In the random news department, my Onkyo TX-SR705 receiver started failing by going into firmware upgrade mode for no reason and being unusable after I moved it to a cabinet, and jolted it a bit during the install (at most).|
Amazon was fantastic there, I was able to get them to take the receiver back and send me another one (this is the second receiver that failed and that they swapped, past their own 30 day return window). This is even more amazing because the price had gone back up from their $400 special to $800, and they sent me their last one with free shipping and a label to return the old one for free too.
After a few hours of work, the 3rd one is setup and working again. I'll make sure not to breathe on it too hard :) but seriously Amazon went above and beyond the call of duty here.
I got a free scooba 5900 from work. I was never really sold on the scooba, and indeed it looks like a finicky little device that needs a lot more help and care than a roomba, to the point that you may not save that much time compared to mopping yourself. It's also unclear that it's safe to use on our stone and hardwood floors, which might not be fully sealed. It also seems that the battery on the one I got is mostly dead, but eh, it was free :)
Maybe it's worth using it as credit for a newer scooba 350 or so, but I'm not sure.
In the good news department, after trying and ordering 3 pairs of hiking boots at REI, I think I finally found a pair that will work for me (i.e. that is wide enough without being way too long, which is otherwise bad for a hiking boot): Lowa Renegade GTX Wide. So far those seem both lightweight, which is nice, and willing to give more in the toe area. Hopefully they won't destroy themselves in a few days, but it seems like they may just work for my wide feet (I'm a 9 E wide).
Last, but not least, I've been spending a lot of time in the last weeks reading our 4 books on Hawaii and its Islands and working with a travel agent to plan our 3 week honeymoon. Those books are fantastic and have so much info, it's not even funny. In return, it's taking a lot of work to read all the useful info but it's allowing me to plan a very good honeymoon. Hopefully all that work will have been worth it :)