Nov 232015
 

I’m writing on my cheap little Android tablet (Nexus 7), mostly as an experiment.

I kicked Chilkoot in the face today. He insisted he wanted to sit in my lap, so I started to move my laptop out of the way. He stood up and started to walk into my lap, and as I set the computer down, he started to fall face first from a standing position on my lap on the couch. I stick out my leg to either catch him or slow his fall, and he landed nose first on the top of my foot. He didn’t want to sit on my lap any more.

Chilkat… Is dramatic. Despite the fact that we do this every day, today, bedtime was traumatic for her. I read her The Elephant’s Child (oh best beloved), gave her hugs and kisses, and then when I told her I was leaving, she started to weep because she didn’t want to be alone. She escalated in intensity until my softhearted wife went in to comfort her, then continued when she left, and escalated further until she got yelled at. Then she whimpered until she fell asleep… About 1.5 hours after I initially left her.

16 more years.

My neck started aching more last week. Then I had that spasm I already wrote about. That spasm flared up again on Sunday. Now it’s really hard to look to my right, because my neck sucks and my mid-back is too crappy to compensate. I’m on a heating pad right now.

I originally got this tablet partially because I wanted to try to learn how to write an app for it. I finally started taking steps in that direction. So far, it’s a pretty miserable failure. It doesn’t help that it’s a language (Java), a tool (Android Studio), and an ecosystem (Android) with which I have almost no familiarity. So far, I’ve been able to figure out how to compile and run a sample app, and nothing else.

Nov 202015
 

We visited Mom for her birthday and gave her a cake which KrisDi invented and I thought was delicious, even though it was chocolate. The kids repeated their performance as Hansel and Gretel to amuse her. We tried to teach her dog Spike that we’re friendly people who are unlikely to steal or murder her home, her food, or her Mom.

We also staged a couple photo shoots for our (KrisDi’s) yearly Christmas cards. This, of course, is KrisDi’s ideas. The kids were slightly cooperative, even. For the ones of us standing in the woods with the “Happy Holidays” stringer, we had the camera on a tripod, pointing at us, with a timer shooting a picture every five seconds, which we did until we felt that the kids’ cooperation was deteriorating.

We also went down to Gig Harbor for my new niece’s christening. I guess I’ll be calling her V Dubs. She’s cute, and still in the quiet uneventful phase of infanthood (which is not so bad). In general, not much to say about it. I failed to help Pixel Chick’s sister with her trig homework. Fucking trig identities blow, man.

This weekend, KrisDi’s internet friends are coming to our house to eat our food and drink our booze, and we’ll also head down to Gig Harbor so KrisDi and Pixel can take the girls out for some crafty thing while E Dubs, A Dubs, Chilkoot, and I apparently stick around their house.

Chilkat’s been relatively well-behaved lately. Chilkoot’s been a bit of a monster. He was removed from a restaurant at dinner today because of repeated ignored commands to sit his ass down in the god damn chair and eat his god damn quesadilla. He also has a nasty sounding cough. His coughing actually woke me up a couple times during the night Wednesday night. Not last night, though, as my muscle-relaxant-enhanced sleep was too powerful for such puny meddling.

Speaking of which, I had a new back spasmy problem yesterday! After putting kids in the car after day care, as I was getting into the driver’s seat, my mid back (right below the shoulder blades) just exploded with pain and seized up, leading to an uncomfortable drive home and evening. It’s feeling better today, so hopefully it will be mostly gone tomorrow.

November 1-17

Nov 172015
 

Once again…recalling based on photographs.

The rest of KrisDi & The Kids’ trip to Chicago is in here. They went to the zoo, and like I said before, they brought back a bunch of awesome beer (which I still haven’t even finished, but I’ll work on more once I finish The Brother). I wasn’t there, so I’ll let KrisDi expand on it if she feels the need to do so. There’s also one cool picture of food I ate in Japan.

We went to the pumpkin patch to get pumpkins, which the kids painted, and which now continue to reside outside our front door. I may need to toss them into the green belt soon. Not a whole lot to say there, other than it’s a kids/tourists trap. Fine for kids, but excruciating for me.

Immediately afterward, we went to the Popes’ place for Popita’s third birthday. I also gave the Pope a bottle of scotch for his birthday, which we broke into (incidentally, high end whiskey is exactly what you should drink at a three-year-old’s birthday party). The kids had a great time (of course), and they came home dirty and tired and sugar buzzed.

Halloween was pretty low key. The False Alarm family visited and trick-or-treated with us. Chilkat and Chilkoot were Gretel and Hansel (respectively, although, somehow, somewhat magically, Chilkoot’s Hansel costume morphed into Tom Cruise as Joel Goodson in Risky Business), wearing authentic German duds purchased in Germany (but probably hand crafted in Vietnam). KrisDi played their witch, and to match the theme, I was Silent Bob. Of course. At my work’s costume contest, I quickly realized that Silent Bob is not a timeless character; there is a narrow band of ages not far from mine who have any idea who he is. Speaking of which, I grew a beard. Then KrisDi made me cut the long hair (before it was long enough to donate, and she wouldn’t let me shave it off).

15-31 October

Nov 162015
 

Let’s see…recalling this month entirely based on the pictures in the update of the first half of October:

My friend mr-jj and I went to Yakima the day before the fresh hop festival. Bale Breaker was my primary target: Their Topcutter is a top notch IPA. I really wanted to try their double IPA, Bottomcutter, and their fresh hop imperial IPA, Piled High. But Yakima is a long drive from home. KrisDi promised to take care of the kids (because she’s awesome), and Mr-jj and I took a half day off on that Friday, drove out there, and went straight to Bale Breaker and drank everything, and it was awesome. Then we parked at our motel and walked to a downtown area to find bars with more fresh hop beers. It was terrific. The morning after, I didn’t feel so good, which was not awesome on the long drive home. But, the aroma of hops that permeated the open air in Yakima was amazing. Yakima, if I understand correctly, is in the area that produces more than half of the hops used in America. Bale Breaker is built in a hop field, with some unharvested vines immediately behind their outdoor area.

We also went to Salmon Days with the Popes. Popita and her new little sister, whom I guess I’ll christen Popette, are a cute little pair. Popette obviously wasn’t jumping around or anything, but Popita for whatever reason was very interested in Chilkat. They bigger kids bounced and got balloons and were generally spoiled while they were being obnoxious.

We also went out to Port Townsend for the Kinetic Sculpture Race again, for the first time in three years, I think. I mentioned Eric in my previous post. His newest iteration of his kinetic sculpture is about 1/3 the weight of the original (now only 700 pounds!), it’s much faster. They were one of two sculptures that actually conquered all of the challenges. There were lots of cool sculptures. Eric’s kids have even started participating — they design and build their own, essentially with just advice and oversight from Eric (the only ~12 year olds I know who can weld). It was fun — we walked nearly the whole track with the kids, following the sculptures. We took the ferry across on the way out, and drove the long way around on the way home, so we could stop at Silver City Brewery.

KrisDi took the kids to Chicago when I went to Japan, and visited lots of people and met some of the internet mom friends she has. They left the night before I did, and I returned the night before they did. KrisDi came back with a bunch of awesome beer she bought in Chicago.

1-14 October