5/9/2010

Greetings… I’m back in Milwaukee after spending weekend at my parent place in Thomson, IL…

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fun grocery bag....

Last Thursday went grocery shopping at Outpost Foods to get some easy to prepare items so John had nutritious stuff for over the weekend. I usually like to bring my own bags to the grocery coop, but the only bag I had in the car was one from www.BlueFly.com… so I used it… had lovely stylish groceries 🙂

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FedEx Tracking of John's computer from China to Milwaukee...

John’s new Mac Book Pro arrived on Friday. It was shipped via FedEx, and we were able to track it from Shanghai, China to Milwaukee, WI:

John ended up not having to work on Saturday, so he was able to get caught up on his sleep, then spend the remainder of the day getting the new laptop configured. He did go to the Apple store and purchased a special FireWire cable to connect between his old laptop and his new laptop to transfer stuff over. On his new laptop, the data on his old laptop appeared like it was on an external hard drive. I think he could have used an Ethernet cable to do the same thing? Anyway, he managed to get everything moved over – most of it using the Migration manager tool supplied by Apple. He also setup Parallels and a new installation of Windows XP. The XP CD we have is actually an XP upgrade disk – so he had to dig out a Windows 95 CD to prove that we are upgrading. He then spent 5 hours setting up XP and going through the long list of Windows Updates needed to get it all secure and usable. I think we should be moving to Windows 7 soon, but still don’t have any real reason to do so – everything we need to do with Windows is still working under XP….

Found a cool free utility program for Windows XP that recovers the installation key used when you first install windows, and other programs – it is called Magical Jelly Bean and helped John out because we could not find the installation key: http://www.magicaljellybean.com/keyfinder/

Anyway… My trip to Thomson to see my parents went by quickly. The trip there and back was long and uneventful. Both ways I just followed how the GPS said to go – so went down some interesting back roads – most were through some scenic countryside. This time of the year everything is nice and green and lush.

Mom was happy to see me and showed the flowers that I ordered for her – a large arrangement with two different kind of orchids. They were pretty….

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Dad working on the old bike.

Saturday morning Dad got the old bicycle out that I could use for awhile – it is a Schwinn World Tourist bike from around 1983 – probably last used around 1991. It was dirty, dusty but mechanically it still works. Dad and I sent a few hours cleaning it up and trying to get some of the rust cleaned off the rims. One surprise was that the ties still held air after being pumped up – so I was able to take it on a test ride around the farm yard. I will need to continue working on it back in Milwaukee and get new tires for it and etc – but it is good enough to ride on the bike trail that runs close to the RV park here. Plus it is kind of “green” – using a old bike instead of getting a new one…..

Around 11:30am on Saturday I meet up with Missy at Poopy’s in Savanna, IL – it is a restaurant / bar / motor bike shop / tattoo parlor – kind of a neat place. She grew up in Mt. Carroll, IL and went to Robert Morris College in Carthage, IL the same time I did. I’ve not seen her since 1989, so was fun to get reacquainted. Missy runs a business where she makes soaps, lotions and other related items. So after lunch ( we had “The big Poop” – which is a large tub of nachos), we headed over to her workshop where she had an appointment with a customer to make her some custom lotion. Here’s some pictures:

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Missy and I

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Missy mixing up some lotion

After departing Missy’s shop I headed back to Mom and Dad’s. That evening the skies cleared off and the temperatures were forecast to drop below freezing – not good when you have lots of vegetables planted. So we spent a few hours covering plants with blankets and etc. Most of very tender outside plants (tomatoes, beans and strawberries) were covered with long strips of synthetic fabric that is made special for this. The fabric is in long strips that likes to get all twisted up – so it is a bit of a challenge getting it untwisted and to lay over the plants nicely.

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Mom in action covering beans....

We finished up around 8:45pm after working in the dark with flashlights and headlights from the ATV’s…. It did get down to around 29° out – so it was a good thing they were covered. Some plants were damaged by the frost – but most will “grow out of it” because they are still young and still have lots of energy to keep growing….

Today for Mother’s day we went over to Rockford, IL to see Deven, Melinda and my nephews Jet and Scout. I drove the Subaru there so I could just head to Milwaukee from there. It was sunny and just warm enough to play outside on the back patio. The sun felt really good – but kept going in and out of cloud cover. Mom gave the boys some toys she purchased at Easter time. One was a Playdough set where you make pretend ice cream treats though different molds and presses. It was fun playing around with that….

I then left Rockford and made it back home by 4:00pm. John was at work – so I get situated at the RV – getting my clothes put away and etc.. then headed over to see him. On the was I stopped at Taqueria Buenavista to get some Mexican food to eat with John. He was happy to see me and the supper – we sat down and ate together and discussed our weekends… He should be home by midnight tonight… maybe…. He showed off his new laptop to me – first time I have actually seen it – look about like mine. We also discussed what needs to be done before we leave town this coming Thursday for Dayton, OH…. I need to clean house, get laundry done and stuff like that. Our goal is to be on the road by 9:00am. Any earlier and we would run into rush hour traffic when we go through Chicago – not a good thing….

Not much else going on…… I’m going to try and get some programming done and prepare for upcoming partial work week…

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