Example missionary name tags for youth activity

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I needed to create some example name tags for an LDS missionary-themed youth activity.  Since you're not supposed to create name tags that look similar to official missionary name tags, I created these vertical ones that worked well with these holders and printed with FedEx Office Laser #80 cardstock paper.  If you're interested and have Photoshop, here's the zip file with PSD and related files.


Teenager group game #3

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I recently had to come up with some games for a Christian youth group I volunteer for.  The boys always love to play dodgeball but the girls are less enthusiastic so I came up with a variation I call Snitchball.   ...yes, that's a subtle reference to the Golden Snitch in the Harry Potter game of Quidditch:


To play this variation, you need a set of regular dodgeballs and one small one (that's the snitch):



  • If the snitch touches a male he's out (even if he catches it).  
  • If a female is holding the snitch she becomes indestructible until she releases it and runs and touches the back wall of her side (which she must do immediately after releasing the snitch).  
  • While holding the snitch, the female must announce the fact by loudly saying "snitch" over and over while she's holding it.  
  • The snitch, like any other ball in dodgeball, can only be held for up to 10 seconds, after which it needs to be rolled to the other side if not thrown beforehand (note: if the snitch touches a male while rolling -- even your own teammate -- he's out).  
  • Once the snitch has been used by one side, it must be sent to the other side (this prevents a single team monopolizing it's power by tossing it to other girls on the same team every 9 seconds).  However, a team can elect not to touch the snitch and leave it dormant on their side if they so wish.
  • Unlike the regular dodgeballs that are placed on the center line of the court at the beginning of the game, the snitch starts at the back wall of one side (flip a coin or paper-rock-scissors to decide which side)

This variation encourages the young women to be braver and also adds a subtle element of surprise and strategy to the game.

Have fun!

Teenager group game #2

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I recently had to come up with some games for a Christian youth group I volunteer for.  One of the ideas that came to mind was SwipeShot by Fat Brain Toys:


Here's a quick overview of the game:


It's a lot of fun and I recommend you buy a set!  However, being short on time and cash, I needed to make a quick homemade alternative (which I call "Wreck It Ralph" since I can never remember the 'swipeshot' name):

Supplies:
  • colored plastic cups (like these) -- one color for each opponent
  • string
  • marker
  • small ball about the size of a racquetball (here's a fun alternative ball that you can find at many dollar stores)
  • 1.5" inch colored satin ribbon (like this) -- note: don't use ribbon with wire in it
Instructions:

1. Cut one ribbon strip 96" long for each two-player team


2. Mark the ribbon at the 48" halfway point with a marker


3. Seal the ends with clear nail polish or a few brief passes in a candle flame to prevent fraying:


4. Sew 12" loops at both ends (or, if you're lazy like me, use Velcro and then attach them to create a loop):


5. Tie a 36" string to the ball and halfway point of the ribbon (note: I didn't have good string lying around so I used gift wrapping ribbon):


6. You'll want to put six cups (three of each color) in a circle about 40" apart from each other.  Since I'm a bit of a perfectionist I created a cardboard template for quick setup (remove before game starts) but that's optional of course  :)


Have fun!

Teenager group game #1

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I recently had to come up with some games for a Christian youth group I volunteer for.  One of the first ideas that came to mind was Ribbon Ninja by Fat Brain Toys:


Here's a quick overview of the game:



It's a lot of fun and I recommend you buy a set!  However, being short on time and cash, I needed to make a quick homemade alternative that uses wristbands and only one ribbon per arm:

Supplies:

  • 2 silicone wristbands for each participant (you can get these at a dollar store or here or here)
  • Velcro (I prefer the adhesive buttons like this)
  • 1.5" inch colored satin ribbon (like this) -- note: don't use ribbon with wire in it

Instructions:

1. Cut ribbon strips 19" long, two for each participant (and a different color for each opponent/team):


2. Seal the ends with clear nail polish or a few brief passes in a candle flame to prevent fraying:


3. Attach soft Velcro piece closest to one end and the bristly Velcro piece about 2" from it.  Note: the goal is to relatively easily detach the ribbon from the wristband when pulled so you'll need to avoid "industrial strength" Velcro and you may need to practice with one to get the desired feel.  In my case, I tried the full button, half button, and quarter button variations and the half button worked best so I cut them as shown below:


4. Then loop the end over a wristband and press the Velcro pieces together:


5.  Repeat process as needed for as many sets as you need (remember, you ideally want two for each participant and different color ribbon for each opponent/team):


Have fun!

Verizon settings on LineageOS

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After upgrading to LineageOS Oreo I couldn't get on the Internet with Verizon mobile data (Wi-Fi only) so after a bit of trial and error I found the fix:

Settings > Network & Internet > Mobile network > Advanced > scroll to bottom and select "Access Point Names" > select "Verizon VZWINTERNET"


Then restart your phone and you should be all set.

-1 for Gmail

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I've been using Mozilla Thunderbird to access my Gmail email via POP for years and suddenly it stopped working.  After a while of frustrating troubleshooting and verifying all my settings were correct, Google sent an email to my backup email address (which many people wouldn't have but thankfully I did) asking me if I've been trying to access my email and notifying me it had blocked access from a less secure email client.  Since Thunderbird uses SSL/TLS this confused me.  It turns out Google is now treating any email client that doesn't support OAuth2 as "less secure".  Sheesh, what a bunch of nonsense!  TLS is perfectly safe.  Anyways, here's the instructions for enabling "less secure access" which is Google's way of trying to scare you into using their lame web interface and force fed annoying ads.

-1 Google  :(

LineageOS Oreo on HTC 10

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Android Nougat was giving me grief today so I switched to Oreo:

  1. Use fastboot to install latest TWRP recovery
  2. Use fastboot to install Oreo firmware (I used the first Verizon link)
  3. Use TWRP recovery to install UNOFFICIAL LineageOS 15.1*, micro OpenGapps for ARM64, and Magisk
  4. Verify phone boots normally and install substratum and Default Dark Theme

* Note: I initially got an E3004 error so I had to manually delete the assert check to get it to install on my device.

Issues:
  • So far, my only major issue is "GPS Signal Lost" errors with Google Navigation (or other map tools, like VZ Navigator), no subwoofer/boom speaker, and poor battery life (which the Naptime app solved).