Category Archives: Family Stuff

General-interest stuff about our family

At Least it’s consistent

Plans tend to be a fairly regular topic on this blog. They have been a major part of my life. However, I am once again left to wonder why I bother.

Previously, I wrote about an opportunity I had to apply to be the EE department head at the Air Force Academy, and how that would interfere with the plans I had made to go back to the life I had left behind in Texas. That opportunity didn’t pan out, and I was grateful for that. I interpreted it a reason to hope that my original plans would work out. … Read the rest

A Cheap Gun — or not

Almost 10 years ago I was in Florida with orders to move to Alaska the following summer. Excited at the prospect, I decided that one thing I wanted to do up there was hunt bear and moose, so naturally I went to the gun store looking for a rifle capable of taking that kind of game.

At the time, I wasn’t all that well versed in guns. I had lots of experience shooting with my family and with the military, but I had never spent the time to become particularly familiar with the ins and outs of hunting rifles. The … Read the rest

Unplaned Road Trip

Circumstances conspired to the point that recently I discovered a need to drive to central Wyoming, then find a way to keep myself occupied for a few days before heading home. As you look at these pictures, keep in mind that they were taken in June — i.e. summer. Without much explanation, some pictures for your enjoyment.

Devils Tower Wyoming (the missing ‘ is intentional and correct)
We camped just north of Sundance Wyoming, and each morning woke up to a new layer of wet snow. We hadn’t expected winter camping conditions in June.
Michael had more fund playing with
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Albuquerque has its Good Points

The brown sort of desert that is Albuquerque isn’t my favorite environment. I miss trees and brush that are even slightly green, and I could happily go the rest of my life without ever running into a cholla cactus again. That said, new Mexico has it’s charms. One of them is quick access to the trails in the Sandia foothills, some of which are within a mile of my front door. The last two Saturday’s in a row, Michael and I have hiked one of them to a large granite formation that looks almost like a dam. This last Saturday, … Read the rest

Don’t Ask

How often do we casually ask someone we encounter how they are? Passing a casual acquaintance in the grocery store isle, the nearly universal greeting is to ask how they’re doing. Run into an old classmate you haven’t seen in a few decades who has their arms full of kids and is clearly on their way somewhere, and we ask how they’ve been. I know I’m guilty of it, and I’m pretty sure almost everyone else is too. This kind of callous or ignorant questioning needs to stop. We don’t really want to hear about our former classmate’s recent divorce … Read the rest

First Rejection

I just received my first rejection letter from a queried literary agent.  Milestone achieved.  Now, the wait to see if there are any who think my attempt at a novel could possibly be profitable.

Update:  make that three, and the time has elapsed where I’m extremely unlikely to hear back from any of the others. Looks like a failed attempt all around. I guess I just overestimated my ability. 

Grandpa’s House

When I was young my parents would take us over to my maternal grandfather’s house almost every Sunday evening. I have a great many memories of that house and the people in it.

My Grandfather’s house was a small pale-green concrete-block structure built shortly after World War II in Kearns, UT. As originally constructed, it had three bedrooms, two bathrooms, a small kitchen, a living room, a small family room, and not much else. I doubt it was much more than about 1200 square feet. Grandma and Grandpa occupied the master bedroom with its rather small attached bathroom. As you … Read the rest

Quitter

I don’t have a lot of patience for quitters. I’ve spent so much of my life pushing hard through difficulty and frustration to accomplish whatever it was I was working towards that it irritates me deeply when someone (especially someone close to me) gives up on something that is ostensibly important. To some degree, giving up feels like a moral weakness or failure. Setting something aside for a while is one thing… An inevitable thing in mortal existence… An uncomfortable but bearable thing… An acceptable thing. Giving up with no intention to circle back and try again later is quite … Read the rest

Uncle John

My uncle John giving me my first salute as a Second Lieutenant

One of the core principles everyone who has ever gone through basic training will understand is that being invisible has it’s advantages. When your bus drives through the installation gate for the first time on your way to training, you develop a pit in your stomach and start to wonder just what you have gotten yourself into. As you watch others get chewed on, you try to shrink into oblivion and do everything you can not to get noticed. At least, that was my experience. No sooner had … Read the rest