Thursday, March 28, 2013

Google Reader's Going Bye bye

So for those of you who are out there using Google Reader you probably got a little pop-up when you logged in a few weeks ago saying Google Reader will be shut down July 1, 2013. Whuttttt! If you aren't familiar with Google Reader it is a free Google product where you can subscribe to all your favorite blogs and read them in one location. With the disappearance of Google's product many of us are left looking for a replacement. Some of the products out there are free and some charge. I haven't tried all of the products out there but after reading a few blog posts about the topic I decided to try Feedly, a free reader. Its not as easy as Google Reader but once I figured out the best way to organize it, it got a little easier. Here are some of the features and benefits.

Feedly has apps for iOS, Android and Kindle. As well as, add-ons/apps for Firefox and Google Chrome.

The biggest benefit was the fact that Google Reader already integrates with Feedly and therefore I didn't have to download my subscription list and load it into Feedly, they were already there.

You have the option of logging into your Facebook profile and having the new feed display to the right of all the blog posts. It isn't the most advanced plug-in though it only updates when you refresh the page. And it only displays a few items from your Facebook news feed at a time and you can't scroll down to view more. So this isn't a replacement for logging into Facebook.

You can organize your blogs into categories of your choosing. So when I want to look at only my Home Blogs or Food Blogs I can just open that folder. You can tag posts for future reference. Like I've created a Recipe tag for when I find a recipe that I want to be able to find later so I can make it. Then I don't have to try and remember which blog it was on and how long ago it was posted.

You can click on a post to read the full article in Feedly (unless the blogger truncates their posts) or you can use preview. Preview Mode has to be one of my favorite features.

Hi, Gemma, hope you don't mind that I used your blog for my screen shot of the Preview Mode. I love The Sweetes Digs.

When you are using Google Reader you aren't able to navigate a blogs website without clicking over to the site. If you click on the preview button at the top of an article it actually will open the website in the Feedly window but you can still see Feedly behind it. But it isn't just a preview of that one article you can actual move around the site without leaving Feedly.

So there might be more features that I haven't discovered yet but for now that is what I've figured out.

For those of you who use a reader, what are you using? 

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Regularly Scheduled Programming Continued...

So when I last left off, I had filled you in on what shows we love to watch Sunday through Tuesday. Well, a few more shows have started up recently. First I let you know what those are and then I finish off Wednesday through Saturday.



The Voice - During the blind auditions, the decisions from the coaches are based solely on voice and not on looks. The coaches hear the artists perform, but they don't get to see them - thanks to rotating chairs. If a coach is impressed by the voice, he/she pushes a button to select the artist for his/her team. At this point, the coach's chair will swivel so that he/she can face the artist. If more than one coach pushes their button, the power then shifts to the artists to choose which coach they want to work with. Once teams are set, the battle is on. Coaches will dedicate themselves to developing their teams of artists, giving them advice and sharing the secrets of their success, along with help from their celebrity advisers. (write-up NBC)

We have watched this from Season 1. We used to watch American Idol but it has become all about the judge drama and I feel the talent has really fallen. The judges/mentors are fantastic on The Voice. Season 1 -3 had Blake Shelton, Christina Aguilera, Cee Lo Green and Adam Levine. Season 4 just started on Monday. Christina and Cee Lo decided to take a season off to work on personal projects. In their places are Shakira and Usher. I have yet to watch the new season, we will have to watch it on catch-up.


Revolution - In this epic adventure from J.J. Abrams' Bad Robot Productions and "Supernatural's" Eric Kripke, a family struggles to reunite in an American landscape where every single piece of technology - computers, planes, cars, phones, even lights - has mysteriously blacked out forever. A drama with sweeping scope and intimate focus, "Revolution" is also about family - both the family you're born into and the family you choose. This is a swashbuckling journey of hope and rebirth seen through the eyes of one strong-willed young woman, Charlie Matheson (Tracy Spiridakos, "Being Human"), and her brother Danny (Graham Rogers, "Memphis Beat"). When Danny is kidnapped by militia leaders for a darker purpose, Charlie must reconnect with her estranged uncle Miles (Billy Burke, "The Twilight Saga"), a former U.S. Marine living a reclusive life. Together, with a rogue band of survivors, they set out to rescue Danny, overthrow the militia and ultimately re-establish the United States of America. All the while, they explore the enduring mystery of why the power failed, and if - or how - it will ever return. (write-up NBC)



Smash - “Smash” is a musical drama that celebrates the beauty and heartbreak of the Broadway theater as it follows a cross-section of dreamers and schemers who all have one common desire - to be a “Smash.”

In Season 2, the “Bombshell” team is one step closer to achieving their Broadway dream. The Boston run was the success the team was hoping for, including producer Eileen Rand (Academy Award winner Anjelica Huston, “Prizzi’s Honor”); writers Tom Levitt (Tony Award winner Christian Borle, “Peter and the Starcatcher”); and Julia Houston (Emmy Award winner Debra Messing, “Will & Grace”); last-minute star Karen Cartwright (Katharine McPhee, “American Idol”); and director Derek Wills (Jack Davenport, “Pirates of the Caribbean”). But, they are all about to learn even a charmed show cannot avoid paying for sins of the past. Will Eileen get away with mixing business and pleasure with her shady paramour, Nick (guest star Thorsten Kaye)? Will Julia’s marriage to Frank (guest star Brian d’Arcy James) survive the revelation of her infidelity? Will actress Ivy Lynn (Megan Hilty, “9 to 5: The Musical”) bounce back from the shame of losing the lead role to rival Karen and bedding her fiance in retaliation? And will Tom and Julia’s long-time partnership endure the changing tides of opportunity?

As they all scramble to push forward, one of the show’s players finds Brooklyn natives Jimmy Collins (Tony Award nominee Jeremy Jordan, “Newsies”) and Kyle Bishop (Andy Mientus, “Carrie: The Musical”) toiling away on a current-day rock musical of their own, which could either become “Bombshell”’s biggest rival, or yet one more Broadway false start. (write-up NBC)



Nashville - Music legend Rayna Jaymes reigns as the Queen of Country, but after two decades, her grip on the throne is slipping. Rayna refuses to be steamrolled by her record label as they present a new arrangement. And in the face of an evolving industry, Rayna is struggling to adapt and reinvent herself, which she must do if she plans to stay relevant.

Juliette Barnes is sexy, sassy, and trails trouble in her wake— she’s also the country’s #1 crossover artist. In her climb to the top, Juliette's public image is threatened by circumstances she struggles to control. And while she is determined to sit on Rayna's throne, Juliette refuses to deal with her difficult past.

Offstage, things aren't much smoother for Rayna. Her father, Lamar Wyatt, Nashville's most influential businessman, continues to complicate her life. Their strained relationship is defined by years of resentment and secrets that come to a head when Lamar and Rayna’s sister, Tandy, push Rayna's husband to run for mayor. For husband Teddy Conrad, this marks an opportunity to share the spotlight with his wife instead of continuing to be the man behind the woman.

The city of Nashville is the stage for many hopefuls: Deacon Claybourne, Rayna's longtime bandleader whose unrequited love for Rayna prevents him from claiming success if he went on his own. Scarlett O'Connor, the beautiful and gifted songwriter, who's here to support her boyfriend Avery's talent while still unsure of her own. Avery Barkley, a struggling alt-country musician, who can't help but feel left behind when his girlfriend Scarlett's songs have a chance to find an audience before his own. And Gunnar Scott, a wholesome up-and-coming crooner, who finds a musical soulmate in Scarlett, coming in between her relationship with Avery. (write-up ABC)


The Americans - The Americans is a period drama about the complex marriage of two KGB spies posing as Americans in suburban Washington D.C. shortly after Ronald Reagan is elected President. The arranged marriage of Philip (Matthew Rhys) and Elizabeth Jennings (Keri Russell), who have two children – 13-year-old Paige (Holly Taylor) and 10-year-old Henry (Keidrich Sellati), who know nothing about their parents’ true identity – grows more passionate and genuine by the day, but is constantly tested by the escalation of the Cold War and the intimate, dangerous and darkly funny relationships they must maintain with a network of spies and informants under their control. Complicating their relationship further is Philip’s growing sense of affinity for America’s values and way of life. Tensions also heighten upon the arrival of a new neighbor, Stan Beeman (Noah Emmerich), an FBI agent. Stan and his partner, Agent Chris Amador (Maximiliano Hern├índez), are members of a new division of Counterintelligence tasked with fighting against foreign agents on U.S. soil, including KGB Directorate S illegals, Russian spies posing as Americans. (write-up FX)



Elementary - stars Jonny Lee Miller as detective Sherlock Holmes and Lucy Liu as Dr. Joan Watson in a modern-day drama about a crime-solving duo that cracks the NYPD's most impossible cases. Following his fall from grace in London and a stint in rehab, eccentric Sherlock escapes to Manhattan where his wealthy father forces him to live with his worst nightmare - a sober companion, Dr. Watson. A successful surgeon until she lost a patient and her license three years ago, Watson views her current job as another opportunity to help people, as well as paying a penance. However, the restless Sherlock is nothing like her previous clients. He informs her that none of her expertise as an addiction specialist applies to him and he's devised his own post-rehab regimen - resuming his work as a police consultant in New York City. Watson has no choice but to accompany her irascible new charge on his jobs. But Sherlock finds her medical background helpful, and Watson realizes she has a knack for playing investigator. Sherlock's police contact, Capt. Tobias "Toby" Gregson, knows from previous experience working with Scotland Yard that Sherlock is brilliant at closing cases, and welcomes him as part of the team. With the mischievous Sherlock Holmes now running free in New York solving crime, it's simple deduction that he's going to need someone to keep him grounded, and it's elementary that it's a job for Watson. (write-up by CBS)

Fridays & Saturdays

Catch-up days - We don't have a DVR, though Andrew really wishes we did. We have Comcast Xfinity, which offers Free On Demand(catch-up) of a huge selection of TV shows. They don't have everything so we have make sure if we miss a show it is one on the catch-up. We watch all of the shows we were unable to watch during their regular air times because of conflicting shows or if I go to bed early. Some of our shows air at 10pm eastern time and I'm just to tired to stay up. We sometimes will watch some shows on catch-up on Wednesday and Thursdays, too.

What shows do you like to watch? Do you DVR your shows when you can't watch them or do you have Comcast's On Demand?

Monday, March 18, 2013

I Love Bassets!

It has been a little while since my last post. Sorry. I've been busy heading to the gym around twice a week and spending at least one morning on the weekend at the barn riding my pony. Warmer weather was here and made riding fantastic. However, we now suddenly have another winter storm headed our way. Also, 3 of the 4 past weekends included a visit to my Mother-in-Law's house. Want to know why?

Well two reasons:

1. We enjoy watching a good Bruins hockey game at their house.


2. This adorable little guy!

I can't handle his super adorable floppiness! He is so silly and has a tendency to trip over his soft ears.This is their second Basset Hound.

Dear, sweet Homer was laid to rest 1 year ago on March 8th. He was 15 1/2 years old. My husband surprised his mother with him when he was just a puppy. We were all quite sad to lose him but he lived quite a long life. At Christmas we ordered a custom printed fleece throw from Wal-Mart as a gift for Andrew's Mom. They have a great service where you can upload a hi-res photo and they will print it on a variety of products. We chose a photo of Homer when he was much younger and luckily it turned out to be one of my MIL's favorites. The throw is huge and came out fantastic. She love it and it was such a great deal. Here are Andrew & his Mom holding it up on Christmas.

Well at the end of 2012/beginning of 2013 my MIL and her boyfriend decided to get a new puppy. This little boy was born on 12.12.12 and they named him Maxwell. They got him on February 22nd and we are all in love with him. All of the photos of Maxwell in this post are from February 23rd. Now you will be subjected to cuteness overload.

Has any once else been enjoying some super cuteness?