Happy National Tell a Story Day!

National Tell a Story Day is celebrated on April 27 in the United States. The holiday was created in the early 1990’s in Sweden and it is now a worldwide celebration. The purpose is to share stories and to enjoy the process. Anything goes — the stories do not have to be true, personal or original. (Source)

How to write about National Tell a Story Day:

  • Talk to your family. Ask a parent or relative to share a story from their youth.
  • Tell a story to the next generation. Let your children know that you were young once too!
  • If you can, sit around a campfire (or a candle) and tell spooky stories.
  • Have a party and ask each guest to tell an outrageous story. Guess whether or not it is true.

A challenge — write it now!

As you read this, I am in Phoenix at the Infusionsoft Users Conference. (Infusionsoft is like Constant Contact or MailChimp on steroids!) My intent is to learn more about the software and to meet potential clients who – like most of us – are not using their email marketing programs to their full potential. My experience is that most users struggle because they don’t have content to send to their clients or prospects.

Creating content can be challenging for many reasons. Quite honestly, it is hard to write about yourself and your product or service. (Yes, I suffer from this too.) When you own a business, everything seems important and it’s also tough to distill the information that is critical to your client.

Another issue is that content creation is not urgent. You can always postpone writing your newsletter or campaign for another day or week or month. And then you look at your website and realize that your last blog post was in 2012! Few of us make purchases anymore without checking out websites. The reality is that outdated or non-existent content can make your prospects go somewhere else.

Today, take a few moments and create a piece of content you’ve been avoiding. It might be a blog post or an email thank you letter. It will feel good to connect with your clients and prospects.

Reviewed – Rescuing Penny Jane: One Shelter Volunteer, Countless Dogs, and the Quest to Find Them All Homes

Rescuing Penny Jane  is a fascinating look into the world of dog rescue, written by shelter volunteer (and dog lover) Amy Sutherland. Ms. Sutherland begins her journey as a volunteer dog walker in an animal shelter. As the book progresses, we meet some of the animals she’s encountered and learn about the many challenges that occur in re-homing and rehabilitating dogs. Some of the stories have happy endings and some do not.

Along the way, the author interviews shelter directors, animal behaviorists and public policy experts about how we can better serve man’s best friend. I learned that shelters have made it much harder to surrender animals and that many are willing to assist with challenges (such as behavioral problems and vet bills) to help keep the dog in a home. I also learned that thousands of small dogs are transported from the southern United States to New England for adoption.

Overall this was a very interesting and informative book. I think it would be of special interest to anyone who has adopted a shelter dog.

Happy Lima Bean Respect Day!

Lima Bean Respect Day is celebrated on April 20. Lima beans were first grown in the Andes in South America about 2000 BC. Lima beans were first exported from Lima, Peru and named after this location. Lima beans are the main ingredient in the Southern dish succotash and are the foundation of the expression “Suffering Succotash.” Apparently Lima beans contain cyanide and are poisonous if eaten raw. When cooked, Lima beans are a healthy, high-fiber food. (Source)

How to Write about Lima Bean Respect Day:

  • Do you like Lima beans? Share your opinion of the taste and your memory of first eating them.
  • Make a recipe using Lima beans. Share the recipe and whether you liked it.
  • Does the expression “Suffering Succotash” evoke any memories? Describe a situation where this expression would be appropriate.