The French Horn

Hello! Today I will be blogging about the French horn. The French horn is a brass band instrument with a loud, full sound. Its used has been recorded in history as far back as 1753, when slides were first inserted that aid in changing the tone of the horn.

The French horn has been made in many simpler forms through history. At first, the the instrument had no valves and could only sound a few notes. Now, it has three rotary valves and can make a wide variety of low and high notes. There is complex tubing, and if this tubing was laid out straight, it would total in 24 feet long!

The French horn has a very regal sound that is very soft and pleasant, but loud enough to please large crowds. If you are a horn player, you may find yourself playing solos, melodies, harmonies, or bass background tones.

If you are an early French horn player, you want to start at the note low C, which is one line below the staff. This note is the most basic and one of the easiest to play. The highest note you would want to play is G, which is on a line in the middle of the staff. Later, you can work lower and higher.

If you have a double horn, that means you can play C and B-flat scales. If you have a double horn, you press down the thumb key (above valve 1) to play all notes above G. This will give you a clearer and more natural sound.

I like playing the French horn because of its royal past and regal sound. It is soft and I find it easy to play. The horn is easy to play and I love to make beautiful music with it. I recently got a The Greatest Showman book of the soundtrack in horn form for a full orchestra that I have begun playing. The Tradition of Excellence book my Bruce Pearson and Ryan Nowlin has great warm-ups and beginner tracks.

If you need a fingering chart for French Horn so you can learn how to play each note, CLICK HERE.

Feel free to comment. Thank you for reading!

Susan

 

Chocolate

Hello! Today I will be blogging about chocolate. Chocolate is a delicious candy made from cacao beans. There are many popular companies that manufacture chocolate, such as Hershey’s, Cadbury, and Nestle.

Chocolate was first started 4,000 years ago, in ancient Mesoamerica, or modern-day Mexico. This was where the first cacao trees were planted. The Olmec, an early Latin American civilization, drank chocolate during rituals, and as medicine. Centuries later, the Mayans praised chocolate as the ‘drink of the gods’. The brew was made of cornmeal, chilies, water, and ground and roasted cocoa beans. It was called ‘xocolatl’, or ‘bitter water’. In the 15th century, the Aztecs used cocoa beans as currency. They believed chocolate was a gift from one of their gods. They drank it as a refreshing drink, and while preparing for war. According to legend, Hernan Cortes went on an expedition to the Americas in 1528, searching for gold and silver, and instead finding a cup of cocoa served to him by the Aztec emperor. When Cortes brought this drink back to his homeland in Spain, they adopted the drink and the plant, and sweetened the beverage with sugar and honey. The Spanish kept their knowledge of chocolate mum for nearly a century. When King Louis XIII of France married Anne of Austria, Anne brought samples of chocolate as a gift. Soon, chocolate spread through Europe, and cocoa plants spread through Europe. In 1828, the invention of the chocolate press was made, which squeezed cocoa butter from cacao beans, leaving a powder behind. This cocoa powder was then mixed with liquids, poured into a mold, and solidified into the chocolate we know today.

History from Chocolate.org

There are endless flavours of chocolate, some of the popular ones being caramel, cookies & cream, and nougat. I enjoy Hershey’s Skor bars the best, as the sweet butter toffee and milk chocolate create a wonderful, crunchy mix. However, I also enjoy Mars bars, and Kit Kat bars, as well. There is a flavour of chocolate for everyone.

I like eating chocolate because it acts as a de-stressor for me. Whenever I have a lot going on, I eat a small square of chocolate and it perks me up again. Sometimes I enjoy a mug of hot chocolate on a chilly day. An easy recipe for hot chocolate is:

  • A mug of hot water
  • 1 tablespoon white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cocoa

Just mix these ingredients for a delicious drink!

FUN FACTS

  1. Chocolate makers use 40% of the world’s almonds and 20% of the world’s peanuts.
  2. Chocolate milk was invented in Jamaica.
  3. The biggest chocolate seller in the world is Brussels Airport, which sells over 800 tons of chocolate each year.

What is your favourite chocolate bar?

If you are interested in knowing more about chocolate, CLICK HERE.

Feel free to comment. Thank you for reading!

Susan

 

Musings

Hello! Today I will be blogging about musings. I find that at my adolescent age, I ‘muse’ a great deal, or think about ‘deep’ things. Many people say, ‘there was a teenager sitting on the doorstep, thinking about life’ as if it were a mocking, shallow, stupid thing. But life is fascinating, and the more you think about it, the more you know. I find myself often caught up in these musings, and I will list some of them here.

  1. I think I pick up ‘classified’ information in school, but really all I hear is what my teacher wants me to know. There are many things going on at school concerning other students that my school staff keep to themselves. Sometimes I hear them talking in the halls, and think ‘Oh, okay, that’s new info to file,’ when why would they talk about it in the open unless it’s okay for me to hear? Unless they just trust me not to break anything out…
  2. What do I even do in life? If I just die, my presence on this planet will be gone. I’m not saying my spirit won’t remain somewhere else, but I will vanish off the face of the Earth. What will I have done? What will I have changed?
  3. Infinity is, well, infinity. Never ending, always continuing. How can we have numbers when they technically don’t exist in infinity? We though the universe was never ending, but now we think their are millions of universes in the cosmos, and the cosmos is never ending, and there are millions of cosmoses! How can something just go on for infinity? How can it never stop? Imagine how small we are if the world is endless…
  4. We have scientific ways of explaining things, but how does science work? We know how light is recieved through your eye, retina, iris, pupil and all, but how does that work? How can we remember, how can we smell, how can we sleep? What is sleep, even? What are you doing when you sleep? I try to remember when exactly I fall asleep, but I suddenly just black out. I know we dream in Rapid Eye Movement (REM) sleep, but what are dreams? How do we come up with them? Are they things from alternate universes???
  5. Life is fragile; you only get one. You can mess it up in one single move. I am baffled by all the things in my kitchen alone that could be used to kill. How could someone even imagine killing another living, breathing, intelligent being? It can take just one stroke to end someone’s life. I think the thing that baffles me most about life is how completely unpredictable it is, at least to us humans.

These are just thoughts. I don’t expect them to be answered, at least not in this life, but I just wonder, over and over, about these things, and countless others.

If you want to know more about the scientific concept of dreams, CLICK HERE.

Feel free to comment. Thank you for reading!

Susan

Evolution by Natural & Artificial Selection

 

Only the best survive. This is true in evolution. 

This essay will discuss and teach the theroy of evolution. Evolution is adapting and changing to better suit your environment. All of life is constantly doing this – animals evolve to live easier in their environment; predators may develop sharper teeth, or prey better-camouflaging coats. Plants might evolve to suit a new climate – that species may develop water cavities if they are in drier countries or produce more fruit if animals start consuming it more often. Even humans evolve. 

There are two types of evolution that will be covered in this document: natural and artificial selection. Evolution by natural selection is when life evolves independently. In the wilderness, only the best survive – you must be strong, healthy and attractive to get by. 

Scientific theory states that we all evolved from a single organism, DNA. As DNA multiplies, it mutates and deforms, thus creating multitudes of different species of life. This life further changes as it adapts to its new world. In evolution by natural selection, the most healthy, attractive and strong are the most likely to produce young, thus the species is always evolving and improving. Some examples of natural selection are giraffes and frogs. 

Giraffes used to have short necks. Over time, they evolved to have longer necks so they were able to access more food and nutrients, becoming healthier and better suited to reproduce. Therefore the giraffes with longer necks had more young and passed on their genes, continuing to change, and to lengthen their necks, thus becoming the animals we see in savannahs today. 

Frogs lay many eggs, hundreds at a time. But out of these many eggs, only a very small fraction survive. Many get eaten by carnivores or fail to develop properly. Only the strongest live to hatch, and only a few tadpoles finally morph into frogs. 

This, in full, is natural selection. 

Evolution by artificial selection is when humans breed animals to create a desired variety. Another term for artificial selection is breeding. Dogs, cats, horses, birds, and many other animals are bred by humans to create different variations. Artificial selection can happen for many reasons. 

Dogs are often bred for hunting. They may be bred to have sharper teeth or a keener sense of smell or hearing. The beagle has been bred to have a white-tipped tail so that the owner can track it through the forest easier. Horses are bred for appearance or ability. Cats are usually bred for looks, if the owner wants a long- or short-haired cat, or flat ears or short legs. 

Plants, too, can be bred. Fruit trees are often bred to withstand different climates or produce different tastes. Wild plants may be made into small, delicate shrubs.  

Evolution by artificial selection happens when breeders select a male and female specimen and mate them to produce young. In the case of plants, a botanist would harvest the pollen of a male plant and place it in the female plant to germinate and produce seeds that would be planted to create the new variety. If a horse is bred for competition, the breeder would want parents with certain traits, such as grace and strength, and cross-breed them to produce a mixture of the two. New breeds and species can be developed by artificial selection. 

Thus, this essay is brought to a close. Hopefully it has educated you fully on the topic of evolution. 

GLOSSARY 

Breed – to produce (offspring) by hatching or gestation 

Germinate – to cause to sprout or develop 

Evolution – descent with modification from preexisting species: cumulative inherited change in a population of organisms through time leading to the appearance of new forms: the process by which new species or populations of living things develop from preexisting forms through successive generations 

Artificial – caused or produced by a human 

Definitions provided by Merriam Webster 

REFERENCES  

Cosmos: Possible Worlds by Ann Druyan, Chapter 5: The Search for Intelligent Life on Earth 

Dinosaurs: A Visual Encyclopedia, by Dorling Kindersley (DK), Section 1: Prehistoric Life 

Only the best survive. This is true in evolution. 

This essay will discuss and teach the theroy of evolution. Evolution is adapting and changing to better suit your environment. All of life is constantly doing this – animals evolve to live easier in their environment; predators may develop sharper teeth, or prey better-camouflaging coats. Plants might evolve to suit a new climate – that species may develop water cavities if they are in drier countries or produce more fruit if animals start consuming it more often. Even humans evolve. 

There are two types of evolution that will be covered in this document: natural and artificial selection. Evolution by natural selection is when life evolves independently. In the wilderness, only the best survive – you must be strong, healthy and attractive to get by. 

Scientific theory states that we all evolved from a single organism, DNA. As DNA multiplies, it mutates and deforms, thus creating multitudes of different species of life. This life further changes as it adapts to its new world. In evolution by natural selection, the most healthy, attractive and strong are the most likely to produce young, thus the species is always evolving and improving. Some examples of natural selection are giraffes and frogs. 

Giraffes used to have short necks. Over time, they evolved to have longer necks so they were able to access more food and nutrients, becoming healthier and better suited to reproduce. Therefore the giraffes with longer necks had more young and passed on their genes, continuing to change, and to lengthen their necks, thus becoming the animals we see in savannahs today. 

Frogs lay many eggs, hundreds at a time. But out of these many eggs, only a very small fraction survive. Many get eaten by carnivores or fail to develop properly. Only the strongest live to hatch, and only a few tadpoles finally morph into frogs. 

This, in full, is natural selection. 

Evolution by artificial selection is when humans breed animals to create a desired variety. Another term for artificial selection is breeding. Dogs, cats, horses, birds, and many other animals are bred by humans to create different variations. Artificial selection can happen for many reasons. 

Dogs are often bred for hunting. They may be bred to have sharper teeth or a keener sense of smell or hearing. The beagle has been bred to have a white-tipped tail so that the owner can track it through the forest easier. Horses are bred for appearance or ability. Cats are usually bred for looks, if the owner wants a long- or short-haired cat, or flat ears or short legs. 

Plants, too, can be bred. Fruit trees are often bred to withstand different climates or produce different tastes. Wild plants may be made into small, delicate shrubs.  

Evolution by artificial selection happens when breeders select a male and female specimen and mate them to produce young. In the case of plants, a botanist would harvest the pollen of a male plant and place it in the female plant to germinate and produce seeds that would be planted to create the new variety. If a horse is bred for competition, the breeder would want parents with certain traits, such as grace and strength, and cross-breed them to produce a mixture of the two. New breeds and species can be developed by artificial selection. 

Thus, this essay is brought to a close. Hopefully it has educated you fully on the topic of evolution. 

GLOSSARY 

Breed – to produce (offspring) by hatching or gestation 

Germinate – to cause to sprout or develop 

Evolution – descent with modification from preexisting species: cumulative inherited change in a population of organisms through time leading to the appearance of new forms: the process by which new species or populations of living things develop from preexisting forms through successive generations 

Artificial – caused or produced by a human 

Definitions provided by Merriam Webster 

REFERENCES  

Cosmos: Possible Worlds by Ann Druyan, Chapter 5: The Search for Intelligent Life on Earth 

Dinosaurs: A Visual Encyclopedia, by Dorling Kindersley (DK), Section 1: Prehistoric Life 

To learn more about evolution, CLICK HERE.

Feel free to comment. Thank you for reading!

Susan

Simple Bookmarks

Hello! Today I will teach you how to sew simple fabric bookmarks. These bookmarks are fun, easy, and quick to sew, and make great gifts for any occasion! You will need:

  • Cotton fabric
  • Fabric scissors
  • Sewing pins
  • Sewing machine
  • Thread
  • Ribbon (optional)
  • Lighter

 

Step 1: Cut two pieces of cotton that are each 2 x 7 inches.

 

Step 2: If you wish to add a ribbon tassel, cut a length of ribbon 6 inches long. Melt the edges so they don’t fray, and pin one end to the top of one piece.

 

Step 3: Sew the two pieces right sides together. Make sure the ribbon is secure by sewing back and forth over it a few times. Clip the corners of the bookmark and turn it right side out.

 

Step 4: Topstitch the bookmark at 1/8 – 1/4 inch, pulling out the edges with a pin to make sure it is completely turned out.

Congratulations! You now have a beautiful bookmark to use yourself, or give to a close friend.

If you want more bookmark tutorials, CLICK HERE.

Feel free to comment. Thank you for reading!

Susan

Gacha Club

Hello! Today I will be blogging about Gacha Club. Gacha Club is an entertaining dress-up game that can be played on many devices, including Apple products, PCs, and Android. Here is some basic information:

  • Producer: Lunime
  • Age: 10+
  • Available on Apple and Android products as well as PCs.
  • Cost: free

Gacha Club is the updated version of the game Gacha Life. It was released in June 2020. Gacha Club is an anime dress-up game with multitudes of options for even the tiniest details, like hand positions and pupil shapes. You can create virtually anything on it if you know your options. It is possible to create book and movie characters, like Harry Potter or Avatar. There are safety precautions as the common skin colours have been omitted as clothing colour options.

Gacha Club is a fun game to play as you are in control of who you create. You can create unique and never-seen-before characters, using a vast selection of customizing options. You may change hair, stance, facial features, clothing, profiles, and many other things.

I was first introduced to Gacha Club in August 2020. She showed me around, which I am thankful for, as I would never have been able too find all the customizations. If you know someone who owns this platform and are interested in owning it, ask them to show you around first. If you like interactive designer games, then you will enjoy Gacha Club.

If you are interested in owning this game, CLICK HERE.

Feel free to comment. Thank you for reading!

Susan