Searches and spiders and Schoolhouse Rock

“Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow.”~Albert Einstein, German physicist

I would disagree with Al’s statement above: rather than “hope” we should “plan” to be more active in our futures.

What does my Internet searches say about me? That was a question posed in a recent Twitter Chat, I believe. That’s a [insert adjective] thought. In just 3 hours of writing in a Starbucks, web-based analytics would show me searching:

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Haiku Horizons #105: Spider

–“Haiku Horizons” (so I could get the apropos link for this week’s haiku challenge, my contribution seen here)
–“Geico squirrel commercial TV”
–“The More You Know NBC” (and clicking on the Will Smith link!)
–Scary as adverb (“senyence grammer scary”)
By the way, “scarily” is the adverb. I’m jolted back to the Schoolhouse Rock I should know.
–“Schoolhouse rock adverb” (to get the title: Lolly, Lolly, Lolly Get Your Adverbs Here)
In a surprising coinkidink, there’s a squirrel in the video.
I bet the song is stuck in your head now. You’re welcome.
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–“Sound of Music title” (it does have “The” at beginning of title)
–“Rochester writers contest” (to revisit the categories and submission requirements)

I also did a few interesting hashtag/user searches on Twitter. I searched this blog for some keywords. I commented on blog posts, posted to Instagram and checked in on Swarm.

And you? What do your searches say about you?

Things that make you go hmmmmmm….

What makes someone successful?

“Success is a state of mind. If you want success, start thinking of yourself as a success.”~Joyce Brothers, American psychologist

Success is a scary word. If we say we are successful, others may perceive us of bragging. I am superior and you, failing human, are worthless. If we say we are unsuccessful, then we start to shovel ourselves into that six-foot-deep pit.

Some days I’m one; some days I’m the other. Some days I’m both.

One thing that has gone well so far is my instant social media response time. I need to come up with a catchy acronym for that so it makes the process more fun. Aside from email and Facebook, all is going well. My Grand Experiment from this post seems to fit into my style of interaction and planning.

How’s my ROW80 going? Let’s take a look at that:

1–Polish and publish Jimmy the Burglar: Thief of Socks. Not as much progress as I’d hoped for–really, this was supposed to be a quick little piece–but I did share part of Chapter 1 with my Writer’s Group. The feedback was just the critique I needed to move forward. I did a smidge of editing on Friday, but there were a lot of distractions that day.

2–Find and do a blog self-hosting site. Nope, not yet. This To-Do action item keeps getting moved from week to week. I think breaking it down into smaller actions will help. This week’s goal is to explore at least two hosting sites for info about their price and services.

3–Blog and social media planning. I’m doing a little with action sheets and making notes, but this is ongoing. I’m not sure where I want to go on with this.

4–Update my blog pages/site. I’ll save this until I finish the blog self-hosting goal.

5–Fractured finger, heal thyself. Doctor visit this week. I think I’m remarkably flexible, but we’ll see how he says I’m doing.

6–Make progress on memoir My Father, My Friend using Scrivener. First step needs to be resolving my supposed Scrivener problem, and I have yet to deal with that email. It’s probably a 5-minute fix, but it shifts on my To-Do as well.

7–Make time to play. This is the reason I was so lazy and unproductive with my writing and blogging and planning this week. I scrapbooked a few pages in my Happy Planner and obsessed over colors and styles while I watched insanely detailed YouTube videos on it. Just for fun.

8–Do some fun writing. See above.

What makes a success a success? What makes a failure a failure? It is all a state of mind.

Tumble over Umble in a Zentangle challenge

“Look up at the stars and not down at your feet.”~Stephen Hawking, English physicist

Today’s the 4th Tuesday of the month, which means it’s my bi-monthly Tuesday Tangled Lunch. It’s a quiet two hours, which is just fine for me. I had time to focus on preparations for tomorrow night’s Zentangle: By the Sea class and to complete this week’s Diva Zentangle Challenge #223.

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Tumbling as I’m Umble-ing in Diva #223

Umble. It’s an interesting tangle combining Crescent Moon’s shape and contrast with Hollibaugh’s criss-cross overlapping technique. Once again, I pulled out a half-completed tile, this one part of a 9-tile Zentangle pre-strung mosaic. It may be more obvious where the pre-Umble tangles are, but it’s the one I’m working on, regardless.

Umble is designed to work in a square space, starting from each of four corners. None of that here, so that’s a challenge right there. With a little tweaking, I turned it into something quite satisfying in a strange rectangular-triangular space. I’m purposely leaving the one space blank because I want to see how it looks when the mosaic is complete. Will it look as stark as now?

I can’t wait to find out.

How to save a walrus

“Education is what remains after one has forgotten what one has learned in school.”~ Albert Einstein, German scientist

As I continue to write and edit My Father, My Friend and as I think about NaNoWriMo, I downloaded a new app, Prompts. Sounds great for writers who smack into the stone wall called Writers Block. The app prompts you with a random first line to write about. If you’re stuck on the topic, it also suggests an approach to take, such as “What about the research?” and “Focus on one emotion.” I haven’t used it yet in my writing, but I plan to as I revise and tighten my memoir. To practice, here is what random generated for me.

How to save a walrus in 5 easy steps:

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My first Drawsome: Walrus. See others on my Pinterest page.

1–Keep a large tooth-and-nail file handy
2–Always travel with a yellow submarine
3–Antacids cure upset stomachs, but you’ll need a large bottle
4–Keep walrus away from the high-diving board
5–Walk softly and carry a big net

Hmmm. I’m not sure how I would use that in any writing, except that maybe a list in my story will inspire a character or provide some conflict. I’m going to have to try this again. I wonder what magical or mysterious prompt will be next…?

A #tbt for #PSU24 day

“What people say, what people do, and what they say they do are entirely different things.”~Margaret Mead, American scientist

As a rule, I don’t like blogpost titles that includes hashtags. It’s a sloppy shortcut to do double-duty without proper social media promotion. But in this case, rules are made to be broken.

Today, Penn State University showcased a 24-hour look at all the various actions going on at campus. However, this event turned into its own World Campus as students, alumni, employees, students abroad, other campus locations and anyone connected to Penn State showed their pride.

I made my alumni contributions on Twitter, Vine, Facebook and Instagram. In case you missed my day, here are some highlights:

(A special shout-out to author Marcie Hill who reminded me that it’s okay to do a picture-only blogpost.)

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Zentangle: Pretty in pink

“Understanding is joyous.”~Carl Sagan, American scientist

Cancer has affected my life. Among Dad’s many health conditions, he developed cancer in his later years of life. My one aunt had skin cancer. I expect that another family segment of relatives would have developed lung cancer from being lifelong smokers, but sometimes those people get lucky and just infect others. THON is the charity that defines Penn State students and alumni, supporting children with cancer through The Four Diamonds Fund, and I have danced twice so far to support the cause. I have not been affected physically by that disease…yet…and I’m hoping never to be.

This week’s Diva Zentangle Challenge #190 is to use the color pink in your art in support of breast cancer. I say use pink to support the fight against any type of cancer. Men used to wear pink, and those who still do can be quite dashing; Ralph Lauren certainly thought so for the movie The Great Gatsby, and who can argue with that stylish designer?

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Diva #190: dancing in pink

And so my entry into this week’s Challenge does not focus on gender but on the name. I used Printemps, Ixorus, ‘Nzeppel and Knightsbridge as my tangles. I did not find a direct “pink” color in my set of Derwent Inktense pencils, but I found something pink-esque, and used one definitely-pink gel pen to play counterpoint to the softness. I’m pleased, and it’s not often that I say that about my first attempt.

Support the fight against any cancer any way you can. It’s all a good fight.

A month in review: thank you, Photo 365

“The true sign of intelligence is not knowledge but imagination.”~Albert Einstein, German physicist

I made art.  I was creative.

I played games.  I won and lost, but friendly competition. 

I earned 5000 coins in Word Science and 100,000 coins in Bejeweled Blitz. Doesn’t beat my one million mark, but none too shabby

I started a new job.  I was productive.

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August 2014: coffee, games and being stylish

I visited new places: an apple orchard, a coffee shop.  I was adventurous.

I set new records in Foursquare.  I am happy because it is still working.  I was determined.

I received football tickets and a homemade breakfast tailgate.  I was Penn State proud!

I looked good with stylin’ clothes and a new ‘do.  I was pretty.

I taught Zentangle classes.  I was successful.

I traded text messages with my husband. He agreed that I was pretty. I was loved.

And that’s just what I saved in my Photo 365 app. There’s so much more.

What was your month like? Do share.

Lessons of a sumo wrestler

“I learned the value of hard work by working hard,”~Margaret Mead, American scientist

Back in 1998, I visited my friend, Deb, in Tokyo when she and her family lived in Japan for a few years. I climbed Mt. Fuji. I got lost in Akihabara (“Electric Town”). I saw more than my share of temples and shrines. I bought a kimono.

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Intense sumo concentration dressed in gold polka dots

When she came back to the states, she brought me a gift: a sumo wrester statuette. He is adorable. The stone he is made from a rough texture but not scratchy. He is pudgy and strong. He is bold despite–or because of–his red polka dot attire.

So many good memories swirl around. He is more than just a statue I hold in my hand.

Drink some coffee, tangle some Zen, nap

“A person who never made a mistake never tried anything new.”~Albert Einstein, German physicist

It’s 10am and I’m in a coffee shop on the campus side of Ann Arbor. Espresso Royale is my hangout caffeine of choice whenever I’m here waiting for my car to be repaired. I discovered a new roast, Sombrio, that is smooth enough for a second cup. Of course, the repair is going to take a few hours, so that second cup is practically mandatory.

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The store’s motto: “Helping you pretend to study.” Or to nap

There are tables and chairs here for working, but there are also couches for casual relaxation. It’s about 10am, and there are four guys sleeping there. One is under a blanket; it is chilly in here, so good foresight there. Another is snoring, and I can hear him from across the room. Seriously. I’m used to panhandlers here next to campus, but if they’re homeless folks looking for shelter, it’s probably warmer outside.

Hours-long car repair = great tangling time. The Diva’s weekly Zentangle Challenge #166 is another Use My Tangle (UMT), this one of a personal nature: it’s the Diva’s very own creation.

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Diva #166 and coffee: the perfect blend

Starting with Laura’s new as-yet-unnamed tangle, I created circles of varying sizes randomly splattered, as per her suggestions. I had to catch myself to stop while the lines were straight and not bowing out. I’ve been in a Mooka mood for weeks now, so I had to add it in. Knase is one of the CZT-exclusive tangles I’ll be teaching at my Mega Meet this week (still spaces available; check out my class description, I {Heart} Zentangle) And Ahh is such an underused tangled, it makes me smile, so here it is.

Now it’s raining. Definitely time for that second cup.

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