Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Blog Template Update

Can you believe it? I changed my blog template. I’m sure that the changes are obvious, I added a family of pictures at the top. I’ve been very happy with the general template from blogger that I lightly modified once before, but it seemed to be missing something. I think it is fixed now.

Monday, January 30, 2006

Super Bowl Snacks

Back in the day, I didn’t think that Super Bowl snacks would ever amount to much more than chips and dip or something else from a bag in the chip isle. This weekend’s shopping list included several items indented to be consumed before and during the Super Bowl game, most notably, crab meat and meatballs. I think the crab meat dish is going to be something that I’ve never tasted before, but I’ll probably like it, and I already know I’ll love the meatballs, made with a secret sauce that includes grape jelly and chili sauce. MMM I’m really looking forward to overeating on Sunday!

Saturday, January 28, 2006

Installed some lights

Last night when I was laving to go get Andrew I turned on the light that is just inside the front door and it seemingly burned out. While I was at Costco getting gas, Amy called and said that none of the lights worked on the main floor. I talked her through resetting the breaker and wondered why a light bulb burning out would blow a breaker.

It turns out that something failed inside of the light fixture causing it to arc and crack the plastic casing that holds the bulb. I was hoping to find that plastic casing, but realized that I might have to buy a new light fixture, which is what I had to do in the end. Below is a picture of the new light fixture installed.

While I was at it, we had needed a chandelier type light over the kitchen table since we moved in. In the summer, it isn’t so bad, there is plenty of natural light, but in the winter, even during the day, the sun just isn’t at the right angle to make that side of the kitchen very bright. I had to modify it with a power cord that would reach the wall socket and that had an on off switch, since there was no light socket above the table in the kitchen.

It is kind of hard to take pictures of lights.

Friday, January 27, 2006

More Civilization

I’ve been playing two games of Civilization 4 for a little while now. The first, a play by e-mail game with Amy and Brandon, hasn’t progressed very quickly, but it has a lot of potential. So far, Amy is kicking our butts, she’s lost more settlers to barbarians than I’ve been able to create so far. Of course, she did get lucky with the goodie huts. The only goodie hut I was able to get only gave me a map of the area (actually, I think I found another one with some gold).

My single player game, on a huge archipelago map is getting a little crazy. For one, it runs real slow and takes a long time to load. It is a lot of fun however. All of the map has now been occupied, which has caused my score to stall a little. I’ve fought a couple of wars earlier in the game, but I just started a war with the Romans who while not quite as advanced as me, have at least fighters and destroyers in their arsenal. I’ve already lost a couple of stealth bombers over their cities. My goal is to surround the Germans, my land is on one side, and the Romans are on the other. The Arabs had a defensive pact with the Romans, so, I’m at war with them too, but I have a couple of other computer players at war with them, so, I’m not too worried about it. I did send a fleet of battleships to their area to bombard cities and to intercept warships that might be trying to help the Romans. War, even in Civilization 4, has a lot to do with logistics, which I’ve been setting up over the last few days. In the archipelago map, it is all about shipping convoys, and making sure all of your cities have airports. I expect to have a lot of military capability left over from this war, but will probably need to spend a few turns making money. I really hope to finish this game with a conquest or domination victory, the only victory options I selected for the game. It has been quite fun.


I skipped breakfast at home this morning so I bought some oatmeal from the cafeteria here at work. Basically, it is plain oatmeal with toppings. I chose brown sugar, honey, and granola. Interestingly enough, oatmeal and honey are hard to mix together. Maybe next time I’ll use chocolate chips.

Thursday, January 26, 2006

Didn’t Blog for 10 Days

Can you use Blog as a verb? I guess I just did. Anyway, it isn’t that I haven’t had a lot of interesting things to Blog about; I’ve just been busy doing other things, like feeding Aidan, playing with Alex, sleeping, playing Civilization 4, getting on the radio, or whatever.

Also, I didn’t really want to push those pics of Aidan down from the top :).

Interesting Outlook Problem

A customer was complaining that she wasn’t getting any e-mail. Of course, I figured that it was a typical problem where the customer was working offline and didn’t think much of it. That turned out not to be the case so, I had to do some investigating. Eventually, the customer told me that sometimes she would see the some of the missing message in the Large Mail search folder. I started my search there and found that some of the messages were indicating they were in the folder “Top of Information Store”. This was odd, because mail never really goes there. I could not seem to figure out why this was happening, so, I was about to delete the customer’s mailbox and re-create it again. Before I did that, I wanted to see if there were any rules I need to make note of because they would be deleted along with the mailbox. That is when I saw it, the customer had a rule that said mailbox sent to the customer should be moved to “customer name – mailbox” or, the root folder, also known as, “Top of Information Store”. Mystery solved, rarely do I enjoy the helpdesk type work I get stuck with way too often, but this one was kind of fun.

Monday, January 16, 2006

Aidan in his Crib

I don’t know why but I put Aidan in his crib tonight while we were putting Alex to bed. Aidan sleeps in his cradle in our room and the crib is in Alex’s room. He smiled so big, I just had to grab the camera.

Sunday, January 15, 2006

Today is my Birthday

I’m twenty-eight years old today. I guess that qualifies as pushing thirty.

General Class Ham Radio License

Back in October, I passed the Morse code exam, one of the required elements for the General Class License. Last week, I passed the written exam. The General license allows you to operate on almost all of the amateur radio frequencies, using CW (Morse code), voice, or data communication modes.

So far, I’ve made four contacts using my new license privileges, three yesterday, to Vermont, Indiana, and New Hampshire, and today’s contact was to the former Yugoslavia, now known as Serbia and Montenegro.

Unfortunately, those contacts were made using single side band voice. I have yet to actually get good enough at using Morse code to copy weak signals. I often call CQ and get no response; it could be that my sending is just that bad. The catch 22 is, to get good at it, you have to practice a lot, but to make a contact, you have to be able to send and copy the code on the air.

Monday, January 09, 2006

Aidan Eats Peas

No, I didn’t get a picture this time, but Aidan has just finished his first jar of peas. Of course, it took three meals for him to finish the jar, but he is only nine weeks old. He has done quite well with his rice cereal, he actually seems to enjoy it. The best news is, he will sleep from about ten o’clock at night until five o’clock the next morning. That’s my boy, he’s learning how to sleep in already, all he needs is just a little more practice, that’s all.

Saturday, January 07, 2006

Haircut Day

Alex, Amy, and I all got hair cuts today.

Sunday, January 01, 2006

Two K Six

What can I say, it's a new year!