Monday, February 18, 2013

More online problems

I'm still having to put in my entire 'key' in order to get my online connection.  The computer keeps latching onto an unprotected connection, which is evidently somewhere in my neighborhood.  It is much weaker (fewer bars) than the connection I am supposed to have.  I will call Comcast again today and see what they can do about this issue.  I REALLY do not want to have to type in 16 digits every time I want to go online!!

I'm also having a problem with my phone, but this I can't blame on Comcast, as it has been going on for quite while now.  When I talk to Kate (in England) she hears lots of noise on the line, although I do not hear any.  Sometimes the situation is reversed and I hear noise and she doesn't.  I don't know if it's my phone, hers, or something in the connection.  I seldom use my phone otherwise, so don't know if it's a common occurrence or just when I call England.  Next time I call her I will use the only phone in the house that is not cordless and see if the noise still persists.  If that phone is clear, then I think my cordless phones are going bad or need new batteries or ???   It's lovely having all these gadgets that make my life easier, until something goes wrong with them. 

Another annoying thing here in the house is a really bad odor that I sometimes smell in the basement.  I think it's a dead mouse, but have not seen any other evidence of mice.  The odor was strong last week, then seemed to vanish, but it was back yesterday.  More than one dead mouse?  Dead mice usually only smell bad for a couple of days.  (Voice of experience)  Maybe I have a whole nest  of mice?  I sure hope not.  No food available for them in the basement, unless they like cardboard (lots of boxes down there).  And, no water source that I know of.  I really don't want to start searching for dead critters, so am hoping the smell will go away on its own.

This is such a negative blog, sorry about that.  Actually my life is going along pretty well.  I'm busy and, as is often the case, my activities are conflicting with each other.  On Saturday I need to be at two places at once.  The compromise is that I'll leave one early and arrive at the other late.  I hope that works out ok.   I will go to the church leadership retreat in the AM and do whatever they want me for (a committee report).  I will then leave and go to the Raku firing here in Laurel.  I only have a few pieces to be fired, and we usually don't get started until noon, so hopefully I will still have time to get my stuff fired.  Raku is slow because there is only one small kiln.  I don't know how many people will be firing stuff.  There is only one Raku class, but people in other classes may bring their pieces for firing.

I'll post a photo of my work sometime after Saturday.  Stay tuned.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

me and Comcast

A week or so, a very persistent salesman from Comcast came to my house.  He actually came back a few days after the initial visit, when I told him I needed time to consider switching from Verizon.  I have not been thrilled with Verizon lately, mostly because they raised by rates a while back.  Anyway, I signed a contract with Comcast, getting Internet, Phone and TV for just about the same price I had been paying for just phone and Internet. 

The installer came on Monday.  He had a bit of difficulty finding the Comcast cable in the house.  We found one "outlet", but it wasn't live.  He said the cable came into the basement near the outdoor water faucet.  To connect there, he would have to drill a hole in the wall, which is behind my bookcases or perhaps he could run the cable along the door sill and come in behind the TV.  Before he did this, however, he poked around some more in the beams in the basement ceiling.  He climbed up on the clothes dryer and Eureka! found the cable.  So then he proceeded to hook it up. All seemed to go well.  The new router is in my bedroom, because he needed to put it near where telephone wires exist and where there is an elect outlet.  (I now know why Verizon put the router in the basement near where the phone wires come in.

Anyway, when he left Monday, all was working.  However, when I when online Tuesday AM, things were not working properly.  I logged onto the computer, but couldn't get into my email or anything else.  So I called Comcast and they sent the tech back yesterday afternoon.  He checked the router and then said, "I think I know what the problem is".  It turns out that the outlet where he connected the router is controlled by a wall switch.  There is a light plugged into that outlet.  I turn the light off and on using the switch.  Since that is my bedroom, I turned off the light (and the outlet) when I went to bed Monday night.  The router worked using it's battery until the battery wore out, then no connections and no phone!  All is well now, except that I am waiting for a new battery. 

I think in retrospect, this is very funny.  Neither the tech nor I thought about the possibility of the outlet being turned off!  I'm afraid it says something about my life, when the most exciting thing that happens to me is the kerfuffle with Comcast.  Actually, I am very happy that my life usually does not have anything exciting happening.  I like having activities every day, with lots of free time in between.

We did have a lovely bit of snow last night.  I was at my pottery class and went outside to watch huge snowflakes come down.  The snow didn't stick to roads or sidewalks and will all melt today, if the weather prediction for 60 degrees is correct. Here's the snow on my artificial poinsettias.

Monday, February 4, 2013

I see it's been quite a while since I wrote on this blog.  I guess I've been putting short messages up on Facebook and neglecting the blog.  I will try to do better this year, but no guarantees.

Not much happening in my life recently.  I will be doing some traveling this winter/spring and will blog about that after the fact. 

 Here are some random photos from my files since I last posted. 

The first photo is  couple of Raku pieces I made back in the fall.  The pot has faces all around it.
 This bowl/pot also has faces imbedded in it. 
This shows what I did last year in the backyard.  I have a collection of antique tools which have been hanging on my fences.  They were looking a bit dull, so I used spray paint to make them colorful!