Fidget Cube Review

Once upon a time, two brothers had an idea. They turned that idea into one of the most highly successful Kickstarter campaigns of all time. With the support of over 150,000 backers, the Fidget Cube was created.

Fidgeting has become a big craze lately, at least in the U.S. Tangle toys, fidget spinners, and other gadgets suddenly became popular, and I think part of that has to do with the viral success of the original Fidget Cube from Antsy Labs. Of course, people have been fidgeting for forever with keys, pens, and coat zippers, but the concept of something built specifically for fidgeting didn’t cross our minds until recently.

Though I came to the game a bit later, I was one of the Fidget Cube’s backers, and I received my cube a few months ago. It quickly became one of my favorite gadgets to carry with me, and it’s one of the best investments I’ve made. Because of this, I wanted to give it a sort of “review” – not so much determining how good it is, but more to analyze it and the pros/cons of it.

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Blogkeeping: July 2017

Hello everyone! This is just a quick announcement post, because a few things are going to be changing on the site temporarily. Let me explain.

Some of you may recall that last July (and the year before that), I went on a short-term missions trip to West Virginia with an organization known as Christian Endeavor. We spent a week there doing construction work to rebuild and refurbish houses for the community there.

2016-07-08  047 WV Day 6
The house we worked on last year, including the new railing for the steps and front porch.

The summer, I have the privilege of being one of C.E.’s staff interns, which means that starting this Friday (June 23), I’ll be heading out for staff training, then spending two weeks in West Virginia and two weeks in North Carolina. My role on the staff will be mainly to run the office at our “base” in each state, but I’ll also be filling in as needed depending on what tasks need to be completed each day.

Because of the busy schedule and the fact that I’ll be away from home for about five weeks, things are going to be different around here for a while. There won’t be any “Week In Review” posts, and I won’t be able to participate in the Beautiful People linkup for July. The good news is, I still have a post scheduled to go out on Monday each week. I won’t be able to respond to comments as regularly as I do, but I’ll try to stop in when I can and say hello.

I’ll be back home at the beginning of August, so I’ll go back into my regular blogging schedule then. If you’d like to, I’d really appreciate your prayers while I’m away, mostly for safe travels, the staffers (we will be spending five weeks together, after all), and for the groups that’ll be coming to do the work.

Thank you so much for your understanding and encouragement! I’ll be sure to tell you all about how it went when I get back. In the meantime, I hope your July is absolutely spectacular!

How to Succeed on the Internet

The internet is confusing. Ever since social media became popular, the internet has become a rapidly-changing place, which often leaves the average person feeling disoriented. Even I was once lost – I never knew how to react to certain situations like offensive tweets or weird, stupid trends.

Fortunately, I was able to overcome that, and now I’m going pass what I’ve learned onto you! Whether you’re dealing with people making money, knowing how to share your favorite memes, or successfully winning a comment debate, these five simple rules will help guide you as you navigate the world wide web.

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Week In Review – June 16

Happy Friday, everyone!

I hope you all had a good week and are enjoying your summer (well, if you’re in the Northern hemisphere, I suppose. This week, I wrote a blog post about the Importance of Local Libraries, and I also participated in June’s Beautiful People linkup, so if you missed those posts, be sure to check them out!

Also, this week in Musings history, I shared my Top 5 Male Singers as the first part in a two-part series. Even though my music taste has changed a little since then and I’d perhaps change this list a little if I were to update it, I still really like all of these musicians and I still think they’re incredible.

What else have I been up to this week? Read on!

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Beautiful People #25 – June 2017

Another month, another edition of Beautiful People! For those who don’t know, BP is a monthly blog linkup hosted by Paper Fury and Further Up & Further In. Each month, they share a list of ten questions for writers to think about for one of their characters, and then the writers share their answers on their blog! It’s a great way for fellow writers to connect with each other, so for more information, click here.

This month, I’m introducing a new character from a new story idea that I’ve been toying with lately. I’m still in the brainstorming phases, so there isn’t much set in stone, but I know enough to do this. I’m still developing the two main characters, but I thought participating in BP this month would give me a chance to work on at least one.

The story takes place in a fantasy world with (at least) six different nations (two of which still need to be named). One of the main characters, the one I’ll be talking about today, is Myrina. She’s in her early 20s and is from the country of Lamori, which is mainly mountainous with some wooded areas and some flatter ground at the foot of the mountains. She’s also a commander in the Lamorian army, which will probably come up later on.

That’s about all you need to know to start, so click to read on and learn more about Myrina!

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Local Libraries: More Than Just Books

Inspired by/adapted from a presentation I gave in my freshman year of college.

When was the last time you visited your local library? Think about it. Now narrow it down to the last time you were at a library because you wanted to be there – not because you had to do research for a school project or fulfill some other kind of obligation.

I know there are many in my audience who are avid readers, so perhaps this question is a little pointless. For us, a trip to the library is no less common than a trip to the grocery store. We thrive in those stacks of books. However, there are many others who aren’t big readers – which is totally okay! – and don’t frequent libraries as much as we do.

Although I still believe local libraries are wonderful places to gain knowledge (there’s only so much the internet can do), they offer more than that. They offer useful services for patrons, but more than anything else, they bring people together. After researching my local library and other libraries around the country, I can say with certainty that they offer much more than books.

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Week In Review – June 9

Welcome to Friday everyone!

I’ll admit right off the bat, this week’s post is probably going to be on the short side – I’m not feeling too great (headaches and whatnot) as I write this, so I’ll probably just cover the highlights and wrap up quick. Before I get started with that though…

In case you missed it, I shared a list of Video Games That Made Me Fall in Love with Gaming on Monday. This is the first time I’ve really talked about video games, and I’m excited to hopefully write more about them in the future!

Also, this week in musings history, I wrote about 5 Things I’ll Miss About High School. I can’t believe it was almost a year ago today that I graduated! It seems like forever ago and just yesterday at the same time. It’s amazing how time passes.

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Video Games That Made Me Fall In Love With Gaming

We often remember how we first discovered the things we’re passionate about. It might be the book that got you to enjoy reading, the first camera you ever owned, or the movie that made you realize you wanted to be a film director. Though I remember may of those things, the ones that really stick out in my mind are the video games.

Not long ago, I realized my blog had been lacking in one of my favorite subjects – gaming. Sure, I talk about it here and there, but I’ve never really focused on it for a whole blog post (except perhaps Writing Lessons from Ace Attorney, but even that was more writing-focused than gaming-focused).

Growing up, gaming was never really a big deal in my family. I played a version of Pac-Man that plugged into the TV and enjoyed my fair share of computer games, but that was about it. Without these three games, I probably wouldn’t be the gamer I am today. Sure, I’d probably enjoy a few rounds of MarioKart or play the occasional game of bowling on Wii Sports, but nothing too intense. These games really changed my life for the better, and ever since I played them for the first time, they’ve opened the door to more geekery and gaming.

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Week In Review – June 2

Welcome to Friday!

I hope all of you had a great week, and especially for my U.S. followers, I hope you enjoyed your Memorial Day weekend and were able to spend some time with your families. I went to a picnic with some relatives in Maryland, which was fun! It was good to be able to see everyone, especially those I hadn’t seen in a while.

Before I get to the week in review, in case you missed it, this week I shared some of my baking adventures, where I made raspberry lemonade cupcakes, just in time for summer! I also participated in the Daily Quote Challenge and broke all of the rules. Whoops. But I had fun with it and I enjoyed finding quotes to share with you all.

Also, this week in Musings History, I shared my first “Writing Lessons From…” post about the novel Steelheart by Brandon Sanderson. I’m still proud of the way this one turned out, and I hope I can write more for this series in the future!

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Daily Quote Challenge

Happy Wednesday everyone! Today I’m here with a challenge I was tagged in a few weeks back, but I just got the chance now to participate.

I was tagged by the amazing Anna @ The Story Scientist to participate in the Daily Quote Challenge! Now, I’m bending the rules a little bit because I want to keep to my blogging schedule, so instead of posting one quote every day for three days, I’m doing to post three quotes today, same as Anna did.

The (Traditional) Rules Are:

  1. Thank the person who nominated you
  2. Tag 3 new bloggers every day
  3. Post one quote on your blog every day for three consecutive days

I chose “quotes” that fit my WIP, Summertime, and its characters. Don’t know about Summertime? Well, you can read the first chapter here! I’ve also posted a lot about the main characters, Riley and Leslie, a lot, so you can always read more about them, too.

The three five quotes I chose are…

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