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March 1, 2010 7:15 PM 3/1/10

Put her television on a timer.

Cruel? Only a minor amount.

My daughter is autistic and has been using the TV as her “stim” for far too long now. So much so that she has been slowly neglecting doing other things.

So my wife and I decided that it was time to start weaning her off of it. Thus the timer.

And let me tell you she is _not_ a happy camper right now. But she’s also out of her room and sitting on the couch with us. She’s not getting to fast-forward and rewind the DVR like she likes to do but we both feel it’s a good compromise.

It’s probably going to take a wile for her to settle into a new routine and we’re quite prepared for the resulting temper tantrums. For once we’re a united front.

My daughter is smart though. She’ll figure out the timer eventually so in the meantime I’m going to put in the X10 controlled outlet that will allow us to control it remotely without her being able to bypass it. (I can control that from a cron job on the server then.)

In other news my father in law just spent about a week in the hospital because he fell with severe vertigo and dry heaves. Still diagnosing that one but he’s home and resting comfortably. Able to walk with a walker and will be in therapy the next few weeks. Regardless he’s okay for now.

I’m down another roomba. Banpei is having charging issues just like Skuld. So right now Urd is doing all the work. I’ve found the right mosfets I need to repair them but I can’t buy them until the end of the week.

Since it officially is two years and one day I sent off a message to Bank of America requesting the removal of the PMI on our mortgage. I’m going to definitely push that because it’ll save us almost $150 a month which is significant. They’re not going to want to do it but the original contract - 25% or two years.

Managed to get seeds set up in starter flats on shelves with two fixtures using 5000k color florescent bulbs on an 8 hour cycle. I’ve planted a half flat of Wisconsin Lake 55 tomatoes, a half flat of broccoli, a half flat of balloon peppers, two whole flats of herbs, and a half flat of XXXXXX which are a surprise for my wife. It’s two days and I’ve already see one seed sprout. I need to pick up a bucket at the end of the week so I can fill it full of the tap water and let it neutralize all the crap the city puts into it. (My rainbarrel is frozen so there’s no getting natural water there. I suppose I could melt snow but I’m not sure I have a clean source there either.) No matter. I’m just glad I have a start on our midwest growing season the size of a dime. Blink and you’ll miss it. ;-)

So we no longer have a land line. Got rid of ATT in favor of a dedicated line from Speakeasy and using our iPhones. So far it’s all positive. We’re saving $80/month or so and the Speakeasy line is a little faster as well as cleaner. (For the techies - no more PPPoE just plain static ADSL.) That and a new firewall system and it’s a much much better connection.

Now if I could only get a handle on everything else...

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( 7 comments — Leave a comment )
Mar. 2nd, 2010 08:31 am (UTC)
I guess it'll be a while before your daughter learns enough to be able to override the X10... of course, she could just unplug the TV from that outlet and plug it into a different one...

IANAD, etc., but "vertigo and dry heaves" sounds like an inner-ear problem; could be anything from an infection to Meniere's Syndrome. All are treatable, some are curable.

How about putting an under-sink filter on one or two of your sinks, to provide filtered water, both for human consumption and for watering the plants?
Mar. 2nd, 2010 08:46 am (UTC)
Oh and she _will_ figure that out. If our daughter is anything she's a problem solver. ;-) And with X10 my wife will insist on having one of the remotes available so she can override the system as necessary.

Re: father-in-law - Meneiere's Syndrome is what I came up with but they're checking a lot of things still. At least he's home now. They moved the bed into the basement so he won't have to go far for a while.

As for the filter...nice idea but as usual money is the issue. I'd love to put in the one softener/filter combo from a local place here. It uses a mechanical metering system to meter out the salt so no electricity is involved and their under-the-sink filters are pretty darn good too. But the softener alone is $1700+ which is something we don't have.

I may start looking for an in-the-sink style filter because I have a soap dispenser we could remove to put that in place. And that would be cheaper than a whole reverse-osmosis system.
Mar. 2nd, 2010 12:00 pm (UTC)
Well, as I said, sooner or later - probably sooner - she'll just unplug it from the X10.

I knew someone who was suffering from Meniere's-like symptoms, and it turned out to be a simmering inner-ear infection. Once the infection was cleared up, the symptoms went away and didn't come back.

In the house I lived in before I moved here, I installed one of those cylindrical under-sink filters in the kitchen - I think it cost about $100.00. It's not a salt-using water softener; it uses a sintered metal screen, carbon granules, and pellets of ion-exchange resin, all contained in a replaceable cartridge. I don't want to install one here, though, because we're only renting. (There are also the ones that just attach to the faucet, of course.)
Mar. 2nd, 2010 03:17 pm (UTC)
Did I mention I love that icon? ;-)

Inner-ear stuff is what they're focusing on right now but there were other things going on at the time. His potassium was dangerously low among other things. I really really would like a peek at his medical charts because I'm sure I could figure out what's going on or at least a direction to go if I had all the data.

My mother-in-law says that they're treating it like a game where everybody can play so maybe I can get my wife to get the data for me. Oddly it must be serious enough for her to actually listen to me because they checked him for POTS (http://www.dinet.org/pots_an_overview.htm) on my suggestion.

RE: filters. I did consider the filter you are suggesting and it might be a serious option but right now even $100 is not a good thing to spend. (The planting stuff ate up the discretionary fund this week.)
Mar. 3rd, 2010 11:34 am (UTC)
The icon was originally a print ad for Dell servers - I think the concept was that it was simple to "multiply" your server capacity ;-)

The water filter was a gift from my father. He used to give me all sorts of weird "As Seen On TV" shit - I think they often advertise things as "Buy one for $49.99, get a second one for just another $10.00!", and he thought he was being helpful. Actually, some of the things he gave me, like the water filter, were useful. (I hear ya about not having an extra hundred bucks to spend.)
Mar. 2nd, 2010 11:17 am (UTC)
Sorry to hear about your father. Yeah, it's likely something inner ear.

As for the TV, good-on-ya for taking a firm approach.
Mar. 2nd, 2010 03:12 pm (UTC)
Thanks. :-) He seems to be doing much better thankfully.

See my post to Ace above for some other information on him.

Edited at 2010-03-02 03:18 pm (UTC)
( 7 comments — Leave a comment )



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