Saturday, February 26, 2011

1717 week-a-versary

Jomona, the first Williamson Grandchild to Bob's parents---alerted us to a cool math site, WolframAlpha.

It is fun to play with the numbers. When I entered April 1, 1978 to today, it told me that we are on our 1717th week-a-versary.

When Bob and I were newlyweds, we used to celebrate every Saturday and calculate which week-a-versary we were on.

1717 is a fun number.

In 2015, August, we will celebrate our birth year number week-a-versaries.

Fun. Fun.

Something to look forward watching the odometer roll over 100,000 on the car. eh?

and over 12,0053 days means that surely, there have been over 12,000 kisses if we only kissed once a day, even counting times Bob was out of town. I like the sound of it: the year of 12,000 kisses. Sounds like a movie title.

But, that also means 12,000 suppers, 12,000 "I Love you mores..." 12,000 back scratches...

I think I will go calculate something with 100,000 in it...

on June 21, 2012, Amber's birthday next year, we will celebrate 300,000 hours married---so if we were a car, Bob said we'd be headed back from the moon. (traveling one mile per hour)

Friday, February 25, 2011

Live Webcam: Eyjafjallajokull

I just love clicking on live webcams from around the world. I used to have a wonderful one of Mount Saint Helens. Then my computer decided it did not like pop up windows or something. boo.

In reconstructing favorites, I found the cool live webcam of the volcano in Iceland. Sometimes it is just snow. Sometimes at night, though, you can see the northern lights reflect off the snow. It looks like such a wild and desolate place.

Now they have webcams so that you can check the driving conditions in Wichita Falls before venturing out. Halelujah. Wichita Falls is mostly high over passes which ice over in winter. Yuck.

Someday they will invent live webcams for grannies. Won't that be fun! One time we were skyping with our son who was tired and lay down on their couch, and his two or three year old kept piling toys on top of him. It was a hoot. We could see her the whole time, so we were watching her. If she wandered out of frame, we were going to call our son and wake him up. We have read books with her on skype. But, most days, we just enjoy her exuberant energy.

I watched a video the other day where these experts say babies only learn language from face to face encounters. not from TV nor video nor webcams. But, as a grannie, we are thankful for skype. And hey, if it cuts down on flu and colds, all the better!

Thursday, February 24, 2011


I like to brouse blogs and some news sites, and the weather sites.

I like to arrange my favorites on the left column, in alphabetical order.

When the old computer crashed, I used a saved favorites list Bob had made for me back in December. It was outdated, but better than nothing.

In assembling a new favorites list, I have been hunting and pecking, stealing and cruising sites looking for old friends. Even this blog has some old favorites listed. Some are not there, but like Katherine Ham, I like to keep her in the list to remind me to hunt for her articles.

How do I save this new list? It represents a morning of work. And learning. I hit the wrong button on one place and there was no undo...yikes. The ads are horrid.

I am glad my email is on a site not connected to my computer. I never lost my ability to email since it was "out there" but the ads on it are pesky.

I need a tutorial on this new computer. something in book form so that I don't have to go back and forth between screens. So much of it is just hunting and pecking. One day I will figure out how to remove all the scroll bars. And someday I will figure out how to set the fonts and screen sizes. Someday.

Now to figure out how to get that cursor bigger, and the silly little upside down triangle. I will be glad when the folks who make computers have old eyes like mine. Then maybe, we will have decent sized things to click on.

I have 105 "favorites" which include the Drudge Report, and WBAP, The Onion, and some Army wives, a mom taking care of her disabled soldier, and a couple of people in Israel. Windows to the world. Recipes from Pioneer Woman, news from The Blaze and The B-cast. And a funny or two on strange listings or things children have gotten into. Fun. Fun

New Stack Thingy

The gateway stack computer thingy quit. So, Bob ordered a new HP (Hewlet Packard) stack thingy. It came yesterday in a box weighing 22 pounds. A fed-ex lady brought it to the door. She came about 1pm. For the past 12 or so days, Bob has graciously let me use his laptop. I was glad for the access, but his font is so tiny. Even the little arrow things you click on were hard on my eyes.

So, I have been trying to figure out how to configure this new computer with a larger font. It is different for every page. Lovely.

And we spent four hours last night trying to get the webcam on the monitor wake up. You'd think the HP computer could access the HP monitor webcam. Four hours of talking to support via chat, it looks like it needs another cord. So, Bob took the cord off the printer and tried that, but it was getting close to midnight, so we gave up. Now the printer is lit as in powered, but I doubt I could print any cute pictures of the grandkids.

We need the webcam or we need to download the old one so that we can skype with the next generation.

I have lost count on how many computers we have had, and how many favorites lists I have lost. Now to reconstruct a favorites list. And reload pictures. Facebook makes it easy to reset your background with one of the baby pictures, but somehow, when I tried it this morning, all I get is Baby James' midsection. Oh, dear.

I pondered aloud what it would be like to buy a car like we buy computers: we'd still be sitting at the dealership wondering why the windshield wipers were not talking to the controls.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011


Once upon a time, an old K-mart closed. The lot and building were purchased by Walmart, and when the new Ballpark Stadium in Arlington was built, the Walmart started over with a spanking brand new building. And cute baseball lights on the corners. It was the newest, fanciest Walmart I had ever been to. Fancy.

Then this man decided to build a football stadium across the street. Rumors flew. Would the brand new Walmart be closed? Seemed a waste, as the area needed the store. And I am sure the workers appreciated the low cost of things they needed so close at hand.

But, Walmart is under attack by the snooty. I wish the snooty would actually visit a Walmart and see the number of ethnic groups holding down jobs there, as well as saving money there. Arlington only has another Walmart, way south, 30 minutes away from the Ballpark one if you are lucky in traffic. The closest one to the Ballpark Walmart is actually in Fort Worth---as far east Fort Worth as one can get. the Eastchase Walmart. There used to be one on 820, but it closed, and the Eastchase one is where all those customers have to travel.

The new Ballpark Walmart tried to be a good neighbor. They changed out half of the baseball lights and changed them to footballs.

Then the Super Bowl came to town. Snooty reporters looked down their nose at the Walmart. What kind of store would be "worthy" to be across the street from the Cowboy Stadium? A mall with a Neiman's? We have plenty of malls south.

The Walmart closed the day of the Super Bowl and allowed their parking lot to be media and security central. There is an old Jewish cemetery behind the Walmart, and an old Jewish synagog that has been bought out and changed into a tatoo parlor, then clubs. How come a Walmart is bad, but not a club?

Walmart makes a big effort to be clean. A cleaning crew has been at the Eastchase store for days now, changing out shelves, removing sticky labels, deep cleaning under shelves, checking stock and expiration dates. I have been impressed. Rumors are that a big wig is coming.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Valentine's Day

We celebrated yesterday by going out to eat at a favorite Mexican restaurant.

Bob had taken off the last Monday to see James off, and help Amber get outa Dodge.

We so enjoyed getting to hold and play with two week old Baby James. At the two week visit, he was back over his birth weight: seven pounds eleven ounces.

At three weeks, he is so cute, and strong, and loves to eat. If his Momma could just strap him to her chest, he'd feed all day. Sleep a little, eat a little.

He has such a strong little neck and if his feet can push on something, he flips already. We are dog sitting their yorkie, Brody until tomorrow, when Amber drives back to Lawton. He is a cute little doggie. Seems everyone loves yorkies--when we walk him around the block, he is very popular. (especially with the ladies)

I enjoy going to Walmart or Target the day after Valentine's Day and buying those chocolate hearts at half price. Bob does not seem to care if we wait a day.

A Note about the blackouts

Come to find out, some power plants did not winterize their water pipes. two went down. (Luminent) and during the rolling blackouts, the pressure to the natural gas which feeds other power plants made matters worse.

I learned that it is best to live near the Barnett Shale, because they need the gas for the power plants, so we should not suffer blackouts next time. yay

And maybe the hospitals should test their generators periodically.

The Stack Is Dead. Again.

My gateway computer stack thingy has been a problem. Early on it shut itself off, so we positioned a fan to keep it cool. okay in summer, but a pain in winter.

It crashed, and Bob was able to resurrect from an original something, which meant loss of favorites, but saving the pictures. Was I smart? Did I move the pictures to a disk or necklace drive? nope.

This time, it boots to a beginning part of the intro, then a blinking cursor.

So strange. What to do? Spend money getting diagnosed?

or just get a new stack and start over. The monitor is fine, the mouse and keyboard are fine.

So, Bob has graciously let me use his little lap top. Tee-tiny font. With a tee-tiny little box to center the arrow on before clicking, but, I am slowly learning. The laptop keyboard is very touchy. If I get sloppy and toggle one of the mystery buttons near the right shift key, all of a sudden, my screen is at 10 percent. or the cursor has left the premises.

Back in December, Bob had saved my favorites in a list I can access from email, but i miss the ones I had found since December. And if we were to need a computer to access the printer and scanner to do banking, we would be in trouble. And if we paid bills online, we'd be in trouble.

I have learned that computers are temporary. Computers crash. Computers are balky.

I don't play farmville or cityville. I use the computer as a newspaper---hunting and pecking for what is going on around the world, and thanks to facebook, keeping up with the news of family and friends.

Friday, February 4, 2011


Heavy Snow. We have not even seen it fall, as it started after midnight. It is like the snow has just appeared on the ground. I can see it falling if I look toward a streetlight.

We were suppose to get a dusting. No worries.

Then at 5:30pm they started making noises about inches. plural.

Then, while Bob is in the middle of a Colon Clean Out for a colonoscopy this morning scheduled for 7:15am...the weathermen admitted that a new, big, strange cloud had appeared out of nowhere to the south and that we'd be getting three and more inches.

Supposidly, this snow is just snow as it is still so cold. We are approaching 100 hours below freezing. They have revised the Superbowl forecast, too. For days, they have been saying that it would reach 55 degrees on Sunday afternoon. But, now, they are saying barely 48 degrees. wow

A huge storm...stretches down to Corpus Christie, and it is headed east. Kids have been home for four school again today.

The storm of the century.

Amazing. Friday morning.

two hours later: Bob has shoveled and swept the drive, and is taking a shower. Then we are off to the hospital for his procedure.

The TV coverage has been painful to watch. They all drove into work at the TV stations and their horror stories of spinning out, and having to creep along at 20mph but, warning the rest of us to stay home. okay.

Six inches of snow fell in Dallas, and some of the freeways are closed.

The weather angels are having fun with the silly super bowl worshippers.

And the PUC apologized...come to find out, there was no emergency, no need for rolling blackouts. yikes. Talk about calling lawsuits down upon their heads.

The TV folks must be catoring to the bedridden. They were showing how deep snow was piled on top of cars...something any one can see if they just peek out their windows this morning.

10:30am home again. And it is still SNOWING. wow. I usually don't drive on snow. I don't get out much. But, I had to drive Bob home from the procedure. Bob says the worst part it the cleanout the night before. They put him to sleep.

One little pollup and a few diverticulitus. Doc said he was good for three more years.

And yet another visit to the hospital where you never see anyone wash their hands. Maybe they do that in the back somewhere. Not before the IV nor before taking out the IV. There is not even a sink in recovery nor prep. lovely.

Bob has had some cereal, and says pizza is sounding good.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Power, thus heat, but rolling blackouts

We experienced our first of the rolling blackouts this morning. The temps are having trouble climbing out of the teens today. It is suppose to get to 22 degrees, but I don't think it is gonna.

The blackouts only last fifteen minutes or so, so no biggie. During the last one, I turned off the furnace as per radio instructions, and took a nap. It got down to 62 degrees in here. (usually set at 68 degrees)

I sit here at the computer in a coat anyway, as the fan necessary to make the computer happy is a bit chilly in winter. Nice during a hot flash...but...

The sun is trying to peek out. Streets look dry, but Bob warned of lots of black ice in shady spots. Bob had a lot of trouble with the door locks on the plymouth. froze shut. I wondered if he was going to have to tie to door shut to drive to the train station.

WBAP reporting two gas powered plants had water main breaks. That is why the rolling blackouts. Mystery solved.

Here I am snowed in, and the little guy next door (second grade) brought over the Worlds Finest Chocolate for me to purchase to help his school. Too funny. I don't need the chocolate, but I was out. ha

So strange to see a sheet of ice on the inside of the window on the south side. The indirect sun (through the clouds) has burned almost all of it off now. But, according to records, our coldest Ground Hog Day was back in 1985. I think that is the year we lost some front bushes.

Thank you, Bob for chopping all the ice off the drive and walk and cleaning off the toyota. Temps may not get above freezing until Friday...but things will clean up better without the re-freezing of the walks and drive.

Better post this before we lose power.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

May be the last post until our weather event is over

They are calling it a weather emergency.

Rain started last night, but ice started pelting the window at 3am, and Bob spent a lot of time scraping ice off the windshield before he left this morning. I wonder if the train is running.

The temperature is at 20 degrees, but it is dropping every minute. Once the ice moves east, there is snow. This storm just barreled down from Montana. I think all the schools closed just to be safe, which is smart. Wind chill below zero, as the wind is brisk.

The Super Bowl parties at the hotels in Fort Worth and Dallas will be fine, but getting to them treacherous. And this yucky storm is typical for the Stock Show in Fort Worth, but they have enjoyed some spring like days, and record attendance.

Good news---the Army wife I follow on facebook made it out of Cairo! yay. Her husband works at the embassy there, and is trying to help other families get their pets out. wow She posted that the police station was overrun, guns stolen, and the Walmart-type store, looted and burned.

DFW airport is closed.

In case we lose power because of the ice---