Category Archives: Personal

I love my neighborhood.

So I realize I have posted almost nothing about my new house and neighborhood. We love it here.

I’ve been working from home because my work still hasn’t figured out how to get me into work. I sold my car shortly before they decided to move and then they picked the one location they were looking at that wasn’t accessible by bus. “No problem,” they said, “we’ll find a way to get you there.” They haven’t yet, but I’m not in a rush. It’s wonderful being at home every day. The view out the windows is fantastic, and I like being able to give Stella a hug whenever I want. Plus I’m much more productive without a commute. I have no problem adding the 30 minutes to an hour that I would normally commute on to my work day. It’s nice.

We’ve realized that this neighborhood is full of cool people. Everyone is friendly and actually talks to each other. It’s quite a change. I’ve found out one of the bloggers I read lives in this neighborhood as does the respected artistic director of a local theater.

This week we’ve mostly been Christmas shopping and making quick trips to Ikea to finish up our house. We had to pickup a dining table and chairs for our new dining room. We ended up choosing this table and these chairs:

The chairs are actually office chairs, but they look great. You can’t get as many under the table, but we’ve figured out a way to get 10 settings at it anyway. Of course we had to test out the chairs at Ikea which meant I had to carry a chair from the office area over to the dining room area, which of course is the furthest distance possible from one Ikea’s “short cuts”. I was waiting for a comment from the employees in Kitchen design, but they didn’t give me any guff.

Other than that we’ve been settling in. Last night we went to a neighborhood watch meeting and learned more about our neighbors. How to call in about suspicious characters in the neighborhood. Good stuff.

At lunch this afternoon I went running. There’s a hike and bike trail just across from where Santa Monica dead ends into Burleson. I jumped off and found myself on Pleasant Valley just a couple of minutes later. I ran all the way up to Riverside and Pleasant Valley before having to turn back (Julie asked me to be back by 1:30).

All in all we love it here. The neighborhood has some rough sides, but all in all it’s really cool.

I’m currently working in the backyard, watching Stella. Julie’s gone to get her haircut. It’s in the mid-seventies and this my view:

Stella looking for the march hare

biting nails

We decided to put in an offer on a wonderful modern house in South-East Austin last night. Turns out we’re in a multiple offer situation and we just had to submit some crazy high numbers in the hope that we’ll get

arghhhh…. need sleep!

As you know yesterday was the switch into Daylight Savings Time. One of many of our ridiculous concessions to farm staters (who apparently need light to work in the morning, but not at night). Theoretically this means I have a week or two of reduced danger for running into trees on my morning jogs. Which I haven’t run in a week. Because I haven’t slept.

Stella decided last week that she would like to get up at 7:00am rather than 7:30. I’m not cool with that in general. But with Daylight Savings that would mean should would be getting up at 6:00am. If she woke up at 6:30am I would just take her running with me. But 6:00? No sir.

With that in mind we spent all day yesterday engaged in Project: “Keep Stella Awake”. We went to the mall during her nap time. At the mall she proceeded to run around stores for about 2 hours straight. Really. Considering that previously the longest she’s run is about ten feet, this was pretty shocking. We lapped Express about 20 or 30 times in the time it took Julie to try on 3 pairs of jeans, and we lapped Macy’s three times. Any time she tired Stella sat down on the base of a clothing rack and patted next to her for me to sit down. She doesn’t quite grasp yet that I can’t sit under the clothing.

We eventually got home. Had many meltdowns. Had many more meltdowns. Baba and Grandaddy came home and gave Stella a bath and put her to bed at 8. Which meant that Stella stayed up an extra hour and didn’t have a nap. We were successful at keeping Stella awake.

Then at 12:30 last night Julie woke up with severe stomach pain. Which meant no sleep until 1:30am when I ended up taking out a bag to the trash and finally getting back to sleep.

Stella slept until 7:20 this morning. So mission successful.

But I still want some sleep.

Lucy Miyagi

Julie and I were out sitting on the back porch tonight drinking wine. Lucy and Roxie were milling about, and for some reason there were a lot of flies and moths out. Julie commented on a particularly plump fly. We speculated as to whether it was a fly or a bee, then suddenly, WHUMP Lucy jumped up out of the blue. “I think she just ate the fly,” Julie exclaimed. We looked. Nope, she hadn’t eaten the fly, merely winged it. We put it out of its misery. But that is one badass dog. How many dogs you know of that catch flies?


If you’re one of those people who don’t watch TV feel free not to read this entry. And bask in your moral superiority. Also consider making out with yourself in the mirror. That intellect makes you so hot…

Kelli was talking today about the new fall TV season. I’ve got to say that Julie and I are a bit more interested than usual. We like to unwind to a show before we go to bed at night. Since we moved in with my parents we haven’t had cable. We could have gotten cable, but decided not to. My parents have a cable modem and no cable TV. We were afraid that if we added cable TV to their bill it would never get canceled and result in shenanigans and drama. Erroneous bills, collectors calls, bad debts, we feared it all. This is just an extension of my mom’s ability to come in during the only objectionable part of any TV show. She hates TV and TV likes to prove her right. I’m sure the cable company can oblige with their patented incompetent business processes.

So we’ve been doing without. Hasn’t really been too hard. Although, Julie joneses for HGTV shows something fierce. Their website is lame. They have House Hunters, but they only have the reveal. You don’t get to see the three houses they’re choosing from. Bah! We also really enjoyed “Tori and Dean in Love” while on our vacation to Port Aransis, but their streaming appears to be technology from the Netscape Navigator 4 era. Seriously. It’s bad. Seriously. Check it out.

So what have we been watching? We had been watching Top Chef Season 3. Which rocked. We were buying them from iTunes. That shows how much we liked it. Buying episodes. But that’s over now.

We also got hooked on Scott Baio is 45 and Single on Joost, but they only have half the season – BECAUSE THEY ARE EVIL!

The Office still seems good. 30 Rock seems like it might have jumped the shark. And Pushing Daisies has promise. Anything we should be watching that’s available (legally) online?

Chicken and Cashew Stir-Fry

Thanks for all the kind words for Stella guys. She’s doing much better. I finally got out last night and went to see Julie performing in this weeks 365 days/365 plays performance. It was very well performed. The scripts were lacking though.

Here’s some more food pictures from last week. It’s Chicken and Cashew Stir-Fry.

I guess the pictures for the things that were little sushi rolls that tasted like tuna salad haven’t been downloaded from the camera yet.


Ok, so the guy who I share an office with at work has been out of work for a day and a half. People keep asking me why he’s not here. I explain that he had an in-grown toenail and had to have surgery. This has resulted in 4 or 5 stories about in-grown toenails for my coworkers as they pass my office. Now I’m not Julie. I don’t have extreme anti-foot reactions. But this is a bit much. I really don’t need to think any more about my coworkers disgusting disfigured toes. Oh, and my brother-in-law jacked up his toe when we saw him this weekend. The theme of the week seems to be disgusting toes.

Food, food, and food

This post is basically the pictorial followup to this post.

First off, we went to Jason’s Deli on Sunday and got this incredibly cute picture of Stella. This is her eating ice cream. Could you distill the wonder of ice cream into a more perfect picture?

So I downloaded pictures last night and can finally post about the Salmon with Sesame and Orange-Ginger Relish Dinner I made two weeks ago. Here’s the mis en place:

I don’t think my matchstick peppers turned out quite as small as they should be, but the oranges went well. I also didn’t marinate the salmon for the full 4 hours. I think I managed about 30 minutes. It still was quite tasty though. Here’s the final product:

So this being about food, I’ll now move onto the meals for Stella. She’s been being really fussy lately. If you give her vegetables, she generally puts them into her mouth and spits them out. She’s also been being fairly difficult lately, so I figured it would make the week easier for Julie if she had meals for Stella each day that she could just heat up. Here are the four meals I made:

Meal 1:

Hamburger with Onion, with a side of Asparagus. She’s not eating the asparagus, but the dogs love it, so I guess it’s not all bad.

Meal 2:

Whole-wheat chicken Spaghetti with garlic and artichokes.

Meal 3:

Whole-wheat tortilla pizzas with chicken and artichokes.

Meal 4:

Whole-wheat quesadillas with chicken, asparagus and mixed cheese.

They’re not as nutritious as I’d like, but I think she’ll eat them. Next week I’ll start throwing all sorts of vegetables in there. I’ll look to Julie for inspiration, she’s always got good ideas for vegetables. Perhaps spinach and broccoli on the pizza next week? Cauliflower and broccolli in the spaghetti? Sweet potato instead of asparagus. We’ll see…

Finally I leave you with some cool racing pictures.

Starting the race


Stella and I running Mom in to the finish line.

So now you’re up to date. New news in the future.


So I have a headache today, and I’m wondering if it’s related to barometric pressure. So I’m going to record today’s pressure for future reference. This shall be of no interest to any of you. Thank you for your time.

1013.0 hPa

UPDATE: Today is 1012 hPa and I feel fine, so I guess that’s not it. Or it’s more complex than that.

New Look?

So what do you think of the new look? I think it’s kind of bland, but it’s pretty easy to read. I’ve also added the Netflix widget over there on the left, so you can see what we’re watching. And comment on it and stuff… I also added twitter. Which I initially thought was completely stupid, but now I think is kind of interesting and indearing. So think about signing up for an account at and adding me as a friend. Maybe we’ll figure out the point of it together.

Yesterday was a bit dreary, and Julie wasn’t having a great day so we decided to break our eating out rule and go out to lunch together. We ended up at Sandy’s, which was awesome. We both had burgers and fries, and then we had chocolate dipped cones. And the chocolate was totally that plasticy tasting chocolate. It was brilliant. The rest of the day was kind of blah. I ended up running over to Garrison with Stella, and by the time I got back it was about 8:10. So I fed her and had to put her directly to bed without a bath. That was her third day running without a bath so I had to promise Julie I’d give her one this morning. Ok, I didn’t have to promise her. I just felt guilty and did so.

This morning Stella woke us up crying randomly at 6. I worked my sleep-fu on her and sent her back to the land of dreams. Of course it monkeyed with my sleep schedule, and I’d had a bit of a headache all night. Probably dehydration from the run. I wasn’t feeling great this morning so I decided to work from home. Which was great. I got to spend a lot of time playing with Stella, and we had a really fun day. Let me just interject that I really like kids. And I really don’t like babies. Babies are boring. Kids rock. They’re smart and stuff. Babies are dumb. Down with babies! Up with kids who do wacky fun things!

Anyway, I ended up doing some work, I added that twitter capsule up in the top right, and then we went to Home Depot and Kohls. Wherein I decided that I hate shopping for mens clothing. It’s all 100% cotton and right now everything looks like they bought their stock from goodwill. It has a slightly used feeling to it, and everything’s faded. And I’m not talking about the distressed look. I’m talking about golf and polo shirts that just look like they’ve been washed too many times.

So my 30th birthday is tomorrow, and I’ve already gotten some cool presents. I got Jacque Pepin’s Complete Techniques and 7th Generations guide to natural cleaning. I’m sure I’ll get into the cleaning book, and I do really want to read it, but Jacque is so amazing that I’m completely in awe. I already used one of his knife techniques to do a fantastic dice of some mushrooms last night. And he’s got everything in there. From making chicken stock, to hollendaise, to fashioning a rabbit out of an olive. And it has pictures. Truly amazing. Then we’ll use the seventh generation book to clea

Anyway, got to actually eat dinner. It was ready about 5 minutes ago, and I’m just letting it get cool on the stove while I write this.

Oh, if you want to use the Netflix or Twitter widgets on your own website let me know and I’ll get you the code.