Sunday, September 25, 2011

Day 207 of 365

I have been a bit confused about something.

For some reason I had difficulty posting my videos straight to the blog. I should have pursued the issue more, but decided to try and see if I could get them to work through YouTube. When I started putting them on YouTube then posting them from there to the blog, I was able to get them working with no problems. Based on your suggestions (thank you!) I've been filming my tutorials for Tutorial Tuesday beforehand. I either film them over the weekend or on Monday. Then I edit and upload them to YouTube. From YouTube I post them when Tuesday comes around. It was all working well.

Except something weird started happening.

I started getting comments from people about my videos. Comments on Sundays and Mondays, before I ever had the video up on the blog. I also started getting e-mails from YouTube about people "subscribing" to my videos.

So here's what I've figured out so far. All my videos I've uploaded are collected together on a "channel". My channel. People can view the videos on my channel, and (I think) if they "subscribe" they receive notification when I post a new one (even though it's not on the blog yet).

So some folks (don't know if they're blog readers or not) are getting the first look at the tutorials. So it's only fair for me to give you the channel info - just in case you're wanting to be one of those first-look folks. My channel is the debp33 channel. (I must have signed up under a different log-in than DebzDays.) And if you're not a YouTube person, I'll still be posting the tutorial on the blog on Tutorial Tuesday.

It's small potatoes, but as of right now I've had 19 people view the channel and 1,782 people view the videos. Wow!

Speaking of numbers, have you noticed the map on the right side of the page here? Over 9,000 visitors to the blog so far. Another wow!

The third and best wow of the day? The picture of our Orange Dream rose, of course.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Day 206 of 365

I used to be embarrassed about where my degree is from. At the time I was attending, the university had both lackluster academic and athletic programs.

Before my time on campus, the football program had seen some success during its junior college days in the 1960s and then later saw success in the 70's with a record-breaking quarterback. (A quarterback who, after graduating from college, happened to have worked in my school district for umpteen years.) In 1980 a national championship was won. My husband was working with the team then, and has his own championship ring to prove it. And his championship football team picture and his Letterman's jacket is hanging on the wall downstairs.

Then for the next 15-20 years the university's football team was competitive, but didn't come close to great successes seen in the past.

As students we went to lots of games. We lived just a block from the stadium, walked to the game, and never worried about not being able to get tickets. Not great seasons equaled easy-to-obtain student tickets. Once we graduated we mostly stopped watching the games, and every time alumni conversations came up I kept my mouth quiet.

But now people are proud to have graduated from Boise State, home of the blue turf, ranked number four in the nation as of today.

Even those who don't have any connection to the university are decked out in gear, buying up tickets, and clustered around TV sets everywhere on game days. Just late this afternoon my husband and I had gone out to an early dinner and found fans streaming into the restaurant as we left. (My husband certainly noticed and we made plans to be in attendance at the joint for the next afternoon game.) The grocery store was packed with fans, decked out in their blue and orange, buying up snacks last minute.

It has even impacted us. One of my daughter's classmates and husband's former students/players is a star defensive tackle on the team. I noticed my husband had his alumni shirt on today. We listened to the pregame as we were driving home.

Guess I've jumped on the bandwagon, too. Not too much - I don't have any blue and orange clothing yet.

Today's picture is orange, though. But not a happy orange picture. One of our monarch butterflies somehow met a not-so-pleasant fate and the results were evident on my gravel path.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Day 205 of 365

All my titles at work carry a certain amount of respect with them, but it seems my personal projects don't.

At work I have three job titles/descriptions attached to my name.  On Day 106 the first job came. On Day 184 I took an additional position. Then just this week I was offered an another additional job at my same school. Three job descriptions attached to my name now and some new responsibilities.

This is definitely going to be my last add-on position. When I signed this new contract yesterday, I told the gal this would be the last one I would sign because I needed time for my charity work. Why did I say charity work? It sounds like I'm working in a soup kitchen or blood bank. What if I had said I needed time for blogging? That would have been an even bigger mistake - being a "blogger" carries with it a certain negative connotation.

So just how do I describe my personal projects? I don't. When asked what I do when I'm not at work, I usually just respond with I do a lot of sewing. As much as I'm proud of what I do each and every day, I can't figure out a quick and easy response.

I write, I photograph, I document. I quilt and I sew for sick children and children of deployed military personnel. Through my videos, I teach people how to do quick and easy projects.

But it's more than that. I'm part of my own personal growth project. A project that is keeping me moving forward on most days. A project where I find ways to deal with the pain and frustration of injuries and rheumatoid arthritis. A project that prevents me from being lazy and forces me to make the best of each day.

Okay, I admit it - I really don't know how to describe what I'm doing.

I can describe today's picture, though. Sunshine-y.
In other news - we have a 200th Day Giveaway WINNER!

The random number generator picked comment number five. Number five was Pam who wrote, "Debbie, You always amaze me with your talents and patience.GOOD JOB!" So Pam, use the "Contact Me' button at the very bottom of this page so I can send the goodies your way. Congrats!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Day 204 of 365

This isn't a cooking show, mom.

Words uttered from my daughter more than once. When she's home we work on building her repertoire of recipes. And the details, information, and expressive language I use when teaching her how to cook and bake sound like a cooking show to her, I guess. When she says, This isn't a cooking show, mom, it's a signal to me that I'm giving her too much information. But now she's even getting it when she's not home - by watching my tutorials. Just yesterday she let me know I use my "teacher voice" in them. Whatever.


I was flipping through channels yesterday and came across Guy Fieri's Big Bite on the Food Network. I have watched his other show, Diners Drive-Ins and Dives where he travels around the country, focusing on small restaurants and the foods they cook. But this show, Big Bite, is a show where he's cooking different things in his kitchen. My husband has watched the show many times but I always skip it.  But this time I left the channel on it. (And it wasn't because of his hair - oh, I do love his hair. For many years I had short spiky hair, dyed with blonde highlights, but never dyed like his. I wish I would have been bold enough to go as blonde and spiky as he does, but I never got there.)

As I sat there watching Guy grab things from the fridge and cabinet, talking about techniques and why he uses what he uses and what could be substituted, I thought, Oh my gosh, that's me. When I do tutorials, I add all that extra chit-chat into the video. But since I'm trying to keep my videos just a few minutes in length I wind up editing all that extra conversation out. Leaving it all in would probably make for an entertaining cooking show or sewing show, but I'm not sure the world needs another one of either.

According to my daughter, one thing that doesn't get edited out is that "teacher voice". As I thought more about what my she said, was she implying the "teacher voice" was a good thing or a bad thing? (You can bet I'll be asking her on that one.)

One thing that is a good thing is my picture of the day. The Canadian Geese were flying around on my early morning walk this morning. I was patient, hoping to catch them flying over the river. They weren't cooperative, so an orange morning sky background will have to do.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Day 203 of 365

Someone asked me the other day if I know the family I'm making these latest kids quilts for, the ones with the pictures in them.

Nope. Though, after making these quilts, I kind of feel like I do. The pictures in the quilts tell the story.

The family has a black and white dog. The oldest girl has a nice, new bicycle. She and her dad have been to a butterfly garden. The little boy plays with a set of jumbo Legos. Dad is in the Army, like Folgers coffee, and once got his red truck stuck in the mud.

But right now dad won't be helping with the bike riding, won't be playing Legos, and won't be getting his truck stuck in the mud. Dad is deployed and the kids are missing him.

So quilts are on the way. Quilts with sewn-in pictures of the kids and their daddy. Quilts that will, hopefully, help them remember their dad until he gets back home.

I feel blessed to be part of such an important project. I've decided this will be my go-to quilt charity and am requesting to "adopt" another family.

If you have any interest in joining me, visit Operation Kid Comfort to let them know you'd like to help. You can use your own fabrics to make the quilt or you can request one of their free fabric kits. The quilts are quick and easy to put together and are a great opportunity for us to support the children of deployed servicemen and women.