Monday, 20 June 2011

ECMP 355 - Final Project Ep. 4 (Artists That Students Can Learn From Podcast)

Ep._4_(June_19).m4a Listen on Posterous
Here is episode 4 of my podcast
Track List:
  1. Adele - To Make You Feel My Love
  2. Michael Franti & Spearhead - Hey Hey Hey
  3. Elton John - Bennie & the Jets
  4. Esperanza Spalding - Wild is the Wind
  5. Jason Mraz - The Dynamo of Volition
  6. Broken Social Scene - Meet Me in the Basement
  7. Ray Charles - Georgia on my Mind
I am done podcasting for this week anyways, like I said I have lots of other ideas for podcasts, and I intend to continue!

My next thing to do is to buy my domain and to publish my website that I have been working on using iWeb. I'll keep you posted when I do! I plan to use that site to blog from, as well as post podcasts. iWeb has an awesome page you can add to your site to publish podcasts, as well as videos.

Thanks for an awesome semester everyone!

Saturday, 18 June 2011

My Final Reflection

Here is my final reflection for ECMP 355. Writing the song for this video and recording it was the easy part. Uploading it was more challenging. Apparently one cannot upload a video to a "page" on Blogger, I could only upload it to a post. Not that it matters! As long as it can be seen. 


It was a productive evening for me last night! While all of you folks were either at or watching the Rider game, I was in my quiet little room, talking into my Macbook. I did both my 3rd podcast last night and my video for my reflection. The podcast is posted, but sadly, the video is still in waiting. I cannot seem to get it to upload to my blog here. I loaded it from iMovie into iTunes, because I do not have a youtube account, thinking it would be easier. It has not been easier. I click on the video, and it looks like it is loading, and eventually it stops looking like it is loading and nothing happens. Gah!

So I am seeking the help of my lovely boyfriend to help me with this one, he seems to know what he's doing. I hope. If not, I'll just get a youtube account and try uploading it that way.

SO all that I have left to do is my personal assessment, which I will be working on today and sending off to Dean, as well as my last podcast, which would also be nice if it got done today but I have not had a weekend in a while, still not having fully recovered from my trip. Things have been crazy busy, and on top of that, I begin training for my job at the Autism Resource Centre on Monday! I am very excited to get started. I went and met with a youth worker, who told me about the person that I would be working with and she has worked in the summer program before, she said that we go swimming pretty much everyday, we even go to the beach once a week, which I think is an awesome idea. I am so looking forward to being active and being outside this summer, I cannot tell you how much.

That's all for me for now, hopefully I'll get that darn video posted today at least! The podcast may not be up until Monday, but don't worry, it will be up there!

I also have made a list of other themes that I liked for possible future podcasts, so if you liked the ones that you heard thus far, I have been thinking about continuing to post podcasts over the summer! It's something that I have been getting the hang of, and I think it's really fun! Hopefully you guys like them too.

Friday, 17 June 2011

ECMP 355 - Final Project Ep. 3 (The Easy Guitar Songs That Don't Suck Podcast)

Ep._3_(June_15).m4a Listen on Posterous
Here is another podcast!

I am now, as we speak, on to doing my reflection. iMovie is loaded and ready to rock!

Hopefully this podcast isn't too jumbled, I felt slightly rushed recording it, but oh well!

Track List:
  1. Kina Grannis - Valentine
  2. Fleetwood Mac - Rhiannon
  3. Taylor Swift - Love Story
  4. Sufjan Stevens - That Was The Worst Christmas Ever!
  5. Feist - I Feel It All
  6. Neil Young - Heart of Gold
  7. Shania Twain - No One Needs To Know

Tuesday, 14 June 2011

ECMP 355 - Final Project Ep. 2 (The Kid-Friendly Podcast)

Podcast_Ep._2_(June_14).m4a Listen on Posterous

Here is the second podcast for ECMP 355. It has been a long afternoon, people. My iTunes is giving me so much grief. Whenever I open iTunes, this message comes up saying it's connecting to the store, but it never goes away and always come up even after the store is loaded. It keeps stopping anything from loading! GAH! So trying to purchase two songs for this podcast was like pulling teeth. It was a battle of wits between me and iTunes.

And I won.


Please note that the last 2 minutes are silence! Sorry! After my voice ends that is the end of the cast.

I'm gonna post the track list on Posterous now for these first 2 podcasts right now!

Thanks for listening!

Reflections on last night's class

So last night's class left me feeling super inspired about creating more of an online identity for myself. I realized that I do want to be "found" online. I want good things to come up when my name is searched on Google.

When Dean talked about buying a domain, I thought, "oh, I am gonna do that." And I am. I'm going to buy and create my own website.

So after class, I drove to my boyfriend's house. It was his birthday yesterday and we went out just to do something on the actual day, because frankly, birthday's are destined to not be very much fun if they are on a Monday. I should know, mine was as well this year. I had a class until 10pm.

Anyways, so I was telling Richie about what we had gone over in class, and how I wanted to start my own website, and he informed me that my Macbook comes with a program called iWeb. He suggested that I create my website using iWeb first and then create my domain so that I can just import it and it will be started at least.

Well let me say, I have only been using the program for about 2 minutes and I already love it. The program opens with a basic tutorial video, and it is easy to follow. So I am going to begin designing my very own webpage and hopefully I'll have it posted before class is officially over. I'd love for y'all to see it! I'm pretty pumped, I am feeling very prepared and able to do this, which I would not have felt before. I feel like I am capable to doing these things now.

Now, I realize that there are still things that are more pressing in my life, such as my final reflection and the rest of my podcast series. I have an idea for my reflection and if anyone has any feedback, I'd appreciate it! I would like to write a song, reflecting on my experience in ECMP 355, record myself playing it, with my guitar (and voice of course) using iMovie and post it to my blog.

Thoughts? And if you haven't heard my podcast yet, please listen, it's only 11 minutes long, and let me know what you think! Thanks!

Monday, 13 June 2011

My Professional Portfolio

My portfolio is complete!

You can view the different parts of my portfolio using the tabs at the top of my blog under the header. I also made a "Podcasts" tab so that when all of my podcasts are posted, you can locate each of them on the one page rather than scrolling through my blog posts. I think I will also post a link to my Posterous page on my "podcasts" page as well, so that it can connect to my main page.

So now it's on to podcast, episode 2 and I really gotta get rolling on my final reflection. I have a page full of notes, and no way to display them at this time! I have some thinking to do on that!


Final Project Ep. 1 (The Canadiana Podcast)

Podcast_Ep._1_(June_13).m4a Listen on Posterous

It is here! Episode 1! Yippee! I created the first of hopefully four podcasts for my final project!

So this podcast was recorded using Garageband, and I decided to just start over, and leave my first podcast attempt for my own personal reflection, plus I needed to re-record all of the my voice because the orders of the songs were changed and whatnot.

It was harder to create this podcast because I had to cut every song down, and matching everything up was more difficult than just pulling the song into the track and letting it go.

I decided this time to post my podcast using Posterous, which I am finding to be more user friendly. I had to load my podcast a couple of times though because it kept freezing a certain points and wouldn't load anymore. It loaded, and then I noticed that my pictures for each chapter didn't come up, only the audio track. Does anyone know how to change this? I know that you can open my podcast with the program of your choice (ie: iTunes, etc) is there a program that will play it with my pictures? I know that Podomatic had my pictures and everything in it, so if it doesn't do that on Posterous, I might want to change...

So yes, it's far from perfect but it's mine! I have many ideas for more so either tonight or tomorrow I'm gonna get started on the next one and post it as soon as I can! Feedback is appreciated but be kind, I am a little self-conscious of hearing my voice coming out of these speakers! Ha.

Saturday, 11 June 2011

Thanks Petey B!

Tonight, my buddy, Peter, helped me solve my blog problem. I could not figure out how to get the links on the top bar of my blog to connect to various things that I wanted it to. I knew it could be done, I just couldn't figure out how. I commented on Peter's blog, since he uses Blogger as well (we are the minority in this class since most of our classmates use Wordpress), asked for help and he was able to answer my question lucky for me, and I even understood what he said and could do it myself! Love that.

So now, I have lovely little links on the top of my blog. Some of them do not have anything attached to them yet, but it'll happen, don't worry.

I was so excited when they worked, my blog is getting to look very pretty! Yay!

Thanks Peter!!

My Blog Reflections

On my blogging experience:
  • By taking ECMP 355 I discovered that though I suck at journaling, I absolutely love blogging. To me, I like having an audience to my thoughts, I love getting comments, being able to post video or pictures or links. I have been reading various blogs for months now, and this was a great opportunity for me to begin my own.
  • I now realize that I should have used tags long ago on my blog posts for ECMP 355, so now my posts, especially about the final projects/reflections will have the tags on them. Unfortunately, my blogs post about my final project with my podcasts do not have the tag up until this point. 
  • There are many things that I would like to change about my blog at this point, especially finding out how to create headers on my blog, that can link to my posts about my final project and professional portfolio.  
  • I want to continue blogging and working to perfect my blog. I like being able to have something that is mine, and it is cool to look at my stats and see that my post on being a "Tweetcher" got 95 views! That is crazy to me. But you have no idea that people are reading your blog if there are no comments, so I'm glad that I looked at my stats and saw that yes, some posts have like, 3 reads, but some have more reads, and some have many, and that is very cool to me.
My frequency of posting/consistency:
  • I think that I have been very consistent with blogging and I know that is because I enjoy it so much. I really like being able to take 20 minutes and write up a post about what is going on in my day, or address something that was covered in class, although I realized that I spent most of the posts talking about myself. Surprised?
  • I have a total of 24 posts up until today (June 11), some of them are drafts for my professional portfolio and some are for my final project blog posts, but I have been blogging on average at least 2 posts per week. 
Comments on my own blog/others' blogs:
  • I was disappointed by the lack of comments on my blog. I don't know if this was because people weren't reading my blog, if they didn't like my posts, if it was because it was on blogger instead of wordpress?
  • I found commenting on wordpress blogs frustrating, because after every comment that I left, I had to check my email and confirm my comment. Why did I have to do that for every single comment?
  • I tried to comment as much as I could on people's blogs, but I found it hard sometimes, not knowing what to say. Sort of a, "if I have nothing interesting to say I'd best no say anything at all" kind of feeling. 
On my contributions to the class:
  • I was super disappointed about not being able to attend hardly any sessions except for one. I really enjoyed being there and getting to talk to the class and tell them what I was doing, getting to use the chat and contribute to the conversation. My days during this spring class have been open for the most part, but it is my evenings that fill up, which is why I thought an online class would be perfect. I have watched all of the recordings of ECMP 355 and blogged about them afterward. So my main contribution to the class is through my blog. This is a good way for all of us to keep in touch, especially if we cannot make it to the live sessions. 

Thursday, 9 June 2011

Oh home, yes I am home... Home is wherever I'm with you. HEY!

I am home!

It was an amazing trip, saw lots, ate lots but I am very delighted to be home. I missed my new (to me) car and I missed my Dad and my cat, Emma. I am beat. It has been a very long day today. But I have things to do! So sleep will come later on.

I have, in true Riley fashion, created a brand spankin' new list for what I have left to do in ECMP 355 up until June 21. I have plans upon plans for my podcasts, portfolio, etc. but I need to actually get started. My eight day stint in the Maritimes has not helped my productivity whatsoever with these projects, although I loved being able to blog about what I had been doing and post some photos. There was no time to just sit and do work for longer than maybe an hour, so I am feeling stressed, looking at blogs and seeing that people already have their final projects posted! AHHHHHHH!

So, with that said my plans for my podcast have been finalized, and I have decided that I am going to keep my number of podcasts for this project to approx 4-5 podcasts. They'll probably be anywhere from 15-20 minutes I'm thinking, since my first one with the full versions of the songs was close to 42 minutes long. I'll do some more talking, so recording my voice for the podcasts will be one of my larger tasks in the next week. Some themes that I am planning on covering are:
- Awesome Canadian Artists ( I do believe in my first version of my podcast I said "awesome" an obscene amount of times, so that will have to be dealt with...)
- Kid-Friendly podcast (Awesome songs that kids can learn to sing or play, good themes, etc. It'll be more geared towards younger kids, but I think a lot of the songs that I plan to use can be transferred to older grades.)
- Easy Guitar Songs that don't Suck (I know at many Regina high schools they offer guitar classes, and I play guitar. I would love love love love to teach a guitar class... maybe I'll even record myself playing a bit of something?)
- Musicians that students can learn from (I have already begun a list including Adele, Ray Charles... and if anyone has any suggestions leave em please and thanks!)

I am also very excited to report that one of my friends who happens to be a neighbour has accepted my invitation to record The White Stripes "We Are Gonna Be Friends" song for my Kid-Friendly podcast! So it will be a recording of her and her bro-heim, rocking out this tunesky. I am so pumped!

I am also listening to a lovely lady named Meredith Jordan, whose name and website was passed onto me by none other than Dean Shareski himself... Your daughter has some kick-butt songs Dean! I am planning on emailing her for permission to use "The Germ Song"? If you speak with her before I do, put in a good word!

I have lists of songs and artists for each theme, so I basically just need to DO IT. So this week will be a lot of me sitting in my room or on my couch talking to myself.

I have also decided to instead of using a Podomatic account to post my podcasts, I would like to try using Posterous, because from what I understand you can also use Posterous to post photos, and can post them to Twitter, which I would like to start doing.

So on that note, I have to get moving! Once again, AHHHHHHHHHH!

Anybody wanna see another picture from my trip?!?!

In the public gardens in Halifax, there is this beautiful Japanese flower bush right in front of the gates, and there is a little plaque in front of the flowers stating that this lovely pink plant signifies the relationship between Halifax and a city in Japan. Pretty neat huh?

Sunday, 5 June 2011

New Game Plan!

Hey Team,

I have a new game plan for my final reflection project. As you probably have read, my podcast plan went awry when it was pointed out to me that I needed permission to use the selected songs in my podcast. The solution that Dean and I discussed is for me to try and get permission for any songs that I can (and I have permission for one song so far - thanks Jenn Grant!), and to use short clips from the other songs that I do not have/could not receive an answer for. Hopefully I can do this and still create a satisfactory podcast. I want to focus less on the music and individual songs, and more on the content of the music, why I chose it, the artist and why I listen to them/chose them, etc.

I have been in touch with David from the Arts & Crafts label in Canada, they represent artists like Dan Mangan, Feist and Broken Social Scene, and he had many questions for me about which artists I was interested in using/how many songs I wanted, so I hope to hear back from him soon! It has been hard this week to get to work on my new plan for my podcasts, but I know that when I get back it will not be difficult to get them rolling, I have plans written out for them so I'll just need to sit down and do it up.

So this is all for now, it has been a crazy couple of days on my end, I have covered three provinces in five days! We have been driving and walking and flying and ferrying and it has been awesome but tiring! I'll leave you lovely folks with another couple of pictures from my travels, the first one is from the lobster supper that we went to on Saturday night in New Glasgow, PEI. I got my sweet bib, just as promised, and a pound of lobster goodness. It was awesome. The second is from the ferry ride we took today from PEI to Nova Scotia. It was so cool to be right on the ocean! Tomorrow we have another full day: Maritime Museum of the Atlantic, Peggy's Cove, Alexander Keith's Brewery... Don't wait up!

Kidding, Dean!

Saturday, 4 June 2011

 Here are some pictures from today. I went to the Anne of Green Gables house in Cavendish, PEI, about 5 minutes from where we have been staying. It is a beautiful site, the picture above is from one of two trails that you can take around the area. This was the Balsam trail, and my sister took some very nice pictures, the weather was cooperating so we were happy, since it rained all day yesterday.
The Green Gables house is pretty cool inside, lots of old artifacts and neat tidbits that I learned. My sister was especially surprised to learn that Anne Shirley was in fact not a real person. She was a little bummed out by this information. I loved just being able to walk the trails and take in the beautiful scenery. We also went down to Cavendish Beach, and saw the ocean in all of its glory. I think it has finally hit me that I am here! Tomorrow we leave on the ferry for Halifax, NS. We'll be staying there for the remainder of our trip, and I am excited to check out that city as well, I've heard lots of great things about it.

I'll post some more pictures soon as we have taken bunches upon bunches of them. Tonight we are going for an authentic lobster supper at a place nearby called Fisherman's Wharf. This is the kind of joint where you get one of those plastic bibs with a picture of a lobster on it. I can't wait! This is the kind of legit PEI experience I have been searching for!

Thursday, 2 June 2011

Live from Cavendish, PEI...


I am currently in a lovely little place called Cavendish, Prince Edward Island. We drove here from Moncton, N.B. this afternoon via Confederation Bridge. So freaking cool! My Mom's fiance, Trent, lived all around the Martitimes during his university years, while he went to Dalhousie University. Trent was living in Summerside, PEI while Confederation Bridge was being built! Look up some info on that, it's very interesting and I had no idea it existed.

I love PEI. Some things that I have learned about it so far:
  • Recycling is mandatory by law here. Which I think should be enforced by law everywhere, in every province. Why don't we have this law in Saskatchewan I wonder?
  • PEI is cottage country in many parts. Where we are, there are many cottage/resort places that can be rented out. I thought this was a super cool idea. So smart for a wedding or family reunion or a vacation like my fam-jam is doing right now. Our little cottage is at a place called Anne's Windy Poplars and it is so neat! So much space, and really cute. We have a BBQ, stove, dishwasher, hot tub, and wireless (thank goodness!)
  • The traffic lights in PEI are all shape-oriented. For example: the red/stop light is a square, the green/go light is a circle, and the yellow/caution light is a diamond shape. My mother and boyfriend, who both happen to be colourblind, appreciate this concept. Once again, why don't we have this in Saskatchewan?
  • All of the dirt, even in all the fields (PEI is very agricultural which surprised me!), are red. Red dirt. Everywhere. It makes the land seem more magical and vivid. So cool. 
  • Everyone in the Maritimes has a hint of an accent. Sometimes you notice, sometimes not. They all say "youse" though, which I try not to laugh at.
  • There is also a very strong Francophone culture in all of the Maritimes. All of the signs are bilingual here, which is different from the signs in Sask, as well in PEI, some of the houses that we passed have gold stars on their doors, which means that they are Acadian. Trent explained to me that it is a very proud culture, but the language can be confusing because it mixes French and English words in the same sentences!
We are 3 hours ahead here. Which totally messed all of us up yesterday, we were done by 9pm, which was 6pm SK time! But today we are on track, and settled into our wonderful little cottage! Tomorrow we are going to go into Charlottetown, and check out what's good there. Do some shopping and some pub-visiting!

That's all for now!