Wednesday, May 18, 2011
You know how much fun it is to clean out a filing cabinet, or closet. Today I decided that I really should clean up this computer. I don't know how old it is, but it's a Windows XP Media Center. One bit of software says it's a single 64 bit processor, so you know it's getting old - and slow.
Today I went to the administrative part of Windows, did a disk cleanup and disk defrag, searched for PC cleaners, ran the free PC Cleaner software, and came up with 10,634 problems. I paid the $29.95 and cleaned up the problems, then eliminated about half the programs that I didn't starting at turn-on, and got a computer that works a whole lot faster than it used to - doing everything. It turns on and boots up in a fraction of the time it did take, and the browser images pop up at about the same speed as my son-in-law's new liquid cooled machine did when we visited in October.
Sometime it pays to clean out the closet - I wish I had done it sooner.
Tuesday, May 17, 2011
Sunday evening the BW wanted a Subway sub for supper, but I wasn't really hungry because I had eaten some peanuts an hour earlier. As a consequence I suggested that I guy one 12 inch sub and we each eat half. She really wanted two 12 inch subs, and I didn't suggest that I have a bowl of soup or something else - I just went out and got two oven roasted subs, exactly alike, with
Swiss cheese and mayo.
When we sat down for supper I ate my entire sub, and she ate just the first half of hers, then decided to save the other half because she was full. It was an extreme lack of both my sales ability and my restraint.
Today, a friend wanted me to meet him for a couple of beers about four in the afternoon, and I told him that I was in the middle of making chicken noodle soup, with the stock made and the meat separated on the chicken. The BW told me to go head - keep him company because his wife was away, so I did. I met him and stayed until after seven, drinking four beers and eating chips and fries, and hearing that he had been fired today and the story of his latest marriage. I still haven't got the hang of drinking without eating, or the knack of nursing a beer.
So I have overindulged twice in three days without a reasonable excuse either time. I consider it a lack of commitment.
Sunday, May 15, 2011
I have been paying for AOL for many years - originally I switched because a financial column was only on that service, later because I could automatically upload and download all my e-mail is a short time (when we were in a campground with telephone access), and the last few years because our oldest daughter wanted to keep her AOL user id. After it was free (she has high-speed internet) I kept it because there were two of us using the McAfee antivirus software. I saw an article (I think within the last year) about free suites that gave you good protection, but didn't do anything about it, but this month's Consumer reports rated the antivirus software, and several of the free programs rated much higher than McAfee.
I saw that article a couple of days after I got a notice from my phone/cable/internet provider that my monthly bill was going up $11 right now. Since I'm paying $9.99 a month for AOL I decided the check out the free software. The first thing I did was to check with the other kids, and our son tells me he is running four antivirus (AV) programs at the same time on his computers. The youngest daughter and son-in-law had copious advice (with four kids who aren't careful, and lots of computers, they have had lots of bad experiences) and I got recommendations for several other free programs.
I did download Avira a few days ago, and it ran just fine along with McAfee, and found two trojans and another bad file that McAfee had missed. Then I downloaded and stored AVG and Avast! but didn't start them. After a couple more days I tried to start AVG, but it wouldn't start because the McAfee firewall was turned on. I checked and turned the Microsoft firewall on before turning the McAfee firewall off. Everything went fine for a day, so I completely shut down McAfee for a couple of days.
One thing that our son-in-law said was that the multiple programs would slow down the computer, but I wasn't able to see any difference is response times. Today I tried to install AVG, and it did install, but didn't do anything. I told it to repair itself, and it said that it couldn't run because McAfee was there, so I told it to remove itself, which it did. Then I went to the Control Panel and removed McAfee, so now this computer is running with just the Microsoft firewall and the free Avira.
What I noticed today was a much faster response of the computer with only Avira running. It is significantly faster than it was with McAfee running by itself. That really blows my mind, because the Avira is a much larger program than McAfee, and it checks nearly four times as many files on the computer as McAfee claimed to check. I don't know - I checked and I have 70 GB used, and I don't really see how I used up that much memory.
I will let things go for a while, and if there are no problems, and I can convince Annie to get some other antivirus software, I'm going to cancel AOL. It's not much of a hit to the outside world, but it gets irritating that everything keeps going up by hugh percentages, and I keep having the same amount of income. I though about just cancelling the cable, but sometimes we do want to watch TV, and without cable we only get one TV station here.
Saturday, May 14, 2011
I intended to take the day off and just fool around, but the BW wanted me to put up the twine for her climbing plant because I was taller. I didn't change my clothes because it was just a little job, but being taller wasn't enough - I had to get out a stepladder to reach the top hooks on the porch frame. Then I had to hunt up some pegs to hold the twine to the ground, and string the twine through everything. I used four pegs, five hooks, and a tent rope know on the end so she (or I) can tighten the twine if it sage too much.
Then she wanted to plant the flower, so I got the wheelbarrow and a round shovel from the shed, and brought the fertilized peat moss with them. After the plant was in, we spread three bags of pine bark nuggets and washed off the pavers in front.
After I washed an put away the shovel and wheelbarrow, and was headed for the house the BW mentioned the peaches again, so I picked peaches. We had 16 on the ground, which I picked up and threw away afterward, and I picked another 42 peaches today. There were two that dropped on the ground just because I touched the tree and I collected them. After I was all done an had all the drops in a bag another one fell just because I touched the tree. I thought I had tried them all, but obviously I missed that one.
All together we have collected about 100 peaches from a tiny little tree, and most of the crop is still hanging there. We finished peeling and cutting up the first pick last night, and I guess I'll be checking the tree every day now until they're all gone.
Unfortunately we only have one showing avocado on the avocado tree. There were a lot, then only 10, and now only one. I have no idea what is eating them, but I'm going to use sevin on all the fruit trees next year. They disappeared while they were very small.
The neem oil seems to do enough for the citrus crops, but not for other stuff. We do have dozens of limes getting big all at once, which makes me wonder about the "everbearing" designation. That is supposed to mean a long season, but they're all getting big together as far as I can see.
It was cloudy, and it's raining now, but I was our nearly two hours and the house was like a cold shower (at 79 degrees) when we came in. I scalded and peeled four peaches for my lunch, and NOW I'm goofing off.
Friday, May 13, 2011
Today I walked to dogs to start things off - and the sun was just up when we got back. Later I took Jack to lunch, and after lunch I spent the rest of the day (until seven) planting ten sweet viburnum. I first moved four St. Augustine plugs to the back yard. In the morning, before I picked up Jack, I measured and marked where the ten plants would go, and figured out what to do with the new grass plugs that I had just got well started.
To handle the excess sand I did the planting serially - that is, I dug one hole at a time, mixed fertilized peat moss with some sand, soaked the hole with water and waited for it to soak in (just a couple of minutes) got the plant out of the plastic pot and placed it, and then filled the hole around the plant and soaked the new dirt to settle the fill.
By the time I finished the second one my back was absolutely killing me and I though about just doing a couple a day. Of course, the four plugs I moved were about as much trouble as the viburnums, so maybe I could have done five or six tomorrow, and finished up Sunday. All of that was immaterial as I just kept going until I finally finished. The last two plants were in the middle of the television cables - two unbroken for the next to last plant, and three unbroken for the last plant, along with two that were cut off. It is hard to get the plant in, but there is an incentive to do it right because one of those cables is our television, internet, and telephone connection to the outside world.
I did get them in without cutting any cables. Unfortunately it took me four hours to get everything done, and even though I didn't feel hot, my shirt and pants were soaked, and I was shot. The pain in my back blanked out any other discomfort.
I did manage to have a shower and put on clean clothes, but we didn't have supper until 7:30 today, and I still am not completely pain free. A half hour in the recliner helped a lot, though.
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