• It’s (NOT) Yet Christmas Time

    The Fall 2020 semester is nearly over. Thank Bob. I’m so done with these classes. Chem can be hit or miss. Some things I get right away and some things I feel like I’m barely hanging in there. But there’s only a few weeks left and I am pretty sure I will squeak by with a pretty solid B.

    Spanish 102 is going a lot better this time than the last time I took it, but some things are still challenging. I’m pretty solid on remembering that regular verbs end with e or i in the past tense so I can kinda fudge my way through talking about the past for the most part. Fake it until you make it, right? I think I’m going to finish with a B in there as well.

    I’m taking Winter 2020 off. In Spring 2021, I’m taking Microbiology, and one more Spanish class. I had hoped to squeeze in 4 Spanish classes total but there’s not going to be time for a fourth once I start the core program for my goal of MLT.

    I need to send out emails to find out who I need to talk to and when I need to start getting things together to actually apply for the program before this semester ends. I won’t start the program until Fall 2021 but there’s a lot of stuff I have to get in order first and I mean a lot of stuff. Paperwork, grades, a physical, insurance policy, phlebotomy certification that I need to do in Summer 2021. I hope there’s a guide on getting all that done because I already feel overwhelmed thinking about it.

    As to this post title, its not even Thanksgiving and I’m starting to see Christmas stuff creep in. Ads for artificial trees, gift guides, decoration crafts… the list goes on. I’ve purchased a gift for my mom, a gift for Perla, and I have a few items for Tracy. I still need to get for Jami and for Rafael. I have no idea what to get for him at all so it probably won’t be awesome.

    The kittens are supposedly going to be picked up by the rescue tomorrow sometime, but they haven’t answered my texts asking about what time we’re handing off. And somehow, my car is supposed to get to the shop tomorrow as well, likely to have the water pump replaced. I say I’m not sure how because its losing a ton of water any time its running so its not really drivable until its repaired.

    I think I’ve figured out how to get Plex working in the trailer, streaming from my server, but not sure. I need to re-up my subscription on a service before I can test out my idea. I also want to switch to a different VPN service, but I’m not sure if I can do that and still keep things working outside of the network. Research must be done.

  • I Literally Don’t Know What To Do With Myself

    animals Antelope Valley College aquarium art beauty beginning algebra books cats cleaning College of the Canyons conversations cooking crafting craft room doctors dogs donations dreams education elementary Spanish I elementary Spanish II family food friends grades health & fitness holidays human anatomy and physiology I language local business medication mental health money moving forward music organizing piercings quotes relationships school shopping subscription boxes thrift women in US history yarncraft

    These are all topics I’ve talked about on this blog. Some I’ve talked about several times, others considerably less.

    For me this space is just somewhere I can ramble on about whatever thing is on my mind at the time. Sometimes that’s the crazy dream I just had. Sometimes it’s about school. Sometimes it’s about friends or family or occasionally politics.

    Tonight I’m sitting here, making small changes to my sites, watching Tales From the Crypt, and hoping my mom’s new computer gets here soon.

    For the last couple weeks, her computer had been making a lot of noise. At the time I thought it was the fan, but yesterday during an update, it froze up, and upon rebooting, couldn’t find the hard drive. I opened the case today, and Jesus Bob is was unbelievably filthy inside.

    After removing the front part of the case so I could unscrew the hard drive from it.
    The actual hard drive. The dust and dirt was accumulated between the case and the drive.

    I checked the fan, which seemed fine, and then hooked the hard drive up to some jumpers and plugged it in to my laptop. It couldn’t even be seen, which makes me wonder now if all the noise was actually the drive failing, instead of the fan.

    We ordered a new desktop which should be here in Monday, and believe me we will be blowing it out regularly!

    I’m out of school for a couple weeks and it’s so weird. What do I do with this extra time? I cleaned up my mom’s bathroom a bit today, and later I will be cleaning up the desk for the new computer.

    I’m thinking about doing some cross stitch later this evening, and maybe some knitting. I downloaded copies of all the knitting and crochet patterns I’ve bought or been gifted on Ravelry and organized then. I cleaned my computer if temporary files that take up precious space. I updated things.

    I feel like this is what newly retired people feel like.

  • Deals for Students (and others)

    I’ve found a few deals lately that my status as a student or my status as a disabled person allow me to take advantage of.

    Amazon Prime can be had for $6.56 a month instead of the usual $12.99 if you’re on Medicare.

    Alternately, Prime can be had for students for 6 months free (but with limited benefits) and at 50% off after that.

    If you’re a language learner, there’s a student discount for Duolingo that takes it from $10 a month to I think $4 and change. I’m waiting for my subscription to run out so I can resubscribe with my student email. This deal can only be accessed on the full desktop version of their website.

    SiriusXM also offers their Premier package for $4.00 a month to students to listen to on various devices. I found this by chance when I was looking up pricing for my mom in her truck.

  • Jesus Bob Fuck Me Running

    So I’ve spent I think 4 days dealing with my raspberry pi suddenly refusing to download anything. They start, go fast for about 15 seconds, and then just drop off and die completely. There might be a few stuttering starts but no real data transfer.

    Tried on my laptop. Same issue. With or without the VPN, with or without a proxy. At this point I’ve tried damn near everything and I’m really frustrated. Maybe my ISP is blocking me? This all started shortly after they did some work on my connection…

    Tonight I sit down at Mom’s computer. The only wired connection in the house. Downloads work perfectly. With or without the VPN, everything is fast and consistent.

    So after pulling my hair out all weekend, it’s a problem with the router, nothing nefarious at all. Tomorrow I need to send a message to the ISP.

  • Makeover Pi

    My Raspberry Pi got a make over today. I had previously installed a fan on it due to overheating issues but recently it started making a lot of noise.

    On inspection, the bearing was worn, causing a wobble, and the blades were tapping the casing.

    I went to Adafruit to order a new fan, but with shipping, it was more than I wanted to pay.

    Amazon showed me a kit with a case, that included a fan and 3 heat sinks. It was about $0.40 more expensive than just ordering the fan. This is the one I ended up ordering.

    It arrived this afternoon, and I set to putting the case together and getting everything hooked up.

    Unfortunately, while it came with plenty of hardware, the screws to mount the board to the base were way too short, but this was easily remedied by using the screws that came with my now broken fan.

    But it went together in the end, I got everything hooked back up, and it looks pretty damn good! I do miss my bright pink case but I think this will keep my Pi a lot cooler.

    Edit : uncooled Pi 3 was operating at about 175°F. Fan cooled Pi 3 in closed case was holding at about 140°F. Fan, 3 heat sinks and open case Pi 3 is operating at about 100°F. Big improvement!

  • Cooler Pi

    I bought myself a Raspberry Pi 3 for Christmas last year, giving my old 2 to my mom to work as a home theater setup.

    And for the most part, my 3 has operated flawlessly.

    But when I’m running Kodi, it gets hot – not just the “getting kind of warm” icon on screen but the one that’s red all the way to the top. And when it stays that way, it slows way down, freezes, and sometimes crashes. No Bueno.

    I also (I finally tracked the cause down to some recent updates) had a glitch where Kodi was suffering some really rough video playback. Took a few days on our frustratingly slow internet, but I eventually made a fresh installation of Raspbian, installed Kodi and Deluge, and left everything else as is. Got that rough playback cleared up!

    Anyway, I ordered this fan – it’s teensy tiny. I think 30mm? My case isn’t set up to house a fan, so I grabbed a drill, made a few holes in the lid, and mounted it. Works great too. I haven’t seen that little red thermometer once after it got cooled down!

    My Pi is happy and healthy again, and I’ve rediscovered podcasts. I saved about two dozen I want to check out, finished one (Missing Richard Simmons – really guys, let the poor man enjoy retirement!), and have been desperately trying to catch up on another (Sawbones- check it out, it’s so funny and you’ll learn stuff too!).