Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Renewal Zones

This passage comes from the latest book I am reading called 'Riding the Dragon: 10 lessons for inner strength in challenging times' by Robert J. Wicks.

"If there are places and people with whom we can laugh, relax, dream, and plot the future, then discouragement need not take root or flourish. People who can encourage, challenge, and be fun-loving companions can go a long way in preventing or stemming burnout. Whereas, if all the places in our life - work, home, and recreation - and the people who inhabit them are filled with worry, anxiety, anger, or angst, the interpersonal space we occupy will always be gray. When this is so, compassion fatigue and a sense that life has lost its joy will become evident."

Find people who make you happy. People who encourage and uplift you are necessary for anyone who is searching for a personal silver lining. The silver lining is there for anyone who wants it. It's a much easier journey to discovery when you surround yourself with laughter and love!

Monday, December 29, 2008

Thinking like Leonardo Da Vinci

I found this article on WikiHow and thought it was great! The comments there paint a much different story. Perhaps I'm as strange as he was...?!

How to Think Like Leonardo Da Vinci

from wikiHow - The How to Manual That You Can Edit

Leonardo da Vinci was the ultimate multi-tasker: an accomplished scientist, mathematician, engineer, inventor, anatomist, painter, sculptor, architect, botanist, musician, and writer. If you want to be a Renaissance Man (or Renaissance Woman), you can learn a lot from how Leonardo da Vinci lived and thought. Based on studying the life and work of this famous polymath[1] anyone can emulate da Vinci with the following steps.


  1. Curiosità. Curiosità is an "insatiably curious approach to life and unrelenting quest for continuous learning". Great minds have one characteristic in common: they continuously ask questions throughout their lives. Leonardo's endless quest for truth and beauty clearly demonstrates this. What makes great minds different is the quality of their questions. You can increase your ability to solve problems by increasing your ability to ask good questions. Like da Vinci, you should cultivate an open mind that allows you to broaden your universe and increase your ability to explore it. Here are some ways to apply Curiosità:
    • Keep a journal. Bring a journal wherever you go and use it often. Write your ideas and thoughts there. Try to write several statements a day that start with "I wonder why/how..."
    • Observe according to a theme. Choose a theme and observe things according to the theme for a day. For example, let's say you choose "communication". For the entire day, observe every type and instance of communication you come across. You can then record your observations in your journal.
    • Stream of consciousness exercise. Pick a question and write the thoughts and associations that occur to you as they are. Don't edit them. The important thing is to keep writing. This is also referred to as freewriting.

  2. Dimostrazione. Dimostrazione is "a commitment to test knowledge through experience, persistence, and a willingness to learn from mistake". Wisdom comes from experience and the principle of Dimostrazione helps you get the most out of your experience. Here are some ways to apply Dimostrazione:
    • Check your beliefs. Do you hold any beliefs that you haven't verified through experience?
    • Three points of view. First, make a strong argument against your belief. Next, take a distant view of your belief (for example, as if you live in a different culture) and review it. Finally, find friends who can give you different perspectives.
    • Analyze the advertisements that affect you. Look at the advertisements in your favorite magazine and analyze the strategy and tactics they use. Find the advertisements that affect you most and find out why.
    • Find “anti-role models” to learn from. List the names of some people whose mistakes you want to avoid. Learn from them so that you won't encounter the same pitfalls.

  3. Sensazione. Sensazione is "the continual refinement of the senses, especially sight, as the means to enliven experience". According to da Vinci, we can best practice Dimostrazione through our senses, particularly sight. That's why one of Leonardo's mottoes is saper vedere (knowing how to see) upon which he built his work in arts and science. Here are some ways to apply Sensazione:
    • Write detailed description of an experience. For instance, describe your experience of watching a sunrise in your journal.
    • Learn how to describe a smell.
    • Learn to draw.
    • Listen to different sounds around you. Learn to listen to different intensity of sounds from the softest (e.g. your breathing) to the loudest (e.g. traffic).
    • Live in the moment. Practice mindfulness.

  4. Sfumato. Sfumato is "a willingness to embrace ambiguity, paradox, and uncertainty". An essential characteristic of da Vinci's genius is his ability to handle a sense of mystery. Here are two ways to apply Sfumato:
    • Befriend ambiguity. Find some situations in your past where you faced ambiguity (e.g. waiting to hear if your application for a job you wanted was successful). Describe how you felt.
    • Ask yourself questions that relate two opposites. For example, ask yourself how your happiest and saddest moments are related.
    • Practice the Socratic method. The goal with the Socratic method is to examine possibilities, and that is done by asking questions, not by giving answers. Socrates was known (and criticized) for asking questions to which he didn't have answers.[2] The key to using the Socratic method is to be humble. Don't assume that you or anyone knows anything for sure. Question every premise.

  5. Arte/scienza. Arte/scienza is "the development of the balance between science and art, logic and imagination". This is thinking with the “whole brain”. Mind mapping is a powerful method that can help you combine logic and imagination in your work and life. The end result of mapping should be a web-like structure of words and ideas that are somehow related in the writer's mind.
  6. Corporalità. Corporalità is "the cultivation of grace, ambidexterity, fitness, and poise". Leonardo had amazing physical ability that complemented his genius in science and arts. Here are some ways to apply Corporalità:
    • Develop a program for physical fitness. Your program should include three things: flexibility exercises, strength training, and aerobic conditioning.
    • Develop body awareness. Study anatomy. Try yoga. Dance. Do some contact juggling. Whatever strengthens the connection between body and mind, go for it.
    • Cultivate ambidexterity. Leonardo could work with both his right and left hand and regularly switched between them. You can cultivate ambidexterity by using your nondominant hand for relatively simple tasks like brushing your teeth or eating your breakfast. Later you can use your nondominant hand for writing.

  7. Connessione. Connessione is "a recognition of and appreciation for the interconnectedness of all things and phenomena". This, in other words, is systems thinking. One main source of Leonardo's creativity is his ability to form new patterns through connections and combinations of different elements. Here are some ways to apply Connessione:
    • Find ways to link things that seem unrelated. For example, you can try to find connections between a bear and the World Wide Web, or geology and the Mona Lisa (real name "La Joconde").
    • Imagine dialogues. Imagine talking with a role model to gain new perspective and insight. Or you can imagine how some role models would discuss your problem.
    • Think about how things originate. Take an object and think about what elements are involved in its creation and how.


  • Some other characteristics of da Vinci that might be worth emulating are:[3]


  • Because of his wide variety of interests, da Vinci struggled with procrastination. On his death bed he apologized to "God and Man for leaving so much undone."[4]

Related wikiHows

Sources and Citations

  1. Gelb, Michael J. How to Think Like Leonardo da Vinci. ISBN 0440508274. Main source for the ideas in this article.

  2. http://www.buzzle.com/articles/socrates-philosophy-and-socratic-method.html

  3. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leonardo_da_Vinci%27s_personal_life#Personal_habits_and_talents

  4. http://www.hypatiamaze.org/leonardo/leo_vinci.html

Article provided by wikiHow, a wiki how-to manual. Please edit this article and find author credits at the original wikiHow article on How to Think Like Leonardo Da Vinci. All content on wikiHow can be shared under a Creative Commons license.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Zany Zodiacs Free Weekly Horoscopes 12/28/08 - 1/3/09

Find this week's updated Zany Zodiacs horoscopes ....

Aries - click here
Taurus - click here
Gemini - click here
Cancer - click here
Leo - click here
Virgo - click here
Libra - click here
Scorpio - click here
Sagittarius - click here
Capricorn - click here
Aquarius - click here
Pisces - click here

Friday, December 26, 2008

Racism & Barack Obama

Ok so I'm not even going to get into this. This issue of racism just gets me WAY too fired up, and as you might be able to judge by other posts on this blog, I do my best to stay away from those types of emotions...they are way too low on the vibrational scale for my liking. My significant other suggests that I can't just ignore it and it will go away, with my hippie flowers and my joy, just running around through life like these kinds of things don't exist, but I say phooey. I say phooey on the whole thing. We're about to have a great president. WE ELECTED HIM! We can't find anything better to bitch about besides the fact that the poor man lights up a cigarette once in a while, and the fact that his race doesn't quite match any one race in particular. I say GREAT NEWS! It's high time we got over ourselves anyway just friggin accepted the fact that some people are different. At least Barack Obama isn't green and blue polka dotted...what the bleep would we do then? Face your fears, people!

Ok so with that said, I did discover a blog entry today and I liked what I read. Despite the fact that the issue of racism continues because WE KEEP TALKING AND WRITING ABOUT IT, I still am glad to know that some people, black or white, are just ready to get over it. Local News and Newspapers is the blog I stumbled across. If you're interested, go check it out. He's got a viewpoint much like my own.

And for God's sake...the man is about to pick up all the pieces left behind by George W. Bush. If he wants to have a smoke once in a while, GET OVER IT!

Thursday, December 25, 2008


As a writer, one of the most enjoyable (or least enjoyable; depending on my mood) things about working with the English language is homonyms. Homonyms, among other things, are words that have the same spelling but completely separate meanings. Example: duck. At the pond, you may have to duck if you startle a duck.

So imagine my surprise when I see a blog entitled All About Cricket. I'm excited because I've always been fond of the sound that crickets make, which is apparently called a 'chirp'. So imagine my surprise when I discover that All About Cricket is actually about another kind of Cricket...one that I've heard, but never given much thought!

This blog is dedicated to all cricket fans over the world, and this doesn't mean the chirpy kind. Updated with live Cricket scores, rundowns of several test matches, and cricket fan information. If you love cricket, or you're looking for a place to figure out who's where and what is when...I think you might have a good time at All About Cricket.

Monday, December 22, 2008

New Blog!

In order to keep all my discoveries in somewhat of an order, I've started a new blog. I'll continue to post anything horoscope or astrology related here. If you'd like to continue the 'working at home' and 'making money online' sagas, you can find my new blog at at-home-money.blogspot.com. There I will go into detail on the programs that are making money for me, the ones that are not, and anything else I discover that's beneficial for stay at home moms, dads, and other work at home website owners or affiliate marketers. Bloomdrop's Zany Zodiacs blog will continue to include updates on weekly Zany Zodiacs horoscopes, plus other oddities that I come across through my internet "bimbling"... (<-- lol at robbellblog).


Saturday, December 20, 2008

Happy Holidays from Zany Zodiacs!

Find this week's updated Zany Zodiacs horoscopes ....

Aries - click here
Taurus - click here
Gemini - click here
Cancer - click here
Leo - click here
Virgo - click here
Libra - click here
Scorpio - click here
Sagittarius - click here
Capricorn - click here
Aquarius - click here
Pisces - click here

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

One Way to Make Money Blogging

IMPORTANT UPDATE!!!! 12/31/2008
******Unbeknownst to me, involving your blog with Smorty or any other Paid to Post or Sponsored Reviews website really upsets Google. I have just proven this with my own experience as Google PageRank was updated and the only one of my sites that is back to N/A is the blog I use for Smorty. I'm officially cancelling my account and removing all links to any Pay Per Post, 'make money with your blog' sites until further notice...(which may be never!)

Smorty is a website that offers paid writing jobs for your blog. Based upon some criteria involving page ranks and blog popularity, you will be offered paid assignments and you can start making money for your blog. Your job is to simply write your opinions about people’s products and services, and publish these opinions to your blog. You will be paid shortly after your blog entry has been approved.

Sign up for Smorty. To get blog approval, here are part of Smorty’s guidelines: "Blogs that are not indexed, have little or no content, are banned from search engines or contain hate related and crude content may be rejected or put on Probation until corrected. Your blog must be older than 30 days and have at least 10 posts to apply." Other than that, the only rules are the obvious ones.

One thing that I really like about Smorty is their post exchange program. They pair you with other similarly ranked blogs, and you write a review for that blog. In turn, another blogger will write a review for your blog. Instead of a 'link exchange' this process is creating an inbound-only link from another blog, therefore increasing your Google PageRank. When Google PageRank increases, not only does your blog popularity increase, but your opportunities for making blogging money will increase as you are offered more paid reviews. I find this little program to be quite awesome!

Smorty is currently offering a beta version of their Digxa Widgets. I haven't yet tried this feature, but I have read that it connects to products by Amazon. If you aren't yet an Amazon affiliate, and don't have plans to become one, this is a super easy way to begin earning commission from product sales. Yet another great way to make money for blogging with Smorty.

Lastly, Smorty offers a friend referral program. You will earn 5% commission on all payments made to any referred bloggers who sign up under your referral link. If you have a blog, it is my opinion that you can’t lose with Smorty.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Zany Zodiacs Free Weekly Horoscopes 12/14/08 - 12/20/08

Find this week's updated Zany Zodiacs horoscopes ....

Aries - http://www.squidoo.com/zanyzodiacs-aries
Taurus - http://www.squidoo.com/zanyzodiacs-taurus
Gemini - http://www.squidoo.com/zanyzodiacs-gemini
Cancer - http://www.squidoo.com/zanyzodiacs-cancer
Leo - http://www.squidoo.com/zanyzodiacs-leo
Virgo - http://www.squidoo.com/zanyzodiacs-virgo
Libra - http://www.squidoo.com/zanyzodiacs-libra
Scorpio - http://www.squidoo.com/zanyzodiacs-scorpio
Sagittarius - http://www.squidoo.com/zanyzodiacs-sagittarius
Capricorn - http://www.squidoo.com/zanyzodiacs-capricorn
Aquarius - http://www.squidoo.com/zanyzodiacs-aquarius
Pisces - http://www.squidoo.com/zanyzodiacs-pisces

(horoscopes will be updated at zanyzodiacs.com very shortly)

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Save a tree; make a Funky Christmas Tree Wallhanging

Like it? I made it last year at Christmas. I couldn't actually afford to get a Christmas tree so I decided to craft one out of my imagination. Well, I stole a couple ideas here and there, but it came out pretty unique! If you'd like to take a closer and more in-depth look at how to make this Christmas Tree Craft Decoration yourself, please click the link below.
Click here for instructions

Saturday, December 6, 2008

My Leos are in the Lead!

So for the Leos have been paying the most attention to the new Squidoo lenses for Zany Zodiacs horoscopes. I really need some help from Cancer, Scorpio, Sagittarius, Aries, Taurus, Libra and Gemini. Check out your specific horoscope lens. Ratings and comments are encouraged! This help the Zany Zodiacs horoscopes to gain popularity! Whoo hoo! Ok so all free horoscopes have been updated for the upcoming week.

Check this page and click on your specific zodiac sign to view your horoscope!

Thanks and enjoy!

Creating a Christmas Playlist

I got a special gift today from one of my online friends. It was a link to a Christmas playlist. What a wonderful gift that was. I may be overreacting, but I was just tickled by the fact that I can click and open up a player filled with Christmas songs. Since this is just not something I would think to take the time to do, it's been a simple pleasure for me to simply go to the page and play it whenever the mood struck me. I love music, but for some reason, I just don't think to play it. I race around the internet all day long, writing articles, and telling other people the best ways to stay upbeat, get in touch with their higher selves, and give treats to make the world a better place. Obviously, I'm not that great at following my own advice. So, this little music player was just an inspiration to me.

If you'd like to make a Christmas playlist of your own, you can find the instructions by clicking here. Enjoy and Happy Holidays!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Can I be psychic, but still be a child of God?

People have a tendency to confuse God with religion. People also have a tendency to confuse the term psychic' with the act of fortune-telling. The term God,' as defined by our trusty Merriam-Webster dictionary is the supreme or ultimate reality. We are all God's children, as we are all creations of that supreme reality. As such, we are each individual pieces of a whole, and since we come from an origin that is defined as supreme and ultimate, we then are each, by nature, instilled with the ability to use, work from, and live by the characteristics of that ultimate reality. Read the entire article here

Monday, December 1, 2008

101 Great Christmas Stocking Stuffer Ideas

I've created a new Squidoo page on stocking stuffer ideas for Christmas. My lens includes some ideas, and gift options for men, women, kids, old, young, rich, and not-so-rich. Come see!

101 Great Stocking Stuffer Ideas

Zany Zodiacs Facelift!

The Zany Zodiacs website has changed.

Come take a look

And don't forget, if you love Zany Zodiacs, to come and check us out at
Squidoo (find your specific horoscope lens and leave a comment, testimonial, vote, whatever!)