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March Madness Widow Survival Guide 8.0

Every year basketball enthusiasts sit in their favourite chairs or in their most comfortable spot on the couch to enjoy hours and hours and hours of college basketball. It’s amazing, it’s enjoyable, it’s all of the best moments that you could hope for in 3 weeks of action.

But, if you aren’t that person, you might be a March Madness Widow. You might feel like you are alone, bored, and left without the hangout partner that you normally have.

If you are struggling with March Madness Widow Syndrome, we have 5 things that you can do from March 14 to April 3, 2017 – give ‘em a shot!

1. Create An Awesome Playlist!

Just like the mixtapes we made from our favourite cassettes and the radio, a good playlist still holds all kinds of value!

If you’re looking for simple starting points – we recommend using Spotify or YouTube to start curating your list of songs and mixing and matching until you get the perfect selection to suit your mood. Give yourself something to dance to, something to relax to, or something that just plays as loud as possible while you sing along!

2. Share Music With Your Friends!

Music is best enjoyed as a shared experience. Yes, sometimes it’s great to be lost in a song, but sharing music with your friends is the best.

Here’s a challenge: Every day of March Madness post a link to a song on a friend’s Facebook or Twitter and invite them to send you one back. There are 12 games days over 21 days – that means you have a chance to really share the music you love, and hopefully get some back, with and from your music loving friends!

3. Make Your Summer Music Plans!

Whether you’re into the festival scene or single concert events, there are all kinds of options available for you in the summer. And the worst thing you can do is wait until the last minute to make your plans.

Most festivals have tiered pricing, so the earlier you buy – the better. And unless you love sitting in the back row or on the lawn, you should be buying tickets and setting reminders for the concerts that have you most excited when the weather warms up!

4. Watch Some Music Documentaries

Trust me, I know that not everyone is into documentaries, but there are some awesome films on Netflix that you should really check out if you love music.

If you’re looking for recommendations… here you go

☞ Neil Young Journeys
☞ History Of The Eagles
☞ Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers Runnin’ Down A Dream

I watched and really dug all three of those – and if you take a look I’m sure you’ll find a few more that you can get into!

5. Play Along!

If your partner or best friend or family members are in love with the tournament, give it a shot with them. It really can be a whole lot of fun.

Fill out a bracket, pick a favourite team, let yourself get drawn into the drama and excitement that the tournament provides. From buzzer beaters to Cinderellas, you might just find that you like the NCAA action more than you thought you would.

Please remember though, your partner may truly be invested in their team’s performance, so if they do lose on the way to the national championship, try not to rub their face in it too much.

Have fun!

And if you need more ideas, have a look back at the first 7 years of the March Madness Widow Survival Guide

The March Madness Widow Survival Guide – March 18, 2010

The March Madness Widow Survival Guide 2.0 – March 10, 2011

The March Madness Widow Survival Guide 3.0 – March 8, 2012

The March Madness Widow Survival Guide 4.0 – March 17, 2013

The March Madness Widow Survival Guide 5.0 – March 16, 2014

The March Madness Widow Survival Guide 6.0 – March 16, 2015

The March Madness Widow Survival Guide 7.0 – March 12, 2016

7 months ago Views

I’ve Got A Crush On Choir! Choir! Choir!

choir choir choir bannerLast Thursday I got to see something that made me smile, got me to stand up and has been bouncing around in my brain ever since.

It was one of those times when music hits you right smack dab in the forehead and then leaves a trail of goosebumps all the way down your body.

It was in fact, Choir! Choir! Choir!

The Toronto Botanical Garden kicked off their Edwards Summer Music Series with a performance by the eclectic Toronto choir in the gorgeous courtyard behind the main building.

The show featured approximately 60 choir members, 1 acoustic guitar and a set list that included…

  • Elvis: Can’t Help Falling in Love
  • Rihanna: We Found Love
  • Robyn: Call Your Girlfriend
  • The Arcade Fire: Rebellion (Lies)
  • Patti Smith: Because The Night
  • Radiohead: No Surprises
  • Big Star: Thirteen
  • Survivor: Eye of the Tiger

All of the songs had arrangements that take them away from the studio versions that we’ve all learned and turn them into events. And while they fully admit that there isn’t anything fancy in the way they put things together – it sounds awesome and looks like they’ve put enough work into it to me.
choir choir choir

In all honesty, I really want to go and sing with them. And I can because these guys are awesome and anyone can go and hang out and have a drink and sing with the choir on Tuesday (No One Writes To The Colonel) and Wednesday (Monarch Tavern) nights. All you have to do (as far as I can tell) is bring $5, a smile and the willingness to sing your heart out with a rad group of people who are all there to do the same thing.

I’m hoping that I can talk a few other people to come with me so I can curb the whole “new guy all alone in a crowded room” thing – so please, if you want to sing with Choir! Choir! Choir! too – let me know!

If you have never had the chance to listen to C!C!C! I would very much recommend checking them out on SoundCloud (just click this here) or go to YouTube for awesome videos of the choir singing.

Now, turn up the volume – find some songs that you love and enjoy!

4 years ago Views

Little Big Town – Covers Done Country: Scattered, Smothered & Covered!

Little Big Town – Scattered, Smothered and Covered

Sometimes music crosses over from one genre to another and it’s awesome. Personally I’ve always been a big fan of cover songs. In the late 90’s and early 2000’s it was punk covers. On YouTube it is often a cool piano or ukelele cover. And then there are the (sometimes brilliant) karaoke performances.

But now I’ve found a new fav… in country music!

Little Big Town has been one of my favourite country acts for the last few years. Their 4 part vocals are always smooth and fresh. Their songs make me want to sing along. And they’re a pretty good looking bunch. And now they are covering songs from all over the muscial spectrum in Scattered, Smothered and Covered.

Scattered, Smothered and Covered is a series of YouTube videos that show some very talented people singing some pretty good songs.

As of now there are 8 videos in the series and while I can’t really tell you which is my favourite, I can tell you that I have a top 3.

“Moves Like Jagger” – Maroon 5 feat. Christina Aguilera. Scattered, Smothered, and Covered

“I Want You Back” – Jackson 5. Scattered, Smothered & Covered

“Born This Way” – Lady Gaga Scattered, Smothered, Covered

If you’re looking for more just check out http://www.youtube.com/littlebigtown – you won’t be sorry.

Have a great day kids. Smile big.

6 years ago Views

#BreakItOff Day 7 – It’s Getting Easier & Thank You!

What up kids?

Just wanted to stop in and let you know that hard things can be done and can be made a lot easier with the support and love of friends and family.

I’m on day 7 of the non-smoking and I feel better than I have so far in my nicotine free week. I’m getting more energy at times when I didn’t before. I’m saving cash. I’m not drinking less coffee (that one is in every one’s best interest). And I’m not gaining weight.

I’m also giving out a ton of support to Rannie who quit smoking this week and is tracking his path with the #BreakItOff app. Feel free to tweet him and tell him that he can do it!

There are still cravings. I just had one right now. And they still suck. But I’m learning more and more that they do go away and I can get through them.

If you have a chance check out the tweets that are using the #BreakItOff hashtag. There are a few people flashing it around and doing a great job. I feel pride for all of them!

I wanted to say some thank yous today so I made a video – check it out.

Alright y’all. It’s time to check out for now. There’s stuff to do.

Have a great weekend! Be awesome!

6 years ago Views

So Far So Good… 6 Days In. #BreakItOff

Hey y’all. 

It’s day 6 of my non-smoking and things are starting to look up. I didn’t feel like I was on the brink of emotional break down. I only had 1 headache. I even made a new video. 

Since I gave up on the cigarettes I’ve noticed that I have more energy in the afternoon. My skin isn’t as dry around my eyes. And my lips aren’t as chapped.

I’ve also been told that you can hear a difference in my voice. I think I’m starting to taste things that I was missing. They say that my sense of smell will come next.

I’ve also noticed that my Klout score has gone up. And that’s because of all of your support on the interwebs. Between my Facebook and Twitter feeds there has been an outpouring of support. I appreciate all of it. Very much. 

Stay tuned, there will be more awesomeness coming up. Videos, blogs, tweets, yells, cheers and more!

Note: Thanks to BreakItOff.ca for some great resources . If you or someone you know is trying to quit this is a great place to get help. 

6 years ago Views

I’m Craving and It’s Complicated #BreakItOff

This whole quitting smoking thing is complicated. There are so many stop smoking aids these days that I don’t really know what to do.

I’ve heard a ton of great things about Allen Carr’s book but I haven’t had my hands on it yet. I picked up a pack of Thrive nicotine gum yesterday at Shoppers Drug Mart but it made my tongue feel funny. I inhaled through a straw yesterday to mimic smoking but it looks weird when I do that in public. I chewed plastic spoons when I was trying to quit in college but people looked at me really funny when the spoon was all messed up with teeth marks.

Right now I’m using the Break It Off iPhone app to register my cravings when they come up. It gives me a chance to identify that I do want a smoke and then to tell myself that I’m not going to have one.

Note: So far I’ve added 4 triggers to the default list provided: Just Ate, Coffee, Headache and Jonesing.

I’ve also been using the video camera that Break It Off sent me to make some short videos and talk about this whole process on the YouTube. I’ve promised that there will be minimum swearing, nudity and violence in the videos but I hope you’ll check them out anyway.
This is only day 2 so I know that I’m not looking at any awards or medals or achievements yet. However, I can not remember the last time that I went 34 hours without a cigarette and that’s where we’re at right now as I write this.

Note: Reggy is also part of the #BreakItOff campaign – follow her on the Twitter to see how she’s doing and to cheer her on.

Alright friends – it’s time for me to go distract myself. I think maybe I’ll take the garbage out and wash a dish or two… who knows, maybe being a non-smoker will make me a better house keeper.

Hope that y’all have a good Sunday. Be prepared for a lot more content now that I’m looking for distractions!

Smile. Awesome.

6 years ago Views

#BreakItOff – The Beginning

Hey y’all. Happy Saturday from my little corner of the world.

In case you didn’t see it on the Twitter or Facebook I have some news to share.

I’m quitting the whole smoking thing.

Yup. I know that I’ve said it before. Heck I even blogged it before. But this time I think I have the support, desire and drive to quit.

I’ll be working with and using the Break It Off campaign to do my quitting. We’re working to build the world’s biggest break-up with smoking.

Check out www.breakitoff.ca to see videos that have been uploaded. See the cool resources that have been made available to everyone and please feel free to let any smokers in your life know that they are welcome to join us.

Note: Please do not be pushy in referring friends and family to this or any other quit smoking program. Trust me, it’s not helpful.

As I work on this whole quitting thing I will be taking video and photos and blogging about it through good times and bad.

Soon you’ll be able to see my Break-Up video on the Break It Off site and last night I made little vid while I smoked my last cigarette before bed.

Feel free to stop in here or on the youtube channel at /joshua1murray to see what I’ve come up with.

Warning: I may cry at some point.

Check out the first video. I felt like one of those kids on Intervention when I watched it back this morning. Yikes.

Have a good day friends. Wish me luck.

6 years ago Views
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