I write ~ with my papers so slanted that they may as well be upside down.  My father was an artist in every sense of the word.  I wish that he (or I) had kept some of his sketches as well as some of his writing samples, absolutely beautiful but illegible.  Have you ever tried to read the Declaration of Independence?  That’s what my father’s writing looks like.

Over time I also developed other little quirks that add to the uniqueness of my writing:

  • I love Pilot Precise V5 pens because they offer the sharpest and cleanest point (Pilot people if you stumble across this post and you want to give me a bunch of purple ones, I wouldn’t turn you down.  Call me.)
  • All of my letters have to be the same size (Yes, I’m a tad bit OCD about my writing)
  • Everything slants in the same direction (I am responsible for a lot to the deforestation that has taken place across the US because I would just toss homework away left and right)
  • I will rewrite until things are perfect (What you are about to see is a 3rd attempt, I wanted to do it again but I’m resisting the urge)

The Handwriting Meme

To participate in the meme, all you have to do is write the answers to these questions on a piece of paper:

  1. What’s your name/your blogger name?
  2. What’s your blog’s name/URL?
  3. Write “The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog.”
  4. Favorite quote?
  5. Your favorite song?
  6. Your favorite band/singers?
  7. Anything else you want to say?
  8. Tag three to five other people.

17th Feb2011

It’s Official! I’m a Contributing Blogger

by Daenel
Contributing Blogger for Eighty MPH Mom

Image by Fotolia

My friend, Jen, has invited me to be a contributing blogger at Eighty MPH Mom.  To say I’m honored would be putting it mildly.  Those of you who read my blog regularly know that I participate in her Monday Mingles on a regular basis.  Yes, she’s the reason I’ve been hamming it up in front of the video camera on Mondays.  If you’d like to read more about what I’ll be sharing, please head over to Jen’s blog and read Contributor Introduction ~ Daenel.  While you’re there consider entering some of her fabulous giveaways

15th Feb2011

Wordless Wednesday: Huntsville Dam

by Daenel

Huntsville Dam

For more Wordless Wednesday, check out 5 Minutes for Mom

15th Feb2011

I May Not Have Rhythm but I Have a Healthy Heart

by Daenel

Image by © Royalty-Free/Corbis

Did you know that heart disease is the number one cause of death for women over the age of twenty?  According to the American Heart Association, one woman dies every minute from heart disease!  That is a crazy statistic, especially when you consider there are steps you can take to get your heart healthy now…

1.  Get active
2.  Control your cholesterol
3.  Eat better
4.  Manage your blood pressure
5.  Lose weight
6.  Reduce blood sugar
7.  Stop smoking

For the past fourteen days I’ve been participating in the 21 Day Activity Challenge that my friend, Sarah, is hosting on Facebook.  Mostly, I’ve been sticking to a walking routine that I found online but today I decided to do something a little different, I decided to dance.

A few months back I purchased a DVD by The Firm called Cardio Dance Express with the hopes that I’d be slim and trim by the time summer came around.  I used the DVD a couple of times and then put it away to be forgotten with the myriad of other loose my jiggly parts stuff that I’ve collected over the last few years.  Anyway, this morning I decided to bust out the video and shake my groove thang.

Well, I discovered several things:

  1. I’m very uncoordinated
  2. I don’t have a bit of rhythm
  3. Dancing is hard work

The routine, led by Allison and her salsa dancing box stepping high kicking gang, was at times difficult, fun and exhausting.  I had body parts flying all over the place.  It wasn’t pretty, y’all, but it was just what I needed to get the old heart pumping.  By the time I had worked my way through the 45 minute routine, I was sweating, panting and desperate for some water.  But I felt good.

The cover of the DVD guarantees “Visible Results in 10 Workouts”.  Well, I don’t know about all that but I can guarantee that you’ll feel better in one workout!  Even if you’re uncoordinated like I am, just moving for 30 minutes a day can help to improve your heart health.  No, you don’t have to be a dancer, you can make up your own moves, just get up and do something!

What are you doing to make your heart healthier?

Disclosure:  I did not receive any compensation for this post, I just wanted to talk about what I’m using to get my heart healthy.

14th Feb2011

Monday Mingle: Birthday Wishes, Roller Coasters and Other Things

by Daenel

Monday MingleMonday Mingle is hosted by Jenn at Eighty MPH Mom. If you’d like to participate, simply create a short vlog in which you answer the questions and then hit up the linky. Don’t forget to grab the badge and leave some comment love for your fellow participants. After all, isn’t that what mingling is all about?

This week’s questions are:
1. What is your favorite ride at an amusement park?
2. Whats the nicest thing you have ever done for someone?
3. What do you like best and least about your life?

Next week’s questions are:
1. How do you compile grocery list – by an inventory, or writing things as you run out?
2. At what age do you plan on retiring (or your spouse retiring)?
3. What do you plan on doing when you retire?

13th Feb2011

Guess Who’s a Featured Blogger?

by Daenel

Eighty MPH Mom Featured BloggerLooks around and then raises hand…  I am!  I am!

Jennifer at Eighty MPH Mom has asked me to be a Sunday Featured Blogger!  How cool is that?  I adore Jen, she’s the one who encouraged me to get out of my comfort zone and share my silliness in front of the camera with Monday Mingle.  If you’re a blogger and you’re interested in vlogging, I would encourage you to give the Monday Mingle meme a try.  It’s fun, quick and painless.

If you get a chance, check out the Sunday Featured Blogger post, where you’ll get a chance to learn more about me.  And while you’re there, check out Jen’s giveaways.

12th Feb2011

Saturday 9: Television, Charity and the Other Seven

by Daenel

Saturday 91. What new TV show rocks your world this year?
Oh, gosh, there are several:

2. What is your least favorite ethnic food, and what makes it your least favorite?
I don’t have an ethnic food that I dislike.  I love food.

3. When does liking someone a lot become loving that person?
I don’t think you can say it happens in X amount of days, weeks or months, it just happens.  One day, you wake up and that person is a part of you.

4. Is there a job you would do for free, and is it your current job?
I love what I do right now. I’m a librarian at a local college and I couldn’t be happier. I enjoy helping the students and working with the faculty and staff. It’s a really good gig.

5. What is one person/thing that inspired you to take action of some sort?
Last year I rocked the red pump as a member of The Red Pump Project 500 in 50 Campaign, which is a global initiative to raise awareness about women and girls who are living with HIV/AIDs. I’m participating in the campaign this year as well. I chose to do this because I was stunned and saddened by the number of women and girls (especially in the African American community) whose lives have been touched by the disease.

6. Though you might not believe in it, would you like fate to exist?
No, I believe that God is in control.

7. Tell us about a news story that truly shocked you.
I think it’s safe to say that I’m increasingly shocked by the depravity of people and can’t believe the things that they’ll do to each other. My heart especially aches when I read/hear about a child who has been abused.

8. What’s something you’re looking forward to?
Warm weather. I don’t do well with cold and snow.

9. What characteristics do you despise?
The need in some people to be physically abusive towards people who are weaker or smaller. I think it’s a cop~out to say those individuals suffer from low self esteem, no, they don’t, they’re just mean. There are people out there who are just mean.

Saturday 9 is hosted by Sam at Saturday 9.  If you’d like to join the meme, simply answer the 9 questions and then hit the linky.  Don’t forget to visit the other participants and leave them some comment love.

11th Feb2011

I Love My Kids But It’s On Now {In the Family Room}

by Daenel

I like to think I’m a good mother.  I’m firm when I need to be (I’ve stripped their rooms to the bare necessities for punishment) and playful most other times (I’ve sent all four of them the following text message at the same time: “Don’t tell the others but you’re my favorite” just to make them laugh).  But I was not prepared for their revenge…

Wednesday night I arrived home from work to a semi~dark house, a little weird but not enough to raise my suspicions.  Usually someone leaves the hall light on for me, instead the living room lamp was on.  No biggie, maybe the light blew out. So I started walking up the stairs and I saw what I thought was my daughter peering at me over the back of the sofa; I got ready to yell because it was after 11 and they had school the next morning.  Anyway, just as I opened my mouth, I realized it was not my kid but “something else” and I started screaming…. The kids had placed my doll on the sofa and darkened the house to get back at me.  They totally scared the living daylights out of me.

The doll is Kareena.  I’ve had her since I was about 3 or 4 years old; longer than I’ve had them, therefore, the attachment is much stronger. Kareena has literally been all over the world with me: D.C., Colorado, Virginia, Italy, Korea, etc.  My family teases me mercilessly about this doll, they call her the “Bride of Chuck”. They swear her eyes move  and that they’ve seen her run across the living room in the middle of the night.  Way too many Lifetime Movies with killer infants.  In fact, she’s usually in the closet so they can’t see her but every now and then I break her out for a little bit of fun but I never expected my babies to use my doll against me.

Now it’s on…

Do you and your family play pranks on each other?  Who usually starts it?

10th Feb2011

What Do You Think of the New Facebook Fan Page Profile?

by Daenel
Facebook Badge

To see the new profile, click the picture

Remember a few weeks ago when Facebook rolled out the new profile pages for its users and everyone was upset about some of the features, namely the row of pictures plastered across the top of the page?  Well, guess what?  Now Facebook has rolled out pretty much the same new profile page for fan pages as well.

Here are some of the changes I noticed to the new profile:

1.  The most recent photos posted to the wall or that have been tagged by the page owner form a “banner” across the top of the page.  Photos posted by fans don’t appear in the stream.  A nice way to highlight interesting pictures, especially if you’re a Wordless Wednesday participant.

2.  Navigation links have been posted to the left, just as they are on the profile pages.  This is one of those changes I wouldn’t have noticed had it not been pointed out because, um, I thought the navigation has always been on the left side.

3.  Two new posting filters have been added, so either the most recent posts or the most popular post can be seen first.  To set the default filter, just go to “Edit Page”.  This is great for keeping active conversations going or allowing you to highlight new content.

4.  You can use Facebook as your page, which means that you can comment on other people’s pages using your Facebook page, receive notifications when fans interact with your page or posts, like other pages and feature them on your page, etc.  OK, I really hope the notification part works because there’s nothing worse than finding out hours or days later that someone commented on a post or said something on your page and you missed it.  Seriously, Facebook, that’s something you should have taken care of a long time ago.

5.  Under the “Settings” you can set your defaults for email notification, establish how you post on your page (as yourself or as your page e.g. as DaenelT or as Living Outside the Stacks) and you can select which featured pages appear on the left hand side.  To manage the settings, go to “Edit Page” and “Settings”.  To select your favorites, go to “Edit Page” and “Featured”.  I’m definitely curious to see how the page posting works because there are times when I’d prefer to post as myself on other people’s pages, although I’m sure for branding purposes, it’s probably best to remain consistent.  Still I’m going to give that feature a whirl…

If you’d like to see the new profile, I’ve upgraded my Facebook page already.  All other Facebook pages will receive the new profile beginning in March.

Facebook Fan Page

Some of the other things that I’ve noticed so far:

  • The font is really small. Dude, I’m blind in one eye and can’t see out the other, what are they trying to do to me?
  • You now have the ability to add fans as friends.  Or did I just never notice that?
  • The “View Insights” link, aka as “stats” to us library folk, has been moved over to the right hand side.  In fact, all admin stuff is now on the right hand side while all fan type things have been moved to the left.

How do you feel about the new profile?  Are you going to switch voluntarily or just wait for Facebook to do it for you?  Or would you rather they just leave well enough alone?

09th Feb2011

Wordless Wednesday: My Front Yard

by Daenel

Wordless Wednesday:  My Front Yard

09th Feb2011

Borrowing from My Husband’s Closet

by Daenel

Daenel TIf you follow me on Twitter or Facebook, you know one of my biggest complaints is that the library is freeeeezing at night.  I’m not talking about a little chilly, I mean huddled at the desk with my hands between my knees cold.  So cold that sometimes I just wanna yell “Group hug” so we can all warm up.  Ok, I think you get my point…  Anyway, today as I was getting ready for work, I remembered a post that I had read on Charmed Valerie about how to wear your husband’s sweater and I thought hmmmm, why not?  So I grabbed my husband’s big ol’ gray wool sweater (XXL, that’s why it’s sweater dress length) from his sweater drawer and threw it on with a pair of jeggings and my Earth Footwear boots.  Now, y’all know I’m an accessories kinda girl, so I added my own black scarf and a pair of silver hoop earrings ~ gotta feminize it just a bit.

I have to say, if you’re always cold, shopping in your husband’s closet may not be such a bad idea.  He has a cream colored sweater that I think will look really cute with this vintage rose colored scarf that I made a few days ago.

Have you ever stolen borrowed anything from your husband’s closet?  Would you wear it to work?


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