Monday, December 22, 2008

Top 10 Favorite Albums

I'm a big fan of music. I love to listen to music while I work, and I could waste hours and hours just listening to a good stereo and some of my favorite tunes.  It's always interesting to talk with other music lovers about their favorite albums, artists, and songs.  Some people like lyrics, melody, or even just a good beat. Tastes vary wildly and change over time. The things you hear in a song can be completely missed by someone else.

I thought I would take a stab at listing my 10 favorite albums. This is much harder than you might imagine. You should try it yourself:

  1. Ani Difranco: "Reprieve"

  2. David Bowie: "Station To Station"

  3. Interpol: "Our Love To Admire"

  4. Rush: "Moving Pictures"

  5. Steely Dan: "Aja"

  6. The Who: "Who's Next"

  7. Thomas Dolby: "The Golden Age of Wireless"

  8. Devo: "New Traditionalists"

  9. The Beatles: "Sgt. Peppers"

  10. Fleetwood Max: "Rumours"

What are some of your favorites?

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Recent Clay Sculpt

A quick item I'm probably going to give to someone for Christmas.

Year Off Update

ACK! three quarters of the year have passed by in a whirl.

I haven't been updating as much as I had planned, but we all know how that goes.

Here is a list of the other things I haven't been doing enough:

  • exercising

  • art

  • programming

  • reading

  • traveling

Things I plan to do more of over the next 3 months: (see entire list above)

I have been spending a bunch of time gaming, relaxing, goofing off, cooking, etc...   Having said that I don't really regret it, I've had time to think about life, career, and everything. More to come on that later.

The last couple weeks I have been working on making Christmas presents for a few people. I'll post pictures of these items as soon as they are done.

PG tips

Started drinking PG Tips special blend tea. I kept hearing people talking about it on various podcasts and what not. To be honest its just a good black tea, but I wouldn't say its great or hugely better than anything else. It can be pretty strong depending on how long you let it brew, which I like. My friend introduced me to blending it with Double Chai, which is double yummy.

PG Tips Wikipedia article:

Sunday, October 12, 2008

One little, two little, three little kitty cats...

We got a new kitty as a companion for our younger cat.  So far the new kitty is doing great and seems to be fitting in just fine.  The younger kitties chase each other, while our older cat (Trill) watches.  Trill thinks they are both crazy and wants nothing to do with either of them.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Watching without question

Playing around with more abstract ideas. I like working quick and rough, so ignore the lack of polish on this one.

Sometimes it seems many people just sit and watch whatever is placed in front of them with out checking the facts, or questioning anything.

Monday, September 1, 2008

This Week in Photography

Wanted to add a link to TWIP, both for their link contest, and because I think its a great Photography show and website.

Check them out

Monday, August 25, 2008

*sigh* clay

I haven't been spending enough time with clay lately.  I'm not sure why, just goofing with other things.  Its really hard to force myself into a regular schedule, but I need to try harder.

A friend of mine, suggested that I make some Golem's little ones, big ones, etc...  I only spent like 10 minutes working on this (minus baking time) but it was fun just to touch the clay again, and has gotten me back to working on some half finished items.  I'm gonna make a larger more detailed golem and put it up on the etsy store soon.

[caption id="attachment_511" align="alignnone" width="400" caption="simple golem"]simple golem[/caption]

More info on Golems.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

iPhone 2.0

I haven't been able to get the new iPhone yet, but I will as soon as I can walk into the apple store without waiting in a long line. However, the software store is now available on my 1.0 phone and it's a great addition to the iPhone.

In fact I'm using the new Wordpress app to create this blog entry.


Saturday, May 24, 2008

Lego saved the day!

I started to build my Lego 10179 Ultimate Collector's Millennium Falcon. Everything was going great, until I discovered that my instruction booklet was missing 67 pages!!!!  I was worried because in the past Lego had fought some sites that were posting instructions online. Would I be able to find the instructions online?

A quick google search later and I discoverd that Lego made the correct decision and now provides the instructions online in pdf:

So I can return to the humongous pile of Lego and try to get a few more pages into this Millennium Falcon.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Year off update (51 days in)

Getting close to two months and I thought it was time for an update.

Out Etsy store:

I have sold a few items on Etsy now and I have a better idea of the direction I should take here.  I should be posting some new "Eye Guys" to Etsy soon.  I also still plan to try to do a series of little creatures for Artomat.

iPhone development:

No progress made here, but I'm thinking about it and should be working on something soon.

Weight Loss:

To date I have lost 21 pounds.  My energy levels are way up, and I think I should easily meet my 50 pound loss by the end of my year off.  Who knows I might lose much more than that.

Monday, May 12, 2008

iMac Review part 2 (memory upgrade)

I have had my iMac for a couple of weeks now, and I'm very happy with it.  The 4 gig memory upgrade was a huge improvement when it comes to parallels usage, and to when playing World of Warcraft.

Here is the quick rundown of pros and cons during my first 2 weeks with this machine.


  • Large, crisp, and bright Apple LCD display

  • 2nd monitor support (with purchase of mini-DVI to DVI cable)

  • Machine is surprisingly fast and responsive

  • Removal of clutter under the desk

  • Reduction in number of cables


  • Overheating. I did not notice any issues with the temperature the machine was running at until I ran World of Warcraft for several hours.  The back of the machine was too hot to touch.  I have since read some info on the bad fan control in the iMac. No wonder it was so quiet.  A few downloads later and I have turned the fans up and made things run a little smoother.  There really should be better built in control for the fans and for monitoring temperatures.  I should not have to download a 3rd party program to warn me of high temperatures and to turn the fan speeds up. (Note: I have only had one crash on this system so far, and it was most likely due to overheating, but I did not get any warnings or info to confirm this)

  • One week after I bought this iMac, Apple released an update to the Apple store with new top end iMac's.  I would have had to pay full price for these, so it didn't really change my mind about the purchase.

I have to say that overall I am very happy with my purchase of a refurbished iMac.


Where I got my memory upgrade from.

Temperature Monitor

Fan Control 1.2

Note: This installs as a preference app and it allows you to change the base fan speeds, but does not seem to properly conrol them automatically.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Minor Review: Refurbished iMac

Yesterday was my first day with my new iMac.  This now means that my main machine is no longer a PC running windows XP.  I have been using a Macbook Pro for about a year now and have very much enjoyed it.

The machine I purchased is a Refurbished iMac 24-inch 2.4GHz Intel Core 2 Duo. Buying it refurbished saved me about $300.  I'm unable to determine any difference from a brand new machine.  The system seems very fast and responsive.  The screen is bright and crisp.  It is probably the best LCD screen I have ever had.

In order to play Windows based games and run photoshop (which I have for windows), I also got Parallels Desktop.  Parallels allows you to run XP in a window while using OS X. You can copy files between the systems and share other resources as well. The XP install went fine, but I have yet to install any other programs in XP.

I downloaded World of Warcraft for OS X and I'm able to play with almost no problems.  There is some jerkiness when entering new areas, but that is most likely related to the amount of memory my machine has.  This machine came with 1gig of ram which is really not enough, but it is extremely expensive to purchase memory upgrades from apple.

Apple wanted $600 for the 4gig upgrade (OUCH!). I was able to get the same amount of memory from an online store for $82.

After a month of use I will write a second review to talk about the impact the memory upgrade has. I'm also looking forward to doing some development on this machine.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Health care sucks

So we were able to get reasonably priced health care for L. But, because I'm overweight we were not able to get any for me.  The only way they will cover me is if I pay them a huge amount of money per month for a plan that barely covers anything. WTF is up with health care in the US.

It doesn't matter that I'm losing weight, it doesn't matter that I'm in good health otherwise.

I guess I should be happy that we got L covered so easily.

*grumble* *grumble* #$%$%^%^&#$%#$%@@!@!

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Almost one month gone

I can't believe the time is going so fast. It still feels like I just started this adventure. Time for an update:

Exercise: I contiue to walk almost everyday. The distance I walk each day has doubled. I should be increasing it to the next level next week.  On the days I have to cut the grass I usually don't walk. Believe it or not cutting the grass has turned into a big workout for me.  My new lawn mower (cordless electric) is pretty heavy. Each week cutting the grass has gotten much easier.

Etsy: So far its going ok, I haven't sold much - not sure if its my pricing, or the quality of my work. Each time I add an item to our store I get more exposure, and there are several people now watching our store.  I may have to tweak the prices some.  One thing I need to do is come up with a line of items I can become known for.  I have gotten the most feedback on the bowls, and I have supplies to make several more. I'm also adding more little figures to the store over the next couple of weeks.

Business cards: I ordered one hundred cards to include in items I sale, they came out really well and were very cheap.  I highly recommend Overnight Prints for your cards.

iPhone SDK: The 4th release of the iPhone SDK beta has been downloaded and installed.  I haven't done much with it so far.  But I plan on working on something very soon.  I have to admit that not getting into the Certificate program when many others with no programming experience did was a big de-motivator for me.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

An experiment

Thinking about making some miniture faux bonsai tree's. So, I did an experiment first.

Clay Tree

This little tree came out pretty good. I'm worried that it would be too fragile to ship without breaking tho.  I'll have to see how it does on L's desk.  For any bonsai tree's I would probably use a smaller and flatter bowl. I might make dishes for them out of clay.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Look at all the cool stuff people are making.

I've been spending a bunch of time looking at the work other people are doing on Etsy.  There are items posted there that I think are way overpriced, things that I could duplicate easily, but or the most part the work is much, much better than what I'm currently doing.  I really need to practice more.

I thought I would link to a few of the stores on Etsy that I really like. These are also in our favorites list on Etsy.

Oh, check out Overnight Prints. They do buisness cards and other printing needs, and are very cheap.

Monday, April 7, 2008

One week down, X-1 to go

The first week has passed and I accomplished some of my goals and missed a few of them as well.  I posted a few items to the Etsy store yesterday, I'll be refining this listings as I gain experience.  I already have several things I want to change (Thanks Blake).

So this weeks goals are as follows:

  • Business card design: I need a card to include with any craft sales (going to keep it simple and self printed for the first few items, I'll pay for a better card later if needed)

  • continue my daily exercise routine, and increase time. (doing good so far)

  • Create a 3rd Bowl for the store (need to decide on colors)

  • Create a few other original items.

New Etsy Items

I have posted a number of new items up for sale on our Etsy Store.



"A netsuke is a form of miniature sculpture which developed in Japan over a period of more than three hundred years. Netsuke served both functional and aesthetic purposes."

I saw a post this morning on netsuke and thought I would pass on links to that post and a few other sites that are really cool.

Related links:

Monday, March 31, 2008

And so it begins...

Today is the first day of my official leave of absence.  I hope to get a few things accomplished today as I try to figure out my new routine.

Things to get done this week:

  • Business card design: I need a card to include with any craft sales

  • Clean up clay work area

  • Create several items for the craft store

  • Get into a regular exercise routine

  • Cut the grass :)

Monday, March 24, 2008

Getting ready to get started

Next week I start my "Year Off", and I can't wait. I put it in quotes because I'll actually be very busy. I'l be doing things on my own schedule, but I'll keeping a regular work day.

The first week will involve:

  • Getting a batch of items ready for our Etsy store.

  • Creating a business card to include with the Clay work.

  • Working on a submission for Artomat

  • Getting started with iPhone development. Very interested in seeing if I can make any money with some simple apps. Its important to get my foot in the door as early as possible.

I'll be trying to post something related to this work and my thoughts on how its going every week or two.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Music Time

The Talking Heads are one of my all time favorites. I stumbled on this video and thought I would share? I should get this DVD.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Taking a year off resources

My time off starts in April, and I have a bunch of work to do before then. I thought I would post some of the sites and articles I looked at before I talked to my employer.

Friday, February 8, 2008

"My Year Off" - (Part 1)

Many of my friends and familiy are going to think I've gone totally insane.

But, here it is, I'm taking an entire year off from work and my career. I'm going to spend my time doing only the things I love, which include the hobbies that I neglect when I spend most of my time working. It sounds crazy but the idea of taking a year to focus on what's important to me is a rare opportunity.

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Musique non stop

There was a time when computer graphics were still very primative, and this video was ground breaking. I remember being fascinated by it. And anyway, you have to love Kraftwerk, no really, you have to, or the Germans will come get you, and I'll help!

Kings of Convenience

Been listening to the Kings of Convenience today, and I thought I would post a couple of videos in case you haven't heard of them. The Videos aren't all that great, but the music is nice and easy.

My favorite video by them is "Gold in the Air of Summer", but I can't seem to find a video for that one.

Only A Fool Would Say That

Lots of great info coming out from CES this year.

As far as the Blue-Ray vs HD-DVD war goes, I like the idea of one of the formats winning, but I'm not sure I want it to be anything to do with Sony. I was really hoping that HD-DVD would be the victor.

Now how long till Microsoft makes  a Blue-Ray drive for the XBOX 360, cause thats when you will really know that the format war is over.