Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Double The Mice

I recently added a second mouse, the wired USB one pictured on the right above, to my traditional wireless Bluetooth mouse to the left of the keyboard.  I tried a pair of wireless mice, but couldn't get both to work at the same time.  The goal here was to be more efficient when needing to use repeated left-handed shortcuts (e.g. ALT-TAB), but I've found that occasionally switching back and forth helps relieve wrist fatigue.

Monday, May 21, 2018

Rock Garden

Transformed an area where nothing would grow well into a decorative rock garden.  Replaced 700 pounds of dirt, sod and roots with at least 1,000 pounds of Imperial River Rock, flat stones and paver sand laying on top of a couple sheets of landscape fabric to prevent weeds.

We can still "rock" it in our 60's!

Friday, May 18, 2018

Everything Bagel Hot Dog

Another fusion of breakfast and dinner, combining this man's favorite, a jumbo hot dog, with cream cheese and the five ingredients that top my favorite bagel, that being sesame and poppy seeds, dried onion flakes, dried garlic flakes, and coarse sea salt.  Summer will see this being devoured several more times.



Thursday, May 17, 2018

Elevated Herb Garden

Last weekend's project was building this (almost) 3 foot by 4 foot elevated herb garden, and planting
sweet basil, cilantro, rosemary, Italian oregano and flat Italian parsley.  It was so heavy we had to move it from the garage to the back yard, taking three short rest breaks and barely getting through the extra-wide gate, before installing the 2'x4's that make the floor. Add the garden soil and I'm estimating about 500 pounds.

Here's hoping those fat rabbits can't jump this high.  Next step will be calling Elmer Fudd.


Wednesday, May 16, 2018

First Successful Flight of the Wright Flyer

My home office wall decorations are now complete with the addition of this classic Wright Brothers picture showing Orville piloting, laying on his stomach, while his brother Wilbur looks on.  The brothers took turns flying, so it just happens that Orville was piloting when they made history.  It's amazing how far flying has progressed since 1903.


Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Phone Identification

My solution to wanting a good samaritan to be able to return my phone in case I misplace it is to place a business card info-side down under my Pixel 2's protective phone case.  Given my company's logo on the back of the card, I guess this might also be a bit of tongue-in-cheek humor...


Monday, May 14, 2018

Printing Password Protected PDFs

What to do if you get a PDF that's disallowed itself from being printed?  Simply upload it to your Google Drive and print it from there.  Really, it's that easy.  Seriously, why would anyone bother to try to prevent printing, or make themselves believe that's even technically possible to do that in software?  Silly rabbits...


Friday, May 11, 2018

Quick Sizzlin Chicken Fajitas

Cinco de Mayo called for hot and spicy Mexican food and the chili powder and jalapeƱos in this recipe delivered.  Do you ever over-stuff that first tortilla, not wanting to skip or short change yourself of a delicious ingredient?  This is that recipe.


Thursday, May 10, 2018

Fried Chicken and Waffle Sand

Oh yes, they did!

As I was scanning down the menu at The Troll Pub in downtown Dayton last week, my eyes stopped at this fried chicken and waffle sandwich.  Say no more.  While I've never had such a combination, my brain just knew it would be delicious and it was correct.


Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Nikon Camera Updates

I never really thought of my DSLR camera as a computer, but while trying to use it as a webcam (no luck so far) I found its firmware and GPS files to be really out of date.  All it took to rectify that was downloading new files, putting them on the camera's SD card and finding the update selections in the menus.


Tuesday, May 8, 2018

KitchenAid Food Processor

Our newest kitchen machine is a 9-cup KitchenAid food processor and my favorite feature (so far) is ExactSlice, allowing six different thickness to be cut with the slide of its lever in front.  As the GIF below demonstrates, it takes a stick of hard pepperoni down to even slices in a few seconds.


Monday, May 7, 2018

Santa's Address

The official Canadian address for Santa Claus uses the postal code of H0H 0H0, cleverly matching the jolly one's famous laugh.  Eleven thousand "postal elves",  volunteers from Canada Post, respond to more than one million children's letters to Santa, answering each one in the language or in which it was written.



Friday, May 4, 2018

Chicken Salad with Caesar Dressing

It's the addition of the avocado in the caesar dressing that caught our attention in this simple recipe and the results were superb.  I like the fact that the dressing, instead of sliding the rest of the ingredients around, binds it together nicely.  And you might tell I liked the dressing by the double scoop (at least) on each English muffin.


Thursday, May 3, 2018

Google Sheets - Waterfall Charts

Among the recent improvements to Google Sheets is being able to create waterfall charts, like the one below that tracks the number of miles I've run per year since 2004 (I turned 49 that year).  Lots of customization is available, including adding the number of miles that year inside the blue bars and the cumulative total above.  That's not all, as you can discover at this Google blog post.


Wednesday, May 2, 2018

CVG and CMH Airports

My closest airport, about 30 minutes away, is Dayton International Airport, which has the "DAY" airport code, which makes total sense.  The other two I use are Cincinnati, "CVG", and Columbus, "CMH", which are not so obvious and need some history lessons.

Cincinnati's airport is in Northern Kentucky, and the nearest major city at the time of its opening was Covington, hence the "CVG".

As for Columbus, the "CMH" stands for "Columbus Municipal Hanger", its original name.



Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Emotional Speed

My Life Experiences blog contains stories about my life, this one containing three about going fast, or better said, faster than I expected.  I hope you enjoy The Skiing Story, The Motorcycle Story and The Great Leap Story, including the back story to each. 


Monday, April 30, 2018

Code Blog

I started a new blog at code.paulishing.com as a store for little programs that I think others might find useful.  It's brand new, so only a couple posts are out there now, but expect more AWK (like the code below), PowerShell, VBA, Google App Scripts and others.


Friday, April 27, 2018

Detroit Style Pizza

Lacking a real Detroit-style pizza pan, I opted for the cast-iron skillet to bake this deeper-dish, pepperoni and cheese pizza in the oven.  Store-bought sauce saves some work, but no time as the dough needs a couple hours to rise.  Make sure the bottom of the crust is throughly oiled to prevent extraction issues.


Thursday, April 26, 2018

Human-Powered Washing Machine

Last weekend's Senior Design Expo at Wright State University was packed with a variety of engineering capstone projects, each starting with a really interesting problem which the students solved in innovative ways.  One of my favorites is this bicycle-powered washing machine, which had to be built only from parts easily found in Africa, and consisted mainly of various bicycle parts and a drum.  Genius in its simplicity.


Wednesday, April 25, 2018

680 Pounds

Last weekend's major project was clearing sod, dirt and roots from the west side of our backyard and hauling its 680 pounds to the dump in the Jeep Grand Cherokee, which now needs a major cleaning, inside and out.  Cost about $13 to dispose of and thankfully the dump opens at 6:00 am Monday morning so I didn't have to drive around smelling like yard.  This area will be transformed into something decorative in the next couple months, so stay tuned.


Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Ed Mabrey At TEDxDayton

Ed Mabrey has won the Individual World Poetry Slam title in 2007, 2012 and 2016 and tied for first in 2013.  His performance at TEDxDayton in 2015, at this YouTube link, was just stunning.


Monday, April 23, 2018

Decorative Gift Box

Using a decorative gift box instead of gift wrapping a traditional white box not only results in a very classy presentation, but leaves a very useful second gift. This gift box came from Tuesday Morning, a fun place just to wonder through.


Friday, April 20, 2018

General Tso's Crispy Chicken Sandwich

This takes a bit of work, but the results are fantastic.  The combination of cornstarch and self-rising flour in the coating makes for a super-crispy crust and the General Tso's Sauce, with ginger, garlic, pepper and hoisin, is sweet-spicy. The Chinese slaw is a nice touch, but optional in my opinion.  Store-bought Chinese mustard will also save time and effort.