Monthly Archives: July 2005

Pardon Our Dust

First, in case any of you tried to access our website from 8:30-9:30 a.m. EDT today, I apologize. The machine runs on at ***Site5|*** was down. As a reminder, I have an externally-hosted blog set up on ***Blogger|*** at which I will ***post updates|*** in the event that there is an outage on In the event of an extended/catastrophic outage, I can even have all requests for redirect automatically… but I most likely won’t go through that trouble unless the downtime exceeds more than a couple hours. This blog also has an Atom feed, so you can subscribe to it in your favorite news aggregator.

Second, if you have noticed the appearance of our site being a bit funky in your web browser, that’s because I’ve been doing a bit of tidying in the underlying XHTML and CSS code of our site. I have been reading ***Jeffrey Zeldman|***’s excellent book ***Designing With Web Standards|***, and have been compelled to do a lot of cleanup and reorganizing. If everything is working normally, things should look basically the same as they did before. The changes are almost totally under the hood, so unless you’re a real XHTML/CSS geek, there’s not much to see. (If you do want to see, you are more than welcome to ‘View Source’.)

If things are still looking weird in your browser, just hold down the shift key and click your browser’s refresh or reload button. That should clear things up. If it still looks weird, then please leave me a comment with the version of your OS and browser, and the nature of the problem you are seeing.

Yellow and Pink

fff|ggg|baby_quilt/P1030803|Pink and Yellow Quilt|ggg|fff

We know two baby girls who celebrated their first birthdays this summer. I sent off their gifts already, which were little summer outfits made from cute, pink, tropical fabric.

I had some of this cute fabric leftover and I had a little brain storm. A baby quilt! So, last weekend I got to work and made such a little quilt. Currently, I have sent presents to all the baby girls I know, so it will have to wait before being gifted to anyone.

It was my first foray into machine quilting, and while it worked well, I know that there are things I’d do differently next time. All in all, however, I think it’s pretty darn cute. More photos can be found ***here|***

Willy Wonka

On Friday night Peter and I joined the hordes at the movie theater to see ***Charlie and the Chocolate Factory|;fc=1;ft=5***. I had my doubts about seeing this film. I love the 1970’s version of this film, starring Gene Wilder, and didn’t know how’d I’d feel about the new film.

As luck would have it, I really enjoyed it. It was a very entertaining movie that didn’t outshine its predecessor. The elements that were the same brought out nostalgic memories, and director Tim Burton, didn’t feel the need to rehash the old jokes. Johnny Depp plays Wonka with a fresh and new perspective, and Freddy Highmore shone as Charlie Bucket.

Personal Highlights:
*Getting to see the Chocolate Factory in its “fully operational ‘heyday’ days”.
*Helena Bonham Carter’s appropriately bad teeth. (inappropriate teeth in movies is a pet peeve of mine!)
*That an entire theater-full of adolescents was laughing, cheering and enjoying a movie devoid of sex, foul language and nudity. Perhaps there’s hope after all!

ps. My college roomie, Melissa, will be relieved to hear that this movie is also lacking in a certain song entitled “Cheer Up Charlie.”

pps. Fun Fact- I once knew Roald Dahl’s first wife. She is a lovely woman who still carries her “old Hollywood” air about her.

Forest Hills Lantern Festival


I recently read an ***entry on Exploit Boston|*** about the ***Forest Hills Cemetery|***’s Lantern Festival. Becky and I took the Orange Line out to Forest Hills on Thursday night to attend. Though Exploit Boston links to a Wikipedia entry on the Chinese ***Lantern Festival|***, the Forest Hills event was actually closer to the Japanese ***Bon Festival|***, both in calendar date and content. Overall, however, the festival was a amalgamation of various Asian traditions, with some local cultural flavor thrown in.
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A Shot in the dark.

Earlier today ***Ben|*** posted a little essay contest. While talking about his newly purchased iMac he mentioned that it came with an iPod Mini that would be surpurflous in his household. He suggested an essay contest to determine a new home for the little Mini. Tongue-in-cheek as it may have been, I decided that it would be worth the required 1000 words if there was a chance of scoring an iPod.

There were two essay topics to choose from: “Why Macs are near and dear to my heart” and “Steve Jobs is a Hottie”. I chose the latter. So, for your reading enjoyment I have encluded the entire essay here. Just click to read the full article!

Why Steve Jobs is a HOTTIE
~by Rebecca A. Wood
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Calling All Family!

Between Becky and me, there are two siblings, four parents, five grandparents, 25 aunts and uncles and 14 adult cousins. That’s 50 adult people. Most of these family members have a computer at work, school, or home, and most of them have Internet connections.

According to a recent* ***Pew Internet|*** ***phone survey|***, 13% of adult internet users said that they maintained their own personal websites. 13% of 50 is 6.5 people… so one might conclude that in a family with 50 adults, you would expect to have at least six people with a website. Well, Becky and I have one, so that’s two, and Corey ***has one|***, so that’s three… but that still leaves us with three more people who ought to have a website of some sort. (Note: Even if we were to remove five people from our sample because, for whatever reason, they weren’t able to use the Internet, that would still leave at least 5 people who ought to have a personal website.)

Now, I know that many of our family members read this blog, so I’ll put the question to you:


Dear Woods, Keefers, Lowes, and Quitadamos,

Where are your websites? Do any of you have personal websites that we don’t know about? If you do, please leave us a comment so that we can check them out! If you don’t, and are interesting in setting up a website, leave us a comment and we will help get you started!


Peter and Rebecca Wood


* Actually, it’s two years old. So if anything, I would think that the percentage would have increased since then…

Hasta La Vista!

fff|ggg|vineyard_20050712/P1030637|Mom and Dad in Edgartown|ggg|fff

My parents have just left the North Shore to head back to Ohio. We enjoyed the time we got to spend with them this week…

On Monday night when they arrived, we went out to ***The 99|*** for dinner and then came home to do our Russia slideshow for my parents. That slideshow takes a while, and we didn’t get through the whole thing… but they really liked seeing the photos up on the big TV screen and hearing our commentary. We always enjoy giving the slideshow, so if you’re in the Boston area and you haven’t seen it yet, just let us know and we can give you the full narrated slideshow experience! 🙂

On Tuesday, we took a trip to Martha’s Vineyard. We drove my parents around on a tour of the island, went to ***Polly Hill Arboretum|***, ate lunch at Espresso Love Cafe (note: I found the website of the company that designed their website, but couldn’t find any links to the actual E.L. website itself!), and then relaxed back in Oak Bluffs. We went out to dinner at Slice of Life, which is run by the same folks who run ***The Sweet Life|***. (I had perhaps the best burger and fries that I’ve ever tasted in my life… I think that restaurant will merit its own entry.) We had a full and fun day exploring the Vineyard. You can see our photos ***here|***.

Last night we had dinner at ***Acapulco’s|*** in Beverly, then went over to their hotel to swim at the hotel pool and look at the rest of our ***photos from Russia|***.

All in all we had a wonderful time getting to see them and catch up on things, and we are looking forward to seeing them again later this year!

Mis Padres

I am pleased to report that my parents are up in New England, and any minute now they will be coming by for a visit! Becky and I are taking off from work tomorrow so that we can all go on a trip to Martha’s Vineyard. We’re looking forward to it, as we rarely get a chance to see my side of the family.

Anyone who has greetings to send Stan and Ellie while they are here may do so on this blog entry!

Getting Things: Done

I got through Part 1 of ***GTD|***, which is where Mr. Allen sets up the theory and general idea behind his system. I found myself thinking that many of the techniques were far too overblown for my needs, while others were things that I already did or things that came naturally to me. It may be that my life is just very simple, and thus I don’t have any need for a robust, full-featured organizational system. Or I may have just developed my own internal systems that work sufficiently well for the work and informational load that I have. I went so far as to start reading Part 2, where Mr. Allen starts into the practical side of his technique, in other words, how to actually implement his theories. I just wasn’t getting the feeling that any of it would be useful for me.

So I’m finished with the book. I would probably recommend the book to you if you really felt that your current organizational system wasn’t working, or if you are constantly stressed out about the things you have to do. If I ever get to the point where I feel that my life is disorganized or that I’m stressed out about everything I have to do, I might consider going back and implementing the system. For now, at least, it’s not for me.

Beauties, Geeks, Brats and Fast Food

Over the last few days I’ve seen some interesting things on TV and DVD.

We got ***Super Size Me|*** from Netflix on Tuesday and popped it in the player during dinner… a HEALTHY dinner of tortilini and pesto. I’ve heard great things about this documentary and was looking forward to finally seeing it. I liked it. I have already read ***Fast Food Nation|*** and so I was not surprised at much of the facts laid out in the film. Even still, the effects of all those hamburgers on his liver was shocking! Watch it and make your own decisions about whether or not to visit MickyD’s.

I’ve also been watching, over the last few weeks, the WB’s ***Beauty and the Geek|,11116,228773,00.html***. I wasn’t sure I would make it past episode one (considering that it was the brain child of Ashton Kutcher!) but by the end of the premiere I was hooked. The premise was that they would pair intellectual guys with not so intellectual gals and subject each team to a series of challenges that would test the smarts of the gals and the social skills of the guys. Hopefully, each contestant would learn to appreciate the skills and talents of the others. In any case, I found it terribly entertaining. It was great to see these beautiful girls come off their social high horses and actually enjoy being wiht the geeks…and it ws fun watching the geeks open their eyes to something other than science or medicine or music.

And finally… have you seen the recent commercials for ***Brat Camp|***? It is a new ‘reality show’ about trouble kids who are sent to boot camp by their parents in a last ditch effort to turn their lives around. Judging by the ads, the kids go camping, hiking, rock climbing and are forced to reevaluated their lives. — Last weekend I saw that commercial with five other family members and five out of six of us declared, “That looks like fun!” It almost make me want to become a problem child just to get to go on that adventure!!