Sunday, May 25, 2014

Taos, New Mexico–Land of Enchantment

Lounge Area at Inn on the Rio - photo from
I have been away for too long.  Today I would like to share about my trip to Taos, New Mexico the first week of May.

Bill and I went to Taos for some refreshment and touristy stuff.  I had never been there before, and I had a great time.  We stayed at a friendly relaxed bed and breakfast called Inn on the Rio.  Jules and Robert were fabulous hosts.  Our rooms were on the ground floor with our own entrance from outside, like a motel.  The b&b is an adobe structure with bright painted flowers around the doorway and cute decorative art in bright colors.

It was a short walk from our room to the dining area where Jules and Robert served us breakfast each day.  They are both excellent cooks and wonderful conversationalists. My favorite dish was a frittata that Julie made the first day.  It contained cream cheese, Vidalia onions, and mushrooms.  It was light as a feather and scrumptious.  

The Plaza

We spent time at the Taos square in the middle of town.  I enjoyed shopping and added a piece of Navajo horsehair pottery to my beginning collection.  It is my second piece.  The shops offer lots of different unique items, the shopkeepers are delightful, and prices are mostly reasonable for us everyday traveler type folks.

The Gorge Bridge

We also went out to the Gorge, where there is a bridge over the canyon of the Rio Grande.  We enjoyed looking at that.
Gorge Bridge over Rio Grande near Taos NM

Taos Pueblo

The Taos Pueblo is located on the north side of town.  It is the oldest continuously inhabited structure of its type in North America.  The Pueblo tribe has lived here for about 1000 years.  I did not have an opportunity to walk around there, although it is open to the public.  It is fascinating.

Arroyo Seco

We also drove up the road to Arroyo Seco, a small spot in the road where there are a number of cute shops.  We went there about 10:00 am in the morning, and many of the shops were not open yet.  I did get to visit a shop that was open.  It was a gift shop, and the lady tending shop told me that Julia Roberts is one of their customers.  She said that Julia Roberts is a resident of Arroyo Seco.  I did not know that, but I do not keep up with celebrities on any regular basis.

High Road to Taos

Taos is not too far from Santa Fe, so we jumped in the car and took the High Road to Taos in the opposite direction.  We took it to Santa Fe.  It was a beautiful drive.  As we neared Santa Fe, we could see out over the desert landscape and mountain visits.  It was an incredible sight.

We visited some old adobe churches along the High Road to Taos, one at Chimayo, and a few others.  The church at Chimayo is quite old, and it was the only one open for us to go into.  We did that.  They were preparing for the 11:00 AM mass.  It is such a treat to visit such an old place that is in continuous use on a daily basis.
Old Church at Chimayo NM
The St.Francis d’Assisi church at the Taos end of the drive is one of the most photographed churches, so I tried my hand at photographing it as well.
St. Franics D'Assissi Church near Taos, NM

Studio J Bead Shop

So I found a bead shop in Taos that I really liked and spent some money there on supplies. It is called Studio J and I had fun talking with the shop owner and her mother.
Here are a few of the items I made using beads from that shop.  

The green one below is made with magnasite round beads that have a similar look to turquoise. I got those at Studio J.

I made two of the blue one, and both are sold. The blue beads are drizzled glass and have a lovely sheen to them.  I got those at Studio J as well.

Thursday, May 1, 2014

5 Favorite Business Blogs

I spend a lot of time reading business blogs each day. I need to educate myself on blogging, e-commerce, social media and small business, and this has been a wonderful way to do so. I have come up with a list of my favorite business blogs that continue to provide me with relevant up to date information.

What is a business blog?

Business blogs cover a very wide range.  The ones that I favor cater to the small business owner who operates an on-line business.  These are so good for those of us who work on our business from an office or studio in our homes.  Business blogs, just like lifestyle blogs can vary considerably from one another. That is what keeps them interesting and why I follow a number of them. The business blogs that I like speak to real people, and they do not assume that I have lots of prior knowledge about their topics.

My Top 5 Business Blogs

Sits Girls -

This blog is all about the art and science of blogging.  If you write a blog or if you are contemplating doing so, this website is the place to be.  This business blog provides you so very many resources, and they feature the work of many other bloggers.  My connecting with them, you are able to connect with the blogging community.  I need to utilize their resources more than I have done.

Blogging Tips -

What I like the most about this business blog from  Zac Johnson is that he utilizes many blogging experts to write and publish posts.  Each post is a little different and provides the flavor of the blogger writing the post.  I found a new blog that I listed below when reading one of the posts on his blog.  If you are a blogger check out this business blog.
Here is a photo of Zac and his dog from his about page.
 Blogging Tips About page

Social Media Examiner -

This business blog is a treasure trove of information.  I have to admit, the beautiful graphic of a hunter searching through the jungle with a magnifying glass and the tagline "Your Guide to the Social Media Jungle" grabbed me right away. Michael Steltzner is the founder of this remarkable website that calls itself a social media magazine.  The podcasts are wonderful as are the articles.  This is another of those sites that you can spend hours perusing.  You can learn so much from the information presented in this business blog.

 Social Media Examiner

Buffer -

I like to use the Buffer app to schedule postings on my Facebook page.  They also have a business blog that is awesome.  They have articles about many aspects of doing online business. Check it out and enjoy the read.  Here is an info-graphic from their content today.



This blog addresses all kinds of business needs.  Some are for larger business with lots of employees, and others are for any size business.  I have been receiving their posts by email for a number of years.  One of my favorite things about HubSpot is that they write and provide downloads of lots of educational materials.  They have information on developing email lists, writing blogs, using social media, SEO and more.  You may find that they ask you to sign up for their programs which cost money.  If you do not want to do that, just let them know that.  They will still continue to provide the free information.

Please comment below to share with us any good business blogs that you read

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