Archive for December 2006

Dec. 12 (Tuesday)

December 12th, 2006 — 3:13pm

Tiny Tigers
musical theater

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Aperture, full-screen

December 12th, 2006 — 11:44am

Dan and I had so much fun last night. We were trying to figure out how to make Aperture show one photo at a time, full-screen, without any menus or thumbnails or options or anything on the screen. We wanted just one big photo and nothing else. It’s easy to get a photo to pop up full-screen (press “f”) but by default there’s this row of thumbnails covering the bottom edge. We must have fooled with it for 20 minutes trying to get rid of those thumbnails, and we’re both geeks who are good at figuring out software! Aperture’s UI leaves something to be desired. It’s not exactly intuitive. We tried every menu option that seemed reasonable — preferences, view options, layout, everything — before we finally noticed the little “auto” option in the thumbnail menu itself. Eureka!

1 comment » | Blog, Tech

Dec. 11 (Monday)

December 11th, 2006 — 6:07pm

Christmas crafts
reading math

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The Man of my Dreams, by Curtis Sittenfeld

December 10th, 2006 — 7:28pm

I’ve just finished a very good book: The Man of my Dreams, by Curtis Sittenfeld.  I went through a long dry spell of forgettable boring books, but when I picked up this one a few days ago and read the first few pages, I was hooked and I knew I’d be unable to put it down.  I had to leave it in the livingroom last night to stop myself from staying up way too late to finish it!    Lovely book, just lovely.

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Belt, Filemaker, Velvet

December 9th, 2006 — 10:45pm

Henry passed his belt test! He’s now 4th Kyu — purple with a black stripe (crossways, at the end of the belt). I’m very proud of him.

After Henry’s test, I came home and sat with Dan on the couch for hours. He did something to the server and I studied my Filemaker Pro book (on I’m determined to make an awesome client/gig database for Chloe in the near future. Filemaker is certainly complex, but I’m getting the hang of it and it’s fun.

And I put on National Velvet (thanks TiVo and TCM) this evening and worked on my second green sock. Yes, I finally finished the first one! Pictures soon, if you’re lucky. Anyway, National Velvet is a fantastic movie, if you can put up with an overdose of Elizabeth Taylor being Breathy, Eager, Idealistic, And Passionate About Horses. The supporting cast is amazing, especially Mrs. Brown and young Donald, who steals every scene he’s in. The race scene is absolutely thrilling.

Oh, and I did a little googling and found that Titan Panel has been released for WoW 2.0! Hooray! Now I can play in comfort; I have all the necessities.

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An Ear for Proper English

December 9th, 2006 — 12:16am

A few days ago Henry and I were listening to the “A Way With Words” podcast, which is one of our favorite podcasts. A woman called in to discuss the common and irritating substitution of “less” for “fewer.” As soon as she mentioned her peeve, but before she described it, I hit pause in iTunes, turned to Henry, and said, “I have less socks than you do.” He groaned, rolled his eyes, and said, “FEWER! FEWER SOCKS!”

So what if he doesn’t know 7×8 yet? He hears the difference between “less” and “fewer.” That’s my boy.

A Way With Words can be found here:

2 comments » | Blog


December 8th, 2006 — 8:32pm

Tonight I made a HUGE pot of split-pea soup. I want to be able to freeze several portions for days when I crave a good thick hot soup but don’t have the time to make it. I really love good soup! While I was cooking I put on my Christmas playlist on “shuffle” and lots of good stuff came up — Dylan Thomas reading “A Child’s Christmas in Wales,” the Brian Setzer/Ann Margret “Baby It’s Cold Outside,” some Sneak’s Noyse, a couple of the Phil Spector Christmas songs, a little Pete Seeger, etc. etc. A nice mixture of the sublime and the corny :)

I took Henry to the dojo this morning so he could have a little extra one-on-one coaching on his three katas to prepare for his belt test tomorrow. He’s so excited! I think he’ll probably pass his test, if he stays focused and doesn’t space out. He seems to be doing really well to me at least :) And if he doesn’t pass it’s not the end of the world, of course, though he’ll be terribly disappointed; kids who don’t pass always get to test again in a couple of weeks.

Time for a bowl of pea soup with a big glob of sour cream!

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Dec. 8 (Friday)

December 8th, 2006 — 6:08pm

In Our Time science podcast (light)

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Dec. 7 (Thursday)

December 7th, 2006 — 6:07pm

The Grey King
multiplication chart

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December 7th, 2006 — 12:56pm

Boy, you don’t fully appreciate your WoW add-ons until they’re gone. This morning I went hunting and found that, although they won’t release a stable version for another two weeks, the developers of Auctioneer and Informant have an alpha version that works with WoW 2.0!!! I backed up my accounts and installed them, along with Enchantrix, which is handy for enchanters. Informant is possibly even more useful than Auctioneer.

Please back up your accounts before installing!

I’m headed to the IF auction house now, to see how this Auctioneer alpha works. But even if it’s buggy I’m still happy to have it.  Informant seems to be working perfectly so far.

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Our Island Story, ch. 51, 52, 53, 54

December 6th, 2006 — 6:53pm

051 – The Battle of Shrewsbury

052 – How Prince Hal was Sent to Prison

053 – The Battle of Agincourt

054 – The Maid of Orleans

This ends the first half of Our Island Story.  I’ll begin podcasting a different book soon, but if you’d like to hear the second half of Our Island Story (another 56 chapters of crazy princes and evil bishops and noble knights!) please visit the LibriVox catalog page here:

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WoW Patch

December 6th, 2006 — 11:52am

I wasn’t happy with the new collar I knitted onto my red sweater, so I ripped it off and tried again.  Still not happy.  But I have another idea…

I sat on Henry’s bed and knitted while he cleaned his room this morning.  He got rid of a lot of cruddy old junk, yay Henry!  Then we started all the computers downloading the most recent WoW patch, and then we went to Margaret’s ranch for one of her Christmas Craft Days.  She sets up tables outdoors with a variety of high-quality craft kits on them, and charges a dollar or two for each craft.  It’s a lot of fun and a great way for  Henry to make gifts for his friends and relatives!  We had a RIOT making a tiny little nativity scene together.  :)

Then we came home and I fixed lunch while Henry filled in a few more squares on our big multiplication chart.  After lunch we settled down to play a little WoW.  The patch broke ALL my add-ons.  I found updated versions of Monkeyquest and EquipCompare, but nothing else, groan.  I need Titan Panel!  I need Auctioneer!  Anyway we played together for a long time.  Went to Aerie Peak and found a new Draeni NCP questgiver!  He gave us three quests so we worked on those. Henry’s character, ZInny, hit level 50 last time we played, but it took all his gold and lot of mine for him to train, so now I’m going to help him grind and make money for a while.  But I depend on Auctioneer to help me make a killing in the Auction House, so I do hope that developer will update his add-on soon.

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Dec. 6 (Wednesday)

December 6th, 2006 — 11:51am

Christmas crafts at Margaret’s
multiplication table
science podcast (light)
grammar (prepositional phrases)

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December 5th, 2006 — 11:16pm

I felt better today, a bit less tired, and I got a lot done!  I faded a bit in the afternoon and I’m very tired now, so this might not sound very enthusiastic, but I really did have a nice, fun day.  Henry and I went to  karate first thing.  There were three new little Tiny Tigers in class.  They’re soooooo tiny!  They only come up to Henry’s elbows.  He’s got a belt test coming up on Saturday, so we asked if he could come in for a little extra help brushing up the three Katas that he needs to know.  Sensei Michelle made time for him on Friday, very nice.

Then we went to the dentist for his cleaning and appliance-check up.  He’s doing fine. He is to start turning the bottom front crank at the same time as he turns the top cranks.

Then grocery shopping: TP, Lunesta, dental floss, and baking supplies at Stater Brothers, and everything else under the sun at Trader Joe’s.  Henry carried everything in for me, and then ate french break, garlic and herb Boursin cheese, and applesauce for lunch while I put everything away.  Then I took a 15-minute email break (for the first time today).  Then I helped him bake his fabulous lemony cheesecake.  While it baked, we played music together.  He showed me a cool rhythm to play on the drums while he played the bass.  We sorta re-created “Drive My Car” a little bit :)

Then it was off to the passport office. Then I dropped him off at his dad’s house and did a little Christmas shopping.  Then home, internet, and dinner, which was rotelli with about half a bag of wilted spinach and some red bell peppers in the sauce. And Henry’s cheesecake for dessert!
I’m trying to finish my re-worked sweater collar tonight so I can wear it again tomorrow.  Brr.

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Scary Mary

December 5th, 2006 — 10:15pm


Mary Poppins Re-Mix

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Dec. 5 (Tuesday)

December 5th, 2006 — 9:41pm

Karate (Tiny Tigers)
Grocery shopping
drum and bass practice
baked a cheesecake

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Dec. 4 (Monday)

December 4th, 2006 — 9:41pm

The Grey King
started lego castle
verbal math drills

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Right Ho, Jeeves

December 3rd, 2006 — 11:28pm

Slept until 10:30, amazing! Dan and I sat on the sofa in our jammies with our laptops for hours and hours today, very lazy and relaxing. We went through the 300 photos he took at the gig last night, separating out the interesting ones, and I did LibriVox work and started editing my recording of Barchester Towers, chapter 11.

This evening we watched the first episode of “The IT Crowd” but it was just stupid so I don’t think we’ll be watching any more of it. I heard a lot of good things about it, but I guess that “Green Wing” and “The Office” have spoiled us and we can’t watch stupid sitcoms anymore.

Our reader Mark has completed another Jeeves and Wooster book — this time a whole novel, rather than a collection of short stories. Download it (for free!) here:

It’s a classic, featuring Madeline Bassett, Tuppy Glossop, Cousin Angela, Gussie Finknottle, and assorted Aunts :) I think Mark does a great job reading Wodehouse. Henry and I will be listening to this one tomorrow, for sure.

2 comments » | Blog


December 2nd, 2006 — 11:28pm

Our David in England found a short and hilarious public domain Cornish Christmas Play (published 1833, but it feels a LOT older). He posted the project this morning, had it fully cast within 5 hours, and I think almost all of the parts have already been submitted. I grabbed the role of The Dragon (I speak about 4 lines and am then slain by Saint George) and David asked if Henry would read the role of Father Christmas. I asked him when he was here for a while this evening, and he said yes so we worked on our lines and took turns recording them. It’s going to be so cool when David gets it all pasted together!

I had lots and lots of Alone Time today — Henry was at his dad’s house all except for a few hours in the evening, and Dan was out helping with a Rockola gig all day. I did luxurious things like reading, uninterrupted, and knitting while listening to audiobooks, uninterrupted, and recording for LibriVox, uninterrupted :) But it was kind of weird, too, so I’ll be glad when everyone is home again tomorrow!

1 comment » | Blog

bpt alterations

December 1st, 2006 — 11:19pm

I made the “bpt” sweater a couple of years ago. I wear it constantly, but the hood kind of bothers me. I almost never use it (’cause I’ve made myself an assortment of cute warm hats) and it’s lumpy when I lean back in my seat. So today I RIPPED it off while listening to LibriVox’s lovely free audiobook of The Awakening. Ripped it all the way back to the neckline, picked the neck stitches back up and started knitting a little standup collar. The sweater is rather poorly designed at the neck — the front is as high as the back, so it rides down in back and is too high in front. In an attempt to make it fit better, I’m doing the collar with short rows in back to make the back higher. Let’s hope its a success! I took a “before” picture which maybe I’ll post tomorrow.

Oh, and here’s an old photo of the sweater in its still hooded state:

I’d also like to make it longer and less tapered, so I might be doing some more alterations after I fix the neck.

3 comments » | Blog, Handmade

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