Monthly Archives: November 2004

Thanksgiving dinner #1

We made three pies yesterday to bring to dinner last night at John & Deborah’s:

Rumrunner’s Pecan Pie
Praline-Pumpkine Pie
Orange Crusted Pumpkin Pie with Bourbon Whipped Cream

John’s mother, his brother and his family was there too. Dinner was delicious and there was plenty of wine, of course. We left at about 12:30am, after Gay had one too many scotches and danced the evening away with Deborah. :)

Thanksgiving

It’s Thanksgiving Day, my favorite holiday and a good time to talk about what I’m thankful for.

I’m thankful for my smart, caring, supportive and beautiful (new) wife and my somewhat smart and beautiful dogs who I spend the majority of my waking and sleeping life with and that they stick around even though I don’t show them enough how thankful I am for them.

Update: I’ve received a few comments about how the preceding paragraph shouldn’t have lumped my wife and dogs together. Valid point. My intent was to mention the most important things to me in one paragraph. If I had kids, they’d be in there too. But my dogs are my kids. And I write this stuff off-the-cuff; it’s not well-edited so there’s plenty of mistakes, poorly-communicated thoughts and mis-spoken things said on this site — if not, it’d be a part-time job to keep this site updated. And I’d like to point out that my wife didn’t write a thing about being thankful for me, so there! :)

I’m thankful that I live in a quiet area surrounded by nature with plenty of privacy and some “interesting” neighbors who show me how fortunate I am.

I’m thankful for the lifestyle Gay & I created together, that we created it together and even more thankful that the end is not in sight. :)

I’m thankful that I get to work at a job that I enjoy every second doing and for the opportunity to build something that is bigger than myself and my immediate existence. And I’m thankful that my job shows me how wonderful human beings can be and that the job’s very nature helps me to enjoy life through the simple pleasure of food.

I am thankful that I have good health and, more importantly, the knowledge and ability to maintain that good health (because I want to live to be 300+).

I’m thankful that my family is also in good health and that I am able to communicate with all of them even though I live on the other side of the country (although I don’t communicate with them enough). And I’m thankful that they live on the other side of the country. ;) (it’s a joke!).

I’m thankful for my new in-laws who accepted me into their family without a fight (that I’m aware of). And I’m thankful that my new mother-in-law is so easy-going and doesn’t mind a bit that I don’t email her enough and enjoys our political arguments as much as she does. And, of course, I’m thankful that she probably won’t read this. :)

I’m thankful for our old friends and that we’ve stayed in contact with them after moving way out to Vashon. And for our new friends on Vashon we’ve gained since moving here.

And finally, I’m thankful for the beer and wine I get to drink with friends tonight during dinner. :)

SuitWatch

SuitWatch: “Why do commercial software makers whine about the “threat” of “commoditization” while analysts and press, mostly paid for by vendors, whine along in harmony? Second, why has nobody ever whined about the “threat” of physical commodities, such as those that give us food and shelter, that we can’t live without?”

The rest of it is a good read. And I like his construction industry analogy to software. When asked about my old of Program Manager at Microsoft, I always said a PM was like the architect (they don’t actually do the work, they just think about it) and I haven’t heard a better description yet. :)

Illy's operation (cont.)

Illy had an operation on Monday to remove a mole. The vet called today with the lab results and the mole is benign. :)

Milgard Windows Lifetime Guarantee lie

We bought a house in 2001 that was built in 1993 with windows from a company called Milgard Windows. A few of the windows in the house have condensation between the two panes of glass. But Milgard Windows have a Lifetime Guarantee so this should be no problem to have fixed.

Wrong. It turns out, that Milgard’s “Lifetime guarantee” only lasts as long as the purchaser owns the house. So the day we bought the house, the lifetime guarantee ended. No one died, the windows are still in the house, so what’s the “life” part of “lifetime”?!

We found this out after we bought new Milgard windows for our office remodel. So having learned a lesson from the old window warranty, we want to make sure these new windows are covered as much as possible. Obviously, Milgard will find any reason to void the warranty so we figured we’d better have our documentation on the purchase with the warranty information we were given.

But we weren’t given a receipt for the windows, just a bill from the contractor for the windows. So we asked for a real receipt. Of course, they said that’s easy and had the distributor get us the receipt. We got a faxed receipt (no original copy) with the prices whited-out. Hmmm. We called the distributor and explained that we want a receipt and were told we can’t have one.

And then we get an angry email from our contractor telling us that our “rather bizarre” request is impossible. It’s impossible to get a receipt for a purchase?! The construction industry is looking pretty shady to us at this point.

The Office remodel (Day 15)

Ron came by this morning, agreed that the outlets looked terrible, and agreed to fix them at his cost. The new version is much better. The rest of the trim was finished and caulked, so we can start painting as soon as we decide on colors.
fixedoutlets.jpg

The Office remodel (Day 14)

screwyoutlets.jpgThe construction guys returned to put the trim around the windows and the walls. They didn’t finish the window trim and a little of the wall trim so they’ll be back tomorrow. And because the electricians put the outlets too high on the wall below the windows, they had to make really ugly cutouts to go around them. They were supposed to be flush-mounted on the trim but Ron didn’t explain that to the electricians so now we have the ugliest wall outlets in town (see inset). We’re going to have a talk with Ron about a solution to this…

We’re also still trying to decide on colors. Melinda, who is an ex-interior designer, came over last night and helped us pick out some colors, of which there are samples you can see painted on the walls.

After tomorrow and once we decide on paint, we can start painting. Then it’s just flooring (carpet) installation and put the plates on the electrical outlets and getting the wall heaters installed. My guess is that we can move in mid-December six weeks after the “two-week” project started.

Review: Shrek 2

Finally saw Shrek 2 this weekend but we didn’t like it as much as the first one. The story just wasn’t as entertaining. The cultural references weren’t that striking, as many reviews said. Yeah, it was cute that the fast food place was named “Fryar’s” and Far Far Away Land was obviously Los Angeles.

We watched the extras on the DVD and about how much more advanced technically than the first one, but you know what? I didn’t even notice. I wasn’t amazed that the characters got stuck in a rain shower and got drenched, something “never before done” in a computer-animated movie. All I remember about that scene was thinking “what was the purpose of that rain shower?”

It was entertaining and funny and worth watching, but I really liked the first movie and this one didn’t do it for me as much.

Belated Thanksgiving

We run a recipe web site which means our busiest time of year is during the run up to the big holidays, so our celebrations are always delayed now. I have to admit, I’m beginning to like it. We’re going to our friends’ John & Deborah’s on Thursday, so we get to have dinner without getting stressed about making it to the grocery store tomorrow. We’re having other friends out here for turkey on Saturday night. We can cook while the rest of the world Christmas shops. I’ve only started collecting recipes to choose from for a menu today. Thanksgiving is still my favorite holiday, and I am really looking forward to sharing it with our close friends, even if a few days late.

Holiday Beers!

I always forget about holiday beers every year… it’s one of the best parts about the holidays. Deschutes’ Jubelale (reviews), Maritime‘s Jolly Roger (reviews), Red Hook’s Winterhook (reviews) and Sam Adams Octoberfest (reviews) are regulars at our house during the holidays. This year, we also have Sierra Nevada’s Celebration Ale and Sam Adams Holiday Porter (reviews).

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