Remembering Loved Ones in Iraq

Iraq
by SoldierMediaCenter

I know several who are serving in Iraq, some military, others civilians. One friend’s husband is one of the volunteers, not military, but working for one of the contractors, his one year commitment, turned into two. Safe zone? Not really. When they get a chance to talk in the morning hours she can hear mortar fire in the background, bravely keeping a cheerful voice for the sake of her husband. Afterwards she is sick to her stomach.

Summer has hit, I just checked the forcast for Baghdad and tomorrow’s high is 111 F. Lots of dust and sand. HOT! DRY! and too many miles away from home.

One thing they really miss is home. My friend told how her husband would call early morning and just talk, needing to hear the voice of a loved one. He also craved photos from home. Yes, he does have a laptop, but the promised internet has not made it other than a few minutes far between.

Several in our church’s congregation are in Iraq, and as many are Dads, Granddads of our little ones, we planned a service activity for the children. Both those with family home and those with family away made picture frames for Father’s Day presents, wrote letters, drew pictures, brought gifts to put in care packages to those in Iraq. The funnest thing we did was provide flags, balloons, hats of various sorts, bandannas, longhorns, armadillos, etc. to dress up and pose in front of the camera. Great pictures were printed and added to the boxes. Other photos were saved to be turned into cards and mailed later.

It was a great experience. One young man (7 years old) was very excited as his Dad was coming home for 2 weeks.

Imagine the smiles that would come on their faces, as our surprise care packages arrive close to the Fourth of July. I’ve spent much time thinking of my friends’ families, and how over and over again the best part of the activity was the photos, both serious and silly.

I thought of how I enjoy sending cards through SendOutCards and what a great service it would be for those families. No need to leave home to make photo cards for those loved ones away from home. And for those in Iraq who are able to get internet, they can upload photos into greeting cards and they will be printed and mailed from the United States, less waiting time.

Connect Simply would like to help as many who wish send cards to loved ones in Iraq and from Iraq back to family members back home. If you know anyone serving in Iraq, send them a card, first one is on me, put a smile on their face. More details in my Cards to Iraq post.

Diva Update

I enjoyed networking and meeting the other Baby Boomer Diva’s today. It was great and I’ll post a link to the businesses involved once Bev has it up. I’ll be reviewing Rosie’s Blogging Managment System and posting that info for all first of next week.

For those who want to learn more about SendOutCards tune into the following webinar or drop me a note.

FRIDAY June 20, 2008

4 PM EST, 3 PM CST, 2 PM MST, 1 PM PST

Reserve your Webinar seat now at:
https://www1.gotomeeting.com/register/941048536

Give 3222 for the ID number.

Stay tuned for the Cards to Iraq special.

2nd Annual Boomer Diva Day Schedule

Sassy Girl Photo Greeting Card

OK, for those who’ve asked, here is the schedule of events. Be sure at tune in at 1:15 Eastern and I’ll demonstrate a fun and easy way to stay in touch with your clients, friends and family using the coolest cards in town, SendOutCards. Free gift for those who attend.

I am excited to be a part of this wonderful online event hosted by Beverly Mahone, founder of Boomer Diva Nation and author of Whatever! A Baby Boomer’s Journey into Middle Age.

The event is the 2nd Annual Boomer Diva Day celebration in honor of Baby Boomer Day will be on June 20th from 10amEDT-3pmEDT in the WECAI web conference room at http://www.wecai.org/ewednesdaychat.exe
This is a time of celebration and fun for boomers all over the world who are (as the motto of Boomer Diva Nation) “On the Move and Making a Difference”.

I hope that you will join us for the wonderful event and join in on the fun, community and support for Boomer Divas everywhere!

Also, we are so excited and honored to have my good friend, Heidi Richards, founder of WECAI, to be the speaker of the day to talk about Blogging for Business.

Here is the updated schedule (times and vendors may change):

Time (all times are EST)
10:00-10:15 Welcome/Greeting

10:15-10:30 Kathy Porter – Mia Bella Candles

10:30-11:00 SPEAKER: Heidi Richards – Blogging for Business

11-11:15am Passion Parties rep, Donna Bourque

11:15-11:30am Dortha Hise – Avon

11:30-11:45 Break/Networking

11:45-12pm Rosie Horner – The Blog Management System Organize Your Blogging Today!

12-12:15pm Terri – Pop Art Diva

12:15-12:30pm Debbie Mormino – The Breast Cancer Diva

12:30-12:45pm Lisa Fredette –BeautiControl Rep

12:45-1pm Sharon Williams- The 24 hour Secretary

1-1:15pm Barb Ireland The Sample Cake

1:15-1:30pm Heidi Caswell (http://www.connectsimply.com)

1:30-1:45 Stephanie Fish, Buckeye VA http://www.buckeyeva.com

1:45-2pm pending vendor

2pm-2:15pm Dr Sally Witt (http://www.drsallywitt.com)

2:15pm-2:30pm Michelle Waters , Product Sellers Seminar

2:30pm-3pm Networking/Giveaways

A Story of Ethics


Photo by David Prior

How would you handle this?

I was building a team with a previous NWM business. One of the things I did was help with out local meetings, and those in another town a couple hours away. Thank goodness for the internet and online meetings today. We did not have such tools back then and put many miles on the car. My husband would say don’t go, you are wasting your time, let someone else support those meetings. Yet I had downline there, and I could go, and I did, putting a positive tape in the car to listen on the way down.

One of my reps was a stay at home Mom with a GED education and no job experience. I learned that when I worked with her almost everyone we talked to became a customer or rep, kind of cool and I saw the real value in helping others. She was quite excited, sadly she only worked after I called, or while I was down there, but it was time well spent. I learned much. One of her reps became a leader and friend in her local area.

At one of the meetings there was a guest from an out-of-town rep. We answered her questions and she was ready to join. We told her to get back with the person who sent her. She said No, she wanted a local sponsor and asked quite firmly to join our group. It would have been real easy to do so, and quick money. But we didn’t. It would not be right. She was upset with us for not letting her join us. I explained how we would help her anyway, not good enough for her, but we could not sponsor her. Ethics. In the end, she didn’t join anyone. Other times it would have been real easy to give in to the lure of quick money and sponsor other people’s guests.

As a company grows, a person may have more than one rep contact them. It is that person’s decision who to join. I know one person in this previous company who loved that company but would not join because he felt torn too many ways. It doesn’t have to be that way.

We had a good local group, leaders cross-line of each other. One thing we had was trust. Instead of pulling prospects in different directions, we encouraged them to join who ever showed them first. Now if that first person was no longer working the business, nor following up, nor just mentioned they had a business but never invited them to look, it was fair game. We helped many locally who belonged to leaders in other organizations. One guy we spent a lot of time with after meetings, etc. Put it this way, he is excited and doing things, lets help him do the right things so our company can keep its good name. Other groups helped our reps in their town.

One person who was running newspaper ads even went so far as to pull out his list and ask “Do you know ______ ?” If we knew them it was is this someone you would want in your business? If we said No, he chunked their card. If we knew them, it was how well do you know them, if we knew them well it was you have so many days to contact them, if you don’t I will.

And life was good.

Consider what your actions do to a company, and even the reputation of Network Marketing in general.
We can help each other out and the business can thrive, or we can work out of a fear of lack, and say “they are all mine!” and it becomes a war zone.

Today we have the internet, so much information at our fingertips. Nothing wrong with picking your sponsor carefully. Consider their upline organization too. I enjoy and appreciate the support I get from Diane Walker and her SendOutCards group:

“I can do things that you cannot. You can do things that I cannot. Together we can do great things”
– Mother Teresa

“Our team works together just like this quote :-)” Diane Walker

Meetings are done more and more online through conference calls and webinars, thank goodness. It is great fun to meet face to face occasionaly. As leaders we still have a responsibility.

Open to thoughts. Where do you draw the line? If you are a leader in your business, do you help those crossline? under what conditions? do you encourage crossline prospects to join whoever introduced them to the business? or would you after a corporate sponsored meeting encourage someone else’s guest to join you instead?

Heidi Caswell

Send the coolest greeting cards in town.
Visit http://CardsConnectSimply.com
and I’ll give you a couple for free.

Happy Earth Day!

Earth Day Commitments

Earth Day! We should show respect for our planet every day, not just on Earth Day. But, this is a good time to consider our planet and the footprint we leave behind. Each small act makes a difference, we can each do something. Ways you can honor our planet:

  • Educate yourself. Sometimes what seems a simple solution, is not so simple. We have to look at the full impact of the steps we take.
    • WE Magazine for Women has a special issue out you don’t want to miss, and you’ll find plenty of green articles there.
    • Care2’s Healthy and Green Living Blog is full of tips and information of things you can do. And on their website I see over 40 videos with tips,, how to conserve water, and other helpful bits of information
    • Google, search blogs, read a book for more information. Keep in mind that some businesses, seeking to profit from our increased interest in healthy living, have provided us with much stuff we can buy, some are good and others not misleading.
  • Discuss with others, learn from each other. Each of us in unique, with our own view points, experiences. Share and brainstorm things we can do to help the environment.
  • Make commitments yourself. I posted my commitments on this Earth Day Card. You can see them above. Visit and post your own message to the Earth.
  • Teach others to have a respect for the Earth. My kids and I were discussing other ways to fuel a car. Yes, plant oils can be used to fuel a car, but if it takes more energy to produce that fuel, than what you get in return, it isn’t worth it.
  • Use recycled items wherever possible. I did find recycled trash bags the other day. I love that SendOutCards uses recycled paper for their cool greeting cards. I love that our local area has a composting center where I can drop off tree trimmings and pick up aged compost.

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Send Cards to Clients – Timeless Advice

Sands
Photo by Hamed Saber

Long before there was even an internet, in fact even before our modern day postal service, many successful businesses have written countless greeting cards, notes of appreciation to their clients. Building relationships through that personal touch which sets them apart from the crowd.

Today we have so many ways to communicate. Technology has grown so much, not only has the mail service, which we take for granted, can get a letter across the world in a week or less, but we have so many other ways to keep in touch. Phones, cell phones, VOIP, emails, online groups, blogs, twitter, text messaging. . . No excuse not to keep in touch.

I was talking last week to Justin Walters from Arizona. He is very tech savvy, helping businesses connect with their clients online, even through text messaging. Justin told me about how while talking to a client he’d heard when that client’s birthday was. He wrote that date down and the next time that birthday rolled around he sent a birthday card through the mail. His client was so appreciative, thanked him. He’d only gotten 2 cards that year, one from his wife and one from Justin. It really meant a lot. Justin has continued to spend time each month sending out cards to clients. Timeless advice.

If you’d like to meet Justin and check out how he is sending out cards today, click here

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“Appreciation Wins Over Self Promotion”

“Appreciation Wins Over Self Promotion” I hear it at SendOutCards all the time.

More than just words, it is one of those universal laws. Think about it for a minute who would you rather refer your friends to, a business that sends you a bunch of junk mail, or the one that did a super job and let you know how much they appreciated you? And who would you rather buy from, someone who treated you as a friend or a company who saw you as just one more number?

Watch this video about Relationship Marketing Today!

Mailing Out Cards from the Hospital

Tuesday morning I was with my husband at the hospital. He had surgery, which went well, and we were able to go home soon after.

I love that our hospitals here have public wireless internet, so rest assured my laptop is with me. Especially helpful when my husband had back surgery in Little Rock. While waiting to check out, I saw that my nephew had a birthday coming up and was picking out a basketball related card when the nurse came in. While husband made a trip to the bathroom, I invited her over to take a peek. She thought it was so cool that I was mailing real cards from my laptop. I gave her a mail out cards service’s url so she could check it out herself when off work. (Note to self, get her name and number next time, works better, I just forgot).

So cool that hospitals have free internet. I hate leaving anyone alone in a hospital room, and sitting in a room watching someone sleep gets to me quickly. But add an laptop and internet, I find plenty to do, which I can put down when ever I’m needed at the bedside.

Holiday Gift Ideas

Decisions, decisions! What to do? What to do?

You want to send nice gifts to those you appreciate, those who’ve cheered you on, became loyal customers, to show your gratitude for their support. Something nice that doesn’t end up in the trash bin, or collecting dust in a hidden corner. You want your recipient to smile and remember you fondly as they open your gift, not toss your calendar on the ever growing stack. (I like calendars, but only need 1 or 2. Wish there was some way everyone could get together and say, it is your turn to give calendars this year). Handcrafted gifts by self would really add the personal touch, but then hwo would you have time to build your business. I do like food as gifts, less shopping and baking to do here, no dusting later (exercising, yes, we know where those calories go).

Think about the person you are giving the gift to, what do they like what would be a meaningful gift. Most important, add a card to the gift, write down in words exactly why you appreciate them into a personalized card. Dear customer just won’t work here.

Let Someone Else do the Baking

  • How about an Italian chef baking all kinds of tasty treats? Hand made Italian Cakes, muffins & cookies from the old country! Let Mama Gloria do the baking this year at My Little Taste of Italy
  • Shortbread anyone? Vermont Shortbread Company Brings a Taste of Homemade Goodness to Your Doorstep.
  • Jams, jellies, pound cake. From Jalapeno Pepper Jelly to Pumpkin Butter. Gift baskets and sugar-free varieties (splenda). Visit Annie’s Accent Bakery.
  • Customize your own greeting card and add it to a box of delicious candies, nuts, cookies, brownies. GetYourCards and gifts here.
  • Need something a little healthier, unique? Sage Hill Farms will take care of your with their organic herbs, teas, tell Bea “Hi!” for me.

Gifts that Give

Books are always great, how many time did you say to yourself I’d love to read that book? but never got around to purchasing it for yourself. There are many gifted authors out there who have wonderful, inspirational books out there. I don’t have time to list all the ones I know and recommend.

  • Brian Biro, one of the all time best buddy thankers, sent me a copy of both his Joyful Spirit book and his BreakThrough Stories 1 cd which my kids and I enjoyed listening to as they are also swimmers and could relate to Alison’s story.
  • Another book you may want to pick up for someone struggling with menopause is Beverly Mahone’s Whatever! A BabyBoomer’s Journey into Middle Age.
  • If you have no idea what book to give your can always give a gift certificate such as one from Barnes and Noble available with a greeting card from SendOutCards.
  • Give a gift of song, a book on cd or a cd such as Jeanie Marshall’s Guided Meditation cd’s.
  • No sure what to choose, give an iTunes gift certificate, again available as a gift card inside your personalized greeting card from SendOutCards.

Other Gift Card Ideas

Other gift cards available from SendOutCards:

  • Restaurant Cards, Starbucks gift cards, let them decide what to eat, when.
  • Home Depot gift cards for the Do It Yourselfer
  • Bed Bath and Beyond
  • Gift card for a variety of clothing stores, let them take advantage of the after Christmas sales
  • WalMart gift card
  • More
  • Or even make your own gift cards, free coupon for a new service you are providing clients, discount coupons, referrals to their business, a gift of service. But don’t forget the personal note.

Happy Hanukkah

Candle lightDec. 4, today, at sundown is the beginning of Hanukkah, the Jewish Festival of Lights, commemorating the rededication of the temple in Jerusalem. According to tradition, a menorah is lite one new candle added each night for the 8 day festival.

While surfing the news, looking for a spin on the holidays/news, as Dina suggested in today’s blog copywriting tip, I found many celebrations. University of Michigan students are putting their own spin on the holiday, with 1000 dreidels to spin at once in celebration.

Hanukkah greeting Cards
? Sure contact me and I’ll give you a free Hanukka card to mail out from your computer, a real physical greeting card, not a Hanukkah eCard. Sorry I didn’t post this earlier, Hanukkah snuck up on me this year.

Not having a menorah, my blog will light a candle in honor of miracles.