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And I Suddenly Remember I Have a Blog!

Somehow things have reverted to the way they were when I first started this blog. “Because I feel like it! But only when I feel like it!” Hurrah. Today, I feel like it. Also, some cool stuff has happened, and I feel the need to catalog it, since this day has been on the horrendous side.

I’ve been a fully realised Romance reader, as we all know perfectly well. And I did it in about three years. So I thought it was about time I joined the Harlequin rewards program. And soon after registering, I looked through my library and realised with a sheepish grin that all of the Harlequin books I own were given to me. Almost all of them are destined-for-the-bin Love Inspireds that Jared gave me, in fact. Which is great, but it means that I don’t have any purchases to redeem. How red is my face, right? Apparently everything I buy is Hachette or Macmillan. Oops.

BUT THEN I REMEMBERED.

Back when I was pregnant and bored and not sleeping at night, I bought Pregnesia. I even wrote a review about it. And guess what, you guys. It’s a Harlequin Intrigue. I remember thinking at the time that I hated to buy a book when I had so many free books and library TBRs. Also, I never bought ebooks at that time. (that time is incredibly over) It wasn’t an ebook vs print book thing, it was a miserly “I have access to a bazillion FREE books thanks” thing. But it was called PREGNESIA so of course I forked over my moneys.

Now I am 200 points away from a free book from the rewards program. Also scouring my memories to uncover and possible purchases that fall under Harlequin’s roof.

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April Fool’s Day in Habitica

joyanddoom

Joy and Doom to All!

THE SPRING FLING HAS FLUNG TOO FAR! Run while you can, Habiticans! The floral theme has come to life and is taking over Habitica with horrifying cheer, repeat, the flowers are taking over HMMMPH MMPH MMMHPPPH….

FLOWER

CELEBRATE FLOWER POWER.

RESISTANCE IS SILLY.

Anyway, I got this kind of early, which made it funnier. Also, I’m playing Sims 4 again. I figure I bought it, I might as well. Also doing my first by the rules for-realsies Legacy Challenge. Considering that Sims 4 is about the emptiest Sims base game ever, it should be an easy challenge.

I’m just being a jerk. The game is actually being fun, and I keep catching myself going to buy the expansion that came out today.

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I hate insurance

Getting insurance after Hubby became a full-time student has been rather a nightmare. When we finally did, guess what. They don’t cover any of our doctors, despite an inaccurate list claiming that they do. And getting a new rheumatologist is about as likely as Nevada becoming submersible. Quite frankly, it’s all I can do not to have whiplash-inducing flashbacks starring things like my previously deformed knee and a single fleece blanket pinning me to the bed.

Looks like the Medicare thing doesn’t even matter now. I can’t have enbrel without a doctor to prescribe it and insurance to cover it. I just… I’m so sick of all this shit.

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Percolating away

It’s odd that although there are much fewer bumps right now, I still haven’t got any time to write. Like most people who don’t have time to write, I am doing it anyway, but it’s stressful and incomplete. I have another hubby assignment that I’m rather afraid won’t be fulfilled in favour of a much much bigger project. I’ve been trying to read the goofy Mercedes Lackey fairy godmother book for two days, and have only gotten in about eight chapters because Bridge of Birds is so much more engaging (and yet a sloooow read for me).

No more juggling Wednesdays. We’ve moved the game to Mondays, and instead of just guessing which grandmother Owen will terrorise, now we know (thank you, by the way). Also it was just the weekend, and I had ample opportunity on at least one day. So why do I feel so cramped for time?

Part of it is that I don’t always use it wisely. And to be totally honest, some of that is in turn because I have crippling insomnia and Owen still thinks that this Sleep thing is a bollocks idea. …and since it’s past 23:00, I shall take some advice, possibly some sleep aid, and get some Zzz.

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4theWords Review – What is This Even

The other day, I heard about this site called 4theWords. I will not link to it. Not because I think it’s purposely dishonest, and it probably isn’t technically harmful. But it is such an impressive bit of FUBAR that I don’t want to be associated beyond this one time that I will (sort of) publicly state my opinion.

It looks like such a good idea. The phrase they use is something like “a gym for writers” and it is basically 750 Words with more features. There is supposed to be a forum, like NaNoWriMo has, badges like 750 Words has (only more and possibly cooler), levels like HabitRPG, and two kinds of gamer-type currency. Like Duolingo has. So cribbing ideas from elsewhere like picking up eggs, sugar, and condensed milk and making flan.

Yummy_Flan_by_mkirby712Yummy Flan by mkirby712 on DeviantArt

Anything related to flan must be good, right? Wrong. 4theWords is not a delicious flan.

It’s an abysmally buggy site that not only has absolutely no business even discussing money changing hands, it also has no business being listed on the NaNoWriMo web site among legitimate writing resources like Evernote and Scrivener. This is old news (like five months old) but it’s still up on NaNoWriMo’s Sponsor Offers page. My respect for NNWM tanked years ago, but it does not help when they toot a horn for stuff like Zoetic Press and this bullcrap.

…an “honour” that a company can apparently buy with $6000 donated to NaNoWriMo. I think I just died a little. This makes it look even more likely that whoever is in charge doesn’t vet the sponsor offers at all. Yay bribes.

Anyway. I wasn’t aware of all of this until I decided to try it out. First warning sign is that even to sign up for the 30-day free trial, you have to set up a recurring payment with Paypal. It doesn’t look illegal or anything, it’s just not always good business practise. Simply because people don’t like it, and it stops them from ever being customers. It’s even worse when you realise that this site is STILL IN OPEN BETA. Oh, and they also missed basically every deadline they ever set. Old jokes about Peter Molyneux start to come to mind.

But the kicker was when I went ahead with the Paypal thing, and lo, I was kicked back to the sign-in page… and upon trying to log in, I found myself at the same page asking me to set up a recurring Paypal payment. Every Single Time that I tried logging in. I gave up. It wasn’t worth it.

From what I gleaned from people who actually managed to log in (many after having the same problem I did, and all of their comments 3-5 months old), the interface is both unappealing and unusuable. The forums don’t work like forums are supposed to work. And worst of all: Core Features, the gamification stuff like fake currency and levelling, literally don’t work at all. The general attitude in the thread that announced the site’s existence to WriMos was disappointment, irritation, suspicion, and even anger.

But since it is such a good idea, a lot of people were kind of cynically hopeful for the stable version. Personally? I don’t care if it does happen. I want nothing to do with any software engineer who ever thought that SHIFT-S was a good Save Shortcut Key in a WORD PROCESSOR.

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Owen is getting bigger

Photo Mar 10, 6 32 44 PM

Watching a movie with Abbie.

Photo Mar 19, 10 10 10 AM

He talked on the phone with Oliver for a couple of minutes. Then he decided that he would rather push buttons and hang up. Twice.
Also, his hair is crazy because he had just had a bath.

But my favourite thing that he has done recently was when he got into my phone. He loves to play with my phone. It does all the things! He listened to music (thankfully only downloaded things I had already bought, no accidental purchases YET) I saw him open up Pages and create a new document. I even saw the template he chose and that he had changed a picture. What I didn’t see was what picture he had replaced it with–later I had a look.

Owenreport