D E M E N T E D P E N G U I N . N E T

September 26, 2008

Why is it so hard to find the time?!

Filed under: general topics — Tags: , , , , — admin @ 11:33 am

I do try to keep up with this blog, but I just can’t seem to allocate enough time in the week to do my twice a week posting schedule. How does that happen?

I have updated my other blog, with a how-to on how to build a grey water filter. I had a lot of other things I was hoping to accomplish last weekend that I was going to post on that blog about, but it turned into a garage cleaning adventure instead. That’s okay tho, because now we have plenty of room for our two wheeled rides, as well as a workout area too. A few more weekends and it should be finally cleaned up!

Nickey has been loving her new “Scoot”. She’s been riding it as much as possible and it really has been saving us some money in gas. Unfortunately tho, if it’s outside of a few mile radius then she can’t take it (top speed = about 42mph), so she has had to use the car a little more than we had hoped. I’ve been riding my motorcycle to work every day for the last few weeks. The only days that are bad are Fridays, but I have started riding down the lane divider when traffic is really bad. I just had to bite the bullet one day and do it. It is a bit intimidating but not as bad as I thought it might be. Also, I finally got my endorsement on my license yesterday. The DMV’s here seem to be really booked up and it was hard to get an appointment quickly. I had to drive out to Thousand Oaks (about a 40 minute drive on the freeway from home) to get an appointment this month. Now I can drive on the freeways, at night, and with a passenger!

Hayden has been doing great in school. He does the obligatory battle over homework sometimes but that isn’t very often. He was able to get the teacher he really wanted this year, but unfortunately she just took a new job at a school closer to her home and today was her last day. We’ve been reassured that his new teacher – a recent third grade teacher at his school who lost her class due to an attendance drop – is just as good as his current teacher was.

Hayden is really getting excited for his birthday. He’s going to be six on October 4th. We were planning on throwing him a party but Nickey had a different idea that she proposed to him. He could either have a party, or we could take the money we would expect to spend on the party and instead let him go to Toys R Us and have a shopping spree. He opted for the shopping spree and has been making a list of, what seems like, everything he sees. I swear, he want’s every single Bionical and Lego set out there. He’s also getting really excited for Halloween and Nickey has been putting up some really gory decorations for him. We even have bloody footsteps up our front steps. Spooky!

The weather is showing signs of changing. It was in the 70’s to low 80’s for a little over a week after Mom and Bob left, but now it’s back up to the high 90’s again. Our pool dropped six degrees during the “cool spell” and has been hovering around 75 degrees since. It’s getting close to the time to close down the pool for the winter. This winter we are going to drain the pool and resurface it, which it’s been in serious need of since we bought the place. I’d really like to tile the whole thing, but I’m not sure what that would involve and I’m not sure I could do that myself. We’ll see tho.

September 15, 2008

The two wheeled family

Filed under: general topics — Tags: , , , — admin @ 4:38 pm

Since getting a new job farther from home, I decided to finally bite the bullet and get a motorcycle. Something I never thought I’d do. It seems, however, that I’m not the only one overcoming their fears of the two wheeled motorized mode of transport. Last weekend we went to a scooter dealer out in Irwindale and bought Nickey a new 50cc scooter. I’ve gotta say, she is really cute on that thing! She’s got a half helmet, leather gloves, and her movie star sunglasses.

We opted for the 50cc because then she wouldn’t need to get her endorsement. It’s only for around the neighborhood so she doesn’t need a lot of power, and can get up to just over 40mph while getting 70-90mpg. It’s got quite a bit of storage – a trunk, storage under the seat, and even a glove box type of compartment up front. It also has room for a passenger so Hayden can go along with her. It took him a while before he’d even sit on it while it wasn’t running, but now he’s like a dare devil on the back shooting people with his finger (for some reason) while he rides and he almost refuses to hold on to his mom, even though she is quite adamant about him hanging on to her. She loves to ride it whenever she can, and even makes up reasons to go to the store just to ride it! On the weekends we usually go places together – her and Hayden on “Scoot” and me on my motorcycle. Here’s a picture of Scoot and my Harley together:

I’m not sure what’s gotten into Hayden lately, but he has really turned into a TV kid. He never wants to go anywhere anymore, he just wants to watch tv, a movie, play games on the computer, or play video games. We are starting to curb this as much as we can, and are going to implement a “No TV or Computer” time zone on the weekends, probably between noon and 6pm. We tell him he needs to turn off the tv and go out and play, but his response is “It’s boring!”. Sheesh! He’s not quite six years old yet and he already sounds like a teenager!!

My Mom and Bob came to visit us last weekend and, as I feared it would be, it was really hot. I know we had a great time and I think they did to. They took us out for almost every meal and watched Hayden a couple of times while we went on a date and while we ran some errands. We got to spend a lot of quality time with them catching up on family events. Apparently my mom hasn’t changed much in the humour department, because – as she liked to do when I was a kid – she cannon balled me in the pool while I wasn’t looking. I got her back without even trying tho, because the water was a lot colder than she expected it to be :). As misfortune would have it, the very day they left to continue on their journey up to Fresno the temperature dropped down from the mid-90’s to the low 80’s for the rest of the week.

September 9, 2008

Latest events

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , — admin @ 3:42 pm

Last weekend my Mom and Bob came to town to see us for a few days. They flew down on Friday morning to start a week or so long adventure. They left our house Monday morning and were heading to Disneyland and possibly Catalina, then to a B&B up the coast, to Bob’s sisters, and then back home again. While they were visiting with us we were treated to some good food, and we also got the opportunity to have them watch Hayden a couple of times so Nickey and I could go out and do a few things.

One of the things we were able to do while they were watching Hayden was to go out for a date night. It didn’t end up how we had planned – dinner at the Stinking Rose (garlic) restaurant – but we still had a great time. The plans were changed because we went out to Irwindale to buy a scooter for Nickey which ended up taking a lot longer than we expected it would. She looks really cute on the scooter. We then had dinner at the Claim Jumper, which we hadn’t been to since probably back when we lived in Seattle. I’ll get my hands on a picture of the scooter and put it up here, hopefully a picture of her riding it to show how good she looks on it.

Hayden successfully completed the first week of first grade without too much of a problem. It’s hard to know for sure how he is going to accept a change in his schedule but he has adapted quite quickly. If I remember correctly, last year it took him a few weeks to get into the swing of things before he got used to the routine. I’ve been walking with Nickey and Hayden to school in the morning to see him off. He’s so cute – he’s so little and he hasn’t grown into his clothes yet which makes him look even littler! Hopefully he’ll be able to stay focused and do well on his schoolwork, I know that was a tough one for me at that age.

I passed my motorcycle class last weekend which means I’ll be getting a certificate in the mail that I can take to the DMV and get my motorcycle endorsement. Whew! I wasn’t sure I was going to be able to make it since the riding classes were soooo early in the morning, but I was able to get up for them okay and wasn’t even late. I was fortunate that I had been riding my motorcycle before the class so it made the lessons easier than it was for those who hadn’t been riding yet. I’m just glad it’s over with. I’m still nervous to go on the freeway, but at least I now have the option. I really want to take the advanced class but I will have to see when and where it is.

There’s probably more stuff to blog about, but I’m at work so I should probably make it look like I am actually working 🙂

September 3, 2008

Labor Day weekend

Filed under: general topics — Tags: , , — admin @ 1:00 am

It was a pretty laid back holiday weekend for the most part. We went out to a few places to eat, ran a few errands, and I did half of a small home improvement project. The highlight of the weekend was on Monday when we took a drive out to Ojai, which is about 30 minutes south east of Santa Barbara. It’s a small town that seems to attract a lot of local tourists, and a lot of motorcycles. We saw at least as many motorcycles as cars, maybe even more, and most of them were cruisers. Nickey suggested that we might consider taking a ride there on the Harley when I get my motorcycle certification.

Ojai is a very interesting town. Unfortunately most of the shops were closed due to the holiday, but it seemed to have many unique and eclectic retailers selling clothes, art, furniture, toys, and many other things. My personal favorite was an eco-friendly store that had a lot of great stuff in it, and I had a great conversation with the owner. I’m sure we’ll be at least semi-annual tourists of the town, although I don’t think Hayden will be as excited to return as Nickey and I will be. It’s almost all boring adult stuff there.

Hayden starts school in the morning, first grade to be specific. I think it will be good for him to get back to a regular school schedule, he has turned into quite a home body this summer and hasn’t even wanted to get dressed unless he has to. It’s quite a change from last summer where he’d almost get agitated if we didn’t leave to go somewhere by early afternoon on the weekends. Hopefully he’ll remember most of what he learned in kindergarten, but we’ll find out soon enough. I’m sure we’ll have lots to update in the weeks to come 🙂

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