Hello friends and welcome to You Choose the Shoes Season 2 ~ Week 5
This week the choices are both open toe and back strap, Payless versus The Shoe Dept.
These cognac sandals are quite comfy but they didn’t get much wear last season.
On the other hand, these Fioni’s from Payless were worn quite a bit during the season, I just wish they were available in other colors.
Next week you may not see much of my right leg because I burned it with hot grease. I was pulling the pan of baked chicken out of the over and it slipped, I grabbed the pan with my hand burning my fingertips and the grease splattered along my leg – it was painful!
The skirt is JC Penney and the top and purse were both thrifted from Goodwill.
I am wearing the Jord Watch and tomorrow is the last day to enter for a chance to win! So which pair do you choose?
Thank you all for voting last week…and the winner was…
5 steps Small Businesses Can Take To Get Started Working With Bloggers
I recently read an article which is several years old but is still relevant today. It was published by Small Business Computing.com, and listed 5 steps small businesses can take to get started working with bloggers. I found it to be very interesting to not only small business owners but also for bloggers who work on their campaigns, here’s an excerpt.
Identify the Right Bloggers
With all the bloggers out there, you need to prioritize. Start your blogger outreach effort by browsing *Technorati and Alltop to find bloggers in your field, or by doing a Google Blog search.
Narrow Your List to No More Than 20 Bloggers
To stay focused, create a list of up to 20 bloggers to target. You might start with smaller, more niche-focused bloggers. Any lessons learned from those interactions can then be applied to the bigger fish. Plus, if you get a shout-out from a niche blogger, you can provide a link to it when you contact the bigger bloggers.
Track all communications with target bloggers in an Excel, Google Docs, or other spreadsheet, recording when you contacted them, if you received a reply, and so on.
But you’re not ready to contact bloggers until you can check step three off your list.
Read the Blogs
“The biggest mistake people make when reaching out to bloggers is not reading their blogs,” says Payton. “I get pitched all the time by people who clearly haven’t read my blog, and it’s a real turn-off.”
Read at least a few months worth of each target blogger’s posts, to get a sense of their likes and dislikes and tone. Note what they don’t cover as much as what they do write about.
Engage the Blogger in a Conversation
Usually, the best way to initiate a dialog with a blogger is to add thoughtful, useful comments their posts. Many bloggers read the comments others leave for them. Also, include a link back to your website to give the blogger some context about your business if they want it.
When leaving comments, don’t be self-serving or talk about how great your product or service is. That’s an ideal way to turn off the blogger you’re courting. Just strive to be helpful and interesting.
Once you’ve got the blogger’s attention, it’s time to reach out more directly. Consider emailing the blogger helpful information, story ideas, statistics, news in your industry — anything that’s not an overt sales pitch.
For best results, make sure the email subject heading is specific and intriguing. Here’s why:
“I receive hundreds of emails every day,” says Ben Parr, coeditor of Mashable, a popular technology blog that often covers startups. “Most of the time I just scan the subject lines.” If Parr doesn’t know the sender and/or the email looks like a “form letter,” he usually ignores it.
Your goal should be to make a blogger curious enough to open your email, without being cheesy about it. If you don’t receive a response to your first email, wait at least three days before sending a follow up.
Maintain the Relationship
Once you’ve established a good relationship with a blogger, keep the dialog going.
Periodically reach out with observations, story ideas and anything else the blogger might find useful. Continue reading your target bloggers’ posts, so you can stay up to date on changes in their interests and topics. (Subscribing to the blog’s RSS feed is an easy way to be alerted of new posts.)
Consider inviting local bloggers to a special event your company hosts. This could help you develop a relationship with the blogger and potentially give him or her something to write about.
And pay attention to your site’s Google Analytics, or whichever Web traffic analytics tool you use, suggests Payton. Look to see if the blogs you’ve developed relationships with are sending measurable traffic to your site. If that’s not happening, make sure the blogger includes a link (preferably one with a relevant keyword) to your small business website whenever he or she writes about your business.
Ultimately, successful blogger outreach is just like any type of business networking. Be genuine and authentic. Know your messaging and differentiation. And most importantly, think about how you can help the blogger, rather than staying focused on what they can do for you.
*Technorati can be a particularly helpful tool for identifying influential bloggers, with its Top 100 blog chart and Technorati Authority ratings. The latter gives you a sense of how influential a blog is based on its category, how well a blog’s content matches its category topic, how often other blogs in its category link to the blog, and so on.
You can also use tools like Compete and Alexa to see how blog sites rank in terms of popularity, traffic and page views. Also take into account a blog home page’s Google PageRank, a link analysis algorithm that plays a role in helping Google determine how authoritative a web page is.
The goal is to focus on blogs with a decent amount of traffic and authority. “Look for blogs that have a PageRank of three or higher and that have 1,000 to 5,000 unique page views per month,” advises Susan Payton, managing partner of Egg Marketing & Public Relations in San Diego.
Payton also suggests checking to see if bloggers you’re targeting are active on Facebook orTwitter. If so, the bigger the following, the better.
That said, you should also be realistic. An influential blogger with a huge following may not be interested in covering a small business she’s never heard of. There’s nothing wrong with aiming high, but don’t overlook smaller bloggers who cover niche topics relevant to your small business, too.
In addition, learn as much as you can about the bloggers you target. By reading their bios and tweets, you might find some common ground that can serve as an ice breaker.
Hello friends, I hope all is well in your world! As I sit here writing this post I am listening to The Friends of Distinction sing “Lonesome Mood” and it has really gotten me in some sorta mood – I love classic R&B, check it out and let me know how it makes you feel.
Last week as I was going through my closet looking for something to wear for the #JordWatch review, oh, by the way, don’t forget to enter for a chance to win, I came across this sleeveless dress. I had totally forgotten about it but since it was 81 degrees and sunny I figured it was a perfect day to wear it.
The statement necklace was shown in a previous video and was purchased for $5 from Walmart #WearWalmart and the shoes were a gift from fellow blogger SandpaperKisses.
The CZ ring is from Avon and of course the watch is a Jord Wood watch, Ely in Maple. Click on their side banner ad to see some of the other great styles of both men and women wood watches.
Hello friends, I hope all is well in your world. If you, like many other families are preparing for the kid’s summer vacation and you don’t want to spend a lot of money, think local. It has been years since my sons were young and we always ended up vacationing in Orlando, however, there were a few places in Wilmington that we enjoyed visiting during the year.
Last week I met a friend for dinner at Iron Hill Brewery on the Wilmington Riverfront, where by the way I had the best Fish Taco! Before she arrived I had an opportunity to walk around and take a few pictures. #bloggerslife
When my boys were young we used to take them to the now closed Kahunaville, but there are still a few places for the family to have fun in Wilmington.
The Delaware Children’s Museum looked like fun spot and there is also Frawley Stadium, home of the Blue Rocks where you can have some major family fun watching minor league baseball. For the little ones in strollers, parents can get in some exercise while the tots ride along the beautiful Wilmington Riverfront.
Wow it seems like it has been forever since I last featured a chapter from the Superfoods for Seniors book, but it has been on my desk at work for the longest time so I guess it’s time to begin again.
The last chapter we discussed was Tummy Tamers, and this week we will pick up with “Bowel Disease Basics”. As most of you know, my hubby was diagnosed with Small Intestinal Cancer and had surgery approximately one year ago in March. Although the cancerous cells were removed, they have since noticed a growth albeit small one in a lymph node and have been monitoring him closely. We are not claiming the possibility of it being cancerous, we are however, eating right as not aggravate the cells.
According to the book, the 17 Superfoods that help to cure intestinal ills are as follows:
Cooked Rice – the starch is tough enough to withstand stomach acids and encourages the growth of probiotics which is a valuable bacteria.
Oats – soluable fiber dissolves in water, forming a gel that slows food down in your intestines, giving your body the chance to make butyrate. Rolled oats are best and are great with blueberries, another soluble fiber.
Yogurt – packed with probiotic power, look for those labeled “active cultures”.
Yogurt is an easier calcium source to digest than milk.
Lentils – a great source of iron for people with anemia often found in people with IBS. If you prefer not to eat beans, try other iron rich foods like clams or chicken.
Artichokes – High in magnesium which is hard to absorb if you have IBD or celiac disease. Try steaming and dipped lightly in mayo with lemon juice or plain yogurt with Dijon mustard. Other foods high in magnesium are green peas, potatoes, sweet potatoes, spinach, okra, scallops and beans.
Butterhead Lettuce – switch from iceberg lettuce to butterhead lettuce to get 4x more vitamin K which helps the blood to clot properly. If you bruise easily, have excessive bleeding or nosebleeds you may be vitamin K deficient. Butterhead lettuce includes Bibb or Boston, try adding these to your salads instead.
Orange Juice – fortified with Vitamin D because people with IBD or celiac disease often absorb less Vitamin D than average, which is also a risk for osteoperois.
Turkey – high fat foods can cause cramping and diarrhea so cut the fat with turkey which is lower in fat and can add zinc to your diet. Zinc had wound-healing powers which may be loss if you are taking steroids for IBD.
Chickpeas – add more folate-rich chickpeas to your diet to help control colon cancer risk. If they are too high in fiber for you, try eating raw spinach or canned condensed chicken noodle soup.
Pumpkin – just ½ cup of pumpkin will provide as much Vitamin A as a whole cup of carrots. Vitamin A helps to protect the lining of your intestines.
Lima Beans – if on steroids which robs your body of potassium, then eating Lima Beans which are rich in potassium will help to replace it. Lack of potassium causes confusion, drowsiness, dizziness, kidney damage, paralysis and irregular heart beats.
Marinara Sauce & Olive Oil – both contain high levels of Vitamin E a powerful antioxidant.
Cranberry Juice Cocktail – contains higher amounts of antioxidant vitamins such as vitamin E and C. Helps to reduce the minimum steroid dosage needed to control ulcerative colitis symptoms.
Collard Greens – leafy greens such as collards, kale, and turnip greens can help you add calcium without milk’s consequences.
Sardines – rich in calcium, vitamin D and omega-3 fish oils sardines also contain selenium which help lower the increased colon cancer risk associated with IBD.
Rainbow Trout – contains omega-3 fish oils which can help prevent relapses of Crohn’s disease but limit your consumption to 12 oz or less per week because some may contain mercury with PCB’s.
Pineapple – has been linked to the improvement of ulcerative colitis symptoms in older adults. Fresh pineapple is better than canned or in a gelatin.
Disclosure: I am not in the medical field so please check with your own physician before making any changes to your diet.
Used for medicinal purposes for thousands of years, tea tree oil has many beneficial effects on your skin, your complexion and hair. Take our short quiz to find out more about tea tree oil and what it can do for you.
As you can see from the pictures below, these tasty treats are definitely inline with what I consider to be savory snacks and I can’t wait to try them all.
The box arrived during Easter week but I didn’t have a chance to try any of them due to the holiday, but have since taken them to work to try and will let you know what I think in the next video. In the meantime, please take a few minutes to watch the unboxing video.
Herby Bread Basket: mini basil bread sticks, garlic crostini and oregano rice crackers
[tweetthis]what do you call a sheep with no legs? a cloud! @grazeusa [/tweetthis]
Black Pepper Pistachios: Black Pepper Pistachios
90 calories and 95 mg of sodium
Chili and Honey Almonds: Honey and Chili Almonds
130 calories and 170 mg of sodium
Graze is introducing aromatic afternoon broths including Japanese Miso, Thai Tom Yum and Vietnamese Pho which I may add to my “Try” list. The broths are inspired by the big, bold flavors of Asian street food and are a perfect pick-me-up for an afternoon snack.
If you are interested in trying the Graze box subscription, click on the link below to be taken to their website and if you do place an order, I will get a few discounts on my future orders.
Disclosure: I received a watch from JORD in exchange for this review, however, opinions are 100% my own.
I believe that Mother’s Day should be celebrated more than once a year and I also think that it should last for more than 24 hours. Now with both of my sons in college spending time with them has become even more important.
Every year on Mother’s Day hubby stays home so that the boys and I can spend the day together and we always go out to brunch. Of course, they give me the customary bunch of flowers and a kiss…on the forehead, but this year it’s going to be different. Along with brunch, flowers and a forehead kiss, I am getting the gift of time, and that gift is compliments from Jord Watch.
Moms everywhere knows the importance of spending time with their kids because they grow up so fast and it’s time that we can never get back. The picture below is from Mother’s Day 2013 and if you have kept up with my Instagram photos you know how much my sons have grown and matured in two short years.
I am wearing the Ely style in Maple which compliments any outfit that I wear during the week and on the weekends. My friends over at Jord wants to share the gift of time with another special mom, so enter today for a chance to win a watch of your own!
If you click on the link below you’ll be taken to their website where you will see a large selection of lovely watches, then come back here and leave a comment as to which watch you’d love to win.
This Rafflecopter Giveaway is open to US residents only and will end on May 1st, so that your gift of time can arrive in plenty of time before Mother’s Day!