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Archive for April 2012

The Voice: Semifinal Round – Vote For Chris Mann Tonight

Source: skimbacolifestyle.com via Skimbaco on Pinterest

Oh. My. God. The Mann is good!


Voting opens AFTER tonight’s show from 10PM EST through 10AM EST.
Five ways to vote: Phone, FaceBook, NBC.com, iTunes, Text.



Zen and Tulips at Longwood Garden

Longwood Gardens in springtime is a sight to behold. Spent a few hours walking around the garden and taking photos of the colorful springtime plants. The tulips grabbed my attention for a good hour, then wandering towards the Italian Garden, I came across a stunning purple flower covered glade.

Enjoy a few of my favorite photos from this visit to Longwood Garden. All photos taken with either Canon EOS Rebel T1i and Panasonic DMC-LX5

Pretty purple glade

Pretty Pink Tulip

Orange Beauty

Is it Real?

After a few hours of walking around Longwood Garden, it was great to sit and enjoy the cool breezes coming off the large lake. Thanks to Famous Footwear for providing  comfy shoes for this photo walk.

Dr. Scholl Shoes


Duke and Duchess of Cambridge – One Year On

Still going strong :)

So, how many of you woke early to watch the wedding?


2012 Broad Street Run – The Reasons Why I’m Running

Why I am running  the 2012 Broad Street Run.

First Photo with iPhone 4s

2012 Broad Street Run

I may have submitted this too late for inclusion into the Inquirer’s profiles of participants running the 2012 Broad Street Run, so I’m posting the reasons why I’m running this year.

2011 Broad Street Run was  my first distance run. With training and support from Team Philly, the run was simply magical. A passion for running was ignited with that race, so much so I signed up to participate in longer distance runs in the fall.  Training went on full speed into the summer, until I sustained an ankle and finger fracture during a mud run.  In the ER, the reality that I would not be able to safely train for the races I had looked forward to running began to sink in and it gutted me.

As I  healed, I planned. When medically cleared to start running again, I joined Goals Fitness Boot Camp to work on strength and cardio fitness and eased back into running, starting with small distances gradually building up the number of miles.  As I progressed, there was an improvement in my running pace and running became fun again; I missed that so much.  By February, I began to believe that maybe I could dramatically improve upon my Broad Street finish time.  I was thinking this was my comeback story;  from devastating injury to PR glory at the 2012 Broad Street Run.  Then I heard about Sherry Arnold and her story inspired me to become that much stronger. Via websites and social media came the awful news of Sherry Arnold’s abduction and murder during an early morning run. This struck home, as I often run alone in places I deem ‘safe’.  Three days a week  I’m  out the door at 5 am  for Goals Fitness boot camp session and often run alone after work along Kelly Drive.

On  Sunday, May 6th,  I will realize my comeback from injury and will dedicate this run in honor of the memory of Sherry Arnold.  Sherry was a math teacher, wife, mother, and runner. In essence, she was one of us.Her tragic end galvanized people get out and run – stomping out fear and getting stronger one mile at a time.  While I can’t change the past, I can honor her memory by facing my own running challenges and finding the strength to overcome them.


Bleed it Out – Linkin Park

2012 Broad Street Run

Bring. It. On.

Say your prayers and stomp it out
When they bring that chorus in

I bleed it out digging deeper
Just to throw it away.


Instagram Milestone – 100 Followers!

Yay me!
100 Instagram Followers

Now I want more.

Follow me on Instagram via Followgram or click on the link on the sidebar to your right.


Quitter – A Book Review

First Line of Jon Acuff's Book 'Quitter'

Rarely does a book grab me with the first sentence, but that is exactly what happened when I began reading Jon Acuff’s book ‘Quitter‘.

The opening paragraph describes his reverse superman routine – something I practice three times a week. Although I do have access to a private bathroom, his advice for changing clothes is spot on along with his advice on making your dream job a reality.

Quitter is a personal reflection and how to guide on how to make dreams become your day job. Amazon book description is as follows:

Have you ever felt caught between the tension of a day job and a dream job? That gap between what you have to do and what you’d love to do?
I have.

At first I thought I was the only one who felt that way, but then I started to talk to people and realized we’re becoming the I’m, but generation. When we talk about what we do for a living we inevitably say, I’m a teacher, but I want to be an artist. I’m a CPA, but I’d love to start my own business.

I’m a _____, but I want to be a ______.

All too often, we hear that dreaming big means you quit your day job, sell everything you own, and move to Guam. But what if there were a different way?

What if you could blow up your dream without blowing up your life?

What if you could go for broke without going broke?

What if you could start today?

What if you already have everything you need to begin?

From figuring out what your dream is to quitting in a way that exponentially increases your chance of success, Quitter is full of inspiring stories and actionable advice. This book is based on 12 years of cubicle living and my true story of cultivating a dream job that changed my life and the world in the process.

It’s time to close the gap between your day job and your dream job.

It’s time to be a Quitter.

Jon delivers on the back of the book description. His writing paints a realistic portrait of how to make smart decisions on the path to your dream job and more importantly, why these decisions are important.  From the first sentence, I connected with the point of view of the author.  It took only two days to read the book, yet several weeks later I’m flipping through the book re-reading selected sections. I love, love, love his conversational style of writing.  Every time I read chapters or paragraphs, I come away with the impression of a best friend sharing serious, no nonsense advice – it is always best to pay attention.

I would recommend this book to anyone who is on a journey seeking to be better. It is a great tool to have and to use during your journey.


I was fortunate to be present during his opening keynote speech at the 2012 Blissdom conference in Nashville where he gave out a copy of his book, Quitter, my opinion of this book is completely my own.


Chasing 26.2 – Claire Lomas 2012 Virgin London Marathon Challenge

After learning of Claire Lomas and her journey to the 2012 Virgin London Marathon, I have no excuses as to why I should not complete a marathon or two. In my professional life, I’ve read about the devastation of spinal cord injuries and Claire’s story offers a ray of hope for people struggling with these injuries.

Claire Lomas suffered a devastating spinal injury horseback riding in 2007 leaving her with no sensation from her chest down.  With a fantastic support group and modern technology via ReWalk from Argomedtech, Claire decided to walk the 2012 London Marathon to raise awareness and funding for spinal injuries.

Check out her progress at Get Claire Walking Campaign.


Snark Factor Tonight

Listen live to the Snark Factor every Wednesday night at 1opm EST on FTR Radio where I will be joining Fingers Malloy, Irish Duke to bring news bites at the top of the hour followed by sparkling chats with invited guests. If you are a fan of my blog, you’ll know that I have an eclectic taste in news of the day.

On tap for Wednesday night:

BlogCon12 Review


Belle Meade Plantation

Belle Meade Plantation

What I learned during my stay in Nashville.

Belle Meade plantation was founded in 1807 by a Virginian with a keen interest in horses, John Harding. While visiting Nashville, I was interested in touring an antebellum mansion and Belle Meade is a fantastic example of this type of mansion. The original house was a brick Federal style home. The greek revival style pictured above is the work of William Hicks Jackson, who married Selene Harding, the grand-daughter of John Harding.


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