Monday Musings

So over the last week here are things that have made me go….hmmmmmm.

  1. Why is it my daughter wants to sleep in on weekdays yet be up at the crack of dawn on weekends.
  2. Why do stores (Walmart are you listening?) in Canada advertise all week to not go across the border on Black Friday because they are having a Saturday/Sunday Huge Event and it turns out that it was basically a regular sale.
  3. Why can’t people on Twitter make the attempt of conversation instead of just demanding a Google Wave invite – I might actually send you one then.
  4. How do the “People of Walmart and People of Costco” not realize they are being photographed.
  5. I am just glad my 2 year old shouts out “I have to pee!” in public like she does at home.

| Enjoy your week |

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Living the Google-centric life

You might as well give up and give to Google being king on how you can organize your life.

First off would be to start using Gmail.  It is a free email service and it has unbelievable features including a great search system that you can find any email or information in an email no matter how deep it is in your inbox.

Another great feature of Gmail is that ability to turn your email into IMAP which would keep your inbox updated whether you logged in on the web, mobile, or a desktop client like Microsoft Outlook and all of your email would be synced and automatically change when you receive, send or delete.

With Gmail comes the Contacts feature in it which on the outside may seem plain and boring but is quite powerful.  The one feature I like is that anyone who either you emailed or has emailed you gets put into an ‘All Contacts’ group so that even if the email gets deleted you will always have that contact information.  From there you can choose to place them into the main ‘My Contacts’ grouping.  Another great feature of Contacts is that you can go through you contacts and see what recent conversations(email or instant message) with them so you never lose that email.

Moving from Gmail is the Calendar feature which again is automatically synced if you have your Gmail IMAPed so that anything you change on one device is changed on another other devices you have synced.  There are a number of incredible features that come with GCal to list here but one feature is the the ability to put public calendars into your own GCal account so you don’t have to spend time inputting each item indivually.  So you can get your favorite sports teams schedule or your favorite TV channel schedule put right into your calendar so you never miss a date.

This is just the tip of the iceburg on what you can do to keep your life organized.  Try it once and you will find it hard to go back to your old system.

Find all the information to get started at:

Gmail

GCal

All information Google on lifehacker.com

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Random Thoughts

Here are some things that I saw this weekend and thought…huh these people actually made it out their front door.

If you are going to a toy warehouse sale to buy Christmas gifts for your kids – why do you bring your kids with you?  Now I can see kids 2 and under who don’t really get the idea of Christmas cause hey I am guilty of taking my 2 year old to a toy store and asking if she likes this and then buying it in front of her.  But hey when your kid is 6 and having a meltdown because he/she can’t get a toy.  Don’t blame it on the child.

With the recent hands-free law that came into effect in Ontario I know you might not be use to it yet…..but don’t do it in front of a cop shop.  That is just way too easy for them.

Fine you are going to put up Christmas lights in November – easier to do it in the warmer weather.  But please don’t turn on all of your decorations before I have to wear my winter coat.

Every day is a new adventure.

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Mushroom Risotto

Looking for a meal for Sunday night why not try pork chops .  You can cook the pork how ever you like it.  Me I prefer the BBQ.  Put a little oregano, thyme and any other seasoning you prefer and cook each side about 8-10 minutes and you are good to go.  But wait don’t you need a side dish, why not try mushroom risotto.

Ingredients

  • medium white onion
  • 1 pkg mushrooms
  • arborio rice – 12 oz
  • butter
  • olive oil
  • worcestershire sauce
  • chicken or beef stock – 900 ml
  • parmesan cheese

Start by heating up in a medium sized saucepan with olive oil on medium  and then put in the onion that has been diced and start browning it.  After about 5 minutes put in the chopped mushrooms with a couple of knobs of butter and start softening up the mushrooms.  As the mushrooms are softening up put in some worcestershire sauce to taste – the more you put in the meatier your risotto will taste – and then put in your arborio rice heating it up with the mushrooms and onion.

After a few minutes add the stock until everything is covered and let the rice cook.  Keep stirring throughout the process and as the rice absorbs the stock add more stock.  Keep repeating until all the stock is in the pan and then let the rice cook.  Should take about 15 minutes for the rice to be fully cooked grate some parmesan cheese over top and serve it hot.

Once you master this dish you will find that it is a great thing to have in your pocket as it not only impresses people when they taste it but you can also add different vegetables into it like beans and make a different dish all the time.

Here is what it should look like in the end.

Have fun and enjoy your Sunday Dinner.

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How the DVR has saved marriages.

Living the single life meant one thing you could watch sports whenever you wanted and you could actually see a game live and not spend the whole evening trying to avoid the score.

I really think DVR’s were invented by a couple of husbands who kept missing the game because either they were stuck watching some drama with some guy named McDreamy or ended up spending the evening chasing down a 2 year old trying to get them to bed.  We advertise them as tools so that you don’t miss a show and can pause the TV at any time but the hidden message that only guys can read is “See every game when you can’t”Now I am sure most guys are like me and have invented a new sport, “Avoiding the score”.  This sport can be seen nightly in most living rooms and you have learn the rules real quick or else you will come across the score.

  1. To really make sure you don’t see the score when one show is finished on the DVR pause it, don’t delete it.  Doing this prevents live TV from coming on while you switch to another show as you can always go back later and delete the show.
  2. If you must delete the show first turn down the volume of the TV and block out the upper third of the screen as that is where the put the score
  3. Do not – I repeat- Do not go on Facebook, Twitter or any sports message board as you never know when the arena announcer posts the score – Thanks Stu.

Oh and one more thing guys this doesn’t work the other way around – trust me I tried.

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If only we know when we were kids how much sleeping would be valued when we become adults.

Imagine if we were given a chance to sleep 12 hours a night do you think we would be waking up at 3am?  Then why do our kids wake up?  Pretty much like clock work I hear the door open and the patter of little feet come running out of the room wanting to jump into our bed.  Ok I know we have a king-sized bed but you add two adults, one 2 year-old and of course an extra pillow, a stuffed animal or two and an extra blanket the bed gets rather cramped – aaah…why don’t you want a bed to yourself.

And there you have it my nightly stare downs with my 2 year old in a dark hallway.  Me asking her why she is awake and her ignoring the question and pointing towards my bedroom door.  So after 10 minutes of back and forth I decide it will be easier to let her crash on our bed then not sleep.  Even after that somehow I seem to end up on the edge when my daughter takes up my whole side.  Ahhhh…the sleeping joys of a parent.

 

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Twitter Friends

However you use Twitter there are definitely people on there that are interested in what you’re talking about.  Even with only 140 characters you can definitely find some tweetfriends to spur on some good discussions.  The best thing about Twitter is that you can have conversations with people you have never met and have it turn into a great resource.

For me I got onto Twitter because yes I am a geek, but never really got it until I started using the search button to find topics that I was interested in.  Only then did Twitter become a great resource.  For me getting laid off and having frustration in finding the next job I decided to use government programs to my advantage and thought about switching to a computer career.  So I searched Twitter for what training I needed for web development and the answers came flooding in and from that I have a great network of friends that I can discuss about web development that I never had before.  While at home with my daughter I apparently put myself on the stay-at-home diet where you gain pounds and not lose them so I used Twitter again and came across a group of people who were all looking to get their family healthy and fit and found a website WeFitFamilies.com and from there I am now participating in a huge Mother’s Day Giveaway

This giveaway involves group of bloggers who mostly all met through Twitter and are giving away prizes on May 1 with a huge Twitter Party.  Check out the list of prizes and sign up with all the bloggers there at We Fit Families.  

Twitter can be a great tool and you can really develop some good friendships through it but you really have to decide how you are going to use Twitter and you really do have to participate in discussions or else you will never get the full benefit of it.

You can find me on Twitter – @permeister

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