Wednesday, September 26, 2012

The New Bins Are In!

The City of Winnipeg has successfully delivered its new garbage and recycling bins to the South end of Winnipeg. Back in June the first of the new bins, part of Winnipeg's new garbage and recycling services program, were delivered to residents in the northwest part of the city. Since then the media has reported multiple problems such as Winnipeg's yard waste depots closing, upset seniors unable to move the bins themselves, and some homes receiving two sets of bins.
The latest issue that has reached papers is what to do with the old blue boxes previously used for recycling. It's estimated that there are 500,000 blue boxes here in Winnipeg, and the city expects as many as 150,000 to simply be discarded.
I have a pretty optimistic outlook on all of the recent news. Few people get excited when things in their life change, but eventually they get used to it and soon the new change becomes the norm. I also have a feeling that many of the kinks that people have discovered in the new system will be sorted out in time and eventually people will be wondering how they ever took out the trash before this system was introduced.
The issue with the many blue boxes without a purpose is actually very exciting to me. Already some programs have ideas about introducing gardening to young children with the help of the old recycling boxes. Personally, I already have plans to turn mine into laundry hamper. If you'd like to find out some more ideas of what to do with your blue box, check out this piece from the Metro, and if you think of a really great and original idea of what to use them for, submit it to this contest from Simply Recycle Manitoba by September 30th.
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Wednesday, September 19, 2012

A Post From VIMWAC: The Waffle Guy

Hi there. I originally blogged about my first experience eating from The Waffle Guy on VIMWAC. To see the original post and more delicious photos, click here.
Today an amazing thing happened. During my first class this morning I looked out the window to discover that The Waffle Guy was parked out on the street! Normally this trailer can be found on one of the streets by the University of Winnipeg, but due to popular demand from Red River College students, The Waffle Guy journeyed to our campus for the week.  
As soon as I got out of class, a friend and I walked across the street to get ourselves some Belgium waffles for breakfast. A plain waffle with one fruit topping was $6.00, and then after that each extra topping was $1.00. My friend decided to order strawberries and whipped cream on her waffle, and I opted for strawberries and ice cream on mine, both costing $7.00.
This was the first time I had ever eaten a Belgium waffle, and it was amazing. So sweet and crispy, and deceivingly small, this waffle was able to satisfy both my sweet tooth and my grumbling stomach.  A small warning to folks who order ice cream or whipped cream for their waffles, you can't tell in the picture, but the waffles are piping hot as they are made fresh to order. As well, the fruit that comes on the waffles is fresh and never frozen. At the time I couldn't believe that the gentleman was actually bringing out a cutting board, knife, and container of fresh strawberries, just for our two waffles!
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Sunday, September 16, 2012

How to Properly Donate Your Hair

So I made the cut! The haircut that is. This weekend I decided that it was the right time to cut the hair I had been growing out for close to two years. Why did I decide to grow my hair out in the first place? So that I could donate it!
Donating your hair is as easy as growing it out, cutting it, and then sending it off in the mail. Sure it takes time and effort to grow the hair and keep it healthy, but knowing that the hair will become part of a wig given to a woman with cancer makes the struggle a little easier.
Years ago I donated my hair for the first time and learned how rewarding the experience could be. Two years later I cut my hair intending to donate it, only to discover that it was an inch too short! So here I am again and this time I made sure to do things right!
1. The most important thing when donating your hair is to make sure it is long enough. The minimum length is 8 inches. If you have curly hair like me, straighten it to measure.
Now that you have met the most important requirement, it's time to prepare the hair.
2. Thoroughly wash your hair and then dry it. Do not use any product in your hair, just wash it with shampoo and then leave it.
3. Divide your hair into four sections with elastic bands. One on each side of your face, and two at the back. Unlike one ponytail, having four ponytails will allow you to cut off the maximum length of hair from each side of your head.
4. Pull the elastic bands down half an inch below where you would like to cut. This will help keep the hair together and organized.
5. Cut the hair half an inch above the elastic and place it into an envelope to send to whatever organization you like that accepts hair. I donated mine to Pantene which has the "Beautiful Lengths" program where they work with the American Cancer Society to provide real hair wigs to women with cancer.
All that is left to do is have your hair professionally cut by a hair dresser (or maybe your older sister). The hair I donated this weekend was just shy of 10 inches. Now I feel amazing every time I shake my head when saying "no". : )
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Thursday, September 13, 2012

A Post From VIMWAC: Mondragon Bookstore & Coffee House

Hi everyone! Last night I posted a review of the Mondragon Bookstore & Coffee House and decided to share it here on Natasha's Nickelodeon. If you would like to visit the original post on VIMWAC, click here.
Today was another crazy day at the college, but at some point during all the running around, I managed to eat one of the best sandwiches I have ever eaten at a restaurant. Ever!
It all began with a group of us handing in our assignments early and leaving the school to wander for a while during our break. Eventually we decided grab a bite to eat, and this gave me an opportunity to write a blog post about one of the city's strictly vegan restaurants, Mondragon. 
Contrary to what I thought when I first heard the name, this restaurant does not serve Chinese food. Instead, it is a bookstore and coffee house with a small organic market at the back, and a wide selection of vegan dishes you can order at the front counter. There are so many items on the menu, it's actually quite overwhelming for a vegetarian like me who is used to only having three options to chose from when going out to eat.
The photo of the menu board above shows just how many things the Mondragon serves. Not just soups and salads, but sandwiches, burgers, quesadillas, burritos, samosas and pupusas, nachos, and even breakfast food. And if you're in the mood for something to drink, they have different types of smoothies along with caffeinated beverages.
One of the girls in the group ordered the daily soup special with bread...
...and one of the guys ordered the quesadilla. 
I was feeling a little peckish and ordered the roasted vegetable sandwich with soup on the side.
Wow, this was a really great sandwich. I can honestly say I've never been served a sandwich so full of fillings. There were roasted vegetables of every kind, including soft, melt in your mouth sweet potatoes, and the whole thing was covered with a white sauce and large pieces of avocado. The truth is, I couldn't fit the sandwich into my mouth and had to cut it in half and eat it like an open face sandwich. How amazing is that?
If you're interested in eating at Mondragon, it's located at 91 Albert Street, just a short walk away from City Hall.
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Saturday, September 8, 2012

How to Create an "About Me" Page in Blogger

So you recently created your first blog and you've spent some time designing it, but now you want to start adding some features like an "About Me" page, or a "FAQ" (Frequently Asked Questions) page. Maybe if you write about food on your blog, you'll want a "Recipes" page.
Creating a page in Blogger can be really simple once you know all the steps involved. Here they are...
The first step is to go to "Pages" in blogger. Once there, click the "New Page" button and select "Blank page".
A new window will open, and this is where you can design your new page. Start by adding a title (ex. About Me) and then put some text into the box, perhaps even a photo of yourself. Then click "Publish".
But don't stop there! When you first create your blog, your pages are automatically set as "Don't show". In order for your page to appear, you need to change that setting to either "Top tabs" or "Side links".
Then click "Save arrangement".
Now your blog should have a beautiful new bar at the top with a "Home" button and another button of your choosing. To go back and make changes to a page, simply go back to "Pages"and click "Edit" under the page you want to select.
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Thursday, September 6, 2012

New to Blogging? Read This!

So you've just started your new blog. Congratulations! The next steps are to write a post, have people comment on it, possibly reply to their comments (because you are a nice person), then have them subscribe to you, and then get lots and lots of page views, right?
The next step is to put some time into designing your blog, and that means heading over to the Template Designer. There are two ways to get to the Template Designer; go to Layout and then click the link that says Template Designer, or go to Template, and click "Customize".
Once you're there, really take the time to choose a good template, and remember that within each "style" are multiple templates for you to choose from. For example, you can see in the photo above that the Awesome Inc. style has six different templates to choose from.
But when you're designing your blog, you're not just limited to choosing a template and then being stuck with whatever designs the template designer has chosen. You have the opportunity to change the font of your tittle, the colour of your words, even the colour of the links you put in your posts (before and after they have been clicked). These features can be found in the "Advanced" tab in the Template Designer as seen in the photo above.
And once you have your blog looking all pretty and sophisticated, choose the layout of your blog. This will be a little harder after you have just created your blog and won't have any posts to help you visualize the various layouts, but try your best anyways. Remember, you can always go back and change the way your blog looks.
So those are the real first steps you need to take after creating your new blog.
Once you've finished designing the template you can then move on to creating an "about me" page, designing a header that is custom made for your blog, and then maybe writing some posts.
Good Luck!
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