Uschi has left the building

well, this is it, I have left facebook and its infantile changes and suggestions. I tried some time ago but got lured back, and even now I still have to check in now and then as I am admin for our club page, but I am sure I can survive and keep contact with my friends without logging in all the time. Once a week sounds like a good time frame.

I am not sure what the deal is, but every time I look at my newsfeed, something that I liked has gone and 2 things that I don’t like have appeared. For those who are interested, I will make an effort to post updates on here, without the eternal sharing, and yes, as a concession I will link my posts here to facebook, but that is it. If you want to be kept up-to-date with my life you will just have to talk to me or drop in on the Primeval Nerd every now and then.

There will be some changes in my life over the next few months and I will endeavour to post about them here for those who are interested. You are welcome to comment on this or any other post or drop me a line from my About me page, I would love to hear from you.

Beauty in the Detail

My yard, I hesitate to call it a garden, is an expanse of grass, sprinkled with a multitude of weeds that give colour and texture to the otherwise brown-green background, accentuated by some mainly native trees and shrubs, desperately clinging to life. I doubt I would even be allowed to enter the local garden competition. A gardener I aint.

But, if you look around you there are so many beautiful flowers hidden away in the foliage, birds of all sizes, some of them in fancy colours apparently enjoying my little paradise. What appeared at first glance not very appealling at all, suddenly opens up to all kinds of beautiful gems.

So this morning I grabbed the camera and started snapping away and was really surprised what came out of this exercise. I’m afraid I only photographed the things that stood still for me, so the birdlife is missing from the collection, as neither me nor my camera are up to producing something useful in that department.

Start to look deeper than the first glance, and you might be surprised what you can find.

Under the sea….

I’m sure we’ve all been there:you’re up in the attic looking for something and get side tracked by something completely different. So, I found a small fish tank and thought it would be nice to have fish in the house again. After cleaning it up and checking the pump and light I started looking through aquarium books to find a small easy care fish species. We used to have fish tanks of various sizes up to a 4 foot room divider over many years but stopped a while ago, so I have a fair idea what works and what doesn’t.  But I just couldn’t decide, so it just sat on my desk, empty.

Ages ago I started an amigurumi gold fish but had problems with the tail. Not sure why, because when I had another attempt last week, it worked straightaway. It seemed to be obvious to put him in the dry tank. That didn’t look too bad, so I made him a crab, an octopus  and a seahorse for company. The difficult bit were the plants,  but eventually I worked something out. 

This is the first ‘large’ project after making just individual items,  and it was fun. I will have to think of another group to make. 

Older and wiser?

My little mare (on the right) was the reason many years ago that we started separating our horses at feeding time. No matter where we put the food, she ran around protecting it against all comers – and no one got any food. 

I never tried to feed my horses together after that and saved myself a lot of problems. Over the years Oky did settle down a lot as my fellow riders can attest. Taking her out in company was an exercise in patience, perseverance and brute force. But she has slowly developed into the most fantastic trail horse you could ever want – so it must have been all worth it. But apparently she has matured not only as a ridden horse as the photo above shows: all three of them munching contentedly on their bit of hay. 

So all you frazzled horse owners out there: by the time they get to 20 most problems will have solved themselves 🙂

Were did the time go?

I have to apologise for not posting for so long, but real life (in contrast to cyber life) has been a bit busy. Just lots of unrelated things happening but nothing that really made for a good story.

Im WaldOn the horse front there was a weekend to be planned (and then almost didn’t happen because of heavy rain forecast) and it went of really well. Met some new people and realised that even my boring neighborhood can make for a good ride. The beach ride was cancelled though, as the weather started to come in – we managed to get 128mm of rain during that day. There will be a next time.

Technology: I have been playing around with a number of Linux distros trying to find the ideal one to run on my little EeePc, 900HA which is still going strong after about 8 20160709_155414years or so. I upgraded it to 2 GB RAM some time ago, but the Atom Processor is the bottle neck. I found Bunsenlab works really well on it and the grey colour scheme matches the plain look of the hardware. Together with the extra large battery I put on after the original battery died, this machine keeps going almost all day. Just a shame that both the keyboard and the screen are so small.

I had less success with another distro dual-booting my little Medion Akoya e1232t. The machine is so locked down that the only distro that I can load is Ubuntu. I unlocked what I could but still no luck with anything else. It works ok except for shutting down/restarting – both hang on the Ubuntu logo. The Windows side has been upgraded to Windows 10 but I really don’t use it.

And of course I’m currently in the process of setting up my brand new desktop (Core I7 processor, 16GB RAM, 2TB HDD, separate graphics, etc) with Linux Mint 18 Cinnamon, and then restoring my trusty laptop to normality (speak Windows 7) for my daughter. Although 5 years old, it is still better than a lot of machines in the shops now. Core I5 processor, 8GB RAM, 750GB HDD, separate graphics, TV tuner and more. Should be more than enough for her to surf the Internet and play a few games.

Craft: I have been working on a Puss-in-boots for what seems forever, I could not find 20160619_165548a pattern that I liked so I did everything from scratch and had to redo a few parts when they did not turn out the way I wanted. The end result is not too bad. A couple of smaller projects fitted in between; but the next big project is a realistic looking Schnauzer. The original pattern includes wires and discs and it is a completely new way of amigurumi for me. I do love a challenge.

And last not least, I still have a coat to finish. If anyone out here is familiar with Vash the Stampede you know the style; daughter wants to go to Supernova with it later in the year.

More critters…

A few months ago I discovered amigurumi, the Japanese art of making crochet or knitted animals and dolls and I got (literally) hooked. I posted a few photos of my first attempts and I think it is time to show you all some more. I have been making a couple of custom animals:

 

I have been getting quite proficient with my horses:

 

But recently I came across a pattern from Stuffthebody that blew me away, it is done all in one piece and looks so much better. I made the little cat and now I am going to adapt a few ideas I had to this way. I will let you know of the results.

Grey cat

Horse Trailriding free eBook

Some time back I wrote a monthly column for my website for the Wide Bay Trail Riders in Queensland. It was intended to give some guidance to horse riders new to trail riding and horse camping and covered everything from food to horse training. I have combined these articles into a small eBook and am making it available here for free download.
Although originally intended for our club members,  I believe the subjects covered apply to trail riding and camping everywhere and perhaps it will give some of you a few new ideas.
I welcome any comments, feedback and perhaps you have some additional info that should be added in.

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My apologies for the problems with this link, it has now been fixed.

Click here to download eBook