Friday, February 12, 2010

My Review of Sherpani Rumba Child Carrier

Originally submitted at REI

Sherpani Rumba child carrier has all the features for camping yet is also suitable for trips to the market and all-day summer festivals.

Looking forward to warm weather

By MacSideJosh from South Windsor, CT on 2/12/2010


4out of 5

Gift: No

Pros: Strong Construction, Comfortable, Lightweight, Easy Use

Best Uses: Toddlers, Out & About, Travel

Describe Yourself: First Time Parent

I did a good amount of research before choosing the Sherpani Rumba. I am looking to get the family out for some good day hikes as soon as the weather is warm. But have had a few opportunities to use the pack already.
On the short neighborhood walks with the dogs the pack has been very comfortable to use. The many adjustments have allowed for me to quickly fit the pack to my body and carry my daughter with ease.
I did use the pack to run some errands the only problem is that the pack is quite large and I found myself running into things behind me. My daughter did like having a grand viewing locations on my back in the store.
For downsides, even though I don't plan on hiking in the rain, I can't figure out how to use the rain shields, there does not seem to be a good way to attach them. The sun cover seems to be a little high and does not quite shade my passenger. And this is simply an aesthetic complaint but did Sherpani have to put daisies on the pack and change the colors of "she"rpani in the logo?
I plan on trying this pack in the airport soon. I figured that carrying may daughter and all of her accessories (diapers, bottles, toys, change of clothes etc.) this way through he airport would be the most convenient. The idea of pushing a stroller around in an airport does not appeal to me.
I am very happy with the pack and look forward to carrying my daughter around with my wife and dogs for some great summer adventures.

preping for the first journey in the cold


Tags: Picture of Product, Using Product


Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Passion for flower pictures!

I guess why I love taking pictures of flowers is because of the color and the unique opportunity to play with photo composition. Whether it is about playing with special camera features, or simply a unique perspective, it is fun!
The rest of this entry will require almost no words I will let the flowers do the talking.

This is of a purple indoor plant in our bay window. The flower looks kind of small and unremarkable. So I took some closeups!This is the Mountain Laurel in my back yard. It doesn't bloom every year. but when it does it is magnificent. I caught several pictures of it one morning With Linnaea in the carrier on my chest.Speaking of Linnaea I had to include her at least once in this posting. I don't love this picture that much but it was of flowers sent to Linnaea when she came home. These came from her Great Grandma Beals.
This is one of my favorites. That is Stone Henge in the background. And in the foreground clover!
The Village of Corfe and Corfe Castle in England. I believe the pub is the Greyhound inn and the ruins of Corfe castle are in the background.

Here is a perspective picture of some flowers sticking out of the fence around the steam train station in Corfe. The Colors were a bright spot before the clouds and rain cleared.
More perspective pictures in Corfe. These little blue flowers had a great color. I wish I had more time to change the focus onto them instead of the street. But I still like the picture.

Mountain flowers practically sticking out of the rocks while on a mountain hike in Slovenija. The focus is on the flowing water behind the flowers.
Water Lilies at Schonbrun Palace near Vienna Austria.

Pictures from our own garden at home of an Asiatic Lilly. The poor thing was devastated this year by a little red beetle. There was only one pathetic looking flower on it. Maybe it will come back next year!
Pictures of the floral decoration on the Huppa at my cousins wedding in Washington DC.

Flowers on the west coast looking out over the Pacific Ocean along Route 1 in California.

Again a flowers over looking the Pacific Ocean.

Golden Gate Park in San Francisco. I was playing the the color selection feature on the camera.

One of the first pictures I took with my camera. The bee was probably 10 feet away buzzing around a flower in Golden Gate Park. I was amazingly happy with this picture. Probably part of why I love taking flower pictures!

Some day I will Justify a better camera and then I can really have some fun with macro pictures. Maybe then I will post some bug photos!
In the mean time I will continue to post flower shots as I take them. Hope that someone out there enjoys!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

End of Last Summers Vacation

I apologize now this is old news on a new post. But I have renewed desire to keep a record of my life's adventures since Linnaea may someday be interested.
So I left off last summers blogs talking about my summer vacation. What I did not get to was my day and a half in London. Unfortunately I was not impressed. I think there were a few strikes against us. We were rushed, we were tired, and the famous English rainy weather got the best of our day and a half. London seemed like a great city with so much to offer but we had so little time and it was the last day and a half of our trip. I could not want to have missed all the other sites we saw but maybe I will have to go back to London to enjoy it more.
The late afternoon and evening in London we decided to go and see a show. After figuring out our way into London on the subway, we bought our tickets, and went to dinner at a chinesse restaurant in London's China town. It struck me that I have never been to a China Town in any city before. We went to see Monty Pythons Quest for the Holy Grail. Marika and I had already seen this show before and it was interesting to see another interpretation of the show. There were some jokes that we did not understand because they were based on local humor. Maybe this is why we liked the tour that came to the Bushnell in Hartford better.
The next morning we started out going to see the changing of the guard at Buckingham palace. It started late and there was an amazingly large crowd. I didn't get any good pictures of the actual guard changing, my father-in-law did though. But here is a picture of the crowds and police presence. The architecture around the area was very impressive.After the changing of the guard the weather started to get questionable. We decided that museums might be the way to go. We visited the National Portrait Gallery and the National History Museum. I do love Museums but at the end of this whole trip this was not a high point. I do want to talk about a few things though.
First the architecture in the very old building that houses the National History Museum was fascinating. All around the pillars in the entire museum there were carved animals like this monkey. And the monkeys all had different expressions and poses. Speaking of the monkeys there were also Orangutan skeletons hanging on the second floor. I had fun with those.As you can tell by this picture there were also lots of really cool stain glass windows in the museum. The lighting and the decoration of the museum were great.
The lighting was such that I either had to use flash everywhere, and I don't like how those picture come out, or I could use a slower shutter speed. I had a great deal of fun playing with the slower shutter speed. I did get lost from the group though as I waited to get the perfect picture of the "Dippie" the Diplodocus in the middle of the Museum foyer. This picture was way to much fun to take though.
I also took this picture of Marika and her family. It was fun to have them pose even though the people were moving about in the museum. The result is, in my opinion, a really cool picture.
We spent the rest of the day wandering in and out of stores and seeing sites from along the Thames river. It was raining on and off and we got to see a lot but didn't do much. We did eat dinner in the Cafe in the Crypt at St. Martin in the field in Trafalgar square. Eating dinner cafeteria style while sitting at a table positioned about peoples grave stones was a unique experience. I have to thank Peter Seem for suggesting it.
After dinner we found our way back to the London eye. This picture of the London Eye is taken from across the Thames with a Egyptian Sphinx in the foreground. The Sphinx had score marks in it from a bombing that had happened in the street right next too it.
The view from the eye was great, but because it was night and I am not that good with my camera, not many of the pictures I took came out. The lights over the city and looking at the mix of new and old architecture in London was a great way to end our trip.
The next morning we caught our flights home from Heathrow Airport. Marika and I did get stuck in Toronto because of late summer thunder storms. We met up and traveled with two other people that were also stuck in Toronto and flying to Bradley Airport. I was suggesting we rent a car and drive home rotating drivers. We all decided we were too tired to try. So our trip was extended by one more day. I wish we could have seen some interesting sites in Toronto but the airport was too far from anything to see.
I will have to update my readers on my new sailboat in my next blog post. (I bought that this year in case anyone is confused by the time line in this blog.)

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Let the Real Experiment Begin...

I just spent the past 20 minutes with my happy new baby! Linnaea Joy Kraus was born on June 2nd and is now more than one month old. Hopefully that excuses at least a few months of my lack of blogs. She was born 8 pounds 2 ounces and 20.5 inches long. There she is!
I promise she is a happy baby and a pleasure to hold and behold more often than not.
So you ask why did I only hold her for 20 minutes. No, my wife did not take her away she is teaching voice lessons in the other room right now. No other family took her away from me. She was happily settled and I thought I would take this time to update my blog.
Wait...I have to go she is fussing again. Can't let her disturb the lesson.
For a few moments it was more like this

Alright more about my little girl.

I had an amazing revelation a few days after she was born. I was returning home in the car from a few errands and I noticed that the girl in the car next to me had several facial piercings; eyebrow, nose, tongue, etc.. While in the past I never held it against a person that they had piercings and even in some cases thought it looked good. I would question a parent that did not allow their child to get piercings. But, suddenly watching that girl in the car next to me, and there was nothing garish about her piercings they were tasteful. I realized that a parent looks at their child and sees perfection and wonders why their child would want to do anything to change that. It was not about protection from evils or restrictions because it is less socially acceptable. It was simply to preserve the beauty that was already there. How could anything be done to improve that...
I have to leave you with a better picture of Linnaea than the last one. Because to a parent you want the world to see your child for as beautiful as you see them.
So, Linnaea is here after much anticipation and I am looking forward to the next many years. It will be a grand experiment. And I have confidence that despite some errors along the way and bumps in the road it will come out better than can be expected.

Friday, July 3, 2009

Another excuse.

2 years ago know I started this blog. And during the school year I never update. I intend to but life becomes busy as I consume myself with my students, my athletes, and performers. I may manage to get a blog post or two in during the school year but I often slip. Enough of the excuses (I think I do this every summer.)

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

My Review of Waimea H2

Get out and active with the Waimea H2 sandal from KEEN. The recycled rubber or synthetic webbing upper features a rugged, activity-friendly design; a hydrophobic mesh lining provides water resistance and the Aegis Microbe Shield treatment fights odor. The anatomically designed EVA footbed adds endu...

Good in the right size.

MacSideJosh Central Connecticut. 6/30/2009


4 5

Sizing: Feels half size too big

Width: Feels true to width

Pros: Breathable, Comfortable, Durable, Protective

Cons: Chafes

Best Uses: Barbecues, Beach, Everyday, Going Out

Describe Yourself: Conservative, Practical, Alternative, Casual

I have a couple other pair of keen shoes and bought these shoes in the same size as my other Keens. This turned out to be a half size too large and between that and the recycled inner-tube material, I don't know which was the bigger problem. I ended up with 3 blisters. That just should not happen with "thongs!" I returned the big size and the new ones fit great and no blisters. I look forward to the open feet and protected big toe this summer.


Wednesday, November 5, 2008

A time for change...

An amazing event in history has taken place and I am relieved and excited! The first Black man Barack Obama has been elected President of the USA. Equally importantly in my mind is that there were record numbers of voters that turned out for this election, and the new and younger voter numbers were on the rise. Some of those new and young voters were part of the first group of students I taught. This is a monumental event!
In the past I have overtly tried not to put political statements on my blog although there were many times that I wanted to, there were many reasons I have resisted. First, I had been taught if I have nothing nice to say than don't say anything at all. More importantly as a teacher I have learned from the teachers that taught me. I have had wonderful teachers in the past that showed me the value of focusing my efforts on the development of individuals and their ability to think and be creative so that they can make personal, thoughtful and ethical decisions. I feel ethically obliged to not persuade young minds politically or socially. I teach science and strive to be objective in my teaching. Because I am a public employee and role model I am very careful about the public persona that I present. And despite the fact that this blog is a private space it is open to public view. I will exercise my right to speak freely, I will always strive to be respectful!
Recently, I had a very eye opening experience that disturbs me about a portion of society. I gave up television because of it's commercialism years ago and I have been reading and listening to my news ever since. My position in the upcoming election was pretty strong and I have been surfing the web and blogopshere for contrary views. Doing this helps make me more informed and well rounded in my views and decisions. I posted a comment to a blog, (which I will not name, but you can get to it by following blog links on this page) happily the person who runs this blog published my comment with a response. I feel that healthy dialogue and debate can enrich all involved. Well the person refused to publish my rebuttal to their comments and instead posts a comments attacking me and worse accusing me of unethical indoctrination of the students I teach. This is based only on what they have learned from reading my blogs, which are overtly not political. They know nothing about my classroom or teaching methods. Realizing that this person is not interested in debate and is instead interested in deception, misdirection, fear and using personal attack and smear tactics, I decide to back out gracefully from the "debate" and ask them to remove the unfounded comment about my teaching practices. Instead I am attacked again. I suppose that I really cannot blame them when this is the example set by too many so called leaders in this country and especially demonstrated by the leaders they support.
The results of this weeks election have uplifted meAnother teacher I work with commented to me that Barack Obama represents a curiousity, strength, and willingness to make a best effort to improve this country. This curiosity was one thing that seperated Obama from McCain. Thinking about this comment I realize that America was founded on curiousity and a grand experiment. Over the past 200 years we have become complacent. Barack Obama shows that this experiment is still alive and going great! America did not like the course it was on and elected for Change! I truly hope that this new direction and curiousity overflows into the public reigniting the spirit that started this country! We need challenge whether we are Green, Democrat, Republican or Independant. Are we willing to rise to the challenge and work together to solve the problems that face this country? Are we curious about the ideas, beliefs, and strategies that everyone can offer in order to find the best solutions? I am reminded of the cartoon by Benjamin Franklin stating Join or Die.
Fifth graders got it now can all of America get it, I am Curious...
I will end stating that I have not be able to get John Lennons "Imagine" out of my head!