Monthly Archives: February 2012

Do It Yourself: Fix Your Own Washing Machine and Save $$$

Thank God for the internet!  In the end I only paid $36 for a part, which came to just under $50 with shipping & handling.  The Champ and I fixed it ourselves.  Yeah, we baaaaad!!! Watch & Learn to do it yourself:


Too Many Pattern Attempts on a Tablet: Solution!

Well, this one had me quite frustrated.

I was officiating a basketball game, while The Champ, my 7-year old son, patiently awaited his game to start later that day.  In the meantime, he wanted to play Angry Birds, and pulled out my Novo 7 Advanced tablet.  (I love my Novo 7 Advanced tablet — only paid $155 for it!)

I’d configured my tablet’s screen to timeout after 10 minutes — only to be unlocked using a screen pattern.  I taught my son the pattern, but for some reason — on this particular day — he’d forgotten the pattern.  At some point — between his launching of an Angry Bird, and taking a bathroom break, my son was locked out of the tablet.  After his numerous attempts to unlock the screen, the software did exactly what it was supposed to do, and the screen showed that death message:  “Too Many Pattern Attempts”, along with a prompt to enter the Google (Gmail) username — an email address — and password.  These are the same credentials used to purchase from the Android Market.  The password to this account could be changed on a PC via the site.

In order for the tablet to verify that the Gmail username and password were correct, it had to be connected to a the internet — usually a WiFi network — to be able to access my Google/Gmail account.  There was only one problem.  My tablet was configured in such a way that it did not automatically connect to a WiFi network. I would manually “tell” my tablet to connect to a WiFi network (this prolonged the battery life). Now that I was locked out of my tablet, I couldn’t manually connect to a WiFi network.  So, even when I entered the correct Gmail account’s username and password, the tablet would not unlock because it was not connected to the internet!

Did I mention that I love my Novo 7 Advanced tablet?

The Novo 7 Advanced tablet comes with a USB port — which, along with allowing file transfers, also allows you to CONNECT TO THE INTERNET VIA A DIRECT (HARD-WIRED, NON-WiFI) CONNECTION!    I’d already purchased an adapter for the USB port to serve as a network port when I bought my tablet.    In short, using the tablets USB port, I was able to connect my tablet directly to the internet, enter my Gmail credentials, and unlock my tablet.  Here’s a summary of what to do:

First, make sure you can login to your Gmail account (on a computer) and verify the username and password.  Then


1.  Find a way to connect your tablet directly to a network instead of using WiFi (can be done if your tablet has a USB port).

2.  Login to your tablet using your Gmail credentials, and you’ll unlock the tablet.

OR, more specifically, as I did:

1  Purchase a Plug-n-Play USB-to-RJ45 LAN Adapter 10/100, along with a USB Host Adapter — costs $3 to $15  (these came with my tablet order).

2.  Connect the USB-to-RJ45 LAN Adapter to the USB Host Adapter.

3.  Connect the USB Host Adapter to your tablet.

4.  Connect the USB-to-RJ45 LAN Adapter to your network cable.

5.  Connect the network cable directly to your internet Hub or modem.

6.  Your tablet now has a direct connection to the internet.  Enter your Gmail username and password, and you should be able to unlock your tablet.  Make sure you enter the correct credentials!

If you want to buy tablets with great quality, price and service, visit  Tell them I sent you!

Buttermilk Biscuits… Yum!!!

Buttermilk Biscuits

Shopping List: Flour, baking soda, baking powder, sugar, salt, butter, buttermilk

Time before baking:  20 minutes or less

Amount:  Makes about 10 medium biscuits.  Take human bites.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. I have a small convection oven which I use for this as well.

Mix 2 cups of flour, 1/4 teaspoon of baking soda, 1 tablespoon of baking powder, 1 tablespoon of sugar, and 1 teaspoon of salt in a bowl.

Slice up 6 tablespoons of cold butter into the dry mixture.  Blend (with a fork, and then your hands).

Allow the mixture to flow through the fork as you press into it.

Now, rub the mixture between your hands (in circular motion) as if grinding it.

Do this until the butter is so blended with the dry mixture that the mixture holds its shape when you squeeze some in a fist.  Wasn’t that fun?

Mix in 1 cup of buttermilk a little at a time. Continue to use your hands to blend the buttermilk, and your “butter/dry powder mixxy stuff”.   Yes… yes I did call it that.  You should have a fairly “wet” gooey mixture.   Eat it. Wait… don’t eat it.

Sprinkle flour on a dry surface. With your hands covered with flour, take up some of the gooey biscuit mixture and shape it into 2x the size of a tennis ball, covering it with a light layer of flour. (The layer of flour will keep the gooey biscuit mixture from being too sticky to work with — less gooey, see?) Place the ball on the floured dry surface and prepare to roll out the biscuit mixture. If you don’t have a rolling pin, just put in your pre-school thinking cap, and flatten it out with your hands to about 3/4 inch thick.

Use a cup or glass whose opening is as wide as you’d like your biscuits. Cut your biscuit circles and place them in a non-buttered baking pan.

You can optionally brush the top of the biscuits with melted butter.  Bake for about 25 to 35 minutes.  Like I usually say… just don’t burn them.  Enjoy!

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