Archive for July, 2012

Back to School for Teens

Monday, July 30th, 2012

Depending on what part of the country you live in, your children may be heading back to school in the next week or so.  For those of us in the Northeast, we have an entire month until school begins.  However, the stores have had back to school sales and specials since the day the kids got out of school in June, or so it seems.

In our house, we don’t do back to school shopping until late September or early October.  As the kids are teens, there’s no rush to have a whole new wardrobe for the start of school.  They tend to wear their summer attire for the first month and take the time to assess the current trends before we shop.  Being middle and high school aged, the right clothing is crucial.

As I’ve mentioned previously, our kids understand the importance of budget and good choices.  While they like to shop at trendy stores, they realize that some of the trendy stores have better buys than others.  They remember to bring discount cards and figure a way to get the best price on an item.  And as they do a good job discerning between what they want and need, we usually add one splurge item to the back to school shopping list.

As you prepare for your back to school shopping sessions, keep our shopping publication, Go Shopping Info, in mind.  While it has gone through several changes over the past few years, we continue to focus on bargains and fashion.  We have narrowed the categories in which we cover those topics, eliminating  children’s shopping, as there didn’t seem to be as great a demand.  However, we have added more categories to women’s shopping, including evening wear, shoes, and beauty items.

For those with teens, like me, Go Shopping Info should continue to be a good source of shopping information.  Whether your teens are looking for trendy shoe suggestions or hints on men’s fashion, they’ll find them there.  Most likely, the ideas we provide won’t break your wallet.

Family Gatherings

Monday, July 23rd, 2012

Over the last four weeks, I have spent time with both my mother’s side of the family and my mother-in-law’s side of the family.  The reasons for the gatherings were quite different.  For my mom’s side, we gathered for a family reunion at the end of June, which was a first, as far as I can recall.  We spent four days and nights at a resort in Virginia, with the bulk of the time spent poolside, as the daily temperature was over 100.  With a very relaxed schedule, we were pleased to lounge under umbrellas or float in the pool and catch up on the years since we had last seen each other.

Last week, my husband and I traveled to Maryland for his grandmother’s funeral.  With an afternoon and evening of calling hours and a morning funeral and lunch, we spent multiple hours with many family members.  Although there were tears at the loss, there were numerous stories that brought laughter and smiles.

While one event was a planned, happy occasion and the other was an unscheduled, somber event, they both provided us with time with family.  In the hours and days that we were together, there were old memories shared and new memories created.  At both occasions, we left our smartphones, laptops, and other electronic devices aside and truly connected with our family.  There was no drama; there were no grand revelations; each was simply a time to be reacquainted.

As I reflected on the relationships that were strengthened, I wondered what it is that people enjoy in reality tv shows.  Neither of our family gatherings would have made for exciting television.  However, I’d assume that’s true for the majority of people, and maybe that’s why reality shows are so popular.   The events and people in these shows are so unlike us.

So, even though I may not enjoy reality shows (never mind a major portion of the other shows out there), I know that many people do.  Thus, we write about those topics on our television publication, Couch Tuber, which is something that I like about Wasabi Media Group.  I truly feel that we offer a little bit of something for everyone.

Meet the Team- Jane Wangersky

Monday, July 16th, 2012

Jane Wangersky joined the WMG team in February 2009.  At that time, she worked solely as a writer.  She covered a variety of topics, including pets, parenting, book reviews, travel, and humor.  In May 2012 she was offered the role of Associate Editor, which she accepted.  In the time since then, Jane has been busy overseeing the content in our Entertainment, Family, Fine Living, and Opinion sections.  She continues to write weekly humor articles, shopping bargain pieces, and other assorted columns.

Without further ado, here’s a little Q&A with Jane:

MPK:  In your role as an editor, you edit on many of the publications.  Do you have one publication that is your favorite to edit?  If so, why?

JW:  Probably Camp Campaign, because the writers don’t hold back there. They write what they think on politics, which is a subject many people avoid.

MPK:  What’s the most interesting fact you’ve learned or discovery that you’ve made while editing others’ work?

JW:  That people most enjoy watching something, a TV show, a movie, a game or whatever, when they can’t tell how it’s going to end.

MPK:  You write three columns a week for Giggle Chuckle, many of which seem to be based on actual events.  Where do you find your inspiration for these articles?

JW:  I find some of them while I’m looking for something else. Other times I get them from FBI press releases, which are full of stories about scams and not-so-smart criminals, or from the BBC’s “Also in the News” section.  Some of them just come from the papers I read, and some of them are
inspired by photos I find.

MPK:  When you aren’t writing or editing, what do you like to do with your free time?

JW:  Read, walk, cook, crochet, and observe other people arguing in blog comboxes.

MPK:  What is one fun fact that our readers would be interested to learn about you?

JW:  I’m a certified ESL teacher, which took five years of community college.

A Discombobulated Week

Thursday, July 12th, 2012

I thought about treating this week’s Editorially Yours like a teenager who’s arrived home after curfew.  You know, sneak it in quietly, set the publication date in the past, let no one know that it truly is overdue.  However, as I thought about it, I decided to take the honest route.  Yes, it is Thursday afternoon, and I am just now publishing this week’s column.

For those who don’t read my editorial piece on a regular basis (Shame on you!), it should have been published on Monday morning.  Ahh. . .Monday morning, it wasn’t a very good morning.  I know that for many Monday morning is unpleasant, but this Monday was worse on a grand scale.  Approximately half of the WMG properties were having issues.  Articles weren’t saving edits nor were all of them publishing on schedule.

So, instead of starting my Monday with some coffee and editorial reflections, I spent time trying to re-edit and republish articles; emailing with support staff; assuring writers and editors that all of this would be fixed soon.  By end of the day Monday, the problem was fixed.  When Tuesday rolled around, I was playing catch-up from Monday and decided that Editorially Yours was a back burner projects.  And, foolishly, on Wednesday, this column didn’t come to mind.

So, here I am on Thursday afternoon, guiltily writing a post that, in theory, should talk about the coming week.  So, with only one day left in the work week, what is of interest for tomorrow? On Be Green Info, the preservation of green spaces will be the topic du jour.  While you’re there you might want to take a peek at other articles from this week.  On Monday we published a fabulous article about plants that not only beautify your yard but also repel insects.  We followed that with an article about preserving energy on Tuesday.

As you read this extremely overdue column, I hope you have had a good week.  Enjoy what’s left of the work week; it’s almost the weekend!

Turning Four

Monday, July 2nd, 2012

I have been writing highlight articles on the first Monday of the month for about half a year on Editorially Yours.  However, the first of July isn’t like the first of any other month, as it Wasabi Media Group’s birthday.  This past Sunday WMG became a four year old company.  During this time period we have seen our publication quantity increase from sixteen to ninety-one articles per week.  Additionally, we’ve grown from a company staffed by eight team members to a team of thirty-five.

With this growth, we have doubly fortunate.  First, we have been able to provide our readers with a greater amount of articles, a regular schedule of design changes, and more interesting features.  We think this makes WMG a more useful and inspiring resource.

Second, we have been able to give back to the community. Last year we celebrated the company’s birthday by hosting a charity contest and making a donation to Shelter Box.  This year we decided to do something closer to home.  Although Wasabi Media Group currently is based in Manchester, New Hampshire, it initially was hatched in the neighboring community of Litchfield.  To align with our goal of engaging minds, we wanted to help engage the mind of one graduating senior at Campbell High School.  Thus, we created the Wasabi Media Group Scholarship, which recognized one senior who was in the top tier of English students.  All applicants submitted an essay, which were judged by the editing team.  After much deliberation, a winner was chosen and was awarded the scholarship at the Senior Awards Night at the beginning of June.

As we begin our fifth year, I look forward to even more growth and innovation, which will make Wasabi Media Group an even greater resource for our readers.

Happy birthday, WMG!

Inspire. Inform. Engage.