sraun: fire opal computing seal (fire opal computing seal)
I just received a notification that as of 1 January 2016, my ISP (OneNeck/VISI) is getting out of the Home DSL business.

I wish they'd waited a year. I'm still hoping that 10gig fiber to my neighborhood gets installed next summer, but haven't heard anything about it yet.

So, for people in the Twin Cities, MN metro - who's your favorite DSL provider / ISP? I need a static IP because I'm hosting my own e-mail & web services at home.
sraun: castle (castle)
We have a fence. Pictures later. Discussion of compensation happening sometime today.
sraun: castle (castle)
Currently seriously annoyed with Keller Fence Company. Asked The Home Depot about their 'get a fence installed service' about May 4th. Signed a contract with Keller on May 10th - the sales guy said they were currently scheduling about four weeks out, our installation should take a day. Check for full payment cleared May 27th - we tried to pay with our debit card, the processing company didn't like that. Hadn't heard anything from the scheduling people by about June 20th, called the sales guy. Heard from scheduling about June 24th, we were - at that point - scheduled for June 30th. This was, as I recall, subject to weather delays on jobs in front of us - it was delayed, to July 2nd. They finally showed up about 10am on the 2nd. Apparently due to the late start, they were able to get the posts in, but were unable to get the fence proper up. They told Irene they'd be back to finish the job yesterday, the 3rd.

They did not come back yesterday. They did not call yesterday.

At this point, I believe we are going to be without a fenced back yard for FIVE DAYS! Fence went down Wednesday, they're not working today, I will be very surprised if they work Saturday or Sunday, so the soonest we get a fence is sometime Monday.

We have a fenced back yard because we have dogs - one especially will chase after other dogs, cats, squirrels, birds or figments of her imagination. We really need the fence to keep her in. We also are watching a dog that needs a fence. So, we're having to take the dogs out on leash multiple times per day.


We've left voice-mail with Keller Fence, but that was apparently after they had closed for business on the 3rd. It will be ... interesting to hear what they have to say about this on Monday.
sraun: castle (castle)
(This is the post promised in a later bottle.)

We're upgrading to DirecTV's Genie device / service. Our DirecTiVo that we got in ... 2002? 2003? is dying - it is randomly locking up, and sometimes not finishing a boot after being power-cycled. We've been loyal DirecTV customers for sufficiently long that the hardware upgrade (include mini-Genie for a second room, and new satellite antenna) is free - we're paying $21.50 for the installation, and our bill is going up about $19/month.

This means that our TV that was new in 2000 is finally getting replaced by an HDTV.

And I need some help / pointers.

We'll be sitting 100-110" from the TV. We have a low awareness / high tolerance for digital artifacting.

Research is leading me to believe I'm looking at wanting a 35-70" TV. The space it's going into is about 51" wide - our current theory is that we're going to get a new media center with a built-in support for the TV that will fit the space. The media center that the old TV is in has a hole 28" wide for the TV - the HDTVs that would fit that space are way too small.

How important is 1080 vs 720? p vs i? (I know i is interlaced, and that I should prefer p.) 60hz vs 120hz? What are the trade-offs of bigger vs. smaller? Got any pointers to a good 'I'm almost totally ignorant, educate me on the pros and cons'?

Finally, any brand recommendations? Pro or con accepted.
sraun: WTF? (wtf)
I've been up about 33 hours at this point. I'm not used to that any more.

I got up about 10:30am on Sunday and started onions caramelizing in the crockpot - they got turned on about 11:30am. This is supposed to take ~10 hours, it normally runs me 12-14. 24 hours later, they were done. And I really couldn't just go to sleep on them - I wasn't certain when they were going to finish.

After they finished, I ran errands. I came home with lunch, then [ profile] iraunink and I ran errands. I'm going to bed - I have to get up about 6am tomorrow. Errands included haircut, boot shopping, picking up prescriptions, ordering glasses (3 pair for me, 1 pair for [ profile] iraunink), and shopping for a new media center. More on that last in a later bottle.
sraun: castle (castle)
Those of you who are local or also read [ profile] pegkerr's LJ have some idea what's coming.

[ profile] iraunink and I went out for dinner and errands last night. It started raining while we were on our way from dinner to Menards. It got a lot worse on the way home - we saw at least a half-dozen trees pulled up by their roots - one of the trees was leaning on power wires that weren't quite down - and a lot of down branches, ranging from a few leaves to a third of a tree.

When we got home shortly after 8pm, the power was out. It came back on about 10:20am. From the clock on the thermostat, the power had gone out shortly before 8pm - about the time the rain really started coming down as we were on our way back from Menards.

I hadn't realized how much I depend on a fan to sleep in the summertime.

This was the longest power outage I've had since I bought the house. There was one that was about eight hours in ... 1990? The last time the ground was really wet, and we had a bad windstorm that tore trees up by the roots.
sraun: portrait (Default)
Saturday we had lunch at the Goda Cafe - I'd seen an article about them some time ago claiming that they served goat, which I knew [ profile] iraunink would be interested in. She was. About six weeks ago I got one of those restaurant deals - $10 got me $25 off of a $35 minimum bill. I picked it up - we finally made it there.

$35 is way too much for two people there! We might have hit $35 with two appetizers, two dinner entrees, and two desserts - but I doubt. As it was, we had one appetizer, one entree, and one sandwich, and it was plenty of food! All that and two cans of pop was $21 exactly. Oh, you get a bowl of soup as part of your meal - before you order, even! Everything except the starches was somewhat spicy - call it a 3 or 4 on a 1-10 scale, where 10 was a Sri Lanka Curry House medium. We'll be going back sometime with one or two people, to actually use the coupon.

After that, we went chair shopping. CB2, Slumberland Outlet, Borofka's (where Wickes used to be by Southdale), Gabberts, Slumberland, HOM Furniture, and Ikea. Our favorite was the Palmona Swivel Chair, to be had at Slumberland and HOM. Unfortunately, the fabric on the floor sample was ... not to our taste. But one of the available fabrics at Slumberland made us both go "ooh, I want that!". We're unlikely to pull the trigger for 3-4 months, maybe longer, but that's our current chair to beat (at not quite $500 each - we want two).

If anyone is garage-saling in one of the higher class neighborhoods, and sees something like it - doesn't have to swivel, or else an armless chair, let us know? We're looking for something side/accent chair sized - i.e., on the smaller side.

Sunday I did laundry, we didn't get much else accomplished - Irene had a dead day.

Tonight I made sauteed bell peppers and onions to go with brats. We'll do that again sometime.
sraun: portrait (Default)
was it yours?

I watched my netbook go from 1:59 to 3:00. And then I went and changed three of the five clocks that I know I have to change manually. The remaining two are the car clock and my wristwatch (it's a mechanical display).


Feb. 22nd, 2011 03:24 am
sraun: castle (castle)
We got lucky - some neighborhood entrepreneurs came along before I went to bed, and we got our front walks shoveled.

When I looked out the front door this morning, the snow was flat - there was no sign where my front walk was. You could kind of tell where the sidewalk was, but that was because the lawn slopes down three feet to it, and there's a big pile of snow between the sidewalk and the street. So there was really too much depression to get filled in flat.

It was well worth the money. Now we just have to shovel the inch of light powder out front and off the back stairs (I shoveled them clean about Midnight Monday), trample a path to the back gate, dig it out enough to open, and shovel out the garbage & recycle space.


Oct. 27th, 2010 07:08 pm
sraun: portrait (Default)
We finally turned on the furnace last night. Rather late in the year.
sraun: castle (castle)
I want gadget Lio has in today's strip! - for 22 Jan if it's scrolled off by the time you read this.
sraun: castle (castle)
Last week - Thursday, I think - the city came and beheaded our boulevard tree. We've been expecting it for months - since July, maybe? And it looks like tomorrow they're going to come and take out the trunk.

Given the location of the boulevard trees north and south of us, I think we really want to have the replacement go in exactly where this one is. Which means no new tree until after the stump gets ground out. Our choices are wait for the city to do it - which, from recent observation, could be a couple of years; or to pay for someone to do it for us. Anyone local have recommendations for someone who grinds out stumps?
sraun: portrait (Default)
Lunch w/ [ profile] iraunink, AJ (grand-son), [ profile] kosmickitten & baby Irene
Buy groceries - CostCo, Cub & Rainbow
Fun gaming session (face-to-face, I'm host, Don B., WINOLJ, is GM)

Five Loads of Laundry
Two sets of Amish Friendship Bread - one basic, the other as banana bread. The plan is to bring one load of each to the Minn-StF Meeting on Saturday.
Dinner w/ [ profile] iraunink, Don B & Margo B, WANOLJ (yes, the same Don B) - they brought lemon-dill salmon & carrot-raisin salad, we contributed Friendship Bread and mixed vegetables.
sraun: castle (castle)
Not that I'd doubted any of the reports, but I just got a phone call from them.

We've been getting the Saturday & Sunday Star Tribune for ... five years? Maybe seven? now. We had a three month 'free week-day with week-end' last year sometime.

Earlier this afternoon they called to offer a change in our subscription. $2.49/week (down from $2.60), guaranteed not to go up for life (but I've only got their verbal word on it, and I wasn't recording the call), for seven daily papers.

They're really desperate for subscribers!
sraun: castle (castle)
Spring in Minneapolis, MN!

Spring in Minnesota - don't we just love it!
sraun: portrait (Default)
At 6:19 this morning, the lovely [ profile] iraunink poked me in the ribs and asked 'what time does the computer store open?' I told her '9:30, I'm going back to sleep until 8'. I got up at 8, and we went off to breakfast at Curran's. After that, we dropped her laptop off at Que Computers (it needed a new fan), and then headed over to the Friends School Plant Sale. (That was what she was really excited about for the day.) She got a bunch of veggies for her square-foot gardening - we'll be building a 12'x4' raised bed sometime in the near future.

We came home, dropped off plants, and headed off for more shopping - Target, for men's wear, looking at glassware, looking for over-the-glasses sunglasses, some other stuff. We went in with a list, and walked out with fewer things than were on the list! After that, we went to Cost Plus World Market for new glassware, then Menards for lumber. On our way home with the lumber, the phone rang - her laptop was fixed. We got home, got the lumber out of the car, and then I went off to get her laptop. I stopped at the grocery store on the way home for sandwich bread, and added focacia and summer sausage for dinner. Dinner ended up being acorn squash, corn-on-the-cob, and the focacia & summer sausage.

We watched some Tivo, I told my lovely wife about [ profile] onyxhawke's Masochism Monday, and we're headed to bed shortly. It's been a long day.
sraun: portrait (Default)
We had two pugs (Yoda and Percy Bell) visiting this week, courtesy of Pets Are Inn.

Long, and possible TMI - I was ill part of the week )
sraun: Sleepy Precious (Sleep Now?)
Yesterday about 12N I went off and printed Einblatt. I stopped at Uncle Hugo's on the way home, getting home about 12:45-12:50.

About 1:45-2:15, [ profile] iraunink headed out to visit the elder son. She didn't get very far - when she tried to start the car, it went click-click-chunk. I tried, same thing. We found a service station that was open - they sent the tow-truck over, took the car away, and called us back about 45-60 minutes later.

The engine has seized.

So, now we get to figure out what we're going to do about it. The car is a 1995 Chevy Lumina, and is (we believe) in OK shape with two major exceptions. The obvious exception is the engine - the other is the fact that (as I see it) it's going to need a new transmission in the nearish future. (It frequently won't go in to Reverse quickly - a wait of 10-50 seconds, or revving the engine, is required.) So, do we pay for the engine, and try to keep space in the emergency budget for a new transmission, or do we get a new (or at least new to us) car?

The service guy is going to get us quotes on Monday for an engine - one for used, one for new. I wonder if new = rebuilt?

I'm guessing that we're looking at $3000-4000 for the engine and transmission - fortunately not all at once! As information - we got the car free from [ profile] iraunink's sister. They'd bought it brand new, and had put a new transmission in at about 60,000 miles. We got it at about 120,000 miles. It's been getting reasonable to good maintenance, regular oil changes, and hasn't been involved in any major accidents.

Anyone have any insight, opinions, whatever as to what we should do? I'm really hoping to have a functioning vehicle ASAP - busing to work, while possible, is a pain!


Nov. 2nd, 2006 07:30 am
sraun: Sleepy Precious (Sleep Now?)
We spent a largish chunk of money yesterday - at Slumberland, we bought a queen-sized Tempurpedic with a split-queen base, waterproof mattress cover, and new frame - fortunately, my existing headboard is actually queen width, and will bolt on to the new frame. Then we stopped at a Lands End Inlet store and bought two new sets of queen-sized 5 oz. flannel sheets.

The new bed gets delivered next Thursday afternoon (a week from today).
sraun: portrait (Default)
[ profile] dd_b came over today and took (what I assume will be) good pictures of my [ profile] jonsinger bowls. I'll post pictures when I get copies.


sraun: portrait (Default)

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