Since nobody does year-end retrospectives anymore, I thought I’d take a stab at the highlights of my year. I think I’ll feature photos since I think I took more than I did last year (I hope).

I worked hard (and played hard).



I played games. Quite a few games.






I went to a few conventions,


..and a few concerts,



…and sporting events.


Met some awesome, talented musicians, filmmakers, and actors.


Saw some good movies,

…and one really bad one.


Continued to make new friends.

Geeked out with some current friends…


It was, overall, a good year.

I’ve thought, as I sometimes do when a bit of insomnia hits me, that I should set some goals for my self, and the timing of this bout seems a bit coincidental with  (as of when this post begins) the last day of the year. That’s right, it’s time to groan inwardly with me. I’m going to publish my resolutions for the new year. Continue reading

The first episode of the second season doesn’t waste any time hitting you with some slightly jarring impact points. The ride has begun to swing into high gear for Clementine, who we control at the start of this season.

The wait for the second episode will seem nearly as long as the wait until March for fans of the struggles going on in Westeros (OK, slight exaggeration…)

Some people might wait for all the episodes to be released and power through it like I did the first season. Not me.

The list was deceptively simple. Five plants to take to a new planet.

But, which five? Well, here’s a reasoned set.

Nutrition That Tastes Good


My first choice seems pretty straightforward. It’s mint. Besides being good for your breath, it helps with digestion by getting your mouth-watering, and relieves nausea[1]. That’s a pretty good combination I think.

Get Up And Go

I’d next need something to give a good “boost” in the morning, but not be leaving me super-wired, so some variety of black tea would need to be in my new garden. Flavor is also a decider here. I don’t dislike the other tea varieties, but taste matters to me as part of the stimulation.  Also, it helps reduce cholesterol[2].

Cure For What Ails You

Coincidentally, something that’s good with tea, also can relieve pain[3]. That’s ginger for you. I’ll take that next.

Healing Powers

Colds are likely to travel along with me, so it would be very good to have a way to cut their impact, that’s where Andrographis paniculata (it has many names, so I chose the scientific one) comes in handy for upper respiratory infections and for clearing the sinuses[4], things that definitely bother me from time to time.

Rest Time

Last, but not least, is something to help with sleep. Sleep, which is important to health, should be taken regularly. Sometimes, that’s hard, and probably going to be harder on an exciting new world. So, a natural sleep aid would be very much appreciated. I’ll go with chamomile for that. Brewed up as a tea, it seems to work pretty well for me.

All Set!

So, it seems that I’ll be a big tea-drinker at this new planet, with good breath (I hope). Seems like a pretty sweet way to live to me.

Your turn! You only get to choose five plants to take with you to a new planet. Which plants do you take and why?

Source : writing prompts
photos: anthonycramp, Leszek.Leszczynski


  1. “Herbal remedies using mint (Menta spicata)”
  2. Theaflavins from Black Tea, Especially Theaflavin-3-gallate, Reduce the Incorporation of Cholesterol into Mixed Micelles – Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry (ACS Publications)

  3. 4 Herbs for Natural Pain Relief | The Dr. Oz Show

4. Use of visual analogue scale measurements (VAS) to asses the effectiveness of standardized Andrographis paniculata extract SHA-10 in reducing the symptoms of common cold. A randomized double blind-placebo study

Stipula fountain pen

I love it when a blog post not only exactly what it’s title says, but also when the entirety of the information you want to both retain and share at the same time.

pen and paper

If you want a handy list of a few good tips on writing, this will probably be the post to bookmark or add to your favorite clipping service, by Belle Beth Cooper, on :

6 of The Best Pieces of Advice From Successful Writers.

This post’s hit the points well. I’ve seen all the advice noted here scattered around and repeated by quite a few great, prolific bloggers. There’s even an infographic not only referenced, but included inline.

I think 1 through 4 are the ones I need to focus on for myself, but maybe all of them in the long run. Right before I wrapped this post up, I found a post I had saved a while back, by Maria Popova related to writing.

Mary Gordon on the Joy of Notebooks and Writing by Hand as a Creative Catalyst

I’m not sure I’m sold on the “handwriting as the way to start writing” concept, but I might try it to at least keep my writing muscles in good shape. Importantly, there’s quite a few links to even more fairly well-known authors at the end of her article.

The list might not be complete (this I’m fairly certain of). Leave any missing or similarly useful tips in the comments or even write a post of your own.

Photo by Rick Payette on flickr