thingelstad

Jamie Thingelstad's personal website

Month: January 2012

Super Fort

This morning Mazie, Tyler and I built a super fort in the living room! Here is the view from inside!

It was awesome!

We anchored it on the couch and then built support structures with OGOBILD Kit Pod sets.  For Christmas Mazie got one of these sets from Grandma and Grandpa Olson. These things were as much a toy for me as them it seemed. The only problem with the kit? There was only 30 poles and 10 connectors. We couldn’t build big enough.

So, on my 40th birthday I decided the kids each needed a present from me. Two OGOBILD Kit Pods later (Amazon) and we were ready to build! We made some pretty big structures but always wanted to turn them into forts. Sheets weren’t big enough, and they weighed too much. What to do?

Parachute!

Not just any parachute. A 20 foot parachute! I thought about getting the 12 foot one but it seemed like it could be too small. A few days later and we got to build some huge stuff and wrap it in an awesome parachute. More fun than you can shake a stick at!

Honestly the parachute is too big for inside use, but it has plenty of room to make forts out of. Plus it is pretty light so it hangs way better than a sheet. It’s still plenty durable for the kids and even Chase the dog. We had a great morning hanging out in the Super Fort.

Now we just need even more OGOBILD’s to make bigger stuff! Just kidding!

Tyler’s domain name came up for renewal, tylerthing.com. I didn’t even realize this the registration date is the same day as his birthday.

Domain Name    : tylerthing.com
Registered on  : 2/12/2010

Nice. :-)

Morning Smoothie

We’ve had the Vitamix for about three months now and a morning smoothie has become part of our routine now. We use the Vitamix for many other things as well, but most mornings it will be stacked like this.

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SOPA Scrapbook

I participated in the SOPA blackout on January 18th. All of my personal websites went dark at 8:00am CT and returned at 8:00pm CT. I served 6,235  STOP SOPA notices. My handful of sites were just a drop in the big ocean of over 115,000 sites that went dark. It really felt historic. I took notice of the first time that so much of the Internet banded together to make something happen, and did it happen. Just two days after the blackout the bills have lost major supporters and are going back to committee.

It felt like something momentous. A punctuation mark in the big timeline of the Internet. I decided to grab some screenshots and make a little scrapbook of the day.

My Sites

Here is what thingelstad.com looked like on SOPA blackout day.

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Forty

Two weeks ago I turned 40. I’ve been wanting to write a “Forty” blog post but each time I think to do it I find myself with little to say. I figure it is time for me to just start writing and see what happens.

I had an absolutely awesome birthday, thanks to my most awesome wife Tammy. She planned a simply great day of fun! We had a great breakfast at Original Pancake House. We had a nice time at the Como Park Conservatory where Mazie took lots of pictures and Tyler was in constant surprise of everything. We came home and Mazie baked a birthday cake for me, with help from Tammy. I had suggested that I would like a vanilla cake with strawberries and whipped cream frosting but she could do what she thought would be good instead. She decided I would like a super chocolate cake with chocolate frosting. :-)

I picked dinner and we had Indian food ordered in from India Palace which was delicious. Tammy had planned that we would have a family fire that night with S’mores because I like fires but complain we don’t do them enough. After about an hour a bunch of friends showed up and the S’mores fire turned into a birthday celebration with music, fires and beer. It was awesome and I was completely surprised!

It was pretty much the best birthday, ever!

I’ve been asked many, many times “How does it feel?” and I don’t think I have any good answers. Feels the same as yesterday. So, let me see what comes to mind:

  • While I’m sure physical signs of getting older have been appearing for a while, but I seem to be noticing them more. Hair is thinning. A few grey ones. But in general I still think I have my boy like look. :-)
  • I’m totally smarter now that I’m 40. Or so I think…
  • It’s really rare that I sleep past 7 am. I think that has more to do with kids than being 40.

See, not much interesting. Tammy had much more to say about being 40. Ask a question in the comments and I’ll see if I have anything more interesting to share about being 40!

Participating in SOPA Blackout

I just added these crontab entries

0 8 18 1 * /srv/www/maint/sopa/deploy-sopa.sh
0 20 18 1 * /srv/www/maint/sopa/remove-sopa.sh

On January 18th at midnight all of my personal websites will be going dark to protest the proposed SOPA and PIPA bills being discussed in congress. I’m joining sites like Wikipedia and Reddit in this process. I realize I don’t get a lot of traffic, but I felt it was important to join in. My sites will be in protest display from 8 AM to 8 PM central time.

Birthday Dinner at Heidi’s Chef’s Table

I had a big birthday this year and Tammy surprised me with a number of things, including a very cool dinner at Heidi’s at their special Chef’s Table. We got to enjoy 13 individual courses of vegetarian delights! First a few pictures from the evening. It was a great time!


The menu was designed by Chef Stewart Woodman, aka Shefzilla. The service was led by one of the sous chefs. It was great fun to be in the kitchen, although predictably a little hot. :-)

Now, to dinner…
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Lightroom 4 Gets Maps!

I’ve been an avid user of Lightroom since the very first 1.0 beta and for as long as I’ve remembered I’ve wished that there was a tab on the top called “Map” that would allow me to add geographic coordinates to my photos. I didn’t get it in 2.0. I didn’t get it in 3.0. I had pretty much given up, and then look at what is in the brand-new-just-announced Lightroom 4.0 beta! Maps!

So awesome! Now I just need to drag 65,117 photos onto a map. :-) Lightroom 4.0 looks like a great upgrade. The only big feature on my wish list that is still completely absent is face recognition. Maybe 5.0!

Yama Cold Brew Drip Tower

A few weeks ago I was discussing various ways of making coffee with Ry4an at the office. He had seen this crazy looking coffee system and sent me a link for it. My instant response was…

Gorgeously Finicky!

Tammy thought the one I sent her a link to was about the ugliest thing she had ever seen, but she found an acceptable looking Yama and got it for me for my birthday from Mazie and Tyler.

It takes three hours to brew 8 cups of coffee. The resulting coffee is similar to cold press coffee, but with significantly more theater to the production. My first run didn’t come out right. I tried to grind the beans myself and didn’t get the right grind consistency and the water went through far too fast.

There is much written about ice brewed coffee. CoffeeGeek has a good writeup.

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