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Root Beer


When my grandmother came to visit, she brought some ingredients so we could make some homemade root beer! We used a recipe from a book I have called The Big Book of Boy Stuff. It is a great book and I highly recommend it. It was a bit hard to make but it was fun. It was a little bit bitter but I liked it. We made it last Saturday and it was ready on Sunday. You can order root beer extract from the internet.

By | September 22nd, 2015|Uncategorized|0 Comments

My Trip to Phoenix


In the picture, the people are (from left to right) Sienna, Christine, Story, Silas, Steele, and me.

One week ago, I went to Phoenix! It was really fun! We stayed at the Arizona Waldorf Astoria Biltmore Hotel (you can get water for the fabulous deal of only $5.50 a bottle). The flight was boring and long from JFK airport to Phoenix. Our Aunt Maggie picked us up in her Sprinter van. In the car were our cousins, Sienna, Silas, and Story! I was really hungry, so we stopped at a taco place real quick. We went over to our cousins’ house and goofed around for a bit with my cousin Steele. After, we went to our hotel and went to sleep, exhausted.

The next day, I woke up around 6:00 am. My dad went for a walk. Christine snoozed until 6:30 am and Dad got lost and came back around 7:00 am. He said he saw two coyotes that scared the living daylights out of him. We went to breakfast at the golf course, where I had two fried eggs, some bacon, and some potatoes. It was great! My dad got a burrito and my sister got pancakes. Then we went back to the room and did some math (groan). After, our cousins Steele and Sienna came over and we played at the pool for 5 hours. For dinner, we went to a mexican restuarant where I blew up my mouth with an enchilada. It was the spiciest thing I’d ever eaten! Then we went back to the hotel and went to bed.

The next morning we went for a walk. For breakfast, we ate leftover pancakes. Afterwards, we checked out and our Aunt Maggie picked us up in a Yukon and we went to their library for half an hour and checked out their new house which will be done in December. Then we went to… Flagstaff! The ride was okay, but when we got there it was raining! So we relaxed for a bit and went to dinner at some place called Oregano. The pizza was good, and I tried one of my dad’s spicy wings, and blew up my mouth again. It was even spicier then that enchilada! It was like death-on-a-wing! Then we went back to their house in Flagstaff and went to bed. Well, going to bed was a diffucult. I had to share a bed with Silas, who I wasn’t sure if he was potty-trained or not, and Steele. At first Silas scared me and Steele by saying, “I’m gonna pee on you.” Then he farted on us. I was directly in the blast zone. Then Silas read his book (Bear in Underwear) out loud. Finally, I went to sleep.

The next morning, I woke up and helped Steele build his LEGO Imperial Star Destroyer. After doing some work (groan) we had breakfast, played (where the Imperial Star Destroyer was destroyed by that rebel Silas) and went to the Country Club, where there was a pool. Then the grownups ditched us with a babysitter for the rest of the night.

The next day was basically a repeat of the last except we went to a community barbecue around dinner time and there was no babysitter. For desserts at the barbecue there was an ice cream truck, but Aunt Maggie didn’t want to pay for ice cream so Chrissy and Sienna ate some nasty-looking magic bars while Uncle Ryan took pity on me and Steele and gave us ten bucks. BUT when we got to the ice cream truck they told us it was free. Chrissy and Sienna were furious (they wanted ice cream too).

The next morning I felt sick and tossed my cookies. I had a plain pancake for breakfast, but an hour later, I upchucked that too. But we had to go back to Phoenix that day so we packed up. Then everybody else ate lunch except for me because I didn’t want to throw up anything else. Then we got our bags into the Sprinter van and started the ride back to Phoenix. It was 4-hours long. Most of the trip, I either felt cold, hungry, tired, or sore. The girls were in the back singing Miss Mary Black, Quackadilly Oso, and other stupid songs I don’t want to talk about. Also, the air conditioner was blasting and all I had was my dad’s jacket to keep me warm. All while “Miss Mary Quack” or whatever it is came from the girls, who had huge blankets. Also, Uncle Ryan played The Factor Game with Sienna and Steele, where they had to factor the numbers 1-50. That was painful. Also, Story the baby was screaming her head off. When we got back to their house in Phoenix, I dumped myself on the couch and didn’t get up until Dad got some tacos for me. Then I jumped into bed.

The next morning was great! I felt a lot better, although I woke up to “Did John puke again?” from Sienna. We ate some breakfast and played, because this was our last day. They had a math teacher who Christine was not fond of, because she thought he was “stealing our cousins”. We went to this place called Short Leash for lunch, and it was pretty good. Our cousins had a skateboarding lesson, so we sat through that. Afterwards, we hung out at their house until it was time to go to the airport. Finally, we took a plane home.

By | September 10th, 2015|Uncategorized|0 Comments

The Adobe Creative Cloud


My sister always says, “Boys’ heads are always in the cloud.” And I would return, “Really? The iCloud? The Microsoft Cloud?” But now, my head is really in a cloud. The Adobe Creative Cloud! A couple of months ago, my dad got Photoshop. Last week, he got the whole Creative Cloud! The first thing we used was Illustrator. I messed around with Illustrator (like Paint on steiroids) for a bit and plan to use it for my logo design buisness. The next day, we downloaded Audition (a sound editing program). We used it to crop the ads from the file from the first episode of his radio show. That was a long night. The next day, I messed around with After Effects (video effects). We are probably going to use Premiere (for video editing) and InDesign (for my Dad’s free PDFs). Warning: everything I tried is difficult to work with!

By | September 1st, 2015|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Photoshop Cool Stuff

john-chrissy-train-to-nyclight blastsmall

The top picture is what I made with Adobe Photoshop and the bottom picture is the original.

First I cropped out me and my sister and put us on a different layer. Then I applied a variety of filters to the background. Then I added a Hue and Saturation layer and a Color Balance layer. And then I resized it and Ta-Da! Awesome light burst effect!


But I also saved the cutout I made of me and my sister in a different file, and I can put them on any background!



If you want me to do anything on Photoshop, just contact me!

By | August 13th, 2015|Uncategorized|0 Comments



A week ago, my dad downloaded photoshop for his computer and wanted me to learn how to use photoshop. I made my new logo with photoshop, and if you want your own like that, I will make it for you for $3 (email me at john@homeschoolson.com). I think photoshop is a great tool, and is very useful. I would recommend it any day. A good site for learning it is photoshopessentials.com.

By | June 30th, 2015|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Wicked Cool Plugins and DAP


Wicked Cool Plugins is a company that makes cool plugins, such as DAP (which this site uses), the Social Media Pagelock (which I am planning to use), the WordPress Chat Room, all sorts of popups which you can use to make affiliate money, lock content, and much more! DAP is a member ship site plugin which this site uses. You can sign up here for this site. My dad got an unlimited DAP and WCP license for both of our sites.

By | June 15th, 2015|Uncategorized|0 Comments



Today I went to my homeschool woodworking class. We made the bases of our tool boxes with our instructor Tim. Last week we cut the wood, and this week we used a nail gun. Half the lesson we went over safety and how to use a nail gun, the other half was spent on building stuff. Last week he taught us how to use a chop saw and a table saw. It is a very fun class. 8 kids come every week, and I know everyone there.

By | June 8th, 2015|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Thailand – Bangkok & Return to New York


So my last stop before returning to New York was Bangkok.


We went to the Antara hotel and ate at a place in… Bangkok’s Chinatown. The steamed buns were really good, especially the sweet ones. Afterwards, we headed toward the MBK, a massive shopping mall. Then we went to the Asiatique riverfront plaza. Pooped, we took a ferry back to our hotel.


We ate a delicious breakfast (nom nom nom… danishes!), and headed to the Museum of Siam. It was a really cool museum, and I liked it a lot. Afterwards we headed towards a temple, then went back to the hotel for the pool. For dinner, we headed back to Asiatique. Then we went back to bed.


We went on the monorail to the 85-story Baiyoke Tower. There were great views, but Chrissy was more interested in her book. We took a tuk tuk ride to the Jim Thompson House, where this guy who pioneered silk from Thailand to the world lived. Then we had a little break at the hotel, because after we went to a 2-hour Dinner Cruise. On the boat, I felt a little bit woozy. Was it a wave of homesickness? Had I eaten some bad pad thai? Whatever it was I felt really sick for the rest of the trip. Afterwards, we went to the airport. The plane ride home was brutal. Even though Thai Air is really nice airline, I couldn’t sleep and had to go pee every 15 minutes. But we had buisness flight class tickets home from London, because we had to stop in London for a connecting flight. However, the buisness class on British Airways was even worse then the peasant class on Thai Air. The food was horrible, and they had no good movies. So I slept for most of the ride. When I woke up, we were almost there. Was it true? Was my beloved home only 2 hours away? We landed at JFK airport and returned to my long-lost home. I had a great expierience in London, and I hope to travel again soon.

By | April 25th, 2015|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Thailand – Phuket



So after my relaxing time in Chiang Mai, me and my family went to Chiang Mai International Airport, and had 2 hours to kill. My mom got some egg yolk bean paste, she said it looked really good. One long flight to Phuket later, we arrived in Phuket Airport. After a 45 minute cab drive, we arrived at our hotel, the Centara Grand Phuket. It was really family friendly, and me and my sister had two waterslides, a lazy river, a hot tub, a pool, and a cliff jump for leisure. So my mom checked us in, and then we were brought to our room. Everybody unpacked, and mom tried the egg yolk bean thing, and it turned out it was awful. After unpacking, I went to the pool with my sister and my mom. Afterwards, me and my family ate at one of the hotel’s various restaurants. Then we went to bed. The next day, me and my sister just went in the pool, on the cliff jumps, and down the waterslides. Then my parents dragged me and Chrissy “into town” for dinner. Then we went back to the hotel and went to bed. The next day we got up early for a speedboat tour. It was really fun! We got to go snorkeling! But somebody accidentally dropped their GoPro into the water. When we went home, we were really tired, so we went to bed. The next day was just like the second day. On the next day, we went… not home… but to Bangkok!

By | April 24th, 2015|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Thailand – Chiang Mai


Two Saturdays ago, I took a plane to Bangkok, Thailand, just to take another plane to Chiang Mai, the second largest city in Thailand. The plane to Bangkok was 10 hours long, and I watched movies the ENTIRE TIME. On the plane to Chiang Mai, I (tried to) sleep, but I was awake the whole of that plane ride, too. When I got to our hotel, the DusitD2, my Dad made my family┬ásleep for 3 hours, just in time for our Temple Tour in Chiang Mai. On the tour, I saw 3 temples that I forget the names of, the main one being on top of a mountain (you can see my family on the steps in the slideshow). After the tour, I was exhausted and went to sleep back at the hotel. The next day, I got up early to go Elephant Trekking at Ran-Tong Search and Rescue Elephant Camp. After a 45-minute drive to Ran-Tong, we went down a steep slope to a “courtyard” for the elephants to live in. There, we could feed the elephants bananas. There was a young one that was really crazy for the bananas, and once we were out of bananas, the young elephant still wanted more. After feeding time, we were instructed how to use vocal commands for riding the elephants. You can see in the slideshow what the commands were. Then, we were instructed to change into special clothes so we would have something clean and dry to wear afterwards. So we changed, then we started to get ready to ride the elephants. Me and my dad rode an elephant called something like Boom-Pot. Boom-Pot was very slow as we rode him, we were screaming one command, Pie (the word for go) at him the entire time. When he did move, he moved two yards and stopped. Then we had to scream Pie! at him again so he could move another 2 yards, and this repeated for the entire trail. The trail lead to a pond, so the elephants could wash up. My sister helped out, (as you can see in the slideshow), and finally we went back to the “courtyard” again. There, they gave us lunch, a Thai ice cream woman gave me and my sister ice cream for 30┬ó (I got vanilla bean with actual beans and my sister got green tea), and I took the van back to my hotel. There, I went in the pool for a little bit, relaxed, and after 2 hours or so, went for a walk, took a tuk-tuk (a motorized rickshaw), and got dinner at this place called The Whole Earth. Then, I went back to the hotel and went to sleep. The next day, I woke up, ate a big breakfast, and took a bike tour. The bike tour started with going to the Leprosy Hospital, which there are no pictures of, then going by a university, where we saw cotton trees and huge beehives. Then I passed through a rice paddy, and got lunch for $3, and that was for the ENTIRE FAMILY. Then the tour guide brought me to a bakery, and I ate something like a cupcake. We took a bag of cupcakes for the orphanage, which was up next on the tour. After 20 minutes or so, we arrived at the Piyawat orphanage. My sister was shocked at how “normal” the orphans were. She thought they would be like orphans from Annie. We gave them the bag of cupcakes, spent an hour or so there, and finally returned to where the tour started. Then we returned to the hotel, relaxed for a bit, had some dinner, and went to bed. The next day, we packed up our stuff, went to the airport, where my mom got some egg yolk and bean dessert thing, BUT we didn’t take a plane to London or New York. Instead we took a plane to Phuket, Thailand… To Be Continued in Thailand – Phuket…

By | April 23rd, 2015|Uncategorized|1 Comment

Isambard Kingdom Brunel


Isambard Kingdom Brunel was a Victorian engineer and architect who desinged bridges and tunnels. He invented the suspension bridge, and used the method people still use today to build tunnels. He built the Thames tunnel by starting at the soft ground by the Thames, using something like a cookie cutter to go into the ground. In the ground, workers used a tunneling shield to drill through the ground, while an arch of bricks was made to support the ground. Isambard also made the Great Western Railway and some tunnels along the way (such as the Box tunnel at Bath). His Thames tunnel is still in use by the London Overground from Rotherhithe to Wapping. He also made docks in the Docklands of London. He is also famous for making the Albert Bridge on the side of Battersea Park.

By | March 26th, 2015|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Angular Best Practices – Part One – ngRoute


Angular.js is a great tool to create expressive and dynamic HTML. But some of the best parts of Angular doesn’t even come with Angular. ngRoute and ngResource weren’t shipped with Angular, but they are very useful. ngRoute is used for creating routes like localhost:8000/#/yourRouteGoesHere. To use it, you must download from https://code.angularjs.org/1.3.9/ Then, require it with a script tag in your HTML. Note:Only make one index.html page with routes. With ngRoute, the index.html file has to be more of a layout page. Also, do not make one app.js file and put all your Javascript there. Make your app reuseable by writing angular.module("YourAppName",

[]); instead of var app = angular.module("YourAppName"); To use routes, you put them in your config and make a Dependency Injection. To do this, in your app.js file, you write this code: angular.module("YourAppName",['ngRoute']).config(function($routeProvider){
//this is where the routes go!

You must put ‘ngRoute’ in the array, and $routeProvider in the function params. Otherwise the routes won’t work. Some people like to extract the config function into a routes.js file, as route files can get quite long and you don’t want to plug up your config function. To route, you might write inside the config function:$routeProvider.when('/yourRouteName',{ templateUrl:'../templates/example.html', controller:'yourController', controllerAs:'yourCtrl' });
To explain, the $routeProvider param is calling the when function. The when function is listening for someone to visit ‘#/yourRouteName’. When someone does, it will render your template from the templateUrl with the controller and the alias. With links to your routes, DO NOT forget the pound sign in front of your route.

By | March 12th, 2015|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Mocha and Supertest


I use Mocha and Supertest to create tests for Node.js and Express apps. To use Supertest, I make my app in app.js a module, require it and Supertest(Supertest as a variable called request, the app as a variable called app), and create some code like this:
if(error) throw error;

It works, but it isn’t very readable on console. To solve this, I use Mocha:

describe('Requests to the root path'),function(){
it('Returns 200 status code',function(done){

Now my tests are readable. I run them with mocha “test file goes here”.

By | February 25th, 2015|Uncategorized|0 Comments



Redis is a NoSQL database system, most commonly used on Mac. It is used with Node.js to create an efficent key-value store. To use redis with Node, you must require it like:var redis = require("redis"); To create a redis client, add the following code:var client = redis.createClient(); This code depends on a redis server running.

By | February 25th, 2015|Uncategorized|0 Comments


My second winter trip was to Zermatt, a tiny little town tourist attraction. People ride around on exalted golf carts, unless you’re going to a very expensive hotel where they take you there on a horse.


We took a train from Zurich to Visp, where we took a train to Zermatt. We stayed at a Best Western with an awesome pool, ping pong table, fooseball, and much more. It was late in the day, so we didn’t do much. We just floated around in the pool. Dad went to a supermarket and bought some food for dinner that night.


Friday was our big day. We got up early, ate a delicious breakfast (pound cake) and went to a ski lift that would bring us up the mountains. The first stop was Furi, which was a stepping stone up 1000 feet. Then the next main stop was Schwarzee, where there actually was a hotel. The next stop was Trockener Steg, where we got off and boarded another lift to the Matterhorn Glacier Paradise, or Klein Matterhorn. I had serious altitude sickness at the top, and only Haribo Coca Cola gummies and hot chocolate could make me feel better. We ate at the Cafe DuPont, and then just drifted around the hotel for the rest of the day.

Today we took a cog railway up to Gornergrat, then went sledding on a sledge run at Rotenboden for most of the day. My mom was a good driver, but whenever she turned snow blowed into my face. Dad didn’t learn how to break until the fifth and final run, but he went extra slow, so it wasn’t as exciting. When we went back we ate dinner at this really awesome place. I got a raclette. We then went back to the hotel.


Today we toted a couple plastic sleds, in search of hills. We followed a path to Zum See, but the restuarant was full, so Dad made us walk to Furi, where we ate a good pizza (we were very close to the border). But we found a good sledding hill, which we did until I went over a bump and hurt my butt. So then we went to the Matterhorn Museum, which was nice.

So after 4 days we headed back to London. I really liked Zermatt. It ranks number 2# on my favorite countries (Number 1# is probably either Scotland or Poland, and in last place is probably either Milan or Istanbul).

By | February 12th, 2015|Uncategorized|0 Comments