Stan’s Obligatory Blog

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Net-less Vacation

Filed under: — stan @ 8:42 am

We’re off to Lake Tahoe for a week at Grandpa’s vacation house. We’ve got Lucinda’s kickboard and goggles so we can go to the pool and she can show us all that she learned in swimming lessons this summer. We’re going to do the little hike up to Cascade Falls. And I’ve still got the phone number of our favorite restaurant saved in my phone. Sadly, I’ll be without Net access for the week. But I’ll have pictures and such when we get back.


Play structure

Filed under: — stan @ 9:58 am

I built the two gates for Lucinda’s play structure. One is at the top of the ladder and the second is to allow access to the top of the monkey bars. Lucinda asked for that one. The instructions that came with the bars explicitly said that children should never play on top of the bars, but Lucinda wanted to be able to do that if she wanted. She does it at the park, so we decided it’s not a big deal. So I built a gate so that the upper level will feel like it is enclosed, but still have access.

In the first two pictures, Lucinda is checking out the gate at the top of the ladder. The second two pictures show the gate to the monkey bars.

With this, I have officially completed all that I initially set out to do with this structure. We are considering adding a tarp roof, but that’s still in the planning stages. So I think it’s time for a rest.


Over the river and through the woods…

Filed under: — stan @ 10:50 pm

Today we took the train down to San Diego to visit Grandpa Schwarz. Riding the train is a pleasant way to go there, and it’s an arduous trip by car. The only bad thing(s) that happened were that we missed the first two trains. When we got to the Gold Line station in Pasadena, the train left just as we were coming down the stairs. We had to wait for the next train, and then when we got to Union Station, we looked out the window and saw the Amtrak Surfliner leaving for San Diego. So we had to wait for the next one.

Once we got there, we had a nice time. Grandpa picked us up at the train station and we all went to lunch. After that, we went back to his apartment. He played computer games and music with Lucinda, while Cathy and I looked through piles of old photos. I found a lot of pictures from my bike racing days back in the late ’70s, which was fun. I’ve scanned some of them for my photo album already, and I’m going to see about getting the slides scanned.

After a fun and relaxing afternoon, we got back on the train for the trip home. The train was crowded, so we ended up in the front car, which turned out to be entertaining. The engineer had the door to the cab open, so we could look out the front window. He also let Lucinda blow the train horn. So we had a fun trip back.

When we got home, we were all tired, but it was a fun day.


A trip to the Zoo

Filed under: — stan @ 7:49 pm

This afternoon I took Lucinda to the L.A. Zoo. We walked around and looked at both the animals and all the construction going on there. The new entrance is close to being done, and they had a surf band playing by the front gate. Inside, a large part of the zoo is torn up. They are rebuilding the Gorilla and Elephant exhibits, which are a large part of the center of the zoo. We had nice time, including finding a feather from an ibis on the ground in the aviary. Lucinda also got a new toy on the way out. She really liked the kangaroo, so I agreed to buy it for her if she would pay for half with her own money.

Pictures are in her photo album.


Ghost of pumpkins past

Filed under: — stan @ 4:55 pm

Last Halloween, Lucinda saved a few seeds from our pumpkin. Over the winter, she planted them in a pot in the back yard. They started to grow, so we planted them in the back yard. The plants have gotten quite large, and they’ve been flowering a lot. Today, we noticed the first two little pumpkins forming on the vines. Lucinda is quite excited by this.



Filed under: — stan @ 8:14 pm

I built the ladder yesterday, and I put it up today. The photo shows the top half of the ladder, along with some detail about how it is attached. The bottom of the ladder is sitting on a couple of concrete paving stones. It didn’t seem quite necessary for it to have massive concrete footings, and with the big carriage bolts holding it on, it’s quite solid.


Nearing completion

Filed under: — stan @ 12:31 pm

I put the monkey bars up this morning. It was a bit of an adventure, since the assembled bars with their 4×4 rails were quite heavy. Then I mounted the end posts and added an “X” brace for stiffness. Lucinda took the inaugural trip across them, and then we posed for a picture.

Next up, I have to make a ladder up on the posts at the end of the monkey bars. Then, I’m going to make a real ladder up to the second level, and finish the railings around the top.



Filed under: — stan @ 10:48 pm

Since Lucinda had her first sleepover at her friends’ house a few weeks ago, they are over here tonight for their first sleepover at our house. We ordered a pizza for them, which turned out to be a bust. But I made a fudge pudding cake, which was a hit.

There was a fair amount of bickering about toys and sharing, which we had expected. They also argued about the order of their bedtime stories.

This is quite the adventure.


Construction update

Filed under: — stan @ 11:45 am

I have finished two of the railings now. The monkey bars should be here Tuesday. It will be time for another trip to Home Depot for some more wood. Then I will do the concrete footings for the ladder and assemble the monkey bars.


More construction

Filed under: — stan @ 7:32 pm

This evening after dinner I put up railings on three sides of the upper level of Lucinda’s new play structure. I also ordered the monkey bars.

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