Being a Pescatarian is hard…

meat counter

 

For the first 3 weeks of my new lifestyle things were going GREAT!  Then I took a trip to New York for the weekend.  How can one not eat meat when visiting New York for the weekend?  The answer is, you have to.  Honestly, it wasn’t that bad, I had some chicken and a few slices of sausage.  Other than that it was all seafood and other non-meat food items.  The real challenge was when I got home and realized that I had 7 more days of vacation under my belt.  For the most part I handled myself with dignity, but there was the visit to Bern’s Steakhouse for my dad’s birthday (if you’ve never been to Bern’s, just know it’s $100 a plate and it’s pretty much a requirement to eat steak) and then the impulse to have a chicken ceasar wrap the next day.  Needless to say my count is back to 0.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I feel bad for breaking my commitment but I don’t feel like dying since at the start I did add a stipulation that I would eat meat “every one in a while”.  While this vacation meatfest was more than I intended I don’t feel like I’ve completely wrecked my self-made promises.

All-in-all, I’m back to eating veggies and seafood, and just to show you i’m committed I’m here to tell you that Morning Star entrees are BOGO at Publix until Wednesday the 10th.  And, here’s a great recipes for General Tso Tofu.

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My journey as a Part-time Pescatarian

Recently, I decided to cut meat out of my life.  Don’t get me wrong. I. Love. Meat.  I honestly am having a difficult time picturing my life without meat but I want to explore the health benefits and aid in weight loss.

So, as of August 11th I have switched over to a pescatarian diet.  This diet consists of meatless products, vegetables, and seafood.  No chicken.  No beef.  No pork.  I’m definitely getting used to the concept of eating options that don’t contain animal  meat.  Especially, chicken.  Chicken is probably my #1 choice when eating a healthy meal and even more so when eating out.  I feel great so far so I want to continue the progress and see where it takes me.

The reason I call it a part time change is that, as I stated before, I love meat and I would like to still enjoy it every once in a while.  With this restriction, I am going to let meat be my treat and once or twice a month have a meal containing meat.  I don’t think that’s too bad considering I used to eat meat 5 out of 7 days of the week.

One great thing I want to share is that I even started dabbling with tofu recipes!  I made tofu for the first time a few days ago and I have to say I was pretty impressed with my skills.  Hopefully, I can find new ways to incorporate meatless options and still maintain a healthy lifestyle.  Any suggestions or tips, stories or comments for surviving the change are welcome with open arms.  Wish me luck on this journey.

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Acing the job Interview – a 4-part series on inalj.com

Recently, I wrote a 4 part series of articles on inalj.com with tips on acing the job interview in any field (especially library sciences). I’m really excited and proud of the articles so be sure to check them out! There is so much more I could write for these but I think these are the top industry tips all rolled into 4 easy to read articles.  Enjoy!

Acing the job interview: Pre-Interview Prep

Acing the job interview – Personal and Professional Interview prep

Acing the job interview: Surviving the Interview

Acing the job interview: Post-interview tips

I also created a Pinterest board (You’re Hired!) in conjunction with these articles so be sure to follow me and let me know if you have any more tips!

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Mutt meatballs review

In February we got our very first BarkBox for my middle corgi Rufus’ birthday.  Inside the box there was a mix for Mutt Meatballs:

mutt meatballs

I was super excited to try this mix and I wanted to share with all of you the process and the final outcome as you might be interested in getting this as a treat for your pooches.

First of all, I was completely impressed by how cool this product is.  I never dreamed about having a mix to make my dogs meatballs, but here it is!  It exists in real life, in our realm.  And I’m sure the corgis were completely excited to find out how they would taste!

So, unfortunately this is just the mix and you do have to add a pound of ground beef and an egg to make the meatballs so this can be a pricey treat.  But, maybe your dog has gone a whole week without eating something valuable or he/she just finished obedience training or maybe they are just the best dog in the whole wide world and you want to give an extra special treat to your favorite pooch.  It might be worth it since the treat is all natural.

So, let’s get into the nitty gritty of mutt meatballs.  As I mentioned before, you are going to start out with the mix, 1 pound of ground beef and 1 egg.

step 1First things first, preheat the oven to 350 degrees and put everything in a nice big bowl to mix together.

step 2

Once you have everything mixed together spray a baking sheet with non-stick cooking spray and let the real fun begin!

form little [insert breed of choice here] sized meatballs and begin placing them on the tray.

step 3

I had to remember that these were little doggy snacks and not people entrees so I made sure to make my “muttballs” fairly small.  I was successful in making the 40 servings that the packaging claimed I could make (in fact I was able to make 46 little “muttballs”!).

Once I was done forming all the little balls and placing them on the baking sheet, I baked these bad boys for 30 minutes.

3.2.14 062They looked like fresh, meaty and healthy little treats for my munchkins.

3.2.14 063I was concerned at first that this was too much for my little pooches (which is was) but the good thing about the mutt meatballs is that anything that you don’t use can be frozen for later!  I kept a container with enough treats for a couple days and put the rest in the freezer for future use.  When I was ready to give them to the dogs, I just pulled out what I needed, heated them in the microwave until they were thawed and slightly warmed and the dogs were in heaven all over again!

While you do have to put some work into these treats I think they are completely worth the effort.  You can see all the spices and oats int he mix telling me that it really is all natural and organic and all around good for my little nuggets.  The dogs loved them as well!  Now they also eat poop and laundry detergent but I think these are definitely a step up from their regular snack time escapades.

All in all I give these an 8 out of 10.  They are little pricey and take some effort and time to make but they are easy to do, I’m sure they are tasty and the ingredients are all natural.

For more information on Mutt Meatballs check out Your Dog’s Diner website where you can read about the product and purchase it as well.  If you’ve tried this product or have heard about it be sure to leave me a comment and tell me about your experience!

My life as a Procrastinator on inalj.com

Hi, my name is Angie, and I’m a procrastinator.

My life as a Procrastinator is a look into my life as a MLIS student at Wayne State University.  Looking back at my time as a graduate student there are many things that I have reflected on and many hours I have spent wishing for an alternate reality.  But most of all, I have admitted to the world, I AM A PROCRASTINATOR!  Check out the full story here and let me know what you think.

Volunteer Opportunities with inalj.com (I Need a Library Job)

INALJ.com has opportunities available in many different volunteer positions.  Visit http://inalj.com/?page_id=47338 for more info.

Positions at INALJ
  • Head Editor (state/province/country): 5 day a week (weekday) position.  Monday-Friday add new jobs and delete expired jobs, coordinate and manage a small crew of assistants- daily commitment approx. 1 – 1.5 hrs a day.  One blog post due mid-month no exceptions.  Canada, USA and international positions.  I insist on HI, Alaska and most international actually living in their coverage area.   Openings.
  • Assistant to the Head Editor  (state/province/country):  This is a 2 days a week, formatting jobs from 10-15 websites assigned by your Head Editor, approx 2-3 hrs total a week.  Openings.
  • Associate Editors, Submissions:  This is a 2-3 days a week position.  One person for Mon/Tues and another for Wed/Thurs and each covers every other Friday.  Takes all the jobs sent to the shared email address -combines them into lists by order of state and sends them on to the Head Editors.  Opening.
  • Associate Editors, Formatting:  This is a 3 day a week gig sending jobs to the Senior and other Formatting volunteers.  Runs our shared jobs email account.  Opening.
  • Assistant Editors: These editors are assigned approx 8-10 major  websites for jobs to check 3 times a week, format and send jobs to the Associate Editors for submissions.  Jobs sites they check are listed on INALJ FB notes.  Openings
  • Senior Formatting Editors:  Format jobs sent to them by the Associate Editors, Formatting, from the jobs email account 3-4 times a week max.  Openings.
  • Formatting Editors: Format jobs sent to them by the Associate Editors, Formatting, from the jobs email account 2 times a week.  Openings.
  • Senior Submissions Volunteers:  This is a group that have been with me since the beginning sending jobs very frequently.
  • Submissions Volunteers:  This is a group that have been with me since the beginning sending jobs.
 
How to volunteer
Contact inalj.com at volunteer@inalj.com  with your information and they will get back to you.  All positions require a commitment to fulfill the duties through the end of the calendar year.
In the subject line clearly state one of the following:
  • I am interested in VOLUNTEERING!   Head Editor position
  • I am interested in VOLUNTEERING!  Assistant Position
  • I am interested in VOLUNTEERING!  Other Positions (explain which ones)
 
These are all really helpful positions for LIS students or anyone just wanting to make a difference and help the LIS community.

2014 Resolutions

Every year billions of people around the world make New Years Resolutions, most of which become empty self made promises which are quickly forgotten about.  I usually do ok when it comes to keeping my resolutions and I intend this year to be no different.  So, here are my resolutions for 2014:
  • Blog more:  Shortly after I created this blog I completely forgot about it.  So in 2014 I hope to become more active in the blogging community so that I can really figure out what I want to do in blogging.  I also added another blog: vivalacorgi.blogspot.com.  My corgis are becoming famous and blogging is our 2nd stop to greatness.  I also plan to start doing book reviews which leads me to my next resolution…
  • Read more:  I have been doing a decent job of reading more books in the last couple years but no where near where I want to be.  Part of this resolution is starting a book club with co-workers.  It has already failed once so we will see if we can get it going.
  • Lose weight and just generally be healthier:  This is probably the most common Resolution for people and I am definitely no different.  This year I lost about 60 pounds so I want to keep it going so I can be more of a hottie for my wedding in 2015.
  • Get more organized: I’m not sure why I’ve never made this a resolution since my life is an unorganized mess most of the time.
  • Keep my shit neater: I will completely admit I hate cleaning and I can be messy (not dirty) at times, so in the new year I hope that I can make a conscious effort to keep my house tidy and my stuff neater.
  • Manage my money: I am what some people might possibly maybe kinda call a shopaholic, so in 2014 I am hoping I can learn to manage my money better so that I can have better habits in the future.  This resolution is not just for the year, its something I hope I can continue for-e-ver.
I think this list is pretty good so far.  I may add more later but I think this is plenty for now.  So, here’s to the new year and all the resolutions that will be kept!

Instalibrary: The (un)uses of Instagram in libraries

The following entry is the section I wrote for a group assignment blog on social networking.

Instagram is a unique social networking site that allows users to take, enhance and share photos with friends and followers on the Instagram network.  Instagram was launched in Apple’s app store in October 2010 and since then it has skyrocketed to the top 10 social networking sites.  The application was acquired by Facebook for $1 billion on April 9, 2012 (Rushe, 2012).  Since its inception, Instagram has managed to catch a lot of attention with its artistic filters and growing network of users especially once it expanded its network to Android device users in April of this year.  After its launch less than 2 years ago, 10,000 users were using the service; today the application services more than 50 million users (Taylor, 2012).

 (Murray, 2012)

Like Twitter, Instagram uses hashtags and short descriptive text, but the network requires visualizations as its main source of “storytelling”.  The network is open for users to follow and be followed freely with optional privacy settings available.
The growth of Instagram can in part be credited to the integration with other social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter.  While Facebook and Twitter have been able to tap into other markets like educational and business fields, Instagram is still working on increasing its value in not only the personal market but the professional one as well.

 (Murray, 2012)

To Instagram or not to Instagram

Instagram’s easy to use platform gives it an excellent opportunity to be used by the technologically handicapped as well as technology experts.  Photos can be used by taking them directly on the device or by taking them with a traditional camera, then adding them to a device library.  Once a photo is chosen, it can be edited easily on Instagram and added to the app’s feed and other social networking sites.  The ease of use and compatibility with other social sites encourages participation among users.  If this isn’t enough Instagram visually entices users to browse and follow as they will.
While there are several reasons to use Instagram, the application is not designed to be accessed easily.  To use Instagram, a user must download the app on their Apple or Android enabled phone/device leaving those individuals and businesses without this access in the dark.  Instagram does not even allow users to be able to view photos on their website forcing Instagramers to seek out third party websites like http://web.stagram.com or http://luxogram.co/ along with many others.  Another drawback to using Instagram is the limitations of its use.  While users love the capabilities to enhance their photos and tell stories through visualizations, the requirement of these visualizations leaves news-only content out of the Instagram market.  Obviously, Instagram is not used as a news outlet which works well for many of its users, however, it is difficult for Instagram users to tap into this field as a photo is required to post, but one may not always be available.
Despite Instagram’s limitations it is an extremely beneficial tool that can and should be used in the library.  If a library has an employee willing and able to manage the Instagram account, it can be used to attract a new kind of patron as well as be used to market the library in a new way.

The Instalibrary

The synthesis of libraries and instagram is virtually non-existent at this point, as there are only two libraries currently utilizing the application (based on a search of “library” in user names).  Academic institutions on the other hand are beginning to utilize the app more frequently.  Some notable institutions on Instagram areWayne State University, the University of Florida and Stanford University.  Those libraries that are taking advantage of the opportunities available with Instagram are using it for more than news and updates.  The app is being used as a community tool, a marketing device and an educational resource.
The UCLA Powell Library is one of the few libraries using Instagram at this time.  Their mission is “to serve as a place of inquiry, creativity, and community to the university’s 27,000 undergraduate students (Library, 2012).”  This mission statement exemplifies a goal that goes beyond education and shows a shift into a new technological age where social networking (no matter what format) is at the center.  Their feed which began 14 weeks ago contains details on library events, a timeline of their Edible Book Festival, details on therapy dog sessions as well as other photos.  While their Instagram life is still young the use of this budding social network shows potential for growth in the future.  In UCLA’s case Instagram has been used successfully in promoting library events and acting as a bond between the library staff and students, teachers and the general public.  A great example was their use on Instagram during their edible book festival.  The application was used before the show to exhibit prizes and get the word out.  The app was used during the show to advertise the event and create an instant online diary of the festival entries and it was used after the show the show the winners.

Instagram of the future

Instagram isn’t just for personal use anymore.  More and more businesses are beginning to use this app, especially since there are a plethora of business tutorials built into Instagram’s online community.  Libraries have an opportunity to join in an extensive network to share information in an artistic and fun format.  One way to implement Instagram into the normal marketing structure of the library is to encourage participation among library guests.  Offer patrons the opportunity to share and intermingle their experiences at library functions and everyday activities.  Many institutions are using hashtags to allow users to share their photos making a space where other users can engage with the library as well as other users.
Libraries can take a cue from educational institutions that have already joined the Instagram network by also creating educational related activities.  Many libraries already have youth programs in different formats and there is a way that Instagram can be incorporated into programs for youths and adults alike.  Programs can be formatted to encourage short photo essays or photo sharing sessions.  There are also ways for academic libraries to piggyback on their home institutions as it is more likely that a university rather than a university library will be on Instagram.   The Infinite Thinking Machine recently released a video about the use of social networking like Instagram in education.  A school teacher used Instagram in her lessons allowing her students to “practice collaboration, critical thinking and communication skills with a real world audience (The Infinite Thinking Machine, 2012).”


It is disappointing that more libraries are not utilizing Instagram to their own gains.  So many people are visual learners and are attracted to art and photography.  Even an enhanced photo of books seems more interesting.  A picture of a library event from multiple perspectives, makes the event more enticing.  And Invitations for participation can make a community feel more united.  If libraries embrace the use of Insatgram they can tap into a market that it utilized by millions of individuals, both young and old as well as libraries and schools from around the world.

References:
Library, U. P. (2012). Instagram. Los Angeles, California, US.

Murray, J. (2012, April 12). Instagram snaps into top 10 social networks. Retrieved June 21, 2012, from Experian Hitwise: http://weblogs.hitwise.com/james-murray/2012/04/instagram_snaps_into_top_10_so.html

Rushe, D. (2012, April 10). Instagram founders turn two years of work into $1bn – only in Silicon Valley. Retrieved June 20, 2012, from The Guardian : http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/2012/apr/10/instagram-founders-two-years-silicon-valley

Taylor, C. (2012, May 1). Instagram Passes 50 Million Users, Adds 5 Million a Week. Retrieved June 21, 2012, from abcnews.com: http://abcnews.go.com/Technology/instagram-passes-50-million-users-adds-million-week/story?id=16247981#.T-ZO77WwacQ

The Infinite Thinking Machine. (2012, April 17). Episode 2.02.