Finding Richard at

Which way did he go? Where has he been? Where is he headed? So many questions . . ..

Archive for the month “August, 2013”

Momentum Builds for More Diesels – News

Momentum Builds for More Diesels – News.

Overheard a couple of my co-workers discussing this very subject, which – of course – caused me to Google “small diesel pickup trucks.”  GM is saying they will put a 2.0L turbo diesel in the Chevy Colorado and GMC Canyon light pickups for the 2015 model year. (Time for me to start putting my pennies away!)

I like the Colorado & Canyon.  They’re a more practical size for my suburban lifestyle, and they come with a decent crew cab so I can haul all the boys — legally!  No more tying one down in the box!  (Joking!  JOKING!)

Since the EPA has made it cost-prohibitive for Toyota, Nissan & Isuzu to import their diesel pickups, I’ve been considering a drive to Texas to purchase a Mahindra — but the dealer service trips would be, likewise, cost-prohibitive.  <*Sigh!*>

Been reading on-line about installing John Deere tractor engines in Ford & Chevy full-size pickups, but I don’t have a work space, so I guess I’ll just have to wait on Detroit, err, Kansas City? Louisville? Where do we build trucks in the U.S. of A. these days???

Life used to be so much simpler . . .




A Real Hacker Can Hack ANYTHING

Spotted this over at Wired: 

Hold the Sun Tea: Our Favorite Mason-Jar Hacks

I should note that the last hack on the list will get you in trouble with the law in many jurisdictions.  (Voter initiatives aside, Cannabis Sativa a.k.a. Marijuana, is still illegal under U.S. federal law.)  But, I felt that the other hacks were good enough to make the article interesting.

New Blog Launched!

Started a technology blog: Tekky’s Corner at

Overcoming Convention – And Your Past


Long Ago, And Not So Far Away

I’m noticing that a lot of people in the healthy eating blogs are advising that we forego dairy products.  That’s rough — for the son and grandson of dairy farmers.

A few of the supplements I take to help me regulate my ADD symptoms are supposed to be taken with food.  Well, the Army broke me of eating breakfast right after I get up.  You’re supposed to get up, get dressed, go run five miles in the rain, sleet and/or snow, shower, shave, get dressed again, THEN go eat breakfast.  So I wind up eating at my desk at work.  Keeping milk in the refrigerator at the office has never worked out well for me.  It always winds up going off – rather rapidly, it seems – or, it gets used up and I forget to replace it.  I started just mixing my yogurt into my oatmeal.   (Oatmeal – it’s the breakfast of Highland Champions, I tell ye! Och, Aye! =;o))

Well, I don’t always bring yogurt that is flavor compatible with apple cinnamon oatmeal (My favorite!), so I started dosing it with a generous teaspoon of butter.   (I can hear the cardiologists cringing all across the country . . . )

After a while, dosing my oats with yogurt got a bit old and I ran out of butter, so I decided to just try them sans dairy.  Y’know what?  They’re not half bad without milk, yogurt, or butter!

My one piece of advice is to nuke them in the microwave for about 90 seconds, or until they try to climb out of the bowl, then let them sit for a couple minutes.  You’ll be amazed at the difference that makes for the flavor and texture of “instant” oatmeal.  They taste just like the old-fashioned oats that Mom boiled on the stove.

Live & learn . . .

WOW! Where Did Summer Go?

Wow! Here it is almost the end of August and I’ve yet to do a post this Summer.

Richard as Kilroy in The Cabin's Shower

This is what happens when you are married with a beautiful and talented photographer. You just have to develop a sense of humor and go with it . . .

Bear with me . . . There’s a lot of ground to try to cover.

One of the Bible studies I attended at a former church was about getting your life back so you could actually walk your Christian walk.  The leader’s motto was: “Satan wants you busy, busy, busy!  Because when you’re too busy to follow Jesus you’re much more open to Satan’s influences.”   He turned BUSY into an acronym that stood for “Burdened Under Satan’s Yoke.”  Well, it’s certainly been a busy Summer.  Too much to do, and too little time to do it.

One of the things that I absolutely HAD to do this Summer was to evaluate my supplement regimen and modify it as necessary.  I stopped taking Adderall because  – quite frankly – if you want to experience instant @hole, just take Richard and apply Adderall.   I wound up dropping St. John’s Wort as a daily supplement and will keep it in reserve for the times when depression rears its ugly head.  (Depression is a frequent co-morbidity for ADD — and why wouldn’t it be?  ADD is such a lovely condition to live with.)  I will continue with the other supplements I’ve been taking and have added several more.

The results have been positive, so far.  I’m feeling much more “normal.” I put normal in quotations because . . . I’m not sure I know what normal really is. The psychologist I saw for a brief time thought that I’ve probably been ADD all my life. From our discussions about my life, I would have to agree with her. So, what do I mean when I say I feel much more “normal?”  I have energy.  I can focus more.   I have a much more positive attitude.  I smile more.  I actually feel playful.   I’m interested in getting off my butt and actually doing something.  I really haven’t felt like this in years.  Probably at least seven or eight. All-in-all, I’m happier. I’m hoping that these positive outcomes continue.  I’ll keep you posted.

One of the other “must-dos” was to get a start on losing the 50 pounds that I put on after we quit smoking.  Sorry to report that I’m still pushing the wall on getting a start on that.   I’ve been walking more (With my knees, running is completely out-of-the-question.  At least, it is until I’ve lost the majority of this weight.), and watching what I eat — but, so far, not an ounce lost.  Previous experience (I lost over 90 pounds about 13 years ago.) tells me that it’s going to take sustaining and expanding my levels of exercise over an extended period to actually kick-start my metabolic rate.  Took almost 18 months last time – but then the 90+ came off in under a year.  I really don’t want to do the radical dieting and exercise I did last time, so I expect it will take longer this time — once the weight actually starts to come off.

I’ve always considered myself a woodworker, even though I’ve done precious little of it for the past 20 years.  Well, my beautiful bride has attacked our garage in order to make floor space available so I can actually do something out there.  First project is a couple useful sawhorses to be followed by a workbench.  Then, there are more projects than I can shake a stick at.

One of the must-dos before NEXT Summer is a couple of Puddle Duck Racers.  I was raised on the beach up on Lopez Island and had a boat from the time I was ten years old.  (Thanks to my Auntie Sis – she found a 4×8′ scow that was built out of 1/2″ plywood and 2″ dimensional lumber and gave it to me as my first boat.)  That boat was a boxy boat and was super stable.  It was a great platform for a kid to learn about boating on.  My brother Gene (6′ 4″ and about 180#) stood on the port stern quarter and bounced — she never shipped a drop of water.  That’s stability! Of course, a project like that just spawns other projects like a salmon spawns fingerlings.  I need to do a shaving horse so I can shape the masts, booms and oars.  I’m going to have to learn how to sew canvas to make the sails. There will be cleats to be made, boat hook handles, tillers, I’ll have to brush up on splicing rope . . . Wow! =:^)

Then, there’s my truck.   It’s become a piece of “driveway art” over the past four years or so — and not really a very attractive one.

I’ve decided it either goes — or it goes.

I bought it to be a vehicle to take my boys fishing, to haul stuff for projects, and to be a backup commuter.  Now, it needs to be got running again.  Then, there’s a new muffler, new tires, replace the non-functional bucket seats with a functional bench, get the seal on the rear window repaired/replaced and a catch plate glued to the slider portion so it can be secured, and did I mention paint?  It’s a host of projects all on it’s own.  To top it off, while it is a close fit, it’s not really what I want in a truck.  I like that it’s a straight six with a five-speed manual transmission, but, it has all the electronics and crud that a new truck has.   I want something simple that I can maintain.  Basically, I want this truck, but a 15-20 year older version of it with a carburetor, points & condenser, instead of electronic fuel injection and a half-dozen computers.  Simple.

At least the Honda is coming back into shape nicely.  Had some real issues with it, but they all boiled down to it’s a 23 year-old car that’s pushing 200,000 miles.  All just maintenance items that needed to be done.  Tune-up. Oxygen sensor.  Fuel filter. New muffler.  It’s back to running the way it did when we bought it from John & Lisa!  I like it! =:^)

Boys are growing like weeds.  Great kids.   All three of them.  Smart and they have good hearts.

We got to go up and spend a week at the cabin on the old family homestead.  Except, it’s not the old family homestead anymore.  It has passed out of our hands to another family.  Thankfully, he was raised on Orcas Island on a smallhold farm and gets it.   They were willing to allow us to have our family reunion there again.  And, after seeing that we don’t tear the place up and there was no wild partying, etc., they’re open to us doing it again next year.  Really great family.  If the land had to pass out of our family’s control, I can’t think of a nicer family for it to pass to.

Helped BL (my beautiful bride) shoot my nephew’s wedding last weekend.  Wow!  That was an education!  It was a love gift from us to them, but I have to say wedding photographers are not paid enough.  It is work to try to get all the photos the bride and groom want and then to try to back fill with good memories as you see them happening.  You just have to keep moving, observing and shooting the whole time. We each got about five minutes to eat (at separate tables) and thank God the boys were on their best behavior!  I wouldn’t trade the experience, but I’m not sure that I want to repeat it.  It is WORK!  Especially when you care about the couple involved and want to provide them with as many memories of their big day as possible.

Even though Summer is winding down, our schedule isn’t.  Got our youngest’s birthday this weekend.  Then, we want to go up and camp with family on the Skagit River and do some fishing.  BL’s birthday and our anniversary are in the offing, and time to start the boys back up in formal home schooling, and, and, and . . .

Going to post this and use it as a jumping off point to future posts and a possible spin-off blog.  Y’all take care of each other, and may The Good Lord bless and keep you and yours!




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