Sunday, August 17, 2008

Full Moon ...

It was a full moon tonight, so Fernymoss decided he'd take a stab at getting some photos, since it was so bright outside. We haven't played around much with taking night shots (except the fireworks and that thunderstorm video), and obviously we don't have the hang of it yet! So, I apologize for the quality in advance, but knowing it was full moon should have tipped me off about undertaking any major projects! But no ... I had to go and try to get my new wireless network card in my old XP computer connected to the rest of the computers in the house ... bad decision! I just quit out of frustration a little bit ago, vowing to go out and just get an ethernet cable to connect it tomorrow because I can't get it to connect to my network through the wireless card!

Why do I want to do this, you might ask? Well, it's a long story! When I got my new computer last fall, I planned to get them all networked so we could share the internet connection, as well as do some file sharing between all the computers in the house. After consulting our "guru" BJ (a friend originally from here and now living in NYC), I learned that since Fernymoss is running Linux, that wasn't going to work for him, but I'd be able to swap back and forth between my two.

But yesterday we ran into a few kinks ... first of all, I had planned to swap the second hard drive in the XP box to my Vista computer, put in a wireless card as well, and expand my capabilities on this computer. Well, as it turned out, BJ couldn't swap the drives because the XP box uses an IDE controller and my new one only will accept the newer (next generation) SATA drives, so the huge 225 GB drive I wanted to swap has to stay put, and I have to get a SATA drive for the Vista box. But that can wait until Thanksgiving, when BJ will be back in town again from NYC. The second wrinkle was that given the compact architecture of my Vista machine, the PCI wireless card I had gotten was too big to fit the box! Another great idea nixed by circumstances of having such a new machine. No sweat, I thought, I'll just put the card in the XP box and go from there. Well, that's what I've been trying to get up and running tonight, and I wasted over three hours of time and increasing frustration on a fool's errand. Occasionally I can get the computer to show up in my network, but it can't access it, for some weird reason. So much for Linksys "Easy" installation and set up! I can see other networks in the area, but not mine, so I just gave up. Ethernet cable will be much simpler, and when I got the router all set up when I originally got it, I was able to hook up my computer and Fernymoss' Linux box with no hitches. So that's the next plan ... and then I have to figure out how to do file sharing between my two computers, which should be simpler, once they both realize they're on the same network. Basically I just want to use the old XP machine as a file server because it has most of my music on it, as well as all the photos dating back to when I first started my (now defunct) website and this blog.

I consider myself pretty computer savvy in most things, but making hardware cooperate hasn't been my forte, as tonight's adventure in frustration proved. Tomorrow's another day, and though I have to do "work work," I can't devote too much time to this, but the ethernet cable should take care of one problem, which is getting the XP box all updated, since it's been inactive since late September. All I want is an internet connection so it can download all the Windows and security updates, which will likely take a day or so! Then I can concentrate on getting the file sharing set up, so I can access that huge drive I have over there. Wish me luck, and if you have any salient tips to share, please let me know (please!).

As for the garden, well, it's August and until the last few days it has either been too hot or rainy for us to get much done out there, and in the interim, the weeds have been proliferating insanely! It's a mess out there! But we tackled it today for about three hours, working in different areas, pulling and digging weeds up to rescue our precious beauties. I worked on weeding my pathetic peppers (this is NOT a good year for peppers around here!) and the rest of the stuff behind the house ... the tomato (it had to be staked higher because it outgrew its "bush" status quickly) and the herbs as well. And once that was done, I took a break and tackled the out of control hibiscus bed in the parking (where Kopper King and Blue River reside), where the volunteer morning glories, bindweed and foxtail had overrun practically everything! I now hate morning glories, especially those horridly weedy pink ones we mistakenly planted years ago, and who refuse to go away. I filled up an entire wheelbarrow with the stuff I pulled (it took me about two hours!), but at least everything can breathe again. As for that Coreopsis I complained about earlier this summer, it was looking so crappy that I just pulled it up and threw it in with the other weeds! I've had it with that plant. I bet it will be back next year, when it will get the same treatment. If I plant it again, I'll make sure to get one of the more compact varieties, but I'm not in any big hurry. Take heart though, I had planned to do a "Bloom Day" post tonight and took plenty of various pictures for that, but it will have to wait a day or so, until work calms down a bit. Kopper King is blooming, and Blue River was having an off day today, and was heavily damaged by the recent hard rains and hail, but it's still hanging in there even though it had fallen over completely and needed much staking that is still not done. One huge section had been blown over and broken (but still blooming!) so I just severed it and we're going to try to root it to produce another plant ... more on that later.

Next project: the front boulder beds, because between the weeds and the overly enthusiastic Zebrina mallows, we have a lot of work to do out there ... Fernymoss made some progress, but after I finished the Hibiscus bed, I was wiped out and had to quit for the day. You already know what I tackled next, and that's a continuing saga that I hope a mere ethernet cable will resolve. Then comes networking the various printers I want to have up and running in my home office here. I expect that will be every bit as "fun" as what I put myself through tonight, lol! At least all these months, I've been saving paper and toner/ink cartridges, but that can't go on forever, so that's the next hurdle ... wish me luck! With any luck, after next Wednesday, I hope to have the blog back in its regular schedule, and apologies in advance for not keeping up with what I usually try to do ... though summer is waning now, alas, there's still a lot of prime growing time to chronicle for the next couple of months!

UPDATED: Sunday August 17, 2008 ...
Since I actually had to do some "work work" today for a few hours, I gave Fernymoss $20 and sent him off to Radio Shack for an ethernet cable. Once I powered up my old machine, plugged it into the router and my network immediately recognized it and established an internet connection for it. It all seems so decadent ... now two people could access the internet in this one small place I call my office! Who knows, that may well come in handy at some point ... And best of all, I looked up how to do file sharing with folders on the old machine, so now all my hundreds of discs of music are accessible from this computer, even imported into my media player library! After all that frustration, venting and general kvetching, I now pretty much have the file server I was wanting all the time. And when I can get a new SATA drive for this computer, I'll have probably close to a terabyte of storage space! Whoopee ... just what the avid photographer and music fan needs.

I'm a happy camper tonight!


Mother Nature said...

Hubby and I happened to be out driving last evening when the moon was rising. We were amazed how red it was.

Shady Gardener said...

You have completely worn me out!!! Hopefully someone can help you in the matter of your computer woes... I cannot. :-( Sorry.

Now, I hope to pass through Des Moines in a week or two. If it works out, I'll contact you!!! Be prepared for some lamenting as I look at your gorgeous Kopper King. ;-)

We had a wonderful day at the Fair Friday. Beautiful weather. Enjoyed the full moon afterwards as we drove towards home. (Did I give you a hat tip? I remember the grow ring tip. Gardener's Supply has them on sale right now... but maybe not enough of a sale?)

Gail said...

You lost me at the paragraph with real computer lingo! We are primitive over here at Clay and Limestone! Still, I can understand computer frustration! I feel especially irritated when I can't get pages to load considering what we pay for cable's highspeed internet access!

Weeds are my friends these days...I am not even going to attempt to pull them out of the very dry ground. Here is our sad tale: Maybe rain in the last part of the week, this is the same forecast we had this week and the rain chance disappeared! SIGH!

No bloom on Kopper King, the stinker! I will enjoy your photos...I hope you post, please include the beautiful foliage.

Thank you kindly sir!


Iowa Victory Gardener said...

Hi MN,
Wasn't that a dramatic moon last night? I joked today to Fernymoss that he had been out "shooting the moon" last night, which wasn't initially intended to be a pun, but then it was pointed out to me... DUH!

Iowa Victory Gardener said...

Hi Shady,
That's ok, but thanks for the empathy! I got an ethernet cable today, plugged it in, and it was immediately connected to the internet and was recognized by my router as part of the network map, something I was unable to do last night. I should have saved my money and skipped the wireless cards! I'm going to work on file sharing a bit tonight, which I think should go much easier now ... I hope!

Definitely let me know if you'll be in town, and of course weekend days are best for me, as I work from home M-F and don't have much time before 5:30 or so. Give me advanced warning and we can dig up some Monarda and pot it up for you. Also, any seeds you might want that are ready now I can collect.

We didn't make it to the fair again this year, and it was such atypical weather for Fair time ... traditionally it's held during the hottest days of August, at least not this year!

Iowa Victory Gardener said...

Hey Gail,
No problem on losing you... I was just so frustrated at how much time I wasted on that, I just had to vent a bit, lol. I see you're on Comcast, which has the rep of being one of the most expensive and unreliable of ISPs from what I've read. I have a good deal from QWest (phone company) where I bundled the service with the phone and committed to 2 yrs minimum, which locked in my price for life and discounted it significantly. I love them and very rarely have outages.

I looked at your forecast and it did look grim for rain chances, though those storms we got earlier in the week were on days where we only had a 20-30% chance, so you never know. I do hope you get some relief soon! That's really a note of resignation there about the weeds, but I can understand. Stuff got so out of control the past few weeks when it was so hot, thus our freaking out at how bad it is out there!

I took more Kopper King photos today and he'll be appearing here very soon, I promise!

Oh, and you're more than welcome! :-)

Annie in Austin said...

Blue River II isn't having a good year here either, IVG, but for the opposite reason of drought and such heat that any bloom fries fast. Well, we're once again promised rain tomorrow and maybe the wind will calm down in your garden - shall we hope that both our big hibiscus plants open those white sails in September?

My eyes glazed on the computer part, too - since I've been spoiled by my live-in tech support.

Annie at the Transplantable Rose

Iowa Victory Gardener said...

Hey Annie!
I sure hope you and Gail both get rain soon! Believe it or not, after those storms last week, it's dry here again, and we'll have to start watering the areas we weeded.

I think it's safe to say Old Blue will be blooming into September ... it's always the first to start and last to finish. I just wish it could stand up tall a bit more sturdily, but still love the old guy.

BTW, only movie we watched this weekend (a lot of time was spent outdoors and on the computer) was Fido which we pulled out to show an old friend in town from NYC. He loved it too, and it was even more fun the second time around. If you haven't seen it, I bed you'd like it! It's a "zomedy." :-)

Annie in Austin said...

No thanks, IVG - one or two a decade will do, and we've already seen Shaun of the Dead...although Billy Connelly is tempting.

I'm not too sure how often our tastes intersect! I saw Mamma Mia twice since it opened but when we recently put on Inland Empire per your recommendation, I fell asleep and Philo quit before the end. We may have to agree to disagree on a lot of them ;-]


FARfetched said...

You should be able to install Samba on Fernymoss's Linux box & then everyone could share stuff around.

Good to hear you got the server set up, though. I need to do some upgrading on my old G3 Mac & set it up as a file server.

The pics have, as always, been awe-inspiring, or cute, or informative. I'll leave you do decide which is which. ;-)

Shady Gardener said...

IVG, I've just sent you an e-mail. Let me know what you think. :-)

Iowa Victory Gardener said...

Hi Annie,
LOL, I guess maybe we do intersect sometimes, but I do tend to go way off the beaten path with a lot of my picks, I'll admit.

I'm actually curious about Mamma Mia but there's no way I can convince Fernymoss to try that out. I'm not an ABBA fan, but the story does sound fun. Now, about films with ABBA in them, we both love Priscilla, Queen of the Desert, so I'm not totally averse.

Sorry about Inland Empire ... Lynch is definitely an acquired taste and that's a very challenging film, and probably best to have seen Mulholland Drive first, since they share elements. At least you gave it a chance! I know, at 3 hrs of nothing but Laura Dern is a hard sell, lol...

Iowa Victory Gardener said...

Hey FAR,
I've never heard of Samba, and will have to research that a bit more. Our "guru" friend is a total Linux geek and he wasn't sure how/if we could set up sharing, but I'll email him and ask him what he knows.

I'm really liking the access to the files on the old box... and media player plays the music without any hitches! Thanks for the tip and the nice props!

Iowa Victory Gardener said...

Hi Shady... got it! Check your email too... sent a response just before I got on to Blogger to work a bit on the blog...

Annie in Austin said...

Philo loved Mulholland Drive and I loved Twin Peaks...we've been watching David Lynch since Eraserhead but he's lost us for the present!

I didn't meet ABBA until seeing Priscilla and Muriel's Wedding, myself. But as a self-proclaimed member of Meryl's Marauders no way could I miss Mamma Mia.

Frankly, I doubt that you'd like it but if you feel like reading why I did, I wrote about it.

The trailer for the upcoming Cohen Brothers' movie Burn After Reading was terrific.


Iowa Victory Gardener said...

Hi again Annie,
I suppose you've returned the disc by now, but it you have the 2 disc IE, at least give the short on David Lynch explaining how to cook Quinoa ... it's a hoot! And he must go through about a pack of cigs during it!

I hated ABBA when I was a teen because it was so insipid and all over the radio all the time. I'm tepid about the renaissance, but Priscilla used it well. BTW, have you seen The Texas Chainsaw Mascara? hehe, that Guy Pearce ...

That review must be new, and I'll head over in a bit to read it. There was a time that I got really tired of La Meryl, but I like the stuff she's been doing the past few years (loved Prada), so I'm onboard for her having fun. I still have a hard time with her early be-atch roles in Manhattan and Kramer vs Kramer, but she's a talent to reckon with though.

Saw that Cohen Bros. trailer too ... I'm not so sure about Brad Pitt, but it looks odd enough. Are you going to see Woody's new one (w/hunka hunka Javier Bardem)? It's at the Fleur now, but I haven't been able to convince Fernymoss to go yet, and he generally really likes Woody.

After Volver I'm totally sold on Penelope Cruz and it's not the first time she's acted with Bardem ... both made early roles in a very strange film called Jamón, jamón and struck me as people to watch even back in 92.

Annie in Austin said...

No Chainsaw for me...but Guy Pearce also rocked LA Confidential.

Maybe Meryl takes what she can get - don't get me started on roles for mature women! She sure seems to have fun with Garrison Keillor when she's a guest on his radio show and in their movie Prairie Home Companion.

The Woody Allen movie looks like a probable...and the NYTimes reviewer echoed my own feelings...thank goodness that Javier has ditched the Prince Valiant bob from No Country and made another movie.


Iowa Victory Gardener said...

I guess I was too obscure here... Texas Chainsaw Mascara was the video Guy Pearce asked for in the video store in that little town where the thugs went after him when appeared at the beer bash in drag, lol.

I hear you on the mature women roles, though Helen Mirren sure seems to land some plum ones, and surely deserved her Oscar for The Queen, don't you think?

You're right, Meryl was great in Prairie Home Companion ... she and Lily both were fantastic, and that's the only movie I ever seen with Lindsay Lohan in it, lol. I like that film a lot, but I'm a huge Altman fan. I didn't know about P.T. Anderson being back up for that, but it was a wise choice on Altman's part.

When I watched that, I had this weird feeling that it was Altman's "swan song" and sure enough, he had to go and die not too long after. I'm not real fond of Keillor, but he was good in that, and I think it did justice to the old PHC I liked back in the 70's, newer incarnations, not so much.

Iowa Victory Gardener said...

That should read: The only movie that I have ever seen.... I swear I'm not a yokel, lol. In fact when the stinky grammarian in me comes out watch out! :-)

Annie in Austin said...

That Guy Pearce reference went over my head - I saw the movie too many years ago.

Helen Mirren seemed wonderful from our first meeting in Excalibur, through two versions of A Midsummer Night's Dream, and on to Mosquito Coast, etc., etc. She's quite amazing, but had to play someone famous and much older to get the prizes.

Lindsay was cute in The Parent Trap and Freaky Friday - bet those will not go on your "Seen" list!

Once I heard Prairie Home Companion was in production, I looked for news stories. I don't know how much is hype and what's true, but I read that P.T. Anderson volunteered to be on the set partly as a friend, and partly to satisfy the insurance people, and because P.T. was there, Maya Rudolph was there and ended up in the movie. That's his baby Maya Rudolph is carrying on screen.

Philo and I were lucky enough to get into a screening of Nashville at a screenwriting fest soon after we moved to Austin. Robert Altman was there to talk about the movie, led people like Karen Black in informal discussion and then took audience Q & A. It was an incredible experience.


Iowa Victory Gardener said...

I think one of Helen's earliest films (that I remember seeing her in) was in Lindsay Anderson's O, Lucky Man! with Malcolm McDowell, which is a brilliant film if you've never seen it.

Have loved her for years, and seeing her name on a film will always make me take serious consideration of it!

Annie in Austin said...

We saw O Lucky Man when it was rather new - then rented in on tape a couple of times. It seemed to disappeared from circulation until the DVD came out a while ago. Still amazing to see.

Here's something at ChuckB's My Back 40-Feet garden blog for your Zombie festival.