Dynamics 365 Users In Pittsburgh – User Helping Users

Last year I attended the CRMUG Summit in Tampa and have to say I was very impressed with everything that I was involved in. During the summit I attended two classes in the Black Belt Series and completed the series when I returned to Pittsburgh. The information that I learned in this series I put to immediate use on our Dynamics 365 project. I also met with a local Pittsburgh Chapter leader and discussed participating in the local chapter.

This past January, I facilitated the first meeting of CRMUG Pittsburgh at the Microsoft Office . We have a very good discussion about the local chapter and how it can benefit others. We talked about the value of the user group and what we would like to have presented and discussed in future local meetings.

The local chapter is a place to learn from other users, vendors and Microsoft about Dynamics 365. This is a place to enhance your network of people who you can discuss ideas and ask for help. Vendors at the group do NOT do sales pitches, this is part of the rules of the group. They are they to support the community and build relations. User, like myself are there to learn, teach and discuss ideas.

The next meeting is in April, to help make the meetings as valuable as possible to our local community we have a survey to collect information on themes of the next meeting.

To help create a better local chapter of CRMUG please fill out this short survey. The results will be used to create the agenda for the April meeting.
Create your own user feedback survey

Please register now for the CRMUG Pittsburgh meeting, April 18, 2017 from 1:30 to 3:30.

DEA 360 Strategy

The fact that the DEA has selected Pittsburgh for the pilot of the 360 Strategy speaks volumes to the epidemic that we are in. This health crisis is throughout our country and right in our own backyard. The war on drugs is not working and did not work. We need to have a new strategy and I am anxious to see how the DEA implements the new 360 model.

I have spoken before about my goals as it relates to this horrible crisis and shared my story of loss. Losing Amber is something I have to live with every day, I think of her constantly and miss our conversations and laughter.

My goals are:

  • End the stigma with addiction and overdose
  • Educate people on the epidemic and this health crisis
  • Celebrate recovery

“The 360 strategy brings together for the first time, the agencies that have dealt with this problem separately, into a comprehensive and sustained effort to not only fight drug traffickers but also to make communities resilient to their return.”

Read more at http://www.dea.gov/divisions/hq/2015/hq111015.shtml

I have partnered with newly found friends from Sage’s Army and Not One More Pittsburgh Chapter to progress my goals forward. I am in regular contact with them as well as friends at Candle, Inc for their Reality Tour program. Each of these non-profits offer creative resources to the public and I recommend you visit the sites to learn more and attend their events.

We must remove the blinders and open our eyes to see the crisis that we are confronted with. We are losing lives every day from overdoses as well as related violent crimes. Not to mention the staggering amount of people who are suffering from addiction as addicts or loved ones.

I think a very important part of the 360 Strategy is the formation of a “Community Alliance“. There are many groups in our area as well as the nation that are dealing with different aspects of this crisis. Let’s work together to raise awareness and end this epidemic.

“DEA’s 360 Strategy recognizes that we need to utilize every community resource possible to reach young people and attack the heroin and prescription drug epidemic at multiple levels,” said Tuggle. “This three-sided strategy brings together everyone who has a stake in the successful outcome of this pilot program. This could be a model for many other communities.”

Read more at http://www.dea.gov/divisions/hq/2015/hq111015.shtml

Read the complete DEA 360 Strategy Fact Sheet below.

hq111015-DEA 360 Strategy Fact Sheet

 

Fittsburgh

I was born and raised in Pittsburgh and have the accent to prove it! I left Pittsburgh back in ’99 and rushed back home to be where my heart belongs. People all over are trying to live more healthy, even here in the Burgh where we have fries ON our sandwiches!

Join Fittsburgh, by clicking on the image.

I came across the community called Fittburgh and just loved the idea. I have been trying to live a more healthy lifestyle for a few years now. My age as caught up with me and my metabolism no longer will let me eat anything I want and still be thin. I have started  work on it, but  haven’t been succeeding lately.

I started practicing yoga in December and have been wearing a Fitbit for several years. I always joke that is shows how lazy I am. Well, now with the help of Fittsburgh and my yoga practice at Urban Prana Yoga I am going to succeed at changing my lifestyle. Join me on my journey through life here, not only about my weight loss and fitness challenges and successes.

Let’s help Fittsburgh promote Pittsburgh as a fitness and healthy community, they can do it, WE CAN DO IT!

Join Fittsburgh and help them in their mission and make it your mission to.

Yoga, One Week In

So, I have been attending Yoga classes for a full week now. Right now I am taking part of a great special that gives me unlimited classes for 30 days for $30.

I started last Sunday and have 7 classes in already! Yesterday, I attended 2 class one in the morning and one in the evening.

The classes I took are listed below and I have enjoyed each one in a different way.

Yoga Basics

This class is basic poses in Yoga in a very friendly environment, I have notice that this is more of a workout for me. I usually work up a little sweat during this class and it feels great. The teachers provide various alternatives for people to work with the poses and help out a lot.

Gentle Yoga

This is a more relaxing class that I am able to move through a lot easier. The poses are not as difficult as the Yoga Basics. The stretches feel wonderful.

Candlelight Restorative Yoga

I attended this class last night and just LOVED IT! This is more of a meditative class. You only do a few poses but you hold those poses for 10 – 20 minutes with props to help out. This is a very relaxing class, you are stretching and breathing and thinking about the moment. Living the moment is something that I am learning about.

$5 Meditation

This short class is not covered by the program and is a community based class, meaning it is geared towards provide an inexpensive way for people to give Yoga a try. What is even greater about this class is that these benefit a charity, each month a new charity is selected. Great way to to give back to the community!

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So, how do I feel about this. So far I am hooked, as is evident by looking at my attendance. Why? Because it is a nice way of getting some exercise, the stretches feel very good. It is also a great way of stopping and freeing my mind for that time, this time I am about to connect with myself. Sounds corny, huh… Well, I believe this will help me deal with the stress in my life and I did already notice one event during the week that I handled much better.

This is only week one of my 30 days and I will be supplying more information as I move forward in this journey!

Namaste.

You can view the class descriptions here on the Urban Prana Yoga web site.

 

 

Yoga, My First Try

I have heard of Yoga and have wanted to try it for a while. I read about how Yoga incorporates mediation and breathing and feel that is something that will bring a lot of value to me.

So, today I signed up and tried my first Yoga class. Yoga Basics, this morning at 9, perfect time for me. I didn’t know what to expect as I drove to the studio, will I be the only man there? Preparing for the class I read some articles online and watched some videos on YouTube. I watched an interview with Quentin Vennie and then found the article quoted below by him.

There are many benefits in maintaining a consistent yoga practice. Yoga has been shown to relieve stress, enhance mental focus, improve posture, improve mood and increase flexibility. With all of the life changing advantages of yoga, there is one question that remains: Where are all of the male yogis?

Read more: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/quentin-vennie/men-yoga_b_4179963.html

Breathing is so important, I know this, I am sure you know this also. This is another article I read prior to attending my first class.

Scott Rodwin, founder of Radiance Yoga, explains that breathing exercises, called pranayama, have been developed over thousands of years to calm and tame that endless stream of thoughts. – See more at: http://www.mensfitness.com/training/endurance/9-reasons-why-you-should-practice-yoga?page=4#sthash.muolP0d2.dpuf

So, I attended the Yoga Basics class at Urban Prana Yoga in Brentwood. First, I was NOT the only man. I was welcomed in by a very friendly and informative teacher. The other people in the class where also very welcoming, which made the experience that much better.

The class itself was a little difficult for me, I am overweight and a “couch potato”. I really enjoyed the time to myself, I was in a room of people but still felt a sense of peace in the room. The soft lighting and music helped with that, I listened to the teacher and tried to do the poses that she instructed. Some I did, some I couldn’t. But, she was very helpful in making sure I knew other poses that I could do and making the experience very enjoyable.

I worked up a sweat and really felt at ease throughout the class. I came home and told my wife about the class and that I am looking forward to attending more.

Year In Review

 Year In Review

This year saw changes in my work life, I was contacted by a previous employer to come back as a principal engineer. The company and boss made this decision very easy, now that I am at a large international company some of my daily responsibilities have changed. But, all in all I am doing the same thing that I have been doing for that past 15+ years.

I have been very involved with the social media communities and especially Pittsburgh based communities. I have been honored to be a Carnegie Science Center Insider and I have been writing posts on PghDad.me about the Science Center with special insider access.

I have been working with WordPress this year a lot and diving more into blogging which help me create this site and also 2 additional sites now. I have more regularly blogged at PghDad.me, which is a site that I use for parenting/family and Pittsburgh. I blog about many different ideas and thoughts with PghDad.me but everything revolves around family and/or Pittsburgh.

The purpose of this site, Rainaldi.org, which I plan to become more active with this year is my technical site. Which is extension of what I do professionally, as a principal engineer and a tech geek I use all kinds of technologies both personally and professional. This site is a place to write and share my feelings about what I am doing and learning.

This year also saw the re-launch of our church’s web site at Stewart Avenue Lutheran, I have bee more involved with the church this year not only with the site but also with social media and Sunday School. By the grace of God I am here and blessed to have a wonderful family and life and I am honored to belong to such a wonderful church family as well.

 

A new site that will officially be launched January 1st 2013 is TalkWithDaddy.com, this is a project that my children and I are diving in to. Talk With Daddy is a web show that will revolve around talks and experiences with my children.

 

I wish each and everyone of you a happy and safe new year and look forward to a bright 2013.

 

Pittsburgh Blogger Facebook Group

Emily over at emilylevenson.com created a new Facebook group for Pittsburgh Bloggers, I joined the group right away. Those who do not know her, she also create Project: Food Budget which I have participate in for helping to manage my family's food spending. I love the idea of a group for people who blog around Pittsburgh to communicate and get to know each other better. I am a new one to the blogging arena, I am not new to the web or Internet though. I have been created web applications since the late 90s, I travel a lot to develop sites during the boom.

I left Pittsburgh and hurried back around 2000 and met my beautiful wife and started a family. I am a “tech addict” and stay on Twitter and Facebook all the time. I am truly “connected' with my Fitbit which is a very advance pedometer that monitor not only my steps but the floors and activity level that I walk.

As of this writing the Facebook group is getting a lot of activity and I will be checking out each of the blogs posted there. Born and raised in Pittsburgh, I love our city and am so happy to be part of a great community of bloggers.

Once again, Pittsburgh bloggers join the Pittsburgh Bloggers Facebook group and build our community.

 

 

East Coast Earthquake, did you evacuate?

Having experienced the first earthquake in my life and the first felt in Pittsburgh in over a century, I am rethinking are reactions.

Walking back to my office and seeing a coworker concerned and asking if anyone else felt the earthquake. A 5.8 at the epicenter in Virginia, an earthquake hasn’t occurred at this size on the East Coast in 114 years.

I was in an office building in the South Hills of Pittsburgh, downtown Pittsburgh evacuated buildings and some in the South Hills. My afterthoughts now, should we have evacuated? Many of us talked about it at the office but didn’t leave the building, was this the right thing to do? Are we to focused on work and not on safety procedures? I am not being critical of anyone, just rethinking if what I did was correct. I would love to have a discussion about this and see what others on the East Coast feel about this.

My first Earthquake in Pittsburgh

Today in Pittsburgh was the first Earthquake that I been through, but I didn’t feel it. A coworker felt it and looked very shocked and concerned. I was not sure what was going on and was continuing with my work, but had to check the the social media networks to see what was going on. It took some time and then the news media started to report, glad we have social media to get information around.

To read details look at:

5.9 magnitude quake rattles Pittsburgh.

Did Anyone Else Just Feel That Earthquake?

Facebook and Twitter where alive with chatter regarding the earthquake and checking if anyone else felt anything.