Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Look, Up in the Sky! It's a Bird, a Plane, a Blog, a...Vlog?

I am one of those rare birds lucky enough to have both a blog and a vlog. Most everyone knows what a blog is: a shortened version of "web log." This is a site where people can post just about anything that interests them, and, hopefully, the masses. There are blogs about everything one can possibly imagine. Most are very entertaining. I enjoy visiting them, checking them out, seeing what's new and interesting. And though, originally, they were mostly just in the form of the written word, now quite a few blogs have branched off into other areas of communication. Like videos. Technology has made it a breeze to add vids right onto most blogs with simple cutting and pasting. Heck, even I can do it.

The other side of the coin is something close to my heart: vlogs. The name derives from Video Log, and just like blogs these sites can be about any topic that interests you. The major difference between blogs and vlogs is the amount of video. Take my site, livelife365.com, for example. My goal when I created this site was to offer a venue to share my information using a video format. And, save for a few bits of text here or there, I have been true to my vision. A visit to my site offers you tips on diet and nutrition, exercise and motivation, self-help and overcoming adversity. As well as entertaining and funny songs, videos, and rants. And all of them are in video form. You will not find a written piece, like this one, anywhere on the site. And that to me is a true vlog.

But a funny thing happened while I was promoting my site, visiting other sites, mostly blogs, networking with all of the wonderful people who make up the blogging community. I wanted to be one of them, join them. And not just as the new kid on the block with the vlog. I wanted to be part of their blogging community with my very own blog. An interesting self realization, coming from a guy who thought that video-driven sites were going to be the next big thing.

The fact is, I have come to understand that while video is here to stay and will eventually be everywhere, on every site, mark my words. The blog will never die. Just like newspapers. Books. Magazines. Because there were many who thought that any paper-based from of media would eventually dry up and blow away, never being able to compete with the convenience of an electronic media. Not the case. True, sales and subscriptions may be down, but I honestly believe that newspapers will never die. And neither will the blog. There is room in this here town for the both of us.

I want to take a moment to thank all of the great people with whom I have networked and met online while promoting livelife365.com. I feel lucky and blessed to be part of such a kind and giving community...even if I do have a vlog. But, now, also a blog.

So, read or watch, as long as you are doing all that you can to make each day count, living your life every day and every way. Until next time...


Sunday, April 27, 2008


I am very excited about the new "How-To" segment I have just introduced on my website, livelife365.com. Not only will I be offering advice and suggestions and helpful tips and proven methods using the "How-To" format. I will also be creating funny "How-To" videos. Check them out at livelife365.com, they are listed under Inform/How-To. Or use the video tab at the top of the page to access my complete videography. I offer over one hundred videos that range from diet and nutrition advice, to motivation and overcoming adversity, along with dozens of funny songs, videos, and other goofy antics that, hopefully, make you laugh. Try my latest: "How to...Get Slapped by a Woman, parts 1-4." Use the menu on the left titled: Access My Video Directory, then mouse over Laugh/Funny How-To, and enjoy. As always, I value your feedback. Let me know what you like, as well as inform me what I could be doing better. And if there are any specific topics you would like me to talk about, send me a message and will be happy to make a video just for you.

I hope you enjoy this new series and continue to make livelife365.com a regular experience. So, get out there and live life, every day and every way.



Thursday, April 24, 2008

Are You Balanced?

Trick question? Are we talking mentally, physically, or spiritually? Actually, I'm talking about all three. Right now, for instance, I am struggling to find a nice balance between an increased workload and the need to relax. Time, it seems, is swallowed up by this blog and my vlog, my full-time job (you know, the one that pays the bills), and all the little things that go on in between the three. I cannot recall a day or hour lately when I felt bored. And that's a good thing, for the most part. I am a firm believer that human beings are happiest when they are busy, driven, leading a purposeful life. But we still need balance.

What's the old saying? All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy? Well, I don't know how dull I've been of late, but I sure am beat. More to the point: I am out of balance. I looked in the mirror the other day and almost didn't recognise myself. Gazing back at me was this sunken cheeked guy, with five days of growth on his face, huge dark circles rimming his eyes. But beneath that haggard looking facade I noted a hint of a satisfied smirk, a contented grin. Yet, still, I was not complete, whole. Balanced.

I have a program, that I am in the process of turning into a book, called "Triad of Balance." What this is--the short version--is working every day to get yourself in balance. Get your triad in balance. The triad being: Mind. Body. Soul. All the while, as you strive for balance in each area (Intellectually, Physically, Spiritually), the ultimate goal is to then get those three in balance with each other. I will touch more on these principles in coming blogs. In the meantime, if you can't wait (the book will not be out for several months), I have a video about this on my website that goes into more detail than I will in this entry.

Now, back to why I am out of balance right now. By working too many hours, I have been neglecting to work on other aspects of my life. Other areas that, if ignored too long, will rise up and bite you. It is vital to, first, understand what your mind, body, and spirit need daily to be complete. And then essential that you make yourself do these things. I know that I need to workout almost every day. That I need a certain amount of sleep. That, even though I love the work that I do every day, I also need to feed the other parts of my brain: reading for pleasure, relaxing and talking with my wife, walking outside, dining out, or just sitting in front of the TV, watching a funny sitcom, doing a crossword puzzle. Simple tasks, not as important, it seems, than working at earning a living. But vital for your balance. Essential. Any of this sound familiar to you?

I just briefly touched on the edges of the importance of living a balanced life and offered up a few remedies. Remember, the key is your understanding of what YOU need in your daily existence to make you whole. And don't forget your Triad: Mind. Body. Soul. Because, if even one of the Big Three is out of whack, you will be out of whack. Even if you are balanced intellectually and physically, but lacking balance spiritually, you will not be complete. Think about it. One step at a time. One area at a time. Then work on getting all three balanced. The good news? The more conscious you are of your needs, and the more you strive to attain them, the closer you will be to getting where it is you need to be. And even if some days you are slightly off, a little unbalanced in one area, by understanding what you need to do to get back on track you are that much better off. As for me, I vow to work less and spend more time relaxing with my lovely wife. Maybe take a scenic walk with her through one of the many wonderful parks we have here in town. In between that, think I will park it on the couch with a pile of magazines and newspapers, put the Red Sox on the tube, sip some green tea, and, if all goes well, nod off and catch up on some sleep.

Balance. Have you checked yours lately?


For more about balance, visit Mike's website: http://www.livelife365.com/

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

My Videos on Yahoo! Video

My Videos on Yahoo! Video

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Earth Day Means Think Green...Every Day

Happy Earth Day. And while I think celebrating environmental awareness is essential and important, it is something that should be done every day. And, since I do try to bring my own bags, made out of recycled materials, to the store when I purchase organic products most every time I shop, I would like to talk about other things green. Like healthy things. Like green food. Now, come back here. I see you running away from your computer screen in search of a thick, greasy cheeseburger, dreaming about washing that baby down with a thick cholesterol-laden chocolate shake. And, if that is something that you cannot live without, who am I to stand in your way?

Okay, those of you still remaining, let's talk green stuff, good, green foods that will not only lengthen your stay on this planet, whose day it is today, remember? But I'm talking about green foods that taste good, help you lose weight, and lower your blood pressure, cholesterol, the risk of heart disease, and diabetes. Would somebody go and get those cheeseburger eaters and drag them back here? Thanks, I'll wait...

Let's start with the F-word. No, not that one: FIBER. Fiber-rich foods are not all green, but they do help with all of what I described above: weight-loss, health improvement, and good taste. So, enough small talk, let's eat:

(in no particular order)
salads, lots of it
edamame, which is nothing but soy beans
speaking of beans, add those: green beans, navy beans, pinto, kidney, black, they are all great for you, filled with vegetarian protein and fiber
hummus (if you add some dill or parsley, it will look green)
herbs, speaking of dill and parsley
nuts (most are not green, but pistachios are)
whole grains (again, most are not green but can't keep them off the list)
bananas (but wait until they turn yellow)
Brussels sprouts
tomatoes (fried green ones)

I could go on and on, and will in coming entries. But, you get the idea. Notice what's missing from this list? Yes, meats. And dairy. Now, I'm not suggesting you go without a burger once and a while, or cheese or milk, but we're talking green today. And every day, if you want to live longer, feel better, drastically reduce your ailments, lose weight. And do your part to celebrate Earth (green) Day every day.

Think about it.


Monday, April 21, 2008

Pick One, the lyrics.

Okay, by now I am sure some of you are tired of my shameless self-promotion for my latest music video, "Pick One." What's that? Some of you are still unaware? Then this short post should help clear a few things up. Like, what the song is about. And why it is important. And even though it can make you laugh (at least, I hope it does), it is also intended to make you think a little too. Parody. Satire. We often laugh at the things that frighten us the most, or bother, confuse, or annoy us. Like this primary season. Like the fact that the Democrats have two amazing candidates, yet still are lagging behind McCain in some head-to-head polls. Like for those who really want a change in Washington, the fear that they will get another heaping helping of the same-old-thing is gut-wrenching. But is it funny? Yes. If we cannot laugh at ourselves or at the bizarre or the craziness of this season's amazing campaign for president, then I offer you this little tidbit of advice: take a chill pill, dude, and watch "Pick One." You will giggle and ponder, tap your toes while clenching your teeth, cringe and grin all at the same time.

Here are the lyrics:

One is black
One is white
No matter which one you ask
They both think they're right
But pick one

One is a guy
And one is a girl
They both have in mind
That they're gonna change the world
But just pick one

Well, Barack Obama
What's with all the drama
Hillary Clinton
What are you thinking
Just Pick One

I said, pick one
Select One
Then elect one
Then forget one

One is for change
And the other is for...change too
One says, "Yes we can."
And one says, "Yes we will!"

Come on, just pick
Select one
Then elect one
Then neglect one

Well, they both think that George Bush is wrong
And we've been in Iraq too long
They sound the same on the economy
Universal health and global warming

Just pick one
Select one
Then elect one
Then forget one

Well, they both agree about McCain
He could be a royal pain
But if one of them does not back down
Then none of them are gonna be around
So pick one

(repeat chorus)

And then lots of mixing and mismatched names, like:
Hillary Obamamamamamamamamamamamaaaaa....(watch the video to see what I'm talking about)...Barackmccainacainacainacainacain...

Barack Obama Hillary Clinton John McCain

Hillary Obamabamabama!

Then more shameless plugs, like, for "Pick One" merchandise, available at livelife365.com


Sunday, April 20, 2008

Pick One (the music video)

Pick One, huh? Not two or three? What is this guy talking about, you say? How about one of the most exciting presidential races in recent memory. How about having not one, but two (and maybe even three) very qualified and electable candidates? How about, for the first time in the history of this great nation, having a person of color or one who is not a man as the Democratic nominee? Add to that a war hero who is respected by both parties? Pick One? Now are you starting to see what I'm getting at?

A few months ago I had an idea for a song parody about this year's close, and often turbulent, elections. I sat down with my guitar and started plucking about, playing with some lyrics that had been swimming around inside my brain, trying to get those all important key words and phrases necessary to make the song work. What I came up with was a song called "Pick One." The version I originally recorded on video and posted was okay, but not complete. In fact, I titled it, "Pick One (the almost finished version)." I knew that I had inside me a better, more polished version, and I set about attempting to make that happen. But I decided that I would need some help.

Enter my new buddy and sound and video editor extraordinaire, Dale at ProSound (electriccanyon.com). I needed to make the song (and me) sound better. I had worked with Dale before on my "Fun with Fiber" video, but that was just some editing work. So I made an appointment for some studio time, burping down the butterflies as they scurried through my guts at the thought of singing and playing guitar, an instrument I have only messed around with for a few years, in front of a professional sound guy.

But Dale immediately made me feel at ease, partly by his calm demeanor and obvious knowledge and professionalism, but also by the serene surroundings of his Electric Canyon studios. And even though I was nervous, we got some good sounds down on tape. Then we discussed what I had in mind with the video, my vision of how the images would work with the song, and we went from there. The result is the version of "Pick One" that you see below. I would like to publicly thank Dale for his enormous efforts and patience and kindness during this ardours undertaking. As well for his tremendous talents at making a guy like me sound better than he could have imagined. Thanks, Dale.

Also, during the time while Dale and I were putting the finishing touches on "Pick One," I decided to tear down my website and redo a good chunk of it. The end result is more user-friendly, easier on the eye, and exactly what I was looking for when I undertook this massive remodeling. It could not have been done--in less than a week and with no site downtime!--without the enormous efforts of my pals, Eric at Multi Media Information (ememi.com) and Keith at Webxpertz. They did in days what most would have taken weeks to accomplish. Amazing job, guys, thanks. Especially Eric. He also was a great help with the "Pick One" video and is a valuable contributor to my website livelife365.com. Gracias, mi amigo.

So, that's the story behind "Pick One (the music video)". All that remains is that all of you watch and enjoy it. And if you like it as much as I hope you will, then, please, spread the word for others to watch, laugh, learn, and help me to decide which one to pick. Pick One? Are you nuts?


Saturday, April 19, 2008

Welcome to livelife365!


My name is Mike Foster. I am the creator of livelife365.com, a video-driven website dedicated to healthy living, self-development, and entertainment. Most of the information on my website is communicated using video...Manny just hit a two-run bomb to put the Red Sox on top, sorry for the segue. You see, I am a huge Red Sox fan, have been since, and this is really going to show my age, 1967. As I was saying, my website is all about videos, this blog offers me the opportunity to communicate using the written word. My aim is to entertain, offer helpful advice, and share information using both mediums. So, this is my first official blog entry, hope you enjoyed it (don't worry, they will get better). Please check back whenever you feel like it, and visit me on livelife365.com.

You never know, together we may just change your life.