Thursday, November 10, 2011


Tonight the girls decided to be superheroes. They flew around saving me from dragons, dinosaurs, and bad guys. Then they saved some babies that were lost. It was pretty awesome.

Saturday, November 05, 2011

Good Saturday

Today was a good Saturday. It started off with a morning swinging a hazel hoe at a trail build on a new mountain bike trail complex here in Redmond.

Then I went shooting with a couple of friends. I was able to shoot my new gun. It was pretty awesome.

Then I spent the evening with the girls while Jessi was out. We had a dinner picnic and watched Toy Story. It ended up with a lot of cuddle time with dad! That was nice. When it comes to my girls I'm pretty sappy.

Then I finished the night off hanging out with Jess. All in all it was a good day. Now we just need snow so ski season can start!

Sunday, February 06, 2011

2010 Journals

As I posted last year I have a few nontraditional journals that I like to keep. I like to keep track of my bike commuting days and miles, all the books I read, and all the ways that I injury myself. Here's a recap of how 2010 turned out.

Bike Commuting Highlights

  • 175 total days bike commuting

  • Logged 1,593 miles bike commuting

  • Burned 56,735 calories commuting

  • Had 4 car driven days (this was either driving myself or by Jess & the girls

  • I know there were some bus days in Cincinnati but I didn't keep track of them. I'd probably say 10

  • 37 days riding recreationally (this is mountain and errands [yes I consider riding the bike for errands recreation])

  • Logged 249 rec miles

  • Burned about 8,726 calories riding rec

  • In total logged 212 'days' on the bike for a total of 1,842 miles, and burned about 65,461...not too shabby

Book List
Here's the book list, by month (once again, the book is logged in the month I finished it).


  • Three Against Hitler

  • Basic Soap Making - All the Skills & Tools You Need to Get Started

  • Farewell, My Subaru

  • Omnivore's Dilemma


  • The Good Earth - Pearl S Buck

  • Peter Reinhart's Whole Grain Breads: New Techniques, Extraordinary Flavors

  • Parenting with Love & Logic for Early Childhood

  • The Market Planning Guide, 6th Edition, David H. Bangs

  • In Defense of Food

  • Strategic Market Management, 8th Edition, David A. Aaker

  • Consumer Behavior, 1st Edition, Frank Kardes


  • Unleashing the Ideavirus


  • Marketing Mangement: The Big Picture

  • The Way of Herbs

  • Winning at Retail: Developing a Sustained Model for Retail Success


  • Fablehaven Book 5: Keys to the Demon Prison

  • The Backyard Beekeeper: Revised & Updated: An Absolute Beginners Guide to Keeping Bees in Your Yard and Garden

  • The Natural Soap Book: Making Herbal and Vegetable-Based Soaps

  • Making natural liquid soaps : herbal shower gels, conditioning shampoos, moisturizing hand soaps, luxurious bubble baths, and more--


  • Milk-based Soaps: Making Natural, Skin Nourishing Soap


  • Hunger Games

  • Moves & Miracles: My Sister and I (Grandma Johnson's story)


  • Catching Fire (Hunger Games #2)

  • Mockingjay (Hunger Games #3)


  • Eragon

  • Just in Case: How to be self-sufficient when the unexpected happens

  • Mini Farming: self sufficiency on a 1/4 acre


  • The Lost Symbol

  • True Blue (Baldacci)

The Body Journal
Here's all the ways I injured myself in 2010. I had to feel it for at least 2 days to make the cut.

That rounds out 2010 in terms of journals. So I ask again, does anyone else keep any nontraditional journals?

Sunday, November 07, 2010

Sunday Entertainment

So, you have to be a parent to appreciate the video below. You also have to love your kids to appreciate the video below.

The last few months with the girls have been awesome. Maya has grown and matured enough to actually 'play' and interact with Penelope. Penelope has grown and matured to play with Maya as opposed to trying to outright bend Maya to her will. They have become the best of friends (but as you'll see a couple minutes in they are definitely sisters, hehe). About 3:30 it switches to what activity number two of the night was.


Sunday, October 03, 2010

We Bought a House, Yay!

We offered back at the beginning of August, it was accepted, then it took forever, but we finally moved in! We moved in this past Thursday and have been getting settled. Pictures, details, and other things will be posted at another time. But we got a house, yay!

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Penelope's First Climb

Today we took Penelope rock climbing for her first time! We have 'bouldered' with her a little. At a park here in Redmond they have boulders with holds on them. She likes to climb those but today was her first time with the real thing.

Yesterday I picked up a kid sized harness from work. She's been asking to go climbing for a long time (months and months she's been asking). Today we decided to do it. We drove to Smith Rock State Park, only about 20 minutes away, picked up the guide book and a year pass to Oregon State Parks and away we went.

Penelope was very excited and had to carry her harness herself. It took us a little bit of scouting around to find the area. Then we had to wind our away around and climb over boulders to finally make it.

I set up a top rope on what I think was a 5.4, harnessed her in, gave her a talk about safety, how to climb, and sent her on her way. She's a natural. She jumped right onto the rock and started climbing. When she'd hit difficult spots she feel around and try things out. The highest she ever got was maybe 15 feet off the ground but she was stoked!

Fortunately she weighed enough and there wasn't too much friction in the system that when we lowered her she actually came down (we've actually seen little kids that literally won't come down because they don't weigh enough and someone has to climb up and pull on them to get them down).

Jessi got to climb as well. She was also stoked because it's been forever since she was able to climb.

It was an awesome evening, we got to go out as a family and do the stuff we love, the surroundings couldn't be beat (watch the video below to see), we climbed, we hiked, we had fun, and we had huckleberry ice cream on the way home. Man it felt good to get out and climb, even though it was easy, and do it with my family. Climbing is one of Jessi and I's favorite past times together.


Last Saturday, August 14, I ran my first triathlon ever. I did it on a whim. Four weeks before I learned of the spring tri that the city of Redmond puts on (this was the second year) and I thought to myself "what the heck. I can swim, I bike, and I run, I might as well." Jessi has been telling me for years that I should run tris but I just never did. I have thought about it in the past but never had the motivation. With this sprint tri the distance was 500m swim, 12 mile bike ride, 5k run. I figured I could come off the couch and race that.

My training consisted of:

  • Three days in the pool (workouts were about 2000-2400 yards)

  • One long road ride, two long MTB rides, and daily bike commutes

  • Three 30 minute runs

That's it. I had no real goals other than push myself and see how fast I could do it. I didn't really do any advanced prep. I read a little bit on how to do transitions and how to set them up, but that was it. Since the swim was in a pool there was staggered start times based on your time to swim 500m. I said my time would be 9:30 or maybe it was 9:45, which ended up putting me in the third to last wave to start. I got there at 6:30 am to set up my transitions and had to wait until 9:45 to actually race.

When the swim started I started out strong, focused on swimming long, and kept a pace that I thought I could keep the whole time. As it turns out I swam the leg a lot faster than I thought. I pulled out of the water and crossed into the transition area at 7 minutes 56 seconds (I was surprised). As it turns out I had the second fastest swim time in the tri and the third fastest including the teams. No idea how that happened.

My transitions were slow. My first transition too me 1:58 or so which is fine. Very slowed compared to the people who were in and out in 30 seconds. My bike was pretty good. I'm not the strongest road rider, I don't really ride road. I passed one guy and was passed by four others. I think I kept a good past and almost chased down the last guy who passed me. I finished the bike in 34:32. The bike was only a little painful. I wanted to keep a strong pace but then trying to chase that last guy done worked me pretty good. My second transition was also okay. This time it was only 1:15, still slow but oh well.

Then onto the run and the pain. By this time I am tired. It's getting hot and I don't like running on paved surfaces. I'm a snob and I only like trails. Oh well, what do you do? I had high aspirations for the run which I quickly learned weren't going to happen. I reminded myself that my overall goal was to push myself and see how I did. I jammed a gel right at the beginning of the run and a bunch of water and in the first two minutes I wanted to heave. Of course I didn't but I wanted to.

My pace was okay. My legs felt very stiff and I didn't feel like I was flowing. The halfway point perked me up a little and I picked up the pace. By the end I felt a little less stiff and felt like the run flowed but it still wasn't that great. I finished in 25:09 which isn't that great for me. I was hoping to keep it closer to 22 but what do you do?

Overall I finished the entire tri in 1:10:52. Not too bad I thought. I gave it my all and I felt good about it. As it turns out I finished 2nd in my age group, 12th overall, and was only about 8 minutes out of first place. Completely surprising.

Overall it was a pretty good time, I liked it a fair amount, and would consider doing another tri, but only if it was swimming in a lake, mountain biking, and trail running. Not sure I want to commit to a tri training schedule though. Good times.

Jessi was very supportive and encouraging (thanks honey!) and she brought the girls to cheer me on at the transitions and at the end. That's my favorite part, seeing my girls at the end.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Camping at the Metolius River

We finally went camping! This is the first time in about a year. That was one of the things that made it great. The other thing that made it great? We finally bought a big tent. No more cramming all of us in the small 3 person Coleman that Jessi brought with her when we got married (nothing against that tent, it has served us many good nights). We sprung for the The North Face Mountain Manor 6. I know what I've said about TNF in the past and I still stand by that. But, through work I got a great deal and there weren't many other 6 person tents to choose from.

We went to the Metolius River Recreation area just outside of the town Sisters. We camped up near the headwaters. It was a small 'walk-in' campsite. It was actually nice, we had to walk maybe 400 feet from the car to the campsite. The one huge benefit? No trailers or generators nearby! It was fun. The girls helped us set up camp. They loved playing in the tent. The tent has 3 'rooms'. The 'main' room is separated by smaller 'rooms' off to each side that by curtains. The sides were big enough to fit the pack 'n play on one side and tons of room for Penelope on the other. The girls liked having their own 'rooms'. Jessi and I slept in the 'living room' as Penelope liked to call it.

We had fire, cooked some smores, went for a walk to the river, and put the girls to bed. After that Jessi and I played cards and sat by the fire. In the morning we had eggs and pancakes in the dutch oven over the fire. There was more playing until lunchtime and then we had beef stew with herb dumplings in the dutch oven. It was delicious!

After lunch we broke down camp and went home. I can't say how nice it is to have mountains close, pine forests close, camping close, and did I mention mountains? Yup, we definitely are not regretting leaving Cincinnati (sorry Cincinnati-ites).

Here's some more pictures to check it out: