Saturday, September 26, 2015


Church last night. Church tomorrow. Sounds good to me.

We sang this at church last night:

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Notice to Those Who Lurk and Don't Contribute to the Conversation

If you come onto the internet to look at what other people wrote, and don't leave comments or in any way contribute to the conversation, you are losing out on the purpose of being here. Do you see that link... it says "comment" ??? It is there for a reason.

How about on Facebook.... do you read other people's postings without ever clicking "like" or leaving a comment there? Don't you ever think that you're not holding up your part of the conversation?

The internet isn't a spectator sport. It is an exchange of ideas and information.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

I'm Walking Without Pain Again

My foot no longer hurts! After seven months of foot pain and no walking or bike riding, I finally got to see a doctor a few days ago. He identified my malady as an inflamed tendon and gave me an anti-inflammatory shot. It feels good enough to be a miracle.

This evening after the Wednesday Bible studies I decided to walk downstairs. I walked around the outside of the building and checked my mail, then walked up the stairs on the other end of the building. No elevator this time.

It seriously feels like I'm being given a second chance at life. No longer am I forced to spend most of my time at home on my chaise lounge.

I'm still loving the chaise lounge, but it just feels good to be able to walk freely again... something like being reborn. It is an awesome feeling and believe me, I know how lucky I am. So many people don't get that chance to walk again.

Anyhow, it has been a good day with good friends, and I am happy.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Life is Full of Surprises

Sometimes life doesn't go as expected but that's okay - I submit myself to the Will of God and keep traveling onward.

I thank the Lord for good Christian friends and all the love He's brought my way.

Thursday, September 17, 2015

God Helps Bloggers - You Just Need to Ask

I'm putting this here as a "note to self."

Today I prayed to finish two gift-list blog articles, and one short one for this blog. Well, I'm here to tell you - I did it. I'm feeling good about it, and thanking God for helping. I wish I could write that much every day.

I will be praying about it. I'm trying to get as many gift-list blog articles written as I can... during the time from now until Christmas.

I will never run out of things to write about.

Today's new articles are:

Baby Einstein Toys for Infants - I noticed today that one of these toys is popular at Amazon.


Aroma Rice Cooker-Steamer + Recipes - I'm a fan... I own one of these.

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Progress on the Halloween Site

My little Halloween site now has two articles on it.

1. Halloween History: Samhain and All Saints' Day - Oh, I can smell the pumpkin carving already. This was my first article on the blog. I wanted a good understanding of the history of this event I'm dedicating some time into.

I've never been big into Halloween... the way it is celebrated these days is truly not my style. But I live in this culture and want to know how these things come about. It is interesting to know that until the 1930's there was no trick-or-treating in the USA. This is an Irish and Scottish custom and while it started as innocent harvest celebrations, many centuries ago, the day has been beset with fearful folktales and eventually turned into the fright night that many people consider it to be these days.

2. The True Meaning of Halloween - this one happened last night. It practically wrote itself. It is about the meaning of the word, Halloween . . . which means "Holy Eve." And it ended up being about church harvest parties put on to give children an alternative to trick-or-treating.

Friday, September 11, 2015

Blogging, Affiliate Marketing, and What I'm Reading

I've had a busy, happy day. Yesterday I joined a blogging mastermind group - something I've been wanting to do for a long time. I also got a mentor for my affiliate marketing career. I've been having difficulty with sales since the time I was writing for Squidoo (a site that folded over a year ago) and am learning techniques (new to me) that will help increase online sales.

With that in mind, I made some changes to my most recent article, How to Overcome the Fear of Cooking. I also started a new page for selling scarves and shawls. It is partly written already because it had been posted on HubPages long ago. I am doing more research and will revamp all the affiliate links. I want to write well over 1000 words of content on each page. The last one I wrote was 2000 words... and that sounds like a good number to aim for. I want my readers to find the information they're looking for whether it is ways to overcome cooking anxiety, or the information needed to safely wash delicate silk scarves.

Today I also wrote a new welcome page for my online office at LJ Martin Web. I want to continue adding to that site as the central hub of my online activities. It has most of my links - both blogs and social media links - but I've skipped a few that will eventually be added, when time allows.

I'm nearly done reading Art & Fear: Observations on the Perils (and Rewards) of Artmaking. I bought the book because, while reading the introduction I was moved by a particular quote that spoke to my heart. The book delved into scholarly writing, but not frequently. For the most part it is readable and I've learned more about reasonable expectations for artmaking.

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Left Behind - The Movie (2000)

Tonight I watched the 2000 version of Left Behind - The Movie ... and it is not as bad as I expected. In fact, I enjoyed watching the movie... the whole process was painless.

This is the first time I've ever watched a Left Behind movie. I've been a Christian only 2 years.

I was surprised the movie only earned 1 star on Netflix, but it has 4 stars averaged on Amazon. After watching it, I think it deserves the 4 stars. The acting and directing are just fine. This is not what I'd consider a B movie... it is better than that.

I wonder if a lot of people on Netflix gave the one-star feedback because they don't like Christianity. It isn't reflective of the quality of the movie.

The plot was somewhat predictable, for anyone who knows about the rapture and tribulation. However there's a strong sub-plot about an airline pilot whose wife and son are among the disappeared. He wasn't interested in learning about her Christian faith before, but post-rapture, he's confronted with a need to know the truth.

The rapture was depicted with people disappearing leaving all their clothes and jewelry behind. I'm not so sure that will happen. It could be we'll leave our physical bodies behind too. Wouldn't that be a mess for those "left behind" to clean up?

This movie also shows that all the children are raptured along with the Christians. My friend commented that it will be so sad for the parents who are missing their children. Again, I'm not sure whether that idea is scripturally based or whether it was just the understanding of the director, Vic Sarin.

The movie was entertaining enough. The main characters are portrayed by Kirk Cameron (Buck Williams), Brad Johnson (Rayford Steele), and Janaya Stephens (Chloe Steele).

I know there's also a 2014 "Left Behind" movie. I haven't seen it yet. How typical of me to be fifteen years behind the times.

Wednesday, September 09, 2015

To Homeschool or Not to Homeschool

I started homeschooling my children in 1995. I loved the adventure. My son wanted to be homeschooled, after being bullied in kindergarten by a group of girls.

I researched curriculum and educational activities, took my children to the school supply store, read novels to them, and loved them always. We went on numerous educational trips to state historic parks, to drive the entire Mother Lode highway, and even drove to the Peace Arch and Canada, all in the name of home education.

I wanted my children to learn at their own pace and study what they wanted to learn about. Mission accomplished.

Years later, my family members still think I was wrong to homeschool them. According to what they think, I should have left them in school to be bullied and get a cookie-cutter education so they could be just like everyone else.

What I have now are two adult children who are capable of creative thinking, who are independent and self-supporting, who are unique and capable.

I'm happy with the way my homeschooled kids turned out. My family members may want to denigrate my homeschool efforts, but as I recall, they were not there to help. I'm the only one who knows what I went through and why I did what I did.

Tuesday, September 08, 2015

Scarborough, UK, and Memories of Tilden Park in Berkeley, CA

One of my favorite YouTube channels is a travel vlog by Darren... it is called ExploreList. Here's his latest video, about a day he spent at Scarborough, England:

At the end of the video he asked us to tell him about our favorite place to spend time when we were children. That question brought back a lot of wonderful memories about visiting Tilden Regional Park in in hills above Berkeley, California.

Tilden Park steam train - Berkeley, California
Tilden Park Steam Train - Photo by Andrew Malone.

I should write about it more on my childhood memoir site: Cali Childhood. About six years ago I wrote 50,000+ words worth of childhood memories during a NaNoWriMo month.


Please subscribe to my YouTube channel: Book Lady - Adventures of a Senior Citizen - Books, Health, and Happiness.

Monday, September 07, 2015

How To Create a Blogging Editorial Calendar on a Spreadsheet

Today I've been working on setting up my blogging editorial calendar for the final four months of this year. Blogging, especially blogging on multiple sites, as I do, requires the same kind of pre-planning that goes into creating a magazine that will be published monthly. I need to keep my blogs up-to-date and filled with useful content that will really help my readers.

I created my blogging editorial calendar using Excel. I once used a WordPress editorial calendar plugin however found it to be too simplistic for my needs. It doesn't allow for pre-planning on multiple blogs; I had to access the calendar on each individual blog, so I found it confusing. I need everything represented on one page.

Each year I start a new Excel file for blog organization, and the editorial calendar is one page of that file. Other pages are for notes on various blogs and aspects of my blogging work. I create a new file annually because I've had Excel files cease working in the past, due to being overly used. It can be a huge challenge when the file that stops working contains a record of your annual business expenses for the last five years!

Here's the page for my blogging editorial calendar. If you would like to have a copy of this to help create or design your own editorial calendar, just click on the image. Below this, you'll find explanations of the sections I use.

Date Posted: The day this project is completed.

Platform: What blog (or YouTube channel, for vlogging)

Post Type: See the "Types" page in the spreadsheet.

Category: What category in your blog will this fit into? blogs refer to categories as "labels."

Proposed Title: Suggest a possible title. Change later if need be.

Sources: Where will you get your information for the post? ie: research, experience, etc.

Graphics: Where will you get your images?

Multimedia Needed: What do you need?

Request: At the end of the article, will you ask your reader for something?

The rest, in small font, are the social media platforms you plan to use to let people know about your new article or video. ...

Please subscribe to my YouTube channel: Book Lady - Adventures of a Senior Citizen - Books, Health, and Happiness.

Sunday, September 06, 2015

Pyramids in China and Bosnia

I found two interesting articles this evening about ancient pyramids.

The Bosnian pyramids date back 29,200 years!

The Chinese pyramids seem to have been the work of aliens who crash-landed in the Himalayan mountains of southern China. They left records that are actually about the size of phonograph records. This knowledge has been suppressed and the disks are stored in China.

There's much about the history of this planet that is yet unknown.

My interest in ancient archaeology has been brewing many years... and I've written a yet-unpublished novel series set in an ancient land: Antediluvian Adventures.

Saturday, September 05, 2015

Music for Relaxation

I'm having a peaceful, relaxing Saturday at home. I worked on my websites this morning and did my laundry.

Now, it is time to relax and enjoy the weekend. I found this music to help:

I also started a painting this morning. It is the Lion of Judah crossing the water near His kingdom.

Friday, September 04, 2015

Just Watched "Do You Believe?"

I just watched a movie called "Do You Believe? It is a Christian movie, and it is awesome. Well produced, good actors, great plot... with a compelling theme. What more can one ask?

Then I went to Facebook where a friend of a friend was calling herself a "Christian Wiccan" . . . she said she was raised Baptist, but I couldn't help but get the impression she hadn't read the Old Testament very well.

On Google News I saw an article stating a 1500-year-old copy of the "Gospel of Barnabas" was found and that it said Jesus didn't die on the cross, but that Judas took His place there.

Heresy is nothing new. I hope Jesus returns soon, to set things straight.

Thursday, September 03, 2015

It's Been One of Those Days When It Seems Like Nothing Gets Done

I feel like I've accomplished nothing today. It wasn't because I didn't try. I've been trying to organize my audiobook collection. I'd never transferred most of these books from my old computer, and since that one isn't working well, sometimes using it is an exercise in frustration and futility.

Well, today I did it - I transferred all the audiobooks to my portable hard drive then installed them in my new computer, and transferred some to my SanDisk Clip.

I can fit a lot of audiobooks and music on that because I have a 32GB micro-hd card in it. I have an entire audio NKJV Bible on the card, and many other things. I spent some hours deleting things I no longer want and need. In the process I found a recorded sermon from my friend's church, and stopped to listen to that. It was about when Jesus appeared to His disciples when they were fishing (this was after His resurrection) and told them where to cast their net to get fish.

This audiobook organization is something that's been on my to-do list at for a long time, so I'm glad I took time to do it, even though the work isn't completely done yet. That's probably why I feel like nothing is done - because I can't cross it off the list, unfortunately... and not much else got done.

The one drawback to being a web worker is that I'm never done with my work. There's always a massive number of tasks left to do. I can't just walk away from it like I'd do if I had only eight hours at a job in someone else's business.

Wednesday, September 02, 2015

Finished Video: Review of "One Zentangle a Day"

I finished my video yesterday and uploaded it to YouTube. There were still a few things I could have done better - but let's face it - this is just a simple YouTube video and for me, these videos are all learning experiences. At some point you have to quick picking at it and upload it to YouTube, then move on to another project.

I struggled with learning the software programs, Audacity and Adobe Premiere Elements 13 - but this video project taught me a lot. The next one should be easier if I keep up the momentum to continue making videos regularly.

This is the book I reviewed: One Zentangle a Day by Beckah Krahula. I'm still working my way through the book, but I did enough to feel confident in recommending the book for anyone interested in learning how to do Zentangle art. This is essentially a thirty-minute per day form of meditation through focus on artistic process. It is easy to learn, and practical to use.

Thirty minutes of artistic focus calms and de-stresses us, and that's a good thing.

You might notice, if you go to the YouTube page for this video, that I included a lot of text on that video page. I'm doing that to help the search engines classify and understand my YouTube pages. I also place text in the Closed Captions (CC) section as it helps search engines rank a page as well.

I appreciate all subscriptions to my YouTube channel. As of today, I have sixty-two subscriptions - which isn't very many! I guess not too many people are interested in seeing an old lady's videos. YouTube seems more successful for the youth culture - with young teenagers getting thousands of subscriptions. To be young and beautiful helps, and they appeal to young YouTube users - teenagers - who have plenty of time to watch youth videos about topics important to them, like what makeup to use, or what clothes to wear.

Well, God bless them... and all that. I wish them well. But I'm still hoping to make my YouTube channel something older people (or anyone) would like to subscribe to.

After reviewing all the videos I made last year, I noticed my book review videos were getting more hits than any of the others, so I will be making more of them. After all, I'm the "Book Lady" on YouTube now. I love this persona.

Tuesday, September 01, 2015

Still Working on Producing a Video

I'm working on a book review video. Big job! I'm still learning to use the software.

Yesterday I focused on learning about Audacity, the audio editing software. Today I'm back at Premiere Elements 13, trying to re-learn that.

I took a course on this video editing software, but have forgotten too much, and must go back to it to relearn sections.

Don't let anyone tell you that web work is easy. It isn't. There are always new challenges.

The audio track is complete and edited. Now I have to fit the video and photos to the audio track.