Our Exclusive ILMA Interview with Jenny Roets @Arch_Girl

Jenny Roets is one of my oldest Twitter Architecture friends – She is extremely passionate about Architecture.  She recently passed the ARE’s and is helping others get motivated to pass.  We were delighted she agreed to answer a few questions:

When and why did you decide to become an Architect?

I was going through a list of majors my junior year in high school. I stopped at Architecture because it just made sense: I really enjoyed my Geometry & Art classes.

What were some of the challenges of achieving your dream?

I have had a lot of challenges. Life got in the way for me while I was in college and again in graduate school. Finding the right fit in employment has also been a challenge, as was the recession where I had to find unrelated employment to survive.

Blueprints

How do you balance design with your family life?

Simple, I don’t have a family yet.

How does your family support what you do?

My parents and brother have been very encouraging throughout the entire process of school, finding work, taking exams. They are happy to be celebrating this accomplishment with me.

What matters most to you in design?

Sustainability. The building should reflect it’s climate, orientation, location, and purpose. When materials fail, design shouldn’t.

Where do you see the profession going over the next few decades?

I think the profession will connect more with engineers / other consultants and contractors to provide a more comprehensive approach. I also feel there will be a shift back towards design with the environment in mind as sustainable design practice becomes more valued by the public.

House Plan

How do you hope to inspire / mentor the next generation of Architects?

I’m already trying to do this! I encourage Architectural Interns that I know in the real world and in social media as much as I can (especially women).

What does Architecture mean to you?

Architecture both responds to and creates environment.

If you could not be an Architect, what would you be?

I have given this a lot of thought, especially since I chose Architecture after the age when everyone asks “what do you want to be when you grow up?” I never came up with anything I felt I would be happy doing, but it would likely be related to math, something like Accounting.

What is your dream project?

I would like to create a building to benefit my hometown of Merrill, WI. I don’t have a type in mind, but I have always wanted to design something great there.

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We would love to hear from you on what you think about this post. We sincerely appreciate all your comments.

If you like this post please share it with friends. And feel free to contact us if you would like to discuss ideas for your next project!

Have a great weekend!

Sincerely,
Frank Cunha III
I Love My Architect – Facebook

FC3 ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN, LLC
P.O. Box 335, Hamburg, NJ 07419
e-mail: fcunha@fc3arch.com
mobile: 201.681.3551
direct: 973.970.3551
fax: 973.718.4641
web: http://fc3arch.com
Licensed in CT, DC, DE, FL, MD, NJ, NY, PA, VA.


Who are the Wonderful Women of @SpicieDotCom???

Spicie is today’s woman. She is different. She is unique.

Spicie

The Spicie woman may be your sister. She may be your neighbor. She may be your co-worker. She may be your boss. She may be you.

S – Sexy – The Spicie woman is sexy. We’re comfortable with who we are. Both women and men want to be around us and get to know us.

P – Passionate – The Spicie woman is passionate. We love fiercely. We stand up for for the things we believe in.

I – Interesting – The Spicie woman is interesting. We’re not our mother or mother’s mother. We’re aware of what is going on in the world and are always ready with an opinion.

C – Curious – The Spicie woman is curious. We’re well-read and well-educated – whether through traditional means or self-taught. We don’t blindly accept but want to ask why.

I – Intelligent – The Spicie woman is intelligent. We’re not just avid learners, we’re able to learn and process information. Give us the facts and we can figure it out.

E – Evocative – The Spicie woman is evocative. People remember us when they encounter us. We’re not the little waif who sits in the corner.

And here they are:

Sharon Hayes: Publisher

Sharon Hayes, All rights reserved
Sharon Hayes is a marketing dynamo and currently serves as the President & CEO of Sling Shot Media, LLC and CEO ofDomainate.com. She has worked with organizations of all sizes on strategy and implementation of marketing objectives through social media, community development, e-mail marketing and domain names.

Sharon has worked almost exclusively online since 1991 – predating commercial usage of the Internet.  With a diverse background in all aspects of online marketing, Sharon has provided clients with an integrated approach to the marketing and development of their businesses.

Although Sharon no longer works directly with clients, her companies provide many marketing services. You can review information about her companies’ services here.

Amanda Fox: Editor-In-Chief

AK Fox, All rights reserved
Amanda Fox describes herself as a collector of useless degrees, proud US Air Force veteran, bored atmospheric scientist and burnt out activist. Over the last several years, Amanda has dedicated herself to initiatives related to helping all oppressed people attain equality, particularly the LGBT community. Amanda is  enjoying life with her partner, their three kids and her fluffball kitteh Zoe. Her partner is the owner of Brilliance On Demand and an ardent supporter of Amanda’s pursuit of her inalienable right to enjoy the perfect nap.

Tracy Madlener: Team Spicie

Tracy Madlener All Rights Reserved

Tracy Madlener is a crazy insane person who thinks that she can create a new K-12 education system all by herself.  With any luck, she’ll succeed and all will be right with her world.  In the meantime, she homeschools her 2 kids and is known in the homeschool community as the go-to person for information and resources in alternative education.

She is the creator of www.asktracyabouthomeschool.com and also pens her thoughts about education at Alternative Education System. Tracy is also the writer behind the lipstick obsessed character that is Caffeinated OC Mommy that took the #1 spot in the Top 25 SoCal Mom Blogs for 2012.

Heather Jabusch: Team Spicie

Heather Jabusch All Rights Reserved

Heather Jabusch, LSU class of 2000, is the Director of Sales & Catering at Wingate by Wyndham in Sulphur, LA. Heather is a cutting edge social media enthusiast and renowned hospitality specialist providing advice on travel planning.

Anise Smith: Team Spicie

Anise Smith All Rights Reserved
Anise Smith has a Masters Degree in Internet Marketing and is President and Director of Anise Smith Marketing which specializes in mixing Traditional and Digital Marketing Strategies using Mobile Web, QR code Products, and more. Anise is also the Digital Marketing Specialist of Full services healthcare Company located in Cherry Hill, NJ.

She also works as an advocate for non profit organization which provides financial assistance for medically fragile children and their families. When she is not online she is a rabid Philadelphia EAGLES Fan, closet Foodie and single mom to a 13 year old miniature male version of herself.
Carrie Eckles: Team Spicie
 
Carrie Eckles All Rights Reserved
“Carrie Eckles attended the University of North Alabama where she majored in English, and the Academy of Art University in San Francisco where she focused on fashion design, reporting, and illustration. A lifelong sufferer of lupus, she considers herself a “lupus warrior” and survivor, and is active within the Lupus and “Spoonie” Twitter communities, which offer support for victims of these invisible illnesses. During college, Carrie went from waiting tables in local restaurants to actively pursuing her dream of writing.
At the age of twenty, she began her writing career under the tutelage of fellow Spicie, Amanda Fox. To date, she has written articles on various topics for clients big and small. Her downtime is spent working on her novel, bantering, playing with her dogs, playing with her family, over-analyzing HBO’s Game of Thrones, and occasionally ranting on her personal blog.”
Barbie Fariña: Social Media Director
Barbara Farina All Rights Reserved
Barbie Fariña works in the area of telecommunications. For over 10 years she work in this area, in Telefonica.SA one of the largest telecommunications companies in South America and Europe. Lover of art and music. Today is dedicated to promoting their passions. Journalism degree. In constant search of knowledge. Mother of two children. Who loves more than anything in the world. Defender of the rights of workers and helping all those in need. Passionate of science fiction movies and a good book. #SpiciePromoter
Alicia Taylor: Team Spicie

Alicia Taylor is a major freebie hound and coupon nut.  She believes that families can always benefit from saving a bit of money and has been running a popular blog since 1998, which features product reviews, giveaways and money saving techniques.  She’s an all-around fun-loving person whose claim to fame is an annual legendary Halloween party.  She’s a bona fide gamer chick with an XBox Live gamer score that will make most guys blush.  She was a geek before it was chic and convinced her high school math teacher to teach a Pascal programming class in the 80′s in a school with only 5 computers. She was the only female in the class.  She adores sci-fi, 80’s hard rock, and photography.She attended the University of West Florida and majored in both Psychology and Information Technology with a Digital Enterprise specialization.  She has three sons and a daughter.  Her oldest son struggles with autism and Alicia spends much of her time helping him navigate through the world.

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We would love to hear from you on what you think about this post. We sincerely appreciate all your comments.

If you like this post please share it with friends. And feel free to contact us if you would like to discuss ideas for your next project!

Sincerely,
Frank Cunha III
I Love My Architect – Facebook

FC3 ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN, LLC
P.O. Box 335, Hamburg, NJ 07419
e-mail: fcunha@fc3arch.com
mobile: 201.681.3551
direct: 973.970.3551
fax: 973.718.4641
web: http://fc3arch.com
Licensed in NJ, NY, PA, DE, CT.


Art And Poetry By My Friend Sophia Fine @SophiaFine

I wanted to share one of my dearest Twitter supporters and friends, Sophia Fine who is a Fine Arts graduate.  She successfully completed her independent studies in Florence, Italy and was recognized and awarded for her contributions to Literature and Drama. Now she is well-respected in the art-community and is involved in various art shows, solo expositions, and selling her original artwork both in America and overseas.  Click here for more on Sophia and how to contact her online if you are interested in her artwork.  Click here for our last ILMA post on Sophia.

AMOURS SOUS LE CIEL  48X60

AMOURS SOUS LE CIEL  48X60
http://sophiafine.com/paintings/A/Amours_Sous_Le_Ciel_Bleu-big.jpg

“Because the blue of day and night is the perfect setting for dreams
and mystery.
Because it is where great adventures begin.
Learn to feel the sky, the wind, and the desire to soar and keep going!”
S.F.

ARDEN MESSENGER  54X54
ARDEN MESSENGER  54X54
http://sophiafine.com/paintings/A/Ardent_Messenger-big.jpg

“Secret life with the same thought:
In our ferocious lives under these skies we desperately want to be loved…
I am airlifted to raging happiness, thrills, and… fears.”  S.F.

Bilderberg

BILDERBERG  48X60
http://sophiafine.com/paintings/B/Bilderberg-big.jpg

” Chock full of lively! They weave magic spells but can also be
mischievously playful! All these thematic fairies daringly
complimenting each other.
I lived with them when they invaded my privacy of thought.
And one by one escaped from Dream to Reality, creating their utopia
and the tangible. Dreams are made of this.
Need not define their abstraction.
Have no control of that.” S,F.

Le Ciel Provocador

LE CIEL PROVOCADOR  48X72
http://sophiafine.com/paintings/L/Le_Ciel_Provocador-big.jpg

“I am shaken under the skies in my essential solitude, running for
cover under the cottony cumuli… intergalactic warriors grouping
against the soft blue that is dotted here and there with balls of
clouds.
I exhale…
Learn to feel the sky, the wind, and the desire to soar and keep going!”  S.F.

SOLO MATADOR  54X54

SOLO MATADOR  54X54
http://sophiafine.com/paintings/S/Solo_Matador-big.jpg

“The sky is ending the night and
I follow, only follow to charge my dream

Invitation to instant exoticism…
A fantasy performed free from evocation.

In front of my eyes the endless silhouette of a Matador
becomes elegance in motion.

Before me his face suspended from his golden locks
eyes brilliant, reading my soul, rushing my heartbeat…

My trembling voice reveals my aim…
If I only could…

—let yourself go with the wind.” S.F.

Parlement

PARLEMENT  50X50
http://sophiafine.com/paintings/P/Parlement-big.jpg

“The Gray of Mystery..The Gray of revolt of Fear..The Gray echoes
melodies played on a white piano..
These scores are the musical transcriptions of the image..of Parlement!” S.F.

ELECTRIC BALADE  48X60

ELECTRIC BALADE  48X60
http://sophiafine.com/paintings/E/Electric_Balade-big.jpg

“The smash hit of the evening was the Electric Ingénue and her music.
More naked than dressed in her flowing glow, wrapped in a powdery
flower scent and thigh high jeweled boots..she caught the breathless
desire of everyone in the room..
Her entrance signaled the presence of a New Generation..” S.F.

Thinking of You

THINKING OF YOU  48X48
http://sophiafine.com/paintings/T/Thinking_of_You-big.jpg

“A sun ray caressing my face brought you in to me..
loss of thought now..

..in the essence of intimacy
the right moment..

“For members only” space of mind now is yours…
How do I go about?

My essence of intimacy fractured…
Am I at a loss?

Spirits of beasts want my soul..
fading the rush in eyes wide open..

Your magic wand can change seahorses to dragonflies..
I don’t want to change..

only let your destination become my own…

Colormusic my constant reference creates my thoughts..

…and through the looking glass
i see -you- now..

.. and hear the echos from the walls of Palazzo Grassi:

“Where are we going?” S.F.

RENCONTRES  30X40

RENCONTRES  30X40
http://sophiafine.com/paintings/R/Rencontres-big.jpg

“Setting the tone.That is my vocation. A wonderous job. It is veering
from the extreme concentration of the moments, meticulous as measuring
the right amount of coloring for the total freedom to create.
But it is such a place to be! This immersion in color, that midway, in
the journey, I know the expression.. I see the final stage! Dazed and
befuddled..coraled out, this moment is all mine!
In my studio…” S.F.

Also Check Out:

We would love to hear from you on what you think about this post. We sincerely appreciate all your comments.

If you like this post please share it with friends. And feel free to contact us if you would like to discuss ideas for your next project!

Sincerely,
Frank Cunha III
I Love My Architect – Facebook

FC3 ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN, LLC
P.O. Box 335, Hamburg, NJ 07419
e-mail: fcunha@fc3arch.com
mobile: 201.681.3551
direct: 973.970.3551
fax: 973.718.4641
web: http://fc3arch.com
Licensed in NJ, NY, PA, DE, CT.


Sophia is Fine (Art) – @SophiaFine

I wanted to share one of my dearest Twitter supporters and friends, Sophia Fine who is a Fine Arts graduate.  She successfully completed her independent studies in Florence, Italy and was recognized and awarded for her contributions to Literature and Drama. Now she is well-respected in the art-community and is involved in various art shows, solo expositions, and selling her original artwork both in America and overseas.  Click here for more on Sophia and how to contact her online if you are interested in her artwork.

Can You tell us about Your Process.

I came from a Beautiful World, which presented itself to me early in life. Art was always within me, in so many ways, in everything I saw and touched. I feel like a creator of Expressive Beautiful things, as if God Touched me.

Creativity! Yes! Art is a great Gift! I aim to transform my visions and feelings into my Art.

I create happiness. I can’t wait to go to my studio, express myself, and make things happen. Sometimes I pour the Colors on an Empty Canvas and before me I see all the things I had in my mind.

I like to create themes, with enchanted realities, dream-like, and with absurd beauty. But never losing the soul communication with the viewer when jostling together colorful compositions that are as jolly as kitsch Postcards from Heaven!

I like to immerse the viewer in the false immobility of life’s turbulence and to render the animated presence of Joy!

Everyone has a space within them that waits to be filled with new, yet unknown excitement.

Read the rest of this entry »


Barbara Fariña @Babfari Expose – Promo Queen

Today’s Follow Friday Feature….

One of my favorite people to follow on social media is Barbara Fariña from Argentina.  She is a fantastic promoter and loyal fan.

If you don’t know her yet, you should….Maybe she will even help you build your followers on Twitter, Facebook, etc…

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Featured above are some of Barbara’s favorite artists.

1) When did you first get started on social media?

I don´t know really.  What I do know is that it all started with Facebook for sure.

2) How has it changed your life?

Very much. When you understand Social Media, you realize there is another way to seeing and conceiving communication.
And different ways to do it! 

3) What are your favorite top 3 sites?  Name a few others you like.

Every day there are new sites. Some of them you don´t even know for what were created.
But I guess my top 3 are: Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest. ( I use a lot google +and  youtoube) and one thing is important to say for us, if you don´t have a smartphone stay at home.

Read the rest of this entry »


My Favorite Social Media Sites

Warning: This is not the end-of all of the best social media for everyone, just the ones that I find interesting, effective, or just plain addictive fun.

1) Path

Path is quickly becoming my favorite social media website.  Its edgier and more personal than Facebook.

Path is a social networking-enabled photo sharing and messaging service for mobile devices, launched in November 2010. The services aims to be a place where users can share with their close friends and family. Dave Morin, Co-founder and CEO, says: “Our long-term grand vision here is to build a network that is very high quality and that people feel comfortable contributing to at any time.” The company began with an iPhone application and a website and released an Android version later (Blackberry application expected soon). The company competes with other social networks such as Instagram and PicPlz.  Based in San Francisco, California, the company was founded by Shawn Fanning and former Facebook executive Dave Morin. Path’s initial $2.5 million funding round included Ron Conway, Index Ventures, First Round Capital, Ashton Kutcher,Kevin Rose, Marc Benioff, Chris Kelly, and others.

2) Twitter

Twitter is my all time favorite social media platform.  Once I first started using it when it came out I called it “Facebook on crack.”  It’s important not to treat it like a bulletin board.  If you want to keep up, keep on tweeting or your message will be drowned out.  Noisiest social media platform, but more effective for getting your message out.

Twitter is an online social networking service and microblogging service that enables its users to send and read text-based posts of up to 140 characters, known as “tweets”. It was created in March 2006 by Jack Dorsey and launched that July. The service rapidly gained worldwide popularity, with over 300 million users as of 2011, generating over 300 million tweets and handling over 1.6 billion search queries per day. It has been described as “the SMS of the Internet.” Twitter Inc. is based in San Francisco, with additional servers and offices in New York City.

3) LinkedIn

Social media for businesses.  Great for networking, but no edge.

LinkedIn is a business-related social networking site. Founded in December 2002 and launched in May 2003, it is mainly used for professional networking. As of 3 November 2011, LinkedIn reports more than 135 million registered users in more than 200 countries and territories. The site is available in English, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Spanish, Romanian, Russian, Turkish and Japanese. Quantcast reports LinkedIn has 21.4 million monthly unique U.S. visitors and 47.6 million globally. In June 2011, LinkedIn had 33.9 million unique visitors, up 63 percent from a year earlier and surpassing MySpace. LinkedIn filed for an initial public offering in January 2011 and traded its first shares on May 19, 2011, under the NYSE symbol “LNKD”.

4) Empire Avenue

Fun way to network with friends.  Most “different” platform.

Empire Avenue  is a stock market simulation social network game that allows users to buy and sell shares of people and websites. It started in February 2010 as an invitation-only closed beta before launching to the public in July 2010. Registration and game play is free. Players have their own portfolio in a virtual economy. The price of a player’s share depends on the ticker’s stock buying and selling, along with social networking activity. Players can choose their own ticker symbol. The players can have multiple investors, which will garner them a higher share price, and they can invest in other players. Players win Achievements for their actions, such as advertising and adding services such as Twitter. Players gain dividends from the other shares in players they invest in, which are counted as Credits. Social networks supported by Empire Avenue currently include Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, YouTube, LinkedIn, Foursquare, Instagram, Wordpress hosted blogs and the player’s own blog and RSS feeds.

5) Facebook

Yawn,… good way to keep track of your parents, kids, etc. No excitement here, but replaces the regular phone calls and postcards to keep in touch.  Not going anywhere for a while.

Facebook is a social networking service and website launched in February 2004, operated and privately owned by Facebook, Inc. As of February 2012, Facebook has more than 845 million active users. Users must register before using the site, after which they may create a personal profile, add other users as friends, and exchange messages, including automatic notifications when they update their profile. Additionally, users may join common-interest user groups, organized by workplace, school or college, or other characteristics, and categorize their friends into lists such as “People From Work” or “Close Friends”. The name of the service stems from the colloquial name for the book given to students at the start of the academic year by some university administrations in the United States to help students get to know each other. Facebook allows any users who declare themselves to be at least 13 years old to become registered users of the site.

6) Instagram

Fun way to share photos online and make new friends.  I find it more interactive than Flickr, but I guess you get out of it as much as you put in.

Instagram is a free photo sharing application that allows users to take photos, apply a vintage filter, and share it on the service or a variety of other social networking services, including Facebook, Twitter, Foursquare, Tumblr, Flickr , andPosterous. The application is compatible with any iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch running iOS 3.1.2 or above. The company is based in San Francisco. Instagram, in an homage to both the Kodak Instamatic and Polaroid cameras, confines photos into a square shape. This is in contrast to the 4:3 aspect ratio normally used by the iOS device cameras.

7) Flickr

Fun way to share photos online and make new friends.  Best photo sharing platform.  Even if you do not want to share photos pay the membership fee to store backups of your most important photos.

Flickr is an image hosting and video hosting website, web services suite, and online community that was created by Ludicorp in 2004 and acquired by Yahoo! in 2005. In addition to being a popular website for users to share and embed personal photographs, the service is widely used by bloggers to host images that they embed in blogs and social media. Yahoo reported in June 2011 that Flickr had a total of 51 million registered members and 80 million unique visitors. In August 2011 the site reported that it was hosting more than 6 billion images and this number continues to grow steadily according to reporting sources.  Photos and videos can be accessed from Flickr without the need to register an account but an account must be made in order to upload content onto the website. Registering an account also allows users to create a profile page containing photos and videos that the user has uploaded and also grants the ability to add another Flickr user as a contact. For mobile users, Flickr has an official app for iPhone, for Windows Phone 7, and for Android.

8) Tumblr

Your repost images you like the same way you retweet a message on Twitter.  Younger crowd.

Tumblr is a microblogging platform and social networking website, owned and operated by Tumblr, Inc. Emphasizing its ease of use, the service allows users to post content to a short-form blog, named a “tumblelog.” Users can follow other users’ blogs, as well as make their blogs private. Much of the website’s features are accessed from the “dashboard” interface, where the option to post content and posts of followed blogs appear. As of February 13, 2012, Tumblr had over 44.3 million blogs.According to comScore, it scored 13.4 million unique visitors in the U.S. in July 2011—up 218% from July 2010.Its headquarters is located in Midtown Manhattan, New York City.

9) WordPress

Great place to share ideas, photos, thoughts…. 

WordPress is a weblog hosting provider owned by Automattic which opened to beta testers on August 8, 2005 and opened to the public on November 21, 2005. It is powered by the open source WordPress software.It is financially supported via paid upgrades, “VIP” services and advertising. The site was initially launched as an invitation-only service, although at one stage, accounts were also available to users of the Flock web browser.There are 24 million individual blogs with the service as of July 2011. Registration is not required to read or comment on weblogs hosted on the site, except if chosen by the blog owner. Registration is required to own or post in a weblog. All the basic and original features of the site are free-to-use. However, some features (such as a CSS editor, domain mapping, and storage upgrades) are available as paid options. In September 2010, it was announced that Windows Live Spaces, Microsoft’s blogging service, would be closing, and that Microsoft would instead be partnering with WordPress.com for blogging services.

10) Google+

Although I’m a “Mac-Guy” I love Google, but I just can’t get into their social media platforms.  Google+ to me isn’t much better than GoogleWave!!!  Take three guys??? Third time’s a charm….Well at least you have YouTube.

Google+ (pronounced and sometimes written as Google Plus, sometimes abbreviated as G+) is a social networking and identity service, operated by Google Inc.

The service was launched on June 28, 2011, in an invitation-only “field testing” phase. Early invites were soon suspended due to an “insane demand” for new accounts.  On September 20, 2011, Google+ was opened to everyone 18 years of age or older without the need for an invitation.  It was opened for a younger age group (13+ years old in US and most countries, 14+ in South Korea and Spain, 16+ in Netherlands) on January 26, 2012.

Google+ integrates social services such as Google Profiles and Google Buzz, and introduces new services identified as Circles, Hangouts and Sparks. Google+ is available as a website and on mobile devices. Sources such as The New York Times have declared it Google’s biggest attempt to rival the social network Facebook, which has over 800 million users.  Google+ is considered the company’s fourth foray into social networking, following Google Buzz (launched 2010, retired in 2011), Google Friend Connect (launched 2008, to be retired by March 2012) and orkut (launched in 2004, now operated entirely by subsidiary Google Brazil).

On January 19, 2012, it was reported that Google+ had surpassed a user base of 90 million.  According to independent analysis of its growth in December 2011, the site was adding an estimated number of 625,000 new users a day, which may total 400 million members by the end of 2012. The site’s popularity accelerated in December 2011, with almost a quarter of its total user base joining in December alone, said Paul B. Allen, the founder of Ancestry.com, who tracks the numbers as the “unofficial statistician” for Google+.

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Sincerely,
Frank Cunha III
I Love My Architect – Facebook 


Who is Wilford Raney “@BillyBadBird” – Over 1 Billion Views (Like McDonalds) #ProllyEvenMore

I have made a few “interesting” connections over the years and I am going to “expose” some of them to you. For my first “Exposé” I chose a special social media friend (or maybe he chose me).

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All photos taken by Wilford Raney.

I have been friends with Mr. Raney for quite some time now.  We first met on Twitter and are now connected throughout the web.  Wilford, or as I like to call him, Billy, is a unique fellow who I have come to admire because of his good nature and pleasant nature.  He becomes a friend to everyone he meets.  People from all over the world interact with “Billybadbird” (Billy’s Twitter handle on Twitter) on a daily basis.  Somehow he finds time for his fans and friends in between his daily routine of watching/feeding the birds, cleaning up the local beaches in Port Bolivar, Texas, and photographing the majestic scenes he encounters living next to the Gulf.

Raney’s parents moved back to Houston Texas right after his father finished serving in the air force in Bossier City (where Billy was born).   The family always spent summers and weekends at the beach.  Eventually, his mother and father relocated the family in the 70’s to, as he says, “get his children out of the city and away from drugs and temptation” but Billy seems to think that it was more a tactical decision. 

 “My father loves the ocean just as much as we do…  Once you get here it’s very hard to leave.”

Billy goes on to say:

“Our family has always loved birds…  My grandfather (also named Wilford Raney) left the city for the country after he retired.  He had a great big window in the great room and when he became bound to the wheelchair he spent his days in front of the window watching the birds.   It gave him great pleasure.   My mother believes in waste not want not – so everytime she cooked – all the scraps went outside to the birds.  That was a practice I continued when I moved into my little ocean front cottage — the birds started staying so I started cooking for them – the same as I do today —  I make rice cakes — twice a day — I cook 6 cups of rice – let it cool then turn it upside down on a plate –”

I asked Billy who has nearly 12K followers about when he started tweeting:

“I have been tweeting about two years — I don’t know how I started or why.” I only retweet people I follow who follow me –  I make very few exceptions to this rule-  and I have this rule be fair to people who promote me.  I am grateful for their support….  I am grateful for everyone’s support -but I also must remain fair to everyone.”


Anyone who knows Billy from Facebook, Twitter, or visiting his website knows that he has been through some tramatic experiences living on the coast.  He was weathered some difficult storms.

“We are in our third year without a storm —  this is making everyone nervous.  We average two a year – a few years back we had three hurricanes back to back.  The worst times for storms for us is August and September when the ocean is very, very warm — but some of the earlier seasonal storms hit us too.   Allison was a tropical storm that stalled for several and flooded Houston – Alicia was a hurricane – she really messed things up. My worst experience was Ike — I lost two homes and the property which now lies in the ocean.  I was trapped.  I almost died. We went 4 months without water and lights – the island was deserted. I stayed — I cannot leave.”

Billy recounted a typical day in Port Bolivar, Texas:

“I clean up the beaches for God and the birds.   One day I went outside to a seagull in my yard who had fishing line tangled in his wings.  He was scared of me but he needed help —  it broke my heart – I cried for many hours —  I had to trap him with a net but eventually I was able to save him —  the last thing before Ike — I kept seeing a pelican in front of the house — when he moved he was wobbling and tripping — I had to chase him in the ocean to catch him — he also was tangled in the fishing line — the hook was in his foot — I carried him to a neighbor — we cut him free and he flew away — then the storm came —  I will always remember that –  I clean up everything that can cause a bird his life —  prevention….. I wrote a poem about this.  We have about 1500 people year long – the island is 22 miles in the middle of the ocean —  you can only get here by ferry boat – probably 30 to 40,000 people come for holidays – maybe a whole bunch more — people are everywhere during the summer – winter is for us. Quiet
Peaceful – you can walk for miles on the beach and never see a soul.”

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