Sunday, January 29, 2006

Dinner Date doing double.

Erin and I went out to dinner with another couple last night for the first time ever. It was pretty cool. Tim and Jessie have been married for a while and have kids that are close to our kids ages. I've met them before several times and we've always enjoyed ourselves, last night was the first time we got together just as adults, no kids. Whew, what a relief it was being away from all children and out as a couple. I had a really great time. Dinner at Bennigans was great! We were there for almost 2 hours before we got up to leave and then we went to Starbucks and sat and chatted for another almost hour. I ate and drank so much food that I skipped breakfast this morning. Oh well, after the double of dinner and coffee last night, I don't think I'm up for going out again in the next week or so. I had a blast, but going out every night is just not for me. I guess I did a good job of recupperating today, by just laying around the house and doing nothing.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

American Midol

Last night was hilarious. Prior to the start of American Idol we told Ady that we were getting ready to watch the singing show, American Idol. She responded with "Idol", but it sounded more like "Midol". I laughed so hard. Had I known how tough of a show it was going to be to watch last night, I may have referred to it as American Midol anyway. Drugs could have at least made it easier to watch. I watched American Idol last year for the first time. Once the contestants were whittled down to the final 10 I thought it was worth watching. I just get really frustrated watching the people that should have no shot of making it through the door, yet they have been passed on through several levels of judges just for their shock value. It's those people that drive me crazy when I watch the show. The people who are good enough to make it are always enjoyable to watch, and there's been some good talent this year. I'm really looking forward to the show, now I just have to wait until most of these idiots 15 minutes of fame is over.

Monday, January 23, 2006

Home Improvement, kind of...

I'm not the most handy person and I tend to shy away from everything that involves fixing anything. However, there are times that I must do something. It will ultimately be better for me if I just do it. If I can just keep working on using tools and fixing things then I will have the confidence to do whatever needs to be done around the house. As it is, I feel completely inadequate when it comes to any repairs or improvements on the house.

Well, tonight I didn't really do anything with home improvement, I just hung a couple of shelves, but I was able to successfully hang 3 shelves in Ady's room, they are as level as I can get by eyeball, since I don't have a level anymore, and I did a pretty good job of getting them up. I was happy with the results, even though it took me a half hour to put in 12 screws and set the shelves up on the wall. I'll have to take some pictures and post them later.

Jonas on Marriage

I've been telling Jonas that I'm getting married to Erin for a few weeks now, to get him accustomed to the idea, he is excited and keeps asking if Grandma and Grandpa will sit with him while I get married. Yesterday, I was telling him again and he said, "Then you and Erin have to live in different places." I said, "Married people don't move apart, what do you mean?" He said "You and mommy were married and moved apart." I had to tell him that Mommy and I didn't move apart until the marriage was over, and that Erin and I would keep living together for a long, long time. It was a funny twist on what marriage is to a 4 year old with divorced parents. He did understand the difference by the end, and we were all laughing about what he had said.

Thursday, January 19, 2006

Speach Therapy

I think I need speech therapy. Sometime the words coming out of my mouth don't convey the same message as the images in my head. I think it usually happens because my mind has already moved on to the next thought or topic and I'm not focused on the phrases I'm using. This sometimes causes me problems. When this happens I never mean the phrase to be hurtful, but it does come across that way from time to time. Strangely, when I mean the phrase to be hurtful (which is extremely rarely), my mind stays focused on it. I wonder if that's becuase men in general get satisfaction out of revenge as noted by several articles on the web today. You can read more about how men enjoy revenge.

Biggest Loser

Last night the Biggest Loser was on TV. It was a couples edition where two couples were each trying to lose the most weight for a chance to win a dream wedding. It was pretty interesting to see these people have the weight fall off of them so fast. The winning couple had the man lose 97 pounds and drop to 181 and the woman lost 77 pounds and dropped to 221. I was actually inspired to see them lose that much weight in such a short time. I think that the show did a better job of helping the people keep it up at home. In the original they gave the people all a gym membership, but the weight loss didn't go that great. This time the people show up at home to a home gym. They had a stationary bike, an eliptical machine a generic bowflex and the rubber bands.

It inspired me to keep losing weight. I haven't done very well, but I know it's because of my portions and my exercise. I just need to do a better job for both of these. It's supposed to be 51 today, hopefully I can get out for a run today.

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

How not to compliment

Apparently I don't give the best compliments. We had a good dinner the other night. Erin made a turkey breast, baked potatoes and corn. I thought the dinner was good. I don't know why, but the corn really hit the spot. It tasted sweeter than normal or something, but it was really satisfying. If you can believe it saying "The corn was good" did not come out as a good compliment. Erin started talking about all the work she put into dropping a turkey breast into a crockpot and the time that it took to wrap potatoes in foil before putting them into a hot oven, but the corn, which she opened a can and dumped into a bowl before microwaving, was the compliment that I chose to give. We laughed and laughed about it that nigh, but I've been thinking about that dinner. I think she had to put more effort into the corn than anything else, so I think I chose the right one to compliment. At least now I know not to compliment the corn, unless it's on the cob, that may be a different story.

Monday, January 16, 2006

All's quiet on the western front

We spent a very quiet weekend doing almost nothing. We of course got the laundry done and there was that 3 hours of re-arranging the bedroom. I moved my bookshelf around and turned the bed. I now have a larger empty space in the middle of the floor which is somewhat useless because there's nothing that can be done there, but at the same time it's very useful becaues our 2 month old Jaden now has a place to play on the floor in our bedroom. Our room is the warmest of the house because we have a space heater in here and it's where a lot of the living happens. We also each cleaned off our bookshelves which gave us both more empty space and made the room look a lot cleaner. I had an entire shelf of just blank paper.

Diet, what diet?

Well, the diet that I started last week isn't going very well. I tried, and did really well for the first week, but this weekend it all fell apart. And today I forgot to put the milk that I brought to work in the refridgerator, so I ended up running out and gettting fast food. I would have done better to be more prepared and have a backup meal on hand at work so I could at least have eaten a healthier can of soup. I have done pretty well with exercising with walking, hopping and running around the house. I've also been doing a bunch of pushups and situps I just don't have anything formalized.

Monday, January 09, 2006

Diet Started

I started a new diet on Friday last week. I'm taking the Special K challenge. It's where you eat 1 serving of cereal for 2 meals a day and eat a normal 3rd meal. They state you can lose up to 6 pounds on this diet in 2 weeks. Unfortunately 1 pound would fit into this claim. My goal is to kickstart my weight loss by losing 4-6 pounds in this 2 week period. My official starting weight was 220 pounds. I also bought a couple of exercise DVDs from Target last Thursday when I was there, how do you pass up on a $1 exercise DVD. I have only exercised to 1 of the 3 thus far, but it was a fairly decent 30 minute workout. The other 2 are both longer.

Yesterday I was 217 pounds. I didn't weigh myself today, so I'll have to wait until tomorrow to see how I'm doing.

New Years Resolutions

I know it's late, but that doesn't mean I haven't been thinking about them. It was actually the start of December when I started jotting notes about my new years resolutions.

Here's a run down on what I want to do in the new year.
1. Get Married. We're planning for may 13th.
2. Run more than last year. I want to run 15 miles a month, which is only 1 mile every other day.
3. Get new running shoes (mine are 1.5 years old).
4. Get new dress shoes.
5. Lift weights more consistently. I have a few specifc goals with lifiting.
a. Be able to do 100 pushups.
b. Bench 180 pounds. (currently at 100)
c. Curl 60 pounds (Currently at 40)
6. Read more tech articles (at least 1 article per week)
7. Blog more. Post 3 to 5 times a week at least.
8. Take more pictures of my family.
9. Start taking classes for my MBA, if I can get it approved through work.
10. See the Bald eagles this February.
11. Go to 3 or more White Sox games.
12. See 3 to 5 movies at the theater.
13. Go on my golf trip.
14. Lose weight. I want to be at 195 pounds for my wedding May 13th.

As I typed these up, I noticed I don't have any specific goals for the second half of the year. My workouts should continue all year and the baseball games may come second half of the year, but most of this is for the first half. I need to think longer on the topic and see if I can come up with some specific things to do later this year.

Sunday, January 08, 2006


This is a picture of my niece taken in March 2005. She is 9 here. Posted by Picasa

Sunday, January 01, 2006

Year in review

Happy new year. It's now 2006 and while I'll post about my resolutions for the new year, I thought I would also review the past year.

I looked for my goals from last year to see if I had accomplished any of them. I've gotten too far away from living my goals oriented life that I was working on before for some things. Now I live more off the cuff and although I'm doing the things that would probably be my goals, I'm just not specifically laying them out as my goals ahead of time. I think I'll be able to use the blog to help me organize and keep track of my goals going forward.

For the year in review.
January: I spent the New Year coming into 2005 at my parents. I sat around and watched college bowl games all day, it was great. My marriage was over and January brought about the official culmination of the end. Things just went far enough that I could no longer stay married in order to be with my son that I loved more than anything. I fell in love with the love of my life.

February: This was a difficult month. Trish moved out completely, which was necessary, but I also started losing time with Jonas. I went to St. Louis and saw Bald Eagles along the Mississippi river for my first experience with wild Bald Eagles, they were magnificent, but I wish I had more time to watch them. My brother took me out to get me drunk, to help me get over Trish, I didn't need it and didn't get drunk, but we had a pretty good time hanging out that night.

March: I found out that Erin was pregnant. I love her so much and am ecstatic. We start thinking about what we are going to need for a baby and what we have to look for in houses when the one I have ever sells.

April: I went on the golfing trip with my dad and brother again. This was a great time for me. We had lots of fun, but I really missed erin a lot. I started to meet some of Erin's family around Easter time. This was my first experience with her sisters and their children. I was very nervous about whether or not they would accept me. I had never felt accepted with Trish's family and this weighed very heavily on me.

May: I turned 29 and my divorce became final. The house that had been on the market for 16 months finally sold, I started looking for a new place to live.

June: I moved in with Erin's Aunt because I didn't have a place to live yet. We had made an offer on a house and it was accepted, then the owner's decided they didn't want to get out as quickly as they had agreed to. The sale fell through because the owner's hadn't signed the papers yet. Erin and I spent a lot of time looking at houses before we found on that we could afford that didn't also need 15,000-20,000$ worth of work to it. The downside is that it's only half a lot, which doesn't give the kids much room to run in the yard, but we're only 2 blocks from a wide open grass park, so they can go there when they get a little older.

July: Just finished moving into the new house and had a housewarming party on July 2nd. It wasn't a mistake,but it sure made it hectic for the past 2 weeks trying to get every thing unpacked and moved out of the way enough to have a party of people here. The rest of the month is gone from memory. I spend a lot of time helping Aunt Shel work in her yard and work on her pond. It's hard manual labor and I sweat a lot because it's one of the hottest summer's in my life, but it doesn't stop me from getting out and doing it. I take Erin to Springfield and we look at rings. I am going to surprise her by buying her a bigger ring than she's expecting, she's so realistic that she wants the smallest one.

August: I ask Erin to marry me. Erin's cousin Brandon is an expecting father, his girlfriend Jessie is in the hospital there are complications with the pregnancy. We add them to our daily prayers and go visit them several times in Springfield at the hospital. My two weeks vacation with Jonas is the end of the month. It's a great time having him every day again. I missed it so much.

September: Bryan Otis Leonard is born on 9/1. We go several times to see him and the new
stressed parents. They remain in our daily prayers and when Jonas prays he always asks me to say the new part that I taught him. It's cute.

Our son Jaden is born. He's kind of little at 6 pounds and 7 oz.

We get discharged from the hospital and put back in the hospital the same day. Jaden came home then didn't respond well, his temperature dropped so we take him to the ER and end up at the NICU in Springfield. We are in the same unit that our cousin is. It's very stressful, but the week off of work is spent entirely at the Ronald McDonald house in Springfield and going to the hospital several times a day. We also get to see Bryan a lot while we are here and I get to know Brandon and Jessie more. The trip is sort of a blessing in disguise.

Christmas is coming and lots of time is spent thinking about and shopping for gifts. Erin has her birthday and although she comes down with the flu she says it's one of her better ones. Trish gives me an unexpected Christmas gift of Jonas one week every other month. It's awesome. We get together for dinneron the 30th when she even drives all the way to Bloomington to drop him off and go over the calendar for the next year so I can plan everything that I want us to be able to do together.

A quick recap is easy, I found out I was going to be a dad, I got divorced, sold a house, bought a house, got engaged, became a dad, met a whole new family. I know none of this was in my goals from last year, so I did a ton that was all great and a lot of fun, Next year should be a lot more simple.