Monday, September 16, 2019

Saturday, September 14, 2019

Firefly Q6

New camera for a slightly bigger rocket.  Shoots 4K video.  
60 bucks - from China.

Friday, September 13, 2019

Thursday, September 12, 2019

front porch decked...

250 screws
87,94,70, .38",B

Wednesday, September 11, 2019

Casita Power

Some of the solar gear arrived today for the Casita.  
Panels coming Saturday. 

Tuesday, September 10, 2019

A big rocket...

So a guy in the Houston area named Mauricio Valdez who has been following my blog and YouTube channel donated a partially completed mid/high powered rocket to the cause.  It is a Binder Design Excel Plus.  67" tall and 4" in diameter with a 38mm motor tube that will handle G, H, I, and J motors.  I can only purchase certain G motors for now.  To be able to purchase larger motors, I will have to get HPR certification Level 1 for H and I motors and Level 2 for J motors.  We shall see how far I take this... 83,92,74,0,B

Monday, September 9, 2019

Sunday, September 8, 2019

Do rockets bring you closer to God?

Psalm8:3 When I consider thy heavens, the work of thy fingers, the moon and the stars, which thou hast ordained; 4 What is man, that thou art mindful of him? and the son of man, that thou visitest him?

Saturday, September 7, 2019

another rocket test coming up...

Rocket: Estes Phantom Blue
Camera: KEQI 1080P
Engine: C6-5
Projected altitude: 1,000 ft.

Friday, September 6, 2019

Thursday, September 5, 2019

A little side gig...

A friend on the ranch needed to replace a burned out pump on her catchment system.  She bought the exact model so everything lined up (almost) perfectly.  The previous plumber had the presence of mind to put slip unions in all the right places so switching out the pump was pretty easy.  87,95,76,0,B

Wednesday, September 4, 2019

There is a method to my madness...

So I have been watching a lot of model rocket videos lately.  Most are pretty lame - some are just OK - and only a very few are what I consider to be pretty darn good.  One thing I haven't seen is some close up video of the chute deploying.  My goal is to get some really good video with my drone of the rocket deploying the chute at apogee.  Model rockets ascend rapidly during powered flight - continue ascending while coasting after the propellant is finished - and reach the point of maximum altitude (apogee) before falling back to earth.  It's a bit tricky just getting the right motor with the correct delay to fire off the chute at apogee.  Larger, more sophisticated (and expensive) model rockets have an electronics bay with an altimeter that fires deployment charges at apogee and/or specific altitudes.  With these cheaper models, it is going to require a bunch of flights and a bit of luck to capture apogee and chute deployment close up with the drone (without hitting the drone of course).  I just got another inexpensive rocket and some spare parachutes and shock cords so I can work toward my goal.  86,93,65,0,B

Tuesday, September 3, 2019

Free Tin

Cutting up some old/donated tin for the Casita ceiling.  67,95,87,0,B

Monday, September 2, 2019

Sunday, September 1, 2019


1 Corinthians 15:55 O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory? 56 The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law. 57 But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. 58 Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.

Saturday, August 31, 2019


The client sent out a couple of chairs for me and the guy who is helping me build the Casita...88,97,72,0,B

Friday, August 30, 2019

Thursday, August 29, 2019

Lots of staples...

Over 2,000 staples and have yet to whack a finger...

Hmmm...forgot to post.

wall insulation going up quickly...83,100,71,0,B

Tuesday, August 27, 2019

Close to the finish line...

Wall insulation, porch decking, and trim delivered today.
88,108,76, .35",B

Monday, August 26, 2019

Sunday, August 25, 2019

Idle Words

Matthew 12:35 A good man out of the good treasure of the heart bringeth forth good things: and an evil man out of the evil treasure bringeth forth evil things. 36 But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment. 37 For by thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned. 

Saturday, August 24, 2019

Friday, August 23, 2019

Thursday, August 22, 2019

Wednesday, August 21, 2019

The New Rocket

Launching this weekend. 91,95,73,0,B

Tuesday, August 20, 2019

I think the Mavic Pro is OK...

Second drone test since my crash.  Hovered nicely at 400 ft. (part way to the moon).  90,96,76,0,B

Monday, August 19, 2019

Sunday, August 18, 2019

Saturday, August 17, 2019


This guy was about 3 inches long.  I thought it was a hummingbird when he flew by me.  92,98,79,0,B

Friday, August 16, 2019

Thursday, August 15, 2019

The roof is finished...

video tomorrow...

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Tuesday, August 13, 2019

That First Time

The first time I visited the area, I got to this point on Highway 118 and thought to myself - who the hell could live out here?  I think about that every time I pass this spot...since moving here 11 1/2 years ago.  75,103,94,0,W

Monday, August 12, 2019

Sunday, August 11, 2019

the wicked...

Psalm 37:37 Mark the perfect man, and behold the upright: for the end of that man is peace. 38 But the transgressors shall be destroyed together: the end of the wicked shall be cut off. 39 But the salvation of the righteous is of the Lord: he is their strength in the time of trouble. 40 And the Lord shall help them, and deliver them: he shall deliver them from the wicked, and save them, because they trust in him.

Saturday, August 10, 2019

Friday, August 9, 2019

Thursday, August 8, 2019

Wednesday, August 7, 2019

Tuesday, August 6, 2019

Early Bird

This time of year it is brutally hot and the only way I can get any work done on the casita is by setting an alarm and getting up at 5AM.  I was resisting the notion until I decided it has been so long since I had to get up daily with an this point it is a novelty that I am willing to try out for a change.  The goal for now is to be on the job before the sun pokes over the mountain.  93.99.75,0,B

Monday, August 5, 2019

Sunday, August 4, 2019

Saturday, August 3, 2019

it's just HOT...


Friday, August 2, 2019

Thursday, August 1, 2019

starting the tin

Had a slight hiccup yesterday when I discovered that McCoys had sent me the wrong inside closures for the roofing.  They delivered the correct ones this morning and I got started by getting the drip edge in place and figuring out how the roofing is going to line up.  I have to trim both the eve edges of the metal to center it on the building.  Metal eve trim will protect the outside edges from water penetration.  Placed one section of closure with butyl tape and I am ready to proceed tomorrow morning.  (Hint:  they aren't kidding when the butyl tape manufacturers suggest refrigerating the tape - it is very difficult to peel off the paper backing when it is warm.)  90,98,72,0,B

Wednesday, July 31, 2019

A distant fan...

Ben got a late birthday card in the mail today
from his friend Tricia in Trinidad...

Tuesday, July 30, 2019

no more hatchlings

Checked the nest this morning and the hatchlings were gone...probably the victims of a snake.  Better luck next time.  89,96,70,0,B

Monday, July 29, 2019

Sunday, July 28, 2019

Beware the father of lies...

John 8:42 Jesus said unto them, If God were your Father, ye would love me: for I proceeded forth and came from God; neither came I of myself, but he sent me. 43 Why do ye not understand my speech? even because ye cannot hear my word. 44 Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it. 45 And because I tell you the truth, ye believe me not. 46 Which of you convinceth me of sin? And if I say the truth, why do ye not believe me? 47 He that is of God heareth God's words: ye therefore hear them not, because ye are not of God. 

Saturday, July 27, 2019

big plants

My two tomato plants are huge.  Just plucked # 33 and # 34.  I counted 24 more tiny tomatoes slowly filling out.  I would have pruned these plants to produce more fruit, but I thought I would see how big they would get if left alone.  Have had very little bug problems with these.  They are both growing in one Earthbox and at this point they require 3 - 4 gallons of water per day.   89,94,65,0,B

Friday, July 26, 2019

Thursday, July 25, 2019

perfect fit

Checked the doors today and the rough openings are just right...

Wednesday, July 24, 2019

House Finch Update

The first hatchling emerged this morning and had its first breakfast.


Tuesday, July 23, 2019

Monday, July 22, 2019

Sunday, July 21, 2019

Who to you serve?

John 8:34 Jesus answered them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Whosoever committeth sin is the servant of sin. 35 And the servant abideth not in the house for ever: but the Son abideth ever. 36 If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed. 

Saturday, July 20, 2019

YouTube Rerun...

In honor of the 50th Anniversary of Apollo 11 landing on the moon.

Friday, July 19, 2019

Thursday, July 18, 2019

rain delay...

Due to a little storm last night, the roofing delivery won't be coming till next Tuesday.  Started shuttling the siding materials over to the job site.  88,95,70,0,B

Wednesday, July 17, 2019

furring strips

Broke out the old table saw and put a new blade on it.  Been over 10 years since it had new teeth.  I wanted long length 1x4 furring strips which McCoys doesn't have.  They only sell 1x2 and 2x2 in 8' lengths.  Ripping 2x4s was my best option and cheaper than buying their standard 1x4s.  76,99,76, .23",B

Tuesday, July 16, 2019

New Nest

Some house finches have taken over (and refined) and old dove nest under the SW corner of the greenhouse.  There are 3 eggs in the nest.  I am monitoring it with my webcam and you can view it on my nightly live stream on YouTube from 7:15 to 8:15 PM CST.  91,99,74,0,B

Monday, July 15, 2019

Sunday, July 14, 2019

the greater...

1 John 4: 1 Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world. 2 Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God: 3 And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world. 4 Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is He that is in you, than he that is in the world.

Saturday, July 13, 2019

that tire tumbleweed...

The story behind the tire tumbleweed:  
Tires for Sisyphus is a performance video utilizing a spherical tire clad sculpture. Angel Fernandez pushes the object on a 42 acre property in Terlingua Ranch, near Big Bend, Texas. Winter Rusiloski is assistant director, Persephone Battle is drone camera operator, and Christian deLeon is responsible for editing and sound. The video was included in exhibitions at KSpace Contemporary in Corpus Christi, TX and the CICA Museum in South Korea.  
The work is a performance video utilizing a spherical tire covered sculpture. The device creates a drawing on the sandy 40-acre surface on our property in Terlingua Ranch. I document the process and finished marking via drone photography as well as on the ground footage. While traveling from South Padre Island to the Big Bend along the U.S. and Mexico border, I encountered chained tires that the Border Patrol uses on the American side. Their white Suburbans drag tires to clear tracks on the dirt paths. This clearing or erasing of tracks allows them to monitor fresh foot traffic. Native Americans used this method to track and hunt various animals. This technique sustained their livelihood, which at times was unpredictable. Tires are symbols of progress, movement and date back to Sumerian culture’s invention of the wheel, one of the most revolutionary inventions of civilization.
I intend to use the tires differently from the subtracting and destroying quality. In Tires for Sisyphus, they are a creative and mark making tool. The tires and my shoes leave impressions on the earth the same way that immigrants leave evidence of their passage. This drawing is a record of the journey. The process of pushing this object on the desolate landscape suggests a perpetual struggle, one filled with tension, pain and hard work. Our existence leaves a mark on the land, good and bad. This same existence also makes impressions on our collective identity, shaping the psyche of this country.
Tires for Sisyphus is a reminder of the great cliché that great things come from hard work, risk and adventure. Immigrants make up the greatest part of our American identity and they embody the entrepreneurial American spirit that helped individuals traverse the Atlantic Ocean on their most perilous journey to this amazing land of opportunity. Presently, people come to this country and risk everything, including their lives. People are caged, turned away, and mistreated. Many will come back and try to find a different way to enter this country. This process is part of the unending cycle, a Sisyphean task, and the pursuit of a better tomorrow that may never come.

Friday, July 12, 2019

Thursday, July 11, 2019

don't want no leaks...

Taped all the sheathing seams and installed some peal and stick leak barrier on the ridge and at the roofing transition.  83,97,75,0,B

Wednesday, July 10, 2019

a side job...

Got a little repair job coming up for a friend as soon as the insurance claim is finalized.  His house got pounded on the north side by some pretty large hail.  89,98,68,0,B  

Tuesday, July 9, 2019

man on top...

First time I've been on top.  Finished all the roof fascia and some final sheathing nails.  Prepped for underlayment now.  Tin arrives next week.  In other news: didn't find any hornworms on my tomato plants - just a couple of grasshoppers doing a little leaf chewing.  81,99,73,T,B

Monday, July 8, 2019

Sunday, July 7, 2019

give me liberty

Galatians 5:1 Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage.

Saturday, July 6, 2019

Hornworm Season

A couple of days ago, I noticed the first evidence of tomato hornworms on my plants.  Haven't been able to spot them yet.  Did a quick internet search today and discovered they are easy to find after dark if you use a blacklight - they glow bright green.  Dug through one of my old boxes of electronics and found a black light that I probably bought over 10 years ago...and it still works!  Going hornworm hunting tonight. 75,94,70, .08",B

Thursday, July 4, 2019

the fourth...

Today's holiday task - figuring out the gable fascia.
90,100,72, .13",B

Wednesday, July 3, 2019

Going to Europe...

The rattlesnake skin is finished and shipping out Monday to its new home in Estonia.  My friend Herbert Murd is going to put it on display in his Texas themed restaurant.  90,100,74, .05",B

Tuesday, July 2, 2019

shade again...

A few more repairs in the morning and I will be back
 to pre-storm damage progress...

Monday, July 1, 2019

Sunday, June 30, 2019

with God all things are possible...

Mark 10:23 And Jesus looked round about, and saith unto his disciples, How hardly shall they that have riches enter into the kingdom of God! 24 And the disciples were astonished at his words. But Jesus answereth again, and saith unto them, Children, how hard is it for them that trust in riches to enter into the kingdom of God! 25 It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God. 26 And they were astonished out of measure, saying among themselves, Who then can be saved? 27 And Jesus looking upon them saith, With men it is impossible, but not with God: for with God all things are possible.

Saturday, June 29, 2019

the ties that bind...

Finished preplacing all the hurricane ties I had installed with larger ones over the past couple of days.  80 ties - 800 hand driven nails.  Still have some L-angle to install to reinforce the post/beam connections.  69,93,84,0,B

Friday, June 28, 2019

Thursday, June 27, 2019

personal shade...

Finished getting all the rafters back in place and trimmed the ends this morning.  Ended up having to cut 11 new ones.  My friend Joe Blumentritt bought me a big hat to keep me out of the sun until I get all the shade put back together.  86,95,70,0,B

Wednesday, June 26, 2019

Tomato plants

The tomato plants are hanging in through the heat.  
Just picked tomatoes 17 - 21.