How to capture an image from your screen

With most computers you can just press Control and Print Screen and it will snap your whole desktop – but then you will need to open it and crop it to make it useful. I like to use a program call Screenshot Captor. It can be downloaded from this link:

After installing and running the program there will be an icon in the tray.

If you right click  on it you can get a menu that looks like this.

If you chose Grab Selected Area, you will have the ability to select what you want an image of and then save it as a file or copy it to the clip board. This is also very useful when you want to share what you see on your computer screen

Help someone with their PC remotely

This is really pretty easy:

  1. Click this link to install Teamviewer 12:
  2. Instruct the person you wish to help to download and install this link:
  3. Have them run TeamViewerQS and they will have a meeting number and a password to give you
  4. You run your local copy of TeamViewer and in the Remote Control section, enter the number they give you.  – You will then have a box to enter their password – soon, their desktop will appear on yours and you can start controlling their PC – this even works for rebooting.

What things are important

I am certainly not yet at death’s door and I still have a pretty long bucket list but I am old enough now to say that physically, my best days are behind me. Not that a gym membership and a crazy number of hours devoted to straining and sweating wouldn’t help, it is just that I must move a little more carefully, I must pace myself a bit and nothing really works as well as it once did. So here I sit thinking about how to redeem the time by considering what is really important and what is not. Money and wealth are not important past the point of providing a means to an end. How much do I really need? How much time am I willing to invest to go beyond what I need? I guess the answer is more holistic. I have a priority to my creator in that eternity makes this life’s priorities into a different context. I have a priority to my wife, to whom I have given my promise and with whom my life is in partnership. I have covenants with people I do business with, people I work with and people I am friends with. These covenants are implicit within the bounds my character and morality requires. All that adjusted by eternity.

That is the point though isn’t it? Am I going to live my life as if nothing remains of my after my flesh perishes or am I going to adjust my life in the context of eternity? Christ used words like “abide.” Paul talks about “winning the race.” Yet I best serve my creator by fulfilling the purpose for which He created me.

What are my passions? I am passionate about living in peace. That is the peace I have inside regardless of all the turmoil outside. So I will be anxious for nothing but in all things with prayer and supplication, I will give all my cares to God, that the peace that passes all understanding would guard my heart and my mind. Also, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good report, I will let my mind dwell on these things. So – faith is surrendering stress and not feeding my mind on the turmoil around me. Living in a blue state can make this a challenge when so many people let current events destroy their peace.

I am passionate about my wife. Our relationship is critical to me. We make decisions as partners, we help each other. We please each other. My commitment to her is before any other commitment short of my commitment to my creator. I delight in her delight.   To find a soul mate, you have to become someone who is a good soulmate and that takes no small amount of work.

I am passionate about my work. I have employment that brings me a lot of creativity and challenge. It is a wonderful mixture of consulting and creating as well as negotiating and travel. I enjoy my work so much that at times I find myself saying … “and they even pay me for this!”  Since work is honorable and necessary to make life work, it is really wonderful to find work that fits your gifts and passions.

I am passionate about people that are in my life. People at the Mission, people I work beside at the Mission. People I work with. I enjoy time with them. I am not passionate about chasing relationships with people that do not want me in their lives, even if they are family. Life it too short to chase people that are too good for me, people that have something against me for whatever reason. I will not be held hostage by social expectations regarding those who are indifferent to me. I know that I have a lot to offer to someone who wants me in their life and I will not waste my time trying to be loved by those that wont.

I am passionate about photography. I do not mean snapping a million photos hoping one will turn out. Photography is an intimate thing. I am best when I am alone. I will see something I wish to photograph and then I will circle the wagons five or six times and then ponder it. I use film and real paper made from cotton and cow bones. Just like they did 100 years ago. I mix my own chemicals and I use monster big cameras. Why? I like the end result. It has a lasting value and a depth and permanence about it.

I am passionate about the outdoors and all that goes with it. I love to hunt, to shoot targets, to hike and fish and do reloading. I love to explore and just relax in nature. It is not about killing or eating or even winning. It is about being in nature being a good marksman and there is just something wonderful about sitting around a lake with a fishing pole.

I love ham radio but I am waiting for a time a place where there is room to set up a great antenna and time to enjoy it. I know I could deploy an  antenna here that would get the job done but I do travel a lot and do not want to rob Loretta my time by chasing DX. My call is N6FH – I have worked a number of IOTA expeditions, my favorite mode is CW and I enjoy QRP. The day will come when I will be found pounding brass on 14.010 Mhz again, but not for a little while yet.

Regardless of my art and my hobbies, my priorities are to let all these things operate in balance. I loath missing Sunday mornings at the mission at Church in the Alley. It is important to invest in  those who are in need. It is important to give. What is really important is to become what God created me to be. To trust Him fully. To rejoice in His blessings and to be a blessing to others.


The Parker Vacumatic

Parker Vacumatic showing the end cap off for filling by pumping
Cap posted and ready for your pocket

Fountain pens are a passion for me because they harken back to a time that seems less complicated, a time where parents and grandparents were heroes, a time of hand craftsmanship. I collect various types of fountain pens and restore them for the purpose of using them in everyday work. A pen for everyday generally has the following characteristics; it needs to stay wet when capped. A lot of antique pen designs dry out when capped. Daily carry pens need to hold a lot of ink. Carrying ink bottles is not practical. The nib needs to not shed ink if you move the pen around in the air and the nib needs to stay wet when uncapped for a short amount of time. One of the best pens to meet all these criteria is the Parker 51 and the Parker Vacumatic. The Parker 51 has several versions for filling. There is a vacuum filling mechanism where the end cap is removed and the nib is placed in the bottle of ink and the plunger is pressed many times until the belly of the pen is full. This style holds a lot of ink and can easily do over 5,000 words without refill. Compare that to a Shaeffer Snorkel that only does 2,000 words and you can see why the Vacumatic would be a travel favorite. There is also an Aerometric filler that has a bladder with a squeeze bar like many pens had in the 1920s. These pens still hold a pretty good charge but they are not as innovative as the Vacumatic and so for most collectors, they are a little less desirable.

Special tools are required to refurbish the Vacumatic. There is a tool that screws on to the threaded area of the pump and then squeezes it to allow the pump to be removed. The nib section screws off the body and the body can be cleaned to restore its transparency. The pump plunger attaches to a rubber nipple that has a little ball in it that fits into a socket and there is a clear tube that attaches to the nib section. The nipple will get replaced and the tube needs to be cleaned. The nib can then be removed from the feed and all of it cleaned and re-assembled.

Vacumatics tend to have slightly flexible nibs and Parker 51s tend to be less expressive. The Parker 51 has a hood over the nib that not only keeps it wet, it also keeps the ink from flinging off when the pen is moved about in the air.

A few of my favorite things

This photo was taken several years ago. I had just enough time to race over to Multnoma Falls before I had to fly home. I had to fly home. It was rainy and I kept having to wipe the rain off my lens. This was taken with a 90mm lens on 4×5 film and the exposure was 16 seconds on Kodak Tri-X film rated at ISO200. I developed this negative in PMK which is a staining Pyro type developer. I have made many prints and the most common is 11×14 on fixed grade fiber based paper.