Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Pop-pop passed away quietly this morning while Tom and Nancy were at the hospital. Bob unfortuntely didn't make it to Erie in time. But at least we were all able to spend time with Pop-pop at the beach and the wedding 2 weeks ago. And I gotta tell you, when it's my time to go, that's how I want it to be. Spending a week with my family and friends, watching my kids and grandkids have a great time and knowing that I've raised a good strong family. I think knowing that you've made a difference in so many people's lives, have been a great father and an excellent grandfather, makes it a little bit easier to say goodbye. That said, it's always hard to lose a family member, especially one that you've had a close bond with (in my case through all the times we'd gone hiking together). Even knowing that he probably didn't have much time left, it's still hard to think of a world without him in it. Watching him deteriorate has been very difficult for all of us, especially in the last year. To see how quickly Leukemia and heart failure could reduce a man that we've always known to be in superb physical shape and who always seemed to me to be damn near invincible is a terrifying thing. As Most Precious Blood says, it's not easy watching your architects fall. Pop-pop provided us a model for how to live our lives and he will be sorely missed. The image indellibly inked into my brain right now is of me and Pop-pop and Mr. Gregory standing atop the frozen Chilkoot Pass about to cross into Canada, following in the footsteps of the gold seekers a century before. Week-old stubble, cocked knit hat, rain gear, mittens and all, we felt on top of the world, and that is how I will always remember him.

Carry the lantern high. Love is stronger than death.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

We decided tonight that Grandma is a force of nature, but were having trouble deciding on which one. I submit that she's actually the most fearsome conglomerate of natrual phenomenae. Beware the Tsunamicano Hurriquake!

You can read into this whatever you want, I just think it's hilarious. Sure, my dog can operate a motor vehicle. Wait, why did we hit an oncoming car?

Monday, August 28, 2006

I hope everyone else had a good weekend. I stayed up way too late on Thursday night making Emily a birthday cake. I think it turned out really well, and I didn't burn the kitchen down or poison anyone! I worked out again on Friday and ran a full mile and a half, not bad after basically taking a week off from running when I was at the beach. Then Friday I stayed up too late again working on my Chaos Rankings software (I'm almost done!).
Saturday I went to go check on the zoo over at Tommy and Steph's since they were out of town and feed all the critters. Then a short stop at Lowe's to find a piece of hardware I need that I couldn't get at Home Depot (what's up with that?). Then I finally saw the birthday girl and we were treated to ice cream sundaes courtesy of Post. We hung around the pool for a bit before getting ready to head out for dinner. I had planned to go to the Doubletree in Arlington since they have that restaurant that overlooks all of DC, but it's closed for renovations until 9/15, so we headed to Sequoia instead. And we didn't get lost at all on the way there. It was really easy to get in and out too, so I'm not sure what went wrong last time we drove over there. But we had a great view of the Potomac and the Kennedy Center as the sun went down and all the lights starting coming on. Emily indulged in a lobster and I had some yummy swordfish with garlic potatoes. Unfortunately, our server was rather sub-par, so she got a lousy tip, but the food was awesome yet again and despite feeling totally stuffed, we managed to eat some cake after we got home.
Sunday morning I made us a nice breakfast of bacon, eggs, our hershey's coffee, and cinnamon rolls. Mmmm... Off to Brick Fest! It was at the Sheraton Premiere neat Tysons this year, which is a nice hotel, but didn't really jibe with Brick Fest very well. Most of the displays were in one ballroom, so it seemed like it wasn't as well organized. And because everyone was all in one place, there wasn't very good flow. It seemed like there were a lot more people, but fewer creations. Hopefully next year it'll move back to GMU or someplace more appropriate for an event like this. I am always amazed however at what kinds of things people come up with though and how even with the same pieces, peopel are always finding new ways to put them together. Then we went to Tysons to find Emily a new jacket at LL Bean and do some gnir tnemegagne browsing. We looked at a few different stores and I think we've got a better idea of what looks right and which styles make sense. Then for kicks we looked at S'ynaffit as well where the only one that caught Emily's attention cost just a hair under $25K. Watch out Tim! The stones were certainly bigger than other ones we'd looked at, but also of significantly lower quality. Nice to know how much having that T&Co name on a box costs. After walking past a Cinnabon stand at the mall, I suddenly became quite hungry, so we headed home and stopped at Macaroni Grill for dinner. After playing with the girls and clenaing their cage, it was definitely time for bed. I certainly had a good 3rd anniversary and I think Emily had a good birthday as well. It's hard to believe sometimes that it's been 3 years, but I know I'm very much looking forward to the next 3, and the 3 after that, and so on to infinity. =)

Thursday, August 24, 2006

So long pizza. Time to learn a new mnemonic for the planets orbiting our Sun that Pluto is no longer classified as being a part of. My Very Elegant Mother Just Served Us... Nitrogen? 'Nanas? Nutrients? Nutmeg? *shrug* Just doesn't have the same ring to it as Nine Pizzas. Lousy Pluto abandoning all the poor school children. Won't someone think of the children?

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Oh, also, on my way to work this morning, I saw two raccoons strolling down the sidewalk near my office. I had to do a double take. I knew immediately they were furry little scavengers, but seeing them just crusing down the path like they were out for a morning walk together was just really funny. I half expected to see ear buds leading to an iPod or something.

So the pictures and videos aren't quite ready yet. I've just been too busy the last couple evenings. We're trying to make plans for the Notre Dame game that we recently recieved a pair of tickets to (by way of certain aunt - technically a first cousin once-removed in-law I think). And then we're trying to work out some plans for this weekend as well since it's Emily's birthday and our 3 year anniversary. I think things are starting to come together though, and it's going to be Labor Day before I know it.
As for last week and the wedding, I had a blast. My extended family is so much fun and I'm really glad we all get along as well as we do. Most of the week was pretty laid-back and everyone just sort of did whatever they wanted. I read a lot and played some FFIV:Advance and worked on my Chaos Rankings software (check out the site if you haven't yet).
Edisto is a nice beach area that's mostly just houses. Not tons of commercialization or shops or anything. We got to shop at a Piggly Wiggly which is always very exciting and the ice cream parlor shares space with the video rental place. Nothing was overly busy or crowded, so it was nice to just kick back and relax for a week. One night we went out to dinner at a quasi-fancy place which used to be a post office (and I suspect a church prior to that - speaking of which, there are something like 15 or 20 churches on this little island) where we got soooo much food. I had fried catfish and cheese grits and then peach cobbler for dessert. A little pricey entrees, but for the amount of food you get, well worth it. We also hit up the Serpentarium which is home to so many snakes its ridiculous. Also a few other things like alligators, caimans, iguanas, bearded dragons, gila monsters, and so forth. Kinda creepy to see so many snakes in one place, especially in the outdoor areas where there was nothing really protecting you from the venomous snakes, but it was fun nonetheless. Our house had an ocean view and the balconies had a constant breeze that made it nice to sit outside almost any time of day. Bob's house was on the beach and sort of on a corner of the island such that they had amazing views of the sunset each night.
Unfortunately, the week at the beach was over before I knew it, but then it was off to Greenville! We stayed downtown at the Westin again (that place is so nice and really not that expensive for what you're getting). The rehearsal dinner was fun to see the rest of the family and I have some hilarious video of my favorite cousin and her father dancing. Somehow we all got roped into singing Michigan's fight song in tribute to Uncle Bill, which made me feel kinda dirty, so I commisserated with my GT companions Emily and cousin Darren. We contemplated busting out the Ramblin Wreck, but decided in a room full of Clemson and USC grads, we'd probably just get beaten up. The actual wedding was nice, though I think far and away the fastest one I've ever been to. I'm told it clocked in under 13 minutes. A lot happened; it just happened very quickly. The reception hall was nice but it was almost too spread out so people I think felt somewhat segregated. But overall it was a really nice wedding and I think we're all very happy for Brian to have managed to trick someone into marrying him.
We had an eventful drive home that included Jersey Mike's and Sonic (Emily was downright giddy even before she got the sugar from her 44oz cherry limeade into her system) and a phone call that Pop-pop was in the hospital. He had been doing so well all week at the beach and the wedding. But his transfusion on Thursday seems to have caused a clot which resulted in a heart attack. Luckily he hadn't boarded his plane yet and with 30 minutes of the onset of symptoms, he was in the ER. He's stable now at least, but we all had quite a scare. He was in good spirits last week being surrounded by family, so it was almost hard to tell that he was fighting Leukemia and heart failure simultaneously. It's hard to watch someone you always looked up to and who was always so strong reduced so quickly by disease. But his mind is still sharp as a tack and I think being around family was exactly what he needed.
Sorry to end on a bit of a sad note, but that's how the trip ended, and life isn't always all roses. But like I said, he's stable, and seems to be doing better now. So the good news is that he'll likely be able to attend Libby's wedding next weekend. Unfortunatley, I won't be able to make it to that one. I'd like to, I really would, it's just that when a pair of Notre Dame at GT tickets came into my possession, I couldn't pass them up after trying for so long to find some. So this weekend is going to be a big celebration and then next weekend is going to be awesome with ESPN Gameday on campus and the Yellow Jackets crushing the Irish. It's like a month long super fun fest for me!

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Happy 25th b-day to My Friend Tim (haha, you're "old" now too) and a belated b-day to Meg (who I assume is still living her dream of residing within the city limits of NYC).

Monday, August 21, 2006

I have returned from my vacation and the wedding. That is all for now. It's been a busy day at work (after a week off - go figure) and I'm ready to go home. More updates and possibly pictures and/or extremely hilarious video maybe tonight or tomorrow. Stay tuned.

Saturday, August 12, 2006

"It's 105 miles to Chicago. We've got a full tank of gas, half a carton of cigarettes, it's dark, and we're wearing sunglasses. Hit it!"
Only replace 105 with 600, Chicago with Edisto, cigarettes with donuts, dark with early, dog with son, and accidentally with repeatedly. Wait, now I'm mixing my quotes up... In any case, I'm off to South Carolina for a week at the beach and my cousin Brian's wedding. I probably won't have any internet access this week, and may or may not have cell phone coverage. So hopefully nothing important will happen that I need to know about with any real urgency. So long suckers! I'm on vacation!

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

I just found out one of the Navy on-site team at Lockheed is quitting her job. To enter a convent. Yes, you read that right, a nunnery. That's really too bad. I mean, don't get me wrong, if that's what you want to do, more power to ya. It's just that she was awesome about helping me out with witnessing PVTs and closing out IRs. She and Steve and Beecher were always on the ball when it came to our software, and I'm scared about who her replacement might be and the steep steep learning curve that I'll have to put up with in October/November when our next round of integration testing comes up. I know, I'm being selfish. Whatever. I'm bummed Maureen is leaving, I think I'm entitled. Besides, I just can't see her donning a habit... *shrug*

Monday, August 07, 2006

I had a pretty good weekend. Emily and I had dinner at Brion's with my Mom and Ben on Friday night. Saturday we headed over to Arlington to see Picasso at the Lapin Agile put on by the Keegan Theater. Emily's co-worker was in the play and my cousin Sarah was the assistant director, so we both heard about it from separate sources. It was so good too! Not that I expected anything less of course, what with the people involved and the fact that Steve Martin wrote the original screenplay. I found myself laughing through almost the entire show. I strongly reccomend that everyoen go see it if you have a chance. It runs for two more weeks. Barring that, I suspect that if you check Amazon, there's probably a movie version with Steven Martin in it (as Sagot may as well have been the man himself, and Schmendiman was a spitting image of one of the wild and crazy guys). Afterwards we wandered around Pentagon City Mall and I bought some new clothes with Emily's help. We had dinner at Sine, an Irish pub nearby, and dessert at Maggie Moos, a Coldstone-wannabe that was quite delicious, though run by kids who pay too much for sneakers. No one needs $400 hi-tops. Yesterday I was pretty lazy. Well, not really I guess. I picked up 5 boxes of my stuff at my Mom's house Friday night and yesterday I threw out 3 boxes worth of stuff (mostly papers from high school). So I suppose I actually made a good bit of progress towards Emily letting me live with her since I'm throwing so much away. ;) The Formula 1 race in Hungary wasn't that great. It rained right before, which always throws a monkey wrench into things since not only do you have to change your pit strategy but you have to guess when the track is going to start drying and when to switch tired and you have to stay off the main line if you're still running wet tires. Neither of the championship contenders finished the race, and in fact, of the top 5, only Schumacher's Ferrari teammate Felipe Massa finished, so there's still an 11 point gap between Fernando Alonso and Michael Schumacher and a 2 point gap between the 3 drivers vying for third place. Go Kimi go! He even earned pole position for the race, but didn't finish either. But after the race, Emily came over and made cookies with her new cookie cutters (a moon, a palm tree, a squirrel, and a lobster). Then we watched some more hilarity on It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia, played with the chinnies and then it was time for bed and the weekend was over. I feel like I got a lot accomplished though and I had a fun time. And it wasn't 800 billion degrees outside. Next weekend I'm off to the beach for a week! Yay for vacation!

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Somehow I lost my water bill. I know I opened it and was appaled by how high it was. Perhaps I tore it up in disgust right on the spot, made temporarily insane by rage. More likely, it got misplaced and then thrown out by accident when I was cleaning up other piles of paper. In any case, I can pay it online, so whatever. But here's the kicker. All my bills come with a huge boldface reminded to "pay online - save a stamp!" Since I lost the piece of paper, I have no choice but to pay online, which I did last night, which cost me an extra $2.25 "convenience fee." Yes, that's much better than the 39 cents a stamp costs. In this particular instance, I had few other options, but in the future, I will be sticking to my antiquated stamp-based bill paying methods lest I have to fork over additional funds to save the cost of a stamp, thank you very much.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

I'm beginning to sound like a broken record here, but what happened to July? Last I knew, I was mourning the passing of June, and here is is August already! I was super busy all month, so I'm sure that's where the time went, but still...
In other news, my mom and Rosie got home safely yesterday and looked happy to be home, but quite worn out. Ben and I went over for dinner last night to welcome them back. They both have cars now and Ben is working part time while he continues on his quest for full-time employment. Dave's party on Saturday was fun. I like having older friends because they always have to deal with things before you. Dave brought up something that happened in 1985, and I was like, I was 4 then, sucker. I mean he's only got 5 years on me, but 9 and 4 is a big difference. Emily did awesome at poker and came in second place, netting herself an extra $5. Otherwise things are fine. The heat is beginning to get really old, but that's summer for you. Working out again is going pretty well. If I can get past the first brick wall, usually I'm good for another 10 minutes. On Friday I ran for a solid 20 minutes which made me happy, and I wasn't even sore afterwards! I guess that's about all that's going on.

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  • I'm Rev. Adam
  • From Oakton, Virginia, United States
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