Cut to spare those with delicate sensibilities )
...and here I am, pounding my fingers on a keyboard and my head on my desk.

In other words, it's Monday. Hey, how the hell are ya?

So, it's been almost 2 weeks since I last blathered at ya. Been busy in that time. Between the getting ready for the holidays and putting in about 12 extra hours at work, I've been busier than a one legged man in an ass kicking contest. So then, a quick bullet list.
  • Me: Doing OK. Trying to not think about [livejournal.com profile] mousecat0's upcoming surgery. Yeah, I know, it's routine. They probably do tens of thousands of them a day. But still - it's surgery, and there's always a risk. So, I try not to think about it. Otherwise ok, if somewhat tired last week from putting in extra time to cover the time I'll be taking off for the surgery. Had a bit of a revelation last week...but more on that later.
  • Family: Doing well. [livejournal.com profile] mousecat0 is off some of her meds in preparation for the surgery. Everyone's been busy with schoolwork and holiday prep; it's sometimes hard to stay focused.
  • What we've been doing. Well, since the last real update...
    • Went to parent-teacher conferences
    • Went to [livejournal.com profile] stoooooooo's and [livejournal.com profile] ginabeth's place for family, food, and football.
    • Did the Thanksgiving baking (4 loaves of pumpkin bread, 3 cornbread rounds, pumpkin pie, pear cranberry pecan pie, chocolate pie, thanksgiving sugar cookies)
    • Did the Thanksgiving cleaning (well, a lot of it, anyway)
    • Finished the Thanksgiving shopping
    • Did some Christmas shopping.
    Blearg.
  • Gaming: You may have noticed a lack of gaming listed. I think, though I'm not certain, that the lack of gaming, whether tabletop or electronic, is one of the reasons behind some of my depression of late. Gaming is far and away one of my favorite things to do, and I haven't really done any lately. No fault or blame here, just the way life has worked these last few months. Once I realized that, I tried to get myself to do something, even if it's just noodle around on WoW for a while. Haven't been able to. Too much to do. Must work on this.
  • Work: Still no word on the contract award. Still feel about 99% certain I'll have the same job come Jan 1, but about 85% likely that it'll be with a different company (in other words, I'll still be here, but someone else will be signing the checks). We shall see.
  • New Year's: Yes, we will be doing the Open House this year. Saturday and Sunday. official announcement and eVite to go out tonight, I hope.
  • Food Network shows: I liked Food Network Live this year. It gave me one or two ideass to work with. Also, the Swedish Chef made an appearance. What's not to like? Also appreciated the new Good Eats Thanksgiving special. Yum.
OK, I need to clean up and head for home. Got a 12 hour day tomorrow, and need to make some spiced pears and cranberry apple ginger chutney tonight.

Once again, I'd like to take a moment to remind all of you of why we do this. Yeah, the food is good and the pies better, but this is a time for family and to give thanks for the blessings in our lives. In all the hustle and bustle, let us not lose sight of that.

I remind you all to have a good day. The very fact that you woke up on the proper side of the grass this morning makes it a great start to a good day.
Not much, how 'bout you? I'm not sure why I called...

Ok, enough o' that crap.

Yes, I know I've done that before, but not recently, and I'm not firing on all cylinders right now, so go soak your head. ;-)

Anyway, this is likely to get long and rambly, and before it's all said and done, I may put it behind a cut.

So, lemme start out with some administrivia. Please give a warm welcome to [livejournal.com profile] rainlust who found me through the [livejournal.com profile] ljover30 community. Pull up a chair and help yourself to somethin' to drink. I generally suggest that people read this post if they want to know more about me.

[livejournal.com profile] mousecat0: Normally I start out talking about me (this is *my* LJ after all), but this needs to be put out there first. For the last month/month-and-a-half or so, my lovely wife has been having problems with her left arm. Shooting pain, numbness, etc. She saw one of the docs in one of the buildings she manages, who recommended she see a specialist. Long story short, they believe she has a pinched nerve in her neck causing the problem. They put her on a relatively short steroid regimen and prescription ibuprofen, as well as physical therapy.

Unfortunately, it hasn't worked. If anything, things have gotten worse. And to the point where last night she sat in bed crying for 20-30 minutes from the pain, and there wasn't a damn thing I could do except sit there and hold her hand, because I didn't know if doing anything more would make things worse. I gave her some Tylenol PM to help both the pain and to help her sleep. I didn't sleep well because I was constantly monitoring her. If she didn't have the followup visit today, I might have considered taking her to the ER. Of course, I don't know what they could have done.

Anyway, today's appointment resulted in her getting an appointment for an MRI. I don't know when the appointment is, unfortunately.

Me: Um, take away the stress and frustration over the arm thing and I'm ok. Otherwise, right now, I'm tired and frustrated. The tired thing I can handle, it's the not being able to do anything that's...not so easy to handle. For all of my gifts, healing is not on the list.

Kids: Doing well, champing at the bit for school to let out for the summer. Both are concerned, however, for their mom, and this tempers their spirits a bit. However, a note of congratulations is in order for [livejournal.com profile] mouseling1 and the rest of the North Bethesda Middle School Chorus for taking first place in the "Music in the Park" competition last weekend at Busch Gardens. The NBMS Band and NBMS Orchestra took second place in each of their respective competitions there as well, and congratulations are due them as well.

Work: is work. Contract has been renewed through the end of December. We'll see what happens then.

Mother's Day: Went very well, despite my attempts to screw up the baking. How so? Well, lessee, first there was the sugar-free cheesecake, which I could have sworn called for the graham cracker crust to be baked first. Except I obviously read it wrong, for I burned two crusts. The third, made with the last of the graham crackers I bought, was fine, and so was the rest of the cheesecake. Then I tried to make the cinnamon rolls, and the dough wouldn't rise. [livejournal.com profile] mousecat0, being the consummate baker that she is, warmed up the oven and threw the dough in there...where it promptly rose. [livejournal.com profile] luvmomh seemed to enjoy everything, and I think it was a great time for everyone.

Gaming: My Pathfinder game has started it's next stage, as the party has moved on to helping a small Keep on the Borderlands. Perhaps the best line of the last session was made by the barbarian, who, upon arriving at the keep and being questioned by the surly corporal of the gate, announced "We're from the Government! We're here to help!" They have also been introduced to the "Curse of Competence" - since they did such a remarkable job of taking care of a bandit problem they'd been having, they were given a chance for greater fame and glory by being commissioned to find and eradicate the threat of the so-called "Caves of Chaos". Ah, what fun!

Not much electronic/online gaming of late. No time.

Cons: As has been announced elsewhere, the current plan is that we will be attending Origins this year. In fact, we've already registered for the con and our events. Plan is to leave early in the AM on Wednesday and come home Monday. I'm glad that we were able to make this happen - if what I'm hearing is true, we may not be going for a while. It seems that they may move Origins to Memorial Day weekend. This, IMO, is going to be a major mistake, as most students are not out of school yet. And for all that they've been pushing this as a family convention...I foresee a sharp drop in attendance if the date change becomes a reality.

Otherwise, TCEP 18 is on track, and Intervention 2011 is full steam ahead as well. At TCEP, I'll be running two sessions of the 4th annual Arneson/Gygax Memorial Dungeon Crawl, as well as a RPG session for the younger kids (probably Avengers based) and who knows what else.

TV notes: Watched the latest ep of Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes last night. Loved the cameo appearances of Ben Grimm & Johnny Storm. This series is REALLY Good. So, for that matter, is Young Justice, though some of the vocal mannerisms are gonna drive me up a wall.

I think that's all I got for now.

I remind you all to have a good day. The very fact that you woke up on the proper side of the grass this morning makes it a great start to a good day.

Peas. Out.

Convention Countdown
Origins: 34 Days!
TCEP 18: 138 Days!
Intervention: 152 Days!
So, yeah, here we go...

Saturday, Nov 20 )
Sunday, Nov 21 )
Monday, Nov 22 )
Tuesday, Nov 23 )
Wednesday, Nov 24 )
Thursday, Nov 25 )
Friday, Nov 26 )
Saturday, Nov 27 )
Sunday, Nov 28 )
As I usually do, I find myself extremely thankful for a number of things this year:
  • [livejournal.com profile] mousecat0, B, & F.
  • My job and [livejournal.com profile] mousecat0's job
  • My clueless end-users
  • My in-laws.
  • My family
  • The fact that I have a roof over my head, food on my table, and clothes on my back.
  • And perhaps most especially, my friends, whether near or far, whether they read this drivel I write or not. (and that does mean all of you)


Even though Thanksgiving has come and gone, I would ask one thing from each and every one of you. Please, try to remember to be thankful for each and every blessing in your life every day. Let the people in your life know you are thankful for them. Let us not give thanks only on Thanksgiving, but every day.

And I am thankful for all of you. Believe me when I say that even when I don't comment, I am reading what you write, and rejoice with you in your triumphs, and weep with thee in thy sorrows.

If you're worried and you can't sleep
Just count your blessings instead of sheep
And you'll fall asleep counting your blessings.

--Bing Crosby, Count Your Blessings (Instead of Sheep)
Hey there! So, how the hell are ya?

I'm doing fairly well. Getting over a cold that my son brought home. I love my kids, and I'm so proud that they freely share. I just wish they'd stop sharing their mini-plagues with the family.

*sigh*

Anyway, here I am and there you are and here we are and isn't it a loooooooovely day! OK, no it's not, given that it's cool and rainy. But we need the rain here in the DC area, so I can live with it.

So, not much has happened since the last time I wrote in here. We went to AnimeUSA for Friday & Saturday. [livejournal.com profile] mousecat0 & B had a good time wandering around and going to various panels. F & I kinda camped out with a bag of games and played them with each other and random passers-by. Played/Taught several rounds of Castle Ravenloft. Also played Ninja vs. Ninja, Munchkin Impossible, Frag! Gold, and one or two other things. Had lunch in the Maid Cafe. We left around 7 on Sat because I was really starting to feel run down.

I have to say that I saw only a minimal amount of body-inappropriate outfits at AnimeUSA. This is a good thing. I had a longer writeup, but decided to cut it because I know y'all don't need that. The only one that disturbed me a bit was the dude dressed as some anime chick who had long, dark, curly chest hair poppoing up over the top of his bra. Looked like some sort of cthuloid tentacle thing waving around in the breeze.

Watched the Sam Kinison Tribute on Comedy Central Sat night. The man still makes me laugh after nearly 25 years.

Watched my beloved Philadelphia Eagles lay the smackdown on the Redskins last night. It was...painful to watch at times. Loved Sonny Jurgenson's line "They were Vicked".

Need to finish up Thanksgiving shopping on Saturday. Need the fresh fruits, veggies, herbs, and other stuff.

Actually, I need to put up a Do-List for myself. Get my shit together.

But, before I do that, I want to take a moment to remind all of you of why we do this. Yeah, the food is good and the pies better, but this is a time for family and to give thanks for the blessings in our lives. In all the hustle and bustle, let us not lose sight of that.

I remind you all to have a good day. The very fact that you woke up on the proper side of the grass this morning makes it a great start to a good day.

Peas. Out.
So, haven't updated in a while, I know. I really would like to get back to posting on a regular basis. Just need to get off my ennui-riddled ass and type.

So. Hi there. How the hell are ya?

Not gonna go into exhaustive detail of the last few weeks. That'll bore the snot outta ya. Instead, I'll just go for the Bullet List Of Doom (tm)!
cut to spare your f-list )
That's all I have for now, mah fwiends!

I remind you all to have a good day. The very fact that you woke up on the proper side of the grass this morning makes it a great start to a good day.
Short version: We're alive, we're ok, we're dug out, we're sore.
Long(er) version behind cut )
That's the way it is for now, kids.

I remind you all to have a good day. The very fact that you woke up on the proper side of the grass this morning makes it a great start to a good day.

Peas. Out.
So, it's that time of year again, the time of year where we celebrate that most American of modern holidays: The Super Bowl (or, as my World History teacher, Mike Gould, called it, the Hyper Bowl)

Alas, my beloved Philadelphia Eagles will not be playing, but I'll still be watching. All I really hope for is a good game and a handful of humorous and/or innovative commercials. I have to admit, I'd like to see the New Orleans Saints win this year, as they haven't done so before. Were I a betting man, however, my money would be on the Colts.

We're not 100% sure where we'll be this year. The current plan is to me at [livejournal.com profile] matt3485's for the annual "Kielbasa Cup Super Bowl Party", but weather may conspire against us - mainly because [livejournal.com profile] mousecat0 may be required to stay near DC for work purposes.

In the meantime, here's a few polls for you to fill out if the mood so strikes you.

[Poll #1520255]
Hey there, folks! Hope you're all doing well!

So, here's what has transpired since having seen you last.
cut for rambly length )
As I usually do, I find myself extremely thankful for a number of things this year:
  • [livejournal.com profile] mousecat0, B, & F.
  • My new job, and the people who "prompted" me to find it
  • My clueless end-users
  • My in-laws.
  • My family
  • The fact that I have a roof over my head, food on my table, and clothes on my back.
  • And perhaps most especially, my friends, whether near or far, whether they read this drivel I write or not. (and that does mean all of you)


Even though Thanksgiving has come and gone, I would ask one thing from each and every one of you. Please, try to remember to be thankful for each and every blessing in your life every day. Let the people in your life know you are thankful for them. Let us not give thanks only on Thanksgiving, but every day.

And I am thankful for all of you. Believe me when I say that even when I don't comment, I am reading what you write, and rejoice with you in your triumphs, and weep with thee in thy sorrows.

If you're worried and you can't sleep
Just count your blessings instead of sheep
And you'll fall asleep counting your blessings.

--Bing Crosby, Count Your Blessings (Instead of Sheep)
When did that happen?

Oh well.

Nothing overly exciting happened since I last spoke at ya.

Well, almost nothing. Seems that on Friday night, [livejournal.com profile] mousecat0 and the kids were on their way home when a deer decided to cross the road in front of her. And while she missed that one, she was not so lucky with the five more that followed. Or, more precisely, the last one or two. Fortunately, no one was hurt (except the deer) and there was minimal damage to the TrailBlazer (front grill, driver's side headlight mount). Insurance will cover the repair (minus the deductible). We went to the USAA-recommended body shop yesterday; they ordered the parts and we'll drop the car off tomorrow night. I'll be taking the metro to and from work until we get the car back.

Otherwise, as I said, not much going on. Did the Thanksgiving shopping on Saturday. Also got the main course for Christmas eve dinner as Giant had frozen geese for sale. Damn thing cost me more than the 2 turkeys I bought. Oh well.

Made chili on Saturday for the family chili cookoff on Sunday. It came out great. Shame that the Eagles lost to the Chargers, though. I think that a combination of too many injuries and talented but inexperienced rookies is going to cost us a run at the playoffs this year, though I could be wrong.

Watched the Dear Food Network: Top 10 Thanksgiving Problems Solved special on Monday. While I was glad to see that Ted Allen was using the AB turkey frying rig, I wanna know who brought back that corpse they named Claire Robinson. Dude, she was disturbing. It took me half the show to figure out why she bothered me so - she looked like a damn zombie. The dead were alive and trying to remake green bean casserole on Food-f-in-Network! Also, I don't remember who the hell it was that did this, but some idiot took a shot at Ted Allen because he was "afraid of hot oil". I don't need to tell all y'all how many fires are started every freaking year because people didn't exercise sufficient caution and common sense when frying their turkey. Bad scripting, Food Network. Overall, it didn't suck, but it didn't help or inspire me either.

Right now, we have our "Do list" of what needs to happen when for the next week or so.
so as not to bore people )
Is it busy? Yes. Absolutely. Will I enjoy every minute of it where I'm not at work? Most likely.

This is where and when the memories are made, folks. These are the times I treasure.

But before the rushing around and silliness starts in earnest, I would remind all of you of why we do this. Yeah, the food is good and the pies better, but this is a time for family and to give thanks for the blessings in our lives. In all the hustle and bustle, let us not lose sight of that.

I remind you all to have a good day. The very fact that you woke up on the proper side of the grass this morning makes it a great start to a good day.

Peas. Out.
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For 25 million and immunity from lawsuits and prosecution, I'd go on Survivor.

And then make it a true game of survival as I hunt, kill, and eat the other players.

Those poor bastards wouldn't have a chance. Tribal council my ass. Tribal council means I get more of them at once.
Hi folks. How are ya.

Me, I've been busy.

So, let me drop this thing into the Bullet List of DOOM format
dropped behind the cut )
OK, I have things to do and people to beat. TTYL.

Remember: You woke up on the proper side of the grass this morning. By definition, that makes this a good day.

Peas. Out.

Convention Countdown
TCEP 16: 2 Days!
Welcome to Monday, you wonderful wacky weirdos! Another bright and brilliant start to a week!

Oh relax, my enthusiasm will wane. The whole thing won't be so...exuberant.

But here we are and there you are and isn't life grand?

So, an update!

::checks archives to see when last post was::

Me: Doing well. Didn't sleep as much as I should have for most of the weekend (exception: Saturday night/Sunday AM). Still, doing good and feeling good. Trying to get back on vitamin and St. Johns Wort regimen.

Family: Also doing well. Kids are enjoying camp. B. is taller than some of the camp counselors. I think that F being in a different camp than B. is good for him. Only real issue anywhere is that F got sick on Sat night and didn't make it to the bathroom, so we had to strip the bed at midnight. Fun. [livejournal.com profile] mousecat0 is enjoying her job so far - but the person she replaced had essentially stopped doing much of anything at the beginning of the year after she announced the retirement, so [livejournal.com profile] mousecat0 has had to hit the ground running and deal with crap that should have been dealt with months ago.

Car: Yeah, so as I may or may not have related elsewhere, the Mazda died two weeks ago tomorrow when I was leaving work. Now, it's got 110k miles or so on it, needs a new exhaust system, a new belt, and the windshield has a crack in it. Yeah, I could replace everything, but it would cost a bit. Meanwhile, my mother-in-law was getting rid of one of her cars. So, we figured to sell the Mazda, give her the money and take over on her car. Of course, two weeks before we were going to set everything in motion, my car decides to throw me an $800 repair bill for a distributor system. But, as I tweeted, we had the money to take care of it without having to not pay other bills. So now the Mazda is at home and I'm driving the new one.

The 4th: The Suburban Charred Meat Festival went off beautifully. 'Twas our pleasure to play host to Necros (from TSC) and his kids, [livejournal.com profile] allura, Sean, Drew, [livejournal.com profile] byronczimmer, [livejournal.com profile] principiacoh, my sis-in-law, [livejournal.com profile] aylinn & [livejournal.com profile] tth. It was a nice enough day that we were, for the most part, able to sit around outside and chat. Plenty of good food was shared (the kielbasa I grilled disappeared so fast it made my head spin), and many laughs were had. We caught the DC, NYC, and Boston fireworks, and [livejournal.com profile] mousecat0 & I finally got to play Dominion (thanks to [livejournal.com profile] byronczimmer & [livejournal.com profile] principiacoh). I enjoyed it greatly - [livejournal.com profile] mousecat0 did as well. This one we will be buying.

I tried a recipe for roasted potato salad - I'll post it later.

What's coming up: Well, next weekend is the wedding of [livejournal.com profile] pleasantlyevil and [livejournal.com profile] deceptiverose, and the plan is still to be there for that. Maybe Sat night we'll get together with some old friends. The weekend after that is a Barking Mad meeting.

Remember: You woke up on the proper side of the grass this morning. By definition, that makes this a good day.

Peas. Out.

Convention Countdown
TCEP 16: 60 Days!
Early bird pre-reg ends at the end of the month!
Check out this article on
Topless Robot:

The 10 Reasons Why Star Blazers Is Unbelievably Awesome Beyond Words
So, here we are at Wednesday. Middle of the week. Hump day.

And here I am. And there you are.

The depth of my observations today is frightening, no?

So, I know it's been a while since a real update. I'm kinda pushing myself to write this one, because really, I just wanna curl up in a ball and go to sleep. And I don't have time for that crap.

So, let me start this off with some...

Administrivia: Welcome to [livejournal.com profile] lacousteau, an old and dear friend from college who has consistently been one of the few people I respect and fear. It's that "Joisey/Lawng Ise-land" dynamic.

Me: I think I may have finally kicked the congestion that has been migrating between my sinuses and chest. ::knocks on wood:: Dealing with this since New Year's has been what can best be described as a royal pain in the ass. Simultaneously looking forward to and not looking forward to tomorrows interview with Capstone. On the one hand, I'll probably never have an easier interview to pass. But I still hate interviews. Always have, always will. It's an outgrowth of my self image/self esteem issues, I'm sure, and just one of those things that I deal with. Otherwise not doing badly.

Family: [livejournal.com profile] mousecat0 is picking up temp work here and there, but nothing long term. There's still a potential for good news on the job front, and some few of you know about it. But until things become more solid, we aren't going into a whole lot o' detail. The kids are doing well with school, generally speaking. B.'s birthday is coming up soon, as is the Green & Gold dinner (note to self: When is it?) for her Scout troop. For her birthday, we're having a sleepover for some of her friends. My strategy? I'll be in the Dining room with the laptop and my headset half on playing WoW. I'm not gonna wanna listen to whatever unholy mish-mash of High School Musical\Jonas Brothers\Miley Cyrus\other-annoying-pseudo-Disney-crap-aimed-at-pre-teens that I'm sure will be infesting the dining room, but I can't bloody well leave them unsupervised, right? I mean, sure, [livejournal.com profile] mousecat0 will be there as well, but I can't be totally oblivious.

Well, OK, I have been in the past. But I mean intentionally so.

F., if he's smart, will hide in his room while the girls are here. Lord above only know what they'll do to him. I am, however, allowing him to pick the toppings on one of the pizzas. Other than that, his big thing coming up is the Pinewood Derby race later in March. I still have my old Pinewood Derby car; we're going to start working on it soon.

Work: Nothing new here. Big thing for everyone right now is the Job fair tomorrow. #1 question being asked: Are you going on Thursday? My answer has been: Yes, unless I hit the lottery.

Stuff we've done/are doing: Well, A week or so ago I introduced the kids to the Reiner Knizia Lord of the Rings boardgame. It was their first time with a cooperative boardgame. I'm happy to say that we won, although it was fairly close. We all had a blast with it.

Introduced both kids to the joy that is watching The Blob. Although I love the movie, there's part of me that just wants to scream "Get some fruit cocktail, whipped cream, and spoons, you doofuses!"

Been catching up on Heroes on DVD, as well as periodic episodes of Supernatural.

American Idiot Idol has started again. Since I live with two people who love watching it, I can't really escape from it short of leaving the condo. So, I attempt to ignore it as much as possible while losing myself in World of Warcraft. But there's one thing I have noticed this year: For a show that is allegedly about singing/performing, there sure is a lot of time wasted on maudlin, melodramatic bullshit that has abso-fucking-lutely nothing to do with music. I had thought that this crapfest couldn't get worse. I was wrong.

Warcrack:
This one goes behind a cut )
Future: Only major thing that I can think of that is coming up is our trip to NJ in a week and a half or so for a combination bowling/birthday party. Balticon may be day tripped if the money is there. O wait, there's a gaming con in Aberdeen, Game Con, in April that I may go to.

Sadly, no Origins this year. Such is life.

OK, time for me to wrap this up, do my timesheets, and make like a shepherd and get the flock outta here.

Remember, you woke up on the correct side of the grass this morning. By definition, that makes it a good day.
Well, here I am, back at work. Been on vacation from work since 12/23/08. I didn't realize I needed that time off until last Friday or so. So, here's a kind of day-by-day accounting of the last two weeks or so...
Dec. 23 )
Dec. 24 )
Dec. 25 )
Dec. 26 )
Dec. 27 )
Dec. 28 )
Dec. 29 )
Dec. 30 )
Dec. 31 )
Jan. 1 )
Jan. 2 )
Jan. 3 )
Jan. 4 )
And that was our holidays in a nutshell. I'll have some more thoughts on various things as the days go on. For now, I want to thank everyone who helped make the 2008 Holidays special for me and my family, and I wish everyone a bright, bountiful, and blessed 2009. May the darkness stay far from our doorsteps.

(No, that doesn't mean you can attack the darkness with a Magic Missile spell...)

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Frank N. Huminski

February 2014

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