Dec 252015
 

Today, the Dubses were asking us about our bedtime routines with the kids. I thought it would be cute to get the kids themselves to share.

“Chilkoot, do you get out of bed at night?”

“Yes!” He doesn’t. Ever.

“Really! What do you do?”

“Go downstairs!”

“What do you do downstairs?”

“Play!”

“Play? All by yourself?”

“Yes, all by my…mmm…with a couple of friends!”

—-

Chilkat was eating grapes on the couch today. She asked for more grapes. I gave her more. She started to eat them. I called my little brother to wish him Merry Christmas. We spoke for a little while.

Then Chilkat came around the corner, very concerned, with her grape bowl in front of her, saying, “Daddy…Daddy…”

I said, “What’s wrong, sweetie?” I looked at the bowl, and I thought, “Why did she chew up a bunch of grapes and spit them back out in the bowl? Is there something wrong with the grapes?”

Then she started to gag. I said very quickly, “GottagobyeNorthwood” and hung up.

Things proceeded fairly predictably from there, except that she managed to keep most of her vomit in the grape bowl. She hasn’t thrown up in probably more than a year — I doubt she even remembers the last time. She was more scared than anything, not understanding what was going on. She told me she was feeling fine until she started to eat the grapes, but I don’t know how much I can trust her testimony on that. It was an interesting experience mostly for how it made Chilkat feel, and that she came running to me for help instead of Mommy or Nana, both of whom were around.

Anyway, this has given rise to a new phrase which I intend to use often. “Better than a bowl of grapes and vomit!”

—-

Merry Christmas!

Dec 222015
 

Between requesting and completing, I think it’s been over four months, but WestHost has finally finished migrating me to their newer servers. I requested this basically because WordPress wouldn’t automatically update any more without more up to date security data, which wasn’t supported on the older server.

So, if you noticed downtime recently, that’s why. If you didn’t notice the downtime recently, then you probably don’t actually pay attention to this blog anyway, so why worry?

Dec 212015
 

She’s getting sick of being told what to do. Let me see how well I can reconstruct this conversation, during bedtime routine last Wednesday (2015-12-16).

“I can’t wait to grow up.”
“Why?”
Something incoherent, but concluding in, “…and I can move out.”
“Oh? And make your own food, and buy your own clothes, and buy your own toys, and clean up your own messes, and do your own laundry?”
*blank stare* “I just want to live by myself.”
“…So you want to move out, but you still want us to do all that stuff for you?”
“…I just want you to help me move my bed and my dresser and stuff out (she might have actually used the word furniture), because you know, one person can’t do that stuff alone.”
She’ll be five next year.
Dec 092015
 

I have to hand it to Microsoft, they’ve done some things right.

I received that Yoga PC today, fully functional with a home version of Windows 10 and a bunch of unwanted bloatware installed. I hate that shit.

So…I Googled lightly and found a guide to making a backup image using built-in Windows functionality, did so as insurance, and wiped the disk clean, nothing left whatsoever.

This is where it starts getting impressive — usually, that step requires booting to a Windows DVD (or, in the old days, a CD), but this PC doesn’t have an optical drive at all. As an experiment, I took the entire contents of the Windows 10 Enterprise install disk and did a simple file copy to a USB thumb drive. Then I told Windows I wanted to boot to a USB device, and it read it just fine as the install disk.

Zero effort, except that I had to Google how to tell Windows I wanted to boot to a USB device. Install let me delete all partitions (a mark of how weak I’ve become: I was nervous about this, mostly due to the unknown and potentially special/custom hardware involved in this weird little device) and start clean and fresh.

Of course, I was missing lots of drivers, including the Wifi adapter. I was able to download the Wifi drivers to a thumb drive, install them, and then with internet available, systematically right click on each of the ~12 other devices in Device Manager and ask Windows politely to find drivers and install them for me — and it worked perfectly, quickly, and easily. A complete first time wipe and install, including driver discovery and installation, in about 25 minutes.

I hate to say this, but: Kudos, Microsoft. You done good.

Dec 052015
 

At the end of last month, two of KrisDi’s internet mom-board friends came over with their families for dinner (she made deep dish pizza). Each couple has one kid, in the vicinity of our kids’ ages. One couple made a ~2 hour drive to get here, and they stayed over night. We actually put both kids in Chilkoot’s bed and let the guests use Chilkat’s room. It worked out OK. We had a good time. I think they did, too.

For Thanksgiving, we had the Phoenixes come in from OK. They rented a car and stayed at a hotel, but one night, we actually still had the kids sleep in the same bed so only one parent had to be involved in bed time, allowing the other (me) to actually hang out with them. We were hosting an unusually large group (12 adults + 6 children), so KrisDi made a 4 pound beef roast in addition to the 20 pound turkey. There were not a lot of leftovers. KrisDi had also made a 20 pound turkey for her work Thanksgiving the Tuesday prior. On Saturday, we went to the Popes’ for their Thanksgiving dinner — so at that point, I had exposure to three different 20 pound turkeys, and hadn’t had a single turkey sandwich yet. It was terrible.

The Phoenixes’ visit was nice — short, not intense. We went to the zoo, and we looked at Christmas lights, and we ate, and drank, and lounged around.

Aside from that, I ordered a laptop, which I’m excited about, but I don’t have any idea when it will actually arrive. There was some several day delay in assembling the thing and getting it shipped, and now that it has finally shipped, UPS isn’t updating status at all. This PC should be a slight CPU performance increase (i7 instead of i5), a GPU performance decrease (the new PC uses Intel onboard graphics instead of a separate GPU, but I don’t game at all, so I’m not sure how it will impact me in day-to-day life), a significant hard drive performance increase but capacity decrease (512gb SSD instead of current 1tb standard drive), massive form factor improvement (I think the new laptop is something like 60% lighter than my current one, and 75% thinner), huge screen resolution increase (3200×1800 versus 1920×1080), and the new PC has a touch screen and is convertible to a tablet format. It’s the Yoga 900. I really wanted the Microsoft Surface Book, largely due to the 1tb drive (but also due to some other cool but not critical factors), but I couldn’t stomach the price tag for what I wanted.

The Rest of November 2015