Friday, September 28, 2007


Do you remember the first major purchase that made you feel all "grown-up"?

I'm sure the usuals would be along the lines of buying your first car, closing on your first house or even buying an engagement ring.

But let me add one to the list: buying a tree. In an effort to beautify our back yard, Kelly and I bought a tree last week.

The first feeling you have when you shop for a tree is sticker shock! Holy live oaks! Those things are expensive!

How much for just an acorn?!?

The second and lingering feeling is the realization, when driving away in your car, that you have just purchased, of all things, a tree for your yard. I guess it strikes me as a little odd since I'm usually the one who's in the market for stuff like cycling jerseys, iPhones and/or the latest The Simpson's season on DVD. Purchasing a tree just seems like something my parents would do.

Gasp! I'm turning into my parents!

But now that our new arborian friend has found its new home in our backyard, I'm please to say that I've yet to have the typical third feeling of the purchasing process: buyer's remorse.

And I'm sure Al Gore, tree-hugger extraordinaire, feels much better knowing that Kelly and I are doing our part to protect the ozone layer directly above our house!

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

'Til Oprah Do Us Part?

In an effort not to be a terrible husband, I've been looking for more things Kelly and I can do together. Since I don't watch much non-sports-related TV, I've been trying to watch some of Kelly's TV shows with her.

But I had to draw the line a couple nights ago when Kelly said she found a show for that we could watch together. Unfortunately for me, this is what I saw on TV when I walked into our living room:

Justin Timberlake talking about Britney Spears on Oprah.

(Umph! It's the pop culture trifecta from you know where!)

Pardon me as I take a quick moment to review our nuptuals. . . . Nope! Nothing there that says I have to watch Oprah!

So without saying a single word, I turned around and went back up to my office. Kelly thought I was over-reacting just a bit!

Hey! I'm all about spending quality time with my dear sweet wife but must it involve the likes of Justin Timberlake, Britney Spears and/or Oprah?

And of all people, these three are the least likely to add quality to my time with Kelly. Let me explain:

Justin Timberlake: On multiple occaisions, Kelly has referred to him as her "boyfriend"!

(Some boyfriend! What has he ever done? I bet he doesn't even know the difference between the ventrolateral preoptic area and the tuberomammilary nucleus in the hypothalamus? What a loser!)

Oprah: I don't deny that she is the most powerful woman in North America (Sorry, Senator Clinton), but can we get a little less Orpah and a little more North America, please?

Britney Spears: Oh yeah, I'm sure there's quite a bit she can teach me about nurturing a loving marriage!

So Kelly, let me assure you that I am committed to our lifelong relationship and remain willing to do anything (well, almost anything!) to make sure we continue to have quality time together.

But, for the betterment of our marriage, let's make a deal: I won't force you to watch two random, unranked colleges play football if you won't try to spoon feed me Oprah!

Sunday, September 23, 2007

QOTW: Rise And Shine, Sleepy Head!

I can get at out of bed at any time I want. It's having a coherent thought after I've gotten out of bed that tends to be the problem.

Sometimes I'll stand dazed and confused in my mandatory morning shower so long that Kelly will think that I've fallen asleep while standing up - not that I haven't tried!

Helen and M. Missionary will no doubt tell you that the morning is best kick started with a good cup of coffee. I'll respectfully disagree despite my best efforts to become addicted to coffee myself.

Add all the creamer, half & half, sweetener you want - to me, it still tastes like burnt coffee beans. What I can't figure out is, why do coffee grounds smell so good in the grocery store ailse if it tastes like burnt coffee beans?

What gets you up and going in the morning?

Total Votes: 17

A long shower 25% (5 votes)

A cup of coffee 25% (5 votes)

A good breakfast 10% (2 votes)

A little TV 5% (1 votes)

Sleeping in until Noon 20% (4 votes)

Other 15% (3 votes)
- the baby
- 4 kids jumping on my bed!
- kids

Friday, September 21, 2007

ACU Reunion at Cafe Express

Kelly, Tate and I were enjoying a nice dinner out on the patio at Cafe Express when a woman pointed at my hat and said, "ACU? As in Abilene Christian University?"

Since my hat had both ACU and Abilene Christian University on the front I was tempted to say something sarcastic like, "No. ACU as in Atrociously Crusty Underpants!"

But since I didn't have the nerve I just said, "Yes! How did you know?"

She sat down at our table (that's right, she sat down!) and told us all about how she went to "Abilene Christian College" and could still remember the names of all the girls in Nelson Dorm when she lived there; about how much she hated West Texas wind; about how bad Abilene water tasted back then; about how she's a bad singer (still not sure what that has to do with going to ACU); about how she used to be a teacher in Odessa; about how she prayed for a Christian husband but then meet "a boy" who liked her but wasn't a Christian but he "converted" once they started dating; and about how they now go to a church down the street and that we needed to come visit.

Although she was very nice and I enjoyed our conversation, it was difficult for me to pay attention to what she was saying because all I could think was, "Man, that sure is a big piece of lettuce stuck in her teeth!"

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Tate-ism #11

It looks as though, at least for now, Tate doesn't mind that he has inherited my bed head.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

We Still Love You, Little One

For the past week or so, I've found great difficulty in writing a post about our first baby.

Kelly has found way to beautifully express how be both feel today.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Forever In Heaven

During our visit to Church #2 this past weekend, an elder got up to thank the congregation for all the prayers and support he received when his father recently passed away.

He said, "My father was 88 the day he died. But today in Heaven, he is forever."

First, what a great tribute from a son to his father.

Second, how cool will it be to one day be "forever" in Heaven?!

"O Death, where is your victory? O Death, where is your sting?"

- I Corinthians 15:55

Sunday, September 16, 2007

The Most Dreadful 6 Hours I've Ever Spent On-Line!

Some of you may recall my recent run-in with the law (2 speeding tickets in a month in case you forgot). I've just finished paying my debt to society by means of a defensive driving course.

To make this process as painless as possible (because it's not like I'm supposed to be learning my lesson or anything), I decided to sign up for an on-line comedy defensive driving course.

How great is that? (1) It's on-line so I get to take the course little by little whenever I want. (2) The word "comedy" is in the name so one can only assume that I'll have a great laugh while taking the course!

Apparently, I assume too much!

Here are some suggestions of names that they should consider instead of Comedy Defensive

1. Please Tell Me When I'm Supposed To

2. Seriously, This Really Isn't Funny At

3. I Can't Believe How Not Funny This

4. Why Is This Course A Cartoon When The Picture Clearly Shows Photos Of Actual Comedians?.com

5. Oh My! That Was A Horrendous Impression of Bobcat

(That link is to a really funny stand-up routine of the actual Bobcat on

6. What Does A Bobcat Goldthwait Impression Have To Do With Defensive Driving Anyway?.com

7. My 9-Month Old Can Write Better Comedy Than

8. And He Can't Even

9. Dear Lord! Make It Stop! I Can't Bear It

10. OK! OK! I've Learned My Lesson! I'll Never Speed

But I guess I can't complain. After I finally finished what had to be the most dreadful 6 hours spent on-line in the history of ever, I got a certificate in the mail that I was able to use to get my ticket dismissed. So I guess it wasn't all that bad . . . it's definitely funnier than having to pay a $275 fine!

Friday, September 14, 2007

Now THIS Is A Dessert!

Yes, it is as big as it looks!

Did you know that calories and fat grams don't count when your vacationing in California?

What you can't see here is that all of this is piled on top of a big brownie!

Don't worry, I shared a little bit with Kelly, Shannon, Tate and Mallory!

Thursday, September 13, 2007

8 Randoms

Kelly tagged me.

Making a list of 8 random things about myself isn't too hard to do. It's making a list of 8 random things about myself that I'm not too embarrassed to tell the blog world about that's proving to be a bit difficult!

1. Just Say No to Radio Ads - I won't listen to radio ads. They're annoying - especially after the 4,132nd time! Such noise pollution! It drives Kelly crazy how I will turn down the volume during commercial breaks. Ultimately, I'd rather sit in complete silence than listen to another over-the-top car dealership ad that ends with a 30-second legal disclaimer at 400 words a minute!

2. Restaurant Karma - Thanks to my one-sided hearing I must have first dibs on where to sit at a restaurant table. I keep telling Kelly it's for her own good. If my one good ear is facing towards the noisy kitchen then she'll spend the entire meal repeating herself.

3. Clutter Kills - If I have an OCD tendency on anything then it's with clutter. I hate clutter! There are times when I can no longer stand the clutter and go on a cleaning/re-organizing spree. When I do, watch out! If something hasn't been used in the last 3 months and it's not in its proper place then there's a good chance it'll end up in the dumpster!

No kidding! I once threw away a perfectly good coffee maker because we hadn't used it once during the 4 years it sat in our kitchen and it was cluttering up our kitchen counter.

(Kelly made me go buy a new one!)

4. Don't Call Me Picky! - I am more than capable and willing to eat almost anything. But I choose to be selective on what makes my menu of acceptable food units. Despite being called strictly a "meat and potatoes" kind of guy (which is a great meal, by the way), I do find opportunities to stretch my culinary horizons from time to time.

Even today I tried a crab cake wrap for the first time. I may have to move that one up to the top of my rotation - quite delish! But just because I may pass on your grandmother's spinach casserole doesn't mean I don't have a refined pallet! I'm just being a little selective!

5. Not Worth Seeing TV - Aside from major sporting events, The Colbert Report, The Office and an occasional news broadcast, I don't watch TV. (1) I don't have the time. (2) There is a decreasing amount of quality programming that's even worth watching. Just because reality TV is popular, it doesn't mean it's any good! (3) Watching TV takes away too much time from blogging!

6. Coverage Denied - That's what I'm eventually going to hear from my medical insurance company if I keep injuring myself. In the last 8 years I have:

- Hyper-extended my knee playing softball.

- Sprained my ankle who-knows-how-many times playing softball.

- Suffered a head injury while playing basketball and was hospitalized for 2 days.

- Sustained another head injury a month later by a silver platter-wielding waitress and had to go back to the ER.

- Consequently suffered dreadful migraines as a result of my head injuries. I hate migraines!

- Ridden in an ambulance to Dallas Baylor ER after my cycling accident - no hospital stay, whew!

- Nearly sliced my finger off - which is healing nicely, by the way!

7. Clearing The Mind At 20 mph - One of the reasons I enjoy cycling is because for at least 2 hours at a time I don't think about anything but the 50 feet of pavement directly ahead of me - which, in a weird way, is actually quite refreshing. It's when I stop thinking about the 50 feet of pavement when I land in the ER!

8. "Be good!" - I don't know when or where I picked up this phrase but I say it in place of "Good-bye", "Have a good day", "See you later", etc. I actually get some pretty funny responses from people ranging anywhere from "What?" to "Why would I want to do that?"

After reading my list I'm sure you've added me to your prayer list! Kelly says thank you! Let's see if we need to add The Swan, Wendy or Laura to our prayer lists, too!

Tuesday, September 11, 2007


These were my thoughts I posted last year on 9/11.

Adopt-An-Atheist Program

During my recent Tour de California, I passed a sign outside Sacramento that read:


Atheist and other Freethinkers"

(not actual sign obviously)

In my daily pursuit of tolerance towards those who make me want to pull my hair out, I remind myself that we're all entitled to our own opinion.

That being said, it just makes me wonder how a group of people whose world view is defined by a list of absolutes (disbelief in a god, Big Bang Theory, Darwinism, etc.) could think of themselves as "freethinkers".

But hey, more power to them if they feel the need to clean up the streets, right?

Sunday, September 09, 2007

And So It Begins . . .

I realized recently that I probably watch 3 times the amount of TV during the 5 months from September to January as I do during the 7 months from February to August.

Football on Saturday. Football on Sunday. Football on Monday. Football, football, football!

I don't know why I love football so much. I remember how disappointed I was when I realized that I would never play high school football - a decision that I made myself for the sake of self-preservation.

These days I half-wish I had made our team as a kicker, punter, tackling dummy or something. If I had I would have a TAPPS 3A state championship ring in my sock drawer right now.

Every year, the first week of September brings a new meaning to my life - I know, pathetic, isn't it?

But I can't help in getting caught up in the hype - there's football everywhere! A nationally ranked high school team just down the street. My newly adopted favorite college team only 10,000 miles away on the west coast (Go Bears!). And tonight, Cowboys versus Giants!

I love this time of year!

(And I really love that Michigan is already 0-2!)

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Nice Matters Award

Jennifer was nice enough to hand me the Nice Matters Award! I'll humbly and graciously accept this award while discretely asking if she has anything with a little less pink in it!

"This award is for those bloggers who are nice people; good blog friends and those who inspire good feelings and inspiration. Also for those who are a positive influence on our blogging world. Once you've been awarded please pass it on to 7 others who you feel are deserving of this award."

30 . . . Really? - My wife has oft been described as "nice, a good friend, one who inspires good feelings and inspiration, a positive influence." I would like to add to that list "one heck of a mommy!"

Shannon's 50,000 Words - It shouldn't surprise you that a blog that regularly features pictures of my favorite toddler niece and updates on my niece-to-be would make this list! But before there was Mallory or Morgan, there was my sis-n-law, Shannon! She's always good for a laugh! Plus, I still think her blog title is one of the most creative and original yet.

Kid B - We went to ACU together. He always gives me a laugh with his funny stories about his cute kids and hysterical videos of his alter-ego, Darrell! More Darrell videos, please!

Tara's Life - It's hard for me to think of when I didn't know Tara and her family - we grew up together at the same school and church. Tara has always cracked me up because she will say what everyone is only thinking!

The A-Team - Jody & Janell are two of our most dearest friends from Vista Ridge. So what's better than a blog by 2 of our most dearest friends? A blog by 2 of our most dearest friends . . . and pictures of their twins!

Patiently Waiting For Heaven - I've allowed myself to become addicted to blogs because they are such a great way to keep up with and reconnect with old friends. Keri is a great example of an old friend who've I've enjoyed catching up with.

The crazy thing is, because she lives in Amarillo, we stayed connected during high school by writing letters to each other. Now it's through reading each other's blogs.

(I sure hope the Internet doesn't go out of business anytime soon! I hate writing letters! Sorry, Keri!)

Satire & Theology/thekingpen68 - Although we've never met, Russ is the first person who came to mind when I read 'those who are a positive influence on the blog world.' Many of his posts have challenged, in a good way of course, my perspective on Christianity. Plus, his occasional cartoons and gospel album covers are always good for a laugh.

Muisto - Since I haven't been to Germany lately , I haven't had the opportunity to met Helen either. But reading her blog has given me an impression that she's young Christian woman who is wise beyond her years. I was a little disappointed to see that someone else beat me to the punch in giving Helen this award, so I promised that I'd at least give an 'honorable mention'.

Thanks again for the props, Jennifer.

(For those of you who bemoan getting "tagged" with lists, I hereby relinquish you from the burden of passing on this award.)

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Roll On You Bears!

I stepped away from the blog world long enough to spend an extended holiday weekend with family out in California.

Kelly will no doubt give all the details of flying with Tate, Tate meeting the NoCal clan for the first time, Tate going to his first Summer of Love Music Festival in San Francisco, Tate havin' fun at the Nut Tree (one of Kelly's old haunts), Tate hangin' with his WWII Vet Great Grandpa in the Sacramento area and Tate eating his first In-N-Out burger.

But for now, I'm going to give the play-by-play of going to the Cal game!

Go Bears!

If there was one thing that I regret about going to ACU, it was not going to a school that had good D-1 football! Since my dad-n-law went to the University of California-Berkeley, I've adopted Cal as my college team!

Here's Kelly and I as we're walking into Memorial Stadium on game day!

Once we got through the gates I bumped into my old pal, Kirk Herbstreit. He and I started talking about the game and he said I made some excellent points and asked if he could use them during the television broadcast - to which I said yes.*

(By the way, can someone tell me why my camera makes Kirk look a bronzy tan and me a sickly white?)

Here's Kelly and Shannon.

Here's me and Butch - sometimes known as 'Anonymous' in the blog world!

What a game it was! We won! "Pac-10 football!"

At the end of the game, all the students rushed the field in mad hysteria after beating Tennessee. Since I'm not one to just stand by and watch other people have all the fun, I coerced Butch into running on the field with me.

This is usually one of those moments when I'm the one guy who gets arrested or gets trampled at the bottom of the mosh pit at mid-field. I'm glad to say that I was able to get on and off the field without having to post bail or needing medical attention!

(Yet another proud moment for Kelly!)

It was obviously too late of an evening for Tate to be able to tag along so dad-n-law made sure to get him a souvenir. Thanks for the hat, Grandpa!

More posts on California coming soon!

*For those of you who don't know, Kirk Herbstreit is an ESPN analyst. He's not one of my old pals. And I barely had 3 seconds to take a quick picture of the two of us before he realized that I was just a 30-something idiot who was way too excited to see him walking down the sidewalk!