the wyze pan cam in my parents' living room broke over the weekend. my mother had mentioned that she saw the camera spinning around randomly, but i didn't believe her when i saw it for myself. when i tried to reset the camera i couldn't get it to see the QR code. i brought the camera home and played around with it a little bit. i did manage to set up the camera but only for a few minutes before it "crashed" and went back to spinning around intermittently and unable to stream videos. so i finally contacted wyze today. they have a good warranty, will replace the camera within a year of purchase (bought this pan cam last november) if it should fail unexpectedly. i had to first go through the formality of creating a technical trouble ticket.

a few hours later wyze sent me a reply with a list of "things to try" to fix the camera. it was all things i attempted before, but one thing caught my attention: that the microSD memory card might be corrupted and causing the camera to misbehave, something about a bad sector. i'd taken out the memory and reset the camera before and still had problems, but i decided to give it one more try with the memory card removed.

imagine my surprise when the camera suddenly started working again. but i did this in conjunction with a firmware upgrade ( to so i can't say for sure whether it was because of the a bad memory card or the upgrade. later on i looked through the card and discovered it hadn't been recording any videos for the past 2 weeks. regardless, the camera seems to be working again, i'll bring it back to belmont when i get the chance, although it is kind of nice to have a webcam in the house; not so much for when i'm home but to keep an eye on the place when i'm not around.

i found myself in an ebay bid this morning for a CMG-2420 12-24V 20A solar controller. with 5 bids it was at $3 with just 15 minutes to go before the auction closed. solar controllers are a dime a dozen, but this one was special because it had both voltage and current readouts (usually a controller just has voltage). it even has temperature (but only in celsius). normally the CMG-2420 sells for $22-26 on ebay so i decided to make a bid. my strategy is to wait until the last few seconds before putting in my bid. the disadvantage is there isn't enough time for me to up the price if i get outbidded, but likewise all the bidders don't have time to outbid me should i have the highest bid. back in march i paid $10.59 for a 12-24V 30A solar controller i got for our 100W flexible solar panel, so i wasn't going to spend more than that. going up 25¢ increments, i decided to bid $6.50 with just 15 seconds to go. apparently i surpassed the max bid one of the bidders had placed, and i won the auction at $6.50, a 70% discount compared to if i just bought one at the normal price.

after having some granola and yogurt for lunch, after filling out the cambridge cable survey (some of the questions were redundant since i cut the cord and occasionally receive OTA broadcast via youtube tv streaming), after going to star market to get some coffee for my mother, i rode the motorcycle to belmont, first stopping at the gas station to fuel up.

i wanted to see how full the rain barrels were after last night's heavy rainstorm. i was surprised to discover that the water level gauge was only halfway up. apparently it didn't rain quite as heavily in belmont as it did in cambridge. there were some open containers lying around, and there was about quarter inch of rain water at best, not quite enough to fill all our 6 barrels. i used the rain water to water the grass patches which have finally started to germinate.

i noticed 2 of the fairy light jars have water in them; apparently i didn't close them tight enough to make them completely waterproof. i cut all the spent garlic chive flowers to prevent them from making any more. i went to the basement to inspect our grow house, before the addition of the 1000W LED grow light we bought yesterday (arriving tomorrow). i returned home by 3pm. i thought it was going to be a cool day but it was actually pleasantly warm, temperature in the upper 70's with low humidity. although it was sunny for the first half of the day, by the afternoon large patches of clouds started to fill in the sky, looking like it might rain (it never did).

i went to market basket in the late afternoon to get some groceries. tonight i was going to make a parmesan chicken salad recipe i saw online. i'd already grabbed a lemon and an avocado from belmont, along with a head of red garlic. i'd been planning this recipe since last week when i bought some radishes from haymarket.

my 1m LED neon strip light came today ($1.28). i don't have a 12v power source in the house so i couldn't test it. it's built so sturdy, i don't know if i could ever cut it into smaller segments without damaging the electronics inside since i can't see through the covering.

in the late afternoon nancy pelosi announced formal impeachment inquiry into president trump following reports from a whistleblower that trump had pressured new ukrainian president to personally investigate joe biden's son's previous work in that country. i don't know how i feel about that. not that i don't want trump impeached, but i don't think they have the vote. it'll definitely pass the house, but impeachment advocates (overwhelmingly democrat) will need 20 senators (republicans) to flip in order to remove trump from office. pelosi and the part committee have been slow to act on impeachment inquiry for strategic reasons, fearing that a failed vote (which right now looks to be the case) would only serve to galvanize trump's base come the 2020 general election, despite clamoring from the more leftist wing of the democratic party eager to see trump removed. i suppose impeachment was inevitable, given trump's flagrant disregard for the law and inability to tell the truth. it'll be interesting to see how this plays out. trump's people said they would release tomorrow the transcript of his conversation with the ukrainian president, hoping to show there was nothing unlawful.

i didn't start cooking until 8pm, where i tenderized some chicken breasts, drizzled them with olive oil-salt-pepper, and baked them in the oven for 30 minutes at 350°F. they were done by 8:40pm. the breasts seemed a little tough and i couldn't shred them easily with forks so i just used my hands. i made the dressing which was a combination of greek yogurt, olive oil, lemon juice, fresh grated parmesan cheese, and roasted garlic pulp. i mixed it by hand, wonder if it'd taste better if i used the food processor to blend the ingredients. it wasn't so much a creamy dressing as just a sour yogurt sauce with sour lemon juice. the sourness was so overpowering, i could hardly taste any of the parmesan or the garlic. i chopped up some lettuce (dried it in the salad spinner), some radishes, and half an avocado.

i made a big bowl of salad for myself (using the largest glass pyrex mixing bowl that i have, 2 quarts). ingredient-wise you'd think it'd be delicious, but it was just okay. the "dressing" was definitely a fail, like eating a salad with lemon yogurt dressing. i have more salad ingredients for the next few days, i should research a different parmesan cheese dressing. there really is no excuse not to have a delicious salad with what i have on hand. the chicken breasts should also really be grilled in the foreman, which is usually how i cook the chicken for my caesar chicken salad. in fact, if i used the caesar dressing in my fridge, it would be a caesar chicken salad.