Monday, 28 October 2013

09:41 – Al was moved to a regular room yesterday. Frances called yesterday to tell Barbara that Al’s temperature was a bit elevated. They’re keeping an eye on that, obviously, but haven’t moved him back to ICU. We’re hoping that Al will be released later this week and can return home to recuperate.

I have the first-draft design of the earth science kit pretty much complete. That is, I pretty much know what’s going into the kit and have enough of those items either on hand or on order to build a prototype and an initial batch of 30 kits. Items may be added or deleted as I actually write and test the lab sessions, but at least I have a starting point.

One of the items that’ll be on the “You Provide” list is a tub of Crayola Air-Dry Clay, which is widely available locally and on-line. Among other things, that’ll be used to make a 3D landscape model for a lab session on topographical mapping. At least, I think it will. I need to do some testing first, not least to make sure that the clay model, once dried and hardened, will remain hardened if it’s reimmersed in water.

So I asked Barbara to put a tub of the stuff on her shopping list for the next time she goes to Wal-Mart. She informed me that she’s no longer going to Wal-Mart unless she absolutely needs to for something no one else carries. She’s boycotting Wal-Mart, which is fine with me. I don’t like how they do business, and I’d as soon not buy from them. Barbara says she now goes to Target instead. No problem. Target also carries the Crayola Air-Dry Clay, and I’d much rather buy from them.

The last week or so has been pretty chilly for around here. One day, the high was only 50F (10C) and the low was 28F (-2C). But it appears that Native American Summer has arrived. For the next week or so, we’re to have highs in the upper 60’s to mid-70’s and lows in the upper 40’s to lower 60’s. Still, it’s time to make sure the natural gas logs in the den are clean, tested, and ready to go. Every year, I have to use canned air to blow out the tube in the oxygen-depletion sensor. Even the tiniest bit of dust plugs it and cuts off gas to the pilot light. Unless that pilot light is burning, the bimetal strip it heats won’t allow gas to flow to the burners.