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Wicked Wednesday – My New Android!

24 Aug

Aside from the obvious (insert references to Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy and Radiohead here), I didn’t really like my “smart” phone all that much at first. In fact (somewhat predictably), I dubbed it “stupidphone” by the time I had gotten home from the store.

But after countless hours wasted playing Angry Birds and some invaluable advice on apps and settings from my tech-savvy friend, I’ve come to quite like it. One of the main reasons being, of course, the photos!

I’ve always loved photography, and have become fascinated by the photos posted on Instagram by iPhone wielding friends. Of course, there isn’t yet an Instagram app for the Android, but I found two that are just as fun: Picplz and Vignette. Along with the photo above, here are some others I’ve snapped:

Okay, so they’re not very good, but I’m just getting started! There’s potential. So for those of you who are considering moving over to Android, here are some useful apps and features I’ve found so far (strictly for those brand spankin’ new to apps – they’re pretty basic!):

  • Vignette –  Free trial, then about $5, I think. Has lots of different effects you can do, and you can save multiple copies of the same image with different effects.
  • QuickPic – Free. It’s a gallery of all the images on your phone in different apps and the basic camera. Makes it really easy to find your photos.
  • Angry Birds – Free. There are three versions – original, Rio and Seasons. This game is so simple, but great fun when you’re stuck waiting somewhere or in transit.
  • Movies – Free. Lets you see when movies are opening and search showtimes in your area. Very handy.
  • Skype – Free. Honestly I have yet to use Skype, but from what I understand it lets you call from your phone to another phone – free! I have a friend who has called me with it and the sound is just as good as regular phone.
  • Volume Ace Free – Wondering how to get rid of that irritating shutter sound that goes off whenever you take a photo? Download this app and set “System” to 0. Voila.
  • Ringtone Maker – Free. Lets you edit songs to become ringtones. You can cut it to the chorus and fade in and out.
  • All the social media apps – Free. Facebook, Twitter, Google+ all have apps that take you to a mobile version of the site. Honestly a bit difficult to use, but not bad. Even Gmail (“Talk” is the app for Gmail talk) and Google Reader have handy apps.

So all in all, I’m starting to warm to my little buddy. We might just get along after all.

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Wicked Wednesday – Refinery 29

4 Aug

Clearly I’m not a fashionista. I don’t like shopping, I definitely don’t replace my outfits every season (or even every year), and I will never learn to walk in high heels properly. But every once in awhile, I like to check in on what’s going on in the world of fashion/style/trends etc. and vicariously enjoy what other people come up with. You know, the ones who actually care enough to shop more than once every six months.

I came across Refinery 29 by accident when I found a link to a slideshow of stylish 70-year-olds. This impressed me right away. One of the things that turns me off about the fashion world is its preoccupation with youth and idealized beauty. Rarely will you see women much over 30, and when you do it’s someone like Oprah or Michelle Obama or Anna Wintour – clearly amazing women whose accomplishments are the focus rather than any appreciation for their beauty (which is considerable, in my opinion).

Don’t get me wrong. I’m certainly not saying it’s a bad thing to value women for their skills, hard work and lifelong experience. It’s very important, and provides great role models for young girls. I’m just saying that it’s important to acknowledge them as beautiful, vibrant and sexy, too. So this article really got my attention. It made me smile and think, “finally, I’m looking at women who are what I want to be like when I grow up.” The site won me over immediately for this one slideshow, and I’ve really enjoyed reading some of the other stuff they have to offer.

Here are a few links to demonstrate the range of the topics covered (I love that they cover women of all ages, plus-size fashion that actually looks good, DIY, socially conscious shopping, do-able makeup tips – even something for Harry Potter fans!):

And the post that started it all for me:

If you like style and fashion-centric sites that cover it all, this is a great one to waste some serious time on!

    Wicked Wednesday – Incubus’ New Album – If Not Now, When?

    13 Jul

    If I absolutely had to pick one favourite song, it just might be the classic Incubus song, “Drive.” Probably the acoustic version. I’m not one who can easily pick favourite songs – I love music and my tastes are constantly changing. So this is high praise.

    Though I never expect Incubus to come out with another song I love that much, it has earned them my loyalty as a listener, and I’m always excited to hear what they’re going to come out with next. Yesterday they released their newest and long-awaited album, If Not Now, When?

    “Adolescents” is my favourite track so far – though probably partly because it was the first single to be released so I’ve listened to it many times already! If you want to check out the rest of the album (and you want to do that old-fashioned buying the CD thing), you can get it here.

    Wicked Wednesday – Me & You Reusable Shopping Bags

    2 Jun

    Okay, I realize that this makes two posts in a row telling you about stuff to buy, but somehow it just worked out that way, and I want to share this one before the deal is over. It wasn’t on purpose, honest! I stumbled across these locally made, reusable bags in a Grooster special last week. Now, their signature bags look like this:

    To view image sources, click on images

    These bags are great, but the bags I’m really impressed with are these:

    Plenty of companies – even most grocery stores – have reusable grocery bags these days. But these bags were a first for me – and such a great idea! I mean, plastic shopping bags I can reuse to gather recycling in or line small trash cans in the bathrooms, but the produce plastic bags… well there’s really not a whole lot you can do with those once the fruits and veggies are all used up. I’ll definitely be switching to these babies!
    Visit here to check out all the bags Me & You carry, and here to check out the Grooster deal.

    Wicked Wednesday – The New Sherlock Holmes (BBC)

    25 May
    To view image source, click on image

    I have been meaning to watch the new Sherlock Holmes for ages, but I never seemed to get around to it. After spending an evening with a good friend of mine who is a huge fan of the Jeremy Brett version, I was inspired to give it a go.

    So I loaded the first episode up onto my iPod and figured I’d watch the first ten minutes or so in bed since I wasn’t particularly tired. Fast forward roughly an hour and 22 minutes and I’m still watching with rapt attention. So involved did I become that I actually giggled out loud at the section where Anderson (an irritating crime scene investigator) says, upon finding a key piece of evidence in Holmes’ flat, “According to someone, the murderer has the case, and we found it in the hands of our favourite psychopath.” To which Holmes replies, “I’m not a psychopath, Anderson, I’m a high-functioning sociopath. Do your research.” Luckily J is a deep sleeper.

    I have now breezed through all three episodes and am left cursing the brevity of British TV show seasons. It’s going to be a long wait until it’s back on air again!