Blog Archives

We All Need a Break Sometimes


For a while, I wasn’t really cooking anything that seemed interesting enough to post about, so I didn’t post any recipes. More recently I’ve been making some good stuff–made guacamole with my mom, made salsa (as far as I’m concerned, the secret is just jalapenos and cilantro), and some other things I now can’t really remember. But I haven’t felt too motivated to post about these things, even though I do sort of want to.

And all those things I said I was going to do to update my blog? Still intend to, but I’m already late. Like almost everyone else I’ve ever met, I’m kind of a procrastinator, especially when I don’t have a set deadline. (And deadlines I set myself that no one else cares about don’t count.)

It can  be argued that keeping at something even when you don’t feel like doing it can be good for you. If you push through the difficult times, you will come through to the other side with more energy and motivation. However, you can also burn out that way. I think that taking a break is a good idea for me right now, so I’m just taking it easy. I haven’t posted on Between Worlds either. I have been watching a lot of Netflix, though.

In the meantime, you can watch my eggnog cupcake video if you missed it (doesn’t show actual cooking, sorry) or my most recent one on my non-resolutions:

 

I haven’t done nearly as much with my channel as I originally wanted by this point. One of my unstated goals is to play around with editing a bit more, even in the crappy program I have, and see if I can understand more of the features. All I have to do is just take some sort of stock video-like footage I can play around with, because then I won’t feel like I’m in a rush to post it (I talk about time-sensitive things when I’m vlogging), and I can take my time. I’d also love to figure out how to make it post in HD… my camera should be able to do 1080p videos, but so far when I upload them it only goes up to 260 or whatever the number is. It’s really low, I know that much.

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So, based on what I’ve stated above, you might not see a lot of posts from me for a little while. I’ll be back though. I’m stubborn, so I have to pretend that this blog might one day be successful.

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Monday Madness: Why Do I Holiday


Madness indeed. I don’t really feel like writing anything. Everything’s just a mess, there’s no time to do anything, and I’m off to the family Christmas traditions tomorrow morning. All I’ll have time to do between now and then is pack and eat breakfast. Maybe some reading.

It’s strange how stressful work can get when there’s any more than a day or two off in a month. How am I supposed to finish my work? AAAAAGH!!!!

Today was weird, and almost bad, but I had a really nice time at lunch and tasty food. Just about made up for the unfortunately icky weather.

What is there to say? My mind is already on vacation. Anything I type right now is going to be mediocre at best. That’s the Joy of Christmas, folks!

Fingers crossed that my train tomorrow won’t be too crowded, and that eggnog will cure my silly brain. Eggnog inspires productivity, right?

Monday Madness: Untitled


It’s a rainy, but not in a pleasant way, already exhausted, just want to curl up in bed kind of day.

If you have an office job in the U.S., chances are you have today off. Lucky you. I don’t. I have lots of days off in September so I’m not complaining about the TIME per se. The problem is something else. For one, I could be hanging out with friends… maybe… since everyone else has today off.

Then, of course, my usual bus isn’t even running today, so I had to make do with one of the other, more sucky routes to work. And of course I didn’t plan ahead for it, because I think it’s stupid that they stop running certain buses on certain days, or rather, because I forgot entirely that they do that.

Everything about life right now seems uncertain and several degrees less awesome than it could be. I don’t know how to change it.

Also, when two-day shipping was supposed to get me my package on Saturday, and instead I’m getting it tomorrow or Wednesday, that’s not two-day shipping. That’s just regular shipping. As always I blame UPS, not the company I ordered from, because UPS’s policies seem designed to keep my packages away from me, instead of just delivering them.

I want to be clear: I had a good weekend. I enjoyed myself and spent time with people, ate some good food (and some ok food), and of course did a little bit of shopping. I had to. There were so many sales! And this morning, as soon as I had to commute to work, any optimism left over from my good weekend got drained away.

I hate the MBTA.

Monday Madness: Wasn’t that Weird?


I went on vacation last week. Weird, right? I know. That’s why I missed Monday Madness. It turned out the ship’s “internet cafe” wasn’t free. I don’t know why I thought it would be. And just about everything surrounding vacation has been stressful, so I kinda don’t think I should go on vacation ever again. Not that I didn’t have fun, because I did. But my back started hurting on vacation (the first morning!) and it hasn’t done too well at stopping.

I am almost out of coffee. I will definitely need more of that.

Voting day is tomorrow (in Massachusetts). The plan: wake up early, get ready, leave the house before 7, get out early, be at work on time. More likely: leave house slightly after 7, have to stand in line for 2 hours, be late for work. Going after work sucks because my commute is an hour long, so I can’t get there until 6 at the earliest. I’d rather go in the morning or NOT AT ALL.

I am going to do a post all about my trip, so I’m not going to go into the details right now. I am hoping I’ll get that done in the next few days. I made a back-from-vacation vlog, which you can see right here. I love how I talk as if people watch my channel and are expecting videos from me. No one watches my channel. I could have just waited. But I like to ramble at my camera and then let people watch it, because that is in no way embarrassing.

Soon, I will start making more focused and interesting videos. Videos about writing will start soon. Really.

Anyone else hate commuting so, so much?

Re-entry


I returned from my cruise today! …to find that WordPress has been updating the site. I’ll have to see what I think about this as I continue to make more posts. I took a few pictures and videos on my trip, so I’ll have to do an experience post about the cruise and see if I can make a watchable youtube video with what I have. I will probably do that this weekend or sometime next week.

I need to say that this is NOT a relaxing Thursday right now. I wanted to get home and have some nice peaceful relaxation time, and I have to deal with some loud event happening at the school near my house. And I mean LOUD. With too many screaming children.

I’m also kind of in pain for some reason or other. I have all kinds of sore muscles and my lower back is bothering me right now. I don’t really know why. I went out to CVS because I am all out of ibuprofen, and I needed to get some melatonin as well because I have not been able to sleep well most nights lately.

CVS has rarely been a nice experience in the last several years. Today, I had people crowding me in the aisles, a bunch of stockroom stuff piled up right in front of the shelves I needed to get to, and a group of loud kids showing up at the checkout lane as I was waiting for “assistance” that should not have been necessary. (I don’t even know why they have self checkout there.) Plus, the machine refused my dollar off pain relief coupon. I didn’t feel like taking the time to complain about it.

Whole foods was not so bad. Middle of the afternoon on a weekday, apparently, is when you need to get there in order to avoid the crowds.

Having just returned from shopping, I once again have to deal with the constant stream of video game noises from downstairs. I really should work on cleaning my room and unpacking, but all I want to do is lie down and not give a f#@! until I absolutely have to (tomorrow morning).

I’m going to try to find something online that will make me smile and avoid my chores until Saturday, I think.

Last-Day Syndrome


Aaagh, 2 days, seriously? It’s so soon! I am experiencing that thing where it’s the last day before a break so I really don’t want to do anything, but the one important task I need to finish before I leave did not actually get completed yesterday. Why do manuscripts have to be so long? … So I’ve got to get down to business and finish that today, and then do as much of the next manuscript as I can. STRESS. Plus, I really need to clean my room, but I don’t think I’ll have time…

I’m going to have to make SURE I relax and enjoy myself for this vacation, because preparing to go on vacation is so stressful. Does this count as irony? Probably not. But it seems like it should.

I had the last of my leftover tikka masala for breakfast. Hey, if you can have breakfast for dinner, then dinner for breakfast is also acceptable. That’s what I say. Tonight or tomorrow I’ll be putting up a non-recipe post about it. I have some good-ish pictures.

As much as I would like to blog all day, I should really get this work done. So…

Monday Madness


Look to the right. Did your eyes leave the computer screen? You looked too far. I meant just to the right of the post, where there’s a countdown to my vacation. Yes, I have one week of work left before I’m off! I leave on Sunday and return Thursday. I will be at work on Friday, but I’ll be out for almost a whole week.

Which really means that I’m crazily trying to get as much done at work and home as possible before I go, so that I’m not hit with huge piles of stuff to do when I get back from vacation. No one wants that.

They’re supposed to have a sort of cruise-ship version of an internet cafe, so I might be able to do my usual Monday Madness post and maybe update with some pictures along the way, but I won’t guarantee that. So, if you don’t get any madness next Monday, you’ll know why!

I’m going to have to choose my vacation reading soon. …so many books, so little time.

. . .

Now an update from my last Monday Madness–I put my first video on youtube, under the account norecipewriter. It is available for viewing and you can watch it here, if you want to see me introduce myself and my channel:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ko0zG3z01pw

Filming was difficult in the sense that I don’t have a real camera, or a good place to set up my phone, and my phone’s camcorder mode automatically stops at 10 minutes. Which I guess is a good thing, as I’ve clearly gone on too long if I’m still going when it shuts off. Then, of course, the picture quality kind of sucks because my phone camera is not very good.

I was pretty nervous when I sat down to do it. I had written down a list of things I wanted to talk about, but I kept stumbling over my words and I completely lost my momentum when I talked over the 10 minutes my phone gives me and had to start a new video. I did end up with some fabulous outtakes, though, which you might see at some point when I have gotten a little  better at editing. My do-over went much better, as I’d gotten most of the nerves out, and I managed to talk for only about 7 minutes. I just snipped the ends a bit, figuring I would edit more next time, if necessary.

Editing was another problem (of course it was). Ok, just to be clear, I was already aware that editing is difficult. I played around with making a video or two when I was in college, with clips from tv shows of course (because I’m a geek). What I really did not count on was that my computer was unable to open the files I recorded with the usual windows programs I use. I decided to go online to find an editing program I could download. The first one waited until I was at the saving point to tell me that with the free version of the program, they would put a watermark on the video. I tried it anyway, and it turned out to be situated right across my eyes. I tried a second one, which seems to be a little better, and at least didn’t leave a watermark. That is the one that ended up being the final version.

I like that youtube has some editing options right on the site, so you can tweak the video after uploading. That’s a cool feature that I do not remember from my days of making geeky mvs.

I will be playing around with my current equipment and software to try to make cooler videos. I would love to find a reliable editing software that I can get for free or at least that is inexpensive, and I would LOVE some recommendations, as this stuff is all new to me and I don’t know how to tell which programs will be really good. Ideally, I would like to get a real camera (not a super-nice one, just a regular digital camera that actually works is all I’d be expecting) and a nicer computer, but both of those are out of my reach for now.

My aims for now are: keeping my videos under 10 minutes, posting at least 1 video a week, and learning how to edit to make them a little more polished. And maybe coming up with an intro,  but I don’t think I’ll worry too much about that. If I could animate I would have a really cool one, but I can’t animate.

So that’s my experience as I started vlogging. It was very stressful when I thought I wouldn’t be able to edit the videos I had made, and would have to re-record it, but it turned out ok. As I’ve seen some other vloggers mention, you shouldn’t expect your first videos to be great. I’m just going to try my best and hope some people out there find me interesting, or endearing, or fun to make fun of, or something.

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