Previous passing thoughts of a Pageminder — MindBlog

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March 1 - 31, 2003

Previous passing thoughts of a Pageminder

03.31.03 - 8:05 pm (CT)
As all good things must come to an end, so must March. It was a mighty fine month as far as months go and I definitely got more than my fair share of… Hey, wait just a minute there — I didn't get more than my fair share, I got exactly what I deserved! As I was telling Peg (Hi Peg!), "It's my turn!"

Through the years I have pretty much stuck tight to a budget, buying things — practical, economically priced things — that were well suited to a house full of growing boys. But now it's been almost two years since the youngest went off to college and I'm down to two (adult) dogs, so it was more than time to change the decor, and the cost of it, to something more suitable for a Mom that had done a darn good job of raising three handsome young men.

As far as the baubles and clothes go (Oh, I hadn't mentioned the clothes, had I? Oh well, now you know.), well, I didn't stop at a fresh decor for the homestead, the one who made that homestead into a home for all of those years also got a few items for just her… compliments of, as always, the girls, Marie and Tara.

Yes, March is just about over, but don't worry folks, because after April comes May and we all know what May brings… along with the flowers is… Mother's Day!
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03.24.03 - 2:42 pm (CT)
Well, the celebration just won't stop — last week Marie and Tara came up with a little something to commemorate my 50th birthday… Marie gave me all new furniture for my family room and Tara, not wanting to be outdone, threw in all new living room furniture to boot! What wonderful and generous dogs! And they are already talking about Mother's Day — the scuttlebutt is something about a heater for the pool, which I'm sure Marie instigated, as she is my pool buddy.

Oh, and I finally did make it up to Long Grove, IL, where I went straight to that little nostalgia shop — Nifty 50's — that is just loaded with 50's and 60's memorabilia. Previously (twice, if you can believe it) I had passed on buying an item for my son, Jon, who is not only my network guy, but also a musician and songwriter. Well, there was no non-buyer's remorse this time as I managed to pick up the perfect gift for Mr. Rock n' Roll — a neon guitar emblazoned with the words "Rock n' Roll and a few musical notes… he loved it.

"besides I do believe these qualify as baubles"

While I was in the neighborhood, I stopped at Dakota Expressions where they sell American Indian handmade jewelry and couldn't pass up a beautiful opal ring that just happened to go with a pair of opal earrings that I spotted almost as soon as I walked into the store. I justified this little expenditure as it was a "roots" thing — I am part Cherokee, so how could I pass it up? I couldn't, and besides I do believe these qualify as baubles.

And if all that wasn't enough, the girls managed to sneak in a new gas range to go with the dishwasher and refrigerator that they insisted went with the new flooring that they gave me for Christmas. Yes, March is a much better month than February and there still is a whole week left before April rolls around.
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03.13.03 - 5:46 pm (CT)
I was surprised to find out when perusing my daily access logs for this site to find out that there is a blogger birthday page at the weblog directory, Globe of Blogs. I had submitted MindBlog there last August, but had not noticed at the time that you could find blogs according to the blogger's birth date. Anyway, I had several people come from that page on my birthday, I guess, to see if the birthday girl had anything interesting to say about herself — I didn't, but then that is par for this blogger's course.

A little while ago I was "playing" with Easy Thumbnails, which the developer describes as "a handy freeware utility for creating accurate thumbnail images and scaled-down/up copies from a wide range of popular picture formats" — I just consider it a wonderful little free program that I told you about last year. While I'm on the subject, I had version 1.8 until today — when I was checking their link I saw that they were up to version 2.53 without me knowing it. So, I downloaded, installed, and used it — it works fine, mighty fine.

Anyway, the reason I was "playing" with it was that after having explained to a client the need for speed and small graphics on the Net, they sent me a graphic that was HUGE (843x891, 87K), and they wanted to know if there was any way to use it, as they were kind of partial to it. In less than a minute using Easy Thumbnails I had reduced it to a more webable (no, that's not a typo, I just made it up) size (250x264, 7K) and returned it to them.

Easy Thumbnails does such a terrific job in retaining the quality of a graphic that I was curious what size it would reduce the jpg to with just a small resizing. So, I reduced a 629x377, 107K graphic by 5% to 600x360 and it came in at an amazingly low 28K — a 75% reduction with only a 5% resize! Now that could come in mighty handy… sometime.
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03.11.03 - 10:57 am (CT)
Well, the big day is here… the husband has passersby honking… the girls (the dogs) are insisting that I go out to lunch… and I'm in the mood for an egg salad sandwich so, in a little while, it's hi ho, hi ho, it's off to lunch I go!

Happy Birthday to ME!!!

For those of you who have yet to make it to the half century mark, I'll let you in on this much — 50 is pretty much like 49, which is pretty much like 48, which is… Well, you get the picture — it's not like you were born just yesterday or even last week.

I have managed to pick up a few baubles as I made my way to this day, one of which was a ViewSonic UltraBrite A90f+, 19-inch, flat screen monitor. It was a bargain at $220 after rebate, which is about half the price it was a year or so ago. I'll let you know whether I like it as well as the Samsung SyncMaster 955DF that it replaced.

So far, I've noticed a difference in viewable screen size (the default is smaller, which is not a plus), color display is slightly different (don't know yet whether this is a plus or a minus), and I can see pixels — lots of pixels (this is not good, but maybe the settings need to be fine-tuned). It may just be that this monitor will end up being a backup monitor to the Samsung, instead of the other way around.

And now, I think it's been a little while, so it's hi ho, hi ho, it's off to lunch I go at one of Chef Klaus' little eateries, Country Cookin' in Mokena, IL. Yes, I know it's a little early, but that will give me time to peruse a store or two on the way…
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03.04.03 - 7:20 pm (CT)
Is it just me? No there are others out there who deserve a celebratory mention, such as my dear sister Peg — the one who reads dictionaries for fun and is sometimes referred to here as the "Dictionary Diva" — it's her birthday TODAY! So, to Peg we give a big MindBlog…

A BIG MINDBLOG… Happy Birthday to Peg!!!

My brother, Phil, is up from Florida for a visit and was just telling me yesterday about how when he went away to college way back in 1962, he had all of his marbles, but when he came home from college he had lost all of his marbles — every last one of them. So, today I was in the hardware store and there they were, a whole bag of them!

Now, I don't know that they were HIS marbles, but when you've lost your marbles, any marbles ought to be helpful, right? And I try to be helpful, so I bought the marbles for him — there was a big cats-eye one, some regular-size cats-eyes, I think there might have been a puree or two, some that looked like they had little stones embedded in them, but no steelies — and now over 40 years later, Phil can honestly say he has at least some of his marbles left.

As for me, I have yet to lose one single marble — not that I ever had any of my very own… wait a minute, one of my kids gave me a marble once and I still have it! Okay, so I have just one marble, but I haven't lost it, so, I too, can honestly say I haven't lost my marble…

And now the countdown continues… only seven (shopping) days left!
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03.01.03 - 11:49 am (CT)
Well, well, well, March is here, so the countdown begins… only ten (shopping) days left till the big day! I just know that the dogs — yes, the dogs — are "secretly" planning a wonderful celebration in honor of the event… they always do. And, no matter the occasion, they somehow manage to always get me just the right gift(s)… just what I would have gotten for myself if I had the whatever to buy myself a gift or five.

Marie, the Golden Retriever, is especially thoughtful in her gift selection and her generosity can be almost, but not quite, overwhelming. Tara, the Black Lab, can always be counted on to add a bit of daring — edginess, if you will — to her gift selections. And when these two work in concert, well, you end up receiving something like all new flooring for the entire house as a Christmas gift! What a dynamic duo! I just can't imagine what they will come up with next… or maybe I can.

As for me, not being much of a shopper, I'll probably just have the family gather at a quaint steakhouse for a nice little meal. Although it's possible that between now and then, I'll happen to come across some little bauble or other to commemorate the occasion, and will throw caution to the wind and purchase it for myself. Like I said just yesterday, "Happy Birthday to me!"
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