Wednesday Wanderings: Guardians of the Galaxy 2nd Trailer, Sea Blob, Photos of the Day, and 3D Printed Legs

haleakealaphoto

The second trailer for “Guardians of the Galaxy 2” has been released. I don’t know about you, but I can’t wait for this!:

GotG2 Trailer #2

And, in case you missed the first one:

GotG2 Trailer #1

Here’s a look at a giant “sea blob”. Kind of icky and fascinating all at once:

Sea Blob

Here’s a compilation of some of the best Photos of the Day from National Geographic:

Best of Photo of the Day

Trying out the first 3D printed prosthetic legs. Not perfect, but this could be a big breakthrough in helping amputees walk:

3D Legs

(Image from nationalgeographic.ocm)

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Available now:

tn_Circle Unbroken Cover (eBook)

After five years away, Kaili is coming home for the ceremony to install her sister as head of the family business. When an old rivalry threatens the family, Kaili and her partner need to use all their skills to save the sisters’ lives. Learn more here.

 

 

tn_Six of One

A collection of six short fantasy stories set in varied worlds of magic and mayhem. Learn more here.

 

 

 

tn_Survival of the Fittest (Front Cover)

A short novelette set in a dystopian Earth after the final environmental collapse. Sam is a genetically engineered chameleon who may hold the key to mankind’s survival. Learn more here.

 

 

Feedmypeople-thumb
In a world reeling under the effects of severe climate change, food shortages are common, and arable farmland is scarce. Unscupulous distributors like Beni Oligowma take advantage of the shortages for their own gain. When a promising new technology for growing food even under the harsh conditions is unveiled, grocery store owner Frank is determined to see that everyone is able to benefit from the results, not just the Benis of the world.
Feed My People is a short story, set in a dystopian science fiction world, and is free. Learn more here

Monday Musings: Stuff and Nonsense

musing

We added a wreath on the door to our Christmas decorations this year. We’d looked at some earlier, but anything that was more than a couple pine cones stuck into the side and one of those red-flocked bows was really, really pricey. I knew I could make one cheaper. We got a really good deal on the wreath itself, which is nice and full and thick and heavy. It was on a display at Market Basket marked $14.99, but when it rang up, we got it for $5.99! We got the decorations at Michaels. Most were 60% off. We did buy some stuff I didn’t use, but you never know what’s going to look best. I think it turned out rather nicely.

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We are probably going to get our tree this weekend. We’ll go to Lawndale Farm in Tyngsborough, MA. We know the family, and they always have such pretty trees. Check them out if you are in the area, and are looking for a really nice tree.

I’ve been (very) slowly getting more Christmas decorations out of the basement. I suppose I should step it up a bit, or it will be post-Christmas, huh? I did get the window candles out, and a few other things. It will be interesting this year, since we are in a new place. Some things will go where they usually do, but some will need to find new homes. I will probably rearrange a few times, but it will get done.

It’s getting to be that time of year again, isn’t it? New year, new directions, new ideas. I need to take some time to sit and think about how to move forward with my projects. Things are a bit stalled right now, and I suspect it’s partly because I haven’t a clear picture of where it’s all going. I sometimes need to have a goal in sight, even if I miss it. Otherwise, the procrastinator in me takes over. I just found a plan that I think, with a few adjustments, might be a workable starting point for me. So, one of this week’s goals is to take some time with a calendar and the plan in hand, and do some organizing and some goal-setting. Gee, sounds like New Year’s stuff, doesn’t it? But, then, I suppose if I am going to get started for the new year, I have to know what I’m starting, don’t I?

It’s getting colder these days, and I hear there may be some snow in the near future. I suppose it’s to be expected in New England in winter. Stay warm and dry, and have a great week!

(Image from vesomusing.wordpress.com)

================================================

Available now:

tn_Circle Unbroken Cover (eBook)

After five years away, Kaili is coming home for the ceremony to install her sister as head of the family business. When an old rivalry threatens the family, Kaili and her partner need to use all their skills to save the sisters’ lives. Learn more here.

 

 

tn_Six of One

A collection of six short fantasy stories set in varied worlds of magic and mayhem. Learn more here.

 

 

 

tn_Survival of the Fittest (Front Cover)

A short novelette set in a dystopian Earth after the final environmental collapse. Sam is a genetically engineered chameleon who may hold the key to mankind’s survival. Learn more here.

 

 

Feedmypeople-thumb
In a world reeling under the effects of severe climate change, food shortages are common, and arable farmland is scarce. Unscupulous distributors like Beni Oligowma take advantage of the shortages for their own gain. When a promising new technology for growing food even under the harsh conditions is unveiled, grocery store owner Frank is determined to see that everyone is able to benefit from the results, not just the Benis of the world.
Feed My People is a short story, set in a dystopian science fiction world, and is free. Learn more here

Friday (Movie) Review: Dr. Strange

benedict_cumberbatch_as_doctor_strange

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I went to see Dr. Strange with Stephanie on Wednesday. Overall impression? It was good! Perhaps not quite as much fun as some other of the Marvel Universe movies, but quite enjoyable. Plenty of action, some humor, a few outright laughs, and pretty much what you would expect from a Marvel adaptation.

The story, in brief: Dr. Stephen Strange is a world-renowned surgeon, able to perform surgeries that others deem impossible with apparent ease. He’s also a bit of an insufferable jerk, with a huge ego and little regard for the other doctors around him. When a serious car accident leaves him unable to use his hands, he becomes obsessed with finding a way back to his old life. When traditional medicine can’t help, he discovers a hidden enclave of spiritualists who can seemingly perform miracles on those with no other hope. Of course, there is more here than the surface appears, and Strange slowly begins to learn that the group is actually powerful sorcerers who protect the world from encroaching evil. A rogue sorcerer, trained at the enclave, is bent on unleashing unimaginable evil on the world, and Dr. Strange faces the choice of getting the life he once had back, or becoming the sorcerer capable of defeating the forces of evil.

I probably don’t have to tell you which he ultimately chooses, and that is really not much of a spoiler. It’s the journey that takes the front seat here. Strange is really a complete jerk at the beginning, and even after being put in his place by the Ancient One at the enclave, he still lets his ego rule his choices. He’s overconfident and brash. He makes mistakes, some of them with rather large consequences. And all that makes him an interesting character, and makes the movie work, even though we all know how it’s going to end from the start. Strange is flawed, but he learns to live with and work through the flaws, becoming a true superhero by the end.

Action scenes are plenty and fast-moving. There is a nice mix of magical weapons and martial arts fighting. The effects, particularly the “folding” as the sorcerers manipulate reality, are impressive. Some of the scenes, particularly where Strange is flung through the many universes co-existing with ours, seem to drag a bit into “okay, I get it already” territory, but there are very pretty special effects to offset that. Benedict Cumberbatch and Tilda Swinton bring their roles alive to create believable characters (within the confines of comic book believability). Benedict Wong is perfect as the mystical library’s guardian. And, while not a character per se, the Cloak of Levitation steals a scene or two.

Dr. Strange was a very good and enjoyable movie, and a nice addition as a stand-alone story to the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

View all my reviews

(Image from wikipedia.com)

================================================

Available now:

tn_Circle Unbroken Cover (eBook)

After five years away, Kaili is coming home for the ceremony to install her sister as head of the family business. When an old rivalry threatens the family, Kaili and her partner need to use all their skills to save the sisters’ lives. Learn more here.

 

 

tn_Six of One

A collection of six short fantasy stories set in varied worlds of magic and mayhem. Learn more here.

 

 

 

tn_Survival of the Fittest (Front Cover)

A short novelette set in a dystopian Earth after the final environmental collapse. Sam is a genetically engineered chameleon who may hold the key to mankind’s survival. Learn more here.

 

 

Feedmypeople-thumb
In a world reeling under the effects of severe climate change, food shortages are common, and arable farmland is scarce. Unscupulous distributors like Beni Oligowma take advantage of the shortages for their own gain. When a promising new technology for growing food even under the harsh conditions is unveiled, grocery store owner Frank is determined to see that everyone is able to benefit from the results, not just the Benis of the world.
Feed My People is a short story, set in a dystopian science fiction world, and is free. Learn more here

Wednesday Wanderings: Arctic Ice Cap News, Most Relaxing Song, Be Informed, and Wildlife Photos

giraffe_wildlife-ph

More disturbing news regarding the Arctic ice cap:

Arctic Ice

Stressed about the political, social, economic, or world climate? Need to just sit back and relax for 7 or 8 minutes? This may help:

Most Relaxing Song in the World

This is good advice for anyone in this internet, sound-bite, echo chamber driven world (Note- it’s gonna take some effort, but it is worth it):

How to Be Informed

25 Photos on the shortlist for Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition at the Natural History Museum in London:

Wildlife Photographer of the Year

(Photo from bbc.com)

=================================================

Available now:

tn_Circle Unbroken Cover (eBook)

After five years away, Kaili is coming home for the ceremony to install her sister as head of the family business. When an old rivalry threatens the family, Kaili and her partner need to use all their skills to save the sisters’ lives. Learn more here.

tn_Six of One

A collection of six short fantasy stories set in varied worlds of magic and mayhem. Learn more here.

tn_Survival of the Fittest (Front Cover)

A short novelette set in a dystopian Earth after the final environmental collapse. Sam is a genetically engineered chameleon who may hold the key to mankind’s survival. Learn more here.

Feedmypeople-thumb
In a world reeling under the effects of severe climate change, food shortages are common, and arable farmland is scarce. Unscupulous distributors like Beni Oligowma take advantage of the shortages for their own gain. When a promising new technology for growing food even under the harsh conditions is unveiled, grocery store owner Frank is determined to see that everyone is able to benefit from the results, not just the Benis of the world.
Feed My People is a short story, set in a dystopian science fiction world, and is free. Learn more here

Monday Musings: And We’re Back!

img_1261

Well, we really didn’t go anywhere, but my hiatus from the blog for Thanksgiving went on a bit longer than I originally planned, and turned into a mini-hiatus from most of the internet, as well. I was around, just not as much as I normally am. And, I see you all managed to survive just fine. That’s excellent. Not unexpected, either. It was restful, and I needed that.

The family Thanksgiving, which took place on November 20 this year, was pretty much as usual. The house was full, the food was beyond excellent, and I think everyone enjoyed themselves for the most part. A couple of kid meltdowns, but when you are dealing with the younger ones, it happens. On the up side, our oldest grandson, who is eight, told us he has never had a bad meal at our house. Now, there’s a compliment!

On Thanksgiving itself, the BaldMan made lasagna. Also quite good eats! We watched football and some of the MST3K marathon. We’d forgotten how truly funny that show was! And how truly bad some of the movies were. The rest of the weekend was pretty laid back. We did some shopping on Saturday- mostly groceries, and a few other stops. On Sunday, we put up the outdoor holiday decorations. I am a firm believer in no Christmas decorations before Thanksgiving! We rush the holidays so much, they all seem to run together these days. I like to give each one it’s own space. I do need to make a door wreath yet, and will probably look at doing that this coming weekend. And I will start on the indoor decorating this week. Going to pick out the tree will be in two weeks, I think.

I’m going to see Dr. Strange with Steph on Wednesday, so I would expect that to be the Friday review this week. I have heard good things about it, so we will see. But, really, with Benneton Climbersnitch starring, it’s already ahead of the game, right?

I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving, if you celebrate it. And that you are looking forward to the coming holidays, whichever one you celebrate!

(Image photographed at my front porch)

===========================================================

 Available now:

tn_Circle Unbroken Cover (eBook)

After five years away, Kaili is coming home for the ceremony to install her sister as head of the family business. When an old rivalry threatens the family, Kaili and her partner need to use all their skills to save the sisters’ lives. Learn more here.

tn_Six of One

A collection of six short fantasy stories set in varied worlds of magic and mayhem. Learn more here.

tn_Survival of the Fittest (Front Cover)

A short novelette set in a dystopian Earth after the final environmental collapse. Sam is a genetically engineered chameleon who may hold the key to mankind’s survival. Learn more here.

Feedmypeople-thumb

In a world reeling under the effects of severe climate change, food shortages are common, and arable farmland is scarce. Unscupulous distributors like Beni Oligowma take advantage of the shortages for their own gain. When a promising new technology for growing food even under the harsh conditions is unveiled, grocery store owner Frank is determined to see that everyone is able to benefit from the results, not just the Benis of the world.
Feed My People is a short story, set in a dystopian science fiction world, and is free. Learn more here

Wednesday Wanderings: Cuteness. Only Cuteness.

cuteness

Today’s links will be of cuteness. Mostly animal cuteness. Click. Watch. Smile.

2016 Baby Animals Compilation

What cuteness video set is complete without a baby goat trying to figure out how to jump?

Baby Goat

If you want to entertained non-stop, it seems you need to get your dog a trampoline:

Dogs on Trampolines

And, of course, this kitten being tickled is always worth re-watching:

Tickle Kitty

(Image from pinterest.com)
========================================================

Available now:

 

tn_Circle Unbroken Cover (eBook)

After five years away, Kaili is coming home for the ceremony to install her sister as head of the family business. When an old rivalry threatens the family, Kaili and her partner need to use all their skills to save the sisters’ lives. Learn more here.

 

 

 

 

tn_Six of One

A collection of six short fantasy stories set in varied worlds of magic and mayhem. Learn more here.

 

 

 

 

 

tn_Survival of the Fittest (Front Cover)

A short novelette set in a dystopian Earth after the final environmental collapse. Sam is a genetically engineered chameleon who may hold the key to mankind’s survival. Learn more here.
 

Feedmypeople-thumb
In a world reeling under the effects of severe climate change, food shortages are common, and arable farmland is scarce. Unscupulous distributors like Beni Oligowma take advantage of the shortages for their own gain. When a promising new technology for growing food even under the harsh conditions is unveiled, grocery store owner Frank is determined to see that everyone is able to benefit from the results, not just the Benis of the world.
Feed My People is a short story, set in a dystopian science fiction world, and is free. Learn more here

Tuesday Thoughts: It’s A Week

backsoon

With a lot to do. We have company coming on the weekend, and our family Thanksgiving on Sunday. Pesky schedules, you know. But that’s what happens when the family grows and changes. You have to change with it. So, things may be a little light in here this week. Think of it like the November hiatus on TV, right?

Meanwhile, here is a link to a very enthusiastic boxer who just can’t contain himself when he sees a dog on a trampoline on the telly:

Jumping Dog

Isn’t that adorable?

(Image from cocoanetics.com)

==============================================

 Available now:

tn_Circle Unbroken Cover (eBook)

After five years away, Kaili is coming home for the ceremony to install her sister as head of the family business. When an old rivalry threatens the family, Kaili and her partner need to use all their skills to save the sisters’ lives. Learn more here.

tn_Six of One

A collection of six short fantasy stories set in varied worlds of magic and mayhem. Learn more here.

tn_Survival of the Fittest (Front Cover)

A short novelette set in a dystopian Earth after the final environmental collapse. Sam is a genetically engineered chameleon who may hold the key to mankind’s survival. Learn more here.

Feedmypeople-thumb
In a world reeling under the effects of severe climate change, food shortages are common, and arable farmland is scarce. Unscupulous distributors like Beni Oligowma take advantage of the shortages for their own gain. When a promising new technology for growing food even under the harsh conditions is unveiled, grocery store owner Frank is determined to see that everyone is able to benefit from the results, not just the Benis of the world.
Feed My People is a short story, set in a dystopian science fiction world, and is free. Learn more here

Post Election Day. Not Post-Mortem.

Quill

It took me a long time to decide what to say about yesterday. It was such a jumble of emotions and thoughts that I needed time to process and untangle. I’m not sure I have completely done that, but I’m going to try to put out some thoughts.

I am afraid, deeply afraid. That’s the one feeling I can’t shake, much as I would like to. I think this storm is going to get worse before it gets better, as many storms do. The next couple years are going to be telling. But one thing I do know is that we (or most of us. Some won’t survive it as well as others, and that is part of my fear.) will come out on the other side. We’ve faced tough times before. We’ve ridden it out and got ourselves through the best we could. I can only hope and pray that things will not play out as badly as they now appear. That the horizon will eventually clear, and there will be some light left.

Am I angry? No, not really. I thought early this morning that perhaps I was, but as I let the feelings flow, I realized that anger is not part of the mix. We are so used to the “us versus them” mentality in this country, we haven’t noticed how that has changed us. We are not the global champions of freedom, justice, and tolerance we used to be. Oh, we still believe it’s “us versus them,” but “they” have become the guy across the street. We have forgotten the one thing that really makes this country great- we are Americans. We’re not Republicans or Democrats, white or black, male or female, straight or gay, Christian or not. We are Americans, every single one of us. Are we also all of those above things and more? Yes, of course. But what made us different, what made us strong, what made America truly great, was that we could be any of those things, in any combination, and still consider those who fell into other groups fellow Americans. We lost that somewhere, somehow. And that makes me sad. And more afraid.

Whatever happens after this election, we simply must reunite as a nation. You can hold different philosophies, beliefs, and convictions without requiring everyone else to fall in line behind you. You can respect those differences, embrace them even, work to understand what makes us different and why that only makes us stronger. Disagree, don’t hate. Work for your vision, don’t destroy someone else’s. Stand up for what you believe, don’t knock the other guy down. This is the only thing that will make America great again. Not a president, not a Supreme Court, not Congress, not any one church. All of it. All of us. Together. It’s the only way to survive.

So, congratulations to you, Mr. Trump and your supporters. I hope you can all step up and show us all what it means to be really great. And if not- well, we’ll see you in four years.

Wednesday Wanderings: I Got Nothin’

I’m gonna go play with the dog.

Maybe later.

Monday Musings: Election Eve Thoughts

vote-voice

Yes, this is a late post. Partly because I had things to catch up on earlier today, and partly because I was originally thinking that I should say something about the upcoming election. And then I thought, Why? I presume almost all of you have already decided who you are voting for, and nothing I say will change anyone’s mind. Those of you who know me know what my political stance is, and I imagine most of you can figure out where my votes are going. So, I am not going to talk about candidates or issues or any of that. And even if I wanted to, the best thing for me to do would be to post links to blogs and articles that say it all far better than I can. I am just going to focus on one thing:

Vote. Whatever your political affiliation, whatever your ideology, whatever you believe or don’t believe about the political climate right now- just vote. Because it DOES matter. Your vote DOES count. Yes, we have a major election this year, but that’s not the only reason to vote and certainly not the only place where your individual vote really counts. Because, in the end, at the highest levels, politics is politics. It has always been thus, and it will be for a long, long time to come. Perhaps forever. No one will get everything, compromises will happen, politicos will be happy or unhappy. We, down here in the everyday, will think things are better. Or not. But the politics will go on.

So, why bother, then? Because there is a lot more at stake out there tomorrow and every election than the national picture. And that’s where your vote counts even more. I’m not saying it doesn’t count in the national contests. Of course it does. But your town, county, and state elections and ballot questions are the ones that affect you everyday. And the ones that will impact you soonest. Want to change the way things are in whatever direction you think they should be going? Start locally. Because that’s where the movement really begins- at ground level, and then you can start to work it upward. Top down ain’t gonna work, folks. Give as much, and perhaps more, thought to your local ballots as you do to the national ones.

And vote. Vote for whoever and whatever you think is right. Whether we agree or not, I support everyone who goes out and votes. Or who already have, if you took advantage of that option. Congratulations. You are making history, on both large and small scales. And it’s the small victories that eventually lead to big ones.

I will leave you with something my Dad, who taught me how important voting is, used to say: “If you don’t vote, you got no right to complain after.” And, as usual, he was right.