Tuesday, September 25, 2007

On My Own

The wife and kids are in Michigan for another week or so and I've been scrambling to complete a long list of "honey do's". These are mostly husbandly tasks that have slipped for a variety reasons (such as completing the second nursery) due to the numerous distractions of family obligations. While my wife is mostly happy to be spending time with relatives in Michigan, I know she's going to expect that I get some work done as payment for my having three weeks without having to help with the kids.

That being said, I'm also taking the opportunity to catch up on some personal stuff. Last Saturday, we had a double gaming session with Dragonspire in the afternoon and Slaying Solomon in the evening. We'll repeat this extraordinarily rare full day of gaming next Saturday as well. It's good to be gaming again, though I do wish I had yet more time to devote to it. I had high hopes for lots of down-time to plan future adventures and campaigns. Alas, with all my other activities, that ain't gonna happen.

One of those other activities is assembling my new basement office and adjusting to a new computer. Yes, I just ordered a new iMac today. Hopefully, it will arrive in time for me to play around with it before the family gets home. It sure is a beautiful machine. And with Boot Camp, I should have no loss of PC functionality. I'm hoping to high heaven that I can get the sucker online with minimal fuss, as I still need to spend time on getting our web photo gallery working as well. Sigh... I'm not looking forward to that mess.

Finally, I had hoped to get a lot of gym time in. Alas, Finley gifted me with yet another nasty cold just as I returned to Virginia. Now that I seem to be on the mend, I'll try to resume my workouts tomorrow.

Sunday, September 02, 2007

So Much for Vacation

Ok, that big trip to Hilton head that I was so excited about turned out to be real disappointment. It is hard to do long car trips with young children, but we knew this going in. What we didn't expect is that we wouldn't have any time to ourselves down there to swim in the ocean, sip foofy drinks by the pool, or take long walks on the beach. Uh uh. No way. Our kids weren't going to allow it and out relatives had too much on their plates to give us a break. As it turned out, we spent most of the trip cooped up inside watching the toddler watch TV. We did make to the pool a few times, but our one attempt to hang out at the beach was an absolute disaster. I was totally afraid that someone would call child services due to one of the most inconvenient toddler tantrums that we have yet experienced.

Fortunately, we managed to spend some quality time with Professor Pope and his family on the way back. Unfortunately, my wife, oldest son, and myself all came down with seriously nasty colds on the final leg of the drive. We're still recovering right now. Thank goodness that the infant was spared.

So here I am trying to adjust to going back to work after not really having much of a vacation. And instead of focusing on work, I'm thinking about what computer to buy after events have forced me into purchasing a new one about 3 months earlier than I anticipated. I had previously stated that I had had it with Dells. My current Inspiron laptop has been nothing but problems. But the more I price out options, the more I am leaning towards a new Inspiron model. They are highly rated, they are the right price, and they have all the specs that I need. I had considered switching teams to buy a Mac, but I'm having a hard time convincing myself that the added expense and hassle of installing Boot Camp will be worth it. I haven't ruled it out yet, but it's looking less and less likely.

Update: friends have been giving me more reasons to select a Mac (the fact that I already own a license of Windows XP is one). We'll see...

I know it's probably stupid, but the proposed D&D 4e Game Table is kind of driving my decision. The few games that I want to play are generally available on the Mac. I wouldn't have to retain my ties to the PC world if it weren't for the fact that I think that Game Table has the potential to be a sweet tool. Of course, it could easily blow chunks and leave me afflicted with bad case of buyers remorse (the most likely scenario).

Saturday, September 01, 2007

Water Bottles

Ok, I've totally been on an anti-bottled water kick lately. I must have reach some kind of tipping point because I'm now kind of sickened by the wastefulness of buying something that is essentially free in a package that seriously harms the environment. My wife and I have certainly been guilty of the wastefulness (especially on car trips and such). Part of simply came down to the convenience of having an container available to drink the stuff. Sure, I have a Nalgene bottle for hiking in my basement somewhere. But I don't like drinking out of it, mostly because the opening is too big and I imagine the water tasting differently when it has been sitting in plastic for a while.

So I was very pleased to discover these totally awesome reusable aluminum water bottles. I'm hoping that having a practical and stylish water bottle will help me kick the plastic bottle habit AND drink more water (something I desperately need to do anyway).