Broadening Horizons

Some varied lessons came in view this week.

Forming New Power

Once again, I faced the power of young minds and how accidental inventions can turn into the most important ones. Apparently, a 10-year-old Clara Leisen from Kansas City discovered a new chemical compound in class. Her chemistry teacher posted an assignment to combine nitrogen, oxygen and hydrogen atoms and molecules. Leisen’s formed a compound that could help in developing new methods for collection and conservation of energy, as well as produce a new kind of explosives.

The Closest to Being on Another Planet While on Earth

Travelling has always been my passion and truly any destination sounds fascinating. Regardless if I went to a small village in Bulgaria or Disney World in Orlando, Fla., I can find magic. Recently, a parent at my preschool told me about their trip to Beijing, China that slightly makes me rethink how long I want to spend there if I ever visit. Apparently, the pollution and neon lights dominate the landscape so much that you stand in a constant state of a milky, lit-up fog. Also, blond, blue-eyed children are a rare sight, so when one fairer child visits, he or she immediately becomes the center of attention in the crowd. While I love just finding new things on the spot, researching a destination before arrival still seems the smartest way to get the most of your vacation and stay safe, especially when traveling as a family.

Of Brushes and Strokes

For her birthday, my mom-in-law requested no gifts but some help around the house, namely helping her change the color of her office. As a painting newbie, lessons were plentiful. When you use a roller, you must ensure even amounts of paint on the entire surface, because if the brush is not coated uniformly, spots will show on the wall. Also, be that with a roller or a regular brush, while painting on the first coat you can paint in a V-shape (to get in the crevices if the wall is textured), but just up and down on the second. Additionally, on every final stroke (before you remove your brush from the wall/ceiling) you must brush up or down at a flowing motion without coming to an abrupt stop but letting the brush just roll off, quite as an eccentric artist. Best advice? Always have someone with at least minor experience painting to get a better result.

Screen Smarts

Thanks to my electronics-wiz husband, I learned something brand new about my laptop today. We attach our PC to a larger monitor on the side so that we have two screens making it easier to multitask. Well, when you unplug the monitor, usually the laptop immediately recognizes that it only has one screen and displays everything on it … until today. To fix it, you need to go into your desktop’s properties, click on settings and then on screen number 2, uncheck the box stating “Extend my Windows desktop onto this monitor” and apply the action. Your device should restore to its original one-screen setting. This helps in my case, but it can also aid if you use a work laptop at home and want to hook it up to personal computer and view information on multiple screens.

And the … goes to …

With the Academy Awards being presented tonight, the nerd and the pop-culture ignoramus that I am, I learned how the Oscars got their name. History gives many explanations, the earliest of which states that an Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences worker named the award after her “Uncle Oscar” in 1931 because the statuette resembled her relative.

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