Cami and I went for a drive in search of magnolias. For Mothers Day I did a scratchboard of some cala lilies. For her birthday I wanted to do a magnolia since they are blooming everywhere.
Here is the prettiest one we found:
In addition to the magnolias we saw some beautiful orange lilies:
And some interesting cactus that I pass each day going to work:
When I first got my Incipio silicrylic case for my iPhone I could tell it wasn’t the strongest case around. I liked the soft cushion of the inside case, but the hard outside shell was pretty thin. After a while it started to crack at the corners, no matter how careful I tried to be.
I got it about 14 or 15 months ago and it has been looking pretty tattered. Not anxious to buy a new case I started looking for ways to repair it. Glue wouldn’t work because the material is so thin – it would just crack again. I thought of tape, but there were disadvantages to each kind I thought of:
- Duct tape: It’s too thick and would tend to grab if I were to put the phone in my pocket. If it started to peel up the adhesive would be sticky.
- Scotch tape: This would be thin enough but not strong enough. I knew it wouldn’t be long before it would split where the cracks are.
- Packing tape: Splits too easily, similar to scotch tape.
- Electrical tape: This seemed like it would be a good option because my case is black. The tape is thin enough with low friction. But, I have seen the adhesive of electrical tape soften up after a while. I wanted something similar but more likely to last.
Then I realized I had the answer: adhesive vinyl used for window decals and signs. I’m not sure why I didn’t think of it before since I had a roll of black vinyl (Oracal 651) sitting downstairs. Using a fairly small piece, I cut several strips with rounded corners (rounded to make them less likely to catch on something. These I applied over the cracks in the hard case. On the case corners I used smaller pieces so the vinyl wouldn’t bunch up as it followed the contour. Here is the result:
I’ve been using it like this for several weeks and I’m very pleased with how it turned out. The black on black doesn’t show right away that it has been repaired. The adhesive on decal vinyl is strong and stays stable over time, even with temperature changes. No doubt I will eventually end up replacing this case, but I think I’ve given its useful life a long extension. Instead of feeling like it is coming apart, the case feels like it did when it was new.
UPDATE: It’s been about 4 months, and the case repairs are still holding up. The vinyl has not peeled up at all. The repairs I did were done with just a few square inches of material – maybe 3″x2″ that I cut my strips from. A sign shop might be willing to give scraps from their trash…if you ask nice and are respectful of their time.
I am a lover of fresh strawberries, especially when they are in season and the price is good. The problem is, if you buy more than you can eat in one sitting, you are faced with the problem of how to keep them fresh. After ruining our share of berries, my wife and I have come up with an easy system that works.
These strawberries are over a week old and they still taste great:
To achieve this we do the following:
- Remove not just the top, but the entire core as soon as you get them home. This is the trick. It doesn’t take much time and it is well worth the trouble. If you are in a hurry, at the very least slice off the top to remove the leaves. There is something about the leaves that promotes decay even in the refrigerator. When we remove the entire core they stay fresh much longer.
- Keep the berries refrigerated. With the core removed I haven’t seen strawberries mold in the regrigerator. If they are stored too long they will eventually start to “wilt” and lose flavor, but they don’t get the rotten patches that are so common.
- Keep the berries covered. This prevents them from drying out, which can happen in a refrigerator.
- Don’t allow the berries to freeze, unless that is your purpose. A few times our refrigerator has been too cold and froze the strawberries. They aren’t much fun to eat after that.
Ellie is, and always has been, a very vocal child. Cami is pretty sure Ellie is starting to purposely sing when she hears music. Her voice takes on a more harmonic tone when music plays.
Until this morning she seemed mostly interested in vowel sounds, and she often holds them for long stretches like “woooooaaaaahhhhhooooowwwwwwwwoooooooaaaaahhhhh” – sort of like Eliza Doolittle’s voice exercises. When she got up this morning Ellie was in a good mood and full of chatter. I noticed she was using “B” sounds a bit. Cami said she heard it yesterday too. I started saying “Ba ba ba ba ba” to Ellie, and it wasn’t long before she was doing it too! This is the first time I have known her to really copy anything I have done. Of course I am impressed. We think she is a smarty and we love to see her progress. Now we need to teacher to say “Mama”.