Monday, March 18, 2013

Spring Break Hodgepodge

This is post #499.  I thought it would be really cool to make post #500 the very last one before switching over to the new blog, but now I'm not sure if that's going to happen.  The problem is the new blog isn't ready--Shan and I haven't worked out a template, nor have we figured out the details of a duel ownership over the new blog.  I want to avoid the dynamic of one of us being labeled the primary owner, while the other one is labeled as a "guest blogger."

Oh, if you haven't noticed yet, my sister's a lop (as referenced in certain areas of my right side-margin).  She refuses to write on here anymore because her eyes are fixated on the gleaming new blog.  "Why bother with the old one when you're just getting a new one?" is the basic premise here.  She's also resigned to letting her home slide down the mountain because they're eventually planning on getting a new one of those, too.  Okay, I might have made up that last part.

So Universal Studios was pretty brutal.  Two kids got lost from their group; one was turned into me by a security guard.  The other one I hunted down myself and found him sitting (with no cell phone) on a bench near the tram tour.  But even the wandering-off kid issues were something I could make my peace with; it was just the whole day was exhausting.  My Builders Club students are usually responsible, but for some reason, when we mixed them up with Incentive Club members, the whole dynamic of both clubs changed.  The kids were loud and wild.  The worst was the bus ride home.  I think my ear drums are permanently scarred.

The rest of spring break has been pretty awesome so far.  I've been able to take the new compound bow out three times now, and I'm starting to get pretty comfortable with it.

I was shooting at a cardboard turkey on the ground.  If it were a real turkey, he'd be walking around with arrows sticking out of every part of his body except for his head--he'd be the only one of his buddies with arrow-plumage.  Yeah, I need to work on my aim.  As long as the weather stays nice, I'll probably go again tomorrow and Wednesday.

Besides playing with my new bow, I've been writing in the evenings, but not as much as I'd like.  I'm still stuck in that editing trap where I keep smoothing out the already-written stuff instead of moving forward in the story.  I joined a writing club two weeks ago, which I'm feeling pretty excited about.  Just one meeting and I already made some great connections.  Although it's strange, because I'm significantly younger than the other members (by significantly, we're talking about twenty years).  At 34, I would never expect to be the baby of any group.  But I guess most people wait until they're empty-nesters and/or retired to pursue their passions.  Honestly, the age gap didn't really bother me.  Once you start talking shop with other writers and authors, you forget all about the age difference.  Unfortunately, the club only meets once a month.  I'll have to join a critique group within the club if I want to do any real writing.

I started a painfully easy painting of a peacock for my living room that hopefully I'll finish this week.  The problem is I'm bored with it.  It's more shapes and colors than an actual animal.  I chose this particular image for the colors, which I think will compliment my living room, but I'm not particularly impressed with the peacock itself.  Oh well, I'll finish it anyway. 

In other news I dreamt that some sort of sewer lines going into our school's bathrooms exploded, and my entire classroom filled up with crap.  I'm not good with dream analysis, but that one seems about as eloquent as they come.  I just wish my subconscious could conjure up more clever symbols to use in dreams.  I mean, sewer lines?  And crap?  Those are the best metaphors my brain could come up with?  Yay me and my beautiful aptitude for poetry.  


  1. I laughed so hard when I read this! I almost wrote a post today, but then I thought it would be kinda jacked up to take credit for the 500th post when I've been gone so long. We should set up our new blog Saturday morning!

  2. P.S When we DO set up our new blog, can we put a picture of us that doesn't look like I am wearing granny pants?

  3. P.S.S Saw that you updated your blog list for the first time in half a century.

  4. YES! What better way to spend a hangover than setting up a new blog? Until then, see if you can find any templates you like. I'll bring my laptop on Friday night.

    No way, granny pants are mandatory. :-D

    Yeah, ironically I updated my blogroll just in time to ditch this blog.

  5. You two are so funny! Blogger has a built in template builder, so if you have components you like--like a seamless background image, a header, etc--you can put them together yourself and make a really pretty template. Just a thought. ;)

    Glad you had a good time at Universal. You're so much braver than me. I'd lose what's left of my mind trying to take that many kids to an amusement park.

    Your bow sounds like fun! My arms are so weak, I don't think I'd be able to pull it. You should have seen me trying to pull back the slide on my new pistol. It was shameful. lol

    Looking forward to seeing the new blog and to seeing the peacock painting!!

  6. Thanks for the suggestion Kristyn. Can you use Blogger's template builder to customize templates from other sites? Because I haven't figured out a way to blend the two. So far, it seems like I have to settle for one or the other.

    A 'good time at Universal'...did you miss the part where I said it was BRUTAL, EXHAUSTING, and I might be PERMANENTLY SCARRED? ;)

    It does take some muscle to pull back the string. My arms were throbbing after my first two times of shooting, but now they're getting used to it.

  7. I've found blogger to be pretty customizable--at least as much as my WordPress blog right now since all I did to customize that template is change my background and add a new header.

    Take this blog I'm working on for example ( - it'll be dedicated to my adventures as a new GM, a gaming blog). All I did was add my own header, which I made with photoshop (I've got several thousand fonts) and a seamless background I love. It's turning out pretty so far! It also gives you the opportunity to have a template that's uniquely your own. :)

    I would DEFINITELY be permanently scarred if I tried to go to Universal with that many kids!! :D

  8. Your new blog looks gorgeous. I absolutely LOVE your header.

    I've been playing with blogger's template builder, and it's been a nightmare so far. I wish I could figure out what I'm doing wrong. I have no issues customizing fonts and colors and such, but every time I upload my own background image, it is either way too small or too large--even though I'm using blogger's recommended dimensions. Arghhhhh. I wish you lived here in the HD so I could go to you for help. Plus I would be borrowing your photoshop program and making my own awesome headers. :)

  9. I've never actually tried to use an image with the blogger template builder, I usually just use seamless background images. It gives you a great background pattern, but that's about it. No image. Good luck getting it to do what you want!

  10. One last question--how do you transfer the fonts from photoshop onto the blog? Do you save it as a jpeg? (Turns out we have a version of photoshop, "Photo Elements 6", that I can try to play around with).

  11. I save header images (like the one on my gaming blog)as .png files. They're also placed against a transparent background. Is that what you mean?

  12. Yes, that was what I meant...thanks for all your help!

    I played around with photoshop, and holy cow--that is a complex program to figure out if you've never used it before. All I can say is, woman, you are talented with this stuff! I'm going to have to get a lot more practice in before I'm able to do the kinds of things on there that you can do.

    Ultimately Shan and I decided to foot over 15 bucks to buy a professional template that meets our needs. I love it--it's simple/clean, but still has "pop" to it. Our new blog will be live by next weekend...can't wait. :-D

  13. Ooh, I can't wait either! Send me the address, or will this blog redirect?

    I only know enough photoshop that I can do the things I need, which isn't a whole lot. The header on my blog is premade (yay Shabby Blogs) and all I did was add the text--the trick was to find a font that matched the header's style. I actually downloaded a completely new font. Then, I manipulated the font so that it would have outer glow and inner shadow for texture. That's about it. Oh, and I turned the words so they followed the banner and made the banner fit my blog's header by adding a transparent background that made it wide enough without adding anything visual--mostly it was for sizing.

    But, it took me years and years to get to the point where I could make my blog look the way I want and I'm still never completely happy with it. LOL.


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