Continuing Ed

Upgrading with Fios

During my transition from being a Stay at Home Mom to a Work At Home Mom, I have been lucky to have great service through Verizon Fios. We have always had land line, internet, television and wireless service with Fios, and as our family grew and our use of iPads, computers, and cell phones grew with it. Considering that we hadn’t even looked at upgrading speed options since we first got Fios (in 2008), and our usage has definitely increased, I recently upgraded and am thrilled with how fast I can search sites, update blog posts – even with the house full of people streaming on their devices.

The speed and convenience that I now take for granted was highlighted even more  after a weekend at my parent’s house that definitely does not have Fios, and where I had to navigate their patchwork of services. Next project, set the parents up with Fios!

The Verizon representative was thorough, knowledgeable, professional and courteous. After the super easy, non-intrusive installation was complete, he helped me run a speed test on the computers and installed another Verizon router upstairs (we have a weird, old house) so now all of the house is covered. He also patiently answered all of my many questions. Great customer service again. Thanks Verizon!

So, if you have Verizon already – here is the Verizon Speed Test – give it a try. Don’t have Verizon yet? Just click here and see if it is in your area. Verizon Fios Boston

So while I am occasionally still locked out of Netflix, I now have the fastest download speed available and I am never at a loss for something great to watch.


Disclosure – I am a member of a Verizon #BostonFios influencer team (a natural for me – a Verizon superfan!) and we are compensated for social shares. All opinions are, and always will be, my own.




All about the Pi(e)

According to the Merriam Webster Dictionary:

The mathematical value of π, or pi, begins “3.14…” so March 14 (3/14) is considered to be International Pi Day.

Pi is the English spelling of the sixteenth letter of the Greek alphabet. It means “the symbol π denoting the ratio of the circumference of a circle to its diameter,” and also means “the ratio itself : a transcendental number having a value rounded to eight decimal places of 3.14159265.” This means that the outside measurement of a circle is a little more than three times its width. This ratio is one of the most important constants in mathematics.

Pi is probably used to stand for this number because it is the first letter of the Greek word that is the origin of periphery. And don’t miss the weird and wonderful things they’re doing over on Twitter. Funny, creative and inventive. You’re welcome.

This variant form of cauliflower is the ultimate fractal vegetable. Its pattern is a natural representation of the Fibonacci or golden spiral, a logarithmic spiral where every quarter turn is farther from the origin by a factor of phi, the golden ratio.

So, I really want to give a shout out to math on Pi Day.  We use math every day, even when we don’t realize it. Now head over to Live Science to see some really cool math. And really, much as I  respect math, I respect that wonderful, versatile food choice, pie.  Sweet or savory, I am all about the pie. So when my intrepid blogger friends invited me to a pie photo morning/tasting (because who would go to just the photo shoot anyway?) –  I ran right out and grabbed some pies. Because more is more.

We fanned out across the city and suburbs in search of our favorite types of pie. Undaunted by the amount of research this would take, we were committed to our quest, and you reap the results of our labors. Why, yes, I did try most, but not all, of these delicious pies. It was an early release day or I would have, though. Pacing. Here’s the rundown. Honestly, the things I do for this blog.

Hi-Rise Bakery – This is one of my favorite places for everything – sandwiches, baked goods, bread and jams, and I every so often make the Vanilla Bean Loaf – we call it Vanilla Bread.  We sampled the lemon meringue – next time it might not make it home.

Leah brought some of her favorite pies from Petsi Pies and they were all inhaled.  I had heard of Petsi Pies but this was my first time and the Bourbon Chocolate Pecan may have been one of my tops favorite pies ever.

More Cambridge? Pemberton Farms Marketplace is a sweet grocery/bakery/garden center that has everything you could need plus pies from The Pie Guy’s – the key lime pie is off the hook. So when I head back for that particular confection, I’ll be picking up a few hostess gifts, some wine and a plant or two next time I go.

Craving a savory pie with a flaky out of this world crust? Look no further than  KO Catering & Pies in South Boston.  Mostly meat pies here but some veggies find their way in, and  a lovely veggie pie or the Classic Beef Pie will warm you right up. We were hosted to try these yummy hand pies and sample we did. Then we ordered a bunch to go – great for the freezer for an easy dinner you almost made.

And from Shoofly Pie Baking Company, an unbelievably delicious and pretty – no one wanted me to cut it but I did anyway – cherry pie. She delivers – yes, delivers pie to Jamaica Plain, Roslindale and Hyde Park. with a trial run in Brookline going on now. Hopefully Newton is next! I’m not going to lie, when Kelli handed me still warm from the oven cherry pie, I doubted that it would make it to our pie morning. Yet it did, and it was whole. I  know. All the will power.

Freshly baked, incredibly delicious pies from the Ever So Humble Pie Company can be found at both Volante Farms and Brothers Marketplace.


So what do we do? Go Local Boston is our hashtag. We find things, we share our finds.

Follow these blogs for more fun finds – pie and otherwise.

A Little Bit about a lot of Things

Kim World

Leah’s Life: Pearls and Oysters

The July Adventures Continue with Mudderella

We spent the Fourth of July weekend in western Massachusetts with the first stop at The Clark which was gorgeous and calm. We visited for the Splendor, Myth, and Vision exhibit (on view through October 10th) as well as the stunning permanent collection of Impressionist paintings. A lovely afternoon in the museum followed by a short hike through the grounds.

View from the terrace

Then it was on to Charlemont and the Warfield House Inn, a lovely bed and breakfast on a picturesque farm. Good thing we warmed up with a hike on Friday because Saturday and Sunday were action packed. Since we’ve been white water rafting a few times, I knew what to expect, we had a terrific guide – no one even came close to falling out of the raft -and we made new friends, too. But zip-lining was a new experience for me, and while the rest of my family LOVED it, I liked a little bit of it – the brief, fleeting moments when I forgot to be afraid –  but those moments were only sparsely interspersed throughout the rest of my mostly anxiety fueled day. I don’t like heights or high speed anything, so, yeah, not really my thing. And I do have to give Berkshire East a huge shout out for having well-trained, professional, patient and kind staff members, and a wonderfully well-run program.  Thanks for the adventure weekend, dear family, but next time let’s do something a little more my speed, like…going to a bookstore or another museum…okay?

And the adventures continue! At first I was only cautiously optimistic about completing the upcoming Mudderella event. Now? Not a worry. If I can fling myself across a canyon on a cable, I can tackle any obstacle, mud included. What is Mudderella?

Mudderella, what is it?

  • A unique, 5-mile obstacle mud run where women are able to come together and celebrate strength, teamwork and everything that makes them feel like an empowered woman. The course, designed by women for women, promotes working together, having fun and owning your strong. We never refer to the event as a race or talk about participants in terms of competing –it’s more about taking on a challenge together!


  • It’s taking place in Epping, NH on Saturday, July 30th.

What’s the course like?

  • The course features 12-15 obstacles. You can check out our 2016 obstacles here – including completely new obstacles Stunt Double (a 10’ leap onto a crash pad below in front of cheering teammates and spectators) and Charlie’s Angles (a steeply sloped A-Frame structure). It helps to be a good runner, but you don’t have to be a trained marathon runner in order to be a Mudderella. You can go through the course at your own speed and can skip an obstacle if you’re not comfortable with it. Remember, you’re stronger than you think you are.


  • Mudderella was created as an opportunity for women to experience new challenges alongside other women – whether these women are our friends, family, or someone else running next to us on event day. The courses are designed to not only challenge you, but to bring you closer together.

And I have a discount code (15% off) for you, too. It’s MUDMOM – go to this page to learn more. Sign up with some friends and have fun!

There are tons of things to like about this event – celebrating teamwork, strength, women’s empowerment, fun, mud, and laughs, and what I also love about it is that Mudderella partners with Futures without Violence, a national nonprofit that is working to prevent and end domestic violence. You can donate through this page or build a team to raise money for this wonderful nonprofit organization. FYI – Mudderella New England events have raised over $90k for local chapters of the organization over the last two years.


Mudderella also has great training tips and workouts to help get you on track. Check them out – I’ve only just started The Basics and am working on my cardio, too! I signed up to do this for my daughter and her friends – it looks as if I am both the chaperone and the person they will have to help over every obstacle. It’s about team building!

I’ll keep you posted on my workout progress and share pics of the team shirts we’re making. Go team!

Follow Mudderella on Twitter,Facebook and Instagram. And check out their blog and Youtube channel.

Disclosure: I received no compensation for this post but am being provided with admission to the event.

A Summer of Volunteering with a Side of Adventure

IMG_1436While I hadn’t planned on doing anything particularly adventurous this summer (I really never do plan for adventures as I really do prefer to grab a good book and read), it turns out that I will be white water rafting, zip-lining and running (or maybe just observing), a fun obstacle course run in July – Mudderella. I’m most nervous about the zip-lining and will let you know if it actually happens. Maybe that’s enough. Maybe it’s too much.

I am also going to continue to work, and to volunteer for some great local organizations which is more my usual speed, and if you or your teens need volunteer ideas, here are a few – (italics indicate text from website of the organization featured).

NNHS Center for Civic Engagement and Service at Newton North High School – ask to join the Facebook Group here. We connect you with volunteer and intern opportunities!

Cradles to Crayons  provides children from birth to age 12, living in low- income and homeless situations, with the essential items they need to thrive.

Every year, thousands of volunteers pass through the doors of the Cradles to Crayons Giving Factory warehouse to roll up their sleeves and help disadvantaged children around the Greater Philadelphia region. Together, youth and adults inspect, sort, and package all new and like-new donations into customized “KidPacks”.

Anyone age six and above can volunteer at the Giving Factory. Activities are appropriate and engaging for individuals, families, student and community groups and corporate groups. Our warehouse space allows us to accomodate large numbers of volunteers, so it provides an exceptional team-building experience for companies. Sign up for a 2-hour shift on our website. You will work at a volunteer station such as Clothing Sort, Outfits, School Supplies, Shoes, Toys, or Shopping.

Newton-Wellesley Hospital
People volunteer for many different reasons. They may wish to become actively involved in the community, meet new people, explore career possibilities, develop skills and experience or share their special touch when people are sick. Whatever the reason, volunteers do make a difference. Volunteers make it happen.

Newton Free Library

Grad Bag 

A green initiative to reuse college dorm supplies. We collect and redistribute lightly-used dorm room items that too often end up in landfills and give them to incoming college freshmen from low-income households.

Boston Health Care for the Homeless Program

Donation Drives – Small Gestures, Enormous Impact

Our patients face the unimaginable challenges of life in shelters, on the streets and in temporary housing, while struggling to maintain their health. Acquiring basic necessities can be difficult, and we welcome the help of corporations, faith-based groups, schools, colleges and individuals to organize donation drives to meet these needs.

The seemingly small, practical items gathered in these drives can have a tremendous impact. Distributed by our doctors, nurses and case managers, they not only improve the quality of care we deliver, these items help us develop and maintain the trusting relationships that are such an essential part of our work.

Futures without Violence

(through a partnership with Mudderella) is a national nonprofit that is working to prevent and end domestic violence by developing innovative programs and policies that:

  • support victims, survivors, and their families and help them get to safety
  • educate individuals about the critical roles that we all have to play in promoting healthy relationships
  • promote mutual respect as the foundation of healthy relationships
  • support children who are exposed to violence at home and in school
  • enlist health care providers and health systems to improve domestic violence responses
  • and much more

And don’t forget to register to vote –



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