Techno-Dummy: Working Through Technology Issues

 Technology issues drive me and this lady mad!

Is this you? Well, it certainly could be me. The more time I spend on my computer or phone, the more I realize I have no idea what I’m doing. Technology issues make me want to tear my hair out. In fact, they kind of scare me. Not in a security or privacy kind of way, but in the way that I fear I’m so clueless about what I’m doing, I’m either going to blow up my entire system or I’m going to send out posts or messages that make absolutely no sense.

Whether I’m working on an outrageously slow Google doc or my phone is making mysterious, unintended phone calls, I’m never quite sure if my technology issues are because of me or just technology gone wild.

If you’ve signed up to receive email notifications for my blog, you know I’ve been having trouble working through the kinks of my email plugin. Let me first say thank you for signing up and, most importantly, for your patience.

I slightly panicked over the issues until I realized that I’m far from alone when it comes to experiencing technology issues. This weekend, Saturday Night Live spoofed an extremely awkward moment from the 2016 Grammy’s when rapper, Bow Wow, attempted and failed to kick off the show with about a minute and a half to go. A minute never felt so long! His feeble efforts to fill time were so uncomfortable, yet hilarious, and SNL made it even funnier picking on the Kid’s Choice Awards. In that moment I realized problems are going to happen no matter who you are or what you’re doing. Your best bet is to relax (good advice from my sister), handle them with grace and laughter and everything is sure to work out. Sometimes it’s easier said than done, but since I’m new to the blogosphere, I must practice what I preach.

My fingers are crossed that email notifications for this post will go out perfectly. If they don’t, let me know. Meanwhile, I’ll take a deep breath and keep smiling.

Have a laugh at both videos here:
SNL Kids Choice Award Skit
Bow Wow’s Grammy Fail


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Moxy: One of the Best Portsmouth Restaurants

Moxy - Portsmouth Restaurants
Moxy menu and their signature cocktail

Friends of mine are heading up to Portsmouth, New Hampshire for a couple of nights and I was happy to recommend one of my favorite Portsmouth restaurants. My cousin, Susan, moved to Portsmouth several years ago, which gave me good reason to head up there more often. Thank you Suzie! When we get together and the question of where to make our restaurant reservation comes up, I’m usually the first to say let’s try something different. But we’ve returned to Moxy on several occasions and I’m always glad we do.

If you know the area, you know there are a lot of Portsmouth restaurants to choose from, but there is something about Moxy that sets it apart. Maybe it’s the delicious food served tapas style, or it could be the dimly lit, low-key ambiance. The fact that it’s tucked away on a side street is also appealing. I love going a bit off the beaten path.

Likely it’s the combination of all three that make Moxy a perfect location for our girls’ nights out. It’s easy to chat, the service is friendly and the vibe is so incredibly comfortable. Each time we’ve gone to Moxy we’ve been seated on the upper level. It’s nice because it’s away from the bar, but open to the lower level so we aren’t missing out on the action. Decorative nods to the chef of all chefs, Julia Child, lead me to believe that Moxy has a true understanding of quality cooking with a fun and fabulous flair.

But let’s get serious, if the food weren’t good, we wouldn’t keep going back. The moment you look at Moxy’s menu, you know you’ve stumbled upon something unique. Fried pickle chips are one of Susan’s favorites. I always steal a few. Moxy bread is grilled to perfection with grated tomato and hickory nut farm goat cheese, the pan roasted cauliflower might even get my husband to eat his vegetables and my personal favorite is the beef short rib marmalade on grilled bread with pickled onion and bleu cheese. YUM!

Moxy, Portsmouth Restaurants- shortribs and fried pickles
Beef short rib marmalade and a side of pickle chips


Ingredients are locally sourced, so fresh and full of flavor. The tapas portions are perfect because they allow you to try several options and enjoy a number of creative flavor combinations.

If you’re in the area and seeking a Portsmouth restaurant that will give you a great dining experience, give Moxy – a Modern American Tapas Restaurant, a try. You won’t regret it.


Moxy whoopie pies- Portsmouth Restaurants
Something sweet – whoopie pies!
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Charming Charlie: A Fun Place to Shop

Charming Charlie chandelier and bags
Bags and Bling

Do you know about Charming Charlie? I just recently discovered this cute women’s clothing store at MarketStreet in Lynnfield. If it’s been in our area for a while, consider me late to the party.

From the outside, this colorful jewelry, accessories and apparel store caught my eye with its glistening chandeliers. The sparkle drew me in, but it was the selection of extremely affordable items that kept me shopping.

There was an ease to browsing about Charming Charlie because everything was organized by color. The pretty, bright hues immediately put me in a happy mood. Pocketbooks, tops, sweaters, shoes, scarfs and baubles galore were all stylishly organized and displayed. The looks were trendy, yet sophisticated – which I liked.

Colorful and fun
Colorful and fun

My first trip in, I walked away with a couple of sweaters, a top and two scarves.  My next time in, I was shopping for a birthday gift, but ended up purchasing jewelry for myself. I also found a great gift, but was more excited about my own purchases.

Good stuff
Good stuff

Rings, necklaces, bracelets and earring might run anywhere between $5 – $18, tops and sweaters range from $15 – $30 and most dresses are well under $50. If you even only wear something for one season, you get your money’s worth.

Pretty in Pink
Pretty in Pink

Charming Charlie is a cute little spot to add color, bling and diversity to your wardrobe without breaking the bank. It’s a perfect place for teens who may not have a lot to spend, but who are into fashion trends with money burning a hole in their pocket.

If you haven’t already, check it out online at or stop in. Little did I know, Charming Charlie locations are far and wide. Locally, they are in Burlington, Natick and Westwood, Massachusetts, as well as Nashua and Manchester, New Hampshire. They also have a store in Patriot Place in Foxboro, Massachusetts.

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Tech Tip Tuesday: iPhone Photography

iPhone photography- light adjustment

My fellow iPhone users – iPhone photography has never been better. Did you know that your iPhone camera has a photo light adjustment feature?

I recently discovered this handy little option when Googling how the heck to take decent iPhone pictures. You may already be aware that if you tap your photo screen, a yellow box appears which locks in your focus and exposure.

I thought that alone was good, but recently learned there was more to it. If you swipe up on the star, a line appears. Run your finger up or down and you can control the level of brightness. Suddenly, my iPhone pictures went from drab to fab. Tack on a good photo editor app like Snapseed or even iPhone’s own photo editor tools and your pics could rival those of a pro.

So simple, but useful! Here’s the thing, I’m a technology ignoramus. My kids surpassed my computer, phone and social media capabilities many years ago. I often just hand my phone to my 13 year old, Ally, whenever I need to do anything beyond checking messages.

I figured my little discovery was old news to most, but several of my friends didn’t know about it and even a photographer friend was unaware. When Julia said her iPhone camera didn’t have that feature – I showed her that it did. I was excited to have even this tiny bit of knowledge and I think Julia was surprised I knew something she didn’t.

So, every now and again, if I come across a technology tip worth sharing, I’ll pass it along. If you have any quick and dirty tips of your own – please share. I can certainly use all the help I can get, whether we’re talking about iPhone photography or any other aspect of technology.

Here are some more great tips from

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The Long Hall: Tufts Floating Hospital for Children

Children's Hospital -Tufts Floating Hospital for Children
7th floor hallway at Tufts Floating Hospital for Children

The long hall in the photo represents the start of one long week. Last Sunday, my oldest daughter, Julia, spent the night in the hospital. Everything is perfectly fine! Turns out she was dehydrated, had a touch of the flu and, mostly, exhausted (note to self: all-night fundraisers in the high school gym sound like fun, but not a good idea for a teenage girl who desperately needs her sleep). As any parent would be – I was a wreck, but for the most part I knew our hospital experience was for precautionary purposes. Although both Julia and I wanted nothing more than to go home, I was impressed with the medical team’s determination to ensure absolutely everything checked out OK. My mindset at the children’s hospital was the same as with airport security – I’d rather deal with the inconvenience than ever feel that something may have slipped by unnoticed. I’m a big fan of “better safe than sorry.”

We were at the Tufts Floating Hospital for Children at Tufts Medical Center overlooking Boston’s Chinatown. The buzz just outside the hospital doors was electric.

Inside, the patient care Julia received was exceptional. I was most impressed with the kind and considerate bedside manner of every single nurse, doctor, aide and student that we encountered. Never did someone snap or act brusquely. I could tell that Julia felt comfortable and unafraid – as a parent; that made me feel good.

As anyone knows who has spent time in a hospital, there is a lot of time waiting for things to happen. In that time, I couldn’t help but observe the youth and energy of this teaching hospital. There were so many young, attractive people in scrubs and lab coats that it felt like we were on the set of “Grey’s Anatomy” – without all the drama and absurdity. When I popped down to Au Bon Pain, at all hours of the day or night, I was surprised to see it was active and busy no matter what the time. And again, it seemed I was always surrounded by young, good looking people. While, of course, healthcare should have been top of mind, I admit I was slightly distracted and mesmerized by the entire scene.

When we left Tufts Floating Hospital, I was glad we had taken advantage of the top-notch Boston medical system. How fortunate we are that our local hospitals are among the best in the world. The 45 minute ride from home was worth the peace of mind knowing that such a reputable medical institute had given us the all clear. And while Julia spent most of her time there sleeping, I was not surprised a few days later when she said, “After seeing everything that goes on in a hospital like that – I think I want to be a doctor.”

Thank you Tufts Floating 7. You did a great job – in more ways than one.

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