October 16, 2008

Build a Fire to Renew and Grow


It's a bit chilly outside. I'm hoping we have a cooler winter than we had last year. Given the cool air this morning, I'm thinking we may. I cannot wait to build a fire in the fireplace.

Last year we did not use the fireplace once. I missed it. When we bought this house I could not wait to build a fire for the first time. We have since used up all the wood from the wood pile so it's time to re-stock.

Behind our home is the community park. It's surrounded by trees. There is a slope down to the pond. It's a beautiful walk down some trails to get there.



A few months ago a large old red oak fell to its demise and took down a few cedars in the fall. My husband and I want to clear and chop that tree, and the unfortunate bystanders, to restock our wood pile. I miss the old oak. At this time the leaves would be turning into a glorious spectacle of color, which is rare around here.

Is it wrong to take the wood for our personal use? The property is community owned, but part of the tree fell on our lot. No one ever visits the slope beyond our home. No one keeps the area up. It just grows. I think clearing the debris would make room for new trees to grow, allowing the earth to renew itself.

We've been going back and forth about this situation. I think we're just going to do it. If we had already done the deed, I would build a fire today...

I have some news. I posted about wanting to become a Giant Squid: Squidoo Talk Time. I finally made it! You can see my Giant badge on My Squidoo Cheat-Sheet.

Building my Squidoo presence has taken up a lot of my time. I only have so much computer time during the day with the kids, house, and otherwise. I have to prioritize in order to keep up with my goals. Thank goodness the Squidoo Giant goal has come to fruition. That fire is built, I just have to keep stoking it now.

Back to my original topic...I wonder if my husband would be up for working on the old oak this weekend? Another question popping in my head is if the oak has sat long enough to be useful cooking wood? He probably knows the answer but I'm going to look into it myself.

It would be nice if it is because we have a brisket in the freezer screaming to be smoked--yet another reason to build a fire.

I love to sit out and watch the smoke rise from our pit. On a still day the smoke rising from the fire seemingly doesn't move. It just vanishes and renews itself.


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October 10, 2008

Rounds of Debates: Are You Undecided?

I've been watching the rounds of debates. I was going to make detailed comments for each round, but I could not decipher what the heck they were talking about. Then, of course, I had some other things going on.

I don't know why there is so much double talk, avoiding/begging the question, and he said/she said in politics. Those who get elected never follow through anyway.

Apparently, there are a lot of citizens who are undecided...Okay. If you are undecided you need to check this out:

http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/MatchoMatic/fullpage?id=5542139

Even if you are not undecided, check it out.

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October 6, 2008

Change is Good!

I have great news about my computer. My husband did not murder it. As it turns out, our problems all rooted from IE (And modem).

I'm proud to say I convinced him to open his eyes and accept change, change is good. We did a modem speed test on Speakeasy. Our modem is not performing at its peak for our paying for DSL. We'll be getting a new modem from our provider.

Next, I had been researching slow computer issues on the net. I performed all the fixes and deletions I could. The computer itself performs without flaw and is very fast for picture editing, document work, and other little things we do outside the Internet.

I searched about our browser and found slow issues with IE. Not one of the suggested fixes worked for us. So I uploaded a few different browsers to try. My husband barked about this until he sat down and tried them. We ended up with Mozilla Firefox.

Actually we tried FF before but did not like it. It seemed slow. We didn't like the toolbar or customizations. So we updated our IE6 to 7 and stuck with it. There is an IE8 now (Beta), but it did not work for us.

The FF we tried before was an old version. We tried the latest (I think it's 3.0.3) over the weekend and it's lickety split! Pagination is almost instant, pictures load quickly, and downloads are so fast it almost made my head spin.

We also tried Opera. I was really impressed with Opera. It was faster than FF on every account, but we could not get it to load Adobe flash for our music and videos no matter what we did.

The others we tried are not even worth mentioning.

I cannot wait to get our new modem! We'll really be moving on the Internet then.

All I can say about this whole experience is: Change is good!
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October 4, 2008

Slow Computer Issues May Cause Untimely Murder of a Computer

Today my husband is planning to murder my computer due to slow computer issues. The plan has been in the works for quite some time. Over the past months the computer has become extremely slow and he can't stand it. Neither can I for that matter.

In addition to everything else I've been doing computer wise, I have taken some dear time to clean up and back up certian files. I did some research on cleaning up and speeding up a slow computer. I removed a ton of old programs and moved bookmarks from my favorites to my Stumble account. The computer is a bit faster but not like it should be.

I defragged, cleaned the registry with CCleaner, scanned for viruses, and tweaked some features on my Internet options. Really, I defrag whether it needs it or not once a month. I clean the disk and registry every other week, and the virus stuff does its thing regularly. It helped, but not enough.

I think he's spoiled by those fast machines at his work. Let's face it, our computer is getting old. I told him we may just need to tighten the belt and buy a better/bigger/faster machine, and get a new modem. The modem may be the biggest culprit in this scenario.

"No, no, no," he says. "I know wiping it out and starting anew will bring it back to life"...Whatever.

Even the guy at our DSL provider says our modem is antiquated.

I'm hoping I can convince him today we need to exchange the modem, doing one of those modem speed tests. Honestly, I think removing all the stuff I had on the favorites and the hard drive really helped immensely.

We'll see what happens...
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