Monday, September 17, 2012

Why we love our 2013 Jeep Grand Cherokee

now over the last 8 days of owning our new car we put exactly 500 miles on it so far and did several trips to stores like Home depot or other 'let us keep you money' stores. To work on our house and compliment it.

Now reasons why we love the jeep:

buying a bbq for the backyard - it fits
space for two adorable puppies

space for a out door patio furniture set
space for several 100 pounds of wood and stuff
and the gas bill for 450 miles of driving was not even to bad

Needless to say we are rather happy with it!

And our backyard looks nicer and nicer.

Sunday, September 09, 2012

The magical transformation of a 2013 Porsche Boxser into a 2013 Jeep Grand Cherokee

So Robin and I were dead set on buying a new 2013 Porsche Boxster in the next 3-6 months, because owning a Porsche was always something, which I never thought would be possible to obtain for me.

Well about 3 days ago, I got hit on the freeway by another Car, which totaled my 1996 Pathfinder/Puppy Car and made it not safe to drive anymore.

damage after getting hit by 4800lbs F150 Pickup Truck, the frame seems to be bend to and it's not really safe to drive anymore
So Robin and I set down trying to figure out what we need and a sexy sports car, was not really a possibility, since we need a useful car to transport our puppies (which are getting bigger and bigger) and get stuff for our house.

what we wanted to buy ~55k$
So we decided to get instead a car, which fulfills the following criteria:

  • AWD or 4WD to be able to drive in Snow and go camping in offsite campgrounds
  • not more than 5 seats
  • enough space for the dogs in the back and 2 people + stuff
  • load capacity of around 1000 lbs for House supplies
  • able to tow a small trailer or jet skies, if we ever require it
  • possible to have a roof rack installed
  • somewhat fuel efficient (no V8 for me... I guess I will never own one now, since car makers are stopping to produce them)
  • not more than 400$ a month payment
Now after I started my research and pointed out a couple of car's to Robin:

1500 Dogde Ram Quad Cab Pickup ~22k

2013 Toyota 4-Runner 4WD ~40k
2013 Toyota Tacoma 4WD ~35k
2013 Jeep Grand Cherokee AWD ~30k
And we decided to go with a Jeep Grand Cherokee, since all the Toyotas used to much Gasoline and the Dogde was the worst by far with a estimate gas mileage of ~17l on 100km and the Grand Cherokee was the best with about ~12l on 100km. It was a bit more expensive than the Dogde, but had all the features we wanted and satellite radio.

Now this sounds a bit funny to choose a car by a feature called Satellite Radio, but after using it for 5 minutes and discovering a dozen of stations I loved, It was a must have for me and Robin just loved the look and features of the Grand Cherokee and considered the Ram 1500 Pickup just too big.

Robin: The grand cherokee is a boat, but the Dodge is a flipping Cruise Liner...
She also found this cute 2013 Jeep Compass, which was a nice litte SUV and was just great gas mileage wise, but it was just to small for me and optical as physical (I did not fit behind the wheel) and so it was never an option. It was 10k$ cheaper than the Grand Cherokee, but if I don't fit...

So we ended up with this beautiful 2013 Jeep Grand Cherokee, which has all the features we wanted and needed, for an acceptable price and is able to tow up to 5000lbs, if we ever need to and install a Class IV Hitch to it.
from the front, in our Drive Way
from the side
next to our Pathfinder, I assume it's going to be picked up by the insurance company soonish. The Jeep is significant larger
Now we are just looking forward to our next camping trip, with the Jeep. After all, it's already Basil approved.
Basil seems to like the large rear window

Pearl Habour

during my stay in Hawaii, I had togo to Pearl Habor, since this has been one of the most significant places in the States and especially the State of Hawaii in the last 100 years.

And sadly the security guidelines were so strict, that I could not bring my long lenses into the memorial to take pictures and was so limited to using a 10-20mm wide angle lens. Which basically means that I could get only one decent shot.

one of the old submarines in front of the memorial of the submarines, which sunk/disappeared during the second world war.
I actually really learned a lot at this particular part, for example that the average service live of a submarine was only 6-8 Month (just a guess based on the numbers, no statistical evidence available), before it 'disappeared' during the war. Yes there were some, which survived for 2-3 years. But most of them were lost on sea during the first 6 months of there service.

Tuesday, September 04, 2012

A new Toy...

After we put the Dog kennel together last weekend and the week before assembled the TV mount, I decided we need yet another tool. A decent miter/power saw to speed up this progress a bit. Using a handsaw just takes to long.

So today we went out shopping and got a new 10" Saw for 165$ instead of 450$. Because it was on sale and a part was missing from it. A simple wrench to adjust the blade, which turned out to be a 10mm Socket wrench. I got about 4 of them already, so not to worried about it.

Dewalt 10" Compound Miter saw,

Now I just need to create a plan to build the puppy house and get the wood.

Meeting in Hawaii

For the last couple of years now I wanted to travel to the state of Hawaii and thanks to a recent meeting I was finally able todo so and spend 5 days there.

Sadly I had not that much time to explore the things I wanted todo and forgot my contact lenes back in california. So not surfing/windsurfing or scuba diving for me.

So besides all the meetings to attend, developing quick software solutions on the fly and enjoying some great food. I did have time to take some pictures.

delicious oysters
one of these countless turtles of the area
the beach in front of our house
So Hawaii is definately quite nice and I do want to go back there sometime in the future, but I'm happy I didn't follow the standard stereotyp and got married or spend my honeymoon there.