Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Math - its a cool thing

One more thought...

Helped Jaimer with her ACT math practice tests. Yeah - its been a long time. I don't remember how to do things like quadratic equations and other things - but I'm still good at graphing (which she was having a problem with). For the most part, I might not be able to quickly figure out the right answer... but given a problem and a multiple choice set of answers - I can usually figure out which one makes sense. So we spent time going through all the problems she missed, and when all was said and done, I showed her how to get the right answer on many of them.

I thought it was fun and why I like math so much. One answer makes sense and it is "easy" to see. "The graph kind of pops out in front of your face and you can see what a line represents", etc. She wasn't so thrilled with the concept as I was - but she got it much better than before, so that's good.

One of those nights

Lots going on at work - and we are in planning stages, not actually coding anything yet. So having big design discussions. Woke up at 1:15AM with all kinds of thoughts flowing around in my head. They'll just stick there and keep me away if I don't get them "on paper". So logged in and updating the wiki with new interface specifications and design thoughts. There... emptied the brain out for now. 3:10 AM - time to go back to bed for a few hours.

Night all...

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Red River Rally - Sunday

Another good day. Road the Enchanted Circle "road rally". Won $10. :) Paid for the entry fee.

Bought a bit more stuff, talked to some folks, ate vendor food and local food and watched the bikes. Tomorrow's weather looks good. We aren't staying for the parade. Its been a great time - but time to get home and get ready for work and the week to come. So we are leaving early in the morning. Have a few good stories that I'll post later along with pics.

Just wanted to post we are having fun, its been a good time and we'll be heading home tomorrow. I imagine this will be the first of many Red River rallies.

First full day of the rally

Mostly what you would expect. Buy stuff, going on rides, listening to bands do covers of classic rock tunes. Doing a few jello shots... Yeah I know - but hey, you only live once and I've never done a jello shot before! Fun stuff. :)

A few observations:
  • At least 90% (if not more) of the bikes are Harleys
  • Probably 90% of the people are bikers. There are also some tourists that come up for the day to look around
  • Just like bands, bikers apparently have groupies too
  • They sell a lot of little kid stuff and "My grandma" or "My grandpa" - yeah, bikers are aging.
  • There are some pretty harmless looking people - and there are some pretty scary looking people at bike rallies.

I'll have to post the conversation Tina had with the vendor from Bad Pig... but I've got to go get ready for todays ride. Should be fun... although maybe a bit wet.

There are kids at rallies


Those folks we road in with from Denver to the Red River Rally - they had a 10 year old girl with them. And I've seen a number of kids at the rally - some dressed in leathers. Not too many... but I figured I'd mention it anyway.

Maybe Red River won't be your first rally - but we'll have to take you somewhere! :)

Love ya,


Saturday, May 26, 2007

Trip to Red River

We had discussed going to Red River and had made hotel reservations in Taos - the closest hotel we could get. But then on Wed we were both feeling kind of sick and the weather wasn't looking too good - so we called and cancelled the room. Still have to pay for one day that we could use some time in the next 6 months - so we said that was fine.

Friday morning - sun is shinning, we both have the day off and the road is calling. We decide to go, so I call the Best Western in Red River - and they had one room free up for the full 3 days. Woo hoo.

We leave town at noon. Stop south of Pueblo at a Taco Bell to grab some food and decide to get gas. We see 8 other bikes. We gas up quick, pull up behind them and ask if they are going to RR. They are and say we are welcome to tag along. So we travel with them all the way to Cimarron. They traveled as a group pretty well (stagged, hand signals, etc.). Its always nice to travel in a group - just feels safer - like people can see you, etc.

Weather was looking wicked bad when we hit Walsenburg (towards the west), but they were heading south, so we stuck with them. We eat in Trinidad, then head to Raton. Hit rain, but not bad. Going south towards Cimarron it got worse and one bike stopped so we all pulled over. Just sitting in the cold rain/sleet, letting it pour down. Its all about the adventure! 10 minutes later it stopped and we broke off from them at Cimarron and headed up to Red River. *Beautiful* ride. Stopped to put on my leater jacket ('cuz I had rain gear on), as it was getting very ccld.

Pulled into town and there were bikes *everywhere*. All down the middle of the street and on both sides. Vendors everywhere.

Ate quail for dinner at Texas Rob's and called it a day. Of course... it is a rally - so folks blow-drying their hair at midnight and bikes up and down the road all night - but they, that's part of the deal.

Beautiful Saturday morning and we're off to find food, check out vendors and do some rides.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

The pros and cons of getting older

Getting older is very cool because then you have grandkids. I cannot wait to come roaring down the street on Capt'n Jack and to have PeaBaby come bursting out his front door yelling "PapaJames PapaJames" - similar to how Jaime would welcome me home from work when she was little. I just cannot wait and I think about him all the time when I see little boys on the plane, in restaraunts, etc. Yeah... I obsess.

And its cool that I've worked my way up and have the money to do things like have Capt'n Jack and go on rallys, etc.

On the other hand... you start realizing you're not going to live forever. Little aches and pains and high blood pressure and the doctor worrying about your glucouse count, etc. make you realize that your body will eventually break down.

Its just one of those reflective mornings... Like Sis says - she can't imagine us not being close, as her dogs miss us terribly when we are gone - she can't imagine how PeaBaby is going to handle it. So I just can't imagine not being around for ever and seeing PeaBaby (and all the other babies) grow up and then seeing their kids and on and on. But you take the good (we can make some trips down there and its going to be so cool) with the bad (we can't live next door to them and follow them around the us) and make the best of it. But sometimes you still think "Wow - I'm getting older and I'm just not going to be able to do everything I want to do. But I'm so blessed, so quite whining and get to work." :) [Some times I have to snap myself out of it].

I am a blessed person and love my family so much.

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Trip to DC

So - just a brief summary of the trip to DC... [As a side note - mostly if I don't blog something right after it happens - I don't blog it. But this was pretty cool so I figured I'd post something - more for myself than anyone else - so years from now I'll read it and be like, "Oh yeah - that was so fun!"]

Flew out Sunday - got to the hotel pretty late, but in time to watch the very end of Survivor. Terry and I are both fans so we decided to meet in the lobby after and go find food. We ended up with McDonalds, because apparently 10:15 PM in Sterling VA on a Sunday night is NOT a good time to find food - other than maybe a pub somewhere, and we weren't too up for that.

Monday was a blast - and exhausting. We basically spent the day driving/walking in circles and getting lost now and then - but having fun the whole time. Took the Metro from Falls Church. EVERYONE says "Don't drive in DC - take the Metro." I'm always like, "Yeah right" - but for once I decided to listen to people - including Terry who said, "I think we have to because I don't think we'll find anywhere to park". So now I'm one of those people who says - if you are going to DC from the outlying areas... "Don't drive in DC - take the Metro!". It is cheap - you can get an all day pass for $6.25 - as long as you start after 9:30 AM, and it goes most everywhere and once you get the hang of it, its really easy. Took a few exchanges to get the hang of it - but apparently most the staff is used to tourist. All I had to do was stare blankly around like I was lost and most anyone in a uniform (staff, security, some guy sweeping) would be like, "You want to go that way" and point... at which point I figured how could they possibly know that, since there are many possible destinations and I'd start to say "But I want to go to XXX" at which point they'd just nod and say "Yeah - that way". All in a not overly friendly manner, but also not rude. More like, "Yeah, yeah - another lost tourist - move along." It was fun.

Anyway - went downtown and spent the first 1/2 of the day around the mall. Saw the Vietname War Memorial - different that I had expected; the Lincoln Memorial - awesome - in the true sense of the word... inspiring awe. Very cool. The WWII memorial and Washington Memorial were cool as well. Went over to the WhiteHouse where the park service was doing a tour for some elementy school kids - 3rd grade maybe:

PS: "See this fence. Its kind of low. One time one kid bet another kid that he couldn't jump the fence and make it to that fountain... Do you think that was a good idea?"

Many little kids: "NNNnnnnoooooo"

PS: "Thats right. You can't see them right now, but there are men on the top of the Whitehouse that keep an eye on things. Do you know what they did when they saw him?"

One little boy: "They killed him?"

PS: trying to stifle a laugh "No... but they did come down and talk to him to find out what he was doing."

And so forth. Cool stuff. I saw the Whitehouse Christmas tree... which you can see from the Washington Memorial and I thought "Hey - that looks like it would make a cool Christmas Tree." And it is!

Anyway - much walking around, going to musemes, getting lost down by the riverfront and eating good food. Was a fun day - and yeah, you can't see it all in one day, even if you are booking along.

The rest of the time was spent working (met to discuss 4 different projects, with many teams and all of it was extremely productive - which was very cool) eating and sleeping. Ate Thai (of course), Sweetwater Tavern (good halibut special), Irish Pub (cornbeef and cabbage - with a carrot/parsnip mixture which was awesome). We discussed being "adventurous" and heading into DC for dinner on our last night but: a) we would have gotten there about 8:00 - which was cool with me but too late for many people, and b) what we could find looked pretty expensive - over the per diem for the day just for dinner. So we decided to do Thai fairly close - but far enough away that it was somewhere different (Reston) and we took two cars, and we both got lost on the way - so that was fun.

Yeah... since my internet connect was pretty hosed at the hotel (finally got it working the last morning) and so there wasn't much to do but watch TV - eating late and getting lost on the way there is just fun. I mean - what else is there to do? One way to see the area. :)

So all in all a good trip. I'll definately have to think about going out early or staying late next time as well - because it would be cool to go downtown again.

Freedom Memorial Ride 2007

Went up to the Freedom Memorial Ride 2007 yesterday. Turns out there wasn't much of an organized ride (not like most rides I've been too) - it was more like "Hey, come up and see us." But we went with 5 bikes from the Springs to Denver and came back with Robert, on Hwy 83. So it was a great trip, beautiful day for it, and it was a good cause. They hope to have it in place and the dedication next year, that would be cool.

Ate some vendor food and stuck around for the official ceremonies, part of which was mentioning the 52 people who have died in Afganhistan or Iraq in the latest war. Seth Staton's name was mentioned.

Having just returned from DC and having visited a number of memorials there, I think the idea of this memorial is a good thing.

Spanish Tapas

Ate at the Washington DC La Tasca while I was out there last week on business. Its a Spanish Tapas restaurant. Very cool food. I had the:
  • Berenjenas fritas con queso cabrales,Fired eggplant with a cabrales cheese dip
  • Selecion de embutidosA selection of Spanish cured meats
  • Vieiras gratinadas, Scapplos sauted with garlic, onions and peppers.
  • Gambas al Ajillo, Shrim sauteed in olive oil, garlic and "Guindilla" peppers.

I liked the eggplant the best, as it was different from anything I've had before. Sliced pretty thin and deepfried, almost like a chip. And the cheese dip was very good. But all of it was good and it was a nice atmosphere. It was Monday night and they had a special for $25 get 4 Tapas and 2 Sangrea. If you are in the DC/Maryland area, check it out.

Turns out there is a Tapas restaurant in Denver - the 9th Door. I'll have to check it out some time!

Friday, May 11, 2007

google humor

  1. go to google
  2. click on "maps"
  3. click on "get directions"
  4. type "New York" in the first box (the "from" box)
  5. type "London" in the second box (the "to" box)
  6. click on "Get Directions"
  7. scroll down to step #23 (or so)

Some companies get a sense of humor. :)

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

What a cutie

Got home Mon night and was sitting on the couch watching TV and getting warm. Heard the garage door open and then Jaimer walked in.

"Hey... who is in *my* house! No one lives here except ME!"

What a cutie.

She didn't have to be to work till 11:30 yesterday, so we spent a good hour or more just catching up and talking about what is going on in her life. Her day with Miss Christie was awesome. She told us all about it, "Miss Wagner... Miss Wagner - can you come eat lunch with me?" "Miss Wagner - you are my bestest bestest friend."

She spent the day in kindergarden - and now she wants to go to college to be a teacher! Not a big surprise. She has always loved little kids and wanted to do *something* with them. And Miss Christie's class was so fun. We talked about college quite a bit. The good and the bad. How you'll love it - and hate it at times. I loved school and have always missed it. So much I went back for my masters and thought about getting a doctorate - and maybe I will some day - but not right now. I just treasure my time with my family too much and school takes quite a bit of work!

But I'm so excited Jaimer is seriously looking into it. It will be a great time for her. And while teaching isn't about the money - it is something she is passionate about, has been "called" to do since day one probably - and will love doing. So its all very good.

It was great to be home and spend some great quality time with my kid - talking about what's going on in her life and what she sees for the future.

Long distance is hard


Just read your mom's latest post about our visit.
While it was amazing and fun and I'm so grateful that they were here, I can't help but be really heartsick at the fact that visits are all we will have, and too brief and infrequent at that. I really wish we could live near them during this pregnancy but more importantly after he's born. I can't believe he won't get to spend the weekend at grammy's whenever he wants.
:( Yeah - no kidding. It was so awesome being down there. We missed Jaimer tons - but it was so great to hang out with your parents. That is always such a good relazing time of just catching up, eating good food, and playing X-box with your dad! And buying stuff for you was so fun. When we were looking at furniture I just *had* to buy your crib. Something for my kid - and for her kid. So every day you'll be sleeping in the crib I got you. Makes me feel closer to you - given we are so far away.

And we buy stuff like little Harley vests and discuss, "Some day you'll have your Fat Boy and I'll still have Capt'n Jack and PeaBaby will be up for a summer vacation and we'll take him to a Rally and then he can pick out his own patches and get them sewn on his vest! It will be sooo coooool!"

I wish your folks lived closer too. Even if it was Albq - we could make it in one day on the bike. As it is, I'm thinking about 4 day weekends... I don't think we could make it in one day on the bike - so probably lots of car trips. Long day down - spend a day or two with you guys, and then a quick day back and back to work. I just can't imagine only seeing you once or twice a year though. And that's only for another year or so - after that who knows where your folks will end up and if its in FL or something - the trips will be way less frequent.

Anyway - it was an awesome time down there and we can't wait to come down in Aug and see you for real.

Keep getting bigger, and stronger, and have fun playing with your mom.

See ya in a few,


Loud pipes and car alarms

My boss Hans tells a story of how he helped his boss Kevin go pick up his first Harley. He drove it back to work and going through the parking lot it was so loud it set off car alarms. So I've heard of this, but never experienced it... till this trip.

Day 1 of the Rally we parked in a parking garage - and as we pulled in to park, the alarm in the car across from us went off! And then when we left (a bunch of us at once) all kinds of alarms went off. Wow... its true - loud pipes will set them off. But maybe its because its in a parking garage.

Then yesterday when I went to the store I was slowing down to go over a speed bump in the parking lot and reved the engine... and a car alarm went off.

I know - probably pretty annoying to the owners... but I think its kind of cool. :)

AZ State Rally - Trip home

Left Tif's about 11:30. Forecast was sunny through AZ with maybe showers in Albq. and showers on Monday. Forecast didn't look better through the week - so we decided to go ahead and head home, rather than waiting and trying to do it on Mon/Tue. We weren't sure if it would take 3 days or not, in case we had to hang out and wait for rain to stop.

Ride through AZ was great. We took it pretty fast - not a lot of side trips - as we were trying to beat any rain. But really only clouds on the horizon. Took 26 from Deming to Hatch and the back way all the way up to ToC and then up to Socorro for the night. We thought about trying to make it to Alb. but Tina was beat and we had put in a good day. Stayed at a Motel 6 - which was clean and sleepable - but had NO ammenities. No hair dryer, no coffee pot, and NO INTERNET! So - no update or upload of photos. :(

Got up the next morning and it was sunny out. Figured we'd try and make it to Raton or Trinidad that day - stopping when we hit the afternoon showers.

We took back roads all the way up to Alb and ended up on the west side of town. Hit I-40, took it east to I-25 and headed north. It was a nice lesiurely drive up to that point - although a bit cool. We were layered up pretty good.

Stopped in Las Vegas for gas - and so decided to eat. We ate at Pizza Hut - which is usually pretty fast - but took forever. Got some pizza to go - yeah, just threw it in the "trunk" and headed out. The windy was coming up and it was looking like it was going to storm any second. The rest of the trip was pretty much spent in the "maybe we can make one more town" mode. Figured we'd maybe make it to Raton - Trinidad was looking less likely.

But it was beautiful as we headed north. Large storm clouds in the distance - but then the road would turn and the clouds would be over some mountain and we'd be heading towards a clearing in the clouds. Hit Raton and decided to try for Trinidad. Not that far and if we hit rain it wouldn't be that much. Going into CO it got beautiful. Looks more like "home" and less like desert and the sun was shining off of everything. Hit Trinidad "What to stop?", I asked Tina. "Nope, Walsenburgh is only an hour a way, lets see if we can make it". Hit Walsenburgh, "What to stop?" - "No, its only 90 miles to home, lets keep going". It was getting cloudier and cloudier and we could see a big storm to the north. Walsenburg was cool because all the clouds were along the mountains to the west. Looked like it was snowing and the sun was shinning through in spots - but out on the plains it was sunny, where we were headed.

The closer and closer we got to the Springs, the worst is looked. Looked like it was really bad up there. "Do you think we can make it?" - "Sure", I replied.

By this time it was getting pretty cool and there was moisture in the air. I was shivering - but didn't want to stop. Neither did Tina. Just get home, so on we went. Gas was getting low - but surely we could make it. Just get home.

Getting closer to town and a rain drop hit the windshield. I looked over to the side of the road and there was the "Colorado Springs City Limit" sign - and from then on it rained. Not poured, but rained - stinging the face. I don't like doing 75 or 65 in the rain - so when we hit the south Nevada exit, we got off. Wound our way through town, getting wetter and wetter. Probably would have been faster to head up I-25 - but again, I don't like driving fast in the rain. Stopped about 2 miles from home for gas. The light had been on a while and I did NOT want to run out of gas a mile from the house or something.

Pulled into the garage cold and wet... But really it was just the front of my neck warmer (which was up over my mouth) and my beanie. My bandana on under it was still dry! Brought in all the stuff, got out of the wet clothes and we were home and snug and dry once again!

It was a great trip home. Really only 30 minutes of rain or so, and given the forecast that was a blessing. Did 480 miles the last day - probably the most we'd done in a day, getting home close to 7:00PM. But it was worth it to get home.

Trip total: 2093 miles!

Next morning I was choming at the bit to hit the road again... Usually after a long ride Tina is ready to be off the bike - but I go through withdrawls and want back on it. I mowed the lawn, went through the mail, paid some bills, got caught up on work email... But then at 4:00 I couldn't take it any longer and road the bike to go get groceries. :)

Then I looked up the Posse ride... a Coast to Coast HOG ride. This year it goes from Delware to Oregon - through Montana. Right through Big Timber. We are already booked - but would have been a fun ride... Maybe someday. 18 days, 14 states, over 3K miles. :)

AZ State Rally - Day 3 of the Rally

As noted, Tina slept in, but when she did get up I talked her into heading over to the rally pretty quickly. I didn't want to miss anything! We checked out the vendors, which were fewer than "big" rally's we had been to (such as Thunder in the Rockies), but were still cool.

We found the "cool vests" - but they were kind of expensive and we don't really need them that often, so skipped buying any. There was a vendor selling patches and sewing them on. There usually is, and I had counted on it and brought some patches with me - so got those sewn on my vest plus a few more. "Loud Pipes Save Lives" - plus had her sew on my HOG patch with the "Pikes Peak Chapter" and also the "HOG State Rallies - Arizona" patch. I figure I'll add the CO and the National on as well. Vest is starting to fill out some.

We also bought a small child genuine leather vest for PeaBaby and had an Air Force sticker sewn on it! We then went and watched some bike games and just hung out. We then went and had lunch - and ate in a Bud area and got a beer. I mention this because this is the first time I've seen a "beer tent" type area that had a sign "No Firearms Allowed!" You can carry firearms in the open in AZ - just not where they serve alcohol. But you can take them into banks. We talked to a guy who says he does it all the time. Tombstone and the wild west live on I guess!

We then watched some more games and then went back and had a Harley patch sewn onto PeaBaby's vest. It probably won't fit him till he is 2 or 3 - but its still very cute.

Basically just hung out most of the afternoon and then went and gathered for the parade. Talked to some folks from Phoenix, did the parade and then headed back to Tif's. We discussed hanging out for night activities - but decided that spending the last night with Tif was the better thing to do.

Saturday, May 05, 2007

AZ State Rally - Day 2 of the Rally

Day 2 the ride to Tombstone left at 8:00! So - we had to get up about 5:30 to get around, get packed up and get over to the hotel. This was the longest scheduled ride of the day - 200 miles. We picked it because it was long and was going to Tombstone. I had been there about 30 years earlier and remembered it as being pretty cool.

After we got to the hotel someone asked "Is this the short ride or the long ride?" Turns out it was the short ride, as they had thrown another longer ride together. But we knew a few folks that were going and decided to stick with the "short" 200 mile ride. Turned out the ride was going to go back the way we had come, pretty close to Tif's house, and then off I-10 out into the desert.

It was brezzy on the way down, and there were people that were even putting on jackets because they were cold! Tina got a bit chilly and put here jacket on, but I was good with just my long sleeve shirt. A bit gusty here and there, but not bad.

We stopped in Sonita for gas. And I took a couple shots of all the bikes!

Our particular group had about 20 bikes in it (they split into multiple groups if there are tons of bikes) - but we had lost 5 right off the bat. The "sweep" will usually block a road if we are turning so that we can all keep together and not get split up by oncoming traffic. While this is a bit of an inconvience for the motorists (perhaps) - it is much safer for the bikes when everyone is together. Well when we turned south coming off of the main road that the hotel is on, and getting onto the interstate onramp - the sweep blocked the traffic and towards the end this lady pulled up, looked at him and drove right around him. Splitting 5 bikes from the rest! We didn't know any of this till we got to Sonita and because we stopped there for about 30 minutes (bathroom break, gas, etc.) everyone caught up.

Then it was on to Sierra Vista. We had actually played at the Holiday Inn here, probably about 30 years ago. Yeah... I didn't remember the town at all!

One of the reasons for the Rallies is a sense of brotherhood and fun stuff to do - but its always a way to foster loyalty to the company and pick up some business for the local dealerships. So we stopped at the dealership. Its seems fairly small - had about 20 bikes out front. Then we showed up with about 50 more! :) They had free water and ice tea, so we chugged some water and then bought a couple of t-shirts.

Then we headed to Tombstone. We were going up through the "mountains" (hills really), but the terrain changed quite a bit. You could actually imagine cows and cowboys out here, as it was grassy, green and there were some trees. Very pretty ride.

We got to Tombstone

and ate lunch together at Big Nose Kate's. She was Doc Holliday's girl friend. Tina and I then walked around the town a bit and saw the OK Corral.

We wandered through a few of the places, then decided to go get gas - as we had skipped it at Sonita. Didn't want to be the only ones that needed gas! Then came back and sat on a bench in the shade on main street and watched tourists, locals, gun slingers, etc. walk up and down the street. Cool place to visit, though different that I remember it from 30 years ago!

From there it was back to the hotel. We headed to Benson where everyone gassed up before heading back on I-10. It had been a very windy ride - with the wind picking up as we came out of Tombstone. Standing at the gas station an old American Indian biker came up and started talking to us about CO - seeing our plates. He then said, "Its going to get windy now." - "NOW! It already been windy!", Tina said. "Nope - *now* its really going to get windy!", he said and smiled. And he was right!

The wind coming back was much stronger. We pulled in line 4th, behind the sweep in the right side of the stagger - since we were going to be going by Tif's exit. We told the captain we'd be peeling off there - so they didn't think we broke down or something. Tif's house is about 20 miles from the hotel - so no reason to go all the way back just to turn around! There was quite a bit going on this night, but Tina was beat, so we had decided to just hang at Tif's and do some more visting!

Anyway - the trip back was very windy. The folks behind us pulled up next to us to tell us to be careful of the guy in front of us - he drifted quite a bit. Asked if we wanted to switch spots, but I said no. I didn't want on the left side because then we'd have to cross the stagger to exit. They were right - the guy would drift all the way from the left almost to the ride side. And not just when it was windy. But I just kept and eye on him and would fall back some if he started to drift. So - the ride home was windy - but still fun.

We hit Tif's exit - waved at everyone and peeled off. And that was the end of Day 2!

Day 3 there aren't any rides - just bike games (no we are not in any), a bike show, vendors and just hanging out. Oh - and a parade through downtown at 4:00. So we'll probably sleep in some (ok... so I woke up at 6:00 - but Tina will sleep in some) then wander over when we feel like it. Checking out the vendors, buying some stuff undoubtedly (they have a vest you can chill that keeps you cool for desert riding!) and just check things out. A couple of bands are playing tonight - but I don't know if we'll make it to that or just do the parade at 4:00 and head back.

Outlook for the trip home is stormy. Looking better up through NM - but still looking at the I-10/I-25 route. Going north and up through 4 corners looks too cold/snowy. And Raton/Walsenburg looks cold/raining on Mon. We might wait to leave till Monday morning and make a 2 day quick trip home!

Well - that's all for now!

AZ State Rally - Day 1 of the Rally

Thur was the first day of the rally. The web site said that the first ride was at noon and that was when registration started. It was already hot out, so we through some extra clothes in the saddle bags, dressed lightly, and headed out around 11:00:

Got signed up at the rally and saw that there were some earlier rides that we had missed. :( - But there was one at 1:00 that was going to the
San Xavier Mission. This was about the longest ride of the afternoon and looked cool, so we decided to do that. Met a few folks going through our registration packet and had lunch with them. Lunch took so long we *almost* missed the ride, but the road captain said he'd wait for us so I ran and got the bike and we took off with everyone. The ride was mostly through town and then out into the desert. You can see the mission from a ways off and it was under construction, but very cool:

The inside was pretty amazing. This little mission out in the middle of nowhere, and pretty ornate inside. Check the website for better pictures.

Tina and I checked it out and then I took a picture of her by some cactus:

and by this Saguaro:

Tina calls them "grandpa cactus". We found out on this trip that the reason the flowers open at night is because they are pollunated by bats!

When we got ready to head back, Tina - ever the bold one - said, "The trip out was too short! Can we take a longer way back?". The road captain, Kevin, was really nice and said sure. He asked for a vote of who wanted a longer ride back - and everyone said yes. So we went back through the desert and up over Grant's pass. Very pretty and nice twisty road up over some hills.

By this time Tina was bushed and hot, so we decided to head back to the pool once we got back to the hotel and the trip ended. When we got back everyone parked in the garage, but we followed Kevin around to the main area and he snapped this photo of us in front of the State Rally flag!

After that it was back to Tif's for an hour in the pool. Tina wasn't too keen on heading back out, but I talked her into it and we went to the BBQ at the dealers. Lots of bikes, loud music, good food. :) - Met a few more folks and bought some more cool baby clothes. A set of 7 bibs and a newborn black skull cap. :)

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Good Pizza!

Went to Oregano's Pizza Bistro last night with the kids. Yum! Nice atmosphere - casual and big band maybe? Swing music, early 60's black and white TV shows. Comfortable. They have an extensive menu! We got some UFOs for appetizer:
These hand-made Unidentified Frying Objects are lightly seasoned, breaded artichokes filled with an out-of-this-world cheese!

And then I got a Chicago Stuff Pizza for dinner. The Numero ONE-O:

This ain't no wimpy pizza! A traditional combo of homemade sausage, pepperoni, mushrooms, onions & green peppers makes one incredible pizza!

Yum... and since I got it on a whole-wheat crust, I didn't feel so bad about having pizza. Its at least an inch thick (of ingredients, not crust) and packed full. Very much the pizza taste I was craving, w/ no "white flour" issues. Or very little. Tina got a "made to order" thin crust pizza and the kids got a huge salad and a pasta dish. We all brought some home.

While this isn't a "local" eatery - they have 8 restaurants across AZ - it had a local feel to me. So - if you are in the mood for some slightly different (or even traditional) Italian food - especially Chicago Style pizza - check it out!

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Didn't know this was a problem!

Being a guy, it would have never occured to me that this would be a problem. But having just read it... I could see how it might be. In fact, I guess I would have figured you'd use both sides every time. But in any case, knowing someone who will soon fit this description, I figured I'd post it.

From Tricks of the Trade:
Amid the confused haze of sleep deprivation that comes with the care of an infant, a breastfeeding mother may forget which side she used last. If faced with this problem, simply place a hair band or bracelet around the wrist of the side you should use next.