Weekend Update: Energy & Entertainment

Installing solar panels in Southern California.

Renewable Energy…

Some weeks I’m better able to maintain focus than others. This has been one of those weeks when I’m easily distracted. I’ve also been restless at night, and not feeling as though I’m getting quality sleep, so the two may be related.

But on the plus side, the solar panels have been installed, we passed inspection yesterday, and are now generating solar energy! (At least we were until the clouds/rain rolled in.) We’re told that over time, the system should generate enough to meet all of our electricity usage. 🤞

Counting Down The Days…

Babylon Berlin Season 3 on Netflix.

until Season 3 of Babylon Berlin, which will be available March 1 on Netflix. This was one of those shows I just couldn’t stop thinking about after watching the first two seasons. If you haven’t seen it, there’s still time to catch up on Seasons 1 & 2.

In the meantime, we’ve been watching Counterpart, a dystopian spy thriller. The premise is sort of of a modern Cold War scenario with a sci-fi twist. That one’s on Amazon Prime. It took me a couple of episodes to get into it. There are occasionally some annoying plot conveniences, but it is an interesting story, with interesting (and often morally ambiguous) characters.

And when we need something lighter, we’ve been enjoying “Modern Love.” A bit uneven, but some really fun casting and sweet stories.

Also “watching…”

Apple watch gold case with red band. Details at une femme d'un certain age.

I’ve been making noises for some months about trying out an Apple watch to help track my activity levels, and le Monsieur surprised me last week with an early birthday present. Well, sort of surprised me. He said, “we’re going to the Apple store,” and told me to pick out a watch. I went with the basic model, gold case, red band. I’m still getting acquainted with it, but do appreciate the reminders to get up and move, and the ability to Shazam while listening to my car radio 😆 without having to dig out my phone.

Next week I’ll arrange to take the tutorial, so I can find out what else this baby can do.

Do you have a smart watch? What function do you use the most?

Bon weekend!

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  1. I rarely wore a watch until my husband also bought me an Apple watch. Now, I wear it constantly. I have these complications on my watch face; timer, temperature, calendar daily events, the activity rings and activity choices. I use the California watch face, so there is room for all that. I like the idea of Shazam on it. I’ll check that out. I also change the watch bands a lot. I have some from Amazon and Caseify.

    One thing, I had the series 4 aluminum gold and the face scratched badly. I traded it in for the Series 5 stainless and no problems. I would recommend getting something to cover the glass to protect it as the aluminum model uses glass instead of sapphire.

  2. Ha congratulations with your Apple Watch. Ron got one as soon as they came on the market. As voice control is on your phone as well as on your Watch, I suddenly heard Ron in the toilet saying: “We are also looking forward to seeing you again”. That was so weird. What was going on? Well, he got a message on his watch and replied by voice hahaha. So silly.
    But it is a nice watch and you chose a feminine one. I still go for the old fashioned watches. Just bought the a Le must de Cartier 21(second-hand). Mint condition.
    We have 16 solar panels on our small roof since 1995. They need to be replaced really. They still work, but the new ones can generate much more energy.

  3. Have you seen Sherlock yet? I am watching it while walking on the treadmill and it makes me want to exercise! I love my Apple Watch. It’s easy to change the bands too. Currently mine is pink sparkly. I mostly use it to track my exercise but I like that it vibrates to tell me when to turn if I’m using Apple Maps.

  4. My daughter just got me a Fitbit as an early birthday gift. She was going to go with an Apple Watch or a higher priced Fitbit. I asked her to get the $80 one for me. All I really wanted was one to track steps. It turns out this one is still a watch. It has Bluetooth so does let me know if I have a call. It vibrates when I need to get some movement in…way more features then I expected. I have worn it two days. Yesterday got my 10 K steps in!

  5. I love my Apple Watch! Once in a while it thinks I have fallen down and taps me on the wrist to see if I am okay. If I don’t answer, it will call my husband or 911! I got the plain white band with it for the gym. My daughter gifted me a black patent watch band which I love. The bands are so easy to change. Hope you love yours!

  6. I work at Apple. There are so many features, be sure to go into the store and have them show you! One of the most important features is the Fall Detection. Make sure you turn that on and if you fall or are in an accident an alert will automatically be sent to your Emergency Contact(s) and even 911 if you add them.
    My in-laws were recently in a car accident and we all received alerts on our iPhones and Watches with a map of the exact location. Might have saved their lives!

  7. Yes, traveling this spring to Cornwall, UK. Trying to put together a smallish wardrobe for 7 day repositioning cruise on QE2 and 11 days in UK. I generally take small suitcases since 2 are easier to handle than 1 large. This trip includes formal nights – I could skip but daughter going along loves formal wear. One overriding concern – cover arms, legs from sight a must. Although I realize no one will know me but remain afraid I need a larger wardrobe than 12 pieces with shoes…

    1. Yes, you may need more than 12 pieces, especially if you have formal events. The 12-piece capsule is intended as a tool and starting point…how much you add or adjust depends on the demands of the trip.

    2. I’m plus sized and use long chiffon floaty coats over black silk separates for black tie when I pack. Beautiful chandelier earrings and I’m set. Could pack these filmy coats in a baggy!

      1. I totally agree. Black pants and she’ll with different tops or jackets. I am determined to pack light for upcoming cruise in Europe and a visit with friends.

  8. I have Type 1 diabetes and my Apple watch displays my blood sugar from my continuous glucose monitor. Love it!!!

  9. Will have to check out the newest Apple watches – I love them for all their useful functions. And my pet peeve? People who check them constantly in the movie theatre – that’s just plain bad manners inconsiderate. Leave them (and your cell phones) alone – if you can’t, watch movies at home where the only people you bother are your family!

  10. Be careful with these watches. They have not been tested for long term safety by any agency. These watches give off electromagnetic radiation that penetrates your body as long as the watch is on. If you wear this watch you are part of an experiment. You could get sick years from now because of the latency period of cancer. New science is showing that even low amounts of radiation cause cancer. 2018 NIH National Toxicology Study. Check out the Environmental Health Trust website.

    Love your style. I want you and your followers to stay healthy and happy.

  11. The day I retired, I put my watch — a plain old watch — in a drawer & haven’t taken it out more than maybe twice in over a year. And the last thing I’ll ever do is wear a watch that tracks & monitors my every move & then sells it to advertisers so I can be better targeted for their ads. It sounds worse than my mother when I was 15! I’m an engineer & have spent a lifetime mucking about with techy stuff, so I can’t get away from it all fast enough now. My husband (also an engineer) feels exactly the same way. I haven’t even replaced my Smartphone after it flew out of my hand when we were roaring up the highway on our motorcycle last year — I went back to my old flip phone & it works just fine! I don’t really understand people’s desire to be connected all the time. Just thinking about it makes me tired 🙂

    1. I have a Fitbit that vibrates when I get a text message and I’ve decided it’s all I need. The battery lasts several days without a charge. Most smart watches I’ve checked out look very large and the Fitbit is much smaller. If I want to send messages I’ve got plenty of other screens to do that.

  12. By far my favorite Apple Watch feature is that you can ping your iphone. No more searching around for my phone. Also, as I walk of a plane I ping on my watch to make sure I hear the phone in my bag. Definitely make them show you how in your tutorial.

    1. Yes! The ping! The ability to “ping” my iPhone is a great feature. :o)

      My other favorite features are the timer, weather (multiple cities), and voice-text. As a full-time mom who does not love technology, I do love my Apple Watch! The timer is mainly used for cooking and time-outs (ha ha) and the weather feature is helping me decide what to pack for my trip to Milan this week. ;o)

      The best think is that I hardly ever touch my phone during the day anymore. I am more present with the children and my husband!

  13. Susan, you may want to check out Paul Green’s Abby Laceless Sneakers. I just got them and they fit my fussy feet and are so fun. Pricey but worth it for me as I don’t find most other brands comfortable. First pair of sneakers that I have kept. They have a orange-red accent that is right down your alley. I ordered 1/2 size up. On another note, I have the Garmin VivoActive 3 which is cheaper and more simple in operation than the Apple Watch. Got it in rose gold and a white band so I feel a little fashionable. I find the stair and step tracker helpful and it lets me know when I get a text or phone call. To each her own.

  14. Thanks for the review and nudge, Susan. For the last year I’ve been wearing a Fitbit (“Inspire” model), which encourages me to get WAY more exercise than I would without its nudges. I’ve thought about replacing it with Apple watch, especially since I live alone and could use that “Help, I’ve fallen and can’t get up!” function.

    Regarding the safety of wearing smart watches and Fitbits, I’ll face those demons when/if they actually manifest. I am comforted to know, however, that I’m highly unlikely to be injured or die while roaring up the highway on the back of a motorcycle. I believe the science on that topic has actually been done.

  15. I love my apple watch. I’m on my third one. Mine has the dark gold band, and I went with the stainless steel face this time. I would also suggest getting a glass cover for your watch’s face. I had the cheaper model last time, and it scratched badly.

    I use so many things on it. It is a wonderful apparatus.

  16. I am no Luddite: I worked at Apple for several years and have bough only Apple computers and devices since the first Mac. Then, I worked for one of the largest North American telecoms for a decade…but you could not •give• me this hunk of plastic. It is ugly and not in a quirky way. If worried about being found in case of an accident, use your smart phone, it tracks you anyway. FWIW I notice when a woman gets an Apple watch it is most often bought for her by a man who loves his gadgets— that is kind and generous but no thank you, honey.