Category Archives: Miscellanea

Whatever doesn’t fit exactly in the other categories.

Book Review: Flying with a Broken Wing – by Laura Best

Book: Flying with a Broken Wing
Author: Laura Best
Publisher: Nimbus Publishing
Date: September 6, 2013
Genre: young adult
Pages: 216
Price: $12.95; also available on Kindle
My Rating: a story of hope with characters the reader will cheer on
 

This is Laura Best‘s second novel. As Laura told us in this interview, Flying with a Broken Wing is a young adult novel set in a fictitious community in Nova Scotia.

Nearly twelve-year-old Cammie is the main character in Flying with a Broken Wing, and we get to see most of the adventure from her perspective. She is a young girl with a big dream – the dream of somehow starting a better life for herself.

All Cammie knows about her past is that her father was lost in the Second World War, her mother left her with an aunt who is the local bootlegger, and now her life feels full of shame and disappointment. Her aunt is harsh and not the most popular person around – among people who don’t buy moonshine, that is. Add to that the fact that Cammie’s eyes don’t work well. Being visually impaired has been a terrible burden, especially when everyone treats her differently because of it, and her aunt doesn’t even want to let her go to school. To Cammie that is very unfair, especially when she wants to go! When Cammie learns about a school for the blind in Halifax, that becomes her new goal and her hope for the better life she wants.

Cammie gains a friend along the way, one her aunt does NOT approve of because of her own personal reasons, which suits Cammie all the better. That’s when the excitement really begins … and the hilarity, and the trouble – big trouble. What kind of trouble? you may ask. Well, I’m sorry but you have to read about that yourself. Let me just say, it was a daring and dangerous plan, and the author certainly held my interest! Now I’m hoping for a sequel.

This is a delightful young adult novel for anyone to read. Laura Best created very believable characters in a post-war community setting. She is expert at writing real people who talk and act as one might expect, including some who aren’t always nice. If you have never had the privilege of reading any of the author’s work, read this one.

Please return here for an interesting interview with Laura Best – to be posted April 17’14 – after which you will have the opportunity to try to win a copy of “Flying with a Broken Wing” donated by Nimbus Publishing located here in Nova Scotia, Canada.

Thanks for reading, and … Creative Musings!  :)

 
 
 
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Jobs disappearing. Is yours?

Have you noticed how the world is changing? Well, duhh, you might say, but I am referring to job opportunities. If you are fortunate enough to live in an area where the unemployment rate is low, good for you! Even so, you may not have thought about the jobs that are being phased out, being replaced by technology. It troubles me that people think it is a wonderful and quick convenience, and although that is true it also is taking away jobs that real people do – or used to do. 

I found this interesting article on Yahoo.com called Top 10 dead-end jobs on their way to extinction. From it I excerpted a couple of lists for you to see, but do go to the actual article and check out what else it says.

The 10 jobs that won’t exist in 10 years include:

  • Social Media Expert
  • Taxi Dispatcher
  • Toll Booth Operator
  • Retail Cashier
  • Word Processor / Typist
  • Switchboard Operator
  • Photo Finisher
  • Postal Worker
  • Video Store Clerk
  • Print Journalist

5 fast-declining careers

  • People Greeter
  • Photo Laboratory Associate
  • Head Cashier
  • Data Entry Clerk
  • Courier

Of course, with the decline of some jobs there is the rise of others.

5 fast-growing careers

  • Financial Advisor
  • Representative Financial Service
  • Field Sales Representative
  • Sales Associate
  • Social Worker

empty pockets

I also am concerned about people, especially young people, who have no understanding or preparation in place for retirement. It is never too early to start putting money away for that because the way the economy is going with prices going higher and higher, who is going to be able to live without something in place? And NO, the government will not be able to carry us. Even if there is an Old Age pension in place for you it will be such a small amount that if you are counting on that to live on you will find yourself under the poverty line, with barely enough to cover anything. Seriously, go see a financial advisor and check out what I’m saying.

Okay, that’s my rant for today!

Have you found your job being phased out? Is your job on the list? Do you feel okay about your financial future?

PS. If you are a writer, can you live off your earnings from writing, or will it provide enough of a supplement for you to live comfortably or even help pay the bills?

Thanks for reading, and … Creative Musings!  :)

 

Say what?? Tiresome blog spam

gives your eyelashes a capital way to commence when they travel into a pedigree job or change of integrity of your be. 

Say what??    The above is how a spam message began – a message waiting for my approval.  Funny, isn’t it? And I did laugh, but there are some days I am so fed up with spam it is no joke!

What gets me is … What are they thinking?! What kind of message is that? And who in their right mind would approve it?

There are some pretty legit-looking comments that are left, though, and a person has to be really on their toes to discern which ones are to be denied as spam. It does get tiresome.

I am thankful for Akismet used here by WordPress, but even then the spam messages pile up in my spam box. I’m very glad they don’t get through to my actual messages, though, so, thanks WordPress team!

Do you sometimes feel overwhelmed by spam? Has spam ever become more than an annoyance to you?

Thanks for reading, and … Creative Musings! :)

A few interesting blogging facts

Recently, I read some interesting facts about blogging but I don’t recall where I saw that. I had made note of a few things which stood out to me, and which I will share here in case you might like to know.

graph pie

Were you aware that 64% of bloggers blog as a hobby? Only 27% of bloggers write full-time at this. I think I would consider myself, at present, full-time – or the closest thing to it. I don’t blog every day but I try to keep up a manageable routine and schedule – however haphazard that can be at times. :)

I learned that 21% of bloggers have been blogging for more than 6 years. I started blogging in September 2008 on another site, which makes it five and a half years ago for me.

Do you know what are the major traffic sources for blogs? I’ll tell you: Search Engines make up 48% and Social Media make up 28% – which would consist of Twitter, FaceBook, LinkedIn, and other such places. My posts are noted by me on Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, and anywhere else I or my readers choose to mention my posts.

In January 2010 I moved to WordPress. I am pleased to be one of the 40% of bloggers who are using WordPress as their blogging platform.

Another interesting fact is that 30% of bloggers are 25-34 years of age, while 27% are 35-44 years old, and I don’t fit in either of those age groups! Oh well, I still feel at home here.

How do you rate with regard to the above facts? Do you have any other interesting things to add to this information?

Thanks for reading, and … Creative Musings! :)

 

 

 

Important info about Alzheimer’s research! My rant

I’m on a rant! Please indulge me.

As you know, Alzheimer’s disease (one high-profile aspect of dementia) has invaded my family and taken over a major part of my life. Today I have very important information to share with you.

Before you read further, I would like it if you would take this Alzheimer’s quizRight click on the link so you don’t lose your place here.

Much research is being conducted to learn how to prevent, slow, predict Alzheimer’s disease, but study of the actual brain of Alzheimer’s patients cannot be done until after death. I recently learned that the main focus of study is of the male brain because it is easier to work with due to the female brain being more complicated due to hormonal changes and differences. This means that drugs formulated to help Alzheimer’s patients are geared more to the male brain! This is shocking since more women are afflicted by Alzheimer’s disease than are men! Now, does that make sense to you?

I don’t know about you, but that does not sit well with me. Alzheimer’s is following the generations in my family and I for one do not want to have to rely on ill-targeted studies and drugs should it come to that for myself or any other woman in my family.

There are not many causes I believe in enough to commit to support, but Alzheimer’s research is one in which definite strides are being made and support is not misused. In fact, Nova Scotia is a leading force in research and progressive work in learning about this disease. I’m proud of that fact. I also see the huge and urgent need of continued research for breakthroughs. I truly believe that for the generation of my own offspring there will be discoveries made to determine very early if an individual has the actual disease and then stop it from progressing further, thus saving the individual from the horrible regression due to a deteriorating brain. Although now there is a blood test that can reveal if a person has the gene, at present the drugs we have, at best, sometimes slow the progression but cannot stop it. 

I wish I were a scientific genius who could come up with the answers to save so many lives from the agonies of Alzheimer’s disease. There is so very much we don’t know about it … what causes it, what triggers it to start, how to stop it, how to prevent it, how to cure it. There are guesses, lots of those, and there are studies which have found diet has a lot to do with trying to fend it off – foods that make a positive difference for the brain (coconut oil being emphasized now) – but when one is in a family stalked and oppressed by Alzheimer’s that is not enough.  Answers, helps, a cure, PLEASE!

I found a website I would like you to visit. It is called Hope Knot. The name comes from the Hope-Knot project – to combat women’s brain aging disorders. A beautiful design was created by a renowned jewellery designer whose family has experienced the devastating effects of dementia. He explains the inspiration for the design, which I hope you will go HERE to check out for yourself.  Here is what is said on the site: The Women’s Brain Health Initiative wanted an icon to raise awareness and escalate concern over the unchecked growth of dementia and other aging brain diseases in women.

Here is additional good information about Alzheimer’s.

There is more I could say but for now I will simply thank you for permitting me this rant. You can see it is a cause I believe in. I urge you to please visit the website, and if so inclined, make a purchase of that beautiful jewellery to support the effort and honour the many women afflicted – or who will be afflicted – with brain disease. I did.

If you took the Alzheimer’s quiz what were your results? I missed one.

There is talk of a blood test now that will reveal if someone has the Alzheimer’s gene. If given the chance, would you want to know ahead or would you prefer to wait (if you have it) until it is obvious? If you knew ahead, would it change your life?

Thanks for reading, and … Creative Musings!  :)

PS:  From the Hope-Knot website:  Almost 70% of new Alzheimer’s sufferers will be women. What makes this fact even more alarming is that there is little understanding of why this is the case, and there are no studies currently being undertaken to explore the discrepancy. We at the Women’s Brain Health Initiative intend to change that.

 

 

8 fun ways to procrastinate

Are you a procrastinator? Or, do you wish you could find things to help you procrastinate … because …  maybe that story you are working on just isn’t coming together and you need a harmless distraction to give your brain a break.

If you need that break, or you feel you simply want something fun to while away a little time, first … I found this funny clip for you to watch.

Ellen DeGeneres on procrastination

Then, here are eight fun ways to procrastinate. Enjoy!

  1. Bubble Wrap pop
  2. Today I found out
  3. Create word clouds
  4. Play piano
  5. Neon Bible
  6. Swap Sketch
  7. Reaction Time Test
  8. Google Fight

The ones I don’t already have on my Writer’s Helps page will soon find their way there so you can find them easier any time you want to take a fun break. :)

Do you have any other fun ideas?

Thanks for reading, and … Creative Musings!

 

Does fear control your life?

FEAR.

What do you think of when you hear that word?

From the time I was a small child fear was my constant companion. It hindered me in every way. Sometimes it got pushed aside but rarely did it let go. It has taken years for me to begin living without it taking over, and even yet I struggle against its seemed power in my life. I have come to believe that when fear is not of value it is a choice to be made.

FEAR IS A CHOICE.

Without going into a lot of personal grief about things not necessary to mention at this time, I want to direct you instead to an excellent post I found. Titled “Is Fear Driving You Forward or Dragging You Under?” it was written by Kristen Lamb  <—- so please take a few minutes to go there (just click on her name) and read it. She says it so well.

E. E. Cummings said, “It takes courage to grow up and become who you really are.”

I’m still working on that. How about you?

Thanks for reading, and … Creative Musings!  :)