Archive for January, 2011

Current Reading January 2011

Posted: January 16, 2011 in Books

Currently I am Reading:

The War of Wars by Robert Harvey

“The Epic Struggle between Britain and France 1789-1815”  One of my Christmas presents, so far this appears to be a fusion of politics, grand tactics, and battle.  Light on the telling of all 3 facets, but it is ambitious as to be all this in one volume.  So far a well paced and good read.

Pearl Harbor  A novel of December 8th by Newt Gingrich and William R. Forstchen

This is my parking shuttle and lunch reading for the month.  Not a bad read so far, actually I think it’s better than their ACW series.  It does make some interesting points on understanding (the Japanese verses a Western view) how Japan viewed the events leading up to the Pearl Harbor attack.

What I’ve finished Reading:

The Surgeon’s Mate by Patrick O’Brian

7th book in the Maturin/Aubrey  Napoleonic age of sail series, yet another  reread for me, but good stuff for the parking shuttle and lunch time at work.

An anonymous source reports to the TOWNN (The Occasional Wargamer Network News) that a new battle Squadron has joined the US pre and WWI fleet.  The report lists BB-13 USS Virginia, BB-14 USS Nebraska , BB-15 USS Georgia , BB-16 USS New Jersey, and BB-17 USS Rhode Island; all Virginia class battleships.  Apparently this squadron was not built in local yards as no report of any recent launching from the ways was forthcoming.  Rumors abound about at where the ships were built, but evidence suggests that  the international arms merchants of E-bay were involved in the transaction.  By the snapshot below, the yards of Panzerschiffe were most likely the original builders, fitting out was accomplished at an unknown location.

Virginia and classmates

2011 Making Plans

Posted: January 8, 2011 in Uncategorized

A few months ago, I blogged on a half-dozen projects and when I hoped to have then done.  Well as the New Year begins to unfold, I still have those projects on the back of the painting table.  That being the case, here is a brief plan for my hobby efforts for 2011.

1) Blog more, with more pictures.  I’m going to shoot for at least twice monthly articles with pictures in addition to doing month end wrap-ups.

2) Finish the workshop.  Formica on the benchtop, shelves, and a sink should complete the major phase of fitting out.

3) Get to at least one convention.  With an adoption in the works in 2010 convention trekking just wasn’t in the mix, with everyone settled into a routine, I’m going to try to get out and get a convention in this year.

4) Finish at least 3 of the lurking projects.  Eureka Teddybear pirates are up first, On deck is a human Bloodbowl team, and on the steps of the dugout is another 18mm AB British brigade for Age of Eagles.

5) Actually sit down and paint at least once a week.  I’m going to try to plan this into my schedule to keep moving ahead.

6) Organize and briefly catalogue the ready locker.  Now that I have a workshop, I need to get a handle on what lurks in cardboard boxes in the basement.  I’m sure there are projects and mini’s that I’ve long forgot.  I need to figure out what I have, what I want to keep, and move the rest out.

2010 Year End Wrap-up

Posted: January 8, 2011 in Year End Wrap-ups

Miniatures Stats  2010:

Bought     27

Painted     8

2010 already gone? it seems like I hardly knew you.  I really didn’t get much done on the mini’s front.  I think I bought the fewest mini’s in a year since I got into the hobby.  I tried to focus on completing project that I already had started.  I made progress on several projects but just haven’t been able to put numbers in the finished column.

I did however make major strides in getting my workshop up and running.  Going from essentially bare walls at the turn of last year, on to having light, heat, floors, and a workbench closing out 2010.  Next up is getting some Formica on the benchtop and shelves over the bench.

On the homefront, my wife, son, and I welcomed a daughter to our family in May and finalizing our adoption in December.  Bigger and more enjoyable events than anything the hobby holds, I don’t begrudge “losing” hobby time to my family.

Onward into 2011!

December 2010 Wrap-up

Posted: January 3, 2011 in Monthly Wrap-ups

Miniatures Stats December 2010:

Bought for Month:      0                                                 For 2010:     27

Painted for Month:    0                                                  For 2010:     8

Wow, did December go fast.  With a stomach bug sweeping through the house in mid-month, holiday activities, and a belated work-up of our church budget which I oversee; December turned in to a wash for painting.  Unfortunately this means that I missed getting the Christmas gift for my nephew done (fortunately this was a secret from him).

Onward into the New Year!

Current Reading, November/December 2010

Posted: January 3, 2011 in Books

The last couple of months I’ve had some longer days at work and a series of evening meetings.  It’s cut into my painting time, but having shorter evenings means (strangely enough) that I’ve read more.

Currently I am Reading:

The Surgeon’s Mate by Patrick O’Brian

7th book in the Maturin/Aubrey  Napoleonic age of sail series, yet another  reread for me, but good stuff for the parking shuttle and lunch time at work.

What I’ve finished Reading:

John Paul Jones Maverick Hero by Frank Walker

This was a $2.50 brand new bargain Non-Fiction at Half-Price Books.  I can see why they had a big stack.  The information is good, even solid from other readings on the man, but like many books this one was in desperate need of a good and firm editor.  The author couldn’t decide whether to cover the life by simple chronology or let events give way to provide a peek into Jones’ past.  He achieved a confusing swirl of past and present which confuses the events and details.  The end result is good facts tumbled about into an almost unfollowable biography.

The Shiva Option by David Weber and Steve White

An extension of the Starfire books based on the classic game.  I picked this up off of the bargain shelf.  A fair space battle read.  The earlier books were better.  This one gets a bit stale.  Each battle is bigger, heavier losses, etc., etc.

The Price of the Stars by James D. MacDonald and Debra Doyle

This and the next 3 books in my list are part of the MageWorld series. I picked the  series up years ago, started them and for some reason never finished.  My mistake they are a great Space-Opera series.  A very entertaining series of reads.  I see that the authors have added a couple of other tales on each end of the series over the years, I will have to keep them in mind on my next trip to Half-Price Books.

Starpilot’s Grave by James D. MacDonald and Debra Doyle

By Honor Betray’d by James D. MacDonald and Debra Doyle

The Gathering Flame by James D. MacDonald and Debra Doyle

Under Enemy Colors by S. Thomas Russell

A good rollicking sea tale set in His Majesty’s Navy circa 1793.  In a similar mold of Hornblower and Aubrey, this one is a real page turner.  I probably should list it under books that I have read as it will not last the day.  I’ll be looking to see if there are any more in this line.  This is not as weighty a novel as O’Brian’s Aubrey series, it leans more toward the action packed pagers of Forester’s Hornblower books.

Desolation Island by Patrick O’Brian

5th book in the Maturin/Aubrey  Napoleonic age of sail series, yet another  reread for me, but good stuff for the parking shuttle at work.  I’m working my way back though the 12 or so books that I have, anticipating being able to finally continue the series.  At times life can get in the way of all hobbies, even reading.

The Fortune of War by Patrick O’Brian

6th book in the Maturin/Aubrey  Napoleonic age of sail series, yet another  reread for me, but good stuff for the parking shuttle and lunch time at work.

Jesus Among other Gods by Ravi Zacharias

A Christian apologetic, comparing and contrasting Christianity with Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism.  Zacharias is one of the leading Christian apologists writing today.