Monday, April 30, 2007

A day of silence

Sunday, April 29, 2007

Our tree

Yesterday at Earth Day we were given a free tree. It is a black oak that will grow to between 90 and 100 feet tall. We planted the tree today in front of our house. Here is our tree:

Here is us with our tree:

Yes, it's the tiny little stick-like thing at our feet. Today is our anniversary, so we thought we'd start a tradition of taking our picture with our tree every year as it grows. It's our anniversatree.

Saturday, April 28, 2007

Earth Day

This afternoon we went to the Earth Day festival in downtown Indianapolis. (Yes, I know it's a week late. I don't know why.)

There were five large tents with many exhibitors in each. I declined many, many brochures because I already knew the information on them, but we picked up quite a few with new information. Specifically, we're going to look into a solar attic fan.

We brought Spike because it was such a nice day and he likes festivals. He got a little overwhelmed in the tents because there were so many people, but he enjoyed himself anyway and got lots of compliments.

After we visited all the exhibitors, we stopped by the row of food vendors for a snack. Steph had a bowl of red beans and rice and I had an alligator sandwich. Yes, it was real alligator. It resembled bratwurst and tasted fairly similar to it.

I was disappointed in some of the displays because they didn't teach me anything new. I know that I'm pretty well informed, but I wanted more. I was very disturbed to hear the Toyota representative giving a couple blatant misinformation about the Prius. I didn't interrupt her, but I should have said something. She told the couple that the Prius runs on electric power up to 50 mph and only turns on its gas engine on the highway. In simple terms, the Prius only has enough battery capacity to run about three miles on electric alone, and the speed cutoff is 42 mph. The gas engine will run whenever the battery needs to be charged and whenever the car needs it to provide extra heat to warm the cabin or the batteries. (Learn more from expert Prius owners at any of the Prius-related Yahoo! groups.)

Now we're heading to Good Earth, the natural food store in Broad Ripple, to go get some natural and organic food.

Friday, April 27, 2007

NYR update 5

1. Floss: Still flossing consistently. I think it's become a habit by now.

2. Lunch: Slowly making progress on last year's deficit.

3. On time: I'm leaving the house a little earlier these days. Moving to our new building at work will help, as my commute will probably be a little shorter.

4. Flip: It felt like I got good height in my flip attempts this week, but I'm not getting the rotation, so I'm landing forward on two feet with a three turn to backward.

5. Save: Selling Steph's old house helped a lot in this department.

6. Recipes: The leg of lamb I made for Easter turned out well. I'm going to figure out something to do with ahi tuna this week.

7. Trans fat: Doing much better.

8. Perfume: One bottle down, two to go. I'm working on the larger bottle now, and I can see the level going down. I'm glad I like all of these scents -- this would be no fun at all if I didn't.

9. Compact: Doing okay. We bought a new vacuum and air purifier with a gift card recently.

Monday, April 23, 2007

Weekend update

On Friday night, we grilled out for the first time this year. Yummy!

Saturday morning we took a load of cardboard boxes to the recycling center. We purchased 800 lbs. of top soil (in 40-lb. bags) at Indiana Mulch on the way back. After all that work, we had lunch at BW3s and played trivia. Later, Steph learned that things like playing trivia keep your brain active and help prevent senility and Alzheimer's later in life. When we got home, we painted the rest of the balcony railings and post. One more coat on the floor and we're done! The rest of the afternoon and evening we spent organizing my music in preparation for moving it onto the server. We also started watching The Muppet Show, which I've never seen before, on DVD.

On Sunday, we got the wheelbarrow out and unloaded the 800 lbs. of top soil into it and moved them all to the deck in the back. Steph planted some flowers we'd started indoors, and we sat on the porch and read for a while before taking the dog for a w-a-l-k. After several false starts, I managed to move my music over to the server, and then we went over to Elizabeth's for dinner because Joe was in town.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Cucumber salad recipe

When my mom gave me her cucumber salad recipe, I didn't have any paper at hand, so it's scrawled on the back of a fast-food napkin. I thought I'd blog it because that way the dog can't chew it up.

Cucumber Salad

cucumber, peeled and sliced
2 Tbsp. vinegar
2 tsp. sugar
4 Tbsp. water
Pepper to taste

Combine wet ingredients. Add cucumber. Adjust proportions to taste.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

My next car

I just put a deposit down on a Smart car. I've wanted one since I went to Europe in the summer of 2000 and saw them everywhere. (My friends were taking pictures of architecture and I was photographing Smart cars.) I chose the base model in yellow with black trim, and the only option for the interior color was gray. It will have a 5-speed automated manual transmission, which appears to be very much like the old VW Autostick. (I hope it will work better than the Autostick did.) I'm going to miss the clutch, but I'll still have one in Phoebe. It will probably arrive in the spring of 2008, several months after my Honda turns over 200,000 miles (my goal).

The gas mileage is estimated at 40 city/60 highway, which is not that much lower than a Prius. The Smart car costs about half as much as a Prius, and I expect it to hold its value well. I may decide to sell it in a few years and buy a Prius when I get tired of not having a back seat.

Hey Elizabeth, it comes in a convertible -- you should get one, too!

Wednesday, April 11, 2007


I found an interesting online shopping/barter site. It's called PoshPoints. You sell things for points and then buy other things with your points. You can buy extra points if you need them, and you get 15 free points to start out with. Plus if you join through my referral link, I get 10 points when you list your first item for sale. Most of the stuff is little (say, the value of a DVD or a pair of jeans or less), but I've sold several books that weren't worth much at half.com and a little giveaway pedometer so far, and I've bought a shirt, a lot of something like 10 pairs of shoelaces (necessary in this house, where Dru is always looking for shoelaces to chew), a pair of jeans, and a tea bag squeezer/holder thing (difficult to explain).

Here's my referral link.

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Lucy in my lap

Tonight Lucy kept trying to come into the living room with us (we were watching The Muppet Movie) and Spike repeatedly chased her back to the stairs. We put Spike in bed so he couldn't bother her, and for the first time since we moved here, Lucy came over and jumped onto my lap on the couch. I've missed having her curled up on my lap as I watch TV, and I hope Spike mellows out a little so she can do that more often.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Fortune cookies

I brought Chinese food home for dinner after my haircut tonight. I grabbbed four fortune cookies for us. My two were weird, and yes, I typed them accurately:

Your talents will be recognized and suitable rewarded.

I trust they're talkng about my editing talents.

Your dearest Wish will come true.

The one about eliminating all random capital letters, perhaps?