Quotes to help kickstart 2014

We all need a little inspiration in our hectic lives. It is not always easy to find the right words to inspire us or present the right message in our brains. Sometimes we need a little help. Thank goodness, others have found just the right way to put those things into words that we feel but can’t find the right expression of them.

Here are some quotes that gave me some inspiration to start my new year – maybe they will inspire you as well:

  • We are all of us stars, and we deserve to twinkle. -Marilyn Monroe
  • A person who never made a mistake never tried anything new. -Albert Einstein
  • It’s one of the greatest gifts you can give yourself, to forgive. Forgive everybody. -Maya Angelou
  • I like nonsense, it wakes up the brain cells. Fantasy is a necessary ingredient in living, it’s a way of looking at life through the wrong end of a telescope. Which is what I do, and that enables you to laugh at life’s realities. -Dr. Seuss
  • May your coming year be filled with magic and dreams and good madness. I hope you read some fine books and kiss someone who thinks you’re wonderful, and don’t forget to make some art — write or draw or build or sing or live as only you can. And I hope, somewhere in the next year, you surprise yourself. -Neil Gaiman
  • You must be the change you wish to see in the world. –Mahatma Gandhi
  • Apparently there is nothing that cannot happen today. – Mark Twain

I wish all of you all the best in 2014 and beyond!

A truth

Ernest Hemingway once said “All you have to do is write one true sentence. Write the truest sentence you know.” I have been thinking about this in the back of my mind for the last several days. It seems like a simple thing to do, but it turns out that it is harder than it appears at first. Okay, it is actually simple to do, but some of us make it more difficult by over-thinking it. So here is my attempt at writing some true sentences without trying to make them more than they are…

  • I like cats.
  • Summer rain is one of my favorite things.
  • Books are great.
  • We need more trees.
  • My toes are cold.
  • Bananas are yummy.
  • Flowers are pretty.
  • Ummm…

Apparently, there is more to this than just writing a true sentence. I go back to my previous statement of this is harder than it appears. The writing a true statement part isn’t so hard, but writing the truest sentence you know…. Well, I think I will have to go back to the drawing board.

Unicorn Farts

unicorn farts lip balm Ever wondered what a unicorn fart smelled like? I know I never did, but thanks to the Internet I now know. Not only can you too now know what they smell like – you also get to know what they taste like.

Tastes just exactly like real imaginary unicorn farts! Which taste like spearmint and pink cotton candy, everybody knows that.

It makes sense that a unicorn would fart, since they poop.

In all seriousness though, this is real Unicorn Farts Lip Balm from Long Winter Farm.

Top Content of 2012

It seems we all survived the Mayan Apocalypse, so we can move on to a brand new year full of the possibility of a Zombie Apocalypse (not that I believe in that one either). I am starting out this year with a bang and actually getting a post out in the first week of the year – yay me! I have been writing these top content posts for almost every year since my blog began (2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, and 2011; I never got around to posting a 2010 list – which is fitting because I can’t recall anything about the year 2010 – apparently there should have been lots of wine reviews that year ;-) ). I always find this list to be pretty interesting and this year is no exception – it has several of the same ol’ posts that seem to trend to the top each year and some new ones. So on with the list…

  1. Hell just froze over is at the top this year. I am guessing the reason somehow ties to the Mayan Apocalypse, but I really can’t be certain.
  2. A favorite post around here is a simple post listing the books in what I thought, at the time, was titled the Women of the Underworld Series. I did finally finish reading all the books in the series, but there are still some novellas that include characters from the series that I haven’t read.
  3. A new one to this list, and it managed to land itself in the top of the list, is about the Indoor marshmallow toaster. It is a post that links over to a how to make one page on another site. I still maintain that it is the cutest little marshmallow toaster I have ever seen.
  4. I guess there are lots of people out there who put their dogs on motorcycles, since Dog Helmets is again on this list. I never tried to put a helmet on my dog or put her on my bike. But best of luck to those of you who accomplished one or both of these things.
  5. Back on this list this year is The price of beauty? – a post that still gives me the heebie geebies.
  6. The number 6 spot this year goes to… Sexy Female Professions. Still a pretty good list – in my opinion. Although, I would still add vampire hunter to the list if I wrote it again.
  7. Collectible VHS appears on this list again this year. I have been thinking about this and I have come to the conclusion that a VHS tape is only collectible if it is signed by someone from the movie or it is not something you can get in any other format. Otherwise, it is just a dust collector on your shelf – unless you still have a VCR. I donated almost all of mine to the local library a few years ago.
  8. A new one to this list is my post about the Personality detector. It is an interesting device for which I proposed alternative uses.
  9. Another new one to this list is If you build it, he will come. It is about my favorite Doctor Who companion – K-9.
  10. Last on this list, we have Star Trek: A Movie List. A fun list of all the Star Trek movies in my favorites order.

That’s it for 2012. I’m looking forward to a joyful 2013. Cheers!

Pumpkin Dump Cake

Pumpkin Dump CakeI have to admit that the name of the recipe is terrible, but the cake is yummy! I was given this recipe by a friend and she got it from her mother, who found it on cooks.com. Her mother changed it up a bit and I changed it from there.

I will warn anyone making this of two things

1) it is downright addicting

2) despite the name – it is not exactly a cake

Ingredients:

  • 1 (29 ounce) can pumpkin (or 25 oz fresh mashed pumpkin)
  • 1 (14 ounce) can coconut milk
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 4 teaspoons Chinese Five Spice (can also use Pumpkin Pie Spice)
  • 1 box spice cake mix (can also use yellow cake mix)
  • 2 sticks melted butter (unsalted – omit above salt if using salted butter)
  • 1 cup pecans
  • whipped cream for topping

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees (F).
  • Mix together pumpkin, milk, sugar, and eggs until combined.
  • Add salt and spices.
  • Mix well.
  • Pour pumpkin mixture into 9x13x2 inch pan.
  • Sprinkle dry cake mix evenly over top of pumpkin mixture.
  • Drizzle melted butter evenly over dry cake mix.
  • Sprinkle on nuts.

Bake for 50-70 minutes – until knife inserted in center comes out clean. Watch it carefully to prevent burning. You may want to cover the top with foil for the last 10-20 minutes to prevent the top from burning if the cake still needs to cook. Once cooking is complete, remove the cake from the oven and let cool. Top with whipped cream.

Note: picture above is not topped with whipped cream, so you could see the cake.

Enjoy!

Doggie day of Halloween

So it is Halloween once again. The drill goes something like this…

  • My dog barks and barks and barks and barks like there are thousands of angry chipmunks ravaging the entire neighborhood
  • the doorbell rings or they knock (which makes the dog bark even more)
  • I open the door
  • the dog sees the little ones (small children in adorable little costumes)
  • the dog whines like she has been beaten because she wants to go play with them (all while her stump of a tail wags like there is no tomorrow)
  • the dog does everything she can to get out the door to go see the kiddos
  • I wrangle the dog back into the house
  • the kids try to get in the house to see the dog – the children are more interested in petting my dog than getting candy
  • I try to keep the kids out of the house (mostly so the parents don’t freak out)
  • the kids get their candy and go on down the road
  • I close the door
  • Rinse
  • Repeat x100 (or until I run out of candy; turn out all the lights; and pretend I’m not at home)

The whole “trick or treat” message is usually forgotten in all this, but I’m usually too busy laughing at either the children or the dog to worry about all that.

Happy Halloween!

Doctor Who Sonic Screwdriver Wii Remote

Dr Who Sonic Screwdriver Wii RemoteWait… What??? Yes, you read the title correctly, this Wii Remote resembles a Doctor Who Sonic Screwdriver.

Imagine this… It’s been one heck of a loooong work week. And now, it’s a cold rainy/snowy weekend – too miserable outside to even think about going out there. You don’t feel like doing anything except ordering pizza, parking your butt in the recliner, and sleeping in front of the tele.

Ah, but wait… What if instead of just turning on the tv, you turn on your Nintendo Wii and load up Netflix. You watch non-stop, back-to-back episodes of Doctor Who (making sure to do a little Wii bowling in-between to keep your blood moving). You control all those episodes with your very own Doctor Who Sonic Screwdriver Wii Remote! That would be so incredibly geeky, but oh so much fun!!

This is definitely going to be my next Wii Remote!

Me, You, and a Can of Whipped Cream

whipped cream and strawberry Earlier this week I bought a can of whipped cream as a dessert topping (yes, I said dessert topping, now get your minds out of the gutter) – it was for strawberry shortcake in case you were wondering. The strawberry shortcake was delightful and the whipped cream on top made all the difference (of course). But, sadly, after all the dessert was eaten, there sat a lonely can of whipped cream in the fridge. Now, me, being the very nice person that I am [pausing.... looking up... watching for lightning strikes... whew...] I didn’t want that poor little can of whipped cream to be lonely, so I took it out of the refrigerator – popped off the top -  turned the can upside down over my head -  aimed for my mouth – and…. well, yes, I did in fact fill my mouth full of whipped cream and ate it.

Now I know you may be thinking several things at this point, some of which I probably don’t want to know about, but one of them is probably “What a barbarian! I can’t believe she just ate the whipped cream straight out of the can!” Well, I did. And I will let you in on a little secret – it wasn’t the first time. But now you are probably thinking (at least if you are still reading this – and I know all you fellow barbarians out there are) – “Why is this something that is worthy of a blog post?” Well, I will tell you…

I noticed something strange while eating the mouthful of whipped cream…. I chewed it! Yes, in fact – I really did CHEW on a mouth full of whipped cream… Chewed, not swallowed, not drank, not licked… WTH!!! Seriously? Did that really happen? Why on earth would I chew something like whipped cream? I couldn’t believe it – I also couldn’t believe I hadn’t noticed it before. I didn’t know what to think – I was very confused and amused. I was almost laughing at myself (which I don’t recommend with a mouthful of whipped cream – but at least I was alone at the time). So, I had to try again just to be sure I had noticed what happened correctly – you know, for scientific purposes. And I’ll be darned, I did it again! Hmmm…. I have about half a can left – I think I will have to keep studying this phenomenon.

Top Content of 2011

It is time once again for my top content list. I am very late on getting this list completed this year, but apparently not as late as getting it out last year… I apologize to anyone who searched all year for my top content list of 2010 (you would have found 2006, 2007, 2008, and 2009). It seems that I never got around to completing one last year at all! I was even ready to congratulate myself on at least getting a post done every January since this blog began… Oh, well, at least I can say I have managed TWO whole posts in January this year (celebrate the small victories!). So on to the list!

  1. Once again, Women of the Underworld Series tops this list in the number one spot. I love this series, but I am seriously behind on my reading of it. I think Kelley Armstrong is a great writer and I LOVE that she keeps writing, but I seriously need her to slow down a bit so I can get caught up and then wait anxiously for the next one!
  2. My next most popular post for 2011 is the 10 Uses for Your Old iPhone. This is way up in this list from 2009. I am assuming that this is in no small part due to the release of the very popular iPhone 4S. I myself, upgraded to the new 4S last year and I love it. I’m still not sure that Siri is my new best friend, but she and I are getting along okay so far.
  3. Next we have Star Trek: A Movie List in the number three spot this year. The popularity of this list has improved over the years. I am glad to see that my opinion on the order of the Star Trek movies is useful to others.
  4. In the number 4 spot, we have Sexy Female Professions. Over the years since I wrote that list, I have decided that I should have included Vampire Hunter, think Anna Valerious, to the list.
  5. A strange one is on the list this year. It is a post titled: Hell Just Froze Over. It is a very short post from 2006 about how you can run Windows on the Mac. Not sure how it came to be on the top 10 list, but welcome!
  6. Collectible VHS is new to this list as well. I’m guessing people were searching the Internet to determine whether or not they should keep any of their old VHS tapes. If it helps anyone out there in the world, then here is what I ended up doing with mine – DONATED. I donated almost every single one of my old VHS tapes to charitable organizations. I kept the ones that were really important to me and that I had no chance of ever finding in any other format. All the others went to a good cause. And you know what – I haven’t missed any of them.
  7. A favorite top content list member is another list – the list of Top 10 Lip Balms. While I still no longer use any of the lip balms on the list – it still is one of the best lists (my opinion) of lip balms out there on the web.
  8. This year we welcome the Weather Warden Series to the top content list. This is my second favorite book series. Living in Oklahoma makes you a little bit of a weather junkie. Since the weather is so unpredictable here, you have to check it pretty religiously and then hope the wind doesn’t blow in something unexpected before you can get home from work. So books that have weather and magic in them fit right in here (at least in my opinion).
  9. From Sexy Car to Sexy Couch is next on the list. Since this post is on this list, everyone must have forgiven me for the incorrect back seat references…
  10. And last, but not least, we get to Dog Helmets. Motorcycle helmets for dogs – ’nuff said.

That’s it for 2011. Hopefully, keep your fingers crossed that I will get around to posting enough to have new items on the 2012 top content list.

To Smoke or Not To Smoke

Ahhh… Whether or not to smoke… that is definitely not the question everyone has to ask. But for me that has almost always been the question. I have been a smoker for [Mom, stop reading right now...] almost 27 years [Mom, ok, you can start reading again...]. I have tried EVERYTHING (ok, maybe not everything, since I did draw the line at electro-shock therapy) to quit and nothing has ever fully stuck. Honestly, I like smoking. I like the clouds of pretty smoke that comes from a cigarette. I have made lots of friends while smoking. I like the conversations that happen when everyone is forced to go outside and take a real break from their work to smoke. I did not like the smokers hack I was starting to develop though… And I hated the ashtray smell on my clothes and in my hair. So I decided to make a change.

Almost 5 years ago I read about electronic cigarettes. I thought they were a pretty cool idea, but never really explored them. Two years ago that changed. I bought my first e-cig and starting using it off an on. I would alternate between smoking and “vaping” (using the e-cig). At first, it was more smoking than vaping, but I gradually shifted to more vaping than smoking. This month, I finally made the switch to vaping all the time!

If you think you will always be a smoker because you have always been a smoker, then you might want to watch some of vapingpoint’s YouTube videos.

Hmmm… I’m thinking I might start including flavor reviews on here in the future….