26
April
2015
Permalink

For about a year and a half, the faucet in our kitchen sink hasn’t rotated. We have two sinks, like most people, and the faucet has been stuck over the left sink for all that time. Finally yesterday Laralee said in an exasperated tone, “Why can’t we have a faucet that works?”

Since my Saturday afternoon was actually wide open (for a change), I climbed under the sink to take a look. I fiddled around a bit but didn’t see anything obviously wrong, so I decided to just take the whole thing apart to see if there was something that could be re-aligned or whatever. It turns out the faucet mount was screwed on tighter than a mere mortal could undo, and the nut was completely inaccessible to any reasonable wrench. I spent a solid 30 minutes laying under the sink wrestling with pliers, a flashlight in my mouth, to get the stupid nut off. Finally it came free (raining little bits of rust and metal in my eyes) and I was able to remove the faucet.

An inspection of the faucet showed that something was broken inside– it’s not clear what– but given my adventure in frustration, I decided we should just get a new faucet. Laralee and I headed over to Lowe’s to take a look at their selection. I think the cheap faucets are around $90; the most expensive ones are over $300. Wow. For that price, they’d better do the dishes for me.

We turned around to see an array of sinks, some of which were “complete kits” that included faucets and drains. Since our sink is 15 years old and sort of pitted and worn, we thought maybe we should just replace the whole darn thing. The price wasn’t that much different than just buying a nice faucet anyway. So we picked one, confirmed with one of the Lowe’s guys that we wouldn’t need anything else, and hauled it home.

“How hard can it be?” I said to myself. I mean, come on, you pop out the old sink, drop in the new one, hook up the water lines, and you’re done, right?

Hah.

Removing the old sink proved to be pretty simple, and we had to scrape off the 15-year-old caulk and mildew around the edge.

sink-project-1

That took a while, but it wasn’t bad. We then opened up the new sink and discovered that the instructions in the box were completely different from the hardware. The pictures of the parts didn’t match at all; I can only guess they included the wrong instructions. Still, with a bit of poking at the bag of parts I figured out how the mounting brackets were supposed to work.

We lowered the new sink into the hole in the countertop… well, mostly into the hole. Even though 95% of sinks are a “standard size”, it turned out our countertop was not. The hole was about a quarter-inch too narrow from side to side, and a quarter-inch too short from front to back. Also, there were rounded corners on the countertop and the sink was definitely square. Sigh.

Fortunately the countertop is a cheap laminate atop half-inch particle board. I brought out a hacksaw and took care of the rounded corners in short order. Laralee was hesitant– what if our next sink needed those rounded corners?– but I told her if this thing lasts fifteen years like the old one, we’d be long gone and wouldn’t need to worry about it. Because we couldn’t really saw a thin quarter-inch strip off the sides, front, and back, we grabbed our wood files and went to work. I think it took us about thirty minutes of filing and re-measuring before we finally had a hole big enough to accommodate the new sink.

That’s when we realized that we needed caulk. Duh. We didn’t want to go back to Lowe’s, so we dug through the garage boxes and found some caulk from a while ago. Still fresh! We caulked along the edges and lowered the sink in place. That’s when I discovered that the mounting brackets wouldn’t work on the front and back, because the countertop was inch-thick particle board there. (For reasons I don’t understand, just the front and back were thick; the sides were both half-inch.) Oh well. I slapped extra brackets along the side and tightened them down, and we’ll hope the middle of the sink doesn’t bow up.

Because the locations of the drains and the depth of the new sink aren’t the same as the old, we learned that we’d need to get creative with the plumbing beneath it. The old pipes didn’t quite fit, so out came the hacksaw again, and a few cuts and hard shoves later we had the drain and garbage disposal in working order.

The moment of truth came. I turned on the water and it all worked! The new sink looks pretty sharp, too:

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I asked Zack and Alex to take care of all the trash while Laralee and I cleaned up the kitchen. The boys took the enormous cardboard box to the backyard and proceeded to slash it to little pieces with a sword.

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Hey, if you have a sword, why not use it?

In the end, I learned two things:

1) If you start a home project thinking “How hard can it be?” you’re already in trouble. Something that you suspect might take an hour or so will end up taking four and cost twice what you thought.

2) I never want to be a plumber.

26
April
2015
Permalink

We bought new towels. The ones in our master bathroom and the kids’ bathroom were all many years old and were starting to get scratchy and worn. I found a good deal at Kohl’s and picked up new ones for everyone. Of course you need to wash your towels before using them the first time, so Laralee did that and then ran them through the dryer. The result: a huge sheet of lint that was like a fragile towel itself.

kyra-lint-rag

This is just from the red towels for the master bathroom; the kids’ towels hadn’t even gone through the wash yet. Laralee decided to run them all a couple more times, and each time the lint was quite impressive. By the end we had a stack of multi-colored lint that was at least twice the weight of one of the hand towels. Most impressive. It’s also probably an indicator of the quality of the towels… hmm.

19
April
2015
Permalink

It’s been about a week since we returned from our spring break trip to Cancun, so I figured it was time to sit down and write about it. It was fully awesome and worth all of the expense. We’d never taken a vacation quite like this before; most of our trips consist of loading everyone into the van and driving a few thousand miles. While those trips are a lot of fun, it was definitely a nice change to go somewhere tropical and let someone else take care of the arrangements.

Day 1

We went to the airport, where Zack felt pretty cool because he thought flipping open his passport made him look like a secret agent.

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When we crowded onto the airplane, we were greeted by Frontier’s amazing new slogan:

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I’m not sure what they mean by “more perks”, but they found several more ways to prove that air travel can be even more uncomfortable and frustrating. First, the seats on their newest planes are all hard plastic and don’t recline at all. The lack of padding means they can probably squeeze yet another row into the aircraft, and that means dollars! Also, the tray tables are so small that they quite literally won’t even hold a paperback book.

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I’m not really sure what you could put on these trays. Fortunately we stowed them before takeoff, because you wouldn’t want to slam into them. As we were taxiing, a strange mist filled the plane. It was pumped from behind the walls. You can see it here near the top of the photo, as Kyra demonstrates the proper choking maneuver.

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When we arrived in Mexico I was amused by the prolific “exit” signs. These green signs were everywhere in the country– apparently it’s really important to know how to get out of buildings.

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One reason I was so amused is because the little stick guy running for the exit bears a striking resemblance to the dudes in the 1980 Apple game Lode Runner, which Thom and I played for untold hours.

lode-runner

A van from the resort picked us up at the airport, and while we were riding we struck up a conversation with the other family in the van. It turned out they were from Longmont, live a few blocks from us, know many of the same people, and even know a bunch of the kids’ friends. Small world, I guess.

When we arrived, I was impressed. This place was easily the nicest hotel I’ve ever stayed in. The floors were a really nice tile (predictably, for sand and water reasons), all of the linens were immaculate, and everything just looked so nice.

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It’ll be hard to go back to the Motel 6 and Super 8 places we usually stay on our trips.

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There was even a phone conveniently located beside the toilet, for those important calls to room service while you’re conducting your business, so to speak.

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They even had a team of guys whose sole job, as far as I could tell, was to scoop up seaweed that washed ashore on the beach.

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They would work in the hot sun loading the seaweed into wheelbarrows, which they rolled up the beach and stuffed into garbage bags. Because I’m a curious kind of guy, I kept an eye on it and watched them load the bags into pickup trucks and drive them off several times a day. Who knows where the stuff goes… maybe they truck it up to a neighboring resort and dump it on their beach at night.

One of the great things about an all-inclusive resort is that food is always available. On our first evening we enjoyed a really nice dinner at an outdoor cafe.

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There were several restaurants peppered throughout, room service was 24/7 and had an amazing menu, and you could walk (or swim) up to the bar and order pretty much any drink you wanted. We quickly learned that the lemonade and chocolate milk were both amazing. Yeah, that sounds weird, but it’s true.

Day 2

We took a taxi south to a place called Tulum, which is famous for its Mayan ruins. The Mayans built a fairly large city right on the beach, presumably for defensive reasons, but also because hey, who doesn’t want beachfront property?

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The buildings are in remarkably good shape considering they’re something like 1,600 years old.

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We didn’t have a guide, and all of the signs were in Spanish, so it’s anyone’s guess what some of this stuff was. Maybe these are outhouses? Servants’ quarters?

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It was pretty hot that day, and away from the beach there wasn’t much wind, so the humidity was stifling. Zack was in kind of a grumpy mood most of the time, so Alex and I couldn’t help but mock him.

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Kyra and Laralee posed in front of some guy’s hacienda.

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Laralee was a little worried about getting around, but I found the public transportation to be a breeze. There were plenty of American tourists, so there were plenty of taxis. I found myself doing the math every time we had to hand over a fistful of pesos, just to make sure we weren’t paying $200 for a 10-minute taxi ride or something.

When we arrived back at the resort, Zack headed for the pool. As it turned out, he spent a lot of hours in the pool… he loved it. Since our rooms were “garden” level, we could walk out our sliding back door straight to the poolside. It was sure convenient for Zack.

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We settled into some lounge chairs to enjoy some drinks.

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It was fun to just sit back and watch the palm trees sway in the breeze. Man, I tell you, this tropical thing grows on you pretty quickly.

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There was a giant chess board near the pool, so of course we had to play. Kyra and I started a game while Alex kibbitzed.

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Here Kyra considers a difficult move while sucking down some chocolate milk. I believe the USCF recommends chocolate milk (or lemonade) for most championship-level play.

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In the end, I had no mercy and took down Kyra’s king. She was pretty upset.

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Later in the afternoon, Kyra, Alex, and I decided to grab some kayaks and head out to sea. They were cheesy plastic things, but still a lot of fun as we paddled out past the breakers.

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We decided the sea was too calm, so we headed over to an area that had more waves and looked interesting. We learned that little waves can quickly become bigger waves, and that a plastic kayak isn’t always great for getting over them. Kyra ended up getting beached on a bunch of volcanic rock, and Alex and I went in to rescue her but were washed ashore right alongside her. We had to portage the kayaks back.

Day 3

We headed up the coast to the north to a place that had jet skis and snorkeling. I always enjoy jet skis, and I found that they’re way more fun on ocean waves than on lakes. Here are Zack and I as we head out from shore.

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As we headed out to sea and picked up some speed, I had a great time hopping waves and catching air. A few minutes into that, Zack was holding on to my life vest for dear life and asking me not to do that. I calmed down the ride a bit, but it was still difficult to avoid the occasional wave and airborne crash.

After a twenty-minute jet ski trip we arrived at a secluded beach where we donned snorkeling gear and headed out to the sandbars and reefs near the shore. It was pretty cool stuff.

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After about forty minutes of snorkeling we jumped back on the jet skis. Zack decided to ride with Laralee, thinking it might be a smoother ride. Since Alex had his own jet ski, I hopped on with Kyra, who had decided to drive. I caught a few pictures of us jumping waves.

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About halfway back to base, Kyra decided she was too freaked out to keep driving. She’d been doing fine, but okay, I offered to switch with her. Of course that’s tricky on a jet ski in the middle of the ocean– sort of like switching places in a canoe. Sure enough, as we attempted to pass one another, the whole thing tipped to the side and sent me into the drink. But I survived, climbed back on, and we continued our trip.

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One thing I really liked about the beaches was the nice warm, fine sand. It was so soft and just pure bliss on bare feet.

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Back at the resort, we ran into our new friends from Longmont. They told us about a “secret” beach on the far end of the resort, where there weren’t any crowds. Sure enough, when Laralee and I headed down there we found a bunch of empty lounge chairs and were able to lay back and watch the waves come in.

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Day 4

We had another day of snorkeling, at a different location that advertised sea turtles. Sure enough, there were a bunch of them lounging around near shore.

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I grew to love the (relatively) cheap underwater camera I’d purchased for the trip– it did a great job and captured a lot of pictures I wouldn’t have otherwise. Here’s Laralee watching a stingray or something.

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After the sea turtles we went to a cave, where we were able to swim in a cenote or underground river. Apparently there are thousands of cenotes around Mexico. The water was noticeably cooler, but we quickly grew accustomed to it. I think we were spoiled by the bathwater-temperature water in the Gulf.

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Naturally it was dark, so most of my pictures didn’t turn out so well. Here are Kyra and I getting ready to submerge.

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And here are Kyra and Laralee swimming around a cavern.

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I did my best to take some shots of the underwater stalagmites, but the flash didn’t work out so well.

After the cenote we hopped on some ATV’s for a ride through the jungle. That’s what they advertised, anyway; in fact it was riding on a dirt road that happened to go straight through an area with a lot of trees.

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Zack was stoked because the tour guide let him drive (he hadn’t been allowed to drive the jet skis the day before).

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After we’d been out for a while, we were heading back on a rough jungle trail and Alex managed to crash into a tree.

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Luckily there wasn’t any noticeable damage, since we’d declined the insurance. We recovered and made it back to catch a taxi to the resort.

The resort had a couple of catamarans that you could reserve for a little 20-minute trip out to sea. Each day I’d gone to put our name on the list, but it was already full. We were running out of days to ride the catamaran, but fortunately our new friends from Longmont mentioned to us that they had scored a reservation but wouldn’t be using it (dad and daughter had gone out, but mom and son didn’t want to). Alex and I gratefully used their reservation and had a nice trip out to sea.

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Here’s a fun shot of us crashing through a wave.

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Day 5

On our last day we had some time to kill before our flight out of Mexico, so we went down the beach and relaxed a bit. Here’s me with my lemonade.

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Laralee spotted a little hermit crab making his way across the sand. This guy was maybe an inch from end to end… pretty cool.

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As we were getting ready to grab our luggage and head to the airport, we asked someone to take our picture. Adios, beach!

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We enjoyed some overly expensive Domino’s pizza at the airport, then boarded our Frontier flight back home (don’t forget: More Choice! More Perks! More Savings!). They gassed the plane again, and we were on our way.

All in all, it was a fantastic trip. I’m sold on tropical vacations, and assuming we can get the money together, I’d love to head out to Hawaii or Florida or even back to Mexico again. Good times.

1
April
2015
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Our latest Zing activity: archery! Today at lunchtime all of us headed over to a local archery range and shot things. Ben and Noah have their own bows (Noah handmade his about a year ago) and the rest of us used some rentals.

Although I was hardly consistent, I did manage to hit the bullseye twice. Notice the holes in the center yellow!

bullseye

I figure another couple of sessions and I’ll be able to shoot better than Legolas, Katniss, and Hawkeye combined.

20
March
2015
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Spring ultimate season has started! The local group I’ve played with for the past 15 years, Grass Roots Ultimate, is running multiple concurrent leagues this year so I took the opportunity to play in two leagues at once.

On Tuesday nights there’s an indoor league, which is a little unusual but a lot of fun. I’d never played before, but I’d heard it’s a good time, so I signed up. I was invited to be a team captain, so even though I had never done it, I drafted a team and we took to the turf. We play triple-headers every week, and even though the games are only 20 minutes long, they’re intense. It’s very different from traditional outdoor ultimate– it’s much more fast-paced, there are no stoppages of play, and you run flat-out the entire time.

We lost all three of our games, but in each one we did noticeably better, so I attribute it to just getting to know one another and figuring out playing styles. Plus, I kept throwing deep passes that simply don’t work on a field that’s only a quarter the size of a full ultimate field.

I was exhausted at the end of the night, but in a good “wow, that was some workout” sort of way. This is definitely going to get me in shape.

Then on Thursday nights there’s an outdoor league that’s played under the lights at a nice city park in Longmont. It’s convenient: less than a mile from my office, instead of a drive down to Boulder where GRU is headquartered. I’m a captain in this league as well, and I also volunteered to run the entire league. I first ran the league last fall, and it was so much fun I decided to do it again. It means coordinating with the City, managing field space and budgets, organizing the draft, recruiting captains, acting as “host” at our after-game parties every week, and generally being the go-to guy for all of the things that come up in any sports league.

What’s fun about this league is Alex decided to join. He’s played ultimate for years with some friends at school, but it’s pretty recreational and in fact they sometimes play with some goofy rules. He recruited a few friends but none of them really wanted to commit. It’s an adult league but anyone 16 or older is invited. He’s one of three teens in the league, so I’m sure it’s a little intimidating to be playing against a bunch of adults.

We play double headers in this league, and our first games were tonight. The weather was cold and rainy most of the day, but it cleared in the evening and by game time it was still chilly and a little breezy, but considering it’s technically still winter I can’t complain. It’ll definitely be nice to have it warm up through the season, though (we play through the end of May).

Although we lost both our games tonight, just like on Tuesday I saw marked improvement in how we played over the course of the games. Again, we sort of had to figure out who was good at what, and develop strategies to use that. It was awesome to see Alex out there– he was actually really good! I knew he would at least be decent, but he made several fantastic defensive plays, out-jumped one of the opponents in the end zone, and caught everything thrown to him. I’m excited to play on a team together.

To add to the fun, the pickup group I’ve played with for over a decade also has games every Tuesday and Thursday at lunchtime. We typically play two games, or three if we have time. Although it’s just pickup, the level of play is pretty high; in fact, many of the pickup players are in the leagues with me.

It looks like this is going to be a crash course in physical fitness! I’ll be playing nine games of ultimate every week for the next few months, all on two days. How awesome is that? I suppose I’ll sleep well those nights…

16
March
2015
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Kyra’s on the high school varsity tennis team. She never played tennis until about three weeks ago.

Tonight Laralee and I watched her first home game. She played doubles and the two of them did pretty well, but lost a close match. It’s fun to see her doing something completely new and different, and I’ve already seen dramatic improvement. Maybe by the end of the season she’ll be a regular Martina.

kyra-tennis-1

kyra-tennis-2

7
March
2015
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At church our youth group (ages 12 to 18) is involved in a month-long series of seminars called “cotillion”, which is apparently from the French and refers to a formal ball. Cotillion is about manners, etiquette, chivalry, conversation, formal dinners, and dancing. The intention, of course, is to teach the teenage boys how to treat a lady, and the teenage girls how to be graceful. I find it to be an interesting concept, and although I’m completely refined and polite these days, there was certainly a time in my younger years when that wasn’t the case.

Alex and Kyra went through it a few years ago, and neither of them can attend this round because Alex has martial arts and Kyra has tennis practice. They’re not exactly heartbroken about it. Zack, who had no other activities to use as an excuse not to attend, was not excited about it at all. So, in general, amongst the teen group there’s an attitude of grumpiness and resignation about cotillion, but as youth leaders we kept telling them “it’ll be more fun than you think”.

At some point the week before the first session, Zack really wanted something. I don’t remember what it was– maybe it was a snack, or for someone to take care of a chore for him, or to play some extra video game time– but I told him he could have it if he promised not to complain about cotillion for the next five weeks. He agreed. I’ve learned with him that it’s usually best to get it in writing, though, so I put together a little legal contract on a sticky note:

hygiene-griping

It’s stuck to our refrigerator to remind him weekly that he can’t complain when it’s time to head over to the church for the weekly two-hour session. Interestingly, after the first one, Zack came home with a new attitude. He admitted that it was, in fact, more fun than he thought it would be. Even more surprising, he mentioned that during the dance portion (they were learning the foxtrot that day) he danced with a very nice young lady. Wow. So after that first week, it’s been a lot easier getting him out the door.

Next week I’m teaching one of the seminars. My topic: personal hygiene for the older teenage boys. Yeah, that sounds pretty… exciting, doesn’t it? So for the past couple of weeks I’ve been thinking about how to teach boys the things they should do to attract the attention of the young ladies (in a good way). I came up with a few examples and thought I’d illustrate the point with some photos.

First, don’t have messy hair. I took a picture of myself right after getting out of bed, although unfortunately my hair wasn’t as amazingly bad as it is on some days.

hygiene-messy-hair

Be sure to clean your ears. Alex used to have a “wax problem” where he’d go for weeks without applying a Q-tip, and after enough time there would literally be thick brown wax oozing out of his ears. Bleah. (Yes, he’s better now.)

hygiene-ear-wax

If you nick yourself shaving, use a little dab of tissue to staunch the blood, but don’t forget to remove it before you head out the door. Yeah, I’ve done that.

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Brush often, and make sure you don’t have food in your teeth.

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And finally, my favorite, avoid the dreaded “bat in the cave”. The kids and I use that to indicate that someone has a nice booger visible in their nose. For some reason, when you’re talking to someone with a bat in the cave, you can’t help but stare. It’s like a train wreck in slow motion or something.

hygiene-bat-in-the-cave

There are some other things I’ll be teaching, including appropriate levels of deodorant, maintaining fresh breath, and yes, even taking showers daily. Hopefully it’ll not only be entertaining, but will help one of these boys enjoy a dance with his dream date.

7
March
2015
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Many years ago we thought it was funny when Zack fell asleep on the landing of our stairs. He would often play with toys there (who knows why) and apparently one day he just crashed.

Anyway, fast forward to last weekend, when some of Kyra’s friends were hanging out late on Friday night. I guess the action was just too much for Hannah and Chaille, who ended up falling asleep on the landing:

sleeping-on-the-stairs

(No, they weren’t just posing for a photo… they were actually asleep.)

Maybe there’s something to the whole “sleeping on the landing”. I should give it a shot. It’s probably more comfortable than sleeping on rocky ground in a tent…

28
February
2015
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Although it was fun to have sunny 60-degree days a few weeks ago, it sure didn’t feel like February around here. The last week, coupled with the upcoming week, are more like what I expect:

forecast-snowy

I actually enjoy winter, even though I’m not out playing ultimate. This is more like February!

27
February
2015
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Despite apocalyptic warnings about winter storms and dangerous roads, Longmont was (as usual) lightly dusted with snow while the rest of the Denver area was pounded. We had a couple of “snow days” at the office, since I’m the only one who lives in Longmont and the rest of the team commutes from Boulder and farther. To the kids’ dismay, the schools were open.

As I was driving to the office yesterday I decided to stop and take a short walk along the trees lining the road. It was a peaceful morning, with light snowfall, and everything looked nice and wintry.

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For some reason I find snow to be beautiful.

27
February
2015
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Sometimes I don’t know if Laralee is crazy or brilliant.

Here’s the latest crazy-brilliant idea: on our counter we have a jar of water that has a bunch of used eggshells in it.

egg-water

I wondered about it and asked Laralee, and she told me that if you soak eggshells in water, you can then use the water for plants around the house. The calcium in the shells dissolves in the water, and apparently the plants love the calcium. (Another option is to crush the eggshells and mix them into the soil, but that seems like a lot more work.)

Wow. Brilliant. And a little crazy.

19
February
2015
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I saw a funny graphic about how movies were made, then and now:

movies-then-and-now

14
February
2015
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Laralee isn’t really into flowers or jewelry, so I get off pretty easy on Valentine’s day. This year I bought her a dozen long-stemmed chocolate roses:

vday-chocolate-roses

(Only six fit in our vase.) Unfortunately we discovered they’re hollow milk chocolate, so they’re not as impressive as you might think. I also bought her a stack of dark chocolate Chocolove bars, which are far superior and will definitely win me a few points in the Valentine’s game.

14
February
2015
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In today’s mail I found an amazing card that Nooch Dirque had sent to me for my (upcoming) birthday. This is what the front looks like:

unicorn-card

Inside it says “Have a magical birthday!” and Dirk had taped 43 cents, including a bicentennial quarter!

birthday-coins

How awesome is a barfing unicorn card with money in it?

10
February
2015
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While I was playing ultimate, some IT guy called and left me a message about some domain changes he needs to make. Fine, no problem; I called him back when I was in the office but his phone just rang and rang. Finally it dropped to a generic message about “This subscriber is not available. Please call back later. Goodbye.”

It’s 2015, man. What kind of IT professional has a business line (or mobile phone) without voicemail? Seriously?

Maybe he’s expecting me to Facebook message him or something. I guess that’s what all the cool kids do these days.

10
February
2015
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Today it was sunny and about 65 degrees– just another day in the strange month of February in Colorado. Of course I went out to play some ultimate. My team won the first game handily at 7-4, and in the second game we were down 6-3 with the opponents only one point from a glorious victory. We managed to score two in a row, and had some momentum for a comeback.

Jay threw a deep pass into the endzone, and I went the distance (panting and wheezing, it seemed). I can brag just a little bit to say that I made a spectacular diving catch in the back corner of the endzone, grabbing the disc in fingertips for the point. Tie game!

I scraped my right knee… a huge abrasion from the winter grass. But it was worth every drop of blood. Woo hoo!

5
February
2015
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Today at work I exchanged a few texts with Kyra:

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That’s my girl.

5
February
2015
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Today I was heading west into town, and the mountains looked absolutely stunning. They’re coated with the snow that fell last night, and the sky was a crisp blue with some light clouds. I grabbed my cell phone and took a hasty shot out of my horribly dirty windshield:

midday-0205

That’s Longs Peak on the far right, and the Indian Peaks on the left. This photo doesn’t really do it justice, of course.

Later, as I was heading home after work, there was a fading crimson sunset… also spectacular. I was heading north this time, so I rolled down my window and stuck my phone-camera into the cool air:

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Longs Peak is out of the shot, but you can see the same profile of the Indian Peaks on the left half of the photo. Again, this picture isn’t nearly as impressive as the real thing, but not too bad for a cell phone out the window of a moving car.

4
February
2015
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Congratulations, Thom and Katie!

katies-ring

And may I say it’s about freakin’ time, heh…

1
February
2015
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Today at church I gave a lesson to the little kids, aged 11 and younger. My lesson involved some photos of famous people, Jesus, and one of me when I was about eight years old. Anyway, at the end of the lesson a bunch of the kids asked if they could have the photos. It was funny to see who wanted the Jesus pictures versus those who wanted the other people (like Hagrid, for example). At the end of it all, I was left holding my own photo… apparently no one wanted a picture of an eight-year-old Jeff.

I handed it to my friend Franz, who is one of the teachers. He took it home, framed it, and put it on the stairwell in his house.

portraits

He’s waiting to see how long it takes the women in the house to notice it. Hilarious.