Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Almost done - the CHICKEN, that is!


Visit Write Brain Challenge to check out my latest free write piece, and the photo that inspired it. Thanks, Jenny.

☀☀☀☀☀☀☀☀☀☀

What were you thinking? - another reflection post about 2014.

HA - Not happening on my shift. 
And my shift ends at midnight.

I’m so over 2014.

Where did I find such a great shot?

Pump me up…

I've packaged up 2014 and my good friend, Arnie, is taking care of business. (I’m not condoning the use of steroids, but hey, he’s the one carrying the big black box.) 

Now that that’s taken care of… 

Here, this is my new toy.  (okay, I asked for a Harley, but hey, Santa was feeling the economic slow down and thought I should focus on cooking - I’ve got a few choice words for the fat man…)

The Beast - 5 in One

I received this Crock-Pot from my kids (yup, now I have two - daughter and son-in-law).

I LOVE IT! (I still love the kids a wee bit more - most days)

Yesterday, I slow cooked a pork rib roast - damn, was it fine.

Today, I’m slow cooking a chicken - damn, it smells good.

I even made stuffing, from scratch thank you very much - and it too smells oh so yummy.

Okay, I’m cheating with the Brussels Sprouts. I’m letting my good buddy, GG, take care of those. (Green Giant, for those of you that actually do the whole Brussels Sprouts thing - as I’m not a huge BS fan I refuse to invest precious time in them.)

Roast Chicken and a chilled bottle of Proscecco.

That is how I’m sending off that casket full of 2014 BS… (no, not Brussels Sprouts).

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

BRING ON 2015 - I’M READY. (Hammer and all!)
Yes, I found this too… here.


Are you ready for yet another year to roll you over and have its way with you? (Come on, admit it, that’s what it feels like once the year comes to an end.)


Cheers, Jenny

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Resolutions, REVISIONS, Goals and GAMES

Let’s start with RESOLUTIONS



Well, let’s say we did - and move on. We know I’m not making any, right?!

How about REVISIONS



Okay, there’s one and it’s in reference to my previous post about my one and only GOAL for the New Year.

So, than this is really about REVISIONS to the GOAL.

I’ve decided that my goal should now be: 
To set TIME aside DAILY to free write. So, it’s not “doing” the free writing that’s the goal, it’s making the TIME to free write that is the newly revised goal.



Now… onto something else…

GAMES.

I like games. I play games, and I read about games.

Presently I am reading the GAME OF THRONES (Book 1)



AND I AM LOVING IT!  

REALLY LOVING IT! OMG (yup I’m even going there with an acronym. Why? Because I can!)

NEXT…

I’m reading it on my NEW Kindle Paperwhite - which I received for Christmas. 

Yes, I was good! (What? You have to ask!)

Santa saw my name on his NICE list, so there. (Okay, it was also on his NAUGHTY list and I did get a lump of coal too!)

I’m not going to debate the virtues of an e-reader over turning a page in a ‘real’ book. Mostly because I like turning pages too. I will never stop loving the feel of a real book. I buy real books. I even read them too.

That said… I really, really am enjoying this Kindle Paperwhite.

Two years ago I received the Kindle Touch and was not thrilled. Really, I thought this is not what I wanted for Christmas - and I know for certain I was NOT on the Naughty List. It was like getting a lump of coal; that was until I got over my pout and decided to try it.

Thing is - IT IS NOT A REAL BOOK - I get that, but it does something that real books can’t do; it fits nicely into the side pocket of my purse. 



Books can be bulky. Have you seen Stephen King’s, The Stand - need I say more, you need a little red wagon to cart it along.

So - these little gadgets have a place in my life. Now, when sitting in doctors offices waiting for spare body parts I can read… and read… and read one of the many books all neatly housed in this very thin little electronic book.

About GAME OF THRONES - all I can say is if you haven’t given it a read you are missing out on some amazing storytelling. 

Okay - now for the question… (drum roll please)

Do you do any reading with an e-reader? 

If yes - when, where and why.

If no - what’s holding you back?



Cheers, Jenny

PS - for the photos, in this post, I used Google Images. I would like to credit each but I think the sites they went to had taken them off Google too.

That said, here are the search words I used: 1-Resolutions, 2-Revisions, 3-Time Management and 4-Bulky Purses. See - that's how it's done! Credit where credit is due!

Saturday, December 27, 2014

On to the NEXT event… the NEW YEAR!


So, who’s making New Year Resolutions? 

We know, from past posts, I WON’T be making any.

But then…

this year might be the start of something different.

Source


How about one Goal...

I was toying with the idea of setting a goal. 
Is that the same as making a resolution? Hmmm, not sure. 

Okay, I’ve thought it over and it is NOT the same thing.

Definition of “goal” (as in setting a goal)
the object of a person’s ambition or effort, an aim or desired result.

Definition of “resolution” (as in New Year’s Resolutions)
a firm decision to do or not to do something

Okay - so we see there is a difference. (We could be splitting hairs here.)

MY GOAL:

To do a 15 minute free write, DAILY. (or not)

I’ve been free writing for a while and enjoying, but I was thinking about doing one a day for the year… hmmm, it may be too ambitious - reeks of resolution.

I’ve got this blog called Write Brain Challenge and I’m thinking a post a day (the results of my 15 minute daily free for all) for 365 days would be a doable goal. (I hear you laughing yeah, yeah, I know, with me, not at me.)

I get it word on the blog is she can't even post once a week, so how's she going to do it daily. Might you have a little faith.
  

Okay, so now I’ve put it out there.
Hmm, maybe I should sit on it for a year and think about it. 


What about you?

Will you set goals, or do you make resolutions?



Cheers, Jenny

PS   At the top right side of my blog you'll see FEATURED POST - that's my latest free writing piece.

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Merry Christmas!


The Pearson Girls are sending their 
BEST WISHES  
for a 
very Merry Christmas
and a Happy New Year.

However you celebrate this Holiday Season we hope it sees you all in good cheer surrounded by those you love.


My daughter and I have been getting Santa Photos taken for twenty-six years - it is our Christmas Tradition.

What is your holiday tradition?

Merry Christmas, one and all!

Cheers, Jenny

Tuesday, December 02, 2014

Tis the SEASON to design a NEW frock.

A REPOST…

I was busy changing into my Holiday Outfit, here at Pearson Report, and thought I'd share my wardrobe secrets.

ENJOY…

Header and Background fun - what does your blog wear? Original post: Nov. 9, 2012.

If you frequent Pearson Report you will undoubtedly have noticed I like playing dress up with my blog.

Since this is my blog it will be addressed in the feminine. 

She, that would be my blog, likes to be seen in custom designed hats (Headers) with matching outerwear (Backgrounds) and I like to oblige. (yes, some bolts are not completely tight, but then if this is as bad as it gets I’d say I’m in pretty good shape)

Here is a peek at some of her outfits…

City Skyline, Vancouver


Dandelion Farm, in the Cariboo


Hubbard Glacier - Alaska


Jericho Beach, Vancouver


Lake in the Cariboo


Lizard (Header only, background is a Little Black Dress)

Lost and Found (Header only - Background: LBD)

Sunset Beach, Vancouver


I have discovered a few things while creating these looks. I’m going to share what I’ve learned because that’s just the kind of gal I am...always willing to share a few of my spare bolts! (if you really “read” my blog you’ll get the reference)

Although I work with a Mac I’m sure this bit of info can be translated easily for Windows users.


Here we go…

I start by creating a folder on my desktop called Blog Header and BG sets.

I then go looking for photos (I use all my own pictures) in my photo library. 

I decide on a background; when I find a photo I like I crop it. I pay attention to the “width” of my photo as I crop it. I don't want it any smaller in width than1800 pixels - I use 2100 or 2200, unless (as in the case of the Dandelion set) the photo is maxed out at 1800 pixels already.

Once I've cropped my photo I Export it to a desktop folder. (this makes life easier when I want to change my blog’s look as often as I change my lacy bits, or boxers...depends on my mood!)

When exporting in iPhotos, I get this box: 
#1 
I always select the smallest size for the JPEG quality as this will keeps my picture below 300k, which is the maximum size allowed for Backgrounds on Blogger. 

#2
Next, I need to specify a “size” for my photo; I select Custom and then choose “width” and type in 2100 or larger, but 2100 pixels wide seems to do the trick for even the larger monitors, right Dezmond!

Thanks to earlier feedback, from good friends like Dezz, I was able to determine the right pixel size so someone with a big monitor would get to enjoy a decent sized background.

However, there is a limit to how far 2100px will stretch so I always select an actual Background colour (in the Template area) then if my picture is not wide enough a matching, complementary colour will be visible.

Like this…

I have stretched my blog (pulled it from one side) and exceeded my actual picture width; this is what you would then see:

Once I have exported my Background, to my desktop folder, the upload is straight forward but I do have to remind myself to pay attention to this area: 

I choose to align my photo in the centre, I don’t tile it and I don’t have it scroll with the blog - my Background is static.  You can play with this area, and depending on your photo and your intentions you may wish to have different settings.

Now for the Header...

Again, I select a photo and crop it. Here I want the width to be no greater than 1000 px (again, this may vary depending the page layout) but for me this works and in any event, Blogger scales it down further to fit the Template size.

In iPhoto I do a custom crop and select 1000 x 300, I like to keep my Header on the smaller side in height. Once cropped I go through the same Export step, only I select 1000px for the width, and I still use the smallest JPEG size.

I like a custom Header and to that end, once I’ve Exported my picture I use the Preview option, with my Mac, to add my blog name, and a border, to my picture. (poor woman’s Photoshop - yeah, go me!!! It's how I do all the writing on these screenshots as well!)

When I want to upload my Header I go to Layout and click on the Header tab.


Note: I click “Shrink to Fit” otherwise my picture will be the width I cropped it to. That's to say, 1000 x 300 would show as 1000 pixels wide and would exceed the width of my post area and sidebar combined.


Also, since I do a custom Header and have added my blog's name to my photo I need to pay attention to the Placement area, shown here, so I don't get a second Blog Title showing up:

And that's about it!


Okay, I don’t really know how necessary it was to "share" this because I love what you all do out there already. Mighty fine looking blogs I follow, I can tell you that!

Butt (big butt, yes two t's *giggle* cause it's late and I'm in need of sustenance - liquid preferred) just in case my millions of readers (reading is good, commenting is better...butt nothing, comment trumps reading, ask Donald, he comments without reading!) wanted to know how I work my magic, here at Pearson Report, well, now you know! 

It’s all about lacy bits and boxers...or, Headers and Backgrounds - take your pic(ture) and run with it!


How do you create your Header and/or Background? Any tips you care to share? 

Cheers, Jenny