norad santa tracker 2011

Yet Another year has past and once again, Santa is getting ready for his big night of delivering gifts to all the good girls and boys around the world. Every Year the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) got its best and brightest workers together to ensure Santa’s airspace remains clear and safe. As in past years, the NORAD Santa Tracker has a placed all of the Santa tracking onto Google Earth on your computer and on your mobile device! That is right, there has been an app developed for the Apple iOS and Android Marketplace! As well, there are also videos and other fun games for kids and kids at heart to play in the Countdown Village.


iChristmas Music

On December 8, 2010, a group of musicians from the North Point Ministries iBand produced a concert playing instruments that were apps on Apple iPads and iPhone/iPod Touch(s). What impresses me is they did the set in front of a live audience and I never heard any mistakes—plus it tounds great! Tis the season so let’s all enjoy some Christmas music by the way of iDevices played by the North Point iBand. Enjoy!

Holiday Gift Guide to Men (Part Four)

Round four of the Holiday Gift Guide to Men brings you all things for your iDevices. As always, I either have these items or am wishing I had these items. Some of these are also able to work with devices other than Apple products.

Elago S4 Slim Fit iPhone 4/4s Case

Do you have a new iPhone 4 or 4s? You know they look great and you want to keep them that way, so why not protect them? The only problem I have is that some cases go to the extreme and protect your phone from falls off of towering skyscrapers which results in a bit of bulk. The Elago S4 Slim Fit case protects your phone from everyday wear and tear and it is what its name suggest—slim. No, this is not going to protect your phone from high falls or sudden dunks in a toilet, but I am hoping you respect your expensive iPhone and don’t treat it like a flip phone from years past. Best of all this case gives a little grip to the slippery phone yet it is easily retrieved out of pants pockets which other grippy cases do not do so well.

Cost: $10

rooCase for iPad 2

This case for your iPad 2 is a great case for the executive that wants to protect the iPad 2 and look professional at the same time. The rooCase is made of premium leather and features a soft microfiber lined cover with a magnet that works in conjunction with the iPad smart cover on/off feature. Please keep in mind this is not a sleek form fitting case, more of a portfolio. My wife has one for her iPad and loves it (so do I)!

Price: $30

Scoche passPORT Charging Adapter

Do you have an iAccessory like an iHome that you bought a few years ago for your iPod, but now have an iPhone and now it won’t charge it? With this device, you can charge your iPhone with the older accessory—the Scoche passPORT Charging Adapter. I had this exact problem with my old Monster iPod FM Transmitter for the car. My transmitter worked great as a transmitter, but once I got an iPhone it was not wired to charge mt iPhone. I bought the passPort, just popped it onto my Monster 30-pin connector and then the adapter into the 30-pin slot on my phone and now what was once old is now new and most importantly—charging my iPhone.

Price: $20

Mophie Juice Pack Air for iPhone 4/4s

Are you always on the iPhone and now with iOS 5 noticing you are left with little power to your phone. The Mophie Juice Pack Air gives your phone an extra battery and case all in one! This case adds to the size of the iPhone 4/4s but what it also adds is up to 6 more hours of talk time to your phone, and for some people that depend on their phone for business, this can be all that is needed to get the job or new client. This phone does use the 30-pin slot, so it is no longer available to use unless removing the case, but it then offers you to plug in the very common USB plug, which is included. That USB can also be plugged into the computer and it will still sync to iTunes without needing to remove the case. My dad has one and swears by it!

Price: $75

Apple TV

Yes, this is an iPhone/iPad Accessory! This tiny box attaches to your HDTV thru an HDMI cable and accesses all the content on your computer iTunes account but also any iPhone/iPad running iOS 4.2 using Airplay. You can stream video, movies, even apps to the big screen of your TV. This does work through WiFi or through Ethernet, but best of all this item is APPROVED by my co-worker Stacy as a great device!

Price: $100

Holiday Gift Guide to Men (Part Three)

Round three of the Holiday Gift Guide to Men. This one is themed outerwear, and like before, either I own it or want it. Also, if you are reading this and feel something else should be in the Holiday Gift Guide to Men, leave a comment or e-mail me and I will look into it. Oh, and if you wish to buy me something on the list, I am gladly accepting gifts as well!

Sherpa Adventure Gear Renzing Hat

It is getting cold outside and I am sure your man would like to keep his ears nice and toasty. The only thing is that you don’t want him looking like a school kid with a puff ball hat or like a droid wearing those earmuff things. This hat is made of lambswool with a polyester lining by the people of Nepal—the home of Mount Everest.This hat is available in a variety of colors, and I love it for its warmth and style. I especially like that it isn’t made in China.

Cost: $15

Isotoner Men’s Smartouch Fleece Lined Glove

Ever outside in the could and you reach for your touch screen phone only to realize you can’t use it because you have gloves on? These gloves are stylish and useful for more than keeping your hands warm—they also let you use your touch screen phone without taking of your gloves! There are other makers of this sort of glove, but I chose these for those of us that work in an office setting and may need to look a little more polished. I know that I sure could use these, because in January when it is below zero outside and my car barely breaks above the freezing point, I will still be able to use my phone! If interested, North Face also makes a series of gloves using the North Face Etip technology starting at around $60.

Price: $25

De Martini Messenger Bag

If your man is a bike messenger or likes quality, well made and unique bags for going to and from work, the De Martini bag might be for him. I have one of these bags and have had it for almost 10 years. The outside is made of a high quality canvas which is lined with an industrial vinyl that will keep all the inside belongings dry from the outside elements. These bags are rather simple no cheap fasteners or zippers that break. These use a simple metal buckle with nylon webbing for making it secure. Also, don’t expect hidden pockets all over. There is one open pocket on the inside. Simple, clean and built to last.

Price: $60-125

Wigwam Hiking Socks

Socks you say? Yes, socks. I own several pairs of these sock and can’t say enough about them other than they last forever, keep your feet warm when needed and help wick away moisture when needed and they are made in the USA! I ask for these socks every year because I just can’t wear regular socks on the weekends especially when it is freezing. These are great camping/hiking socks that also help minimize blistering when on long hikes, even in the heat of the summer.

As you can imagine, Wigwam makes more than one type of sock, so here is a link to their other styles. It is also nice to note that they also make socks for running and have an Ironman sock for those who run the Ironman.

Price: $15 a pair

Holiday Gift Guide to Men (Part Two)

As promised, I have round two of the Holiday Gift Guide to Men. This one is all for the camper and outdoors-man in your life. Below are four gifts of which three of them I personally have.

Fatwood 25 lb. Box

On those cold nights when you just want a fire in the fireplace and you no longer get the subscription to the daily paper, you will be glad to have these little sticks of wood. Fatwood is all natural, insect free and loaded with natural resin that starts on a dime, which lasts much longer than the local paper does. Just two of the 8″ long sticks will start a roaring fire long enough to get the bigger logs ablaze. best of all, this fatwood is responsibly harvested from logged tree stumps making it an environmentally responsible gift as well!

Cost: $30

Swedish Firesteel

If you ever find your out in the wilderness with no matches for the night, make sure you have this little lifesaver. I always have this in my bag when camping, you never know when it will come in handy. I have used mine to start camp fires and stoves. Just like a traditional flint and steel, this lightweight version is great for backpacking due to the weight and I have never had troubles even when it is wet! My thought is if it is good enough for the Swedish Department of Defense, it is good enough for me.

Price: $15

Goal0 Guide 10 Adventure Kit

Yes this is expensive, at least in my world, but it is also one of the best. This summer my family and I went to Rocky Mountain National Park and camped out for four nights at a non-electric site with plenty to charge. We cobbled together a 12-volt 15-watt solar panel, car jump-start kit with 12-volt and USB and a power inverter not to mention the 2-prong charger with cords. All of this was just as—if not more expensive as a Goal0 (Goal Zero) setup, and definitely not as compact and efficient.

Price: $120

As a side note, this will charge a phone at a time, but for the bigger stuff I suggest the Goal0 Escape Scout 150 for $400 or if you are really going off grid and need longer term larger power the Goal0 Ranger 350 Extreme for $525. Like I said, not cheap, but will make one or more happy campers! Then again if you go camping to get away from it all, forget you ever read this!

SAS Survival Handbook

Lets just say you got lost, really lost. Would you know what to do to be found, if injured, if starving for food? You would if you had this book. Developed by the SAS (Special Air Services) a corp of the British Army this handbook covers it all just in the case of an incident. It is always better to be safe than sorry. This is also a great read for those who like “useless knowledge” like my wife says—except it could prove to be more useful than useless.

Price: $15

Holiday Gift Guide to Men (Part One)

I you are struggling for ideas of what to give a guy for the holidays, have no fear, I have just the solution for you. Introducing my Holiday Gift Guide to Men. While I can’t guarantee a gift will be great for all men, I can at least give you suggestions that will aid your search. Most gifts are reasonably priced and are on my list or are items I currently own. Happy shopping and let the fun begin. Over the next few days and weeks, I will place one or more items in a post for ideas. Hope these help!


Syma S107Syma S107 RF Helicopter

This was a great present to myself earlier this year that is fun for almost the whole family! I do not recommend this for children under 6 or with anyone that may have a pet that is a bit scared of noise and things that hover, but still lots of indoor fun!

Price: $30

Scosche reVIVE II Dual USB Car Charger for iPad

On the road with your iPad and you have no way to charge it other than the wall socket? Now you can plug in and charge your you iPad, iPhone or any other device that uses USB to charge and you can truly be mobile! All you need is your cord and this and you are all set. One great feature is that you can charge two devices at one time!

Price: $15

Gerber Paraframe II Camping Knife

Have a camper or outdoors-man in your life? This knife is strong and sturdy and yet compact enough for a backpack. The serrated blade also aids in cutting . . . err. sawing through some of the tougher materials like climbing rope and wood. Please note this is not safe at the airport and will most likely get you some unpleasant looks and meetings with people that have little humor in their jobs.

Price: $25

a charlie brown ad agency

This morning a co-worker of mine sent me this classic Charlie Brown remake depicting ad agency life. Being an ex-agency art director, I can most certainly attest that much, if not all of this is true! Please enjoy this special presentation of A Charlie Brown Ad Agency!

personalized santa video

Santa may me hard at work preparing for tomorrow’s flight around the world, but he still has time for sending a personalized video to your child! Santa now has technology called the Portable North Pole that makes a personalized video possible even when he is extremely busy. Mom and Dad just need to fill out a form and answer a few questions and then Santa will make a video for your child. Please note that this technology is first being rolled out in Canada, but will work for any child around the world. Santa (with the help of Mom and Dad) can have your child’s picture placed into the nice file next his or her name.

Try out the Portable North Pole and let me know what you think!