Food Culture in Boston: Where to Eat to Maximize your Boston Experience

Every city has their niche food. You go to Kansas City ready to devour some barbeque, you head to Philadelphia for a delicious cheesesteak. It's one of the biggest talking points of visiting any new location, "what's the best food to get around here?" Of course, you wouldn't want to eat the same type of food you'd eat at home! You want to maximize your experience. 

When visiting Boston, there are a lot of things to see, and activities to do. Whale-watches are an incredibly fun, relaxing and popular form of entertainment in the city, on top of the many museums, such as the Museum of Fine Arts and the Science Museum. The Franklin Park Zoo and New England Aquarium are great to visit if you're the animal type, and especially if you're bringing kids. But what about food? What type of food is a must when visiting Boston? 

New England Clam Chowder. This is a pretty easy one, and one that the New England area in general is very well-known for. This is something you can get pretty much anywhere, though one of the most renowned places for their clam chowder is the Island Creek Oyster Bar in Kenmore. If you're a fan of night life, you could also check out Ned Devine's Irish Pub, which turns into a bumping party after hours, and to boot their clam chowder is ever so good. 

Lobster Rolls. Are you sensing a trend? Yeah, seafood in general is a pretty big deal in Boston, but one of the best types of seafood to get around town is a wicked fresh lobstah. Better yet, you can get some of the best lobster rolls in the area right near Fenway at Eventide Fenway, so go ahead and eat up before headed inside to watch the Sox play nine innings (probably a good idea to eat ahead of time – while Fenway Franks are yummy, they're very expensive!).

Italian. In general, Boston has a pretty heavy Italian population, and in turn there are a lot of great Italian eateries, particularly in the North End. We actually talked about dining in the North End in a previous article, so click here to see the hottest places around to dine Italian! 

Burgers. There are burger places galore in Boston, and not just Boston Burger Co. - while great and filled with ridiculous variety, do yourself a favor and head to Harvard Square and check out Flat Patties. Absolutely delicious, fresh burgers, one of my personal favorite burger spots anywhere, and I'm a pretty big burger advocate. If you're headed to Fenway and not a big seafood person, you can't go wrong with Tasty Burger, which is just outside of the ballpark.  

The Indie Experience at PAX East

I went to PAX East a couple of weeks ago. 

I was attending for purely recreational purposes; I had no plans to write an article about my experiences there. I went for the first three days, April 5th-April 7th, and enjoyed a plethora of video game and tabletop game goodness, and enjoyed every minute of it (well, outside of waiting in the rain for 40 minutes for Chicken & Rice Guys. But it was worth it.)  

Before I get further into it, I'm sure some of you aren't entirely clear as to what PAX East is. It's a gaming convention: there are several events year to year, with, yes, a PAX West, South, etc., that revolve around gaming in general. It most closely focuses on video games, but also has a significant tabletop presence as well. It's a place for gaming enthusiasts, such as myself, to gather and play new unreleased titles, get discounts on gaming hardware, and meet their favorite streamers, gamers and developers. 

So why are you reading about a video game convention on a blog for an information technology consulting firm? Well, we're also a startup company, if you hadn't noticed, and while perusing the various stands I had a lot of fun in the indie game area. There was a large section in the center of the exhibit floor dedicated to indie developers who were showcasing their generally smaller-scale games, which was such a different experience than standing in the very long lines at the Playstation and Xbox booths. Most of these booths had actual developers and creators of their respective games, created by companies I had never heard before. One of those games was Battery Jam, developed by Halseo. 

Battery Jam is a simple four-player party game where four players compete for territory. That territory is based on the color of their character, and you knock other players off of the small stage you are on in order to gain territory. The game has a time limit, and at the end, the player with the most squares of their own color win the round.  

I was introduced to Battery Jam by the two people standing at the Battery Jam booth simply holding out a controller and asking me and my friend, "wanna play?" So we played, quickly got a grasp on the mechanics and had a blast. Eventually we were shouting and yelling competitively, and we both wanted to keep starting a new game every time we finished a match. They gave us codes for special skins for the game, told us where we could purchase it (on Steam for $9.99! Great deal!), and their eyes lit up when we told them how much we enjoyed it. 

It reminded me of when we brought Chowdown to TechDay last year in 2016. TechDay is a technology-centered convention revolved around startup companies, and while talking showcasing Chowdown to the hundreds of people that came by our booth, their excitement got us excited, it made our eyes light up, we were thrilled with everybody's enthusiasm about our idea. You can read my article about our experience at TechDay here.  

Starting up a company, headed by a new innovative idea, is daunting. You ask yourself many questions...can we do it? What if it's all for naught? Is our idea unique enough? Will people buy into this? So to see people visibly take interest in your ideas, enjoy them and get excited about it, that is a reward in itself. So to meet these developers for these games, enjoy their creation and tell them how excited I am for it to come out, or for me to go home and simply download it that night, I really appreciated how they felt because...to a degree, I've been there, too. 

We Have a Long Way to Go with Technology

It’s possible, today, to go home and have your lights automatically turn on with geofencing. You can throw on a pair of high-tech goggles and immerse yourself into impossible-to-exists worlds. You can write on digitized paper that plays back recordings with the tap of a specialized pen. 

There are so many phenomenal ways technology has entered our lives, reinvigorating them and allowing us to live comfortably. Every year, there are countless advancements in tech that make it feel more and more as if we are living in the movies we watched when we were younger.  

There are still places for improvement, however. Where we feel an expanse of technological improvement in one space, there are still pockets of old-style livelihood within our society, or spaces that still don’t feel as fleshed out as they could be.   

One of the most glaring issues I've noticed in day-to-day life is the ineptitude of the public transit system. Its processes have hardly changed as I've grown older, and still feels horribly out of date – most public transits I go on still require cash or a specific card, where in Boston it is the CharlieCard. There is no support for mobile payment, which would expedite the process heavily. On top of that, the trains themselves still operate very poorly in their own right, and lack greatly in performance compared to other nations' transit systems, such as the famous trains in Japan known as the Shinkansen; Japan's transit system is widely renowned for their reliability and efficiency, far surpassing anything you could find in the United States today. 

Public transportation is not the only form of travel that is still behind, however, as personal transportation also is in need of an upgrade. Elon Musk has been hard at work with his Tesla car line, but for many people they are still not as affordable as many other options, and until the electric car is more of a standard in today's society where a majority can reap the benefits, it still is, to me, not a completed step in the right direction– but it's a start. A large majority of vehicles we see on the road today still consume gasoline to run, and this does damage not only to our wallets by refilling our gas tanks but also the environment, emitting fumes into the atmosphere unfit for our lungs. It's only common sense to move vehicles towards being universally electric, but it's still not practical, as not only are current options very expensive, but there is also the issue with longevity, and long travel. There is still a ways to go. 

Backtracking to mobile payments being a huge potential beneficiary to expediting public transit, it would also heavily benefit shopping in general. Registers do support mobile payments, but the process still feels cumbersome and hardly any time is saved in the process. Amazon's "Amazon Go" stores are introducing a revolutionary way of shopping which entirely eliminates the need for the checkout process, which is a step in the right direction for technology, and gives businesses the opportunity to direct their employee focus on customer service over efficiency in checking out in a timely manner. It's an idea that is, for now, restricted as a prototype on a limited basis, but is an interesting approach towards a new way of living. 

Similarly to shopping, dining out is a process that is still heavily based on seemingly ancient practices, and no, your local coffee shop with their sleek touchscreen registers do not constitute a technological leap in the infrastructure of the modern restaurant. Luckily, your friendly neighborhood minds here at MakesSense are already hard at work on this project, with Chowdown looking to change what it means to go out to eat every night. Servers are still scribbling down our every word as we fumble over coffee-stained menus, while a stressed mother of four several tables down is waving her hand feverishly because her youngest just spilled his chocolate milk all over his mashed potatoes. It's a high-stress environment in many ways that technology has yet to remedy, and it's high time we get with the program when it comes to dining out and create a system that expedites ordering, paying, and getting service. 

Technology is constantly growing, and it's so exciting to see, but there are still so many ways we can advance our livelihood even more. For those minds out there, looking to give life to that new idea and find a market to put it in, consider this: what is an aspect of your life, or life in general, that you think needs remodeling? Consider the points in the article here, but there are so many more. Let us know if you think of anything else you'd love to have technology renovate. It's an ever-growing industry in a constantly upgrading world. Ten years ago, you wouldn't have believed what we have today, so what you don't believe is feasible now, will be a reality in another decade. Get to it. 

Set Your Business Straight: Consulting Firms are Worth It

Everybody has that bright idea. That spark that goes off in your head that you get really excited about. You tell everybody you know, regardless if they actually care or not, constantly saying "this is such a good idea, I can't wait to get started on this." 

But...wait. Why are you telling people you're going to get started on it? Why haven't you already started on it? 

So many of us have bright ideas we let sit, and never touch upon again. We avoid starting them because it's daunting, or it's unrealistic to pursue. A lot of the time, we don't even know where to start– which is okay. There's nothing wrong with not knowing how to do something, everybody doesn't know how to do something at some point. The point is, go out and find out how to do it. 

You could read articles online about it. You could ask a friend who kind of knows about it. But what about real, professional help? What about talking to somebody who knows the industry inside and out, and can give you real, wholesome advice on whatever it is you're pursuing.  

Business consulting is severely undervalued by many while it should be a top priority for anybody looking to start up a company. It's not hard to find one, either. It's a huge industry; the global consulting industry itself was worth over $250 million in 2016 alone, according to Statista. It's a booming industry because it works.  

Get the advice you need. Consulting firms are designed to help startups get out in the world. How do you set up the infrastructure of a company? What do you need to consider? What paperwork do you need to fill out? What are competitive salaries to offer new hires? What are the standard market prices for your product? How do you promote your product or business, so investors become interested in the traction you have? There are so many factors that come into play when running a business, so to ignore consulting as an option is a means for failure.  

Here are some specific reasons you may want to consider consulting. 


1. You don't know where to begin. 

One of the easier reasons to lead to consulting, you just need to understand where to begin. What's the paperwork like, how much money do you need to realistically start working on whatever it is you’re building, what staff will you need, all of these things and more are factors to consider when starting a business. 

2. You lack a skillset within your team to do a certain job. 

Sometimes, you have a team you're really happy with, but you're having trouble finding someone to fulfill a certain need. Maybe you need a professional marketer to organize some social media campaigns. There may be a need for a technological guru to give you advice on what equipment to purchase. Sometimes, nobody on your current team fits the bill, and all you need is a bit of advice to get going on the right path. 

3. You've hit a wall. 

You've been in the game for awhile, and you've hit a wall. Investors aren't interested enough to hand over a check. Your product isn't selling the way you had hoped. Maybe all it takes is a tweak here and there to get you going again, and having some fresh eyes from the outside looking in to take a look around and see what needs fixing is all you need. 


Consulting is a service entirely designed to help a company. It's not out to get you, it's not there to slow you down or simply cost you money. These are professionals who love to help people and see businesses succeed at what they're passionate about. Consider a consulting firm for your business, it could go a long way. We'd be more than happy to talk to you, even. Check out our consulting services at https://www.makessense.co/pricing-services/.  


Keys to a Healthier Lifestyle

The decision to start eating healthier always begins as a dreadful one. You have to cut down on, or entirely remove, certain foods and dishes that you’ve always loved and enjoyed for the sake of your health. It’s important, though, that we learn moderation and develop more responsible eating habits. You'll feel and live better, and keep away from illnesses with a stronger immune system. Where to begin, though? How do we make such a sudden change in our everyday lives overnight?

You’ve got to make the changes gradually. Slowly cut away from certain foods, and cut down on portions. Just make little changes by adding or subtracting bits and pieces of your typical meals so the transition is that much easier. Here are some specific examples to get you started:

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Look for smaller portions. Most of the time, burgers come as either single or double patties. Most people order a double; it’s typically only another dollar more, and you get double the meat. However, if you’re trying to eat a little bit healthier, try knocking it down to just a single patty. You’ll be surprised at how filling even just a single burger can be. Consider a small size with subs, or a smaller basket of wings. You don’t have to immediately cut out your favorite meals; just cut down on the portions. The best way to approach this is to eat slowly - so many of us wolf down our food and eat so much so quickly. If you eat slowly, you'll be surprised at how much you don't need to eat.

Find the healthiest food you already like to eat. There’s a chance that there’s already a dish that you really enjoy that also happens to be pretty good for you. Make this your new go-to meal as a step in the right direction. I've always enjoyed an occasional chicken Caesar salad, and now it’s one of my favorite go-to meals. It may not be a dish that epitomizes health (Caesar salad certainly isn’t the best thing for you overall), but as long as it’s better than eating several slices of pizza in one sitting, you’re trending upwards. Starting the development of healthier eating habits is how you make the full transition to a healthier lifestyle.

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Discover healthier substitutes. Turkey bacon actually tastes pretty good, and as a bacon fanatic myself, it’s existence is a savior for somebody who is looking to eat a little bit healthier. Find those healthier alternatives to your meals, like wheat bread instead of white, or grilled chicken instead of fried, and you’ll discover that making the switch to a healthier diet isn’t as hard as you thought.

Live without soda. Soda is a huge reason for weight gain, and cutting it out of your life is guaranteed to help you lose unhealthy fat and feel better. All of that sugar and sodium is really bad for you, especially when consumed regularly. Drinking diet soda can even promote weight gain, because the artificial sweeteners can make you even more hungry!

Get healthy snacks. Snacking is where we get a lot of our unhealthy eating habits, munching on things like cookies, chips and crackers. Instead, buy a bag of pistachios, keep a banana on you, or get some orange slices (real orange slices, not the fruity candy). If you can fill your day with healthy choices between the big meals, you’re setting yourself up for success.

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There are many ways to get your diet back on track, all it takes is a little bit of planning and some tweaks on the grocery list.

Want to learn more about ChowDown? Head to mychowdown.com and sign up with your e-mail to receive updates down the line as we prepare for launch!

Living in the Ever-Growing Tech Industry

            Every year, newer, faster and easier-to-use technology is released into our world. Every day, over a thousands apps are uploaded into Apple’s App Store, the largest hub of mobile applications on the planet. A seemingly infinite amount of resources are sitting there right at our fingertips, just waiting for us to use them.

            Unfortunately, not everybody is on board with using the latest technology. Some of the logic makes sense: it takes time to learn how to use new software, and in today’s ever-changing world, sometimes it feels easier to use a system we’ve known for years. Just when we learn to use new technology, something else may be released to make it obsolete. I also sell computers at Best Buy, and one of the more common requests is for people to purchase computers with Windows 7 still installed on them. Yes, Windows 7, that software that released almost 8 years ago in 2009, people still want to use over the new Windows 10 operating system.

            People struggle with change, they like when they understand how everything works and how to navigate the software they already use. When things change, time has to be taken to learn new concepts, time that could otherwise be allotted towards working on a company project.

            But there’s a reason things are always changing, there’s a reason your operating system always wants to update. There’s a reason there are over one thousand apps are added into the App Store every day. We live in a world that is constantly trying to improve and innovate. Because, let’s face it: these new software gadgets are revolutionizing how we live our lives.

            Let’s take a look at some current events. You may have watched the latest Super Bowl, and even if you didn’t, you probably heard about the miraculous comeback by Tom Brady and company to win the game, down by 25 points. How is it that in such a tough, competitive league, Tom Brady has been able to continue to succeed, time and again, over a span of 17 years?

            Because he keeps improving and changing his game. Watch him play in 2003 versus today. He looks like an entirely different player. Watch 2007. Watch 2010. Watch 2013. Every year, Tom Brady is changing his mindset and changing his style. Why? Because he’s trying to find new ways to succeed. If he doesn’t, somebody else will.

            Just like the NFL, the world is a competitive place. Your business is constantly competing against other businesses, especially those in the same field of work. What makes Apple such a successful company? Their focus on technology is far different than anybody else’s. How does Nintendo still manage to sell their popular gaming consoles? Because their gaming systems aren’t like anything else in the world. How is Tesla becoming an empire in the auto industry? Because they don’t follow the status quo and keep things the way they already are and have been.

            We hate when things change, we hate adapting to new services and systems, but if you take the time to learn and grow, you may notice a shift in the wind. Efficiency skyrockets, and as you grow more comfortable with the latest technology, you reap it’s benefits.

            Be patient with technology, and open your mind to learn new tricks. Constantly evolve your mind, and never shut yourself out of an opportunity to learn something new. You lead such a path, and you’ll be welcoming success into your penthouse.

            What are some of your favorite new innovations in software? Let us know in the comments below, and be sure to like and follow our page so you’ll be able to see all of our latest posts!

Why Tech Companies are the Companies to Work For in 2018

A lot of people graduating college and getting degrees are asking the same question: where can I get a job in 2018? A lot of the jobs that our parents and their parents had when they were growing up are gone, either outsourced or no longer required for modern society. Getting experience can be really difficult, as getting accepted into internship programs is incredibly difficult and competitive.

Luckily, the adage “technology is changing everyday” actually means a great deal for job opportunities. As technology grows and more and more companies are taking advantage of society’s latest technological advances, more jobs are opening up revolving around technology, as well.

This bodes incredibly well for a younger generation that has grown up with this kind of technology. As somebody who sells computers, I know that a lot of people, particularly older people, have a lot of trouble using technology. A lot of them mention that they have an “IT guy” who helps them out. Many of them take advantage of service plans with companies like the Geek Squad, and are willing to pay hundreds of dollars just to have somebody help them better understand and make use of technology. People who didn’t grow up and develop their minds around this technology are at a disadvantage compared to the young, budding minds who are using technology every day.

Not only does this apply to actually using technology properly, but it also relates to a company’s growth. As I said before, young people are making the best use of technology in today’s world, and therefore, all of the online trends are going to be most relatable with the younger generation. So, popular companies that have been around for decades who are looking to stay relevant are eager to hire young, bright minds who can not only take care of the more technical aspects of the evolved business, but also keep the company relevant on social media pages. Tons of companies are now taking advantage of emojis, memes and quick and witty comedy to attract consumers: and it’s working.

Whether you’re a writer, a social butterfly, a builder, or a strategist, the tech industry has a place for you. Look at me! I went to school for writing and I’m working with software startup MakesSense. People who are great working with other people know how to get the word out on anything, and attract people to like their product. The best way to do that is over social media, a place where social skills, writing skills and visual creativity skills all can come into play. Maybe you like to build things; there are more tools than ever to create amazing software that everybody can enjoy.

You may not have considered working in the tech industry, but the more you think about it, the more today’s world is revolving around technology, and becoming a part of the movement will only propel you further in your career. With the internet forever expanding, more and more opportunities are opening up for people outside of just software developers and engineers. Open your mind up and explore the possibilities; your talents could be coveted in a place you never imagined possible.

The kinds of opportunities around us today weren’t around when we were kids, but today you can take your childhood dream and expand it even more to places you never thought possible. Just get a little creative. Working with tech companies is the way to go in 2018; we’re certainly looking for people here at MakesSense. Take a look around, and give it a shot. You can find our job postings here.

Thanks for reading, and be sure to like our Facebook page and follow our blog to read all of our latest posts!

How Software Has Changed Dining Out

Not too long ago, the primary form of communication with a restaurant was to call them. That’s how we would place orders for takeout, or book a reservation. To pay the bill, we used cash, or maybe even a check. However, since then, the entire dining experience has completely changed. Every type of service has some sort of application now, from ordering online to leaving a review. As convenient as is it now, can you imagine having all of those features in one application? That’s the focus of our upcoming dine-in assistant, ChowDown. But more of that later. Just how much has dining out changed over the years?

            We can order and reserve online. No more waiting on hold for a reservation. No need to order over the phone. Most major chain restaurants have their own applications and websites now to order takeout and reserve seats online, and if they don’t, there are applications out there that service multiple restaurants, like GrubHub and OpenTable. With the press of just a few buttons and a couple of swipes, we can read entire menus, reserve a table, order food for pickup or delivery, all from the phone in our pocket.

            We can easily share our meals with the world. It would have been odd to pull out a big, clunky film camera to take a photo of your food. Now, it isn’t strange to see almost everybody using their phones to take filtered snapshots of their aesthetically pleasing entrees. It’s practically free advertisement for a restaurant; you see something delicious, you want to try it yourself, right? There’s no doubt that popular photo sharing applications like Instagram and Snapchat have taken off in a huge way in just the food industry alone. Food-based accounts are among the most popular for these services, and going out to eat has become more than just a social interaction while eating good food. It’s about the visual, as well, to share with the world.

            Payment applications make splitting the bill even easier. Before, it was always a hassle to split the bill between people in a large party. You might be at a restaurant some extra fifteen–to–twenty minutes, just figuring out who owes what, how much to put on each card, and so on. Cash exchange apps like Venmo and Cashapp have changed the game, and made it so much easier to split the bill. Now it’s as easy as putting the entire bill on one person’s credit card, and everybody simply sending that person their portion of the bill, so it all gets sorted out later on. Not only are people able to get back to their homes to relax faster, but restaurants are able to quickly turn tables and get more people seated.

            Everybody gets to be a critic. Before, the only reviews we would read about restaurants were done by professionals in the newspaper, and by word of mouth from friends and family. Now, there are services like Yelp! that allow every single person to leave a review, right from their phone, about their experience. It’s entirely enhanced the customer experience by allowing everybody to speak their mind. Satisfaction levels have to be met, and expectations have never been higher with open-ended reviewing services.

            There are so many different apps available now to help with the restaurant experience, and I only listed a few of them. As convenient as it is to have all of these apps, imagine being able to do all of this in one place!

            The restaurant experience is about to change, because at MakesSense, we’re making a new service called ChowDown. Ordering and reserving online? Sharing our meals with our friends? Paying your tab online? Leaving a review? These are all features that are a part of a larger world with ChowDown, your personal dine-in assistant. It’s designed to walk you through your night out from start to finish, all from one application.

            The experience has already been revolutionized by all of these different applications available to everybody, but nothing in this world is stagnant; we’re always growing. ChowDown is that next step in the restaurant experience. Get excited!

            What are some of your favorite apps that you use now when you go out to eat? Let us know in the comments!

An Exploration of Creativity in the Business World

“Liberal arts degree” is actually considered, by some, to be an insult. It carries a demeanor that refers to somebody being useless, as a liberal arts degree tends to be considered as useless.

First of all, no, I don’t think a liberal arts degree is useless, I have a liberal arts degree, and I think the remark is absolutely ridiculous.

The “artsy” college graduate is ridiculed because their pursuits did not involve something considered practical. They didn’t study business from a financial standpoint. They didn’t study medicine that could save lives. They didn’t learn a skill that is easily quantified and calculated.

They learned a skill that can be applied to many, many positions, in fact. That skill I’m talking about isn’t writing or drawing, by the way. It’s not sculpting or painting, and it’s certainly not acting. No, that’s not the skill I’m talking about. I’m talking about creativity.

Most of my friends from high school were either business majors or majors of various different sciences. I have friends studying to become veterinarians, pharmacists and doctors. I’ve been with them while they all study together, cramming information and memorizing terminology. I’ve heard them talk about how to solve certain formulas and finishing up lab reports. All the while, I was finishing up Beowulf so I could move on and read more chapters of Fyodor Dostoevsky’s Crime and Punishment. It’s very easy to see why my major is so ridiculed, but life is more than just numbers and reports.

An English major doesn’t just read a story and understand it for what it is. An art major doesn’t look at a painting and think of it as a simple display. There is no one way to look at something so abstract and complex. They think outside of the box, they think of different possibilities and messages the work conveys. Liberal arts majors are learning to think with an abstract mind. They’re trained to study everything outside of the box; to consider every single possibility, and to keep an open mind as often as possible.

You’re probably thinking what this all has to do with the business world. I promise, there’s a point to all of this. Just have an open mind.

Those who live creatively tend to be interested in other creative things. This involves movies, television programs, books, art, and yes, even internet memes. These people tend to be heavily involved with what’s popular, and with today’s society, it’s easier than ever to be involved on the internet. Things that one would consider trivial, and meaningless.

Now, take a look at Arby’s social media sites. Yes, the restaurant. Yes, I’m serious! Look at what they post. They dress up their food to represent popular characters, symbols and objects from video games and television shows. They make inside jokes regarding nerd culture. They make reference to daily fitness struggles. They cater to what’s popular today in every sense of the word. They’re getting creative with their social media outreach, and it’s working.

What it comes down to is this: those who are creative and went to school to be creative were war-torn into thinking abstractly about even the simplest of concepts, and coming up with different ways to describe the same thing. Those who went to school for business tend to focus closer to the facts, the numbers and productivity. Both are absolutely essential traits for a business, despite being very different and almost quite opposite. They do say opposites attract.

So the next time you try to use “liberal arts degree” as an insult? Remember that someday, that liberal arts degree could be saving you a ton of money on a marketing campaign because they thought of something so wild and outlandish, that it worked like a charm. In a world so surrounded by social media, creativity has never been more important. Everything moves so fast and the same content is constantly being pushed out. Thinking outside of the box is the only way to stay relevant and to get noticed.

Easy Recipes in 15-Minutes or Less for your Christmas Potluck

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            The greatest shopping spree of our time. It’s the holiday season.

            As you gather up your shopping lists for gift giving, you can’t forget to save a portion of your budget for the holiday party. Pot-luck parties are very popular during the holidays, and it’s always fun to be the one to impress with a creative dish to bring.

            What to do, though? You barely have any time to go shopping for gifts, let alone bake something for a party. Luckily, there are many dishes you can concoct in a short amount of time. Here are some ideas that shouldn’t take you more than 15 minutes to complete.

1.     Holiday Rolos – I got this idea from a friend of mine. You take a bunch of Rolos, the caramel candy, and stick a small stick of a pretzel down the middle. At the top, you place a green or red M&M (holiday colors!). Place them in the freezer, and you’ve got a great treat to share!

2.     Chocolate Apple Pops – Slice up a bunch of apples, stick ‘em with a stick, and pour chocolate over them. For good measure, sprinkle different toppings on them; jimmies, pretzel bits, M&Ms, whatever you like! Put them in the freezer, and enjoy.

3.     Hot Chocolate – It’s not directly holiday-themed, but it’s cold outside. You deliver the hot chocolate, and everybody will warm up to you right away. It’s always a good solution to go with.

4.     Puerto Rican Eggnog – Who doesn’t love egg nog? Though, I’m sure when you arrive, there will already be regular egg nog. Make your own homemade Puerto Rican Eggnog (otherwise known as Coquito) and spice up the party (you can find a quick 5 minute recipe here https://www.goya.com/en/recipes/coquito-coconut-eggnog.)

Want to learn more about ChowDown? Head to mychowdown.com and sign up with your e-mail to receive updates down the line as we prepare for launch!