Non-geek time!

photo of our backyard July 17, 2000     photo of same backyard Aug 9, 2004

Backyard July 17, 2000 | Backyard Aug 9, 2004
Click either picture to enlarge

If you consider that my recent posts here have all been about
pushing the range of an Apple Airport Express adapter, you might think I spend all my time indoors at a computer screen. But in truth, its just part of the things that keep me busy …

Of course, we have the backyard pond to maintain, and about 18 very tall trees … recently reduced by one. Thats the problem with living among old tall trees – the shade is wonderful, but even with regular watering and deep root feeding, they only live for so long. And in the 4 years we’ve lived in this home, we’ve had 4 large trees cut down. Its troubling, but on each occasion we found a huge amount of decay hidden within the trunk, so its actually a blessing to take the trees down gently at our pace, instead of waiting for them to crash down in winter, loaded with ice.

As you can see from the pictures, the last homeowner let the yard go to seed – so I’ve spent a lot of time clearing weeds and undregrowth from a lot of the yard. Somebody in the past had even filled in the little pond years ago – but I show how I got the pond set up in pictures and pages here

Its a lot of work, but its very pleasant to go sit in the chairs on a sunday morning with a nice cup of coffee and watch the birds play in the trees. Very soothing – like a vacation in our own backyard.

TV Room, Bonde found!

Photo of multimedia shelves
Click to enlarge

Emma made the calls and got the folks at IKEA customer service to locate and ship the long-missing parts for the Beech Bonde shelf system. We got a call Weds that the parts had arrived, so i went by the Woodbridge store after work Thursday and picked up all the extra shelves and such. I made time this weekend and got all the pieces screwed together, and even got most of our CD collection rearranged and sorted out.

No, it was NOT sorted in “chronological order” and, yes, I HAVE seen High Fidelity!

IKEA – Bonde discontinued?

Photo of multimedia shelves
Click to enlarge

The media-room project so far – the dark wood “rack” with the lamp on it is an old Teak stereo rack unit from Scan that will go away – visualize the room with the CD shelf flanked by a pair of narrow shelf units.

Its been a while since I posted an update to the Media Room Redecorating we began around Thanksgiving. I painted the room last fall, after I built a “light box” just below the ceiling on 3 walls and put the “light rope” into it. That gives the room a very nice glow from above (I’m a big fan of indirect lighting) and is especially nice in a room like this which is designed for watching TV and listening to music. Part of the plan was to get rid of the old Sauder shelves that held videotapes and cds and replace them with a more Danish/Scandinavian style display system. We looked around and decided that we really like the Bonde shelf system from Ikea – but only in the Beech finish. Its available in Birch, but that was a very pale wood, and the white finish was too artificial for us.

We are fortunate to have 2 IKEA stores in the area, one is a bit south of DC in Woodbridge VA, one is just north of DC in College Park. There is even another north of Baltimore in White Marsh, MD, but thats further than I want to go!

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Yule Blog Catchup!

living Room Shelves
Click for a closeup

The holidays were very busy time for us. I’ve been working through a number of pre-holiday projects putting up new shelves to finish the Living Room, trimming out and painting the TV room – but the finished look was worth it.

There wasn’t a lot of shopping heading towards Christmas – Emma and I keep the presents low-key so its make it more a time of family and love (and cookies!) than any big consumer spend-fest.

We’d made plans for my Dad to came over Christmas Day, and we fixed a classic dinner with turkey and ham and all the sides … then the next morning we headed to Richmond to be with Emma’s family.
Her dad is a Methodist Minister, retired after 50 years in the pulpit!
This fall Emma’s mom was diagnosed with Pulmonary Fibrosis – basically,
her lungs are failing. Its a slow slide downward – but they’ve
already signed the living will and have contacted the hospice folks.
They live across the street from her sister – which is a lot better than when they lived in Roanoke, nearly 5 hours away.
Anyway we travelled to see them, and to give her sister some well earned time-off. We zipped down there again after work Weds to be with them on New Year’s eve. We came back late New Years Day – and I was looking forward to relaxed weekend. Weather forecasts were calling for warm days in the 60s! I had visions of pulling the bike out of the shed for some New Year riding – but instead I came down with the flu, and stayed indoors all weekend – congested and sneezing and miserable. Yuck ….