November 27, 2005

Christmas List

Dear Santa,
I'm doing well this year, skip me and give my stuff to someone who needs it. All I want for christmas is a ticket back home to see friends and family, and I got impatient and bought it for myself. :)


Ok, I have an amazon wishlist, but I figured I'd augment and comment on it here for friends and family. I will probably update this entry a couple of times. I'll start with the usual, "don't spend much, if you must get me something." I've been blessed with pretty much all I need.

A general gift giving guide (I do get to pontificate, this is a blog), I tend to go for:

  • Something people would enjoy, but wouldn't buy themselves. (Sadly, for me, that is something like socks.)
  • Something from their list that is both fun or interesting.
  • non-durable goods - Things that get used up make nice gifts too. (Socks again, chocolate, balsamic vinegar, cheap plastic cutting boards.)

I've put some cooking supplies on the list. One missing item is a Flavour Shaker. I'd like one of these, but they're not available in this country. (They won't even ship them here.) Maybe next year.

Update: Apparently, ships the Flavour Shaker to the US - but it looks like it might be pricey.

November 17, 2005

Quick Update

Our contractor says he's worked out a satisfactory solution with the inspector which shouldn't be as bad as I thought, we'll see how things progress. (And no curry paste tonight - I forgot to get cilantro, it was a new recipe and I was shopping from memory.) I did have leftover larb gai for dinner, though.

Notice of Violation

The final rough inspection did not go well at all. We got a different inspector from the one who originally did the foundation, and he didn't really seem to like much of anything. We have to get Engineer/Architect redraw everything (IMHO, he's a bit of a hack and didn't do a decent job in the first place) and get a revised permit, before embarking on the expensive process of fixing things.

The only good point is that he did sign off on the upstairs and said we could close things up in the bathroom. That will at least move along the process of Dan, Carmen, and I moving into the upper unit. But it'll be a bit cramped until we get the lower finished (three people, two apartments worth of stuff).

Tonight I think I'll try my hand at making some panaeng curry paste from scratch. I'm out of the imported, store-bought stuff and really should be making my own so I can control the ingredients.

November 15, 2005

Weekend Update

Before working on the house, my brother and I went to a neighborhood meeting at Juri park on Saturday. We ended up getting pulled into a park cleanup project for most of the morning. It was fun, but we had planned on working on the house and that killed a good chunk of the day. We ended up just shoring up the bathroom wall after lunch at Papalote.

Our open wall inspection is scheduled for thursday. If it goes well, we'll be ready to dry wall and finish the bathroom. It'll be nice to see some progress again. Things should start to pick up now, unless holidays and contractor's schedules get in the way.

November 10, 2005

Yay Electrical

Our electrical inspection passed today. Only glitch was that the contractor needed to pull a second permit, because the first one was completed, but that will be taken care of on Monday. Now we need to get a general inspection, so we can close up the walls, and we'll be good to finish work on the bathroom and walls. (After that, we do the flooring and kitchen, and then we can move into my unit.)

I tried out the Flock browser today. It's interesting. It's basically just a modified version of Firefox, with some integration with, various blogging sites, RSS feeds, and flickr. It's just a beta version, so it's not quite ready for general use, but seems fairly polished. The support is the most interesting to me - it'd let me synchronize all of my bookmarks, and it integrates the bookmarks with the little search widget. The blogging functionality isn't spectacular, stuff like X-Journal do the same basic thing and grok more of livejournal's features. (Blog this page and Blog this picture are the only real integration, but I wouldn't use it.)

The RSS reader isn't too bad, it looks like it was copied from Safari. I wanted something similar for Firefox at one point, but I'm using Google Reader now. The key benefit for me is that it keeps track of what I've read and I can use it from multiple machines.

So the jury is still out on that one, we'll see how it develops. I can run piggy bank in both flock and firefox, so either is fine for now. (More on Piggy Bank and RDF later.)