Monday, December 17, 2012

Caden and Betsy playing Boil the Cabbage at the 2012 Country Harvest Hoedown.

Friday, August 24, 2012


Check out this beautiful sourdough start!  

I'm so happy to have a good, active sourdough start in the house again.  I keep one going for over a year a while back, but eventually killed it due to neglect.  Colin and I have since attempted to get a new one going, but I keep killing them with my side-tracked nature.  Happily, Randy's brother has more focus and got a good one going.  Uncle Ron shared some of his this past weekend while we were visiting and it is alive and well. 

We've used it to make two of my favorite sourdough recipes: pancakes and pizza.  YUM!

Sourdough Pancakes

1 Tablespoon oil
1 Egg
1 Tablespoon White Powder*

Mix together well, then add:

1 Cup sourdough starter

Cook on hot griddle. 

We had them with fresh blackberries and whipped cream.  Too bad we ate them before I thought of getting a picture - they sure didn't last long! 

*The White Powder is:
1 part Salt
1 part Baking Soda
3 parts Baking Powder
5 parts Sugar

Sourdough Pizza Dough

1 1/2 cups Sourdough Starter
1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups Flour

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
Mix ingredients, working in the flour until you have a soft dough. 
Let dough rest for 1/2 hour so it will relax and forming the pizza will be easier.  
Roll out the dough in a circle, however big you like.
I pre-bake my pizza dough for 5 minutes on my pizza stone, then top it and bake 5 or 10 minutes more.  If you prefer, you can just top it and bake for 15ish minutes.  

We topped our pizza with BBQ sauce, bacon, and cheese because that's what we had on hand.  Again, this got gobbled up before I could snap a picture.  I'll try to remember better next time. 

Thursday, August 23, 2012

The Bug

Recently I've been doing a lot of photography.  So when I saw this bug on the porch, I ran in the house and grabbed the camera.  I think it's a praying mantis.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Alabama Smoked Chicken Sandwich

If you're looking for a GREAT tasting smoked chicken sandwich, this is it!

The Recipe (From Smoke & Spice by Cheryl and Bill Jamison)

Southern Succor Rub:
1 tablespoon freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon paprika
1 tablespoon turbinado sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons coarse salt (kosher or sea salt)
1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
1/4 teaspoon cayenne

6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, pounded lightly
Alabama Great White:
1 cup mayonnaise
3-4 tablespoons cider vinegar
1 tablespoon freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon coarse salt (kosher or sea salt)
Pinch or two of onion powder
Pinch or two of cayenne
12 large slices toasted white bread
6 crisp lettuce leaves

I use a regular gas grill, so I fill a metal box like this with wood chips (cherry this time) after soaking them in water a bit.  Then I light the grill on one side and start it smoking and getting the grill up to 200-220 degrees F.
Sprinkle the rub on each side and rub it in.

Then put the chicken on the grill on the opposite side. The idea is to have one burner on, and the chicken over the other burner which is off so the chicken is cooked by indirect heat.  This gives a juicy slow cooked chicken.

Drizzle with a little of the Alabama Great White mixed with a little water.
I put a thermometer in the chicken so I can just wait for it to beep when it's reached 165 degrees F.  This way it doesn't end up getting overcooked.
When it's about done, toast some buns.
Slice up the chicken, slather the buns with the Alabama Great White Sauce, add lettuce, and some chicken slices.


Friday, August 3, 2012


I've been reading David Bednar's book, Increase in Learning.  Fabulous book!  I love it!

Chapter Four is called "Doctrines, Principles, and Applications: A Framework for Gospel Learning.

Here's my attempt to apply that framework to my study of Happiness this morning.

Doctrine = Why
Principles = What
Application = How

The doctrine is the plan of happiness.

A few of the principles of happiness are:

  • We are happiest when we have the Holy Ghost with us.
  • "Wickedness never was happiness." (Alma 41:10)
  • Knowing what you need to do is not enough, to be happy you actually have to DO what you need to do.
  • "Happy is he that condemneth not himself." (Romans 14:22)  Don't beat yourself up for not being perfect.
FLYlady is a great example of the application of these principles.

David Bednar explains that "Doctrines and principles do not change,  applications appropriately can vary according to needs and circumstances" (p.156).

Only studying applications without seeking true principles and doctrines will not lead to success.  For example, many people say "FLYlady just doesn't work for me."  This is an example of only studying the applications without understanding the doctrine and/or the principles.  When Marla Ciley started doing her routines, the principle she had in mind was to Finally Love Yourself (FLY).  Her routines help her to DO what she needs to do to be happy.  They keep her from beating up herself for not being perfect.  And they help her create an atmosphere in her home and in her heart where she can get what she calls "God Breezes."  Understanding the principles that she was following help me to create my own applications that work for my family.  A person who only studies the application sees the huge list of everything Flylady does in her daily routines and will likely give up before they even get a chance to understand the blessings that following the principles will bring.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Garmin Forerunner 305 battery replacement

The battery in my Garmin Forerunner 305 got to the point where it wouldn't hold a charge long enough for a 6 mile run.  A Google search at first didn't result in much, but finally I came across a couple pages that looked promising.  One guy used a phone battery with success, but I don't have any phone batteries lying around.  Another site I came across indicated that a replacement battery for an iPod Mini is the same voltage (3.7V), about twice the capacity (1300mAh instead of 750mAh), and very similar in size.  I bought an iPod Mini battery on eBay for $4.21 including shipping.  A couple days later it arrived and I went to open my Garmin.  I had read that sometimes the watch pops open of its own accord because the battery swelled, but even if it doesn't you should be able to open it by prying with your fingernails.

I went to pry mine open and realized it was already swelled open, so I just opened it the rest of the way with my fingers.

There were no wires to be careful with...the top just came completely off.

I clipped the black and white wires connecting the battery as close to the battery as I could to leave as much wire to work with as possible.

I cut the connector off the end of the new battery's wires, stripped the black and white wires at the ends, twisted the wires together, and soldered them.  I just left the white wire alone.

After wrapping the exposed wires with electrical tape, I put the battery into the watch and pushed the wires out of the way of the button on the left.

I glued it back together with epoxy since that's what I had on hand.  I hope I don't have to open it again!  I pressed on the watch to keep it snug while the epoxy hardened.  The connectors won't make good contact unless the pieces are snugly together.

When I plugged it into the charger, it started charging normally.  An hour or two later it said battery charging was complete.

It got satellite reception and appeared to be working properly.

I went to the menu to see the battery symbol which indicated it is fully charged.

And Kim tried it out on her run this morning.  It's working well!

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Color of the Day

More javascript, since that's my new interest.  Drag the slider to choose the blinking speed.  The color of the non-white square should change every day.
UPDATE: Okay, it's not just a firefox problem.  I'm using the new HTML5 slider, and it works best in chrome.  You might see a text box or nothing at all otherwise.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Trinity Lake by Robyn

On Saturday we went hiking at Trinity Lake.

We hiked to Fiddle Lake.

  When we got there we went fishing.   There was a fish following dad's hook but it never bit the hook.

 Before we went back to Trinity Lake we climbed on rocks. They were very tall. 

Monday, July 23, 2012


And now, for the coolest thing I've ever done here... Javascript!

More to come!

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Watermelon Slice Cookies

This recipe came from p. 92 in the Taste of Home Cookie magazine that was to be displayed until June 11, 2012.  It says it's from Sue Ann Benham from Valpraraiso, Indiana.

It makes about 3 dozen sliced cookies. 

3/4 C butter, softened
3/4 C sugar
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon almond extract (you could probably use vanilla if you don't have almond)
2 C all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon salt
red and green GEL food coloring
1/3 cup raisins
1 teaspoon sesame seeds

1.  In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy.  Beat in egg and extract.  Combine the flour, baking powder and salt; gradually add to creamed mixture and mix well.  Set aside 1 cup of dough.

2. Tint remaining dough red; shape into a 3 1/2 inch long log.  Wrap in plastic wrap.  Tint 1/3 cup of the remaining dough green; wrap in plastic wrap.  Wrap the remaining plain dough in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 2 hours or until firm.

3. On a lightly floured surface, roll plain dough into a 8 1/2 inch X 3 1/2 inch rectangle.  Place red dough log on the end of a short side of the rectangle; roll up.

4. Roll green dough into a 10 inch X 3 1/2 inch rectangle.  Place red and white log on the end of a short side on green dough; roll up.  Wrap in plastic wrap; refrigerate overnight.

5. Unwrap and cut into 3/16 inch slices (just less that 1/4 inch).  Place 2 inches apart on ungreased cookie sheet.  Cut raisins into small pieces.  Lightly press raisin bits and sesame seeds into red dough to resemble watermelon seeds.

6. Bake at 350 degrees for 9-11 minutes or until firm.  Immediately cut cookies in half.  Remove to wire racks to cool.  

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Remember by Robyn

Here a poem I wrote:

Remember me?
I am the girl                              I am the woman
who does what she's asked      who wherever she goes
who tries to be nice                  she will bring joy
whatever the task.                    to all that are low.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Ode to Music by Robyn

Here is my ode that I wrote for cabin writers:

Ode to music that clears the mind
that makes us brave through all time.
Ode to music its soft sweet song
that brings us together as one.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Cabin Writers

Today I went to Cabin Writers at the Cabin in downtown Boise.Boise, ID : Log Cabin Literary Center, Boise, ID
  We spent an hour in the Cabin writing character sketches.
  Then we went to the Ann Frank memorial and wrote a poem about ourselves.

 We then went down to the Boise River and wrote some stuff about sensory detail.

  Then we walked down to Julia Davis park and wrote the beginning to our stories.
Julia Davis Park in Boise, Idaho

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Sunday Quote

"The companionship of the spirit of the Lord is an antidote for weariness,..... for fear and all those things that sometimes overtake us in life."   George Albert Smith

I needed this quote from our Relief Society lesson today.  When I am feeling weary or fearful, I find that it's usually because I am out of line with the spirit.  Those feelings go away and are replaced by peace when I get my life back in line.  This quote was just the call to repentance I needed today and I will head the call.  Summer is too wonderful for weariness or fear. 

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Saving Rabia

This is another story I wrote.
Saving Rabia
One warm summer morning, I received a package from my pen-pal Rabia from India. I excitedly opened it. When I looked inside I was disappointed to discover a dusty old rug inside. However when I shook out the dust to have a better look at the rug, I discovered that it was really a purple magic carpet with yellow stripes. There was a message pinned to one edge of the carpet. It proclaimed:
Help! I'm stuck in a shed on Rickets Farm. Tell the carpet to take you there. Then come find me. Hurry!” Rabia.
As soon as I finished reading it I quickly wrote a note to my parents letting them know I had had to leave suddenly. Then I jumped onto the carpet shouting “Go to Rickets Farm as fast as you can!”
At first the ride was scary and I kept thinking I was going to fall off, but soon I became
accustomed to it. When an airplane came zooming by I almost did fall off! I was very excited.
About an hour later I finally arrived at Rickets farm. I looked around me and saw some grazing cows, a few apple trees, and a little stream, but there was no shed in sight. So I decided to look around some more.
Before long I found an old brown shed that was surrounded by some big trees, and looked like no one had been to it in a long time. I timidly peeked through a window in its side. Inside I saw a 7 foot tall monster that was purple and green! He was torturing Rabia! I had to save her, but how? I thought about it for a few minutes and then I had an idea. I quickly opened the brown leather backpack that I had brought along and searched for my candy stash finally I came upon it. Then I circled the shed until I found the entrance to it and burst inside. As soon as I entered the monster whirled around.
What do you want?” He bellowed.
I have come for my friend.” I told him.
You can't have her. She's mine!” He shouted.
Oh, then I guess you can't have what I brought to pay you with.” I replied casually.
What did you bring?” The monster inquired.
Oh just this.” I said, holding out my hands which were full of candy.
What are they?” The monster asked.
Candy.” I replied.
What do you do with it?” He questioned.
Eat it.” I replied.
What does it taste like?” He inquired.
I thought for a moment and then said, “I'll give you one piece to try it and if you like it
you can trade my friend for 50 more pieces.”
Okay.” He said. “Give me my first piece.”
I gave it to him. Then I inquired, “What do you think? Do you like it?”
Yes.” He replied, “I do.”
So will you take my offer?” I inquired.
I will.” He said, “but I want 60 pieces.”
Okay.” I replied.
So it was agreed. I gave him 60 pieces of candy and he gave me Rabia.
Rabia and I leaped onto the magic carpet and flew Rabia to her home (where the monster could not get her) and then I zoomed home. As soon as I got there I carefully put the rug in the closet, collapsed on my bed, and fell asleep.

Friday, July 6, 2012

Trapped in the Cellar

This is the dog's side of the story of In the Cellar witch I posted earlier.
Trapped in the Cellar
One warm summer night my folks had a going away party prior to the big move. I'm not too keen on strangers so I headed to the cellar for some peace and quiet. I was investigating the cellar when my left front foot got stuck in a rat trap. I tried vigorously to get it out but that just made it hurt more so I started to bark. But that didn’t work because the party was to noisy for them to hear me. Tenderly I laid down and went to sleep feeling lonely.
The next day in the morning I was awakened by the noise of the moving van pulling away. Scared I started to bark but it was too late. They were gone! My mind was racing. What if no one ever found me? What if I was stuck forever in this dark cellar?!
That afternoon a different moving van pulled up and stopped. The door squeaked open and the new family came in hauling their stuff. I heard them go back out and get more stuff. The noise of boxes being dragged across the floor continued all day. Even if I hadn’t been to scared to bark they wouldn’t have been able to hear me.
That night there was a storm, but the only thing I could hear was the cracking thunder. I was terrified and whimpering and whining. Then I heard creaking floorboards, someone was coming! The creaks got closer and closer, then slowly the door creaked open and a little girl entered. I growled nervously at her but she kept coming toward me. She started talking gently to me and I calmed down.
As she carefully removed my foot from the rat trap, I examined her. She had brown hair and bright blue eyes. When she had succeeded in removing my foot from the rat trap, she soaked it in hot water and brought me up to her room. We slept comfortably in each others company for the rest of the night.
The next morning she excitedly asked her parents if she could keep me. They said she could! So I have lived happily with them ever since.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Bob Books

I read a lot of Bob Books to my mom.  I felt good when I was reading my Bob Books.  7/3/2012

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Happy Independence Day!

We love the 4th of July! 

Our favorite way to celebrate is to head on out to Melba, ID. From the early morning fun run to the late night fireworks display, that little town knows how to throw a party.

We usually take a break sometime after the parade and before the fireworks to visit Grandma and Grandpa Reeder for a picnic out at the air strip.
Caden in Grandpa's RV 8 last fall

While we are driving around in the van on the way to all the fun, we like to listen to Janeen Brady's Take Your Hat Off When the Flag Goes By. It's a great introduction to the Constitution, the Founding Fathers, the military, and patriotism.  Janeen Brady is awesome!

We may have to shake things up a bit this year, but that's a typical 4th of July for the Reeder fam.

Have a happy and safe Independence Day! 

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Busy day

I did a lot today (7/2/2012). When I first woke up this morning, I decided to learn IPA. IPA stands for International Phonetic Alphabet. It's an alphabet used for displaying pronunciation. Some words in IPA look a lot like the actual words, like the word sʊn (son), while others look less like the actual words, like tʃɑːx (chalk).

Later, I set up Titanium (taɪteɪniːʊm) Studio on the laptop because it somehow didn't work on the mac. Titanium is a framework for javascript (dʒɑːvɑːsxrɪpt) used to make phone apps. I'm mainly planning to deploy to android though. I verified that I could test my apps on the android emulator and begun working on an app. I might talk more about the app when it's finished. It is far from that at the current state.

Just now, I replaced the battery in my keyboard (xiːbɒrd) and wrote this post.

Monday, July 2, 2012

The Speed of Trust

I am listening to Stephen M. R. Covey's book, The Speed of Trust. Two CDs into it, I am hooked. It's good stuff! The basic idea is that trust is something you can measure and a skill that can be learned and that when trust goes up, speed also goes up while costs go down. It's been fun to recognize this truth in many areas of my life. I am excited to keep listening to the rest of the book!

Friday, June 29, 2012

Randy - Samsung 226BW monitor flickering fix


I enjoy doing outdoor things with the family like camping, biking, and hiking.  I like to go hunting, but so far just take Colin hunting.  I enjoy running to stay in shape and keep from getting old - I don't think it's completely working though.  I enjoy accompanying the kids on guitar when they play fiddle tunes.  We have a good time.  I also enjoy programming and electronic circuits.

Today's post is about our computer monitor (Samsung 226BW) that recently started flickering.  First it was only flickering for half a minute when the monitor came out of sleep.  I got around that by changing the setting on the computer so that it doesn't put the monitor to sleep.  That worked for a week or so, but then the monitor got turned off and when we tried to turn it back on it just flickered forever and never fully turned on.  The monitor still showed the picture, but it wasn't very bright and it made me sick to try to use it so I just used the laptop instead.

A Google search showed that this is actually a common problem for this monitor and the typical solution is to replace some capacitors.  I decided to open up the monitor and see what condition the capacitors were in.

First, I just three screws out of the back to remove the base and three more followed by some easy prying with a screwdriver to get the back black plastic cover removed.

Then I pried the left sheet of metal up at the tabs to pop it off.

I unhooked the wires from the bottom left and the bottom right so I'll be able to lift up the cover.

With the cover lifted, now I see two boards.  The one on the left is the one with the power supply (where the power cord connects), so I need to unscrew that one to see the capacitors.

There was also a small sheet of metal at the top of the left board that needed to come out before the board would pull out.

There they are.  And now for a closer look...

These three capacitors are no longer flat on top like they should be, so they'll need to be replaced.  The two on the left are 820uF capacitors.  The one on the right is a 330uF capacitor.

Looks like this one needs to be replaced too.  It's a 680uF capacitor.

And its companion behind it of the same size also needs to be replaced.

Look at that.  This one looks good and won't need to be replaced.  It's 47uF.

And this big one looks good too.

So the capacitors I need to replace are:
one 25V 330uF 105C capacitor
two 25V 820uF 105C capacitors
two 25V 680uF 105C capacitors

The 47uF capacitor is 50V 105C, but it doesn't need to be replaced, and neither does the big 450V 150uF capacitor.

If I were patient, I'd order the capacitors and just install them when they arrived, but I'm not very patient.  I tried to find some locally at Radio Shack, but they didn't have any high temp (105C) capacitors, let alone the right capacitance.  I found a local electronics parts store called The Current Source.  The guy I talked to there has a 330uF 50V 105C capacitor and some 1000uF 25V 105C capacitors.  While reading other forums, I found plenty of people have used 1000uF instead of 820uF with success.  For power supply usage, the exact capacitance doesn't seem to matter as long as it's not less than the original, and the same goes for the voltage.

So I bought four 1000uF 25V capacitors and one 330uF 50V capacitor for $7.60.  The 1000uF capacitors are about the same size as the original 820uF capacitors, but the 330uF 50V capacitor is quite a bit larger because it's 50V.  It still fits on the board though.

This picture is after removing the 820uF capacitors and the 330uF capacitor and installing one of the new 1000uF capacitors.  The circle on the board has slanted lines in the negative half of the circle showing where the capacitor goes.  The capacitors have a band on them with a negative sign indicating which lead is the negative one.  Also, the negative lead is shorter than the positive lead.

 Here's the board with all the new capacitors installed.

I just put it back together and plugged it in to try it out.  It's working great!  A fun way to save $200!