The History of the Fork

Random word of the day is “fork.”

Did you know the use of a fork was once seen as evil?

The origins of the fork date back to the Eastern Roman Empire of Byzantium but some of the earliest known table forks made their debut in Ancient Egypt. The Qijia, who resided in part of present-day China, also are known to have used forks. The utensil migrated west after Byzantine princess, Theodora Anna Doukaina married the Venetian doge in 1075, brought the utensil to Venice. God-fearing Venetians saw the fork as a monstrosity.

God in his wisdom has provided man with natural forks – his fingers. Therefore it is an insult to Him to substitute artificial metallic forks for them when eating. -St. Peter Damian

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In the 16th century during the Italian Renaissance, the popularity of forks began to grow when Catherine de Medici brought along a set of eating forks from her native Florence to France. People also became more aware of hygiene and didn’t want their food covered in filth. Men still preferred to use their fingers as forks were deemed too feminine.

By the 18th century, the upper-class began carrying forks as part of their utensils set. During the industrialization period, the middle and lower-class gained access to the “split spoon.”

In 1633, John Winthrop, a founding father of the Massachusetts Bay Colony received a case of utensils accompanied by a note stating, “for the useful application of which I leave to your discretion.” At this time, the proper use of a fork was still unknown. Once the Americans grew accustomed to the fork, their dining etiquette was critiqued by international users. Everything from how Americans held the fork and whether or not the tines should be facing up or down as you ate the food was a source of controversy.

The popularity of forks blossomed and several variations were created.

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So the next time you use your fork, take a closer look. It had a long journey to become a staple in our lives.

 

Random Word Challenge: Discouraged

Day four of my random word challenge!

Today’s word is “discouraged.”

If you’ve gone through life never being discouraged by anything, I applaud you. Do you have any advice? 😀

Honestly, I have to remind myself to not be discouraged each time I think of something creative. When it comes to creativity for clients or my job, it’s easy. When things get personal, I’m my own worst critic.

There’s always someone better than you, but that doesn’t mean you can’t teach yourself and up your game.

It’s easy to find people who are doing better than you, but how you view them makes a difference. I enjoy baking, painting, writing, and design. Whenever I see someone doing better than me in those areas, I can get discouraged, but what good will that do?  If anything, that’ll make me want to quit. Instead, I look at that person and know I’ll be like them someday as long as I keep improving my craft. Use them as motivation instead of being discouraged.

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The last thing you want to do is look back and realize the same amount of time you spent self-sabotaging yourself, you could have been elevating your skills. It’s easy to fall into a negative space, but monumental when you can turn it around and use it as a driving force to do better.

Random Word Challenge: Chapters

It’s day three of my random word challenge. If you’re a bit confused, I’m using a random word generator to generate words in alphabetical order. Each day is a new letter and whatever word is generated is the word I write about.

Today’s word is “chapters.”

When I first saw this word, I couldn’t help but think of the chapters of life. I’ve met so many amazing people who have come and gone throughout my life. Whether through death or we drifted apart due to growing older. I’ve also met people who put on the facade of being good but they were narcissists, sociopaths, and downright disgusting people. There are some people I wish I’ve never met, but thinking back, they’ve only helped me get through the following chapters of my life.

Each person I’ve encountered in life is different and I’ve learned from them in some way. I’ve learned what real friendship is, what a user looks like, the subtle art of manipulation, how love feels, how love shouldn’t feel, and how my own personal values, morals, and worth plays a roll in all of my relationships.

I’ve known my closest friends for over 10 years. Although we’re still going strong as friends, we’ve had several chapters come to a close. These chapters include transitioning from teenagers to adults, going through our 20’s, helping each other through intimate relationships, arguing and disconnecting because of a disagreement, and reconnecting.

It’s amazing how we go through chapters in life learning little things, but we get the true ah-ha moment once we start reflecting. We may feel as though we ended a chapter, but sometimes we go back to it through memories and realize we’re still learning. After deep reflection, we end the chapter and feel more relief than when we first thought our minds were settled. Amazing how that works.

I’ve done some deep thinking over the past few years. Although I’m continuing with my life, my previous chapters are still there. Some more than others. Those chapters are the ones that are constant reminders to never put myself through something similar. One should never repeat a chapter of their life. Create new ones, but always remember the valuable lessons learned in previous chapters.

Random Word Challenge: Bacon

Random Word of the Day: Bacon

I couldn’t help but laugh when this word appeared. This is day two of my random word challenge. It seems like it’s going to be interesting. 😀 OK, let’s talk briefly about bacon.

Remember when people put bacon on and in everything the way they do Flamin’ Hot Cheetos now? Well, they still do. I’m all for a nice crispy piece of bacon, but bacon milkshakes and bacon ice cream was going too far. OK, I’ll admit I did have a breakfast ice cream that included maple flavored ice cream with bits of waffles and bacon. It wasn’t bad, but the soggy bits of bacon distracted my tastebuds from fully enjoying it. If a bacon milkshake sounds interesting to you, here’s a recipe. Honestly, I may try this milkshake myself. It looks good. No shame here.

I’ll never forget when I first saw a bacon bouquet. My first thought was people are crazy. After giving it some thought, I wouldn’t be mad if my man gave me one of these instead of roses. I’d laugh my ass off, but I sure would eat it.

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If you want your own bacon bouquet, here’s a recipe that includes chocolate.

Alright, now I’m craving bacon. Let me get up and workout to take my mind off of food.

 

 

 

5 Simple (But Important) Things To Remember About Blogging

Maintaining a blog isn’t always easy. Sometimes the ideas flow like water and other times your ideas are as dry as a desert. When the ideas are no longer flowing, you stop writing and your blog is forgotten until you come up with new content. Here are some simple but important tips I remind myself of when it’s time to write.

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Search the Web for Topics

If you find yourself experiencing writer’s block, search the web for blog topics. There are several websites that list hundreds of topics to dive into. Some websites offer blog topic generators. They aren’t the best, but they may help stimulate your mind.

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Brain Dump

We’ve all heard it before, but brain dumping is wonderful. Writing random words, thoughts, things you need to get done, just anything and everything can be therapeutic.  You can place items in order or scribble randomly on paper or in a program similar to Microsoft Word, but I highly recommend paper. If you still can’t figure out what to write, walk away from your brain dump and revisit it later. The more you do it, those random words become phrases, full sentences, and the next thing you know, you’re writing a full blog.

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Don’t Worry About Order

This is an interesting habit I’ve discovered about myself. When I write for clients, I tend to write things out of order then rearrange it before submission. For clients, I follow the inverted pyramid format. If you’re unfamiliar with that, it’s a writing style that features the most important information at the beginning of the article and filters down to the least important. The goal is to retain readers from beginning to end.

When I write for my blog, I don’t pay attention to the order… all the time. My only goal is to write. When you worry about the order, the structure may not come to you right away causing you to not want to write at all. When you have an idea, write about what comes to mind first. If you’re writing a story and you have a clear vision of how it ends, write the ending. Don’t wait until you write the beginning and middle. If you have to, write the story backward.

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It Doesn’t Have to be Deep

You don’t have to write a thesis. A blog can be as little as 300 words or images of your favorite quotes. This is called microblogging. Creating short and quick posts to stay active or to keep your community updated on life events, your brand, etc. works just as well as full-length content.

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Hit Publish

I won’t go into whether or not your grammar is correct, if your writing has flow, or if your blog is SEO friendly. There are other articles on the web for that. I’m here to encourage you to simply start writing.

Once your blog is complete, read over to see if you missed anything, and hit publish. Release it into the world wide web and feel the accomplishment of publishing content. There are amazing writers in the world, but it doesn’t come easy to everyone. Don’t doubt yourself. The more content your produce, the more hitting “publish” will be an afterthought. Just keep writing and have fun doing it!

 

 

Random Word Challenge: Advice

As I sat at my desk thinking of something to write, I’ve decided I’m going to do a random word challenge using each letter of the alphabet. I’m using an online random word generator. I insert one letter and the first word that pops up is going to be the word I write about. If you’ve done a similar challenge or want to join me, let me know in the comments.

Today’s word is “advice.”

I’ve received advice throughout the years, but none of it stands out as deeply memorable. I have found people, including myself, who will give advice that we should be following ourselves. It’s amazing how we subconsciously try to teach ourselves through the advice we give to others. Unfortunately, we don’t realize what’s happening until the person we gave the advice to gives it back to us.

Imagine your friend’s relationship ended. You provide all of the advice needed to help them overcome the obstacle of restarting their life without their lover, how to occupy their mind so they aren’t constantly thinking about their ex, advice on what they should take away from the relationship to better themselves, and so much more. As soon as you go through a breakup, you instantly forget the advice you gave. Your friend is now the one regurgitating what you told them. Interesting how that works.

My advice to you, the next time you give advice, listen to your own words and analyze whether or not you need to apply those words of wisdom to your life. Your advice may be the subconscious pep talk you needed.

 

 

 

Blogtober: Mission Accomplished!

I DID IT!

This is my 31st article for the month of October officially completing Blogtober!

I took on the challenge on October 2 with no idea what to write. My website sat dormant for quite some time and I wanted to get back into the groove of writing. As a result of Blogtober, I purchased a domain and chose a theme. Something I’ve procrastinated doing for years.

I’ve never been this active on my site and I don’t plan on stopping. It feels good to get back into writing mode. I feel beyond accomplished right now. As basic as this goal was, I feel like I’ve done so much more.

Due to not planning my content in advance did add some stress because I didn’t want to fail. Two or three pieces of content were fillers and I feel a little bad about it, but my goal was to stay active. I mentioned in my progress article that I may do something similar again because it’s a great challenge.

I fell a little behind and posted three pieces of content today. Go ahead and judge me. Ha! I didn’t have to work yesterday or today, so why not make things more intense for myself during the final day.

If anyone reading this participated in Blogtober, how did you do? If you didn’t participate this time, give it a try! You don’t have to wait until October 2020 to do it.

Blogtober: My Progress So Far

Blogtober has been interesting. I’m a day or two behind with posts but will make that up before the month is over.

I stated in a previous post that I wouldn’t create an editorial calendar to plan my month and will blog about whatever comes to mind. It’s interesting how many interesting ideas pop into my head, but those topics are deeper and would require some time to create. They’re currently in my drafts and will appear eventually.

There are times when I still don’t know what to write about, so I toss in funny quotes as fillers. Not the best form of content, but it keeps me active on the blog. I think this is the most consistency I’ve had in quite some time. I’m even looking into purchasing a domain to make my blog look more “official.” That has been in the plan for quite some time, but I want to make sure I remain active to get my money worth.

I will do another month’s challenge. Maybe do it in January and call it “Bloguary.” I will create an editorial calendar for that challenge and schedule a post in advance. My life isn’t hectic, but there are challenges within myself that I will discuss in a later post.
To wrap this up, so far so good with posts. They can be better, but “quality” content will be released soon. More deep thought pieces.

If you’re participating in Blogtober, how has it been going for you?

Blogtober 2019: No Idea What to Write, But I’m Doing It

I just found out October is Blogtober. I’m already a day late, but challenge accepted!

If you aren’t familiar with Blogtober, the challenge is to post a blog each day of October. The topic can be about whatever you choose. Some bloggers may be more strategic based on their audience/niche, they may want to gain more traffic, incorporate more SEO, etc. My goal is to simply write more.

What am I going to write about? I have no idea!

My life has been busy and stressful, but I’ve been itching to write more. I feel like I’m letting my imagination go to waste due to my job taking over my life and my over-appreciation for taking naps on my days off.

I will get out of my mechanical rut of repeating mundane life expectancies that don’t provide intellectual stimulation or pleasure in my life.

I could write about the BS that’s going on at my job, but there is enough negativity in the world as soon as you turn on your TV or step out of your door. Let’s keep things positive for once.

I’ll post another blog later today or I’ll do it tomorrow. See, I’m already procrastinating—side-eyeing myself right now (¬_¬).

Are you participating in Blogtober?