Sunday, September 30, 2007

We just got back from a weekend at the beach. I'll try to put up a pic or two soon.

The 10-day weather forecast calls for highs in the mid-to-upper 80's all week with even a day hitting 90 here in sunny, Sanford, NC.

This is October, isn't it?

Will we see highs in the 70's by Christmas???

Still unpacking.

Friday, September 28, 2007

Saturday Something To Do

Brush & Palette Show - All Day Event

The Sanford Brush and Palette Club hosts its anniversary Fall Show and Sale at the Hales Center (Sanford's old Armory at 147 McIver Street). More than 120 members feature their paintings in watercolor, oil and acrylics, as well as three-dimensional media, including woodcarvings and sculpture. Exhibition open to public. Guided educational tours will be scheduled throughout the show and will be published in the Herald.

For more information, please call (919) 774-8723 or (919) 774-8873.

From the Downtown Sanford events calendar.

Monday, September 24, 2007

That was fast!

Time spent assembling five dollar hummingbird feeder: 2 minutes.

Time spent mixing hummingbird nectar mix: 1 minute, 30 seconds

Time spent hanging hummingbird feeder outside kitchen window: 1 minute (6:05 PM)

(Cost of white shirt with red hummingbird nectar spilled on it: About 4 bucks)

Time until first hummingbird showed up: 11 minutes (6:16 PM)

Level of amazement considering we didn't even know if any hummingbirds were around: 10 out of 10

Friday, September 21, 2007

Craig and His List

Well, I was going to play a little golf this afternoon at Quail Ridge, but I have apparently badly strained my achilles tendon. I was playing basketball last night in a Men's Open league in Cary, and it was our first game. It started feeling pretty sore toward the end of the game and I awoke in the middle of the night with it throbbing. I guess I'm not 25 anymore.

Does anyone use Craig's List? I have known about it for years, but we would normally use eBay for selling things on the Internet. We have just recently listed a couple of things (moving boxes, an old bicycle) in the FREE section and have had people come pick them up here in Sanford. But it appears while browsing through many of the sections of both the Raleigh section and the Fayetteville section that there are not too many people in Lee County using the site. We have tried to buy a couple of things we have found, but we weren't quick enough. Things of decent value that many people might need apparently get snatched up rather quickly. And i imagine that there are resellers out there who find things on the cheap and buy them low while trying to resell them for a good profit.

Things I am looking for on Craig's List in the region:

1. A travel trailer or larger pop-up camper. Toilet must be separate from the shower for the wife's sake! Used but in good shape. (Just window shopping now. Maybe after Christmas we'll get serious.)
2. Dog kennel fencing - 10x10x6. We are trying to give the dogs more room.
3. A set of patio furniture for our back deck.
4. An entertainment center. Large enough to hold our 36" TV. Prefer darker stained wood and nothing contemporary looking.
5. A simple table and 2-4 chairs for our homeschool room. Not too high for the boys to work comfortably.
6. A simple coffee table for the play room couch.

Possible dangers of using Craig's List versus eBay, etc.: No financial guarentees if you get ripped off like those offered on trusted sites. The anonymity disappears. Weird people will email you. Yes, they will. Parts of the site are unfortunately for adult eyes only. Don't let the kids wander around on it. (Or your eyes either!)

Bonuses of using Craig's List: It's free (except for a tiny handful of cities where they charge a small fee for job listing (seven cities) or real estate ads (New York only, I believe). You can go out and look at the thing you are buying if it is local/regional. You can always back out of a raw deal. Currently no ads. It is a simple text based site that is not out to make money, believe it or not. More than 20 million people are using it each month. Lots of exposure.

We are still "experiementing" with it now, but we hope we might be able to find a good deal here or there with the site. Who knows?

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

We just got back from our first walk through our new neighborhood and only made it maybe half-way through. Neighbors were actually coming out to meet us. Amazing how friendly everyone is in a small town. The boys met a few kids, too. I think we are going to like this neighborhood just fine.

Check out our back yard (well, the farm behind us) from these pictures taken earlier this evening:

Walmart Opens

The new Super-Duper Walmart is opening today here in Sanford. The old, smaller version up the street has closed.

The little guy in me hates to see the giant come in and take over.

The poor man in me loves to save money by shopping here so I can feed my children.

8:16 PM Update: We bought milk from The Scotchman on Horner Blvd. at 15/501 last night for 3.99 a gallon. PET milk, too. Walmart had PET milk today for (are you sitting down?) $6.19!

My wife reports that most everything else was cheaper than Lowe's and comparable or just lower than Food Lion. And the Walmart was p-a-c-k-e-d today.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Come On, Herald!

The New York Times will soon stop charging a fee to access parts of its web site.

I am hoping small town newspapers such as our own Sanford Herald will get on board with this. Advertising, though shaky at times, is still the best way to generate revenue according to many experts. If you are in online newspaper ad sales, do you want to go to a possible advertiser and say, "I have (insert small number here) paid subscribers to the online edition?" Or do you want to say, "I have (insert larger number here) reading the online edition?"

“But our projections for growth on that paid subscriber base were low, compared to the growth of online advertising,” said Vivian L. Schiller, senior vice president and general manager of the site,


What changed, The Times said, was that many more readers started coming to the site from search engines and links on other sites instead of coming directly to

Was this a new revelation or have then been stewing on this epiphany for some time?

Whatever the case, I know that I for one would be accessing the online edition of The Herald 6-days a week rather than my current low rate of access were it to become free. All the while subscribing to the nice, shiny, new printed edition.

Friday, September 14, 2007


This is one nasty storm!


Nice to have the rain, though. My grass was crunching under my feet!

Finally Back Online!

We’ve accomplished quite a bit the last few days, including finally getting our high speed Internet connection up and running. So, I am back to posting again, and thought I would give a quick update.

The movers brought our stuff last Friday. Everything arrived like we thought it would and we have unpacked a good 30 of the 100+ boxes so far, and partially unpacked another 30-40. I am guessing we will still be unpacking for a good while, but we have the essentials down, such as the kitchen, the master bath, the master closet, and the office. Maybe by Christmas we will have the place the way we want it.

All of the rooms are painted except the master bedroom. We also need to wallpaper above the chair rail in the dining room. Stacie wants the kitchen painted, too, but that can wait a bit. I just have a few small areas to touch up throughout the rest of the first floor and we can decide then what to do with the playroom and upstairs bedroom.

A couple of things I discovered this week about our new home/area:

Fire ants! Ouch. I was attaching a hose and put my hand down to steady myself. The next thing you know I feel a stinging pain in a couple of places on that hand. I look down and there are several small ants locked on to me in a crouching position. I decide to take a quick revenge on these little knuckle biters and throw them in to a garden spider web next to the spigot. But then, quite suddenly, I get that same burning and stinging sensation on my feet. I look down and discover another dozen ants biting anywhere my flip-flops didn’t cover. Ouch! About the same time I discover they have taken a good hold of 6-year old Ethan’s feet, as well. So, being the good and protective Dad that I am I … no wait… I got them suckers off of my own feet first, and then helped out poor Ethan, who was clawing at his own feet. I told him to step away from the little dirt area and run and get me the ultimate revenge maker. That can of sprayed death… RAID! And took our revenge we did. Hearty these suckers were. We sprayed the entire area, and came back an hour later and discovered that they were making a mad yet valiant attempt to crawl up the wall of our house. Splash! I hit them again and sprayed a good five feet in diameter (being careful not to hit or affect the aforementioned garden spider) and gave them a sense of shock-and-awe. The carnage was displayed quickly as more and more ants piled out from the hill to meet their doom. Soon there was nothing but a patch of ant bodies, three and four ants deep. As we walked up the steps of the deck, madly scratching our hands and feet, we felt a sense of pride in killing off our new found enemy.

The cows! There is a cattle farm behind our house. We moved our two labs up over the weekend and they had a difficult first night. The cows only come up to the pasture behind our house at night, so when they dogs began barking like crazy at midnight I knew that had to be the problem. I grabbed my flashlight and went out and discovered two of the cows sitting right up on the fence as if they were taunting the dogs. I walked over toward the cows and they took off running. I think it was good for the dogs to see that I wasn’t afraid of these large beasts, as they have barked very, very little since then. I like having the farm out back. It reminds me of the country, and with a couple of horse farms at the beginning of our street we do feel like we are out there a bit. It is nice out here, even when the breeze brings the very faint smell of cow-patties into the back yard.

We like Sanford. It has some issues like any big city or small town, but we like what we have seen so far. I am especially glad that Stacie and the boys are happy to be here. That makes a big difference, and allows me to focus on some other things. We’ll be seeing you around town!

Monday, September 3, 2007

Much To Do, Little Time To Do It

Sorry I have been quiet for a few days.

Painting. Painting. Painting.

Fixing this. Repairing that. Replacing something else.

We are fixing up the "fixer upper" that we bought. Great house, but it needs a little love. So much to do the next 4 days. Then the wife and kids arrive at their new Sanford home. I want it to look nice for them!

I'll be back shortly.