Tuesday, December 29, 2015


I finally put comments in moderation since the spammers wouldn't let  go.  How obnoxious they are.   Luckily, in a way, I only have one regular commenter who I am sure won't mind the extra steps to add a comment now and then.

The problem with the spammers is not just that they have no relevance to any post, but their comment has a link to a spyware/adware site tidily enclosed so I can't let them sit.  And I got tired of deleting them several times a day.  Blah blah.

Friday, December 25, 2015

Merry Christmas!

I hope you're snuggled somewhere warm with those you love.  May you be surrounded by light till spring comes.

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

First Time Sewing: The Absolute Beginner's Guide

I found this title recently, and think it may be The One which will teach me to sew.  I have another book on beginning sewing, but this one is truly perfect.

It has a nice diagram of the machine and each part.  Two pages of various sewing feet and what to use them for.

Nice pictures of various types of hems and stitches.

A sewing pattern talking about everything inside and outside of the envelope.  How to lay the pattern on material, pin it down and cut it.

I appreciate the step by step so much. Many books assume everyone knows these things, but alas, not I.

A nice section on hand stitches, which made me look at the book in the first place.

The very first project is a rectangular tablecloth, how beautiful and practical.  All of the projects are things I'd love to make, rather than 20 pillow variations (though there is a pillow.)

The book is by The editors of Creative Publishing International.   I'm not familiar with them, but am happy with their work.

Monday, November 16, 2015

Stokes Seeds 2016 Gardening Guide

In a rather grand surprise, Stokes Seeds 2016 catalog has a new look and focus.  Stokes has always seemed to me to be largely aimed at people with small farms.  This year, as you can see on the cover, they embrace the "foodie" crowd who love locally grown, fresh foods.

The truly beautiful new page layout includes not just cultural information, but some recipes.

"For those of you who may be familiar with our catalog in the past, this catalog may come as a shock.  We have selected only the most popular varieties to make your choice easier, made the print bigger, and provided a picture for every item.  If you can't find an old favorite check our website, we have literally thousands of varieties that we could not fit into this one book."



Friday, November 13, 2015

2016's First Garden Catalog Pinetree Garden Seeds

Pine Tree Garden Seeds is my first mail order catalog arrival of the season.  Last year, for some reason, I didn't receive one till March, and the seed starting season was well underway.

I did my best job ever of garden cleanup and putting the garden to bed this fall.  I also decided I would start completely fresh with the garden in spring 2016.  I tossed tons of stuff, including all old seed packets, all seed and plant catalogs, and any plants or shrubs deemed unworthy.

My plans for what I'll feature and grow aren't even at the glimmer stage yet, but I'll see what catalogs and offerings come my way.  Plants and herbs and succulents in pots were so beautiful this season, and so easy to maintain, I'll surely add more containers.

Let spring dreaming begin!

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Missing Television Without Pity?

I don't feel like watching tv tonight, but I'm in the mood to read about it.  I used to be a big fan of the site Television Without Pity and it's forums in particular.

There was a forum for every show you could think of, and people would discuss and speculate like mad.  If you were a fan of a train wreck of a show you couldn't resist watching (Revolution, in my case), it was a guilty pleasure to hop onto the TWP forums after an episode and just see it all get ripped apart.

These weren't just trolling types such as you find in Facebook's comments, no these folk were brilliant and razor sharp.  Why were they watching our guilty pleasure of a crummy show, we ask? Incomprehensible, that's the explanation.

The original creators of Television Without Pity have a new site and forums called Previously TV.   I'm hoping they cover a show I like this season but which is getting picked on elsewhere: Minority Report.

previously.tv      Is the web address. Writing this on my iPad so I'm not sure how linking will work.

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Zzzzzz goes the Garden

I meant to bring my house plants and tender perennials into the house in August as is recommended, but here it is, October, and I'm racing to get them in and the garden put to bed by this Friday's frosts.

It is hard to undo such a lovely garden as I had this year, which is why I waited. It isn't because I'm some low lazy slug, nosiree...

I brought in way more plants than I intended.  We will see how they do.  I've tried to add extra lighting by them to make them happy as they can be over the long cold dark winter.  I hope it works!

Monday, September 21, 2015

DOA on TV: And We're Off!

Doctor Who  The Magician's Apprentice

I'm not clear here who was the magician and who was the apprentice.  Doctor Who/Clara or Davros/Dr. Who?

I have seen no episodes with The Master (I haven't seen all the runs of Who) that I recall, but I just despise the Missy character and was not happy to see her again.

Clara has grown on me, but I didn't care for her bit here super analyzing the frozen plane dilemma with some brain trust peeps.  Once reunited with Who, she was wonderful.

In a bit of purest sacrilege, I also don't like the tinny voiced Daleks with their idiotic incessant "exterminate" whine.

Colony Sarff, a being composed of deadly snakes, now he was interesting.

I loved Peter Capaldi rocking out with his guitar, riding atop of tank.  Best entrance ever.

Fear the Walking Dead: Not Fade Away

Our group tries for normalcy under the imposed martial law.   From the opening we know it's been nine days since the lights went out in Los Angeles and elsewhere.  There's no water, landline phones, nothing, and the occupiers aren't providing much information.

They do say they're working on getting services restored, and health checks will continue.  These folks are one of 12 safe zones south of the San Gabriel Mountains.  This stuck with me so I looked for a map to see how much area that covered.  Not really so much land area, and they don't say how many people are in each safe zone.

They also said that it was great news that a six mile area around the safe zone had been cleared.  When Madison goes sneaking through a fence with her handy fence cutter to see what that zone is like, she finds the dead lying all over in the streets, some clearly not diseased, just shot.

When Travis reports to the head military goof that some sort of signal seems to be coming from the deadened zone, the guy looks up, dismisses the idea, and goes back to golfing in the street  (a common thing for apocalypse honchos to do, note the Governor, season three The Walking Dead lofting golf balls at zombies).

Later that night, Travis sees lights from the house, then sees the place lit up with gunfire, which can be heard even at the distance.  He is so enamored of the security the military brings, but I'm hoping he sees that he is responsible for those deaths.

Madison, in addition to sneaking outside the fence, goes whacko on Nick and beats him for stealing drugs from a dying neighbor.   I understand that she is cracking under the strain but, just yell at the kid.  Man.

Alycia just has to butt into every conversation.  Agh.

Ofelia changes out of her sweetie pie dress and slinks out to find a soldier who might give her mom new meds.

Liza, who keeps sneering at Travis for trying to fix everything, is right out there on the front lines going door to door using her nurse-in-training skills to help out.  When ratted out by a real doc who comes to town, she hops on a truck and leaves everyone behind in order to travel with Griselda (who is going to get surgery for her foot-wink-wink) and Nick, who is apparently a risk of OD-ing and needs to be removed.   I see nothing good ahead for those folks, since soldiers come and forcibly take them at night--why at night? and relatives are not allowed to come along for the ride.

The only good things that can come from these events are that Liza gets some crash course medical training that will be valuable later, and Daniel and Madison will unite to try to get them back, and I think they make a formidable pair.  Through them, we'll also get a bit more of an idea of what is happening in the larger world.

My last thought is, in the chaos of the times, how did they get a big chain fence up around this community in so little time?

Gotham: Rise of the Villains: Damned If You Do...

This season is Gotham, Rise of the Villains.  All of the neo-natal villains from season one--Penguin, Joker, Riddler and more are coming into their own.

Jim Gordon is tossed from the force by the commissioner.  Gordon goes to Penguin to ask for help getting reinstated and he wants Commissioner Loeb removed.  Penguin want Gordon to do a favor too, collect money from a reluctant mob boss.  He refuses, but basically Bruce Wayne shames him into going to do it for the long term good of the city.   Wise beyond his years is Bruce.

Jim does the deed, ends up killing the mob boss, but he gets Penguins help and is reinstated by new commissioner Essen. Yay, now things will shape up.

Horribly, there's a new uber villain in town with a psycho sister in tow with big ninja moves (Theo and Tabitha Galavan).  I don't mind a passle of silly over the top villains, because this is the comics, folks.   I hate uber, untouchable, smarter than everyone villains though.  Boring and ugly.

Worse yet, Uber dog has set loose a team of scum from Arkham Asylum which includes Barbara the super psycho which puts my beloved Dr. Leslie Thompkins in danger.  Yech.

Great scenes with Bruce determined to get into the Batcave and getting yelled at by Alfred for trying to make a fertilizer bomb using an Internet recipe.  Thanks to Alfred's own skills, they blow open the door and find a spider webby cave with an old computer and a note to Bruce from his dad.  The doorcode was Bruce, doh.  To the Batcave!

Minority Report: Pilot

This has taken the place of Sleepy Hollow after Gotham and I found the commecials for it to be just cringe worthy.  Ha!

The story doesn't quite match the film, and yet it was quite enjoyable.

Three children with precognition are trapped by the goverment for a decade predicting crimes.  Theyr'e released after the program doesn't quite work out but are not to bring any attention to themselves.

Cue the entrance of Dash, who sees visions of murders and can draw rather bizarre caricatures of the killers.  He sees these just barely enough in advance to try to stop them but he can't ever successfully get to the scene in time.

He decides to ask for the help of detective Lara Vega, who has retinal implants which help her recreate crime scenes and scan areas for heat signatures among other things.  The high tech available to the cops is fun to see.   They were able to create a 3D sketch from Dash's drawing of a killer, then go after that person.

The show was unexpectedly fast paced, compelling as a crime story, with Vega and Dash being a good pair working together.

An interesting twist going forward is that Agatha, the precog sister who sees the future as a larger picture without details, sees something bad coming of Dash working with Vega. Maybe his death, maybe the recapture and imprisonment of the three siblings.  Arthur, the sibling who sees names and dates and places wants to help Dash but fears Agatha may be right.   Dash himself sees the details of the murder, but not locations, names or any general idea of what surrounds the crime.   Only the three together get a good picture of what is to be.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Jungle Book April 2016: First Trailer


This looks so spectacular. The article says that only Mowgli is live action, and not CGI, but you sure can't tell it from the trailer.

Monday, September 14, 2015

Fear the Walking Dead: The Dog

 Travis and his family and the Salazars are forced to flee the barbershop when the walls begin melting.  They've been sitting there all this time and nobody in the family has packed anything, no survival supplies.  If there was a mob outside wouldn't you expect the worst and prepare a bit?

There's some nice sniping between Travis and Daniel.  Despite Daniel saying if people break in, they all run, and in different directions, as soon as the door is opened he says "everyone stay together" and they all flee as a group.

Griselda has her foot deeply injured when a big sort of grandstand falls on her.  Everyone runs back to help her and Travis carries her to the nearby truck.  I've read some comments tonight about the truck remaining intact in the riot situation, but that truck is a real piece of junk.  Maybe it wasn't worth the effort.

Plans to drop Griselda off at a nearby hospital fall through when the area is cordoned off by police and shots are fired at patients who won't "stand down".   It does make sense that hospitals would be one of the first settings to get overrun.  It reminds me of the Walking Dead scene where Shane sees hospital staff being shot by military personnel, I suppose they just had no clue how this all spread and figured the people working closely with the sick were all infected.

                              Poor Paul, a hacking cough one day, really a mess the next day

Meanwhile, the Clarks are playing Monopoly by candlelight while they wait.  A strange noise at the patio door turns out to be a dog.  They let him in, covered with blood.  Before they can process this the dog runs to the front door and barks.  There they see a shambler out front.

Nick suggests they go next door and get a gun from their neighbor's house.  The thieving weasel used to go next door for daycare, so he knows they have it. 

The neighbors have a bizarre maze in their back yard they make their way through, Nick leading the way, easily plucking a key from under a mat on the porch.

I understand they're totally freaked, but to so easily go break in, and go rooting around, sheesh.  They did call out and didn't get a response.  Lights blink on then off adding to the creepiness.

While Madison and Nick work to load the gun, Alicia spots the shambler going into their open back patio door.   Growls and then a shriek from the dog.

Just then, Travis and company pull into the drive way.  Run run, back through the maze and over the fence hollering all the way. Travis hears nothing through the open back door.  He is treated to seeing his former neighbor bent over the dog, particularly harrowing once the lights come on again fully all of a sudden.

Alicia is sent back by Nick to get the ammo which got left behind.  As she's grabbing it she sees feet under a swinging door, with dark, rotten looking legs.  She runs for it with the zombie neighbor in hot pursuit.  This time, when she's running through and screaming everyone hears her, no problem, and she makes it to safety.

Madison arrives with the gun, but it takes Daniel to take first a glancing shot, then a right up front, head blowing off shot.

Unbelievably Travis and Madison are upset that he did this, though we know he saved everyone by acting decisively.

The Clark family is packed and ready to leave, but Travis talks them into leaving in the morning in one of those defining type moments.  The show isn't The Walking Desert, right, its Walking Dead, L.A. Style.

As they pull out, leaving the Salazars behind (Daniel says a cousin will come pick them up), Madison sees her neighbor's husband returning.  She tries to get to him and stop him from a run in with his zombie wife, but no, Mrs . Zombie is all ready for a big hug.  The spouse is saved by the arrival of National Guard (?) who swarm the place, and the whole neighborhood.

                                 Parting was such sweet sorrow, Patrick and Susan reunited

Martial law is in effect as the Guard question the Clarks as to their contact with possible Infected, and house to house searches reveal which homes are clear and which have been infected.

Travis is all happy now that they're here, feeling they're safe now and everything is under control.  Daniel knows better, of course.


Madison  wins the most annoying of the episode, edging out Nick.   Apocalypse Monopoly, great idea.  Prissy insistence Alicia leave the safety of their little snug kitchen group to go put the game away because of house rules....  If she was going to clunk her zombie friend with the hammer she just needed to do it, not have some goofy farewell.   I thought she was a beetch in that little conversation with Liza.  Liza tries to put out an olive branch so they can work together to keep the kids safe, and Ms Stone Cold brushes it off and lets Liza know that Travis will be "broken" if she dies and he has to "put her down".  She just ooozed he's MY Man Now stuff. 

Nick , wearing the clothes still that he stole from the old man at the hospital, hasn't showered or put on his own clothing.  All he wants is "moar medicine".  I think he rooted around at the neighbors looking for drugs, and unleashed Susan on Alicia, and there he was scooting around at the end of the episode with a screwdriver trying to break into a barred home for more.  He was terribly offended that some of the schoolhouse break-in drugs were being left behind for Griselda, who was in actual pain.  Wretch.

Alicia may have had zero obnoxious moments this episode.  Big step up.

Liza was great.  She thinks fast on her feet, never whines, is tough, is adaptable.  I am liking her.

Christopher joined Alicia in having almost no bad moments.

Travis  I want him to get along better with Daniel, be nicer to Liza, and not try to talk down zombies.

Daniel  He has a cranky old man thing going, but in a pinch you want him right there by your side.  He is going to ace the apocalypse.

Griselda  As much as she's in pain, she is coasting along, and has faith Daniel will get them through everything coming up, because he's done it all before.  She's not quite right about that of course, but clearly the two of them know how to survive and they'll show their daughter a few things shortly.

Ofelia   Never try to ride out the apocalypse in a pretty dress, girl.  She seems a delicate flower so far.

The Dog   (sniff)   He needed to lay low, not bark and bring Zombie Paul into the yard and house.  Poor pup.

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Figure A: Tomatoes

I did nothing with my vegetable garden this year except move raised beds around and plant a few tomato seedlings.  Miraculously, the seedlings thrived and better late than never, have put out some nice tasty little tomatoes.  

Back to full production in the spring.

Friday, September 11, 2015

Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation

I'm glad to have caught this at the theater, though late in its run.   The Mission Impossible movies are perfect for the giant screen and mega-sound systems.

Warp speed action, light humor throughout, incredible stunts...bring on the popcorn and a large red Icee.

The "rogue nation" of the title is an organization called The Syndicate.  It seems to be behind disasters and assassinations all over the world.

Led by a classic reedy villain type named  Solomon Lane, the organization has recruited "officially dead" operatives from every intelligence organization on earth.

Even with the resources at his disposal he can't get through security to reach a certain bit of information he wants.  He needs Ethan Hunt and the IMF, and he sets in motion a convoluted plan to get them involved.

One of the things I like about these films is that it is a pleasure to see how the IMF team works together.  While Ethan is the brains behind the operation and the front man, he'd never get any of his schemes off the ground without this group.  They're just perfect clockwork.

I loved Ilsa Faust, the very best female agent I've ever seen, and I just kept thinking she needs her own movie.  Slick, smart, brave, ten steps ahead of everyone though she appears ensnared, man, she was so perfect.

DOA On TV: Fall Shows 2015

Here you are, carefully selected, the very best new and returning shows for this fall.   I included names, premier date and station.

Gotham     9/21 Fox
Minority Report    9/21 Fox
Supergirl   10/26   CBS
Legends  11/2   TNT
Childhood’s End    12/14   Syfy

Marvel Agents of Shield 9/29  ABC
The Flash 10/6   CW
iZombie   10/6  CW

Survivor   9/23  CBS
Arrow  10/7   CW

Heroes Reborn  9/24   NBC
Sleepy Hollow 10/1   Fox
Elementary   11/5 CBS

Grimm   10/30   NBC
The Man in the High Castle  11/20  Amazon
Marvel’s Jessica Jones  11/20  Netflix

Ash vs Evil Dead  10/31   Starz
Doctor Who    9/19   BBC America

Once Upon A Time 9/27  ABC
The Librarians  11/1    TNT
Fear The Walking Dead (Sept 13, 20,27, Oct 4) AMC
The Walking Dead   Oct 11  AMC
Talking Dead  Oct 11 AMC

Returning sometime…
Penny Dreadful (No Date Set)  Showtime
12 Monkeys  Syfy  Date TBD

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Duncan Hines Perfect Size Golden Fudge Cake

You may have seen the commercials for these little six inch cakes.

While the size is nice, the flavor is lacking.   Too super sweet, very artificial, and I almost want to say chemical tasting.  I hoped the use of real butter in the cake and frosting would give it some character.

Back to my cookbooks, perhaps halving recipes once I know them well.

Friday, September 4, 2015

Magnolia Bakery Chocolate Buttermilk Layer Cake

We were in NYC last week and had cupcakes from the Magnolia Bakery in Grand Central Station.

Heaven in a bite sized bit of frosted cake.   I couldn't stop thinking about the taste and ordered a couple of Magnolia Bakery cookbooks when we got home.

What lovely chocolate perfection.

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Fear the Walking Dead: So Close, Yet So Far

In tonight's episode, the fall of Los Angeles accelerates.

Most people still don't know anything is wrong.  They are hearing reports that people are getting sick and becoming violent, but you know how it is, it doesn't really have anything to do with them personally.

Alicia finds her boyfriend home alone and sick so she stays with him to try to help him.  Her mom and Travis find her there, and almost physically pull her out of there, with Matt saying he'll be ok and his parents will be home soon.

This whole scene bothered me because two parents, two teachers who work with kids are more protective of them than most, and they would take Matt out of there with them, ill or not.  You just don't leave the guy your child loves alone and suffering.  I don't believe seeing Cal turned into a zombie would be enough to harden them.  I don't think they understand what he was, and the effects of the illness are not so widespread at this point that they can go, oh yeah, he's dead soon, and dangerous.

Back at home the group splits yet again. Travis to find his son and ex-wife, Madison to go to the school to get a bunch of drugs from a locker at the school for Nick.

Travis' son Christopher becomes involved in a mob situation, as onlookers protest police shooting a homeless person, he films away.  Luckily his parents see the scene on tv and pop on down to get him, only to have the mob turn into a riot as police shoot another obvious (to the audience but not the crowd) zombie.

The family seeks asylum at the barbershop, which shuts down as the crowds surge by.  Here's our barber family.  The dad seems grumpy.   The mom does look a bit mystical and creepy but she insists he let them in.  The adult daughter Ofelia comes down to see what is going on and Grumpy Boy tells her to go to her room. What?  Luckily she brushes him off and gets everyone calmed down.

They should be safe, but the barber tells Travis there is no back door, no other way out.  I hope that's not the case, how can you run a shop without access to an alley and trash cans?  How do you say "trapped like a rat"?

Madison meanwhile finds the all knowing Zombie fan Tobias at the school. He is taking stores from the school kitchen "a mother lode" of accessible food, and he'd like his knife back.  Since he walks in on her loading up on drugs, she has no problem helping him load a cart and start pushing it towards the exit.

Odd noises turn out to be the principal, who has been transformed.  She has a long history with this man and only fights him when he has Tobias pinned and is nearing his neck for a snack.   She must have hit him five times with a fire extinguisher before he let go of Tobias.

She drops the kid off at home, where he seems to have no one. This time she does offer to bring him home with her where he can be safe.   I really liked this kid as soon as I saw him.  Total geek, sees what's happenings, predicts "when civilization falls, it falls fast".   I suppose the whole deal is we are supposed to see the apocalypse through "every person's eyes"  and we can't have a character like him around.  I hope he is saved, and triumphs.

Finally at home, she finds Nick had a grand mal seizure and Alicia had been planning to sneak back to help Matt.   The birthday party across the street turns zombieriffic.  Travis manages to call and let her know they're safe but trapped.  He wants her to go to their rendezvous spot in the desert  but she'll wait for him.


Madison shows herself capable of defense big time, even though it is a hard thing to do.  She's full on Mama Bear, protective (except Matt!).

Travis is pretty single minded here, find ex-wife, find son, gather everyone up and get far from where people are.  He may be ok in the apocalypse.

Alicia, still undeserving of Matt, still not my favorite.

Nick spent most of the episode barfing.  Not his finest hour.

Christopher tried to be socially conscious, filming the scene where police were clearly shooting innocents and protesters are angry and chanting as he chants with them.   He moves up an inch on the scale.

The Salazars are an interesting group.   There is a sneak peak of the next episode on the official page and they are part of the hapless group that stays together once they escape the tin can of the barbershop with no other entrances.

Official Site:    http://www.amc.com/shows/fear-the-walking-dead

Ha! The next episode is September 13, skipping next week already.   Way to build and maintain tension and interest.

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Fear The Walking Dead: Pilot

The episode served as a nice intro to the apocalypse.  It appears people are falling ill and getting violent all over, but nobody knows the cause.   It is a slow thing, not a rampant overnight change in the world.

From our cast of characters, it turns out I like Nick and Travis.  Travis really is a good guy who is trying to mediate the personal disasters that Nick brings with him.  He seemed like a gifted teacher in the classroom.  He spent time watching over Nick in the hospital then yikes! went to the church where Nick had seen his Girlfriend the Zombie to look around.  Oddly no bodies remained but lots of gooey looking blood.

Nick, I'm surprised I like him, he is a total druggie, not my favorite people.  There is a vulnerability to the guy, an innocence somehow.  He only means himself harm.  I like that he reached out to Travis, who isn't a stepdad as I thought, but a live in boyfriend.

Madison was all sharp edges and annoying this episode.  Her daughter was even worse.  Luckily the daughter has a great boyfriend, who she doesn't deserve, but maybe he'll bring her around.  Or save her from a zombie.

Christopher was brief and whiny for someone in his teens.

Liza turned out to be quite pleasant and understanding for the most part, but I thought Christopher too old to be the subject of a conversation  "it's your weekend will you take him?"

I briefly liked Nick's old friend Cal, who seemed like a good guy that had maybe cleaned up his act as Nick should be doing, but nooooo.  Bad dog.

The Barber's family wasn't in the episode but it looks like next week they'll be in.

Fear The Walking Dead Tonight!

The premier of Walking Dead spinoff Fear the Walking Dead premiers this evening.  Luckily I have some deep seated love of zombies, or I'd be put off by some aspects of the show.

It is set in Los Angeles at the start of the zombie outbreak.  I'm ok with zombies in bikinis.  The more dead, rotting flesh, the better, right?

We get to see how everything fell apart, which is one of the great pleasures of disaster movies and books.  Everyone is enjoying everyday life, complaining about hang nails, then whammo!  Sheet happens!

My problem with Fear is that as soon as I read the character descriptions, I thought, man, I'm not going to like any of these people, and I will be fine with them getting eaten by zombies.  Tear em up, boys!


Look at that face! Popular guidance counselor with a murky past.  Ya.


A hip high school teacher who wears tweedy jackets and blue jeans.  All around good guy with a lurking ex-wife and "resentful son".


Popular guidance counselor Madison oopsie has a heroin addict son.  Note he is a "young man at a crossroads".   Could that be the corner of Dead and Zombified?


Popular guidance counselor Madison also cranked out a Perfect Patti of a daughter with ambitions to get the heck away from her crudball addict brother and popular mother.  Hard to say how she feels about her tweedy stepdad but we'll find out tonight.


Tweedy Travis's son is all rebellious because he wants daddy to himself.


Tweedy Travis's Ex.   Unhappy "for years" with "do gooder" Travis she is now working her way through nursing school.  She is a "multi-tasking whirlwind".

Truly, all those guys seem obnoxious, and I wondered if they made them that way so nobody would get attached to them or mind when they got torn apart by hungry zombies.   I started watching The Walking Dead at season 4 so I never read the bios of the characters in advance.  Maybe if I had, I would have written a snarky post like this, then fallen in love with them and felt bad.

There are three other characters featured on the Fear the Walking site.  I like them all very much in advance!  They'd better not kill them off is all I have to say.


Here we have a guy who has a shot at survival.   Mild mannered barber who will "protect his family at any cost".    That's what you need in the apocalypse.


Smart, realistic, tough.  That's what we're looking for.


She might be a mother figure to our ragtag group.  She will have to have been tough to come here and make a new life.  They try to make her sound weak because she has faith, but that doesn't have to be so.

We shall see what I think tonight.  Bring on the zombies, I'll bring the popcorn.

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Scrapbooking DOA: Anecdotal Tales

Anyone working on family histories or scrapbooks knows that "interviewing" people and getting stories about the past can really add personality and depth to the stories you're trying to tell.

If the person is speaking of their own past, you assume that a lens of time and emotion is applied to their stories whether they know it or not, but the essence of the tale is almost certainly true and worth noting.

When they speak of their contemporaries, including their parents or grandparents, a larger lens of refinement is applied depending on what relationships with those people have been.  These stories are valuable for inclusion because they help paint a larger picture for future readers, but you need to note somehow what these relationships are, or have been, so anyone would know it isn't necessarily an eyewitness account of events.

Anytime the person is speaking of someone from the past who they didn't really know or interact with themselves, I think marking these stories as anecdotal  (a short usually amusing account of an incident, esp a personal or biographical one...Free Dictionary) lets everyone know it is just a story passed along down the years.  As you're writing your own section, you might want to make things pretty clear, so your tale doesn't get enlarged or modified.  Could work.

As I'm going through old photographs, and getting birth and death and whatever other information is out there, I know I can't really bring the previous generations to life.  I do have anecdotal tales of some of the way back folks.  It seems to me that what survives as anecdotes is often not the everyday things in a person's life, but the out of the ordinary or borderline scandalous stuff.

Did this couple really have a line drawn through the center of the house and one side was his, and one was hers?  And did he "have a woman on the side"?

Even more Dept. of the Wierd...did this woman have such a strong constitution that she survived her Atlantic crossing in a barrel?  Did she use her iron will to arrange marriages, possibly including the unhappy one above?  Was there an opportunity to follow some love to California (which would have brought considerable relief to the locals) which she turned down?

I'm wondering if I should keep some of these stories in my own notes, or should I include them in just my own book and give everyone else just the facts?

Saturday, August 15, 2015

Trying out Apple Newstand: Mollie Makes

I love magazines, particularly two craft magazines: Mollie Makes and Simply Crochet (from the same British publisher).
I've had good luck finding copies at a local Joann fabrics, but if I am willing to give up the cute little craft project they include with each issue (a tiny bag with the project of the month and all the materials you need to make it), would I enjoy just getting access on my iPad?


For an initial browse of the articles, the format would be fine.  My iPads large screen will display the pages easily.

Working on a project

If you're using a page to work on a pattern, you run into the tendency of the device to go dim/dark.  I have tried to find a setting that stops this annoyance but without success.

Another consideration is that you might be working away blissfully only to find your battery is low.

These things are never a consideration with the physical magazine.

Of course you can have dozens of issues on your device and no space is taken up in your home, which is already overflowing with books, right?

The Newstand doesn't show you the subscription price of a magazine until you choose "Get" and log in with your Apple ID.  That seems so odd since other apps show you the pricing upfront.

You can buy individual issues of Mollie Makes for $6.99 each which might be an option if you didn't want to subscribe upfront but only wanted to see a particularly appealing issue.

$16.99 for three months 
$59.99 for a year

I may try the three months to see how I like it.  I believe you have access to all back issues when you subscribe.

Edit:  I went with a three month subscription and the magazine is beautiful as always. Caveat! Your three month subscription will auto renew unless you go into settings (device or subscription settings??) ...I'm pretty sure they said the day before it is due to renew.  That is all kinds of troublesome if true, and if the subscription service is U.K. Based you'll need to be wary of time zones.

As you're flipping pages it seems to take a few moments for some pages to resolve.
If one of the reasons you like the magazine is getting the "artist paper", that you'll need to print out rather than being able to tear it out of the magazine.  Artist paper is usually on a bit stiffer stock than the rest of the pages so what printing result you get would vary with your printer and the paper you choose to print on.