Adventure-Filled Weekend

August 29, 2022 by Adam in Family

Emma and I had a great time hosting the family D&D group this weekend.  We made bread the night before and baked it fresh for everyone.  Joanna picked up sliced meat and fun bubbly beverages so we were all set.  The adventure itself went well, exploring an ancient tomb and somewhat making it through a series of tricky puzzles without dying.  After that they faced a fierce Batari battlestack, which was more comical than anything else.

Sunday was low-key, with the usual tasty breakfast spread of pancakes, eggs, potato pancakes, bacon, veggie sausage, and the usual mocha.  Laundry was folded.  Emma and I went for a walk by the river.  I helped Jo in the garden and take the pits out of plums for a sauce.  Emma and I played more Cultist Simulator and found ourselves Googling the best way to generate corpses in the game.  All good fun.

School is right around the corner and we have an increasingly firm plan for Duncan.  It will likely be a somewhat light load as he finishes his IOP and eases into school.  He may end up with a modified diploma, which means if he wants to go to a four year college program he'd need to start at LCC.  That being said, Lane is likely a better fit to start and has a good multimedia program that he might like.

Mocha Friday

August 26, 2022 by Adam in Family

We mostly survived another week.  Joanna buried the chicken under the pear tree at the farm.  Duncan's IOP seems to be going okay.  We're starting to get ready for the start of high school.  I'm getting ready for family D&D on Saturday.  I'm trying out using primer on the miniatures, which are looking good so far.

Joanna and I worked on our finances for date night.  There's nothing like a good spreadsheet to get the romance flowing.  Still, I think we're getting a better handle on our expenses, canceling subscriptions and cutting back on things.  I'm getting somewhat capable of making onigiri and sushi instead of ordering out.  Joanna and I spent some time cleaning the house Wednesday night now that we're cutting back on house cleaning.  We will endure.

We also took some time last night to do a little carpentry, putting shelves into the new little free library we're working on.  It just needs a door, a roof, and a coat of paint before we swap the old with the new.

A Death in the Family

August 24, 2022 by Adam in Family

One of the chickens died last night.  I texted Joanna when I saw the chicken unmoving on the ground.  After some prodding we determined she was dead and moved her from the coop into a gardening bucket.  No obvious marks, so it's not clear what could have caused it.  Our only guess was the heat, though it was only in the 80s yesterday.  Poor girl.  We thank you for the eggs.

The Dune People

August 23, 2022 by Adam in Family

I suppose I only have myself to blame, quickly searching for places to stay on the Oregon coast at the last minute, with limited options and high costs.  One of the things mentioned in the rules for the place was not to invite dune people in.  It seemed strange at the time, and we wondered if it were part of some cult or supernatural concern, but we went anyway.

It turns out the house is on a lake - which was lovely - and next to the dunes - which was less lovely.  The ATVs were running from dusk to down all weekend, which made our quiet getaway much less quiet.  They also had scented candles and sheets, which gave Joanna a migraine.  The end result was buying new sheets at Walmart and washing them in a laundromat in Coos Bay.

That being said, paddling around the lakes with all the lillies in bloom was quite lovely.  The kitchen was functional and I made a variety of tasty meals.  We played a game - Unlocked - and escaped the ancient submarine by solving puzzles and entering codes.  Coos Bay was fascinating and surprisingly quiet.  We stopped by the boardwalk where the old guy who lived on his boat had a nice garden in planters where he moored his boat on the docks.  We stopped by the art museum where there was a whole room dedicated to the runner Prefontaine, along with nautical exhibits that were fun.

On the way back we stopped by the Umpqua lighthouse and took the tour.  It's one of the few places where you can stick your head in the center of the fresnel lens, and one of the only ones on the coast that has red lenses along with the clear ones.  It's cool that this ancient bit of technology is still in use.

We're still sorting through our finances, with Joanna possibly picking up some work doing editing.  I think we'll all be fine, though moving from the pandemic economy to the present is taking some adjusting, just like the rest of the world.

Mocha Friday

August 19, 2022 by Adam in Family

It's been a rough couple weeks, so I'm glad Joanna and I can get away for a couple nights, visit the coast, kayak around the lake, and have a little bit of quiet.  Work continues to have changes, though I'm increasingly hopeful our team will be mostly unscathed.  Joanna and I are sorting out finances and figuring out what to cut back on to get our budget balanced again.  The dishwasher has been washing away cheerfully, which makes me strangely happy.

As for the rest of the crew, Emma's off to Kalamath Falls for the weekend with her mom.  Duncan's first week of IOP seemed to go well.  Ben apparently has 200 Instagram followers of his various art projects.

I've been printing and painting miniatures in my free time, which continues to bring me strange joy.  I try to stay a couple campaigns ahead of myself, plus it's just fun to do.

Dishwasher Repaired

August 17, 2022 by Adam in Family

I do a lot of dishes.

Last week when it stopped working I wasn't sure what to do.  Finances are getting tight, so I didn't really want to spent more money, let alone wait to get it delivered.  Still, we were resigned to doing so and as I was checking one last thing before clicking the buy button, Joanna opened the door and the lights turned on.  We ran it and noticed a bit of melty smell afterwards.

That kicked off a "I don't know what I'm doing" diagnostic session with my favorite flashlight.  As I followed the main wire into the dishwasher, I noticed some blackened wires.  Opening it all up, I found the melted pieces, cleaned things up and ordered a new part to replace the most melted one.  Last night while we were making sushi, I wired it all up, turned it on, and nothing happened.

I wasn't up for anything last night, but this morning I opened it up again, found the wire that wasn't fully connected, put it back together and it turned on.  The acid test will be when we run the next load, but I'm pretty confident that was the issue.  Take that, stressful life event!  Now to deal with the rest of them.

At least this motivated me to finally fix the bit of plastic on the handle with a 3D printed part.

Pied Piper for Chickens

August 16, 2022 by Adam in Family

This morning the neighbors are playing the flute and the chickens became strangely silent.

Too Many Teenagers

August 15, 2022 by Adam in Family

It's been a somewhat challenging week or two, with all sorts of problems popping up at once.  Our savings have been going down, so Joanna and I are going through all our expenses and trying to find ways to get things more in balance.  I suspect dropping some subscription services and cutting back on cleaning services are in our future.  Joanna did find the bank screwed up with a check, turning a $270 check into $2,700, so that'll be nice.  We could also turn some of our non-liquid things into cash if we had to, but cutting back on expenses seems most reasonable.  Mostly we have a $7,500 roof replacement in a couple months and we're trying to still have some buffer money after that.

I'm also trying hard to get the refrigerator fixed - hopefully the new part arrives tomorrow.  Doing dishes by hand is quite motivating.  There's also a long-broken handle part that's mostly cosmetic.  Emma and I played around and modeled a new part that's slowly printing away.  We couldn't help ourselves and added a fun anchor logo while we were at it.

My friend D&D group also got together, somewhat last minute.  I think they had a good time fending off cultists and escaping a giant octopus.  Fortunately I have four weeks to prep until the next game.  I think all the minis are printed but there are maps and traps to get ready.

I also forgot to mention that our cat Leia turned 13 this last week.  Joanna went out and got her a doughnut which she developed a taste for when I'd put a doughnut on Duncan's desk for dessert.  That means we technically have four teenagers in the house, making us outnumbered  two-to-one.

Melting Dishwasher

August 13, 2022 by Adam in Family

The dishwasher has been working on and off the last few days.  After some foul smells and disassembling things this morning, I think I pieced together the series of events that's led to me washing dishes by hand since Wednesday or so.  There was a brief lightning storm and the voltage spiked.  This led to the power wire melting things, perhaps in part because the ground wire had fallen off.  The end result was a poor connection and the dishwasher only turning on if I pulled it out of the counter and tipped it a little.

I ordered the most melted part, stripped off the melted part of the power cable, and cleaned the rest as best I can.  Hopefully I'll only be washing dishes until Tuesday and then I can get it working again once the part arrives.

Everything, Everywhere, All At Once

August 12, 2022 by Adam in Family

I watched and enjoyed Everything, Everywhere, All At Once which is kind of a scifi superhero family dramatic comedy.  I've also been feeling overwhelmed this last week in between all the stressors in my life that seemed to appear at at once.  Fortunately some are being sorted out - we deployed a hotfix at work that should cleanup a tricky problem and the Subaru's air conditioner should be repaired.  Still need get the dishwasher replaced and I've been spending way too long doing dishes by hand.  Duncan starts an IOP program next week which hopefully eases the transition to school.  I arranged a beach trip with Joanna the weekend after next, with wonderful Seraph watching the kids.  Still not sure what's going on with Jason and my nautical D&D group.  I'm getting back into lifting weights again, thanks in part to stickers Joanna gave me.

Needless to say, it sometimes feels like a lot.  At least I had a mocha this morning.

D&D Weekend

August 08, 2022 by Adam in Family

I muddled through all the chicken feeding and garden watering with Joanna away at a writer's conference.  They had a good time hanging out with like-minded people, including an impromptu ukelele open mic jam session.  As for me, I had a good time playing D&D with the family session.  They managed some heroic saves including using a stampede of brotosauruses to trample a horde of zombies, with the monk leading them along with a bunch of tasty food.  Emma's character had mounted a bronto and threw a rope down to Frankie's character to swing to safety at the last moment.  I like these zany solutions the party comes up with.

I'm trying hard to manage the various stresses in my life, which seem to bubble up from time to time.  Lifting weights, running, meditating, and spending time with people I love sure does help.

Mocha Friday

August 05, 2022 by Adam in Family

Joanna's off at a writer's conference, so I've been running around taking care of extra chores.  I'll head inside in an hour or two to make breakfast, pill the cat and I've still got to check the chickens for eggs.  Whew!

It's been an otherwise uneventful week.  Work carries on - Jonathan's on vacation so I find myself doing more manager-like things.  Joanna and I had our date night at Cornbread Cafe along with a stroll around Yayoe's old neighborhood on Polk street.  I continue printing and painting miniatures.  I started playing Banners of Ruin, which is a new deckbuilder game like Slay the Spire.  I started after dinner and didn't really stop until it was time for bed.  Funny how that happens.

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