Positively Balanced

Coffee House Writers

What Is Pyrography?

Pyrography is an ancient art form using fire to burn in images into wood, leather, and bone. Even though this form of art was developed long ago, it was only in the 1900s that the term pyrography was first used. Pyrography is a Greek word that translates as “writing with fire.” Most people may recognize it by its more popular name of woodburning. Whichever name you call it, it’s an interesting medium to create beautiful works of art. While some state that the form was developed by using charcoa

How to Woodburn Part 1

In my previous article, I reviewed the basics of pyrography. In this series, we’ll go in-depth into how to woodburn all sorts of surfaces to decorate your home, office, or to just make some personalized gifts. No matter the type of surface you choose to burn, preparing that surface is key to clean and stunning artwork. Some of the most common types of materials to burn are leather, bone, cork, and wood, of course. For this tutorial, we’ll use a wood plaque to demonstrate the basics of pyrograph

What Happened America?

I sit here, watching the protest events unfold in front of my eyes. I am not shocked nor surprised. I am disgusted. I am disgusted by people who claim to love one another turning their backs on their fellow man. Racism is not new to the US. We’ve struggled with equal treatment of blacks since way before I was born… way before this country was officially founded. Hell, we all but obliterated the Native Americans when taking this country from them. So, yeah, the good ‘ol USA was founded on outrigh

May The Fourth Be With You

Star Wars fans rejoice! May 4th is Star Wars Day. The internationally recognized day of celebrating all things Star Wars is here. Some may wonder what this day is all about and how it originated. Let’s take a closer look at this geeky holiday. Most everyone knows that the epic saga first premiered in 1977 with the fourth part of George Lucas’ Star Wars story known as Star Wars: Episode IV–A New Hope. The movie became an instant hit, generating interest and the release of parts five and six, and

Travel The World From Your Computer

If you’re like many folks, cabin fever has become an actual condition. While we may all be self-isolating, that doesn’t mean we have to sit around in our homes and do nothing. As our nation practices social distancing, we can find creative ways to pass the time. Fortunately, there are tons of companies and websites willing to help out in our boredom so that we can stay home and save lives. Below are a few ideas of where to virtually visit and enrich your lives at the same time. Feel like explor

Netflix And… Social Distance?

With the insanity of COVID-19 and the government recommending to self-isolate to slow down the spread, folks are getting bored and feeling lonely. While most have enjoyed a bit of binge-watching on different streaming services, it’s always been rather lonely if you don’t have anyone at home to watch with you. Netflix remedied this by making the Netflix and Chill activity a group (yet separate) activity by creating the handy Chrome extension Netflix Party. Netflix Party is an ingenious way to br

Doctor Who And The Timeless Children

The Doctor Who season 12 finale was a shocker. It left me feeling dumbstruck, shocked, and numb. Just when I thought I knew the Doctor, Chris Chibnall threw a spanner in the works and rocked mine and other fellow Whovians’ worlds. I’ve been an obsessed fan of Doctor Who since 1977 (Yes, I was a wee kid.) Even as a child, I poured over facts and history of the Time Lord’s (Is she still a Time Lord?) timeline. There’s been a plot hole here and there, but as a devoted fan, I’ve always skirted over

Bethesda Announces New Chapter in Elder Scrolls Online

The almost 5-year old massive multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) is getting some new adventures. On January 15th, Bethesda Softworks and ZeniMax Online Studios announced the latest chapter to be released in their epic The Elder Scrolls Online game. This new chapter will be part of a year-long adventure, Season of the Dragon starting with the new content (DLC) titled Wrathstone. During the announcement, Rich Lambert, creative director for Zenimax, discussed the release plan for the ne

New Year, New Discoveries

As you may recall in my last article, I wrote about sending off my DNA sample to Ancestry.com. With much anticipation, my results arrived about 6 weeks later. To be honest, I didn’t know what to expect. For years, I guessed, fantasized, dreamed of the possibilities, but never could I have guessed the results. Being adopted, I was used to creating my own background or at least assuming my adoptive family’s ancestry. Perhaps it was this constant guessing that caused me to become so interested in g

Journey to Discovery

Most folks that know me know that I’m adopted. I was very fortunate to be adopted before I was even born. My adoptive parents, whom I’ll call my parents in this series, brought me home when I was 2 days old, so this is the only family I’ve ever known. But being adopted has always left me with hundreds of questions. Why was I given up? Who are my birth parents? What is my ancestry? As my adoption was a closed adoption, I didn’t have access to any of that information, until now. With the advent o

Doctor Who Series 11 Premiere

Whovians have had a long dry spell without their favorite Timelord. Their wait is finally over as Doctor Who series 11 begins on October 7th. With the new series, there will be a few changes, one of the most noticeable is the lead role. For the first time in its nearly 55-year history, the Doctor will be female. The actress to play this iconic role is Jodie Whittaker, of Broadchurch fame. Accompanying Jodie in the TARDIS is Bradley Walsh as Graham, Tosin Cole as Ryan, and Mandip Gill as Yasmin

September 19th Is Talk Like A Pirate Day

Yarr! September 19th is International Talk Like a Pirate Day. A day when your inner-scallywag can come out and play in full eyepatch regalia. However, where did this bizarre and fun holiday get its humble beginnings? The story is amusing, to say the least. A couple of every day kinda dudes, John Baur and Mark Summers were joining the fitness craze of handball back in 1995. In a vigorous match, they both started yelling pirate slang at each other. They found that not only was it fun but it added

Finding My Way

When I started this journey into becoming a full-time writer, I have to admit, I didn’t really have a real direction or purpose other than to write. I had grown increasingly tired (fed up) with my career choice in information technology as I felt stagnate. This stagnation was the catalyst to finally switch gears and explore the other passion in my life: writing. Don’t get me wrong, I’ll always love technology. I love gadgets, new software and hardware, and yes, even programming, but doing this k

WTF Blizz? Not Sylvanas!

With the looming World of Warcraft expansion only a few days away, Blizzard Entertainment released part 2 of their Warbringers animated shorts out on Tuesday. This week’s video featured the undead banshee queen and Horde warchief Sylvanas. Once that video began its circulation around the net, an uproar could almost be heard. In this video, Sylvanas heartlessly orders the burning down of the World Tree in Teldrassil, even though only Night Elf citizens were left. All in the name of war. What…the

Embrace Your Geekness Day – July 13th

Being a lifetime member of the geeky persuasion, I was actually surprised and delighted to find out about a holiday all about me (and other geeks); Embrace Your Geekness Day. As I mentioned in a previous article, there are celebrations and holidays for just about any occasion, being a geek included, it seems.  So, you may be asking, how did this special day come about? According to Geek.com, this fun holiday was created by a whimsical site, Wellcat Holidays, that celebrates and lists just about

That Magical Diploma

After spending countless hours consuming gallons of coffee and having at least one anxiety attack a week for 3 years, I finally graduated with my bachelor’s degree, with honors even. Now, in my mind, graduating with such high grades and honors, I thought surely, I would snag that magical decent paying writer’s job. Potential employers would look at my resume and my shiny new diploma and transcripts and be in awe of my greatness, hiring me on the spot. (hahahahahaha) Excuse me, I had to get that

What The Heck Is National Meteor Watch Day?

What the heck is National Meteor Watch Day? Seems like there is a holiday or some kind of observance for nearly any topic out there. If one wanted to, you could probably hold some celebration every day for some special day or other. (Or use it as an excuse to imbibe a few adult drinks.) You might be asking, What is National Meteor Watch Day? It is precisely as the title says, a special day set aside to watch for meteors in the summer skies. But surely there is more to it. So, how did this obse

Stress, Stress Everywhere And Not A Chill Pill In Sight

I despise being bored or feeling like I’m in a rut. I love the idea of having new experiences, knowledge, and scenery, which is probably why I’m such a travel nut. Knowing this about me, one would think that I’d fully embrace this new journey my husband and I are undergoing. Well, if you ask, my answer would be, “yes and no.” My spouse found an excellent new job opportunity that was both financially lucrative and a fresh start. The caveat, we have to move several states! Now, I love the idea of

My Summer Vacation From Hell

I had big plans. So many things I wanted to see and do while on vacation. It’s the usual routine. I figure out a destination, plot out a course on Roadtrippers.com, then see what activities pop up on their site. I’ve been doing this the last 3 years, since my husband and I decided to start doing road trips again. (Now that we can afford to.) This year’s epic road trip destination would be Rapid City, South Dakota. I wanted to see Mount Rushmore and Crazy Horse now that I was an adult and could b
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Medium - Coffee House Writers

Bethesda Announces New Chapter in Elder Scrolls Online

The almost 5-year old massive multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) is getting some new adventures. On January 15th, Bethesda Softworks and ZeniMax Online Studios announced the latest chapter to be released in their epic The Elder Scrolls Online game. This new chapter will be part of a year-long adventure, Season of the Dragon starting with the new content (DLC) titled Wrathstone. During the announcement, Rich Lambert, creative director for Zenimax, discussed the release plan for the ne

Doctor Who Series 11 Premiere

Whovians have had a long dry spell without their favorite Timelord. Their wait is finally over as Doctor Who series 11 begins on October 7th. With the new series, there will be a few changes, one of the most noticeable is the lead role. For the first time in its nearly 55-year history, the Doctor will be female. The actress to play this iconic role is Jodie Whittaker, of Broadchurch fame. Accompanying Jodie in the TARDIS is Bradley Walsh as Graham, Tosin Cole as Ryan, and Mandip Gill as Yasmin

Coffee, My Beloved – Coffee House Writers –

I’ve been consuming this wonderful beverage since I was nine years old. Not even my grandfather’s warning of it “putting hair on my chest” deterred my consumption. I even have a nickname because of my obsession with this brown concoction; Caffiend! Let’s face it, I worship coffee. It is my answer to all that ails me, and so delicious! To pay homage to my lifesaver, and let’s be honest, my co-writer most times, I decided to write a poem about this amazing brew. Bringing me such ecstasy, such exh

Remember – Coffee House Writers –

And cerulean blue eyes that sparkled with delight, So tiny, only two days old. Seeing the sweet smile of my future wife. She nods at me as I take her hand. Swiftly we drive away in that Ford T-bird. Scooping up the little brown eyed girl, Looking oh, so hopeful. You gently perched her on your shoulder for the whole world to see. Standing in the church with our eyes locked. As we chugged along the fields, Riding that gigantic tractor, me nestled on your lap. Lifting me up into your red

Tiny by Design Part 2 – Coffee House Writers –

As my husband and I have been researching all of the details on building or buying a tiny home, we’ve collected a great deal of helpful information along the way. In part 1 of Tiny by Design, I discussed the first decision one needs to make on going tiny: a foundation build or tiny house on wheels (THOW). The next logical step is the kind of framework to use for your tiny home. Whether building a foundation home, park model, or THOW, the same types of framing will apply to all three. The two mai

Odyssey

8 Reasons Why I'm Joining The Tiny House Movement

Several years ago I had a major epiphany. After being so unhappy in my current job, I decided something had to change. I lived, ate and breathed technology. I spent 10 plus hours a day working on a computer or some other electronic device. I had no life. I’d come home exhausted both physically and mentally. I knew something had to give, and I didn’t want it to be my health. Knowing I needed to make significant changes, I began to research all sorts of options. I knew I wanted to finally pursue w

Mental Illness Is Not A Stigma

It all began in 1949, Mental Health America (MHA) started an awareness campaign to educate the masses about mental illnesses. With this campaign in mind, MHA hoped to erase the stigma of having mental illnesses by educating the uninformed on what it was all about and that these conditions are something biological or natural not some man-made creation. Now in its 68th year, Mental Health Awareness Month has multiple tools and activities to aid in the education and changing of perceptions of menta

How I Survive Each Semester Illustrated By Doctor Who

As we are nearing the end of another semester, I’m sure all of us college students are going through a plethora of emotions. From the excitement of starting a class you’ve been longing to take to the final relief at the end of a long, hard semester, Peter Capaldi’s Doctor captures my rollercoaster of emotions. As he is starring in his final season in Doctor Who, what better way to commemorate this crazy semester and show his character some love. Here’s how most of my semesters tend to go: Yay

The Silly World Of Rat Terriers As Told By Jax And Amber

Almost 4 years ago my husband and I found the cutest little rescue pup. With her hazel colored eyes and small brown nose nudging my hand through the cage, my heart melted. I read her biography card…hmmm, a rat terrier? I knew next to nothing about the breed but quickly researched it on my phone. After reading through my impromptu research, I took her out of the kennel and held her. Such a calm, quiet puppy for her 4 months old. While all the rest of the rescue dogs were barking madly, Talulah (s

To The Best Friend That Has Never Let Me Down

I have been fortunate in my life. I’ve had so many good friends through all stages of my life, but one person shines above all the rest, Carol S. I met Carol on my first student job at Oklahoma State University. We both worked at this science exam company and were housed at OSU. Now you see, our friendship might seem very unlikely, she’s almost my mother’s age. As I live by my grandmother’s philosophy, age is merely a number, and this didn’t pose any problem. Carol has always been young at heart

Understanding What It's Like To Live With Alzheimer's

Those three words send shivers down my spine. Dread fills my mind from the inevitable scenario when my dad no longer knows who I am. Nearly six years ago, we received the heartbreaking news that my dad had Alzheimer’s disease. It wasn’t a big surprise. On my father’s side of the family, Alzheimer’s is fairly common. My grandfather, two great-uncles and two uncles had Alzheimer’s or some form of dementia. I remember as a teen seeing my grandpa with this vacant stare most of the time. There were

Super Bowl LI: Entertainment or Protest?

The Super Bowl is one of the most anticipated annual sporting events there is. Millions watch each year providing a perfect venue for corporations and businesses to advertise their products and services. However, this year had a noticeable difference. Companies like Budweiser, 84 Lumber and Airbnb have decided to subtly, or not so subtly, share a message — a message in protest of the new presidential administration. Budweiser decided to break with tradition this year and not use the Clydesdal
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