Friday, June 05, 2009

Baby blog!

Please note that there is now a new blog in the blog list to the right.

Ally has created a blog in which her and I will be writing about the pregnancy and uploading ultrasound pics and other pregnancy/baby related pics.

Check it out!

Saturday, February 07, 2009

Arctic Blast!

After spending a week in warm Southern California, we came back to a cold Oregon and a few days later it snowed ... A LOT. It was nice for the first few days, then it gone to be a bother.

Southern California

I always thought that I hated Southern California. After our vacation to LA and San Diego, I have changed my mind. I no longer hate it, in fact I actually kind of like it. I still would never want to live in LA, but it definitely has some positives. I would like to spend a bit more time in San Diego some day. It just might be the nicest place I've ever been.

Friday, November 14, 2008

a trip home of sorts

Last week I flew to Minnesota for my grandfather's funeral. He had been quite sick for sometime now as he battled with cancer. In a way, it is good to know that he is no longer suffering. At the same time though, I feel like it came too soon because I had not seen him in 8 years. In fact, I hadn't been back to Minnesota for 12 years. Because of my long absence, I hadn't seen many of my relatives in those 12 years, and it was at times shocking to see every one after so many years. My cousins have all grown up (I guess I have too) and my grandma, aunt and uncle have grown older too.

That side of my family is no stranger to cancer. My grandmother and my uncle have both fought several battles with cancer each. My uncle, in fact, at times could barely speak louder than a whisper after several bouts with throat cancer. Although I didn't get to see my grandfather before he passed, I'm glad that I was able to see my grandmother and my uncle. The fact that they survived their own cancer scares is a testament to their grit and resiliency.

My brother and I left last Tuesday and flew from Portland to Fargo, North Dakota with a layover in Denver. Once we landed, we drove from Fargo to my grandma's house in Park Rapids, Minnesota with a stop in downtown Fargo at Hardee's for lunch after an unsuccessful attempt to locate the North Dakota State University bookstore where my brother was hoping to buy his kids some gifts.

Shortly after arriving, we went to the funeral home for a viewing. It was sad to see him, but he had been put together well and looked decent for a man that had struggled so much and had withered down to about 70 pounds on his 5'10" frame. Afterwards, we went back to my grandma's house where we talked, shared stories and kept an eye on the presidential election results. My brother and I eventually retired to our hotel room for some sleep before the funeral the next morning.

The funeral was nice. That side of my family isn't religious, so the service wasn't too preachy. I had always known that my grandpa was in World War II and the Korean War, but I didn't know the extent of his service. I learned a few things during the service. My brother and I joined our cousin, another cousin's husband and 2 of their kids are casket bearers both on the way to the hearse as well as to the grave. It was definitely a sad burial. I was overwhelmed with feelings of regret for not having visited in so long and not having a chance to say goodbye. After the funeral, we went to the Legion Hall where there was a meal prepared. Following lunch, we returned to my grandma's house where we shared more stories before we eventually went to dinner. Then, back to my grandma's house for more family time and perhaps too many beers and cigarettes. Another night in the hotel this time barely able to sleep as my brother snored through the night.

The next morning, we had coffee and breakfast at my grandma's house before I took my brother to Fargo for his flight home. We stopped in Detroit Lakes, Minnesota for lunch at Taco John's. The weather was getting increasingly nasty. The temperature kept dropping and the wind and rain kept getting harder and harder. When I got back, we had dinner at my grandma's and sat around the table discussing the things that needed to be done to get insurance taken care of for my grandma. Eventually I retired to the couch for my last night of sleep in Minnesota.

I awoke, washed my face, said my goodbyes and headed off for Fargo once again. It was quite a boring drive with no radio reception as I drove through rural Minnesota. I was entertained only with my struggles to keep the car on the road as the wind and rain again increased and as the temperature outside quickly fell from around 54 degrees to an eventual 33 degrees at the airport. After a quick flight from Fargo to Chicago, I stepped off of the small plane onto the tarmac (outside) just in time for it to start snowing. I had a two hour layover so I grabbed some dinner at Chili's before getting on my plane for a 4+ hour flight home on which I read a lot.

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

oh yeah ... I have a blog

I feel like I have forgotten completely about this blog. If any one is still checking this, I'm sure that you feel that way too. I can only apologize and hope that you accept it.

So, what have I been up to all this time? Not a whole lot. I have been consumed with keeping up-to-date with my Oregon Ducks football team. I spend way too much time reading articles, blogs and message boards looking for news and new opinions on my team. It's been a crazy season already with some pretty high highs and already some very low lows. I know that most of the people reading this blog couldn't care less, but I have to be honest if I'm going to tell you what I've been doing with myself lately.

But of course I couldn't possibly spend every single moment of my life on football, right? Right. We've also spent quite a few Mondays at North Bar winning trivia night (once against Ally ... whoops). We've also spent a few nights with my dad, step mom and sister. I joined a gym last week and have been trying to go after work since it is across the street from the office. I have been reading a lot lately too. I mostly just read on the Max to and from work, but I have been blowing through quite a few good books ... some I had previously read and some that are new to me.