Sunday, February 01, 2015

Cough... Cough... Dusting off the old blog

I guess it has been a few years since my last post. But I have been doing a lot of thinking lately, and have come to the conclusion that Facebook/Twitter simply don't work for me. So I'm going to reestablish as the place where I communicate... whatever I feel I need to communicate :-). To bring this blog up to date from my last post (mid 2009? really?):
  1. Mary Beth and I had a son. A long time ago. He's 4.5 years old as I type this :-). His name is Henry and he's awesome beyond description. I need to set up with some photos, because my account is dormant and all of my Henry photos are on Facebook.
  2. The run streak I had going back in 2008-2009 is no longer in effect. I managed to run at least one mile 560-something days in a row, and 1510 of 1513 days total. The only days I missed were due to food poisoning (late in the day before I could get my run in), and the day/day after Henry's birth.
  3. We moved from the house listed two posts ago. New address is:
    2306 Raleigh Rd.
    Hummelstown, PA
  4. I don't intend to talk about work on this blog much.
  5. The areas of my life on which I'm trying to focus are the same as what I've mentioned on here in the past... mostly. Having Henry has naturally shifted my priorities a bit, and my #1 goal in life now is to continue to have a good relationship with my wife and son.
  6. I've been mostly vegetarian for a few years now. I still east fish (mostly in the form of Sushi) from time to time, but no red/white meat. How I arrived at being a vegetarian (pescetarian, to be precise)is a long and boring story. Frankly, I'm somewhat surprised by it. Eventually I just decided I didn't feel good about eating meat, so I stopped.
I am in the process of moving from my previous hosting company to something I can control more directly on my own. In the process, I'm going to try to spruce things up a bit... so please pardon the dust while I ramp up again.

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

2009: Mid-year review

I appear to have moved all of my web activity over to Twitter. My tweets feed automatically to my Facebook page. Maybe I'm just lazy, but I don't want to write full blog postings any more. Still... It is getting late in the year, and I've only made a handful of posts to this blog in 2009. Someone asked me how I was doing on my focus areas for 2009 (see my previous post for more details). Here's the rundown:
  1. [My relationship with Mary Beth] Got married at the end of May. The ceremony was awesome. I still haven't finished organizing the photos, but you can see the pre-processed mess of them at SmugMug.
  2. [Food] I'm hit or miss here. I still eat too much crap when I don't eat mindfully.
  3. [Writing] Haven't been doing any. And it shows :-).
  4. [Caffeine] 100% off caffeine. I've occasionally had it when I had no viable alternatives, but I'm not addicted any more. I was hitting caffeine free soda for a while, but I'm off that, too.
  5. [Run streak] Still going strong! I'll hit 500 days in a row on Monday.
  6. [30 minutes of movement per day] Doing a good job with this. But I could still do more moving and less TV watching.
  7. [100 pushups] Not even close. I was making progress early in the year when I was in competition with the fellas at work, but after a job switch I lost all momentum on this one.
  8. [Simplifying finances] Mary Beth and I are making good progress here. The wedding and job switch complicated things quite a bit, but we're making an effort to keep things simple.
  9. [Getting up earlier] Doing much better here, but it still doesn't feel natural.

Sunday, March 08, 2009

New Address

Yeah, yeah... Not a very exciting update. But I did promise to keep the blog updated, even if the content was boring. I have a new mailing address, and will probably have a new phone number in a few days. The new address is:

262 Lincoln Ave.
Harrisburg, PA

Saturday, January 03, 2009

2009 Resolutions

As promised, part II of the pair...

I don't really do "resolutions". I do "areas on which to focus" lists. In 2009, I plan to focus on the following:

  1. My relationship with Mary Beth. I want a strong marriage, and I know that having a strong marriage will require work.
  2. Food. Nothing fancy here. I need to get back to focusing on food-as-a-process instead of food-only-as-entertainment.
  3. Writing / This blog. Like any other skill, writing skills fades unless it is practiced. I promise I'll get back to updating this blog more often, even if the content is insanely boring :-).
  4. Caffeine. I let myself get addicted twice in 2008. I hate the feeling of being addicted to something.
  5. Continuing to run at least 1.0 mile every day until May 10th, thus completing 365 days in-a-row. After May 10th, reevaluate my running goals.
  6. Moving for at least 30 minutes per day, no excuses. Walking counts.
  7. Completing 100 pushups in a single set at some point during the year. I can't explain why, but I really want to be able to say that I did 100 pushups in a single set at least once during my life.
  8. Simplifying my financial life as much as possible.
  9. Getting up earlier. This one is going to be tough. I've never been a morning person.

Friday, January 02, 2009

2008 Year in Review

It's the time of year to make "Year in Review" and "New Year's Resolution" posts. So... Here is the first post of the pair. I'll introduce this Year in Review with one of my favorite quotes:

Imagine life as a game in which you are juggling some five balls in the air. You name them - work, family, health, Friends and spirit and you're keeping all of these in the Air. You will soon or one day understand that work is a rubber ball. If you drop it, it will bounce back. But the other four Balls - Family, Health, Friends and Spirit - are made of glass. If you drop one of these; they will be irrevocably scuffed, marked, nicked, damaged or even shattered. They will never be the same. You must understand that and strive for Balance in your life.
-Bryan Dyson (former CEO of Coca Cola Enterprises)

Ironically, I've never learned how to juggle five (literal, not metaphorical) balls. I'm a very good juggler of 3 or 4 balls, but doing 5 has always eluded me. Let's examine how I've done with my 5 metaphorical balls in 2008:

Family - The big news, for those of you who haven't heard yet, is that Mary Beth and I are engaged. There was a time, not long ago, when I didn't think marriage was in the cards for me. But Mary Beth is the perfect yin to my yang. We work well together, and I look forward to spending the next 60-70 years with her.

Health - My health is generally better now than it was one year ago. I'm proactively managing/monitoring known "concern areas", and I have been exercising quite a bit. But my diet is still awful: I ran nearly 700 miles in the last 7 months of the year without losing a single pound. That means I ate nearly 30 pounds too much food during that time!

Friends - I don't have a huge number of friends, but I generally think I did a good job managing my friendships in 2008.

Spirit - Building my relationship with Mary Beth has been undeniably great for my spirit, but I failed to do many of my other favorite "spirit building" activities. I didn't connect with nature at all. I did almost zero photography, writing, or "creative" computer programming. I read a few books, but don't feel like I expanded my intellectual horizon much. I still don't have a pet. I haven't felt as compassionate towards others (i.e. "I'm slowly becoming a cranky old bastard"). I'm still way too self-centered (count the number of time I used the word "I" in this blog post :-)). I blame a lot of my spiritual stagnation on poor time-management, and anxiety about...

Work (and Finance) - This blog is not the proper place to go in to detail, but I will say: I dropped the Work/Finance ball hard in 2008. I hope Dyson's quote applies and this ball can properly reintegrated without causing me to drop any other balls. As any juggler knows, dropping one ball will throw off your timing on the others. Work is both a creative outlet and a primary source of interpersonal contact for me. When the Work ball gets dropped, it unavoidably affects the Spirit/Friends/Health balls.

All in all, I have to declare 2008 a solid year.

Tuesday, June 03, 2008


The strawberries in my garden are finally starting to ripen. Mary Beth and I picked a few pounds of them earlier tonight, then had a wonderful dessert of berries and cream. OK, the cream was Redi Whip, but it was still a YUMMY dessert!

We only picked from the "overflow" area, where the strawberries have started to take over beyond their original bed. The main bed still hasn't ripened. I'll probably have five or six times as many berries once I harvest the rest of the patch.

I'm going to have to find a few new recipies, or at least find some friends/coworkers who like strawberries.

Thursday, March 27, 2008


I've been using Eclipse as my primary IDE for a very long time. While it has its strengths (e.g. integration with CVS, Java code editing), it also has a few weaknesses (e.g. integration with Subversion, no Swing GUI builder). Rumor has it that NetBeans is strong in the areas where Eclipse is weak, so I decided to take NetBeans for a testdrive. I downloaded the latest Mac version (*), installed it, and saw: Thanks, NetBeans! No description of the errors, and nothing that I can do about them even if I knew what they were. My relationship with NetBeans is not off to a smooth start.
(*) - Have I mentioned how much I like my MacBook Pro? Like a former TV crush of mine, I made the switch from Windows to Mac. I like my Mac so much I might have to dedicate a blog posting to it someday.