My phone broke

Sunday afternoon.  Hubby is out at work and the boys are playing on their Xboxes before bed.  Hubby decided that he wanted a break from driving (taxi driver), so he calls me to see how the boys are doing.

It wasn’t long in to the call when I couldn’t hear him talking…  I thought he had drove through a “dead zone”, so the network had dropped.  I stated my thoughts with my usual, “I don’t know if you can still hear me, but I can’t hear you…  If you can hear me, call me back…”  He called me back straight away, but I still couldn’t hear anything.  Thinking it was a glitch, I repeated my previous statement, but saying that I would call him back.

I called him back, but there was no ringtone…  The display was showing that he had answered the call.  I said, “I haven’t a clue if you can hear me, but I think there’s something wrong with my phone.  Give me ten minutes, and I’ll try to call you back…”

I tried a few things.  I called the house phone, and I couldn’t hear anything from my mobile – but I could through the house phone.  I then had the idea of trying to play some music…  I went to the YouTube app, and pressed play on one of the recommended videos.  It started to play, but no noise.  I repeated the experiment with Google Music…  Nothing.  Then, all of a sudden, my mobile data stopped working.  I couldn’t connect to the internet…  Great.  I quickly texted hubby to say “my phone’s broke”, and to call me on the house phone if he needed me.

Monday morning.  My phone is well and truly “dead”.  After some research last night, I had found the phone that I wanted, and it would come with a free fitness watch.  It would mean that I would have to take on another contract (3 years), but I would get a “top of the line” phone…  I was ok with that, so hubby and I went to the phone shop to pick up my beautiful Huawei P20 Pro and Huawei GT Smart Watch.


All of the above had me thinking…  I am the last generation of so many “ends” of technology, and I am the first generation of many, many more.  I was planning on making a list of all of the technologies that have come and gone, but I’d just be here all day…  Instead, here’s a list of just a few:

Minidisc was a magneto-optical disc-based data storage format offering a capacity of 74 minutes and, later, 80 minutes, of digitized audio or 1 gigabyte of Hi-MD data.  They were first introduced in 1992, and it was hoped that they would replace the delicate compact discs.  Unfortunately, the Minidisc didn’t gain as much popularity as was first thought, and the last Minidisc was produced in 2013.

MP3.  There are many contradictory answers, as to when MP3’s first appeared, although I have discovered that the first MP3 player was produced in 1997.  Therefore, I think it’s safe to say that the MP3 came out prior to when I left high school!  The MP3 is still a  popular choice of audio today.

Audio CD’s were introduced to the world a lot earlier than people think!  They were first available to purchase in 1982; but, as with a lot of new technology, were rather expensive to own.  As the popularity increased, primarily because the compact disc could hold more information than a cassette, the prices went down, and almost everyone owned a CD player.

Cassette tapes were first introduced in approximately 1962, but were all the rage in the 80’s.  The personal “Walkman” was first released in 1980, and was a great source of listening to music “on the go”. By 1993, CD’s were outselling the cassette tape, and by 2000, less than 2% of the worlds’ audio purchases were on cassette.

8-tracks were another popular form of listening to music, but were not able to be “portable”.  The 8-track cartridges were common in car radio systems, and were “in season” from 1964 to 1988.

LP / Records. In 1888, a gentlemen named Emile Berliner invented the flat disc record. These very first discs were produced of a vulcanised rubber.  Later he discovered that a mixture of shellac (a secretion from the lac beetle) and slate dust produced an extremely hard wearing but very brittle surface and from this the 78rpm disc was developed.  The slate dust was used because the older acoustic gramophones used steel needles with a pick-up weight of up to 200 grams and the slate helped grind the needle to fit the groove more closely.  In 1927, a vinyl record was used for the very first talking picture (movie with audio) – “The Jazz Singer”.  Since 1927, popularity increased, and the LP was often sent to POW camps, during the second world war, to keep up prisoner morale.  Despite the devastation caused to vinyl sales by the rapid rise in popularity of the CD, the format still thrives among keen record collectors and club disc jockeys today.

Betamax and VHS were first released in 1975, and although VHS are still available (rarely though), they faded out with the release of the DVD in 1995 (DVD’s have also decreased in popularity, since the introduction of the Blue-Ray in 2003).

The Internet is another thing that has been around a lot longer than people think.  We can trace the development of the first internetworking back to the early 1960’s, and was developed primarily for business use only.  Commercial Internet Service Provider’s (ISP’s) began to emerge in the late 1980’s / early 1990’s, and by 1995, the internet for home usage was fully commercialised throughout the UK.

The list is not exhaustive, and I will address this topic again, after having done more research.  In the meantime, just have a think as to how far the world has come, technology wise, since you came along.  Did you see one of the first TV’s?  Do you remember when it was incredibly rare to own more than one car?  Do you remember what the connection is between a pen and a cassette tape?

 

Advertisements

Merseyside Bucket List

From the moment I was born, up until 2009, I lived in the borough of St Helens, Merseyside (north-west England).  In 2009, I moved to Huyton village (in the outskirts of Liverpool).  I have lived within this 6 mile radius all of my life.

Last night I decided to start making a list of all the important, and wonderful places to visit in the area.  Museums, historical buildings, green spaces, and more.  I have visited many, thanks to my dad who loved to teach me the history of where I live, but there are still so many places that I have not been.

If you live in, or know the county of Merseyside, I would love to hear about your favourite places.  Do you have a favourite park?  Is there a particular building, or museum that you enjoyed visiting?  Do you know of any “hidden gems” in the area?  Please comment with one, two or more of your favourite Merseyside places, so I can add them to my list.

As soon as I have compiled my list, I shall post it here.

2018: My New Years Resolutions

  • Read more.  Aim to read at least one book per month.  If you start a book, finish it.  Even if you don’t like it…
  • Write more.  You have such a creative mind, and you’re letting it go to waste.  Write at least one piece of poetry, and one short-story per month.  Get in to the habit of writing, then when you feel more confident, start writing that book…
  • Every night, write a bullet point list containing three things that you are grateful for on that day.
  • Teach Gning how to play chess and backgammon.  At least once a month, play a game of each.
  • Start keeping the house.  Properly.  No more “I’ll do it in a minute…” – if it needs doing, do it now.  Stop leaving everything until later – it’ll only pile up, and mean more work for you.

It’s another Blogiversary!

Today celebrates my 6th year of my Insanely Normal blog.

Image result for blogiversary

It’s been fun, although a little slack, and I know that I have said it time and time again, but that can now change…  I have a lot more time to be able to publish, and I have all sorts of ideas!

So, without further ado, let’s revisit my top three posts…

At number 3…

This post has somewhat amused me since I published it in 2014.  It was a review (a negative one at that!  And badly wrote, haha) about a local franchised café.  I can remember visiting the place – it was bloody awful, and I imagine nothing has changed, because I’m still receiving messages agreeing with my post!  You can read about the Pound Café in Huyton here.

At number 2…

2015 seems to have been the year that brought in most of my subscribers (hello stalkers!), and top of the shot (again), was my Christmas Ham post!  My second most popular post in 2015 was for my slow cooker sausage casserole…  With just under 10,000 reads throughout the year, it definitely got the attention it deserved, ha ha.  You can try the slow cooker sausage casserole recipe here.

Drum roll please, because at number 1…

Every Christmas, I make a ham.  It’s by far the best thing I have ever made, and you all seem to agree, as the amount of views that post has received is amazing!  I first published the post in 2012, and it seems to be a recipe that is used right throughout the year, as it’s always my most read…  My “best” stats for this recipe was on 1 December, 2016, when I had a little over 4,000 views – just on that day!  You can read my Christmas Ham here.


So, it seems that my stalkers like recipes and negative reviews!  Ha ha.  Yes, those were my top three posts in the past six years, and other posts in my top ten include more recipes, a holiday post, and how parenthood drives me crazy.

So, here’s to more exciting times – more recipes, more random stuff, and I may even through in a mini-comp somewhere…

43 problems every curvy girl has faced at least once in their life

1. “One size fits all” isn’t a game you can even think of playing.

2. You’re no stranger to walking out of a store because they don’t carry anything above a size 12.

3. And you know not to bother with sales because the largest size that’s ever in stock is an M.

4. Strapless bras are just a no-go zone for you.

5. Plus, all the bras that are comfortable and offer that perfect support cost an arm and a leg.

6. Actually, no. All clothes are more expensive than anything “normal” sized.

7. You have to try EVERYTHING on before you buy it.

8. Which really makes online shopping a chore because you never know what your size is.

9. Especially because all stores think people looking for plus-size clothing just want to look like a shapeless sack.

10. And forget about even thinking about getting jeans online.

11. You really can’t go to a cheap market or a random eBay seller because you already know nothing will fit you.

12. Damn, most of the time you have to tie your clothes up to fit your body the right way.

13. All your belt loops are broken from you constantly trying to pull your jeans up.

14. And your pants always rip on your inner thighs because of them always rubbing together.

15. Not to mention all the little balls of fabric that build up there too.

16. But even worse than that? The painful chub rub you get when you wear dresses or skirts.

17. You’re constantly buying baby powder to combat all the chafing.

18. But when you do chafe, you’re forced to wear pants for at least a few weeks.

19. Your pants fit perfectly around your booty and thighs but are always baggy down near your ankles.

20. Or are massive around your waist and give you major butt gap.

21. And jeans that actually fit well everywhere are usually two metres too long on you.

22. Most jeans you own are in that shitty stretchy material, so you always get a bad case of saggy butt syndrome.

23. Any time you wear jeans with holes, you’re left looking like a wrapped leg of lamb with marks everywhere.

24. Button-up shirts always pop open as you walk. Or sit. Or breathe. Or exist, really.

25. You’re constantly pulling dresses out of your ass crack.

26. In the summer, cute lil’ shorts really just look like underwear on you.

27. And whenever you walk with shorts on you have to constantly pull them out of your thighs because they really love to bunch up.

28. Actually…any tight clothing loves to creep up.

29. Skirts and dresses never sit the same at the front as they do in the back, thanks to your booty.

30. You have to stay away from any tops or pants with text on them because they warp out of control.

31. Fabric at the seams of all your pants and shorts always pull and go see-through from the strain.

32. And if you’re sitting in the middle of anything, you feel like your entire, kinda see-through ass is in everyone’s lap as you get up to leave.

33. Every time a song references anything about bass or booty, all eyes are on you.

34. When you work out, your boobs and ass get so damn sweaty.

35. To the point where you’re always afraid of leaving ass sweat marks on the ground when you stand up.

36. You have to hold your boobs as you run so you don’t knock yourself out.

37. And you don’t need anyone else to clap for you as you run because your thighs gladly do it for you.

38. A lot of swimwear either cuts into your hips or slides right off them.

39. So you’re usually forced to buy mismatched tops and bottoms for that perfect fit.

40. Normal clothes like a plain t-shirt or vest top are deemed “too sexy” when they they’re on your body.

41. Which means everything casual you own is no longer work-appropriate. Even if it’s just a T-shirt and jeans.

42. You have to deal with people thinking they’re complimenting you by saying they “love a girl who’s not afraid to eat”.

43. And worst of all, people try to offend you by calling you fat, like it’s anything more than a word…

 

 


Credit for this post goes to Buzzfeed – 43 problems every curvy girl has faced at least once in their life

My Summer Bucket List

As summer is right around the corner, I thought it was about time that I made a list of things I would like to do before it’s over.

As my eldest, Gning, is now in full-time school, my summer falls in line with his.  He breaks up for the summer holidays on 21 July, and he goes back on 4 September.

That gives me a little over 6 whole weeks to try to mark everything off on my bucket list…  I have the final week of the holidays off work, so the list I have made below has to either fit around my usual working times, and then take advantage of having the week off to complete the list.

I’m going to revisit this post in September, to see exactly what I managed to accomplish, and what is still outstanding.  I think this could be a rather interesting experiment!  So, without further ado, here is my Summer Bucket List of 30 things to complete within my son’s 6 weeks holidays.

  1. Have a bonfire
  2. Attend an outdoor concert
  3. Watch the waves
  4. Lie in the grass
  5. Go to a funfair / amusement park
  6. Have an ice cream at the beach
  7. Have a picnic
  8. Make a summer soundtrack
  9. Have a water balloon / water pistol fight
  10. Have a BBQ
  11. Go camping
  12. Take more pictures
  13. Finish a book
  14. Make homemade salsa
  15. Play frisbee
  16. Visit a water park
  17. Visit a heritage garden
  18. Go on a day trip
  19. Make ice pops
  20. Wear flowers in my hair for a day
  21. Feed the ducks
  22. Walk up a hill with the boys
  23. Buy a helium balloon, tie a message to it, and let it go
  24. Swim outdoors! (Bear in mind that I live in the north west of England…)
  25. Draw on the driveway with chalks
  26. Finger paint a summer picture
  27. Have fish & chips at the beach
  28. Visit a park we’ve never been to before
  29. Watch a family film together – snacks incl. popcorn essential
  30. Spend more time with the boys!

20 Satisfying Pictures

The work day can be pretty monotonous and deflate your spirits at times. Just when your day gets super boring, the internet, particularly Reddit, has a way of snapping you back to reality and giving you exactly what you need. I dug through the catacombs of Reddit to find you the most satisfying/pleasing/inspiring pictures, and I wasn’t disappointed.

Here are 20 pictures to lift your spirits today.

1. The way this peak comes through the clouds.

2. This man posted a before and after shot of his physical progress after ditching alcohol.

“One year of no alcohol has changed my life. I lost 53 pounds and I’m 1000 times happier. I tried to recreate my bloated pic,” said Klamsykrawl.

3. This kitty coming up for a quick boop.

4. The lengths these two brothers went to recreate this old photo from their childhood.

5. These beautiful cherry blossoms over the Meguro River in Tokyo.

6. “Every time I mow the lawn….” wrote joey_r00 on Reddit. 

7. This one-day-old kitten.

8. This wood has been dyed and totally looks like a brick of lava.

9. Are you as happy as this pug running through a garden of tulips?

10. This sandcastle that is so perfect it needs to be preserved forever.

11. This cute leaf that looks exactly like a dolphin.

12. This amazing shot.

13. How could this not lift your spirits?

“My son’s knee looks like a worried teenage mutant ninja turtle,” wrote danowar5000.

14. This amazing shot using some trickery.

15. “Home Depot’s cutest employee,” wrote pregglt on this adorable picture. 

16. This water is so clear in Sweden that Reddit user Suborb had to check for evidence that there was even water.   If you look closely, you can see the water around his wrist…

17. This awesome Easter photo from Jim Carrey.

18. This incredible piece of art found under a Denver overpass.

19. This person finally figured out what this compartment in his car is used for.

Wish I had one of those compartments…

20. This shot from a drone capturing a calf and mother humpback whale.