Posts Tagged ‘tabby chapman’

RSS? What the heck is that!?

January 17, 2009

Okay so it looks like the first subject I will begin to discuss, from the “techy-side of tabby” (some may refer to as “the dark side”), will be RSS feeds.

What the heck is an RSS feed? Well! It’s a big pink ball!!! Just kidding! An RSS feed is a wonderful little tool that helps avid blog or news readers stay on top of the latest and greatest all from one single place.

Imagine a world where you want to keep up with 20 different blogs and three major news sites and four local news sites and your local animal shelter’s pet list. In this world, you might have to go to 27 different sites every single day just to catch up on things. Oh wait! That’s what most of us do! HEHE. Well, as you know, that’s GREAT for the advertisers of the site and for the unique views/visits and click-throughs (yay business!) but really time consuming for the end-user.

Now, imagine a world where you create a space where you log in and go to ONE SINGLE web page and see the latest blog entries, latest news posts from your major news, and latest local postings? Well, that leaves plenty of time for you to traverse your local animal shelter site to see their listings, doesn’t it!? (Hint: Local animal shelters, please get an RSS feed soon!)

Okay so here’s what you do. Find what they call an “aggregator” which sounds like alligator but its not an alligator, at all. The good news is that many of us have access to an aggregator without knowing it. Firefox has a built-in tool for you to add it to what is called a “Live Bookmarks” folder. Then you can go to your bookmarks and see a menu item for the blog. Try it out using the steps below:

Steps:
1: Using firefox, click here
2: In the top of the page, you should see “Subscribe to this feed using” and then a drop down selection showing “Live Bookmarks”. Select “Subscribe now.”
3: Now go to your Bookmarks menu and navigate down to “Bookmarks Toolbar” and you should see “Girls by Design: This is a Blog.”
4: Hover over that and you should see a list of the latest blogs.

Spreadfirefox Affiliate Button

Easy, hey? So! What if you don’t have Firefox? Well, firstly you might want to ask yourself why not but then if you really don’t want to get Firefox and make your web browsing experience more enjoyable, then you can use google.com as a reader as well. Do this by signing up for a google.com account and then going to http://www.google.com/reader/. Then you see a control panel with lots of options. In the top left, click “Add a subscription” and paste the following into the box that appears: http://blog.girlsbydesign.com/feed/ et voila! Now you can see the latest blog entries in your feed.

Now, getting back to “its good for unique views and click-throughs if you visit the site.” That’s true. So, while RSS feeds are a beautiful tool, please be sure to come back to the site and participate as often as possible!

There is one other note as well. RSS in and of itself refers to “Really Simple Syndication.” Many blogs and newsites provide several different methods to syndicate their material such as ATOM (which is the same thing but just a slightly different delivery method). In this case, you can use the same two methods above to syndicate ATOM for most cases.

Post here if you have any questions or additional comments to add about the world of The Pink Ball.

xo,
tabby

Movie Madness Monday: Wall-E

December 16, 2008

When this movie first came out, Kristin went to see it and IMd me after it was over, totally awe-inspired by the movie. In fact, she said “wall-e is sooooo good!” I didn’t see it until recently after it came out on DVD and I have to say that I wholeheartedly agree!

The movie was amazing considering there was probably like 20 lines of dialogue in the whole movie mostly consisting of “Wall-E” and “Eve.” The graphics work felt perfectly fit for the sci-fi nature of the film and “Eve’s” design felt like a real possibility. I’m such a geek!

More so than the cinemetography of the film, it’s also packed with a punch that’s easy to swallow. Okay, so it’s packed with multiple punches, starting with a love story reaching beyond differences, to environmental protection, to our ever-increasing ideology of a fast-food society and what that could mean when taken to an extreme. For me, one of the more poignant points was, indeed, the latter. It feels like citizens are always always looking for the absolutely most easiest route to take, and with the building of our technology, many are choosing to let technology do things that they could easily do. I’m totally guilty of this too. I’ve been in fast-food mode for the last couple of years and even on my diet my food has been what I consider “healthy” fast-food (hellllloooo Subway!). So now I’m thinking… what’s so bad about taking initiative and cooking, grocery shopping, and enjoying the fruits of my efforts in that way rather than running out to the nearest “healthy” fast-food place? I wonder if I’ll enjoy it more.

So, what stuck out for you?

Idea-ology 101

November 16, 2008

Ideology. What a funny word. What does it even mean? Do you ever hear it and feel a bit puzzled? Do you ever use it and feel a bit puzzled? Have you never heard it before? Feeling puzzled?

Good, me too.

The last week has been an interesting theme for me in regards to my choices and purpose with regards to the kind of person that I want to be. Due to a specific proposition passed in California this election day, I have decided to take some time to think about what I stand for and the kind of person I want to be in this world and the values that I want to uphold, and what it might mean for me to uphold myself and my values. What could I lose to uphold them at any given cost?

I recently asked an amazing friend of mine the following question (paraphrased because I’m not that good at remembering speech verbatim): “In light of the recent popular-vote decisions regarding minorities made in government, what is the best method in effecting change in the world for minority groups?”  I was looking for something along the lines of “Rally! Of course!” or “Don’t Rally! Sit peacefully like Gandhi.” or “Get everyone on your side.” Or “don’t support the system at all.” or some action that I could do that would somehow move the world around me.

You want to know his answer? “You must think about your ideology. You must be mindful of what you want to uphold. You must fully explore your values and know how it might effect the world before it can effect the world.” How interesting of a thought… I think this response goes along the lines of something that Gandhi might have said with regards to change in “You must be the change you wish to see in the world.” How can one be the change if one has no firm concept of what that change is? How do you get this concept? What drives you to create and define these concepts of change that you must be to effect the world?

I was just thinking in terms of rallies and protests, what does it take to be the kind of person to march down a street with signs and chants, peacefully stating their disenchantment. What must you know about yourself and what you believe to take up that sign and march? Furthermor, what kind of person does it take to do this peacefully, compassionately, and non-blaming… and how different would this effect change as opposed to doing it more forcefully and disgrunted? Is there a difference in the potential effect?

I was just thinking about this because I heard, recently, of a movement of people who choose to do it more creatively and peacefully and include crafts and arts in the area that they stood, vigilant, singing. Do you think that this type of protest would or could be any differently moving than a more disenfranchised protest may be? Are there greater benefits for one over the other?

All of these questions are questions that I have been asking myself over and over this week. What is the greatest way to effect change in the world? To effect change in yourself, I think, is the only way to effect change in the world. At least that’s the realization that I’m working through right now. What do you guys think?

Weight Blog: Honesty

October 5, 2008

Hi.

So, the other day I was thinking “What is wrong with me? Why am I eating this cookie!?”

The cookie? It was so so delicious.

But that’s not the point. The cookie will probably always be delicious. But that’s not why I was eating it. And why I was eating it isn’t really what I was going to talk about, but rather why I want to lose weight.

I think its important to reflect on occasionally because reasons change. Originally, I wanted to do this because I felt unhealthy. I wanted to feel healthier. As time wore on, I think my reasoning changed into “I wanna look hot,” but I wasn’t fully honest to myself about it… so I think the lack of inner honesty with regards to why I was trying to lose weight allowed me to … stop trying.

Now that I realized that I wasn’t being honest with myself, I can focus on the task at hand, figuring out how to get back on track! Mostly I’ve just decided to just DO IT. Get back to my previous routine, and then go from there. So, day two back on my previous routine and I’m back to my weight that I “ended” at (220 lbs) and on my way back down again. w00t!

So, photos will hopefully get back up soon, perhaps next week? In other news, my hip is still very injured. Thanks to the lovely skahahoo, I’ve got some exercises and things to try to strengthen it up, but I do need to go see a doctor… soon. Once that gets back on track I can start up an exercise routine!

Until next week!
xo
tabby

ETA: Rainbow Chocolate Chips!

News day Tuesday: Yummmm Fooodddd

September 23, 2008

So, skahahoo sent in a link to a really interesting article that caught my attention… being the one who’s experiencing weight loss (or lack thereof at times *innocent whistle*).

First of all, go read this article, then come back.

K, now that you’ve read the article…

One of the most common things I hear from my friends (some of you post on here) about their own health journey is that its hard to stay away from the foods that you like. Its almost like some people seem to feel as if the only way to lose weight is to deprive yourself of the foods you love…

WHAT IF THAT’S NOT TRUE???

What if there’s thousands of other foods you LOOOOVE but you’ve never really stopped to experience it? The article above is interesting because it points out this same concept of deprivation over enjoyment. When I first started my journey I think one of the things that made my massive amount of weight loss so successful was the fact that I didn’t feel as if I was depriving myself. I was opening my world up to a brand new world of yummy (really yummy, in fact) recipes and foods that I’d never allowed myself to enjoy before. I mean, who KNEW asparagus was so freaking yummy? Especially when grilled in olive oil and some spice? MMMMMMMMmmm.

There’s so many fantastically delicious recipes out there that are green-based (meaning veggie) without all the bad fats and stuff… I realized that I shouldn’t even really need to focus on the amount of fats that are in something if I’m staying green, you know? Calories are a great way to gauge things if you really really need measurement BUT I found that by sticking to the green stuff or stuff with a thick outer layer I’m usually doin’ great!

That’s my two cents on the NY Times two cents. Now lets see how many cents we can accumulate in the comments! (okay, yeah… that was kinda lame)

Journey Update: Stop at the Inn

September 21, 2008

*Crickets chirp*

*another round of chirping*

Um… hi guys! So! Its been a while since I updated you all on my journey. The journey turned more into an extended stop at the inn on the outskirts of town with lots of meat and mead. So, the update is that there is no changes in my weight lately because I haven’t attempted to loose it. I went back to a hybrid of my old eating style and my new eating style (which really means Subway Wraps for lunch and Romano’s Macorni Grill for dinner). I don’t really know why, at this point, I made that choice with the exception that I’ve been away from home on an extended trip and I could pretty much “get away” with eating whatever I wanted. That and I injured my hip recently so I haven’t been able to get in any physical activity.

Do you guys ever experience that? What do you typically do to get over that hump?

xo
tabby

Health Journey: Acupuncture

August 12, 2008

Hello Ladies!!! I’m excited to be able to do my check-in with you guys because I was finally able to measure myself and am SO happy to report that I’m STILL on track! Despite my diet “adjustments” when I was in California! I’m checking in today at 220 lbs, and am going for 218 by Thursday. W00t!

This week I’m going to chat a bit about one of the methods that I’ve been using to become healthier. That method is Acupuncture. I’ve got a great friend here in Vancouver who is a registered Acupuncturist and she’s been taking amazing care of me for the last couple of months. She’s always sure to see me before I go on long trips and treat me specifically for the things she sees to be the most important.

Acupuncture is a form of eastern medicine that (thought to specifically derive from China but has various forms in Asia) deals primarily with a person’s “energy” field and the “yin” and “yang” and stuff. I think yin and yang are commonly heard terms but within the body, they are about the physical structure of one’s body vs the energy flow of one’s body.

I have to admit, I have always been a skeptic. Sometimes I still am. But the other day I had an interesting experience that is having me re-evaluate my thoughts on acupuncture given my new experiences in it. So I was laying on the table. My friend/acupunturist had some heated instrument that she was putting over my body as she was treating me for a “yang” deficiency (which was apparently causing some digestive issues for me). All of a sudden, while she was putting the heated instrument over my right leg, a weird sensation or build-up went into one spot on the side of my leg. I thought she was playing with a needle or something and kept thinking “Oh my gosh is that necessary?” because, while the sensation wasn’t painful, I was associating with pain since the instrument I believed was being used was a needle. Weird huh!? So I mentioned the sensation to her and she investigated. There wasn’t even a needle site where it was “hurting”. Her explanation is that sometimes the Qi (energy, pronounced “ki”) gets built up in certain areas of our body and causes an energy stoppage, which will create a sensational pressure. Her explanation made a lot of sense, because otherwise there would be no reason to have this strange pressure! So that experience really has me wondering more and more about this world of Qi. I’ll discover more as I go, I suppose! During every treatment, my practitioner leaves little seeds in my ears as take home treatments. Basically there’s a point in one’s ear that represents the entire body so she leaves 4 to 6 seeds which are applied with a clear/tan bandaid type applicator and maintains a light pressure on the points. Each point represents something she’s treating me for. This week I have five points. Two to treat a foot injury I have (and the injury is by far less painful since she inserted the seeds…. although admittedly its been four days so it could just be naturally healing), one to treat my yang deficiency one for the spleen and one for weight loss (an appetite suppressant point).

So, over time we’ll see how effective this all is if even at all. I think its kind of neat to be able to try out these things and have new experiences just to see how they’ll work with my own body. If any of you has ever tried it, do share your experiences and thoughts!

For now, I’m going to go ahead and close with a new photo to add to my weight-loss photo journal. Enjoy!!

Health Journey Check-in

August 3, 2008

Hi Everyone! Long time no chat! I think it’s been over two weeks since I last reported in. I have no real news about my measured weight loss because I haven’t measured myself since before I left for comic con, but I did have a recent experience that I wanted to share with you all! “What is that, my dear Tabby?” I hear some of you asking.

CRAVINGS!!

YAY!

Okay so, when trying to uphold the value of maintaining a healthy body (i.e. what some might call “diet and exercise”) sometimes there’s those days when nothing seems to penetrate the constant thought-bubble popping up over your head with the cute little chocolate bar and whole-milk latte and gelato and … whatever else you might want to fit in it. Thankfully, for myself, I’ve never really been the kind of person who craves sweet things. Although when I do, LOOK OUT!! That was the old Tabby, at least.

Most of my friends crave chocolate. The other day I was not feeling up to par and a friend of mine said, “*I* know what will make you feel better! I JUST made some delicious raw chocolates. Here… try one.” I kinda laughed inside because chocolate isn’t my button, but it DID happen to be heavenly delicious and incredibly healthy made with nuts and raw cacao and raw coconut shavings. MMMMmmm!

No, I don’t crave chocolates. I crave salty things or crunchy things. Pre-Healthy Tabby would go and buy a bag of doritos in order to fulfill those cravings. Post-Healthy Tabby would ordinarily ignore those cravings. This weekend, however, I didn’t feel much for ignoring them. I was craving… SALSA. It’s not uncommon for me to crave salsa because of the jalapenos in them (<3) and the bell peppers (<3 <3) but usually I resist and go on my way, ignoring it.

Not this time, baby! I called up my mother. This is how our conversation went:

Me: Mom? Can you find that salsa recipe you used to make for us when we were little?
Mom: Sure, here it is…
Me: Whoa! How’d you find it so fast!?
Mom: Well, when my daughter was very little she used to be really organized. And she wrote this recipe down in this neat little book as soon as we got the recipe from her grandmother!
Me: I used to be organized? Cool!
Mom: (after she reads the recipe to me): And do you want to know what the very last line says?
Me: Sure!
Mom: "This recipe is best with Chips. Enjoy!!" My daughter sure was a cute one!
Me: HAHA, yeah she was! Although I’m not sure why you’re referring to me in the third person?!
Mom: Because it’s making you laugh!

So true! I was laughing! Anyway, there really was no point in sharing the conversation with you except to show that the recipe that I am about to share with you all is a family recipe straight from Texas and is VERY DELICIOUS!!!! Please make it and let me know how you like it! I made some last night and enjoyed it to BITS! Also if you want to make adjustments share them with us and I’ll try it out as well!

Tabby’s Family Salsa Recipe
Ingredients:
1 15oz can of tomato sauce
1 28 oz can of whole tomatoes
2 medium bell peppers chopped
1 large onion, chopped
2 large fresh tomatos, chopped
2 cloves of garlic (finely chopped)
1 tablespoon of fresh cilantro
1 teaspoon of chili powder
8 fresh jalapenos (use more for spicy salsa!)
1 tablespoon of cayenne
1 tablespoon of seasoning salt
1/2 cup of water
3 tablespoons of white vinegar

Directions:
1) Chop all of the veggies if they are not chopped. Chop the fresh tomatos into desired bite-sizes for the final salsa.
2) Cut the jalapenos into halves and place in small sauce pan or frying pan with water, garlic, and vinegar. Simmer until the peppers lose their shine (approximately 5 minutes)
3) Strain the water and vinegar from the peppers and garlic
4) Combine all ingredients except for half of the onion and the fresh tomatoes into a large blender and blend until it is saucy (but still kinda chunky – this should only be for a few seconds).
5) Combine blended sauce, tomatoes and the rest of the chopped onion into a large sauce pan and simmer for 45 minutes to lock in flavor.

This recipe will make 2 large mason jars or 4 to 6 smaller jars.

This recipe is best with Chips. Enjoy!!

xo
Tabby (and my mom, and my dearly departed grandmother)

Writing Assignment: Before

July 24, 2008

Write what happened just before the photograph, below, was taken.

Tabby’s Entry:

hop hop hop went the frog through the bushes
she laughed in delight as it croaked its delectable goodbye.

Featured Guest Writers

(more…)

Movie Madness Mondays

July 21, 2008

America FerreraWe had movie night here at GBD Central, which was good times… Our inaugural Movie Monday movie was “Real Women Have Curves”. Firstly, America Ferrera is so lovely! We had seen her in travelling pants and she was really sweet in that too. Since this isn’t really a traditional review, we aren’t going to get into the details of our artistic evaluation of the movie.

This character’s mother was pretty intense. Like VERY intense. The lengths to which she went to get her daughter to do what she wanted was kinda devastating…and yet hilarious(really these behaviours are kinda funny when you aren’t making them into too much). Yet one of us, who shall remain nameless, was like, “This is like watching my day to day…” I think a lot of parents use the guilt factor on their kids at some point. You know the whole, “But I have sacrificed so much” or “Look at everything I have done for you!” And honestly, I think they are doing their best and trying to keep us safe. So in this story our lovely lady chooses to pursue her ambitions without her mother’s consent. That isn’t always easy. And to do it without being defiant, doing it understanding why she wants something and going after it because she values it. I know I have done a lot of shizznat that my parents haven’t liked, and sometimes the thing WAS destructive and sometimes it wasn’t. Ultimately though, it was so important for me to begin to understand why I would do or not do something for myself. Like, when America’s character goes to work in the factory with her sister, she chose to leave based on an understanding of the importance of school for her. Not so much that she didn’t want to be like her family.

BUT we did tire of the mopey mopey… Translation for those of you who do not speak “Kristin-speak”: she pouted A LOT. Now, we get that the whole situation was not so ideal, but we think it is possible to go out there and enjoy life. Yes, even when our mothers are uber-intense. Not to say we never feel like indulging ourselves with the mopey-mopey, we do. But we do think we can live our lives and create our ambitions experiencing adversity and not pouting. What do you ladies think?

The other thing we were intrigued by was the idea of defiance and weight. The speech with her mother over to eat or not eat the flan was almost exactly what Tabby was speaking of in “Defy,Defy, Defy”. Really curious about your thoughts on all that!! If we truly loved ourselves, would this even come into play?

Ultimately, most (if not all) human beings are beautiful. And to me, that is far from physical. If we were to go all Eckhart Tolle on you, beauty is a reflection of the essence of life. Which we all embody. We get so caught up in the surface of things. I am too skinny, Tabby is too fat… I play Lana Lang, Tabby is a Chloe fan. Underneath it all, how am I? How are you? If you were to die tomorrow and reflect upon life what would think was REALLY important. You are all beautiful.

And yes, I am sappy… I admit it. But not “The Notebook” sappy. More like “Amelie” sappy.

Okay, so Bianca (aka Binks) sent us about 5 million movie recommendations…Thanks Dude, so many to choose from. Kendra is very very very interested in watching, “A League of Their Own.” It is old school, but fun. So that is the movie this week little darlings! Enjoy the cheese.

xo

Written by Kristin (but brains stormed together)