Author: crazdwriter

Driving Cross Country Series- #2

Driving Cross Country Series- #2

Well now that you have everything from your lists taken care of, what do you do now? What my husband and I did was sit down and Google all of the places that we wished to see along the way on our drive from Virginia to California. And yes we even made a list of the places we wished to see so that we could pick and choose which ones to do on this trip and what places to save for another time. We finalized our list of places to drive to along the way for a nice family trip, allowed our daughter put in her two cents since it made her feel like she was apart of the planning experience, and we were ready for the day to come when we would hit the dusty trails. We had a blow up mattress and a blow up couch from Wal-Mart that we used until we had to pack the car and leave. We said our good byes to where my husband used to work and to the friends we had made, piled into our van, and headed out of Virginia Beach with a car full of bags and other materials that we had to keep for cleaning the house we were renting. Our daughter had her own bags up front by her car seat where she could grab them and play with her iPad, read some books, play with the mess free coloring books, and her stuffed toy friends that she had picked to take with her as her entertainment. We had a cooler and bags of snacks behind the passenger seat so that we can easily have access to drinks and food along the way. My husband and I would make sure to take turns driving and napping so that we didn’t wear ourselves out with just one of us driving all day long. Always make sure that you share the responsibility in the driving. It will make the trip a lot more fun and enjoyable. Also as the passenger, make sure that you have the camera ready at hand and take pictures. The pictures might not seem like much or might be boring to some but to you and your family, they will mean something because you took them while in the car and outside of the car when stopped at one of your destinations that will remind you of the great adventure that you all went on together as a family. Capturing memories as they say.

Another important factor to make this road trip a good one besides having fun destinations and a camera is to make pit stops. Even if you don’t feel that you need one, other people in the car may need it and whether you think you do or not, you definitely need a stop and stretch your legs. It may make the trip seem longer but it will help you especially if you have kids who have to sit trapped in a car seat for hours on end. Their little legs are just dangling there, they may need to go potty, and yes they will get bored so a bit of distraction like getting out of the car will help them readjust to being back in the car for a bit longer. And of course make sure you always stop for gas and/or snacks and drinks when needed. Have an envelope in your car where you can store your receipts if you are military because it makes it so much easier on you or your SO, whichever is in the military, to turn everything in so that you can be reimbursed at the end of your trip.

To entertain yourself as the driver as well as your passenger, pick out some good long audiobooks in genres that you both like. An audiobook can definitely help the time go by if someone is napping in the car or if you two just wish to listen to something other than music from the radio or from Pandora or whatever else you listen to for music. Make sure you’re listening to something child appropriate or have your little one wear headphones and play on their iPad. Our daughter loved playing ABCMouse.com or PBS kids on her iPad, both great learning tools, while my husband and I would listen to our audiobooks or music or just chat. It was so much easier that she had so much to do in order to keep her entertained. Though there were times when she would complain about being bored or wanting to get out of the car and it’s those moments you find a rest stop or another place to stop, pull off the road, and let her out so she can stretch and get some fresh air. Then she was ready to jump back into the car and go, go, go.

Do what you can to make the trip as pleasant as you can for yourself as well as for the others you are traveling with so then the trip can go smoothly and without too many things going wrong or hopefully with nothing going wrong at all.

Remember- have a camera, take lots of pictures even if they might not seem remarkable to anyone but you and your family, have music and audiobooks to listen to, have plenty of games and other items for your child or children to play with so that they can stay entertained, have food and drinks close at hand in the car, make pit stops even if you don’t feel like you need them since someone else might need them especially your kid(s), and have an envelope in order to store all of your receipts that you collect while on the trip.

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Driving Cross Country Series- #1

Driving Cross Country Series- #1

Imagine this! You’re a military family, having lived in a place for nearly three years, and it’s time for new orders. So what do you do? Well after you have decided together hopefully where you wish to go for your next duty question, that’s when you should whip out the notebook and begin to make lists. Yes you did read that right; I did say to make lists. Lists about what to have packed by the movers, lists about what you will need to keep out until you are ready to leave the house you are renting or own, lists about realtors if you plan on selling your house and who can help get your place sold quickly or if you decide to rent which property managers you would talk to about renting out your home, lists about what you wish to sell online or in your garage sale if you decide to have one, lists about what clothes to keep out for yourself, your SO, and if you have a kid or kids, what you will keep out for them. Lists about what you have in the house including your household items might always be a good idea since we know even in the military our belongings get stolen quite often or somehow “misplaced” from the truck to the warehouse where they are stored until you have found a new place to live at your new duty station. Lists about what needs to be cleaned in the house, who to call for cleaning your floors (especially if you are in a rental), and what might need to be repaired before you can sell/rent/leave your rental house, condo, or apartment. Even have lists about what you wish to pack in order to keep yourself entertained on either the flight or driving (we chose to drive cross-country but more about that later) as well as what you wish to take to keep the kiddies entertained. And last but not least, make sure that you have a list of snacks that you, your SO, and your kids like so that when you do a little food shopping you can stock up on those oh so important snacks that everyone will enjoy, on a car trip. If you are flying, then you might not need to remember this list.

So now that you have your lists in hand, you can begin to go through your clothes and your other items to decide what should go and what will stay. Broken things go in the trashcan, items that need mending maybe put off to the side so you can finally get them mended, and just keep going for those next several days, getting rid of items, making sure that your items to be packed are ready to go for once the overs get there, and your clothes and other items you will be taking in the car or on the plane with you maybe stashed off to the side so that you can easily pack them up once the time comes. The best way to be prepared is to make lists, have a plan, and execute said plan in the days to come until you have to say adios to the state or country that you are currently living in and hello to the new state or country you have decided to make your new home for two, three, four, several years.

Making lists have always helped me because when I didn’t make lists, I would think of everything that we had to do before we left and I became way too overwhelmed and couldn’t function right. It also helps my husband to see what has been done and what still needed to be done so that he can pitch in to help out. Our four-year old daughter, who was three years old when we decided to drive cross-country from Virginia to California just last year, helped as much as she could. She would grab things she wanted to keep for the car trip out and we would have her little bags where she could pack everything inside. She actually was a good little helper for her mommy as her mommy buzzed around the house getting things ready. I also liked having lists in hand because then it was a motivator for me to not wait and to not procrastinate until the last-minute to get something important done like selling certain items we didn’t need any longer but worked great or cancelling our daughter’s MyGym class ASAP. So I have come to rely on lists for the military life as well as other aspects in my life. I even have a list for this blog series I am about to write about our trip from VA to CA. Of course, we did the same trip three years ago last October from CA to VA and our daughter wasn’t even one yet but I decided to do this trip because we didn’t stop in many places on the first trip since my husband needed to get back to work as soon as we were moved into our rental house in Virginia Beach so there wasn’t much time for us to make any stops except for at night and to sleep and for pit stops during the day. This second trip across country was more eventful and quite fun for all of us because we had decided to slow down, take in some sights along the way, and actually enjoy the car trip.

So remember whether you are military or aren’t military but planning a trip for vacation or moving, make your lists so you can check everything off as you go! Lists are quite fun to make and helps keep you on track with time crunches, packing, and anything else you might need to add to said lists for your vacation or move to go smoothly and hopefully help iron out any hiccups that might happen, since we all know that those happen from time to time.

As I had said earlier, this blog is just the first of many in a series that I will write that will include strategies for driving cross-country, especially with a little one, and talking about the places/states that we have stopped in along the way as well as with reviews of said places that we had stopped to enjoyed and reviews on the places where we stayed in at night (hotels and motels a like). So sit back, grab a cup of tea or coffee, and enjoy the cross-country trip of this military family as we make plenty of stops along the way from Virginia Beach, VA to San Diego, CA.

We Don’t Say Goodbye, We Say Cya Later

We Don’t Say Goodbye, We Say Cya Later

Dedicated to my cousin: Rose, who has gone home after a very long battle with cancer.

 

She sits watching her two energetic sons rip open their Christmas presents while she rests on the couch. A shimmer in her eye and a smile on her face, she talks excitedly with them, her husband, and her other family members who have spent the holiday with her. She continues to laugh even when she hears the soft voice breath in her ear.

“Rose, my angel, you’re tired. Please come home.”

“Just one more day,” she whispers back to the voice.

“But you have asked for so many more days and you have fought well. Please come home and rest,” God answers.

“I know I keep asking but please, God, one more day.”

God smiles gently and brushes back some of her hair from her worn yet brave face, “Of course, my angel.”

The New Year rings loudly across the world as the world happily celebrates 2018 and once again Rose talks excitedly with her family about what the future may hold. And again, God comes to her and whispers in her ear to come home and rest but she still asks for one more day. God nods and obliges her, letting her continue her fight.

God comes to her one last time early in the morning on January 4th and kneels down beside her as she sleeps in bed. She stirs a little, having felt his presence and opens her exhausted eyes to look at him “Rose, my angel, you are tired. Please come home and rest. You have done a beautiful job with your sons and your husband. Your family and friends of course will miss you but it’s time to come home. You have won your long battle and deserve your rest.”

Rose sighs heavily and nods, feeling proud for what she has accomplished: meeting and marrying her soulmate and best friend, Raising two beautiful strong sons, having countless friends that she could always rely on and they could always rely on her, the best family any girl could ask for. A smile spreads across her face and she nods again. “All right, God. I am ready to come with you.”

God gently takes a hold of her hand and helps her stand from her body and bed, her eyes flickering with love and hope as she looks at her family that surrounds her. “This isn’t goodbye so I’ll just say I’ll cya later,” she says as she turns away and walks alongside God, hand in hand, and feeling freer than ever. She glances back to see two beautiful feathered white wings spread from her back and she grins, looking at God, who smiles delicately and nods.

“You have earned your wings, my angel.”

 

It’s not goodbye, dear Rose, it’s a cya later. May you rest in peace now that you’ve become another one of God’s angels. We love you and will miss you but we know it’s time for your to rest after being such a strong warrior and fighting the cancer for so long and to go home with God. Always know that your family and friends will never forget you and that you sons with the help of their amazing dad and other family members will grow up to become wonderful gentlemen. So again I say to you dear cousin, we will see you later.

Twitch Streamer Series- Part 59

Twitch Streamer Series- Part 59

One of my newer follows is a really great guy who loves playing solo games and with his friends, whom I hope to catch up with and interview for this blog series as well. I have already interviewed one, Cyb3rDragon, and I hope to interview more. They are all a great bunch and a lot of fun to watch. So let’s learn about this great guy, Anchovybob.

 

1. What is your twitch name?

 My twitch name is Anchovybob! Do not let my tiny name fool you, I swear I am ferocious.

2. Is there a reason why you chose that name?

      I actually don’t remember why I chose my username to be Anchovybob. I’ve had it since the early days of Xbox live on the original xbox.

3. Why did you become a Twitch Streamer?

I became a streamer honestly because I thought it was cool! And I was totally right, it is pretty neat.

4. Why did you become a streamer for Twitch?

As for becoming a twitch streamer it was really because well… I was already watching broadcasts on twitch and I new the platform already. So I decided to start there.

5. How long have you been a streamer?

 Casually I was streaming on and off for about 5 years, but up until about April is when I decided to start taking it rather seriously, trying to stream every day and what not.

6. Do you only stream or do you have another job? And if you’re comfortable saying what, what is your other job?

             I wish I only streamed. No, I do have another job, I’m a game master at an escape room.

7. What are your favorite games to play?

                 Personally I love strategy games, but those are super boring to watch, which is handy that I have a healthy love for shooter games and multiplayer games,

8. What are your favorite games to stream?

 I greatly enjoy streaming shooter games, PUBG, Planetside 2, Killing Floor 2 are really fun to play and stream.

9. Do you have any games you’d like to recommend to my readers to play and why?

   Hm, depending on what your readers enjoy, I could recommend Planetside 2 as a shooter, Banished as a simulation game, MOBA fans why not try Overwatch or Dota 2, if your fans haven’t played these yet; give the Mass Effect series and Dead Space series a go! Those are really good series. These games are definitely personal favorites I’ve sunk hundreds of hours into each. Heck, my PUBG clock is ticking close to 500.

10. Was it hard to talk to your viewers when you first became a streamer? How long before you became at ease with streaming?

                      Not exactly no, it was mostly just having people that would just… talk in general. But it often did fall back down to; ok, they said hello, I said hello, what do we talk about?! But thankfully that got easier over time, I would say in the beginning with me some times streaming and sometimes not it took about a years worth of time.

11. Would you like to tell my readers anything else about yourself or your channel?

I stream every night usually starting around 10-11 after work! Shameless plug is shameless… but no, for me my channel is a little detention of my personality. I get to be my normal weird self, make strange noises, cuss out a stupid character for being stupid, let my sarcasm run rampant. It’s fun. But things can also get super serious too and I take speaking freely in my channel quite seriously. Can’t post things but you can say almost anything on my channel. Keyword most.

 

He is definitely a riot when he streams whatever game he feels like it. Want to see this funny guy in action? Then by all means follow the link to his channel and have some fun listening to him be his normal weird self, making noises and cussing out characters. His link to his channel is: https://www.twitch.tv/anchovybob

Twitch Streamer Series- Part 58

Twitch Streamer Series- Part 58

Horror games are one of my favorites to watch on Twitch because it’s so much fun to watch the streamer themselves jump at the slightest movement in the game. Or even if they don’t jump, horror games and having fun is always a great combination. This next streamer always has a  blast with his chat and the games he plays.

 

1. What is your twitch name?

 Gingerpixle

2. Is there a reason why you chose that name?

 I chose the name because I am a ginger, and that’s usually the first thing people notice about me is my red beard. I tried getting names like CrimsonBeard or CptRedBeard but now a days its hard to have a user name that is available on multiple online systems. I think I’m lucky to have come up with a name that doesn’t have numbers or under-scrolls even if it’s spelled wrong.

3. Why did you become a Twitch Streamer?

I became a streamer because my girlfriend at the time said I had a great voice and my friends on call of duty thought I was hilarious. Those two factors made me think people would want to hang out and game with me or watch me game.

4. Why did you become a streamer for Twitch?

Really twitch is the only option for me. Mixer wasn’t there yet, youTube live streaming wasn’t there yet and there was another broadcasting service, but I heard bad things. Twitch is the one and only. They do it right.

5. How long have you been a streamer?

                 I really got started in February of 2016, but it was a rough year starting out learning everything and getting what I needed too stream. I took very long breaks and left for a while, but in February of 2017 I relaunched my channel anew.  

6. Do you only stream or do you have another job? And if you’re comfortable saying what, what is your other job?

I have a real job. My IRL job I call it. I’m an Operations Specialist for a major online retailer and that’s how I pay rent and bills. Anything financially that comes out of twitch goes right back into it with Subs, Games, DLC hardware etc.

7. What are your favorite games to play?

I love shooter and horror games. My favorite game of all time is Bioshock. If I find games that combine horror and shooter I’m in bliss.

8. What are your favorite games to stream?

 For a while I streamed Call of Duty because my friends played it, but quickly learned it wasn’t good for my channel. I try to stick to the latest horror/spooky games while filling in with various titles I enjoy.

9. Do you have any games you’d like to recommend to my readers to play and why?

Lately I have been playing Dead By Daylight, Its a very fun game to play with friends or a challenging game to play alone. Its creepy and exhilarating to play.

10. Was it hard to talk to your viewers when you first became a streamer? How long before you became at ease with streaming?

It wasn’t hard to talk to them. I love to talk, and am not shy in any way. I can walk up to strangers and start conversations. I’ve always been an outgoing person and I think that has really helped to start streaming.

11. Would you like to tell my readers anything else about yourself or your channel?

My channel is a safe place to hang out and chat about anything. I am lucky to have a very diverse group of viewers and subscribers that makes my channel what that is. We love having new people stop by and getting to know them.

 

Whether you enjoy horror or shooter games, this guy might be right up your alley. Why not check him out at his channel? I bet you’ll enjoy him! His channel is: https://www.twitch.tv/gingerpixle 

Twitch Streamer Series- Part 57

Twitch Streamer Series- Part 57

Being creative sometimes can be hard when you think that you have no talent but we all have talent hidden within ourselves. If you need help finding it, maybe this next streamer can give you some awesome tips so that you can tap into that creative side and enjoy a new hobby.

 

1. What is your twitch name?

 BeetleAtBay 

2. Is there a reason why you chose that name?

                   It’s a Harry Potter reference about Rita Skeeter, it’s been a gaming handle of mine for a while and I just rolled with it.

3. Why did you become a Twitch Streamer?

                   A friend of mine casually streamed video games and after I showed him a few of my crochet projects he told me I should think about streaming Crochet. I thought he was nuts and asked if people even did that sort of thing. That’s when I discovered Twitch Creative and fell in love!

4. Why did you become a streamer for Twitch?

 I never even investigated other avenues and I liked the Twitch Creative community.

5. How long have you been a streamer?

 It will be a year next week (Aug 9)!

6. Do you only stream or do you have another job? And if you’re comfortable saying what, what is your other job?

 I stream crochet, I sell my crochet creations, and I also train dogs/dog sit. Ideally I’d like to be able to sell my crochet work + stream exclusively.

7. What are your favorite games to play?

  I don’t play as much anymore but I like rpgs, mmos, and The Sims. :D

8. What are your favorite games to stream?

I haven’t been able to stream many games so far. I primarily stream creative.

9. Do you have any games you’d like to recommend to my readers to play and why?

Nier Automata! It’s a great game!

10. Was it hard to talk to your viewers when you first became a streamer? How long before you became at ease with streaming?

   Not really.. I’m sorta pro at talking to myself and that works well for the stream atmosphere. I’m generally pretty shy in real life especially in larger group settings but the one-on-one nature in chat is much easier for me! And the more I did it the more natural it felt!

11. Would you like to tell my readers anything else about yourself or your channel?

I try to make my streams upbeat, cheerful, positive and a safe place to come for all. I also enjoy educating people who don’t know about crochet or are trying to learn or maybe even just trying to learn new techniques but even if you don’t know how to crochet or care to learn, I make my streams fun for all and just enjoy hanging out and talking about life, my interests, food and oh yeah… I occasionally stream baking/cooking too!!

 

Crochet and cooking streams? If you love both, then she is the one you want to follow right away. Click on that heart on her channel, make sure that you turn on the notifications, and chat away whenever she is live at : https://www.twitch.tv/beetleatbay

Twitch Streamer Series- Part 56

Twitch Streamer Series- Part 56

Every gamer is unique on their names and their approach to streaming but they all have one goal in mind- to have fun and show their viewers that they love what they do. This fun streamer enjoys showing everyone how to have a fun time while in his stream.

 

 

  1. What is your twitch name?

NackersTV

2. Is there a reason why you chose that name?

Actually, I didn’t choose this name on my own. It was actually given to be by a friend from my last online community I was a part of many years ago. Almost a decade ago, actually.. My real name is Nick, and that friend took my name and made it goofy. He started to call me Nackers all of the time and it caught on. At the time, my online handle was BuhbaFette and I had grown tired of that name. So I decided to adopt the name Nackers. Since this is a common name, I spell it ‘Naaackers’ with three A’s since it’s usually not taken anywhere. Been that ever since.

3. Why did you become a Twitch streamer?

Many years ago, my brother told me about this website where you could broadcast yourself playing video games. He had originally started to explore the platform because he wanted to shed some light on the gaming community he was and still is running. I just streamed to provide some entertainment and content for that community and it’s members, and it eventually grew into a hobby. Now, it’s my #1 hobby.

4. How long have you been a streamer?

                 I have been on twitch for a total of 4 years now. I streamed for 1 year, took a year off, and then came back and never left.

5. Do you only stream or do you have another job? And if you’re comfortable saying what, what is your other job?

                 I do have a full time job, I am a Network & IT Administrator for a small charter school district.

6. What are you favorite games to play?

            My favorite types of games to play, especially on stream, are multiplayer games. Right now my number one favorite game is Rocket League. I also dabble in a lot of shooters.

7. What are you favorite games to stream?

                My favorite game to stream is Rocket League, hands down. Second favorite would have to be a tie between Towerfall and Gang Beasts. Alternatively, there is only one thing I love streaming as much as video games, sometimes even more. Talk shows. I’ve been podcasting live on Twitch for a total of three years, and it has to be some of the most fun i’ve had on Twitch.

8. Do you have any games you recommend to readers to play and why?

Bioshock and Half Life, all of them. That is all that needs to be said.

9. Was it hard to talk to your viewers when you first became a streamer?

 

 

               Not for me no, I’ve never had an issue talking to chat. But that doesn’t mean my show was any kind of enjoyable to watch. I go back and look at my streams from when I first started and it is TERRIBLE. I can’t say that I am still 100% comfortable. I still get nervous every time I go live. Just the nature of the beast.

10. Would you like to tell my readers anything else about yourself or your channel?

                There is really only a few things I can say about myself. I love playing video games, especially with friends. I love podcasting (Crocs and Hot Pockets is the show in case you’re interested) and I love building relationships with great human beings. I pride myself if looking out for the people that mean the most to me, and backing them up when it’s needed. I don’t stand for draining, negative Nancys in my life and I’d rid you from my environment as fast as possible if need be. I’m loud, inappropriate sometimes and just love having fun. Rocket League is life.

 

Like he said, don’t be a negative Nancy and you will have an amazing time on his stream. Go check him out on his channel at: https://www.twitch.tv/nackerstv