Archive for category: Family

Conversations in Weight Loss

09 Aug
August 9, 2018

Since Publix was running a BOGO on my breakfast sandwiches, I decided to get a box of their lower calorie ones to try. Had the first one this morning.

Me: Okay, these sandwiches aren’t too bad. I guess I’ll switch over to these.

Fiancée: Not too bad? Aren’t the other ones better?

Me: Not 60 calories better. That’s almost two Oreo thins. I’ll take less breakfast to be able to eat two Oreos. I gotz muh priorities!

Week of Highs and Lows

09 Jul
July 9, 2018

The personal life was a rolling through hills and valleys last week. Some of this my readers may already know from my posts last week.

Last Sunday was the birthday, and I received a lot of well wishes on the Book of Face, and some Amazon monies. Since The Girlfriend’s birthday and mine are so close, we decided to hold off any major celebration until the weekend after Independence Day.

I had a short week at the day job as I was taking off Thursday and Friday. It was still the beginning of the month, so I still had my monthly reports to get out. So, like the Bloodhound Gang lyrics, “Short and hard, like a bodybuilding elf.”

Tuesday night, The Girlfriend took our newest cat Rose to the vet. The cat came to me originally as a foster from my sister-in-law, and we decided to just keep her. She was a feisty, bossy little thing that was always hungry. We discovered part of the reason after taking the cat to the vet. Cancer. So, we decided to give that little cat the best home she could have until the disease took her. Which it did on Tuesday.

Wednesday was momentous, not because it was Independence Day, but because it was Cat Moving Day. Due to jobs, logistics, and houses, The Girlfriend and I decided that it would be best for me to move down to her place in Parrish than for her to move up to northern Hillsborough County. Wednesday was the day I moved my two cats down to be introduced to hers. Yes, we have a lot of cats. No, I’m not going to tell you how many. Yes, it’s less than ten.

Then came Wednesday night. With heart pounding in my chest, I popped the question. The Girlfriend is now The Fiancée.

Thursday was busy. The Fiancée’s niece moved in a few weeks ago after she left her husband. The niece asked if we would mind if she switched from the bedroom at the front of the house to the spare room at the back. This actually works out well, as it forced a purge and consolidation to turn the spare room into a bedroom and the bedroom into my home office. It was also a lot of work.

Friday was The Fiancée’s birthday and we celebrated by exchanging gifts. With the moving, we agreed to a $20 limit on gifts this year. I got her a cute coffee mug, and she got me a sign to go on the door of my new home office. Friday we also announced to the Facebook world we were engaged. The Fiancée has a lot more FB friends than I do. After celebrating, we did some quick shopping and then back to work. This was capped off with the AC going out Friday night, and the repair guy not being available until Saturday morning. Shakes were obtained from Sonic and multiple fans set up. It was a long, hot, and sweaty night. And not in a good way.

Saturday morning involved waiting for the AC guy to show up, fix the bad capacitor, and enjoy the rush of the first cool air in fifteen hours. Then more work. For the record, the desks we bought from Target went together so easily, I was almost suspicious. I also highly appreciated how the small parts were bundled by assembly step rather than one big bag.

Saturday night was a combination birthday/engagement dinner hosted and cooked by The Brother and Shooting Buddy. Both of them are into molecular gastronomy, and this was one of their chances to pull out the stops. The main course was a chicken breast with bacon glued on one side, grilled, and topped with a pepper jack cheese sauce. High end stuff. After dinner was board games and convivial company.

Yesterday was more work in the morning. The day was capped off with a birthday/engagement party at her parents’ house. Good food and good people. And more Amazon money. Which is good because Prime Day is a week away.

I’m on leave for the next couple of days while I do work on my house to get rid of stuff and box up stuff going down to my new home. It’s going to be weird for me to be in the house without my two fur balls getting underfoot.

It was a very busy week. On the good news front, my two cats have assimilated (or dominated) into the household with minimal growling, hissing, and spitting. We haven’t had any real fights. On the bad side, The Fiancée and I have had some frustrations as we get used to living with each other after living independently for years. Sometimes life decides to cram a month’s worth of moments into a week.

Friday Quote- The Girlfriend

06 Jul
July 6, 2018


I guess she’s now The Fiancée.

A Rose By Any Other Name

04 Jul
July 4, 2018

Last night, we had to put down our cat Rose. I say we because The Girlfriend and I discussed the possibility earlier, but in the end, she had to tell the vet to end the cat’s suffering.

Rose came to us as a foster back in May. Last month, the vet told us the reason she wasn’t eating was because of cancer. We knew she didn’t have long, but it was still kind of sudden. I thought we would have another month with the bossy little cat.

I know that in time the things that cat did that infuriated me will become the things that gave her personality and charm. Including waking me up at oh-dark-early because she thought it was time to feed her.

I’m glad we could give her the best home we could for her final days. I just wish there were more of them.

Shooting and Fishing With the Kiddos

28 Jun
June 28, 2018

We’re having a small diaspora around these parts. I’m moving from northern Hillsborough county down to Parrish with The Girlfriend. My brother, Rocket Engineer, got a job at Cape Canaveral last fall, and now that school is out, my sister-in-law, niece, and nephew are moving over to the east side of the state. Shooting Buddy is moving out of The Brother’s (the one that gives me Metal Tuesday fodder), and moving to my mom’s place (which is being vacated by sister-in-law and co) to act as caretaker for mom’s place and mine (until mine gets sold). Got all that? Yeah, it’s confusing on this side as well.

Anyways, with all of the moving and distances, I took a few personal days to spend with the kids. They specifically asked if I would take them shooting and fishing. I decided that I would take them individually to the range, and there would be a joint fishing trip with Shooting Buddy (who also happens to be Fishing Buddy).

Last week, I took the nephew to the range. At thirteen, the boy’s nudging six feet. So, in addition to his 10/22 that I bought him a few years ago, he played with my M&P 22 and my M&P9c (first gen). He really liked the .22 pistol. We went through a couple of boxes of .22 before it was time for lunch.

Tuesday was the fishing trip. I’m not a big fishing person. I went to Florida Carry’s Open Carry fishing events, but that was more RKBA and less fishing. Shooting Buddy is a fisherman from a long line of fisherman. So, I let him organize and me finance the day’s adventures. We took the kids to one of the smaller parks on the Hillsborough river. Real pretty place with a nice boardwalk with shaded benches. This was the niece’s first fishing trip. She was a little squeamish at first at putting a worm on the hook, but as the day progressed, she got into it. Each of the kids caught a bluegill. I had the biggest catch of the day of a two hundred pound log. Stupid stick fish. Lunch entertainment was provided by the niece who caught a little too much wasabi in her sushi roll.

Yesterday was the niece’s range day. She’s an interesting one to take to the range, because she’s a southpaw. She mainly shot my M&P-15/22, which is now her rifle. Mainly because she likes that rifle and it gives me an excuse to get another .22 rifle at some point. She had a lot of fun plinking away with her new rifle.

I am going to have to set aside a few days a year to do these kinds of things with them after the moves. Keeps the family bonds strong.

Quote of the Day – Walmart Edition

20 Jun
June 20, 2018

We – being my shooting/fishing buddy, the niece and nephew, and myself – went up to the Super Walmart to procure line and tackle for next week’s fishing excursion. Stepping out of the truck, I warned the kids to stay with us and not wonder about thusly:

“As we have learned in many games, never split up the party.”

Shooting buddy needed to stop and laugh for a moment before we could continue.

Fifteen Years

18 Jun
June 18, 2018

Yesterday was the fifteenth Father’s Day without my father. Some days, it seems like we lost him yesterday and the idea that he’s been gone for a decade and a half is startling.

I know a lot of my personality comes from my dad. The work ethic, the accountant mind, the methodical nature. Funny thing, I also got my job from my dad. Well, sort of. Dad worked for the same .gov agency that I do. Ran across a memo where he was on the task force that ultimately created my position. These are the times I wish I could believe in fate.

I wish my dad was here. I wish he could see my niece and nephew. They would love his stories. They would love watching old John Wayne films with him. I wish he could meet The Girlfriend. I think he would be glad that I finally found her.

Miss you Dad.

I Am A Bad Uncle

14 Jun
June 14, 2018

Because my brother took a position on the other side of the state, I’ve been tasked with taking my nephew to his Boy Scouts meeting. On the way to and from, the nephew and I have been listening to the first couple of books from Peter Grant’s Maxwell saga. We finished the second book last week, and this week was probably the last week he’ll go to scouts before the family moves.

So, I throw on Lawdog’s African adventures book. Much hilarity was enjoyed. I have also exposed a bright young man to possible mischievous antics.

I am a bad uncle.

Chocolate Cake For Breakfast

25 Apr
April 25, 2018

Last weekend the girlfriend and I had the first “your folks and my folks” dinner at her place. This was the first time my family had been down to her place and got to meet her family and cats. Yes, it was a success. Particularly when my family got to meet her hairless cats.

For dessert, my mom brought chocolate cake. Very good. Very rich. About half of it left over. The next morning, there was some facetious discussion about the possibility of chocolate cake for breakfast. Maybe not so facetious. Anyways, I was going to make a reference to Bill Cosby’s bit, but found out that the girlfriend never saw that routine. That was quickly remedied.

She was amused, and I think more tempted by the chocolate cake.

I Actually Made It Out to the Range

12 Apr
April 12, 2018

I played hooky from work and took my mom to the range. Some tidbits:

  1. There was a bus from The Villages retirement community parked outside the range when we pulled up. That must be an interesting group activity.

2.Playing with the SIRT while teleworking helped my flinch. Now I’m going low and left.

3.Mom’s revolver started throwing keyholes about halfway through the session. Need to research that. It’s one of Taurus’s polymer revolvers, so I’m having all sorts of nasty suspicions.

  1. The range is trying out an “action shooting league” to try and cash in on the three-gun money. They’re starting with just pistol. There’s a match on Friday night. I’ll probably try that out. I’ve never done a competition, and almost all the professionals I know recommend it.

  2. The range had a Colt All American 2000 for $450. I was very tempted just to add it to my inventory. They also had a Boberg (whatever Bond Arms is calling it). That’s another I want to add as a novelty.

  3. Mom handed me a box of 20 gauge shells. You know what this means. I need to get a 20 gauge shotgun. Honestly, I wouldn’t say no to one of the new shorties.

  4. It seems the IMI generic ammo is no longer using the depleted uranium primers. I still have half a box of stuff my M&Ps refuse to fire.

  5. I am buying my niece, nephew, and mom electronic muffs. The ability to communicate is so worth the extra warmth.

  6. It’s been long enough since I’ve taken the kiddos shooting that we need to refamiliarization. Particularly since the boy is now taller than me. At thirteen.