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Summer is almost over. You might be on vacation, about to leave, or just coming back. Maybe you – clutch the pearls – haven’t taken any time off this year yet and don’t plan to. Take it from the woman who just took her first vacay ever: this is a bad move. You’re important but you are not indispensible. And you’re even better when you’ve had a break from the daily grind. So, from one workaholic to another here are eight ways to dial it back a notch: READ THE BLOG!

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I come from an immigrant culture of color and so my parents taught me to work hard. Very hard. Work hard and then work some more. Get a job, a second job, and a side hustle. Hustle on both sides. Oh hell, just make it a 360 degree hustle.  What I didn’t learn was how to slow down and relax without feeling lazy. READ THE BLOGhttp://leighannlord.blogspot.com/2014/08/vacation-no-laptop-required.html

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I recently travelled to a section of the city that I’ve never really been to before. I got the distinct impression that because I wasn't a member of the local ethnic group currently living there that the niceties were going to be nonexistent. Cold stares, rolled eyes, if I was even acknowledged at all. Did I hear even one "excuse me?" when I was bumped into or pushed past? Nope. READ THE BLOG

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Okay, I caved in and went shopping for shorts at Old Navy. I’m not a big fan but they’re in fashion and it’s just too damn hot to wear jeans. I grabbed whatever was on sale and sauntered off to the fitting room. I’m a diehard try-before-you-buy kind of girl. It saves time and heart ache. Well, usually.

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In honor of the day I’ve reposted a story I did last year about going to a Cyclones baseball game with my Dad. When I re-read it, it made me smile and I hope you enjoy it too. 

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We lost The Phenomenal Woman, Maya Angelou, this week. I wrote a piece about my first and only time to meet her and it appeared in the Huffington Post. You can read it here: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/leighann-lord/my-maya-angelou_b_5406506.html

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I went to the theater on Sunday. Just before show time the house lights dimmed and the stage manager announced, “...Please turn off your cell phones.” I’m highly addicted to my phone. I’m a social media butterfly. My phone is my mobile office. It’s my third opposable thumb. And yet I did the unthinkable. I turned off my phone and put it away. There was no one I wanted to text, tweet, or talk to while I was sitting in the dark enjoying a play I’d bought tickets for. But not everyone felt that way. READ THE BLOG @ TheUrbanErma.com

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When I first heard about Zumba I didn’t pay it any mind because I wasn’t interested in another exercise fad. Remember when hot yoga was hot? Pilates? Pul-lease. I’m embarrassed now to think of how much I weakened my living room floorboards by trying to keep up with my Billy Blanks Tae Bo tapes. But when I got an opportunity to take a free Zumba class I figured why not... READ THE BLOG @ TheUrbanErma.com

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I was a first-time faculty member at this year’s Erma Bombeck Writers’ Workshop (EBWW) and I left with a respectable amount of swag: tee shirt, tote bag, and my personal fav, the commemorative wine glass. Let it not be said that the EBWW doesn’t know its audience: Women who write, love wine; and lots of it.  At the Thursday night dinner, the wine glasses had been delicately imprinted with “Erma Bombeck Writers’ Workshop.” Every woman in the room said to herself or one of her tablemates, “Oh, I am so stealing this.” 



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I’ve never been owned by a cat. I don’t have the courage to have a creature in my house that can outthink me. And now I know, I damn sure don’t want anything that can outfight me either. One of the funniest news stories I’ve heard this year – maybe even this decade – is the one about the 22-lb house cat in Oregon that held his family hostage in their bedroom. That’s funny on its face and even more hysterical when you know the facts.

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