Category Archives: gratitude

The Awesome Caramel Tequila Milkshake Recipe!


Earlier this week, I mentioned the awesome Got Milk? event at BLD and their delicious (and sometimes odd) milkshakes. At that time, I wasn’t able to share the killer Caramel Tequila Milkshake.  Lucky for you, the Got Milk? gals took pity on me and tracked it down!!

This tasty concoction was created by BLD Restaurant Chef Mariah Swan.  Did you know they regularly hold Milkshake Madness events at BLD?  I didn’t, but you better believe I dug up the deets to share it with you.  The next two Milkshake Madness events are Sunday August 23rd and September 27th starting at 5:00PM. Until then, let this creamy adult milkshake help you stay cool this hot LA summer.

Just remember, if you decide to do shots before or after imbibing in this drink…you’re on your own!  Enjoy!!  😉


1 pint vanilla ice cream
1/4 cup caramel sauce
1/2 cup milk
2 shots of tequila

Combine all ingredients and blend. Divide between two glasses and top with whipped cream, a drizzle of caramel sauce and enjoy!

Thanks to @Freddysmama and the entire LA-based Got Milk? team for hooking a gal up

Volunteers Are Still Needed for FREE MEDICAL, DENTAL & VISION Event 8/11 – 8/18 @ the Forum


August 11 through 18, 2009 at the Forum, the Remote Area Medical (“RAM”) team and over 500 volunteer doctors from our community will provide over 20,000 patients with FREE medical, dental and vision care. With an estimated 47 million people in the United States uninsured, this opportunity is right on time. FCBC and SMG are donating the Forum as the host site and agreed to partner with RAM and many other community partners to help make a difference. Please join us!

We need your help! They are still in need of volunteers in some service areas, particularly in optometry, ophthalmology, dentistry, general medical and nursing. If you have colleagues and friends in these specialties, please encourage them to attend. They can always use non-medical support volunteers, also.

Since the start of the event is upon us, new volunteers need not send in the application forms, but should come to The Forum on the day they wish to volunteer and complete the registration process when they arrive. Medical volunteers remember to bring your certification. For more information click here.

The event cannot be a success without hundreds of volunteers each day. Please inform and encourage your co-workers and friends to volunteer. The more medical and non-medical volunteers on hand, the more patients the RAM team may plan to serve.

Please pass this info along to your friends and your family.
SPREAD THE WORD that both medical and non-medical volunteers are STILL needed.
SPREAD THE WORD that these FREE services are available.

AUGUST 11 – AUGUST 18, 2009
3900 W Manchester Blvd

Beginning at 5:30AM daily


To provide free MEDICAL, VISION, and DENTAL care for uninsured, underinsured, unemployed, under-employed persons

First come/First Served Basis each day – Please show up early!

PS – if you’re not in the LA area, check out to see where you can help out in your area.

I Won a Trip to London!!


British Airways is doing this new promotion with a couple entrepreneurial organizations.  Their goal is to promote international travel as a way to build your business.  Totally cool, right?

I mean, check out what I won:

  • Flight to London
  • Welcome and introductory events in the US and London
  • Meet and mingle on board with other winners
  • A networking forum with top business leaders
  • Presentations and discussions on how to do business in the UK and abroad
  • A one-night stopover at the Sofitel London Heathrow Hotel
  • Complimentary Heathrow Express tickets if you need to go into central London

And then after the actual event, I can fly on to ANY destination that British Airways flies..for as long as I want…and then they’ll fly me back home to LA.  That’s AWESOME!

But…um…I won’t be going.

First off, I can’t really take the time off teaching.  I mean, when you’re a teacher, you pretty much know your schedule in advance. And to take an extended time off, in the middle of the semester, is just well, bad form. It’s even worse form considering I’m the lead teacher this year.  And well, I’d really like to keep this job.

On top of that, this trip would cost me a pretty British pound.  While the flight and conference is covered, you’ll notice that there’s no food covered and they only have one night at the hotel.  So if I stay any longer – or take advantage of the flight to the destination of my choice – that’s all going to cost extra.  And by extra…I mean British extra.  We all know how just stepping into London automatically doubles the price of anything you’d buy in US.

So as cool and exciting as a business trip to London just might be…I won’t be going at this time.  Some other lucky winner will be going in my place (since the prize was non-transferable).  And knowing that everything happens for a reason, I’m sure something truly A.MA.ZING. will be right around the corner.  Can’t wait!


Can’t Believe it’s Been Four Years Already

Four years ago this week and next week, we launched the ConstantChatter community.  Let me just say…wow, it’s been a long four years!

I never knew what work would be ahead of me when I agreed to this little project.  This time four years ago, I was pulling my hair out, not getting my homework completed, sitting in front of a computer for 16-hour+ days dealing with the site, the server, the community, the emails, the requests, the demands, etc.  When we started, I can’t say that I ever expected the membership to exceed 200 people give or take.  It all came about totally a case of being at the right time at the right place.

I don’t say it often enough, but I’m quite proud of the site and the community.  I know it’s been a resource to many and that’s what matters.  It also taught me so much…you know, that whole If I knew then what I know now sort of thing. Would I have done things differently?  Oh hell yes!  Many things differently.  But like I said, the whole experience of creating a community and blogsite has taught me tons, so I don’t lose sleep thinking about what could have been.

To be honest though, I’m not even a part of the site any more and only pop on when I’m needed or need to dig up a recipe. I’ve got some great people that help out to make sure it all runs smoothly (and I can’t tell them enough how much I appreciate them).

You hear all the time about entrepreneurs that start one business, get it up and running and then sell it off to move on to the next project.  I never used to get how someone could pour their heart and soul into the whole business only to sell it off and walk away a few years later.

But now I get it.  The challenge, the fun, it’s all in the creation.  Once things are running smoothly, your attention pulls you towards the next project.  And boy am I looking forward to that next project!  And yes, there is a project in the works already. 😉

So thank you to everyone that supported me and helped ConstantChatter become the community that it is – past and present, friend or foe.

Forgot to Share…

I totally forgot to mention this week that I got the lead teaching gig for next fall and winter semester!! I’m pretty excited about it.

But mostly I’m excited that I get to create the curriculum myself.  So now there will actually be a direct connection between what they learn in Intro to Computers and what they learn in Advanced Computers.

Well that and the fact that I’ll be getting a cleaning lady to help around here.  What can I say, it’s the simple things in life that I appreciate 😉

I’m least excited about the fact that class will start at 8:00AM. I think I’ll have to give myself about an hour and a half just to get there. Which of course means, I’ll be spending just over twice as long driving to and from class than I’d be spending actually teaching (and getting paid).

Should be interesting.

The Birthday Plans Continue


Things are progressing along nicely in LA Blogger Gal’s 40th Birthday Extravaganza planning. I do believe I’ve settled on a location.  With luck, we’ll be outside in this amazing garden setting, chowing down on Greek food (my fave!).  A friend of mine recommended the location from a place where she’s eaten before.  And since she’s held staff meetings there, she also knew they could accommodate groups.

I’m still not crazy about the corkage fee, but with luck, I can use this recession in my favor and negotiate her down.  Worse case, we just provide champagne instead of wine and champagne.  In turn, we’ll provide some appetizers as well.  It should be fun.

I need that headcount though so I can either order my cake (mmmm….Porto’s cakes, c’est ci bon!) or go with cupcakes (mmm…those strawberry lemonade cupcakes from Layers Cupcakes – but ohhhhh, the price).  Cupcakes totally rock, and don’t require any cutting, but man, they’re a small fortune compared to just getting a cake.  And let me just say, that Chocolate Grand Marnier sounds incredible.

And now, after poking around Porto’s website, I’m jonesin’ for a potato ball.  Guess where I’ll be going later today?

And of course in the midst of all my party planning, I was called out by and out-of-town friend that reads my blog for not inviting her.  Seems I was so focused on my local friends and getting things moving, that I didn’t get around to inviting those that I knew wouldn’t come, but would still want to be invited.  Same thing goes for the in-laws.  I still need to invite them even though I know they won’t come.

I never can really think of things that I want for my birthday (for some reason, I guess because we pick names and do lists I can for Christmas).  Then again, it doesn’t help that from the hub’s I’ll be getting my party (no other gifts there) and from my closest friend back in NM, money is tight.  So if someone where to ask me what I want, all I’d really be able to suggest is that dry cleaning/garment bag at Delight (wow, they really do need to work on their site – that “share this” post didn’t even share a link or photo, or description), a whisk, a digital frame and my new white dream purse (which is apparently others’ dream purse as well since Zappos is running low). Ooh, and I think I’d like this book…The Think Big Manifesto: Think You Can’t Change Your Life (and the World) Think Again.

Okay, off to sit down with the hubs over a bowl of oatmeal.  Love lazy Sundays.

PS – Speaking of birthday celebrations…Happy Birthday Ju-Ju Coop!

Looks Like I Might Have Another Great Opportunity

This isn’t what I had intended to blog about today – that would have been house envy – but it’s something I wanted to share instead.  And much more positive!

I had an interview earlier today with this chap over in England.  He has this awesome website that hosts many business videos (think YouTube for Business).  He’s considering using me for a regular, weekly show. The focus will be women in business and soloprenuers and the challenges we sometimes face, along with tips and whatnot. I’m so excited.

I’ve avoided video (and full-face photos – first one was posted here on Tuesday) due to the crazies I’ve encountered in my past.  But I just don’t think I can hold off any more.  More to the point, I don’t care about it any more.  I’m a successful business woman that can be found all over the web.  There’s no need to hide from a group of people that are too bored to have something better to do with themselves.

Though to be honest…video is great for universal search engine optimization (as I tell my clients).  It’s really the wave of good business – especially if you do online business as it allows people to relate to who you are as a person.  But hey, you didn’t come here to learn about SEO now, did you?

So yes, it looks like I have this great opportunity in front of me.  I won’t know until some time next week or so.  Until then, I could use all the good vibes and happy thoughts you could send my way.  Know that it will be graciously accepted and returned to you tenfold.


And now, I must finish getting ready.  Tonight I have a date with Keith Urban.  Well, my husband will be there (as will hundreds of other fans), but since he’ll be shooting the show, I plan to have Keith serenade me personally.  Hopefully I can get some decent shots of him to share with you all (or steal some of my hubs shots when he’s not looking).

Happy Friday Y’all!

It’s Official…Call Me Teach!

I finally heard from the college (they’ve been so backed up between finals and spring semester arrangements).  I got the job. It’s official, I will be a teacher once again!  There’s a huge part of me that’s so excited to be back in a classroom – even if this time I’ll be working with adults.

I start on Tuesday and will be co-teaching advanced computer and social media skills.  Luckily, I’ll also be able to head up to San Jose for the hubby’s Bruce show next Thursday and keep my speaking gig in June.  So it all worked out in the end.  I can’t wait to get started!

Thanks for all the support and happy thoughts to bring this to fuition.  I’m sure I’ll be letting you know how it goes.

What Have You Done?

I’ve stolen this post from Miss Attitude who in turn stole it from Jen, the Goddess of Zen.  I thought it looked like fun.

This one is simple… the items in BOLD I have accomplished; the items in italics are still on the list. The ones that I’ve crossed out…well, no way, no how, not in my lifetime.

1. Started your own blog – more like 4 or 5, but sure
2. Slept under the stars
3. Played in a band – I’m counting this though it was really an orchestra
4. Visited Hawaii
5. Watched a meteor shower – something I really miss about NM, the shooting stars
6. Given more than you can afford to charity
7. Been to Disneyland – a couple of times
8. Climbed a mountain
9. Held a praying mantis
10. Sang a solo – karaoke and back in school a time or two
11. Bungee Jumped
12. Visited Paris
13. Watched a lightning storm at sea
14. Taught yourself an art from scratch
15. Adopted a child
16. Had food poisoning
17. Walked to the top of the Statue of Liberty – it wasn’t open to the public when we were there
18. Grown your own vegetables
19. Seen the Mona Lisa in France — skipped the Louvre when we were in Paris
20. Slept on an overnight train
21. Had a pillow fight
22. Hitchhiked
23. Taken a sick day when you’re not ill
24. Built a snow fort
25. Held a lamb – hell if I know, I don’t remember much about my childhood, but we spent many summers on my cousin’s farm
26. Gone skinny dipping
27. Run a Marathon
28. Ridden in a gondola in Venice – and have the photos to prove it!
29. Seen a total eclipse
30. Watched a sunrise or sunset
31. Hit a home run – does it count if you’re playing with your 4th grade students?
32. Been on a cruise
33. Seen Niagara Falls in person
34. Visited the birthplace of your ancestors – just realized that since I’m part Irish that I can actually mark this one as done!
35. Seen an Amish community
36. Taught yourself a new language
37. Had enough money to be truly satisfied
38. Seen the Leaning Tower of Pisa in person
39. Gone rock climbing – have a slight fear of heights, not the height itself, but the up and down part
40. Seen Michelangelo’s David
41. Sung karaoke
42. Seen Old Faithful geyser erupt
43. Bought a stranger a meal at a restaurant – no, but I’ve paid for the car behind me at toll booths more times than I can recall
44. Visited Africa – no desire to
45. Walked on a beach by moonlight
46. Been transported in an ambulance – rode with one of my students
47. Had your portrait painted
48. Gone deep sea fishing
49. Seen the Sistine Chapel in person
50. Been to the top of the Eiffel Tower in Paris – we ran out of time, but I did see it up close and personal
51. Gone scuba diving or snorkeling – love snorkeling
52. Kissed in the rain
53. Played in the mud
54. Gone to a drive-in theater
55. Been in a movie – seriously?
56. Visited the Great Wall of China – no real desire
57. Started a business
58. Taken a martial arts class
59. Visited Russia – not really on my list of places to visit
60. Served at a soup kitchen
61. Sold Girl Scout Cookies
62. Gone whale watching – have seen whales while watching for them, but not yet on a whale watching cruise
63. Got flowers for no reason
64. Donated blood, platelets or plasma
65. Gone sky diving – would really like to, but I’ve got a messed up back and I’m afraid a landing might make it worse
66. Visited a Nazi Concentration Camp
67. Bounced a check – hello?  I call that period in my life “grad school”
68. Flown in a helicopter
69. Saved a favorite childhood toy
70. Visited the Lincoln Memorial
71. Eaten Caviar – at my brother’s wedding (her family is Russian)
72. Pieced a quilt – no thanks
73. Stood in Times Square
74. Toured the Everglades
75. Been fired from a job
76. Seen the Changing of the Guards in London
77. Broken a bone – an elbow is a bone, right?
78. Been on a speeding motorcycle
79. Seen the Grand Canyon in person
80. Published a book – plan to start working on it this year
81. Visited the Vatican
82. Bought a brand new car
83. Walked in Jerusalem – not on my list of places to go
84. Had your picture in the newspaper
85. Read the entire Bible – uh, no thanks, though I have tried
86. Visited the White House – not inside
87. Killed and prepared an animal for eating – but I’ve eaten quite a few freshly prepared animals on my cousin’s farm (PS – I don’t like my chicken when you can still see part of feathers)
88. Had chickenpox
89. Saved someone’s life – drowning kids count, right?
90. Sat on a jury – no, but I’ve been to jury duty often enough
91. Met someone famous
92. Joined a book club
93. Lost a loved one
94. Had a baby
95. Seen the Alamo in person
96. Swam in the Great Salt Lake
97. Been involved in a law suit Class action lawsuit against a former employer – no, but I did report him to the IRS!
98. Owned a cell phone – yeah, um…okay
99. Been stung by a bee
100. Read an entire book in one day – quite a few to be honest

Recommendations Please…

Okay, I’m going to try this again and take a moment to get some specifics laid out.  I mentioned last week that I was looking for some “can’t live without it” products.    I even tried to tempt you with lovely gifts if you could help me.  Thing is, I didn’t get too many responses – not that I don’t appreciate the responses, I just figure that if I’m going to give something cool away, then I want there to be some competition going on (or I’d feel bad that 1 out of 3 won and the other 2 didn’t).

So we’ll try this again…

Right now, I’m working on a few things now we’re I’m contacting different vendors and companies for giveaway product and sponsorship (you have registered for the many contests, right?), and it got me thinking that maybe you, my loyal readers (even you, my lovely lurkers!) could help me come up with some new, or maybe something I haven’t yet thought of, products and companies to reach out to.

So I ask…what products do you use in and out of your home and office that you just love?  What can’t you live without?  What are you always recommending to friends and family?

  • favorite foods?
  • favorite cleaning products?
  • favorite bath products?
  • favorite toys or parenting things?
  • favorite clothes?
  • favorite makeup?
  • favorite office or computer tools or programs?
  • favorite authors?
  • favorite anything that you love and can’t live without
  • it can be one thing, it can be 50 things…whatever works for you

To tempt you to reply with as many cool things as possible, I’ll pick one person at random and give away a $10 Starbucks card and a secret, fun surprise (and more than likely unclaimed) item that I have here at the house – and trust me, there’s plenty of goodies hanging around this apartment that I had planned to eventually use for a CC contest, but haven’t gotten around to it yet — to say nothing of the many unclaimed prizes.

RULES: You may enter as many times as you wish and you’ll score entries (chances to win) as outlined below:

  • I’ll give you one entry/chance to win for every comment with at least 3 products listed
  • I’ll give you one more entry/chance to win if you tweet this (be sure to leave the tweet link in a comment)
  • And one more entry/chance to win if you repost (leave the repost link in a comment)
  • And TWO more extra chances to enter to win if you leave a comment telling me what charity for women and/or children that you support in addition to your favorite products
  • This will remain open until next Wednesday, 3/4 (midnight, PST) I’ve extended the deadline

Thanks in advance for ALL your help!

Remember to go to the original post to leave your comments (they’re turned off on this post).