July 2006

It’s a double dose of names this time, since I’ll be sweltering in the East Coast humidity next week and won’t have much time to post. There were two cards in this set with a pair of names for twins, which I can assure you is not happening this round. We went to get a sonogram this week and were told the ‘most likely’ gender of the baby. So if you DON’T want to know, DON’T continue reading this post. The Mrs. and baby are doing well and healthy, although I need to lose a couple pounds gained from eating Grandma’s finger-licking-good meals last week. She makes a killer cherry pie…tart, not runny, with a perfectly flakey crust. Wish me luck and a couple of good thunderstorms to cool the air down.



We’re up to at least 55 submissions, so expect this to be a 12 or 15 part series. Five more names and some good advice…


We played games during our vacation, one of which was croquette. This has to be the nicest setup I’ve seen to date. Most of the work was done by my 80-mumble grandfather, seen in the picture below, in the insanely hot weather we had. When they were younger (i.e. 5 years ago), he and my Grandmother moved, with only a shovel and wheel barrow, 11 tons of gravel from the front of the house to the back of the house, in 2 DAYS (I’ve seen the dump truck receipt). They don’t make them like that any more. My generation is a bunch of wussies in comparison.

The competition was tough, the heat was brutal, but in the end, Team 1 (my team) beat Team 3 (the other team) in the never-to-be-repeated-by-sane-people croquette match. The other two teams beat the heat by playing each other with the sprinklers going.  The Mrs. informed me that she’ll never play this game with me. Apparently we were very ‘focused’ on winning. I blame the red vines we were consuming.

So while it was nice to get out of overcast Alaska for a while, we were disappointed in how amazingly hot it was in Eastern Washington. I for one don’t like walking around in heat that reminds me of an oven. Every single day was above 100 degrees F, most topped 110, and two days made it past 120.

Luckily, the day we played outdoor games it was only 110 or so.  (as opposed to indoor games like: shake a jar of cream until it makes butter – I kid you not. It takes about 15 minutes of ‘brisk’ agitation. A good game to tire out the kids…who can make butter first?)

I was drinking about 6 litres of water each day. It was a joyous feeling to get off the plane in Alaska and feeling the cool moist coastal air…a comfortable 57. Ah, home sweet home.

So, we’re back from our trip to see the family, and extended family, at my Grandparent’s 60th wedding anniversary. A good time was had by all, although the Mrs. got a bit overwhelmed by my…boisterous…relatives. There may actually be some insanity in my family. For instance, someone made the suggestion to bring laminated pictures on a stick of all family members that weren’t able to be there – for one reason or another (best reason is being stationed in Iraq. Second best reason is less than a month till giving birth). These poor souls have no idea what was done to their likenesses. But have no fear, there IS photographic evidence, so without further ado, I give you…heads on sticks wearing baby clothes!


Since we’re going on vacation for a while, here’s one last post for a week or so. Check back when we get back for pictures and stories of the trip.  Five more names and some good advice… (more…)

One of my favorite brain teasers is asking someone to describe a shape with an infinite circumference but finite area. The answer is a fractal (an object or quantity that displays self-similarity) called the Kock Snowflake.

It is built by starting with an equilateral triangle, removing the inner third of each side, building another equilateral triangle at the location where the side was removed, and then repeating the process indefinitely. The area converges to eight-fifths of the original triangle while the circumference grows infinitely. The figure below shows the first three iterations.

Koch Snowflake

Source: Weisstein, Eric W. “Koch Snowflake.” From MathWorld–A Wolfram Web Resource. http://mathworld.wolfram.com/KochSnowflake.html

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