Open Camino tabs

Time to clear up some of my open Camino tabs by saving them here. From left-to-right:

— Michael A. Cleverly

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Driving full circle

Cast thy bread upon the waters: for thou shalt find it after many days.

Ecclesiastes 11:1

Last fall, in anticipation of the birth of our litter we had to upgrade from a seven passanger minivan to one that would hold all eight of us.

Instead of selling our previous minivan I engineered a trade—I gave our minivan to my parents (perfect for hauling grandkids around) in exchange for their Nissan Sentra which I gifted to my sister Eliza and her husband Paul. Basically the same sort of trickle-down people often practice with computers, but with cars instead.

Paul was finishing his final year at the University of Utah and working. Eliza was lucky enough to be able to be a stay-at-home mom with Peter. The car enabled her to have a lot more options during the day.

Fast forward to this winter. My commuter car began making knocking sounds. I took it in to Burt Bros. to have them check it out (since I'm not terribly mechanical). The verdict? A new engine (rough guess > ~$3,000) would be needed now or in the near future. They don't do that kind of work themselves but they could refer me to other shops that did. Or I could keep the oil up, cross my fingers, and keep driving it.

Not having an extra $3,000 on hand (and the car not even being worth quite that) I decided to just keep driving, cross my fingers and hope for the best...

The car survived precisely one more week. Seven days after I picked it up from Burt Bros. the engine seized up and died while I was headed southbound on I-15 going to work. By the time I had the car towed and could arrange for someone to pick me up and take me the rest of the way to work it was practically lunch time. Fun day. I'd hoped to eke out weeks (or even months) of life instead of just days. Oh well.

Luckily I'd been carpooling (though not the morning the car died) and had co-workers who could kindly help make sure I had a way to get to work each day so far this month.

Now, in the past year, Paul graduated and got accepted into a pharmacy graduate program (beginning next year) in Atlanta. Since they'll be moving and don't want to transport two cars the nearly 2,000 miles to Georgia they very graciously gave the Sentra back to me as a Christmas present. It's a huge relief to have a way to get work without having to assume the burden of a car payment. Thank you Eliza & Paul!

— Michael A. Cleverly

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Family blog popularity

Based on the blog search engine Technorati here is how our Cleverly family ranks in terms of global popularity.

487,964th place
795,643rd place
871,446th place
1,072,771st place
1,391,575th place
1,644,723rd place
2,910,025th place
3,053,157th place
4,446,976th place
4,601,744th place

My take aways? I've got good company with Rachael. I'm proud to be Anna's sister (in the top half million!). Why is Mary's old blog so much more popular still than her new one? At least all of the 4,601,744th place people are ahead of Mom, Robert and Peter! ;-)

— Michael A. Cleverly

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Update on the situation with our local school

Since several people have asked in person whether we ever heard back from Mr. Sheffield, the Principal of our children's elementary school...

Short answer: No.

Long answer: No, but I mailed my letter via certified mail with return receipt (at a cost of nearly $5) and so I do have proof that the school received it prior to their December 10th deadline. I figure the ball is in their court at this point.

The fact that my children weren't allowed to go to school last week, and are not being allowed back to school for the duration of 2007 is, I believe, entirely coincidental at this point.


— Michael A. Cleverly

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