Monday, February 17, 2014

Laptop search a dud but good results from old seeds

After email, seedling care, and meal prep, I've spent most of the day reading up on laptop computers and am more confused than ever. Bottom line - I am going to keep my fingers crossed and see what spring or even next year brings. Apple is out for several reasons (initial cost, cost of having to replace software; and our daughter who switched to Apple recommended against it), Windows 8 is a disaster and Windows 9 may not be out for another year, so I'll stick with my ancient Dell and almost as old HP laptop which is still functioning well with Windows 7. That ancient Dell, like my ancient body has had some replacement parts, is moving slower, gets stuck once in a while; but still it lives.

My computer want list is for a 17" screen, good customer care (Dell is way down there lately), a 1 TB hard drive, good sound, non gaming, but able to play some games, and all the usb ports, SD, HDMI ports, bluetooth, etc. etc. Trying to match my want list with what is available, is not bringing up a lot of great reviews in the under $3,000 range . Maybe there will be some new models coming out this spring or summer. Meantime I'll hope that my current machines keep running well enough until I absolutely have to buy a new laptop. In case anyone is interested, my google search to find the best companies for support were Apple, and for non Apple Machines, Lenova and Samsung were the two top ones.

My seedlings are coming along well. This morning the first older, spinach seeds sprouted. Yesterday we got a break in the rain so I was able to get out and clean one of my raised beds and planted some snow peas that I sprouted in the house. I also revised my planting chart yesterday, so now I have to make clean grid plans for those beds. I also made separate plans for our son and daughter-in-laws garden. I don't know how much planting I'll do there other than squash and my excess seedlings and potatoes. Meal prep, bread making, more seed ordering, and watching the Olympics rounded out the day.

The family won't be up to the ranch as much this summer because of their new house remodeling and construction projects. I will be able to plant a bit more for our personal use, because we just decided to buy a small freezer. It will make my studio space tighter, and the positioning will necessitate moving the car to open it, but that really doesn't have to be a problem since I usually plan my meals about a week in advance and won't have to access that freezer on an every day basis. Slowly, but surely we keep finding ways to make this house and studio/garage space work for me.

Time now to re-draw these raised bed plans. It took a lot of time trying to juggle and incorporate companion planting, crop rotation and inter-cropping in the plan; but I finally have this years plans down after a few revisions. The studio must be growing some mold right now; but I've stopped feeling guilty about it. Don't know if that's a good thing or not; but it is what it is.


  1. The new Macbook Air is amazing, we just got one at Best Buy for $1000, it was an out of the box return. Stepping into the 21st century though. No more DVD or CD, it's all about the external hard drives now.....
    If you are interested in having a computer for photography, there isn't a better option than a Mac. Having read your blog for some time now, I have felt your computer woes and wondered why you didn't opt for a Mac, they just don't have all the problems PC's have and are so user friendly.... just my opinion, Wesley was required to have a Mac for film school, the AP gives Gerry a new one every two years or so, and I am still using one I have had for about ten years. right now, we have four Macs in use and have had zero problems with them.
    Can you tell we are mac fans, haha!

  2. Thanks for your input Tracey. My daughter has had her Mac for many months and as she said people either love it or hate it - very few gray areas; but she said she's in the gray area. She bought a Mac only because the best music arranging program is only available in the Mac. Even thought she was already used to Word, word perfect, etc., she said she didn't find the computer intuitive as claimed. And our son-i-law who works in computers, advised me against the Apple, as did our daughter. Just using my own comparison of cost, the memory I'd get for the money and the fact that I'd had to learn a while new system, buy all new software which would get expensive, I decided that I would just sit it all out for a while and hope my current computers keep running for a while. For what an Apple would cost me for the 17" screen, would be more than I would have to pay for that size in a Windows based computer. Plus, with a windows based unit, I could get 1TB hard disk; whereas the Apple was only 512GB. And then there would be another added expense of all the software. Apple's screen evidently has problems with viewing outdoors. Maybe they'll fix that in the coming months, since I've read that they will be phasing out that technology. So at that point, it might warrant a second look. Meantime both computers are working OK other than Norton software backup either not recognizing one of my stand alone hard drives (a Toshiba which is horrible); or backing up differently on the Seagate drive which is working fine. For some reason the backup no longer shows the content or even how big the file is. So I'll have to get on line with Norton as soon as I can free up an hour of uninterrupted time. Today is for some grocery and clay shopping and lunch at the Chinese buffet. :-) PS: Loved the Buddhist mandalas - just exquisite. I could almost feel the energy. Very special.

  3. June, I'm just back from my Thai massage training and retreat in Thailand and catching up with your blog. You've had such a month what with human bugs and computer bugs. I know I'm an ex-geek but you have so much experience with computers now. Some years ago I dumped both Windows and Mac and installed Linux on an old machine. Loved it and now that's all we have in the house. I use a version called Fedora, but Ubuntu is probably the easiest to start with. If you have an old machine I suggest giving it a go. All downloadable for free and unless you want to run the latest games (I never play games on the computer) you will be fine.

  4. Thanks for the suggestion. At this point things are working fairly well and I don't want to have to learn or deal with a new operating system. A couple of years ago I sent away for a Linux disc and frankly, was a bit terrified to try it since my computer knowledge is pretty limited.