Sunday, February 28, 2010

Soo Bahk Do Again, and Goofing Off a Day of Rest

Sunday is almost over. I've grilled burgers, hung out with the family, talked with #1 daughter and my son, watched Giol, her rabbit, gotten some reading done, and - while my wife and #3 daughter were at Soo Bahk Do class - finished another entry for the Sauk Centre Journal and did some work on the Knights of Columbus bulletin. I plan to wind the bulletin up tomorrow morning: I do not want another SNAFU like the out-of-date 'events' section of last month.

I'm steeped in the American culture, so I tend to feel that a day spent without producing all that much is a day spent 'goofing off.' I know better, but the feeling is still there. (More: "Working on Sunday: At Growing the Christian Interior Life," (January 2, 2010).)

Goodnight, and may God bless.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Saturday: Soo Bahk Do, a Rabbit, and Wii

I've got a task or two left to do today, and then I'll be (fairly) free for Sunday.

My wife and #3 daughter got back from the Soo Bahk Do clinic before 6:00 - earlier than I expected them. A happy surprise.

My son and #1 daughter had me run through a tutorial for a series of Wii games: Mario Brothers Smash Brawl, or something like that. That was fun, although I doubt I'll spend the time it'd take to get really competent at it.

I've read Garfield and sung with my son, and then watched one episode each of "Bleach" and "Princess Tutu" with #1 daughter, and watched her rabbit eat three apple cores. Not at the same time, of course

It's been a good day.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Friday: The Day's Work is Done

I finished the last post of the day (apart from this one) a few minutes ago. My son and I have read Garfield and sung. #1 daughter is home for the weekend, and all I have left to do tonight is get some dishes washed.

I've fed Giol, #1 daughter's rabbit, an apple core. Two, actually. He's gotten quite good at walking on his back legs:

"Will walk for food"

brigidtheirish, YouTube (October 26, 2009)
video, 0:12

It's late: time for me to turn in.

Goodnight, and may God bless.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Thursday: Routine, Which is Fine By Me

I'm caught up now, from Tuesday's malware situation.

And, thanks to a big of sitting with pencil and paper (pen, actually), I've gotten some work done part of the setting for a story or three. Which is another topic, for another blog.

It's Thursday, so my wife and #3 daughter went to Soo Bahk Do this evening. My son stayed home: he's been under the weather. Nothing serious, but why take chances? Besides, there's a Soo Bahk Do clinic this weekend, and I'm hoping he'll be able to go.

Apart from that, and talking briefly with my son-in-law about some family business, the day's been quite routine. Right down to the Garfield-and-song with my son about an hour and a half ago.

It may get better than this: but I'm glad with what I have.

Goodnight, and may God bless.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Wednesday: Caught up After Yesterday's SNAFU

I took an unplanned sabbatical from working on the computer yesterday. A rather nasty piece of adware started burrowing its way into my system. On the up side, my son knew of a fairly straightforward way to extract it.

The process of deworming my computer, although largely automated (this time), encouraged me to find other work to do. For one thing, I figured that the less I used the computer, the more of its resources would be available to the software that was patrolling its innards. Mostly, I thought that working at something that didn't have me looking at the monitor would be less stressful.

I think I made the right decision, but I hadn't caught up until late this evening.

I'd have been done earlier, but I decided to relax with the family and watch the two new Aaron Stone episodes that aired tonight. It may not be 'quality time,' but we had fun.

Somewhat after that, I read Garfield and sang with my son.

It's been a good day.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Another Day: For a Monday, Not Bad

Another day is (nearly) over. I've gotten the day's tasks done, not well perhaps: but done. My son and I read Garfield and sang - a happy routine - and earlier he showed me an online game he's discovered.

From the Red River Valley of the North, I hear, second hand, that my son-in-law is making preparations for #1 daughter. I'm not clear on exactly what he's got in mind, but that no doubt will become clear as time goes on.

And now, it's time for me to sign off.

Goodnight, and may God bless.

Searching for Scamp

I think it was Sunday when someone came to the door, asking us if we'd seen a black dog named Scamp. We hadn't.

I went out to grill burgers not long after that, and kept closer watch on my surroundings that I usually do. No dog, black or otherwise, showed up.

Sure hope Scamp finds his (her?) way home.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Of Routines and a Rabbit

#1 daughter is back from the Red River Valley of the North; Giol, her pet rabbit, has had two apple cores for treats (dancing each time); my wife and #3 daughter have been to Soo Bahk Do practice; and I've finished Sunday's Sauk Centre Journal post.

It's been a good day.

And now, goodnight and may God bless.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Of Yogurt, a Rabbit, Movies and Routines

I'll be switching yogurt brands, after using up the current supply. According to the charts I've been using, that half-cup of yogurt with rice puffs should have been good for breakfast.

But before-and-after blood sugar readings say otherwise. No real surprise, in 20-20 hindsight. Sugar comes pretty quick on the heels of milk on the ingredients label. Oh, well: There are alternatives.

My son and I read Garfield and sang tonight, as usual. That's a pleasant ritual. My wife and #3 daughter were watching a "Nancy Drew" video while I've been catching up on today's posts.

Good grief! That's a syntactic monstrosity, but I'll let it stand.

I watched "2001: A Space Odyssey" this afternoon. That makes three movies I've seen on television withing the week. The others were (part of) "Aliens" and (part of) "The Incredibles." The latter I enjoyed. The former? I know more about the approach of the franchise - and congratulate myself on not spending money on a movie ticket.

Add "Avatar," (a week ago tomorrow), and I've been spending a whole lot of time this week, watching movies. I don't intend to make that a habit.

Giol, #1 daughter's rabbit, has had an apple core from my son this evening, and one from me. He likes those things - and has gotten quite good at walking/hopping on his hind feet to take them from our hands. My son's reasoning is that Giol enjoys the apple core more, if he has to work a little for it, so he makes it a bit more difficult for the rabbit. He could be right.

#1 daughter is, presumably up in the Red River Valley of the North, visiting #2 daughter and my son-in-law.

Which pretty much sums up the day's happenings. Right. My wife and #3 daughter have been out, getting groceries and something at Wal-Mart - the latter including a refill of my glucose test strips.

And now, I can call it a day. Good night, and may God bless.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Blue Sky, Diabetes, Blood Test and All That

The day has, in a way, been fairly routine: apart from a call from my son-in-law, about some family business, and the numbers I read on the blood sugar monitor this morning. My blood sugar level was - well, it was too high, by far. And I realized that what I'd written off as an odd variation on my usual winter cold might be something else.

I'll know more, when results from lab work on a sample of my blood come back: but right now it looks like I'm okay.

"Okay" is a relative term, of course. But there doesn't seem to be anything obviously wrong with me - apart from being overweight, diabetic and on medication for depression. Also serious wax buildup in my left ear - that may be where some of the interesting sensations were coming form.

Hey, 'it could be worse,' as we say here in Minnesota.

And: unexpected good news. I'm down 10 pounds from December, 2008, when I was in last.

Now, for something really important: My wife, son and #3 daughter are at Soo Bahk Do class, I'm wrapping up the day's work a few hours early, and getting ready to kick back and relax a bit.

And pray the Chaplet. More about that, another time.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Lent, the Furnace Guy, and Beautiful Weather

My wife called "the furnace guy" today. Good thing, too, since he found out that we had a bad generator down there. And, was able to find a replacement part by early afternoon.

I stayed in, missing the Ash Wednesday Mass at Our Lady of the Angels church. I'm not exactly sick: but I'm not exactly well, either. I'm giving my body a chance to sort out whatever's going on, with as little additional stress as possible.

More than twenty years ago, I felt ill and went to work anyway. And as a result missed something like a month of work and classes. I'm not making that mistake again, God willing.

Other mistakes? Yes. That one, not so much.

The day is one of those Minnesota Tourism moments: bright blue sky, sunshine sparkling of the snow. Beautiful. And strangely warm: around the freezing point.

This is Minnesota: the weather will change.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Talking With My Son

My son and I finished reading Garfield & singing a minute or two ago. Generally, we'd be done earlier, but we started talking. He said he liked the talk - even though it lasted about a half hour.

I rather enjoyed spending the time that way, myself.

Monday, February 15, 2010

A New Wrinkle: Comment Moderation on This Blog

A few minutes ago, I reached my limit for Chinese-language spam.

Or spam of any sort, for that matter.

As of now, this blog's comments will be delayed for moderation. It's a hassle for me: but it'll also mean that you won't be seeing advertising for obscene and dubiously-legal goods and services.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Grilling Burgers, Watching a Movie, Hanging Out With the Family

#1 daughter wouldn't have been here for the weekend: but freezing fog in the wee hours of Saturday morning encouraged her to change her travel plans. Prudent, I think.

So, she was stuck here had some 'quality' time today with her father. She kept me company while I grilled burgers, and after the family ate lunch she and I went to see "Avatar" at the Main Street Theatre. It was the second viewing for her, first for me.

That was an impressive movie - which I'll probably write a little about, when I figure out which blog it should go in.

We got home in time for supper, my wife and #3 daughter spent the bulk of the evening at Soo Bahk Do class, and I got caught up on writing. #1 daughter and my son talked and played video games.

Life may get better than this: but I like what I've got.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Freezing Fog, Long Weekend

Freezing fog early this morning left frost on the trees - and encouraged #1 daughter to postpone a trip she was going to take, up to the Red River Valley of the North. Prudent decision, I think. Looks like she'll be staying here for President's Day weekend.

I've spent the day writing - and doing a bit of research / creative work for a story. Not that I 'felt creative.' If I waited for that, I'd produce even less than I do.

Now, I need to decide what to do with the rest of the evening. Garfield and song with my son is a given, of course.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Another Day, Another Apple Core For the Rabbit

I'm still catching up on Tuesday's posts, in other blogs, and decided to defer seeing "Avatar" until the weekend - or maybe next week. After that, it'll be gone from the local theater. I've felt better. I've felt worse, but I've felt better. Actually, none of the family here in Sauk Centre has been quite up to par.

Except for #1 daughter's rabbit, Giol. He's as fluffy as ever. And let me hold him for five minutes the other day. I think he liked getting his head stroked.

I went out in the afternoon, running errands. My wife, prudently, stayed in and rested.

#1 daughter called this evening, just after supper. Not-entirely-good news involving finances. 'Nuff said. I'm looking forward to seeing her on the weekend.

We got a call from #2 daughter & son-in-law, and viewed a work-in-progress marketing trailer for a video they're producing. He's producing, mostly. I'll be filling in details as that project moves along.

I've fed Giol an apple core - he's getting quite good at standing on his back feet and reaching for it - but haven't yet read Garfield and sung with my son.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Home, at Last! - of a Winter Storm, Interstate Traffic, and Utility Trucks

My wife, #3 daughter, and son got back from an unexpectedly long visit at #2 daughter's household, up in the Red River Valley of the north. My son-in-law's, too, of course.

Winter storm warnings are still up - and I'm duly grateful to be back at home.

I was getting a little tired, after a few hours driving on the Interstate, when I noticed a truck up ahead. We'd already passed a line of something like a dozen utility trucks - cherry pickers and all - which had all stopped on the shoulder where one (1) truck-size vehicle had keeled over on its right side.

No idea why so many utility trucks were apparently responding to an accident.

Anyway, back to that truck: it was one of those that looks like a box on wheels from the back. Nothing unusual. I was going along at about 50 miles an hour, which was close to average for traffic there.

And, as I said, after a few hours of driving, I was getting a bit tired. We'd stopped off in Fergus Falls for supper (Debbie's Home Style Kitchen, first stoplight east of the 210 / Lincoln Avenue Interstate exit - highly recommended), but like I said: I was getting a bit tired.

So there we were, after dark, on the Interstate, about six seconds behind this truck, going about 50, when a semi passes us. Nothing unusual about that: the semi was going maybe 55, and I was thinking about picking up the pace a little.

Then I noticed two things:
  1. Beautiful dancing strands of snowy fog were
    • Writhing away from the back of the semi
    • Hiding
      • The road
      • The back of the semi
      • And just about everything else
  2. The red taillights of that truck (not the now-invisible semi)
    • They were getting bigger
      • FAST
I couldn't jam on the brakes. Well, I could - but I've lived in this are long enough to know that you don't do that in road conditions like this.

As gently as I could, given the speed with which that truck's rear end was rushing toward me and my family, I eased back on the gas and slid (bad choice of words - make that merged) into the passing lane, behind the mass of writhing ephemeral tendrils which presumably still concealed the back of a semi.

I think we were going about 45 miles an hour when we rushed by that truck.

My attention was focused on cutting speed as fast as I could, safely, to keep out of the thickest part of whatever the semi was kicking up: while retaining control of our van, staying on the road, and not hitting the other truck.

As the now-crawling truck's headlights receded in the rear-view mirror, the snow tendrils disappeared. The semi was well ahead of us by then. I eased back into the right lane. My wife remarked, casually, "you'd think a driver for [familiar company name omitted] would drive faster."

I wasn't tired any more.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Of the Super Bowl, Snow, and the Red River Valley of the North

It's been quite a weekend. I went with part of the family to the Red River Valley of the North, to visit #2 daughter and my son-in-law. Also to watch the Super Bowl with them.

Two firsts in football history: The New Orleans Saints won their way to the Super Bowl - and won.

And, while we were here, a winter storm dropped a two-foot layer of snow at the end of the driveway. With more on the way. We'll be staying at least through tomorrow.

Well, the young couple know about this part of the world, so they've got plenty of food in the house. We'll be fine until we get dug out.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Thursday: the Day that Keeps Wednesday from Running into Friday

Another day done, more posts written, and a mascot re-created for my Easy Griller blog and website:

Sizzles, there, came into existence in 2006. I wasn't able to open the original source file for the sausage-loving dragon, but happily I remembered how I created him in the first place.

So, this afternoon, Sizzles reappeared, now on the deck of a vacation home. It's one in the Loonfoot Falls area, by the way: the (fictional) locale of another of my blogs.

But that's another story.

I've also re-started my exercise regime with (new and improved) Wii Fit. According to the software, I burned 116 calories. Doesn't sound like much: but I'm determined to get my weight down and my muscle/fat ratio into a less ridiculous area.

My wife and #3 daughter went to Soo Bahk Do class tonight, as usual.

More important than the work I did today, I suspect, I read Garfield and sang with my son tonight.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Of a Rabbit, a Song, and Proofing

Another day, ending with #1 daughter's rabbit, Giol, getting an apple core for a treat: and my son and I first reading Garfield and then singing that song I've sung with each of the kids as they grew up.

My wife and #3 daughter have finished putting a correction slip in each of over 300 bulletins for a Knights of Columbus mailing. I discovered a glaring error - as soon as the bulletins came back from the printer. For 'upcoming events,' I'd left last year's in place, instead of updating them. Embarrassing, very. Particularly since I'd proofed the bulletin.

Next time, maybe I'll be smart and have my wife proof it. It's an old principle: the person who composes something shouldn't be the one who proofs it. People - myself included, obviously - tend to 'know' what's supposed to be there, and perceive that, instead of what actually comes in through their eyes.

Anyway, I've gotten the day's tasks done - and now it's time to turn in.

Good night, and may God bless.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Burgers, Cartoons, family: Life is Okay

Let's see. I grilled burgers for lunch on Sunday, I've read Garfield with my son every evening, I've gotten some work done on a creative project, and watched a few Danny Phantom cartoons today.

Life gets better than this, but this is pretty good, too.
Unique, innovative candles
Visit us online:
Spiral Light CandleFind a Retailer
Spiral Light Candle online store

On Twitter, I'm Aluwir