Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Holiday Traditions and more NOOKcolor

Tonight is the first night of Hanukkah, our first celebration of the holiday in our new home.

(And I'll have a little more on my NOOKcolor at the end of this post)

Hanukkah is a minor holiday in the Jewish calendar, but because of its proximity to Christmas, it's become a gift-giving occasion. For Hubster and me, this year is more of a 'we're spending enough money on house stuff and new cold-weather gear, so we don't really need specific presents.' But since we're close enough to celebrate with two of our kids, we'll have a get-together on Sunday.

I'll make latkes, and we'll exchange gifts. Instead of tags, I've put pictures of the recipients on the packages, and we'll let our almost 3-year-old grandson distribute them.

One of the positive by-products of having our basement remodel underway was that we had to move all the boxes we'd stored there out of their way. In the process, the box housing our Hanukkah decorations surfaced. Of course, our environment is totally different, which means finding places for the traditional (and very limited now that it's just the two of us) pieces. But, since we had a fireplace in our Florida home, and we have one here, it seemed logical to put most of our ornamentation in similar places.

One other thing we've noticed is that we're no longer living anywhere near a more diversified population. At Walmart, I wanted wrapping paper, and had to tell the clerk I didn't want their Christmas paper. He was very polite, and asked if I was a Jehovah's Witness. I don't think any other alternative occurred to him. I was pleasantly surprised to find chocolate gelt at the City Market. Haven't checked the Safeway yet to see what they offer.

So, how do you deal with 'non-traditional' traditions when you're reading or writing? I don't read Christmas stories because I don't connect with that holiday and those family traditions, yet I tend to have a lot more characters who aren't Jewish when I write. Maybe I'm afraid of stereotyping. Or maybe I'm afraid my relatives would think I'm writing about them!

As for another NOOKcolor update. One of the issues is battery life. This is definitely a factor if you plan to take your e-book reader when you travel, especially if you're in places with no power to recharge it. The manual says that it's good for 8 hours of reading with WiFi turned on. However, I haven't noticed any significant drain on the battery in my reading. First, I don't turn on WiFi if I don't need it.

(And speaking of WiFi vs 3G, it's true that you have to be in a Wi-Fi connected location to use it. Since we live with a WiFi connection, it's not an issue, but you can also hook up the NC to your computer and shop on line, then move your purchases to your device. If I go to my B&N account, I can see everything in my NC library.)

Since my main use of my NC is to read in bed, I usually have the brightness turned WAY down. I don't turn it off when I'm done reading, because powering it up takes a while and it goes through several screens which are very bright--at least at 2 AM in a dark room. This way, if I want to resume reading, I just wake up the NC. In the morning, I've checked battery usage, and it's dropped under 10%. And, if I'm not using it, I simply plug it into the charger. I spent about 2 days at our son's for Thanksgiving without needed a recharge. Should I have the opportunity to take a longer trip, I'll be sure to report on that.


Alan Orloff said...

Chappy Chanukah, Terry!

Terry Odell said...

Thanks, Alan!

Carol Kilgore said...

I'm really enjoying your Nook Color reports. Also learning more about Hanukkah. So Happy Hanukkah to you and your family. The photo tags are a great idea!

Amy said...

Happy Hanukkah! No fair that it starts Dec. 1 this year. It snuck up on me when I turned the calendar page. I like your very tree-like menorah.

Thanks for the comments on the NC battery life. Doesn't sound like it will be an issue for me either unless I take it camping for a week. More likely I'll go with slightly older technology in that situation - the good old paperback.

Terry Odell said...

Carol - thanks. We'll see how our little present-passer manages with the tags.

Amy, I agree, it's early. And since the kids aren't living here anymore, it's not something they're throwing in our faces. At least we have a week to celebrate. You can bring both types of reading matter; if you just read your NC books at night, you can probably get a week out of the battery, with the wifi off and the brightness down low.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Terry .. enjoy your new home .. and please post some latkes over! by plane - so they're fresh??!! Enjoy the family and your time together .. sounds a lot of fun! - Hilary

Mason Canyon said...

I love the idea of using photos instead of name tags. Wishing you and your family Happy Hanukkah.

Thoughts in Progress

GunDiva said...

With my nook, I found that if I set it to "airplane mode" the battery lasts a lot longer. Might want to give that a try. I was also told not to turn my nook off and on, but to just let it go to sleep, which will also conserve the battery power (even if it seems counter-intuitive).

Terry Odell said...

Hilary - I'll do my best, but I have a feeling they'll be eaten and none left for shipping.

Mason - thanks!

GD - So far, no issues; don't know if the same things work for the original nook and the Nookcolor, though. So far, it does sleep a lot!

Jemi Fraser said...

One of the things I like best about the Kindle is the battery life. It runs for well over a week without a charge - even when I'm using it a lot. In fact I think it's closer to 2 weeks, although I'm terrible at keeping track of these things! :)

Terry Odell said...

Jemi - yep, it was a tradeoff for the back light, and one I was willing to make. We'll see how things pan out. I've seen ads for car chargers for the NC, so that could also help