Sunday, February 21, 2010

Online television & The Vampire Diaries

I am a supernatural/sci-fi addict.{And I'm okay with that.} I also don't currently have cable or satellite.  We haven't had it since April of 2008.  It has been a while.  But thanks to I have been able to watch a good number of shows I love Pysch, Monk, Stargate, Bones. . . I have also been able to discover old shows I had never heard of like Day Break.

Hulu is nice because you only have one commercial at each break.  The commercial stays at full screen. And there is some variety within the commercials.  You can watch multiple episodes of the same show and not be hit with the same commercial over and over again.  This weekend I discovered CW's The Vampire Diaries.  There are one four episodes up and they are all on CW's site.  I have seen more trailers for The Crazies than I ever wanted to see.  I think there are two of them and they alternate with the episode.  There are two commercials at each break.  I was also hit with a heavy dose of tmobile's my touch (I think that is what it is called, all those commercials and I'm not sure I remember). 

If you are looking to kill some time or to find an episode you missed, is probably the place to go first.  I found The Vampire Diaries through 

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Books I enjoyed last week

funny pictures
see more Lolcats and funny pictures
My leisurely life of reading and snacking is over. Yes, that's right, I get to go back to work on Monday (finally!)! I am part-time until Wednesday when I hope the doctor will say I can go back full time.  Keep your fingers crossed! Last week, I did quite a bit of reading. Here are the grades with extended reviews likely to come soon on a few of them.

The reviews will have to be from memory and with some help from plot summaries online.  I want new books and can only have 50 out at a time.  I still have a few books to finish and Kate & Mom always get books too.

Before I can go to the library, I have to finish this week's menu and grocery list.  Last week, we strayed from the menu.  We are getting back on course and trying some new recipes!

Blog Improvement Project Task One - A blogging to do list

I love to do lists, I really do. I love the google task feature in my gmail. I can take the tasks and rearrange them, check them off, clear off the completed tasks.  Love task lists.

Yet, this task - making a blogging to do list, was a challenge. Kim & Jackie sent us over to Chris Brogan's 50 Ways to Take your Blog to the Next Level. The first item on his list is to make your goal and your target audience crystal clear.  Hmmm, I am not really a good foodie, I love food, I enjoy cooking, *but* and you knew there would be a but, it isn't all I do and I'm not a good cook.  I am learning, but frankly I don't do it enough.  I also love books, LOVE books, possibly a little more than food.  Only a little though. I also enjoy politics.  Quite a bit actually, perhaps not as much as food and books, but quite a bit.  I love my daughter (more than food and books). And, finally, I am trying to finish my 101 Goals in 1,001 days project (not trying as hard as I should). So I guess this blog is about me.  I have no idea who my target audience is.  I'd like to think it is smart funny people. :) Because I find this particular suggestion to be such a challenge, I am going to skip it.  Instead, I am going to write about what I want to write about and not worry about creating a niche or fitting into a niche.

So here is my list:
  • Design (eg. template, colour scheme, sidebar content)
    • I will create a unique design for my blog (or get someone to create said unique design).
    • I will create a unique design for the Eaton County Humane Society's blog that is professional and friendly.
  • Quality of posts (eg. post length, variety, images)
    • Here my goal is both quality and quantity.
      • I will post at least daily to my personal blog.
      • I will vary my post topics and avoid simply reposting someone else's recipes, etc, expect when I think it improves my content or needs repeating.
      • I will post three times a week to the Humane Society's blog
        • Once a week a featured animal,
        • Once a week a pet/animal health/happiness post/cross link, etc,
        • Once a week a fundraising issue (sometimes subbed with a featured animal).
      • I will include a photo or image with every ECHS post and in most of my posts.
  • Social Media Integration (eg. Twitter, Facebook, Digg)
    • I will twitter each update to both blogs. (maybe). {that sounds more task like than I will better utilize twitter. . . ).
    • I will develop facebook as a promotion and information site for ECHS and the ECHS blog.
  • Search Engine Optimization (eg. meta tags, keywords, page descriptions)
    • I would like to learn about this. . . 
  • Ease of subscribing (eg. RSS button, email subscription option)
    • And this.
  • Branding (eg. gravatar, favitar)
    • Need help here too. 
So there is my to do list.  Some of it not very to do like more goal like, that's okay, that's where I am right now.

    **update: first obvious task, fix list items so they aren't white and can be read. ug.**

    Wednesday, February 3, 2010

    Turns out pot roast is harder than it looks and I'm not so good with biscuits (but we knew that)

    Tonight's culinary adventure was an effort to knock off number 19. Learn to make a good pot roast.

    So we started with the basics, onions, potatoes, a pan, and a bag with seasonings.

    Yes, that's right a bag with seasonings.  The first problem we hit is that the directions with the bag said it would be done in an hour and a half.  It wasn't even warm enough to be rare after an hour and a half.  So we did it for another 30 minutes and it was, eh, okay.  It was a tad on the tough side though.  Mom's theory was that she cut it wrong and it should have been cut on the grain which she couldn't locate.  Next time, I will try the crockpot method, recipe suggestions welcome!

    I also made some biscuits, from a mix this time.  Still not that great, I am pretty sure I over-rolled them and probably over-floured the dough when I was kneading and rolling it.  In the end, the biscuits were okay.  We ate them first as we waited for the roast to get done.  Next time, I guess I will not roll them out so thin and I don't know what I will do about the over-stickiness factor (other than switch to freezer biscuits - aka surrender).

    In other news today, I realized that if it weren't for CNN's emails and The Daily Show on hulu, I would have no idea what is going on in the world.  Being off work has apparently also meant being off of the news.  That doesn't seem good but I'm not compelled to do anything about it.