Surgery update on Brenda and my friend Keith is also ailing

Posted By on August 1, 2015

As my daughter Katelyn told me prior to Brenda’s surgery to reconstruct her damaged shoulder and upper arm … "take a deep breath." I did, but didn’t know I would be holding it for 4 hours (a few details below – also previous posts 1 and 2).




Surgery — Waiting, waiting, waiting…

Posted By on July 31, 2015

While waiting outside on a beautiful afternoon for Brenda’s surgery to be finished, I will try a blog post from my phone. The reconstruction of her shoulder/arm was scheduled for 11am, but she was not wheeled away until 12:45pm. Hopefully all will go as planned in the scheduled 3 hours?

Last night I took a panorama photo of her very nice room at UC Medical Center here in Cincinnati. 

A difficult week and it is not over yet …

Posted By on July 30, 2015


The above is a pretty innocuous photo: pine trees, a tree trimming pole and a ladder on the ground. It was the beginning to a difficult week as my wife Brenda started to trim a couple larger white pines (as she often does with magnolias and other smaller trees and bushes around our home). She enjoys yard work on her days off and particularly likes to get out early in the morning before it gets too hot … Tuesday was no exception for her.

BentLadderIMG_5626I was fortunately still at home after changing my work/travel schedule due to my father being taken to the hospital in the morning due to shortness of breath (that’s another story). After getting the details and texting my brother, I went outside to update Brenda. There she was laying on the ground under the trees. She had placed the ladder up one of the pines and was proceeding to lop off a higher branch … the ladder slide and down she fell. My chest hurts even repeating this story.

BentLadderIMG_5627I ran over listening to her moaning in pain and unable to move more than her arm or her head … although never losing consciousness. She could semi-talk with me as I looked and moved her gentle around even wondering if I should move her? Eventually she convinced me to help (I had to cradle carry her) into the house and laid her painfully down on the bed thinking at the moment that I was going to need to get her to at least an urgent care. While icing her and I wondered how I was going to even get her in the car (she was in terrible pain whenever she moved), so I (we) decided it was time to call the rescue squad (a first for everything … and hopefully last!)


Video: World record semi truck jump

Posted By on July 28, 2015

More video and info – Washington Post Link

Counties in Ohio continue to stealthily raise Sales Taxes

Posted By on July 27, 2015

Small business owners who regularly collect sales tax on their goods and services might not be quite as enamored with the “economic rebound” being boasted about in Ohio. While I do support Gov John Kasich and realized he does not have direct impact on counties needing to find more tax revenue, the tax shifting in our state has not gone unnoticed by small business.


It may be a small gripe, but over the years the sales taxes levied each county continues to climb (previous administrations too). There was a time, not that long ago, that consumers paid sale taxes that averaged between 5-6% in most of Ohio … now in many counties it is over 7%  (that’s a 25-30% increase in sales taxes in the years I’ve been in business). It’s no wonder customers shop online instead of purchasing locally– avoiding sales tax on big ticket items is often less expensive than shipping. Don’t counties know that they need small business and that a high sales tax make them less competitive? Someone in Ohio needs to get on the stick.

Follow up: Finished painting and reassembly of the lawn trailer

Posted By on July 26, 2015

How old is this utility lawn and garden trailer? If you haven't been reading along, it's 40 years old. Of course close inspection would indicated that their was rust, but all in all, my father-in-law's old trailer came back to life nicely … and the green is much more in keeping with our old John Deere 330 from the 1980s.


Dad Howard would be pleased–reviving his old lawn trailer

Posted By on July 26, 2015


PaintingDadHLawnTrailer_15025One of the projects coming together this past weekend was the disassembly, wire-brushing the rust (a lot), and painting of my late father-in-law’s old red Jackson lawn trailer. As mentioned previously, it was about 40 years old, well used, and had quite a bit of rust. Nevertheless, it was well made with quality steel – better than the newer ones at the big box stores (although I haven’t really compared them).

Since we have a John Deere, which is about the same age as this trailer, I decided to change the color. The white components are now black (above) and the red wagon box is now green. I think the new looking lawn trailer should last another 30 years … at least!

Speaking of “old” … I’ll include an updated photo of Tootsie … our 17 year Australian Cattle Dog (below).


Black Miracle Paint does not clean up like printing ink

Posted By on July 25, 2015

PaintFingers_IMG_5598After spending a lifetime working on cars and 30 years dealing with printing press wash-up chemicals and hand scrubs, one would think I would know a little bit about cleaning my hands?


Well I do know a “little bit” but still haven’t figured out how to clean dried paint off my hands (in particular Miracle Paint). It is obviously not ink. So much for cleaning with normal hand scrubs, printing chemicals or even my variety of paint solvents.


Clearing everything out of the Farmhouse prior to selling

Posted By on July 24, 2015

OldStuff_DadH_150722Brenda and her sister Chris spent last weekend together at the family Farmhouse in western New York. They sorted through what was left from their mom and dad’s lifetime of “stuff” separating into garage sale, trash pick-up, donations and items they might still want. The later “group” grew far too large, in my opinion.  Some things were easy to sell while others were memories. I know for Brenda it was tough to finally give up on her father’s original model C Ritter dental chair. For the right person, it was a “man-cave” item (video below); for others who were interested, it may have been a prize collectable (they are listed on eBay for a pretty penny). BUT … they are heavy and full of oil … yes, she wanted me to bring it back to Cincinnati. No thank you. 
We still ended up with a variety of old stuff. The instrument lubricants in old bottles, plaster molds, a “Fort Knox” grinding “gold” (???) dust box – family joke. Dad Howard did much of his own lab work particularly in the early years (a skill not practiced by most new dentists). The good news is that the farmhouse is ready to hand over to a new owner … and they are a couple who will appreciate a restored home build well over 100 years ago (180 years if my mother-in-law remembers correctly).


Streaming our home TV signal with Sling for 10 years #TBT

Posted By on July 23, 2015

Wow … 10 years ago I bought my first “original” Slingbox. I thought this gadget was the coolest thing and even upgraded it in 2012 (has it been that long?) I used it regularly on the road with the laptop or Palm Treo (photo below) and “sling-ed” SlingmediaBeta070328-1024x767our home TV video (or just audio) signal over the Internet and “new” fast 3G network.
Times have changed and now I see a lot of millennials “cutting cable” entirely; my son is one of them and streams all his content to his TV with Sling TV. I’m starting to see the merit in his decision after a long 45 minute phone call hassling with Time Warner Cable …  I’m ready to join him.

If it were not for Brenda being hooked on certain programs or me addicted to the cable news channels (CNBC, FoxBusiness and FoxNews), I think we could manage with an over-the-air-antenna and a NetFlix subscription like we had in 2009. Unless I get some resolution regarding being billed for components we do not have AND a more reasonable “package deal,” I’m tempted to cut the service for at least 6 months! (FYI … then and only then are we eligible for new customer packages. It is so nice they appreciate their long time customers by tagging another $40-$50 on the monthly bill – #sarcasm).

Desultory - des-uhl-tawr-ee, -tohr-ee

  1. lacking in consistency, constancy, or visible order, disconnected; fitful: desultory conversation.
  2. digressing from or unconnected with the main subject; random: a desultory remark.