Mocha Friday Updates

June 30, 2023 by Adam in Family

It's one of those cool summer mornings before the heat of the day becomes oppressive.  I'm trying to water what I can, even the weird patch of grass and tomato plants that used to house the chicken coop.  The grass seeds we sowed on purpose, but who knows how the tomatoes got there.  Hopefully my whim to spare in mowing them will result in tasty tomatoes down the road.

It's the last day of work before nine days off.  The first three days off next week are a company-wide holiday and I decided to take the next two since Jo, Ben, and Duncan are out of town.  I've got a long and semi-mysterious list of house projects.  We'll see how much I actually get to.

It's been a good news and bad news week at work.  I found a security issue in some software (not mine), which resulted in some mild excitement and congratulations.  One of our clients is having weird bugs in the new version of our software that I don't understand yet.  Mostly I feel bad suggesting one of our more engaged customers go first.  Hopefully I can figure it out today before vanishing.

I've been printing out miniatures and preparing for D&D.  The family group is this weekend and they're finally going into the famed tomb after months of jungle exploring.  Hopefully they survive the process or at least have some fun new characters ready to play when things go horribly wrong.

Secret Tomato Grove

June 26, 2023 by Adam in Family

Saturday morning had a hearty breakfast of waffles and dutch babies, followed by D&D with the family.  No one was eaten by a t-rex, though I tried my best.  I think they're headed into the tomb next weekend, where everything starts getting even deadlier.  Should be fun!

I've come up with a plan to turn the cute little miniature drawers I got for my anniversary into a D&D cabinet of sorts, full of shelves for books and places to put big miniatures.  I have all the material, I think, but have some cutting and assembly to do.  Maybe for the 4th of July week when everyone is away.

We chatted with our wayward Chicago child for a long while Saturday afternoon, catching up on the ins and outs of how garbage chutes and trash compactors work in big high rises.  As with most things, there's more to it than you'd think. Emma and I are excited to visit later in the summer.

Sunday was Awesome Parent Day for Jo.  Presents were wrapped and we ran to the store for whip cream.  There were crepes for all the sleepy children we pried out of bed.  I think it turned out okay.

Otherwise it was a quiet day.  We ran to the hardware store.  Emma and I chatted and played in the garden, discovering a bay tree starting to grow in our bushes.  Emma put it in a pot and I think it's going to Seraph's house.  We took Data outside on a leash, which blew his mind as an indoor-only cat.  Life springs eternal.

Summer Mocha Friday

June 23, 2023 by Adam in Family

It's summer for realsies, with long days and kids sleeping in.  Our raspberries and strawberries are ripening faster that we can eat them.  Flowers are blooming in earnest.  Summer trips are getting booked.  It's all very exciting.

Duncan's been showing off the Minecraft creature he made for his next video project.  It's this bizarre thing with a beating exposed heart and lungs that move.  It's impressive.  Ben continues to write and work on art.  Emma sent pictures of the raised beds she and Seraph built.

We had our anniversary on Tuesday - Jo and I went for a hike, made strawberry jam, and went to a secretly gluten-free place called Jazzy Ladies.  With the U of O graduation they were low on quite a bit of things, but we opened presents and had a nice stroll around the ever-changing 5th street area.

Yesterday Jo, Ben, Duncan, and I went to see the new Spiderman movie, which had great animation and humor.  Work pays for a "take your family to the movies" afternoon, which is a weird but fun benefit.  Tonight we're headed to Shakespeare in the park where they're putting on Julius Caesar.  This Saturday is D&D and an awesome parent day for Jo on Sunday.  After the endless homebound days of COVID, it's nice to have so much going on.

Work has been fine - I keep doing awesome, complicated things.  Hopefully someone appreciates it.  I'm nearly done with my great audiobook.  I'll need to find something else to listen to while I paint miniatures.

First Day of (No-School) Summer

June 16, 2023 by Adam in Family

We have a few more days until true summer hits, along with our anniversary on the solstace.  But in terms of my day-to-day schedule, the three younger kids are done with school and presumably sleeping in.  I made coffee as usual, but it may be some time before it's actually imbibed by sleepy children.

I think I finally figured out the last big bug keeping us from releasing, though I'll feel better once more people have used and tested it.  I'm hoping to be able to get back to working on real features again - the one I've got at the moment is a cool one and I'm excited to get it in front of people.

As for the rest of the week, Ben and Emma's finals went well.  I interviewed mom on her childhood and I learned a few things I didn't know.  I briefly chatted with dad - hopefully we can get together for dinner soon.  He works a lot for an 80 year old.  I've been painting miniatures and listening to podcasts of people playing D&D - it's amazing how popular it is these days.  Though it's always a bit of work I can't wait for the next session.

We've got Father's Day this weekend, getting a new refrigerator to replace our aging one, and possibly helping Seraph to unpack the pod coming in from Danica's house.  I'm going to try hard to take it easy too - some downtime seems nice.

Infinity Switch

June 12, 2023 by Adam in Family

We've been having a series of home ownership challenges lately, though one got crossed off the list yesterday.  The front right burner of the stove broke, which apparently is fixed by replacing a thing called an infinity switch.  It arrived Saturday and the next day Emma and I popped off the back panel of the stove and got it working soon enough.  I expected more from something called an infinity switch - cooking an infinite amount of breakfast sausages or getting hotter than the surface of the sun.  But no, it just works properly now.

The weekend was a good one, with beautiful weather and flowers all in bloom.  After graduation on Saturday, Emma and I had a long library trip followed by pizza and anime.  We also picked up a couple bags of ice for the refrigerator which isn't cooling very well. After some investigation I think the refrigerant leaked out so it's not getting cold enough, and fixing a ten year-old refrigerator probably isn't worth it.  Hopefully a new one can be arranged soon.

We had a D&D session on Sunday with the friend group.  It went slower than expected, but the fights went far better for the party than I thought they would.  We'll meet up again in a few weeks.  Jason had to leave early for his daughter's graduation.  It sometimes seems like all us parents are graduating to a new phase of our lives.

French Immersion

June 12, 2023 by Adam in Duncan

Duncan, Jo, and I went back to Charlemagne school for the French Immersion graduation.  It was surprisingly emotional, seeing these kids who for the most part grew up together, along with the parents who were our comrades-in-arms.  Hearing about each of the kids' favorite memories along with what they're doing in the fall was a highlight.  Apparently sliding down the hill in pizza boxes was a favorite pastime for many.

Getting Duncan to this point has been a struggle, but he's gotten into a groove the last few months.  He seems excited about the fall and numerous adults talked about the quality of the media program at LCC.  Jo and I are certainly relieved, but proud of him too.  Each of our kids had challenges making it through high school and it was good seeing another one make it there, whether by luck or effort or the support of everyone around him. 

Duncan visited with friends and teachers.  After the ceremony we went out to the playground where we'd rustled up Duncan and Ben countless afternoons.  I kept thinking about all the kids' and their destinations in a few months, some near and some far away, dandelion seeds scattered to the wind.  I hope they all find fertile soil and sunny days ahead.

Trials and Tribulations

June 09, 2023 by Adam in Family

Home ownership comes with a variety of challenges.  One of the oven's burners can only be on high heat.  The upstairs refridgerator's freezer doesn't get to freezing temperatures.  The basement sink is cracked and needs to be replaced after plumbers came to fix an unrelated problem.

But it's also Mocha Friday.  It's Duncan's last day of high school - he's registered for classes at LCC in the fall.  The days are beautiful and the flowers are all in bloom.  I figured out my challenging work problem.  We've got some summer trips coming up.  The friend group comes for D&D this weekend.

So we muddle by.  It may be time to look at replacing some appliances if we can't fix it ourselves.  We'll see what the Internet has for advice.

Otherwise the week continues to move along.  I've been spending more time watering the garden, which is strangely peaceful.  I finished Going Postal last night, which was a fun read, if slow with my schedule.  Progress towards my next Microsoft certification continues.  Life moves on.

Sunny Weekend

June 05, 2023 by Adam in Family

It was another lovely spring morning, as long as the allergy meds flowed freely.  Saturday was a library trip followed by power washing the driveway and weeding, with ample video games and miniature painting throughout.  Sunday had Emma and I going for a long walk around Pre's Trail at Alton Baker park.  Emma was taking picture of various plants along the way, stumbling across a Dragon Arum Lilly which has this giant purple flower that was a first for her botany class.

Summer is slowly coming together, with the kids going to New York or Florida.  Jo and I are planning a Washington getaway for a few days.  It also looks like we're going to Chicago to hang out with those folks for a long weekend.  After so many years of staying at home or doing short trips it's exciting to think about getting away for awhile.

As for the week ahead, it's Duncan's last week and the other kids are wrapping things up.  I'm back to working on features again at work, plus starting to study for my next certification exam.  I'll likely continue listening to Not Another D&D Podcast and painting miniatures so I don't have nerd withdrawl before the next D&D game.

Testing Day, Take 2

June 02, 2023 by Adam in Family

I'm off to my certification test in a couple hours.  Hopefully they'll accept me for who I am and I'll endevor to be Geoffrey for the duration of the experience.  It's all been highly annoying but hopefully the test itself goes well.

It's been a lovely week of sunlight and plants in bloom, with only a little bit of allergy issues.  Man I love the modern allergy medication.  School is on the way out and Duncan graduates next week, with Emma and Ben halfway through their respective schools right after that.  Summer schedules tend to be far more relaxed, though the madness of getting kids to school has generally improved over the decades.

I spent this week at work getting our release fixed.  Occasionally I do things and wonder who else could figure things out - there were certainly some weird problems where I had to earn my keep.  Still, I think things are functioning and now we need some real clients to test things out.  I've gone back to the feature I put on hold six months ago.  It's been fun doing my "real" job again.

Yesterday was Open Space, so I spent the afternoon painting miniatures and listening to a review of my certification test material.  It was productive in many senses of the word.

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