Tag Archives: getting it out there

More of not much

20150222_143627Holy crap! What do I write about…

It’s weird, I am in a strange head space right now. I have been thinking about a lot of projects I want to get going or moving forward on but it seems like the entire universe in in a holding pattern. I have aviation projects I want to get working on, radio projects, homesteading projects, building stuff, woodworking, furniture, the list goes on and on, but everything is on hold, well almost everything…

We have been working on putting together a bunch of projects of stuff for sale to try and get a crafting/restoration business going to start generating some funds before we make the jump to a new location but it sapping all our energy and some funds with not much in return as of yet.

What was once going to be a website for a completely different business idea has turned into our families crafting/restoration site VintageAeroWorks.com. We have been working on a bunch of projects and posting them on the site. We also have several projects we are just wrapping up to post over the weekend. All of my energies have been going to getting more build projects done.

While building all of this stock and working side-by-side with Tammy are is a good thing in theory, my head is spinning with all of the things that are on hold while I focus on this. Most of it is stuff that would be on hold anyway. I can’t justify starting any other projects that would require a lot of time or materials right before making a big move. It just wouldn’t make sense. I am trying to cut down the pile of stuff that needs to get moved, not add to it.

Keeping spending down to a bare minimum is also a priority, while still keeping up with what we need to spend money on to get the build projects done.

It’s all so tiring, and I can’t get my brain to switch off. It’s like having 100 projects all running at the same time but having 95 of them all waiting on some outside thing to happen befor you can go any further. You go through the list everyday and try to plan for the next phase of each and every one, but you can’t because that outside thing is a variable and the direction of the project hinges on that variable. 95 variables for 95 projects, all floating around in your head while you try to stay on top of all 100 projects and get that small 5 that you are not waiting on anything done.

Just thinking about thinking about it makes my head hurt. Welcome to my head, watch your step, mind the squishy bits.

The basic plan is for a land acquisition in May with a move date sometime around September. I don’t know if I can hold out that long. I’m relatively sure my perception is skewed, but it sure seems like the Stupid and Ignorant quotient is getting larger every day, and I’m finding my tolerance for it is in very short supply. Fortunately working from home keeps me out of the majority of it but even going out only a few times a week has become a very trying experience.

I guess I need some more shop time. 🙂

Till next time,

The Long and the Short of it…

PlanningThere has been a lot going on in and around the old homestead. Some of it has even been aviation related!

To begin with, I spent the last month clearing out old projects. Ether finishing them or cutting them off my list of things to do. I have also decided that 2011 is going to be a year of completing outstanding projects and divesting of outmoded ones. I have been completing little projects right and left and trying really hard not to start new ones, even small ones.

All this housecleaning has also got me organizing and prioritizing the projects I am working on. Always number one on the priorities list is family. Next on the list, out of necessity, is the day job. I have a lot of flexibility here but I need to stay on top of work projects and close out as many as possible by years end.

The third in line on the priority list is school. I enrolled in classes for the Spring term at San Jose City College. A couple of years ago I enrolled at Mountain State University in an Aviation BS distance learning program. Without going into too much detail, I had a 4.0 at MSU, I even made the Dean’s List. Something happened and my GPA hit the floor causing me to loose my funding. I need to bring my overall GPA back up before I can go back and finish my degree at MSU, enter SJCC. I am working on a General AS in Physical Sciences with concentrations in Physics and Chemistry. This is a long term goal, but I need to stick with it. It needs to be a priority.

My fourth priority area is aviation. In truth, this one will move up one or two spots on the list as things progress. This is a broad area because it includes so many small(ish) goals for various endorsements, ratings, and additional certificates. The top of the list here is building the Volksplane. Building an airplane ties into a lot of areas within aviation that are important to me. One of which is working on my A&P Mechanic Certificate.

Having defined these areas and the goals within them, I outlined processes to get to the goals. Since then I have been streamlining. The biggest challenge for me in recent years has been motivation. I suppose that is because up until recently I didn’t really have a defined life goal. I have talents in many areas and I have been searching for some way to incorporate as many as I can into some kind of commercial enterprise. Up to this point I haven’t been able to pull that one off.

I have known for several years that I needed to find a life goal but it always seemed to elude me by staying in the shadows as some vaporous, obscure conglomeration of skill sets that looked like they might work themselves into a good gig. Since that approach didn’t worked, it was time to make the damn decision once and for all. Looking at the non-family things that really bring me joy and satisfaction and making a career out of them, I find myself happy with the results. What I want to do is build, repair, restore, and maintain aircraft. In short, that makes me a mechanic; it also includes many ancillary aviation related things, and thats fine by me.

As for other interests, if it doesn’t move me towards my goal, I am not going to spend a lot of time on it, if any.

Sitting here thinking and typing this post I am feeling a lot of life stress dissipating. For the first time in my life I can see myself twenty years from now doing something I love to do, and actually know what it is. I could be anywhere, as long as I’m in a hanger with tools, music, and an airplane destined to fly again.

another year…

Another year has passed.

As I get older I find that I understand more, not necessarily know more, though I strive to keep learning, what I mean is all those things we are told as kids “you’ll understand when you get older” at some point do make sense. Maybe not the way we expected to understand them, but we, or at least I, understand a great many things much better than I did just a few years ago.

This “new understanding” and all of the opportunities to learn new things are some of the reasons “getting older” doesn’t bother me at all. The silver hair, no problem, it’s a badge of experience. Getting a little thin on top, again no problem. It is all a part of life. Mortality itself is not much of a worry, we are all born, grow up, grow old, and eventually die, it’s how nature works. What dose weigh on me around this time of year is that it’s a marker in time, a recognition that the earths has made its way around the sun once again, and there is so much I wanted to complete before this marker in time came around.

As kids, we all have things we want to accomplish in life, we want to “be” something when we grow up, “do” something before we get “old.” As time passes those goals change for most of us, and thats fine, more often than not, they should. We grow and evolve, we become more experienced, we are exposed to things that as children, we never would have imagined we would see or do. It’s part of the cycle.

When we are young adults we have new goals and desires, we pursue other paths, it’s the next phase of the cycle. At some point when we “grow up” most of us find that we have settled into a path and wonder haw we got here. For some of us it is a great ride that seems to get better as we go, for some… well the ride is less fun. I have no complaints about the paths I have chosen, the choices I have made. There are of course some things I might have done better along the road, different choices, but the major course changes, I stand by them.

Each time the earth makes it way back to this point around the sun I just tend to think about time slipping by, what I had hoped to do, but didn’t. Not so much a regret of things not done, but of letting the time itself slip by without making the best of it. Or did I? Was I making the best of what I had/did, or was I just coasting? If I was coasting, was that the best thing to do? You know… second guessing myself, my motives. I suppose it’s more of a contemplation thing for me than a self doubt thing.

Reflecting as I type, I guess this annual contemplation is one of those times I find insight in the “you’ll understand when you get older” truths. I guess thats what this whole post is all about.


So when did time leap ahead a year and a half?

I was trying to set up schedules for all of my projects back in August 2008, now its February 2010!!! Twenty-Ten! There was so much I wanted to have rolling by now. It seems like I just can’t get on top of the pile of work to be done.

Today was a relatively productive day, in a clean-up-the-straggling-loose-ends kind of way. Moved years of data from an old computer to a new one, that took most of the day. I was hoping to use the old one for another project but that is not going so well now. The partition is all goofed and I have been having trouble formatting one of the hard drives. I’m waiting on a low level format now.

I went through a big pile of saved pocket change, picking out anything that I could add/upgrade to my us coin collection. This is more of a diversion hobby than an investment one; I don’t have much worth anything more than face value yet.

Cleaned off the desk. That was a chore, but it always feels good when I recover desk real estate. This project of course resulted in shredding, filing, shifting, and putting stuff back where it belongs.

Scanning old photos for the genealogical archive was another little project for the day. It’s amazing how much time it takes to prepare 30 photos for archiving. The scanning itself takes about an hour with keeping the glass clean and the photos dusted off while swapping them out. The meta data takes another hour to an hour and a half. So for those 30 photos I was busy for nearly three hours. This brings me to about 300 photos from one box with about 800 more to go, in this box.

Over all I have thirty thousand plus photos and over five thousand documents to scan in my genealogy pile. This one is going to take a while to get through. I have no illusions about that. Another part of that project is to enter all of the collected genealogical data for some six hundred names. My grandmother had done extensive research but it was all on paper. I have added significantly to the data but it is not in an easily ported format, so I created a web accessible database. Now all I have to do is get the data into the database. Some where in here I also need to get a negative/slide scanner as well, oh and a AV capture device that works with my laptop and Vista. I’m trying to get myself in the habit of doing a hundred scans and ten data sets entered per week, I’ll settle for fifty and ten.

As for my aviation endeavors, well I need to get back to my reading which has fallen off the map. I need to get my knowledge back up so I can get my Advanced Ground Instructor (AGI) and Instrument Ground Instructor (IGI) certificates current. Then I need to get back in a plane and get my Commercial Pilot certificate current, oh and I need to get my medical certificate current as well. Instructor certificates can be brought current with little cost, the medical is less than one hundred fifty dollars, its the flying time to get my pilot certificate current that will run about a thousand dollars. Then it’s back to work on my Certified Flight Instructor (CFI) certificate, that will run somewhere around another five thousand dollars. The plan was to get all of this done by the end of the year so I can get started teaching again by next year.

I also have a few writing projects in the mix as well, a genealogy blog, an aviation blog, a community activity blog, a community organization blog, two books, and a screenplay. Granted, the books and screenplay are lower priorities, but I still should be generating two thousand words a week on the blogs at least, and It would be nice to do a thousand a week on one of the books or the screenplay.

If all of that wasn’t enough, some where in there I need to generate at least a thousand dollars a month to cover basic expenses on top of the seven thousand dollars for flight and genealogy expenses. That comes out to a base in the neighborhood of twenty thousand dollars to get us through the year. Also in this mix I should be working on the fifteen thousand for next years base. If I finish my CFI this year I can be working next year as an instructor and with my base covered I can use any extra from instructing to cover the expenses for expanding my teaching certificates, CFII, MEI, etc. If I am working as a CFI my needed flight time for currency is built in to the teaching time, which saves me a lot of expense.

I can schedule all of the no-cost stuff fairly easily. It’s trying to get and accommodate gainful revenue generating work lined up, self employment can be a bitch. Some how I have been able to keep us above water, just barely, since 2003.

It would be really nice to be able to do some stuff for my family this year. A real vacation would be nice, it’s been over fifteen years, my son has never been on a real vacation. I would like to do something special for my wife this anniversary too, it’s our seventeenth. As always, we do what we need to do to get through, and I am very grateful for what we do have, it’s more than many others. I do truly appreciate all that we have. There is just a feeling deep inside, the desire to provide more for my family. It feels lousy when I have to tell my son “we can’t afford that right now” and it’s something simple like craft supplies or going out to lunch or dinner on the weekend.

As it stands the basics are thus; I need to set up a productive but flexible schedule form studying, writing, genealogy work, and making money, I need to come up with twenty grand for this year, and start working on fifteen for next year for a total of thirty five thousand dollars before the end of the year. Piece of cake. :-/

Cuz ya gott’a have one

there always has to be a first post… you know, it’s the one that comes before all the others…

So I have other places I post stuff, ether for business or special interest; a lot of the time the stuff I feel like writing dons’t belong in any of those places… enter blatherskite. I needed a place to post stuff I just want to post. There are many other places to post this kind of crap, but I wanted my own little secluded spot that I have total control over. Makes me sound like a control freak, and in many ways… it’s quite true, I am.

The last few weeks have been rough for me, mentally that is, I have not been in the best of places in my mind. One of those dark times that you just have to work through. Not to sound broodish or emo, but I just needed some time to sleep in really late, stay up really late, not go out, keep the curtains closed, and do a lot of mindless vegging in front of the TV. Some times you just need a week alone in the dark.

So, now the week is over and it’s time to try and get back in gear. It’s late once again, and now I’m getting stuff out and on “paper” here while listening to Pandora Internet Radio (Peter, Paul, & Mary Radio) as background. This week is for getting my proverbial shit together. Judy Collins “Both Sides Now” just came on… funny.

WTF to do next? Dunno. I’ll have to work on that.