Friday, December 31, 2010
The number of blog entries dropped in half from 2008 to 2009 and in half again from 2009 to 2010. Either I am running out of things to write, or I am not writing about all of the exciting things in my life. Hmmm, history will show that it doesn't have to be exciting for me to blog about it so I need to make more time to write.
Of course no one knows what 2011 will bring. Good and bad, happy and sad, and just life experiences. But "life" is built around "if" so anything can happen. I'm looking forward to it!
Tuesday, December 28, 2010
By the way, the condition of the family room in the background will be corrected today...
Monday, December 27, 2010
Christmas was pretty low key this year. Just us opening presents REALLY slowly... Mocha jumped in and helped pull the wrapping paper off for us. Funny how she knows not to touch stuff when she is out and about all day but tears into it when she gets the green light. Ham for lunch. Never got out of my jammies. Got some good stuff - slippers, cologne, movie ("Inception" - good movie), shirt, and a bunch of books that I have bought throughout the year and haven't read yet. We popped in the burning fireplace DVD which provided a nice backdrop.
This week is pretty quiet. Nothing planned. And there is nothing wrong with that.
Saturday, December 18, 2010
God saw you getting tired and a cure was not to be.
So he put his arms around you and whispered “Come with Me.”
With tearful eyes we watched and saw you pass away.
Although we love you dearly we could not make you stay.
A golden heart stopped beating, hard working paws at rest...
God broke our hearts to prove to us, he only takes the best.
I lost a treasured friend today
The little dog who used to lay
Her gentle head upon my knee
And shared her silent thoughts with me.
She’ll come no longer to my call
Retrieve no more her favorite ball
A voice far greater than my own
Has called her to his golden throne.
Although my eyes are filled with tears
I thank him for the happy years
He let her spend down here with me
And for her love and loyalty.
When it is time for me to go
And join her there, this much I know
I shall not fear the transient dark
For she will greet me with a bark.
Sunday, December 12, 2010
Until yesterday. Ashleigh's wouldn't power on past the start up screen. Dang! So we took it to BJs and they said they cannot accept returns on items bought from BJs.com. How dumb is that? Lo and behold, Staples had it on sale for two days only. First Staples was out of stock, but the second one had 7. So we went over there. Not only was it on sale, but there was an additional 15% off today! Woo-hoo! And with the money we saved on that, we bought the 2 year extended warranty for half off. At the rate this story is going, we will need it!
Friday, December 3, 2010
Tuesday, November 30, 2010
The WHSH program has set the standard for high school student-athletes, and gained tremendous prestige in its own right as the program combines the best of high school athlete and academic awards. Each fall, the WHSH recognizes the nation’s most esteemed high school senior men and women for excellence in academics, athletics, and community/school leadership. Students from across the country become involved in the WHSH program because these prestigious student recognition awards highlight their accomplishments and the winning students are showcased on a national level.
Saturday, November 20, 2010
Sometimes at night to keep the dogs occupied I take a rawhide bone and cut about a third off. Mocha gets two thirds, Britni gets one third. (By the way, last week was Mocha's one year old check up at the vet - 116 pounds!) Usually it times out right that they both finish their pieces at the same time. The other night Mocha got distracted and walked away from her piece. So Britni snatched it and had both pieces. Well that led to a big fight of snarling and growling. Mocha could kill Britni if she wanted to but nevertheless I don't want one or both to get hurt. Elliott was walking by the fracas so he reached in to grab Mocha's piece and mis-timed it and got chomped by Britni. Not intentional but it punctured him pretty good. We wrapped it and soaked it in peroxide for a while. But because it was a dog bite, and because of some strong urging from a friend with a medical background, Lucie took Elliott to the doctor the next day. It didn't get infected but the doc put him on antibiotics just in case. Meanwhile, I asked our oral surgeon friend which was worse - a dog bite or a human bite. Human bite by far...
I am working on Monday and then am off all next week. No big plans. The kids are out of school but Lucie is working. Her birthday is on Thanksgiving and we are fortunate to have been asked to a friend's house for Thanksgiving.
Thursday, November 11, 2010
The banquet was at the Newark Country Club. Nice place and the program was good (but a little long with all of the awards and gifts and words of appreciation and thanks).
Ashleigh didn't win MVP, or Most Improved, or Best Offensive Player (she did get a certificate as an All State Scholar Athlete for her 4.0 GPA though!). But she did get recognized for what I consider the most important "award" of the night. Towards the end of the evening, a group of freshman players got up to say some words. (Earlier, during the freshman awards, one freshman girl was named "Most Like Ashleigh Hale!"). Each one of the girls singled out Ashleigh as the most approachable and friendly senior who not only encouraged them on the field, but was not ashamed to publicly greet them in the halls of the school. They were amazed that a varsity senior player would spend time with them and genuinely care about them. So while Ashleigh didn't get a plaque with her name engraved on it or another paper certificate, she made a positive difference in someones life - and that is the most important accomplishment anyone can do. I am proud of her.
Thursday, November 4, 2010
So we had a good night that night and then I was able to obtain some $500 tickets for the public show two nights later (for FREE!). We went back and took Elliott (Ashleigh's boyfriend had bought her tickets to a concert in Philadelphia). Same show but a much fancier night. Timing was everything as we got there just ahead of the CEO so I was able to shake his hand and the #2 in the company too (they went back too as ING sponsored the event). And the family urologist was there so we talked to him too. (Lucie was reluctant to at first but I explained that there really was no one there who knew me better than him...!). I am sure there were people wondering who we were that could afford expensive tickets just as we wondered the same about them.
"Family urologist?" you ask. Yes - oddly enough, they found a kidney stone in Lucie while doing other tests. So this morning I took her in to get that blasted. Pretty strange that we both have them but we really don't eat everything in common. It just so happens. She is doing fine - coming out from and recovering from the anesthesia is the hardest part.
Ashleigh's birthday party was fun and low key. She had some friends over for cake and food and s'mores by the firepit. Earlier that day we went to the Stevenson University Open House. She wants to go there for college next year to get her nursing anesthetist degree. Its about an hour away. Beautiful rural campus but very near civilization too. It is one of the top rated nursing schools and was clean and modern and well maintained. After sitting through the financial session, I think we can scrounge up enough money to send for a full 3 days; maybe an entire week!
Ashleigh played her last field hockey game this week. We have a serious issue with her coach that I will be resolving very soon.
It is chilly out now and we have to scrape the windshields in the morning. Lucie mentioned the other day that she may start parking outside so Ashleigh can park in the garage. I pulled rank and said if she decides she is parking outside, then I am parking in the garage. It's privilege enough to have her own car to drive to school, we don't have to warm it up for her too! Why when I was her age, I had to get up an hour early to shovel a path to my car...
Saturday, October 30, 2010
We don't have a lot of plans for today. Pretty soon we are going to go the Stevenson University open house. It is just outside of Baltimore and where she wants to go to nursing college next year. This evening she is having some friends over for a little fire pit cookout. I am sure there will be a cake in there somewhere.
I am a fortunate man.
Saturday, October 23, 2010
Two weeks ago I was in Dallas for the American Society for Industrial Security annual convention. That place was loaded with all sorts of security related stuff and classes. It is good for me to go as I earn continuing education points which I need to keep my professional certification. My boss is certified as well so we will probably rotate our attendance and go every other year. I came back with a bunch of freebies and contacts and ideas for new things at work. I went to the convention years ago in Orlando - always educational. I met up with some old friends and colleagues and that went well. I was also able to take a short side trip too. The weather was beautiful and the city was clean and nice. I took a swing by the grassy knoll where JFK was shot (just a couple of blocks from the Dallas Convention Center). Pretty interesting.
Our company 10-year anniversary is Wednesday night at the Chase Center in Wilmington. Cirque du Soleil is in town and we will get a "private" showing. We saw them years ago and they are fantastic. We thought it would be a good idea to get tickets for the regular show on Saturday and bring Ashleigh and Elliott for Ashleigh's birthday because just Lucie and I can go to the company show. However, they are moving the show on Saturday to a smaller venue and tickets are expensive. So we ruled that out. Then yesterday our company got a limited number of free tickets for the Friday night show at the Chase Center. Thanks to some quick thinking and generosity of my co-workers, I was able to get some tickets. But not just any tickets, we got the "Ringmaster" tickets - $500 each!! Did I say I got them for free?! Includes ringside seats, dinner before and dessert after, etc. That should be great. Here is a link to the site that also has a short video:
Saturday, October 9, 2010
All else is going OK. I was chewing some gum the other day and developed a mild case of TMJ (from what Google says). Wicked pain and popping in my right jaw joint. Taking Ibuprofen and and not chewing on that side but it is sure painful. Nothing can be done but rest it so I am. Fortunately, or some may say UNfortunately, it doesn't interfere with me speaking. Or typing...
Heading to Dallas Monday for a national security seminar. Going to be there till Friday. Should be very educational and fun. It will be the first time that I will see my former employer since I left but that should go OK. I checked out a laptop from work so I can keep up with my work (and personal) email.
Here is a quick funny video from today:
Sunday, October 3, 2010
Saturday, October 2, 2010
Work had a few challenges the past couple of weeks. Sometimes when it rains it pours and everything goes wrong at once. But I got through it. And I still say my worst day here is better than my best day at my old job...
Lucie's long lost half-sister and her husband spent the night with us last night. They are originally from Colombia like Lucie, but they now live in New Zealand. He is a PhD and they both work in social marketing. They are on sabbatical for a few months so they went took a trip through Europe and now they are on their way to Lucie's brother in Phoenix, then a sister in Seattle. Pretty interesting people. Lots of Spanish with a few "Shawn's" mixed in (they did speak very good English). We had a fun time with them and they went for a walk with us and the dogs at the pond. Mocha actually saw an animal bigger than her today - we ran into a bunch of people on horseback.
Started the pool close down today and will finish next week. I am off to Dallas the week of the 11th and I want it all done before then.
Thursday, September 16, 2010
- I wore a suit but that was unusual and not the norm
- My beard was "on"
- I went in early and liked it
- The team I was working with was using the latest technology and equipment
- Independent thinking and creativity was encouraged
- I paid for my parking with a corporate credit card
- Lunch was provided
- The CEO was motivating and positive and encouraged thinking outside of the box
- New bonus and pension plans were announced which represented a major investment in the employees and future of the company
- My boss left me to run the security program and didn't micro-manage me
- At the end of the program, the #2 in the company invited the "cast" to the stage. This included all of the behind-the-scenes people who set up and coordinated the event. We were honestly appreciated and received a huge round of applause (that was not prompted).
Saturday, September 11, 2010
Getting pretty cool at night and the leaves are dropping. I have to consider closing down the pool but I hate to do it. And Mocha swims in it every day. Maybe in a couple of weeks.
Ashleigh has started her field hockey season. Her final one I guess. I have a link to her schedule and scores on my web page.
I went to my doctor yesterday and was declared stone free. No recommendations or advice on how to avoid them going forward as nothing is really proven to be the cause. So I will go back in a year for a check up and see if I am creating any new pearls.
Nothing really planned for the weekend. Of course today is a day of remembrance. Seems like just yesterday we were sitting around the TV watching those images over and over. Still hard to believe.
Sunday, September 5, 2010
I have been getting back into the swing of basketball after missing so many weeks. I am still the oldest, fattest, slowest and with the least amount of skills but its my program (and my ball!). I have the most fun out there too.
Today we took the dogs for a walk at the park. They had a great time. Mocha carries the water for everyone but it doesn't bother her in the slightest. Everyone we pass comments on her ("what a beautiful dog," "she looks like a bear..."). The weather has been great the past few days and we have had some good grillin' and walkin'.
This week I go back for an x-ray and 6 week follow up on my kidney stone removal. I hope they find absolutely nothing. I've been feeling fine except for phlebitis in my hand where the IV was. But the veins are not as rock hard any more and not as sore. Getting there...
No big plans for the weekend. Nothing wrong with that...
Saturday, August 28, 2010
Tuesday, August 17, 2010
Thinking about this made me think of the top 5 things you don't want to hear from the person house-sitting for you while you are on vacation:
5. Does your pool water normally turn green after it rains?
4. I thought you said you left your computer on?
3. Does it matter if the red switch at the top of your cellar stairs is on or off?
2. Do the dogs know how to find their own way home?
1. Where do you keep your plunger and mop?
Saturday, August 14, 2010
Sunday, August 8, 2010
The drive up was 7.5 hours including a gas/rest stop. Very good time. We were met by my mother with Moe's sandwiches and then we met my younger brother in Portsmouth. The next day was spent visiting friends and mini golf and a visit to our old house and eating and eating and eating. In fact, EVERY day had a lot of eating so I won't even mention it anymore. Monday we went to my younger brother's house for dinner and the next day we went to my older brother's house for the day. What a great scenic ride that was. We even saw a bear cub in a tree off the side of the road (on Route 302, by the Willey House and Ripley Falls near Attitash for those familiar with the area). We had a great time at lunch and hanging out with all three brothers together and some of the cousins.
There was a visit to York Beach and many short shopping trips. We rented a boat for the day on Lake Winnipesaukee. That was great fun even though we got caught in a steady rain and had to return the boat early. The rain was stinging us in the face as we headed back to the dock. I had to break out in a rendition of "The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald" to add some mood music. There was a cookout night and a pizza night and a lobster roll lunch from the place that won Best Lobster Roll in NH and my mother supplied her famous cookies and strawberry shortcake(didn't I saw I wasn't going to mention food any more?!). The weather was great and the nights were fantastic sleeping above the sounds of the tide coming and going.
Did a little fishing but for the first time ever, no one caught a fish. But a good time was had anyway. Suddenly the end of the week was upon us. Too soon as always. While it is always sad to leave, it was especially hard to leave this time knowing it was probably our last stay in the Cafe. But we'll be back...
Go to this link: http://home.comcast.net/~sehale/ and scroll down to the 2010 NH Vacation slide show.
Friday, July 23, 2010
Later in the day my regular doctor told me my cholesterol was a little high so she put me on some meds for that. Meanwhile, all day I was battling a dead battery! The heat must have killed it. So every stop along the way meant some kind soul had to jump me. Perfect on a wicked humid day when I am feeling wiped out. Tomorrow I will get a new battery. I had Costco rotate and balance the tires (free since I bought them there) this week and had the oil changed. Pretty much all set for the NH trip.
But on lighter notes, Lucie came home after a week at camp. A little sore but not completely exhausted. Elliott blew away his state test scores - especially at math. Ashleigh is working part time but steadily and really enjoying it. And work for me continues to be interesting and I love it.
Saturday, July 10, 2010
I was walking her today with Britni (we have a Y splitter on one retractable leash) and the leash snapped. Fortunately we were just in the neighborhood. So today I had to buy a "giant" one to handle up to 110 lbs. Which she will outgrow eventually (about 85 right now).
The fireworks were great as usual. They sold Little Caesars pizzas there for $5 so we got a couple and sat with a bunch of church friends and enjoyed the show. The little town we go to must spend half its annual budget on fireworks. We know just where to park, and the right direction, to get out and home within 5 minutes.
It was over 100º 3 days last week. But it was pretty dry so it wasn't too bad. Rainy today but it is too late. The grass has gone dormant and all is brown.
Just a couple of tiny sand particles have come out from the stone blasting. Had some real crampy days in the kidney but no real pain. I played hoops for the first time this week - I blamed my poor playing on the stone procedure. What can I use for an excuse next week?
Here is a bonus Mocha video.
Saturday, July 3, 2010
Ashleigh started work for the local hospital (where I went twice). She is in a pool of clerks that will be called to help staff doctor's offices for vacations and such. She is making good money and can manage her own schedule (she is a sub on call). She is loving it.
Mocha was fixed and that went well. Her hair is growing back where they shaved her. 81 pounds now. And growing... She is LOVING that pool and swims all day. The pool water temp hit 90º last week.
I put a new wireless router in and our signal strength and the consistency of our internet signal is MUCH improved. I have a wired switch and I hope to get up to the attic today (before the heat blasts in) to run some ethernet wire through the house so we can plug in if we need to.
My high school friend and college roommate Dave Batchelder and family stopped by here Thursday night on their way to NH for vacation. That was nice to see them. We always have some good laughs and memories. His wife and kids are really nice and we were happy to give them a good grill cooked meal and place to rest.
Speaking of NH vacation, we are lined up to go to NH the first week in August. This may be our last chance staying the family Cafe on the water so we will make the most of that.
No real plans for the 4th except to hang out by the pool and go to the local fireworks.
Saturday, June 12, 2010
Saturday, June 5, 2010
The rest of the week was good. Elliott had his lacrosse awards night banquet on Wednesday. The pool temperature in the mornings is 83º and 87º in the afternoons. It didn't get to those temperatures last year until July or August. Mocha loves it. Every morning she goes out and takes a lap. We are leaving her gated in the kitchen these days when we are out (not in her crate) and she is behaving. She loves to swim every time I get in.
Tonight is Newark Nite where they block off the Main Street in downtown Newark and turn the whole area into a carnival like atmosphere. If it cools off, we will take Mocha down and march her around. She loves the people and the people love her.
Monday, May 31, 2010
So here is the freaky part: Ashleigh found that dead black widow on the front steps the other day. That is the second one we have found here in the last 8 years or so. Ugh. The best spider is a dead spider... Anyway, I have the house configured with an X-10 system so I can control the house lights with a remote control. The other night, our bedroom lights were completely unresponsive to the remote. Just our bedroom. That is number 1. Then the outside sending unit for our wireless remote temperature thing stopped transmitting. (We have an inside clock that shows the inside and outside temperature). That is number 2. That same day, Lucie's cell phone could answer calls in the house, but no one could hear her. That is number 3. Finally, my wifi in the house would only work if I was in about a 5 foot range of it. Normally I can go three houses down on either side of us and pick up my signal. That is number 4. I felt like going outside and seeing what sort of alien spaceship was hovering over the house. Freaky stuff. Of course the next day everything was working again...
Saturday, May 29, 2010
No big plans this weekend - which was the plan all along; get the pool opened BEFORE Memorial Day so we can enjoy. That is working out well.
Here is a bonus video of Mocha swimming in the pool:
Saturday, May 15, 2010
Today we took the dogs on a walk. A few weeks ago, we got this great backpack for Mocha on wicked sale. It has bladders on either side we fill with water and it has spigots to pour it out from. So we loaded her up and put our own water bottles in there and went for a 3-mile walk at a local park. She loved it! Newfoundlands are born to be work dogs and she really had a great time. Did not bother her a bit. The temperature was in the low 70º’s and we stopped to rest and drink along the way. They say Newfies can easily carry a third of their weight. On May 1 she was 75 pounds (the same weight 12 year old Jasmine was when she died) but what she was carrying was nowhere near 25 pounds. And tonight we are the proud parents of two tuckered out dogs!
Friday, May 14, 2010
Speaking of sports, it was almost a disappointing night for me last night. No one came out for my weekly basketball night. A couple of months ago I had to limit the people to 18 and we have been having around 8-12 ever since. Not many things worse than coming home and having to take off my basketball stuff while it is still dry. I sat down to watch the Celtics game and both of the Tivo tuners were recording shows. So I switched the TV over to straight cable input and the Comcast digital transition had occurred so I had no channels. But wait - I had a free cable box I never hooked up. (I got it a month or so ago for the digital transition but thought I didn't need it as I used other ones for the other TVs.) So I hooked it up and wouldn't ya know it, the power supply was no good. Right out of the box. That is unacceptable. (I tried another power supply and it worked fine.) So I am off to the cable place this morning to wait for an hour to change that. Anyway, by the time I got done troubleshooting and calling Comcast, the shows Tivo were recording ended so I got to see the Celtics beat Cleveland and move on to the conference finals.
Mocha continues to grow but she is still a little puppy inside that 75+ pound body. Still bitey, still jumpy, still a little scared. She means well... The other night there was a fox out back screaming. If you have ever heard that, you know how creepy it is. Mocha would not come out of the house to investigate. Britni the beagle and I were right at the fence with my super flashlight watching it walk around but Mocha stayed in the kitchen.
Saturday, May 8, 2010
Sunday, May 2, 2010
You may ask why I put WALMART in all caps here a few times. One time I wrote about my cable provider in this blog and shortly after posting it, I received a call from their customer service rep offering to help me. Apparently they scan the 'Net looking for comments. Maybe WALMART will do the same.
Meanwhile, we have had some really warm days the past few days. I power-washed the house, car and driveway yesterday. Mocha jumped in her little Tugboat Tuggy pool and had a great time. Then Lucie and I went to Elliott's lacrosse game and did our parental obligation of working the concession stand. His team is struggling but he plays well and I have to give him credit for sticking it out and taking the hits that he does. Ashleigh won her game the other day. She is now playing defense but managed to score the first goal of the game!
Lucie brought her Kids Church program into the main sanctuary for her annual opportunity during the morning service last week. That went over well. Pretty funny to see the adults doing all of the hand motions and jumping around during the songs.
I got my replacement router and that is working fine. I have a security setting where I only allow certain computers and devices on my network regardless of if they know the password or not. So I was setting it up (it was a slightly different model so I couldn't just load the settings from my old one) and entered the unique identifier information from one of the Tivos first. As soon as I hit "apply" to only allow that device, I locked myself out of my own network! (I forgot to add the computer I was on first!). Had to reset it to factory defaults and start all over. But all is fine now.
Elliott's birthday is tomorrow but due to games, we won't be able to go out for the traditional dinner till about 9 at night. So we are going early today (he wants to go to the Olive Garden).
Saturday, April 24, 2010
On Thursday night our wireless router died. No warning. Just froze up and that was the end. I had an older one that would work if I connected the computer to it directly - it just wouldn't transmit wirelessly. (The one that died wouldn't do anything.) I plugged that in and am now back online (for a while I felt like someone had disconnected my life support!). I bought another router from eBay for $28 and it should be here Monday. I use an older model but it works fine and I have all of my firewalls and security settings configured for that model. When I get a replacement, I just hook it up, download my settings, and am back in business.
Today Elliott has a game at noon so I will pack up Mocha and take her. What about Britni you might wonder? She is too busy sniffing around and trying to get away when we take her out so she can enjoy the afternoon outside at home without Mocha drooling all over her.
Tuesday, April 20, 2010
Ashleigh's team didn't do so well but we gave her some pizza anyway...
Saturday, April 17, 2010
Last night, Tivo pushed down a new update and that sped things up and corrected some issues there as well.
Ashleigh's lacrosse team had a decisive win which is a major improvement and Elliott's lacrosse team is doing better every game. Ashleigh also got accepted in the National Honor Society this week.
So it has been a pretty good week. Big sale at the local pet store today so I may load up the Mocha Monster and parade her through there and pick up some stuff on sale - like a new collar (she is outgrowing her puppy one) and of course, dog food...
Saturday, April 10, 2010
The weather has been just great all week. Gonna light up the fire pit and cook hot dogs and s'mores outside tonight. Gotta get it done now before the mosquitoes and bugs come out.
Friday, April 9, 2010
Wednesday I went to work (at a trade show in Philly) while Lucie did errands and lacrosse practice with the kids. Yesterday I did a lot of yard work including poison-dusting some carpenter bee holes (pesky things!). Elliott had lacrosse practice at the high school so we took him there and then marched Mocha around downtown. She was loved by all! So many college kids stopped to pat her and give her ice and ask what kind of dog she was. She loved it. We made our way to Rita's Water Ice and bought her a water ice - us too! (We were giving her water all along). She loved the attention and was very obedient. Almost a bit overwhelming for a 5 month old baby though! Last night was my basketball night and it rained hard. So our high temperature yesterday of 82º has now dropped to 57º. But it is very nice out so we will go do something.
Tuesday, April 6, 2010
Today is day 2 of our mini local vacation. Yesterday was spent cleaning the muddy kitchen floor and then cooking out and watching a scary (?) movie with friends. Not a bad start to the week. This morning we decided to go to the local state park and bring the dogs. We packed a picnic and off we went (about 4 miles away). It was pre-season so it was free to get in and no one was there. First we did the muddy nature walk. Halfway around Lucie said she lost her cell phone (but we found it in the car when we got back to it). We ate our lunch under the pavilion and then took the dogs to the beach. Britni the beagle had no interest in the water of course and was happy sniffing around on shore. Mocha's true calling came out though! She loved the water. We had to keep her on a retractable leash but she fetched a stick Lucie threw out over and over and over. Some kids went by on a sailboat and she thought she would go pay them a visit too. She got tuckered out after a while so we headed up to the car. When we got there, we ran into some guys going to play Frisbee golf and they had an 18 month old brown Newfie. Had to be three times Mocha's size! That one's owner was thrilled to see us and Mocha and his dog Mia played together for a few minutes and we talked for a while. Nice glimpse into the future...
When we came home, the dogs smelled of dirty pond water so we shampoed them off outside. I fished out the old Tuggy Tugboat and power-washed it. Mocha immediately took the helm:
Sunday, April 4, 2010
Then I moved around to the front of the house and broke out my hedge trimmer. The front bushes were way overgrown so I went at them. I should have put on my Jason hockey mask to make the image complete. But I got them pared down to a presentable level and Lucie and I raked and swept up the debris and got rid of that. Trimmed and mowed and the yard work was pretty much done.
Meanwhile, Mocha has found any and every way to get wet - rolling in the mud at the bottom of the downspout or running across the pool cover (it is porous like a trampoline and her weight brings it down into the water. So on goes the bathing suit and I took her up and gave her a bath. Half the yard washed down the drain I think. She was filthy.
In between jobs I was playing with the new Tivo I got with my tax refund money. Comcast went all digital on the 30th which pretty much made my oldest Tivo obsolete (it wouldn't tune in the digital channels). I transferred the recorded shows from one Tivo to another and then found a big software problem that may require an exchange. Too technical to explain here but it is pretty annoying and shutting me out of some features. Calling Tivo support later.
By the time all the yard work and cleanup was done, we were ready for dinner. We can almost see a Chic Fil A from our house so we went over to get some chicken sandwiches and their new peach shakes. Signs everywhere for their new peach shakes. Life is not complete without a peach shake. So we ordered four peach shakes. They aren't available until Monday. So I guess I will not be able to reach my destined potential until Monday... Not to be deterred, we went to another ice cream place but they were cash only and the ATM there wasn't working. We finally ended up at Friendly's.
Some friends (Ashleigh's boyfriend's parents) invited us over for Easter lunch after church so we will do that. That will be fun. I am on vacation next week and the kids are out of school. I think we are making college visits all week for Ashleigh. Suddenly I feel old...
Tuesday, March 30, 2010
After that I sharpened the mower blade, recharged the battery, changed the oil and air filter, and then edged and mowed. Spread the first Scotts treatment too. It has been rainy for a good day now so that should help distribute the Scotts and launch me into another season of the greenest lawn in the 'hood.
Saturday, March 27, 2010
Saturday, March 20, 2010
Looks like another beautiful day today. 46º in the pool and climbing. I have my list of stuff to do - vacuum up the leftover leaves, put out the hoses, saw off the stumps from the trees that went down over the winter and just generally clean up some stuff outside. Mocha has been digging some holes to China so I will fill them in too. Speaking of Mocha, I have the Tivo set to record anything with "Newfoundland" in the show title or description. We saw a great program last night on a 200 pound Newfie on duty in England as a lifeguard. That dog was amazing. It would swim out with a float and tow people back to shore. Mocha is sleeping in a BIGGER crate (for those who were concerned) overnight in the kitchen so we are all sleeping better.
The kids are at lacross practice this morning. Lucie and I are going to a birthday party tonight and taking it easy on Sunday.
Saturday, March 13, 2010
Getting a lot of rain today so she is going to be wild. Way too windy and rainy to walk her so I hope she and Britni wrestle all day. I intend to nap and watch TV and just hunker down. Everyone around me seems to be sick and I am feeling run down so I am taking it easy. I wanted to chainsaw off the stumps of the trees that came down over the winter and shore up the AC unit but it can wait.
I am picking up our guest missionary speaker for church tomorrow at the Amtrak station right next to where I work. I may make a surprise visit to the Officers on duty and see what is up. Work is still going really well.
Elliott had practice in the monsoon this morning. I brought some towels to protect my car seats and bags for him to put his muddy cleats in when we picked him up. Not too cold out - nothing a Dunkin Donuts coffee and sprinkled donut didn't cure. On the way home, we stopped at Lowe's and got a buy one get one free bag of bird food. The new feeder really seems to be working - we remain squirrel-less.
Oh, this is the new front license plate I put on the other day: