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28
Sep

T.G.I.F!

Once a week, I like to blog about trivia and just general goofy stuff…mainly because I like to laugh and have fun at work. I am very fond of useless trivia. I’m one of those annoying people who do fairly well watching Jeopardy, Who Wants to be a Millionaire, and all those other trivia shows. I’ve won Millionaire in my living room twice. Twice! Getting my pie slices in Trivial Pursuit is usually a piece of cake.

But enough about me! The word trivia has come a circuitous route to stand for meaningless information. In Latin, the meaning of the word trivia is “A meeting place of three roads”. Inconsequential facts abound! And what does trivia have to do with meetings and roads? Nothing. That’s the point.

Trivia has grown to be a large part of our culture, although after the scandals of the late fifties, it lost popularity for a while when it was found that quiz shows were rigged. A movie named “Quiz Show” starring John Turturro & Ralph Fiennes was even made about the scandals, and was even nominated for a slew of Academy Awards. How’s that for some trivia?

So to kick off your fabulous, fantastic Friday, here is some trivia for you! Enjoy!

  • Wearing headphones for just an hour will increase the bacteria in your ear by 700 times.
  • 23% of all photocopier faults worldwide are caused by people sitting on them and photocopying their butts.
  • The average chocolate bar has 8 insects’ legs in it.
  • Floccinaucinihilipilification, the declaration of an item being useless, is the longest non-medical term in the English language.
  • There are more than 1,000 chemicals in a cup of coffee. Of these, only 26 have been tested, and half caused cancer in rats.
  • Giraffes have no vocal cords.
  • Banging your head against a wall uses 150 calories an hour (and causes brain damage, I’m sure).
  • The dot over the letter ‘i’ and ‘j’ is called a tittle.
  • Every person has a unique tongue print. (Say “aaah”)
  • Bruce Lee was so fast that they actually had to SLOW a film down so you could see his moves. That’s the opposite of the norm.

Photo Credits:
Tonydesare.com
free-extras.com
thebeancafe.com
lovegiraffe.com
daniellebaird.net
thefeelgoodlifestyle.com
27
Sep

Whiteboard Art, Who Knew?

As anyone who reads this blog knows, I like art made from office supplies. I like traditional art as well, but that’s for another blog.  I’ve blogged numerous times about art and office supplies, but it’s just such a fun subject! Maybe it’s just my lack of drawing capability (I can craft and photograph, I don’t need the artistic tri-fecta) but I LOVE creative ways to bring art to life.

I’ve tried to paint and draw. I gave it the old college try. I bought Prismacolor chalks and pencils. Pastels and oils. Watercolors and acrylics. Paint brushes have grown like a grove of trees on my desk, and palettes and trowels work double duty as organizers and letter openers. In all these years, the only thing I can draw/paint/sketch is a horse head. I learned the hard way that having the right tools don’t an artist make.

I’ve also learned to channel my need for creativity into Google searches. In my search for various office supplies, I came across one picture that blew my mind. I have no idea why I keep getting surprised by the things I see online, but I just do. I’m in love with creativity and in its thrall when I see new examples of it. So I saw this whiteboard art, and I quickly searched for more…

And found all of these! AMAZING! On a whiteboard. And windows. Should it maybe be call dry-erase art instead? The whiteboards are just incredible, and the window doodles crack me up! Makes me wish I had a window to draw on. Or mutilate with color, as it were. So fess up, do you doodle at work?

Photo Credits:
digitalspy.com
whiteboardartist.com
imgur.com
hudsonhouston.com
blameitonthevoices.com
oddee.com
26
Sep

Graffiti – Art or Nuisance? Discuss!

It’s an all too common sight here is South Florida- overpasses and train cars and snails…anything stationary or near-stationary can (and most likely will) be covered in graffiti. Some of it is pretty, some of it is downright scary, but almost all of the places you find it want it removed.

There are heavy duty graffiti removers on the market, and they really work, but when does it become an eyesore as opposed to art? I’ve seen some beautiful works of art that were technically graffiti, and it would’ve been a shame to destroy it. Unfortunately though, business owners don’t find it so beautiful.

I’m crafty, but not so much “artsy”. I can devise a way to make a picture frame out of driftwood, raffia, and florist wire, but ask me to draw a picture to put IN the frame? Not happening. However, that doesn’t preclude me from appreciating stunning works of spraypaint-or-chalk drawn art on the side of a building.

Also, graffiti has become part of our urban landscape, almost a trademark. Graffiti on the side of a skyscraper in the city downtown is not as out of place as graffiti on the side of a barn in the country would be. It’s almost expected! So that begs the question  – is it art or nuisance?

Photo Credits:
en.wikipedia.org
kaso.it
bluedistortion.com
luuux.com
graffitiarea.com/graffiti-3d-street-beauty-3d-graffiti-street/
emvergeoning.com
25
Sep

Breast Cancer Awareness Month

October is National Breast Cancer Awareness month, and all across the country, the color pink is cropping up, like spring in fall. Warriors in Pink are rolling out their campaigns, along with Susan G Komen and many other breast cancer charities. Proceeds from breast cancer awareness products are going toward the fight to eliminate this heinous disease and bring hope to millions of women who have been diagnosed.

From medical gloves to wall clips, pens to calendars, endorsed products are everywhere, and to buy them gives you at least a little bit of warm fuzzy feelings, knowing that you’re contributing to the fight, and getting a really cool product as well. Who doesn’t want a really awesome tape dispenser that not only looks great on your desk, but also goes to a good cause?

The pink ribbon symbol has become the most recognized ribbon in the country; when you see it, you’ve no doubt what it stands for. Ironically, it’s more recognizable than the original red ribbon that inspired it-which was for AIDS. I know that if I see a woman wearing a pink ribbon, she’s either survived breast cancer or knows someone who has, which unfortunately is way too often.

Breast cancer is a very serious matter to me, not that it isn’t to a lot of women. My family has a long history of it, from my great-grandmother, grandmother, three aunts, and my sister. I can only assume that I am predisposed to it. I am secure in the knowledge, however, that since my grandmother and aunts time, breast cancer research and treatment developments have come a very long way, and survival rates have increased exponentially, as evidenced by my sister successfully surviving the disease.

Breast cancer affects all of us, at one point or another in our lives. My hope is that future generations won’t have to go through the pain and uncertainty of a diagnosis, worrying about survival rates and chemotherapy, radiation and surgery. I support all of the charities that work tirelessly to raise money for the fight, knowing that one day, I might need that support network and the work they do. How do you contribute to the fight? Do you donate or purchased endorsed products?

24
Sep

Energy Drinks – A Love Story

Red Bull. Monster. Rockstar. 5-Hour Energy. You know all these names, and probably many more. For some of us, they are our morning pick-me-up. Or afternoon and evening pick-me-up-off-the-floor. They have become as ordinary as a bottle of soda in a convenience store cold case, and are a large part of our everyday lives.

I was never much of an energy drink consumer, usually relying on my morning coffee to do the trick, but sometimes energy needs are the mother of experiments, and when I was moving back to Florida from Arkansas, I found myself getting dangerously tired around 1 o’clock in the morning in the middle of my drive. I wasn’t even out of Mississippi at that point!

I stopped at an all-night gas station and got two bottles of 5-Hour Energy, specifically because it states there is no crash when it wears off. I downed my first bottle and almost immediately got a rush of energy. I was soon back on the highway, playing loud music and singing ridiculously off-key. I timed my next dose for 5:30 AM, so that I could keep the energy momentum going.

I took the next dose, now being almost to the Florida line, and was feeling pretty good. Until I realized I was twitching. And *maybe* hallucinating (there shouldn’t be elephants on the interstate, right?). Pretty much at the same time I saw the pachyderm, I also realized that I hadn’t eaten anything in almost 24 hours. Probably NOT the smartest move I’ve ever made in my life.

Needless to say, I stopped somewhere around Two Egg, Florida, still almost 7 hours shy of my destination, and got something to eat and took a two hour nap. And learned a valuable lesson about energy drinks.

Now, when I need the extra boost, my energy drink of choice is Monster, and I make sure that I’ve eaten and slept before drinking. Although my original foray into the energy drink world ended badly, I still love the boost of energy that you get from them. And I haven’t seen any other elephants on the interstate, which is a plus in my mind.

Photo Credit:
en.wikipedia.org
fitnessgurunyc.com
food.productwiki.com
doesitreallywork.org
hercampus.com
flickr.com
21
Sep

Happy Fall Ya’ll!!

Well, a day early anyway, but since I’m not here on Saturday’s and Sunday’s to write this wonderful blog, I figured its better early than late. And since this is my absolute favorite time of the year, I thought, Hey! What a great blog to write!

There is just something perfect about autumn. In September, the temperatures are just right (well…not here, but in other places), and you get that slight chill in the morning and a lovely breeze at night. Air conditioners get turned off (again, not here. You’d melt) and windows get opened. Humidity drops and mums and pansies crop up on porch planters, along with corn stalks and gourds. Leaves start turning into the scarlets, golds, and oranges that turn hillsides into gorgeous paintings of bright color.

The other thing I love about autumn is firepits. In October’s past, some of my best nights have been sitting around a fire with friends, light jackets and the heat of the fire offering protection from the brisk night air. Ghost stories around a firepit on Halloween night are just something that has to be experienced..especially if your firepit is bordered by a deep, dark, spooky forest. In October, ghosts hang from trees, jack-o-lanterns glare at you from front porches and stoops, and on one fun night, little goblins and ghuolies rush from house to house, looking for sweet treats.

November is a time for football and Thanksgiving! What other month do you get a pass to eat as much as you want, turn on the TV to watch a football game, and then fall asleep? Well, without recrimination, anyway. Leaves are burning in piles outside, putting the smell of burning wood in the air. The nights get even cooler, and most likely you will have to scrape frost off your car windows in the morning. Thanksgiving comes and you eat like a glutton. Then Black Friday comes and you waddle to the stores at 4 A.M., still full from your midnight snack, and shop like a glutton.

I tell ya, fall is just about the best season. Outdoor activities aren’t impeded by bugs and sweat, and inside activities consist of crafting and baking. What more could a person ask for? Not much more, I can tell you that! What are you doing to make this a great fall season?

Photo Credit:
stmawt.org
bplolinenews.blogspot.com
feeltheambiance.com
thecraftyhostess.com
hosted.verticalresponse.com
webs.com
20
Sep

Workplace Procrastination

I am procrastinating a little as I write this. I stare at the computer screen, willing the words to come to me. Then I get distracted by an inconsequential email, and I answer it for a bit of satisfaction that I’ve done something productive today. I have to admit, my brain isn’t fully focused on work today so I thought, why not a blog about procrastination?

It started out that I was going to blog about origami and how distracting it can be at work (if you know how to do it, that is) and while searching for research, I came across articles about how it’s used to procrastinate at work- you’re accomplishing something, so you get the boost from finishing it, but you’re not working either.

Current research and psychological studies point to the fact that we procrastinate more because we are overloaded with work. I’m sure your boss doesn’t think so, but the fact is, we are definitely overloaded. And overscheduled. And for us, with our (mostly) regimented minds, we can feel set adrift with too much to accomplish and not enough time to produce work. Its not that we don’t want to work, we just have so much to do that we’re completely overwhelmed and don’t want anyone to know.

So I bring to you some ways, in addition to origami, that you can procrastinate at work.

1)      Origami. Folding paper into fun shapes. Need I say more?

2)      Edit photos. In a way, it can be productive if you’re in that department at work, as long as you stick to work-related photos…

3)      E-mail. Technically, you’re working.

4)      Social Media- yeah, you know what sites I’m talking about.

5)      Make coffee. You’re energized and your co-workers love you for making more go-juice.

6)      Imgur, YouTube, that Cheezburger site…all perfectly excellent ways to procrastinate.

7)      Ancestry.com

8)      Read. From your Kindle app on Amazon, or just a technical paper at work (if you like that kind of stuff)

9)      Get educated. Its procrastination and work rolled into one. You can learn new programs used at your company, or just find out how the spiny jungle squirrel stores its food for winter, but get educated!

10)   Making top ten lists.

So go out and procrastinate! Just make sure you make your deadlines!

Photo Credits:
craftionary.net
cultofmac.com
servicedofficecompany.co.uk
news.cnet.com
wikipedia.org
techyuva.com
19
Sep

Wednesday – The Most Misspelled Day of the Week

Ah, Wednesday, that glorious hump day, the unit of measure that we gauge our work week by. You know when you get through Wednesday you’re almost done with the work week. Unless you work Saturdays and Sundays too. Which is no fun, I can tell you. I’ve been there.

Next to Friday, Wednesday is our favorite day of the work week. It’s also the second least productive day of the week, next to Monday. Wednesday’s the day for prolonged water-cooler talks and an extra minute or five in the break room. This is something I don’t indulge in…

So today, I bring you some interesting Wednesday facts, and some other really silly trivia because…well, because it’s Wednesday!

Wednesday is named for Woden (no, not Odin the Norse god, although they are virtually the same), an Anglo-Saxon god. He was later relegated to a lowly human whom past rulers of England like to say they are descended from.

Wednesday is associated with the color green, and the planet Mercury.

Wednesday’s child is full of woe, according to Mother Goose (good thing I’m a Tuesday’s child)

Now for some non-Wednesday trivia…

Did you know that the term “O.K.” is from the Civil War? When troops returned without any casualties, a sign was posted that read “0 Killed”, which was eventually shortened to “O.K.”.

Each King on a deck of playing cards represents a king from history.

A cockroach can live nine days without its head. It only dies because it can’t eat…I have no words.

All polar bears are left handed… I want to know who took the time to figure that out.

Statistically, people are more afraid of spiders than dying.

And on that note…have a great Wednesday everyone!

Photo credit:
eduinreview.com
life123.com
theresilientearth.com
smashinglists.com
en.wikipedia.org
saxons.etrusia.co.uk
18
Sep

You Got to Move It, Move It!

I am no fan of exercise. I LOVE physical activity – hiking, walking, gardening, horseback riding, swimming, etc but actual organized exercise…no, not a fan. I was an active child, with ballet, gymnastics, and softball making up the bulk of my activities (until I found horses, then that was all she wrote) and that translated into an active early adulthood.

That is until I got my first desk job in my early thirties. Oh boy. Not only did my work-related physical activity stop, but so did my after-work activity. I only hiked when we camped (three times a year) and even gardening took a back seat. I sure ate a lot though!

About three years into my new job, I noticed that I had gained a few pounds. Okay, more than a few. Almost all my activity outside work had stopped (besides shopping and the motion your arm makes as it brings food to your mouth) and the only work-related exercise I had was making sure my egg didn’t fall out of the spoon in the relay race at the company picnic.

I started watching what I ate, and started exercising at my desk. It was a bit awkward at first, but people got used to seeing me doing simple stretches and wall push-ups at my desk. I lost weight, and started toning up- all by exercising at my desk and watching what I ate.

I have to admit, I fell off the wagon. When I moved back home to Florida, I was out of work for a bit, and when I started work here at ReStockIt, I was in a state of denial about my weight and fitness level. Spurred on by not only my scale, but also by two standing desks and a core ball chair (co-workers seem to be a lot of motivation!), I have gone back to eating correctly and will be firing up my exercise regimen! It so easy, and anyone can do them.

The first one is just breathing. Sit up straight in your chair, making sure your back and shoulders are not slouching, and breathe in, pulling in your core muscles. Hold for however long is comfortable to you, then exhale, making sure your back and shoulders stay straight. I usually do two-to-three sets of 20.

The next one is leg lifts. Give yourself enough clearance that you don’t hit your legs (or anyone else’s) and sitting straight in your chair (back and shoulder’s straight) raise one leg off the floor and hold for five seconds. I don’t give a height to hold your leg for a reason – you know what your body is capable of, not me. I do each leg two sets of 10.

The last one I do is wall push-ups. Stand facing a wall (preferably a sturdy one- not your cubicle) and lean forward, bracing your palms flat on the wall, fingertips pointing toward the ceiling. Do not lock your elbows or knees. Execute a push-up, pushing away from the wall and moving back towards it, keeping your back straight, and breathing with your core. I usually do two sets of five, working up to two sets of 10.

Now, I’m not a fitness expert, nor a personal trainer. Do these with caution, remember to keep your back straight and don’t lock your joints. If you are completely sedentary like I’ve been, this will help immensely. If you’re active, then these just keep you fluid throughout the day. Always remember to walk as much as possible, meaning take the stairs and park away from the building instead of up close. So what are you waiting for? You can do this!

Photo credit:
healthcareaccessmaryland.org
fitnessandwellnessnews.com
exercise.about.com
scintillator.wordpress.com
exerciseballmed.net
exercisestoloseweightquick.com
17
Sep

Gearing Up For Fall!

Most of the country is starting to feel a crisp change in the air (except for where I live, but even I happened to notice a slight drop in the humidity the other night) and the body, if not the mind, can tell that autumn is on the way. Ah Fall, my favorite time of the year.

When I lived outside Florida, which was twice for a period of 5 years apiece, Fall was my absolute favorite time of the year. Cooler weather, clearer skies, less humidity, and craft fairs are everywhere! I love crafting, it’s a weakness of mine.

Now I’m back in Florida and although we are nowhere near Fall-like weather, I find that I am looking for crafts to do. Now is the time to start Halloween crafts, Thanksgiving crafts, and winter holiday crafts with your kids! Ornaments and masks and stick reindeer oh my!

Scrapbooking is my craft of choice, but I like others as well. I’m pretty good at making masks, and my wooden ornaments aren’t too shabby. My next endeavor (when I stop procrastinating) is going to be diorama’s; I think they are incredibly fascinating and can’t be too much different than the model cars I used to put together.

If you’re new to crafting, you can find easy kits to put together or paint, including paint-by-numbers or jewelry making. And don’t feel silly either- even my husband colors fuzzy posters. It’s just something goofy that we do to unwind and be together as a family outside of TV and video games. So? What kind of crafts do you enjoy?

Photo courtesy:
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