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Coffee Break with Liz and Kate » Entries tagged with "attitude"

Dateline: Central Florida, Spring 2011 Problem: More than 1 million Floridians unemployed Enter Workforce Central Florida, a federally-funded labor development agency, who is about to tackle the above problem with a $73,000 PR campaign. I’m guessing that at some point, the agency’s key players were called together for a meeting. They probably even locked the doors behind them. “No one leaves until we’ve eradicated unemployment in Central Florida,” someone probably said. So (again, I’m guessing) they gathered around the conference table, tossing out idea after idea in search of the perfect solution for the problem that is unemployment. Finally, someone shouts, “Eureka!” Everyone’s attention turns in the direction of the glowing light bulb shining above the room’s genius – they hang on his every word. “I’ve got it! We’ll hand out superhero capes to all who …

Filed under: reviewing literature for research,

First, they came after Christmas, as words like winter break and happy holidays were crammed down our throats lest someone be offended if they heard the term, “Merry Christmas.” And Heaven forbid you say words like nativity and scene in the same sentence – much less in public. Then they came after Thanksgiving. So it should come as no real surprise that Easter eggs are now under attack. It seems some students at a private Seattle, WA, high school were told to perform a week’s worth of community service during spring break. So one sophomore student decided to volunteer her time at a third-grade public school class. Toward the end of the week, the sophomore decided it would be fun to bring some plastic Easter eggs, filled with various candies, to school … Read entire article »

Filed under: reviewing literature for research, Let's Celebrate,

Top signs spring has sprung – Liz’s rant

  Yesterday marked the warmest day of the year for many here in Kentucky – Louisville hit a record high of 90 degrees. Not bad for the second week of April. So I thought we’d briefly explore some of the tell-tale signs that spring fever has hit you. You find yourself at the store with a cart full of flowers and plants, and are filled with a strange urge to fight anyone who takes that nice looking geranium that has the biggest red blooms. You pull out all your summer clothes in full knowledge that the temperatures won’t stay this way consistently – at least not for a few more weeks. But out of spite, you pack away every last item that remotely reminds you of winter (even that light-weight jacket you’ll be … Read entire article »

Filed under: reviewing literature for research,

Washers, dryers and Earth Hour – Liz’s rant

Last Saturday at 8:30 p.m., I was busy running around the house, turning on every light and appliance in honor of Earth Hour. And don’t even try to act appalled that I have my own ways of celebrating. If everyone in the world turned off their lights and appliances in “honor” of Earth Day, the effect would be the same as shutting off China’s carbon emissions for a grand total of (wait for it…) 45 seconds. But that’s not even the point. You see, I’m kind of fond of electricity. Proud of the fact that we are as advanced as we are in 2011. I pondered the thought that barely more than 100 years ago, we’d have had no choice but to spend Earth … Read entire article »

Filed under: reviewing literature for research,

Rising gas prices just the tip of the iceberg – Liz’s rant

I’m sure you’ve all noticed that gas prices are on an uphill climb, with some pundits predicting $6 a gallon in the not-so-distant future. Chances are, you’re already feeling the pocket book pinch. And it would appear there is no proverbial light at the end of the tunnel. In fact, a recent Energy Department analysis found that the average American could need to come up with a cool $700 this year in order to fill up their tank. But here’s the real rub. Gasoline isn’t the only thing you’ll be paying more for. Consider these products – all made from crude oil. And please note that I’m only grazing the surface, here (no pun intended, of course): Crayons Dishwashing liquids Deodorant Eyeglasses CDs and DVDs Ballpoint pens Football cleats Upholstery Sweaters Boats Nail polish Fishing lures Dresses Perfumes Caulking Petroleum jelly Transparent tape Antiseptics Curtains Food preservatives Basketballs Soap Vitamin capsules Antihistamines Umbrellas Hair coloring Lipstick Candles Trash bags Hand lotion Shampoo Toothbrushes Toothpaste Balloons Sun … Read entire article »

Filed under: reviewing literature for research,

Liz’s rant: Playing parental favorites

Enjoy the last few weeks of “mom and dad” while you can, because as of Feb. 1, parental units will become just that – at least where passports are concerned. That’s right, under the infinite wisdom (insert large dose of sarcasm here) of Hillary Clinton, passport forms will now require you to pick a favorite as it were. Here’s (roughly) what the new form will look like: 1. Parent One__________________________ 2. Parent Two_____________________________ In other words, no more references to mom or dad. Because God forbid we offend those parents in same-sex marriages or their kids. Dropping the maternal and paternal references is “in recognition of different types of families. ” Isn’t that special? But apparently, it wasn’t quite special enough to be the lede news. According to a story in the Washington Post, … Read entire article »

Filed under: reviewing literature for research,

Liz’s rant: Planning to plan

So I found myself in an office supply store, recently, looking for the perfect pages for my planner. Again. Because that’s what I do every year after Christmas. Sometimes, I wonder why I put myself through it. Because, quite frankly, there is no perfect planner out there. Oh, sure, I’m a big fan of Franklin Covey, but at the beginning of every year, no matter how many planners I look at, I still come away somehow unsatisfied. I know I’m not alone, based on the number of customers in the store, in the same aisle, staring at the same planners, and reacting as I was: Pick one up, look through it. Put it down, pick up another one. And so it continued. Not only at one office supply store, but at every one I visited … Read entire article »

Filed under: reviewing literature for research,

Liz’s rant: 15 pounds of carrots

That’s how it started. With 15 pounds of organic carrots, water bath canning equipment, cans, lids, rings and a book: Canning for Dummies. Except that Niki hadn’t cracked the book before arriving at my house.And I’d never canned carrots. (Insert large red flag, flapping in the breeze…) On the surface, the idea was a sheer stroke of genius. We’d get together before Christmas and can some very special homemade concoction, tying the jars with pretty ribbons and attaching homemade labels, wishing those lucky enough to receive such an inventive gift the merrriest of Christmases and most prosperous of new years. Apparently, that’s the magic of carrots. Unless they can’t be canned in a water bath because they’re low in acid. That’s right. If you’re gonna can carrots, you need a pressure canner. … Read entire article »

Filed under: reviewing literature for research,

Liz’s rant: Electronics and the loss of innocence

I heard the results of a couple of studies the other day, which sent me on another of my rampages, wondering who the people are that dream up some of these studies. Seems like applying a little common sense would do the trick and save taxpayers a lot of money… but what do I know… The first study deals with hamsters on airplanes. Apparently jet lag is real, and it makes hamsters dumber. That’s right – hamsters were actually dumber after having flown and experienced the jet lag. Are the researchers saying the same applies to people? If so, why didn’t they research people in the first place? Moreover, does anyone really care?! Anywho, the second study was about girls who played with dolls. Seems like girls just aren’t doing that like … Read entire article »

Filed under: reviewing literature for research,

Liz’s rant: The play on words

Maybe it’s just me, but I’ve about had it with someone, somewhere, who’s decided that classic pronunciations of words should be changed – and that words once known as nouns should now be known as verbs. For example: Let’s take the country of Chile. As far as I’m concerned, Chile is pronounced just like that warm winter stew we all know and love – you know: chilly. But apparently the earthquake shook up things enough that all of a sudden it’s become known as Chil-ay. Rhymes with Oil of Olay. And it drives me crazy. Tied for getting on my nerves the most is another phenomena: nouns that become verbs – or verbs that are used for things that they shouldn’t be. Prime example: I hate it when someone refers to “growing … Read entire article »

Filed under: reviewing literature for research,

Get your party on: 12/5-12/11

Let’s get things started with a real splash this week! On Dec. 5, we celebrate Bathtub Party Day, so grab your rubber duckie and some bubbles and hop in the tub. I can see where this one could get a little out of hand, simply because a party typically involves more than one person. So if I were you, I’d proceed with a bit of caution, keeping in mind the naughty and nice lists, as we discussed last week. Unfortunately, we immediately move into more of a trickle zone. What we have here after Dec. 5 is a serious lack of luster where all things holiday are concerned. I just don’t get it. No Hoodie Hoo Day, no Wear Different Colored Socks Day, or even a She’s Funny … Read entire article »

Filed under: reviewing literature for research, Let's Celebrate

Get your party on: 11/21-11/27

Well, here we are. A few short days until Thanksgiving – and a bang-up list of holidays to explore (give me my dreams, ok?). Actually, things really don’t get going until Nov. 24 with Celebrate Your Unique Talents Day. Oh sure. I can celebrate my multiple talents all day long (and you could, too). But the trick on this day is to celebrate talents unique to each of us. Hmm. Maybe we could change this one to FIND Your Unique Talent Day. But no one asked me. Tie One On Day lands on Nov. 24, so if you’re planning on doing some Turkey Day Eve cooking, you may want to tie one on after your work in the kitchen is done. Flossing Day, Buy Nothing Day, Sinkie Day and Your Welcomegiving Day are … Read entire article »

Filed under: reviewing literature for research, Let's Celebrate

Liz’s rant: Revisionist Pigs (and the big bad wolf)

Well, well, well. Just when you think the coast is clear, out comes a new version of the Three Little Pigs. Is nothing sacred? You remember the original story, I bet. Three pigs, three houses and a wolf. The wolf eats the pigs who didn’t have the wherewithall to built a decent house. Lesson learned? Don’t take shortcuts, don’t half-way do something, etc, etc, etc. At least that’s what I took away. Seriously, maybe that first little pig had it coming to him. Who builds a house out of straw? And don’t tell me he couldn’t find any other suitable material. One of the other pigs (the smarter one) used bricks for crying out loud. But apparently, the old version and the lessons it bestowed are simply not acceptable. Anyway, in the “revised” … Read entire article »

Filed under: reviewing literature for research,

Get your party on: 11/14-11/20

Greetings, partiers. Let’s jump right into the thick of it where all-things-holiday are concerned. Nov. 14 is Loosen Up, Lighten Up Day. So please. Lighten up a bit, celebrate these three rather lame holidays, and remember that a bicycle can’t stand on its own because it’s two-tired… ugh… Moving right along… Nov. 15 is I Love To Write Day. This is certainly one I can identify with, since I write for a living. As as all writers know, just because we do what we love and love what we do, there are days when the words just don’t flow. I think that’s easy enough to explain – writer’s block, lack of inspiration, or a cluttered mind stand in the way of all writers at one time or another. So … Read entire article »

Filed under: reviewing literature for research, Let's Celebrate

Liz’s rant: Skeleton cupcakes – if you dare!

The kids found a recipe for these cupcakes and insisted we make them for Halloween. How hard could it be, I thought. I’m sure you can see this is gonna be a recipe and a rant, all wrapped into one post. What more could you ask for? In order to delve into this one, I took the original recipe and began by simplifying the cupcakes themselves. As you will see, they aren’t part of the ingredients photo, because I trust that you people know how to purchase a cake mix and make a couple dozen cupcakes. Anyway, in my opinion, the how-to’s of this project are all about what’s on top of the cupcake. So let’s start there with the nitty gritty. What you’ll need: A couple dozen cupcakes, cooled (note: you may or … Read entire article »

Filed under: reviewing literature for research, Let's Celebrate, Let's Eat,