Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Thanks to everyone for the birthday wishes!

I had a super day - Lisa made mulligatawny for dinner, and we had Linda over as well. Always good for a couple of laughs. Here, Linda shows her true feelings towards "J'OE!" (think Homer Simpson D'OH!)

Monday, January 30, 2006

It's my birthday - YAY ME! Posted by Picasa

Sunday, January 29, 2006

Here I unload Owen while Dave signs my book... Posted by Picasa

Dave holding his youngest fan! Posted by Picasa

Dave was impressed that we brought an 8-week old to a book signing - his exact words "This is a great baby - but you're VERY brave!" Posted by Picasa

Our little swinger... Posted by Picasa

We went to see Dave Barry on Saturday night. As you can tell, we had FRONT-ROW SEATS! Dave was hilarious, and talked for about 30 minutes, then took questions before signing his latest book. Posted by Picasa

Thursday, January 26, 2006

Owen in his first-Bjorn experience. Put your first-bjorn or other bjorn wisecracks in the comments. Posted by Picasa

This is an oil painting my best friend Eric did for us as a wedding present. It's an overhead shot of Caerphilly Castle in Wales. We just got it back from the framers. This is above the fireplace in our living room - I just have to hang it up. He's really a great artist. Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

At supper club, Mary Jo has a couple of minutes holding me while I fart. Mike is amused by the rumblings. Posted by Picasa

Then halfway through his nap, my camera clicking wakes him up... Posted by Picasa

I give him a bath before we're off to Cooking club. You can barely tell, but this outfit has castles and dragons on it! Thanks Auntie Linda! Posted by Picasa

Owen giving me his skeptical look. Posted by Picasa

Monday, January 23, 2006

50 Things you may or may not know about me...

I've happily stolen this concept from other blogs, so here I go:
1. I didn't have a middle name until I got married.
2. Then I took my wife's maiden name as my middle name.
3. I'm 6'3 and 260 lbs.
4. Yeah, I know I should lose weight.
5. I lost 35 lbs in 2004 before my wedding using the Atkins diet.
6. I gained most of it back in 2005.
7. My nickname came from my fraternity. Magnum PI was big at the time (mid-80's)
8. The main reason I pledged my fraternity was to have someplace to drink. I was 16 when I started college. Do the math.
9. My kids will laugh if they ever see my grades from my sophomore year in college
10. I hated my accent in high-school, but learned to make the most of it in college.
11. My undergraduate degrees are in Computer Science and History. I started with one and picked up the other. Don't ask me why.
12. I then went to the University of Buffalo for a Master's in Military History.
13. My Master's thesis was on the Falkland Island's war of 1982.
14. I postulated that Argentina was historically and geographically entitled to the islands, with numerous precedents in other areas of the world.
15. It didn't go over well with the department head. He talked to me at length over why I was wrong.
16. That chat didn't dissuade me - I submitted my thesis as it was.
17. That chat DID dissuade me from pursuing a PhD. That, and I was sick of school.
18. Some of my happiest memories are of Buffalo. Hanging out with Satch, Al and Patti at the Raintree - eating wings, drinking beer and playing NTN.
19. NTN is National Trivia Network - you'd answer 15 questions over 30 minutes, using a little radio pad - and the wrong answers would drop off as the timer/scorer counted down. I loved that game. You'd match scores with players from all over the country. Once I actually made national rankings.
20. I still play Dungeons and Dragons (D&D) with my two best friends from high school. Anyone who thinks D&D is bad for you is welcome to put their reasons in the comments.
21. I've been playing it since 1984-ish. Almost 22 years. Fun times.
22. I was born in South Wales, UK in 1970. That makes me a gazillion years old.
23. My family spent 5.5 years in Malaysia - starting when I was 6. A heck of a way to grow up.
24. We moved from the tropics of Malaysia to the snows of Upstate New York (Oswego) in 1982. A little culture shock? Not as much as the weather shock!
25. At the halfway mark, I realize that I've not really revealed anything terribly interesting. I wonder if anyone will keep reading beyond this. Better throw something juicy in here. I'm not circumcised, and neither is my son. There, that'll keep the punters interested...
26. I'm the youngest of three - an older brother Paul then my sister Rachel is inbetween us. There was almost a fourth after me!
27. I didn't have a drink on my 21st birthday because I had a bet with my girlfriend at the time that I could go longer without drinking than she could without smoking.
28. I won that bet - although I kick myself for having made it in the first place.
29. My wife is amazed that I've lived this long. Some of the things I did in college stun even me as to their blatent stupidity.
30. I was once stopped for suspicion of DWI in college. Amazingly, although I was covered in dried beer and was wearing shorts while it was 30 degrees out - I was stone-cold sober. The cops let me off with a warning to fix a taillight.
31. I'm totally not a gearhead. If they invented a self-maintaing car, I'd buy it. Just not interested in the slightest.
32. I was diagnosed with sarcoidosis 4 years ago. Since then I haven't felt anything even remotely related to it. I wonder if it was just a convenient excuse because they couldn't find anything else wrong with me.
33. While I was typing this list, I was on a conference call, two net meetings and 6 chats. I am the god of multi-tasking.
34. My receding hairline is starting to catch up to my bald spot. I refuse to do anything about it either.
35. My ex-fiancee pressured me to try Rogaine for a while. I hated it. Might be one of the reasons she's my EX-fiancee.
36. I broke my right-most incisor when I was 8 years old (in Malaysia.) The dentist there (WARNING - GRAPHIC) had to kill the nerve by shoving several 2 inch steel rods into the stump of the tooth. The novocaine wore off before he was done.
37. I had that stump in the front of my smile for the next 7 years. When I was 15, our dentist in Oswego pulled them all out, removed the tooth and gave me a temporary bridge.
38. I had that temporary bridge for 17 years. Then I had an implant put in.
39. That was the third best money I've ever spent. For those keeping track, the second best money was my LASIK surgery. The best money I ever spent was on Lisa's engagement ring.
40. My dad made a great speech at my rehearsal dinner - he pointed out that we think of our friends as family. That's one of the many things I love about my wife. We both are the same way when it comes to that.
41. Many of you are probably wondering where all the Owen pictures are. Well, you're almost finished with this list. Be patient. Ummm - for this fact - I'll be kinda boring. I'm a big fan of ska music. For those who don't know what ska is - have a listen here.
42. I also read a lot of science fiction and fantasy. Kinda goes with the playing D&D thing.
43. While I'm not a gear-head, I do LOVE gadgets - especially electronic ones. I got a hand-held Soduko game for Xmas and I'm thrilled about it!
44. My birthday is next week and I'm incredibly blase about it. Eh. 36. Whippidy-do.
45. I can be a horrible procrastinator. Thankfully, I have a very patient wife.
46. I bought an original NES (Nintendo Entertainment System) off eBay just so I could play a game called Genghis Kahn. Eric, Gene and I spent YEARS of our lives playing that in college.
47. I also spent years playing the various versions of Civilization. I'm looking forward to getting this next week!
48. Wow - only 3 facts to go. Ummm. I'm still getting used to the time difference on the West coast. By the time I think of calling most of my friends or family, they'd already be in bed.
49. Without bragging - I'm actually pretty good at my job. I'm probably about due for a change, but I enjoy what I do. I get to talk to a lot of different people and encounter variable client environments. Keeps things interesting.
50. Well, that's that. To finish off, I'd just like to say thanks for reading all this drivel. I'm a huge fan of Dave Barry (we're going to his book signing this weekend) and I've met several people from his website. They have all been incredibly funny and great to hang out with - I just wish some of them lived closer so I could spend more time with them!

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

It's been a while, but...

Some more lessons learned:
1. I'm so glad I played with Action Man (GI Joe for you Americans) with the Kung-Fu grip when I was younger. That was invaluable experience for dressing a new born. Now if only they had Writhing Kicking Screaming Action Man with the Kung-Fu Grip, it'd be uncanny...
2. Now that my dad's gone, I can move the changing table back into the nursery from my office. Nothing spells fun on a conference call like a screaming infant in the background!
3. Cluster feedings can be hazardous to your mental health. And I'm not even the breast-feeding person! Lisa is doing much better with it than I am.
4. I got a new web-cam through work, with a microphone attached. WOOHOO! Now all I have to do is get showered before I start work and I'm laughing...
5. I'm much more willing to let my baby scream for a little bit (such as when he's grunting/pooping/getting his diaper changed) than I thought I'd be. I feared that at the least little sniffle, I'd be picking him up and cuddling. Now I figure a little screaming is par for the course, heck, even good for him.
6. One guy I work with is apparantly unable of comprehending I am in a different time-zone than him. After rejecting his fourth meeting notice that started at 5am, I had to laugh. It was either that or kill him.
7. Owen is up to 9lbs! WOOHOO! He should be, given how much milk he snorks down daily! Our next doctor's appointment is in February.
8. While we haven't had any more projectile vomiting, he did manage a fantastic cleavage-burp on Lisa. She was carrying him in for a diaper change and he let fly right down her chest. You just have to laugh.
9. I can't believe it's the 18th of January already. I'm going to be 36 in a couple of days (well, 12 to be exact.) It's my 20th High School reunion this year and I'll be buggered if I'm going. Time flies.... Is it just me or does time go faster every year?
10. Most important lesson learned - just because the doctor clears you to have sex again (following the birth) does not mean you can or will or want to right away. There's a ton of other factors that get in the way and when the time is right, it'll happen. Having a screaming infant interrupt your "activities" is a sure fire way to stop you dead in your tracks!

Monday, January 16, 2006

Courtney is fearful of dirty diapers, so of course.... Posted by Picasa

Lisa can't believe I just rubbed my son's butt on Courtney.... Posted by Picasa

This shot wins the "freak of the day" award. Courtney shows us how to do the hula while wearing a boppy on your head..... Posted by Picasa

Lisa's sister Linda comes over to play Skip-bo with her NEW GUY Joe. Posted by Picasa

Saturday, we do some JOBS in the backyard. We get rid of most of the debris from the privet!  Posted by Picasa

But we get some cute shots before he leaves on Sunday. Posted by Picasa

Which is enough to knacker Dad out.... Posted by Picasa

Later that night, we head to Leatherby's for dinner and more ice cream. It was a dessert-a-licious day! Posted by Picasa
From left - Diana (Lisa's mom), Gary, Marina (niece who got the 3 house-bricks at Xmas!)

This is Elena's "pretty" smile... Posted by Picasa

After the museum, we go to Rio City for lunch. Fabulous food and OH! what desserts! Here Dad tackles Gran-Marnier infused strawberries and pastries.... Posted by Picasa

A bit dark, but you can get an idea of how big this dessert was.... Posted by Picasa

The railroad museum is the largest in North America, and it's right in Old Sacramento... Posted by Picasa

The little wiggle-worm in his bassinet Posted by Picasa