Archive for September, 2010


Bird house…with a surprise

   Posted by: John    in Miscellaneous, Pictures

The tree out front has a little bird house in it.  I took a couple pictures of it and went in the house to look at them.  The first picture looks real nice.

Bird house in tree

The next picture though, from a slightly different angle reveals a surprise.

Wasp city

It would appear the thing is chock full of wasps.  The little buggers are also nesting in the siding trim on the house.  I need to get some more wasp spray I guess.


Deal of the day

   Posted by: John    in Food, Food Storage

I don’t know if the same sale is on where you live, but the Meridian Albertson’s has Mission White Corn Tortillas on sale for $1 for 30.  That’s a pretty good deal.  Of course, it is difficult to use 30 of them before the date is up.  According to the Mission web site, they can be frozen for future use, and recommended a vacuum sealer to do it.  I happen to have one.  When you are ready to use them defrost them in the fridge for a day or two and you are ready to go!  I happened to do 10 per package.

Corn tortillas ready for the freezer


More Road Work…Paving

   Posted by: John    in Pictures

So today Ustick is being paved.  The base is in place and ready for the new asphalt.  It will take much of the day to do one strip a mile long.  The trucks bringing in the new asphalt just drop it on the base in a long line and the paving equipment does the rest. 

Paving the road (Kodak C180, ISO-80, f 5.2, 1/640 sec)

Paving the road (Kodak C180, ISO-80, f 7.0, 1/250 sec)

Paving equipment (Kodak C180, ISO-80, f 4.6, 1/640 sec)

 It is interesting to see that the paver does not actually compress it at all.  All it does is shape it into a continuous strip 8 feet wide and, in this case, 3 inches thick. 

Rollin' it (Kodak C180, ISO-80, f 8.9, 1/320 sec)

The roller actually pushes it down about an inch.  The 3 inch layer become about 2 inches thick.  It’s actually quite impressive to watch.  Also, one would think it would just roll over the stuff smoothly, but it doesn’t.  You can feel the ground vibrate when it is going.


Irritated Kitty

   Posted by: John    in Fun Stuff, Pictures

They say curiosity killed the cat.  In this case it just trapped the cat…on a Hollister shopping bag!  I heard this goofy noise and when I went to see what it was…here was Clive, attached to the bag’s handle!

Click for larger image

Click for larger image

I think it is safe to say he was more than a little irritated over it.


So…how old do you think Cathy is?

   Posted by: John    in Family, Pictures

Take a guess…I’ll wait!    LOL   

Click the picture to see it full size.

Cathy and Woofy. What year is it?


Road Work

   Posted by: John    in Pictures

Ada County Highway District (ACHD) is out all over the valley doing a ton of road projects.  Last week, they ripped up a mile of Ustick Road and this week they will be paving it.  Here’s what it looks like right now.

Dumping extra dirt (Kodak C180, ISO-80, f 5.2, 1/250 sec)

Grading (Kodak C180, ISO-80, f 5.2, 1/320 sec)

Grading (Kodak C180, ISO-80, f 5.2, 1/500 sec)

Almost ready to pave (Nikon D1, ISO-400, f 8, 1/800 sec, 400 mm focal length)

I will post some pictures of the paving process when it starts.


What to do when the game is on…

   Posted by: John    in Fun Stuff

Went to the local Albertsons to get something for Crystal…and discovered this behind the Tully’s coffee kiosk.

At the local Albertson's

It is hard to see from the picture, but the cases with the letters and football are sticking out about an inch from the rest.  The top of the display was about 10 feet off the ground. 

Somebody obviously had too much time on their hands, but it illustrates just how much football fever is present in Boise.


Lord of the Ring Dance

   Posted by: John    in Pictures

Since Karen has been involved with Prairie Dog Playhouse  last season, I have been helping them out with computers, pictures and video, among some things.  Their current production is Lord of the Ring Dance and last night was their invited dress rehearsal.  It is a combination of Wizard of Oz and Lord of the Rings.  Instead of the ring of power, they have the shoes of power that Crawlum and the evil witch want.  Highly recommended good family fun!

Frodorothy (Aubrey Winterholler)

Grandoof (Ian Murray)

Galadyerwell (Jana Goetz) and Hairagon (Lee Vander Boegh)

Elfis (Jeremy Olsen)

Crawlum (Shawn Manker), Shoe Wraith (Tyson Bates), Sorwoman (Kami Carpenter), Grandoof (Ian Murray)

Dorc (Tyson Bates) and Crawlum (Shawn Manker)

Dorc, Frodorothy, Hairagon and Elfis

Crawlum and Frodorothy

Frodorothy, Elfis, Grandoof and Hairagon

Crawlum, Galadyerwell, Dorc and Sorwoman

The cast of "Lord of the Ring Dance"


Savory Beef and Onions Recipe

   Posted by: John    in Recipes

I made this Savory Beef and Onions recipe a few weeks ago and it was very good.  Takes a little time to cook, but what the heck.  You could serve it with noodles, but the rice was very good with it.


Bye Bye Birdie Pictures

   Posted by: John    in Pictures

Crystal is in Knock-em-Dead’s production of Bye Bye Birdie.  The invited dress rehearsal was last Thursday evening, and I was able to take some pictures.  Here are some of them.

Al (Tony Preece) and Rose (Megan Fetters)

Girls on the Phone

Momma, Al (Tony) and Rose (Megan)

Conrad Birdie arrives at the train station

Conrad sings and women start fainting

Singing for the Ed Sullivan Show (Doug Pluim as the Father)

Al (Tony) meets Gloria (Crystal Christensen)

Gloria (Crystal) prepares to tap dance for Al (Tony) and Momma

Gloria (Crystal) sucks up to Al (Tony) after doing the splits

Conrad preparing to dance with Kim

Almost ready to give the kiss

Al (Tony) trying to find Rose

Rose (Megan) talking to Tony on the phone. Crystal is in the middle.

End of the song "What's the Matter with Kids Today"


Vegetable Stir Fry

   Posted by: John    in Recipes

I decided to make a Stir Fry Vegetables for supper, but approached it a little differently than I have other stir-fries.  Since I was not using meat, I decided to make the sauce separately and add it when the vegetables were nearly finished cooking.  The result was very tasty and the veggies were not soggy at all. Enjoy!


Server Problems – Solved! (Update)

   Posted by: John    in Computer and Network

So, sometime Friday evening or Saturday morning, the exchange server decided it was going to quit sending messages to the outside world.  Additionally, the application error log started filling up with MSExchangeTransport errors 3008, 3018, 3030 and a smattering of other 30xx errors.  Everything was pointing to a DNS error or a spammer of some kind.  Also, the system was intolerably slow.

After messing around with it for some of the afternoon, I decided it could not be a DNS problem.  I could find no DNS issues, nor could I see what would have suddenly changed to cause such a DNS type problem.  Scanning the server (along with other computers on the network) came up with no virus activity, although I did find an unidentified item in the system configuration that ran on startup.  I think it was some kind of bug that put a bunch of junk into the output queue.

Every IT type needs access to  This is an awesome site that users have posted answers to problems like this.  After some searching, I found that someone had this kind of problem and traced it to the c:\program files\exchsrvr\mailroot\vsi 1\queue folder having a corrupt message in it, and it plugged up the system because nothing else could get past it.

I found that the queue folder had about 500 MB of messages in it.  The server was just overwhelmed trying to send it all.  It would not allow me to delete it so I booted into safe mode.  Browsed to the queue folder and just hard deleted the folder (use shift-delete and it bypasses the recycle bin).  It took about 15 minutes to delete.  After it finished, I emptied the recycle bin and created a new folder called Queue to replace the deleted one.

Rebooted and it works just fine.  The queue folder is empty and email gets sent normally.  The server is responding properly and the application log has no errors since the reboot. 

The storage server has 6 GB of RAM in it, but it was only recognizing 4.5 GB of it.  It turned out that in the system configuration it was being limited to 4.5 GB of RAM.  I unchecked the box that enabled RAM limiting and rebooted.  Now the server shows all 6 GB.  This is important because this server, in addition to being storage also runs a VM web server.  It needs all the RAM it can get!


Well, it turns out it was not solved.  It just did not show up until after I went to bed!  This morning I went to safe mode again and cleared the queue.  Then I removed the SMTP port 25 forwarding from the router.  Not a single error showed up before now (10 AM) when I set up the port forward again.  I am going to see if the stuff reoccurs, and if it does, remove the port forward again and see if it stops.  I let the systems scan overnight and did not find any virus activity on my systems at all.