News: at vsatips & at home

In case you’ve been wondering why I haven’t published anything new recently, here’s why and what I plan to do about it.

My New Hip

My first and the biggest reason was my recent hip replacement, which I wrote about in 2 Posts and a 3rd I never finished (about when a THR patient can resume various activities.)

Visiting an Offshore Oil Rig

My son works for Shell as an Engineer, and he was leaving to work for a year on their newest offshore rig called the Appomattox. Family members were invited down to Texas to visit the rig before it was launched out into the Gulf of Mexico. This was such a unique and cool opportunity, it motivated me to really get myself mobile again very quickly. So we went to Corpus Christie a few weeks after my new hip surgery to see what living on an offshore oil rig is all about.

It was an amazing experience!

I took tons of pictures and videos but was asked by Shell not to post any of them publicly or online :-( What I can share is their own public video. So below is a very cool video that Shell Oil produced about the amazing Appomattox, which is the rig my son is living on. The video describes it’s construction which was completed in South Korea and shows it setting sail for the USA.

Changing vsatips to its New Domain

About a year ago I acquired the domain but then I never switched to it because it seemed complicated and I was worried I’d goof something up. I finally ‘bit the bullet’ and made the switch! I didn’t goof anything up either!! But I still do have a little bit of work to do to make sure that everything that was connected to my site, before remains connected after the switch.

Hallway Messages

My husband and I started a new company called Hallway Messages. You can read about what we’re doing here.

My Hubpages Articles

Around the same time I began this website my early work was transferred  to Hubpages from a blogging community I’d joined to learn all about blogging. That company went out of business and made arrangements with Hubpages, a similar platform, to absorb all of the users. I’ve made a concentrated effort in the 3 years since that occurred to get to know Hubpages and find a place for myself within that community. I haven’t been very successful in that endeavor.

Hubpages originally published my original work but as I update and expand those articles they’ve fairly consistently moved things to a category in which they don’t appear on Google. In my opinion that action makes those articles all but useless because no one could ever find them. Apparently Hubpages was bought out by or merged with someone else and they completely changed the way that they do things. So, once again I discovered that I would need to learn an entirely new platform. I had decided to give it one last try for the last 30 days, so I’d been vigorously updating things and engaging in their communities to see if I might want to keep my content there. Once I came to my new realization that this is no longer the Hubpages I begrudgingly joined three years ago I decided to call it quits.

I did find the communities in general to be friendly and helpful, but I realized that there’s an atmosphere there I can’t describe well. It resembles a sort of depressing corporate mentality that I simply can’t or don’t want to identify with at this point in my career…not that all corporate mentalities are depressing…but I’ve experienced some that are, and that’s the closest thing I can think of to describe the atmosphere I feel there.


That experience has made me appreciate being on WordPress in a way that I hadn’t in a long time. I remember feeling this way when I first joined, and how wonderful that feeling was knowing that I am truly 100% in control of my own destiny and success.

Hubpages is sort-of an ‘all-consuming’ environment that draws you in without your realizing it and seems to try hard to not let you go. So for the last 30 days I’ve been so consumed with it that I’ve not produced any new content here or at vsatrends. That stops as of today!

While there isn’t really a lot of my content that matters to me that much at Hubpages, there are 3 things which do:

  1. An article I wrote about my Dad and a friend of his about when they were Marines fighting with Dog Company during the Korean War.
  2. An article about my family’s experience when our home network was hacked.
  3. An article about the technology which allowed our home network to be hacked.

I will be publishing those here some time in the near future.

Tomorrow I’m taking a quick day trip to visit my sister and niece. On the following day, Wednesday, I’ll be back home and once again will devote all of my attention to writing full-time at vsatips. In the meantime, if you missed it here’s a link to the first in what will be a series of articles about Firewalls and protecting your home network which I plan  to finally finish soon. I’m also including a 2nd link below to another series I began on Cutting the Cord from your traditional TV program supplier.

I Cut the Cord from Time Warner Cable in our home in the fall of 2016. I wanted to wait for a while to make sure that the experience was a good one before writing the rest of my guide about the steps we used…but waiting 2 years was never my intention! Yet almost 2 years later  I realize that we still are alone amongst our friends in having done this. The process was really simple looking back on it and the cost savings have been tremendous! It’s even easier now to find other sources to supply you with the television content you’re leaving than it was 2 years ago, so I realize that I need to finish this for my friends and family.

Last I’d like to say Thank You to all my regular readers and subscribers for sticking with me even though I haven’t been writing much this lately…I promise that will change as of today!

About vsajewel

Hi...I'm the author of 2 main blogs on WordPress...vsatips...where I write tech tips for mobile devices...primarily ios...2nd is vsatrends...where I write less about tech things and more about everything else. I also host a YouTube channel which I use to better illustrate some of the 'how to's' in my posts. I love everything about technology. Currently, my main interests/platforms are ios, Windows and Amazon Echo. Recently I decided we were spending way too much money with our local cable provider. So I decided to cut the cord. There is a definite learning curve, especially the antennae part, but we successfully did that and are now saving a boatload of money, so I write some about that. I also am extremely conscientious about security because of an event my family endured , so I write a lot about that too. Two sub-categories of security I tend to focus on are the password manager Dashlane and Hardware Firewalls. Last, I take a lot of notes and have been a beta tester for Evernote for many years. I love Evernote! In recent years Apple has beefed up Apple Notes a it’s become a fairly serious note long as its OK if you lose or mess up all your Apple note data. I write about those 2 note platforms primarily.
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