Shopping With A Quiet Child

Bryson Playing Angry Birds on a Kindle Fire

How to shop with a quiet child:

  1. Place Bryson in shopping cart
  2. Give him a Kindle Fire
  3. Run Angry Birds

Good for 15 to 30 minutes of quiet. Results vary by child.

Photo Credit: From the iPhone of Megan
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Motor Trend Auto Show

On Monday I stopped by Motor Trend’s Auto Show in Sandy. My sons Paul and Jake wanted to see it so I went along. In the time I was there, I wasn’t approached once by any salespeople (a positive) and I was able to check out a lot of new autos. I was interested in Jeeps and any alternative fuel vehicles.

The Nissan Leaf was interesting but with a 100 mile range it didn’t work for me. I already own a natural gas vehicle with a 200 mile range which is the minimum for me. The Ford Focus Electric was on display and looks to be similar in performance to the Leaf.

Jeep Wrangler

Jeep Wrangler Unlimited

Jeep Wrangler

Jeep Wrangler on obstacle course

Nissan Leaf

Nissan Leaf charging port

Nissan Leaf dashboard

Ford Focus Electric
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The Ten Most Popular Posts of 2011

In 2011 Rickety received 114,610 visits from 192 countries, generating 191,044 pageviews. I published 195 posts in 2011 but only two of them made it into the top ten. The remainder were written in 2010 (3) and 2009 (5). Here are the ten most popular:


Defense spendingDefense Spending by Country
In the latter half of 2011, talk of spending cuts increased traffic to my defense spending posts. This is the first of three posts on the subject in the top ten.

The wide gap between U.S. and world defense expenditures is of concern to many citizens.

This post, written in 2009, placed #5 that year and #8 in 2010.

Cowboys Stadium big screen


Cowboys Stadium Tour
Whenever the Cowboys were playing, this post received more hits. Written in 2010, it is one of only a few posts I have written about sports.

I found the tour of the stadium very interesting, considering I don’t watch any football and thought the Cowboys referred to some ranchers in Wyoming.


Laying Permastone tileInstalling a PermaStone Modular Vinyl Tile Floor
I have not written many how-to posts but this article has gradually risen in popularity until finally breaking into the top ten this year.

The flooring has stood up to wear very well and over two and a half years later looks like it was installed yesterday.

Of course it helps that it was installed after the children were grown.

Defense Spending by Country


2009 Defense Spending by Country
In 2009, U.S defense spending was more than the next fifteen countries combined. The chart graphically illustrates the huge gap, which has been widening annually.


Jacob Encountering RachelTen Artists Paint Old Testament Women
I put together this small collection of paintings in 2010 when the Old Testament was being studied in Sunday School. It reached the top ten that year at #5.

Of the ten paintings, one of my favorites is of Huldah in Treasure the Word, by Elspeth Young. Huldah is the woman who authenticated a book of the Law for King Josiah. Another favorite is Rebekah At The Well, by Michael Deas.

Woman with an issue of blood


Seven Artists Paint New Testament Women
2011 saw the New Testament as the scripture of study in Sunday School. These paintings depict seven different women but we only know two of them by name – Mary and Lydia.

My favorite is Lydia in She Worketh Willingly With Her Hands, by Elspeth Young. As Paul preached, the Lord opened the heart of Lydia. She believed Paul’s words and she and the members of her household were baptized.


Bryson and GrandpaUnited States Total Fertility Rate Increases
This is the first post I wrote about U.S. total fertility rate (TFR). It was #1 in 2009 and #2 in 2010. Surprised at its popularity I wrote another post on world TFR which then became just as popular.

The U.S. has a higher TFR than Europe and many Asian countries and will be much more able to the weather the demographic winter that will shortly befall many nations.

Aurora in an egg


World Total Fertility Rate Declines
Since 1950 the world TFR has been decreasing steadily and by 2050, according to the United Nation, the world TFR is projected to drop below replacement levels.

This post has been as popular as my post on U.S. TFR and reached #3 in 2010 with pageviews numbering 5,239 in 2011.


Where Mongolia, China, Kazakhstan, and Russia meet 12 Beautiful Mongolian Landscape Photographs
Written in 2009, this post was #1 in 2010. Its popularity surprised me, especially as it is just a collection of photographs garnered from Flickr.

I have many posts and photographs about Daniel’s Mongolian mission on my blog and this attracts a fair number of Mongolian visitors.

There were 5,578 pageviews of this post during 2011, of which 415 were viewed from Mongolia.

Defense Spending by Country 2010


2010 Defense Spending by Country
This post was written in June of 2011 and shot to #1 as talk of The-Mother-Of-All-Defense-Cuts increased.

In 2011 the post captured 7,312 pageviews.

Also see the Best of Rickety.
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CNG Station in Kaysville

CNG Station in Kaysville

Paul filling up at the new Kaysville CNG station

This evening I heard via Twitter that there was a new CNG station opening today in Kaysville, located at 80 North 600 West, between the UTA Park and Ride and the Davis County Technical Center. The official opening celebration is planned for 2012 but you can fill up now. Paul and I drove over to the station around 9pm to check it out and fill the tank. The overhead lighting was out but the pumps were operational. Two 3,000 psi and two 3,600 psi.


1 Feb 2012 — Questar Gas opens new CNG station in Ogden, UT, on Weber State University campus (4760 Old Post Rd), south of the arena.
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Windstorm Preparations

Windstorm preparations

A long line into the sewer district. There is another line visible further to the east. Click to enlarge

In preparation for the approaching storm, scenes like these were repeated all along the Wasatch Front. There were temporary waste collection sites at LDS Church stake centers and at other locations. After helping in our ward, Dan and I drove through several streets in central Kaysville and found hundreds of people and dozens of trailers being loaded. It was an impressive sight.

Windstorm preparations

Follow a laden trailer if you don't know where to go

Windstorm preparations

Because men were driving the pickups, directions were provided without having to ask

Windstorm preparations

Though the line was long we didn't have to wait long

Windstorm preparations


Windstorm preparations

Even minivans were drafted into service

Windstorm preparations

The line as we drove for the exit

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Kaysville Windstorm Part 2

Kaysville windstorm preparations

Kaysville 14th ward members turned out in force to clean up

It is not often that the Governor warns the citizens of Utah about the weather. But he did just that Saturday night when he urged residents along the northern Wasatch Front to prepare for another windstorm, forecast to begin at 5pm Sunday.

After Thursday’s windstorm, most residents have not had time to completely clean up.

In preparation, our stake president instructed wards to have their priesthood organize to remove branches and other debris that could become airborne in the approaching high winds. Accordingly, in our ward at church this morning the priesthood were asked to assemble in work clothes at 1pm. There was no asking for volunteers, it was just assumed that all able-bodied men would respond — which we did.

We collected all the green waste and took it to the Central Davis Sewer District where it will be converted to ground wood waste and mixed with biosolids, then composted and sold to the general public. It was quite the operation (follow the link for photographs), with armadas of pickups and trailers.

Kaysville windstorm preparations

There were large tree trunks to deal with as well as branches

Kaysville windstorm preparations

Chains saws were the weapon of choice

Kaysville windstorm preparations

Sister Blair handed out hot chocolate

Dan and I, after we had finished within our ward boundaries, drove to my daughter’s home for a branch meeting. There we removed part of a tree that was entangled in the power line to her home. The power is still out from Thursday’s winds. When we had finished cutting down the branches we asked Sarah’s ward members if they would take away the debris and they immediately dispatched ten men to her backyard.

Kaysville windstorm preparations

With the power still off it was a good time to clear away the branches that were stressing the power lines

Kaysville windstorm preparations

Dan did most of the work under my skilled supervision

Kaysville windstorm preparations

Sarah's ward had an efficient operation in progress

Kaysville windstorm preparations

Ever wondered what was inside those Mormon steeples? Nothing, at least now there isn't

Kaysville windstorm preparations

Mmm, I was wondering where that chair of ours ended up

Normally, Mormons view a Sunday as the sabbath day, a day to be kept holy. Occasionally, and this is the first time for me, members have to work together on a Sunday to secure their communities.


The high wind warning was cancelled but some gusts did hit 40 miles per hour.
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Davis County Windstorm Cleanup

Davis County windstorm cleanup

Working on the roof Saturday with my four sons

Yesterday we only had two hours before dark on Steven’s roof. After helping pull out two tree stumps at our neighbor’s homes, we headed back to Layton to finish the repairs to the roof. We nailed the last shingle by 4pm.
Davis County windstorm cleanup

Steven with his roof, good as new. The new shingles don't quite match but they will keep the rain out

Earlier in the day it seemed like the whole of Davis County was on the move. While driving to Layton we saw truck after truck filled with broken tree limbs. The line to the landfill, or rather the Green Waste Recycling Facility, was quite long.
Davis County windstorm cleanup

A common sight all day along Highway 89

Davis County windstorm cleanup

Notice the truck on the left carrying what looks like power cables, no doubt needed for repairs

Davis County windstorm cleanup

Several trucks headed for the Green Waste Recycling Facility

Davis County windstorm cleanup

As we headed towards the landfill there was a convoy of vehicles leaving, having shed their loads

Davis County windstorm cleanup

A long line at the landfill entrance

Mark Reporting from Bountiful

Our power was out from 8am until 2am the next morning. Luckily the temperature was in the low 30s during the day and low 20s at night. We have experienced other East winds when it was below zero. I spent much of the day [Thursday] on my ham radio with emergency responders in the area, sharing information and keeping up to date on what was happening.

It was a good opportunity to test out emergency preparedness plans / equipment. Serious enough to warrant their use, but not life threatening. The Davis County Amateur Radio Emergency Service was the main communication system for cities, police departments, hospitals and other emergency responders. These are hobbyists volunteering their equipment and skills and they did a fantastic job. At one point one of the Centerville Emergency Communications Center responders was heard on the radio saying:

A big spruce fell on a neighbor’s house about 20 minutes ago. The whole neighborhood is there cutting it up right now. I love this community. In some places in this country, we would still be waiting for FEMA!

Davis County windstorm cleanup

Connie surveying the damage in Bountiful

Davis County windstorm cleanup

A dead tree in the cemetery

Davis County windstorm cleanup

This tree was snapped off at the truck

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Layton and Farmington Windstorm Cleanup

Layton windstorm repairs

My sons repairing the wind damage to Steven's home. He's the dude wearing sunglasses in December

Other cities besides Kaysville had windstorm damage. Over in Layton my son Steven had his brothers helping to replace lost shingles. I stayed on the ground in a support role, fetching tools, bringing hot chocolate that Adelaide made, and picking up all the broken shingles scattered all over the lot.

My grandson Bryson helped by pointing with his stick to each piece of shingle and saying, “That one there, this one there, Grandpa.” Over in Farmington, my daughter Sarah, snapped some photographs of Heritage Park from the Frontage Road. She was driving past and was struck at the sight of all those tarps.

Layton windstorm repairs

From left: Paul, Steven, Dan, Jake

Layton windstorm cleanup

Bryson supervises the cleanup. Grandpa you missed one!

Farmington windstorm cleanup

Looking over Heritage Park at all the tarps

Farmington windstorm cleanup

It looks like almost every house lost shingles

Rachel, my daughter-in-law, was driving back from town and as she approached her home she saw a woman and children picking up the broken shingles around the house. She was so embarrassed that she drove right past. She waited until they were gone before going back home. Later when she was telling me her story she said, “I wonder if they picked up the back yard as well?”

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Kaysville Windstorm Damage Continued

Here are some more photographs of the hurricane force winds (up to 102 mph) that struck northern Utah today. My previous post showed damage to buildings, fences, and trees. Dan and Jake braved the weather and took photographs of some of the damage in Kaysville. The video shows the force of the wind.

See: How to heat your home when the power is out.

Signs of Windy Weather

Kaysville windstorm upside down sign

The wind must have seemed like hell in Ogden

Kaysville windstorm bent sign

Kaysville windstorm missing sign

Where is the missing sign?...

Kaysville windstorm found sign

...right here down the street


Vehicle Trouble

Kaysville windstorm skewed traffic lights

Kaysville windstorm blown out SUV window

Kaysville windstorm bent bonnet

Kaysville semi rollover

Not in My Backyard

Kaysville windstorm trampoline

Kaysville windstorm backyard

This is my backyard. This morning Dan had to search for my garbage can and rescue my barbeque from blowing away. The shingles on the ground belong to someone else. Are you missing any?


The Force of The Wind

When Dan was shooting the video he held the camera as steady as he could. The wind was too strong and once knocked him back a few steps (at the 11 second mark) but he kept his balance.

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