Thursday, December 24, 2015

increasing productivity

It's been a rough week.  Christmas is approaching and I still don't have a pikachu toy for my daughter.  She has piles of toys laying around in her room and boxes and boxes of all kinds of stuff for us to wrap for her tonight, but still no pikachu.  grr.

Stuff going on with me:
  • researching shopify
  • Bill Gates' blog
  • things to be thankful for
  • cleaning up the house
Also researching plants to start growing in my new grow box that is finally operational after several weeks of designing, building, testing etc.

  • winter savory - $2/pck, 10g/$16
  • goji - $16/kg
  • corsican basil - $3.25
  • holy basil - $3.25
  • oregano - $2.50
  • white sage (salvia apiana)
  • wild sagebrush plants
  • big sagebrush
  • wyoming sagebrush
  • fringed sagebrush
  • allheal
  • maralroot
  • sea buckthorn
  • santolina
  • roseroot
  • jiaogulan
  • wild strawberries
  • alpine strawberries
  • moringa
  • zaatar - $7
I have so much available.  Some via cuttings of plants that are already growing, some via seeds that I've collected, some via purchased seeds or plants.  It's such a huge decision, it really eats up my time and attention.  Currently I have space for 3 trays, which works out to about 3600 plants, depending on the method that is used.  The full capacity of the grow box is about 4 times that, and will require some extra building, wiring etc.  

Time to sell-able product is a major factor, since a plant that can get sold in half as much time is twice as profitable.  I really like the sagebrushes because they're so beautiful, but I doubt the capacity for other people to appreciate them.  We'll see.  I'm leaning towards one tray of goji and paulownia, one tray of sages and sagebrushes and one tray of strawberries and other herbs that are already available.  The lighting of the box may work well for some and not so well for others.

I'm working on building some shelves that have higher luminance so that the seeds and plants which require higher light densities to germinate and grow will have a greater chance of flourishing.  Also, the different shelves have different colors of light, so I'll be learning about what colors of light work for different plants etc.

Back to cleaning up for Christmas. 

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Apple booger recipe

This makes about a cup of yummy appley booger slime.

1/4 cup tapioca starch (or rice starch or probably corn starch as well)
1 cup apple juice

Warm it up until the starch congeals while stirring and you (and your kids) can have fun slopping and slurping it or whatever you do with such things.  It also makes an excellent pie filling, but you may want to add butter, brown sugar and a pinch of salt before wrapping it with your favorite pie crust or bun recipe.

Have you saved someone's life today?

Goals and successes are the nutritious food for a positive mind-set.

Honest prayer is the key to the magnificent power of righteousness.

We feed and care for everyone on the planet.


You're beauty is unparallelled.

There is work to do. 

This world belongs to us and to our children.

The production of true prosperity requires honesty and correctly focused effort.


What does your child know of God?

What do you produce?

Friday, December 4, 2015

BodyWeight exercises

My schedule is pretty crammed sometimes and getting that extra little pump really helps get through the day and keep your energy and activity levels up.  I keep a pair of free-weights handy whenever possible to get some reps in when my daughter is in the shower etc.  Bodyweight exercises can also be a great way to tone up your abs and you can do them anywhere, anytime.

Bodyweight exercises are also a great way to tone your core and i really need to build up my core.

 My favorites:
  1. V-ups - From laying position, touch toes, balancing on buttocks
  2. Russian Twists - Trunk twists while sitting on floor with feet out in front
  3. Flutter Kicks - Raise your feet off floor while lying on your back
  4. Bicycle Kicks - Cross-over situps alternating elbows to opposite knee
  5. Plank - 30 seconds on your elbows
  6. Side Plank - On one elbow


Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Carbeurator Tuning

I have a 1981 Toyota Pickup that is having some fuel consumption issues.  It's a great old vehicle and it will be out of smog requirements pretty soon, which is when I plan on converting it to natural gas or e-fuel, depending on what's available in our area.  In the mean time, I need to tune the carbeurator so that it can pass smog and reduce pollution.  It's been sitting in my driveway for a while now, just looking pretty.

So the problem that it has is black smoke from the exhaust, paired with excessive fuel consumption.  It's a pretty straightforward carburettor, so it shouldn't be too difficult for me, although I'm not any kind of car repair expert. First step for me is to clean out the jets.

front view of aisin carb (single jet)

It's an Aisan 2 barrel carburetor, at least I think it is, except that it only has one jet.  The carb has to be removed from the engine in order to access the main jet, even though the main jet access bolt is easy to remove, it's just at an odd angle and I can barely see inside the port, let alone figure out how to get the darn thing out and cleaned.  Ordering a complete kit is $53 at  I may only need the lower flange gasket, which is $1.53.  I guess the next step is to remove the bugger and see what is going on.  Coolant is drained, most of the fuel is out of the carb itself. 

view of carb from engine side

Found a gash in one of the vacuum hoses.   Repaired it and put it all back together to see if it runs now. 

view of carb from passenger side
Sounds better.  Now to set timing and calibrate carburetor.

view of carb from behind
Then off to have smog checked.