Thursday, August 30, 2012

UnoTelly Review and Giveaway

I like television, but I'm not what you'd call a television fanatic. However, certain television shows have definitely enhanced different periods of my life. Some of the shows that I watched as a child can instantly take me back in time when I see them now. Those memories are strong. It's hard sometimes to find some of my favorite shows that I remember, since I'm not back home in the USA. So when the folks at UnoTelly contacted me and asked if I would like to try out their system, I jumped at the chance.

UnoTelly is a great solution for USA and UK expats like myself, because it gives you the opportunity to keep up with the shows that you may miss from back home...wherever back home may be. The UnoTelly system allows those outside of the USA to watch Hulu, Bravo, and other USA channels. And for those from the UK who are living abroad, it allows them to enjoy British channels, such as Channel 4OD, Channel 5, ITV, etc. I find that seeing some of my favorites can sometimes help bouts of homesickness. I suppose it's the comfort of the familiar :-)

UnoTelly is great because no matter where you're living, you can keep up with the shows you love. It also works on a variety of devices such as computers, Smartphones, TVs, Xbox 360, PS3, and others. The easy access is a definite plus of this system. The service is easy to set up, even for non-techies like me. That was a big plus for me!

My favorite channel to watch is TV Land because I can find a lot of my favorite older shows on there and they also have new shows that I like. It's a fun channel. When I watch...I'm in nostalgia heaven!

The pricing for UnoTelly is as follows: $4.95 per month for the Premium plan, which gives you access to free channels and the premium channels. This plan gives you the chance to watch things like network channels, Hulu, HGTV, TV Land, etc. The Gold plan is priced at $7.95 per month and it gives you extra channels for even more enjoyment.

If you'd like to experience UnoTelly for yourself, I've got a 25% discount coupon to give away to five readers who are interested in trying the Gold plan.

A couple of rules:
  • - one entry/comment per reader
  • - Just leave me a comment and let me know that you want to be entered into the drawing.
I will pick five winners in a random drawing.

The deadline for entries is Monday, September 3, 2012 at 11:59pm. I will announce the winner on Tuesday, September 4, 2012 in a blog post on that day.

Good luck!

Disclosure: UnoTelly provided access to their service to me free of charge for reviewing purposes. I received no monetary compensation. All opinions are mine.
UPDATE: This giveaway is now closed. Winners will be announced in the next post!

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Our Olympic Adventure - Post #4

Today I'm once again sharing some of my experiences at the Olympics in London. This is post #4 and if you've missed any of my previous posts, you can find them here, here, and here.

I'm going to pick up my story on this past Monday, when we had our final day of attending Olympic events. We had the good fortune to attend the athletics and see lots of track and field action. The vibe of the Olympic Stadium was extraordinary! All of the events that we saw were great, but seeing the events in the stadium felt extra Olympic-esque :-) It was a fitting end to our time as Olympic spectators.

Above: The Olympic Stadium

Above: A view of the stadium from the green space of the park

Above: Inside the stadium before the competition started
Above: A view of the Olympic flame and below another view of the flame

Above: Looking to the sky inside the stadium

Above: The countdown right before competition started

Above: We were so grateful to be sitting this close

Above: The women running one of the heats

Above and below: The men running their heats

Above: The women warming up for the shot put

Above: One last photo of the women competing

I came away from these days at the Olympics with a sense of inspiration. It was truly great to see all of these amazing athletes and I was struck by how much they have had to go through to get onto the Olympic stage. The years of training and dedication all come together to bring them to this moment in their lives. They are all incredible!

This is the last of my posts about our attendance of the Olympic events. I hope that you've enjoyed the photos. Thanks for taking this journey with me! :-)

Until next time...

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Our Olympic Adventure - Post #3

Today I'm continuing my posts about our Olympic experience and if you've missed the other two posts, they are here and here. So on we go! On the next day, Saturday, we had a day off from Olympic things. We went to have lunch, walked around Covent Garden, and then we visited the National Portrait Gallery. We've been to Covent Garden several times and it's one of my favorite places because it's so varied. There are all kinds of places to shop, eat, and people watch. This was our first trip to the National Portrait Gallery and it was very interesting to have an artsy buffer in the middle of all of the sporty things. Brit Boy and I have visited a lot of the other museums in London, but this is one we have always missed. So it was fun to finally visit. Loved it!

Then on Sunday, we went to see the women's basketball and it was fabulous! As I mentioned in my previous post, the basketball arena is a temporary structure, but inside you would never know. I used to be a big basketball fan back in the day, but I don't follow it nearly as much nowadays. However, watching the ladies play has rekindled my interest in basketball again :-)

We saw two games on this day: Australia vs Canada and USA vs China. Both games were great! It was so great to see women doing their very best and being great on all of the teams. This Olympic Games was historic because for the first time there were women participating for every Olympic team and another interesting fact is that the USA team had more women in it than men for the first time. Progess indeed! :-) The second game between USA and China was very fast-paced and it seemed to be over before we knew it. Those ladies can really play! And as I'm finishing this post, the USA have just won the gold medal. Well done ladies! I feel privileged to have seen the eventual gold medalists and bronze medalists play. Here are some photos below of some of the basketball action.

Above: Canada and Australia during their warm-up

 Above and below: China and the USA warming up

 Above: China and USA playing

 Above: USA and China at the end of the game

I really enjoyed the basketball! All of these ladies on all four teams are great athletes and I was so pleased to get to see my home team do so well! They were awesome!

In my post yesterday, I mentioned that we also saw some familiar faces from back home. For anyone from elsewhere who isn't familiar with the Today Show, it's one of the morning television shows in the USA. They have a studio set up in the Olympic Park and we were able to stand there and watch them broadcast live to the folks back home. We were there on Friday a week ago and this past Monday. It was really interesting to see how they go about making the show. They move from one set up to another and in between the cast comes over and talks with everyone along the barrier. They also take the time to have photos taken with the people. They were very accessible.
 Above: The production in full swing and in the center of the photo, in the navy jacket and the light colored pants is one of the hosts, Matt Lauer

Above: This was from the day after Gabby Douglas on the far left won her all-around gold medal. They had the gymnasts on and they were joined by the gold medal Olympic gymnast from the 1984 games, Mary Lou Retton, far right.

 Above: The US Women's Eights Olympic Rowing Team with their gold medals. They came over and let us all have a close up look at their medals.

 Above: This is the closest I'll ever be to a gold medal in my life. LOL.

Above: from left to right - Al Roker, Savannah Guthrie, and Matt Lauer - hosts of The Today Show

I loved every minute of the basketball and watching the filming of The Today Show. What a time we had! :-)

Tomorrow I'll share my final post about the Olympics. I'll be covering what we saw at the Olympic Stadium. It was amazing!

Until next time...

Friday, August 10, 2012

Our Olympic Adventure - Post #2

Today I wanted to continue sharing some photos from our trip to London. If you missed my first post, it can be found here . Yesterday I talked about where we stayed and today's post is about our first day going to the Olympic Park to see the swimming at the Aquatics Centre. After we went through security we were greeted by the gateway below.

We walked along and took in the sights and sounds. Here's a photo of one side of the Aquatics Centre.

And here's a view of the Olympic Stadium as we approached it.

This is The Orbit tower...which is a kind of artistic piece that adorns the park. Visitors can go up top and view the whole park from the observation platform. We didn't get a chance to go up there.

These are some other wider views of the park. It's an interesting place!

Next, here are some views of the inside of the Aquatic Centre. It was really nice and airy inside. I can't recall now who was doing what, but we were there in the morning so they were swimming the heats in preparation for the evening. There were numerous heats. The first photo was a session of warm-up swimming before the heats.

It was really cool to get the chance to watch actual Olympic swimmers. We didn't see any of the marquee names, but it didn't matter. It was incredible to see everyone. The thing that I came away with was that it takes amazing dedication to do what these athletes do. It was so inspiring.

After our session of watching the swimming, we walked around the park to people watch and explore our surroundings. It was interesting to get a look at some of the other venues...they had intriguing designs. The basketball venue below is a temporary structure and looks sort of like a quilted marshmallow to me, but it was impressive inside. It didn't look like a temporary site at all. It's amazing what people can build!

And this below is the velodrome where they do all of the track cycling. It is architecturally beautiful. We didn't get inside, but I wanted to make sure to get a photo to share here.

After I took the above photo, we made our way over to somewhere with lots of familiar faces. I'll share some photos of that tomorrow along with some photos from our basketball day!

Until next time...

Thursday, August 09, 2012

Our Olympic Adventure - Post #1

Hello! Today I'm going to start my photo sharing posts about our time away in London at the Olympics. First of all, we had an INCREDIBLE time! It went far beyond our expectations and it seemed like we were gone a long time and yet it seemed short in some ways too. I guess we were just having fun so time didn't matter at all :-) We saw so much so I'm going to try to post about things chronologically to give you all a taste of all that we saw. I'll be doing a post per day in order to get it all in before the Olympics end on Sunday. So please come back if you can and check out the pics!

I'm a storyteller by nature so I like to set the scene when I can and I thought that first I'd share a few pics of what it was like where we stayed. We ended up staying in a hotel in Canary Wharf and it was a great location because we were only a few stops away by tube to the Olympic Park. The view was spectacular! Here's the view out our window on the day that we arrived.

The hotel had an old-fashioned feel to it, but it wasn't worn down at all. I kept joking that it looked like the Titanic along the hallways and in the room in its design style. Very classic! It had an interesting  and comfortable feel to it.

Here are a couple of pics of the area around the elevator. This statue was interesting to see when you walked out of the elevator.

Here is a pretty light fixture that's right next to him. I love interior design, so I loved this golden light!

And here's more of the view from our eleventh floor vantage point.

The view was really something special and I never tired of taking it all in.

Here's one last pic from the area where we stayed. This is the ship that was in the first picture, but seen up close. It was really beautiful!

Tomorrow I'll be getting into our first day of events. On our first full day we went to see swimming, so I'll be sharing all things aquatic here! :-)

Until next time...

Tuesday, August 07, 2012

Checking In

Hello there! I just wanted to check in. We're back home again from London. We had an absolutely wonderful time at the Olympics! I'll be sifting through my photos over the next couple of days and then I'll start sharing some here.

Until next time...

Wednesday, August 01, 2012

Olympics and Results

I'm all packed and I'm getting very excited about our trip to London for the Olympics! When we were lucky enough to somehow get tickets months ago, it seemed like August and our time at the Olympics was a long time away. And now here we's August already...I can't believe that it's so far into the year already and we're heading to London to see some great athletes do their thing.

I feel very blessed to be going to the Olympics and also it will be fun to be in London again. It will be good to spend some time with Brit Boy and enjoy the summer...rain or shine.

I'll be taking a few pictures as I mentioned before, so I hope to have something interesting to share here :-) I'll do my best!

In other news, I got my exam results today and I passed both of my courses so I'm very pleased about that. I've been waiting for about six weeks for the results, but honestly I didn't worry about it. I just figured that what is done is done and I've put my thoughts elsewhere. I knew in my heart that I did the best that I could do at the moment in time when I took my exams, so I just let it go. I've been working on being more of this kind of person and I think that it's finally taking root :-) As I mentioned in my last post, I'm already doing some of my reading ahead of the new school year in the fall. It has been quite enjoyable and there's something about going through the reading list in the summer versus during the school year. I don't feel the pressure and I have the time to enjoy the books and not speed read because I have to write a paper about them. I'm enjoying having a summer break and giving my mind some rest from academic writing. Yay! ;-)

Well, I have some dishes to wash, so I'm gonna sign off. I hope that everyone is enjoying their summer!

Until next time...