December 27, 2008

Photo ot the day, Saturday

Good Morning! It's a rare post that I do this in the morning rather than at night. We are off visiting Tom and Reen today. Man the roads were terrible, lots of vehicles in the ditches. Holly would either read or sleep, it's calmer that way.

Of all the things to forget I forgot to toss in the Ipass in an so we're stuck in the slow lane this trip. I do like the oasis concept, it's pricey to stop there, but you can get it all, gas, a variety of food, fancy coffee and even entertainment sometimes.

Like last night I was filling up and some lady was coming back from the building. Her vehicle was a great big SUV. I made a weather comment and she replied pleasantly. Once she got to the vehicle, she discovered that she was locked out, we went to each door and peered in the windows, finally managed to get in the back passenger door, but set off the alarm. Lights flashing, horn honking I can see her in the car trying to get the alarm shut down. Finally she gets out of the car, stares into the gas station and gestures violently with a flip of her hands that left both hands palm up. You could see the tension. Immediately the alarm shuts down and she stalks to the car and gets in. I left at that point, having no desire to witness the brutal assault that was sure to happen to her significant other upon their return to the car.
Here's one of our awesome hosts, Tom and Maureen. Tom and I did the cooking last night, we did baby back ribs on the smoker, sweet potato fries. And it was an awesome meal!
Have a great day!

December 25, 2008

Photo of the day, Thursday

Merry Christmas!!!

I hope that you got not what you wanted, but just what you needed to make this an awesome Christmas. Seems funny to say that, but a lot of times what I want is one thing and what I really need is totally something else. Like this one year, I wanted fun stuff, you know, electronic games. What I got though, was a board game that required me to interact with someone else. Just what I needed. You see, while I may appear social, I really am a homebody. Interestingly enough though, many times our wants are driving us in directions that God would just as soon not have us go. So then He arranges a gift that causes us to consider a different path. We still have the free will to choose, but usually His way is better. If I had a nickel for each application of this I think the house would be paid for.

For Christmas this year I got something that I didn't want or need, but will really enjoy. It's an adapter that lets me plug my iPod straight into my car stereo. It is way cool. The only trouble was, I needed to disassemble the trim around my radio. To Larry, my brother-in-law, that would be no big deal. For me, it was a very big deal. But I decided that I could figure this out and save $55. OK, to be honest, I no longer figure things out, now I search the Internet. I did, and I found a great article that explained how to remove the trim, the essence of which was to go really slow and not rush. Rushing is how you break those plastic parts. It worked and within minutes Ian and I were sitting in my car with the stereo cranked. It is very cool to bond with a teenager when loud music is involved. Additionally, I had him figure out how to use the controls and then teach me. It's very cool if your dad needs you to help him. While I don't know a lot about parenting, that little thing, him teaching me, ... that was great for our relationship.

During the day someone kept slipping away upstairs to his room. Here you can see that I tracked him down and landed a wet one on him for my troubles. As you can see by the "rock on" hand gestures, he was cool with this invasion of his privacy.

Have a great day,

December 24, 2008

Photo of the day, Wednesday

Merry Christmas Eve!

Work has wound down to...nothing! I am on vacation! Yee Ha!

Holly the boys and I would like to wish you all a very Merry Christmas!

We went to the Christmas Eve Service at our church and it was lead by the youth minister. It was the most strange message yet, it really pointed to why I chose to become a christian, Jesus came, he suffered, he died and then he rose. Praise God!

Our latest entry into the "share yourself with our gang" is below. Here is the story that goes with the photo, all I have to add is, Jim and Nancy, you guy totally are awesome! I wish I was that cool.

The following was submitted by Kathy.

Thought I would send this picture to you of my sister Nancy and Jim Bell,Th with my husband Norm in the back ground. I, Kathy took the picture. We are about to go on the zip line. This was during our recent trip to Alaska in August. It was at the point of no return. Can you tell? Turned out to be an awesome experience. At the end, the guides told Norm, (when they get older folks like us), they have problems, but that we did a great job.

Kathy, thanks for sharing!

I hope that you all have an awesome Christmas!

December 23, 2008

Photo of the day, Tuesday

Still snowing here. I know, those near here know, those not here, well, feel our pain. I can barely see the mailbox at the end of the driveway due to the huge piles of snow. What's that noise? Dang, the snow plow just buried us again, guess I better get this done and head out with the snow blower.

Work gets pretty weird this time of year, trying to juggle the shutdown schedules for the customers is pretty crazy, but now, with a down economy staring us in the face, some have extended their shut down, others are doing another week in January. We even have set up next week with out team as voluntary, should be fun trying to

The thing that really gets me is that the snack food is becoming a way of life! I have been noshing on all kinds of stuff, chocolate cookies, cakes, brownies, cheese, salami, crackers, peanuts, popcorn and it goes on and on and on. The guys in the tool shop were even slowing down and told me it could take a few days to get through the latest, multi flavor popcorn tin. He seemed disappointed with that.

Still looking to share photos of you guys. Herb, OK to share the one that you sent? (even though you aren't in it) Herb is the area leader for the Toy for Tots program in Polk County. They had an awesome year and over 400 kids were able to have a Merry Christmas. God Bless you and the elves that work with you!

Here are Holly and the boys. Forced pose, but at least I got them all into one frame.

Have a great day!


December 21, 2008

Photo of the day, Sunday

Cold and snowy again today. It was so bad that about 150 churches cancelled their services for this morning. I went any, because I was working with the kids. Holly and the boys stayed home and it was probably a good idea. The roads were dicey at best, but you know what, that little black Ford Focus that I drive is pretty darn dependable and I didn't get stuck at all.

This afternoon was a prime stay in and watch TV kind of day so we watch the Wizard of Oz, the enhanced color version and then one called "Your, mine and ours", a pretty good family flick. Ian watched the Wizard of Oz under protest, but once it was going, he was hooked. He made fun of it, but hey, he's a teen, he makes fun of anything that I want him to do. It was really nice being curled up for the afternoon/evening.

Here's one of some friends that are living the dream somewhere near St. Louis MO. It's Cil, Kevin and Aanika. I love the joy in this shot. How can you not smile when you see them?

Have a great day!