Sunday, October 31, 2010

Sunday Night Blues

I've never cared for Sunday nights. I can remember as a child Sunday nights in the fall and winter  more than any other day or night. When I say I can remember it I mean I can remember the usual routine on Sunday nights. My dad would sit in his chair and watch football most of the time (now you know where I get it from). And for a long time as a child my parents didn't have cable or anything so we had to watch whatever game was on that week. Which didn't seem to bother him to much. My mother usually would cook a nice big Sunday dinner. Something fried no doubt. My mom's family is from Kentucky so while my mom is a good cook, it wasn't always the healthiest for us. We ate things like fried chicken with mashed potatoes and gravy, fried pork chops with fried taters, ham hocks and beans. You know all the things that could stop a heart from beating at any minute. Don't get me wrong, they were great. Like I said mom's a good cook.  

So Sunday's themselves weren't to bad. My siblings and I would play outside or stay busy in our rooms until dinner, but that night was the worst. After dinner mom would usually clean up the dishes, and dad would go to the living room to finish watching football. Soon after the game I would hear the sound that haunts me still to this day like an Edgar Allen Poe poem Tick.Tick.Tick.Tick.Tick.Tick.Tick...That's right, 60 Minutes was on. My dad loved that show. Not sure but I bet he still watches it. Anyway, naturally I hated that show, and I hated hearing that intro. Tick.Tick.Tick.Tick.Tick.Tick. Maybe because that signified that I had to get a bath, finish homework, or basically do nothing for the rest of my weekend because dad was watching this show no matter what.  And you see when dad wanted to watch a show, that's what you watched or you found something to keep yourself occupied and quite. And while I'm sure it wasn't much longer before bed time, it always seemed like a crappy way to end the weekend. I was never a big fan of school so knowing that I had to get up early the next morning didn't help either I'm sure.  As I got older I was lucky enough to have a t.v in my room so I had a few more choices to finish off my weekend but for the most part I always dreaded Sunday night.

You know to this day I do not watch 60 Minutes. In fact, if I even hear the first tick of that show it gets turned over or off. And you know Sunday nights now are not much different. Most of the time my DW makes a great dinner. I watch football while the clowns keep busy (although they have a lot more things to keep them busy than I did) and just like back then, there are a few tasks that need completed before the start of the new week. We get baths, check the school calendar for the upcoming week and make sure there are clean clothes set out for our early Monday morning. The only real difference now is that it's a lot quieter here. No tick. tick. tick. tick. tick. tick. tick. tick.


Saturday, October 30, 2010

Trick Or Treat

So the DW and I took the clowns trick-or-treating tonight. It was a good time, except the middle one fell and hurt herself, that was a little bit of a buzz kill. But she got cleaned up and right back out we went. We have the luxury or being able to go to my father-in-law's neighborhood for Halloween. See we live out in the sticks and don't have a neighborhood of our own so every year we go to the DW's father's house. It's sort of become his "holiday".  The DW took some candy with us though because she said she felt guilty with the fact that we trick or treat but don't actually pass any out. So this way her Dad could pass out a little more. 

So speaking of the whole trick-or-treat. Tonight I noticed that there were actually parents driving their kids around from house to house to trick-or-treat. Seriously? What is this crap? It wasn't raining and it actually was a decent night. I think if these kids want to go from house to house "begging" for candy then they should have to put the effort in to it. I mean how lazy is it for your parents to drive you around. You stop in front of a house, get out and demand candy. No way dude. Besides doesn't it make it worth it when you've walked all night in the cold going from house to house to see all that loot at the end of the night, knowing that you've successfully collected enough candy to last you at least four months?

Well so anyway, it was a good time, and I know that they will remember going trick-or-treating on Halloween ( I know I always enjoyed it when I was a kid) and now my clowns have enough candy to last them right up until the stockings are filled for Christmas....No wonder they're always so jacked up.


Friday, October 29, 2010

Monkey love and Friday

Oh Friday how I love thee...Why is it that Friday is such an awesome day. Why do we look so forward to Friday and the weekend. Some of us even consider Friday the weekend. I was somewhat reflecting back on this week. You see now that I have a blog I "reflect" on my weeks past (what a nerd). So anyway, I was thinking back about my week and I realized that Tuesday and sort of Wednesday are my best days. Now some of that depends on the events of the day or if the Monday Night Football game is worth me staying up late to watch, but for the most part those are my two best days. I feel the best on those days both mentally and most of the time physically. And I think I generally do my best work on those days. You know I've always heard that when you buy a new car you should buy one that was built on a Tuesday or Wednesday, and I think I believe that. Nobody likes Mondays, everybody is tired and generally doesn't  want to be at work. By Thursday people are already thinking about the weekend. On Friday nobody's doing squat but waiting for that whistle to blow so they can get out of there like Fred Flinstone sliding down that dinosaur. I mean I get the whole weekend, no work deal, but does Friday mean more to me then to say somebody who actually enjoys what they do? I've been doing my same job for a lot of years. Sure there is some variation and different companies, but for the most part the same "type" of work. I've come to realize that I, like a lot of other people, really do not like my job. Maybe that's not the right way to put it. I don't like my career. You see like I said, I've been doing the same "job" for a lot of years, and it is what it is. I know what it is. So it really doesn't matter if I do this job where I currently am, or down the road, or in a different state. It's the same thing. Now don't get me wrong this is not a talk me down off the ledge type of post. I just wish that I was lucky or smart enough to do what I loved to do. But I'm not sure they pay middle aged men to sit around watch sports, play the guitar (poorly) and play video games enough that would support my family. So I guess I'll have to just relish in the fact that it's Friday, and this day was made for guys like me.

So life can be pretty humbling when your DW is an awesome photographer. You see she's always right there with a camera or "needing" a shot of someone or something, just ask the clowns. They actually get the worst of it, but I've been the victim a time or two. You see the camera doesn't lie. It shows all your imperfections. Your facial blemishes, scars, double chins, lazy eyes, and in my case the bald spot in the back of my head, or in other words...the monkey butt. Now I'm not that bad, yet, but my DW has had to do a little touch up back there once or twice after an impromptu shoot. So I guess the question is when do you just shave it all off? You know the thing about me is I've always had nice hair, and even now still do. I just have this balding spot on top. And I'm a little scared that if I was to shave it all off the shape of my head wouldn't look right. So maybe for now I'll keep it the way it is. I mean what do I have to worry about as long as my DW can continue to cover my butt right?


Thursday, October 28, 2010

Ramblin' Man

Yeah I really have nothing to write about tonight. Just rambling I guess. I guess that's not a bad thing. Means that all of us had a pretty good day. No drama, no issues, no major problems. Just your average everyday life. Work, chores, dinner, kids. I did work out and run today. I felt like I had to. If for nothing else I did it for the fat guy at work. After all I don't want him to pass my up.

So my oldest clown saw me on here tonight and wanted to know what I was doing. So I explained to her what a blog was all about and let her read a few of my post. I watched her as she read and a sense of pride came over me. She was reading my stuff and she was laughing, she was hanging on every word....Then reality hit ...she's 8. When she finished she looked at me and said as only she can...weird. 

So the clowns are watching the same Charlie Brown Halloween special that I watched as a kid. It's a part of my childhood that I will always remember. I remember when I was young maybe 2nd or 3rd grade and was too sick to go trick-or-treat. My older brother and sister went out for me. It was awesome. Not that they drudged through the cold October night to get their little brother some candy, but rather that I got all that free loot and never had to walk an inch. Now that's.. pimpin' the system.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010


You know they say that imitation is the highest form of flattery. A few days ago I mentioned that I caught up with an old friend and she inspired me to blog. Funny how life moves in cycles.

So I guess I should start by saying that I work out a little bit at a gym. Although I'm not sure why, and I'm not sure you would know just from looking at me. But I do. The company I work for has a small gym in the building so it makes it convenient. I don't have to pay for anything and can go right after work. I've been working out for some time a couple of days a week, again not that you could tell. Maybe that's because I'm not 100% committed? I don't do it day in and day out like maybe I should. Part of that is because things come up at the house and I don't make time, or because I don't feel well, or maybe I'm just lazy, but whatever. But like I said I don't pay for it, so there really isn't much guilt (especially if I don't look in the mirror). So along with this working out, I started running. Again, not very consistent. My goal is to someday run a mini-marathon, and then who knows? Maybe an actual marathon. So I was up to about 8 miles, but lately have done much more than 3 miles. It's harder to do these things as you get older because your body needs more time to recover. Or at least that's what I tell myself. But for the most part I do stay pretty active. And the people I work with know that I work-out run, and I've had different conversations with people about my running a mini.

So today while breaking rocks, at about 10 o'clock, a gentlemen stops me and says the I've inspired him. He said that because I work out and run he was inspired to start exercising and loose weight. Said he'd lost 13 lbs in a couple of weeks. Let me tell you I felt awesome. I really felt great that I had inspired someone just by being me and by doing what I do. Ok so it was good that the fat guy lost some weight too, but I was so happy. It made me evaluate myself a little bit. I started thinking about how "every man's life touches so many other lives" (it's a wonderful life...George Baily). I started thinking about how my words and actions touch other people. I started thinking about how great I felt knowing that I made a difference, even if just a slight difference in somebody's life. I started thinking about God and maybe this is what "it's" all about, inspiring other people. I was on top of the world.

 I went back to my desk feeling pretty good and couldn't wait to blog the events of this day. Then about five minutes later someone crapped on my day. I won't go into details because I really don't want to, but it felt like I got punched in the gut and all my happiness vanished just like that. So the rest of my day was now shot. I felt like crap and just wanted the day to be over. 

So today after work I did not run and I did not work out. Instead I came home and took a little nap. Tonight I'll plop in front of the T.V and watch the World Series and eat some cereal. 
Tomorrow's another day.


Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Today's Dork

Ok so I know that I'm a dork. At this point in my life I'm OK with that. You know when you are younger you have so many pressures to be cool or fit in. But when you get older you realize that the "things" you thought you had to have when you were young to be cool just aren't worth it anymore. Either that or now you're the one paying for those "things" and you just can't afford 'em? Either way, I'm OK with being a dork.

So since I started this blog a few days ago, I have become what you might call "blog obsessed". I just can't believe how many blogs there are out there? I mean there are so many great writers, some hacks, and a bunch of folks in-between. The only thing about this blog is that I know I'm not in the first group. I just find it incredible that there are so many people out there that blog. So when I mentioned this to the DW of course she thought... I was a dork. Like where have I been for the last decade? But truth be told, I'm a simpleton. I don't get out much these days, read the paper or "surf the net" (other than for fantasy football info.which I'm leading my league...thank you very much). So I find this "blog world" pretty interesting. It gives us an opportunity to express our thoughts and feelings TO THE WORLD WORLD WORLD. (Did you catch the repeating/fade echo). Anyway, I've been reading other peoples blogs like I was watching a reality show or something. It's a way into a person's life and their world that intrigues me. I read about a guy who is training for the Boston Marathon, and a pregnant lady. I've read about a lady in the UK who collects things, and found out that there is a club for 20 something bloggers. I've seen photo blogs, cooking blogs, story blogs, and blogs about books, you name it it's out there, and I can't seem to get enough of it. Like I said at the beginning...I'm a dork. 

So today is Tuesday. And in my house that means no T.V. Tuesday. Obviously this means that nobody watches t.v on this day. I started this little "rule" almost a year ago. At first it seemed to be a big deal with "the clowns", but now they have to remind me what day it is. You see we get so caught up in going to school or work, coming home and plopping down in front of the t.v that we forget that there is so much more out there. OK OK so we're not changing the world over here or finding a cure for cancer during our one day without t.v, but it does make the kids do something else besides watch Hanna Montana and Suite Life on Deck. However for every action there is an opposite and equal reaction right? You see if the kids are not with the babysitter..urr..I mean t.v that means they are playing together, which anyone who has kids knows this leads to fighting. Now don't get me wrong, there are sooo many times when I have wanted to scream at the top of my lungs "FOR THE LOVE OF PETE WILL YOU GUYS JUST TURN THE T.V ON AND ZIP IT"? But haven't, and to her credit the DW hasn't either.I guess I hope that with no t.v Tuesdays it brings us all a little closer together. I realize that with time the clowns will grow somewhat distant with the DW and I. And there will be weeks, months, heck even years when we won't have everybody even in the same room. And eventually they ALL will think I'm a dork....eventually.


Monday, October 25, 2010

Computers and the Chinese

Ok so today has been a very frustrating day. First it's Monday. I could probably stop there because you know how Monday's are. So after I got up this morning at 5 am, nearly tripped over the cat (see earlier post), and had my breakfast I headed out the door to make some licenses plates.

Ok so that's not exactly the frustrating part. Although work has it's moments. But today was relatively quite. So the frustrating part is that for the last two days my laptop has not been able to connect to the Internet, and because I'm not very computer savvy I can not figure out what's wrong. Which leads to frustration. I got on the DW's laptop to research yesterday. Thought I had the answer.
So I grabbed my BB and scanned the web in between football and chores. 
Then today after work got on the desktop to see what I've missed. Ok at this point I know what your thinking. You have TWO laptops a BB and a desktop all with Internet????? (Oh did I mention the DW has a BB also). Long story, but not the point, back to my frustration. Let's see yesterday four plus hours trying to get it fixed. Fail. Tonight 3 plus hours of trying to get it to work. Again fail. So I've decided that I'm done for today. I'll try again tomorrow.

Oh and the icing on the let me just say before I go any further that my DW is a wonderful cook, and I always do appreciate it when she takes the time to make us all something. The very first time I ever went to her house when we were dating she cooked for me and I was hooked. She really is a great cook. So anyway, tonight we had Chinese food...home made Chinese food. Now anybody who knows me knows that I can not stand rice... So tonight we had... Chinese food.....Been a looonnng day.


Sunday, October 24, 2010

Carving Pumpkins and Being a Dad

So it's almost Halloween. Fall is here. Hayrides, apple orchards and pumpkin patches. Last night the DW and I took the monsters to the "pumpkin patch" (the local grocery store) and let them pick out a pumpkin. We had been talking about taking them to a real pumpkin patch for the last week or so, but things just got busy with "life" and this really was the only "free time" we had on the horizon. They didn't seem to mind. They each picked out a pumpkin that weighed about as much as they did and we brought 'em home. It was getting late so we promised we would carve them tomorrow (today).

This morning my middle monster creeps into our room at 8 o'clock and whispers "mommy is it time to carve our pumpkins"? See the thing about my monsters is that they don't just ease into the morning, nooooo, they have to hit the ground running. And it only made sense to her that she was up so everybody should be, and it was time to get on with the day. So let's carve them baby's up. 

So carve we did....but later. 

Yesterday I received word that a guy I work with tragically lost his father. So while we were carving our pumpkins I was reminded of my dad. You see I have been extremely blessed with an awesome father. My dad, although rough around the edges most of my childhood, was and is a great dad. Of course I didn't realize when I was growing up how much he (and my mother) sacrificed for us. To be honest while I was growing up I didn't really care (not something I'm proud of). I have wonderful memories of my father and of my childhood and the things we used to do as a family. Now don't get me wrong, I wasn't the easiest child to raise and there were some pretty tough moments as well. But my dad never stopped being my dad. 

So as the days turn into weeks and months and years, I too will continue to be a dad to my monsters. I will go behind them and turn off every light in the house because they don't know how. I will fix the things they break (and yell and complain just like my dad). I will explain why the sky is blue (or at least make something up that sounds believable), and I will "carve the pumpkins". No matter what... because we never know in this life when our time is up....and because my dad has taught me well. 


Saturday, October 23, 2010

Football, Cleaning and Crying

So today is Saturday which means that in my house it's "Football Saturday". I have programed my monsters to know that Saturdays are dedicated to Notre Dame Football. Now I suppose I should start from the beginning of where and how my obsession of Notre Dame Football all started.

 My earliest recollection of Notre Dame came when I was about 7 years old. I was at my cousins house one Saturday afternoon and my uncle happened to be watching the game. My cousin and I were doing whatever we used to do back when we were kids, playing Lego's or picking on his little brother, whatever. With just a few seconds left in the game, Notre Dame had an opportunity to win. My uncle excitedly called my cousin and I into the living room to watch the final seconds. So as time ticked down in the game Notre Dame lined up and kicked the game winning field goal. Now I'm not sure if my uncle maybe was just a big fan,  or if he had money on the game, or if he was just a big fan at that very moment because he had money on the game, but I didn't care. They won. My uncle was excited, my cousin was excited, and I was excited. Now at that time and age, I wasn't really sure why I was excited, or why it mattered, but it was cool. And it was a cool moment with my cousin and my uncle that I will never forget.

Ok so from that point on I have been a Notre Dame fan. I have watched year after year. Game after game. I have seen and heard it all being a Fighting Irish fan. I have lost my entire paycheck on a "sure thing" bet as a young adult. I have visited the house that Rockne built and have seen the Golden Dome shine in person. I am one of those who bleed blue and gold, or is it green and blue? Or maybe green and yellow? Anyway, I have had everything from Notre Dame key chains, blankets, shirts, basketballs, books, mouse pads and flags. You name it I own it, or have owned it Notre Dame, all to show my support because after all "You Gotta Support the Team"(Seinfeld).

Which brings me to present day. Every Saturday that the Irish are playing there are certain "rituals" that I feel must happen at my house. First and most importantly, I have to have a clean house and again the monsters know this. So we get up, have our breakfast and go about our day until it's time to clean. And every Saturday I have at least one monster, usually two.. in tears. "It's not fair" and "this will take for ever" I'm told repeatedly. "Why do we have to clean, and I didn't get that out or that's not mine" echo through the house. Now don't get me wrong. I'm not a clean freak. I don't have a spotless house. I do however think that everything has a place and before Notre Dame plays I want everything put in that place. After a few hours of telling them no your room is NOT clean, and just making "a path" is not good enough, followed by more whining and crying, it's game time.

My other game time rituals involve my putting on some sort of game day shirt, having something handy to eat and drink and settling into my chair to watch my team. Now remember that I've seen the highs and now the lows of Notre Dame football. I was about 14 when they won their last national championship. Since then they have, (it pains me to say it) sucked. Oh sure they've had their ups and downs. Been ranked in the polls and been beaten by schools they should have crushed, but all in all they have been disappointing.

Today has been no different. We got up and had breakfast. We cleaned, I yelled, they cried. I got my sandwich and iced tea and sat down to watch what I thought would be a walk in the park game. Because after all Notre Dame was turning the corner.... (again). After a quarter of football much like so many Saturdays before it, there was more crying. Yes Notre Dame was getting beat by a team they should have beaten easily. And just like my monsters hours before, I was mad. I whined and cried and I thought about what's it gonna take for Notre Dame to be good again, and I thought..."this isn't fair" and "this will take forever".

Next Saturday is another game for my beloved Irish. Next Saturday just like the Saturday's before it, we will get up, have breakfast and go through our Football Saturday rituals. We will clean, we will get out snacks and put on our attire and root root for 'ol Notre Dame, but hopefully, just maybe, there will be a little less crying. 


Friday, October 22, 2010

Panning for Gold and what will surely be the death of me

Ok so if you have a cat then you can relate, if you don't then I'm sorry if I sound like that crazy guy that talks about his cat. We have a cat. We have a pain the you know what cat. Now don't get me wrong I like the cat, but why do cats have to be....well cats?

First of all, I do not in the least, let me repeat, I do not in the least like cleaning the litter box, or as I call it "Panning for Gold". But I guess who really does. Ok so maybe the reason I don't like it so much is because I'm the only one in my house who Pan's for Gold. In all fairness I don't want "The Monsters" to do it because that would just make matters worse and I'm sure my stress level would increase and the yelling would be heard blocks away. I can just imagine L, aka "mini-me" rolling his trucks through the sand trap, or miss O analyzing every "nugget" she found. Not to mention getting it all over the floor, which I would have to clean up in the end anyway. And I know I'd never get miss E to even get near it.

Our cat loves to add insult to injury by watching me clean his poo box. So not only is it bad enough that I have to clean it, but I have to go through the humiliation of him watching me with that smirk on his face like he's royalty and I am soooo lucky to be able to clean up his crap. So tonight as I'm cleaning it, he decides to swat at the scoop and knock the scoopful of treasure I have just collected, all over the floor...Awesome. So now I have to clean that mess. Sooo not loving the cat right now.

So I asked the question, why do cats have to be cats. Again, if you have a cat you know what I mean. They run across the room at warp speed for no apparent reason. They bring you dead prizes, they lay around the house just waiting on you to pamper them. And...they walk under your feet.

And that's how he will surely be the death of me. Apparently our cat thinks that when somebody walks into the bedroom which is connected to the bathroom (where his food dish is) that means hurry up and get to the food because the human is surely after it. Again this means cutting you off and crossing your path every step of the way. Sometimes not a big deal, but every morning at 5 am when we get up and I've got like one eye half way open...yeah big deal.

Again, don't get me wrong, I like the cat, just why does he have to be such a cat.


Thursday, October 21, 2010

The Start

So as it turns out I have several things to talk about today. I recently reconnected with an old colleague the other day via facebook. The other day my friend posted a link to her blog. Once I saw her blog I was so inspired that I too had to start one. So here we go. Welcome to my blog "A day in the life".

So I realize that I'm old. And  I don't mean like walking with a cane old, I just mean I'm a middle aged man with 3 kids. That's old. Tonight the wife and I were lucky enough to have my mother in-law watch are kids for the evening. We live close enough that they spend the night from time to time with the in-laws. The kids love it, and quite frankly so do we. I mean we love our kids just as much as any parent, but it's nice to have some time away from them from time to time. My in-laws spoil them pretty good and they love being out there.

So anyway, I realized tonight that I'm old. Not that I don't think about it or haven't ever thought about it before tonight, but it hit me tonight. The wife and I the lovely M, had the evening to ourselves. She met me at work and we headed into town. She had some errands to run so I "tagged" along. Actually she, as she often does, decided that this is what we were doing. After work I had no interest in running errands with her, but you do what you gotta do. So anyway we go into town run to Target, the Hobby Lobby, and TJ Max before heading home for leftovers. Nice night out. The fact of the matter is I really was tired and didn't really feel much like doing anything.

But that's not really what made me think that I'm old. I realized I was old while walking through TJ Max. The wife and I bought a couple of over priced coffee's at Starbucks as we were walking out of Target. Seriously 5 bucks for a freaking cup of coffee? Why? Because I have sucker written on my forehead. But anyway. So she's doing her shopping in TJ Max (looking for something for the kids none the less) and I mention how I've never been in this store before. M says well why don't you take a look around, so I did. As I'm looking around I think back about the old JCPenney's stores that I remember as a kid. I look around TJMax and think this store has a little bit of everything. Which it does. So I'm strolling around TJMax with my work clothes still on (she picked me up right after remember), and my cup of coffee looking at things like dishware and clocks. I'm impressed with the stores large selection of items. Electric razors, toys, glasses, shirts, hats. I mean this place had it all. It's all pretty cheap stuff mind you, but still.

It was at this moment I'm browsing the isles in TJ Max with one hand in my pocket and the other griping my coffee like Sinatra two stepping to a smooth bluesy/jazz beat that I actually saw myself, and realized that I'm old.

Typically I don't think we think we're old. I mean I don't think we ever really feel like we're old people, until maybe when were really old, but in our late thirties we still feel like we are young people and "cool" right?

So now we're home each one of us on a laptop not saying much just killing time before our favorite t.v programs come on. Both of us in our "P.J's" and "in for the night" (my mom's saying, I'm sure I'll get into that at another time). But you know if I'm going to "grow old" I'm glad I have the love of my life with me to do it. And you know, even though it wasn't the most exciting "date" we've ever had, we were together, and I wouldn't trade that for anything.