Monday, June 28

Final Countdown

Been a weird past few days. Well, maybe not so weird for my life, but in general. Things have been getting a bit busier around our place. With just under a week before we leave for vacation, we have been gathering together some of the items we plan on taking along. Hopefully, all will work out and we won't here "I'm bored!" along the road.

The past few days I have been searching through the internet for places to stop at along the way to/from. Not much has really popped of, of what I think the kids would find interesting anyways. Either that, or it is just a bit too far out of the way to spend the time going there. We are going to take part of Route 66 on our journey back home ... once we get back to it. We are doing a stop to visit one of the wife's friends in MO, and will have to travel a bit to get back to our normal route. I am looking forward to stopping at some of the diners and souvenir shops along the Route.

Not much else will be going on, so I am sure posting may be slow this week, and maybe nothing while we are gone. Depends on if I can get computer access somewhere to update. We are planning on lots of pictures, so I am sure some will find their way here once we get back.


Wednesday, June 23

Another Late Night

Yeppers. It is another one of them late nights. I am an avid player of that there World of Warcraft MMO game (WoW) that is out, and today, for maintenance and patch updates, it was down for fricken longer than normal. So, by 4pm I said to hell with it and went to the pub.

Normally that would be a bad thing, as I sit there and suck down pitchers of beer and glasses of whiskey without count, until I feel the need to go home. The last couple times, I have been prepared, by bringing a book. I have realized that whilst reading, I drink less, and that helps all the way around. Tonight I was finishing up "Wizard's First Rule" by Terry Goodkind. It is the first book in the Sword of Truth series. I had bought the first 3 books of the series for my oldest son in May, for his Birthday. He had made it through the first one, so I was re-reading it. I am awaiting him to finish the next one, so I can continue, but I need to slow down to his speed.

Tomorrow, or rather later today, I think he and I are gonna have a weird lunch though. Thinking WoW, I brought the middle son (who also plays) home on Monday, to have a turn during the day playing. Next is the older son, and I am loading more on his plate than he is expecting. He's 12 years old, and reading this book series has brought some things to mind. First was when he finished the first book, and I asked him what he thought. Mind now, it has been over 15 years since I read this book... if not longer. He mentioned something about that he felt maybe he shouldn't read more of the 3 books (that I bought for him, though the series is longer) because he felt 'uncomfortable' about them. I asked, what makes you feel that way; he mentioned, well, they talk about some more 'adult things'. I flashed back in my mind to think, what would be that in this book? I thought I picked a pretty decent one. So I said, well, alot of books you will read will deal with people hugging/kissing or other relationship stuff (NOTE: we are not talking about reading about actual sex stuff - just like intense romantic feelings, and kissing/hugging). Then I got over halfway through the first book tonight.... and realized what he meant. Yeah, I don't remember it being there, but it mentions stuff like, hands on breast(s), leg between hers, etc. Doesn't get graphic, but much more reading than he would want to read.

Yes, I phrased that correctly. More than he would want to read. A long while back I wrote a short story about my first trip to the public library (I am too lazy to link it) and when I was young (like 10 abouts) Dad had gotten me "Adult" access on my card, meaning I could borrow anything I wanted in the place available. I was reading about sex, assassinations, brutal warfare, sex with aliens, hell.. you name it... before I was 13.

So tonight, as I reached the part of the book where it was more graphic than I remembered, though not like porn, I realized, it is probably time anyways. He's part-way into the next book. And I don't wanna guess about it anymore.

Ralphd00d IV and I are gonna have the talk tomorrow. For my family that reads this...Sis - shut up. RM, you knew it was gonna happen sometime. Rest of ya' with it.

He is still at the age where he denies liking girls, at least as girlfriends or more, and says he has no interest. He starts Junior High this fall. We all know how fast that can change (us men are saying he already likes them, but ain't admitting it). Either way, tomorrow, he is gonna learn about it all, and ... I wonder, how is he gonna look at others for the next few days...

Guess we'll find out. I'll have to let you know.


Monday, June 21

I am so happy!

Wow! What a great Father's Day I have had! I hope all you fathers out there were as happy as I am, but I doubt it. But it could come close!! Naw!! I was just saying that!

We went to dinner last night, sort of for Father's Day, but really just so the Wife would not have to cook. We did it simple and easy. Went to the buffet. Again, I ate too much. But it really was good!!!

This morning, everyone was woken up and told to prepare for church (all except me, cuz ya know I don't go). I got a couple sleepy "Hi Dad"s as they walked out the front door. I wasn't expecting nothing. I am tired too in the morning when faced with a meeting I don't wanna face. Though I am sure my meaning is different than theirs, when we are talking about a meeting a church!

Around 12:30, I jumped into my WoW game, and came across my BIL. HE reminded me that everyone was at their place for lunch (which we had declined this particular time). I mentioned, I was awaiting my wife and family, to be coming home with Subway for lunch. He got to rub it in they were having porterhouse steaks, and I wasn't there to partake. I smirked silently inside, knowing, though I was not there, I only had my own family to deal with, and not other people. My wife showed up very soon after, with the spicy italian sub I wanted, AND soda. Usually we just get the subs, but she stopped and got soda today too!

So here I am happy I got my foot-long sub, soda, and I am thinking, this is a good day. My middle son brings me a present, saying "Happy Fathers Day, Dad". It is a homemade notebook, decorated with glitter of his design, with empty pages in it. But before I could question him, my oldest son plops another present in front of me. It, too, is a handbook of empty pages, decorated by him, filled with empty pages.

-- At this time, I started to fret. Yes, I have been out of work for quite some time. One of my things I have wanted to do, was to write a book. Without going further than that, here I am with two (2) notebooks decorated by my two oldest boys. I feel.... pressured. I give a wild look to my Wife, who, I don't know if she sees my "deer in the headlight look" but instructs the boys to tell me what it is for.... My oldest speaks up, "They are keepsake journals we made, so you can make notes about us as we grow up, and have those memories written down forever."

My eyes teared up. I got one from each of the older boys, and can note stuff separately for them as I feel needed to do so.

My youngest son, painted me a "tie" to wear, though I need to add the strings, and have some sort of interview to go to to wear one. But the tie in itself, has a story. I know because he told me. But it will have to wait for another night to hear the story, because he told me he was busy at the moment, and couldn't tell it to me at that exact moment.

Then, the Wife says, "Oh, these are from all of us," as she handed me a bag. I got a nice collection of dvd movies. Some John Wayne ("The Green Berets" which I already watched today too) some Chuck Norris, Charles Bronson, Sam Elliott... a collection of horror movies (we'll see if any watch with me) and to top it off, though it wasn't a present for me, but for the whole household, the Wife had found a collection of 20 movies of Alfred Hitchcock. BOO-YAH!

Needless to say, I spent the better part of the day watching movies.

Evening rolled around, and RM and PT stopped by. They brought me some leftover steak (from Sis') and some deviled eggs (who don't love them?). It'll go good with the potato salad RM brought me yesterday (cuz she knew I wasn't going to Sis' and she knows I love home-made tater salad).

I rounded out the night, by heading to the pub for karaoke, though, I ended up reading the book I brought instead of singing. I was reading "Wizard's First Rule" by Terry Goodkind. I love that series, and had gotten the first three books for my oldest son last month. he finished the first one. so I asked for it, so I can re-read the series again, and be able to discuss the books with him.

I came home from the pub to see the daughter's bedroom light on, so asked her out for a discussion. For once in our lives, it felt that way anyways, we were able to sit down and have a conversation. No yelling. No raised voices. No blaming for whatever. I think that was the best gift. To be able to communicate with her again after the last 4 years of BS (from her and from me, I accept half blame) and be able to go on.

Thirty minutes ago, I let her go to bed. It's now almost 4 and I need to get some shut eye too.

I think this is one of the best Father's Days I have ever had. And I am crying cuz I wish it wouldn't end.


Saturday, June 19

Alll I got to say

... is I gotta quit drinking....


Friday, June 18

On Its Last Legs, and On The Way Out The Door

No, this post isn't titled about my parents! Sheesh, I could understand you think I am cold-hearted to do that (and I probably would) but at least not until the proper time!

Actually, it is about one of our computers here at home. The one that prior to yesterday was on a dial-up connection to the internet. The good people turned me on yesterday to the high-speed I finally ordered for the home. Needless to say, I think we are down to a CPU speed problem with that HP. I can't remember how many years ago I bought it, but I was playing EverQuest back then, so I know several years. It was one of the better "Gaming Computers" available at the time.

The Wife came home last night, and did the test running of internet high-speed on it, while I was on the regular computer. She said there was basically no difference. I watched for awhile (computers are pretty much side by side) and could see no major change as well. I think it has to do with the speed of processing and the amount of graphics involved. Too much info for that old, slower cpu chip to handle. I told the wife we will have to start watching ads for another CPU to replace this one.

Other than that, I am loving the high-speed! On the newer computer it rocks!

So, I got some movies yesterday while I was out getting the extra ethernet cable. Picked up "Avatar". Also got a 4-pack of Sylvester Stallone: "Demolition Man", "Over the Top", "The Specialist", and "Tango & Cash". What can I say, it was one sale for $12 - that's only $3 a movie!! Plus - I forgot I had ordered a couple from Disney Movies, so in the mail came "Alice in Wonderland" and (I had to get it, we only had it on VHS) "Pretty Woman". I love that movie!

So, I have movies to watch. Fast Internet to play on. And still trying to quit smoking. And cut more on the drinking.

So I am happily miserable??


Thursday, June 17

Moving Up in the World

I am moving out of the Stone Age, and into the modern world. Today, high-speed internet access will be hooked up at home. No more dial-up connections on our other computer. I know my kids are extremely excited about that. Now the boys and I talk about getting a second WoW account so we can play on both computers at teh same time, and help each other. I haven't gone that far yet, but we will see.

So, since the above is being done, I need to get out today to the store for an ethernet cable, in order to have both computers hooked up. I plan on going through the dvd section over at Fry's Electronics too, and see what movies I like that are now going to be marked down (I hope) and maybe even go ahead and pick up "Avatar".

Sunday is Father's Day, and the family is getting together at Sis' place for steak. The Wife and I discussed it, and there are just too many things we need to get done around the house, and in preparation for our trip, that we felt we could not take the day off to go. I fell sort of bad about that, but sometimes other things have to go first.

The Reverend Mother and Preacher Tom sent me over a copy of the Living Will this morning for me to review, and pretty much accept. Kind of a weird feeling when you know your parents are getting "up in their years", but sort of a bummer when they are doing the right thing and preparing well. Starts to make me wonder when the Wife and I should sit down and start planning for that "IF/WHEN it should happen" event. (sigh). I don't really want to even think about it, but sometimes I guess ya gotta.

Okay. That's all I got for now. I need to get some kill time in on WoW before I head to the store.


Monday, June 14

The Countdown Has Started

Blah! It's Monday!

The Countdown to the date we leave for our Family Trip has started! We are under three weeks til we leave. I am beginning to get excited! The Wife and I sat down (sort of) the other day and created a list of items we feel we will need for the trip. Most of it is small stuff you don't think about til you need; paper towels, an extra roll of TP, etc. We added a few things that we feel will help keep the kids somewhat occupied during the drive. Most of it we will be getting in the next week or two. I have already started planning what clothes I am taking. Though, that is not hard for me. Mostly deciding what shirts to wear, as 99% of my pants are denim shorts.

Which reminds me, I need to do some contacting to be sure our locations to stay the night are still available...

Other than that, not much is going on at my household. The daughter now has her license (finally - YEA!) and is gone this week with her Grandfather to help at a VBS. The boys have VBS at their local church this week as well. That means, late dinners to be expected unless I get off my ass and cook. Yeah, that I don't think is going to happen.

I set up for the phone company to hook me up for internet service in my home. I had been using a USB broadband modem for most of my internet stuff, but finally decided to get both computers going. The other had been on dial-up only. I only have to wait until Thursday for them to set it up at the main box, and I need to pick up an extra ethernet cord. Supposed to be faster than the modem I am using now as well... I mentioned to my boys, that since now both computers will have fast internet access, we may have to get another WoW account, so we can play together, rather than taking turns all the time. They liked the idea, until I said we would have to start a character out from the beginning again. All I heard was groans. Oh well, looks like I will be doing the new start up toons.

Sis called about this Sunday. I guess it is Father's Day (I never pay attention). I guess we are going to try to get everyone together for lunch Sunday at her place. She did mention getting porterhouse steaks for the dads (I am liking that!) but am not totally sure what all is happening. I need to get back to her by tomorrow to let her know. Stuman is coming up with his family for south BFE and RM & PT will be there as well.

That's all I got today. Maybe something exciting will happen before tomorrow.


Tuesday, June 8

The Dr. is Done

Since I rolled out of bed about 3:30 this morning, I have had lots of time to catch up on my internet surfing. I started out with my usual stuff, and by the time I was feeling about ready to head back to bed, I see this little jot of info....

Dr. Demento has ended his radio show. We all know who this icon is (inducted into the Radio Hall of Fame last year) famous for his broadcasts of "demented" and often funny songs like " Dead Puppies", "Fish Heads", and many, many more. Weird Al had his career take off thanks to the Dr. Said to say, due to decreasing funds, the show will be taken off the air, except for the Amarillo, TX area this summer. He is doing podcasts though still. I have never been able to figure out my favorite song that played over the years. I always loved "Dead Puppies" and since it has been years since a show was broadcast in AZ, many songs have slipped my mind. I remember a few though, like "Star Trekkin", "Harry had a Wet Dream", "They're Coming to Take ME Away" and a few others.

What was your favorite?

And, as the Dr. would end.... stay Deeeeeeeeeeeeeeemented!!!


Monday, June 7

Another Crappy Morning

So the wife wakes me this morning, asking me what the plans are (regarding taking the daughter out to practice her driving). Me, being half asleep still, says something like "You should know, you said we couldn't do it last night". Oh boy, started out to another crappy day.

I am heading back to bed for nap, and hoping that it gets better when I wake up.


Sunday, June 6

It is One Of Them Days....

I thought, once the daughter got to graduation, and we released ALL holds on her, that life would slowly get better. She's an adult. She is responsible for her self. All we asked was basic courtesy in staying in our home, as to whether to expect her for dinner, for the night, or was she gone for a couple days, etc.

Simple shit.

The Wife is going APE SHIT!!!! The daughter is fine. I offered to take her out to teach parallell parking, prior to getting her license. We were ok with the agreement. I had thrown in, if she felt ready, after practicing thru the morning, we could do her license road test if she felt ready. Ten seconds later, I have the Wife accusing me of forcing the daughter to do everything about the road test.

Whoa! I wasn't forcing. I said if she felt ready. There are other weeks to do this. I made mention, that the minivan needs cleaned up, especially prior to the road-test. So the daughter went out to clean it, AFTER the Wife starting bitching. So I told the wife to shut the hell up, went outside, told the daughter to not bother, since due to her mother not allowing her, she can't road-test tomorrow.

Now, I have the daughter pissed at both of us, the wife pissed at me. I am still..WTF did I do?

The wife is losing her only daughter to college. I think this is the main problem. I don't know though. Anyone with insight, please HELP!!!!!!

HB, your oldest was your daughter, any help? Life is now cold and bitter, and myself, plus the three boys are walking on tiptoe.


Tuesday, June 1

Is It a Priceless Commercial?

Our van is in the garage today. In fact, I just got a ride home from there, and will need to return this afternoon to pick it up. Going over the issue(s) that needed to be addressed, I started feeling like one of those Mastercard commercials.

EGR Valve replacement       $250
New Spark Plugs                 $100
New Spark Wires                 $95
Fuel System Cleansing          $150
Computer Diagnostic            $100
Labor and grand total           $1044
Ease of mind on trip              Priceless

Needless to say, I questioned many of the charges. But, in the computerized world of autos today, I am at a loss. Years ago, Clutch, brakes, etc I did all myself. It was a more mechanical thing. Now you have to hook a machine to the computer in the vehicle to tell you what is wrong, as if you couldn't figure it out. Granted, I am not as fit (or limber, or skinny) as I used to be, and I sure am lazy enough to not want to do the actual work.. I pay the labor. I just couldn't believe the price of spark plugs now! Why? This particular model of minivan requires a certain kind, which truly are better than regular ones, but more expensive, though they supposedly last longer. Same with the wires. I tried to haggle (which I am not very good at doing) asking if I got the parts, would they do the labor at least. Sure, but then they would not guarantee the parts, even if I bought them at the same place they get them (minus their up-pricing). Can't win. At least that is a tune-up done and out of the way for XXX amount of miles.

Yesterday was a good day. Had a wonderful time with family. Celebrated 3 birthdays, too! Tomorrow, PT (Preacher Tom, my stepdad) and I are going out to see "Robin Hood" with Russell Crowe. Trailers make it look good, and I have heard some good things about it.

That's all I got for now.