Tuesday, November 1, 2022


Tuesday: (11/01) The usual hikers sausage, egg and cheese ciabatta sandwich for breakfast. I met 13 adventurous fellow hikers, members of the San Jose Mid-week Hikers Meetup Group, that dared to join me on today’s hike. The weather forecast mentioned about ½ inch of rain during the hike. Those pesky forecasters are getting really good with their predictions. The rain did hold off for 30 additional minutes so we completed most of our hike without heavy rain. Just the last trail, an uphill stretch, was in heavy rain making the water flow down the trail like a stream and lots of slippery mud. This turned out to be a nice day for a hike. Our tour of the Los Trancos Preserve was really pretty showing off the vivid green of the trees and other greenery, all washed clean. Actually, it's nice to see some rain on our dry hills. Back home, I did have to get out of my soggy clothes. I had leftover corned beef hash for lunch. Lou made spaghetti and meatballs for dinner.

Wednesday: (11/02) A little rain showers today in the morning. Lou made strawberry pancakes for breakfast. I attended my Alpha Software webinar in the morning. We drove up to Costco in Redwood City. On the way there, we stopped at Harry’s Hofbrau for lunch. We all had pastrami. Lou and Dawn a dinner and myself soup and sandwich. I installed the new parts of the van bed support and tank box. Dawn made a squash and chicken stew for dinner.

Thursday: (11/03) I worked on the van cutting down the bed panels into smaller center boards and small cabinet doors for the ends. I had to make a run to Lowe’s for some screws and hinged so , of course, I picked up lunch on the way. I also picked up some things at Sprout’s and Walmart Neighborhood Market. When I got back home, I was able to cut the small cabinet panels to width. Their width depended on the type and placement of the hinges I got. Granola for breakfast. Chinese food from China Wok for lunch and dinner. My favorite pork fried rice, Peking pork ribs, and salt and pepper fish.

Friday: (11/04) Granola for breakfast. I worked on the van this morning, reworking some things I did yesterday. I decided that some of the wood pieces I installed yesterday may put too much strain on the tanks so I removed them and increased the space by trimming /4” off the pieces. After trimming I reassembled everything. Lou and Dawn had been out all morning with appointments. We had grilled cheese sandwiches for lunch. After lunch we all went down to San Jose with Meili to pick up her car from the transmission shop. She doesn’t like driving far from home so I was the driver of her car. Lou and Dawn continued on doing some thrifting on their way home. I made paper templates for some of the small wall panels yet to be installed by the rear doors. Lou made chili rellenos with peppers from the garden. They were served with roast chicken and Brussel’s sprouts. It was a fairly nice, no rain day but quite cold in the morning.

Saturday: (11/05) PBJ leftover pancakes for breakfast. Lou and I went to the Smart and Final store for a few things. They have my favorite granola and I was out. We also got some good meat from their manager's special bin. Later, we all drove down to the nearest Walmart that had a battery for the Jeep. Lou has had to jump start her jeep several times recently. It’s about 4 years old now so it has had a good life. I took advantage of the trip to return some molding I needed to return to the Floor and Decor Store there. We also took advantage of the fact it was a Super Walmart that has lots of things our local store doesn’t have. Afterwards, we had lunch at the Black Bear Restaurant in Milpitas. And of course, we stopped at a thrift store heading home. Kabob vegetables with roast chicken and pickled vegetables. Overcast and misty day today. I posted a hike for Monday.

Sunday: (11/06) Granola and banana for breakfast. The usual slow morning of TV news and politics. I spent most of the day cutting out small panels for around the rear doors. I also put a couple of coats of varnish on them. Salads with chicken for lunch. We had Dawn’s baked beans for dinner.

Monday: (11/07) I prepared my usual hikers breakfast ham, egg and cheese sandwich for breakfast. At 0900 I met 7 fellow San Jose Mid-week hikers at Russian Ridge Open Space Preserve. We did a short 6 mile loop hike around the preserve. We had heavy rain last night and the chance of rain after noon is 45 % so that is the reason for the shorter hike. Nice clear skies, beautiful green hills, and nice fellow hikers making a good hike. I planned this hike for a new route through this preserve. It is a nice route. We finished before 1130 and I was home by noon. Salad for lunch. I painted a third coat of varnish on the van panels I’m preparing. Lou made sauerkraut with potatoes and pork chops for dinner. I had to also go out and by some PowerBall tickets because two billion dollars is two billion dollars.

Tuesday: (11/08) Election day and a heavy rain day. I spent all day inside. We all went down to the T-Mobile store to get apple watches for Lou and Dawn. I also, finally, set myself up for the military discount which saves us $30 dollars per month. Granola and banana for breakfast. Salad and grilled cheese sandwich for lunch. Ramen noodles and chicken for dinner.

Wednesday: (11/09) Still quite wet out after more rain overnight. Granola and banana for breakfast. I tinkered on the computer and attended my Wednesday AlphaSoftware webinar. Salad with half a ham and cheese sandwich for lunch. In the afternoon I finally installed the new battery in Lou’s Jeep. I also added insulation in the small channels around the rear doors and installed the panels over the door. Still need to install the power outlets and side panels. Leftover sauerkraut with potatoes and pork chops for dinner.

Thursday: (11/10) Dawn’s birthday. I prepared sauerkraut potato hash with ham and eggs for breakfast. Later, we all headed off stopping at several thrift stores on our way to a visit to the Great Mall in Milpitas. It’s a big mall and we only covered half of it before we stopped for lunch, about 1430, at the Olive Garden Restaurant. I had an embarrassing moment when I tried to check out at the Burlington Outlet store. I had found a nice crepe pan and some bamboo spoons and when I tried to pay for them, I found that I didn’t have my wallet. I had to get Lou to come and save me. My wallet was residing in the bottom of the clothes washer at home having been run through a rinse before running a full load today. I really need to do a better check before I throw clothes into the laundry. I had taken thai off to rinse to get some of the insulation debris off of them before they get washed with other clothes. Now, everything in the wallet is placed out to dry. I’m a money launderer again. Also, there were several lotto tickets in the wallet waiting to be cashed in, each worth $2-7, my portion of the $2 billion dollar jackpot. Fortunately, the paper they use seems to be similar to that of money and did not disintegrate. No dinner needed due to the late lunch.

Friday: (11/11) Nice day today. Leftover sauerkraut potato hash with ham and eggs for breakfast. I made a run to ACE hardware for a couple of electrical boxes. I wanted plastic boxes and I had gotten metal boxes thinking they would fit better. I reconsidered. I installed the boxes in the rear column panels. I couldn’t finish the left panel because I need a properly sized 1 ⅛” hole saw to install the USB and cigarette lighter outlets so i ordered it on Amazon to be delivered tomorrow. I also ordered a replacement tarp to cover Ernie’s trailer’s roof. I still haven’t resealed the seams and won’t be getting to it soon. I also stopped by Grocery Outlet for some goodies on my way home from ACE. I didn't accomplish much today. In the evening Lou and I went to the Grocery Outlet and did real grocery shopping. Ham and cheese sandwich for lunch. Dawn’s squash and sausage stew for dinner.

Saturday: (11/12) Nice but colder day. Leftover sauerkraut potato hash with ham and eggs for my breakfast. I worked in the van s usual. In the morning I added the vinyl fabric cover to the foot of the bed wall panel. Unfortunately I could do more of that because I was short fabric because I’m doing more panels now. I didn’t want to cut the piece I do have because the remainder, over half of it, would be usable on the other panel that is blocked by material stored in the van. That material will move out of the way to the rear of the van when I complete the rear. I only need to install the outlets in the electrical boxes in the rear columns. I couldn;t install the left rear column panel until I received some parts in the afternoon. When the cigarette lighter outlets and hole saw kit arrived, I installed the panel. Salad for lunch. Roast beef with squash fettuccine for dinner.

Sunday: (11/13) Granola and banana for breakfast. Lunch from the Wok On Chinese restaurant in Sunnyvale. I do like their Peking pork chops with pork fried rice and salt and pepper fish. I was out to get more vinyl fabric for the van. I stopped at REI for some energy gummies and at Sprout’s for some ciabatta rolls on the way. I couldn’t find the color of vinyl I had purchased before in the store where I got It. Fortunately, they have a separate storefront nearby and in the back corner at the very bottom, they had what I needed. Only about 3 more yards left now. I hope I don't need more. I also looked for fabric for the mattress cover and seat cushions. I’m thinking of perforated heavy vinyl. I couldn’t find anything like that. I stopped at the Sunnyvale Grocery Outlet market on the way home. I haven’t found any cheap ice cream treats at our store but they had them there. Lou made steak with mashed potatoes for dinner. I received a water leak monitor that I ordered. I’ll install it tomorrow. Our utility company says we use 468 gallons per day which seems way high for our seemingly conservative usage. We’ll see what the culprit is. The monitor records usage and has AI to identify what’s using it and whether it should be using it.

Monday: (11/14) Granola and banana for breakfast. I installed the Flume 2 water flow meter first thing. It seems to be reading our usage well. There was a 56 gallon usage at noon that I’ll have to look into what it was and whether it’s appropriate. Next thing, I upholstered and installed the two wall panels. They look pretty good. Leftover Chinese food for lunch. Chili for dinner.

Tuesday: (11/15) The usual sausage, egg and cheese sandwich for breakfast. I led a hike at Windy Hill Open Space Preserve. It was 10 miles and had a 1600’ climb. 10 fellow hikers from San Jose Mid-week Hikers joined me. We had nice weather, nice trail conditions, and no mud. The went quite fast at 2.6mph and finished early. We had lunch at the top. Back home, I had some salad for lunch. I rested the rest of the day. Lou and Dawn made squash lasagna for dinner.

Wednesday: (11/16) Granola and banana for breakfast. A slow morning. I did some desk tidy up before I attended my Wednesday Alpha Software webinar. I then had an early lunch with the intention of getting to uninterrupted work on my van. But, that was not to be. Lo and Dawn were off early to an appointment at Stanford to get Lou’s phone and watch connected. They returned with word that the phone was too old for the watch. Lou had made an appointment with the manager of the Tmobile store where they bought the watches for 1300 and wanted me to go since I am the account owner for our phones. The T Mobile manager confirmed that the phone should work if it is upgraded to IOS15 so they tried to do that the rest of the afternoon but it failed. We looked around downtown Palo Alto as we waited, and waited, and waited. And then went home unsuccessful. Tostadas for dinner.

Thursday: (11/17) Scrambled eggs and ham with toast for breakfast. I took a walk by all my neighborhood projects then got busy with the van. Today turned out to be most a material acquisition and thinking day. I needed more 2x2” boards so i went down to the San Jose house to get more wood out of the attic. Lots of 2x6”x12’ boards were leftover and stored there for 20 years. I removed the last of them today and brought them home for this project. I then went by the Milpitas Walmart store and returned the battery core from the Jeep. Incidentally, since the new battery was installed and it has learned about it, the Start/Stop function works again. In the past 8 years we’ve owned this jeep, the Start/Stop function has only worked about a total of one year. Hopefully it likes this battery better and keeps working. I also returned a crepe pan I had gotten from Marshalls at the Great Mall. On the way home, I stopped for lunch from the Wok On Restaurant in Sunnyvale. Back home and more planning and thinking how to build the refrigerator cabinet and dinette seat. Leftover Chinese for dinner.

Friday: (11/18) Granola and banana for breakfast. My procrastination won so i took a drive over to CVS to get some mouthwash for Dawn. I then went to the city recreation office and tried to get my free veterans park pass but no one was in the office. Evidently they are only there on tue wed and thu. Too bad it doesn’t mention that on their website. Next stop was ACE hardware where I got some steel angle iron and paint. And finally, I filled the gas tank. Then it was time for leftover squash lasagna for lunch. That brought about nap time. Later I cleaned up my workbench which was piled up with residue from recent projects. And finally, i got out the table sawn and ripped some 2x2 boards to build the van cabinet framework. Lou made mashed potatoes with sauerbraten for dinner.

Saturday: (11/19) Granola for breakfast. I post a hike for Tuesday. Leftover squash lasagna for lunch. I worked on the van starting to build the refrigerator cabinet. After a lot of thinking and rethinking and a false start, I think I have all the pieces cut and ready to assemble after I get some appropriate screws. Received my long awaited composting toilet for the van. It’s a new product called Cuddy supposedly a modern design and cheaper. We’ll see how it works and holds up to regular use. Lou made squash with onions and sausage for dinner.

Sunday: (11/20) Leftover Sauerbraten over mashed potatoes for breakfast. I worked all day on the van, after a slow Sunday morning. I assembled the refrigerator cabinet. I then pondered how to place all the electrical equipment. I put everything in place, the refrigerator, the inverter, snd the two batteries. Popcorn for lunch. I made a list of material I needed from the Lowe’s. After an afternoon nap, We all went to Lowe’s. I picked up lots of different screws, some aluminum channel, other hardware, and some paint primer. Chili sizes for dinner.

Monday: (11/21) I prepared ham and eggs with toast for breakfast. After breakfast Lou and I took a short walk up the block. Back home, I got busy on the van. I spent more time studying the potential layout to maximize function and efficient storage. I then got busy making modifications to the cabinet. At the end of the day I had made progress. It’s ready for painting. After all the paint dries, I'll start mounting all the components. Lou made macaroni and cheese for lunch.

Artichoke chicken with rice for dinner.

Tuesday: (11/22) I made my usual hikers breakfast ham egg and cheese ciabatta sandwich. I met 16 fellow hikers at Monte Bello Open Space Preserve to lead a hike up to the top of Black Mountain. A strenuous 5.8 mile loop hike with 1100’ of climb. On the way home I had a severe sneezing attack. I must be allergic to something that is outside now. I ended up relaxing and blowing my nose the rest of the day. Roast chicken with artichokes and baked potato for dinner.

Wednesday: (11/23) Lou’s birthday. Granola and banana for breakfast. Dawn and Lou went down and signed the lease for her apartment at the building we’ve been watching be built this past year or two. Her studio apartment there at Wilton Court is really nice. Now the work begins to move her furniture from storage into the apartment. Looks Like I may be doing it by myself. Lunch at the Gourmet Haus Staudt restaurant in Redwood City. Of course, Lou and Dawn stopped off at the Savers Thrift store. Lou found a Bolt of upholstery fabric there that is a nice complementary color for the van. Just snacks for dinner.

Thursday: (11/24) Thanksgiving day. Granola and a banana for breakfast. I worked on the van again. I cut out and assembled the drawer for the electrical cabinet. I also painted a prime coat on the cabinet and drawer. We had a nice holiday dinner about 1430 of three kinds of chicken, mashed potatoes, gravy, dressing, yams, creamed peas with onions, fresh cranberry sauce, ambrosia, all topped off later by Lou’s apple pie. More than a typical dinner but way less than the usual Thanksgiving meal.

Friday: (11/25) Breakfast was granola with a banana. Lunch was left over Thanksgiving dinner (creamed peas and onions, chicken, mashed potatoes and gravy, and fresh cranberry orange sauce.) For dinner I prepared chili with scrambled eggs and cheese. I worked on doing the color top coat painting of the cabinet for the refrigerator and electrical equipment ,and then in the evening, I placed it all in the Van to avoid it getting wet.

Saturday: (11/26) More chili with scrambled eggs and cheese for breakfast. Tomato soup with grilled cheese sandwiches for lunch. BBQ ribs with baked potato and green beans for dinner. I worked on the van installing the electrical/refrigerator cabinet. I also trimmed the drawer and installed it into the cabinet. I didn’t feel good today so I didn't schedule a hike for Tuesday. My knees and hips were complaining.

Sunday: (11/27) Granola for breakfast. Pulled pork and cheese sandwich for lunch. I installed the electrical panel board into the cabinet. I also started emptying the van to make room to carry cargo. Roast chicken with mashed potatoes for dinner.

Monday: (11/28) I completed removing uninstalled materials from the van in preparation to carry cargo. I collected the dollies and blankets and headed off to meet Lou and Dawn at her storage cubby in Santa Clara. Lou and Dawn had been to a dental appointment. I loaded all the cabinets and a bookcase into the van with assistance of the small things like drawers and such by Lou and Dawn. Another trip is needed to bring the panels like the countertop and cabinet doors. After lunch we emptied the van into her apartment. Granola for breakfast. Pulled pork and cheese sandwich for lunch. Chili with scrambled egg and cheese for dinner.

Tuesday: (11/29) Granola for breakfast. I took the van over to the Palo Alto Parks office and got my free Veterans permit. Now I’ll be able to enter Foothills park without paying. Lou and Dawn had an appointment and then met me at the storage site. We loaded up the remaining parts for her bedroom set. One large standing cabinet and all the desktops and door panels. We went to the new Country Inn location in Cupertino. Their old location burnt down a few months ago. I stopped to get gas at a cheap station in Sunnyvale, only $4.39 rather than the typical low priced station price of $4.69 and definitely less than our local stations $5.29. I also stopped by the bank. We emptied the van and moved all the furniture up to Dawn’s apartment except for one desktop panel that is too heavy and too long for me to handle by myself. Lou and Dawn can’t help lifting heavy items. I had leftovers from lunch for my dinner.

Wednesday: (11/30) Lou made deviled eggs for breakfast. We went down to the apartment to think about how and where to install the different items. After a few bad starts we came up with a play that installs a desk that is 9 feet long on two walls. It also locates the wall bed so that it has room to walk around it when it is down. And it uses a previously wall hung cabinet as a floor mounted bookcase. Amazingly, this wall bed office furniture system, which was received for free two months before Dawn got her apartment or had any idea of how the floorplan might be, ended up fitting so well. Tomorrow, I do need to cut off two feet of the large desktop that I couldn’t get up to the apartment with all the rest. After it is shortened, it will fit the wall placement and also fit into the elevator and not be so heavy I can’t handle it by myself. We finished the planning and general placement about 1330 and noticed we were very hungry. We went to Super Taqueria for lunch. We then relaxed the rest of the day. Lou made squash with onions and sausage for dinner.