Arizona

Delivery Instructions Signage

Because our courtyard gate latch is a bit wonky, we prefer that packages be delivered to the rear of the house by the patio. Now, most carriers allow you to specify delivery instructions, but some of the drivers don’t get the message and try to open the courtyard gate which is a bit difficult. A lot of the time, they just dump the package out front outside of the courtyard. We saw this as a minor security risk, so today we installed the sign in a location that can be seen from the driveway and courtyard walkway.

The sign is installed on the electrical box where the house’s circuit breakers are located. The box is made of steel, so I needed a good drill bit for drilling four holes to accommodate #6 sheet metal screws. I also needed a center punch to locate the holes. We gave away most of my old tool collection to family when we left Kalifornistan, so I had to buy the tools again. Although this is not my first time to do “handyman” chores around the Arizona house, this was the first time that I had to get special tools.

So I went to the hardware store and bought some #6 sheet metal screws, a couple of 7/64 drill bits (they did not have a number 36 drill unless I bought a set) and a center punch to indent the locations for the drills. I previously got the sign from Amazon, so we were now ready to do the installation. It all went as planned and you can see the resulting installation in the (clickable) image above.

This is sort of a mundane post, but since we got the new WordPress theme customized, we are motivated to blog more regularly on topics like this that might be neither exciting nor controversial. Of course, we will continue to post about major occasions and events.

Clach Mhile

“Clach Mhile” is Scots Gaelic for “Milestone,” I think. At least it is what Google Translate thinks. I was trying to channel my Scottish/Irish/Celtic roots when titling this post to take notice of another lifetime event, i.e. an additional year old. It doesn’t seem like it’s been a year since the last one, but again, a lot of things have transpired since then, so I guess it does seem like it’s been quite a while. I don’t hit the Big O until next summer. After that, I still expect to feel “young” (as I do now) since most vital functions are still working as they should.

I have some routine health checkups scheduled soon – the Urologist next week and the Nephrologist shortly thereafter. I visit those two regularly because of previous bladder and kidney problems, now (mostly*) resolved. I should schedule a chest x-ray as well, since the Radiologist found some lung smudges described as “ground glass” in a previous exam.

The (clickable) image on the right is of a lemon chiffon birthday cake that the Damsel made for me before we went on the low-carb, low-sodium diet in late 2018. She still bakes confections like this, but uses more Keto-friendly ingredients for the dough and icing. I copied this image from our Food Blog.

So, as the next year unfolds, we hope to resume some of the travelling in the RV with a couple of planned destinations and others that will be more ad-lib as we go along. The RV is getting some updates and as soon as we do a couple of other items fixed, we’ll be ready to roll.

* I have an atrophied kidney causing stage two renal disease which is not that bad (stage five = dialysis).

Theme Updating in Progress

UPDATE 07/16/2022: I think this is where we’ll pause in the theme modifications; we now have a color scheme similar to the Stars and Stripes Theme and the sidebar links are available. This will be it for a while until I figure out how to get my graphics and some of my coded gadgets imported.

Since the patio thermometer reads 112° in the shade today, it seemed like some indoor activities might be in order, so I decided to start monkeying around (a technical term) with the WordPress Themes. What you’re seeing now is some of the first modifications to the “Classic” theme, one of the WP defaults. It will be uphill from here, but I started by removing a bunch of the sidebar entries because there was just too much unneeded stuff. Remaining are the links (Blog Roll), the search form and “Meta” or what I will call “Access” in the future. The order of those will likely be changed.

The “Classic” theme has some good points and some undesirable (to me) characteristics, most of which I will try to convert to how I would like for them to look. My first undertakings will not be too much as in the sidebar mods I made. I mostly did away with code (commented out with notes and date). I am going to try and use some of the original Stars and Stripes code as adapted to the Classic format. One step at a time.

In the (clickable) image above, I took a photo of a couple of new trees that the landscape crew put in down by the road in front of the house. They’re still small, but will grow to be a nice addition to that part of the property.

Let me know if you are having any problems with the theme as the work progresses.

Independence Day 2022

Happy 246th Birthday to our great Nation – America the Beautiful! May God’s blessings continue to flow throughout the land! Damsel and I wish you a peaceful and Happy Independence Day!

Babylon Bee Headline:

Flash Flood Warnings Issued As

Liberal Tears Continue To Soak Nation

Although the BEE headline is tongue-in-cheek, there are some seriously anguished folks out there in the wake of Dobbs and Bruen SCOTUS rulings. So, keep safe and watch your 6 if you are in a place where violence may occur during the holiday.

We’re safe at our little home in the desert and have plans for a 4th of July BBQ by grilling Steaks and serving them with Fauxtato Salad* and Beans on the side. We figure to have a safe and sane holiday here at home.

In the highly unlikely event that trouble comes calling, we’re in a Constitutional Carry place and are perpetually prepared for such eventualities. We just don’t post about our equipment, preparations and practice sessions any longer. Nobody needs to know what we have and how many.

Take care and enjoy the holiday.

Photo at the top: Cherry Red Cactus Flowers and Old Glory. Courtesy Damsel. Click to enlarge.

* A Keto diet salad with cauliflower instead of actual potatoes.

Update on Stars and Stripes Theme

. . . and Where We Go From Here.

After many attempts at picking through the old “Stars and Stripes” theme code to try and achieve compatibility with the newer versions of WordPress, I have concluded that I don’t think I can get there from here. Therefore, I am going to abandon further attempts at trying to make the old theme work. I am disappointed with this decision, but it is what it is.

Going forward, my plan is to continue using the bland, no frills default theme for the time being, while looking into some of the newer platform features to customize into a new S&S theme. I am not giving the effort much of a time budget in our busy schedule (wink) but it will give me something to look into when I get some spare time (wink again).

In the meantime, go look at a video I uploaded to U2B with Damsel and our new pup, Tucker . . .

2022 Cherry Red Cactus Flowers Now Opening

There are several pots in our courtyard containing Trichocereus Grandiflorus cactus (a.k.a. Cherry Red or Torch Cactus). We have been watching a few of the flower buds getting ready to open and today the first ones were out.

We acquired the “parent” cactus several years ago and at one point separated the “mother” from several “pups” which are now planted in their own pots in the courtyard. The image above is of a flower open on a “grandpup,” or a second-generation from the mother cactus who is still getting ready to open her flowers.

Click on the image to enlarge. In addition to the one above, there were two more open on a first generation pup in another pot.

Update: 06/27 open flower . . .