Monday, March 30, 2009

just an hour at the park

Today I ran a few errands then took little Helene to Cleveland Park. I'd never been there myself, but she has, as some of the photos I've been given show. I was pleasantly surprised what a pretty place it is, and look forward to doing a bit of exploring minus someone with extremely short legs. It is very well maintained and has a lot to offer from what I see.

The play area was quite neat and clean. There were two sections, one for larger children and one for smaller tykes complete with the biggest sandbox I'd ever seen. Seriously cool. If only I was a kid again.....There was also plenty of grassy area for kids to run, and little creek along one edge. What a great setting.

Helene watched the other kids play for awhile, then I put her on the swing. That is where she spent the rest of our time, as she didn't want to get off the thing. After about 45 minutes of swinging walking around, looking hard at the slide but not being quite brave enough to try going down one, swinging her little heart out,Helene' was starting to get tired. Sure enough, she didn't protest being picked up and set back into her car seat. In fact as soon as we pulled out of the parking lot, that certain droopy eyed look was present. By the time we passed Spartan Regional Hospital she was in lala nap land.

Someone told me there was another playground in Converse Heights. I will take her there soon, and this time I'll remember to pack a picnic lunch for the two of us.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Ask the President

I read this morning where the White House has opened up a Q & A for the public. You can ask the president questions on a variety of topic and vote on already submitted questions as to whether you like them or not.

There are the usual "legalize marijuanna" questions, which would do little, in my opinion to benefit the average taxpayer, the economy or our farms. However there are some sound questions about education, the economy, health care, and other topics that people have submitted. I asked two myself

The first was a question I have yet to hear an answer to. Where is the funding coming from for all the spending on these stimulus packages? AND, if the president pushes a greener more frugal lifestyle, what is the White House doing to practice what they preach, such as turning off lights, lowering thermostats, watching office supply use, etc?

Check it out.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Fun with zip files.

I shot some video using a borrowed camera last weekend of my daughter Ashley's wedding. There wasn't much footage as the ceremony was quite brief, but there was enough that it was enough to work with.

After talking it over with Michael, my eldest we decided to send him the video files so he could edit it into something worth having and sharing. There was a small problem, the three files, or three scenes were too large to email normally. That meant I needed to condense them. He suggested the software to download and I was off...or so I thought. The first try just made a same sized copy of the sizes, so another session with Michael, who by the way does this sort of thing daily for a living.

He then suggested some parameters to use which would make those files work just perfectly. There was only one small problem. Do you realize when you are looking at condensing kilobytes a couple of zeros on your parameter setting can make a huge difference in your outcome? Well now my new copy of those three original video files has been fragmented into 69,000 files. Yes you read it right, a six followed by a nine nine followed by three zeros! He messed up on the conversion and told me the wrong parameters. OOPS!

Do you know how long it takes to delete 69,000 unwanted fragmented video files? When I find out, I'll let you know. Then I'll try to zip those original files again.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

My new office

My daughter hasn't even been gone a week and already her former bedroom is now my new office. Yes, as soon as the "I Do's" were said and we all went home, I was making the space once occupied by Ashley's and Helene's stuff mine...all mine.

The nearly empty closet will soon house much of the stuff that was crowding my closet. Stuff like storage boxes full of paper records that my husband just refuses to let me throw out, and other various sundry junk so I can actually have room to store my shoes in my own closet.

I am also on the hunt for a nice file cabinet and a bookshelf, and maybe even a combination of both, so I can upgrade from the crappy plastic file box and beat up metal bookshelf I possess now.

My bedroom now has more space and looks more like a bedroom instead of the family stuff catch all. I still have things to do but I see progress. My youngest gave me a couple of frame photos for my birthday, I'll figure out where to put them later.

All this activity is helping me not miss the two people who no longer live here as much. It sure is quiet without them here so much.

Friday, March 13, 2009

I is a Mommy In Law

Today my daughter and her fiance stood before a probate judge in a tiny courtroom and said their vows while their family stood by snapping photos as quick as the batteries would let the cameras recharge.

We all dressed up some, the bride, groom and their little daughter the most to celebrate this momentous occasion. The ceremony only took a few moments, there was no music or fanfare, just two people obviously in love declaring their love and commitment to each other. It was perfect.

My daughter was decidedly nervous before the event, as she realized that she was jumping headfirst into the world with out the mommy/daddy net, but once she stood by her new husband it was obvious she was sure she made the right choice. In fact neither of them could stop grinning at each other.

I am now sitting in her former bedroom, gathering up what few items remain to be packed up to move to her new home, as I sit at my computer. Yes, not even married a day and her old room is now my new office. It is still a work in process, but once done this room will be a nice guestroom/office space. At least I beat her daddy to the room, he'll just have less of a space to turn into his man cave.

Congratulations Derek and Ashley, Mom and dad are proud of your both.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Wait just a minute here

Was I dreaming or did we have four inches of snow on the ground just last week? Did my power then go out for 48 hours and my house get on the frosty side of chilly that evening? Did I struggle to keep a kerosene heater at a high enough level to add some warmth to the house, but not so high that it set of my smoke detector?

I wonder that because today it is 84 absolutely gorgeous degrees outside. My air conditioner is running, and I put a short sleeve t-shirt and shorts on my granddaughter so she could play outside.

I hope that I don't wake up next Monday to a completely different weather scenario, but I won't be surprised if I do. After all that is Spring here in the south.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

8 days and counting

We are now officially in the homestretch towards W day. Again its a simple affair with a get together the next day, but there is still so much to do.

The bridal shower was a success. Despite the horrific weather we had a nice turnout and everyone had a good time. The bride got some nice gifts and are things she will need for her new home.

She is decidedly nervous about stepping out from under Mom and Dad's wings, but at the same time excited of this new stage of her life.

So what is next on the agenda? This weekend, they will be moving most of the contents out of Ashley's room to the townhouse they are renting, and turning the place from a bachelor pad to a family abode. I still have nothing to wear as all the dresses I see are either ugly, not my size, in black or just plain old don't fit my rather fluffy frame. Hopefully I'll find something this weekend.

It still hasn't quite hit me that change is afoot, even though I see the makings of that change all around me. I am sure it will soon enough.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Technology rockS!

So, we had lots of rain, followed by four inches of snow. Now for here in the south four inches of snow is a big deal. Last evening our power flickered off and on for several hours before giving up for good about 12:30.

This morning I got out our old kerosene heater, and proceeded to wake up the entire family as it kept setting off the smoke detector. Snarly looks greeted me soon after. I then called Duke Power and was informed that I should have power about 5pm.

So now what to do? We have no internet, no heat, no electricity. I needed to do laundry, turn in a project, and really needed to muck out the fridge. Instead we took the toddler outside for a brief snow laden foray. Then we later moved cars from the back yard. They were placed there yesterday to make room for some guests. After making the backyard a mush pit, we decided to build a snowman.

Close to five, I called Duke Power again. Now they said, "The time your power will be restored is undetermined". Oh oh. So we loaded up the little one and went to Ashley's fiancee's townhouse for showers and so mommy and baby could stay somewhere warm. When we were almost there, we got the call, that the lights were back on.

So now I am catching up on all the things I missed, like heat (toes still frozen), what is going on at Facebook and the other sites I frequent. I'd be doing laundry, but the youngest beat me to the washing machine. I am just glad I don't have to use that kerosene heater anymore. Those things scare me, and I wasn't looking forward to having to leave it on all night.

So I went 18 hours with a few things I take for granted. Please don't ask me to do it again anytime soon.