Amy at Family Camp

There are some pictures “below the fold” but first, some examples of Amyspeak.

  • Apparently if there’s a waterfront then there must be a “waterback” somewhere as well. She kept asking about it.
  • Flippers are “duck slippers” at least some of the time.
  • “Flatting the jellyfish” is a very cute term for squishing a little bit of clay.

There’s one more, my favorite in fact, but it won’t make sense until after the pictures.

Funny News

Tonight or tomorrow I’ll post some pictures etc. from Family Camp last week, but for today I just have two off-beat news stories. First up is baby hedgehogs

baby hedgehogs

Four tiny orphaned hedgehogs are snuggling up to the bristles of a cleaning brush – because they think it’s their mother.

The four inch long creatures are being hand-reared by staff at the New Forest Otter, Owl and Wildlife Park in Ashurst, Hants.

Workers say Mary, Mungo, Midge and Slappy get comfort from playing with the centre’s cleaning brush and enjoy rubbing against it.

Next up: foam buries a beach near Sydney

buried in foam

Foam swallowed an entire beach and half the nearby buildings, including the local lifeguards’ centre, in a freak display of nature at Yamba in New South Wales.

One minute a group of teenage surfers were waiting to catch a wave, the next they were swallowed up in a giant bubble bath. The foam was so light that they could puff it out of their hands and watch it float away.

I got both of these from Spluch.

The bubble’s bursting. Blow harder!

That (the title) was how I put it at lunch, when we were discussing central banks pouring more money into the system while markets are tanking. Dark Wraith put it almost as snarkily.

Forget for a moment that what the Fed is doing is trying to inflate away a market crash. For the time being, we should hope only that the central bank and its friends around the world are ready to blow $40 billion every trading day to keep the welfare train on track for the Wall Street boys. It’s a win-win situation: the fatcats keep their money, the suckers take the losses, the Bush Administration keeps its hero status for the rich, and the Fed maintains its reputation as both the enabler and the drug dealer for all the liquidity addicts and their conjoined Republican incompetents.

Easy money is how we got into this mess, so more easy money isn’t going to fix it. We should all be asking ourselves who’s being saved here, and at whose expense, when the Fed acts to prop up the stock market. DW’s version is a bit simplistic (not all stockholders are fat cats) but it captures the essentials.

Amy at Crane’s Beach

These are from this past weekend.

Amy with seaweed Amy loves to collect and arrange things. On this occasion she decided to collect some random bits of seaweed to put in the little pool I’d made for her at the tide line. She especially seemed to like this type, which I believe is called sea lettuce, so I waded in and grabbed some bigger bits. As you can see, she was pleased.
buried legs Digging holes at the beach is my thing; burying legs is Cindy’s. Amy seemed to enjoy her first exposure to this pastime.

July Amy

The first few are from our July 15 trip to a farm originally for cherry-picking, changed to raspberry-picking when we found that cherry-picking season had just ended. They also had a fairly extensive petting zoo.

Amy picking raspberries Amy picking raspberries. There’s nothing quite like good fresh raspberries, except maybe good fresh blackberries.
Amy eating a raspberry Might as well enjoy the (literal) fruits of one’s labor. I’m sure they expect customers to carry away a substantial fraction of what they pick in their bellies.
Amy feeding a llama Yes, really, that’s Amy feeding a llama. They also had goats, deer, peacocks and others, and they had little coin-operated feed dispensers.

The next set is from the previously mentioned Ann Arbor Hands On Museum, which we visited while we were in Michigan. I don’t know how we managed to miss this on previous trips. It’s barely a block from my mother’s apartment, and not exactly subtle. I guess I’d walked by it a dozen times, sort of known it was there, but never given it much thought. As it turns out, it was a fantastic place to take Amy. Their website gives the overview, but here are some of the things we particularly enjoyed.

Amy and a tornado This is a little artificial tornado that they had set up near the lobby. Pictures can’t convey how cool that is. If I ever start my own company, I’m putting one of these in the lobby.
On the second floor, they had a separate area for kids four and under (I think) and within that another area for the not-yet-walkers. I’m sure other parents will appreciate how nice that is. This fire engine, along with jackets and hats, was in the toddler section.
Internet TOOBZ This internet really is a series of tubes. You basically put in balls to represent a one-character “packet” (yes, ASCII) at one end, then it pops through the “routers” to the other end. Networking geek that I am, I figured out that the network did not include any features to prevent bit reordering. Balls would always enter a router at the top and exit at the bottom. If a ball got stuck somehow, another ball that took a different path could overtake it. Sure, the balls are spaced far enough apart that the odds are extremely low, but it could happen. I think a version that did solve the reordering problem would be feasible.

Tomorrow, I’ll have a couple of pictures from this month.

General Update

I know it has been a long time since I posted anything here. No, there’s no particular disaster behind it or anything. Just busy at work, leaving too little free time which I’ve tried to use in more enjoyable ways. Here are some of the things that have happened.

  • I went to New Haven CT a month and a half ago. The story of why I was there isn’t all that interesting, but I did happen to be there while they were filming the latest episode of the Indiana Jones movie series, which was a bit surreal. They’d basically turned a significant section of downtown into a movie set. The stores all had signs and window displays made up to look like the 50s, while the store’s real name and business were written on sheets of paper. This must have been very disorienting to anyone actually trying to shop or find a restaurant. The next day, there were really big – 6-8 foot diameter – fans and big tankers of water near the building I was visiting. I guess there was a rain scene coming up. There were also lots of these cool old 50s cars parked along the streets. Overall, it was pretty amusing.
  • Cindy’s brother and his family came to visit, bringing Amy’s two cousins. We went to Crane’s beach, where Amy insisted on staying in the water even after her lips were quivering and turning blue. She’s a real waterbug.
  • We went to visit my mother and brother. Some of the time was taken up with preparing for legal stuff I’d rather not talk about. Some of it was spent at Ann Arbor’s Art Fair, which is really four art fairs covering two or three city blocks apiece. It’s a huge affair which makes it very difficult to get around downtown, but it’s kind of cool too. We also discovered the Ann Arbor Hands On Museum, but more about that later.
  • Went to Crane’s beach again, got sunburned.
  • At work, I’ve been working a lot on the 5832-processor system, getting it to behave itself. It’s frustrating at times, but other times I step back and realize how cool this is. This machine rocks.

Tomorrow I’ll post some pictures. Actually I’ll post them tonight, but I’ll post-date it so they show up tomorrow. Stay tuned.