Greetings from a nice winter day in Iowa.

The weather has been crazy this past week.  One day it is above freezing and sunny, then the next day it is snowy and windy.  The worst was on Thursday when a system came through that dropped three inches of snow in one hour along with 50 mile per hour wind.  This occurred at 3 in the afternoon – so John’s commute home was very bad.  It took him two hours and ten minutes to drive on Grand Avenue from Downtown, past the Governor’s mansion, over the new Grand Avenue bridge and finally home.  This drive normally takes 20 to 30 minutes.  He said the wort part was having to wait for drivers attempting to make a left hand turn with oncoming traffic not cooperating – so stupid people.

While John was driving home I went out and dealt with the sidewalks.  The wind caused drifts on the front walkways.  So had to shovel the deepest snow yet this year to get them cleared, while the wind was still blowing hard.  Can’t really leave them because tenants need to be able to make it in the building.  The good part is that once the walks were cleared they stayed that way overnight – the wind kept blowing but the snow did not drift back.  In the morning went out at 6am to touch up the sidewalks and apply fresh salt.


Still playing too much Minecraft.  The multiuser server I play on is called The Crafting Table.  Friday night the shared world become corrupt and everyone lost all of their possessions and their homes.  Logged on Saturday to a brand new world and empty pockets.  So been spending time setting up a new online house, farm for food and etc.  It has been fun starting over, but still think about how much I lost and the time I spent on it. Oh well…  So is life online.

The Central Iowa Linux Users Group meeting last Wednesday night was fun.  The 3D printer that was demoed was amazing.  It printed things out of a gypsum material that had the texture of chalk or a fine limestone, but in color.  They had things printed like wrenches that worked, small replicas of buildings and a car that look like it was made out of Lego bricks, but was one large hunk of printed material.  Would like to get a small 3D printer so I could create brand new 8-track cartridges 🙂


 Had skating lessons on Saturday and Sunday.  Can finally do a backwards swizzle style crossover going counter clock-wise on a circle.  Still need to refine my posture and arm placement but the basics of the move is occurring.  Bad part is that my left foot has been getting sore while skating – not sure if I’m lacing my skates too tightly or what.  I’m sure I will work through it.  Have lessons downtown tomorrow night – so will try to lace skates a tad bit looser and see what happens.

We both have been working on getting things ready for our tax preparer.  I started by going through a rat’s nest of receipts.  Organized the ones that pertain to the apartment building and entered them in an Excel spreadsheet for John.  Have also been printing off tax forms and history of interest paid for the past year from various websites.  Most of the time I can print them faster then they arrive in the mail.

I have the option to work on Monday (MLK’s Birthday), or take it as a paid holiday.  Going to work it but use the floating holiday on Tuesday so I can attend meeting at the West Des Moines police department.  Each year they have a half day program for managers of apartment buildings.  They go over topics like evictions, crime and etc.  It is geared towards larger apartment complexes, but think it is important that one of us go.  The documentation they provide has been very helpful and we refer to it now and then.  It is also nice to network with owners/managers of other apartment buildings/complexes.  Plus free donuts taste better when consumed at the police station 🙂

Work continues on the paint by number painting.  Spent several hours with it today and made some good progress.  John checks it out now and then and keeps telling me it does not look like I have much done.  All of those small irregular shapes take time to fill in… can’t rush quality.


Not much else going on – going to play Minecraft for an hour before heading to bed.

Ethan enjoying video of The Fox on my iPad



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