Friday, July 30, 2021

Memories of Sophie

When Jaya started demanding a dog, Jyoti looked around at local shelters and online.  After some searching, we discovered Sophie on Craigslist.  Her family couldn't keep her at their apartment anymore.  Our family was very excited to get a dog.

2006 - on the way to a hike

However, soon after Jyoti discovered she was allergic and her prior family asked to take her back.  It was heartbreaking for Jaya.  But in another twist, Sophie missed us and her family returned here to us a few weeks later, this time for good!

2006 - upon Sophie's return
 

Sophie was full of energy and loved hikes.  Her favorites were Manchester Preserve (aka Pipe Hike), San Elijo Lagoon and Cardiff.  She had countless walks at those and other locations.  My favorite memories are of walking with her in nature.

2007 - hike at south side of lagoon



2007 - muddy paws

2008 - jogger hike

2008 - lagoon nature center

2008 - pipe hike

 

2009 - Lake Hodges bridge

2010 - lagoon nature center

2012 - makeshift leash

2013 - seeing her leash gets her excited for a walk

2014 - coming back from a hike























2015 - east of Lake Hodges


2016 - beach hike


2017 - Carmel Valley hike

2017 - lagoon nature center

2017 - she loved our old Passport/Rodeo



2018 - caught in the rain at Cardiff

2018 - very furry at the beach

2018 - Sophie selfie

2018 - Sophie's view of the ocean

2018 - pipe hike views

2018 - windy day at Cardiff

2018 - more beach hiking

2018 - ready to turn around

2019 - Anza-Borrego flowers

2019 - at Bengt's spot in Cardiff


2020 - one of her last car rides

2021 - last walk at the lagoon

She was the most cheerful dog. She always was excited to greet us when we got home.  And she loved hanging out on the couch with us chewing a bone.

2008 - at my parent's old house

2010 - chewing a bone on our old leather couch

2011 - a bone bigger than her

2018 - sitting on laundry

Sophie loved people food, especially meat of any kind.  She often would avoid her kibble in the hopes of getting a treat of chicken or steak. Up to the very end, she would get very excited when she smelled chicken in the house.

2017 - wagging her tail to get some chicken

Sophie was fine being a solo dog and avoided other dogs.  When we took her to dog parks, she usually just sat there and watched the other dogs.  She would even avoid drinking from community dog bowls; we would have to bring our own bowls or refresh the water.  We tried getting another dog but Sophie not having it and had a tantrum.

2007 - one of the few times she played with another dog



Like all dogs, she loved to sleep and she spent lots of time in sun spots on the couch or in her basket.

 

2020 - lots of sleep late in her life

2018 - fur ball

2017 - happy sunspot

2017 - cool concrete

2016 - her favorite outdoor chair

2014 - among the pillows

 


 

Sophie hated swimming, baths and anything having to do with water.  At my parents old house, we put her in the pool a few times so she could swim around and find the steps before drowning.

2016 - getting a bath

 



After a long active life, her health started to fail.  A few years ago her hearing went out.  Next she started to have problems jumping on the bed and going up the steps.  As her arthritis got worse, her eyesight started to fail.  We stopped taking her for walks.  Her dementia increased this year and she needed constant care.  Since she couldn't make it out of the doggie door, we often returned home and found accidents on the floor.  Good thing we had tile.  She wore diapers at night in our bed. In the last few weeks, she was having a hard time going to the bathroom and would yelp on occasion.  We knew it was time.  We drove up to visit Jaya one last time and went to the vet hospital where she worked.  It was quick and peaceful... and very sad. 

 

2021 - saying our final goodbyes

Here is just a small sampling of her adventures.

 





Thursday, July 29, 2021

Fitness Update

Since my last update, I set a goal to gain muscle mass.  I have never been able to put on much weight even when in high school.  For about 18 months, I teamed up with a trainer at LA Fitness.  It was cool and I definitely got in better shape but didn't really see much mass.

My next attempt was Athlean-X.  I had been watching Jeff Cavalier's videos and they struck a chord with me.  Maybe it was just Jesse.  I bought one of the programs and hit the gym.  After a year of doing them (with several lock-down breaks) I have seen real results.  I am finishing up a program in the next month and will start a 3rd after that.

Blog Maintenance

I updated the background image to a cool Sierra picture from summer 2020.  Also been cleaning up some pix.

Friday, July 16, 2021

DIY End Fed Antenna Mistakes and Success

 A rite of passage of every ham is building our own antenna and as my first test, I picked an end-fed antenna kit from the ARRL shop.  This was my first kit and the first time soldering in long time so I expected some mistakes along the way.  However, some of the mistakes were made due to the instructions in On the Air magazine missing some steps or not clear.

The biggest mistake was to not remove the enamel on the wire before soldering it to the connectors.  I discovered this with my trusty multimeter.  I had to unsolder the connections, scrape of the enamel and resolder. 

An amateur soldering issue was that I touched the case with the iron several times and it melted the rim.  I had to clean up the rim in order to get the lid on again.

I found that the HF Kits instructions were better, especially when making the external connections.

Overall, it was a fun project and I will surely build more antennas in the future.

Primary side connections and counterpoise


Monday, July 05, 2021

Independence Day Weekend

We had some relatives in town for the Independence Day weekend so did some San Diego type activities.  We headed to Moonlight Beach; it was overcast but still nice.  On Sunday, we went to the zoo.  Most of the animals were active and we saw the feeding for the cheetah's, Fennec foxes and wombat.  Lastly, we caught the Del Mar Fair fireworks.  Good times!

Sunday, June 27, 2021

ARRL FIeld Day 2021 in Village Park

 2021 was my first ARRL Field Day.  I set up in the greenbelt in Village Park.  There was a table for my gear and some nearby trees to string up my antenna.  I used a 40m dipole and a multi band Wolf River vertical coil.  Using a battery and transmitting at 100W, I was able to hear most of the Western US but was only to make contacts in California and Nevada.  Looks like I need to work on transmitting more.

Field Day


Monday, June 21, 2021

Jaya - UCSD Class of 2021

Jaya finally graduated with a degree in Chemistry from UCSD.  Graduation ceremonies were restricted so we didn't go.  One kid down, one left to go!

Shooting around Southern California

Sporting clays at Raahauges in Corona.  They have a great set of stations.  Worth the drive!

Trying the new 20 gauge pump action.

Combat Steel at Rainbow range.


Fun combat shoot with Oceanside Pistol at Iron Sights.





Father's Day 2021

Awesome Father's Day weekend as my parents made their first trip to California since moving to Tucson.

Spent Saturday at the Antique Gas and Steam Engine Museum with my dad and my son.  AGSEM is a great place and I am glad they are back in action.

Petting zoo

Flywheel of an engine that used to at the Holly Sugar plant in Santa Ana.

Not too many open spaces left in San Diego.

 On Sunday we went to the range to shoot the Lee Enfield No. 4 and the AR.

 

No. 4

AR-15