All I want is ONE channel with my internet!

Moving is stressful.  Not only do we have countless boxes to pack and unpack, but moving involves setting up or moving utilities, television, internet, and other services.Moving is also expensive as we work to re-arrange and re-fit our previous lives into our new spaces -- bigger and smaller. Of these hassles, probably the area that creates the most stress is the establishment or changing of basic services --including and especially television and internet. ...more

Love me, love my parrot: my struggle to find love.

I love my cockatoos. There, I said it.  I love my cockatoos.  To me, it's almost magic for my best friends to fly up to me, perch on my shoulder, give me kisses, then put their heads down and beg for scritches (a form of petting typically involving alopreening). ...more

A size 12 is not fat. Recovering from prescription drug-induced anorexia

Autumn has come and with it, much cooler weather.  I live and have always lived in a northern climate where snow and often lots of it is the norm, often beginning in mid to late October.  Here in Cambria County, Pennsylvania we experienced our first frost of the season on September 25th, 2012.  It's getting nippy outside already.  Time to switch our clothes from summer towards winter. ...more

My green plan for saving money (and freezer space) on meat

 Food containers are, for most people, one of the highest sources of consumer waste.  Every week we throw away countless cans, bottles, and plastics.  Buying in bulk, then splitting up our purchases into smaller units helps, but too often that involves plastic bags which we use once, then discard. In many ways, the money spent on plastic bags counter-balances the money saved with this method -- and creates even more garbage that presently cannot be recycled (since only #1, #2, and, in some areas, #5 plastics can be submitted for recycling)....more

Discovering the fun of creating on zazzle

I am that oxymoron of a low vision graphic artist -- and writer.  I have extreme tunnel vision that, ironically enough, makes me better at many visual art tasks than a fully sighted person -- particularly when it comes to photography and editing of photographs. When paired with my 22+ years of playing in the Society for Creative Anachronism (SCA), it's almost a given that I would envision heraldry when writing my "Peers of Beinan" books.  What is royality or nobility without heraldry, after all?...more

Fear-Based Healthcare: Fear Overrides Common Sense in Health Care Decisions

I have no health insurance. I lost my insurance shortly after I lost my job as a graphic artist in Manhattan in May 2009. Since that time I have broken two toes, broken my nose, contracted a mild case of psittacosis while treating the baby cockatiel I bought who had the disease from the pet store, and suffered a mild stroke.These are the sorts of events that drive us to buy health insurance and part of the reason why our healthcare system has ceased to practice common - or economic sense....more

The Freezer is My Friend: How to Avoid Food Spoilage by Freezing

Healthy cooking for one or two people is hard. Unlike families of four or more who can eat through heads of lettuce, bunches of carrots, and entire watermelons before they rot in the refrigerator, single individuals and couples do not typically eat enough fresh produce in a week to justify the oftentimes high prices fresh food is sold at. It's the catch 22 of smaller families. Buying whole produce is healthier, but not cost efficient if half or more of your fresh food purchase rots in the fridge and goes to waste....more

Experimenting with my own "fruit on the bottom" yogurt

This week I bought some plain Dannon yogurt for some tzatziki sauce I made to go along with some home made gyros -- a food experiment unto itself! For a first attempt at both gyros and sauce, I think it came out fairly well.   With the yogurt in the fridge, I did a label comparison between the plain yogurt and some regular flavored stuff I already had. What a difference! ...more

Long-term unemployed and sad tonight

Hello everyone.  I know I started this blog to talk about writing and professional sorts of things.  I named my blog after my book series after all! But tonight I hope everyone can give me the space to defer the talk about writing and work to speak from a different place in my heart. Tonight, I feel very much unwanted, a burden to life.  No, I'm not thinking anything extreme.  Just sad. ...more