Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Here I Am

I'm not in hiding, I've not entered the witness protecton program, it's just been another busy week flying by. I've been at the Texas Affordable Housing Conference here in Austin all week and the long days of exhibiting, speaking and learning have worn me out!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

What's New

I've had several people mention lately that we haven't had any family updates. :) Man has it been a busy summer.

Over the last few months we have traveled all over visiting family
Learned that Alex loves roller coasters as much as his mama
Discovered that sick or not he's going to be up at 6 am, vacation be damned, and all round just really had a wonderful time.

Hope everyone elses summer is turning out as enjoyable as ours!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Telecommuting Advocate

Over the last three years I have become a huge advocate for telecommuting as a flexible option for work. It saves money, it's easier to keep up when children have illnesses, and I flat out get far more done!

I recently decided to share what I've learned about working from home by writing occasional articles for an online site here in Austin.

You can check them out here, and see a preview of my introductory article.
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Sunday, July 12, 2009

Fill-In-The-Blank Bio Templates to Write Your Personal or Professional Bio

Copyright © 2008-2009 Barbra Sundquist

It's not hard to write a personal or professional bio when you use the fill-in-the-blank bio templates provided in this article. All you have to do is choose one or two sentences from each of the four categories and add your details. The result will be a first-rate personal or professional bio.

To structure your bio, choose one or two sentences from each of the four categories below.

1) who you are 2) what your expertise is (credentials and experience) 3) why the reader should care about your expertise 4) how the reader can contact you

I've organized the bio sentence templates below into the four "who, what, why, and how" categories. Choose one or two sentences from each category, fill in the blanks, and you'll be done!

Bio Category #1: WHO you are (choose one or two sentences)

  • NAME is a _________ (your job title) with ___________ (company name). In this role, NAME looks after/coordinates/manages/leads a team providing (choose one of the foregoing) all aspects of _______, including _____, _____ and ______.

  • A big believer in ______, NAME supports _______.

  • NAME is a qualified __________ (your professional designation, e.g. electrician, property appraiser, esthetician) and holds the _________ degree/certification (choose one) from ______ (name of educational institution). (Note: some people prefer to put the education part at the end of the professional bio, just prior to the contact information.)

  • Bio Category #2: WHAT your expertise is (choose one or two sentences)

  • NAME is no stranger to ________ (your industry or type of work), having spent ___ years as a ________ and a __________ (occupations: e.g. fitness instructor, computer programmer, entrepreneur, professional dancer, corporate executive), which taught her/him the importance of ____________.

  • NAME has more than ____ years of ______ experience in _______.

  • Prior to starting his/her _________ (type of business) business, NAME spent _______ years as a ______________ and a __________(your relevant experience).

  • Before joining ______ (company name) in ______ (year), NAME worked for ___ (years) for a diverse range of organizations, including _____ , _______ and ________(e.g. small business startups; large corporations; private sector; non-profits; government agencies).

  • In this role, NAME was responsible for ______, ______ and ____.

  • Bio Category #3: WHY the reader should care about your expertise (choose one or two sentences)

  • NAME helps _________ (your target clients) to ___________ (a problem or goal your target clients have).

  • NAME offers a wide range of programs and services - from ___________, to __________ and __________ (your services)

  • Drawing on _______ (many, several, XX) years experience in ___________, ___________ and _________ (former jobs or industries), NAME now focuses mainly on __________ and ________.

  • After a successful career __________ (what you've been successful in), NAME now coaches/teaches/advises (choose one) other people how to achieve the same success.

  • NAME'S varied background in ___________, ___________ and _________ (former jobs or industries) provided the perfect foundation for _________ (what you are doing now).

  • Passionate about ______and its possibilities, NAME provides ______ services that help _______, _____ and _______ to ________.

  • Her/his book ________ (book title) was published in ____ (publication year) and has since helped _______ (number: hundreds? thousands?) of people to _______ (problem book solved for them, or what it taught them)

  • NAME has _____________ (your accomplishments, e.g. published articles in; received playtime at; had exhibits at; consulted to) ______, _______, and ______, among others.

  • Bio Category #4: HOW to contact you (choose one sentence)

  • To contact NAME please email ______ or go to _______ (your web site).

  • NAME is available for private consultations on ______, and can be reached at (PHONE NUMBER) or by email at ______

  • A final word about writing your professional bio: use these bio templates as a starting point but try not to feel constrained by them. If there's something that you think is interesting or important to add, by all means do so! Trust your own judgment and let your personal or professional bio reflect what is unique about you.

    About the Author:
    Barbra Sundquist, MPA has over 20 years experience as a technical writer and business coach. For more help on how to write a professional bio, please visit where you can get a free copy of Barbra's report "84 Sentence Starters for Writing A Bio."

    Read More Articles by Barbra Sundquist
    Source: Article Submission Service

    Saturday, July 11, 2009

    Forming better habits

    Brownie points for working out on vacation!!!! Yeah. Amazing how much better that makes you feel. It takes 30 days to make a habit...woohoo day 4 :).

    Friday, July 10, 2009

    Where does the time go?

    How did my goal of 30 days of working out turn into three solid days with great workouts and then a two day break....ahhh the motivation is there but somehow time just dissapeared.

    On another front I'm half way through Suzy Welch's 10 10 10 and absolutely loving it. I hope to finish it this weekend and get a good review up here!

    Hope everyone has a great weekend and if you're in the south try to keep cool. We're sitting tight at 106 right now... YUCK!

    Friday, July 3, 2009

    The USDA is on my list!

    USDA Organic SealImage by edlabdesigner via Flickr

    I woke up in an off mood today. I had to deal with my Grandfather’s wake yesterday afternoon, a late evening phone call from my mother reassuring me everyone was okay in case I caught the news (there was a shooting at the funeral home I had left just a few hours earlier), and then I came out of a dead sleep to my husband yelling at my toddler for daring to be chipper before the sun had fully risen. All told, not a set of circumstances that would help anyone be in a good mood. I got my son out of the room, hoping my husband would catch a bit more sleep and wake up in a better frame of mind. Fast forward a bit and I hear “Ohh Traci this is going to make you mad,” …never a good sign.

    Turns out MSN ran this article today,, and like any husband who knows his wife Eric instantly spotted that it was sure to set me off.

    When I first started college I was premed. Shortly into that first semester I realized that my future was looking a little more green then red and I happily began following a course load that should pave my way into environmental lobbying. My family viewed it as eccentric but even at that point I knew there was something wrong with how we grow, process and store our food. With the rise in illnesses, cancer, and problems like diabetes becoming a household word, we are looking to medication to band-aid the problem instead of our lifestyle to solve it.

    Although I wanted to pursue a career in lobbying my moral fiber would never let me work on an agenda that could harm. I find it irresponsible and ethically detrimental to society for high ranking US officials to knowingly discuss selectively banning known neurotoxins. As a firm believer in the adage “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure” I find it very disheartening that our government would seek to undermine their own label in the interests of big business. Many consumers, including myself, use that label to guide purchases that are better for our family. I for one will be very careful moving forward trusting a label that can so obviously be bought.

    Ms. Robinson, I say shame on you!

    Wednesday, July 1, 2009

    In Memory

    Isn't ironic how hard fate works to keep us humble? I've been so geared up for vacation, some mental break time, and some good time spent without distractions with my family. We headed off to visit my dad and two days into our 10 day vacation we got a phone call that my grandfather had passed away. Although several family members told me to stay and enjoy our vacation, it only took a few minutes running through a 10-10-10 analysis (an awesome new book by Suzy Welch) to realize that flying home was the very best decision for me. So Eric rearranged our travel plans and today we head off for my hometown to bid my grandfather a final goodbye.

    I'm not usually very good with dealing with death, but surprisingly my two year old put it in the best possible perspective for me. When told that Papaw was gone he said, "then he's not sick anymore?" and in just a few little words helped me to let go of the sadness that was hanging over me. We're heading home to celebrate a wonderful man's life and I'm determined to remember the grandfather of my childhood who teased and made me laugh rather than the shadow he became as a lifetime of smoking took its toll.

    Papaw, you will be missed, but always remembered.

    We love you always!
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