Baby’s First Portrait

Our first little boyEveryone loves new baby pictures, and you are no exception. We’ll post more this weekend (hopefully including some video) so come back soon. This picture is taken by Debbie for Hospital Portraits. Fiona wanted me to point out this is a 5-7  pound hat (not the hat itself — it’s made for a five to seven pound baby), so it’s a little snug.  He’s very cute and Debbie even managed to get him to open his usually sleepy eyes.

Fiona and new baby boy are doing well and coming home this afternoon.

Blog Changing Server – DreamHost Coupon Code!

This weekend I’ll be switching my hosting for So please excuse any downtime we have. Fiona will make sure I get this up again soon! Thanks to Sandy for hosting this for so long even though I had my own hosting.

I’ve already started the process and pulled by domain registration from 1and1 to DreamHost, my favorite web host.

**Beginning shameless plug, cue infomercial voice**

DreamHost is far and away the best web hosting that I’ve used OR heard about (and I’ve done a fair amount of research). It’s intuitive, easy to use, and most of all — affordable. And for you, yes you, it’s even more affordable for the first year. Use the DreamHost coupon code ‘OS40′ to save $40 of any yearly package. Hooray! But does DreamHost do monthly billing? That’s quite a chunk of change up front. Yes they do, and you can use that same code and get the $49.95 setup fee waived for month to month hosting (yearly packages have no setup fee).

Save $40 on DreamHost web hosting — Coupon Code: OS40

Hosting packages include a bunch of free and ever expanding features including:

  • one free domain for life! (com/net/org/info)
  • One Click Installs and Upgrades
  • 500 Gigs of disk storage, plus 2Gb every week!
  • 5Tb of data transfer (that’s a lot)
  • Unlimited domains hosted (that’s a lot too)
  • Funny Monthly Newsletters (I read it every month)
  • SSH access
  • Unlimited email accounts, MySQL databases
  • AND, you support the hosting for this and many other sites just by using my code, OS40!

**end shameless plug**

Seriously, I love my hosting.

If we’re friends and you still want some hosting but don’t care about a free domain and just want the special “My Awesome Uncle Nathan will totally hook me up” discount… let me know, we’ll work something out. :)

** Update ** Server changed.  Later and took longer than I wanted. It was a pain, had a coworker help me through it.  Not everything is back to normal yet (sidebar) and I’m trying to convince the Mrs. that we should change our WordPress theme.  What do you think?   I really don’t think anyone’s going to read this update so please make your presence known in the comments.

Vote Today!

vote-button-election-293×290.jpg…for a baby name, what did you think we were talking about?  Fiona and I knew we would have a hard time choosing a boy name.  We’re now 3 months away and barely closer to choosing a name than we were 6 months ago.  So we’re opening it up to you, dear readers, to give us some feedback on a “short list” of names.  We’re still open to other names with the following exceptions: Steven, Paul, Heath, Matthew, Linus (I know…I like it too, Fiona shot it down), Timothy, and Gabriel — which have all been shot down hard for various reasons.  Leave other ideas in the comments.

There’s a poll on the right.  You can choose up to two names.  ‘Danger’ is under consideration for a middle name only and as such is not on the poll list.  If you have strong feelings in this vote then it is in your best interest to encourage other like-minded people to vote as well.  This poll is by no means final but it will hold a certain amount of sway in our thinking.  Ok, maybe just my thinking.  There may be another poll as we start to narrow down the choices.

This poll is scheduled to close at midnight November 30th.  Thanks for your participation in Decision ’08!  Vote Early, Vote Often!  Oh, and remember to vote in that other election too.

Back it Up, Check it Out, Make it Do, Or Do Without

I suffered from a computer problem. No, I’m not talking about Computer Users anonymous (although if there was such a thing Fiona would freely admit me), I’m talking about the BSOD, Blue Screen of Death! I had a wake up call that could have been a lot more serious than it was. Don’t get me wrong, there were still casualties that couldn’t be recovered — Cousin Niki, I had 4 Gigs of video from your wedding that are still in a zip file on my backup drive that I haven’t been able to recover…I’m really, really sorry…and ‘Melodious NeverSeeYouAnymore-ious’, gone are your your TV recordings of So You Think You Can Dance and The Notebook…I didn’t try very hard to save them…sorry, but to a lesser extent.

Computer FailureMy “backup” external hard drive wasn’t exempt from the BSOD fury either. I say ‘backup’ because I commited a cardinal sin of having a backup drive and fell prey to the vast tracts of space that it offered and used those tracts for my recorded TV shows. I ended up saving what I could, wiping the rest, reinstalling Windows, and then taking it in to the nice people at Computer Lane (crummy website, good service) to discover it was actually my RAM that had failed, but that it had obvious effects on the hard drives. Great excuse to get a new 1GB stick of RAM (and Best Buy was the cheapest, what will this world come to next?)

Here are some things that anyone with a computer should be do.

  1. Run CheckDisk and Defrag often
  2. Have multiple backups
  3. Have an off-site backup

1 — Run checkdisk and defrag often. Okay, I’m really not sure that this will help a whole lot, but it definitely can’t hurt the overall health of your hard drive. Vista has an option to schedule defrag built in. With XP I’m told you can put defrag in a scheduler and have it done that way. I usually run it 2-4 times a month.

2 — Have multiple backups, especially of non-replaceable data like home videos, photos, and school/work projects. Those were the first things that made me sick to my stomach– wedding/birth/family videos, pictures of family (like grandparents not alive), and old photographs that have been scanned and digitized and I may have the only digital copies. Multiple means at least two, preferably 3 or even 4 isn’t neccesarily overdoing it. With as reletively cheap as hard drives are, external and otherwise, there’s no reason not to have at least one. Keeping it connected to the computer is okay too for automated backups. But what if the worst happens and the computer is detroyed in a fire or flood?

3 — Have an off-site backup. This never really crossed my mind because, being fairly young, I’m still invincible and that invincibility is obviously passed on to my electronics, rights? Maybe not. There’s several options here and more if you have nerdy friends that want to back up your stuff in exchange for backup up theirs. Although I do have very nerdy friends (thanks for the loan of one of your many extra hard drives Mark) I’ve been looking at Mozy and Carbonite. Both have pros and cons but I think I’ll end up going with Mozy for many reasons: I’ve heard great things about them, they’re local (in Utah, awesome billboard), they offer 2GB free storage (and I like companies that do stuff like that), I can pay monthly, and they have a ‘set it and forget it’ mentality to data backup. Carbonite looks like an excellent choice as well and is quite comparable and slightly cheaper, but I don’t want my data to suffer possible hibernation sickness. Mozy and Carbonite are $60 and $50 a year respectively with slight price breaks with Mozy for paying upfront for a year.

And for the record…even with my limited backups, it’s taken well over a week to get things up and going again. What do you do to backup? Share your experiences!

Just For Fun…Memory Tag

I thought this would be fun.  I know it will probably also be a little embarrassing too! Oh well!

1. Add a comment on my blog, leave one memory that you and I had together. It doesn’t matter if you knew me a little or a lot, anything you remember!
2. Next, re-post these instructions on your blog and see how many people leave a memory about you. It’s actually pretty funny to see the responses. If you leave a memory about me, I’ll assume you’re playing the game and I’ll come to your blog and leave one about you. If you don’t want to play on your blog, or if you don’t have a blog, I’ll leave my memory of you in my comments. I can’t wait to see what people remember.