Occasional thoughts and deeds of an Engineer
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  • A Sunny Winter Day

    Posted on December 30th, 2012 cwmoore No comments

    Today, Sunday, it was a beautiful, sunny winters day.  The kind that warms your heart if not your body.  It was the kind of day that you just want to look outside and relish the sunshine and the vision of temperatures warmer than reality.  I put on my insulated underwear, medium weight coat, hat leather gloves and headed outside to clean the part of the driveway that had snow that re-deposited itself overnight.  The job was quickly done so I broomed the snow off the truck windscreen and spent some time tgetting ice off the drive too.  It felt great to be outside and moving like nature intended.  Now as the sun is well below the horizon, I reflect on a day well spent.

    Yesterday, Saturday, Dan came over with his truck and we filled it with hickory and oak from downed trees of seasons past.  There remains several truck loads on the ground but at least two piles near the driveway are gone.  The trunk and top of the stately Ash tree that seccumbed to the Ash Borer remains on the ground where it crashed this summer after being felled by the arborist.  Unfortunately, I have 7 more to go.  That is a lot of cords of wood. I started up the snowblower that has not run for more than 2 seasons and used it to clean the 2″ of snow off the driveway.  I could have used the shovel but the blower beckoned and it is always fun to walk behind and see the snow shoot out the two stage spout.  That just about killed the day but I finished with disconnecting the + terminal of the battery on the tractor after having it on the charger for a week or more: it is ready for spring.zkw-tm-d710a

    My new dual band HT ham radio is a pretty cool device that has great audio and transmitter.  I now have all the local area repeaters programmed into it plus all 7 NOAA weather channels and Marine 9,16,21A, 22A, 23A, 68,69,71, 72 Channels.  It is a very versitile radio and all for $58.  It is made in China, of course.  I enjoy the occasional chats, of course, but really the device is a means to program new adventures like APRS, EchoLink and other digital comms.  Someday I will have the pictured Kenwood D710A that I can use to reach out and touch someone.

  • Year End Letter

    Posted on December 28th, 2012 cwmoore No comments

    Christmas Letter 2012

    image004This is the second try at the Christmas letter.  I am embarrassed to say that the first disappeared somehow? That said, I have to say that this was a very good year. This chronological tale, for the most part honest-to-goodness truths, may bore you to tears and may arrive late for those receiving them by snail mail. The Charles W Moore family (Sharon, Abby, Chuck) here in Pleasant Lake have embraced the internet, Facebook, web sites and all the technology that goes with it.  Most of our mail is email and Facebook these days but the www.charleswmoore.org website is still up and the blog is added to occasionally.

    The winter of this year was spent in St. Petersburg, FL at Martha Pokrajac’s house.  We had a great time cleaning gutters, tending the swimming pool, fixing a whole bunch of stuff and pruning Bougainvillea.  I must say we cursed the Bougainvillea more than once as those spikes penetrated the image001soles of our clogs and sandals.  Martha has a LOT of them in her back yard that have needed attention for several years.  I think we have them under control but constant attention is needed. Each 10’ branch needs to be cut into 12” pieces and carefully transported to the garbage can – I have many scratches that prove I was not sufficiently careful.

    In addition to the yard work, we attended Sun Coast AG Church and volunteered with Tampa Bay Watch plus attended social events with friends from Bradenton, FL.  .  Our Bradenton friends are nautical types so we spend time with them on Wednesday sushi night and sometimes a Saturday, or other day, river cruise.

    Sun Coast is a big AG church and the grounds need a lot of person power to keep them up, so, again we did a lot of yard work with the organized “work day” crews – it was fun, hard work.

    Tampa Bay Watch is an organization who is a nonprofit stewardship program dedicated exclusively to the protection and restoration of the marine and wetland environments of the Tampa Bay estuary through scientific and educational programs.  We made eco-concrete oyster domes and cleaned beaches and did other healthy outdoors stuff all for the benefit of future generations We left Florida in April and drove up I-95 to New Bern, NC to look at a boat on the way to brother Andy’s  house for Easter family reunion.

    We purchased a truck camper in May and almost immediately headed for Texas to attend our Moore grandchildren’s graduation from high school.   Marc had a perfect place to camp next to his house with power and water.  We enjoyed the visit of several days.

    I started a summer routine that was pretty lazy. Well, not quite, as I did manage to design and install a campus wide wireless network with a wireless bridge between buildings for our church in Angola .  As a result, I commandeered a small room to use as the network control point and that has been my hangout ever since.  Also, we made a trip with our camper,  pulling the Honda Civic, to Lake Champlain, NY to look at a boat – I was ready to buy but SAM was not – where we enjoyed our lakes edge view camping spot.  What a marvelous place up-state NY is to be. We visited several Plattsburg historic sites and museums from War of 1812.

    image006Sharon was quite a bit more enterprising and started a garden in a modest way.  This is to be expanded four fold in the 2013 season.  SAM has been food experimenting:  There has been quite good sauerkraut, whole bunches of fermented veggies in all kinds of forms – most were very good – and various smoothies of fruit/vegetable variations.  SAM kept busy all summer.

    Summer came and went too quickly. Fall rolled around – one day it was nice and warm and the next leaves had turned and were falling to the ground in their peculiar fashion.  Due to kind winds and great days we had our whole yard cleaned of leaves with only 10 loads (these are heavy 25 cubic feet of mulched and diced leaves per load).  We deposit them at lakes edge to keep erosion down.  Just after the first hard frost SAM cleaned out the garden and sister Ann’s too and made some new concoctions to keep us healthy well into the winter.

    Now, as I write this missive near  the Christmas Season Winter is hard upon us and we received the first sticking snow a couple of days ago.  We end with some additional notes.  We visited daughter Beth and her husband Ingo Stadter down in Pendleton, IN and it was fun to be with the young image007grandchildren. In addition, we helped daughter Jessica move her apartment in Chicago (Lincoln Park) yet again and I am sure it is not the last since Jessica has made application for the Peace Corps.   May the Lord bless and keep you and yours throughout 2013.

  • Boating Friends Day

    Posted on December 28th, 2012 cwmoore No comments

    Today we made the trip to Shipshewana for the annual reunion of our Tower Marine boating friends who have become regular friends.  First, we met at Yoders Hardware and looked at hats, hardware from the old world, cloth bolts and other cool stuff.  Then came the Blue Gate for lunch – my lunch was a memorable Boiled Cod – and I have a newly found respect for Blue Gate Chef’s.  A truely excellent meal for two at $30.  Afterwards, we went through a few shops and I found Miller Baskets that were excellent baskets at a reasonable price.  Maybe I will have to change from ropework to basket work.  So, the day was well spent in good company and now SAM is asleep upstairs and I hear Abby’s stomach growling  (perhaps mine too).

  • Christmas Season

    Posted on December 16th, 2012 cwmoore No comments

    Today was the christmas program at www.aaogchurch.com and it was a great program.  The wee ones were cute and the older ones good with a lot of last minute stand-ins due to sickness.  The hour went quickly and afterwards there was a lot of good food over at the Family Life Center.  We had 217 attendance.  There was a pre-service prayer for the fallen children, heroine’s and heros of Sandy Hook – 26 in all of which 20 were children 6-7 yars old.

    I sent out the Christmas Letter to family members yesterday and only 4 emails bounced this year – DJ, Erin, Kristen and Chris.  I will post the text and pictures on this blog next week as a legacy method trying to reach those family and friends that change emails too often to keep track of.  Over the years, with continual seperation our previously tight knit family is disappating like smoke on the wind so the Christmas Letter keeps the interested ones informed of happenings of the year.

  • Holland & Saugatuck

    Posted on December 14th, 2012 cwmoore No comments

    Sharon, Abby and I were up earlier than usual to allow to drive to Holland, MI for my periodontist teeth cleaning appointment.  We drove via I-69/I-94/US-131/US-40 all the way into Holland and arrived with plenty of time to spare.  Abby rested in the car from her trauma yesterday, SAM went shopping and I got to relay in the dentist chair.  My ordeal was quickly over and we drove over to Steak n Shake where we had our traditional favorites.

    After leaving SnS we went down to Saugatuck and SAM shopped some more while Abby and I just sort of lounged in the car.  We were much surprised to see an island in the middle of the Kalamazoo River – the water is so low that there is bare earth showing in the middle of the river.  If the river does not raise the boating season for Saugatuck-Douglas will be a disaster and the community will feel the full impact of no boaters.

    I mentioned Abby earlier.  Yesterday she went to the vets for a tooth cleaning and to have a lump on her back removed.  When we picked her up she was groggy and coughing strangely.  The persisted all night but subsided mostly by morning.  We were quite concerned,  Today she was mostly back to herself but felt a bit feverish, in spite of the fact that the vet gave her an antibiotic.  The incision to remove a 1/4″ lump was three inches long and the sutures looked sort of crudely done.  We just could not believe the incision was so long:  must have had long tendrils or something that the vet did not explain since we decided not have a biopsy.  Our $450 experience at this vet was not too satisfying and we will look for another.