Fountain Spring Resort in Google Maps

To easily and conveniently find our business, Fountain Spring on the cloud, we have submitted it to Google Maps and added it to Google Places.
This web tool is free, simple and user-friendly that will help us reach new customers. When potential customers search Maps for local business like ours, they will easily find to locate and know the information (e.g. address, hours of operation, photos, products and services) being offered by our business.

The app is great for all business sizes. You too can start adding your business and put it on Google Maps.

Enjoy while having a glimpse of my presentation on how to add your listing to Google Maps.

Google Maps Presentation

Pingoat - Ping your Blog

Do you want your blog to get noticed? Here's a pinging web tool that I've stumbled upon on the web...Pingoat! It's a free service that helps promote and increase traffic to your blog by submitting your site to several blog ping servers in a flash. It's so simple, quick, and easy to use.

Find out here in my how to's.
How to use Pin Goat

TripIt -Your Online Travel Organizer

If you are a jet setter holding multiple itineraries, you want the privilege of having all your travel plans organized in just a snap. TripIt is just like having an assistant to help you put orders your itinerary from travel bookings to reservation, to finding right hotel, restaurant or even getting a rent for car that suite your needs.

TripIt is a free online service that helps travelers organize and integrate their travel plans in a single online travel itinerary plan. Having this travel application handy will keep you from the hassle of maintaining multiple-destination trips even if booked at different travel agencies.

Cool features of TripIt:
  1. This travel tool is available for mobile devices like Blackberry, iPhones and Android thereby access to your itinerary is easily within reach.
  2. Allows integration with Google apps.
  3. It shows directions, weather and maps in your online itinerary.
  4. It has the ability to let you access your itinerary via internet, share it, print it and allows integration with social networking sites.
  5. TripIt has this "TripIt To Me" attribute that lets you get your trip information from anywhere you have access to email including mobile devices. By sending a command to, you will get the results right away. To illustrate, email "get trip" to and TripIt will email back your current trip itinerary.
Here are the commands to use:

Command: Get flight today
Result: All flights with departure for today

Command: Get hotel 07/01/03
Result: All hotel reservations that include stay date of 01 July 2013

Command: Get restaurant today
Result: Restaurant reservation details for today

Command: Get trip
Result: Entire itinerary for current trip

Command: Get trip 07/01/13
Result: Entire itinerary for your 01 July 2013 trip

Command: Get schedule tomorrow
Result: Full schedule of tomorrow, across your trips

Command: Help
Result: Latest list of currently available TripIt To Me Commands

How to Use TripIt

Sage Billing Boss Tutorial

For every business owner who wants to get paid quickly and easily, Sage Billing Boss comes to the rescue. This totally free online invoicing tool is a knight in shining armor for freelancers who want to get paid efficiently via the online payment tracking system.

An invoice and payment solutions are vital in one's business to be able to survive and I should say that Sage Billing Boss serves its purpose.

Here are some reasons why to use Sage Billing Boss.
  1. It is definitely free and no hidden costs.
  2. Capable of sending unlimited invoices to unlimited customers.
  3. Simple to create and can send invoice online easily and accurately within a minute.
  4. A tracking feature is available to know the status of an invoice.
  5. It allows collaboration with your accountant and bookkeeper by inviting them to gain access to your Billing account.
  6. No special accounting skills is needed because Billing Boss is an online billing solution capable of creating quotes and can track down how much have already been billed out, what have been paid and still overdue from the customers.

Mary Ann_Cucio_how to Use Billing Boss

Free Calls (Landline and Mobile Device) to US & Canada using your Gmail Account

In my personal point of view, phone call facility of Google is undeniably a blockbuster amongst Gmail users. This free call feature connects to any landline and wireless device numbers anywhere within the US and Canada. Although free calls only apply for US and Canada territories, it is an essential and great communication tool which will be of big help for a virtual assistant who has clients across the globe. International call rates still apply for a minimum toll charge.

This added Google phone service would mean being able to enjoy easy and affordable rates access not only to our friends, family, and relatives but to our clients as well.

You may want to try and enjoy the free calls to say hi and get connected to your family in the US and Canada.

I hope you find my learning presentation helpful and valuable.
Mary Ann_Cucio_how to Use Google Call Phone via Gmail

doc2pdf Tutorial

I am just pretty curious why is there such a need to convert almost any file format to PDF (Portable Document Format) until I have discovered the wonders of this document-preservation tool. PDF, being the brainchild of Adobe Corporation is a file format which can be viewed, printed and shared virtually on the web regardless of the document format (texts, images, layout, graphics, etc.) which remains protected/untouched as its original format is transmitted electronically.

Here are some of the cool stuff I have uncovered while learning the PDF.
  1. Word document files that are large in size may sometimes get denied or spammed when delivered because they might carry virus or malware. Converting them to PDF will get the files compressed, thereby reducing the size and still maintain the quality of the document.
  2. It has a security feature to safeguard the document format.
  3. It is compatible with any operating system.
  4. PDF file is pleasant to view on the screen as if you are reading a book.
  5. It is capable of merging files into one document.
  6. PDF cannot be edited or changed, thus, making files protected from changes and retain its exact components. Therefore, it allows our files from misplaced fonts or busted layouts.
To support my learning on PDF, I have selected doc2pdf, an online document tool that converts from file to PDF and from PDF to any document format. I also have created a learning presentation on doc2pdf.

Drop me a line by clicking on the "comment" button if I have missed out something. Thanks.

Mary Ann_Cucio_how to Use Doc2pdf

Evernote Tutorial

Organizing and keeping record of handwritten notes, voice memos, formatted texts, web articles and photos will definitely come in a breeze in one place with the help of Evernote.

Evernote is a web tool designed for note taking and archiving. It works with MAC, Windows, iPhones, Palm Pre, Blackberry, Windows Mobile and Android. Because it has plugins, uploading information from Outlook, Twitter, Internet Explorer, Firefox, Chrome and Safari come simple and straight forward.

This online note taking cloud based application is like a digital filing cabinet that works wonders in archiving information, online synchronization, allows sharing, gives access online and can even retrieve data right in your mobile gadget too.

Mary Ann_Cucio_how to Use Evernote

Free SMS Service via Gmail

Recently, I've gotten to hit on this free SMS service via Gmail. While the other search engine provider offers two (2) free text messages only (for one week!) to a maximum, Google is throwing away free 50 SMS online (I presume this is on a daily basis.) and is now capable of sending text messages for Smart, Sun and Globe subscribers. With this friendly and wise move of Google, I declare myself a big fan of this tech provider.

Here, what I've found out and explored it myself to my delight.

Thank you and more freebies to come Google :)

Google Docs (Documents) Tutorial

I am not aware of the great attributes of Google Docs until I've come across its documents segment while making a tutorial and doing my personal study of the software. I am just acquainted with Gmail just for the email thing; other than that, I have not fully utilized its purpose. Google Docs is a free online program which is an indispensable web tool for every computer user. It has a collaborative feature online, sharing is immeasurable which allows the team to view, make simultaneous revisions (maximum of 10 people) to the document in real time thus, time and effort are being saved. Another built-in functionality is the "Publish" quality that allows you to copy the link or the URL into the web or blog for publishing.

Now, I am mulling over whether I should make a paradigm shift from using a traditional desktop to online word processor. With the many characteristics of Google Docs, which I have yet to explore further, it dawned on me to resist in saying "no" and not to be a fan of this well-liked cloud based app.

Would love to hear from you if there's something I have missed to include in my learning presentation. Go ahead and hit the comment button.
Mary Ann_Cucio_how to Use Google Docs Documents)

MailChimp Tutorial

The benefit of email campaign is gaining momentum as technology modernizes. Why not? Email being the fastest, convenient and economical means of communication that is accessible across the globe is an effective advertising tool used by internet marketers to saturate online market about the products/services they are offering. To ensure that advertisement takes full advantage effectively and gets full attention from customers, using MailChimp application comes into a play. It is a free email marketing campaign that facilitates sending out 12,000 electronic mail newsletters, advertisements, and flyers per month for a free plan and can share them on social networking sites with tracking results.

Here, I have created tutorial to give you an idea what MailChimp is really all about. Have a peep.
Mary Ann _Cucio_how to Use MailChimp

Soho Projects Tutorial

Do you want someone or something to oversee your project that would dramatically change the way you work? Grab this hassle-free and one-size-fits all technique of online project software, the Soho Projects, a social way to get things done in a click. A program where you can converge and see what your team is working on.

Take a look at what Soho Projects has to offer to make our project effortless to handle.
  • It goes together and integrates with Google Docs, Google Calendar with the capability to embed in iGoogle, Gmail and Google Site
  • Allows team gets updates and collaborates online
  • Helps organize project in milestones, task place and tasks
  • There's a shared project calendar that keeps all the meetings, milestones and tasks neatly organize in a central place for everyone to see
  • Tracks the overall progress of your project in the dashboard which is the main area of your project and gives you a great glance view of the past and upcoming tasks and activities.
  • There is an embedded Project Chat in the priority area where you can create a forum and set up chat rooms
  • Time-tracking functionality is at hand
  • It bills customers based on the activities performed and time spent on a project
Mary Ann_Cucio_how to Use Zoho Projects

Google Forms Tutorial

It’s amazing to note that as an ordinary folk like me, I can now create form easily. Yes! Easy as abc. Thanks to Google Forms! I was able to generate an electronic form or survey that is so simple and uncomplicated to fill out. There’s versatility and one has the preference to choose from the question option whether it is text, paragraph text, grid, scale rating or multiple choice according to one's use. From a simple to a complex web form like that of Google Forms which is a built-in tool in the Google Docs, data collected can be embedded into the website or blog and automatically collated in the Google Spreadsheet for results analysis with added graphs and computations.

Here are 5 cool reasons for me to use Google Forms and I am sharing my tutorial too.

1. It's free. Can sign-in using my own Gmail account.
2. User friendly and hassle free. Even a kid can create a form or survey in a snap.
3. Convenient. Easy sharing of collected data for collaboration.
4. Ability to gather all email addresses of all respondents.
5. Data gathered is analyzed in Google Spreadsheet.
6. It can embed into website or blogs.

Till my next tutorial . . . . .

Mary Ann_Cucio_how to Use Google Forms

Google Calendar Tutorial

Keeping our multiple appointments well organized will keep our sanity in place. A good timetable is a life-saver for those who are on the go and want always on top of everything. In today's fast-pace world where everything is in snap, gone are the days of manual tracking of demanding schedules.

With Google Calendar, a perfect indispensable web tool a busy person must have, will simply and systematically put our hectic routines all in one place. It does wonders to an on the go individual in managing and keeping track of his/her appointments, important events, and meetings. There's a customizable reminder to keep us always in constant link with our schedules by notifying us via email or text sent right to our mobile phone. No reason for our schedules to be over looked because Google Calendar also offers a two-way syncing of our mobile gadget's built-in calendar that we can access whenever we are away from our working table or even if internet access is offline. These qualities of Google Calendar will simply mean efficient handling, easy access and trouble-free sharing of our activities or whereabouts with our family.

Hope you will enjoy viewing my 2nd tutorial presentation and you have gained something useful from it. Thank you.
Mary Ann_Cucio_how to Use Google Calendar

Dropbox Tutorial

In today’s high-tech era where computer is one of the important commodities in our household, information turns out to be easily at reach and globally handy. With my exposure to the wider world via net, it is a “no no” for me not to be familiar with some web applications that would make my life uncomplicated as an internet user.

I had an encountered with this Dropbox application in one of my gig (work) in oDesk where files were easily sent and shared to me by my overseas client. As I googled Dropbox, it says, “it is a free service that lets you bring all your photos, documents, and videos anywhere and share them easily with family and friends. Provided that Dropbox is installed in one’s computer, any file saves to Dropbox will directly be saved to computer, iPhone, iPad and even Dropbox website.”

With this attribute of Dropbox, fear no more and say good bye to the hassle of sending large files - a simple and effortless way to share and at the same time storing our memoirs in a secured place. Really, nothing beats from being conscientious when it comes to safeguarding our important documents, photos and videos. As the cyber age increases exponentially, it aims at giving convenience and saves me from the mishap knowing that all my files are in good hands. In my case, I should have placed and have all my photos recovered in Dropbox folder if only there was this kind of application available during that time when our house was razed by a fire.

Dropbox Features
• Your files are always secure and available from Dropbox website.
• Works with Windows, Mac Linux, iPad, iPhone, Android and Blackberry
• It won’t control your connection since it’s manually set bandwidth limit.
• Can view documents, photos and videos even when offline
• Free for 2GB, with subscription up to 100GB available
• It’s your files anywhere for a person who is always on the go

Have a glimpse of my first own version of "How-To" - my Dropbox tutorial. I hope I have shared something useful and you have gained from it. Do keep on coming back for more of my web application tutorials.

Thanks for watching. :)
Mary Ann_Cucio_how to Use Dropbox

Your Virtual Assistant's Disclosure

To get started, it is vital to say that I should arm myself with necessary tools and expertise to be able to get my feet in the virtual assistant world's entrance. Virtual assistant is not new to me. I once had my 1st gig in oDesk way back in 2008 but it did not last long because I should say that, aside from me not being well equipped with the right tools (program know-how, poor both power and internet connection) at the right time to becoming a competent VA, I must admit that I lacked the perseverance to go on during that time. Those were the giants in me that I need to over come and conquer.

Here's my snap shot of my VA short gig in oDesk.

Had there been this kind of training stuff being offered earlier to back me up to flourish as a good VA, then I should have signed up myself. Now that I have set my mind to becoming a world-class competent VA, there's no turning back that I immediately registered my name in an online virtual assistant seminar offered by Jomar Hilario. The moment I got hold of the downloadable material sent to me and without delay, I excitedly listened and paid attention to the lesson being taught. Just like in a usual classroom approach, I even jotted down all the important notes as a source of reference that I can refer at every now and then. It's a make or break for me. This time, I want to make up for the lost time.

As a neophyte VA, I am now ready to learn the curve slowly but surely. There are so many things to be learned not only on technical proficiency but holistically as well. One should have the faith, courage, discipline, focus, proper time management, impeccable work ethics and the willingness to learn to make things happen. For me, being a VA means working remotely and using the technology in a revolutionary approach to be able to render services to clients' end globally while getting the luxury of spending quality time with my family from the comforts of our own home. It's the same way of saying hitting balancing work and life in one stone. One must truly declare that VA has evolved to be the prime necessity in today's modern business set-up.

As I am beginning to learn the ropes, it excites me everyday to discover new wisdom and it's the start for me to become more skilled at internet tools needed for a novice VA like me. My own version of HOW-TO's" will be posted in my succeeding posts. So, please keep track of them. Hopefully, with God's grace, this could be a good start of business for me wherein I can be of help and be a blessing to work-at-home-moms (WAHM) here in our province (Bicol region) and assuring them that it really exists to earn legitimate income (oh yes, paying in USD$ in our own motherland, the Philippines! ) from their respective homes even if they reside in far flung areas provided there's a fast internet connection. I desire to have a business that has no merchandise on hand or inventory, something that I could always bring with me anytime and something I can hold office anywhere (at the park, internet cafe, restaurant, and even in my own bedroom).

In parting, let me share this quote, "Take the first step in faith. You don't have to see the whole staircase, just take the first step." - Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Be inspired and be blessed always. Thanks. :)