This past weekend, we got what I guess could be considered real snow. It covered the ground pretty well, and lasted for a couple of days. The only downside was that it was a drizzly, wet snow that wasn't very pleasant to be in, so we didn't send Owen out to play in it at all.
The reason it lasted so long is that it was very, very cold on Sunday. I think it was down in the low teens at night, and in the mid-twenties during the day. The strange thing is that it was in the 70's just a few days before that. As much as I dog the weather forecasters for their lack of accuracy, if we didn't have them to give us some idea of what's coming, we would probably be caught by surprise a lot.
On Saturday we had a visit from some old friends, Mark and Keri Kornelsen. They used to live in this area, but moved to Indiana a few years ago, and we see them about once every year and a half. They came over to our house for breakfast and we had a great time visiting and letting their daughter play with Owen.
I went out just before they arrived and got some fresh bagels from Panera Bread, which just opened up on our side of town. Let me tell you, that place is good! If you haven't tried it, you need to.
My mom was also here for a visit this weekend. She flew in late Saturday morning, and she left around noon today. We didn't really do anything in particular while she was here - we mostly just relaxed around the house, and that was nice. I had to work some of the time that she was here, and of course we went to church on Sunday, but other than that we just watched some movies and played with the kids.
One place we did go was to Las Americas to introduce mom to pupusas. Mmmm... pupusas... She liked the food, if not the music and atmosphere. I've taken my dad there before, but I don't think the rest of my family has been there. Keith & Kevin - it's about time to plan another trip to Nashville!
Yeah, I know - I'm getting slack on the updates. It seems like all I write here lately is "Sorry I haven't updated - I've been busy". But it's true. I have been busy.
I spent the evening last night upgrading the anti-spam system on my new web / mail server, as well as adding a virus scanner. It's such a shame that we have to spend so much time and money defending ourselves from things like that. On the other hand, if I had no morals, I would definitely be in the on-line scaming business. There's a lot of money floating around in cyberspace these days...
I still have to get a good automated backup system going, and we've got a couple of website projects in the hopper. The fun just never ends.
I also got our taxes done this week. I usually try to get them in by the end of January, but we were waiting on some paperwork this time. We're getting a decent refund this year, which will more than pay for the camera I bought in December. The rest will go towards paying down the debt on our house.
Wednesday night, church was canceled due to snow. It wasn't a heavy snow (at least not in our area), but it was bad enough to keep most people at home, I guess. Tonight, we're supposed to get even more snow. They are saying we'll get 2 to 4 inches of accumulation, but a friend of mine who works for The Weather Channel said there is a 10% chance that we could get 8 inches. Now that would be something! If that happens, we're going to have to find some way to go sledding somewhere. I'll try to get some pictures and post them later.
Speaking of pictures, I haven't been using my new camera nearly enough lately. Mostly because it's been too cold to spend a lot of time outside, and I'm not very inspired to take a bunch of pictures in the house.
There's a lot more that I could write, but as I said before - I'm busy. Maybe later.
I'm now a card-carying member of the Experimental Aircraft Association!
I can't believe I let two weeks go by without posting anything here. It's been a busy two weeks, though, so I'll try to summarize.
After returning from my trip to D.C., I had to move all my stuff from one office to another and get up-to-speed on what the development team is doing. It was nice to get back with the old group and I was able to contribute some ideas almost immediately, which made me feel good about the change.
Outside of work, I've been busy moving this website and several others to a new server. It took nearly a week to get it done, but the transition was pretty smooth. I had one problem with moving someone's e-mail box and actually lost some of their e-mail but they were very understanding and it didn't seem to be a major crisis or anything.
I also did some wiring in my house this week, adding some phone, ethernet, and cable lines to a couple of rooms that didn't have them. I had to belly-crawl under the house a few times, which wasn't exactly fun, but the whole job only took a few hours so it wasn't too bad. At least it's winter and it's not really hot down there.
Speaking of the weather, what's up with this unusually warm January? It's been in the 60's several times, including today. We went to a park and I took a few pictures of Owen but they didn't turn out all that great because the sun was out and there were so many harsh shadows. Most people think that bright sunny days are good for photography, but you actually get much better results when it's overcast, because the light is much more evenly distributed.
This one made me laugh, though, because I immediately thought that if Owen were a second-rate country singer, this would be his album cover photo...
As if I don't have enough to do, I'm also working on setting up individual blogs for Owen and Ivan. Not for them to post, but for us to post things about them. Instead of creating a traditional website for each of them like we have done for Owen in the past, I thought I'd just use the blog format and that way we can post photos and information that way, and hopefully it will stay more up-to-date then Owen's old site did. So, you may see fewer posts about the boys in my blog at some point, but that'll be because I post that kind of stuff on their own pages. Make sense?
I can't believe it's already the end of January. This year is 1/12th over!
I had a pretty good trip to DC this week. The training was very good, the hotel was nice, we had some pretty good food, and of course you saw the pictures of the monuments at night - very cool.
The photos were actually somewhat difficult to get. Since it was so dark, the exposure times were long (3 to 6 seconds), so I couldn't hold the camera for most of the shots. I didn't have a tripod (didn't want to drag one around), so I mostly set the camera down on a ledge or on the ground and set the timer so that I wouldn't vibrate the camera even by pushing the button. A co-woker who was with me was very patient as I laid on the ground adjusting the camera and proping it with the lens cap, etc., trying to get each shot just right.
We saw a large convoy of vehicles leave the White House, but there's no way to know who was in it. Just witnessing all the security and infrastructure of that place is pretty awesome, though. We walked about 5 miles or so around the National Mall area before getting a taxi driver to take us somewhere good to eat. By the time we got back to our hotels, we were pretty tired.
And yes, Friday was my 30th birthday. We got out of class early, so my co-worker and I went to the National Air & Space Museum Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center. It's basically a gigantic hangar with hundreds of airplanes, rockets, and spacecraft, including the Concord, the SR-71 Blackbird (the fastest jet in the world), the Space Shuttle Enterprise, and a number of experimental planes.
After that, though, it got pretty dull. As previously mentioned, the only flight to Nashville was at 10:00 PM, so we ended up sitting at the airport for several hours, and I watched a movie on my laptop. Our flight was actually a little late, so I didn't get home until close to midnight. The flight was pretty bumpy, too, because we flew over/through a cold front, and it was much colder when we landed than it was when we left.
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