Tag Archives: blog entry

Oops. sorry about that, and belated Happy Easter

Greetings, readers. I was completely embarrassed when Rebecca texted me informing me that I had forgotten to put up the weekend blog. I said a few minor expletives, apologized to her and asked if she could put up a short blog entry on Monday. She, of course, said sure. I just knew that one of these weekends it was going to slip my mind. If it was going to happen, it was logical that Easter weekend would be it. Sunday morning I went to church, came home, went out with friends for a buffet dinner, and after all that food and two desserts, I came home and slept like a log. My “nap” lasted until 10pm. Needless to say I didn’t sleep much the rest of the night. I hope your Easter was as good as mine, with many blessings and a wonderful day spent with family.

Topic number two. The apartment cleaning. Yes, April 22nd came and went and as promised to myself, I began work on the kitchen. Ready for your funny of the day? A person starts a major cleanup project with one new trash bag in the box and no disinfectant wipes. Sure, I’m prepared. Lol. I must say, it looks a lot better. Then I walk into the living room and I see just how much I have to do. Slow and steady wins the race.

I can’t believe that Bear Spring Camps opens in less than a month. I’m already getting into my camp routine. My TV cable has Music Choice, channels dedicated to playing different genres of music. I enjoy listening to their easy listening music station, and having about an hour or so of what I call wind down time right before bed, which may include listening to crickets, loons, or a thunderstorm on Spotify. Between Music Choice, Spotify, and YouTube, I can find almost any background “white noise” choice I desire. When I am actually at camp, and I’m by myself, I like to lock the screen door and have the wooden door open, turn off the lights, and sit on my sofa, while I watch the twilight disappear into darkness. The easy listening radio station in that area of Maine disappeared long ago. So I will either listen to nature or a cassette tape on low volume. Trust me, when you spend an entire day in the sun, the breeze, as well as eating three wonderful meals a day and expending energy, you are more than ready around 9pm to wind down and call it a day.

Finally, prayers go out to the injured and families of victims from the church bombings in Sri Lanka. I said it before and I will say it again, we need to stop the madness. People must learn to get along with one another and to treat others as you would wish to be treated.

Until this weekend … I hope … have a great few days, do take care, and as always, happy reading.

Advertisements

64 views at 10:25 AM! Wowzers

Greetings, readers. No, it is not my highest number in the blog statistics ever, but just say I am happily perplexed. 63 of the 64 recent blog views are for the blog entry Top ten list of modern conveniences. I think Rebecca put her finger on it, this has got to be a class doing research for an assignment. We checked which country these views came from and 63 were from the United States. Taiwan chimed in with one.

I’m often amused when the modern conveniences entry comes up as often as it does, but to have 63 views of it before 10:30 in the morning is incredible. My first thought was it was bots, but Rebecca pointed out that we could see a few of the search terms used and they seemed real. If they are real and there is a big class push to do a project, imagine what the numbers might be by the end of the day. It is going to take a lot to top our number one day ever, at 444 views for R.I.P. to my good friend Terry.

I know sometimes I get preoccupied with blog numbers. Most people just write their blog to get whatever they’re thinking off their chest. My brain doesn’t work that way. If I don’t feel I’m being read, my feeling get hurt … just kidding.

In the many years that we’ve done the blog, I’ve hashed and rehashed many topics, from sports to video game reviews, and a whole slew of weather reports. Some folks might find that boring, but I write what I know about. For instance, I’m not going to pretend to know every policy that President Trump has, so I won’t bad mouth his handling of Mexico or North Korea. When I do choose to write a controversal political piece, or something of the like, trust me I will do lots of research first. It helps to know what you are talking about.

As I sit here dictating this entry my mind wanders back to all those views relating to modern conveniences. This trend has been going on for many years. You would think everyone in the world would have done his or her research on modern conveniences. But no, numbers seem to be spiking. Never in my wildest dreams when I wrote that entry in 2013 did I think that would be one of the most read blog entries; it averages four views a day. One can never tell.

On to a different topic, for those of you who found my entry this past Sunday a bit dry, I was unusually distracted by visitors and phone calls, and it was only the second half of the entry when I was able to switch to my speech recognition program. I wonder how many of you can tell just when I started dictating. According to Rebecca, the ones with the speech recognition have a different flow to them. Hopefully that is a good thing. So if any of you were disappointed in Sunday’s entry, that was what the issue was. I might try dictating Sunday’s entry on Saturday evening when it is quiet. I can get it all ready to go, complete with a spell check, tags, and a category, and make it live right there and then. That is not a promise, that is just a goal. Usually I dictate better when I am alone and it is quiet. Let me know how you think this weekend’s is.

For all the people in the world who need prayers, continued prayers and support go out. To all the people using guns inappropriately and those setting arson fires, I implore you to please stop and think about if one of your loved ones was shot or was in a burning building. Just don’t do it.

Until this weekend, I bid you a great few days, love one another, take care and happy reading.

The verdict is still out on Nuance Dragon voice recognition program

Greetings, readers. I have tried the brand-newest version of the Dragon NaturallySpeaking voice recognition program, which the creators call a solution. So far I like it. It’s obviously the same product only better. A couple of months ago, The Nuance company sent me a notice that they are discontinuing my version of the solution, and gave me a choice about what I wanted to do. I could continue to use my current version, number 13, without tech support and updates or I could actually purchase the newest version, number 15, at a big discount. I chose the latter. For a hundred six dollars and some cents I could own a three hundred-dollar product. I said yes, please.

I’ve tried it out a few times already and there are a few improvements I’ve noticed right off the bat. For starters, it did not have to relearn my voice. I believe when I was installing 15, it learned from the previous version before replacing it. That is awesome. I just wish when I am creating a new blog entry in the new post screen on my WordPress dashboard, that I could dictate with the voice recognition program. I still have to dictate in a word program then cut and paste it if Rebecca is not here. That is not that hard to do, but it is an extra step.

The one thing that I did that I actually regret – and it goes to show how impatient I can be – I downloaded the digital copy instead of ordering a disk through the mail. Somewhere in the downloaded content, I’m sure, is the instruction booklet with all the commands and other information about what’s new in the product. I’m quite certain I’ll find it somewhere.

The following paragraph has spoilers for the novel Four’s a Crowd, the book Darren Taylor wrote based on my play Kimberly. If you haven’t read the book yet but want to, you can skip the next paragraph. It is a fantastic novel.

Yesterday Rebecca and I were doing some research on a major health issue for the elderly. My new writing project very well could be either a brand new play or TV pilot script, Five’s a Family, based on Four’s a Crowd. The timeline would be approximately five to eight years from the end of the novel where Kimberly gave birth to Emily Alice. I would want the child to be old enough to interact and be an integral part of the family instead of just sitting there and being cute. The issue is can Alice still have the health to be living in the house as one of the main characters, or would she have to be in a nursing home, only seen once in a while. After a little more research, I will know what I can and cannot do plausibly.

And welcome back to anyone who didn’t read the previous paragraph. Both Rebecca and I seem to be unusually distracted today. Distraction number one is the multitude of construction noises from next door. Number two is my rather naughty kitty cat, Princess Josie. And number three is stopping to find the right words for the blog entry, which are not coming as easily as usual, so we have to keep stopping to find the right words and phrases for a clear meaning. But, we trudge through. Yes, we did have a moment there where we had to re-word almost the whole previous paragraph. We were almost finished with it, when Rebecca pointed out what a major spoiler it was. Oops, can’t do that. That is why she makes the big bucks. She catches things way before I do. Could I edit my own blog? Sure. Would it be edited as well? I don’t think so.

As I begin to wind this blog post down, Josie has finally located a comfy spot. Now she settles down. Haha. I guess it is a comedy of errors today. As I’m trying to dictate the next sentence, the jack hammer outside is wreaking havoc with my concentration. The construction progress of said seven-story building will take at least a year or more. When it is completed, I fear I will have no pretty view left. I took this eighth story apartment for the view. Dang it.

There is today’s entry. We’ll be back next Wednesday with more written goodies. Take care, have a wonderful weekend, give someone you love a hug, and happy reading.

Oops, what a mistake I made

Greetings, readers. Between back spasms, trying to clear out a few things on the computer, and getting ready to run to the bus yesterday, I goofed. I accidentally erased the short story we had ready to go for today’s blog entry. Rebecca reminded me what the subject was, and I quickly remembered that it is one of my recurring dreams, and it won’t be that difficult to recreate. I guess that is what you would call the silver lining. The dark cloud was that story was a page and a half long, which was one of my better accomplishments of late. Grrr.

I’m quite certain I will be able to reconstruct it very soon and I promise you that it will be up at some point as a blog entry, most likely tomorrow. This is my final week at my fast food job before I am taking the summer off, when I’ll have a lot more time to write. Last Thursday’s trial run of my summer daily routine worked beautifully. I’m really looking forward to getting a lot done creatively. Something I must overcome, however, is my morning back spasms while sitting at my chair. I told Rebecca that this could turn into something psychosomatic quickly. I can’t live on pain reliever and I won’t have time to crawl back into my chair and go back to sleep every morning. I must get work done this summer.

The last few days have been beautiful and warm. I love it. It seems like yet again we went from late winter right to early summer. I remember as a child at my parents’ house that the crocuses would come up every early April. That was one of my favorite signs of Spring. Whether it is climate change or what have you, I don’t think central Pennsylvania has a spring anymore. I learned many moon ago that Mother Nature and Old Man Winter can do whatever they want whenever they want, and we have no control. I’m looking out my window to a perfect blue sky and a forecasted high of 82 F, and although I haven’t looked at the forecast, tomorrow might very well be windy and 60.

Well, here’s an update on Princess Josie. She is learning her world quite nicely. When she misbehaves, such as getting on the work table with the computer, I pick her up and say no. I give her three chances to stop and if she doesn’t then I gently put her in her crate for a time-out. After several minutes I let her out and wouldn’t you know, she doesn’t do said behavior again. She is a very smart kitten. She was very much preoccupied with a bumble bee a few minutes ago, sitting on the window sill and looking outside. She was so preoccupied with said bumble bee, she lost track of where she was and slid off the sill. Fear not readers, she landed on her feet. Now she is looking for birdies. She was running around earlier playing with an empty pill bottle. She loves to play hockey. This morning, however, I caught her looking into my pill bag, with the bottles that actually have medication in them. I made certain that the two bottles I let her play with were empty before I let her have them. Now I need to be leery about her being alone with my med bag. I have solved that problem by putting my med bag in my bedroom with the door shut, but if I let her have free roam of the entire place, I will put my med bad in a cupboard.

My JMK Gaming Channel on YouTube is hanging on by a thread. I enjoy making the videos but never seem to have enough time to do them. Hopefully that will be another thing that changes this summer. I have one ready to upload, I just have to put butt in chair and do it.

Rebecca and I will be working here tomorrow. Either I will have recreated the dream house short story with the help of the voice recognition program, or Rebecca and I will type it up and post it. So until then, take care, have a great day, we’ll see you tomorrow, and happy reading.

Mini snow storm over and novel’s chapter two is going well

Greetings, readers. I woke up to roughly 3 inches or so of snow on the ground. It was no surprise. Everyone knew it was coming, the question was just how much. We were in the 3 to 6 inch range, but I think we got the smaller amount of what was predicted.

Snow is pretty when it first comes down, but after the cars roll around in it and make it black, it is disgusting. Also, with my bad balance, slush and ice are not my friends.  When there is any amount of snow that is more than a dusting, I stay inside. It’s just not worth me breaking a leg over. Anything I need at the store, I can get the night before or the day after.

It is late morning as I am using my speech recognition program to dictate this entry, and the snow has already stopped. Now it is just cold and slippery. After I’m done dictating, I shall save this entry to draft and get it ready for Rebecca to edit. I expect that she will post it sometime in the mid to late afternoon.

As far as my new writing project goes, oh boy, am I off to a hot start. Today is a little slower than yesterday as far as production, but it’s still early. I plan to work until at least two or three this afternoon. With over 2,100 words so far, it is certainly my best start in years. What do you know, writing is fun again. Yay! 🙂

I am going to continue to plug away at it until the ideas don’t come anymore. Hopefully, that won’t be for a very long time. I’ve got a great idea for this novel. The more I write, the more excited I get about the project. I shall keep you all up to date in the coming weeks.

Until next week, have a great weekend, be safe if you’re in the snow, and happy reading.

From Rebecca: Reflections in the first week of the new year

For the first time in three weeks, I am sitting in the office, AKA Joe’s apartment, at work. Two weeks ago I had surgery to take out my gallbladder. I truly expected to be back to my normal routine the following week, but I was fooling myself. While I was able to go home the same day as the surgery, I needed a little more than a week to recover, rest, and heal. My husband, Darren, was a big help to me, especially in the first few days when I was groggy, cranky, and in pain.

Thanks to the wonders of modern technology, I was able to write a blog entry and edit Joe’s entries from the comfort of my own home. That was mega-cool. Thank you to Joe for letting me do that and for your patience and support.

Speaking of modern technology, last year we got high-speed internet at home, and we have been enjoying Netflix streaming through Darren’s PS3. He especially likes watching shows with no commercials. He was watching Lost for a while, and Star Trek: The Next Generation. I watched the four-part special of Gilmore Girls, and Longmire. While I was recovering, we started to watch The West Wing, and we are up to the second season. It has been a while since I watched it, and I am enjoying it a lot. I remembered some things and other parts were a surprise reminder. So many of the issues were from the Bill Clinton presidency and I am strongly reminded of that administration with its ideals and its problems. We binge watch a bit, but we want to be careful with the PS3 so we don’t wear it out. A few hours at a time seems to work for us. I am certainly looking forward to exploring more of what Netflix has to offer in the coming year.

So, back to a new year starting. Next to me, I have my work folder ready for notes and reminders and my new engagement calendar, full of January’s information, and waiting for the appointments yet to be made in the next twelve months. We ended 2016 with the deaths of Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds nationwide, and locally the shocking unexpected death of a resident of Addison Court Apartments, Joe’s next door neighbor. A new year feels like a new start, like anything good is possible. I’m ready for that new start and I want it. There was so much yelling and strife in 2016, and with the new Presidential administration coming in there will have to be a lot of people taking action to hold on to civil rights in the coming four years. But right now, this day, 2017 is a new beginning and it has a lot of promise.

I hate online applications

Greetings, readers. As I continue my search for gainful employment, I have found out that most job applications are now done online. Without mentioning the name of the business, I am going to fill you in on what Rebecca and I just did this last hour. It was a frustrating experience.

After typing in name, address, social security number, etc, we got to the never-ending (we are still not done – we quit to do a blog entry) pre-application section. Yes, you read correctly. Before getting to the application section. After 52 minutes, we still haven’t reached the actual application part with education history, job history, and references sections. With time needed to do today’s blog, we were forced to click the “save now” button. I’m glad they had that option; some business’ websites don’t.

Another issue I had today was that I felt some of the questions to be non-pertinent to the job, as well as none of their business. I kept waiting for the what is your religion question. (Joke. I actually know that is illegal to ask). I’m going to have to finish the application this evening because even though it says I have two months to complete it, I doubt the job will be around that long.

The one thing the application did do was make me take a good hard look at myself. I kept asking, should I be completely truthful or click the answer I think they are looking for? The one that will get me the job. I decided for mostly the truthful answers. I will admit a couple of questions were so obvious, I couldn’t resist. Of course, they want me to like to multi-task, which I’ll be honest, I’m not the greatest at. Though I suppose I could learn. Rebecca was particularly bothered by a section on which adjective described me best at work, with choices that did not match, like Content or Cheerful. As she burst out with, those are not mutually exclusive, you can be cheerful because you are content. She was not content or cheerful about it.

Two questions have popped into my brain about this job. First, do I really want it? Well, I do need the extra money right now since I am having trouble making my monthly budget. But I might not be quick enough to keep up the pace there. Second, do I think I’m going to get the job? No. I didn’t take tests well in college, and I consider these long application sections very test-like. I probably will bomb it. But time will tell.

On a quick side-note, yesterday was the six-month anniversary of my girlfriend Traci and me being together. A lot of our friends chimed in on Facebook with likes and thumbs-ups.

This blog entry is #494. Not that many to go before the magic 500. I think I will discuss my most read topics, such as Air Crash Investigation stories, the blog entry about my father, and From Rebecca: A little bit in a hurry.

So there you have it. Another week’s blog entries are in the books. Have a great weekend, take care, and, as always, happy reading.