Friday, April 24, 2015

Feline Friday: Spunky Doodle

I got this cuddle thing last Christmas for our cats but yesterday was the first time we saw Spunky actually go inside it.  Usually  they just lay on top.  My hubby got the picture so I could see what she did when I was at work.

She also hunkered in under the blanket I have on our computer chair.  Guess she was cold.

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Monday, April 20, 2015

Learning New Things: Creating Video Thumbnails

My Cutest Thumbnail Yet

When I make videos and post them to YouTube, I seldom like the three selections that show up to use as the screen shot for the video.  When I make a title at the beginning, it never seems to be one of the three choices that come up to use.  When viewing "Tips for New Booktubers" by ChapterStackss, she mentioned that your videos are more likely to be watched if you use a custom thumbnail.  I think this is very true because based on my own habits, when I see a list of videos pop up on a related topic, the ones with the bright or cute thumbnails are generally the ones I watch.  If you upload any videos to YouTube, I highly recommend you watch her tip video.

I finally found out how to make a custom thumbnail (that's is what the video screen title is called).  I came across a tutorial on creating custom thumbnails for videos on Readables channel.  Although she specifically showed how to do it using GIMP, I found I can make some simple ones using PicMonkey and maybe my photoshop software (but I haven't tried that yet.)

Basically, it's pretty easy:

1.  When you upload your video to YouTube and the 3 options come up for which thumbnail to use, there is also a custom option which you click on.  (You must verify your account which is just a matter of typing in your phone number, receiving a secret code and putting that in the box.  This is a one-time step.)

2.  Choose a picture you want to use for your customized thumbnail and edit it the way you want.  The resize it to 1280 x 720.  (In picmonkey, I can only get one or the other because it automatically sets a different size for the other number, but I found it still works out.)

3.  Save your picture and then click on the custom thumbnail option to upload it and select it.  Remember to save your changes and it usually works.  Your custom picture will show when the video is displayed.
Do you use thumbnails for your videos?  I am so excited about learning how to do this!  Check out my YouTube Channel: 

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Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Falling Bricks and Bus Adventure In One Day!

Some of the Bricks that fell the day before.
On Monday, when I went out walking on my break, the PNC bank building at the corner of  E. 6th and Vincent lost some bricks from the top corner of it.  They came crashing down into the street and on the sidewalk below.  I actually walk down this street sometimes when I go to work or when I go out walking on my break.  Fortunately, no one was hurt which is pretty amazing.  There was a LOT, it was a much bigger pile than what is shown in this picture above--they covered a good section of the street when it first happened.  I didn't have my camera with me Monday, so took some pictures the next morning.  I found myself walking on the sidewalk close to the street rather than right next to the buildings.

Top of the building that fell apart
You can see in this picture where the top of the building broke off.  The road was closed and emergency vehicles and police cars were all over.  Traffic going home from work was terrible because drivers would block the intersection so no one could get through.

Tall building
My bus sat for 30 minutes in traffic trying to get through the intersection.  It started raining too which did not help.  Those of us waiting for the bus cheered when it finally made it through.  It was half an hour late coming and then, we just go a couple blocks and the driver announces that her shift is over, she's not going to drive in this traffic any more and is going home.  She called for another bus driver to come but there were no free drivers available.  We just sat for about another 20 minutes or so for the next bus to come.

I didn't really mind too much because I called to let Gerard know I'd be late, I had a book to read and no plans to go anywhere when I got home.  One of the other lady passengers went on a tirade though, yelling at the bus driver saying she's the worst driver she ever had!  She kept going on and on about how if she has to work late, she does.  She kept on rambling about how awful RTA is and how she would never get away with that attitude on her job.

I thought it was hilarious. 

Joining in Mama Kat's Writer's Workshop with the prompt:  Tell us about a local news story that's all a buzz in your neck of the woods right now.

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Monday, April 13, 2015

Zoo Day - A Bit Too Crowded and Too Bright


My husband and I went to the Cleveland Zoo yesterday.  In the morning, before we arrived, a parent dangled their little kid over the edge of the cheetah exhibit and the kid fell in!  Fortunately, the cheetahs did not bother coming near them, but what a stupid thing to do.  The zoo is charging them with child endangering and I'm glad about that!  (See News Article at WKYC Channel 3--some people actually blamed the zoo!)

We went in the afternoon since it was such a beautiful day!  The temperature was near 70 and the sun was shining so it was very comfortable.  I wanted my husband to shoot some short video clips of me recommending some animal books for my YouTube channel that I could edit into a video (Fast Five Animal Fiction Part 1).

Sounds easy, right?  Wrong!
  • First, it was SO crowded! we had a hard time finding a quiet place to line up the shot so Gerard could get both me and the animal in it. 
  •  Second, we managed to get a few done but the bears were disappointing.  Both Grizzlies were actually lying together in a dugout hole and no other bears were on exhibit.  
  • Third, The flowers weren't in bloom, there was lots of construction going on all over the zoo, including the giraffe exhibit so we we couldn't shoot the video I had planned by them.
  • Fourth, it was so bright that we really couldn't see the Flip camera screen outside to see if we had the shot lined up well.
The animals of the day though were the otters and I did manage to get a selfie of us in front of the elephants without being able to tell if it was on record or not.  We plan to go back again Friday when I have a day off to do some more.  I figure it will be much less crowded and maybe not so bright.  Some clouds would be appreciated.

Joining in Mama Kat's Writer's Workshop with the prompt:  Tell us about a local news story that's all a buzz in your neck of the woods right now.

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Sunday, April 5, 2015

An Interview About the Stations of the Cross with Gerard

My husband was very excited about being able to go to the Stations of the Cross at St. Francies Desailles since he's retired now. It was at noon on Good Friday and it was something he wanted to do for a long time. I had to work so was very interested in his thoughts about it and exactly what they did. I never experienced this. In my church they didn't have it. Here is a list of the 14 stations that were listed in the booklet:

1 Jesus is Condemned to Death
2 Jesus Accepts His Cross
3 Jesus Falls the First Time
4 Jesus Meets His Afflicted Mother
5 Simon Helps Jesus Carry the Cross
6 Veronica Wipes the Face of Jesus
7 Jesus Falls the Second Time
8 Jesus Meets the Women of Jerusalem
9 Jesus Falls the Third Time
10 Jesus Is Stripped of His Clothes
11 Jesus Is Nailed to the Cross
12 Jesus Dies on the Cross
13 Jesus Is Taken Down from the Cross
14 Jesus Is Buried

Praise God, Jesus did not stay dead but rose and lives today! HAPPY EASTER!

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