December 2005 Archives

Final post of 2005

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Happy New Year to everyone, hope you had a great 2005 and that you'll have an even greater 2006.

2005 was a wonderful year for us. My new job is fantastic - I love going to work each day, and would continue to work there even if I won the lottery (unless I won a 300+ million dollar lottery... then I'd probably quit). The people are awesome, the management is by far the best I've ever encountered, and I really enjoy what I do. I've met a lot of great people, and have made some really great friends. I can't believe I landed a job like this - it's that good.

Christmas was good, even if it cost us a fortune ($1165 for a roof rack, $350+ in gas (that roof rack killed us on the way home, thanks to 30mph headwinds for 700 miles), plus present costs) to go to WI. I could've flown first class for less... :-) It was great to see our families and to catch up with friends that we haven't seen for about a year (or more).

We're both thankful for our relatively good health, and have vowed to go on serious diets beginning in 2006. I'll probably start a diet category, ala my friend Brian, and will note my progress on a regular basis. We got a new scale for Christmas, and it measures body fat, so I'll prepare to be embarrassed as I post numbers...

Our pets are all healthy and doing well, as are our wonderful neighbors. The house is doing well, and the home theater is fantastic, even if it is cracking the upstairs walls and ceiling. I hope no prospective house buyers of mine ever read this blog...

I guess that's about it. I'm off work until January 3, and then I head to Detroit on the 6th for the Detroit Auto Show. I'll post pictures and info from Detroit, but will otherwise be pretty quiet - I don't foresee much posting taking place between now and then.

Amy and I are staying in tonight - just watching TV and will probably go to bed early. My back is killing me - I spent the day working in the garage (I got rid of all of my old car wax stuff today)... tomorrow I'm going to wash the cars, and Nat may be coming over with Tanner... if he does, I'll post some pictures. Cheers to all!

Madison - the 'ole stompin' ground

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Amy and I went to Madison today, and you can't go to Madison without going to State Street... for those not familiar with the area, State Street is a street that's about 6 blocks long and starts at the capitol building and runs to the edge of the UW-Madison campus. They don't allow any cars (other than police cars, buses, and some delivery vehicles) on the street, so you're pretty much free to walk where ever you'd like.

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The soak.

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Amy's mom has a new hot tub, and it's pretty nice. I took about a 2 hour soak yesterday, and am getting ready to go soak again. Ahhhh. Kramer really knew what he was talking about when it comes to a good soak...

Last night, we went out with some friends to Ken's Towne Inn Pizza for half-price pizza night. We ordered a "Giant" bacon cheeseburger pizza, and it cost about $7... not bad...

And Regis is happy with the status of things in WI - he found an old rawhide bone and is in love with it... here's a picture of him and his newfound treat:

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(Note: today's photos were taken with the wife's camera, so quality is down a bit...)

Xmas 2005

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Well, we made it to Wisconsin (obviously) without any problems. The roofrack worked great. The dogs were comfy in the Element.

We went to my parents house on Christmas Eve day for some gift opening and a late lunch.

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The tree was decorated and ready for us.


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Bucky wasn't too excited to see anyone.


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We had some turkey..


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And some other fixin's....


Afterward, we went back to Amy's parents house for some more gift opening and more food (cheesy potatoes anyone?).

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Kelly shows off her new Subaru wristband.


We had a great time, and thanks to everyone for the wonderful gifts. Today (Monday) has been pretty lazy -- just sitting around playing games and watching TV. We may head over to my friend Dan's house tonight -- we'll see how the day unfolds.

And to everyone back in AR who loves the notion of a movie-like white Christmas, the sad reality is it usually looks more like this:

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More to come later...

mmmmm Fish Fry

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I've grown to like Arkansas (for the most part), but the one thing I miss most of all about Wisconsin is the Friday Night Fish Fry. Sure, they have fish in Arkansas, but it's mostly catfish... which isn't any where near as good as a bunch of deep fried Pike or Walleye or Cod.

So, tonight, we went to Settler's Bay in Watertown, WI for some all-you-can-eat fish and chicken... mmmm...

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Just look at all of that fishy goodness! Yummy! We had about 3-4 plates worth.


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And french fries with potato pancakes... yum.


So, now we're stuffed and contemplating a few games of Scrabble.

The Great Roof Rack Adventure

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Nothing ever seems to go as smoothly as it should, as this story perfectly illustrates... buckle-in folks, this one's an interesting one.

We're getting ready to travel north to the great state of Wisconsin, as has been the tradition for the past 4-5 years. We load-up the Tahoe with dogs, lugage, presents, dog food, and other goodies, make the 700+ mile trek and enjoy a little holiday cheer.

Part of the pre-game warm-up includes me performing some basic maintenance on the Tahoe - standard stuff, like an oil change, a tune-up, air filter replacement, and so on. As part of my maintenance ritual, I send a small sample of my used engine oil to a laboratory in Indiana, and they do an analysis on it. The analysis tells me how the engine is wearing, and can identify any problems.

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I'm addicted...

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To this game:

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I've got it for my phone, and I can't stop playing it... I play it until my battery dies, then re-charge the phone and play again... I'm undefeated -- the CPU stands no chance against me, "The Steven." I'm a tycoon!!!!!

...and darn you, Karl, for telling me about this game for our phones.

So I've got this friend...

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One of my very best friends from Arkansas is a guy that I met about 5-6 years ago. We hit it off pretty well back then, so much so, that he let me live at his house for about 6 months while I waited for Amy and I to get married and make the move down to our new home in AR.

This guy is a really reasonable fellow. However, he's got his eye on a new house, and I'm afraid he's "losing it" a bit... :-)

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Ok, ok, ok!

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Wow - between the comments, the e-mails and the phone calls, I guess I need to update this thing, eh?

Not much has been going on here. Just working, and coming home and relaxing. Most of the Christmas shopping is done - we have to get a few more things; Amy will probably finish up the shopping on Thursday (tomorrow).

Work is fine - been hanging out with my friends Brian and Karl a lot after work. We usually go out to eat somewhere after work, or go over to Karl's house. We've also had a bunch of people over for movies the past few weeks, so that's been nice.

I have to write our company's BCP (Business Continuity Plan) in January (I did our DR (disaster recovery) plan back in July)... and then I have to take on some responsibility in our data department as well, so things will be exciting next year.

That's all for now!