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Friday, November 10, 2006

November 10, 2006

Post-Election Debriefing

I am always glad when the election season is finally over. The constant battle (in more ways than one) gets really old after a while (a few days), and it always seems that the last week of campaigning makes up for the remainder of the year in regards to the coverage and advertising.

Anyway, enough of that. I, of course, took my opportunity to be active in the process by voting. I don't consider myself extremely well-versed in all the candidates' positions or whatnot, but I'd have to believe that I know more about them than the 'average joe' -- as in, when I do research I don't solely rely on campaign materials. The worst part of it is really cutting through (or ignoring, rather) the crap and focusing on the actual issue(s) at hand.

I'm also not a big fan of selecting candidates based upon one or two 'core value issues.' Good examples that are typically used by people (at least lately) are abortion and stem cell research. While I won't argue that these aren't important issues, when it really comes down to it, they really have nothing to do with a candidate's qualifications to take office or how a particular candidate will perform in office. I tend to select candidates based upon qualifications.

That said, overall this election season, I was pleased with the results (local, state, and federal). While there wasn't any highly-contended local stuff (for me to vote on -- I live in the wrong area of the county for that smile ), there were some important state offices to fill. I have to admit that I was a little bothered at first by the state results, but after stepping back and looking at the overall picture, I have a better feeling about it all. I was of the opinion (and still am) that most of those folks needed to be ousted. There were some I enjoyed seeing get the boot, but then there were also a few (one in particular) which I was quite disappointed didn't get the boot. I have to admit, though, that the challenging candidate put up a much better effort overall (at least what I think) than those who have previously attempted.

So, we'll see what happens now. I remain optimistic -- at least for now. smile

Weekend Projects

Well, I'm not exactly sure what I'll be able to accomplish this weekend, but I have some ideas for projects I'd like to at least begin to accomplish:

  • Fix side garage door
  • Insulate attic doors
  • Terminate some coax for television feeds
  • Clean up/Organize basement
  • Install Structured Wiring Enclosure
  • Install two low-voltage boxes in office
  • Install permanent piece of sheetrock in office to replace temporary sheet which is covering up the old closet door hole.

It all depends upon my ambition -- I intend to sleep some during the weekend as well. smile

Until next time...

This post was upgraded to the MZ Online Blog on 8/29/07

Monday, November 6, 2006

November 6, 2006

Sound Update

Since the last post about miscellaneous musings, we were able to install and test a microphone preamp device to assist with the church sound system. I am very happy to report that it seems to have solved the last of the problems. We're now to the point of simply needing to tweak settings to maximize the effects throughout the building.

Shed Cleaning

A while back (but since the October 25 post), I was able to take some time and thoroughly clean out the little tool shed. This was a necessary project, and actually when it came right down to it wasn't terribly difficult to accomplish. I really didn't get rid of anything, but the reorganization has created much more room for the 'off-season' time (as in, I have room for everything -- including the grill).

While I was at it (since I had to take all of the items out of the shed, I also did some winterizing as necessary and put everything back for the winter. It was a most excellent project to complete.

Garage Cleaning

It was actually jsut yesterday afternoon (Sunday) when I got around to cleaning out the garage. It hadn't been done for a long time and also really didn't take that long to complete. When it was done, though, I was thoroughly impressed with how much better it looked. I was also able to (finally) hang up the extension ladder and whatnot.

While the lower area is good and clean (or at least as good as it gets in an old garage), the upper shelf area still needs to be completely cleaned. This is going to be (at best) a springtime project, because there's a lot of stuff up there which came with the house and needs to be thrown. Since I also need to not keep things outside right now (or at least, keep things enclosed), coupled with the daylight saving lack, it'll be easier to handle this during the spring cleaning phase. This will also allow me more time to go through things (because I'll have more other storage areas available when things aren't all put away).

So, I have a clean garage stall now. Hooray!

Attic Insulation, part deux

This weekend I was able (with the assistance of my brother) to quickly complete the attic insulation project (at least for the walls). It didn't take very long to complete, and should help considerably with heat loss during the wintertime.

As was the case with the other attic spaces, I took the time to install low-voltage boxes on the southern walls of the bedrooms. More about that below, though.

The only additional insulation which I'll likely do (but I haven't a clue when this will be tackled -- perhaps not until next spring or summer, depending upon temperature conditions and how ambitious I feel) will be under the attic floors (specifically the attic floor on the south side of the house). This won't be a terribly difficult project (since those floor boards are easily removed), but we'll see what happens. Regardless, the insulation which has currently been added should help considerably for the winter.

Wiring!

Well, once the insulation in the southern attic was completed, I took advantage of the additional labor and decided to pull wire for our bedroom. When I did the bathroom project, I made four runs of 1" conduit from the basement up to the southern attic, so getting wire from basement to south attic was easy; it's the run for a few wires to the northeastern attic (in our bedroom) that was going to be the tricky one.

We basically ended up running the fishtape under the floor across the bedroom. This went fairly smoothly, especially with two people working on it. Parts of this joist space will eventually be insulated (see above floor project reference), but the remainder is wide open between sides, so it's a perfect option for running wire. No obstructions aside from wall caps (which only stick up a little bit into the space).

So, as of right now, our entire bedroom has been wired. It's not yet terminated (I need to get some more supplies from Home Depot upon my next trip (I'm not sure when that will be)), but the wire is all ready to go. The nicest part of this is that once wires are terminated, there'll be no more need for a coax wire running around half of our bedroom nor will there need to be a phone wire running along the stairs just to bring a phone jack to our bedroom.

Fantastic!

With the completion of our bedroom's wiring, I have two rooms ready to terminate in the basement (our bedroom and living room). With a minimal amount of effort, I'll have a third ready to terminate as well (our office), and then with some additional work (again, another under-floor in the joist space run from south attic to northwest attic in the little bedroom) to the attic space, the little bedroom will be ready to go.

It actually looks like I'll be installing the structured wiring enclosure this fall/winter. Go figure. It only took a year to get that far. smile

Active Baby!

Last night, while I was taking in some TV viewing on the couch prior to bedtime, Beth informed me that I needed to feel for the baby's movement again. Unlike times before, this time movement was more prominent. It's quite an active creature. Still a little bit like Alien to me, but very neat and cool nonetheless.

Anyway, until next time...

This post was upgraded to the MZ Online Blog on 8/29/07

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