Windows 10 for FREE

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It took me 15 years to decide to upgrade from Windows XP, and I only made the decision because I was forced by Microsoft to buy the latest operating system, or allow my computer to be infected with thousands of parasitic viruses that would probably eat away at every microscopic section of my motherboard and all my other hardware which would then force me to have to buy a new computer. I decided I was due for a new operating system anyway, so I figured what the hell, I’ll buy Windows 8.1 full install. I didn’t buy the upgrade because I didn’t want to have to install Windows XP then upgrade to 8.1 every time I reformatted or had to buy a new hard drive.  I figure if I’m going to install an operating system, I’d rather install the one I’m going to use immediately and for a long time instead of having to go through 2 installations, which could take an hour each.

The start window for 8.1 looks awesome to me. Everyone said I would hate it, because they assumed I refused to upgrade because I hated the 8.1 start window, but that simply isn’t true. I’m cheap as hell. No seriously, I’m living on a low income disabled budget, which has absolutely no budget for a new $100 operating system. It just so happened that I had a bulk sale for tassels, and that was what helped me buy Windows. See, that’s why I have a Etsy shop. If I need to buy something, I can count on people to buy keychains or earrings if I beg them to lol. My sales are usually nothing every month, so those occasional sales are awesome.

The Start window for Windows 10 looks a lot smaller, to say the least lol. I quite enjoy the 8.1 Start window because when I’m watching TV, it is a dark enough screen that it doesn’t bother me when I’m watching my shows. If the screen is bright from Facebook or if I have a bright desktop image, then it hurts my eyes to look at the TV and have the bright computer screen in the corner of my eye. I hope they have given us an option to choose this smaller window, or a full screen start window. If the image above is our only option, well, then I guess I’ll have to just deal with it.

As with all new operating systems you want to give it a few months before installing just because you may have to live without your printer or your webcam or any other external hardware you might have if they were sitting on their thumbs when they should’ve been making new drivers. There is also a chance that your favorite MMORPG isn’t compatible. You might have to miss raiding for quite a while. Of course I would find out if they have support for Windows 10 before installing it because they may have a version specifically for Windows 10 all ready to go.

I love new things only because I get bored easily, but I’m quite content with what I have for now. I say I will wait to make sure everything works, but I’m sure there won’t be too many issues. I have a Microsoft webcam and a Kodak Printer, which I’m sure will be ready long before Windows 10 is downloaded. I’m sure my keyboard and mouse work since I trust Logitec will have it ready to go. I don’t usually have to worry since they are plug and play.

So if you are one of those people who panic at the thought of something new, take a chill pill and give it time, but don’t miss out on reserving your FREE copy of Windows 10. They are giving you something for free, so take advantage of it while you can. You don’t have to install it immediately, I’m sure you can burn the installation files onto a cd or dvd and install it when you are ready. If you have panic attacks at the thought of issues, then just check to see how other people are dealing with them before you take the leap.

I actually look forward to the new Windows 10 that I just may buy a bigger hard drive and start over from scratch so I have a FAST new experience. We will see in another 7 weeks.

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Induction Cookware ORDEAL

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OMG Is it really that difficult for a sales person to sell cookware? Why don’t they have a section SPECIFICALLY for induction cookware? Why do we have to go through the whole magnet test with every pot and pan they sell before we can decide that a set works instead of just saying hey look, it’s the Induction section?

Okay so this is what happened. My partner told me that he spoke with someone at Macy’s who said a full set of pots and pans from T-fal were $99. It comes with a bunch of things including the utensils. But, he decided that he wanted to go to Sears first. He doesn’t want me to cook with regular stainless steel because he’s afraid the food will stick to the pot or pan and I’ll do nothing but bitch about having to clean stuck food. Um… not once has this conversation ever happened in the 21 years we’ve been together lol. We have pots that aren’t non stick that I’ve never had an issue with and never bitched about cleaning, so I honestly don’t know where that is coming from. But I digress. Sears wasn’t really sure which ones would work, so I said why don’t we go to Macy’s and see what their T-fal set looks like.

carols-cookie-boy-part-2-walking-deadWe went over to Macy’s and had to basically power walk over there because the mall seemed like they were closing every store, and it was only 6pm. We got there, went up to the 3rd floor and the lady there didn’t seem to know what she was doing. Oh and by the way, if you are a Walking Dead fan you will appreciate this. The woman in the cookware section looked almost identical to Carol. All I was thinking was no Carol, I won’t tell anyone. Can I have a cookie now? Anyway, she went to the computer and said they didn’t have anything for induction that was non stick and that she would have to order it.

We went back to Sears and bought the one set that the woman recommended to us (below) only because a magnet stuck to the bottom of 1 of the pans they had on display that she tested. However, when we came home I opened the box and pulled 1 pan out and tested it and it did not work. Dammit! I really wanted this one particular set because look what you get. You get a black ceramic cup that holds the utensils, and you get like 7 utensils too. It also comes with 5 glass bowls with plastic lids and a random cookie sheet lol. The 25 piece mega cookware set was $89 and so was the 7 piece NuWave set, but at least the NuWave set works.

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20150601_030646So if you are in the market for induction cookware, make sure it has this logo on the box. If you don’t see that logo, chances are it’s not going to work. Don’t waste your time running around from store to store looking for something and buying it only to come home and find out that it doesn’t work. We ended up buying the NuWave at Walmart. I hate going there, but it was literally our last choice. They were the only place out of all the places we looked that had it. Although, we didn’t go to Target, but I also didn’t see it on their website.

VonShef Induction Hob Heat Diffuser Stainless Steel with Heat Proof Handle

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I had an issue with our portable stove, so I had to buy a new one, and I chose induction specifically because I need more power (arh arh arh). Well, I didn’t realize when I bought the induction stove that it wouldn’t be compatible with all of our pots/pans, and when it came and when I tried using them, that verified my worst fear. So I Googled a solution and found out that if I had one of these little things to place on top of the burner, that it would allow me to use my old pots and pans, so I bought one on sale on Amazon for only $15. Well, the hits just keep coming because this doesn’t work either.

The first thing that shocked me was that my package was delivered on Memorial Day. You know, the day that the mail doesn’t come? Apparently the regular mail doesn’t come, but packages do. That’s news to me. I was so excited to use it, so I put it on the induction stove and hit power and WOOHOO it showed activity. I pressed the function button over to “Water” and put a pot of water on there, just basically to see if it worked. Well, it worked, for an entire minute, then I got the E3 message saying it doesn’t work. So I am back to square one.

Why does this crap keep happening to me? I buy something because we need it, but I buy the kind that requires specific pots and pans, which we don’t have, and so I buy something to make them compatible, and it doesn’t work. Now I am forced to go out and actually buy new pots and pans. When will life be simple again?

UPDATE: I really wanted this to work, so I gave it several chances by using it on all the settings, even lowering the heat, and my induction stove STILL gave me an error message after about a minute every time. I really hate having to return things because I feel I made the commitment to buy it, even if it doesn’t work I should just take the loss and perhaps give it to someone who can use it, but screw that, I want my money back! My being too timid isn’t teaching me a lesson, it teaches the maker of the product to improve their product since it will most likely be sent back to the manufacturer to be recycled.

So what does this mean for me now? I’m not going to spend a lot of money on another one of these things, I’m just going to get a new set of compatible pots and pans, that’s all. My birthday is coming, and I’ve always said not to buy me something that is for working, like don’t buy me a vacuum cleaner for my birthday, or a dust buster, or a friggin’ mop. Buy me something that will make me excited, namely a video game or whatever that has something electronic in it lol. But, I honestly don’t really want anything this year because I already have enough games and electronics to last awhile, so pots and pans doesn’t sound like too bad of an idea now. My partner already told me he’s been researching pots and pans and he found a set for $99 with all the pots and pans and the spoons and spatula etc. I checked and it was $119, but you know, same thing lol. Although, I don’t know if that’s the same exact set he’s talking about, but you never know. Anyway, I look forward to the fake surprised look on my face next week on my birthday lol.

Losing Weight with Noom and SparkPeople

When I quit smoking in 1996, I made a big move to live healthy, but I traded one bad habit with another. Most people are afraid to quit smoking because they think they will gain weight. Well, that is a fair concern because it does happen. Cigarettes are an appetite suppressant, so most people who smoke don’t tend to overeat.

Smoking also inhibits your taste buds, so I’ve heard, and I do know this to be true because when I smoked, food didn’t taste as awesome to me until after I quit smoking, which in itself is the very reason I gained 50lbs in the first 2 or 3 months after I quit smoking. I discovered all these tastes that I had tasted before, but never could appreciate because my taste buds weren’t as sensitive as they were after I quit.

That was a very long time ago, almost 20 years in fact. So what have I been doing over those 19 years? Eating… a lot! I was 150lbs when I quit smoking, and when I reached 200lbs, I vowed I would not go over that because I didn’t want to be fat. Well, it wasn’t easy, and I kept slipping over the line and tried to go on a diet to get back under 200lbs. Occasionally I would go way over and would end up 210+ and would vow not to go over that, but then I found myself 220, then 230, then 240 and so on.

In January 2013 I was 262lbs and very unhappy with how fat my body was and especially how fat my face was and the fact that I was missing a neck. I was not only just overweight, but I had type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure and sleep apnea. I was fortunate to lose 70lbs with Noom with diet alone, but by mid 2013, the weight stopped coming off. I eventually got frustrated with my plateau and started eating bad foods again and gradually from around August or September 2013 to today, I have gained 50lbs. Yikes! That’s almost all of the weight that I had worked so hard to lose.

I went to the nutritionist this week and was told that my triglycerides are high and that the reason the doctor gave me Lisinopril is because I have high blood pressure because of the fat. She told me I have to go on a diet again because I need to drop some weight. I have wanted to go back on my diet, in fact I’ve been trying to go back on my diet, but a certain someone won’t let me because he keeps buying me burgers and fries, but with this news, he has agreed to stop doing that to help me rather than enable my food addiction. I am not trying to place the blame on anyone other than myself, because I alone control my eating habits. I can say no to the bad foods, it just so happens that I have an addiction to said bad foods and find it hard to say no.

So here I am 2 years later going on another diet. I have promised the nutritionist a printout of my data from SparkPeople from using The Spark and I will bring my Nook HD+ tablet to the appointment next month so she can see that I’ve been eating healthy and she can see my exercise and steps and the graphs from losing weight.

My diet is already working because I’ve already lost 3lbs since Wednesday when I started. It’s only Saturday, so that is a very small amount of time to have lost 3lbs. I don’t want to lose too much weight too fast, but at the same time I hope it burns off me very fast.

When I bought my bicycle trainer last year, it was to help me lose weight, but I stopped using it because I became lazy, well, I started using it again because I want to succeed in my weight loss. Diets tend to work better when you exercise and eat healthy at the same time. You can’t expect to lose weight if you don’t exercise, or if you exercise and eat crap. Although, I did lose 70lbs in 2013 with diet alone, but I would just prefer to lose weight from both diet and exercise.

The journey begins again, so I will have to take new before and after shots. I already have a great before picture that was taken of me this month with Shane Bitney Crone, so I’ll just take an after picture when I reach my goal weight.

Here are my before and after pictures from 2013. Isn’t it funny how all this works? I was 262lbs in the picture of me with the suspenders, and I was 192lbs in the picture of me at the beach. I can’t believe what a difference that was.

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Here is a picture that was taken of me earlier this month with Shane Bitney Crone at the Bakersfield PFLAG meeting along with a friend. I don’t think my face looks the same as it did in January 2013, I think it is still around the same as the beach picture, or somewhere near there.

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My diet has just begun again, and I’ve only set the Noom app program to help me get back down to 190lbs, but I would hope to drop more than that. In fact, I am hoping to at least go down to 170lbs. The problem for me is that I need to eat healthy, and continue to eat healthy all the time, not just when I’m trying to lose weight. I need to BE healthy all the time because I can’t keep doing this yo-yo diet crap. I need to lose weight and keep the weight off. And this isn’t for vanity, it’s for my health. So wish me luck!

Minecraft Beacons

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One of my Minecraft Essential Handbooks came today. It’s the one with the pickaxe icon on the front. I read it cover to cover in less than 20 minutes. It was only 79 pages, but it was mostly pictures with words, so it’s far from a novel. But it’s fully color and hardcover and was only $5, so I think it was well worth the price considering it’s normally $8.

Near the end it has a tip for finding your way back to your home when you get lost, and that is to build some beacons. They said to just build up 2 columns of dirt blocks, then place your torch on one column, then dig your way down with the 2nd column of dirt blocks. That makes sense, but you know, I didn’t think 1 torch was going to help me find my way at night, or even during the day. I wanted to build up a huge tower of blocks with 4 torches and 4 pumpkins, since pumpkins are supposed to give off better light than a torch. I spaced them far enough that I could still see other beacons, but just in case I couldn’t see the other beacons, at the bottom of the beacon I created an arrow with cobblestone so I would know which direction I had to go in to find the next beacon or the home beacon.

imageAs you can see in the image above, it’s very difficult to see. All you can really see are the arrows, which is why I zoomed them in for you. This particular beacon is the home beacon which stands just behind my cobblestone house. I made the beacon with cobblestone so that it would match my house, but all the other beacons are made with oak wood planks because I have an abundance of wood thanks to fact that every time I chop down a tree, it drops several oak tree saplings which I plant for more trees so I don’t have to keep chopping down all the trees in the land. I just plant around 50 to 100 near my house, then spend whatever amount of time I need chopping them down whenever I need more wood.

Another tip is to create a road using cobblestone, which basically means I have to mine the dirt as I’m travelling and fill in that space with cobblestone, which as you know can take a long time, especially if you just want to go explore. You can’t really explore if all you are doing is laying road, so the other alternative is just dropping torches every minute so you can find your way back using the torches. Later, once you’ve found the new mine or whatever it is you found, you can just create your new road along the torches, then add the cobblestone.

A cobblestone road, torches to light the patch, beacons and signs are a few of the ways I have gotten myself back to my house when I start getting lost, or think I am getting lost. Today for example I had built the first beacon, but then I found a horse and tamed it and put a saddle on it, then brought it back to my house, but I forgot to make the lead, so when I went into the house to make the lead, the horse was gone. Is it a lead? It’s basically a rope that you can put on your horse to tie it to a fence so they don’t wander off. It works with a dog as a leash. Anyway, I went searching for the horse, and next thing I knew I was lost and couldn’t find my beacon. I eventually did, but one beacon isn’t going to help me, which is why I build 3 more in many different directions from my house. I will have to keep adding more later just in case I get lost again and can’t find my roads or my beacons. I still never found that stupid horse, but I have 2 more saddles and I plan on taming another horse. Maybe some day my tame horse with the saddle will return to me.

The first book that I received today was full of useful information, I can’t wait to get the other 3 tomorrow.

Facebook is too graphic for me

What is the reason anyone uses Facebook or any social websites? Well, in my opinion it is to keep in contact with friends and family. Some people use it for dating or to get laid while others use it to spy on people they hate lol. I’m guessing.

In 1997 when I got my first Windows based computer, I was using America Online. I had some friends and family in my buddy list and we would chat in the instant messages and we would email each other. I would go into the AOL chatrooms and meet new people and I am still friends with 2 of the people I met way back then.

I joined MySpace when that first came out, then people switched to Facebook and Twitter and I joined both websites. I follow so many people on Twitter that it’s very difficult to keep up with all the millions of tweets per second. I usually follow certain people in lists, but even that can be difficult to keep up with so I just browse when I have a chance. I read the Facebook feed every day, in fact it’s an addiction for me. There are some good points for Facebook and then there are some bad points.

Good points for Facebook are that I get to see what my friends and family are doing. They post pictures of their children and they post about what they are up to. I never actually get to see anyone, so it’s nice to know what is going on in their lives. Before the internet, you didn’t know anything unless you called them.

Bad points for Facebook is the over sharing. Like, I see some nice posts that other people are posting with funny memes or some inspirational messages and I click the share button. I like to make people smile and laugh and I like to make people feel inspired. Unfortunately, some people like to post negative stuff, like GMO and Monsanto and pictures of dead dogs and cats, or pictures of people abusing dogs and cats. Today someone posted a very graphic picture of a woman who had been baked in an oven with the caption “What’s for dinner? This bitch you been texting.” or something to that effect. Another person shared an image that Ted Nugent shared of a man sitting with 5 decapitated heads in front of him while he is holding an assault rifle. No one wants to see this! I particularly do not want to see this.

Facebook is supposed to be fun. It’s supposed to be a place for friends and family to keep in touch and to share what’s going on with them, not to push people away. I am being pushed away. I’m not the type of person to give up, but I’m seriously thinking that I don’t want to be on Facebook anymore out of disgust.

Look, I’m not going to tell anyone what they can and cannot post, because when my partners sister-in-law signed up for Facebook, she immediately told me that I’m not supposed to use a picture of my dog as my profile picture, that I’m supposed to use a picture of my face. I was insulted because I don’t want to be told what I can and cannot use as my profile picture. Then she asked me to unfriend her because she didn’t like the things I was clicking LIKE on and she didn’t like the things I was sharing because it was all pro-gay stuff. Don’t tell me what I can and cannot post and like.

I’m not saying people shouldn’t post what they want to post, but if it is all negative, I don’t want to see it. It may seem hypocritical of me, but I think pro-gay things and dead people and animals are totally different. I can deal with all the Monsanto and GMO stuff, in fact, I would look at that all day long if I had to if it meant that I never had to look at another decapitated head, or another stock pot filled with decapitated pit bull heads and bodies, or male chicks being thrown into a grinder.

I have 3 pages that I have to maintain on Facebook and I usually post stuff that I share from friends and family if they are all positive. I think the only way I’m going to be able to continue doing that is to just sign into Facebook under those pages and scroll through other pages posts to find positive stuff to share. I’m going to have to stop using my regular profile to see what people are saying and doing if it means I don’t have to see corpses anymore.

Is this too much for a person to ask? I mean seriously, is it too much to ask people not to post corpses? Am I being unreasonable here? I’m feeling like an alien in my own world. Maybe I’m not a human being, maybe I am an alien from another world and this is normal for people to do on planet Earth and I’m the crazy one here. If that is the case then I would love it if my alien family would come get me so I can log on to the Alien Facebook to see what they are posting instead. Perhaps I just need a long vacation away from the internet altogether and just read books. I think that is probably what I need to do.

Please feel free to comment and tell me what you think.

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

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I was diagnosed with Carpal Tunnel Syndrome in 2007 after 20 years of crocheting started to take its toll on my hands. I didn’t just have it in one hand, I have it in both hands. I was given wrist splints to wear at night when I went to bed. I was told I didn’t have to wear them during the day, that they should help me when I sleep. Okay, no problem. I’ve worn them every night since then up until last year when I stopped using my bipap machine for my sleep apnea because I didn’t need it anymore because I had lost 70lbs. Wearing the bipap mask became uncomfortable because suddenly the pressure was too high.

I wore these wrist splints faithfully for 6 years from 2007 to 2013. They did help and last year I started making keychains and opened an Etsy shop. Since then I have added dangle, hoop and stud earrings and hemp and friendship bracelets. I received an order for 8 tassels for a company who makes purses, then they placed another order for 34 tassels and that took a huge toll on my hands. Someone else ordered 60 rainbow keychains. I made 36 of those and had to stop because it was hurting too much. She wanted them for her June wedding which apparently has been pushed back to November. That gives me more time to finish the rest of them, but I’m not quite sure they will follow through with buying them from me. I’ve had several people place a custom order and then not pay for it.

I’ve been working day and night making friendship bracelets over the last week. I really love making things. I don’t know if it is a gift or a curse. A gift that I can make something wonderful out of raw material with just my hands, but a curse that something I love to do can cause so much pain.

The pain is just too much on my hands. I wake up every morning with painfully numb hands and this morning my right hand was still numb for an hour after I woke up, and it was extremely painful. I put my wrist splint on and the pain and numbness eventually went away, but I am going to continue wearing the wrist splint for the rest of the day and perhaps wear it every day and night while I take a rest. I hope that helps.

Here are just a few things that I’ve been making. I am very proud of the hard work that have been doing that is ruining my hands lol.

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I had all these plans for the camouflage bracelets. I bought the different colors to make a red version and a blue version. I also had planned on buying the different shades of brown to make a brown one. People have suggested I go with a complete rainbow and make orange, yellow and purple camouflage bracelets. I can’t see that happening now.

The rainbow braid bracelet on the bottom is actually a bracelet I wanted to make for a very long time for a specific person. I actually wanted to make 2 of them, and I made this yesterday and last night I started a second one. I listed it just because it was very easy to make and if someone ordered it, well I could make another one. But now I’m not so sure about that. I do still plan on giving this one and the other one away to the specific people just because I like to give people gifts.

Well, that’s all for now I guess. Today is the first day of my new vacation from crafting. I love what I do, so I don’t know how long I’m going to be able to stay away from it. It’s addicting for sure lol. I will try though, because my hands are more important to me than making something that no one will appreciate or even buy even though they asked for it.