Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Making A Change For You And Your Family

I was 26 before I met my wife and I lived in a typical bachelor manner.  My diet consisted of Hot Pockets, Pizza and cereal which is pretty typical for a single guy.  I avoided the doctor (I still do but for an entirely different reason).  My roommates consisted of friends from school and college and I was comfortable with this setup.  My relationship was very different from the “typical relationship” and allowed me to maintain this lifestyle for a couple more years with few changes.

As time went on, I began to think about what I wanted to change in my life and taking better care of myself was pretty high on the list.  My wife never pushed or “trained” me to make this change, it was something I wanted to start so I could be around longer for her.  Changing for someone else and not yourself rarely works and if it does take, it’s usually doomed to fail.

Examples of change:
New/Altered Diet: This is one of the best options for trying out change but you have to really be willing to go for it to see any success.  Try small things like switching to less meat or more greens and slowly transition new, healthier foods into your diet while removing ones that are worse for you.

Less Television: TV is a black hole that will make time disappear quicker than anything. Sitting down to watch a show or movie with the family is fine but try to avoid mindless channel surfing on days off or after work.  Try to substitute TV with music or a more active type of video game (The Nintendo Wii was designed for this exact situation).  Music will allow you to get other things done and active video games help get you off the couch and get the body moving.

Splitting the workload: The idea that the woman is “supposed” to take care of housework is an old and dated concept that got planted into the male brain through family and pop culture.  Wipe this from your mind and start splitting the workload.  Try these:
  • If she normally cooks dinner, why don’t you clean the dishes.  She will appreciate the help and it will give her a chance to relax.
  • If she is specific about how the laundry is done, try separating the dark & light loads and moving them into the laundry room for her.

These are all very basic changes but they can go a long way in positively affecting you and your family.  Many men will hit a groove and avoid making changes because we like our “comfort zones” and don’t want change. This will probably be the biggest challenge when attempting most changes so keep it simple and small. Decide on one thing to change and stick with it for a month. Odds are, it will become habit and allow you to try another change. QUICK TIP: If you find it difficult to remember what you want to change, leave notes in frequently viewed areas (such as your computer desktop or wallet) to remind yourself on a constant basis. This has helped me immensely.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Treon's Game of the Week - One Button Bob

It doesn't get much more basic than this.  One Button Bob is a game controlled entirely with the left mouse button.  If you've played a Warioware game, then you'll be familiar with this style of game where the controls are super simple but it's a blast to play.  Featuring charming Atari retro graphics with a catchy background tune, One Button Bob challenges you to make it through increasingly difficult challenges with as few button clicks as possible.  You have unlimited lives which only serves to push you onto the next screen.  Give it a try, it's perfect for a quick fix.

Play One Button Bob Now!

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Films That Will Change Your Life - Food, Inc.

Food, Inc. is a documentary that is so powerful, it will change the way you look at what you eat.  You may think you have a good beat on what's good for you but you'll find that you're way off.  The film does a great job of covering a lot of important issues ranging from corn subsidies to genetically modified crops to issues with meat production.  I can't recommend this film enough and I urge everyone to view it and then share it with everyone they can.

Become a fan of Food, Inc. on Facebook
Watch "The Truth about Food, Inc."

Friday, April 23, 2010

Free Software You Can't Live Without Vol. 5 - Audacity


Audio editing can be expensive and confusing.  Many people have wasted lots of time and money when it comes to editing audio files on computer when they don't need to.  Audacity has stepped up to offer a free and powerful solution that works on Windows, Linux and Mac.  While it may not offer all of the tools and options of the expensive professional programs, it will take care of the average audio users needs.  Need to make a Podcast?  How about cutting down a song for a YouTube video?  Audacity has got your back and its versatility makes it a must have program on your desktop.  Head over to the site and download and if you find that you use it for all of your major audio needs, don't forget the donate.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Treon's Game of the Week - Mario Paint Composer

Mario Paint was a fun little mini program/game for the Super Nintendo back in the 90's but it was too limited to really stand the test of time.  The team over at unFun Games took the music creation portion of Mario Paint and built Mario Paint Composer which could be considered both a game and a utility.  You can now create full length songs with a deeper palette of sounds with the ability to save your creations.  The program works for Mac as well as Windows and it's 100% free.  Click on the link below and check out this freebie.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

How To Save Money When Having A Child

There’s a LOT of extra unnecessary costs associated with having a child.  Many people think they are bad parents if they don’t spend a ton of money on every class, book and device to help with having a child.  Truth is, billions of people for thousands of years have been having children and guess what, the human race is still here.  All sarcasm aside though, America’s capitalism shines through when it comes to baby spending.  You really don’t need to spend that much when having a baby.  Here are some quick tips on saving money when having a child:
  • Goodwill - Goodwill stores are one of the greatest inventions of all time.  When it comes to books, clothes and even baby furniture, you can find it all a goodwill and often in excellent condition.  A lot of people turn their nose at Goodwill because the merchandise is second hand but if you can be mature and realize that this is no different than family giving you their old baby stuff, your all set.
  • Avoid Childbirth Classes - Unless you plan to give birth all natural with no drugs, just about anything they can teach you can be learned from the internet or as advise from other recent mothers.  These classes are expensive and offer you information on something your body is already designed to do naturally.
  • The Internet - The Internet is quite possibly the greatest invention of the last century and it has revolutionized the way the planet communicates.  Within that vast sea of information is just about everything you could want to know about having a child and best of all, IT’S FREE!!!
Remember to shop smart and save money!  Your child will be perfectly happy without being spoiled and you'll have more money to use for more important things.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Free Donkey Kong Country 2 Soundtrack

Donkey Kong Country 2 may not have had the same impact as the first game but it was still everything you could want in a sequel.  More levels, better graphics and amazing music combined to make a very memorable package.  Rare also managed to crank up the difficulty a few notches to make this a hardcore gamers dream.  While it's debatable which game had the superior soundtrack, you can't deny that DKC2 had some truly excellent tunes.  Like the Kong In Concert soundtrack, the fans have once again mixed together a free download album complete with original artwork.  Enjoy!

Monday, April 12, 2010

Treon's Game of the Week - Meat Boy

Meat Boy is a juicy mess of meat who has to rescue his girl, Bandage Girl. It's simple and fun as hell, the way a classic game should be. The game is all about quick reflexes and classic platforming action. You will die a LOT but that's all part of the fun and charm of this game which is why you are equipped with infinite lives. MB will test your old school gaming skills and keep you coming back begging for more. Featured here is the PC Flash version for free and it will be making its way to X-Box 360 and Wii in a few months as Super Meat Boy.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Films That Will Change Your Life - The Union

The last couple of years has seen some amazing documentaries but one of the most important is The Union:  The Business Behind Getting High.  The Union is one of the most eye opening documentary's ever committed to film and you have to see it as soon as possible.  You will soon learn that everything you think you know about Marijuana is completely wrong.  This little weed has the ability to change the the destiny of the entire human race.  Everything from industrial production to medicine to the entire economy would be positively affected by Marijuana.  After viewing The Union, I urge you to do everything in your power to share this life altering film with as many people as you can.

Become a fan of The Union on Facebook
Subscribe to The Union on YouTube

Friday, April 9, 2010

Free Donkey Kong Country Soundtrack

Donkey Kong Country was a turning point for graphics in video games marking a major shift from 2D pixel art into 3D rendered graphics.  It was also a turning point for game music showcasing an amazing soundtrack that is still a legend today.  Gone are the bleeps and bloops normally associated with older video games and we are instead given a aural buffet for the ears.  For anyone who has heard it, the underwater theme is one of the most memorable tracks ever committed to a video game.  Kong In Concert is a remixed album of the Donkey Kong Country soundtrack and what a treat it is.  It features 22 tracks which covers a wide variety of different styles so there's something for everyone.  I highly recommend giving it a download and I'd be surprised if at least one track doesn't find it's way onto your playlist.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Free Software You Can't Live Without Vol. 4 - DVD Shrink 3.2

DVD Shrink 3.2

DVD backup is a questionable activity that balances a fine line of legality but for a father with a young son (15 months) and a DVD collection, this software is great.  You see, kids DVD's are expensive and they rarely get marked down unlike most regular DVD movies.  My kid LOVES his Yo Gabba Gabba and Wow Wow Wubzy but when I purchase him a disc, I don't want to worry if he pops open the DVD player and yanks out the disc to play with it.  He also loves to dig through his collection and open the DVD cases.  This creates a problem when you can't afford to just repurchase these expensive shows over and over.  DVD Shrink solves my problem, allowing me to make a quick backup on my computer and then burn a copy on a dirt cheap blank DVD.  If the kid gets to the disc, no sweat because I've got the original in a safe spot ready to be copied again if the need arises.  This is the purpose of this kind of program and I'm very thankful for its existence.  Combine DVD Shrink with ImgBurn and you've got a quick, easy and powerful solution to backing up your personal library.  Unfortunately, the law has forced this program off the market making it hard to get but if you know how to use Google, you can find it quickly and easily.  Just make sure you are downloading DVD Shrink English (2004) which is the latest official version.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Treon's Game of the Week - Tremerz

Tremors Attack Pack (Tremors/ Tremors 2 - Aftershocks/ Tremors 3 - Back to Perfection/ Tremors 4 - The Legend Begins)This week's game takes its inspiration from a movie series that started 20 years ago, Tremors.  A horror/comedy classic starring Kevin Bacon that has spawned 3 sequels and a TV series with movie #5 long rumored.  Of course, any fan of the series knows that Michael Gross of Family Ties fame is the true star of this franchise.  Tremerz is a simple but fun flash game where your main objective is to keep the characters from the movie alive while dodging the Graboids coming up from the ground.  It's perfect for short rounds of gameplay and is a fun treat for series fans.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Free Chrono Trigger Soundtrack

Chrono TriggerWhen it comes to RPG's, few games have the legacy and universal acclaim that Chrono Trigger has.  It's a finely tuned experience that holds up even today in an industry that grows at an exponential rate.  It is also home to one of the most memorable game soundtracks of all time.  Fortunately for us, a group of game music remix artists have stepped up with the help of Overclocked Remix to give us Chrono Symphonic.  This is a free Chrono Trigger Remix album that honor's its source material with some truly excellent tracks of music that no fan should be without.  Only with the Internet could a project of this quality get done and it is a labor of love that deserves your attention.  Head over to the website and bask in the aural delight.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Dead or Alive Drinking Game

My wife and I just finished the movie for D.O.A. (Dead Or Alive) which is based on the video game of the same name.  We did this as part of our bad movie night where we try and find bad movies and make fun of them together which is a blast.  As expected, the movie was laughably bad but we came up with a drinking game that will make it even more enjoyable.  Here ya go:

1. Rent the movie (Buy it if you can get it dirt cheap)
2. Prep your drink of choice
3. Every time the logo "DOA" shows up in the movie, take a shot

We figure you'll be pretty wasted within the first 15 minutes so my wife suggests going with half shots because that logo is EVERYWHERE! (Clothing, computer screens, weapons, hot tubs, doors, etc.)  Honestly, if you actually catch them all on your first run, you deserve a drink.  There's plenty of action and fighting to go along with the bad acting and horrible effects so enjoy and please drink responsibly.