OMG, Tomatoes!

Tomatoes much?

Tomatoes much?

Yeah, forty or more pounds of tomatoes out of the garden today. And that was after a morning and early afternoon spent working with Marcia restructuring her sewing and fabric rooms. Tired now: I made gallon of salsa, and started another lobster pot of red sauce. Last weeks was down enough to transfer to another pot. I’ll be freezing that batch tomorrow, and cooking down the new batch, too.

But I’ve *got* to do some schoolwork tomorrow, too. I wanted to mow, as well, but I’m running out of hours and days … less than 18 months if all goes to plan, then school is done. Whew. Whoops! Time to walk the little dog for her last outing of the day. Ciao!

 

Agog, Shiny

Shiny is actually an attribute of the new machine, henceforth known as Agog. Agog was my state of being when kindness by others turns out to have been expressed in the form of a 13″ MacBook Air. Core i7, 4G, 256G flash drive. Fast, light, and gorgeous. It’s funny, really, that I should have decided, just last night, that the right choice was to get a new battery for Darla, the MacBook Pro I picked up in January of 2007. Darla runs OS X Lion just fine, if a little bit slow. But slow is relative. I executed a test a short while ago, cold-booting both systems:

  • Darla: 48.9 seconds to the login screen.
  • Agog: 19.7 seconds to the login screen.

And Agog takes about 3 seconds to wake up from sleep – the huge advantage to flash disks.

Getting it to the state of minimal usefulness for a mobile machine: email, remote connections to work and home – that all took about half an hour. Now it’s supper time. Ciao!

Ownage

Apologies – work and schoolwork have owned my days and nights. Project 3 is now in for the database class, and work remains busy. But here’s the project that required slots cut into wood: A framed cork board to substitute for someone who wanted to stick cork tiles onto the gorgeous book-matched veneer on that desk you’ll see when I can upload pictures again (/tmp is full on the server we’re on).

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Later: I executed an end-run by putting the picture on the static Orb site, then linking to it here.

An over-engineered corkboard

An over-engineered corkboard

Seven Down, Five To Go

July is wound down, days are getting a bit shorter, and while the heat is with us for another month or so, I can already see the end of the year. Time seems to go a bit faster with each passing year, eh? But summer isn’t over yet: the tomatoes, as you saw below, are in full production.

I took most of that stack and made a red sauce yesterday: 20# of tomatoes, a couple of onions, a bunch of garlic, half a cup of olive oil, two small cans of tomato paste, five bay leaves, and a bottle of 2007 Turning Leaf Merlot. That simmered all afternoon, making the house smell wonderful.

Today, I used up the rest of the potatoes, making up another two week’s worth of lunches (with mild Italian sausage and spinach). Late this afternoon, I browned up 3# of turkey, and added some chopped peppers from the garden, some more sautéed onion, a couple of large cans of dark red kidney beans, some chili powder and dried cumin. To that I added about a third of the sauce that I made yesterday, for a big pot of killer chili. Between the wine and the fresh tomatoes, the sauce is a bit sweet, but that mostly cooks out over time.

In between all the cooking, I made a big dent in the third SQL project for my database class. I’ve got until next Sunday evening to get that completed.

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Dammit! I skipped a beat there. For just a second, I thought there were no new casualties reported since last weekend! Too good to be true, and my eyes picked out the one report … Our condolences to the families and units of these fallen warriors:

2nd Lt. Jered W. Ewy, 33, of Edmond, Oklahoma, died July 29 at Paktia, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when insurgents attacked his unit with an improvised explosive device.

Spc. Augustus J. Vicari, 22, of Broken Arrow, Oklahoma, died July 29 at Paktia, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when insurgents attacked his unit with an improvised explosive device.

Mmmmm, steak!

Supper at the Chesapeake Grille & Deli tonight, with friends Linda and George. I had the Sirloin steak dinner, medium rare, and they cooked it perfectly! Good stuff. The others had assorted seafood and it was all good. Recommended. Now it’s time for school work, followed by some remote office work sometime after 2200. Ciao!

Cowboys?

Funny, I’ve never really thought of Daniel Craig in a Western genre film until I saw the trailer for Cowboys & Aliens. The trailer is a hoot, and the movie looks like a lot of fun, too. It’s one I’m looking forward to.

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Pain: A growing pressure in the left ear indicates that I’m in for about three unpleasant days while this … whatever … runs its course. Not unusual, but it’s been maybe a year or more since I’ve had this sort of mild ear ache. That’s better than par for the course.

Pleasure: Knowing that the final results from my fifty thousand mile check-up are in, and I don’t need any more extensive work done for 5000 more miles. That’s a good thing. The removed bit was of the utterly benign and doesn’t ever exhibit pre-cancerous traits type of bits.

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We haven’t got enough money to pay the bills … so let’s borrow more money. If I did that, it’s a problem. I understand that things are different at scale, but seriously people: Someone has to decide where to start tightening the belt. When every congresscritter says “Not Me!”, I say, “We can elect someone who CAN make sane decisions, because you ain’t it.” And, sadly, neither is Obama. If the nation’s got a problem, then do what you’ve been elected to do, and serve the nation, not your political cronies. Do the right thing, people.

When Duty Calls

Our condolences to the families and units of these fallen warriors:

  • Spc. Daniel L. Elliott, 21, of Youngsville, North Carolina, died July 15 in Basra, Iraq, when enemy forces attacked his unit with an improvised explosive device.
  • Master Sgt. Kenneth B. Elwell, 33, of Holland, Pennsylvania, died July 17, in Kandahar province, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when enemy forces attacked his unit with an improvised explosive device.
  • Pfc. Tyler M. Springmann, 19, of Hartland, Maine, died July 17, in Kandahar province, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when enemy forces attacked his unit with an improvised explosive device.
  • Lance Cpl. Jabari N. Thompson, 22, of Brooklyn, New York, died July 17 of wounds sustained July 13 while conducting combat operations in Helmand province, Afghanistan.
  • Sgt. Mark A. Cofield, 25, of Colorado Springs, Colorado, died July 17 in Baghdad, Iraq, of injuries sustained from a non-combat related incident.
  • Lance Cpl. Christopher L. Camero, 19, of Kailua Kona, Hawaii, died July 15 of wounds suffered July 6 while conducting combat operations in Helmand province, Afghanistan.
  • Staff Sgt. Kenneth R. Vangiesen, 30, of Erie, Pennsylvania, died July 18 in Ghazni province, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when enemy forces attacked his convoy with an improvised explosive device.
  • Sgt. Edward W. Koehler, 47, of Lebanon, Pennsylvania, died July 18 in Ghazni province, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when enemy forces attacked his convoy with an improvised explosive device.
  • Staff Sgt. Brian K. Mowery, 49, of Halifax, Pennsylvania, died July 18 in Ghazni province, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when enemy forces attacked his convoy with an improvised explosive device.
  • Cpl. Raphael R. Arruda, 21, of Ogden, Utah, died July 16 in Kunar province, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when enemy forces attacked his unit with an improvised explosive device.
  • Staff Sgt. James M. Christen, 29, of Loomis, California, died July 19 in Kunar province, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when enemy forces attacked his vehicle with an improvised explosive device.
  • Sgt. Jacob Molina, 27, of Houston, Texas, died July 19 in Kunar province, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when enemy forces attacked his vehicle with an improvised explosive device.
  • Sgt. Omar A. Jones, 28, of Crook, Colorado, died July 18, in Balkh province, Afghanistan.
  • Master Sgt. Benjamin A. Stevenson, 36, of Canyon Lake, Texas, died July 21 in Paktika province, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when insurgents attacked his unit using small arms fire.

Sundry

Events of the last couple of days were … relatively uneventful. That is, my ‘oscopy was much more unpleasant to prepare for than it was to sleep through. The doc reported snipping out something small, and biopsy results pend until Tuesday, but either way, it ain’t the big C. Depending on the type, I get another screening in three years, or in five. I’ll be happier with five, thanks. And Marcia’s molar extraction in the afternoon was as simple as could be hoped for: no jackhammering, and minimal pain already today.

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The summer garden

The summer garden

The summer garden is doing fine. It’s hot and humid these days – they say the heat index yesterday was in the 115 degree range. I do know that the thermometer which is in the shade after noon, peaked over 102 by mid-afternoon. This morning, it was up over 90 by 9 AM. But anything that isn’t heat tolerant in full sun ain’t doing so good. The cucumbers are almost done, the zucchini is long gone. The beans are nearly toast between the sun and the Japanese beetles (but they’re still producing). Tomatoes and peppers are coming into their own…

Second crop basil

Second crop basil

The new batch of basil is well started, as you can see. And what’s coming out of the garden now makes me very happy, even though it’s a month later than I’d hoped for…

Fresh from the garden

Fresh from the garden