Category Archives: Photos

Washington, D.C.

I've been to Washington, D.C. many times for work, but have never had a chance to just enjoy it as a tourist. Recently I had to go down there for a week for work, so I went down a day early so that I could spend some time exploring the National Mall. There are a bunch of free museums on the Mall, not to mention all of the monuments. I saw the Air and Space Museum, the Natural History Museum, the Museum of American History, the Washington Memorial, and the Lincoln Memorial. I was pretty burnt out by that point, but will definitely be planning a trip back there, and everything was amazing.

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Rainbow Cake

Carter recently made a "rainbow cake" - a many-layered cake where each layer is a different color. It was originally meant to be one layer taller (if I remember correctly), but something went wrong with that extra layer. As-is, this cake was enormous! But it came out great! The frosting was a little thin, but mostly because we underestimated exactly how much frosting we'd need to cover this behemoth.

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Cattle Drive Diorama

Carter recently had to do a project for school, to teach the younger grades about pioneer times. She made a board-game-slash-diorama about the cattle drive. She made it all herself - it's actually pretty impressive in person.

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Moon Cake

Carter made this "moon cake" a couple of weeks ago. She baked it in a big Pyrex bowl to give it a half-globe shape. She also experimented with fondant for the first time to make the decorations. She tried to carve out "craters" in the sides of the cake, but they didn't quite work. She learned a lot from this one, and if she had to do it all over again it would definitely go a lot smoother!

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In the old house I had my makerspace/tinkering workbench in a corner of the basement. It worked, but was a little space-limited. Plus, the kids would often want to hang out down there with me but they didn't have anywhere to sit or any space to do their own stuff - so they would hang out for five minutes, get frustrated, then wander off. But the new house had a finished room in the attic, so I built a bunch of work benches up there and now we've all got our own space to work. The family computer is up there too, plus a bench for Lori to do puzzles. It's been great! Sean especially loves it up there - he's actually camped out on the floor a few times since I finished it.

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Metal Lathe

One other great thing about the new house is a small finished room in the basement with a concrete floor, which I can use as a metal-working shop. I've wanted to get into machining for a while, but didn't have the space in the old shop to add any more tools - plus mixing a metal shop with a wood shop is a recipe for a fire once I start grinding or welding. So now this little room has a brand new Grizzly mini-lathe! I'm hoping to learn a lot about it, and maybe add a small benchtop mill to this room in the future. I'll bet this little lathe will be the source of many new project posts in the near future.

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New Workshop

I know these photos aren't going to look much different than the old workshop, but it really does feel different in person. Because the new house has sort of a third garage bay (it's not car-depth), I no longer need to share my woodshop space with bikes, generators, snowblowers, etc. It lets me spread my tools out a lot more, and makes the shop a lot more fun to work in. Plus a little natural light coming in through the man-door between the garage doors is a great bonus.

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We Moved!

It's been pretty quiet here on the blog, but I've got a good excuse - we moved! It's only a couple of miles from the old house - we wanted to keep the kids in the same schools. But it gives us more space, plus a neighborhood that we can actually walk around - and the kids have friends in this neighborhood too, which is a big plus. Here are a couple teaser pics of the new place.

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Pin Wall Update

Back in August of 2016 I posted about all of the pins the kids and I had collected, and how we were sticking them into the wood of the shelves near my electronics workbench. At the time we probably had about 30 or so. We figured it was time to post an update - there has to easily be over 80 there now.

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Root Beer Sampling – Update

I've continued tasting any bottled root beer I can find locally, and have expanded the brands I've sampled from 12 (in the last post) to about 20 now. Although I think my favorite is still the Bulldog. I need to find some new grocery stores in the area - I've tapped out the varieties available in all my usual (and some not so usual) stores.

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