New photos

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I took this today, and LOVE it!!!
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I’ve got an account over at SmugMug, where I store all my photos. It’s an awesome site, and I love it. Our site is at I plan on setting up a subscription service, much like I do here, so that emails will automatically go out when I update photos. I’ll be using FeedBurner to do so.

In the meanwhile, until that’s all set up, I’m throwing a few links up here to my updated/new galleries.

2008-08-21 – Tyler’s First Zoo Trip

I was out of town, in Peoria, IL, for business. Sarah’s friend, Mel, called Sarah to say that her and Ben (Mel’s son) were going to the Fort Wayne Zoo. Of course, she invited Sarah and Tyler along, so they went. Tyler’s first trip to the zoo, and I miss it *me shakes head* . It’s ok though, I’ll be there next time.

2008-08-23 – 28th Street Metro Cruise

Sarah’s Dad, Mike, invited me to come with him to a car show/cruise up in Grand Rapids, MI. He owns a 1980 Fiat Spider, and Sarah’s mom has a 1978 Fiat Spider (but she wasn’t coming to the show). He wanted to bring both Fiats, so I drove one. The pictures were of all the Italian cars (read: Fiats) that gathered in front of an Italian Restaurant.

New Pictures of Tyler

Just pictures that we take here and then of our little prince. The link will take you to his August gallery, but it’ll start you out on the first of the updated photos.


Just some random pictures I’ve taken in August. Pictures of our new driveway, a grasshopper, etc. There’s also a couple AWESOME pictures of Delilah (like the one displayed above, and this one). This link will start you on the first of the updated photos.

All pictures uploaded today

If you don’t want to look at the pictures organized like they are above, and just want to see everything that I uploaded today.

Alphabet Soup

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What a cool friggin kid!
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Or should I title this post as “Hooked on Phonics”?

Tyler will be starting school soon. The context of “soon” should be read as “in about 4 and a half years”. It amazes me, the things that go through a parent’s mind, sometimes. I would like to propose and submit, to the educational body of our country, a “modified” alphabet. The English language and alphabet is too complicated in its current state. Here are the details of my proposal.

The letter known as “C” shall be eliminated. The letters “K” and “S” shall fulfill its phonetic variants. For example, “cat” will become “”kat”, “face” will become “fase”, and “accent” will become (bekome) “aksent”. The variant “ch” will be replaced with either “kh” or “jh”. I suggest “jh” since it’s close to the same sound, so “chalk” would become “jhalk”.

“G” will no longer hold the soft-g sound. “J” will be used instead. So, “giant” would become “jiant”. “G” will retain the hard-g sound, so words like “get” or “gain” would not change.

“Q” will be eliminated. Words like “quick” would become “kwik”.

“X” will be eliminated. Words like “exit” would become “eksit”, and “xylophone” would become “zylophone” or “zylofone”.

The “PH” sound will be used by the letter “F”, as in “phone becoming “fone”.

“GH” will no longer be used. “Laugh” will become “laf”, and “high” would become “hie”.

Silent letters shall be eliminated. “Pneumonia” will become “neumonia”, “ballet” would be “ballay”, and “know” would be “noe”.

So, alltho there would be a learning kurve to the hole proposal from those uv us that grew up on the kurrent, arkiac system, give it a jhanse, and you’ll kome to embrase it. If we make these jhanjes kwikly and effishently, we’ll be mujh better off as a nayshun. I’m sure you will agree with my lojik, if you were to look at it objekshunably and fairly. This is an urjent matter, and I jenuinely appreshiate your time.

Also, Brett Favre is an idiot. His last name should be pronounced either “Fahv-reh” or “Fahv-er”. Pronouncing it as “Farv” makes no sense. Also, and this REALLY gets me, we need to come to a consensus on the proper way to pronounce “comfortable” (and “comfortably”). “Comfort” is sounded out as “kum-fort”, yet “comfortable” is said as “kum-fter-bul” the “r” is before the “t” but we pronounce it the other way. That would be like “fort” being said as “fter”. “Comfortable” should be “kum-fort-abl”, or we should modify its spelling to “comfterble”. I obsess about that every time I listen to Pink Floyd’s “Comfortably Numb”.

We need to work on some numbers as well. 11 through 19 break the consistency of our system. 21 is “twenty-one”. 45 is “forty-five”. 11 should be “ten-one”. 18 should be “ten-eight”.

Feel free to take most of this post with a grain of salt. Say to yourself, “That Joe, he’s so craaaaazy”, but I honestly do believe there are inconsistencies in our language that make no sense to me. Take the words “scene” and “scone”. Why is the “c” silent in the first word, and a “kuh” sound in the second word? “High” and “laugh” come to mind as well. Silent and “f”, respectively. Sure, we all learned it, our kids will learn all that, and our kids’ kids will learn all that, but it’s still confusing.

And I do stand by my thoughts on numbering, “Favre”, and “comfortable”.

Look who’s blogging too

My blogging agenda was interrupted tonight, but I have no complaints with that. Why, you ask? Well, because my wife decided she wanted her own blogspot/blogger account. Any time Sarah shows an interest in technology or the internet, I get very excited. I offered to just add her as an author to my account. Kinda like a “guest poster” or something. See, we don’t really know how often she’ll be blogging, and it seemed easier to do it that way.

“But I want mine to be purple”, she replied.


So, I set up an account for her and spent the next few hours hacking away at the code to get it *just right*. The themes that come with blogspot/blogger are ok, I guess. And they do allow a certain level of easy color modifying. But there were some major code rewrites that I had to make in order to get it to how I liked it. Then, I had to add a bunch of variables so that Sarah can semi-easily go in and adjust the colors/borders, if she sees the need for it. She tends to like my choices, but it is her blog, afterall.

I present to you… Sarah’s blog, “Because I Said So“. I’ve also added it to my “Required Reading” on the right hand pane, under the most recent photos. Look to the right, and scroll around if you don’t see it.

Check it out… she’s not as awesome as I am, but she’s gosh-darned close 😉

Stunts, lies, and rolls

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Vacation Photos
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We spent this past weekend at Mel and Ad’s cottage. It’s about a block from a lake. The basic agenda was to sit around, play at the beach, go out on the boat, go tubing and go skiing. We stuck pretty well to that plan.

I rarely get in the water. This is due to an unnatural fear of water/swimming that I have. When I was much younger (I dunno, 6 years old maybe), my dad decided he was going to teach me how to swim. We were at a beach. He was supporting my body by having both of his hands under the water with me lying on top of them. I was extremely nervous at the time. I remember, very clearly, telling him to not let go. He said, and I quote, “I won’t let go.”

He let go.

No warning, no easing his hands away. Suddenly, the support was gone, and I was going under. As a very young, impressionable, child, I quickly fell into a blood-chilling panic.

For about the next 18 years, I wouldn’t go into water any deeper than my waist. I worked up the courage to go to my neck.

3 years ago, we were hanging with Mel and Ad on their boat. Of course, the pressure was on me (again) to get into the water. I somehow found the strength to put on a life jacket and go to the edge of the boat. Adam tells me to just step off. The then GUARANTEES me that my head would not go under the water. After another 3 or 5 minutes of worrying and just standing there… I step off…

And go under the water. @$$%*&#

That quickly led to me going tubing and having a BLAST. This year, I actually got up on skis and did pretty well. I wouldn’t dare get in the water (if it’s over my head) without a life jacket, but I’m making progress. I also went tubing while facing backwards on the tube (Adam’s idea) and it was a friggin’ riot!

I don’t want Tyler to think his daddy’s a wuss-monger or anything, so I may have adjusted the truth a little bit. I scooped him up in my arms and told him about my death-defying stunts. I told him about the flips I was doing, and about catching about 15 foot of air on a jump. I felt a tinge of guilt as I told him my modified story. I’ll have to make sure to delete this post when he learns to read.

Now for a totally unrelated topic. Today finds me in Peoria, Illinois, sitting in a Holiday Inn hotel room. I was asked to come out so that I can demonstrate some stuff for bunch of people tomorrow… blah blah blah, work stuff. It was about 6 hours of driving. Fun times. Well, yesterday, I picked up a new GPS. I got the Garmin nuvi 205. Aside from telling me how to get from point A to point B, it also can store photos and display a slideshow. FINALLY, I can look at pics while I’m driving all over the place.

Well, while I was driving on the toll road, I turned on the slideshow to check it out. Up comes a picture of Tyler on the day he was born (7 weeks ago). He was born at 10 pounds 2 ounces, which is pretty frickin big. Looking at the picture, though, I couldn’t help but think of how SMALL he looked. He looks tiny, even though he looked gigantor at the time.

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I certainly don’t remember him growing, but he seems to have done it anyway. I don’t think I’m a fan of this. It’s happening way too fast. The boy weighs 15 pounds now, and isn’t even 2 months old. Our dreams of him becoming a University of Michigan kicker, then an NFL kicker are turning into dreams of him becoming a UofM linebacker, then an NFL linebacker. I’m sure he’ll eventually grow into all his extra rolls and extra necks and extra chins though… right?

Look at him… he’s got moobs (sometimes lovingly referred to as man-boobs, or chesticles)

Do you know who I am?

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I love his eyes
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Last Wednesday, I had to drive up to Kalamazoo, Michigan. There was some training taking place Thursday morning that I needed, so I got a hotel. I kissed Tyler goodbye and begged him to be good to his mom, because she needed some good sleep. The previous night, he was up every 60 to 90 minutes. He’d take one boob and fall back asleep. I told Sarah to put him in HIS room (he’s been sleeping in a crib in our room), shut HIS door, shut OUR bedroom door, and set the alarm for two and a half hours, and go to sleep.

What’s that, you say? Just wake him up and give him Boob B? Get it, boob b? Boobie, hahaha. Thank you for that one, Adam. Let me be very clear here when I say that when Tyler falls asleep at the boob, the boy goes COMATOSE. Sarah calls it a milk coma, and she is very right in calling it so. Waking him up is simply not an option.

With that being said, one of the fundamental differences between Sarah and I, and, I assume, most moms and dads, lies in how crying affects us. I may have blogged about this before, so forgive me (and feel free to skim the rest of this paragraph) if this sounds familiar. When I’ve got Ty, and he starts crying, I go through a mental checklist. If he’s clean, dry, fed, and burped, I tell him he’s going to have to just cry it out. I’m certainly not that brash, but you see my point (hopefully). With Sarah, logic takes a backseat to emotion. And let me just say that emotion shouldn’t have a driver’s license. When Sarah hears Tyler cry, she says that it makes her heart hurt.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I understand where she’s coming from, just as she understands where I’m coming from. But it’s like a Catholic telling a Baptist that the Baptist’s beliefs are crazy. The Baptist is just going to yell back at the Catholic, “NO U!!”

I’m sure you’ve all been in a situation where you and your mate were at odds with each other. Try to put yourself back in that situation for a moment. Are you there yet? Ok. Now, imagine my surprise the next morning, when I talk to Sarah and she tells me that she took my advice.

Allow me to say that again.

*clears throat*

The next morning, I was talking to Sarah from my hotel room. She told me that she took my advice. A woman took a man’s advice. A woman took a man’s advice. A woman. A woman. A woman. A woman took a man’s advice.

She put Tyler in his crib, shut the door, went into our bedroom, shut the door, set her alarm for 2 hours, and fell asleep. As a testament to how tired she was, at some point she turned her alarm off and woke up 3 hours later. IN A PANIC! Tyler was fine though. He had apparently awakened just a couple minutes earlier. When Sarah went to check on him, he was wide-eyed and ready for food.

He took both boobs.

Now that the foghorns, train whistles, and braying alarm sirens have died down, I must say again that Sarah took my advice.

MY thought is that she took my advice because I’m pretty stinkin’ smart and it was a good idea. Sarah would say it was because she was exhausted and not in her right mind at the time. In short, she’d plead temporary insanity.


Looking back over this post, I’ve gotta tell ya, my intention today was to blog about something entirely different. I, more or less, start typing and just let my fingers take me where they must. It is as if I am Gan’s facilitator (Stephen King reference. Don’t worry if you don’t get it). Either way, I now must decide whether to make this one long blog, or turn it into a two-parter. Hrm…. let’s keep going… one long post.

I was in Kalamazoo on Thursday for some training. Sarah had a dentist appointment that morning. Tyler did great while she was in there getting her teeth cleaned. Afterward, she took Logan to the kennel and went home. She loaded up the car with luggage and supplies, Delilah, and Tyler, then hit the road to Kalamazoo. We were invited to hang out with our friends (Mel and Adam) at their cottage by the lake, for the weekend. I met Sarah around 4 or 5p at Mel and Ad’s new house. We got the tour and hung out there for a couple hours. While their house was very nice, and while I was very impressed, nothing – NOTHING – could top what happened very shortly after the tour. No, it wasn’t the fact that I fixed their doorbell (which I believe they don’t even know about). And it wasn’t even that either Luci (their lab/hound pup) or Delilah made a mess on their new carpet. This is, after all, a daddy-blog, right? “Off-Topic Tuesday” does have a nice ring to it, though. It’s my idea and you can’t have it!

What I am taking forever to get at is this: Tyler smiled at me last Thursday. And it wasn’t one of those ehh-it-could-be-gas smiles. It was, without a doubt, a “Hey, there’s my daddy!” smile. A gummy, mouth wide open smile. He does this every time I see him now. Needless to say, I was on cloud nine. It is easily the highlite of my day now, getting to see my son smile AT ME! Much like Joanna, he puts his smiling face away as soon as the camera points at him. I was pretty quick on the trigger a couple times and managed to capture a few half-smiles before he put on his professor-face.

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I caught a smile
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So, there I am, full to the brim and overflowing with glee, when Sarah strolls into the room.

“Sarah! Tyler smiled at me when he saw me! A genuine, legitimate smile!”

Sarah, not to be outdone, grabbed my bucket o’ glee and tossed it out the patio door with this gem:

“Yeah, he’s been doing that with me for about a week.”

Sarah, if you’re reading this, you can stop now. The rest of this post is nothing but highly-technical computer talk.

The array variable wasn’t populated properly. Storing a floating point number in a boolean field will result in a false…

Is she gone?

After mentally shooting daggers at her, I said, with my don’t-you-dare-say-it-out-loud (also known as the for-the-love-of-god-don’t-let-this-get-past-your-lips) voice, “Yeah, well he smiles bigger for me.”

So, in conclusion, Scriptaculous uses prototyped arrays, and the for/each statement doesn’t work as intended any longer.