Making and Catching Up

Yesterday I spent three hours cleaning up and organizing in the garage. A lot of the worked centered around putting away all of the spare aquarium supplies and equipment back into their proper places on the shelves. Then, I took the time to finally break down a ton of cardboard boxes and put them into the recycling bin in preparation for next Monday. Because of COVID challenges, Hillsborough county has moved our recycling pickup to every other week for now. That means all cans and plastic containers need to be smashed down flat and all cardboard needs to be cut up to smaller pieces so we get efficient, compact usage of the bin. Anyway, I also put away and re-organized several tools and finally did a big cleanup of the workbench area.

One of the little organization things I’ve been wanting to do is to get my drill bits into a “first order of retrieval” state. This required getting them out of their store-bought, pocket sized holders and into something that could be mounted on the pegboard over the workbench. Last year I found these holders on Thingiverse and printed out the 1/16 thru 3/16 and 13/64 thru 1/4 blocks. However, I had some other odd sized bits and a plumb-bob I wanted to also fit into the this format. Yesterday I finally created those two blocks, printed them, and got them into the garage, completing that project.

A screenshot of one of the drill bit blocks in Tinkercad.

Sunday I went to Lowe’s and picked up all of the materials for the front yard flower box. I’ll begin working on that soon.

I received HackerBox 0057: Safe Mode. I’m still organizing how I want to tackle all of these outstanding kits. I have boxes 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 54, 55, 56 as well that all need to be completed. I also bought an ESP8266-based weather station kit last year and am including this in the pile of kits to build. This one might be the first, actually.

The Invisible Man (2020) and Scoob! went into the library this week.

And finally, an inexpensive book stand arrived last Wednesday and I started reading some aviation magazines I’m behind on.

Pancakes, Pucks, and pH

Friday night I had dinner with a former co-worker at Hooters. We caught up on a ton of things for a few hours and I generally enjoyed myself.

Saturday, Alex and the kids met with me for breakfast at Tampa North, who was having a pancake breakfast to support the Civil Air Patrol chapter that is based out of the airport. I took the kids down to the flight line to see the planes and we all went over to see a helicopter that came. Generally, I think it was a great turnout, as several pilots flew in for the event.

Alex invited me over to watch the Lightning game that night (the first of the Eastern Conference Finals against the Bruins), so I ended up hanging out all day in the Luts/Wesley Chapel area. I flew, went shopping, and had some great pork chops at Primebar. Around 7:00pm, I got to Alex & Nel’s. I brought a couple presents for the kids, including a couple of books I got that show how to draw comic book characters. Alex and I had talked about how Brandon needed to evolve to the next level of drawing, so I got the books that I had used when younger. I think he’ll learn a lot from them and Alex said he’s going to work with Brandon to learn the techniques outlined in the books. We had some beers, pizza, talked a lot and watched the game. I love hanging out there, and it’s been a while. Had a tone of fun.

Today was work, work, work. I did take a little time out to pop Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune into the PS3 adn finish it. Overall, great game.

And speaking of games, I added the video games section of the Museum up here. Yeah, I’m rebuilding all that from the old site.

Did the usual to the fish tank today by swapping out five gallons of water from a jug Arn gave me Thursday night. I tested the pH from his jug, and it came out to about 6.0, which is pretty acidic. However, my tank has been running around 7.4 lately, and I was hoping the new infusion would balance the pH naturally. It did: 7.0.

Full, Yet Relaxing

That pretty much describes my weekend. I stopped off at Hooters Friday night and watched the Lightning win their game and the Yankees lose theirs. I’ve decided I need to slow way down on eating out to save money, so I’m going to limit myself to one night per week. I may make it a weekly pizza night and stay home and do work on this site while eating.

I woke up Saturday determined to relax and de-stress. I cleaned up a bit, went out and grabbed a little bite to eat, then got the truck washed. While I was waiting for them to finish detailing the truck, I thought about heading to the the airport I normally fly out of, Tampa North Aero Park (X39) up near Lutz, and just hang out there for most of the day. So, after they were done, I got in the truck and went there. It’s great to just sit around, watch planes, talk to the old-timers, and get a chance to read through the pile of aviation magazines that have been accumulating on my desk at home.

Between lessons, my instructor came up to me and told me he had an opening after his next lesson and I should go up and have some fun. Over the course of the next hour I thought about that and when he landed I took him up on his offer. I didn’t bring my flight bag with me, as I didn’t intend on flying, so it was a bit awkward not having all my stuff with me. Anyway, we went up, flew around a bit and just had fun. I even flew over Alex & Nel’s house and snapped a photo.

Flyover Alex Nel

Later that night, Arnold called me and asked if I wanted to go out on the boat with him and a buddy of his. I said yes, and we went out fishing for shark all night. We only caught a bunch of ladyfish; no sharks. But we had a lot of fun. Got back home around 4:00pm last night and promptly fell asleep. I think the de-stressing and all of the fresh air and sunshine was why I slept so soundly for 13 hours last night.