Sunday, November 24, 2013

There are two very different definitions of the word 'love'.

"People use the word 'love' a lot of different ways. Take me, for instance. I am often heard saying that I love my mom and dad. I am also often heard saying that I love pizza. What am I saying when I say I love my mom and dad? I'm saying that I care about them. I'm saying that I love spending time with them and that I talk to them every chance I get. I'm saying that if they needed me, I would do every humanly possible to help them. I'm saying that I always want what's best for them. What am I saying when I say I love pizza? Am I saying that I care deeply about pizza? Am I saying that I have a relationship with pizza? Am I saying that if pizza had a  problem, I would be there for the pizza? (What? Not enough pepperoni? I'll be right there!) Of course not. When I say I love pizza, I'm just saying that I enjoy eating pizza until I don't want any more pizza. Once I'm tired of the pizza, I don't care what happens to the rest of it. I'll throw it away. I'll feed it to the dog. I'll stick it in the back of the refrigerator until it gets all green and moldy. It doesn't matter to me anymore. These are two very different definition of the word 'love'. It gets confusing when people start talking about love, and especially about loving you. Which way do these people love you? Do they want what is best for you, or do they just want you around because it is good for them, and they don't really care what happens to you? Next time someone looks deeply into your eyes and says 'I love you', look very deeply right back and say, 'Would that be pizza love, or the real thing?"
- Mary Beth Bonacci

Lisa Ekanger Your Hometown Realtor!

Thursday, November 21, 2013

20 Things the Rich Do Every Day!

Floyd would tell you its all in creating habits and removing the option to fail!

20 Things the Rich Do Every Day

So what do the rich do every day that the poor don’t do?
Tom Corley, on his website, outlines a few of the differences between the habits of the rich and the poor:

1. 70% of wealthy eat less than 300 junk food calories per day. 97% of poor people eat more than 300 junk food calories per day. 23% of wealthy gamble. 52% of poor people gamble.

2. 80% of wealthy are focused on accomplishing some single goal. Only 12% of the poor do this.

3. 76% of wealthy exercise aerobically 4 days a week. 23% of poor do this.

4. 63% of wealthy listen to audio books during commute to work vs. 5% for poor people.

5. 81% of wealthy maintain a to-do list vs. 19% for poor.

6. 63% of wealthy parents make their children read 2 or more non-fiction books a month vs. 3% for poor.

7. 70% of wealthy parents make their children volunteer 10 hours or more a month vs. 3% for poor.

8. 80% of wealthy make Happy Birthday calls vs. 11% of poor

9. 67% of wealthy write down their goals vs. 17% for poor

10. 88% of wealthy read 30 minutes or more each day for education or career reasons vs 2% for poor.

11. 6% of wealthy say what’s on their mind vs. 69% for poor.

12. 79% of wealthy network 5 hours or more each month vs. 16% for poor.

13. 67% of wealthy watch 1 hour or less of TV. every day vs. 23% for poor

14. 6% of wealthy watch reality TV vs. 78% for poor.

15. 44% of wealthy wake up 3 hours before work starts vs.3% for poor.

16. 74% of wealthy teach good daily success habits to their children vs. 1% for poor.

17. 84% of wealthy believe good habits create opportunity luck vs. 4% for poor.

18. 76% of wealthy believe bad habits create detrimental luck vs. 9% for poor.

19. 86% of wealthy believe in life-long educational self-improvement vs. 5% for poor.

20. 86% of wealthy love to read vs. 26% for poor.

Lisa Ekanger Your Hometown Realtor!

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Remembering a great couple ~ Dick & Magna Duggan

This time of year I am reminded of the talented and loved Dick & Magna Duggan ~
Dick was funny & full of spunk and like to push buttons...
Magna was ever the worrier and a charming and loving Mom, friend & wife.

Missing you both <3 br=""> Duggan, Richard Joseph Of Richfield, passed away Oct. 23, 2010. Born Dec. 6, 1921 on the family farm in Edina to parents, John and Mae. Preceded in death by siblings, William, Robert, John, Bill, and Mary Jean. Loving husband, father, grandfather, and great- grandfather. Survived by wife of 63 years, Magna; children, Dick, Sheila, Joe (Colleen), Steve, Susan (Lane); grandchildren, Cary, Michael (Valerie), Ashley, Andrew, Sam, Ben, Steven, Katie; great-grandchild, Tristan; sister, Kathleen Duggan; nieces, nephews and friends. Richard was honorably discharged from the US Navy, retired Captain Hennepin County Sheriff's Dept. in charge of County and City Jail, served as Deputy Sheriff for 27 years.

Duggan, Magna age 92, of Minneapolis, MN. Born October 9, 1919 in Dale, Norway to parents John and Martha Cleveland. Died Feb. 28, 2012. Preceded in death by husband, Richard J.; son, Richard T. and brother, Olaf Cleveland. Loving mother, grandmother, great-grandmother and aunt. Survived by children, Sheila, Joe (Colleen), Steve, Susan; grandchildren, Cary, Michael, Ashley, Andrew, Sam, Ben, Steven and Katie; great-grandchild, Tristan; brother, Norman Cleveland; sisters- in-law, Kathleen Duggan and Marlys Cleveland; nieces, nephews, cousins in Norway, and many friends.
Lisa Ekanger Your Hometown Realtor!

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Dont think ~ 'You owe me.'

"The sun never says to the earth, 'You owe me.' 
Look what happens with a love like that. It lights up the whole sky."
- Hafiz

Lisa Ekanger Your Hometown Realtor!

Americans Still Prefer a Male Boss

Americans Still Prefer a Male Boss

A plurality report that a boss' gender would make no difference

by Frank Newport and Joy Wilke

PRINCETON, NJ -- If Americans were taking a new job and had their choice of a boss, they would prefer a male boss over a female boss by 35% to 23%, although four in 10 would have no preference. These attitudes have not changed much in recent years, but when Gallup first asked this question in 1953, 66% of Americans preferred a male boss, while just 5% preferred working for a woman.
Americans' Preference for Gender of Boss, 1953-2013
These most recent data are from Gallup's annual Work and Education survey, conducted Aug. 7-11, 2013. Gallup asks this question of all Americans, regardless of their employment status or work history; the responses of working Americans and those who are not employed were similar in the most recent survey.
The proportion of Americans who prefer a female boss has increased by 18 percentage points over the past six decades, while there has been a 31-point decline in the percentage who would prefer a male boss. Americans are also significantly more likely today than in 1953 to volunteer that they do not have a preference.
The 23% of Americans who would opt to work for a woman is the highest in the history of Gallup's asking this question since 1953, although it is essentially the same as in several previous surveys.
Preference for Female Boss Higher Among Those Who Currently Work for a Woman
Fewer Americans today say they work for a female boss than a male boss, and this structural aspect of the workplace in turn likely affects their preferences.
Among working Americans, 54% say they currently work for a man, while 30% work for a woman. Those who currently work for a woman are as likely to prefer having a female boss as a male one. This is one of the few subgroups of the population that does not tilt in the "male boss" direction. Those who currently work for a man prefer a male boss, by 35% to 17%.
It is difficult to establish direction of the relationship between the gender of one's current boss and one's preference for the gender of a boss; it is possible that workers who initially prefer a female boss are more likely to end up in circumstances in which they have a female boss. It is also possible that the experience of working for a female boss affects workers' preferences. If the latter is the case, and if the proportion of U.S. workers who have female bosses increases in the future, the current preference for a male boss in the overall population could dissipate.
Other key differences in preferences for male or female bosses across subgroups include the following:
  • Both men and women prefer a male boss. More than half of men say the gender of their boss makes no difference, but those who have a preference favor a male boss by an 11-point margin. Women are more likely than men to have a preference, with higher proportions expressing preferences for each gender of boss, though women choose a male over a female boss by a 13-point margin.
  • There are some differences by age, with Americans between 35 and 54 the least likely to prefer a male boss. Younger Americans are generally not more likely than average, or less likely, to prefer a male boss.
  • Political partisanship significantly predicts attitudes toward the gender of one's boss, with Democrats essentially breaking even in their preferences, while independents and Republicans prefer a male boss.
  • Americans of all education levels prefer a male boss, by margins ranging from seven to 14 percentage points.
Americans' Preference for Gender of Boss, by Select Groups
Although four in 10 Americans do not have a preference for a male or a female boss, those who do would rather work for a man than a woman -- as they have since Gallup began asking this question in 1953.
The minority of working Americans who have a female boss break even in their preferences for the gender of their boss, suggesting that if the percentage of Americans who work for a woman increases, so might the percentage who would rather work for a woman. However, young Americans' preferences are in line with the average, which suggests that the aging of today's workforce may not in and of itself produce changes in these attitudes in the years ahead.
Key remaining questions center on the reasons or explanations for people's preference of a male or female boss, particularly relating to workers' experience with male or female bosses -- and what can be learned from those preferences that can be used to maximize worker engagement and foster a more productive work environment. Future Gallup research will look at these issues.
Survey Methods Results for this Gallup poll are based on telephone interviews conducted Aug. 7-11, 2013, on the annual Gallup Work and Education Survey, with a random sample of 2,059 adults, aged 18 and older, living in all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia.
For results based on the total sample of national adults, one can say with 95% confidence that the margin of sampling error is ±3 percentage points.
For results based on the total sample of 1,039 adults employed full or part time, one can say with 95% confidence that the margin of sampling error is ±4 percentage points.
For results based on the total sample of 605 Americans with a male boss, one can say with 95% confidence that the margin of sampling error is ±4 percentage points.
For results based on the total sample of 340 Americans with a female boss, one can say with 95% confidence that the margin of sampling error is ±5 percentage points.
Interviews are conducted with respondents on landline telephones and cellular phones, with interviews conducted in Spanish for respondents who are primarily Spanish-speaking. Each sample of national adults includes a minimum quota of 50% cellphone respondents and 50% landline respondents, with additional minimum quotas by region. Landline and cell telephone numbers are selected using random-digit-dial methods. Landline respondents are chosen at random within each household on the basis of which member had the most recent birthday.
Samples are weighted to correct for unequal selection probability, nonresponse, and double coverage of landline and cell users in the two sampling frames. They are also weighted to match the national demographics of gender, age, race, Hispanic ethnicity, education, region, population density, and phone status (cellphone only/landline only/both, and cellphone mostly). Demographic weighting targets are based on the March 2012 Current Population Survey figures for the aged 18 and older U.S. population. Phone status targets are based on the July-December 2011 National Health Interview Survey. Population density targets are based on the 2010 census. All reported margins of sampling error include the computed design effects for weighting.
In addition to sampling error, question wording and practical difficulties in conducting surveys can introduce error or bias into the findings of public opinion polls.
View methodology, full question results, and trend data.
For more details on Gallup's polling methodology, visit

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Lisa Ekanger Your Hometown Realtor!

Friday, November 8, 2013

Paramore: The Only Exception [OFFICIAL VIDEO]

Lisa Ekanger Your Hometown Realtor!

Thursday, November 7, 2013

“When adversity strikes, you have two choices: to “react” or to “respond.”

Do You React or Respond?

How I Learned the DIFFERENCE Between the Two…
by Hall of Fame Speaker and Author Floyd Wickman
I’ve been thinking a lot this week about my first opportunity to speak to the men’s group at my church.  It was during some of the toughest economic times that have ever hit my home town area in Michigan.  Preparing, I thought about those who would be in my audience – many of whom had lost their jobs, lost the equity they’d built in their homes, or postponed their retirement plans.  Some were facing even more adversities ahead.  How could my message move them to believe in themselves again?  How could I make a difference in their lives?
I decided to check with my Big Brother Zig.  Before long, we were discussing the Michigan economy and its unemployment rate, which was approaching an all-time high.   As always, he had a lesson for me.
“When adversity strikes, you have two choices:  to “react” or to “respond.”
I remember feeling confused when he said this.  I thought reacting and responding were the same thing.  The dictionary even uses one to define the other, so how could they be opposite choices? But Zig patiently explained the difference.  He said that we always have two choices when adversity comes along.  We can “react” negatively, suffering the consequences of the adversity.  Or we can choose to “respond” positively, turning the negatives into benefits, or as they say, “make lemons into lemonade.”
Imagine you are in a boxing ring.  You face your opponent.  You get hit hard and are knocked down to the mat.  You “react” by falling.  When you get back up to keep fighting, you have moved past the reaction.  Now, you are choosing to “respond.”
Every human being encounters changes in their lives that are negative.  It is part of being alive.  How we perceive those changes, choosing to “react” negatively or to “respond” positively, is completely up to each individual.  This is free will, and it is one of God’s gifts to us.  We are able to choose what we want to think and believe.
These times we live in have both adversities and opportunities aplenty!  Ask yourself:  Have you been reacting or responding?
I loved this lesson and wanted to share it from my new book, Lessons From My Brother Zig.  Learn more about it here!  I’d love to hear what you think!

Lisa Ekanger Your Hometown Realtor!

What "No" means!

What "no" means

  • I'm too busy
  • I don't trust you
  • This isn't on my list
  • My boss won't let me
  • I'm afraid of moving this forward
  • I'm not the person you think I am
  • I don't have the resources you think I do
  • I'm not the kind of person that does things like this
  • I don't want to open the door to a long-term engagement
  • Thinking about this will cause me to think about other things I just don't want to deal with
What it doesn't mean:
  • I see the world the way you do, I've carefully considered every element of this proposal and understand it as well as you do and I hate it and I hate you.

Lisa Ekanger Your Hometown Realtor!

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Why, why, why did this happen to me?

"People talk about the reality of their life as if it is important. And we want you to understand it's only the temporary indicator. Do you go to the gas station-your gas gauge is on empty-do you go to the gas station and look at your gas gauge in horror? 'How did this happen? Why, why, why did this happen to me?' Do you lay your head on the steering wheel and just sob? 'Oh, look what it's come to. I'm finished. I've lived all of this life, and look where I am.' Or do you just fill up?"
- Esther Abraham-Hicks

Lisa Ekanger Your Hometown Realtor!

Monday, November 4, 2013

LIGHTS - Saviour (Adam Young Remix) [Official Music Video]

Lisa Ekanger Your Hometown Realtor!

Homemade Peanut Butter Cups!

Homemade Peanut Butter Cups

It's always more fun to DIY. Every week on Food52, we'll spare you a trip to the grocery store and show you how to make small batches of great foods at home.
Today: Carey Nershi from Reclaiming Provincial shows us how to make peanut butter cups that are reminiscent of childhood, with a grown-up edge.
Homemade Peanut Butter Cups on Food52
I am what you might call a recovering junk food addict. One that had an especially strong penchant for candy. And while I've managed to get my sweet tooth under control in recent years, I still have quite a weakness for homemade versions of classic treats. Being able to create them without preservatives or strange ingredients makes this a justifiable weakness, I'd dare say.
Peanut Butter Cups on Food52
Peanut butter cups are one of the simplest sweets to make. There's no need to fuss with tempering chocolate or tentatively hovering over a pan of scary-hot sugar. All you need is a handful of ingredients (most of which you probably already have in your pantry), some mini cupcake wrappers, a stove (or microwave), and a fridge. Dangerously easy, folks.
You can customize your peanut butter cups in a number of ways: use dark chocolate instead of milk chocolate; sprinkle the tops with a little sea salt or cayenne; or make them vegan by using dairy-free chocolate, vegan sugar, and coconut oil instead of butter.
Peanut Butter Cups on Food52
I opted for a combination of dark and milk chocolate here, and chose an unsalted peanut butter so I could flavor them with Sichuan sea salt. The result: one heck of a peanut butter cup. The dark chocolate and the floral Sichuan spice give them a hint of sophistication, and make for an all-around delicious treat.
Peanut Butter Cups on Food52
Makes around 4 dozen
1 cup of creamy unsalted peanut butter
4 tablespoons of unsalted butter, softened
1/3 cup light brown sugar
3/4 cup of powdered sugar
1 teaspoon of coarse sea salt (or more, to taste; I used Sichuan salt)
32 ounces of high-quality chocolate (use milk chocolate if you really want to mimic the classic flavor)
Homemade Peanut Butter Cups on Food52
Mix together peanut butter, butter, sugars, and salt in a bowl. Taste, then add more salt if needed.
Roughly chop chocolate, then melt it in a heavy-bottomed saucepan over low heat on the stove top (or in 30-second increments in the microwave, stirring in between) until smooth. Transfer half to a heatproof measuring cup.
Arrange mini cupcake wrappers on a baking sheet. Pour just enough chocolate in to fill the bottom of the wrapper about 1/8 inch. Gently lift and drop the tray once or twice to flatten out the chocolate, then place in the fridge for 10 minutes.
While the chocolate is chilling, begin shaping heaping teaspoons of peanut butter filling into discs about the diameter of a quarter, and setting them aside on parchment paper. Remove the chilled chocolate from the fridge, then place each peanut butter disc into a cupcake wrapper.
Homemade Peanut Butter Cups on Food52
Transfer the remaining chocolate to your heatproof measuring cup. (If it isn't as warm or pourable as you'd like, reheat it for a moment or two on the stove top, or for 10 to 15 seconds in the microwave.) Pour into cupcake wrappers until peanut butter discs are just covered. Once you've covered all of them, gently lift and drop the tray again to even out the chocolate, then add more to the wrappers as needed.
Sprinkle the tops with a little extra coarse sea salt if you like, then place the tray in the fridge for 30 minutes. Eat them straight from the fridge (if you're a chilled chocolate guy or gal, like me), or let them soften for about 5 minutes at room temperature.
Photos by Carey Nershi
This article originally appeared on Food52

Lisa Ekanger Your Hometown Realtor!

Friday, November 1, 2013

Lately I’ve had thoughts I never thought I would think.  These thoughts are more reactions (and blows) to my careful vision of the family I wanted; the family I tried to create.  In my head I always saw a Mom and a Dad and a boy and a girl.  I saw beautiful dimple cheeked cherubs with sparkling personalities and wonderful traits.  My traits, his traits, our traits. My vision was clear, a loving couple raising amazing kids. A family that worked together played together but most importantly loved each other; and for two whole decades my vision was real. The times were challenging but fun and at night, we always took the time to glance into their bedrooms to marvel at those beautiful creatures we called our own; our kids.
Recently I took a personality inventory test that revealed that my energy level bordered hyper.  That at times I’m too enthusiastic and that my leadership style may make others uncomfortable. The next step down from hyper was energetic.  Where am I going with this?  Let me explain.  When I realized that others might perceive me as too enthusiastic and hyper, I realized that my perception of the world might be off track with regards to the people who share relationships with me too.  If I make strangers uncomfortable, then what do I do to you my family? Me, eternally optimistic me?
Right now at this place in time, I cannot stop the thoughts that surge in my head. They are worrisome and troubling and I am battling them like a Spartan at war.  The thoughts = the feelings that are so foreign to me that I feel like I’m trapped in a b-rated horror film from 50's. The words that come to mind are: disappointed, sickened, worried, disgusted, resigned, hopeless, helpless, embarrassed, directionless, horrified, meaningless, lost and alone.
I am grieving her.
I am deeply sad about saying goodbye to my vision but amazingly, however, I am not depressed.  I am not despondent and I am not deterred from dreaming new dreams or charting a new course. 
The daughter I thought was the angel sent from heaven the day she was born, our gorgeous toddler with golden skin, eyes and hair. This girl who showed signs of beautiful sensitivity and amazing creativity was our little girl, we were so proud of her and who she was. She was the kind of girl that was so eager to please everyone and defended the underdog on the school playground.

But something changed when she turned 14.
Our teenaged girl became dark and moody and began to lie to us.  And when she broke the law and incurred 5 infractions and 500 dollars in fines, I emptied her bank account to hold her accountable to pay for them.  Suddenly the girl that had only one BFF her whole life began to cycle through friends.  There was Laney, then Paige, then Lacey, then Ashley, then Amber and Alisha.  Her grades plummeted and she flunked her first year in high school, even though she was voted onto the homecoming court.  It just didn’t seem to matter what anyone thought of her, including her peers. 
In a desperate attempt to re-route and re-up high school, we decided to hold her back and enroll her into a tiny private school.  Her grades went up, but she began to isolate herself and the dark mood lingered.  In her junior year, she made a plan to make up her missed credits and rejoin her classmates at her original high school. We were so optimistic.  We (the counselor, coaches, teachers and us) devised all kinds of plans for her to join clubs and teams, and she simply rejected it all.
The downward slide simply continued through 15, 16 and 17. 
Her grades were great but her attitude, her choices and her new set of friends were bad influences.  Now each and every time we encounter each other she smells like an old ashtray. She only calls me when she needs something so I stopped taking her calls.  She even went so far as to cuss me out when I wouldn’t give her money stating that, “You still owe me money from my birthday.” To which I replied, “I didn’t owe you anything on your birthday, I gave you your birthday!” Last summer she ran away and we didn’t see her for a month.  She returned to school this fall to knock it out of the park.  Her grades are stellar, but again she decided to hang with the same set of kids and again ran away.  This time it was much worse however, because she made a long emotionless statement.  She said, “I have decided to leave this family.”  I don’t want this family anymore and I hate everything you stand for.  I hate everything you say and everything you do.  Your life is not the life I want.  Your standards are not the standards I want.  I will choose my family and it won’t be you.” "I feel like a hostage."
What do you say to that?  We are now numb.  We are beyond worried and stressed and now grieving the daughter we used to have and seriously wonder what the future holds for her.  Some of the hardest parts of my day involve conversations I have with family and friends.  They don't know about our struggles. Many of them with kids the same age talking about sports events, senior pictures, senior activities and plans for college. I smile and nod and always say, “Wow, that’s great!” and “You must be so proud of her!” Never letting on to my deep grief.  Inside I have gravel in my gut. I never dreamed our beautiful little girl would disappear to be replaced with a girl that looks just like her but doesn’t act like her.  The insults have cut deep and the damage is done.  I never dreamed it would turn out like this.  I heard it through the grapevine that she was getting a job at a gas station. I can still see the images in my minds eye of a little girl full of smiles and giggles and mischief...but now its time to forge a new dream and a new vision for my family.
The end.

Lisa Ekanger Your Hometown Realtor!