Archive for October, 2012

Corn maze

Tuesday, October 30th, 2012

Here’s LRN4 at the end of the corn maze we visited several days ago.  That map looks a little bit complex, but it was further complicated by the fact that you had to find all ten pieces of it in mailboxes throughout the maze.  There were all kinds of other things to find too – they had answers to the crossword puzzle you see there, along with cornfield trivia and a few other fun things.  I’ve seen more technically well-done mazes, but this one was fun, what with all the extra things to find and do.  Recommended.  Although it’s too late this year.  And we won’t be here next year.  But still recommended.  Great Art courtesy of the exclusive iPhone-cam and part of my famous Hiking series.

We have a new Loyal Reader!  It’s been a long time.  LRN3 informed me that his friend Chris (not to be confused with LRN23, who is my brother, I think) (that is, I know he’s my brother, but I think my brother is the person who I previously identified as LRN23) has been reading the blog.  I have no idea why he’s reading, but I’m delighted he is!  Welcome, LRN30!  Leave a comment!  That’s a big milestone for the blog.  At this rate, we’ll be at 50 readers within three or four more years.

Anyway.  We weathered Hurricane Sandy last night just fine.  No real impacts here – the lights flickered several times but never went out, the rain was steady but never hard, and the winds were high but never destructive.  They were destructive at my office, though – I counted somewhere between 25 and 30 trees either knocked completely down or broken in half.  That’s a lot of trees on one campus.  The office was closed all day yesterday and this morning.  Schools were closed both days.  Everything should be pretty much back to normal by tomorrow, except for the people still without power, of which there are apparently a lot.  Things should get back to normal for them within a few more days.  Hopefully!

In other news, LRN4 and I are going back to Hawaii next March!  We’re going on the same ship and to the same places we went during our 2011 cruise, but I really enjoyed that one and expect to enjoy this one just as much.  And our (non-Loyal-Reader but very good anyway) friends Doug and Connie are coming too.  We’re excited about that.  By that time, we hope to be firmly ensconced in our house in Las Vegas, so it’ll be especially nice to be with Doug and Connie.  We’ve cruised with them twice before (Alaska and Mexico) and enjoyed both times.  Lots of time left before we sail, but it’ll be on us before we know it.  I hear March is a good time of year to go to Hawaii.  I’m pretty sure any month is a good time of year to go to Hawaii, though.

Version 2.0 of my Morse Trainer app was released this past week, and there have already been over 400 upgrades!  That means that people are not only downloading my app, but some of them are actually keeping it on their iDevices!  I couldn’t be more delighted.  Well, I guess I actually could be more delighted: there could be thousands of people using it and they could have paid me for it.  But other than that, I’m absolutely delighted.

And I’ll leave my Loyal Readers with this shocking food violence news:  tofu explosion!

See you tomorrow.

Red lobster

Wednesday, October 24th, 2012

Here’s LRN4 with a friend she made in Bar Harbor, Maine.  Very large ice cream cone there.  And a triple scoop!  Great Art courtesy of the exclusive iPhone-cam and part of my famous Cruise, Vacation, and Statue series.

Not a lot going on today.  LRN3 reports that he and LRN15 are heading to LRN15’s sister’s Gigantic Wedding Extravaganza tomorrow.  The wedding is on Saturday in Yorktown, so they’ll all have a few days together to vacation a bit and do wedding-related things, such as eating.  Have fun, Loyal Readers!

As already mentioned, LRN1 is in the market for a nice used SUV of some kind.  He spent some time today with his very kind uncle, who made some good recommendations.  I think he has the search narrowed down to about five different models – a couple of Nissans and three Chevys.  Jeeps are out of the question – old ones tend to be beaten up pretty badly and there have been a few reliability issues.  Ditto Ford Explorers.  Those trucks may not take as much of a beating, but reliability on the older ones hasn’t exactly been perfect.  He was looking at Toyotas for a while, but people are willing to pay a bit more for them than he is.  What do you say, Loyal Readers?  What should he buy?

We’re thinking about another cruise to Hawaii in the spring.  LRN4 got a great offer from our travel agent today – even cheaper than our last trip there.  It would be an exact repeat of our 2011 cruise there, including the same ship, but I had a great time on that ship and love to go to Hawaii.  So we’re seriously thinking about it.  Should we go?  Have to make our minds up by Monday at the latest.

I want to go read, so I’ll leave my Loyal Readers with this shocking food violence news: bus driver banana attack nightmare!

See you tomorrow.

At sea

Monday, October 22nd, 2012

Here’s LRN4 standing out on deck during our recent cruise to New England and Canada. Look at those smooth seas! And it was warm! Hence LRN4’s willingness to be out on deck! Enough exclamation marks for now! Great Art courtesy of the exclusive iPhone-cam, taken the day after we left Canada, and part of my famous Cruise and Vacation series.

Had a nice weekend! The weather was beautiful, the leaves were right in the middle of changing colors, and we did some fun stuff. Went to a corn maze in New Jersey, visited the farm attached to the corn maze, and went out for Japanese food. All in one day!

Also finished working on the update to my Morse Trainer iOS app and got it submitted this evening. It’s now compatible with iPhones with Retina displays, iPhone 5’s, and all kinds of iPads. A few functional updates went in as well. I can hardly wait for Apple’s reviewers to finish with it and get it released! Fame and fortune await! Next up for an update, the Brewing Co. app.

Been swapping text messages with LRN1 this evening. He’s in the market for a nice (cheap) used 4×4. He likes my Beloved Pickup, but it’s not quite four-wheelie and off-roadie enough for him. Good luck in the search, LRN1! I love buying cars. Just love it.

LRN4 and I have been watching TV this evening – some of our favorite shows. We particularly like the Jeeves and Wooster series, starring Fry and Laurie. Very amusing, very classy, and highly recommended. We also watched an episode of Sledge Hammer. That’s one of my very favorite shows ever. Dumb, tacky, and hilarious. Also highly recommended. We started the viewing pleasure with an F Troop episode. Not as funny as Sledge and not as classy as Jeeves, but amusing. Recommended.

And I’ll leave my Loyal Readers with this shocking food violence news: ham assault!

See you tomorrow.

Ancient statues

Thursday, October 18th, 2012

Here’s a group of statues from some ancient church somewhere.  They’re not in the best of shape, but neither would any of the rest of us be if we were their age.  Of course, they’re made of rocks and we’re not, so they ought to have a little advantage in the longevity department.  Still, for relics from the middle ages, they’re pretty nice.  Great Art courtesy of the exclusive iPhone cam, taken at Bryn Athyn, and part of my famous Statue series.

Well.  It’s been a few days since I posted here, yet again.  I’ve been giving Facebook a bit of a try lately.  I get WAY more comments than I’ve ever gotten here, since I have WAY more friends than I do Loyal Readers.  Still, the blog is my journal and I want to keep it up.  Plus, my Loyal Readers demand it.

Work is heating up, and I’m not talking about the climate control system.  We’re coming up to a very crucial activity – the whole reason I was asked to come out here – and the pressure is on to perform.  I hope to do well enough to make everybody glad they brought me here but not so well that they want to keep me here.  There may be a fine line I have to walk, but I’m up for the challenge.

Since we think we’re about three months away from going back home, we’re trying to pack in all the local entertainment and culture we can.  We’re going to a play tomorrow night, a corn maze on Saturday,  a Ghost Tour of downtown Langhorne (our current hometown!) Friday of next week, the church Halloween party on Saturday of next week, back to Longwood Gardens for the Chrysanthemum Festival in early November (who knew there even was a Chrysanthemum Festival?), and who knows what else.  LRN3 will be here in early November, we’re going to Michigan over the Thanksgiving weekend, and there will be a whole lot more.

In the meantime, I’ve been working hard on Morse Trainer to modernize it a bit.  I already have all the graphics updated for Retina displays, I have it filling up the screen on iPhone 5’s, and I plan to have it iPad-compatible by the end of the weekend.  Lots still to do, but it’s looking pretty good.  Also came up with a new logo for spinfo dot info, which is now my non-commercial app outlet, while Business Casual Software is my commercial arm.  I may not exactly hit the ground running when I retire and start making a freelance living writing software, but I hope to be at least moving at a trot of sorts.  We’ll see.

Anyway.  Nothing else going on, so I’ll leave my Loyal Readers with this shocking food violence news: ramming Taco Bell!

See you tomorrow.

Portland lighthouse

Monday, October 1st, 2012

Here’s one of the many lighthouses we saw on our recent East Coast cruise. This one was in Portland, Maine. Beautiful, no? And how about that weather? It couldn’t have been prettier! That’s another, slightly less commodious lighthouse there in the background. Great Art courtesy of the famous iPhone-cam and part of my famous Vacation series.

Speaking of Great Art, we had a bit of a sad thing happen recently, which is scheduled to lead to a very good thing tomorrow. LRN4 had a bit of trouble in the packing/loading phase of her return trip from Nevada last week, and my trusty old Olympus camera is no more. For which she’s very, very sorry.

Well, its probably premature to say the camera is no more. It probably still exists, either lost somewhere in LRN4’s sister’s house (unlikely – they looked pretty hard on our behalf) or it’s currently in the possession of some thief in the employ of Alamo Car Rental in Nevada (the most likely case, in my opinion). Such is the all-too-common way of minimum-wage labor, unfortunately.

Anyway, that’s the bad news. The good news is that the camera had to be replaced, and quickly. LRN4’s hugely-popular website demands it! In fact, it needed to be upgraded anyway. She has ordered this lovely camera to take its place and was fortunate enough to get this very nice SD card to go along with it for free! The camera isn’t exactly free, but I think the price is very good and, according to the reviews, it appears to be a pretty good piece of equipment.

Want to buy a new camera of your very own? Click on my link! You get your camera and I get a tidy little kickback at absolutely no cost to you! In fact, click on any of my Amazon links and buy anything while you’re there and I get a tidy little kickback. Do it! Do it now! Feed my financial juggernaut!

Speaking of Amazon, I’ve been on a bit of a buying spree. My rented Ford Flex had a broken rear wiper and the fine folks down at the Firestone shop couldn’t figure out how to fix it. The one thing they were sure of was that they needed a whole lot of time on a weekday to fix it. I did a few moments of internet research, figured out what I needed, ordered it from Amazon, got it in a couple of days, and installed it within about three minutes without the use of tools. It was worth the ten bucks to not have to leave it at the shop all day.

Anyway. LRN’s been doing a bit of shopping herself. So far, she has bought a bunch of house paint (and applied a good amount of it to the interior of the house in Las Vegas), several temporary blinds, and a permanent curtain for the sliding door. Not mention a few books and some other nice stuff.

Speaking of which, the house in Las Vegas is officially ours! LRN4 bought the place slightly ahead of schedule, picked up the keys exactly on schedule, painted a bunch of it (as previously mentioned), and returned home exactly on schedule. It was a lonely nine days for me, though. Now we need to move into the house! Don’t know when that will happen. They’re talking about keeping me here in Pennsylvania until sometime in January.

Otherwise, not much happening. Although buying a new house is kind of a lot, now that I think of it.

And I’ll leave my Loyal Readers with this shocking food violence news: cupcake rage!

See you tomorrow.