Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough

Summer is in full swing and I could not be happier! What an awesome time of the year. Thursday is upon us again and that means it is time for the rundown.

Guilty Pleasure – As it is National Candy Month, I thought it would be appropriate to start with this. For the past year I have turned more and more to Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Bites. If you go to the bins in front of the checkout aisles at Wal-Mart, you can buy a box for a buck. It is a very low quality candy with stale cookie dough but for whatever reason it doesn’t deter me from eating it. Believe it or not, sprinkling them on ice cream or pouring them on your tub of popcorn at the movies is not a bad idea either. Do know that if you don’t sneak a box in at the theater you won’t be paying the $1 Wal-Mart price…most movie houses sell the exact same box for around $4.

My favorite candy sits on my kitchen counter.

My favorite candy sits on my kitchen counter.

A Boatful – Last week I had the opportunity to celebrate the 6th birthday of Sidney’s niece, Russell. It was a joyous affair where we hopped on the family boat and cruised down the Intracoastal Waterway to a fabulous seafood restaurant for dinner. Filling up the family boat was, well…family. The photo, posted by Sid’s sister (AKA Russell’s mom), generated a lot of social media engagement. My good friend Ellen Seder posted a comment suggesting that I blog about the photo. Great idea, Ellen! Consider it done.

It was a full and happy boat. Sid and I are way in the back!

It was a full and happy boat. Sid and I are way in the back!

Periscope Debut – I absolutely love Periscope. This live streaming social media service is incredible and I am already having a ball fooling around with it for personal use. However, I will write about that in a whole separate blog post. Today I used it the first time for work. I introduced the app by taking our #CCUSocialMedia audience on a tour of Brooks Stadium. Of course the focal point was showcasing the teal turf. For about 20 minutes I gave 88 people a live look at the stadium. I went to every vantage point in the venue so our audience could see the teal turf in all its glory. I had a splendid time answering questions and providing a service that not many universities are utilizing.

A screen shot from our Periscope live stream broadcast of the teal turf tour. As you can see, someone is asking a question in this instance.

A screen shot from our Periscope live stream broadcast of the teal turf tour. As you can see, someone is asking a question in this instance.

The Social Circle – We released our latest episode of “Coastal Now” this week. During my Social Circle segment, I talked about how we utilized social media to make the big announcements about our new residence halls. It might be worth a watch to you (probably not though). Click here to be taken directly to my segment.

Another cool professional development happened today. Terminal Four, a gigantic content management company headquartered in Ireland, randomly published a blog post on how Coastal is going above and beyond with its summer social media efforts. I was completely caught off guard with the flattery but of course pleasantly surprised. To read the post, click here.

I talked about how we revealed our new residence halls in my latest "Social Circle" segment.

I talked about how we revealed our new residence halls in my latest “Social Circle” segment.

Another Blunder – Earlier this week when I wrote about the times I had messed up in my blog over the course of the past four years, I missed something. A loyal reader reminded me about an especially embarrassing mistake I made not too long ago. One word: TWINS.

I wholeheartedly believed that this commercial made for my blog featured twins. It took one quick look from by girlfriend for her to tell me that I was crazy. When I asked all of you for a second opinion, you also yelled back at me that I was nuts. Chalk that up as another moment of stupidity.

So I guess this is really just one girl instead of twins.

So I guess this is really just one girl instead of twins.

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Enjoy the first game of the NBA Finals tonight. Hopefully we will witness domination by the Golden State Warriors. I have been completely outspoken, I hope Lebron and the Cavs get swept. I don’t bow down to King James. Don’t Blink.

Instagram Resiliency: Ellen Seder

Today I want to recognize a certain person who answered a challenge I put forth in the waning days of 2013. This particular social media all-star showed endurance, creativity and humor throughout 2014. Before this year ends, I would like to say well done to Ellen Seder.

This is Ellen Seder, the person responsible for bringing a lot of humor to my Instagram account.

This is Ellen Seder, the person responsible for bringing a lot of humor to my Instagram account.

Many people know all about my Life’s Little Instructions calendar. I have written an all-encompassing blog post on it before and I have used it for inspiration for several other blog posts in the past. Anyway, each day I Instagram and Tweet out that particular day’s little tip. Several years leading up to this current year I would always get moderate interaction from the instructions I would post. However, in 2013 I became delighted with the sporadic humorous Instagram comments I would receive from a certain follower of mine. A couple times each week, my friend from my Missoula days, Ellen Seder, would comment on the LLI images I would post. Her comments were always funny, witty, and relevant. I wanted this humor more than just twice a week.

My Life's Little Instructions calendar will be back in 2015...and so will Ellen.

My Life’s Little Instructions calendar will be back in 2015…and so will Ellen.

Just a tad bit over a year ago I issued a challenge to Ellen: Comment on every single Life’s Little Instructions I post on Instagram in 2014. She accepted.

This was the challenge I made to Ellen on December 28, 2013. She accepted:

This was the challenge I made to Ellen on December 28, 2013. She accepted:

Throughout this year I have had the joy of reading a humorous caption that addressed the Life’s Little Instruction for that day. When I would open up my Instagram app and see that I had a comment notification I would always say to myself “What does Ellen have to say today?” She would never disappoint. Her comments addressed so many different topics and taboos but if I was pressed to categorize her responses under one major theme I would say she wrote under the banner of “The Struggles of a 20-Something Girl.” Self-deprecating and light, her comments resonated with many.

Although you can't even see the captions she was commenting on, you can get a taste of her sense of humor.

Although you can’t even see the captions she was commenting on, you can get a taste of her sense of humor.

My other Instagram followers became just as accustomed to seeing what Ellen had to say that day as they were to seeing the actual Life’s Little Instruction post itself. Many times throughout the year people asked me face-to-face (with endearment), “So who is that @ellenseder person who always comments on your photo.” Frequently other users would piggy-back off of the comments she would make. Ellen made herself a big part of my Instagram account in 2014.

Not all of her comments were for a laugh though. Sometimes Ellen offered inspiration.

Not all of her comments were for a laugh though. Sometimes Ellen offered inspiration.

It takes commitment and creativity to comment on something 365 times a year. Her comments, although definitely silly (most of the time), always revealed a lot of thought. I guess it makes sense though, Ellen is a very dedicated individual who is in a career that would allow her to strive at a challenge such as this. We met as regulars at the University of Montana gym and she now holds a job as a social media manager in Westlake Village, California. Her background made her an absolute rockstar as she completed my challenge.

Don't worry! Ellen will be back commenting on Life's Little Instructions in 2015.

Don’t worry! Ellen will be back commenting on Life’s Little Instructions in 2015.

The best part of this all? Ellen has graciously accepted to comment again in 2015. That’s right, come the new year, the comments that everyone has grown to love will continue to appear under my Life’s Little Instructions Instagram post. Ellen, thank you so much for all your hard work and time you put in to brighten the day of myself and all my Instagram followers. You are very appreciated. Don’t Blink.