Thursday, November 29, 2007

Another Good Read

I just finished another great book yesterday. It's called Lone Survivor by Marcus Luttrell.

It's the true story of an ill-fated Navy SEAL mission in the mountains of Afghanistan in 2005. The author was part of a 4-man team dropped in to locate and neutralize a high ranking Taliban terrorist. The team members soon found themselves surrounded by hundreds of terrorists and fighting for their lives. The entire SEAL team was unfortunately lost, except for the author who managed to escape despite being seriously wounded and having lost most of his gear. The book chronicles his nearly week-long ordeal surviving in the rugged mountains while being wounded, lost, alone, and hunted by the Taliban. It also tells how the author was eventually able to make it out due to his intense training and with help from ancient Afghani tribal customs.

Although the main focus of the book is on this one event, 2 chapters of the book are devoted to how a SEAL becomes a SEAL. I always knew these guys were tough, but I had no idea just how tough until after reading this book. Their training really prepares them to survive an ordeal like this and not quit. A word of caution... The sailors in this book talk like, well, sailors. If you're easily offended by some swearing, you way want to skip this book. Otherwise, I highly recommend it. I found it hard to put down, and that's saying something for me.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Uncle Jay

Here's a video Shauna sent me. It reminds me why I loathe politicians so much.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

So Long, Holly

We came home from turkey with the Adamski side of the family Thursday evening around 6. I let Holly out of her kennel and she was a spaz as usual. She ran to the front yard, took a leak, and trotted off down the sidewalk. This isn't usual for her, but it's not the first time she's done it either. It really ticks me off when she does it, so I just threw my hands up in the air and went inside to cool off. After 10 or 15 minutes, I had calmed down enough to go get her. Olivia and I, leash in hand, jumped in the truck and headed off down the street looking for my dopey dog.

After 30-45 minutes we still hadn't found her, which is strange in a town as small as New Berlin. So we went home. By bedtime she still hadn't shown her face yet, so I left her kennel open for her and went to bed. My sleep was restless as I worried about my pup, and first thing Friday morning I hopped in the truck and drove the streets of New Berlin again. Still nothing. She has my phone number and address on her collar, so I fully expected to get a call sometime Friday. After another trip around town Friday afternoon and no phone calls, still nothing.

So, here it is Sunday evening and I've seen neither hide nor hair of the mutt (pardon the pun). Now, I've pretty much accepted the fact that she's not coming back. It's a bummer, but part of me is actually a little relieved. She's not super old, but over the past 6 months or so she's been getting more and more lazy or senile or both. She's mostly deaf, so she won't respond when called. She's been less and less concerned with her personal hygiene, which is an issue with a baby on the way. She's basically been just more and more unruly and harder to control. I've heard of dogs running away when mother nature tells them their time is coming to an end, so maybe she knew something I didn't. Or, maybe she just wanted to live somewhere else.

In light of her recent behavior and the impending arrival of Nate the great, I had already been stewing over how things would work with the dog and what kind of decisions I would have to make regarding her. It seems the decision has been made for me. Although sad, it has also been surprisingly liberating for me. I no longer have the constant worries about keeping her from making a mess in the house, or cleaning the mud off her on rainy days. I don't have to worry about how she will accept Nathan. I still miss her, but I'm really thinking this may all be for the best. Perhaps this is God's way of reducing my obligations, freeing me up to be a better father for my boy. My only hope through this all is that Holly hasn't suffered any and doesn't suffer whatever her fate ends up being.

There is still a chance that someone could call tomorrow and say they found her. We haven't got rid of her stuff yet. But, I'm honestly (and surprisingly) cool with whatever the outcome is. Realistically though, this is really a goodbye. So long, Holly. You were usually a good pup!

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Nathan's Room

Well, we're finally almost done with Nathan's nursery. We spent a couple hours last night moving all his stuff in there and trying to find a place for it all. Here's the pix...
Olivia picked the "sea life" theme and went with a light green to match on the walls. It's not as manly as say "monster trucks" or "power tools", but this way we don't have to re-do the whole thing if the next kid is a girl. That's our fancy used crib there on the left.

The dresser/changing table that matches the crib is in the middle of this pic. The playpen is on the left. It won't really go there permanently. It will be in our room for the first couple months for Nate to sleep in until he graduates to the crib. On the right is Matt Espenshied's old dresser that he left when he moved out. Needless to say, this room looks quite a bit different from when Matt and Tony lived there back in my slum-lord days.

Here's the other end of the room. My old stereo is up on the dresser for momma to rock out with the boy. The stroller and car seat were shoved behind the door for the time being. The purple thing on the right is a fake chimney. I think there's a real chimney behind there, but it's got fake plastic brick around it now. It was a dark maroon at first, but we went with a light purple to match the rest of the decor. Talk about a pain in the butt to paint. We couldn't tape the edges up against the walls because of the irregular shaped bricks and the grout lines. Olivia had to do those corners meticuously by hand. Of course it all took 2 coats as well. While doing it we surmised that the previous owner probably used spray paint. Good idea, I think we'll go that route if we have to re-paint it someday.

So, we're pretty much done. We just need a crib mattress, a rocking chair, and a baby. The rocker has been pretty difficult. Olivia wants a glider, but we can't find a decent one for under $200. Ouch! If you have a used one you want to get rid of, let us know. Thanks again to everyone who gave us gifts at the baby shower. It was a tremendous help and we appreciate it a lot! T-minus 5 weeks til baby.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Yes, I can read

Anyone who knows me very well will probably be surprised to find out that I have begun reading books from time to time. I've even finished a few that don't have pictures! My brilliant wife has discovered this thing called the New Berlin Public Library. Apparently, they'll let you borrow books, and for free! It's amazing! Anyhow, a couple weeks ago I finished one that I actually enjoyed quite a bit. It's called 3 Nights in August by Buzz Bissinger.

It's an inside look at a 3 game series between the Cardinals and Cubs in August 2005 with special attention paid to the viewpoint of Tony LaRussa. There's really nothing noteworthy about the series itself, other than being a key series for both ball clubs during the 2005 playoff race. The real heart of the subject matter is just baseball and what goes through a manager's mind on a daily basis during the season. It was an interesting inside look at the nuances of the game and how complicated and simple it can be at the same time. I really enjoyed the book and would recommend it to any fan of the sport. I'm sure being a Cardinal fan contributed to my interest in the book, but I think it could be enjoyed by anyone who cares about the game. If your town has one of these "libraries", go check it out!

Saturday, November 17, 2007

A new take on the first Thanksgiving

A heartwarming Thanksgiving tale from the guys who brought you Chad Vader...

My First Post

Well here it is, my first ever blog posting. I kinda wish I had something profound to say, but I really don't. I'm really just putting this out there so I can see how it works and what the finished product is going to look like on my page. Since you bothered to come check out the site, I guess I'll include some of the latest happenenings in our household to bring you up to speed.

The baby is already taking over and he's not even here yet. We spent last night spending too much money on all sorts of baby crap. We found a nice used crib and matching dresser and managed to get it for about 1/3 to 1/4 of what it would have gone for new. (Thanks to Ma Dudley for scouting that one out for us.) We picked up the stroller/car seat combo and got it all put together last night too. The painting in the nursery is almost done. Once we get everything moved in there, I'll be sure to post some pictures for your viewing pleasure. Pretty much all we lack now is finding a glider for momma to rock jr in and we'll be good to go.

Liv and I are both ready for Nathan to get here. She's ready for him to stop torturing her from the inside and I'm ready to start teaching him some bad habits. He's due the first week of January, but we're both hoping he shows up earlier rather than later.

Well, there's my first post. I admit it's a little bland, but I'll have more exciting stuff to report in the months to come. Check in often!