Sunday, September 30, 2007

Google WINS!

Randy had to choose a state and then list the state tree, flower, bird, and describe the state flag.

I told Cari this would be no problem, just go Google it and he'll be done in five minutes. She started talking about taking him to the library to look it up. I almost fell down. "For what?" I asked.

She said that he needs to learn to use the library. I am sure that I had a puzzled look, because that's how I felt. Why go to the library when you can type in _____ state flag and get your answer in about five seconds? But I didn't say that. What I said was, "You mean like using the card catalog?"

Now Cari started laughing. "There is no card catalog anymore," she told me.

She said it is all electronic. Just type in what you are searching for and it will give you a list of books.

I interrupted Cari's library lesson, "Then you have to wander the halls of the library looking for your book!"

"NO!" she shouted. "If you know how to use the library you can go straight to the book. That's why I want to teach him how to use it!"

After quizzing both children, I realized that their library time at school is not used to learn about using the library.

When I turned to walk out of the room, Cari was standing there with her "I told you so" look.

She and Randy got dressed and went to the library. About ten minutes later they came home. I met them at the door to find out how they did that so quickly.

"The library was closed," she said.

"Why don't you just type it into Google?" I asked.

Friday, September 28, 2007

Student Council

Randy tried for student council this morning. He decided to try for vice president. Here is the speech he gave his classmates this morning, complete with subtitles!

Fun with Photos

I was off yesterday, so I dusted off my camera. Here's the result:
In other news:

Dunkin Donuts opened in town on Thursday. Good luck trying to find a neighbor that wasn't there the day they opened. I've never seen so many people buying donuts at noon before.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

The new poll

Yes, there is a story behind the new poll. I hope to have it to you by Saturday night.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007


Recently, I have had several people ask me Cari's due date.

The due date is officially November 19, but Cari says there is no way she will make it that long. She is hoping for an October baby (LATE October).

By the way, don't EVER argue with a pregnant woman. You can't win. Pregnant women simply don't lose arguments.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Downtown Go Round

Friday night Cari and I went down to Seneca for the opening of the Juried Photography exhibit. We parked downtown and walked three blocks to the Blue Ridge Arts Council where the show was. It was really cool to have three of my photos hanging among some really amazing pieces. There were a lot of people in the gallery.
We hung out at the gallery for almost an hour looking over the works and waiting to see the award ceremony. While we were there, I recognized a woman in the room. Her name is Dede, and I only knew her through her photos on flickr. I walked up to her and said hello. She turned to look at me and immediately said, "Duck Hunter!" It was kinda funny to me.

Dede, Cari, and I talked for a bit and took some pictures. Dede is really cool and full of energy. She introduced me to her mom and another woman who help run the gallery. They told me how picky the judge was in choosing the photos for the show. I am really proud that all three of mine made it in. I had never tried anything like this before and I was hopeful that at least one would get accepted. Although I didn't receive an award, I was not disappointed.

Cari and I left the Arts Council and headed back downtown. All the shops were open for this special event called "Downtown Go 'Round".

The crowd in Seneca is different than the people at home. Seneca is full of upscale art stores and antique stores. Every store we went into had trays of fruit and cheese. One store had the strongest smell of wine. A bunch of uppity-ups filled these shops.
There was one art gallery displaying the photos that were not accepted into the Juried Show. A lot of these were equally as good as the ones in the show.

Being a part of this show taught me a lot about how these things work, and I was able to see some great photos. It was interesting being downtown and being witness to a different culture than we have thirty minutes down the road. Mingling with the uppity ups is not suited for me.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Maternity Photo shoot...test one

I was wanting to take some maternity shots of Cari. This was to test some ideas on poses and things like that. I hope to get some with the kids soon.

Here's a few of the shots we took this past weekend.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Seneca Photo Show

I submitted The mask, the waterfall, and the house. Thank you all for your opinions. It was hard to decide between those photos.

All three of my photos were accepted into the show. We are going Friday evening to the opening of the show and to walk around town. The judge will choose a winner, 2nd, and 3rd that evening.

You can be sure I'll be bragging on here if I win anything.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

I just want to go home

A few years ago, we went to open house at the school. We got to see the classroom and talk to the teacher. It wasn't bad. In and out. Painless.

Last week we went to open house at the school. We saw the classroom and met the teacher. Standard stuff. What is different is that Cari and I now know people.
As we walked down the hall we were constantly greeted by other parents. It's not that we are so popular. It is in part, the nature of a small town. THE reason we moved here. The halls were filled with adults and children greeting each other. It was really pretty cool at first. I didn't realize I knew so many people. Most of the people I saw I shook hands with or waved and kept walking. Cari seemed to stop more often for a longer conversation. It was ok for the first thirty minutes, but then I was ready to go.

I wasn't trying to be rude. I was tired. I whispered to Cari that it was time to leave. She nodded but chose to pretty much ignore my request. She didn't ignore me to be rude toward me, she was trying not to be rude to her friends.

I kept walking down the hall slowly. Trying not to stop. I was thinking what a social event this had become for me. I wasn't prepared for that. I had it in my mind that open house would only take fifteen minutes. Now it had been forty.

I think if I had planned in my mind that it would take forty minutes, I would not have become as irritated. I had some weird schedule in my mind and it irritated me that we went over the schedule.

Monday, September 17, 2007


I don't have enough time to write what I want to say about school open house. So, consider this a pre-post. Kinda like that commercial advertising a show that is coming on in five minutes.

Right now I have to go kick Cari's butt in a game of Settlers of Catan. I have a four game winning streak she is trying to beat. Looks like it'll be 5 wins in about an hour.

I also have some new maternity photos coming up this week.

Saturday, September 15, 2007


Europeans know all about board games. I'm not talking about Monopoly and Parcheesi. I'm talking about games like Ticket to Ride and even more specifically, Settlers of Catan. It seems like all the real good board games are coming from Europe. The good news is they aren't too hard to get.

I only have two problems with these games. Number one, time. Lack of it. Number two. Players, lack of them. The Settlers of Catan interested me the most, so I kept on reading and obsessing about it the way I do most new things. Then I found out about the Catan card game. A game designed for two players. I purchased it at a local game store in the mall. I don't think Cari was too thrilled about it at first. Maybe I wasn't able to describe it well enough for her. We played a few times and now we both love playing it. Most evenings, instead of turning the TV on, we'll sit at the table with our new game. The card game is so well balanced, it makes you really think about your next move. It makes me even more interested in the board game. The board game requires at least three players. So I'm going to keep waiting on that until a more opportune time.

Anyway. If you don't know much about modern board games, you really should check out Board Game Geek. There are so many great games you can't find at Walmart. Here's a link to the Settlers of Catan website.

This morning we did a lot of driving. Well, I did a lot driving. Had to take Cari back to Anderson where we left her car during the monsoon last night. Then I drove West toward Seneca where I dropped off my photos for the show. I used the house, the waterfall, and the mask. I re-framed the mask before taking it this morning. I was entry #34. The judge will evaluate all the photos on Sunday. Then they will mail me a card telling me the status of my three photos. I should have that by Wednesday. I decided to use the dandelion next time.

It was another thirty minute drive from there to get back home. After cutting the grass, I'm sitting here yawning. Procrastinating taking a shower. I stink.
Ok. Off to the shower. Enjoy your weekend.

To the city of Anderson

City of Anderson,

I hate you. I really do. I just had the most horrible experience in your city tonight and I want to let you know it's because of the people that live there.

Hobby Lobby. Had to wait twenty minutes for the frame girls attention because she was busy talking to a co-worker about the previous customer. Ugh. When I catch her glance, she asks if I need help. She said it in a rude way also.

While my photo was being framed we went to dinner. We chose Chilies. A place I never intend to visit again. We arrived at 6 pm and were immediately seated. At 7pm we received our meals and the first refill of our drink. Keep in mind that Cari and I both had salads. I guess it took so long because they had to grow the lettuce. Maybe because it had started raining and the cook thought it would be more fun to dance in the rain.

Back to Hobby Lobby with only ten minutes to spare to pick up my photo. Grabbed it and headed up to the front where I spent another ten minutes waiting.

When we left, it was storming. REAL SERIOUS STORMS. We were in different cars tonight, but Cari's car had a malfunction of windshield wipers. We all pile into my car and head home in the blinding mix of rain and wind.

My wife's mad.
My daughters crying.
My son is soaking wet from rain.
I am not happy.

I could not wait to get out of the city of Anderson. Good riddance!

Thursday, September 13, 2007

So it has come to this. . .

I went downstairs for one of my favorite breakfast foods, a toasted bagel. I opened the breadbox and couldn't find the bag of bagels that was there last night. I hollered to Cari, "where's the bagels?"

She told me that Randy ate the last one.

"I want a bagel.", I grumbled. The boy also likes bagels, and we often compete to get the last one. Today, he ate the last one before school, while I slept. I told Cari that I was going to start my own stash of bagels. To protect them from the kids. She suggested that she would just buy more at the store. I wasn't convinced that would solve the problem.

Then she laughed a bit. When I asked her to explain her laughter, she said that Meredith was hiding some candy from me the other day after school. "Hide it so dad doesn't eat my candy.", Meredith told her. I don't even eat Meredith's candy (all the time), so I don't know why she would say something like that.

"Oh. So it has come to this.", I said, still looking into the breadbox, "This family is all about hording and hiding food from each other. How far we have come since the cavemen."

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

The doctor is : in

I didn't go to the doctor for being sick the past few days. I actually went a few weeks ago. It just took me this long to get over the mental trauma of the experience. I can finally write about it. I don't like going to the doctor, and I won't go unless I start to feel it is a life or death situation. That means it has probably been about ten years since I've been to a family doctor. Before that, you can subtract another eight years.

About once or twice a year I use an asthma inhaler. Recently, I went to use it and realized that the inhaler had expired about 18 months ago. I used it anyway. It was not effective. Time to go get a new prescription.

Cari takes good care of me. After searching, she found a doctor that was willing to see me with no medical history. I only need a prescription for a medicine I've used most of my life.

I was feeling a bit anxious when I went into his office. I was thinking he would talk to me a bit about asthma and then write a prescription. He was thinking I should lay on the table. ??????

Ok. He lifted my shirt as he talked with me and started pressing on my kidneys, and feeling my ankles. I'm thinking, "Dude, my ankles don't hurt. I just need an inhaler."

He listened to my heart and took my blood pressure. He said my heart rate seemed just a tad high and asked if I was nervous. I told him I was. Then he listened to me breathe, looked down my throat, looked in my ears.

I looked around the poorly lit office examination room and wondered when he would write my prescription. I was now standing and he was sitting on his stool checking me for every ailment known to man. Then he unbuttoned my pants and did the "turn your head and cough" routine. Oh no! I DID NOT SIGN UP FOR THIS!

Whatever. It was over as quickly as it began.

"Let's check your prostate," he said. My silent response, "WHAT THE F@#$!!!!!" He pulled a large purple glove out of a box and asked me to lean over the table. I must have had this dumbfounded look on my face as he asked me again to pull all my clothes down. I could not believe what was happening to me. I did not WANT a full exam. I only wanted a friggin prescription. This is exactly why I don't go to doctors.

I did as I was told. He checked my prostate. AAAAHHHHHHH!!!!!!!
He told me everything seemed fine there. I thought, "YEAH, it was fine for me too, that's why I didn't come in here for you to check it."

He allowed me to get dressed after that and he pulled out his prescription book. He offered some new asthma medicine, and I pretty much told him I wouldn't take it. I told him the prescription I have used since the beginning, and that's what he wrote for me.

I got home and Cari asked how it went. I was mad. "What did you tell him when you scheduled an appointment for me?"

She said she told them I wanted a prescription. Nothing more. Then I told her what happened. She laughed. For a long time.

Monday, September 10, 2007

I'm not dead yet.

Just very sick. I left work early yesterday and slept for a bit. Got up this morning and then spent the day sleeping on the couch.

I'm off tomorrow and I really hope I don't have to waste another day laying on the couch.

Saturday, September 08, 2007

photos of photos

Here's the photos I had framed today. First time I have ever purchased other than cheap Walmart frames. I didn't realize how expensive it could be. I'm going to enter three of these into a juried photo exhibit next weekend. Then I have to wait and see if they get accepted into the show.

Friday, September 07, 2007


There is a week and a half of my monthly schedule that is really tough. After I survive it, there are a few weeks that get very easy. I have just entered into the easy section of the schedule.

Yesterday, Cari and I headed over to the county museum. Lots of really cool displays in there. A lot about the local Indian tribes that used to live here. A lot about civil war era.

They had two displays about cotton and the textile mills that used to characterize this area. Sometimes I think I work too many hours at work. Yesterday I read that textile mill workers were scheduled to work 67 hours a week! When the plant managers lowered the hours to 64 they felt like they were being generous. Then the promised to lower the hours down to 60 a week. They even employed children to sweep the floors.

I'm going to be entering a few photographs in a juried art show coming up, so today Cari and I are headed out frame shopping.

I hope to get some photos taken later today. If that happens, I'll post a few here.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Labor Day!

I hope you all had a great holiday weekend. I had the privilege of working all three days. No sleeping in. No grilling. Just work. But don't feel bad for me, I'll be sleeping in and playing on Thursday and Friday.

Enjoy your week. I'm off to more work.

Oh, and I wrote this instead of cutting grass this morning.

Saturday, September 01, 2007


Maybe I got too cocky after defeating the bees. Especially after seeing the results of the poll last week. WOW! Thanks for the votes! 22 votes. 16 votes saying I solved the bee problem, only 2 votes for Cari solving it. (I TOLD YOU, CARI!!! IN YOUR FACE!!!)

Anyway, after a recent rain, the fire ants started coming back to the surface. I got up one morning and spread fire ant poison around their nests. This stuff normally will have a nest empty within a day or two.

It rained the evening I put the poison out, but I didn't think it would hurt its effectiveness. The rain would only serve to wash the chemical into the ground. The next day, Cari and I were walking in the back yard and she mentioned the huge nests of ants.

"We have nothing to worry about. I killed them yesterday.", I told her.
She didn't say anything in reply. For some strange reason I took that to be a challenge of my good work. I took my bare foot and stomped it into the mound of red dirt to prove it was an empty nest.

For the first half second, nothing happened. I looked at Cari with my best "I told you so" face.
She pointed to the ground.
Ants started coming out of the nest at a rapid rate. They didn't like my foot in their nest.


I got the ants off of me immediately, but one was able to sink his jaws into the side of my toe. It'll be itching for a few days. Before coming back inside, I gave the ants an extra hefty dose of poison.