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The Education Episode – #GetYourLearnOn

Panel Guests: Lisa Ross: Worked as a Special ED Teacher/Reading Specialist at Pennsauken School District, and an audience of Chef Dennis Littley. Dr. Lynn M. Gangone, Ed.D.: Dean of Colorado Women’s College and associate clinical professor or higher education at Morgridge College of Education. Dr. Robert M. Copeland, Ed.D.: Vice President for Student Affairs for Clinton College. Introducing Lisa Ross She was always a smart kid but it wasn’t easy for her to absorb information. Many people struggle on that part, which made them stop going to school. She became a Velcro Teacher: She throws everything at kids. Whatever sticks, that’s what she teaches to that particular student. You can’t do a one-size-fits-all in this case. In Special Ed, it can be difficult to stick to the standards. But Lisa does her best to incorporate all the different modalities, and try to help students the best that they can with what was their whole way of learning. Introducing Dr. Lynn Gangone. She used to be bored in High School, until she had a teacher who saw her potential and told her, “Look, I know you can do more than this.” Her career has mostly been in higher education, but spent some of it doing “Gender Equity” work for K12 teachers. Gender Equity: It's a life mission that's emerged in terms of really wanting the world to be a better place for boys, girls, men, and women. Back in the late 70's to early 80's there was a lot of movement in education around not limiting boys and girls, based on what we expected them to be when they grew up. We had certain expectations for boys, and separate expectations for girls. Not every boy or girl wants to be an Engineer, or Firefighter, or Police Officer, or a Mathematician. It's not necessarily gender-based. The idea was to open up an opportunity and to say to teachers and guidance counselors, "Just because a woman walks in, don't just assume she doesn't want to be an Engineer." Introducing Dr. Rob Copeland. He went to an all-male College. As an African-American male, there were not many people around who would give him the inspirational talk Lynn had. It was eye-opening for Rob going to a historical Black college university. It was a school that made him realize what he could do and what he could be. He currently serves a population of “first generation” college students. First Generation college students: These are students who haven’t had anyone in their family whom has gone to college. They have a lot of issues that traditional students may not have. These are the kids that are under-represented kids in college. They come from broken homes and have seen the abusive things in life. Rob zeroed-in on this population because he thinks that if we don't educate these young people, they're gonna go back to our community anyway. It truly is a fork in the road. And if Rob can make a difference and help these students along the way, that's what he’s there for. People are fascinated about the picture behind Lynn. It’s a compilation of sketches from women in history. It is called “All That We Are” by artist Helen Ragheb. dr. lynn gangone   What we look out in higher education is if it’s affordable. Aggregate Loan Limits: For students pursuing under graduate degree, the maximum they can borrow is $57,000. We think that what we’re doing is educating in terms of intellectual space: History, Political Science, Mathematics, Science, etc. But what we also have to educate in the outside of the classroom space—financial literacy. Most of the younger population don’t understand what that mean, when they sign that loan. This is not an unusual situation. Students are taking out loans, they’re not finishing, and they can’t do anything else. They can’t afford to go to another institution because they’ve hit their max. “If I’m not educating the whole of you … then I’m failing you, and I’m failing the larger society.” –Dr Lynn Gangone. At about 19, 20, and 21-years old, people start receiving credit cards. People at those age thought it as being real money. At that age, you don’t understand the concept of what it may be to pay back this student loan. So it is very important to educate these young people into what they are getting into. Yes, they’re investing on their education… But they also need to be intellectually financially astute, in regards to their education. Educational Online Tools In higher Ed, that's been a huge conversation. We've been talking about online versus on-ground, and hybrid learning. We absolutely need to have all of these technologies available, and understand the application in them; the familiarity of gadgets and what we can learn through those mediums is amazing. For some learners, having them blended absolutely works. But then there are some kids who probably needs having that grounded way, in which we actually have to interact with students. For adult learners, more on the online options. It was price point, it was convenient, and no driving! Technology has got to be part in parcel of everything we do and how we use that as an educational tool. We need to figure out a way to blend the traditional with the new technology. Title IX It was really ground-breaking for women in terms of the capacity to create educational equity. Title IX covers a lot of different things. It was what allowed young pregnant girls to stay at school. But today, a lot of it is focused on sexual harassment and sexual assault. Part of what's happening in the Title IX space particularly in the colleges and universities, the sexual assault and sexual harassment piece is being elevated. Title IX is now used as a way to help clean up what's happening in college and university campuses. Shout out to Erin Weed for founding “Girls Fight Back.” Think globally, act globally. There are 2 issues that are most prevalent right now. 1. Sexual assault. 2. Violence that takes places in college campuses. The biggest part of what we need to do is exactly the type of things that we're doing today: We need to be proactive instead of reactive. Sit down and talk, discuss, device, implement... Put the things in place while communicating each other. Certain colleges, as small as it may be, are dealing with the same types of issues. It is hard to talk about the violence piece. But it is real, it is part and parcel of all the ways in which we think about each other as men, women, boys, and girls. If we don't talk about it, nothing will change. It appears that bullying is only addressed at the elementary level. It starts to get almost out of control and not used for its specific purpose in that. When something happens in college, you are not the victim and you do speak out and voice your opinion in a safe environment. We try it in elementary and we think something seems not quite right with the bullying thing right now. What’s On? It’s interesting what the panel came up with on today’s “What’s On?” portion. In this episode, I asked them what book is on their bedside table. Lisa: The Book Thief. Just reading a fun book by Elin Hilderbrand. Lynn: The Gold Finch. Game of Thrones. A Whole World Over. A Path With Heart. Rob: Game of Thrones. Steven Rogers dissertation. Mia: Freaks Shall Inherit the Earth. You can tell by the mentioned books that the panel and I embrace our nerdiness. Or Rob would prefer calling it, “Intellectual Gangster.” Bat Crap Crazy Lisa: Being at the beach. Lynn: Being in Colorado in the summer. Rob: “My two wonderful kids.” Mia: The batpack audience.

Getting in touch with your feelings!

In this episode of The Mia Connect Power Chat, we talk about getting in touch with your feelings in different ways. We have a panel of experts who work with people with their lives, through different means… But mostly, we have horses, horses, and horses! Check out our guest line up: Adelheid Hörnlein of Paradiso Integrale: We call her “Heidi.” She’s been practicing Integral Theory for 15 years, and an expert in Transformational Relationship Coaching, Integral Practice, and Integral Voice Training. Les Dossey of UGH-TV, The Adviser’s Path, and a lot more!: A life coach, professional coach, organizational consultant, anger management coach, relationship consultant… And he grew up riding horses! Devon Combs of Beyond The Arena: Some people call her “The Horse Girl.” She uses The Equine Gestalt Coaching Method (Yup! It’s about horses.) to help people be the better person that they are. And introducing Detail: The star of the show! An Appendix Mare (which is a mix of Thoroughbred and Quarter Horse), 14 years old (about 42 human years), loves grain, has a super-soft chin, and kept giving me a lovely nose tiara. So Let’s Talk About Horses. Horses are a lot sensitive because they're preyed upon in the wild; so they’re extremely sensitive. They have to feel safe, to want to connect with somebody. With horses, you actually have to build a trusting relationship with them and it takes a while to establish that trust. But once you do, there's nothing like it. It's when people are real and authentic with their feelings that's when the horse feels safe. It’s called “Hippotherapy” or simply riding horses. We got a lot of comments about how horses helped people with disabilities: From autism, to partial paralysis, to emotional challenges. Most of Devon’s clientele are people with unfinished businesses. Either from childhood issues, family dynamics, or relationship challenges, it’s keeping them from moving on with their lives. A lot of that is stuck energy in their body. Horses are incredible healers because they will often tune-in to a person’s body where that’s held. But the horse won’t judge them. They want the person to be completely honest and get real with a lot of their pain. And that’s where the healing starts. So Let’s Talk About Our Guests. Les listened to his followers, and started a podcast dedicated to PROs (people from the legal, financial, consulting, and coaching world). I love that what he’s doing is helping people who are in these fields. With our experts helping them, they’re gonna do their job better in helping us. Heidi made a mission in her life to hear what people need in their lives like the rest of the experts. But she's more with meditation. She works with relationship issues by doing retreats for couples. As she says, "The beginning of the peace in the world begins peace in yourself, and then in your nearest relationships." Most inspired by Integral Theory by Ken Wilber, she'll be launching a project called The Wisdom Factory. Devon is involved with the women's networking group called Crave Denver, and she is featured in the book that we're launching. Why I brought these experts on is because there's a running theme about getting in touch with emotions and feelings. So Let’s Talk about Their Different Versions Of Therapy. Devon works a lot with women in the professional world. They wear masks to work and they feel like they can't be their authentic selves. It's harming them by costing them a lot of joy and peace in their lives. Devon gives them a coaching and they get to be with the horse—and they'll be able to drop that mask. The horse will not connect with them if they're putting up a big wall. With coaching, they'll be able to drop that mask and the horse will instantly walk over to them. It's the best validation of being honest with themselves. Horses pick up the energy behind our words too. They can't comprehend words like people do, but they pick up the energy behind what we say. That speaks with the power of words and intentions, like what Heidi is working on. We have our minds and we must honor that too. Intentions have incredible power. When you say an intention, you don't just make it in your mind; you also feel and anchor it in your body. You use your whole body to confirm this intention. You align with this intention in whatever you do, and then ask yourself if what you're doing is good for where you want to go or not. Less has a place where he goes to think. Whenever he goes there, he enters a different state: More relaxed, more open... He gets quiet and listen. As a result, he often gets clarity and "downloads from on high." It helps him focus and get answers from anything he's contemplating on. What's interesting is that people naturally go in and out of this state, and they're not aware that it's happening. What Les teaches people is how to do it consciously and deliberately, so they can get benefits from it almost on demand. Les's old place was the tub, and now a spot in his office. And to Heidi, it's looking at the stars at night. Me? I get the best ideas in the shower. So Let’s Talk About Bat Crap Crazy Heidi: A little 4-month dog she found in Rome. There is a holiday in Italy where families throw their dog somewhere. While walking in Rome, the dog followed Heidi for about 4 kilometers. So they adopted her. Her name is “Lucky.” Les: Bat crap crazy about Mia... Me? I’ll take that. Devon: The horses, her dog, and Betty for providing a place and generously allowing them to work with her horses. Debbie: Animals all-in-all. Whether your own or not, having moments with them just gives some sort of help in many ways. Mia: Beyond The Arena, and Detail the horse. If I could only fit her in my Toyota Forerunner, I’d have taken her with me.

Big shout out to Debi Davis for producing this show!

With her 8 arms, she made everything come together for this on-location show!

The Mia Connect Power Chat – Architecture & Design

This episode of The Mia Connect Power Chat talks about Architecture, Interior Design, and everything in between. They seem like 2 worlds that do not meet, so I brought in the big guns in this episode to duke it out and decide whether the toilet roll paper should be over or under. Check out the Guest Line UP: Christopher Michael Smith of CMS Architecture and Design. He is obsessed with food and, opening his second restaurant. Susan Serra of The Kitchen Designer. When she focuses on something, it's laser. She's a certified kitchen designer since 1993, and will be working on hew new project, Chef Dennis Littley's kitchen. Laurie Laizure of Interior Design Community. She just finished a project with Kelly Ellis for her Las Vegas Home Makeover show in Hulu Plus. Mitzi Beach. Certified Aging In Place, Boomer designer. She talks about Baby Boomers that are between 50 and 70 years old. Leslie Carothers. CEO of The Kaleidoscope Partnership. She was a practising designer for 20 years. Nowadays, she's more focused on her give-back businesses. Nazim Beltran of Parkmedia Interactive Solutions. Coming from Milan and working on princess cruises. James Dearsley. Founder of The Digital Marketing Bureau. Currently working on virtual reality, augmented reality, 3D printing, and everything that is helping consumers, architects, interior designers, understand what is next in that world. It's amazing when designers and architects come together and agree on the same cause. We get to discuss about Baby Boomers, Millennials, and all the types of people looking for homes. What's trending? We started with Leslie talking about Millennials to Baby Boomers and people transitioning from a real estate and housing standpoint, on a macro-economic level. There's a big market in furniture or products that are multi-functional for people who don't have enough cash yet to buy a home. There's also a huge opportunity in remodeling, especially for the Baby Boomers who just prefer to stay in their homes. Luxury apartment modelling is also huge now. Mitzi promotes transitional and multi-functional designs as a huge potential for market. One of the biggest selling home plans (especially in the East Coast) is the Mother-Daughter houses, or even multiple for families living in the same building. Meanwhile, James added input on the situation in the UK, where owner occupancy is dropping. So the builders are gearing themselves to building according to people renting, rather than owning. But their biggest argument is what to call the retirement homes. Talk about people feeling fussy about what they're going to be called. The rest of Italy might have had the idea of families living in the same roof, from the get-go. In Milan (and the same goes with New York), however, there's a huge push towards luxury construction. Urbanism, commercialism, and feeling the city. Susan begins by talking about her town in Long Island, describing how it's like an accommodation for people who want to be in a city-like atmosphere. There's a big push toward urbanism, but at the same time, people want to get away from the city. You're seeing in a lot of Millennials who are redefining what home is to them, while the Baby Boomers are redefining "Aging," as well. However, our experts raised a point: A lot of people can't afford what they need when it comes to moving forward. As Mitzi says, "As designers, architects, builders, and everything, we not only change lives because we make it beautiful--We affect quality of lives. Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED). It's getting more popular now. Chris predicts it's going to be federally mandated in the future. Plenty of buildings and constructions are now LEED certified. But I think this topic is quite big, I think we could do a whole separate show on it. What's on? Here are some highlights when we segueway to the "What's On" portion of the show. During this episode I asked What's on your feet!?" Architecture - Whats ON Your Feet   Bat Crap Crazy. James Dearsley: Dulux app is an augmented reality app. Point your phone at a wall, pick any color that you want and you'll be able to change your walls into a different paint color. Leslie Carothers: The Design Network. It's where you'll find what real designers around the country are putting out on video. Susan Serra: Kitchens! They're the sole of the home. In particular, she's crazy about the integration with the surrounding rooms. It's all about the social kitchen. Nazim Beltran: "Io sono e bat crap crazy della mia connect." Laurie Laizure: Instagram! She started one for the Interior Design Community. She loves it again! Christopher Smith: Blue apron! His kids love it, his wife loves it, and he loves it. Mitzi Beach: Video, Vlogs, Blogs, and just having a fun time.   Call To Action. James Dearsley: James run a tech blog. So if you guys want to keep in touch with property, technology, and all things around, go to his website. Leslie Carothers: The Kaleidoscope Partnership. Leslie would love it if you guys "like" the Facebook page “Messages Of Hope.” Susan Serra: She would love you to follow her on Google Plus, and her website. Nazim Beltran: Casa Chiesi. It's going to be an area where Nazim and his wife are going to show Italy from their point of view. He's asking everyone to go to the site and add yourselves in there. Leslie Laizure: The Interior Design Community is back on. Leslie would love it if people would follow her on her website and on Instagram. Christopher Smith: ALS (A Love Shared) for ALS (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis). They're having one at the River Cafe for Chef Gerry Hayden. You could go to to buy tickets. Mitzi Beach: Mitzi calls for the 50+ people out there, who are looking for universally designed products, to visit her site.

The Mia Connect Power Chat – Design, Graphics & Shiny Images

The Mia Connect Power Chat discusses Design, Graphics & Shiny Images - the great thing about hosting a weekly Hangout On Air show is that I get hang with experts & #GetMyLearnOn - Lucky Me!  This episode was no exception. View EventComments! (3)
  • Jeff Sieh of His Design - If you've ever seen any of those cool trailer bumpers on #TheManlyShow, then you've seen his work! A little more about Jeff: Creative brain for hire • Visual storyteller • Social media consultant • Speaker • Humorist  #Indeed 
  • Susan Finch of Susan Finch Solutions -  Marketing, PR & Web Pro for DECADES! LOVE my clients  She's also a "gentle guide for clients trying new venues online" - LOVE this!
  • Ryan J. Rhoades - CEO & lead graphic artist at Reformation Designs. Ryan and his wife Laura bust out some great work! "We do everything from business cards and posters to abstract art, book covers, infographics and video."
  • Aaron Wood - He designs things. And draws things. He made a pillow with the word "Bacon" on it. And he knits. #BOOM
What I loved about this show was the honest conversation between professionals. Design work is a slippery slope and at times there can be communication problems as well as differences in opinion on what is good, what works & what just doesn't! In addition to design tips, the experts also discussed how to work with consultants to get the best result. Bottom line (this applies to all expertise fields....) you need to pay for the expertise and not expect to receive a bunch of free work (this is my editorial addition to the conversation). Here are a few choice moments from the show: 22:07 - Advice for New Businesses 22:40 - Get Paid to Be Awesome - Pay for Time 24:20 - Gently Making Fun of Self Design & Microsoft Word 24:47 - Jeff Has the Best Line of the Day 32:14 - Advice for finding the perfect designer 34:35 - Difficult People & Clients 35:40 - How to be a better Client 48:47 - Illustrator & Graphic Design Distinction (Scroll to the time in the video above OR you can click directly on the timestamp links on YouTube!)    

The Mia Connect Power Chat – Guy Kawasaki & Peg Fitzpatrick

Untitled design (29)Wow.  That's all I can say.. WOW. I had to repost because that show still blows me away. Being able to "sit down" in a Hangout OnAir with Guy Kawasaki & Peg Fitzpatrick was a treat. More like Christmas showing up early and the gifts were fabulous! In preparation for our interview, I consumed mass quantities of Guy Kawasaki info (and Peg too) and watched a ton of interviews. And let's face it, that was a great payoff for me because his books are (of course) content fabulous heavy, his interviews provide nugget bombs of sage advice and he's just a downright fun guy to watch. Combine Peg and you have a dynamic duo! But the best part about the interview hangout was that I threw all my notes out and just let the guests riff off one another & the conversation flowed naturally. We learned how Guy & Peg's collaboration came about, how View EventComments!they work together (just called them "Jack Bauer & Chloe") and, of course, all about Canva, the online design product which is now Guy & Peg's main focus. Guy has become the Brand Evangelist for Canva & Peg is their Head of Social Strategy. Canva is an online design tool that empowers the average bear with the ability to make shiny graphics. In case you were wondering, I am your average bear. 🙂   And, of course the graphics here were created using... Canva. Untitled design (22) Make sure to check out the entire show & you can also click through to the highlights on YouTube (yes, I time-stamped this entire show with highlights and there were a TON!)  We had a wonderful supportive crew join us during the show as well. Jaana Nystrom (who was instrumental in the process of writing Guy's book: What the Plus! Google+ for the Rest of Us.) joined us from Finland - she is truly an upbeat and ubersmart woman who has been a staple item on Google Plus.  Dustin Stout also jumped in and provided some great insight into the nuances of logos, colors, design and how Canva can be utilized by all.  Keep an eye out for Lynn Abate Johnson and Debi Davis during the show too - Lynn always brings great insight into any conversation and Debi was the glue that held us all together with her excellent behind-the-scenes production & tweeting. Random Teaser Moments: Minute 4:25 - #HonoraryOvaries Minute 18:04 - The Book Title Challenge Minute 37:14 - Canva & Designers Minute 41:38 - #Canvangelist Minute 53:05 - Guy's Big Question And then I'll leave you with these two bon mots! GuyK (1) an idea (1)

The Mia Connect Power Chat – Celebrating Summer!

Memorial Weekend is the unofficial start of summer and we celebrated by bringing together a panel of guests & visitors who brought a ton of info, fun, entertainment & knowledge!View EventComments! +Larry Fournillier - one of my favorites chefs on the interwebs! Larry joined us from Trinidad and brought his infectious personality from the land of fruit, veggies, drinks & everlasting Summer.  Larry hosts several entertaining online shows. Caribbean Cooking, Food Stories and worldly cuisine are just a few of the wide assortment of videos from my Hangouts On Air series. +Heather Kraafter - +Kraaft Shaak  - Crafter extraordinaire & Google Hangout Host. Heather's weekly shows teach people (young, old, boys, girls) how to create something from the heart using fun techniques.   +Debi Davis of +3D Communications (Debi Davis) - Business Communication Strategist & one of the most engaging people on Google Plus! Debi always has great advice on how to prioritize & strategically manage time. Perfect for summer!  We also had a few pop in visitors - two of my favorite guys!  +Greg Boysaw , the main man in my life (even more main man than Bob Voss) joined me for an IRL (in real life) mimosa and then my show host partner in crime +Chef Dennis Littley - also stopped by to join in the conversation. Our first subject was, of course, Food & Drink. Summer is such a delightful time for drinks, barbecScreenshot_30ues, parties, gatherings and fresh ingredients! Larry filled us in on his very own drink called the Larry-Jito- a new take on the traditional Cuban Mojito.  Listen to this:  Rum, fresh lemongrass tea (Larry grows his own LG!), sour orange, sugar, ice and .. a smidge of Scotch Bonnet pepper.  YOWZA!   Here's the full recipe:  Larry also shared some of the local traditions:  Saturday is usually Soup Day which can range in ingredients but usually contains potatoes, celery, split peas, dumplings, etc. This is a year round tradition in Trinidad. And then there is Sunday Callalloo - among other things, this yummy dish boasts fresh veggies like kale, spinach, karole leaf, okra, pumpkin, buttnernut squash and is seasoned with coconut milk, onion & garlic. Out of this world! In celebration of summer we also discussed Farmers Markets & Fresh Recipes. Nothing is better than going local & green!  Living in Colorado, we are SUPER spoiled with local produce & goods. Check out this handy guide for finding YOUR local farmers market. Make sure to check out the event for great comments & photos from the audience (aka:  The BatPack).  My personal favorite? Caprese Salad! We also had a great time talking DIRTY! You know.. composting.  (hee hee, GOTCHA!) My good friend Wayne Meador always has great tips about composting, worms, etc. - make sure to stop by his YouTube channel & pick up some easy info on how to go a little more green this summer.Screenshot_26 We also picked up some GREAT crafting tips from Ms. Kraafty herself, Heather Kraafter of The Kraaft Shaak.  As with anything preparation is key for having fun on a road trip. Heather's hot tip: For summer travel, markers are the way to go!  Pick up some water color paper at your local craft shop, invest in some good markers and then.. here's the super fun tip:  pick up a Water Brush Pen (Google it, you'll find all kinds of fun pens). Add in some baby wipes for "oops" moments and you are set! Check out her latest creation above. Heather also suggested picking up a plastic "To Go" water color palette and filling it with your favorite water colors. Make sure the plastic travel palette is empty so you can buy your own colors (premade palettes tend to be a bit more bland in colors). Squirt the water color paint in, let it dry and then you can reactivate the paint using the Water Screenshot_31Brush.  Now you can be what is called a "Plein Air Artist" which is fancy talk for "painting outdoors".   Heather is also going to trying out "Gelli" or mono printing this summer!  You can also try Gelato sticks (Faber Castel has a great line) Business Strategy so that we can all actually have time to do fun stuff was also brought into the discussion. Debi filled us in on what she calls her Tripod Strategy (Bob Voss, the tripod cat, obviously approved of that!):  Frame, Focus and Follow Through. The general idea behind this strategy is that you don't want to miss out on fun things so it does take some planning which is part of the first principle of "Frame" which can also be described as preparation. Add in the other two principles of Focus (stay on task) and Follow Through (action plan) - you have a recipe for success! A great example of this, specifically for summer, was a summer road trip that Debi took along with her two sisters and their 3 preteen kids. Imagine two cars with various forms of siblings & relatives traveling through the US during the hot summer! Sounds like a recipe for disaster, right? Well the Tripod Strategy (and bonus strategy of "Flexibility") made her trip a great success. They packed food for the trip and plouted the route but also allowed time for distraction & spontinaety. One of the kids noticed a route that included the Badlands and so their course meandered a bit but time had been built into the schedule. They also gave all the kids $10 in quarters each day to spend as they wish (fast food, souveniers, etc.). They also built a system that if there were disagreements between everyone, fines of a quarter each would be levied - this made the kids aware that their behavior effected a few things like budget & fun.  It cut down on a lot of disagreement. So how do we apply that for grownups?  You can reduce stress & increase spontaneity just by planning! This applies during all seasons, of course, but with the long summer days & the number of parties, concerts & festivals. With that being said, I am officially declaring this the Summer of JOMO - The Joy of Missing Out. I read about this phrase recently (found it in a Southwest Airlines Magazine, of all places) and was really struck by that phrase, in relation to FOMO (Fear of Missing Out). Check out the definition (according to Urban Dictionary which is, of course, the gospel of trendy definitions) Screenshot_28 Enough said, right? Let's make this the #SummerOfJOMO and get out there & enjoy! I plan applying the Tripod Plus One principles of  Frame, Focus and Follow Through (Plus Flexibility) to get more out of this summer! A big shout of thanks to my panelists Debi Davis, Heather Kraafter & Larry Fournillier for bringing such wonderful info! And a big shout to guests Greg Boysaw & Chef Dennis Littley - you both make my world a fun place to be! Speaking of which, all these guests were great sports when I asked - |what's on your feet?" Greg even  sported my tiara & Mickey Mouse Hand.. #TROOPER ! Screenshot_27    

The Mia Connect Power Chat – Sanctuaries & Rescues!

We had the privilege to showcase an amazing array of sanctuary, rescue and training organizations that have one thing in common:  They are making a difference! Our guests included representatives from The Wild Animal Sanctuary in Keenesburg, Colorado, Going Home Animal Rescue Transport in Tulsa OK, Petiquette Dog Training from Houston, TX and Harbor House of Central Florida in Orlando, FL. We also talked about a great new charity idea called Plus Your Charity First up is Becca Miceli, the Director of Animal Care at The Wild Animal Sanctuary, a  720 acre facility located on the plains of Colorado, only 30 miles from Downtown Denver!  The sanctuary is a permanent home to over 350 exotic animals (mainly carnivores, a few alpacas and one camel for good measure!)  In addition to providing the VERY best care for all of the animals (bears, wolves, tigers, lions, OH MY!), they also help educate the public about Wildlife captivrw_1480366ity. Founder Pat Craig is a visionary with purpose and designed the facility to provide the VERY best care for these animals, many who have been rescued from dire situations. As an example, they worked in conjunction with Animal Defenders International (and Bob Barker, Price Is Right host) to help rescue a group of Bolivian Lions. The story of the rehabilitation of Kimba and the Pride is amazing! Check out minute 9:50.  Radiant heating anyone?  Yes please! I can't wait to visit and broadcast a hangout from Lion House & hear the Roar Competition (the wolves jump in sometimes too!)  One of the really great features of the facility is the Mile Into the Wild Walkway - it allows visitors to view the animals at their most relaxed as they don't view them as a threat when they are elevated.  Make sure to check out their website, read all about the great work they are doing and visit when you are here in Denver. Let us know if you are headed there and we'll join you! rw_1478989 Next up we spoke with Kathy Nobles of Going Home Animal Rescue Transport from Tulsa Oklahoma. This is an organization that I've been involved with for quite a while and I love what they are doing. Going Home partners with s532101_4652945638068_1661920722_n (1)mall municipal shelters and rescue groups, mainly in rural areas of Oklahoma and Arkansas, that do not have the resources or adoption pools metropolitan areas do, and transport dogs and some cats to receiving rescues in Illinois and Colorado (and other areas of the country) where there is a need for adoptable companion animals. GHART does SUCH a great job of coordinating with shelters in Chicago and Denver. The amount of work that goes into arrangements for each animals' safe transfer is quite extensive and GHART goes above & beyond with their efforts. Twice a monthly their team takes a 12 hour journey (each way) from Tulsa and delivers anywhere from 40-60 dogs & puppies to the dropoff point where shelter representatives are waiting with open arms. It's a never ending job and Kathy & Mike Nobles have been making a difference since 2009 and have rescued over 5000 animals.  AMAZING numbers, don't you think?  Check out their Facebook page and website  Leila Martin also joined us on the panel. Leila and her husband Jim have a dog training business in Houston called Petiquette  and they are really onto something! Jim has been a dog trainer for over 30 years and he and Leila have really leveraged that experience to create a unique business model that makes a difference.  They were the creators of the very first multi-million dollar pet resort (Rover Oaks Pet Resort). They ran this successfully but decided to sell and go back to what they really love:  training in the home and helping people keep dogs in their forever homes!  Fun fact about Leila & Jim - when they married, they combined their fur families: 7 dogs & 1 Cat. How's THAT for a furry Brady Bunch?!  What I love about the mission the Leila and Jim are on, is that they have figured out a way to more Screenshot_17efficiently and effectively spread the knowledge and reach more people which means more pets are staying in the homes they deserve. As you all know, MANY dogs are relinquished to shelters due to behavior. Leila and Jim's mission is to diminish those numbers greatly and they are succeeding. They use Google Hangouts to help people all over the world! The principles of dog training translates VERY well over the interwebs and so they have been able to reach many more people and grow their business in a way that matches their heart & spirit. In addition, they also train people to be dog trainers and have really utilized Google Hangouts to streamline that process. Now instead of having students take 6 weeks out of their schedule to be onsite in Houston, they've cut that down to two weeks in person. 4 weeks is spent online via Hangouts learning animal behavioral science and then 2 weeks is spent on site. Oh, and get this, they bring in shelter animals for the training so that their students can learn first hand AND the shelter pet is given a "leg up" (ha!) with the training which helps them to be better candidates for adoption.  WIN/WIN ! We also showcased Harbor House of Central Florida, a unique shelter out of Orlando that is really shaking things up in a good way!  My good friends Carolyn Capern and Greg Trujillo have been instrumental in bringing their cause to the attention of many people on Google Plus. Thank goodness - they deserve a TON of attention. Michelle Brady Palmer joined the show and talked about their facility and the unique element they provide for people looking to escape domestic abuse: their shelter provides a pet shelter called Paws For Peace.  Michelle informed us, the majority of shelters do not have the ability for people to bring their animals. The Harbor House format is that they function like Witness Protection: they provide a safe place for the whole family. And pets are your family!
Harbor House has a holistic based program - the furry members are given the same care. Often when they come onto campus, they animals sometimes need MORE care than humans. Their humans know they are safe but the pets don't know. Sometimes they are more traumatized since they are in a separate space. When a pet comes onto campus, the intake process is carefully crafted:  lavender in the intake room, on-call vets who helps with trauma.  a physical assessment (just like human survivors). Many pets do need some type of medial care . They get the same care & keeping as the humans.  Since the shelter was built in December 2012, they have housed over 70 animals - cats, dogs, turtles, fish, guinea pigs - you name it!  One of the MAIN goals of Harbor House and Paws for Peace is education and empowerment. They have even created a phone app called R3 which stands for Recognize, Respond and Refer, is the first mobile domestic abuse screening tool in the U.S. and the leverages the research based HITS screening tool created 13 years ago and used across the globe.   Most importantly, Harbor House is willing to share their blueprint for combining shelters with kennels. The format is replicable, scalable, and sustainable. They've put a ton of time and effort into making this work and want this craze to sweep the nation!
Those are some crazy scare statistics right there so PLEASE, please check out the R3 app and share the info.
Finally, we chatted with Dennis Duce and Carolyn Capern about the fantastic idea they formulated to harness the power of Google Plus and everyone's unwavering desire to help those around us!  Plus Your Charity raises funds for charities using Google Plus, Social Media and Online Marketing to support your favorite charity's mission goals! This new project is bringing attention to great causes... including Harbor House. Through one event alone, PYC was able to raise an additional $250 - enough for a full 6 week stay for one animal at Paws For Peace. Speaking of the power of social media, another $50 was raised during the show.   #GoodStuff   Want to help?  Click below!
In closing, let me throw out my favorite soapbox rhetoric:
Don't shop.. adopt!  If you can't adopt, then foster. If you can't foster, then volunteer.  If you can't volunteer, then donate. If you can't donate, then clean out your linen closet and drop off old blankets & towels at your local shelter.  Get involved. Stay engaged.

The Mia Connect Power Chat – Ask The Experts!

Talk about Content and Information overload! I was able to entice Rebekah Radice, Stephan Hovnanian and Ben Fisher back to The Mia Connect Power Chat couch for a redux of our original Power Chat back in December 2013. Since the original airing of that episode, Stephan, Rebekah and Ben have all hit the gas and expanded their business services with books, new products and more! We also brought on Eric Enge to the Panel Chat to really up the ante & bring on some great firepower. I’m surprised the interwebs did not collapse from the strain of content during the show! A quick overview of our guests & their “shiny” (what they do) Rebekah Radice is a social media strategist and curator of a boutique digital marketing agency that helps people take their established offline brand and turn into online currency. Like that description? I do too! Here’s another – Rebekah works with people to help them craft a social media strategy that actually works.  #BOOM Stephan Hovnanian wears several hats and very well, I might add. He’s been in the web design strategy and email marketing world for about 14 years. In the last year, he has incorporated Google Plus into his services which has taken on a life of its own. Stephan recently wrote a series of e-books entitled Google Plus Pro Tips (2 more e-books are in the works!). He also hosts the Google Hangout Show entitled “G-Plus Business Spotlight" along with guest panelist Ben Fisher. Speaking of which… Ben Fisher joined us again and he has been entrenched in the online world since 1994. Talk about being plugged in to all the changes over the last 20 years!  In addition to hosting G-Plus Business Spotlight (which has had such guests as GoDaddy, T-Mobile and more) Ben is also the co-founder of, a Google Plus analytics tool (drink!). In addition, Steady Demand also provides Brand page management – in short, it’s Google Plus for people too busy to do Google Plus but know how important it is for their brand. Eric Enge rounded out the panel and brought his amazing experience level along with him. Eric is the Founder of Stone Temple Consulting,  a Content Marketing, SEO & Social Media strategy firm. Stone Temple helps enterprises of all sizes get more traffic & more business online. Eric also cohosts the Digital Marketing Excellence Google Hangout Program – every week he serves up programming on helpful topics such as blogging, hangouts, content, marketing… you name it! So now that we have the Panel Firepower outlined, let’s dig into the content of the show, the questions posed by the audience & the discussion items: NeilFerreeQuestion While I’m not certain on the rumor about Google Alerts, the panel provided some of their favorite tips for social monitoring. Stephan’s favorite steps are to simply use Google Search and also NODx3 which is a social network analysis tool. As an extra piece of 411, NOD3x also provided this information:   
NOD3x can easily be setup as a brand listening tool by simply starting a new project with your brand hashtag (and or keyword).  NOD3x will then collect all the posts where your brand is mentioned, and just to make everything easy you can interact with those brand mention posts directly from your dashboard
Ben mentioned that & Topsy work great. In addition, allows you to set up an RSS feed once you set up a query. If you then “daisy-chain” that together with Sprout Social & Hootsuite or Feedly to blast it out, you have a powerful “dual tool”. We also discussed the importance finding Communities (especially on Google Plus) Finding a like-minded Community is key and then building relationships with like-minded people within that community! Identify the people sharing quality content & who has their finger on the pulse within your industry. It makes it very easy for anyone to curate content and share timely & relevant content. Screenshot_8Before you can really find the best way to mine or find information, you need to determine the key words and phrases that are most crucial to your search. You also need to determine exactly what outcome you are looking for and make sure it’s aligned with your online message and purpose. So before you even begin your search you need to ask yourself (or your client):
“What is your goal, what are you listening for & what are you doing with that information?”
Screenshot_9Once you've determine the "What" items listed above, you'll need to plan the best way to share that information. Eric offered some great advice when sharing information. He’s a huge fan of Jay Baer’s credo “And therefore” For instance, when you find a great piece of information that’s aligned with your message, you can hit the “share” button, drop in the link, describe the info you and sharing and then add your commentary and analysis (...and therefore) of that information. And here's where I'm going to shame you into action: please tag the person whose information you are sharing! Most likely that person also has a search set up for when their name is mentioned but what a great way to speed up the process of engagement by making it easy for them to see that you like their work! And that you are actively sharing it. Lift Someone Up! (or, as I like to call it “Let me build you up, Buttercup” Time!) Another great piece of advice for sharing: Make sure it’s lifting someone up! Either by promoting the person who shared it or wrote it or even by tagging someone in the post (comment) with a message that this is something that they might like or is something of interest to them! We also had a great discussion around the subject of Automation which resulted in this great quote from Rebekah
Make sure to take the time to properly craft a post that is specifically tailored for each network. Automation doesn’t always translate.
Another great piece of advice from Rebekah: You don’t have to be everything to everyone everywhere.  Identify where your market is spending time and where your time is best spent.   BOOM! Screenshot_10 Another question that came up is “Best Time to Post” – this is a loaded question since it is such an individual recipe for each person. Make sure to click in at Minute 29:15 – all I can say about that is .. Save the Unicorns! I know I’ve beleaguered this point already (but with good reason). In addition to that the awesome Save The Unicorns rant (SO TRUE!), Stephan reiterated that you really do need to understand your purpose. It’s not just “post it and see what happens”… you need an intention. Start with your outcome (conversation, click throughs, engagement) and then you can figure out WHEN your audience is there online. Consider the type of devices they will be on and the time zones when they will be engaged. For instance, if you want someone to click through and buy something, don’t post when the audience is not able to click through.  Ie: It’s traffic time and they are driving (and should NOT be clicking to buy at that time). You may get great engagement at 6pm ET but actual purchases might not start until they have time to sit down in front of their 10pm ET. Rebekah gave another example: If your target audience is Moms, then posting before 8am may not be a good idea since they might be getting their kids ready for school, etc. Screenshot_11 Eric also made a great point to pay attention that timing changes over time! Is that an oxymoron? NO! Pay attention to trends – what worked last year may not work this year! Bottom line: Test test test! Watch your analytics. It’s all trial & error and testing. It’s all about understanding who your target market is and when they are spending their time online.
FYI, make sure to check out the Pro Tool - it gauges Google Plus activity (including time of day) with great accuracy. You’ll be able to see how your audience is reacting to your posts & the post types.
pic_giant_123112_DA question was raised from the audience about Shoppable Hangouts! We decided to do a little predicting about the launch for the general public.  Eric predicts that these new hangouts will have icons where you can click on an item, a separate page opens & you can purchase the item showcased! Imagine using this for product launches, Kickstarter campaigns and more. We also had a moment of imagining combining this with the NFL Draft.  (That’s for you, Sunny Cadwallader!) Eric’s Prediction Date: September 17th Ben’s Prediction Date: Sometime between December 2014 and January 2015 Mia’s Prediction Date:  Sometime between October and November 2014   Screenshot_13The Fine Balance of Marketing & Promotion: We had some great conversation around the topic of self promotion. Not only WHAT the message should be but when.  Ben made a good point the we all have that need to share with people what’s going on and that means part of our job (if we are building our own brand) is marketing what we do. The “When” part is where some people go astray. Build relationships, engage and share other’s info; build that trust and prove your authenticity. You have to earn the right to share that kind of content that promotes your business. You need to build the relationship & make those connections. Build a community that really cares what you are talking about and what products/services you offer. Then it’s time to say “Hey! This is what I do!” I know, it’s tough to find the balance and I could tell by some of the audience comments during the show that many people are scared to start “showcasing their shiny”.  But, as Rebekah so nicely put it.. You can’t keep yourself a secret! If people don’t know what you do, how can they support your business? They need to know how to refer you, share your content in a meaningful way. It’s finding the balancing act.” To add more to the point on the HOW to promote, Eric had this great piece of advice:“Show what you do while publicly helping others”.  It’s all about when and how you do it.  Not with just link dumping . Tell people what you do – put it in the context of a conversation. Be sure to click through to Ben’s Call To Action for the Audience Members at and then check out the comments to see who responded with their business information!
 Want to know what Platforms these Experts prefer? Well here you go!
Stephan:  Google Plus, Twitter, Email Rebekah:  Depending on your goals but from traffic point of view:  Google Plus, Pinterest, Twitter Eric:  Google Plus, Twitter & Linked In.  Eric made the good point that many decision makers are on LinkedIn. Screenshot_14 Ben: Google Plus & LinkedIn. He also gave a great tip about a business card exchange service called (a free service from SalesForce) He’s connected with Fortune 500 companies on a consistent basis and found decision makers! BatCrapCrazy & Call To Action Moments Eric – He’s crazy about the Carribean (go check out his description) Eric’s call to action – what’s all this advice going to do for you?  What’s going to make this advice work for you? Find YOUR answer, what makes it work for you?  Check him out at +EricEnge Ben went with 2 calls to action:  1. Take 45 minutes and make your own read of the day – do something awesome & creative!! Helps you build you brand & reputation. 2. Check out Version 2.0 of ProTool for – click on Pro – they need users to get in there & give them feedback Stephan's BatCrapCrazy and Call To Action are the same – he’s uber excited about his next two books for Google Plus Pro Tips. Go get some knowledge! Rebekah is BatCrapCrazy for local businesses with amazing customer service. Her local vet did a great job with her 4 legged kids!!   Rebekah’s CTA: Give a shout out to your favorite local businesses in the comments, go tell them how amazing they are! My extra advice, make sure to write a recommendation for them either on their Google Local Page, on Facebook or on Yelp!    

The Mia Connect Power Chat – Sustainability & Going Green!

The Mia Connect Power Chat celebrated Spring and brought on a panel of guests that are knock-down/drag-out fabulous! Each of our guests brought amazing insight & content:for the show +Shawna Coronado - Full-time writer and photographer, an on-camera spokesperson, professional speaker, andgreen lifestyle evangelist. Shawna's goal is to promote a better way of living which inspires and encourages a healthier lifestyle. It includes green lifestyle living, eco-travel, organic home gardening, and fresh culinary ideas to help make a difference in community. 

+Wayne Meador - Visionary and entrepreneur. He’s the creator of AWorld4ChangeTV, and on a mission to make a difference and change the world around him. When he’s not glued to the computer screen and sharing his mission, he enjoys building food security through gardening, aquaponics, and hydroponics. 

+Wayne Nix - Entrepreneur | NeoNatal Nurse | Respiratory Therapist and host of the newly minted ‘Lookin for Good Cookin’ - a weekly Hangout OnAir Program highlighting stories of products, people and recipes from his home state of Louisiana Shawna Coronado: Before becoming the Sustainable Activist, blogger and writer she is today, Shawna was in Sales & Marketing & ended up quitting in a huff. She did a 180 degree turn and began landscape gardening which, amazingly enough, diminished the amount of prescriptions she was taking. She felt great being outside but then realized the problem was in her home as well. They discovered the cabinetry in the house was loaded with toxic chemicals. In addition to remodeling, they also removed all the house cleaning chemicals: bleach, window cleaners. She immediately felt better.  The connection to this really made her think – although she’s extra sensitive to chemicals, Shawna realized that millions of people are exposed & may not have a reaction and therefore don't realize how much they were being effected.  So she decided to write a book and called it “Gardening Nude”  Why that title? It was her hubby’s joke: “In order to get a full grown man interested in reading a book on the green initiative ‘you gotta be naked on the front cover’”! This lead to social media & the need to market her book. Shawna started off from scratch and had no followers or audience. Shawna took a chance and reached to Chris Brogan for advice on how to get her message out.  His answer:  “Get off your ass and do video” (that’s a direct quote here, party people) She took the advice and started doing videos (when Chris Brogan takes the time to give you advice.. do Screenshot_3it!)  And Shawna now has 170 videos with over 1 million views as well as 120k who have circled her on G+ and a large audience on Twitter & Facebook. What is Shawna’s Secret Sauce Secret:  “The socially good message is what drives me. My goal is to connect with as many people on a personal level so I can get the message out to the world. It has changed my life!" She took her message a step further and decided to change the way her family eats and has converted her front yard (and now back yard) into a large vegetable garden that not only provides fresh produce for her family but the Coronado’s also donate 120 lbs. of Organic Produce to the local food pantry. Shawna also has park benches on the city property behind her house that are colored “Kiss My Ass” green, in honor of her fight with The City of Chicago when they gave her a hard time for beautifying the property behind her house with a beautiful Pollinator Garden (go figure!) Wayne Meador Screenshot_4Wayne also comes from a Corporate Background. He was making good money but realized he was spinning his wheels when it came to making a positive impact around him. He felt like his work wasn’t connecting with his higher purpose and he knew he needed to think outside the box and not rely on systems to bus in produce from other parts of the country (and from around the world).  He started his YouTube channel (and was inspired by Shawna’s front yard videos!) and is building a Sustainability WebTv channel called A World For Change TV! Wayne’s mission: Get info out there that others can use and apply to their lives TODAY so we can be sustainable and more self-sufficient.  Wayne’s grandmother was a master gardener & taught him a ton. Wayne made a good point: our grandparents and people from that generation did not make the connection to the bigger vision of sustainability. They had survived wars & the Great Depression and things were going well. They didn't need to think of self-sufficiency –it was lifestyle. Things are different now & Wayne is helping people to see that and to make an impact on the planet in a positive way that will allow us to express care for our earth. More of the Wayne Meador message:
We have to be concerned about the footprint & the impact we leave. We need to wake up; something is going to change if we don’t. We can take control of the change and mitigate some of the risks of living recklessly as a culture. We can create a positive effect moving forward.
And Wayne is going to address all of that with his new show! Stay tuned and also make sure to check out all the great videos on his YouTube channel - talk about getting your learn on! Wayne Nix Our other Wayne has a varied history as well – he is a trained neonatal nurse by trade which brings an interesting perspective Wayne has also experienced personal tragedy which led to time off and he took to gardening which reallyScreenshot_5 changed his mindset! This led to the local farmers market and to… fresh eggs. He noticed the amazing difference between commercial eggs and farm fresh eggs.  The snowball effect continued – Wayne’s curiosity continued and which led to learning about hybrid seeds and heirloom seeds. Wayne's passion & enthusiasm is infectious!  He filled  us in on how amazing hybrid seeds are & that they regenerate – combine that with the right type soil and the effect is amazing. As Wayne put it "You feel better from the great produce and you accomplish something." Another great tip from Wayne each state has an Agricultural Department where you can find a ton of Plant Soil & Grow tips and also get your soil tested.  You can also grow herbs on your kitchen counter.  And I'm so excited that Wayne N. is bringing his message to the airwaves with "Lookin for Good Cookin", a weekly Hangout On Air Program highlighting stories of products, people and recipes from his home state of Louisiana  

Great info & simple tips:

Organic: For those of us that feel the meaning of Organic is a little complicated, Shawna simplified it:  No chemicals or less chemicals. When you shop for soil, just make sure it’s organic and it really helps to grow stronger plants

Make that Change!  I also got some serious learn on when Shawna talked about one of the biggest changes that her family made which was to give up paper towels completely.  Now before you get all fussy and freak out – listen to the reason why and how NON sustainable the paper towel industry is! The trees grown for paper towels have excessive chemicals injected into them. While trees are a renewable resource, the process in making paper towels is not. It involves massive amounts of water and usage of bleach (resulting in whitest of white paper towels). The entire process to get to a single paper towel is quite complicated. She uses white towels now – it took a while to get her family adapted but they’ve done it! Composting:  Wayne Nix recommends it! He’s saving money and regenerating it in his own back yard. Wayne Meador also recommended … worms! You can easily have a small bucket of compost with composting worms. They produce “vermicomposting” or “worm casting”. … Guess what that really means... Worm POOP!  Check out RedWorms Express and get your worm on!!  Use Wayne’s code : AWORLD4CHANGE for a 10% discount (not an affiliate code, FYI)  And then go play in the dirt!  Mix in organic dirt & you have quick non-odor compost. Cleaning Tips:  Wayne N. grows loofah & you can use that for cleaning. But be careful – it can be invasive so get ready for a serious clean house! ACHOO! Here is another HUUUUUGE tip for people with allergies:  Eat Local Raw Honey. When you consume it, you are eating the local plants in your area & helps with your allergies. It physically makes you feel better! (NOTE:  It needs to be raw, not cooked – raw honey has the pollen bits/good junk in it) Wayne Meador’s tip: He leaves his coffee cup out overnight and it collects pollen & then just pours himself a nice helping of coffee with a side of healthy pollen. Pollinatorssounds serious, right?! It’s far more than just bees. Shawna filled us in that magnolias are blooming now & what these are pollinated by beetles. Others in the Pollinator Category are butterflies & hummingbirds. Shawna’s goal this year is to start an initiative where more people are growing Pollinator foods. And she’s not alone! She was recently contacted by Brookfield Zoo and they are also on the Pollinator kick.  Their dream is to building a “pollinator Corridor” from Chicago to St. Louis. Shawna feels that this could help with the 9bilion people who need food by 2050. Not to scare you all but if we continue to eliminator our pollinators, we also eliminate 25-40 of our food that is no longer available Pollinator Action Step:  A simple container with flowering plants. That’s it!  It’s great way to make your space beautiful and help your community and the world around you. Coffee Drinker? GREAT TIP from Wayne Meador – buy bamboo coffee filters! Buy on  Dustin Stout also mentioned that using a French Press is even better.. NO FILTERS! Go HEMP! We touched briefly on Hemp and could definitely do a whole show on it! Hemp is a miracle product that has more uses than can be listed in 10 blogposts! Do you research but for starters, here are a few products:  hemp seed foods, hemp oil, wax, resin, rope, cloth, pulp, paper, fuel, body products.  How to get others involved? -          Focus on the pain point that everyone has which is usually money. -          Live by example, eventually others will follow. -          It’s cheaper to grow your own organic food.. if you can! -          Wayne Nix’s great point – if you spend money on the food, you will spend less on medication. And he knows – he’s been in the medical industry! The Next Generation: Children that are raised with the right message about the environment make an effort! Both Shawna and I agree – our generation is a perfect example of this with the “Give a Hoot, don’t pollute” commercials and the poignant Native American crying commercial (are you old enough to remember that?! I am!) Check out the Panel Bat Crap Crazy Moments & Call to Action: Shawna Coronado:  She’s writing several books including a tome on Vertical & Living Walls with tips on how to grow Pollinator & Aphrodisiac Gardens (how fun!)  She’s also doing a ton of Eco Travel – she recently hugged a Giant Sequoia.  Shawna is Bat Crap Crazy for the ongoing green initative & getting people to change live socially good & to do it the right way Wayne Meador is Bat Crap Crazy about making a difference & leaving a positive impact. We all need to do that – we all leave a ripple with our life and we can either be a positive one or a negative one – that’s our choice!  Wayne is also nutty for his favorite 5 gardeners & you need to follow them!  Paradise Lot is another great thing that Wayne loves.  A sustainable living facility in the City – a very cool book!  Oh, and Wayne is going to help out a friend – Go for Green Living – they will be talking about solar panels, aquaponics, homesteading topics, forging knives. Check it out. Wayne Nix is Bat Crap Crazy for teaching & cooking and is doing that through Looking for Good Cooking – get back to being human again! Here's the event link Mia’s Bat Crap Crazy is the Elephant Sanctuary in Tennessee. And her new show with Chef Dennis Littley called Food & Booze. Tons of Fun Info in no particular order:  22 Natural Ways To Repel Insects  Cradle To Cradle - Remaking the Way We Make Things - by William McDonough and Michael Braungart How To Plant a Vertical Strawberry Planter -
DIY Mini Self-Wicking Garden -  One Yard Revolution - 
CaliKimDIY - 
Blake Kirby - 
Rob Bob  Praxxus55712 GoForGreenLiving Paradise Lot - Two Plant Geeks, One-Tenth of an Acre, and the Making of an Edible Garden Oasis in the City
Sea Turtle Snorkel and Turtles Lay Eggs in Akumal, Mexico - Eco-Hula Eco-Adventure Denver Farmers Market Schedule American Seed Alliance Better Soil Tips from Shawna More Soil Info Full Shade Vegetable Garden List Shawna The Guerilla Gardener Shawna's Front Yard Shawna's TedX - One Person Can Make a Difference The Very First Mia Connect Show

The Brick and Mortar Power Chat!

This week we showcased 5 amazing businesses & ventures from across the US and celebrated the power of local establishments. Before we launch into the fab businesses, let me briefly digress. One of the things I LOVE about Google Hangouts is the ability to connect people to places they might never have heard of as quickly through other social platforms.  Say what you will about Google Plus (and indeed, there has been a LOT said about G+) but for me, it's changed the way I communicate and has exponentially increased the number of people I consider friends, influencers and confidantes!  Now, with that being said, this broadcast was one of the hotter messes presented by The Mia Connect. A surprise trip can sometimes mean that production quality falls a bit short.  Luckily I was sporting my NEW Mickey Mouse Tiara Ears and some Giant Mickey Mouse gloves which made it that much more entertaining.  And Greg Boysaw sported the tiara as Guest Host! Screenshot_1 So here's a large clapping shout of kudos to my newbie guests who persevered with technical difficulties during the show. The great thing is, each of you were showcased to a new audience who absolutely LOVED you! And according to a Plus My Reach post show report, this event had the highest reach & engagement levels.  So take THAT, technical difficulty!  This means that YOU, the #BatPackAudience are really digging the guests and each other.  With that, let's get back into the thing I love.. talking about businesses I love. Susan Dillon of Kitty Mae Millinery - Susan started performing Burlesque in 2008 under the name "Kitty Mae Cupcake".  To quote Susan:  "If something interests me, I will do it!"... and she did!  But how did hats come into play? Susan was in desperate need of a fun mini tophat for one of her performances and, since she's been a self taught seamstress for years, she decided to make her own hat!  Susan fell in love with the process of hat making and started doing costume millinery, then moved into bridal pieces and then taught herself to "hand block" hats. She now creates amazing hats that run the gamut from small flower hats, "fascinators" and full on Kentucky Derby hats.  She's had customers in 5 different continents.  Her shop is located in the RiNO District (not far from Comida but we'll get to kitty mae #2that!) - they are part of the Wazee Union - an old steel worker building. There are over 60 studios in the space and it's one of the largest art collectives in Colorado!  Photographers (including her husband Norman Dillon), fiber artists, painters - it's a "fun and creative spot"!  If you are coming to Denver, you NEED to go see Susan Dillon and Kitty Mae Millinery. You can view Susan's creations here:  Kitty Mae On Etsy   Kitty Mae Bridal on Etsy Next up we welcomed the amazing Kirk Sherrod from Jerks Bike Shop. Kirk has quickly become a Google Plus expert in the last few months and is actively using Hangouts to showcase his business and connect to people across the world with his unique style!  In addition to custom bikes, he is all about the community.  Jerks has a Kids Bike "Buy Back" Program that is amazing and truly celebrates and promotes the love of bikes in kids 12 and under with a program offering $100 back on the next bike purchase for every $100 spent. How perfect is that? Remember how much we all loved to ride bikes as kids?  Jerks brings out the little kid in us all! Jerks_GooglePlusCover Wondering about the name "Jerks Bike Shop"? Personally, I think it's super clever and it's a mix of letters from Sherrod family members that add up to the work Jerks!  In addition to bike repair & custom bikes, Kirk & crew are also collaborating with Murray High School to put together a racing team.  And hey, if you have not heard of 30 days of Biking, then you need to!  Quick snapshot of  the idea: take a picture of what you are riding & where you are riding it and post it! Use the hashtag #30DaysofBiking - find out more here!   And hey, stay tuned because we cooked up an idea for a fund raiser during the show that consists of Mia, Dennis Duce (producer of Kirks Hangout shows) and Kirk riding around on bikes in an actual HangoutOnAir. Let's face it, that show will most likely go much smoother than this one!  And don't forget... May is Bike Month! The amazing Rayme Rossello of Comida joined us as well and filled us in on the new space where her 3rd iteration of Comida resides.  The Comida Cantina sits inside The Source,  an artisan food market that occupies a former 1880‘s brick foundry building in Denver’s River North District (also known as RiNO) a thriving Arts themiaconnect-comidaDistrict. Rayme was one of the first to sign up to be part of The Source. This slightly modified excerpt from a Denver Westword article best describes Rayme's ventures: Comida rolled into the world in 2010 as a food truck, the vision of Rayme Rossello, a former partner at Proto's Pizza and general manager at Jax, who has a degree in pastry arts that taught her "100 percent that I never wanted to be a pastry artist," she says. Comida made the transition (from Tina, The Pink Taco Truck who still is in operation around Boulder and Longmont!) to sit-down restaurant, first in Longmont in 2012 and then in Denver last summer. The dishes still feel like the Mexican street food they were modeled after: tacos, quesadillas, tostadas, tortas and gorditas offered à la carte to mix and match as you please. Most of it you can eat with your hands, though not always neatly, and that, too, adds to the fun, with chopped button mushrooms in a dark, smoky sauce slipping off crisp tostadas and chipotle mayonnaise dripping from fish tacos.  ARE YOU HUNGRY YET?! Now you know why I'm BatCrapCrazy for Comida and Rayme! And a special shout out to Jake Sutton and Heather Sutton for being such great fans & supporters of Comida and Tina The Pink Taco Truck!  We then had Jim Shankle and Larry Fournillier join us to showcase the local effort's of a national cause  in Jim's champions for kidshometown of Fayetteville, AR  called Champions for Kids RazorFest. Jim and his wife have been involved with that organization for years and decided to participate via Mobile Google Hangouts with his company Gplus Edutainment. Jim collaborated with several people, including Larry Fournillier in Trinidad, Azlin Bloor in the UK, Debi Davis in Denver to bring attention to the events and connect everyone !  Check out the events:   Kitchen Party  & The Starlight Event Last but not least, Julian Payne of The Original Mobile Barbershop joined us from his Airstream in North Hollywood and shared his business model.  Julian opened his mobile barbershop.  He began the business in 2006 and the 10245362_10152424936060719_1534016375205297582_nAirstream boasts 4 stations serving everyone (men & women - it's not just for the guys!)  Julian started off doing promotional tours for major brands such as Boost Model & Brand Jordan and then moved to working with public.  Julian holds the Guinness Book of World Records for the most shaved heads in an hour - he beat the record handily with a record 72 shaves.performed on the E Oscars Red Carpet.  Another amazing fact:   They work with the military have the only existing military barbershop contract in the world!!  Impressive, indeed. They are between North Hollywood and Sherman Oaks - go see them and also check them out at Kirk Sherrod snuck in a great quote- "Hair on the floor is worth money in the drawer"... LOVE IT! Big shout of thanks to the Bat Pack audience who attended the live show - you can check out all the great comments here - we had so many... we hit the comment limit!! BAT    


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