Think I am just thinking.

Words are but thoughts made visible.

Black Hills of South Dakota

I’m a little slow in getting my entries, as you may notice.  So, I thought I would share some photo’s from last years vacation in the Black Hills of South Dakota.  We stayed with the family in the Custer area, which makes a great central location for much of the Black Hills area.

And it’s only a short drive to the Badlands area as well.

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February 5, 2018 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Hot Tub, What Happened to the Hot Tub?

This is the result of the the removal of the old RED hot tub Jacuzzi.

Hot Tub 2016-05-24

May 11, 2017 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Lego Land

We recently acquired a few extra Lego’s for the grand-kids to play with.  We purchased a big box of lego’s for about $35.   Inside the box, there were about 20 Lego Kit’s.  Ranging anywhere from a few hundred pieces to some kits with over 1,200 pieces or more.  The only problem is these are no kits in individual boxes, but a collection of all of them mixed into the same container.  So, we had the great idea, we could simply just sort out the needed pieces, based on the instruction books.  Easier said than done!  So far we have about 6 complete kits put back together in baggies.  We are beginning to think this was not such a good idea.

April 17, 2017 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Hey, the Hot tub goes first!

Here sits an old Red Hot Tub, Jacuzzi brand, that has sat unused for the last two years.  What to do with it?  The cover is worn, and showing signs of starting to fall apart.

I think it is time to start a new PROJECT!


July 29, 2016 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Just an Old bathroom vanity and sink.

If you have an older home, sooner or later you will be forced with doing upgrades to maintain your home.  Well, the time has come to replace the old bathroom vanity sink in the master bedroom.  The old vanity countertop is one of those one piece (plastic) looks like marble, with the integrated built-in sink.  The vanity woodwork is early 70’s, dark wood, which does show some of it’s age in the way of little minor scratches and having some of that rather old faded wood look to it.  Another 50 years, and it would qualify as an antique, but the Mrs and I really do not want to wait that long.

So it boils down to what are my options?  First things first, get out the tape measure and start writing down the measurements.  If you are lucky like us, you will find that you have a very unique vanity, in terms of size.  Everything that was a standard size back in 1970 something, is no longer a standard size.  I have a space between two walls that measures 68 inches.  Try to find something with that width, and you will just not be able to find it.  So, what to do?

Option (1):  is the woodwork still viable, then you could replace just the vanity top/sink unit, except you cannot buy a stock unit in exactly 68 inches.   Well, the stock item purchase is not an option, so you can do a custom ordered marble or granite top, which will only set you back about $400-$800.

Option (2): Replace only the sink.  But, with a built-in sink counter top, the indentation size of the sink area, is likely larger than any drop-in sink you can buy, so unless you like a sink dropped into the fist bowl indentation space, you rule this one out, right away.  But if you could find one that fits over the opening you would need to cut into the top, your cost drops down to $50-$150, depending on exact sink that work.

Option (3)  forget about salvaging the old vanity, and just remove the whole thing and buy a new Vanity and a matching sized counter-top and sink.  Of course your new unit must be narrower than the opening you are working with.  In our case, 68 inches.   Of course now you do have to deal with what’s behind the old vanity.  Be prepared that it will not be a finished wall, or as your old unit is likely a floor based unit, there is likely no flooring under the old vanity as well.  So be prepared to do some wall work, and likely some floor work as well.  And you will not find matching floor tile/wood/vinyl, so you will have to redo the entire bathroom area flooring with all new material.  Thus far, you are likely to be in the $1,500-$3,000 range depending on exactly what type of vanity system and flooring, and wall work you are willing to do.  And buy the way, this is do it yourself cost.  You can double the cost if you have someone else do the work for you.

Option (4)  Ok, this should perhaps have been number two, but this is the last option we have been looking at, and are going to give it a try, as I think it will give us acceptable results at a much better price.   First, paint the vanity, don’t replace it.  No, or minimal wall work and no floor work. Second, replace the counter top,not with a custom marble or granite top, but rather a stock length laminated counter top.  Only issue with this is the stock counter tops at say Lowes or Home Depot, are all 24-25 inches deep.  Vanity tops are almost all in the 22-23 inch depth range.  But you can buy a 8 to 10 foot stock kitchen laminated counter top for as little as $60-$100.

I like that kitchen laminated counter tops price.  but it’s too deep you say.  But, is would be just right if you cut off the typical backsplash and make yourself your 22-23 inch deep counter.  Then just cut to fit on the old vanity, which has not been painted a nice popular white color.  The only things left are backsplash and sink.  You can pick up a drop in sink for as little as $40-$60.  You can also get backsplash material for as little as $20-$30.

So, paint the old woodwork, replace the hinges and handles on the doors, put on the new laminate, add the sink/faucet and backsplash and you have a complete new bathroom custom vanity sink unit for under $200-$300 max.  That’s a fraction of what you would pay with any of the other options and you will end up with a nice new addition to your home, which brings you a nice new modern look to your room.


Well, I am still mid stream in the project, so I cannot fully state what the outcome is.  But, I shall be back and share how it turned out.  In theory, and after much reading, watching do-it-yourself video’s, I have very high hopes.

Hopefully my High Hopes, will not melt my wings and result in a fast decent.  Stay tuned.

March 10, 2016 Posted by | Household Improvements | , , | Leave a comment


Yup, that’s a message you do not want to see.  Well, I did, and at first thought perhaps I had some new kind of virus or malware on the computer.  But, after running some hard-drive diagnostics, the drive was confirmed to be failing and the hard-drive utilities could not fix it. My office desktop computer is SICK!

What to do?

Well, speaking from experience, do what the Windows 7 operating system tells you to do.  Quickly make a backup bootable DVD/CD which will contain drivers for any other devices you may have connected.  Next, if you do not have a an external back-up hard drive, get one now!  Windows advises you shut the system down.  If you have to go out and by a backup drive, this may be a good idea.  But, booting back up may take a couple tries.

So, once you have your back-up drive, or hopefully you already have one, use the windows utility to make an Image copy of your computers hard drive.  With an external hard drive this is really very easy, assuming the drive has not fully failed yet.  You can make an Image Copy to DVD’s, but you may need LOTS of DVD’s!

Hopefully you got your Image Copy made.  If you did, you have a very good chance of saving everything on your computer.  Next step after total power down, is the replacement of the hard drive.  Just be sure to get one that is the same type (does not have to be the same brand name), and at least as big, or bigger in size.  Most newer drives have just two cables and 4 screws holding them in on a Desktop computer.  Very easy to replace.

Ok, now you have the new drive in place and you are ready to boot up.  Be sure to have your Back-up USB drive connected to the computer.  Or, have that stack of DVDs ready (big stack).  Hit the power button and quickly open the DVD drive and insert the boot-up disk.  The boot-up program will automatically look for an IMAGE FILE on any drives it can access.  It will display the source and name of the file and ask if you want to install the image on your new drive.  If yours is like mine, it will show that you had two partitions, likely drive C:, and D:, You will get a warning that everything on the drive will be overwritten, but as the new drive is blank, that’s what you want.  So, just click yes to install and wait.  The wait will be upwards of 3-4 hours, depending on speed of your computer and the new hard-drive.

So, what do you get.  Well, for me, everything that was, was once again on the new hard-drive.  All the icons, all the data, all the programs.  I did not have to use my regular backup to install anything.

What do we learn from this?  A hard drive can fail at anytime.  Usually it will take years.  Mine ran 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, as I never totally shut down.  I do have sleep modes enabled, which does give things a rest, but as soon as it time to check emails again, everything spins up once again.

What did I learn.  Make regular Boot-up Recovery DVD/CD’s, and do an Image Backup every once and awhile.  I would recommend you mark down on a calender, or set up a some other reminder to do this no less than once every 6 months.  Having restored a hard drive from scratch and all the original software disks, and data back-up disks, it’s something I would like to avoid ever having to do again.  Also if you purchase new software which is downloaded online, will you be able to download it again, without having to pay, and or just find it?  With an IMAGE Backup on your external USB back-up drive, No Worries!

So, just what I did the next week?  Yup, Laptop now has an updated Recovery Boot disk and Image backup ready to go, should the worse case scenario happen, and the Laptop Drive goes down.   So, you don’t have a backup.  Quick, print this now, before the drive crashes and you forget what to do!!!!!!!!

March 23, 2015 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment