Friday, 22 May 2015

Vlogging on My Phone and Ten Top Tips for New Vloggers on You Tube

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #Vlog #CollectiveBias

Vlogging with my Samsung Galaxy Ace 3

Do you ever Vlog with your phone? Mine, my Samsung Galaxy Ace 3, has become invaluable lately for several reasons:
  • Memory: My Sony Cybershot camera memory card is often full, and lately my laptop is full too so I am a little buggered. This is where the phone is literally a life saver. I even bought a new memory card recently for the phone, and they've increased in size and come down in price. They are designed to process HD, so they are perfect for the up and coming Vlogger. The phone can cope with a MicroSD up to 64 GB! Memory becomes an issue when you get into Vlogging especially if you have the file size of the individual clips and then also the completed edited video - it's like doubling up!!!
  • Battery Charge: Sometimes in the rush to get out, I've forgotten to charge my camera. Or simply I use it SO much on a day out that even a full charge is not enough. Again the phone is invaluable. We always leave home with a fully charged phone right? *coughs* and moves swiftly on...
  • Selfie footage: With my Sony Cybershot I can only point outwards. It's as annoying as pushing a newborn in a buggy which has the same limitation. When I do a selfie photo it is hit and miss (but normally spot on to be fair) but I wouldn't risk it with a Vlog. I love that with my phone, I can see myself on screen and therefore self regulate my facial expressions and ensure I am in the frame. In the frame, without too much, say for example, ceiling... like you see in the pic above.
  • Quality: The spec of my phone's camera says it is only 5MP and on the selfie option only 0.3MP, yet I am happy with the quality. You can decide for yourself in the Vlog I have done below for this #CollectiveBias post.
  • Engaged child: Having the selfie option on the phone's camera, means that Aaron stays interested when we are recording a Vlog together as he can see himself. It often has funny results as with this comedy chat from the two of us or this one where Aaron sabotage my vlog with funny results.
  • Inexpensive. Often people get intimidated by the thought of "Vlogging" due to the cost of the equipment that they think is involved. BUT, often a phone will do the job fine (those two linked to above are on the phone too). People say you need microphones, tripods and lighting, BUT on those two above, in one I am holding the phone and in the other it's simply balanced on the dining table. The lighting in both is fully natural, and as we are so close to the phone a microphone is not at all required.
  • Accessible: For me, both my phone and my camera fit in my everyday handbag, but I know for you serious photographer/bloggers, that may not be the case, so having the phone to hand, for quick/easy vlogging means you capture fabulous memories you might otherwise miss. Looking back at old footage is heartwarming, so I would highly recommend, dear reader, that you start videoing, even if you don't upload to You Tube.
  • Ease of upload: I am writing this post in Ireland as we are here on holiday to see my Mum. It's meant challenges as my Mum's does not have Wifi. But the bigger challenge was that my laptop does not recognise my phone's MP4s (videos). So the plan was that I would upload the below footage offline (with a cable) from phone to laptop and edit it all at my Mum's, simply coming to my Aunt's to upload  to You Tube. I'd have already done the editing on Windows Live Movie Maker. BUT, when I couldn't drag and drop the videos, I came to my Aunt's for the day, and the problem was solved, as I could upload all the videos STRAIGHT from the phone to You Tube (which I could never do with my camera). It didn't even take that long to upload them once I was in a place with Wifi, and You Tube has its own "editor" so I was able to sit here and put all the clips together in a continuous "Vlog". You Tube has a "download MP4" option, so I then delete the footage off my phone/camera as I know it is there should I ever want it. Clearly I pick and choose which videos I am not precious with.
Uploading phone camera Vlogs straight to You Tube Editor
For this post, to showcase my phone's Vlogging ability I have recorded the below video. Anyone who knows me will know I have made a study of You Tube for the past 3 months, in that I have spent hundreds of hours on there as a user. If you follow me on Twitter you will know, as everytime I "like" a You Tube video, it tweets a link to the video I have liked, so that's more or less all my Twitter timeline consists of currently. So I now know what I like and what I don't and have compiled, quite literally on the back of an envelope:
Ten You Tube Musts for the Up and Coming Vlogger

explanations of which are included in my Vlog below.
Ten Top Tips for The Vlogging You Tuber
It just so happens that they all begin with T. I have no idea what the deeper meaning of that is. Judging by the pic above, I need a manicure in addition to the pedicure and Shellac I have just had.
My Samsung phone is my baby
I am blogging/vlogging this post from Ireland, as Aaron and I are here on our hols to see my Mum. Hence I am scrubbed up, as my Mother is a bit of a glamour puss unlike me. Serves me well for this Vlog that my cousin has cut and straightened my hair. My Mum gave me the voucher for the feet. Looking after myself is becoming a bit of a routine. I may even turn over a new leaf in time for BritMums Live. A few more pounds to shift before then though.
So here is my Vlogger's Vlog with the Ten Top Tips I have put together in a brainstorm on the back of an envelope. I hope you enjoy, like, comment and subscribe. Would be great to meet you, and widen my You Tube tribe :-)

I'm adding my post to 

The Dad Network

Liska xx

Sunday, 17 May 2015

Disney on Ice Magical Ice Festival

Just a very quick post, for any readers who may be Disney fans.

I have been very busy on You Tube and have uploaded this and this, with the former not requiring any editing and the latter requiring 8 hours...............


Tuesday, 12 May 2015

See You At BritMums Live 2015 #BritMumsLive

See you at BritMums Live 2015. Hoorrraahhh! I'm finally joining up with the Who's Going Linky

So diving straight in with the answers to the questions and a link to my posts about previous BritMums Lives:

Name: Liska
Blog: er, this one!
Twitter ID@NewMumOnline
Height: 5 foot 6
Hair: Long, straight, dark brown.
Eyes: brown

Is this your first blogging conference?
No, I first went to the second year of Cybermummy in 2011, in the Brewery. I then went to the next three BritMums Lives in a row, also at The Brewery (great venue).
2013 BritMums Live blog posts:
2014 BritMums Live blog post - Breakdown and Breakthrough at BritMums Live 2014

Are you attending both days?
Of course!

What are you most looking forward to at BritMums Live 2015?
I always love the excitement the most.  The run up to it, as much as the event itself, and catching up with people you sometimes only see once a year.

What are you wearing? 
No idea yet but it may well be this playsuit outfit, for one of the days. For the other day, who knows... I know last year when I wore a floral outfit one day, I felt very self conscious as it made me look larger, and I knew it, but it was a very special Summer Solstice last year, so sisterhood of the rose style I was wearing an outfit covered in roses.

What do you hope to gain from BritMums Live 2015?
I hope to learn something. Blogging since 2008, I know the basics, but it is often a passing comment that a speaker makes, that is what stays with me. I really hope to get lots out of the You Tube session.

Do you have any tips to pass on to others who may not have been before?
  1. Yes, enjoy it. So catch up on your sleep before you go. Put your best foot forward, paste on that smile, and get the most out of it.
  2. Make sure you make a list of people you'd like to meet. Tweet them and make it happen. Don't have regrets. 
  3. There are butterflies on hand to ease your nerves. We'll be there on arrival to greet you. Here's my "Hello to you" on that score (filmed last year)
  4. Most people go for dinner on the Friday night. This works well when arranged in advance and is a great way to ensure you catch up with people.
  5. If you are lonely and you didn't arrange to meet anyone, don't leave the conference, just pop to the loo. You ALWAYS get chatting to someone fun in there. Even the keynote speakers relax and have a giggle in there. Just like in a nightclub, the loos are a fab place to connect.
  6. You'll see lots of glamour. Hair, makeup and heels. But sometimes, you actually feel more comfortable if you are more relaxed. Don't wear shoes that'll give you a blister. I did that one year and regretted it. It's also a good idea to wear something you've worn before, so that you know you're comfortable in it.
  7. If you want one glamour day, it doesn't have to be both. I found last year that a lot of people dressed up on Friday (due to dinner and the Bibs) and then relaxed on Saturday. It's NOT out of the question to wear jeans.
  8. There is a charging table at the back of the main hall, which I have used every year to charge my camera and phone, but with today's technology it is good to have one of those battery pack thingies.
  9. Tweeting pics during the event works really well, as everyone at home wants to have a virtual experience of the day.
  10. You'll be wiped out the day after, so although Daddy may have had the babies for 2 days, pre-warn him you might not be ready to do it all by yourself on the Sunday, so perhaps have Grandma or a best mate on standby for the Sunday. A PJ day is what this Doc would suggest for that day (not that I have any medical training, but I just know how I am on the Sunday every year).
  11. After the event, you will want to blog about it, so make space in your schedule to do so.
  12. If you Vlog too.......... well it all gets a bit time consuming, so block out your diary.

I'd LOVE you to watch my recording of the Bibs from last year. I only uploaded it the other day (totally forgot to last year and only noticed now due to the file size). It really gives you a flavour of the event:

See you there, not long now

Liska xxx

Monday, 11 May 2015

The Journey Through Wales and a Tour Of Bluestone

I am yet to collect and gather my thoughts for my review of Bluestone Wales National Park Resort, but I have spent about 88 hours editing and uploading this. Would love your feedback.

It's our journey alongwith a tour of the house/lodge that we stayed in.

Bye for now, lots to do before the school run,
Liska xxx 

Friday, 8 May 2015

Fitting Into Clothes Again while Shape Shifting instead of Losing Weight

Have you ever done that thing, where you lose bumps and lumps rather than weight. It's always the husband who notices first. Traditionally, the first place I would lose weight would be my stomach, and jeans would get loose, so I would normally notice it immediately.

This time, as I am not consciously or deliberately losing weight, it's come off my back of all places, and it means it's easier to hug me, which is one of the reasons hubby noticed. His pointing it out, meant I tried on an outfit from Primark that I bought this time last year.

Rewind: I was in the queue, in Primark, and the lady in front of me took it out of her basket and threw it on the queue barrier. I don't know WHAT mood I was in, but I picked it up, loved it, saw that it was a size 18, thought: "it'll fit" and shamelessly put it in my basket, with a smile to her - I think I said something to her, at the time, but for the life of me I cannot remember what.

Anyhow, I was very sad and surprised when I got home and could not fit into it. It's a playsuit/jumpsuit, which zips up at the back and is formal on top but only shorts down below. I could not even get one leg in. It wasn't a case of getting it on and not being able to zip it up. So I guess, it is not just my back that has lost "weight" but perhaps my legs/thighs too.

This is the moment, Sunday 12th April 2015, when I happened to try it on and discovered that it fits now:

The only thing I can attribute it to, is having dinner earlier, as a consequence of now being a school Mum. Aaron started school September 2014, and now Monday to Friday is a much stricter routine than we have ever had. He gets home starving marvin, so we have to have a proper dinner, and obviously it is at a reasonable time (though not always, as we are often in the park for hours after school). Yesterday I predicted this, so brought him roast chicken and potatoes in a Tupperware container, to eat after school, to tide him over till we got home. He ate "dinner" again when he got in, and still said he was hungry. Either he has hollow legs, or it's a growth spurt. Personally, being that he is 5 in a couple of weeks, I think he has entered that boy stage, where the price of your weekly shop goes up because they eat everything in sight. Well he is VERY active, so I have always seen this coming. Thankfully he likes "proper food" and not sweets, and that has had a knock on effect on me too. It kind of started with me though, to give myself some praise, as I have always audibly criticised sugar in his presence, as it aggravates my plantar fasciitis. For a snack I'd always encourage him to have hummus on toast rather than an unhealthy snack, although don't get me wrong we are both partial to crisps and other naughty things.

Anyway, the progress I have now made and recognised, in fitting into this playsuit has spurred me on, so as you have seen in my previous Dear So and So blog post, I wore the same outfit to Talk To Mums on 24th April.

I want to do something drastic now, in the coming weeks, like a detox, as I would love to get out of the "obesity" section on the BMI calculator and am just thankful that I am not in the severe obesity section. Before I had Aaron I was regularly on the Wii Fit and that used to show me my BMI. It's funny, but the last two videos I have posted on my You Tube channel are exactly a year apart, and I can see the progress on my face for example.

I know I can do even better and haven't had the get up and go to do so before now, but this progress and BritMums Live being on the horizon have certainly spurred me on. I have been to the conference at The Brewery every year since 2011, and this was the first year I could not afford to buy a ticket, and haven't taken the time to pitch to or secure a sponsor. So I was OVER THE MOON to be asked to be a Butterfly the day before yesterday, as it now means I can go. Hence my excitement to upload that Butterfly video that I recorded this time last year, when I last did it.

Now I need to work on hair and makeup, so that I look like this more often than once a year. I used to be quite vain in my 20s, and always made an effort. Once I got into yoga in my 30s, I wrongly thought that beauty was shallow. I'd go to Ireland, and my Mum would say "can't you at least put some lipstick on" or "straighten your hair" or "that doesn't suit you". I went through a brief phase in my days of working in Monsoon Accessorize, where I did make an effort, sometimes just so that my hair and makeup would look as good as the colourful clothes that I was wearing thanks to a VERY generous staff discount. However my career took a turn, with my next employer, that saw me doing 12, 14 and 16 hour days, and I put work first and health/wellbeing last, often going to Burger King on the way home and Pret on the way in. I then had Aaron and I could/should say that it changed to putting him first but sadly, work had me working in my maternity leave, and within 2 years of that we were going into administration, which was a shame, as by then I was contracted 3 days a week, yet working more like 6, thanks to my BlackBerry being surgically attached to my hand. My career thus ended July 2012, with redundancy, but the horrible statutory kind thanks to being the last one to leave, as I literally turned off the lights and closed the doors on the way out, having put everyone else first and myself last as usual. Staying on a sinking ship is a phrase for a reason.

I've gone off on a tangent but how this links to weight loss is that I did lose weight February/March 2012 and was feeling GREAT, but the minute the insolvency/administration process started in May, I saw myself often with beer in one hand and crisps in the other...

Astrologically this is the year of the divine feminine and as with Elsa in Frozen, it is now time to Let it Go, and take off the shackles of the past. There's a beautiful girl underneath my cloaks; I just need to let her shine.

Bye for now, Liska x
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