West Chester 237

TopGolf Cincy + Giveaway

Last week, my fellow Thread blogger Annie invited all of the ladies from  Thread out to the media preview for the new Topgolf venue in West Chester! I decided to disregard my total lack of athletic ability and give golf a try. After touring the venue and getting a better understanding of how Topgolf works I was pleasantly surprised at how interactive and fun everything looked.

This is not your mama’s putt-putt golf, there is no walking from station to station.  There are “bays” where you can bring up to 6 people for a round of golf. The balls come out of a machine on the ground and there are a variety of clubs to choose from to tee up. The goal is to get your ball into one of the targets to earn points. It’s very similar to a bowling experience. I can totally see returning to Topgolf for a fun double date.

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About the food…

The food and the staff at Topgolf were equally playfull! All of the menu options had a fun spin on classic casual dining options. Everything was delectable and don’t even get me started on the injectable donut holes that came with chocolate, raspberry jelly or Bavarian cream. All of the staff members were attentive and kind. At the end of the night, all of the staff came out and did the wobble. Needless to say, fun is infused into the Topgolf’s company mission!

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Thread Cincinnati is teaming up with Topgolf to give one lucky reader a $100 gift card to use at the new venue! The winner will be announced on the Thread Cincinnati Facebook page on Friday, so make sure that is one of your entries so you don’t miss out! Just click here to enter your chance win!

 

For more Oh Wize One be sure to subscribe by clicking the follow button.  You can also follow me on Facebook OhWize One, Instagram@ohwizeone, twitter@ohwize1. Remember to share the wisdom with friends!!

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Style Sunday | Black Does Not Make You Look Thinner

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I have nothing against a little black dress. I think black can be powerful and sexy. I also know women who wouldn’t dare wear another color because black is slimming. Can a darker color camouflage a problem area on your body? Yes, it can. Will wearing head to toe black make you look thinner? Nope! I don’t believe in hiding behind black for the sake of appearing thinner. I do believe in complimenting the shape of your body to highlight your best features and that can be done without wearing any black.

Skin Is In

Anyone can wear black but black is a harsh color and doesn’t work with every skin tone. Women with cool undertones look fantastic in navy blue and chocolate brown. Women with dark skin radiate in eggplant. Give your wardrobe some versatility with other dark staple colors and give head toe black a rest.

It Ain’t The Color, It’s The Fabric

Don’t limit yourself to dark colors for the sake of looking thin it’s a crutch. Let me just be honest because, well, it’s my blog. If a garment is made of thin unflattering fabric that sinks into every crevasse buying it in black won’t make it look better.Any body type can wear any color if the fabric is a heavy weight. The silhouette and the cut of an item will determine if the item makes you appear smaller.

What’s Black, White, and Red All Over? Print!!

I know some people shy away from prints because they fear the print will make them appear larger than they really are. I have even had friends tell me that they won’t wear floral prints because they will look like a garden. I remember thinking but aren’t gardens beautiful? The wrong print can do you an injustice and the wrong print isn’t a specific print it is the direction of which the print goes or the size of the print. I’ve worn stripes. polka dots, checks, and florals. You name it I’ve worn it, some prints are intentional and silhouette the body. New adventures and clothes have something in common you won’t know until you TRY!!

For more Oh Wize One be sure to subscribe by clicking the follow button.  You can also follow me on Facebook OhWize One, Instagram@ohwizeone, twitter@ohwize1. Remember to share the wisdom with friends!!

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Let’s Take A Daycation! The Perfect Picnic

 

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Daycation

Don’t allow a lack of time or funds stop you from enjoying your summer. Take a daycation and relieve your work week stress. Nothing puts me more at ease than a great picnic with friends. Instead of going to the usual gathering place pick a new venue, pull out the cooler, and pack your picnic basket full of goodies.

The Perfect Get Away

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I actually found the perfect getaway right outside of Cincinnati at Pyramid Hill Sculpture Park. Located in Hamilton, Ohio just far away enough to feel like I left town. Pyramid Hill is an outdoor museum focusing on monumental pieces of sculpture in an environment of meadows, forests, and various gardens. The beautiful art and wide open spaces were the perfect backdrop for a picnic with friends.

Get Real Martha!

 

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I love my adorable wicker picnic basket (on sale here) it’s Pinterest worthy but in all reality, it won’t keep anything cool. For a picnic for more than two  I always bring a cooler (similar here) in addition to my cute basket because nobody wants to eat warm potato salad. I pack a tablecloth, serving ware, napkins, and anything that is not temperature sensitive in my basket.

I’ve seen great photographs of picnics styled with real plates and ceramic serving dishes. It looks fantastic but ain’t nobody got time for that stick with light reusable food containers. You can be even more resourceful when packing a salad, clean the lettuce and assemble your pre-cut vegetables in the same plastic container the salad is sold in. That way once the salad is gone you can also throw out the container and pack up your things with one less container to take home. Keep in mind that whatever you pack, you also have to carry.

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Making sandwiches? Toast your bread at home and stick it back in the bread bag and you will have a load of toasted bread. You can assemble your sandwiches at the picnic and your sandwich won’t be soggy.

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How many barbeques have you been to this summer? Switch up your picnic options with light fun bites my Italian Potato Salad is perfect for a hot summer day!

Mayo-less Italian Potato Salad

Ingredients

1/2 lb pancetta 1/2 Pound of red russet potatoes

1/2 Pound of red russet potatoes

1 small jar of roasted red peppers

1/3 cup diced red onion

1/2 cup Italian Salad Dressing

1/4 cup of cut basil

1/4 cup parmesan cheese

3 teaspoons of salt

In a stock pot, salt the water and boil the red potatoes until fork tender. Drain the water and allow the potatoes to slightly cool (cool enough to handle but still very warm). Cut the potatoes into small cubes. Place the warm potatoes, diced red onion,  and 1/2 cup Italian salad dressing in a container with a lid and place in the refrigerator for a minimum of 4 hours or overnight.

In a pan fry the pancetta until browned on both sides, place on paper towel, and allow to  cool.  Drain the roasted red peppers and dice into small pieces.

Drain the roasted red peppers and dice into small pieces.

Crush the pancetta into small pieces

Mix the pancetta, roasted red peppers, potatoes, and salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle the basil and parmesan cheese on top for garnish.

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Style Sunday | Style Inspiration

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Whenever I get dressed I get into character. I get my inspiration from films, magazines, actresses. Believe it or not, my sense of imagination helps me get dressed all the time. Getting dressed is my happy place and since it’s so much fun seeing a great outfit on a shape that’s smaller than mine is not intimidating, nope, my size isn’t a factor. My source of inspiration doesn’t have to wear a size 16, my inspiration only needs to be fabulous. I can play, I can pretend, my size will not affect my sense of play.

This look is inspired by Carmen Jones the movement in the wide leg cropped pants just felt flirtatious and sassy much like Dorothy Dandridge in the movie.

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Top: SimplyBe, Crop Pants: SimplyBe, Shoes: Aldo

Hell, my clothes are my toys. Men buy sports cars and I buy outfits. If clothes are the food of life wear them well! Real style has no size so if you see something you would like to wear don’t make an excuse on why you can’t wear it. A color won’t make you look fat, a silhouette can be altered to compliment your shape. don’t be fooled you can wear what you want to wear.

Don’t Be Afraid To Play

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For more Oh Wize One be sure to subscribe by clicking the follow button.  You can also follow me on Facebook OhWize One, Instagram@ohwizeone, twitter@ohwize1. Remember to share the wisdom with friends!!

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The Perfect Outfit for the Office

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Cheaters always prosper or at least they do when it comes to what to wear to the office. I have managed to wear a dress in the office almost every day. I make the most out of my wardrobe so the dresses I wear for play also need to have a dual function so I can wear them to work. When I am short on time in the morning I throw on a dress and pair it with a jacket (sometimes I keep a blazer or a blue jean jacket in my car, just in case.) Adding a blazer is the perfect cheat it makes everything look more professional.
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If you are looking for a new job this summer getting dressed can be a challenge. It’s too hot to look stuffy and traditional suiting actually looks aged. Especially when you stand a chance of being more dressed up than the person interviewing you. Don’t underdressed just keep in mind that a maxi dress will always look too relaxed and just say no to anything sheer. Here is the formula one traditional piece plus one relaxed item plus tailored details equals success. If you wear a flowy midi-length skirt I would pair that with a collared shirt with a belt and a closed toed shoe.

 

Too Hot For Business

 

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The Barbecue Rules of Engagement

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Whether you are hosting your own cookout or you are attending someone else’s there is something you want more than food this holiday weekend. Independence Day feels so casual and it’s the perfect time to reconnect with friends, meet your new boyfriend’s parents, or vacation for the long weekend. I know what you want and it is to show up looking “crisp”that effortlessly chic look that says. “I just threw this on.” You could just put on some cutoffs and a wrinkled t-shirt or you can take an extra five minutes to enhance your casual look and leave everyone mesmerized at how casually fine you are.

Don’t Go Overboard

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Don’t turn yourself into the American flag! I know it’s tempting but remember that teacher who always had a sweater to match every holiday that is the type of vibe you will give if you wear the American flag from head to toe. Do play with red, white, and blue it is a classic color scheme that always works. Notice how in this look my dress has red and white stripes and I accented the look by pairing it with blue sandals. Even if you go with a monochromatic look and wear one color from head toe you can still accessorize with red or blue.

Just as Cute in Flats

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Yes, girl, you are just as cute in flats. If you know for sure that you will be in someone’s backyard or in a park don’t be the one woman wearing stilettos. You will just ruin the heels on your sexy shoes and you will look pretentious. Save the heels for the after party or a the very least wear a wedge.

The 25th Amendment

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The month of July marks the beginning of the 25th Amendment, where you can legally wear beach wear as street wear. A) because it’s hot! B) How do you know that I’m not going to a pool party? The answer to B is, you don’t. I think a swimsuit coverup or a beach dress can easily pass for street wear. I am however conscientious of how a sheer an item is because some things are more appropriate when you are standing next to a body of water.

I hope everyone has a fun and safe holiday!!

For more Oh Wize One be sure to subscribe by clicking the follow button.  You can also follow me on Facebook OhWize One, Instagram@ohwizeone, twitter@ohwize1. Remember to share the wisdom with friends!!

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Style Sunday | Style in the City

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When you think of destinations for fashion you the New York, Paris, Milian, I’m sure Cincinnati, Ohio never comes to mind. It should the University of Cincinnati has highly rank fashion design programs and with more millennials staying in the city after graduation a scene is emerging. I can’t give the millennials all of the credit for shining a light on style in the city there are established outlets like Cincy Chic that have always held the torch for style in the city.

This weekend I attended the Red, Pink & Blue Event the night focused on women’s health and of course fashion.I loved that fashion had a theme of little black dresses, which were all much sexier than expected which I appreciated.  Cincy Chic regularly holds fashion events at excited and hip venues if you need fashion inspiration follow them on Facebook to find out about their next event. 

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More Style, More Cincinnati

Did you know there is a mobile boutique in Cincinnati?? Trouvaille Mobile Botique has everything you need to put a stylish look together from accessories, clothes, and shoes. The best part is they will come to you! You can book them for a bridal shower, birthday party, or just because. Just get your friends together and shop. You can also find out where they will be next on their Facebook page. Fashion Trucks are the new food trucks!

 

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For more Oh Wize One be sure to subscribe by clicking the follow button.  You can also follow me on Facebook OhWize One, Instagram@ohwizeone, twitter@ohwize1. Remember to share the wisdom with friends!!

 

 

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Style Sunday |That Looks Great On You

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Looking Good Is a State of Mind

Sharing my personal style the one comment that has perplexed me is, “that looks great, on you.” After I read that sentiment I sit staring at my laptop thinking it doesn’t just look good on me it could look good on you too! Especially if the comment is referring to wearing a print or a bright color. When I planned to talk about swimwear, I prepared myself for the “that looks great, on you!”

The reality is my body is the one area of my life where I feel fearless. I think most days I have to remind myself that I’m not Beyonce. My body is my canvas and how I style myself is an expression of how I feel. When it’s finally swimsuit season, I’m always on a mission to find a suit that’s quirky and sexy just like me. When I went swimming this past weekend, I noticed women didn’t want to reflect their style they wanted to hide.

I think confidence can easily be mistaken for being conceited. My body confidence comes from knowing the power of my body. My body has walked miles, given birth to my daughter, it’s been injured, it’s healed, my body is getting me through life. I refuse to be ashamed of it because it doesn’t look like what society says it should look like. 

Lately, I have read several articles about clothes that flatter. There is a whole anti-flattering movement happening, am I the only person confused? Do I keep wondering, why would someone want to wear something that isn’t flattering? I recently began to understand the whole issue about flattery. I feel most confident when I’m wearing shapewear or if I’m wearing something that gives the appearance looking slimmer. I basically want every swimsuit I own to have shapewear built into it.

I’ve owned this swimsuit for a while now, and I’ve just never worn it, it’s not “slimming.” It didn’t guarantee that I would look 10 pounds slimmer. I bought it because I liked the details and the color of the swimsuit. Sometimes you just want to wear something because you like it and not because it creates the illusion of being thinner. Let’s be real my body is there whether I have on shapewear or not. Here’s another reality if you are hiding behind clothes or swimsuits that say, don’t notice me, we can still see you. Now that you have our attention what do you want to say?

For more Oh Wize One be sure to subscribe by clicking the follow button.  You can also follow me on Facebook OhWize One, Instagram@ohwizeone, twitter@ohwize1. Remember to share the wisdom with friends!!

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4 Branding Tips I Wish I Knew Before Starting A Blog

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I was so nervous when I started my blog that I had to devote all of my focus to getting up the nerve to click the publish button. My anxiety was out of control. I was overwhelmed at the thought of people judging me thinking, “Who does she think she is?”  After I finally shared my concept with the social media world, I quickly understood that I was a small fish in a global ocean. I began researching how to stand out in an oversaturated market. The more you know, the more you grow. I still wish I had so many of the tools and techniques that I am finding out about every day.

I’m not Instagram famous, yet, but people have asked me about how I keep my blogging approach so effortless. The answer to that questions is that it’s never effortless, and I work hard and at times, it’s bordering obsessive. Through my research, I noticed what separated the popular blogs, small businesses, and online communities from those that were struggling was branding.

Well, because you asked….

People hate to be sold to or feel like they are being asked to do something. When you first create a new venture, your first instinct is to say “read my blog”, “buy my product”, “come to my show”. That tactic isn’t working because you had to ask. A brand isn’t asking you for anything. A brand is welcoming you into a world that you want to be a part of and providing you with an experience that you can’t get anywhere else.

As a kid, you didn’t want name brand cereal because General Mills asked you to buy it. Every cereal has an associated cartoon with their world, and the correlating cartoon had a thirty-second commercial that invited you into their world. Captain Crunch invited you onto his ship, and by the time you got to the grocery you wanted to purchase his cereal. Whatever it is that you are promoting, create a world for it and invite people to experience it. Asking doesn’t create loyalty, it creates disinterest and guilt, and that isn’t a feeling that will create followers or return customers.

You Don’t Know Jack

Everybody knows something, and you may be an expert in your field, but you don’t know what you think you know. I had written stage plays and performed all over the country as a spoken word artist. I knew what it was to get likes and engagement on a social media platform. I even knew how to post a picture on Instagram, but I didn’t know jack! It seemed as though the moment that I wanted people who engaged with me on an everyday basis, and to engage with me on my blog all I heard was crickets.

When people don’t immediately take an interest in your business ventures it can be hard. You can feel like they don’t support you, but before you lash out in a really long Facebook post, stop and think.  Maybe you’re taking their support for granted. Don’t complain, get better. Maybe it’s not what you are doing, but how you are doing it. It’s okay to stop and reevaluate the plan and amend some of your tactics. Get more information and read books about how to engage with people. Research your industry.  Follow brands that you are loyal to and figure what it is about that brand keeps you coming back. You don’t know jack because you can never know everything.

If you are using Facebook to promote yourself on your personal page ,and you don’t have a business page, create one. A business page has analysis.  It tracks how much traffic comes to the page and how many people saw a post.  (Facebook has a shady algorithm so be sure to share everything onto your personal page to generate more traffic.) Pay attention to what post work and which post generate the most engagement and adjust your approach.

If you promote more on Instagram, you need to takes some time and research hashtags that relate to what it is you promote. Trust and believe that everything has a hashtag and lucky for us, Instagram now will show you related hashtags. Be sure to pay attention to what time you get the most engagement, you may be posting great content, but you’re posting it when no one is online and that is like talking to an empty room. If you don’t use Instagram I don’t know why not. Facebook limits you to who you know and Instagram limits you to who cares. If you find a way to engage on Instagram with people who are interested in what you are providing you are opening up a world of opportunity for yourself.

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ABS (Always Be Selling)

I know I just said people don’t like to be sold.  Let me rephrase.  People don’t like to feel like they are BEING sold. That doesn’t mean we can’t play to their subconscious. Use social media, don’t let it use you. If you post a cute selfie, make a quick reference to your brand in the caption. Then you seem carefree like, “I’m just out here in enjoying life and oh, by the way, stop by my ______.” You may want to limit how many post you make that don’t pertain to what you have going on. I’m not saying never post personal pictures just try not to oversaturate yourself, or create mixed messages with your brand.

The best example of ABS that I can think of is my super suave and handsome friend Ron . Ron is always selling and he makes it look effortless. He pays close attention to when something is working, and he remains consistent. He started a whole movement with pictures that he would take of himself along with his friends.  He posts the pictures and says, “Look Who I Ran Into.” His pictures are always fun, and he is always at a happening spot, so you look forward to seeing where Ron is and who he ran into. Soon he got the suggestion to make, “Look Who I Ran” into a hashtag and into his brand. Once the hashtag grew in popularity, he put the hashtag on t-shirts and they selling like hot cakes!

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Do you see how Ron created a world by consistently taking pictures when he went out? He would also tag his friends (which is genius because now his friends and their friends see the picture). Unintentionally, Ron created a soft launch by promoting himself, creating a hashtag, and then launching a product. A soft launch is a business term that refers to the process of establishing a brand before there is a product to sell.

So if you have a business or blog that you want to get started I encourage you to get started now. Even if you don’t have the money or all of the tools you need to get started, start now. The most advantageous part of a soft launch is that you create a loyal following so that when you launch your product there is someone to buy it.

Image is Everything

The scroll is real! The images that you use to brand yourself and your products are essential. The majority of people now access social media on their phone and not on a computer which means your images are being seen on a smaller screen. If your images aren’t clear and compelling than it’s getting scrolled past until something is captivating enough to make the person’s finger stop scrolling long enough to look at what is on their screen.

You have to think about what story you are trying to convey about your brand with the picture that you are about to post. Also, keep in mind that large retailers, national companies, and major brands are also using social media. Their pictures are being styled and photographed by professionals.  You’re competing to get engagement in the same newsfeed. If you bake, take pictures of your cakes and make sure that they are in the context of your brand. Style your products and services in a context that people can understand. Create a world and invite people in with your pictures.

I know the thought of competing with the big brands seems overwhelming but work it at your own pace. I borrowed a friends camera when I first started blogging until I could afford the camera I wanted. I’ve seen people create magic with iPhone cameras. You might not be able to use a graphic designer for every promotion, but there are free online options like Canva that will allow you to make anything from a Facebook promotion to a full-size poster.

 

I still wish to this day that I had known what a soft launch was before I published my blog. Like I said before, the more you know, the more you grow and to that I will add more opportunities will come your way. I am always taking online classes  and reading books learning more about photography, business launch strategies, and the fine art of promoting yourself. Like I said, I’m borderline obsessed.  If you run into me and get me talking I will probably tell you about the latest podcast about how to grow your Instagram following. Dreams are great and bringing them into reality is hard work, but hopefully from the outside looking in it appears effortless.

Be sure to check out Ron on social media to find out more about him and #lookwhoIraninto Facebook and Instagram.

For more Oh Wize One be sure to subscribe by clicking the follow button.  You can also follow me on Facebook OhWize One, Instagram@ohwizeone, twitter@ohwize1. Remember to share the wisdom with friends!!

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Style Sunday | My Wardrobe Secret

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The weather is beautiful, there is something to do every night of the week and every time you turn around another one of your friends is getting married. I get anxious with every new invitation because after the excitement wears off I’m left wondering, “What am I going to wear?”

This summer I will be the BDG (Best Dressed Guest) at every function. I’m sharing my summer secret… It’s Gwynnie Bee.

Gwynnie Bee is at my service and all of my “what to wear” fears have gone away. Gwynnie Bee is a plus size clothing rental service. I get to try the latest designer plus brands without the commitment. You don’t have to worry about cleaning the clothes after you wear them Gwynnie Bee dry cleans everything after you return your items. Everything is shipped two-day by USPS. When I’m ready, I just send the items back in my prepaid postage bag, and Gwynnie Bee sends me another item from my online closet. It’s like Netflix for clothes, and I’m addicted!!!

Both of these dresses can be found on Gwynnie Bee. I have a special offer for all of my Oh Wize One readers click here and try Gwynnie Bee for yourself  for FREE!!

Gwynnie Bee Unboxing

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Aww wasn’t that nice they included a sample:)

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If you fall in love with an item don’t worry you can purchase the items from Gwynnie Bee at a discounted price!

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For more Oh Wize One be sure to subscribe by clicking the follow button.  You can also follow me on Facebook OhWize One, Instagram@ohwizeone, twitter@ohwize1. Remember to share the wisdom with friends!!