Goodbye swings

Apologies if this seems like a recurring theme of reminiscing. Roughly 21 years ago … in July 2002 … shortly after we bought this house, we bought a big Woodplay brand swingset for the back yard. Michelle with some help from the kids kept it up for about a decade or so. In the years shortly after we got the swingset we added a nice wooden glider and a big trampoline. Anything to encourage playing outside!

We gave the trampoline away several years ago. When Michelle got sick and eventually passed, no one was using the swing or glider much and it began to decay from lack of TLC.

This past week I re-hired a basement cleanout/ junk removal service I’d used 3 1/2 years ago. Besides taking a few items that had accumulated over the past few years, they brought a chainsaw and sawzall. Not only did they take away Michelle’s favorite grill – a wood pellet grill, but they cut up both swing sets and what little was left standing of the wood glider. The back yard seems so empty at the moment.

Another Wedding

A year and a half ago my second daughter got married and now is a happy wife and mommy. In just a few more weeks my oldest will get married too. I’m so happy that they both found good matches and didn’t wait too long. Still … it’s only re-emphasizing the new phases of life that must come.

Upper Class

Tomorrow my youngest takes some final exams and then will be considered “an upper classman” at his college. Technically he was a already Junior in Standing this semester because of all of the credits he’d earned, but after tomorrow he’ll be half done.

LineageOS 20

I have a decent Android tablet I bought in Feb 2021 from Samsung. It’s no surprise that it is Qualcomm Snapdragon powered. I picked this particular model because it was one of the few recent tablets that had support to use the popular third-party open-source version of Android known as LineageOS. Shortly after Tim went back to school from Christmas Break, my table stopped doing updates. It had been getting weekly minor updates to LineageOS 19.1 but now couldn’t auto-update.

LineageOS has a policy that major releases like going from version 19 to 20 must be done manually and not merely with the semi-automated, over-the-air type of updates. I was more rusty at that because my youngest had done the tablet conversion to LineageOS a year ago. I re-read some docs, watched some tutorial videos, and did the manual update using my humble PineBook Pro laptop as the machine that downloads and transfers the data to the tablet.

It’s always a bit of nerves when everything is transferred over, unpacked, and you tell the phone or tablet to reboot to finish the installation. I’m happy to report it seems to have gone smoothly. LineageOS 20 is basically Android version 13 (Tiramisu), which is the current version of Google’s Android – at least until version 14 (Upside Down Cake) is released this fall. That is the nice thing about LineageOS: it helps keep Android hardware devices up-to-date long after the original vendor stops caring.

Last Family Faith Formation Session

This week I’ll be preparing for my last Faith talk of the school year. We’ve been talking about the Cardinal Virtues this Spring: Temperance, Prudence, Justice, and Fortitude. Next Sunday we’ll wrap up with the last class of the school year and follow it up with a celebratory Pot Luck Dinner and Bonfire on Pentecost Eve. While it’s always a lot of prep work, I’m so happy that this year the families met in person. Two years of Zoom meetings isn’t the best way to teach the Faith.

Killer Root

Yesterday I had our local irrigation folks come by to open up and inspect my yards sprinkler system for another season of watering the lawn. Usually this visit takes about 20, maybe 30 minutes, depending on whether any sprinkler heads were destroyed over the winter.

It turns out that one of the tree roots in my lawn formed a knot-like structure around a section of hose and – while not penetrating the hose – did squeeze it almost completely flat so that one watering zone would barely come up. Kudos to the tech who was able to identify where this blockage was even though it was underground. He had to drive back to the office to borrow the sawzall (my second occurance this week) to cut out the root and pipe. The tree should do just fine without this leg of its root structure and that section of underground hose was completely replaced. A quick 20 minute sprinkler setup became more like 1 1/2 hours. Ah well, we’ve had this sprinkler system for 21 years. Craziness like this was bound to happen eventually.