Friday, May 28, 2010

Shameless Plug

I don't normally plug other sites here. However, in this case I will make an exception. My wife posted a story on her blog yesterday that, if you are here reading my blog, you owe it to yourself to check out. Enjoy! *grin*

And a picture of Treelo, just because I can!

The Pretty, Pretty Princess!

Friday, May 21, 2010

A Little R & R

As I told you last time, I took a trip down to Rancho Almost-South-of-the-Border to see my parents. ESM couldn't join me, as she is working and taking good care of our little diabetic, Hubbard.

The drive down was good. Got to take the new Buick on it's first "road trip." Nice road car! It sure eats up the miles! When I left my driveway here, the outside air temperature showed as 38 degrees. Later that day, on a lonely two-lane blacktop in southern NM, the temp showed as 83 degrees. I think that is the first time in my life I saw a single-day temperature "flip-flop". *grin*

Had a great time down there. The weather cooperated for the most part, with only a couple of what I would call "windy" days. Temps hovered in the mid-eighties for the most part. And I took full advantage of that! The shorts and sandals definitely made an appearance!

I helped my folks out with several technology issues they were suffering from. The house they built is made from steel and has a fair amount of insulation, including a double-sided reflective layer. Between that and the low-E coated windows they used, they cause all sorts of havok with TV/wireless/cellular signals coming in. I helped them get their new HDTV set up, including installing a new HDTV antenna on an outside mast so they can watch TV again. With the changeover to digital TV, they have been having a devil of a time getting watchable TV. The new antenna and new LCD TV helps a lot! They actually have several decent digital channels down there, including the local educational station...which makes my mom very happy!

They are also having Internet provider troubles. They were using a point-to-multipoint wireless unit provided by a local ISP to get their Internet. The provider seems like they are running on a shoestring budget, and recently lost their primary backbone connection for their wireless customers. It took them over two WEEKS to get it fixed. This is not the first time my folks have had trouble with their provider, so my dad decided to try something different. Satellite doesn't work for them, as they run VoIP for phone service, so they decided to give 3G cellular a try. They went out and got a 3G USB device from a very well known provider whose name begins with "V" and immediately found that using it inside their black-hole of a house didn't work really well. So, after spending an afternoon working with it myself, including taking their laptop outside with the 3G card and making sure the signal wasn't too bad, they are going to opt for a cellular booster to get better signal inside. Should work, but is a little pricey. When it is up and running, they should have a much more reliable connection. Time will tell...

So, after rewiring their entertainment center, helping with the TV and cellular wireless woes, and fixing several other smaller techy type things, I did manage to get some time to relax as well! *grin* Got to ride the ATVs around a of my favorite things to do down there! Their property backs to BLM land, so there is plenty of space to ride around and have fun. There is also a great trail that goes up to the nearby mountains. Takes about an hour or so to go up, but the view is spectacular! I took some video this time, and I'll embed it at the bottom.

I am always very sorry to have to leave. It is so quiet and peaceful down there...when my dad isn't out shooting his shotgun, or I'm tear-assing around on the ATVs! *grin*

The only bad part of the whole trip was that ESM had caught my cold I had earlier in the month just before I left. I felt bad leaving her, however this was my only good opportunity for some R & R for the summer. She almost had to push me out the door to go. I hate leaving her when she is in distress like that. She thankfully survived and was on the mend when I got home.

We are now looking forward to a visit from ESM's parents sometime early next month. I have not seen them in a while, and they have not been here since we bought the new house or adopted "the boyz." I know ESM's mom is going to just fall in love with Leo. He has that effect on some people, especially the cat-people kind! I think we may have to frisk her, and check her luggage before she goes home...she may try to steal him away!

-- Sundown, Out

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Absence Update...Finally!

I have been remiss in not updating everyone. Things got very hectic around here, with multiple cat maladies, ESM going through finals week at school, and on top of it all I got sick. Not been a barrel of laughs around here lately.

First off, Hubbard is doing pretty good. He is back on his insulin at a lower dosage and is tolerating it well. We discontinued the medication for the pancreatitus for a bit, and now he is back on it also at a lower dosage. He continues to be our little "tank," just rumblin' right along.

Treelo ended up getting smacked in the eye (by Rocky, we suspect) right after we got Hubbard back on track, so we've been dealing with that too. She is ok, but we had to do eye ointment for her for a bit. She is doing better and there seems to be no permanent damage. Just more vet bills...

ESM got through finals week without killing any of us, for which I was grateful. It was touch-and-go there for a bit towards the end, however we all survived with only a few chew-marks on us. She is getting a bit burned out on school and decided to take the summer off from classes. I know the break will do her good. She really enjoys what she is studying, but the grind of working part-time, going to school part-time, and taking care of us full-time does weigh heavy on her. I will be glad to have her out into the yard this summer getting some "dirt" therapy.

I'm also just getting over a spring cold. I hate being sick when the weather is nice...

Gonna take a drive to the wilds of New Mexico to see my folks here very soon. I was going to take my uncle along with me to share the drive, but he wimped out on me last week. Oh well, he is recovering from shoulder surgery and going through the agony of physical therapy, so I can understand. Just would have been nice to have some company. ESM has to stay behind to take care of Hubbard, and work...which I know bums her out.

However, this is my last opportunity to take some vacation time before a big project at work kicks into overdrive. There will be no time off for me from when I get back until probably Thanksgiving. I'll fill you all in on that project as I get closer to completion.

You can tell spring is in the air, when the boys start sticking their heads out the window! *grin*