Friday, June 20, 2008

She Said

A few cute things the girls have said and done recently:

Maija had to go to the dentist today and get 2 fillings. I won't go into the guilt I felt over her having cavities even though we brush every day. Anyway, in order to have the work done, she had to take some medication which made her really loopy, and then they put her in a vest to basically strap down her arms so she didn't have any sudden movements. Of course, I was stressing about how the whole process would go. The dentist assured me that she wouldn't remember anything, so when we got home and she had gotten back to herself, of course we had to ask what she remembered. She said, "We went into the Finding Nemo room, I had a drink, and then Mommy read me a Backyardigans book." We asked her, "And then what?" She went on, "Then they put me in a chair and put on my wings, and then we went home." I'm pretty sure the "wings" referred to the restraining jacket they put on. In the end, she did really well and seems to have only remembered the nicer things. I have to mention how amazing her dentist is, Dr. Bashara at Sweet Tooth Pediatric Dentistry ( I love that place!

Another funny thing Maija came out with today. While we were waiting for the medication to start working, one of the dental assistants had given Maija a toy ring to wear. Maija looked at me and said, "Maybe I can get married now!" Then when the dentist asked her where she had gotten the ring, she replied, "It's my wedding ring." You should've seen his face. So funny!

Rebekah continues to be a very assertive and strong-willed girl, along with being totally adorable and loving. She has started saying "I want up", "I want down", "I want bak" (blanket), and "no" while she shakes her vigorously, among other things. She has also started biting! Actually, she only did it 1 time so far, but I was completely shocked. We were doing swim class, and she had decided she was done. I wouldn't let her get out of the pool and kept holding on to her and trying to get her to participate. I guess she didn't like that because as soon as my arm rested near her chin, she took the opportunity to chomp right down on it. Ouch! Those little baby teeth are strong.

Just another day at the Farny household.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Who Killed the Farnies' Electric Car?

It was me! I confess. Kent and I have been talking for a long time about either building an electric car, converting one, or buying one. The idea of plugging in your car for a few hours and then driving gas-free is very appealing to us, not to mention just plain old cool. As I discussed in my previous post, with gas prices being as high as they are and talk of further price hikes, we revisited our plans and started thinking that maybe this time we would really do it!

Kent started researching parts needed, and the type of vehicle that would best, etc. etc. I searched the internet looking for existing used electric vehicles. Surprisingly, it is next to impossible to buy a decent EV that is new; there are a few used EVs out there, but even they are few and far between. Then tonight Kent and I sat down to look at what he had found in his research about building or converting one ourselves. In the end, I realized that this would be a major project (even hiring someone else to do the installation) and it would cost almost double what we originally thought.

Sadly, our dream of owing an electric vehicle will continue to live only in our minds and hearts. We'll either have to wait until we can afford the $100,000 price tag on a new electric Tesla (, or until Kent happens to have hours and hours of free time and plenty of money to buy parts to do it himself. At least Kent's current car, a Honda Civic, gets decent mileage even if we have to use our children's college tuition to afford to drive it.

For interesting reading and/or watching about EVs, you can read about Chris Pane's documentary "Who Killed the Electric Car?"

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Gas Prices

Everyone seems to be feeling the pain of the increase in gas and food prices. I drove by a gas station today and saw that gas is now $4.19 a gallon. What?!? I never thought I would see the day. When I was living in Seoul, Korea back in 1999, I remember how shocking it was to pay $40 to fill up my little Kia Sephia sedan. My American friends just couldn't understand why gas cost so much there. So, here we are 9 years later, and guess what! It costs an arm and a leg for gas even in the U.S. of A.

Since Kent's field is alternative fuels, we are always talking about using an alt. fuel car or putting panels up to defray energy costs at home. The problem is that all of these things cost MONEY! We would love to have an alt fuel car, but we can't afford to buy one. We'd love to have solar panels on our house, but we can't afford to pay for the installation (even though Kent does have access to free panels.) So...we will have to limp along like the rest of America.

The one positive note for our family is that as gas prices go up, the demand for alternative fuel sources goes up. day, hopefully not too far away, we might be able to afford to actually USE the alternative energy sources my husband designs and tests.