Thursday, 31 October 2013

Graham the cat visits Pets at Home store every day...


(If the video won't appear, above, or won't play here, click here to watch it on Daily Mail website.)

Mysterious Google ads (as in, AdSense) - do you see any?!?

Years ago, I joined Google AdSense, but I did it with my Eircom email address, and at some point (also years ago..), I remember finding that it had somehow created a separate account from my Google profile, and apparently, the accounts could not be merged..

Something reminded me of the ads account, last night, so I thought I might as well investigate what's the deal with it, these days.

Maybe I'd sorted it already, because after resetting that other account's password and gaining entry to its dashboard, I discovered that there was no AdSense account - hmmmm.. Oh well.. Since the AdSense stuff was the only thing I'd ever had going on, with that separate account, I decided to remove it for good. Done.

I then logged in to AdSense with my main Google account (as in, this one), and discovered that I actually had some unpaid earnings! :O Like, not much, but still a nice surprise, after thinking that my old AdSense account might have been killed for long inactivity, or such.. (I still don't know/remember how come my main account DOES have AdSense history, whereas the other account didn't - and that account wouldn't have even existed, had it not been created all those years ago, when I first joined AdSense! LOL..)

So, anyway.. I thought I'd go and switch on ads for this blog - but I found that I'd already done so. (Vague memory..?) I'd set the ads to be on the side bar, only I couldn't actually SEE any ads there.. Not in Chrome, not in Firefox, not in IE.. Huh?? I don't have any ad blocks, at the moment (newish laptop, haven't installed ad blocks yet..), and it didn't make any difference whether I was logged in to my Google account or not.. No sign of any ads.. Strange!?

I thought I'd try displaying the ads below my blog entries, so I changed that setting, but I still can't see any ads!!! LOL.. Here's what I see:

Chrome (logged in to my Google account)
Firefox (not logged in to any Google account)
IE (logged in to another Google account)

(Blogger is being a bitch with the pictures, today.. The top picture won't line up with the others, grrr..)

In Chrome and Firefox, I now have a blank space below my top blog entry, but there's no sign of an ad.. In IE, I can see where the ad is supposed to be, only it displays a missing page error instead..

I only tried viewing an individual blog entry in Chrome, and there was a blank space for an ad, without an ad.. Hmmm..?

If anyone can actually SEE any ads, probably below the top blog entry, I'd really appreciate a comment about it. (Reminder: Comments will only appear in the blog after I've approved them, and I won't publish spam comments.)

Also, I've filtered out certain ad categories (like adult stuff, weight loss, dating, and crap like that..), so IF anyone can see ads, and IF there's anything dodgy, please let me know!

Wednesday, 30 October 2013

Apple tRat

Mine's not as pretty as the one on the recipe page (see the Pin, below), but it's gorgeous.. VERY sweet, though - see the recipe for the amount of sugar..... I bought custard to go with it, but it would have felt a bit too much, so I didn't even open it yet..

Tuesday, 29 October 2013

I bought a ukulele

I bought a LIDL ukulele! =D

I needed to do my weekly shopping today, so I was browsing LIDL website, last night.. I saw that they were selling cheap acoustic guitars (and some other instruments), and I felt a bit tempted to buy a guitar as my own guitar is in Finland, and I haven't touched it in 20+ years..

Anyway, even with the cheap LIDL price (€49.99), it was still too expensive for me, so I just thought I'd get some food and other necessities..

But when I was doing my shopping, I thought I'd just take a look at the instruments, and I felt sort of relieved to notice that they didn't even have any guitars left. However.. They had ukuleles! :O

They hadn't even listed the ukulele on their website, and it was only €17.99.. So, I bought it for a late birthday present for myself. I've always wanted a ukulele..

It came with a booklet and CD, but it was all for the D tuning, whereas I tuned it lower (GCEA), and made myself a better booklet with Ukulele Tabs website and Evernote. Good times..

Monday, 28 October 2013

Getting the most out of the laptop battery

With my previous laptop, I was sort of lazy, and just kept it plugged in as I was mostly using it at home.. Well, it was no surprise that the battery died a long time ago (the laptop was bought in early 2008), and then I had no choice but to keep it plugged in. I did think about buying a replacement battery, but I never did, and eventually (and recently), I had to buy a whole new laptop, so there was no need for a new battery.

Now that I have a lovely new laptop (with a lovely new battery), I've been trying to only keep it plugged in to charge the battery, and then using it until the battery needs charging again.

But I remember reading an article about mobile phone batteries, and how to make them last as long as possible - I'm not referring to the battery life in daily use, but the actual time you can keep using a battery, until you have to replace it or buy a new phone. (Sorry, I don't have a link to the phone battery article, and I think it was in Finnish.. If you're interested in that topic, google it..)

I decided to google for a similar article about laptop batteries, and I found this: Keeping Your Laptop Plugged in All the Time Will Kill Its Battery Faster (Sept-2013, Wired). Quoting the key part;

Cadex Electronics CEO Isidor Buchmann told WIRED that ideally everyone would charge their batteries to 80 percent then let them drain to about 40 percent. This will prolong the life of your battery — in some cases by as much as four times.

(Read the whole article, though. It's not very long.)

I will definitely try and make it a habit, to keep checking that battery status icon..

Sunday, 27 October 2013

Perfect Day

Lou Reed - Perfect Day

My birthday is just perfect, as usual.. First, I got to look at other people's Chinese food containers, and there was the option to wash their dirty dishes as well - I chose not to.. Instead, I had oatmeal porridge for breakfast/dinner.. Then, I heard that Lou Reed died today.. (Not such a perfect day for him, either..) Still a few hours left - can't wait to see what else can suck!

Would have liked some Chinese food as well..

Google birthday

I'd never seen a Google birthday logo before =)

Friday, 18 October 2013

Cured salmon with IKEA mustard & dill sauce


My version of graavilohi (cured salmon)..

salmon darnes / fillets
IKEA mustard & dill sauce
sea salt
granulated sugar
black pepper
white pepper

(I used the IKEA sauce as I couldn't find fresh dill. You can also use a few drops of lemon juice, vodka, cognac, some honey, or whatever.. Dill and sea salt are a must, anything else is optional..)

The first picture gives an idea of how much stuff to spread/sprinkle on the salmon.. I found it handy to start by spreading some mustard & dill sauce all over it, then sprinkle a generous amount of sea salt (not tons, but enough to make sure that the whole piece is covered with sea salt), just a little bit of sugar, and very little black and white pepper.

If I'd had fresh dill, I wouldn't have used the IKEA sauce at this point, and I'd have used much more dill. I was just worried that the mustard would be too much, had I used more sauce. (This turned out to be just perfect to my taste.)

Then, I wrapped the salmon quite tightly in baking paper and tin foil, and put the packet in the fridge. About 6-8 hours later, I turned the packet, keeping it in the fridge. I usually like to leave it there for 24 hours, before eating any of it. (It'll be good for a few days - maybe up to a week, if you don't finish it sooner than that, heh..)

Cured salmon

About 24 hours later.. I've unwrapped the salmon, and cut a few thin slices (on bottom right, above)..

Cured salmon on white bread

Making a cured salmon sambo.. White bread, butter, IKEA mustard & dill sauce, slices of cured salmon.. (I used lettuce as well, it's just not in the picture..)

Cured salmon sambos

Cured salmon sambos.. Omnomnom.. I think I'll go and make one right now!

Devious Maids queen

Queen twins

Every time I see an ad for Devious Maids, that one woman reminds me of the Alice in Wonderland queen..

Tuesday, 15 October 2013

Spaghetti dish

Spaghetti dish  Spaghetti dish
I was out of penne, but I had some spaghetti, so this is a different version of my "penne dish".. =)

Spaghetti dish - most ingredients  Spaghetti dish - layer of spaghetti, then fried onions (2) and vine tomatoes (2)
Left: Most of the ingredients.. Spaghetti, broccoli, aubergine, vine tomatoes, onions, beef mince, olive oil, soy sauce, sea salt, black pepper, white pepper.. I also used milk, eggs, cheese, garlic powder, and sugar.. (I think that was the lot!)

Right: I had a layer of spaghetti in the oven dish (=half of the spaghetti I'd boiled for this), and this picture shows a layer of fried onion and vine tomato. I chopped two of each, fried the onions in olive oil and some sugar, and then added the tomato, leaving it on the pan to get a bit mushy, while I was chopping other stuff.. (Oh, I also seasoned the onion & tomato mix, with soy sauce, sea salt, black and white pepper..)

Spaghetti dish - layer of mild white cheddar  Spaghetti dish - layer of fried broccoli and aubergine
Left: A layer of grated mild white cheddar..

Right: A layer of fried broccoli and aubergine.. I started with frying the broccoli in olive oil (plenty of it, since especially aubergine kind of soaks it in) as I was chopping the aubergine, then added the aubergine bits.. I seasoned with soy sauce, sea salt, black and white pepper, and garlic powder.. It was getting a bit dry, so instead of adding olive oil, I actually added some butter.. =)

Spaghetti dish - layer of beef mince  Spaghetti dish - layer of spaghetti
Left: A layer of fried beef mince.. I seasoned with sea salt, black and white pepper, and garlic powder.. (I ran out of soy sauce - otherwise I would have added some, lol..)

Right: The rest of the spaghetti.. (As it had been waiting for a while, it had dried a little bit - didn't matter, though! The top is supposed to get crispy in the oven..)

Spaghetti dish - layer of mild white cheddar  Spaghetti dish - mixture of 3 eggs and 750ml full milk
Left: Another layer of grated mild white cheddar..

Right: After slowly pouring the milk and eggs mixture all over.. I used three large free range eggs, and 750ml full milk, whisking the eggs first, with a tablespoon of sugar, a teaspoon of salt, some black and white pepper, and then I added the milk, mixing it all together.

Spaghetti dish - baked for an hour (gas mark 6)
After one hour in the oven (gas mark 6). The gas oven always burns that one spot, but I love the top very crispy, so I don't mind. (I could turn it at some point, but I rarely bother climbing down from the attic, just to turn the dish..)

Monday, 14 October 2013

Child abuse on TV: Toddlers & Tiaras

I hadn't actually seen full episodes of Toddlers & Tiaras until recently, and if possible, I'm even more disgusted with the child beauty pageants as I was before..

Lots of little (mainly) girls who are very tired and uninterested, and look like they'd rather be anywhere else, just doing child stuff - you know, playing with toys, watching cartoons, doing stuff with friends and/or siblings, etc.. But their obsessed (and often, obese) mothers (and some fathers) have decided that their child will be a beauty queen, and that's ALL that matters.. It's like they don't even see that their child is suffering / not having any fun at all, or if they do see it, they are totally ignoring it..

Children are dressed up to look like cheap whores, before they have even learned to walk.. When they are old enough to walk, they're taught awful routines, and everything is fake.. Fake tan, fake hair, fake teeth (to hide their own teeth).. Tons of makeup, trailer park whorish glitter outfits..

One mother had decided that her daughter was going to do pageants, before the child was even born, and when the child was born with some health issues, the mother actually described her child like this: "she looked like she had Down syndrome.." - with a mixture of shame, disappointment, and revolt on her face.. "I was so upset that she wasn't the cutest little thing.." Priorities, eh? (And how could any mother say something like that, of their own child?!? Besides, all Down people are cute as they tend to be sunnier than the rest of us.)

There's so much wrong with the whole child beauty pageant idea, that I don't even know where to start..

It gives children some very fucked up values while destroying their childhood. Many of those parents seem to hand out parental love like dog treats - when the child performs well, they get some love, but when the child messes up the routine (or otherwise fucks up their obese & obsessed mother's big plan), they get a frowning and upset mother..

This form of child abuse is banned in France, and other countries should ban it as well. Let children be children. There's nothing wrong with organising events where children can perform stuff, but only if the children actually want to perform, and they should be allowed to be themselves - when you put fake tan, fake hair, and tons of makeup on a child, and dress them up all tarty, it really gives them the message that they are not good enough as themselves. That creates some very shallow people..

Sunday, 13 October 2013

Foggy morning over a year ago, in Bray harbour (August 2012)

Foggy morning in Bray harbour (August 2012)

I've been flickr'ising more pictures, which had virtually piled up.. This was a morning that turned foggy as I was walking home from the shops, so I took my shopping home, and went to the harbour with my camera.

Foggy morning in Bray harbour (August 2012)

Foggy morning in Bray harbour (August 2012)

Foggy morning in Bray harbour (August 2012)

Foggy morning in Bray harbour (August 2012)

Foggy morning in Bray harbour (August 2012)

Foggy morning in Bray harbour (August 2012)

Foggy morning in Bray harbour (August 2012)

Foggy morning in Bray harbour (August 2012)

Foggy morning in Bray harbour (August 2012)

Foggy morning in Bray harbour (August 2012)

Foggy morning in Bray harbour (August 2012)

Foggy morning in Bray harbour (August 2012)

Foggy morning in Bray harbour (August 2012)

Foggy morning in Bray harbour (August 2012)

Foggy morning in Bray harbour (August 2012)

Foggy morning in Bray harbour (August 2012)

Foggy morning in Bray harbour (August 2012)

Foggy morning in Bray harbour (August 2012)

Foggy morning in Bray harbour (August 2012)

Thursday, 10 October 2013

Phone support - with interwebs

My mam needed help with setting the lock numbers on her new luggage, so I tried to assist over the phone. I didn't know exactly what type of luggage she'd bought - just the brand name, but I found instructions in Finnish, for a few different types of locks used by that brand, only I didn't know which lock was used in her luggage.

Let's just say that I describe stuff better than she does, and after the first phone call, I was almost certain that I knew which of those lock versions was used.. LOL

I found a video for that particular lock type (see above), so I phoned my mam again, and this time, we managed to get it sorted. It was easier to give phone support, too, when I could actually see what she was supposed to be doing. (And just when we were done, I could hear the doorbell, and her friend's son arrived to help her with the lock! Jeez..)

Postcard from North Korea

Postcard from North Korea

A Finnish net friend visited North Korea, recently, and had sent me a postcard from Pyongyang, which arrived today! =D

Postcard from North Korea

Fried aubergine slices, mmm..

Fried aubergine slices

I fried these aubergine slices in olive oil (and some butter, because there wasn't that much olive oil left), seasoning with spicy Herbamare, black pepper, garlic powder, and soy sauce.. Really nice..

Wednesday, 9 October 2013

I'd love to see "rock stars as normal people" type photo shoots

For some reason, every time I see a picture of Michael Monroe, I have this mental image of a fictional photo shoot where he's dressed up as a businessman, wearing an expensive grey suit (a bit different from the ones I've robbed for the photoshop job above), no makeup, and where his hair is cut short (or, it would probably have to be a short wig).. I haven't the slightest idea why, but it's been going on for years now.. LOL

As it will probably never happen in reality, I've done a photoshop version.. =D

Anyway, I think it would be a fun idea - to have a series of photo shoots of rock stars as "normal people". And I mean "normal people" as in, people with "proper jobs" or such.. Heh..

If anyone has actually done such stuff, please, leave a comment with a link!

(Facebook version)

Onion & mushroom omnoms

Fried onion and oyster mushrooms, with double cream, seasoned with black and white pepper, and sea salt

This was SO good.. Fried onion and oyster mushrooms, with double cream, seasoned with black and white pepper, and sea salt. Mmmmm..

Handbag clearance

Organising handbag contents - Before    Organising handbag contents - After

Yesterday's achievement: more organised handbag..

Usually, I keep my handbag contents in small freezer bags, to keep everything clean and well organised, but it had been a while since I'd changed the freezer bags, and everything had gotten a bit messy..

This time, I'm trying to keep things organised with less freezer bags.

I'm actually planning to make a new handbag, and I have the materials for it already, but I'm still working on the design.. I want it to be über-practical.

Sunday, 6 October 2013

Organising Flickr sets with lots of pictures

Organising Flickr sets with lots of pictures

Generally, I try to upload stuff in chronological order, so my monthly sets don't need organising. But sometimes, it's not possible, and I'll want to organise the sets on Flickr.

I've often agonised with sets that have lots of photos - dragging stuff through it all can be a pain..

But it's much handier when you SHRINK THE ICONS! =D Just hit "Ctrl" + "-", and keep hitting them again until your icons are small enough. Tada!

When you're done, hit "Ctrl" + "0", to get back to normal size.