Posts Tagged ‘pictures’

Central/Eastern European souvenirs

laelene Posted in lifestyle glimpses,Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
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This most recent trip to Europe allowed me to revisit some places I hadn’t been to in 9 years and also check out new places that have been on my wishlist. It was a lot of fun and I got some gifts along the way to remember each place by!

Our first official stop was Praha (Prague). There were so many artists, musicians, and crafters to be found everywhere. In one of of the shops, I got my first souvenir – a little metal cup. One of the few that wasn’t a glossy finish, which appealed to me.

teal metal cup with owl designs

I liked the matte look and the funky owls!

Then as we were walking across Charles Bridge, perusing the various vendors, I saw a guy selling these adorable paintings! I just had to have one since he had such a fun style and had cats in each piece. This one is perfect because it has the cat couple, plus two extra cats – just like me, Panda, and our cats.

original artwork of prague with cats and hot air balloons at night

I loved that this incorporated cats and had cute little hot air balloons.

Next up was Warszawa (Warsaw), where we explored a massive park and the Neon Muzeum, all the while eating peirogis. I managed to add to my growing collection of TOUS jewelry (this is the 4th piece) and find some local folk art. I’m very happy with the usefulness of the giant coaster, which will be good for putting pots on.

tous onyx bear necklace from warsaw

When we saw a TOUS store at one of the shopping centers, we couldn’t resist. I finally got something from the onyx collection I’d been eyeing!

brightly-colored coaster with roosters and flowers

I originally saw a tote bag with a similar design, but I have so many bags that I was determined to find this look and feel on a different product.

Then we were off to Wien (Vienna) to fulfill my long-awaited dream of seeing the Spanish Riding School. We also went to tour one of Mozart’s homes and the Haus der Musik. When we came across the stalls by St. Stephen’s Cathedral, I found the opportunity to get something with the word “Vienna” on it. I liked the handmade nature of these glass cups that are perfect for holding a tea light.

glass cup for candles with colorful stained-glass scene handpainted on

We had just a few Euros left, but I really liked this one because the name was easily visible (unlike the others where Vienna was along the bottom). We had to pay in a combo of Euros and dollars!

After that, it was down to Split in Croatia. We enjoyed exploring the city of Split, where I found the amazing backpack that is perfect for my needs. We spent a whole day going up to Krka National Park for the waterfalls (freezing cold water, but totally worth it!). And of course, we just had to go out to Hvar Island to check it out. My favorite was going over to Palmizana, a smaller island off of Hvar.

drawstring backpack with elephant design from split, croatia

All pockets open and close with a magnet, which I love. There are side pockets inside as well as zippered areas inside and on the back. All sorts of storage options!

box of lavender buds and essential oil drops, plus bonus pouch of lavender buds from hvar in croatia

Apparently there are lots of lavender fields in the area, so at Hvar I got this adorable box filled with lavender buds. There’s a bottle of essential oil inside as well, to help enhance the scent with a few drops every now and then. The lady kindly gave me a pouch as a bonus.

Finally, rounding out the trip was Budapest, with fantastic views from the Buda side. I loved getting goulash nearly every meal and we got to relax at the Szechenyi thermal baths. Up at Citadella, I saw a tower of mugs (think Christmas tree shape, except everything hanging is mugs) and knew I had to get one. I wasn’t crazy about any of the color combos, so I waited to find them again elsewhere until I decided on this funky one.

giant polka-dotted mug from budapest

My ladybug mug, as it will be known. It’s really a bowl with a handle and I can just about stick my entire face in it.

So these are all the items I have to remind me of this super fun trip to Central/Eastern Europe! I tried to get things I would use and not just stuff to put on a shelf. There’s so much more that I would have liked to have gotten, but that will have to wait for next time. 🙂

Treatsie April 2016 review

laelene Posted in reviews, subscriptions,Tags: , , , , , , , ,
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I ate these so quickly I nearly forgot that I haven’t reviewed the box yet!

Treatsie is $15 per box + $4.95 shipping and comes with artisan candy from 3-4 brands. That means about 6 or 7 different flavors of treats. Boxes are sent monthly with no option to skip. They offer a referral link program to earn store credit. Use my referral link and code FRBUCO01 to get double the treats (a purported $40 value) in your first box!

treatsie april 2016 box contents treatsie april 2016 info card

Salty Road Chocolate Chews in Deep Dark Chocolate: I was hoping they’d have a firmer texture like Riesen, but these are still good caramels. The salt granules could be a bit smaller so the shock of the saltiness doesn’t hit quite as hard. Still, popping one or two of these is the perfect pick-me-up in the afternoon.

Two Moon Shortbread in Vanilla Bean: These were soft and slightly crumbly. They made a good snack to bring along on the flight. I like the light flavor, which is different from the harder crunchier types I’ve had before.

Zlicious Confections Oatmeal Cookie Salted Caramel Corn: As advertised, these are truly addictive!! I mean, I’m not even into popcorn. These were fabulous though, nice and crunchy and sweet. The oatmeal flavor came a little after and was a nice aroma that lingered. I had to stop myself from eating the entire bag in one go. I’d absolutely get these again.

Jacobsen Salt Co. Salty Caramels: These are your standard caramels, soft and chewy. I powered right through them since there were only a few pieces. I wish the portion was larger!

All of these were tasty treats that I enjoyed. I also found a new fav! What do you think of the treats from this box? To get Treatsie, sign up with my link and code FRBUCO01 to get double the treats in your first box!

[This post contains affiliate links. Signing up through them helps support my subscription and I’d be ever so grateful. 🙂 All opinions are my own and I received no compensation for this review. I just purchased this box and wanted to share what I got!]

NASM Volunteer Appreciation Night

laelene Posted in lifestyle glimpses,Tags: , , , , , ,
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This Monday, the National Air and Space Museum held a Volunteer Appreciation Night for the folks who help out at the Udvar-Hazy Center and the NASM downtown. It was in the main hangar of the Udvar-Hazy Center, extending into the space shuttle area. Since Panda volunteers there, we decided to go and see what it was all about. Apparently they really stepped up their game this year and had a great event with delicious catering and a hired band with dancers and singers. There was even a 1950s theme with the performers.

nasm volunteer appreciation night in udvar-hazy center

When we first walked in and looked down in the hangar, we saw plenty of people mingling. There were food stations, stand-up bars, a live band, dancers, and singers.

nasm volunteer appreciation night food table with lobster ravioli

The first thing we did was help ourselves to all sorts of food! They had these lobster ravioli as well as chicken and beef dishes.

nasm volunteer appreciation night food table with mini sliders

Another table had an adorable spread of ingredients to make your own sliders. The patties were beef, mushroom, or salmon.

nasm volunteer appreciation night food table with poblano corn souffle

My favorite dish of the night, which is made of sweet corn and somewhat like a dessert.

nasm volunteer appreciation night drinks table with mugs stacked neatly in pyramid shape

They lined up the mugs so very neatly for us. Everything about the catering was wonderful. We were told that it didn’t use to be so fancy.

nasm volunteer appreciation night dessert table with plate of s'mores on a stick

How could you make s’mores an elegant snack? I’d say this is the way. These were delicious!! I need to try making my own.

nasm volunteer appreciation night bar with artfully stacked martini glasses

Small touches like this cool mini art sculpture made of martini glasses really elevated the feel of the event. The bartenders were very professional too.

We were very pleased with the event and went home happily full. I look forward to attending more of these and hopefully getting a chance to check out mine for the Natural History Museum another year.

Prospurly April 2016 review

laelene Posted in reviews, subscriptions,Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
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Oops, I almost forgot to write about this one! It’s been here since the weekend and I opened it up, but then got distracted with the busy work week.

Prospurly is just under $45 per box (with code for 10% off your subscription – use my referral links from this post) and comes with artisan foods, bath & body items, home products, and other sustainably crafted items. Boxes are sent monthly with no option to skip. They offer a referral program that earns you free boxes.

prospurly april 2016 box open with products showing prospurly april 2016 info card with product details

Holy Schmidt Coffee Co. Costa Rica Rio Jorco – Alas, I’m not a coffee drinker so this will have to go to someone else. I don’t know much about coffee, but I like that this is ecologically responsible.

Heather Lane Cosmetics Hand & Cuticle Salve in Garden Blend – This is a great item for spring. I like the unique ingredients, like plantain and mallow leaf. It’s wonderful for the rougher skin you might get from working outside or even washing dishes. My cuticles will be very happy with this!

The Moontree Jasmine Rose Cleansing Facial Serum – How cool! I love the actual flowers and petals floating in the serum and I’ve never had a cleansing serum before. I guess it’s sort of like the cleansing oil I use. I didn’t really smell the flowers though, so I wish they’d added some essential oils for an extra boost. I enjoy rubbing it in and feeling it sink in, softening my skin.

Rishi Tangerine Ginger tea – Totally saving this for school, when I think I will be drinking tea all the time (at least I’ll try). This one’s herbal so I’ll keep it for drinking before sleeping.

Lotus Natural LifeBlends Essential Oil in Allergy – This came at the perfect time. I was having an awful time with allergies I developed recently and I needed everything I could get that would help alleviate the discomfort. This roll-on helps with sinuses and it just feels soothing to apply to areas that I’m itchy too.

Free Mountain Seeds Wildflower Seed Bombs – Perfect for Earth Day and spring in general, these seed bombs will be fun to plant! It’s so exciting to see something sprout and grow, though I’m not good at keeping things alive beyond that initial stage. Still, these will be great to use when I want an assortment of flowers. I’ll probably save most until I’m done with school and have a place to garden. I wonder if my mom would like them…

The Moontree Blush & Blossom Rose Clay Mask – I like how this mask smells and having it in powder form makes it easy to bring along. I love that I can mix it with things other than water, like honey or yogurt. That sounds like fun! I look forward to trying that out.

I enjoyed this box and found many items to be very timely for the season. I’m not sure I’ll be able to give this subscription up! What do you think of this month’s box?

[This post contains affiliate links. Signing up through them helps support my subscription and I’d be ever so grateful. 🙂 All opinions are my own and I received no compensation for this review. I just purchased this box and wanted to share what I got!]

USC Marshall MBA Admit Weekend

laelene Posted in mba,Tags: , , , , , , , ,
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Holy cow, what a whirlwind weekend! It feels like I’ve been immersed for a week when really it was within 34 hours. Amazing what you can pack into a day when you need to.

view of usc campus from 7th floor of parking garage

My very first glimpse of the campus, as I was in the parking structure.

Thursday I left work at 3 to make my flight to LA. My mom picked me up, we had dinner, and then I prepped everything for the next day and went to bed. I got up at 9 on Friday, got ready, and headed out to campus. They put me up at the Radisson right across the street from the business school, so I parked there and walked over. It was a lot closer than the lot on campus that others were coming from, and thank goodness since I was running late.

GWiB (Graduate Women in Business) had put together a lunch for the women admits, so we got a chance to bond before the official event started. We met and got on a bus that took us over to the JW Marriott by LA Live, where we had a lovely ladies’ lunch. I got a chance to speak to a variety of MBA Ambassadors, admitted students, staff, and faculty. Check out some of the food they fed us as we got to know each other and hear more about their Marshall experiences.

Afterwards, we chatted as we waited for the bus to get around some protests (about Trump, I think?) that were blocking some roads. I had completely forgotten about the guys, so when we got back we suddenly infused them with a different dynamic and then we were off and running, melding into a class.

usc marshall admit weekend welcome signBack at Popovich, we checked in, got our name badges and gift baggies, and headed upstairs to listen to deans and professors and staff and students share a breadth of knowledge. What struck me the most as I sat there listening was the energy, personality and presence that each speaker had. I loved the vibe from them all and really enjoyed hearing from each of them. I liked them all!

At that point we were so engrossed in it all that we hadn’t even checked out what was in our gift bags! We had pulled out the schedules they had prepared for us, but the rest remained a mystery (for me at least) until I got to the club fair. Turns out we had padfolios with the Marshall brand on them, a pen for notes, sunglasses, all the info we needed for the weekend, and – my fav – a Tile! I shouldn’t have been surprised that they branded it USC Marshall on one side.

usc marshall admit weekend introduction

walking over to usc marshall admit weekend club fair

Walking over to the club fair.

After many hours of talks, we headed out on the lawn to the Club Fair where I got a chance to catch up with three current students I knew from completely different parts of my life. I learned about some groups I might want to be a part of and met some truly awesome and helpful people. From there, we were ushered over to the University Club for dinner. I got roped into sitting at a consulting table by two ambassadors. I probably would have gone to the high tech table otherwise, but I wanted to keep an open mind to consulting. During dinner, members of the marching band came in to play tons of songs.

exterior of usc university club at king stoops hall

Our lovely dinner venue!

night view of usc campus from radisson hotel midtown

My night view of campus.

To wrap up the night, we went over to the campus pub/bar to socialize and I met some more great people there. Most folks seemed to have decided on attending Marshall already, but a few were still considering other options. I found we kept asking each other, “Are you committed?” As for me, yes, I am. I was committed in my mind, but had not yet submitted the deposit (which I just did now that I’m home). I’m glad I already knew, so there was no pressure to choose and I could dive right in to the culture and student body that I was encountering. Upon getting kicked out at closing, we wandered our ways back to our hotels/homes and settled in for the night.

usc trojan stuff at radisson midtown hotel

The whole place was very school spirited!

Lest you think that was it, it was only the start of homework time! We had been given a case study to read and prep for. On Saturday, we’d go over it and discuss with a professor just like in a class, so we had to be prepared. I sat in bed reading it until I fell asleep and went a little cross-eyed. I believe I woke up about 20-30 minutes later so I could finish my reading and get to bed. By then it was sometime after 1:30. For no apparent reason, I woke up at 4 (perhaps I was on east coast time). Then at 5, a bird outside my window was going crazy warbling for half an hour before finally flying off. I woke up a few more times before it was time to get up at 7.

sc themed elevator buttons at radisson midtown hotel

Even the elevator buttons were themed!

panoramic view of usc campus from radisson hotel midtown

Check out the awesome view I got of campus from my room!

cops on figueroa watching closed road for march of dimes

All’s quiet before March of Dimes.

I got ready for the day and met up with everyone else over at Popovich for breakfast and socializing. The March of Dimes was happening on Figueroa, so the road was closed (but thankfully not to pedestrians). A ton of cop cars were milling around waiting for the event to start. Meanwhile, we finished breakfast and split up into two groups, Gold and Cardinal, to hear alternately from alumni and recruiter panels (everybody they brought in were Marshall alum, a testament to the strength of the network). After that, we found our assigned small groups of about 4-5 to discuss the case study before meeting with all the Gold folks and being led through the case by a professor.

in-n-out food truck parked at usc campus for lunch

In-N-Out came to us for lunch.

Lunch was an In-N-Out truck where I was probably the only person to get a grilled cheese sandwich. We ate and met more people, then went back in to start a team challenge with our small groups. One of ours went MIA, but we pushed on. There were two consulting/strategy questions, two marketing questions, and two finance questions. I was very little help with finance, sort of knew about consulting, and contributed decently to marketing. Our teams had be assembled with a variety of backgrounds to help us tackle the different challenges. Thankfully, our finance guy who went missing made his way back to us before the competition was over.

Once our answers were submitted, we went on a campus tour and answered quiz questions on an app. Most of them consisted of choosing which company had the largest market cap. For example, between Target, Lowe’s, Home Depot, and CVS. Or between Alibaba, Amazon, eBay, and something else. Then there were questions identifying world and business leaders like Angela Merkel, Tim Cook, and the like. And your typical quiz questions about terminology. With 92 questions, we were pretty focused on getting through the quiz and didn’t see too much of the campus. We did manage to check out Heritage Hall (sports hall of fame for Trojans) and the athletic area, as well as the film school.

The final thing before wrap-up were sessions on topics related to our desired industry of work, living in Los Angeles, the first year experience, financial aid, classes, case competitions, etc. We could rotate a total of 6 times, choosing the topics that most interested us. I ended up spending an hour at the HR/Human Capital Consulting one! I was super interested in learning more and each of the ambassadors there had great stuff to share with me, so I got totally engrossed. Then it was the home stretch, with a summary, announcement of the team challenge winners (and notable mentions), and a final look at what Marshall has to offer.

mrs. fish in downtown los angeles

Entering Mrs. Fish, where the tanks hover over you.

Buuuut that wasn’t the end of it! There was dinner afterwards, at Mrs. Fish in DTLA. We had the place booked from 6-9 and had food laid out as well as plenty of drinks for everyone. I was very surprised when I ran into the fourth person I know in the class of 2017! That rounded out my time there, meeting everyone I knew AND making a ton of new connections. I got a chance to meet yet another new set of people there that night. It’s amazing how many people I met and remember, yet how many I have still yet to speak to. I’m excited to see everyone again at orientation and really get to know each of them.

This entire time I really felt in my element. Ever the business-minded folk, we were all chatting non-stop. These people take networking seriously! That energy lasted the entire time, with clusters of people chatting whenever we had a break. I tried to meet as many people as possible yet still remember who I was interacting with. It’s crazy that I already feel close to some of them and totally see us hanging out in the fall! I was so busy the whole time that I didn’t checked the time or my phone for hours. I hardly even paused to take photos, which is why I have so few (compared to what I’d normally have). I loved that we could strike up a conversation with literally anybody and count on each other to do the same. After all, we’re here to build lifelong friendships and cultivate strong relationships professionally too. I’m finally surrounded by people who speak my language and can geek out with me on business trends like nobody else in my life would. 🙂

Petit Vour April 2016 review

laelene Posted in reviews, subscriptions,Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
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I feel like it’s been aaaaaaaaaages since my last box. I’m going to be sad when I hardly get any once I’m off to school and cancel most of them.

Petit Vour is $15 per box (or as much as $30 for international subscribers) and comes with vegan beauty, skincare, and other personal care products. Boxes are sent monthly with no option to skip. They offer a referral program that earns you points towards free boxes (email contact@petitvour.com to say I referred you if you sign up!).

contents of petit vour april 2016 box with hooray! theme and info card petit vour april 2016 box info card with item details

Juara Coconut Illipe Hand & Nail Balm – Sweet, I can always use a nice balm for my cuticles. I should really take more care of them, though I’m still not quite clear which part of the nail area is actually considered the cuticle. This is sealed so I’ll wait to open it until my current products are used up.

Ursa Major Fortifying Face Balm – I could use any soothing lotions for my face right now! I have had swollen eyes and eyelids all day and sometimes I rub my eyes so much it hurts. This feels great applied to my cheeks and under the eyes. It’s helping me from not scratching that area and the more liquid formula makes it easy to dab on without irritating my skin.

100% Pure fruit pigmented color cosmetics stain eye shadow in Turks & Caicos – Well, as always I shall put this in my collection and look to trade, sell, or gift it at some point. Inside the box is a little tub like your normal eyeshadow or even lip balm might come in. It’s hard to tell the shade without opening the seal, but it seems to be a pale pink or champagne.

Kumari River Bath & Body Oil – Ooo, cool! I can use this directly on my skin or drop it in a bath. I like the dual use, though I will probably use it exclusively as a body oil. The scent is very light and I can hardly make out anything – I think just an olive oil undertone? It feels great rubbed in and will certainly keep my skin soft.

I’ll be using two of these products right off the bat. I really need to work on getting through all the products I’ve accumulated from boxes. What do you think of the products this month?

[This post mentions a referral program. Signing up and emailing contact@petitvour.com to say I referred you helps support my subscription and I’d be ever so grateful. 🙂 All opinions are my own and I received no compensation for this review. I just purchased this box and wanted to share what I got!]

Northwest Federal Credit Union Member Appreciation Day

laelene Posted in lifestyle glimpses,Tags: , , , , ,
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Each year, Northwest Federal Credit Union holds a fun mini carnival in their headquarter’s parking lot for Member Appreciation Day. It’s a way to celebrate members as well as welcome their families and friends. This year, it was on Saturday from 9-1, rain or shine! And this time it was raining a little, but plenty of people still came out to enjoy the event. Since Panda is a member there, we dropped by before going in to DC so I could volunteer at the NMNH.

When you arrived, you were given flyers that were “passports” to help track which free things you had claimed. Each person was allowed a cotton candy, popcorn, food (pulled pork/beef/chicken sandwiches or hot dogs), side of chips, and drink (cans of soda or lemonade). The kids were also allowed a balloon creation, face painting, and entry to the bounce houses. Everyone had the option of getting a large tote bag or those drawstring backpacks, but since we have plenty of both, we opted not to take one.

northwest federal credit union member appreciation day passport handout

The NWFCU passport for adults.

northwest federal credit union member appreciation day tent with food

Inside the giant tent, we stood in a long line for cotton candy and popcorn, then a much faster line for the food and drink.

northwest federal credit union member appreciation day game tents

There were games for the kids to try out.

northwest federal credit union member appreciation day face painting tent line

At the end was the tent for face painting, which had quite a line.

eating two cotton candies at northwest federal credit union member appreciation day

I got to eat both our cotton candies!

northwest federal credit union member appreciation day cotton candy melting from humidity

Due to the humidity of the air, the cotton candy started to melt pretty quickly and bits would fall off.

northwest federal credit union member appreciation day cotton candy absorbing moisture from air

As it absorbed the moisture, the outside layer of the cotton candy would start to get very sticky. I kept having to rotate them so pieces wouldn’t fall off as quickly.

northwest federal credit union member appreciation day bounce houses

Outside the tent, there were bounce houses for the kids.

It was a good event and next time we’ll definitely plan to spend more time there rather than having to rush off. Panda had wanted to withdraw some money from his account and I was interested in earning the free money for signing up as his referral, but neither of those got done. If a member brings someone who signs up that day, they both get $25 in their accounts. It’s small, but hey you can still do a lot with that!

The digital world hates vertical media

laelene Posted in general blog,Tags: , , , , , ,
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I’ve recently re-learned what a nightmare it is to try to deal with vertical (portrait-oriented) media, whether pictures or videos. Why is it so hard to get them to work?

I mean, I know that all our screens are wide and so is much of how we view the world, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t times that a vertical orientation isn’t useful (if not better altogether). It’s so frustrating that when I do have portrait images, they don’t always render properly and for vertical videos, it becomes difficult to edit them.

food from rollplay vietnamese restaurantFor example, the past couple of months I’ve dealt with an annoyance using WordPress. When I upload a picture that is vertical, the image doesn’t show up (this might be happening to you with the one first image). This seemed to have happened with the update that had occurred around that time. Suddenly, every vertical photo uploaded would come out blank in my blog posts. It took a lot of research and testing to figure out that if re-uploaded the image, it would then work.

More recently, I came across the added issue that if I uploaded the original file from my phone, it doesn’t have the correct orientation and instead shows horizontally, as seen below. So now I have to open the image in Paint*, save it, then it will recognize it as a vertical image (shown on the left, if you can see it). What a nightmare! Strangely enough, if you are on an iPhone, you’d see the below image the proper way, but on a laptop browser and on an Android device it’s horizontal. Yet even odder, on an iPad, it tries to show vertically, but the image is stretched out to fit horizontal dimensions.

sample of broken vertical image that does not rotate properly

So to ensure images show proper orientation across devices means I need to edit the photo before re-uploading to WP, using an image editing program like Paint or Photoshop*. It doesn’t seem to help if I rotate the image first, I usually still need to do the replace media option. And literally all I’m doing in Paint is saving it so that whatever EXIF metadata WP needs gets translated through properly and allows images to show up vertically, as they should. I guess however Apple encodes that data is incompatible with the way WordPress reads/handles the info. For now it’s working, but if things act up again I’ll look into plugins like the iOS images fixer or the Image Rotation Fixer, both of which look like promising solutions.

Additionally, I ran into issues when I was trying to edit a vertical video. Any program I opened it up in would put those awful black bars on the sides so that it ultimately took up the space of a horizontal video. I wanted a final output that would keep the vertical orientation, making it a skinny little thing. All the searching in the world only seemed to lead me to tutorials on how to change the black bars to some background, but none actually addressed my issue.

In iMovie on my mobile devices, it would crop my video to a square. I’d shrink it down so the whole thing showed, but those black bars would come to haunt me. I tried rotating it so it fit the horizontal perfectly, make my edits, save it, then try rotating it, but again: ugly black bars inserted. So ultimately I gave up on such an endeavor, but these experiences leave me wanting so much more when it comes to media editing and rendering.

You’d think in this day and age of technology that they would have figured this out by now. Why is it still such a troublesome issue?

 

*Thanks to a comment on this thread for helping me figure out that solution.

I’ve found the only way to consistently see images with proper orientation on all devices is to edit the photo before uploading to WP in an image editing program like Photoshop. – Cindy Otty

On My Mind, episode 11: summer plans

laelene Posted in general blog, on my mind,Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
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I don’t do a lot of journal entry type posts here, but there are some things going on that I just wanted to share. Sometimes there is no specific topic; it’s just about life in general.

This weekend, I was very excited to get a shipment notification from Baubax, which I backed on Kickstarter back in September. I had hoped to get it in time for Thanksgiving. So much for that! They originally anticipated being able to get them completed by November, but their campaign exploded way beyond they ever expected. The product is a travel jacket, which they designed 4 of. I chose the red bomber jacket because it seemed like a nice balance between dressy and casual. I hope it fits me well!!

Panda and I have been looking for someone to rent a room in our home. His organization has interns that will be coming next month and they always need a place to stay. There are a few students we’ve considered and I look forward to finalizing details. We’re happy to earn some extra money to help fund my MBA. I’ll be leaving halfway through their stay to get ready for my program. Things are going to be crazy the next couple of months! Maybe in the future we can consider listing a room on Airbnb.

Panda got the Whole Dang Thang, which included fried fish, scallops, gator, calamari, shrimp and more.

Panda got the Whole Dang Thang, which included fried fish, scallops, gator, calamari, shrimp and more.

About a month ago, Panda and I went out to dinner with Calavera for cajun seafood. As I was cracking away at my crab legs, I didn’t realize I was weakening part of my tooth and on the drive home, I noticed that my tooth had chipped. Prior to that, I had noticed a tiny little indentation along the bottom of the tooth, so it must have fractured along that groove. I needed a teeth cleaning anyway, so I scheduled a dental appointment and was told I should get a crown. Since dental procedures are expensive in the US and I plan on going to China this summer, I decided to wait until I go there to get it done. In the mean while, I look silly sometimes with what looks like a gap in my teeth that then shows itself as a missing chunk. At least a gap would look normal!

Now that I know what program I’ll be attending in the fall, it’s all about getting to know what they have to offer. I received a call from an MBA Ambassador today, but I was working and then wasn’t able to reach her later. I’m compiling questions about the program, life in general, and other things to know before I start school. There are four more people I should reach out to (two friends and two ambassadors, one who interviewed me). I think I’ll learn a lot at Admit Weekend next week and I can’t wait to start meeting people, learning, and thinking about what I’ll do. All this looking to the future has me distracted from what I should focus on, but I’m still making good progress at work. Still, I’m itching to train someone up and start handing things off, though it looks like that won’t happen for another month.

I’ve always been interested in helping uncover resources and make them more readily available, so I created an unofficial employee handbook using Trello. Tomorrow I get to train a new girl on it for the very first time! I can’t wait to see what she thinks, get feedback, and hone it into a lasting legacy that I will leave here. I’ve got quite a few projects that I hope will continue to live on when I’ve moved on. I know that our use of Slack will certainly be one of those.

There are so many things buzzing around in my head these days. With my obsession with Trello, I’ve put together various boards to help me track everything I should be doing. Now I just need to get better at checking them… 😛

Yogi Surprise April 2016 review

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Here comes a spring box of goodies! Quite a few snacks and supplements this time around. When I go off to school, I’ll probably cancel this subscription, so I’ve only got a few more coming my way.

Yogi Surprise is just under $36 per box (with code for 20% off your subscription – use my referral links from this post) and comes with yoga gear, skincare, food, and other lifestyle products. Boxes are sent monthly with no option to skip. They offer a referral program that earns you free boxes.

contents of yogi surprise april 2016 box with info card yogi surprise april 2016 info card with product details

Herban Essentials orange essential oil towelettes – A long time ago, I did a trade where I received some of these in orange and lemon. These are perfect to keep around for a quick wipe, whether of my hands or even my yoga mat. I had no idea they went beyond cleaning off grime and smelling nice, but are actually antibacterial and antiseptic! Apparently these are good for improving mood, focus, and relaxation. Wow, impressive.

The Seaweed Bath Co seaweed powder bath in Eucalyptus & Peppermint – I can’t remember how I first heard of this brand, but it’s been on my list and I got a chance to get some, also part of a trade a long time ago. The flakes darkened my bath and made it a little more effort to clean after draining the bath, so we’ll see how this one goes. I like the idea of using seaweed for skincare – just sounds cool, and it’s supposed to be good for sensitive skin, so I’m sure it’ll be great for me.

rishi hibiscus berry herbal tea – Ah, this will be perfect to take with me to school! I can scoop myself some nice tea to sip while working on projects. I got some rishi green tea from Whole Foods before, which I quite enjoyed, so I know this will be a very good quality.

Bambooee reusable bamboo towel – I first heard of these when I got one in my Conscious box three years ago! It’s so useful in so many different ways. I think it’s a fantastic product to have around and I’ll be using this one a lot in the kitchen, I’m sure. I love things made from bamboo. 🙂

Go Raw choco crunch sprouted cookies – Hmm, these “cookies” are basically bite-sized health bars. I’m not super into raw stuff or seeds/nuts, so I found the taste of this to be unusual. I didn’t get much of the chocolate flavor and instead had a lot more coconut and some unidentifiable taste. If you’re into healthy vegan stuff, you might like this though!

Stoneridge Orchards Montmorency Cherries – Alas, I also don’t like cherries that aren’t fresh ones. I’ll be giving these to someone else to eat, though as a dried fruit, this is something I’d consider trying.

Herbal Zap! Digestive Cool & Calm and Digestive & Immune Support supplements – These sort of remind me of the Pranayums I got in the last box. They make use of herbs to help bring health benefits. In this case, these are for digestion and boosting immunity. They come in these little sugar granules that dissolve in water. I’ll be taking these to work to use during the day! I could always use a little help with my digestive and immune systems.

Rescue Plus Stress Complex lozenge in Orange & Elderflower – Well, I had not known the term “lozenge” before, but I guess they’re basically cough drops. These are amazingly sweet for something that has no sugar! The elderflower adds a unique fragrance that is quite nice. They didn’t exactly provide information on how/when I should use these – when I feel unwell? As a daily boost? I’m not sure, but I think I’ll have one periodically.

Dosha Bar in blueberry balance pitta – Another bar that I will try, but am unsure of. I’ve just never really enjoyed bars, whether granola or quinoa or trail mix. But hey, it’s worth trying and using as a snack when I need that extra bit. Lately I’ve been feeling a plummet in my blood sugar on my drive home, so I think this will be great to munch on during the commute.

Yogi Surprise Connecting with Nature yoga sequence series card – This time around it’s time to get grounded and connect with nature. This series has some very easy and very challenging poses. Check out the instruction page to download this sequence.

Four Sigmatic Reishi & Chaga Mushroom Elixirs – Well, these are a new approach to drinks. Can’t say I’ve put mushrooms in my water before, though I certainly enjoy dishes cooked with them. They talk about how great mushrooms are, but don’t offer anything about what benefits I’m supposed to get exactly. And I thought the different flavors had different benefits, but it seems they are named after the mushroom they are made from. In general, it seems mushrooms are good for your immune system, blood pressure, and offer antioxidants.

suja organic cold-pressured juice coupon – (Not pictured.) Underneath everything was this little surprise, which offers a free bottle of juice! I’ve been curious about cold-pressed juices and was actually going to go get some at Whole Foods since I heard on the radio that they are offering 10% off this week. I look forward to trying these!

Wow, this time around there were a bunch of smaller items to try, which I rather liked. I feel like I’ve got a ton of health boosts now. What do you think about the products in this box?

[This post contains affiliate links. Signing up through them helps support my subscription and I’d be ever so grateful. 🙂 All opinions are my own and I received no compensation for this review. I just purchased this box and wanted to share what I got!]

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