Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Slip Slidin' Away

Slip slidin' away
Slip slidin' away
You know the nearer your destination
The more you're slip slidin' away

Perception of the passage of time is rattling around in my head this morning. It seems like yesterday that the last entry about Oma's visit was posted and yet here I am again....7 days later and it's passed in a blur. The car has new treads, and some clothes have been washed, and CP took her first steps this week!! It's funny to look at all of the changes that CP has made in a year as well. Things big and small float off into the ether if not recorded on paper.

CP and the LW are snuggled in our bed right now enjoying the way the swamp cooler overcomes the last bits of heat from the previous day. I started puttering in the yard well before sunup. The chicks were out for a bit, but are locked away this morning because the concrete for the cistern is coming soon. This will be one yard project finished and it's taken much too long to complete. I'm hesitant to jump into projects that are new, costly, and that have a huge potential for costly irreversable errors, so it's just been a hole in the ground - a reminder of what happens when I'm unsure of where to go with a project. The LW has been kind about it and will be really excited to finally see it finished. I talked to my brother the other day, and of course, he's got all of the information about concrete that I need in his head. If he lived closer, we could knock 3 of these things out in a day and still have time to go ride. I'll think of him today as that gray mud screeches along the shovel blades.

We're all making a break for the coast this weekend. The LW and I need a respite of sorts and it'll be nice to just get away. Saturday morning should find us either at the Birch Aquarium or at Torrey Pines reserve. It'll be good to see CP experience the ocean for the first time and it'll be the LW's first trip to the left coast as well. I look forward to seeing how things have changed since I lived there in '99.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Da Pool

Last night Oma Darlene came to visit us for dinner. It was her birthday and the LW cooked a magnificent dinner. We finished it off with a chocolate ganache torte from Trader Joe's and put a candle in the middle of it for Oma and CP to blow out. It was fun. With Oma not having to host, she actually had time to sit still and talk. She told us of Iowa and cornfields and it was great to hear vignettes of her life as a 1st generation American born to German immigrants. We're so lucky that we found her.

CP and I got out this morning and hit the pool at the Ott Y. She had fun, but in full sun and with the day's warmth beginning, her teeth started to chatter after 20 minutes or so. She kicked her feet, enjoyed flying off of the edge of the pool with me, tolerated the 1-2-3-dunk stuff, and awed the young lifeguard girls with her cuteness. We were drying off when a small boy who was in a swim class was telling his mom that he didn't want to go in the water. She started in on him for whining, asking him if she could have his "Disney World money" back since she had paid for the class ( a whole $25 for two weeks). He didn't like this and she lit into him even more for his continued insistence about not wanting to get in the pool. I just cringed as the little kid was berated by his "mother" and another woman who was her "friend". I heard the "mother" say that she "hopes that her next one isn't as big of a whiner as this one". I had to choke back the reflex to tell her what this does to kids, but maybe she already knows first hand and doesn't even realize what a jackass she is. I only hope that this woman decides not to breed again. The boy must have been 2 or 3 years old.

Monday, June 18, 2007

A Little Warm

For an afternoon nap, it's a bit toasty at 101 degrees. CP's been sleeping for 2 hours now. The LW and I just went into the room to watch her little fingers and toes twitch as she sleeps. While we were standing there, the LW asked me if I remember when she was only as long as her legs are now.....sadly, I can't. I remember seeing her in the tub after she was born, but I can't recall much after that for a few months. The only thing I recall from when everyone came to visit was just both of us being soooo tired that we were barely functioning.

This weekend was a bit of car work, the LW made soup with Aunt B., and I think we went to a garden or two. We watched Pursuit of Happyness last night and it felt as though there was a lead blanket, similar to the blankets worn for xray procedures, over me for most of the movie. It feels so awful to watch people having a tough time of things. I had a hard time with it because I sometimes feel like the character in the movie when work is sparce and the office rent is due. The LW assured me that we'd never slip that far through the cracks because we have a very sturdy social/family network, but still, it was sad and hard to watch.

This morning CP and I watched Cars and I really enjoyed it. Just a fun little movie. I think that we'll load up and actually hit some parts of Route 66 some time soon. Maybe on the way toward Sonoma in August.

The old Jetta is still at Stuttgart being worked on and the truck is good to go with a new catalytic converter. It'll be interesting to see what comes up with the Jetta. Next up on the fixit schedule: Small engines in lawn/garden equipment, garden drip systems, and bicycles.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Cars On Blocks

Well, almost, but not quite up on blocks yet. Today I added a thermoswitch to the list of parts I've tried on the old jetta to get it to stop overheating - then I added it to the list of things that didn't fix it. I confess, I've been shotgunning it hoping to avoid the ever-present radiator replacement that's been hanging over me. It only succumbs to the overwhelming heat when the A/C is on which tells me that the added heat from the condenser is just more than it can bear. Tomorrow, I will run it over to Stuttgart Autohaus and have them check it out and do the radiator if it needs it - depending upon whether or not it's going to cost more than the car's worth. I could do it, but I'd have to disconnect the AC lines and all of that and I don't feel like messing with it. Everything I touch on that car is just one more thing that I could possibly break. It'll get going.

The truck's up on "the rack" outside now and the catalytic converter is out of it. I'll get some bolts tomorrow and get that thing handled. It was all kinds of messed up on the inside, so the rattling and whistling noises should stop with the new part. I'll tighten the A/C belt that "Mr. Lowball" said was the A/C compressor and it should just about be ready to find a new home.

I did something to my neck the other day and it hasn't been right since. One could argue that it hasn't been right since the whiplash I sustained in that crash-up derby that Crazy Larry got me into after high school, or the numerous falls while learning to snowboard, or that 3rd gear pitchoff that my KLX300 served up that time while I was crossing tractor ruts at the wrong angle. At any rate - it hurts. Last night I took some flexer-ill to try and calm it down and stole the LW's feathery pillow. Not a good plan. Today she woke up with a headache from sleeping on the wrong pillow (or was that sleeping on a small piece of the bed because the baby was in the bed with us and pushes her onto the edge....?) Well, whatever the cause, it was my fault and it's just been cheery all day around here.

Auntie Melissa took care of CP this afternoon while I worked on things. It was nice to actually be able to accomplish things that require more than 7-18 seconds of sustained concentration and I thank her for allowing me that free time. George made CP a little blue cart to push around and it is wonderful. I felt bad when I walked in with the one that Aunt Carie had given to CP, but I hope that George knows just how much the LW and I really value hand made objects. She will keep it and we will try to make sure that her first child has the option of playing with it. It's beautiful.

Monday, June 11, 2007

Cool Breeze

Yesterday was car work and gardening. I worked on the old jetta for most of the morning and afternoon. I'm trying to get the overheating stuff worked out and I'll replace the thermoswitch tomorrow some time. The community garden over near Sabino & Cloud is coming along nicely and I expect all 32 plots to be filled within a year. We're at 75% capacity in just a few months. The gardners are all pulling huge harvests of summer crops already.

It started off cloudy today - 72 degrees now - after a warm day yesterday and I didn't take CP to the pool. Her teeth chatter there in full sunlight. We've been inside most of the day except for trips out into the yard to check on the chickens. One of the new additions produces eggs without shells, so we're giving her yogurt and oyster shell to see if the extra calcium will help her out.

The LW's new eSATA storage drive arrived today from and it's being loaded as I type. They were easy to deal with, although is my first choice. The LW's been playing around with words again and is now an o-fishul contributor at the Double-Tongued Dictionary. Funny stuff and it fits her like a glove. Later tonight it'll be off to the Y for some yoga for the LW and a spin around the gym for me. I've been set up in the FitLinxx program there and it should be good. The program is pretty useful and the interface for the trainers is equally easy to deal with.

Saturday, June 09, 2007


The LW met her deadline and was pretty happy about it on Friday. I met my goals for things on Friday and spent the afternoon with CP and Auntie Melissa. It was good fun and it kept CP away from the LW's new(er) computer.

Today was a full day. We went to a garden meeting that turned into an equipment pick up, but it was good time spent around wonderful people and plants. I even got to see the doc's biodiesel setup. We started the wagon on B100 this morning. It's now a vegetarian. This afternoon someone came and looked at my truck. I got lowballed, but at least it turned up some things that I need to address with the truck. I know it's worth more than $4850 and I ordered a catalytic converter for it this stuff.

In the middle of all of this, we added two bird to our coop. Big'uns! One is a Light Brahma and the other is what appears to be a golden colored Ameraucana. Sarah is a white Ameraucana it seems, but we'll see what the new one is tomorrow when I post some pics on They're a little restless, but we are hopeful that they'll settle in nicely.

Thursday, June 07, 2007

One Thing

That's about all that I get to in a day's time lately. One thing. Today's outside accomplishment was building new nesting boxes for "the girls" while CP was taking a nap. My big inside accomplishment was washing some of the dishes and laundry. I remarked to the LW this evening that I don't feel very effective at anything lately. CP slept late (8:15am) after her big day at Teague's place yesterday and we didn't get to swim class for the second day in a row. Tomorrow, my schedule is ambitious - to visit with the little personal trainer person at the Y and to get Auntie Melissa to her eye doc appointment. Somebody queue the music from Rocky!

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Teague's Place

CP and I were off early to the Y for swim classes and apparently it was too early for me. I left the house and hustled us there, but upon parking and opening the rear hatch, I discovered that I had left CP's swimsuit at home. CRAP! Well, it's only a 30 minute class, and I knew that by the time that we got back the class would be half over. There was only one thing left to do - go visit Teague! We made it down toward Pima Mine and when we finally got through the gate at Teague's place - it was on. CP had her hands full with two other busy little people and couldn't get enough. She stayed awake the entire day except for the drive to and from. She had an absolute blast! It was a good visit and I think that it needs to be at least a weekly thing from now on.

Just talked to my bro since he was driving from the BulletProof Designs compound back home to OOOOlathe. The guy spends entirely too much time in that truck and at work. Anyway, he regaled me with tales of freshly milled aluminum and something about some KTM this or that.... I flat out asked him when we could get him to Colorado for some riding, but he gave the standard noncommittal answers about work, kids, or whatever. I think that it's going to have to be a combined effort with everyone that I know back in KC to get him out there for a ride. I sat down tonight and looked at Rick Ramsey's site to find the pics from my last trip out there with the flatlander gang. It was a long fun trip, but that orange beast almost killed me at least once a day. I can't wait to go back.

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Crash Bang Boom

The LW's laptop drive started making funny noises yesterday and then....nothing. She lost most of a day's work and all of her stored passwords and favorites. She scrambled around and we called my buddy John at Housecall Computer Service. He dropped by, picked up the laptop, and in a few hours delivered it back with the bad news - it was toast. She got access to some of her files on our home box and worked on them until around 2am. This afternoon she picked up another laptop from another editor here in town and has been off to the races to beat her deadline.

CP and I had our second day of parent-child swim lessons at the Y this morning and she seems to like getting into the pool with other small people. It's fun for me too and gives me a very specific reason to get out of the house. I get to drop her off at ChildWatch there after swimming and run upstairs to work out for a bit. You can see in the picture that she really likes the water and it doesn't matter if it's the lap pool or water bowl for the chickens.

We finally had the camera in the car the other day when we drove by the local purveyor of pseudo-pithy break room "go get'em peon team" artwork. I guess that success is measured differently by everyone and this store's "journey" has come to an end. The LW and I grinned at this little bit of irony. If you've been a cube monkey for any big corporation before, chances are you've run into one of these things when most cube farms should have artwork like this one.

Friday, June 01, 2007

P That Rhymes With T.....

...that stand for TROUBLE. CP's friend Ava sent her some crayons not too long ago and recently we tried them out for a bit. It was fun, but more crayon ended up being eaten than used for creative purposes on the paper. She'll figure it out soon though and the walls will probably be her canvas.

Just got back from the Y and all of our legs feel a bit wobbly. Mine especially after a big fried food lunch with Carie and family. We had a good time discussing babies and how amazing it is that the LW has tolerated me for five whole years. It doesn't seem like five years since we fooled everyone into an engagement dinner that turned out to be a wedding, but it has. My June bride is still as lovely as the day that I met her.

I put the family truckster up on craigslist today. It's been a good vehicle and I hate to see it go, but we're going to do the biodiesel thing around here. We're finally at a place to put our money where our mouths and minds are. Someone is going to get a good one-owner truck and I hope that I can find it a happy home.