The Best Birthday Ever


Hey guys,
Steve here.

Two days ago, I turned eighteen. That’s probably hard to believe for at least some of my followers– those who started following me when I first began this blog, less than a month after my twelfth birthday. Not only that, it’s hard for _me_ to believe. Even still, call me a man all you want, I’m a child at heart.
That said, I had one of the best birthday weekends ever. It was full of surprises. I got to drive an ATV (believe it or not I was the one in control of the wheel), and eat a bunch of fried chicken and other extremely unhealthy but delicious foods. Most importantly, though, I was able to spend it with some pretty awesome people.
First, there was Danny. I believe you all know who that is. But for those who don’t, he is my best friend who I have been communicating and gaming with for the last four years. Only problem is, he lives over a thousand miles a way, so as one might imagine we never get to see each other in person. But because it was my eighteenth birthday, my family planned for Danny to come for a surprise visit. Some how, they managed to keep it a secret from me for at least a month; I never knew a thing about it until he strolled in to the kitchen while I was making breakfast and, well, introduced himself all over again, in a way. I am not sure what the word is to describe the feeling I got; a mixture of excitement, bewilderment, and disbelief. I have been wanting to meet Danny in person for probably two years now, so being surprised with it first thing in the morning of what was to be a relatively ordinary school day amplified it.
In addition, Libby came back from college. Even though she had been down for spring break just a week before, she made the trip so she could spend time with me for my birthday, because she’s an awesome sister like that. I knew it was going to be an awesome weekend.
Earlier I said it was a relatively ordinary Friday. That’s because instead of spending the whole day at school, I was going on a trip to the mall for my annual Orientation and Mobility field trip. Since Libby was home for the weekend, and Danny was visiting, they, as well as my mom, got to come on the field trip with me. We spent the morning mostly just walking around, and because Danny, Libby and I are blind, the two adults would tell us the names of stores and we would try to guess what they sold. We just had, to pass a coffee shop, so of course that is the one shop I bought anything from – out of all of the stores in that huge place. The only other store we stopped at was Microsoft. That was my first time visiting a Microsoft store. Although I personally was impressed with the goods on display, my wallet was simply intimidated. So instead of buying anything, I settled with writing on one of the demo laptops, something along the lines of this:

To the next person to come across this:

Have a nice day!
meow.

Sincerely,

Chester the cat.

After the mall trip, we all went out to eat. My dad and vision teacher also got to join us for that. Then for the rest of the day, I hung out with Danny, while the rest of my family went shopping for yet another “something” for my party.
Although my birthday wasn’t until Sunday, we held the party on Saturday, since Danny and Libby would be leaving. I am not a social person by nature, but even though there were tons of people that showed up, I was so glad to have them there. It was such a wonderful evening. First, there was the fried chicken. According to Libby, fried chicken is apparently an “original” idea for a birthday. See, I didn’t think of it that way, I just thought it was a genius plan, but that’s just my opinion. Then, there was the cake. It was designed like a torn open bag of m&ms, and whatever they put on the top of it to make the design tangible actually felt to me like a near perfect representation, and there were m&ms spilling out. And yes, it tasted just as good as it sounds. There were cupcakes as well, with a similar condensed version of the design on them, and these had some sort of cream filling in the middle.
Aside from the wonderful food, there was that surprise my family was shopping for the previous day. After everyone finished eating, I was led out the door, and to the driveway, where there sat an ATV. It’s sort of like a car the way it feels, and it can seat up to five people. That’s just how awesome my family is; they surprise their blind son by taking him out to see the brand new ATV.
For the rest of the evening, we all hung out, ate a lot, and took turns driving the ATV. I enjoyed it because it was my first experience driving something on land without anyone holding the wheel or guiding my hands.
Finally, even Sunday turned out to be a great day. As it turns out, since the party and field trips and planning were all over, me, my parents, Libby, and Danny decided to spend my birthday relaxing. We made arrangements so that neither one of them would go home that day, instead they would wait until Monday when I too had to go back to school.

In the end, it ended up being one of the best weekends I’ve had in a really long time. I have to say. For having planned this all in secret behind my back, my family and the others who helped or participated did a heck of a good job. And I recognize that this has been an extraordinarily long post, especially since I haven’t wrote a word in what, gosh, five months? However, there was certainly a hole lot to talk about.

Thanks for reading,
type you later,
Steve.

P.S. I have more catching up to do, but I think that if this gets any longer, it will turn into a novel. I’ll see you next time. Have a good one.

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Spring has arrived


Hey guys,
Steve here.

Did you know today is the first day of Spring? Yes, we all made it through that cold; harsh winter of 2013 and 2014.
Call me negative, call me paranoid… but there’s one main thing that comes to mind when I think about spring–tornadoes. Tornadoes are probably my biggest fear, thus the fact that we’re entering a 2-3 month period where they are possible, if not likely to happen, is a bit disconcerting to me.
As a more posative thought, spring also means my birthday, as well as the blog’s birthday. It also means that there are no more seasons separating us from summer break; I don’t know if this has occurred to you before, but summer break starts on June 6, and it’s not even summer officially until June 21. And on a completely unrelated note, I can also get some storm recordings now. Since thunderstorms tend to occur during the spring more than any other time, and the ones that happen during spring are the most epic ones, I’m bound to get some rather nice recordings… and expect them to be in stereo.

Aside from it being spring and all, I have some exciting news, along with upcoming events. Trash is going very well–not only have I completed the computer draw from junk pile procedure, but I have even done a win round procedure. (see the post on March 6 if you have no idea what trash is or when I started programming it). If progress keeps going how it’s going now, I expect a testers version out (not to you, to my friend), by Steve eve or the day of the best. (the day of the best being a reference to my birthday, because I’m so narcissistic like that).
As for sQuad word, (used to be ultra pad until I quit collaboration with Mason), I’m still fixing visual stuff. Since I only see my friend from school… well… at school, testing that is going slow. I get him to look at it, come home and try to fix it, and get him to look at the next day… etc etc. I’m going to look at a notepad example either tonight or tomorrow and see how they visually did theirs, and copy that for mine. (I won’t copy any code, just the x and y positions, and the width and height of the edit box where you type all your text). Anyway, if I can do that, and my friend tests it and says it looks good, I’ll get it out to you tomorrow or this weekend, and if not, next week. Remember, that when I publish it, you’ll know because the software page will be renamed to “sQuad software.”

Besides software and such, let me give you a brief, and I mean really brief this time, life update.
You know the zombie book I was reading, (it was called “Feed, newsflesh trilogy #1” in case you don’t remember (it was also mentioned on March 6th’s post))? well by golly I finally finished it. Sure it was 2 and a half weeks after I got it, but I! finished it! Not that it’s exciting (it was a good book), but it took me forever to finish that. It must have been 600 pages.
Well As you know with all trilogies, they have 3 books. So, I’m now reading “Deadline, newsflesh trilogy #2.” It’s turning out to be good so far.

Besides all that reading, I haven’t been doing much. Literally, for this whole school week, my evenings were spent on Skype with Danny, and programming. But how can you blame me? Danny is my closest friend, granted we don’t see each other, and programming is one of my hobbies, and hopefully future career. And hey, if those colleges see I want to program, and have done it for several years already, they’ll have no problems letting me in… right? :))
Looking ahead to the future, it’s almost my birthday. A day that, if you like this blog, you’ll be as happy as I’ll be–isn’t it true that if I was never born, nor would this blog be? And of course, don’t forget the upcoming birthday of the blog.
And on a final note, speaking of the blog, we’re almost at 10000 views–and I won’t say the usual “keep viewing and I’ll keep posting” line again, since that really makes me sound like I’m posting for the views; something I am not doing.

Thanks for reading,
type you later,
Steve.

A mid week update


Hey guys,
Steve here.

Well spring break is over, along with two days of our first week back to school. Isn’t it amazing how time can fly by so fast? I mean even when posting the Monday’s musings post… I was amazed–it’s already been 15 weeks of Monday’s musings? And yet it seems like Monday’s Musings 6 was written last Friday. Well not really, considering Monday’s musings posts are written only on Mondays, but you get my point anyway.

For you storm recording fans, I have some good news for you. On March 15, we got a pretty big storm, and I was able to record it not only in stereo, but from an out-of-the-window vantage point. Yes, you will hear wind hitting the microphone, but that can serve as more proof I recorded it vertually outdoors. And if you hear some talking, and you will, it’s because I was at my church friend’s house at the time of the recording.

Aside from storm recording, my spring break was one of relaxation, and forgetting school all together; acting like it didn’t exist, and waiting until Sunday to do violin practice, because after all that is an aspect of school, that I believed I didn’t need to worry about over the break. After posting that blog post last Tuesday, I had two of the same days–spending my time being lazy and playing on the computer. On Friday, however, my mom, sister, and I fed the ducks at white rock lake. And now that I think back to it, didn’t we do the same thing on the Friday of spring break last year? It’s even written in a blog post from around that time.
After feeding the ducks Friday, we went to a palio bakery, and tried some of their desserts. I got to try a cookie, and a cupcake, both made with absolutely no milk. Now how weird is that? Even weirder, the things tasted good!
After our day out, we came home, and I programmed, and skyped danny; nothing productive for the rest of the night.
On Saturday, we had goal ball practice, and then we went to my church friend Oscar’s house to spend the day. We went because I guess my mom and dad planned to spend the day with them, but didn’t tell me about it until Saturday morning, so once again I didn’t tell you guys in advance.
So basically, after goalball, I ran home, made sure I had my recorder and stereo microphone, and weather radio, and we were off. So, that night when we were still over there, the storms hit, and I was able to get that great recording. But due to noise and microphone positioning, it took me like 5 attempts before I finally got the perfect recording. Welcome to the world of audio production. *sighs*
Later on that night, we had ice cream… or should I say everyone but me had ice cream. I accidentally fell asleep around 10:10 or so, and they had ice cream right after that. (lololol) I don’t know how I always fall asleep at parties and get togethers like that right before they have dessert.

Skipping ahead to Sunday, it started off with church as usual, and the rest of it was spent getting ready for school, and on the computer. And as for yesterday and Today, I had school, and was on the computer in the evenings. (well I guess we’re officially back into the routine).

In other news, Trash is nearing completion. I am already working on the winning procedure–and when that’s complete, I can put up an early beta, but sadly you guys won’t be able to play it because I need my friends to check for bugs before I toss it out to you guys. But hey, even if it takes long, at least I’m trying to make it as bug free and enjoyable as possible before giving it to you guys.
Speaking of software, Mason and I stopped colaboration on Ultrapad, because we wanted to release it on our own and do different things on it. Besides, there was some stuff in there I wanted to take out, and replace with different stuff… so it’s for the best. Anyway I think I got the bug fixed–and if that’s true, you’ll know by the nice little link posted on the software page. Also, when I release that, the software page will be renamed to sQuad software, so be on the look out for that in the next few days. (yes, in other words, check back often:).

Aside from all that, My birthday is only 8 days away! So in exactly a week from now, that’s right, it’ll be Steve eve! I decided not to have a birthday party, however I will be eating stake n shake for my birthday dinner. MMM there shakes and chicken tenders are so freaking good!
As for what I’m wanting for my birthday, there are two things–one of which I must see if it exists. I want swamp, and a talking rain gage. Or at least a braille one anyway. I’m not complaining here, but it is a matter of fact that there just isn’t a whole lot in the way of accessible technology out there, thus is the reason I’m having to make sure if such a thing as a talking rain gage exists.

Changing topic, Spring is just around the corner, which also means tornado season. That literally has to be my least favorite thing about spring; even reading about a tornado watch that was issued for Florida (my friend lives there and I was checking the weather) had me shaking, mainly because I know that weather is bound to hit any day now.

As another change in topic, high school transition night was supposed to be tonight. It’s some night where they show you the layout of the high school and you can meet the teachers… but I didn’t bather to go; there will come a day this summer where I’ll go up to the high school, give it a tour, and meet the teachers anyway.
Speaking of which, I’m sort of hoping I don’t get put in Pre AP next year. I thought of that, because my o&m teacher and I were going to talk to the high school counciler (not mental guidance counciler, the one that manages your schedules and such), about me being in pre AP next year. Call me lazy, call me under acheaving… whatever, but I just don’t feel like doing it. You see I’m one of those who doesn’t want to drop out of high school, or even just graduate with 70’s and 80’s as my average; I want to graduate, be successfull, and have a’s and b’s in high school. I don’t care about this whole destinguished program stuff, (although my sister does, and I’m proud of her). I just don’t feel it’s nessessary; if I can get into a college that’s not poor quality, and has programming and/or meteorology classes, I’ll go for it.

But with all that said, I guess that’s the end of tonight’s post. I hope you enjoyed reading it, and look forward to my next post.
(and yes, I have my next 4 posts scheduled, but I’m not releasing dates :).

Thanks for reading,
Type you later,
Steve.

P.s. There are only 10 Mondays left of school! Hurray!
P.S.S:
this is the first one of my posts that is over 1000 words… isn’t it?