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Making Holiday Spirits Brighter With eBay

If any of the above sounds like you or sounds like something you'd like to try to build then feel free to email me at any time. And just to take a little of the guesswork out of it check out the Toys 'R Us “hot toys” list. If you've got "Cars 2" merchandise or Transformers action figures taking up precious space in a closet and you know for a FACT that your child is no longer interested then you might be in luck!  Make it a point to see what is currently trending as a "must-have" toy and go through your undiscovered treasure chests ASAP.

Note: This is a sponsored post. However the opinions and ideas expressed within the content of this post are wholly and independently a creation my own imperfect mind.

Wordless Wednesday: I Am...


Being Polite Will Only Go So Far

A few weeks ago I got a call in the afternoon from my wife. She was enraged. The fact that she was upset wasn't too much of a surprise. As I scrambled to figure out what I did she told me it was our son. Again, I wasn't too surprised. It was the why that made all the difference in the world.

He got picked up for truancy...

Father & Son, Homer & Bart Simpson

How To Face And Overcome Challenges

Challenges don't come to destroy us or make us angry at ourselves or with everyone around us. Nor are they intended to ruin our lives or our relationships. All this can and will happen if you allow it, but ultimately challenges come to make us stronger.

Try your best to spend your energy overcoming and spend as little time as humanly possible reacting that a challenge has landed at your feet. Easier said than done, but please try.

Rise to the challenge!

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    Mondays With Michelle: Thanksgiving Recovery

    Welcome to Monday's with Michelle! I hope you all enjoyed your Thanksgiving. I certainly did! I cooked up a storm (and we are finally rid of all the leftovers), you can check out all the dishes I cooked up over on my Thanksgiving post on my Foodie Blog.

    I don't know about you, but after the traditional thanksgiving food induced coma, the last thing I want to eat is another heavy meal.  So, today I thought I would share a delicious, light fall salad. 

    Delicious fall salad
    This is a really simple, quick salad with spinach, arugula, candied walnuts, dried cranberry, goat cheese, onions and homemade balsamic vinaigrette. I love the bite of the the arugula mixed in with the sweetness of the walnuts and cranberries, and you can always add some grilled chicken if you are missing the meat. It really is yummy. The homemade dressing is super easy to make as well, check out the recipe below. 

    Balsamic Vinaigrette


    • ¾ cup olive oil
    • ¼ cup balsamic vinegar
    • ½ shallot diced
    • 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
    • a few pinches White Spice


    1. Whisk vinegar and mustard in a small bowl.
    2. Add in diced shallot and a few pinches of White Spice
    3. Whisk oil in a slow steady stream until fully incorporated
    4. Taste and and adjust seasoning if necessary.
    5. Enjoy over your salad or even use as a marinade!

    (Printable recipe here.)

    I hope you enjoy this delicious salad! What 'recovery' foods do you eat after the holiday's? Post your comments below. Have a wonderful week. See you next Monday!

    Thanks for reading!


    Happy Thanksgiving from E.Payne!

    A few days ago I found the following note on my phone:

    Technology left in the hands of a child...

    I laughed because it is true. I smiled because at the age of 5 my daughter writes down her very collected thoughts, with near grammatical and spelling perfection, everywhere --- including my phone. I was getting ready to delete the note when I was overcome with joy and satisfaction over life's simple things. Such as, finding this note filled with a child's honest and innocent observation. I was immediately thankful for all of them --- my big one and all his teenage flaws, my little one, and the woman who is their mother. And recharged to be the best that I can be...for them.

    No matter what your circumstances were yesterday and will be tomorrow, Today, please spend some quality time with some loved ones or people who could benefit from your care and company.

    From my family to yours --- Happy Thanksgiving!


    Monday's With Michelle: Thanksgiving Edition

    Welcome to Monday'sThe Day Before Thanksgiving with Michelle! It is officially Thanksgiving week! How many of you are ready for the big day?? The grocery stores are already packed and the demand for Turkeys, Collards, cranberries and all the other staples are through the roof, so make sure you get all your goods now!

    Today , I want to talk about some tips for a great Turkey and share a few fantastic recipes. Also, what is Thanksgiving without some fantastic coma-inducing deserts? We'll get into some delicious dessert ideas as well.



    In no way am I disrespecting the Occupy Wall Street movement that has spread from my beloved city of NYC out across the nation. Instead I'm giving credit where credit is due to all the DADs out there who have generated so much online content in the forms of blogs and sites that they can no longer be ignored.

    Defiant & Dad, Circa 2006

    Jason Avant recently wrote 3 Things You Should Know About Dad Bloggers. Please read it. This article chronicles, showcases and myth-bust this "phenomenon" otherwise known as the Rise of the Dad.

    Of course we're not MOM. We're not even trying to be. And that's the point.


    Sometimes It's Better To Say Nothing

    If social media has done anything besides shrink the degrees of separation between humans down to about one it has all but destroyed common courtesy. People who really don't know one another and seemingly purchased their manners from a broken 25-cent gumball machine address each other as if they've know each other for years --- as if they're cool.

    Mom always said if you don't have anything nice to say...
    And let's make the distinction right now, knowing someone in 2nd grade and then connecting with them on Facebook, Twitter or YouTube doesn't mean you've known them since the 2nd grade. It means you knew them when you were in the 2nd grade.


    (VIDEO) @EPayneTheDad - Man, Dad, Husband

    I recently attended Digital Atlanta, which I almost missed because I thought it was this week and not the one that just passed. I attended one event on how to use of video to drive online traffic where my friends were panelists and was inspired in the process. @LamarTyler, @AmaniChannel and @Jeffrey_Funk are titans in the online video game and shared their stories about the power of video over straight writing and in addition to it. I don't have a video camera nor a DSLR with a video function nor any editing software that will generate the kind of results I would demand of myself. But I do have a new iPhone and I found a nifty little App called Splice which allowed me to do produce the following...

    If you like the video, please share and join my YouTube Channel.

    PS - Please excuse the camera shake (where it wasn't intended). This was my very first time shooting and editing video - all inside a phone at that.


    Mondays With Michelle: Holiday Belly Stuffers

    Welcome to Monday's with Michelle! With Thanksgiving right around the corner, I thought this would be the perfect time to get into some yummy seasonal dishes! I want to take a few traditional side dishes and show you some great ideas that I have found to kick them up a little.
    First things first, what is a Thanksgiving without Stuffing? Well, depending on where you are from, you may call it Dressing, but it is more or less the same thing. (Of course that is up for debate too.) There are cornbread versions, meat filled versions, Oyster filled versions and the old fashioned traditional day old bread version. Check out a few of these versions below.


    MAN STUFF: Harley-Davidson

    Last night I was invited to see a slice of life as a rider...a Harley-Davidson Rider that is. What did I learn that I kind of already knew? That African Americans ride and have always been riding Harleys, which is counter to the popular belief of most --- both majority and minority.

    Check out this video documenting some modern day African Americans and their love affairs with Harley-Davidson motorcycles:

    And then there's me on a Fat Boy-Lo, complete with black powder-coated pipes...SWEET! (The bike, not me).

    The wife claims she'll kill me if I come home with one of these...

    To learn more visit Harley-Davidson.


    Faith In My Heart

    A little more than a week ago, a couple of days before Halloween, my family was given a legitimate scare. Not the kind when your wife sneaks up quietly behind you and screams or even the type that occurs when you come home and find some of your doors are unlocked (because you left them unlocked). This was nothing of the sort.

    Wordless Wednesday | Hair

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    Mondays With Michelle: Homemade Chicken Stock

    Just In Time For Dinner!

    I hope you all enjoyed that extra hour of sleep this morning courtesy of Daylight savings time. "Fall back" also means winter is right around the corner. I actually enjoy the cold weather that winter brings, the layers of clothes, boots and fun scarves, but my favorite thing about the season is nice hearty, body warming soups and stews.

    Soup and stews can be super easy to make and you and can add so many different layers of flavors by just switching up your ingredients. You can buy stock in the carton and jus add veggies and meat or seafood or you can go a step further and make your own stock and build from there.

    Today, I want to start with the basics and share a simple recipe for homemade chicken stock. I've also listed 3 of my favorite soups and stews to get you started.


    iPhone - Rise!

    I blog and I delve quite heavily into social media. I insist on balancing my real life with my virtual world and enjoy being unplugged. All the same it needs to be said that since the smartphone revolution I've remained out of the fray with useless devices that simply make and take calls. A couple years back I entered the game with probably one of the worst performing phones ever dreamed up. Ironically it was made by one of the companies that originated handheld aka "palm" computing. Yes, the company I'm talking about is Palm and the phone of which I speak is the Palm Pre Plus.

    Well...no more! Check out the video below.


    #SALE: DAD: As Easy As A, B, C!

    Beginning today please visit my Amazon.com storefront where my books, DAD: As Easy As A, B, C! and Love Notes are deeply discounted. You can own both for less than $10 for your Kindle or as a digital download where it can be easily read on your mobile device or computer (laptop and desktop).

    And last but not least the book that started it all, I See Through Eyes.

    Love Notes An EBook By Eric Payne

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    Wordless Wednesday: Fall Morning

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