Love our current vehicles, but do miss my VW Jetta TDI #TBT

Posted By on July 16, 2020

The publicity around Ford’s new “bucking” Bronco for 2021 had me thinking about cars this week … as well as seeing a post from 12 years ago highlighting 100,000 odometer reading on Katelyn’s first car.

BuckingBronco_ani

Bronco aside, a few of my favorite vehicles are running through my head, but have a special soft spot my 2003 Volkswagen Jetta TDI .. perfect a Throwback Thursday #TBT post 2003VWJettaTDIBIODZL2009(photo below at a rest area in Bemus Point New York on Lake Chautauqua).

Besides the little VW being a car that suited my sales and commuting back and forth from northeastern Ohio (and to check on my in-laws in Jamestown, NY), it also entertained my car-tweaking needs .. Cat2FilterModalong with a social community and regular GTGs (CinciTDI and the TDIClub). Besides injectors and a new chip tune … adding things like a Caterpillar 2-micron fuel filter (left), a Panzer skidplate and vanity BIODZL license plate (above) made it “my car.”

Since the thrifty car was a diesel, and regularly came close to 50mpg (even with the performance tweaks), the little car also appealed to me as a driver and my desire to be frugal with a focus on renewable Ohio grown fuels (soybean biodiesel). I also enjoyed participating in the Kentucky-Ohio leg of the “across the US” Biodiesel Rally as well as participating in events and promoting algae-based biodiesel. All in all, it was a great car although a bit small for me and definitely too small when traveling with the family.

2003VWJettaTDI_RestAreaNY_2008

Wishing it away. Unfortunately the 3-mo delayed Tax Day is today

Posted By on July 15, 2020

FishExpired_aniThe pandemic delayed April 15th Tax Day for Americans’ 2019 taxes is now upon us and for those who have not filed, you have until 11:59 tonight to do it … unless you request an extension until October 15th. We can try to wish it away like Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz, but as the idiom goes,nothing is certain but death and taxes.”

DorthyClickingHeels_ani

For most of us who owe Uncle Sam money, having a few months more to pay just allows us to remain frustrated; it is both a blessing and a curse. I appreciated the reprieve, but that just meant the inevitable was coming. Thankfully in our case, the under-withholding penalty part isn’t going to break the bank. As I say every year, “next year I’ll be early and get the withholding right.”

By shifting the deadline, the federal government allowed individuals and businesses to hold onto their cash longer as they dealt with the fallout from the virus outbreak. The three-month delay injected about $300 billion of liquidity into the economy, according to Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin.

Taxpayers must file or seek an extension by today — or face a financial penalty.

As of June 26, the IRS had processed about 128.5 million returns, down 10.6 percent from last year. By comparison, it had received about 140 million returns, a drop of just 3.5 percent from the same time last year. The agency has issued roughly 93 million refunds so far, down 10.3 percent from this point in 2019.

If you haven’t filed yet, here’s what you need to know: MORE

Things I should know by now – Unistrut Connecting System

Posted By on July 15, 2020

UnistrutFittingkisspng-world-emoji-day-apple-smiley-5ae5273c4c45c0.3792687915249672283124“So that’s what this is for?”

I had a “duh” moment the other day when sifting through subscribed emails from vendors.

A company called OnlineMetals.com sends out educational marketing emails to customers who enjoy working with metal. I’ve used them as a supplier for a variety of small projects as a source for steel and aluminum tubing and angle material (tile topped table, airplane partsminivan shelf/workbench & generator cage, etc)  … so I am not quick to toss their emails without glancing at them.

A recent email contained information on the Unistrut® connecting system. I’ve seen the steel channels before and know they are used regularly in building commercial shelves and storage ranks. I used a different rack system (heavier duty) in my CPP dock storage area in Cuyahoga Falls, but remembered seeing the “no weld” system as an option. They are attractive because is much more difficult to fit a standard length welded warehouse storage system than to quickly cut to length and bolt together customize racks. In this case I never “connected” (pun intended) the parts on my workbench to the Unistrut system.

The point of this post is that I inherited a bag of “fittings” from my Dad and not really knowing what the fittings were used for… now I know!

UnistrutConnecting
OnlineMetals.com LINK

Update on Fitbit replacement and JAMA step count guidelines

Posted By on July 14, 2020

NewFitbitVersa200711_mAfter my much enjoyed Fitbit Versa smartwatch died in less than a year (it was replaced under warranty – thank you), I have been a bit more careful when wearing the new one. I no longer wear it in the pool or even shower and find myself forgetting to put it back on as often. All of this make the ‘stats’ less useful and les encouraging since I’m not wearing it 24 hours a day.

Previously I worked diligently on trying to hit my 10,000 steps per day goal, but that is no longer the target .. and not having the “heavy statistics” watchface doesn’t help (for some reason can’t get my previous purchase back?) That aside, a JAMA study (10,000 steps a day – or fewer) offers some good news for those of us falling short of that 10K goal – although it sure doesn’t hurt to try and hit that 10,000 steps per day target.

FBN_Jama_StepCount

This is encouraging for those of us who regularly fall short of the 10K target … as we will still see a drop in mortality vs walking 2,700 steps. The graphic above illustrates the benefit of “just a little more” effort in getting that step count up – that’s good because I need some encouragement, besides I’d still like to lose 5 –10 lbs. (and keep it off) over the next couple of years (that’s a realistic and in my opinion a healthy goal)!

Music Monday: Mary Chapin Carpenter – Hometown Girl

Posted By on July 13, 2020

Last weekend, while on Facebook catching up on family goings-on, Mary Chapin Carpenter had a live chat as quite a few musicians have been doing.HometownGirl The video conversation she had with fans from her front porch reminded me of the 1980s when listening to a bit more Country and Folk music as that genre gained popularity in the US.

As politics heat up and summer drifts into the hot steamy days, a little gentle music for Music Monday from Mary Chapin Carpenter’s older 1987 album Hometown Girl may help sooth the soul.

  A Lot Like Me
      Mary Chapin Carpenter | 1987
  Hometown Girl
      Mary Chapin Carpenter | 1987

A new keyless remote and programming for my Honda Odyssey

Posted By on July 12, 2020

The Keyless Remote on my 2002 Honda Odyssey stopped working this past year and figured it was just a dead battery. Unfortunately after replacing the battery … twice …and confirming that my other remote still worked, I gave up and ordered one.

HondaRemoteEbay200627

ProgramHondaRemotes200709After searching the Internet for fixes and replacements, I opted for one on Ebay from yourkeylessremote.com. The service was good (one week to ship) and everything was packaged professionally and it was factory-looking-new remote … and even came with a battery. The company packed it with a small note with coupon code discount, email address and phone number .. but I never needed them. (let me know if you need the coupon code).

The trickier part was reprograming the remotes … you have to do all at the same time. Even after reading a few posts on the  Honda Ody forum, it was a little challenging (could be just me?) After finally getting both remotes re-programmed and confirmed, everything seems to be working just fine again.

So for $10, you too can have a new keyless remote – not a bad deal if you ask me. 

Step-by-Step Programming Instructions:

  1. ENTER the vehicle and CLOSE all doors. (Each of the following steps must be completed within five seconds of one another. If you take longer than five seconds between steps or make a mistake, you must start the entire procedure over.)
  2. INSERT the key into the Ignition, HOLD one remote in your left hand with additional remotes close by.
  3. PERFORM each of the next three (3) steps in order, then repeat all three (3) steps two (2) more times for a total of three (3) times each.
  4. TURN the Ignition to the ON position, marked “II” on the Ignition.
  5. PRESS the LOCK button on the remote for approximately 1 second. (Say “Mississippi”)
  6. TURN the Ignition to the OFF position, marked “I” on the Ignition. (REPEAT Steps 4-6 three (3) times)
  7. TURN the Ignition switch to the ON position, marked “II” on the Ignition.
  8. PRESS the LOCK button on the same remote. The door locks should cycle indicating the vehicle has ENTERED Programming Mode.
  9. PRESS the LOCK button again on the same remote. The door locks should cycle again indicating the vehicle has successfully PROGRAMMED that remote.
  10. For programming additional remotes to your vehicle, REPEAT Step 9 with each additional remote one after another. Step 9 must be completed within ten (10) seconds for each additional remote. You may program up to three (3) remotes to your vehicle.
  11. TURN the ignition to OFF.
  12. Test all remotes. Programming is now complete.
  13. After successful programming, if your remote has a TRUNK RELEASE Button — you will need to hold that button down for 5-10 seconds for that function to begin operation.
  14. If these programming instructions helped save you time and money, please consider sharing our website with friends and family so they can do the same.

Paintings and memories: Do you own any priceless art?

Posted By on July 11, 2020

Since I recently completed the bookshelves project this past spring and repainted our Library/Music room, Brenda and I have been discussing what artwork to put back on the walls. We’ve collected or have been given quite a few painting and likely will rotate them … but probably won’t include my favorites – the ones with special meanings.

RuthBluhm_BoysOnBeach1968

The special paintings to me mean little to other people (like this famous portrait), but because I remember and know where my grandmother painted them, they mean A LOT to me. They generally do not get placed in the “entry rooms”  of our house like the Library/Music, Foyer or Dining rooms, and end up in everyday spaces were I see them more often. One of them (above) is in our great room (family room) and was painted down the road from our house when I was a boy growing up on Lake Erie.

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Desultory - des-uhl-tawr-ee, -tohr-ee

  1. lacking in consistency, constancy, or visible order, disconnected; fitful: desultory conversation.
  2. digressing from or unconnected with the main subject; random: a desultory remark.
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