altivo: Clydesdale Pegasus (pegasus)
Fluffy clouds, no rain, even temperatures, not too much wind. Amazing. A genuine June day. Tess got to go out in the pasture, the neighbors were all making a horrid racket with mowers and leaf blowers and such, and Gary still has a sore jaw from his root canal. Poor doggie.

Neither of us got much sleep. He was up because of pain, I was up because a mysterious leak in the waterbed got my feet all wet (but refused to keep leaking so I could patch it.)

Price of gasoline is down to $3.78 here, lowest it has been in at least 18 months I think. Even more amazing, the gas stations were pretty much deserted. Usually when it makes a downward move, people are lining up to fill not only their tanks but storage cans for lawnmowers and yard tractors.

Newsletter to get done, and also a handout for a presentation I have to give, but I'm too sleep deprived at the moment. Gonna have to go to bed soon.
altivo: Running Clydesdale (running clyde)
Some useful things accomplished, though. Mowing, baking, cleaning, even some shopping.

Beautiful sunny day, with butterflies, bluebirds, orioles and grosbeaks singing. Then it was broken by the roar of a dozen mowers, the snarl of dozens of motorcycles. A perfect day, broken by the tasteless and senseless.

Time marches on though, and dusk brings back the quiet.
altivo: My mare Contessa (nosy tess)
Morning meeting, afternoon shopping and chores, tired as if I'd been at work all day.

Indulgence: bought myself a new e-book reader, the Sharper Image Literati. Off EBay, half price for new unopened box. My old eBookwise has served faithfully for years, but it doesn't read the new standard formats and is obviously doomed to oblivion. I don't want to be bound to Amazon and their proprietary formats. This one will do, it's a version of Kobo I believe, and reads epub, html, pdf. Has wifi and a backlit screen. I don't like e-paper. Anyway, for the price it was worth a try.

Cool and gloomy weather, threatening to rain all day but never did. Gary cut a large part of the grass that was getting rank from rain and neglect.

He's watching all of Peter Jackson's Lord of the Rings films, one disc per night. Not sure quite why, but I'm sitting through them and being reminded of how badly I think Jackson treated Tolkien. He made a fine dramatic epic but it's not the story I have read again and again. It's another tale entirely.
altivo: 'Tivo as a plush toy (Miktar's plushie)
Sleep deprived, and only part of what should have been done got accomplished. Well, to be fair, yesterday was completely eaten up by the bird counting obligation...

Guild newsletter edited and released. Horses and sheep cared for (with Gary's help.) Groceries for the week shopped. Dinner made and eaten. And the evening and the morning were the seventh day. Tess went out to the pasture only to be brought back in after 90 minutes due to severe thunderstorm warnings and a lot of thunder. She seemed to have gotten the picture on her own and was waiting by the gate for me to get her.

We were not actually in the warned zone, and in fact our official forecast called for no rain this morning. Half an hour after I went and brought Tess back in, it did rain. In fact, it poured. We got about a half inch in 20 minutes or so. Then it stopped and that was the rain for today, though it may still rain before midnight. Who knows? Not me, and certainly not NOAA either.
altivo: Plush horsey (plushie)
Back from Elgin where we had dinner with friends. Not a very productive weekend but at least non-stressful.

I did crawl under my desk and swap the UPS out for an older one that has a new working battery. The APC needs a new batter and I'll order one for it tomorrow.

Temperatures rising all day, now well above freezing. We saw a fair amount of fog where warm air was lying on snowfields, but no real serious freezing rain, thank goodness.

And now to bed.
altivo: The Clydesdale Librarian (Default)
Number 91 this morning.

Gary went to a gathering in Waukegan this afternoon while I did grocery shopping and other errands. Unleaded regular gasoline was $3.39 at the Mobil in Marengo, while it is $3.65 at the chain stations in Harvard, just 15 miles away. This much difference within the same taxing district clearly says to me that there is a major ripoff going on.

@RothRWolf stopped by at sunset with wooden parts for t-trak modules, which we will be making and bringing to FCN in April. Our contribution to furry railroading...

Our little test layout here at the farm has grown. It now has two mainline ovals, with a passing siding and an extra loop that climbs to pass over a steel bridge trestle and then descends again. Not very photogenic without any scenery, but we are just testing out possibilities at this point.

When Gary finally returned from Waukegan, we pulled leftovers out of the freezer and had chicken soup, smoked kielbasa, home made pierogi (a year old, but still pretty good) and red cabbage.

Clear tonight, almost full moon, and surprisingly, not cold. Or at least, not as cold as I'd expect. Checking against the 2012 edition of the Old Farmers Almanac I'm amused to see that their weather predictions (made a year in advance) for November, December, and January have been mostly right on target here. The media, on the other hoof, predicted a "terrible" winter, whatever that was supposed to mean, take your pick. We have had neither excess of snow nor bitter cold temperatures, and there appear to be none in the offing for at least the next two weeks. Not long after that it will be February already.

GOP hot air debates on television I guess, glad we have no reception here. They can all go jump in the Atlantic and sink for all I care.
altivo: Gingerbread horse cookie (gingerhorse)
In more ways than one.

The nineteenth square is completed, I've started the twentieth (my own) so this part of the project will soon be complete. No more purple yarn, yay! Number 19 was a nice deep shade of green-blue, very soothing, and number 20 is more or less cerulean blue, the color of clear skies and cornflowers. Then I get to experiment with several yards of extra warp, looks like. *rubs hooves together gleefully*

Only one essential is on the agenda for the weekend, and that's to get the spinners' exhibition set up in the library on Sunday, ready for Tuesday's opening. I have plenty of help, so that should be fun rather than real work. Couple of hours, piece of cake. <==Famous last words, I'm sure.

Hmm, oh, I see it's time for another spinners' newsletter, too, so that needs to get done. But there should be time to play with ponies and dogs and whatever else I feel like. Hooray. Now if the weather will just cool off so it's more comfortable to do such things.

Friday!

Jul. 1st, 2011 11:15 pm
altivo: Plush horsey (plushie)
Hey, hey, it's Friday everyone. *klunk* Zzzzzzzzzz.

Oh, and happy Canada Day to you folks north of that border, eh? Don't overdo the celebration, we expect you to have some energy left to join us on Monday for our own party.
altivo: Plush horsey (plushie)
But at least it was cooler.

Took Gary out to dinner in town to celebrate having the shearing all done. It's a job we've come to dread each spring but it went pretty smoothly this year.

Tomorrow is the picnic at IRM, so went shopping after dinner to get salad veggies and a couple dozen ears of sweet corn. I felt "greedy" buying so much corn at once but the cashier seemed to think nothing of it. I'm actually not a big fan of sweet corn but nearly everyone else seems to be, so it seemed like a good addition to the plan. The salad, on the other hoof, will be good by my standards. Lots of ingredients, but I won't mix them up. Everyone can pick the things they like and leave out what they prefer to skip. This went over pretty well last year.

It's also RPO (Railway Post Office) weekend at the museum, when they recreate mail drops and pickups from a moving train, and cancel letters with a special cancellation for the occasion. The local post office sends staff over to set up a temporary branch.

Weather promises to be decent, coolish, mostly sunny, with enough breeze to blow away some of the insects. Last year it rained in the morning and then got steamy hot in the afternoon, as I recall.

I've come to an interesting/amusing conclusion about DECWindows on the VAX, too. Though it's working properly on the LAN at home, it fails utterly at the library. My suspicion is that you have to have DECnet support installed even though you aren't using it directly. Both the Alpha and the VAX emulator at home have DECnet installed and then deactivated by setting an option at boot time. The Vax emulation I'm running at the library was installed without DECnet. The docs don't say you need it, but I suspect it never really occurred to them that you might run without it. (DECnet was Digital's internet-like communication protocol, predating the public TCPIP Internet by a number of years. At one time, the international DECnet extended world-round, connecting Australia to Japan to US to Europe with the same ease we now enjoy on the Internet.) TCPIP was not supported by DEC operating systems at first, and when I ran real VAX equipment, if you needed it you had to buy from a third party supplier. Eventually DEC bought out one of the third party protocol stacks and integrated it into OpenVMS as an extra-cost option.
altivo: Running Clydesdale (running clyde)
Like the red queen, I feel as if I'm running as fast as I can just to stay in one place.

Tomorrow will be more of the same. I will probably not go to the Pioneer Festival with Gary and Rob since if I did, there would be no time to get animal chores done, etc. I think I could go with them if I did all those chores AND made stuff to take to the potluck tonight, all before 9 am. Possible, but unlikely. Or I'd be so tired I wouldn't enjoy the festival...

An interesting thing seems to be happening with Simon. I knew that Sarah had more or less become the alpha dog when she arrived, though they seemed to get along well enough and play together and all that. But now that she's gone, he's starting to wake up again. No, he hasn't found the fountain of youth or anything like that, but he's much more aware of his surroundings and what is going on. He clearly still sees and hears more than we thought, for instance.
altivo: (rocking horse)
One day down. Guild meeting attended, made it to lunch with Bear Creek and friends, then to the county fair where I may have successfully wiggled my way out of judging for next year (which means I can submit items for display instead,) and then Sam's Evil Empire to get some grocery stuff.

By the time we got home, the heat index was at 100F/38C. I convinced Gary that we shouldn't put the horses in their stalls for the night, so we fed them in their pens instead where there is more air circulation. We do have some breeze, but the humidity is so high that it isn't helping a lot. Tomorrow is predicted to be worse.

Got back my share of the dye samples from last month, will get a photo of the lot as soon as possible. The range of colors is pretty amazing in my opinion, especially considering that they come just from weeds, sawdust, and dried bugs.

We made salad for dinner from lettuce, arugula, and cilantro thinnings I pulled out of the garden. Added a tomato and some cottage cheese, and it was good. Pulled some bean soup out of the freezer from last February and that was enough.

We haven't been running our air conditioning much this year, it has been so cool and gloomy, but today it is on. Coincidentally, talked to a guy in a commercial booth at the fair who has an energy-efficient heating and cooling business and sells/installs the same brand heating and cooling (Climate Master) that we have. He said he can do regular maintenance on our system, something we haven't been doing because the original installers (farther away, in Rockford) have changed hands and aren't handling this brand any more.

Tomorrow: Clean barns while Gary is at church, should be light since Tess won't have been in her stall at all, and the boys, though they have access, will probably stay outside mostly. Then head to the library for the centennial shindig. Gary's Bear Creek partner Rob (and possibly his wife Dawn) will arrive on the 12:20 train, and the whole complicated thing starts at 1 pm. Not sure how late it will run, but probably at least until 4 pm. We hope to take them to dinner in town and get them onto the 6:35 train for home. After which we'll have to go home ourselves and feed horses, sheep, and dogs. Then Monday back to work again. Eeew.

And next weekend? Boone County Fair and the steam tractor gathering in Sycamore I think.

Rain

Aug. 7th, 2009 08:33 pm
altivo: (rocking horse)
Seems funny after complaining all spring about the excessive amount of rain, that we should be begging for rain now, but we are. Today, it rained... at work, 15 miles from here. We had significantly less rainfall right here, though there was at least a little.

This is shaping up to be another one of those weekends with a whole week and no breathing time in it. I have the monthly guild meeting tomorrow morning, while Gary and friends provide music at the farmers' market in the same time slot, followed probably by lunch near the square, for which I will try to join them. Oh, and "possible thunderstorms" are predicted for the morning. In the afternoon we plan to visit the county fair, since that will be our only chance to do so. Sunday is the library's 100th anniversary bash, which will take up the afternoon, plus a chunk of the morning in preparation. Animal care must be squeezed in there too somehow, and a trip to the supermarket as well. No rest for the wicked, as the saying goes.

Only 8:30 pm and I'm falling asleep right now. Because of the anniversary thingie, which will include access to staff workareas for the public to see where we work and what we do, I actually cleaned my desk, more or less. I generally work in a mountain of paper, and parts of the desktop were re-exposed to air for the first time in a couple of years. Many dessicated lady-bugs had to be swept away. Documents from the time of the rupture with the Big Messed Up Consortium, or BMUC, were at the bottom of the piles and were summarily chucked into the circular filing basket.

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