December 2006

Monthly Archive

Webcam Story, Part Five

Posted by on 31 Dec 2006 | Tagged as: Uncategorized

Well — it was my fault that everything stopped working!

We are now looking for a new domain host. It took them more than 24 hours (after I had managed to log in from outside our home and delete the webcam-related pages on my website) to respond to requests for information…

But it was my fiddling with the webcam settings that sent a surge of data to the servers that host our domain… whereupon it automatically blocked anything from our address from getting in the door. So I couldn’t fix the problem! And no notice was sent to the administrator (Tom) that this was going on. And when he tried to call there was no answer and the voicemail was full!

So. As it stands now:

I CAN get the webcam to work. (hooray)

I don’t know what I am doing, so must go a lot slower about tweaking things. (obviously)

We will find a new domain host for our many domains, most of them mine, and it looks like we can find one that is cheaper with even more features! (happier pocketbook)

Will begin to post pics from the webcam periodically via one method or another within the next week. Then folks can see my workspace (shudder) which gives me incentive to make progress (not sure if that’s a happy or a concern).


Posted by on 30 Dec 2006 | Tagged as: Peace Making, Politics and War, Uncategorized

I wrote another silly poem and posted it at blogspot for those who would like the sentiments behind this post.

2006 was, politically, economically, internationally — disastrous for my country in many ways. I am not going to discuss those things here… they are all over the news services. For a different — and very harsh — perspective, check the news from countries that are traditionally allies of the United States.
2006 was, personally and professionally — a real growth period for me.

I am learning to manage my anxiety and panic attacks without medication most days. I am dealing with increased migraines but have medicine that seems to work when I can take it. I am still struggling with other health issues but most days can manage to meet obligations and have some energy left over for me.

I discovered a “social” outlet that didn’t require daily human contact but has led to meeting new people. I also began to volunteer at the children’s school — not in their classrooms, but it’s a step. I am very pleased that I am well enough to do this.

I am starting to be able to back off when the adolescents in the family need it, to stand my ground when they need it, and to tell the difference more than half the time. This has led to decreased stress and increased compliance with requests.

I sold something I made to someone who was not family or very close friend.

And this past week — I cleaned out the office enough to sit at my computer desk when I want! And got the livingroom, entry and part of the dining room rearranged (with help from my three muscular assistants). Small steps, but they feel good.

May your new year bring you many small steps and many big joys.


Posted by on 30 Dec 2006 | Tagged as: Uncategorized

May the year bring you and your family much love –
and as much happiness as you can tolerate
with a brace of challenges to make life interesting.

May the old year grant us wisdom to carry into the future
May the new year bring us hope in better things to come.

Webcam Story, Part Four

Posted by on 29 Dec 2006 | Tagged as: Uncategorized

Okay, I found a really cool (if it ends up working out) software program called CoffeeCup Software Webcam 3.5 which has a free 21-day trial.

Although there are numerous typographical errors in various places (not, apparently, in the actual code though!) the layout is reasonably attractive and it’s pretty intuitive, even for me.

Using this new software, I was able to create a webpage which I posted to my personal website to test out. I was able to get a static image of me taken from my desktop about once every five minutes. I decided to see if I could speed up the image generation.

Unfortunately, while I was tweaking the refresh rate on it, the server stopped responding. It has been 12 hours and all three websites we host on that company’s server are still inaccessible.

Webcam Story, Part Three

Posted by on 28 Dec 2006 | Tagged as: Uncategorized

At the moment, I will give the camera a conditional “okay.”

After uninstalling and reinstalling the software, leaving out some of the “extra” software, the camera is usable.

Now I am searching for something to let me post the images to the web… More details to follow.

Finally! Pictures!

Posted by on 28 Dec 2006 | Tagged as: Family Matters, Uncategorized

Okay, so it took me longer than it should, but here are five pics from December 25.

Unwrapping dungeons and dragons set

Above: G unwraps his Dungeons and Dragons game.

Below: both boys, this shows M with his star wars miniature bust set.

M and G with Lucky and their presents

Now two pics of Tom, first with the cookbook from my parents, then with the cards the boys made him — yes, that is a new robe on top of the older robe!

Tom looks at his new cookbook Looking at cards handmade by boys

And last, me with two of the pretty pots for hanging in the window to make starts for houseplants. They are from Egypt. The third one is a lovely cobalt blue but didn’t look good in the pics.

Me with two flower vases

A few things I would like to point out include the sunlight making shadows in the room and making G’s hair just shine — a rarity on Christmas day in these parts; Lucky is looking at the black “squeaky ball” that was his gift for the day; and you can see the floor!  Yes folks, the floor was not completely covered by either paper or gifts this year.  Another benefit of moderation…


Posted by on 28 Dec 2006 | Tagged as: Uncategorized

Okay, so far, this is not turning out to be easy. The initial install seemed smooth, but then the handy little utility for formatting, recording and viewing crashed. Made the whole computer crash. Had to hard boot.

Several times.

Uninstalled everything (it crashed once while doing this, as well).

REinstalled just the bits I really need. Hope they’re the ones I really need…

We’ll see. But so far, I am going to say DO NOT purchase a Logitech Quickcam Communicator STX — no matter how cheap it seems.

Webcam Story, Part One

Posted by on 28 Dec 2006 | Tagged as: Uncategorized

My beloved Tom got me a webcam… I have just installed it and am trying to figure out how to make it work. So far, I can tell I have a learning curve somewhat steeper than I expected.

The Logitech QuickCam software installed quickly and painlessly. A good start.

The little “QuickCapture” program is working and was easy to figure out. So far so good.

How to get the data into a format that can be used elsewhere (blogs, for example)? Or do I just download the files and set it up somehow? Also, what will picture quality be on the “other end?” No idea. Doing research, and will report back.

So at the moment I will give this one a provisional “yes” in recommendations. Can’t complain about anything since I’ve only been playing with it about 15 minutes. Hardly enough time to fully explore the limits of my knowledge… or is it?


Posted by on 27 Dec 2006 | Tagged as: Family Matters, Uncategorized

When our elder child was younger, he enjoyed coining new words. The title of this post is one of them.

They make sense, but sounds peculiar to our ears, much as when British people add syllables to their words.

So the day off Monday was very nice. Nowhere to go, nothing to do, just a quiet day with us and the boys. Played some games, watched a movie, ate some yummy things. Perfect.

Yesterday was okay, too! Had an early appointment, got home and did some housework with the kids’ help, played some games…. baked some “amaretti” cookies.

Today we ran some errands, played with critters, cooked a lovely tortilla soup.

I updated a couple of blogs.

Tomorrow, I expect we’ll spend a bit of time with my parents, but I want to be at home most of the day if I can. And soon — the new year!

Holiday Greetings

Posted by on 25 Dec 2006 | Tagged as: Uncategorized

For our friends enjoying their Christmas repast,
we wish you the Merriest.
No matter the time or the manner of party,
may your day be the cheeriest.

This time of year, all dismal and gray
Will gradua-ly to Spring make its way
For the present with eggnog and fruitcake to spare
We invite you all in to partake of the fare.

Next Page »