Sunday, October 19, 2014

Woonsocket to Watch Hill

Ben and Pappa take a bike ride the full length of Rhode Island. From Woonsocket in the Northeastern corner of the state to Watch Hill in the Southwestern corner. It was a long day. We started in Woonsocket at 9 AM and ended up at the waters edge in Watch Hill at 5 PM.  And we had hills, lots of hills and while Pappa was struggling pulling his weight up the hill, Benny was cruising along behind, whistling. We had a beautiful day for the most part, with a quick rain shower in the middle and a lot of wind in our face at the end, and somewhere around the 38 mile mark we had a great chicken dinner at the Middle of Nowhere Diner, and we both would recommend this place to eat. A special thanks goes to Nana who drove us up to Woonsocket and picked us in in Watch Hill.  Here is a link to the stats and a map of our ride. Ignore the last couple of miles - forgot to turn off my app and it ran for 2 miles in the car…

Some Statistics
Oct 18, 2014, 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
ride time               5:35:56
stopped time         2:42:59
distance               66.07 miles
average speed      12.30 mph
fastest speed         35.5 mph
ascent                  3029
descent                3182
calories                 5833

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Flight Lesson number 3

Ben had another flight lesson on Saturday. We tried something new with the camera and placed it on the windshield looking back at Ben and his instructor Don. Unfortunately I didn't have the right mounting bracket and I forgot to reformat my card so it ran out of space very early into the flight. But we have a good take-off. Ben's concentration is impressive. Good going Ben!

Sunday, September 14, 2014

New Bikes

Ben and I just got new bikes...well at this point only Ben has his new one..I have a loaner until my bike comes in on Wednesday this week. There was a comedy of errors at the bike shop resulting in me getting a frame that was WAY too small for me, which I had said to them from the start, so the immediate remedy was a very long seat post..this turn out to be really silly. Ultimately they said they would get one for me in about six weeks but a few phone calls later and they found one in California and had it shipped - it is supposed to get here Wednesday. In the meantime they provided me with a decent road bike loaner so Ben and I can ride together.

Monday, August 25, 2014

Sunday Morning ride

Sunday Morning we did a different section of the east Bay Bike Path - from the overlook down to the Dari Bee in Riverside. We were disappointed that the Dari Bee was closed. .  it was a short 7 mile ride but fit the bill for this Sunday morning as Ben was off to visit with his Uncle Shawn and Auntie Erin.

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Some pictures of the summer

Illinois Landscape
On the last day of school this year Ben broke his collarbone messing around with his buddies at school. That was the start of a summer without too much to look forward to and certainly no football at the end of the we did other things. . .
Playing with Uncle Dave
We drove out to Illinois and took Ben and his little sister Grace with us. We went to Kansas, Illinois wher Pappa's brother Dave lives.  ...and we had a ball.
Flying with Uncle Dan
We went to the county fair over in Charleston Illinois and had a lot of fun riding the rides and looking at is Ben flying on a ride with his Uncle Dan. A truck pull that evening left all with ringing ears. The corn dogs were very good.

The Dragon Ride with Grace
I think Grace still has nightmares about the Dragon Ride!!! She was not pleased with this one. . .

BIG Tractors
The tractors sure were impressive and of course after we climbed all over them we saw the sign that said Keep Off
Axe throwing in Indiana
After a great canoe trip through Turkey Run State Park we found a cool trading post that had an axe throwing range…Ben did well, sticking a few, bouncing a few.
Kansas, Illinois, Downtown
The picture above is a typical view of Downtown Kansas, Illinois - what a charming little town.

Niagara Falls NY
On the way home we took a different route and spent a couple days at Niagara Falls.

Niagara Falls NY
Now that's a lot of water!

On The Maid of the Mist
We all got very wet riding the Maid of the Mist, and Ben and Pappa went and climbed up the side of the falls as if we weren't wet enough.
The whole family got wet

It was a great trip and Ben and Pappa commanded the good ship from the front seats - Pappa at the helm and Ben was the Navigator.

On the road again
We did the license plate game and got 46 states on the way out and 42 on the way bad. . .
Kayaking in Onset Bay
To top off the summer we spent some time in Onset, Massachusetts in a cottage right on the water, swimming and kayaking every day.

Exploring the island

Our Friday Night Ride

Ben and I got in another 9 miles Friday night..this is a video of the short and boring variety. . .

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Getting Ice Cream - Day 4

Today, Day 4, of our new beginning of riding brought us 4.5 miles down the path to The Daily Scoop, where Ben had a vanilla single scoop cone in a sugar cone. Mmmmm, Pappa had his water as he needs to drop a few pounds, or more. The return trip brought us up to a 9 mile total for the day, where we averaged 13 mph, which isn't too bad for a couple of beginners.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Wednesday night ride

Another ride tonight..we are getting our selves in shape for a longer bottom is sore but Benny tells me his bottom is getting used to the saddle.  So it was 4.5 miles on the first night, 5.5 on the second night and tonight we rode 6.5 miles. It is coming along. This is just the early work, adventure is around every corner. . .

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

On the Bike Path

It has been quite a while since we have posted a cycling video..this is almost the first time we have gone out riding this year!! We are determined to get ourselves back in shape and do some good rides before the season is done. We are hoping to make it back down to Mattapoisett Mass or Little Compton, RI -- or both, before the season is over. So stay tuned and we will be posting more videos of the Adventures of Ben and Pappa

Saturday, August 16, 2014

ALS Challenge

Ben And Pappa Take the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge on the beach in Onset, Massachusetts.

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

First Real Flight Lesson

This past Sunday morning at 8:30 AM Benjamin began his flight training in earnest. His first lesson, which he paid for himself, began with some information in the office, then onto the preflight inspection of the aircraft and then off into the wild blue yonder. Don Turrell who is the flight instructor at North Central Flight Center has just the right temperament to match Ben and they have hit it off well. Ben spent an hour in the air and about an hour on the ground. He is excited and looking forward to his next lesson. The people at North Central couldn't be nicer. I like that in this video, while Ben is taking off, for the first time, Don seems to be fussing with his iPad. . . .didn't seem to bother Ben.

Monday, May 26, 2014

First Flight

Ben and Pappa, and the family went off to North Central Airport in Smithfield and Ben had his first flight lesson. Ben did a Discovery Flight with instructor Don Turrell from the North Central Flight Center and he had a great time. Hopefully this is the beginning of a pilots license . Ben's plan is to be a Navy pilot and graduate from the U.S. Naval Academy. This is the start of that plan.

Checking everything out - Click image for larger view
Ready for take off - Click image for larger view

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Woodworking Adventures

Scroll saw work - Click image for larger view
This weekend Ben and Pappa had lots of chores to do, and we got them done. In between the chores Ben wanted to make a garden tool box for his Mom for Easter. We got a set of plans online and went to work. Ben did 99% of the work with Pappa's guidance. In the process Ben used the scroll saw, table saw, drill press, thickness planer, sander and many hand tools including a very fine toothed Japanese hand saw (one of Pappa's favorite tools) and clamps, lots and lots of clamps.
Pounding in the dowels - Click image for larger view
The cool thing about his project is that it had no screws or nails in it at all, it is held together with glue and dowels. We made a jig to make sure we had proper alignment of the dowels. and everything was cut at either a 7º or 14º angle so we had to be very careful about making things square.
Trimming the dowels flush - Click image for larger view
We started this about 9:15 in the morning - glueing up some boards to make a piece of wood large enough for the ends. We clamped it up and did some chores while it was drying. And we went back and forth all day from woodworking to chores, we did some concrete patching, and painted the front porch took down storm windows and other things, even made a quick trip to the Home Depot (no Saturday is complete with out at least one trip to the Home Depot, or at least to the Benny's) --- and of course Pappa did not get a photo of the finished product - sloppy work Pappa. We finished up by 5:30 just in time to color Easter Eggs -- Mom was very pleased with her Garden Box. . .

We found the plans and the video of how to make this here - Woodworking For Mere Mortals

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Another First Place! 2 Years straight!!!

The Blue Ribbon 
The team of Ben and Pappa did it again. . . . Pappa pointed the way and Ben ran with the project and garnered another first place this year for his research into Solar Energy. Using a parabolic reflector ben boiled, cooked and set fire to things. . . way to go Benny

Saturday, February 1, 2014

Drawing a parabolic curve

We are creating a pattern for a trough solar reflector to generate steam or hot water using only simple tools.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Measuring Temperatures

We measured the rise in temperature several times today and took an average. We sat the kitchen thermometer in the snow and the needle dropped down as far as it could..we guess that it must have been somewhere in the thirtys. We timed it until it reached 250 degrees. The average was 42 seconds. The highest temperature we got was off the scale. Our oven thermometer only goes to 500 degrees and the needle went beyond that point.

Light and Dark - Solar Power

An experiment with light and dark objects to burn

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Mirroring a parabolic dish

Yes it is Science Fair time once again and this year Pappa and I are doing solar power with reflected sunlight. In this video I show how I stick the reflective tape on to our parabolic dish. I also talk about how this parabolic reflector works and why we don't need those pesky bubbles.

First we had to prepare the dish by sanding it out so it was smooth and down to almost bare metal. Then we painted it glossy black to help with the reflection.

Sanding the dish

Painting the dish gloss black