Monday Magic - Online-Convert

Today I offer another free online app to help you convert video files.

Online-Convert has a basic free tier for those who have an occasional video they need to convert to other formats, like a cell phone video to an MP4.

However, when you're on the website and you click Basic (free), it automatically opens with the requirement to set up an account.

This is NOT necessary according to their usage terms. Setting up an account is only needed if you plan to get a pro plan ($6.42/month) or any other paid plan.

To use the free service, just click All Tools at the top left of the home page and select the Converter you need, or the Tools you need for help with Screenshots, Images, OCR, or Documents.

Online-Convert is a robust utility suite with tons of creds from major corporations like Amazon, Uber, Facebook, Ikea, etc. You can download the app from the Google Play store and iOS. It can be an AddOn to Chrome and Firefox. 

As always, read the Terms of Service for complete details about their service which I did.

In reading the Help files—which is always a good idea before you sign up to anything online—I was glad to read the following:

Do you keep a copy of my file?

Image by FelixMittermeier from Pixabay
We do not keep a copy of your file. You can delete your file from our server immediately after the conversion.

Otherwise, all transferred files will be automatically deleted after 24 hours or after 10 downloads.

We guarantee the privacy of your file because no one else has access to the file except you. Online-Convert does not back up or actively monitor your files; the service is completely automated.

Do you obtain the legal right of my file when I use your service?

Absolutely not. We do not intend to gain the legal right to your files. In addition, all user files are deleted after a short period of time.

In other words, you keep the copyright and ownership of the source file and the converted file. We don't own or have exclusive rights to your content.


I tested Online-Convert with a video file and was pleased with the result. The software is fast and easy to use.

If you use it, leave a comment and let me know if you were satisfied.

Review, The Hill

 An inspirational, underdog movie about baseball? Sign me up for that viewing because it ticks all the boxes. If it does for you too, then watch The Hill, starring Dennis Quaid, Colin Ford, and Joelle Carter.

Now streaming on Netflix but available to be rented on other streaming services, this American biographical sports drama is about baseball player Rickey Hill.

You may have never heard of Rickey Hill, an athlete who seemed to have an innate love of baseball as well as the ability to hit the ball like no other.

Challenged by a debilitating spinal disease that put him in leg braces from an early age, Hill met every challenge head-on. I'm glad his story has been told.

Hill's life was characterized by his struggles to overcome his physical handicap as well as the emotional handicap created by his father, a minister who saw baseball as a detraction from the Christian faith he wanted to instill in his children.

Actually, that wasn't the only reason he didn't want Rickey playing baseball. He feared his son's health would be seriously compromised by the physical demands of the sport.

Directed by Jeff Celentano from a screenplay by Angelo Pizzo and Scott Marshall Smith, The Hill was released in theaters by Briarcliff Entertainment on August 25, 2023. I think it's hard for movies that are Christian-based to draw big audiences with theatrical releases. Thank goodness for streaming services where they can reach bigger audiences.

The movie's director and the cast of Dennis Quaid, Colin Ford, Joelle Carter, Randy Houser, Jesse Berry, Bonnie Bedelia, and Scott Glenn deliver performances that are completely believable.

They nailed it from the Texas regional accents, the way of life for poor people, and the small town, small church community that existed from the 1950s until the late 1970s.

Faith, hope, a deep love of family and God, and believing that someone can achieve the heart's desire despite all evidence to the contrary make for an awesome family movie.


Be sure and watch The Hill and leave a good review of it if you want more family-oriented movies to watch. This one is a winner.

Prize: (1) $10 Amazon Gift Card by random draw.
Winner notified by email so be sure you enter your email correctly.
Entries verified for eligibility.

Saturday Share - Cooking Conversion Chart - Liquid Spoon Measure to Milliliters

Last week I gave a Fahrenheit to Celsius Conversion Chart for cooking because like most Americans, I don't think in metric.

Today I'm giving a Cooking Conversion Chart for Liquid Spoon Measure to Milliliters.

Sure, there's a math formula you can use, but looking at a covnersion chart is much easier and takes less time.

Feel free to copy and paste the chart that follows so you can print it out and put it with your cookbooks which is what I did.

Converting Liquid Spoon Measure to Milliliters

1/4 teaspoon            =    1.25 milliliters

1/2 teaspoon               2.5 milliters

3/4 teaspoon            =    3.75 milliliters

1 teaspoon                =    5.0 milliters

1-1/4 teaspoons       =   6.25 milliliters 

1-1/2 teaspoons       =   7.5 milliliters

1-3/4 teaspoons       =   8.75 milliliters

2 teaspoons              =   10.0 milliliters    

1 tablespoon             =   15.0 milliliters

2 tablespoons           =   30.0 milliliters

Next week I'll give a Cooking Conversion Chart for Liquid Cup Measure to Liters.


If this helps you out, leave a comment and let me know.

and receive exclusive content, bargains, freebies, and book talk.

Time Rolls On

Image by Bronisław DróżkaPixabay
Last night when I was talking to my brother Vernon, we were discussing the anomaly we know as Time.

By that I mean how some things that happened years ago are so fresh in the mind that it's as if they happened yesterday.

Here's an example that may be relevant to many of you if you have kids. No matter how old your kids are, I bet it seems as if it were only yesterday when they were born.

Where did all that time go?

Then there are times when you think about something that happened, and you stop to recall when that was. Suddenly, you're shocked to realize it was decades ago.

Here's an example. Our dad passed away in 1996. That was 28 years ago. Twenty-eight years is such a long time—a lifetime. How is that possible? How did so many years roll by?

Perhaps our conversation was simply an illustration of what Nathaniel Hawthorne said, "Time flies over us, but leaves its shadow behind."

I guess the shadow of time is what gives us those time-effect feelings.

Time has been ever present in the human consciousness for thousands of years. Virgil said, "Time flies; it flies never to be regained."


So many wise people—and witty ones too—have much to say about Time. I thought I'd share some of the wisdom and witticisms with you.

The future starts today, not tomorrow. Pope John Paul II

We must use time as a tool, not as a couch. John F. Kennedy

Those who make the worst use of their time are the first to complain of its brevity. ―Jean de La Bruyère

Remember, today is the tomorrow you worried about yesterday. ―Dale Carnegie

Yesterday is but today's memory, and tomorrow is today's dream. ―Khalil Gibran

For disappearing acts, it’s hard to beat what happens to the eight hours supposedly left after eight of sleep and eight of work. ―Doug Larson

The shorter way to do many things is to only do one thing at a time. ―Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Aside from velcro, time is the most mysterious substance in the universe. You can’t see it or touch it, yet a plumber can charge you upwards of seventy-five dollars per hour for it, without necessarily fixing anything. ―Dave Barry


I'll paraphrase what humorist Art Buchwald once said, "Whether it's the best of times or the worst of times, it's the only time you've got." Avoid regrets about things you did or didn't do. Make peace with yourself and use the time left to you to make it the best of times.


Prize: (1) $10 Amazon Gift Card by random draw.

Winner notified by email so be sure you enter your email correctly.

Entries verified for eligibility.

Sign up for I LOVE READINGJoan's free newsletter and receive exclusive content for subscribers.

You'll be notified each month of free books, giveaways, bargains, and new releases.

Review: The Bee Gees: How Can You Mend a Broken Heart on HBO Max

Now streaming on MAX
One rainy afternoon this week, I had the pleasure of watching the documentary about the Brothers Gibb: Barry, Maurice, Robin, and even Andy.

First, a confession. I LOVED The Bee Gees from the first moment I heard their first song on the radio in the U. S.

Not to take anything away from the Beatles who came before them, but The Bee Gees soulful music did it for me. Their early recordings had that kind of R&B feel with great music, tight harmonies, and lyrics that were poetic, sometimes haunting, sometimes surprisingly literary, and always singable.

I've never been a fan girl who wanted to know every detail of a singer's life. I just wanted to immerse myself in the music.

I think this ignorance of a celebrity's personal life is one reason I enjoy a good "rockumentary" that unflinchingly explores an artist's struggles—personal and career.

AWESOME: My One-Word Review.

 I loved the insights into their music writing process and the background of what was going on in their lives when they wrote specific songs.

Written by Mark Monroe and directed by Frank Marshall, this poignant film was narrated by Barry Gibb, the surviving brother.

The film was released first in theaters in the UK, Australia, and New Zealand on December 3, 2020. Nine days later, in a deal with HBO Max, it was released worldwide and was nominated for six Emmy Awards.

We have this album—in vinyl.

With interviews with the Bee Gees, their music producers, record company executives, some of the women in their lives, guitarists, drummers, and pianists who made up their band, the film shines a spotlight on the musical genius each of the brothers possessed.

The interviews from other performers like Justin Timberlake and other musical authorities underscroe that fact.

All of that will give you an idea of why their music is still played and why people love it.

 You'll see just how popular they were prior to 1971 and how they became even more popular a few years later.


I highly recommend this documentary for the story behind the story, the fabulous music, and the time travel to the 1970s.

and receive exclusive content, bargains, freebies, and book talk.

Writers and Imposter Syndrome

Image "Mistakes..." by John Hain from Pixabay
Many authors have a problem with Imposter Syndrome, that gnawing, persistent inability to believe your success is deserved.

This condition isn't limited to newly-minted authors. Many longtime authors can have that awful feeling that makes you anxious all the time and scared that you'll be revealed as a fraud.

What a terrible way to live your life. This seems to be a side effect of feeling you have to be perfect, write the perfect book, live in a perfect home, have perfect children, etc.

It's exhausting and emotionally damaging to you and those close to you. If the person I've described is you, chances are you're also a procrastinator, afraid of tackling something new for fear you can't do it perfectly. Afraid to publish the book you've written for fear it isn't good enough even though you've had it edited and proofed.

If you've published books and get bad reviews, you tell yourself, "They're right. I can't write. I'm a fraud." along with a whole bunch of self-defeating, negative crap.


Yes, there are professionals who deal with those who suffer from Imposter Syndrome with a plethora of solutions as expensive and complicated as psychotherapy, group therapy, and cognitive therapy.

There are books available if you want to try self-help, and there are some agreed upon self-help "tools" you can use: keep a journal and write about the situations you encounter and your feelings about them, open up to someone who is sympathetic to your plight, change your self-talk, and get out of your comfort zone.

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay.
If you've read me for very long, you know I'm a proponent of self-help books, keeping a journal, working on your self-talk, and trying new things even though they may scare you to death.

The only difference between a comfort zone and a grave are the dimensions.


Writers are like ordinary people with one exception. Because they create something from their emotions and their thoughts, they're extraordinarily sensitive about what they do when they first start writing.

They fear being laughed at or embarrassed because no one has heard of them before. Sharing what they created—a piece of writing—is akin to tearing out a piece of the soul and saying, "Look at this."

Writers can take the advice I mentioned in Rescuing, but there's also something else they can do. I've written about this before. It's a simple thing guaranteed to make the writer feel silly in the beginning, but it's a very powerful tool.

Practice talking about your book.

That's it—talk about it so you can describe your book in a couple of sentences. Yes, rehearse and rehearse some more. Do it in front of a mirror. Create a mock interview set in your den and have your kids interview you as if you were appearing on a talk show. Get comfortable talking about your book.

Work on a pitch of 2-3 sentences so when someone asks what's your book about, you can tell them intelligently instead of babbling for several minutes with "" muttered far too often.

When someone at a party asks, “What do you do?” Know exactly how to describe what you do. Say it confidently and be proud of it.

In addition to claiming your identity as a writer, be professional and tell whoever engages you in conversation that they can look you up on Amazon or your website—if you're at the stage where you have one or both. 

Don't be surprised if people are fascinated by you, The Author. You may have to get used to that.


Authors are amazing people. Remember, many people talk about writing a book, but very few actually write one to the very end and publish it. Be proud of what you've done. You're awesome!

12 Book and Reading Facts You May Not Know

Latin for "Seize the book."
Since today is cold and rainy, i.e., a perfect reading day, here are 12 Book and Reading Facts for your entertainment.

I often post interesting trivia about the world of books—writing them,  reading them, and publishing them—on social media. Maybe you've seen my Facebook Fan Page or my Instagram account.

I've been a reader since before I entered elementary school so reading was my earliest passion.

For many years, I've collected interesting tidbits about books, authors, and reading, and I update reading statistics every year. Enjoy!

1. The longest sentence ever printed is 823 words, and it's from Les Miserables by Victor Hugo. In today's world, that's a chapter in many books.

2. There’s a word for loving the smell of old books. You walk into a vintage bookstore, and that scent hits your nose. That smell is created by dust and other particulates in the book’s life and is called Bibliosmia.

3. The word Bibliosmia was coined in 2014 by Dr. Oli Tearle, a published author and Programme Director for English at Loughborough University. He is the publisher of Interesting Literature, a blog with more than 15 million views and over 100,000 Twitter followers.

4. Once upon a time, authors' names were not printed on the covers of their books because the covers  were considered artworks—beautiful drawings and featuring leather and even gold. There simply wasn't a place for the author’s name.

5. The first book ever written using a typewriter was The Adventures of Tom Sawyer by Mark Twain.

6. President Theodore Roosevelt is said to have read one book every day.

7. The three most read books in the world from a curated list by author James Chapman based on global sales are: The Holy Bible, Quotations from Chairman Mao Tse-Tung, and the Harry Potter book series.

8. People in India read more than any other country. On an average, they read 10 hours a week.

9. Illiteracy is still a huge problem throughout the world. One in five adults around the world can’t read or write, with the highest rates in South and West Asia and sub-Saharan Africa.

10. In 2024, in the United States, 21% of adults are illiterate.

In the U. S., 54% of adults have a literacy below a 6th-grade level with 20% below 5th-grade level.

11. Low levels of literacy costs the U. S. up to 2.2 trillion per year.

12. In a year, 44% of Americans do not read a book.

Takeaway Truth

Have you read a book recently? Do you set an example for your school-age children that reading is something fun to do, that it is essential for success in school?

Monday Magic: Desygner, Graphic Design Website

The Desygner website says this: "Go from blank page to finished graphic in seconds. It's here. It's easy. It's free, forever!"

Yes, this awesome website is another that will help you be a rock star as an amateur in graphic design.

It's free for a 1-person use. If you want more of the amazing features offered to subscribers, or there are more people on your team, the Pro plan is a modest $60/year.

For a business with up to 100 employees, you're looking at $12.50/month annualized. You can use Desygner on PC, Mac, iOS, and Android.

What You Get for Free

You have to register an account by email, Facebook, or Google. Then you can try these features:

* Access an immersive library of beautiful templates.
* Choose between 300+ design format types. Social media posts, presentations, posters, and more.
* Discover Millions of free images & icons.
* Use hundreds of free fonts.
* Limited Assets Library.
* Create designs in any custom dimension you need.
* Resize and repurpose your designs automatically with just one click.
* Create impactful animated designs.
* Import & edit 10 PDF files with 100% control over the document.
* Download designs with transparent background.

I searched the website but didn't find a clear explanation of the licensing they offer. I'm sure personal use is fine, but I'd like see a webpage named License that spells out what you can do with the images, templates, etc. 

Takeaway Truth

Still, I think it's worth a few minutes of your time to try Desygner. You may find the free level meets all of your needs, but be sure that the images you select say, "free for personal and commercial use" before using them publicly.

and receive exclusive content, bargains, freebies, and book talk.

Need a Hug? It's National Hugging Day

It's true, today really is set aside as National Hugging Day.

You may hear this referred to simply as Hug Day. It's an annual event dedicated to hugging that's celebrated on January 21.

Hug Day was created in 1986 by Kevin Zaborney, described as a Creative Social Entrepreneur.

The day is observed in the U. S., Canada, Brazil, and many other countries. 

History of Hugging

Of course, no one knows when hugging was invented. It's been a part of human behavior for thousands of years. 

In 2007, archeologists discovered a pair of human skeletons in a tomb near Mantua, Italy. They dubbed the skeletons the Lovers of Valdaro because they were buried holding each other in a tight embrace. Testing showed the pair of skeletons were about 6,000  years old.

I'm pretty sure hugs have been used since humans began interacting with each other. Hugs can be many things: comforting, platonic, soothing, reassuring, romantic, passionate, and a combination of several characteristics.

Parents hug their children which teaches children to hug those they love whether that's parents, grandparents, their sibling, their pets, or their teddy bears.

Odd Facts About Hugging

Studies have been done about this instinctive human behavior such as the one conducted at the 2008 Olympcics.

The study showed that spontaneous hugs between atheletes lasted about 3.17 seconds regardless of the gender of the huggers, their nationality, or their level of familiarity.

Studies conducted at airports found that people in emotionally neutral situations hugged to the right 92% of the time.

With people in emotional situations though, the hug can go either direction, but a hug to the right was given 81% of the time.

I find that interesting. Perhaps it's another example of body language?

A hug can help one deal better with stress. In a test of those who are stressed by public speaking, a hug  given to the speaker before entering the stage offered stress relief.

Humans aren't the only creatures who hug. Colombian spider monkeys, a higher social monkey species also hug, but there are 2 distinct types of hugs.

They embrace with the arms the way humans do, but they also do a face embrace where they rub their faces together. By the way, these monkeys primarily hug to the left.

Read more about these facts I found in an article from Psychology Today.

Takeaway Truth

Have you hugged anyone today? Have you been hugged today? Don't wait to receive a hug. Give a few, and you'll get an emotional return on that investment of a few minutes of your time.

Prize: (1) $10 Amazon Gift Card by random draw.
Winner notified by email so be sure you enter your email correctly.
Entries verified for eligibility.

Saturday Share - Cooking Conversion Chart - Fahrenheit to Celsius

This year I decided to give recipe baking instructions in Celsius as well as Fahrenheit since many readers live in other countries.

With that thought in mind, I made a Fahrenheit to Celsius Conversion Chart. Since I'm like most Americans, I don't think in metric.

Sure, in elementary school, we were taught to convert Fahrentheit to Celsius with a formula, i.e., subtract 32 from the Fahrenheit temperature then multiply the result by 5/9.

I decided making a temperature covnersion chart was less time-consuming than working the math formula each time I gave a recipe.

Feel free to copy and paste the chart that follows so you can print it out and put it with your cookbooks. (That's what I did.)

Next week I'll give a Conversion Chart for Imperial to Metric Measurements.

Fahrenheit to Celsius Conversion

Fahrenheit                Celsius

200° - 205°                 95°

220° - 225°                105°

245° - 250°                120°

275°                           135°

300° - 305°                150°

325° - 330°                165°

345° - 350°                175°

370° - 375°                190°

400° - 405°                205°

425° - 430°                220°

445° - 450°                230°

470° - 475°                245°

500°                           260°

Takeaway Truth

Leave a comment and let me know if this helps.

Prize: (1) $10 Amazon Gift Card by random draw.

Winner notified by email so be sure you enter your email correctly.

Entries verified for eligibility.

Review - Hunter Killer on Netflix

There's something about submarine movies that have appealed to me some Tom Clancy wrote The Hunt for Read October. Admittedly, the book is a dense read with a plethora of technical details.

The movie of the same name was hugely popular with Darling Hubby and me.

Consequently, I always take a look at a movie with a submarine setting and/or plot such as Hunter Killer, a 2018 American film starring Gerard Butler. that is currently streaming on Netflix.

The movie was directed by Donovan Marsh from a screenplay by Arne Schmidt and Jamie Moss which was based on Firing Point, a 2012 novel written by George Wallace and Don Keith.

About Hunter Killer

Captain Joe Glass, a submarine captain, races to prevent World War III. He's on the hunt for a U.S. sub in distress in the Arctic Ocean. 

Throw in a secret Russian coup, a conspiracy aimed at changing the world order, and an elite  group of Navy SEALs with a daring plan to rescue the Russian president. Exciting story? Yes, and no more outlandish than the plot of The Hunt for Red October.

Released in October 2018, the film didn't do well at the box office which I personally find surprising after having seen it. Hunter Killer is a solid action flick with a thrilling plot, excellent characterizations, believable actions and motivations, and a cast that brings the story alive.


Gerard Butler as Captain Joe Glass, USS Arkansas, is superb. He is the kind of actor who is imminently believable in whatever role he tackles whether it's a Spartan in 300 or a sub commander in this movie.

Gary Oldman was CJCS Charles Donnegan, Common as RADM John Fisk.

Linda Cardellini was Jayne Norquist, National Security Agency, and Caroline Goodall was U. S. President Dover.

Actors portraying USS Arkansas crew members are: David Gyasi as COB Wallach, Gabriel Chavarria as Jimenez, DSRV pilot, Carter MacIntyre as XO Brian Edwards, Taylor John Smith as Belford, Sonar tech, and Christopher Goh as Park.

Those portraying Navy SEALs are: Ryan McPartlin as Matt Johnstone, Zane Holtz as Paul Martinelli, Michael Trucco as Devin Hall, and Toby Stephens as Bill Beaman.

Alexander Diachenko as Russian President Zakarin with Yuri Kolokolnikov as Oleg, Presidential Security, and Michael Gor as Admiral Dmitriy Durov, Minister of Defence.

Igor Jijikine portrayed Tretiak, Russian Special Forces, and Ilia Volok was Captain Vlade Sutrev, RFS Yevchenko. The late Michael Nyqvist portrayed Captain Andropov, RFS Konek, in his last movie role.

My 2 Cents

Darling Hubby and I enjoyed this film very much. In fact, it's one of the better movies we've seen lately. It's great to see a movie where the storytelling structure makes sense.

I often think we live in a streaming world offering far too many ridiculous super hero movies, endless derivatives of once popular films, and flicks whose writers seem to have no concept of what makes a good story. 

Hunter Killer offers an intelligent story, good guys who may be flawed but who do the right thing for the right reason, and bad guys who are unquestionably bad guys.  How refreshing to see the so-called heroes of movies actually be heroic.

Takeaway Truth

Sorry if I jumped up on my soapbox there at the end. I guess I've been seeing too many movies that are just inferior. Fortunately, Hunter Killer isn't one. Watch it. You'll like it.

Prize: (1) $10 Amazon Gift Card by random draw.

Winner notified by email so be sure you enter your email correctly.

Entries verified for eligibility.