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April 2007 Archives

April 2, 2007

One year down

Ninsi and I just finished celebrating our one year annivsary this weekend. I think we both agree that it was a good year. We had a party to celebrate on Saturday, and went out for a nice dinner on Sunday evening. Dinner cost more than my student loan payments, but it was very good.

We're pretty much not doing anything the rest of the month. My birthday is this Friday, but Ninsi has so much school work to do, that I think I'll let the birthday slide by without fanfare. I do plan to take the day off from work, so my birthday will probably consist of a lot of lounging.

April 3, 2007

Inexorable March

Allow me to make my friends feel old.
The Squid turns thirteen years old today. Many of my friends were in the waiting room of the hospital that day. Thirteen.
I have a teenage daughter.
Time to start cleaning out the shotgun, methinks.

April 4, 2007

Name of the Rose

Yesterday, when I got home, the first thing I noticed was that one of my roses had reached full bloom. This was technically the second bloom of the year, as I picked one on Saturday for Ninsi. That one had not yet fully opened though. The one yesterday was large. Bigger than my fist. I was going to go inside, get the camera, and take a picture to post for viewing pleasure, but in between the time I went inside and could find the camera, it started to rain.

Then it started to rain harder. Eventually, the tornado sirens went off. They only sounded for about 5 minutes, but I took that time to watch the news, and learned that the severe weather was just barely missing us. It was still raining hard, but we didnt get the hail, or wind, or the funnel cloud.

The rose was still there this morning, but its glory is diminished. And since we will not be having sun for a few days, I dont think it will reclaim it's former stature. Next week though, when the sun comes back out, we should have a few dozen nice ones though.

April 5, 2007


Tomorrow is my 35th birthday. So. Old.

No, I have nothing planned. Might go out to a club tonight since I don't have to work tomorrow. Might go out to a gentleman's club on Saturday. But really, that is way up in the air. Tomorrow, no plans. I think, actually, that I will mow the yard, since I will be home.

I have the best birthdays.

About the truck I mentioned a few days ago in the truck love post - I have seen that truck every single morning this week. I have been leaving the house about 5-10 minutes later than I should, and apparently that puts me on his exact schedule as well.

Randomly: I have an American Express card. So I get occassional 'offers' from them. I looked at the one for today since it said I could save up to $5000. I think it is a timeshare type thing. This is what they are selling. 5k doesnt make a big difference...

April 9, 2007


Snow. In April.
In Texas.

How queer is that? We awoke Saturday morning to snow flurries. It wasn't much, and it never did get bad like the weatherman said it might. But it was snow. And it was cold. The basil in the garden suffered the most, it looks like. Hopefully my tomatoes are alright. I had some blooms on a couple of the plants. This weather may have stymied that. Hopefully just postponed. My poor roses have been trying to bloom for over two weeks now. All five plants developed a bunch of buds, and were ready to bloom when the weather turned cloudy, and now cold. Once it grows warm again, and sunny for a couple days, I expect to be innundated with roses.

Spent most of the weekend cleaning. I think we did 9 loads of laundry. And there is still a couple more left to be done. But I did finally start making some headway on getting the office clean. I can see the floor again. Now I just need to get the vacuum fixed so we can get the carpet clean. I want to be done cleaning, and get everything organized so I can start getting my Warhammer 40k armies together again. I haven't played in forever, and it's way overdue. I need clean space to organize and paint.

April 10, 2007


Let's see...
Anniversary ... check
House painted ... check
My birthday ... check
Squid birthday ... check
New kitchen ... check

yeah, I think that most everything is done. Ninsi still has three weeks left of school, but outside of that, things are swinging back to normal. I have time now to get back into my routines of racquetball and running, and hopefully some golf. Ive been cleaning the office the last couple days. That is mostly because I finally have time to do so. Even found a couple things that I had given up for lost.

Nothing much going on this weekend as Ninsi still has a paper to write. I may think about going to the horse races since they will be open. But it is nice not having so much going on all a sudden.

The Summer will be busier, as usual. And with Ninsi not having school for the first time in two years, we should be able to enjoy it. Yar, Im looking forward to a good Summer.

April 11, 2007


I have not played golf in months. I've wanted to, but haven't had a chance to get out to the course for whatever reason. Yesterday, I decided to at least go to the driving range. They finally opened one up on the course that it close to the house, so it takes about five minutes to get there.

$5 for a 'large' bucket of balls. That would be 60. I think it was $3 for 30 balls. I gave the guy five dollars and he gave me two tokens for the ball machine. Each token should be worth 30 balls. I walked to the range, put in my first token and it spit out some balls.

Then it spit out some more. And some more.
And some more.

It almost turned into a sit-com episode with me trying to keep a bucket under the ball spitter while gathering up all the ones that had overflowed onto the ground. When it was finally finished, and I had picked up all the loose balls, four of the large buckets had been filled. Doing the math, that comes to about 240 balls, with one token.

I knew I wouldnt be able to hit all of them since I havent played in so long, but I took two of the buckets down and hit all of them. My hands still hurt. I learned that I must get a new gloves before this weekend. Since Im planning to play on Sunday. But it was good to go whack the ball again, even if I couldn't hit with the Four iron.

4-iron = nothing but dirt.

April 12, 2007

Horse Feathers

The races start tonight, and I think Im gonna go. I figure I'll spend about $26 on betting. But the way I bet, I will either lose it all, or break even with one race. I can't justify spending $2 on a Show bet that might net me $.030 when I can take the same $2, risk losing it, but possibly net $20. And of course, that is how odds are made. How much are you *really* willing to lose to get the bigger payout? If you bet the favorite to show in every race, you'll most likely win a couple dollars over the course of the day. Or, you can bet the longshot every race and generally lose your money. But every now and then, you'll get lucky like my brother did, and hit the 70-1 odds on a $10 bet.

Anyway, Im going to the races, and I'll probably have a mint julep, and I'll probably lose $20-$30 on horse betting. But it'll be a good time.

April 13, 2007

A day at the races

So Im sure you are all just dying to know how the races went last night...
It was fine. Ninsi came up and joined me in time for the fifth race. And it is a lot better when you have company. She promptly proceeded to lose every race she bet on, but that's okay. If she had hit any of them, it would have been a good payout. Especailly the one that was about 50:1. Personally, I only cashed on one race. But it was about $10 more than I wagered on the evening, so all-in-all, after parking and entry, I think I netted about $4.

I call that a win!

There was one bet I wish I had made, though I had no reason to do so. One of the superfectas paid over 20k on a $2 bet. That would have been sweet. Usually they pay a couple thousand. Not in the tens of thousands. There was one other race that I might have cashed on, except that one of the two horses I picked suddenly pulled up lame coming down the stretch. Im not sure what happened, but it looked like he snapped his leg. He was out in front by a good margin. The horse I had picked to come in second actually won that race, and the one I had picked to come in second is the one that broke its leg. I feel bad for the horse. And for me, because that might have been a nice win.

Oh, there's a new synthetic turf some tracks are now using that will cut down on horse injuries. But of course, it will have a hard time getting wide acceptance. Old guard not wanting to adopt and all... Here's a Slate story about it - Polysoft.

They also gave me a few free passes to the races next Thursday. And I think I have a pass for free parking next Thursday as well. I'm not sure if I'll be able to pass that all up...

April 16, 2007


Weekend in review:
Did not get tornadoed on Friday.
Had a good Mint Julep at Cheesecake Factory on Saturday.
Played golf very poorly on Sunday.

April 17, 2007


I had another follow-up eye exam yesterday. The last one for a couple years. My eyes are good. My vision is at least 20/20, and im very much okay with that. Maybe in another ten years I will need reading glasses. Maybe not.

After the exam, which took all of five minutes, I went home and mowed the yard. I thought I might try mowing it very short, so as to promote more dense grass growth. So, I set the mower on its lowest setting. Apparently, that was too low, because the cap to the sewage cleanout trap in the front yard did not survive my first pass. Previously, I had been able to mow straight over it without issue. The mower completely destroyed it. I finished the front yard at the low height though. And I think it is a little too short in general. So I raised it up a little bit before doing the back.

Today, I was going to try to go somewhere to buy a new cap for the cleanout. I called the City of Grand Prairie, and told the guy what I had done, and he said they would come out and replace it. No problemo. Sometimes, the city surprises me. I just wanted to know if I could pick one up from the city, or go buy it somewhere.

In other news, my mother gave me a sack full of VHS tapes a couple years ago wanted me to do whatever I needed to do to put them on DVD. Ive been not doing it for a long time and she has been asking me about it for a long time. So, Saturday, I finally decided to do something about it. If I were to take the tapes to a place, they would charge like $10-$12 per tape. I planned to get a VHS/DVD recorder combo box that would just do it. But I couldnt find one for less than $300. So instead, I found a thing that you connect to the VCR, and then connect to your PC with a USB cable. It has all the software for creating and editing the movies as well. At $100, it may turn out to be a real bargain. It works well so far. And, this will allow me to put several of the short VHS tapes onto one DVD.

Halo, your brother mentioned you had some old tapes you were wanting to put onto DVD. If you haven't done anything about that already, let me know. I might be able to save you some money.

April 19, 2007


I started making ice cream last night. I did not expect it to take hours upon hours.

Generally, you put some milk, and some cream, and some sugar and maybe an egg into a bowl and turn on the ice cream machine for a half hour and it makes ice cream. Last night, about nine o'clock, I throught Id try some fancy ice cream. I'd already bought a vanilla bean (for six and a half frelling dollars) so I had everything I needed. I had not read through the recipe fully. Otherwise, I would have started earlier. It involved boiling and simmering. Which took about an hour. Then mixing and heating. Which took another half hour. Then chilling completely. Which is about an hour. And only then! do you actually get to put the custard like mix into the machine to stir it up into ice cream. I put it in the fridge to chill and went to bed. Ninsi was off work today, so she got to stay home and acutally put it in the mixer. It better be damn good. But expectations are low.

April 20, 2007


Got home last night from the races and noticed that I was missing a couple flowers. Someone had stolen some of my roses. They just ripped them from the stem, didnt even bother to cut them.

That really pisses me off.

April 23, 2007


Ninsi is just two days and two test away from being completely done with the MBA. She's had a rough week, so it will be good for her to get through with this by tomorrow evening.

It was about as nice a weekend as we have had in a very long time. The weather was nigh perfect. So, Friday we enjoyed it by having a happy hour at Sherlock's that ran about five hours long. $7 pitchers until 9pm. Saturday was the grand opening of the Grand Prairie dog park, so we went there for a couple of hours. It's nice, but the water situation isn't very good. There just isn't easy, convenient access to water for the dogs. And the dogs cant get a drink at all with human intervention. Poor planning, that.

Later Saturday was the birthday party and Sunday was just a wasted day, mostly. Ninsi and I sat around and pretty much did nothing until about dinner time. It was a good day. :)

April 24, 2007


When Ninsi and I went to OK for Christmas, I drove my older brother's truck down so that I could use it to haul off a bunch of crap from the backyard to the dump. Mainly the old fence that had been taken down. He also told me to try to sell it while I had it.

I had pretty much not done anything about trying to sell it, but finally decided I might ought to at least write 'for sale' on it, since I told him Id try. So, Ninsi wrote on it with shoe polish on Saturday, and last night while im sitting in the living room I get a call from a guy that is outside my house wanting to know about the truck.

Fifteen minutes later, the truck no longer belonged to my brother. When I called him to make sure it was alright, he acted like he didnt want to sell it. I think it was just because he was attached to it for having had it ten years.

I could have used it to make one more trip to the dump, but I'll manage without. And the guy paid cash, which is always hard to turn down.

April 25, 2007


I have tomatoes!

At last count, which was last night during the rainstorm, I have two. One is about the size of my pinky nail, the other is about the size of a gold dollar. I bet that I may have more than two by the end of today. I might even have a pepper!

I never did buy those Ghost Pepper seeds that I sort of wanted. No one to blame but myself for that. But at $.50 per seed, I dont know that I was ready for that committment. I do need to get the camera out on the balcony and take a picture of the plants as they are right now. Maybe keep a small photojournal of the unside down garden. If it works well this year, then I might get another one for next year. That is a long way off though.

The balcony does smell like tomatoes.

April 26, 2007

4 bits

Something that annoys me:
I had a gift certificate to Amazon.com for $40. I found what I wanted, and purchased it. It was not availible for 'free super saver shipping.' Whatever. After shipping though, the total cost was $40.50.

Which means I have to put Fifty cents onto a credit or debit card. And that's just stupid. But Im not about to go back and buy more random stuff just so I can make it a worthwhile debit purchase. A $.50 transaction. I wish they would just send me the stuff, and I could owe them the two quarters next time I buy something. There's no doubt that I will.

In the meantime, it just pisses me off that I have a $.50 charge on my debit card.

April 27, 2007

Suit up

I bought a new suit last night. It wasn't really my plan when I started my evening, but that's pretty much how it ended up. I have been thinking of getting a new suit, and was planning to do it later this Summer. I just happened to be mentioning it out loud to Ninsi when we drove by the Men's Warehouse. So I turned in and thought Id have a look.

A good salesman's job is to size up the customer quickly, and present them with the best options right off. The guy that met me when we went in did just that. The first suit that he showed me was pretty much exactly what I was looking for. And it fit without any alterations. Really, I had no excuse to not go ahead and buy it, since as I said, I was planning to get one later anyway. So now I have another suit to wear on the cruise in August.

In other news:
I suppose I could set up a webcam the next time I paint something and let the world watch that paint dry. It should be about as exciting as watching cheese age.

April 30, 2007


Mowed the lawn yesterday. I had barely started on the back when I managed to hit a stump that Ive mowed over a dozen times before. Only this time, something was different, because I didnt just go over it. Maybe I just hit it at the wrong angle. Whatever it was, I hit it good, and totally fucked up the mower blade. I was going to take it to a repair show, but the turnaround time for that was about a week. So I went to Sears and bought a new blade. It seems to be working fine. I was afraid I had stripped the flywheel and really messed up the motor.

Before lunch this morning, I went to the bathroom. (exciting!) Above the urinals, they have flourescent lighting, and while I was standing there, I heard a noise that sounded a whole lot like dripping water. It sounded like it was coming straight from the lights. Ten seconds later, water started to drip through the light fixtures in the ceiling and onto the floor. Im guessing there was some significant flooding in a third floor bathroom this morning. Oddly enough, that isnt the first time Ive seen water coming out through the light fixture. Last time was at a Braum's.

About April 2007

This page contains all entries posted to Notival in April 2007. They are listed from oldest to newest.

March 2007 is the previous archive.

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