Friday, December 10, 2004

Amphibious Date...and other musings

Tonight we are taking the boys to the Children's Theatre Company for their presentation of A Year With Frog and Toad.

We have spent the last couple of weeks reading the books to help them understand a little more about what to expect. A year ago we took them to see Dora - Live on Stage! and they had an incredible time. They talked about that show for weeks. I do have to admit that I was drawn into the show and was caught waving my arms and trying to catch the stars. Of course, it was all to help encourage the boys. ;)

I had another PC issue the other night. Actually, it was the same problem that I had before. This time, instead of jumping the gun and possibly causing more problems, I took the family to the library to get some books and so I could use their Internet access to do some searching on the problem I was having. I found some information that was helpful, but still didn't seem to fully explain a solution to my problem. I am beginning to think that there is a major problem with the hard drive in my mother's PC. Fortunately, a simple boot into XP's Recovery Mode and simple FIXBOOT command was all it took to get me back on track. Still unable to back-up the data that is on her hard drive, so that will have to wait until another day.

I went to bed last evening with visions of waking up to a covering of snow. The forecast said "several inches". I would love to be able to be that vague in my job and still be considered competent. As I sprang from my bed this morning and pressed my nose against the window, I was greeted by brown grass and mud. This IS Minnesota, isn't it?!?!?!?!?

Tuesday, December 07, 2004

Relaxing Evening

After a long day at work, I am excited to have to opportunity to watch a nice movie on TV tonight. I had seen the preview for it earlier this week, but did not pay attention as to what channel, date or time. My wife reminded me of the movie as we were finishing up dinner (have I ever mentioned how much I love this woman?)

I had been told of a short book about a year ago and thought it sounded good. The book is by Mitch Albom and titled The 5 People You Meet in Heaven. It is a short read, probably 20-30 minutes. If you get a chance to read it, I highly recommend it.

It shows how everything that we do in our lives, will somehow impact someone elses life. There are always those obvious times when we help/hurt someone or confront someone, but its easy to forget about all the times we do things that we never realized the impact it may have had. Not only the immediate impact on a person's life, but also how that impacts the people that they encounter in their lives.

It reminds me of how great it will be when we get to heaven and get that chance to see how and why everything happened in our lives. Why I broke my collar bone when I was 5....why I broke it again when I was 30......why I have a fruit allergy.......why I met John Cougar at a bar 10 years ago.

Monday, December 06, 2004

Busy Weekend

Whew....what a busy weekend. I should have taken the day off of work just to rest from the work I did on Sat and Sun.

My Dad has always been there for me whenever I have needed a helping hand, so naturally when he called asking for some assistance, the thought of turning him down never entered my mind.

So I spent most of the day Saturday cleaning carpets and waxing floors in a medical building. By the time we finished, I was absolutely wiped out. It would have been nice if we would have been able to finish everything on Saturday, but we needed to go back on Sunday for another 4 hours to finish everything up.

As we returned back to his house, he asked if I would help him take a look at his van to see if I can help figure out why it won't start. For many men, this is a question that would not generate an episode of rolling on the floor and laughing; but when you ask me to help you with your car, you must have forgotten that anything more than opening the hood and checking the oil is waaaayyyyy out of my league.

This is a 1984 Ford van - he has recently had to replace the distributor because one of the cams that connected to something had fallen off. Or something like that. Anyways, he was to the point where he could get it to turn over, but was unable to get it to fire. He explained the firing order was 1-5-3-6-2-4 and that he had lined up the distributor to start on the #1 cylinder. Through me asking some rather lame questions, we were able to determine that we were most likely not firing the spark plug on the compression stroke of the piston. So we removed the plug and ensured that the piston was at the top of the cylinder and was on the compression stroke. We then rotated the checked the positioning of the distributor to see if it was lined up on the #1 cylinder and it was not even close. WHOOOOO Although it was disappointing to see that it had not been put together correctly, it was a better feeling to know that the reason it was not working was because of this. So we pulled out the distributor and reset it to the correct location. After dropping the bolt into the engine mounts and having to wake up the neighbor to see if he had a magnet we could use to try and fish it out, we were all set to try and start it.

It started on the first turn.

This was the best that van has EVER sounded. I cannot tell you the strange feeling of accomplishment I felt in working on that vehicle with my father. I was tired, I was hungry, I was dirty, I was freezing - but all of that didn't matter as we looked at each other and knew that we had beaten the machine.

Thanks Dad!!