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Journal Journal: It's already august 4

Amazing how we are only 5 months away from the end of 2005. Looking back on this year so far and I can say time has flown by, and I'm about where I was hoping to be (house, family, church, career). I'll probably post another JE about that in the near future.

Got to go to the zoo over the weekend. It was a lot of fun. Our daughter was feeling a little sick toward the end of the day and threw up twice after we got home. We think she was teething. Our sister-in-law had some homeopathic tablets that she gave her (that supposedly work great- but I'm always a little hesitatnt about that sort of thing). I'm wondering if that caused the vomitting or if it was something else. She had a low grade temperature the day before so it could have been a virus or something.

Overall the weekend went well. We had an irrigation system installed in the front / side lawn. Had two truckloads of dirt delivered today so the lawn should be final graded and seeded this week. I'm trying to find some good sprinklers for the back yard since we didn't irrigate that (would have blown our budget). Any recommendations? Ideally I want to buy one or two sprinklers (100x100 area) that I don't have to move.

In other news, I'm trying to get some more memory for my PC so I can install Virtual PC and Visual Studio .NET Beta 2. Unfortunately I need about 2 GB to run it in the Virtual PC, but I only have 256 MB ram. I am told I can get by with about 800 MB (slowly), so I still need to buy a gb memory ddr. I got a gift cert for $50 at tiger direct and I'm hoping to find some decent memory there.

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Journal Journal: Credit Cards... 4

I have a credit card with a 0% interest rate until March. I generally don't like using credit cards (especially when carrying a balance), but if you're responsible they can be pretty useful- especially when you're building and money is flying out the window :).

At any rate, I had an interesting experience starting about last week. I was looking at my records of bills paid, and I noticed that I hadn't made a payment to this credit card company (the one with the 0%) for about a month. We've moved twice since April, so I figured I either didn't get the bill at the correct address or it got lost in the move. I went ahead and made a decent sized payment as a "hopefully this will make it in time" effort about a week ago. Yesterday we finally got a bill- and it had all kinds of fees on it. To top that off, they dropped my 0% interest rate and raised it to 13.75% (Oh, and they also upped my credit limit on top of that... ???). I went from a $0 finance charge a month to about $80 if you go by the fees.

This morning I just called them and was ready to pay it off and close the account (I had time to "cool down" from the night before). The person on the phone took off all the fees and reset my APR to 0%. I was half expecting them to do that, but it still kind of surprised me. I was told if I missed a payment again I would not get the fees waved. I just think it is interesting that credit companies use those kinds of tactics. A co-worker told me he's seen it where you miss a payment on one card, and the other ones see it and raise your interest rates accross the board. I hope that never happens...

Anyway, I'm glad I called, we can certainly use the 0% right now. I'll be glad in 6 months when (hopefully) all this stuff will be paid off.

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Journal Journal: A few updates 5

Had a pretty good weekend. Got to go to the Ann Arbor Art Fair. We looked around at a lot of booths but didn't find anything that we wanted to get for the house (well, at least nothing we could afford!). It was a pretty hot day. In my least favorite section (where all the non-profit groups are) of particular interest were some JW's (wearing ties and white shirts in 100 ' weather) and a guy at the nudist booth was overly friendly (while I was walking by, he piped up with an emphatic "HI!")

Nothing to exciting on Sunday. Went to Lowes to get some stuff so I can get the garage door opener's installed. After looking at the manual I'm a little nervous about doing it. There are 16 steps, and the opener is at a funky angle that you're supposed to get by sticking a 2x4 above the door. Definitely won't be a one person job... And Sears charges $109 to install. Not something I really want to have to pay for, so I'll probably figure it out myself.

Landscape is the next thing we're trying to get figured out. It's going to cost quite a bit to do irrigation and grass, which we are most likely going pay to have done. Of course, I didn't budget enough (about 1/4th). To save money, my wife and I are going to slowly do the bushes / plants when we can get to it (at least that's the plan right now) but we are planning on setting the beds in place before we do too much. We have a friend from our old church that does landscaping and want to talk to him before we get going with some guys who "do it on the side".

In other news... We've got a .NET User group meeting coming up tomorrow and the topic is on Microsoft Team Server. It looks like a pretty good product especially for integrating life cycle type stuff in software development. I'm going to start playing around with Beta 2 some more pretty soon but I need to get some more ram first. Looking forward to that- there are plenty of new features that I want to check out.
But playing with .NET 2.0 is kind of low on the priority list right now with all the unpacking and misc. projects I have to do on the house.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Updated Pics

Pics from the last week of building have been posted in case you are interested. Check here.

Cable co came out a little late tonight, but I am now up and running. Things are running quite well, and the upload speed is now 368K so it's a bit kicked up from what I had before.

User Journal

Journal Journal: It's been a looong week.

Moving is going pretty well. As of this weekend, we have everything moved to our new house. Unfortunately we don't have everything unpacked, and I can hardly walk through the garage right now :) I'm guessing it will be a good week or two before we get things cleared out enough to feel moved in. It will probably be a good month or so before everything is really moved in. I still need to install the garage door openers, but can't do that until the garage is somewhat cleared out.

Today the cable company is coming out and I will FINALLY have TV, net access, and phone (VOIP). Last week I had to reschedule because our grading people came out. Not that I would have had much chance to use it w/ everything else going on...

In other news, this weekend is the Ann Arbor Art Fair. It is a really cool art fair, and if you are anywhere near I highly recommend you check it out. I bought this really neat sculpture a few years ago (a figure playing a guitar, completely made out of instrument parts). Let me know if you are going, maybe we could meet up.

Assuming all goes well today with the cable install, I should have the web server back up and running so y'all can check out the latest pics. I'll post a new JE when that happens.

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Journal Journal: Moving Adventures 1

We have started moving into the house this week and what an adventure it has been! I am totally whipped right now. I last wrote a journal when we closed on the house, which was this past Friday. A lot has transpired since then. I'll list a few of the more noteworthy ones.

1. Monday- grading people did a great job- moved the pile 'o dirt in the front, and now we are ready to do some grass seed. I'm planning on meeting with the landscaper soon.

2. Tues- rented a uhaul. Let's put it this way: I was about ready to open up the site "uhaulsucks.com". I registered for the uhaul on Sunday night. On the web site I reserved a 24' truck for all day Tuesday and it cost me $5 (to reserve). They were supposed to call me and confirm by Monday at 5pm. Well monday rolls around and I get nervous, so I call the local uhaul I wanted to pick it up at. Not only was it not reserved, but they don't even have trucks larger than 14'! He said I'd have to call another one further out. I did and ended up getting things set up there. I called later to make sure I wouldn't be charged a $50 for not picking up a truck at the original location.. Sure enough, I was going to be. The person on the phone cancelled my reservation but I'm still waiting to see my credit card bill. The lady on the phone actually admitted the web site was terrible and she tells everyone NOT to use it. Wow, how's that for customer service?? At least I'm only out $5 and some aggravation.

3. Weds was big moving day #1. My parents came up from Columbus area to help. I ended up loading a 17' truck (that was the biggest I could get) almost entirely by myself. It took me about 1 1/2 hours and I started around 7:30. I even managed to get the refrigerator on the truck with an appliance dolly. That was kind of dumb but fortunately I didn't hurt anything important. My dad helped me with the remaining two-person items, and we went to the new house to unload- took us about 3 hours! Amazing what the heat does to you. My wife spent a bunch of time painting our daughter's room. She now has a ceiling that looks like a sky (complete with clouds) and almost an avacodo shade for the walls. It actually looks quite nice- border is forthcoming. I'll post pics as soon as I can find the camera.

3b. Installed my refrigerator and gas stove with help of my dad and father-in-law (respectively). Both had a few kinks in the install procedure. The fridge came with a water line that was too short- we had to go buy some tubing and stick a compression fitting on it. The gas line had a stopper in the top of it that was literally a square peg in a round hole. It took a 2 ft. long crescent wrench to torque the thing out.

4. Today was big moving day #2. We emptied out the other storage unit with the help of movers. A lot of heavy furniture was moved today. My dad and I helped the movers unload and we actually got it all done in about 3 1/2 hours- I was amazed how fast it went. I "bribed" them with lunch and unlimited beverages. I gave them a nice hefty tip after they left and I think they were pleasantly surprised. I ended up saving about $100 (considering what I thought I would be spending)

The move is far from over, though. On top of all the unpacking, we also have our temporary living ameneties over at my in-laws. There is about 3-4 car loads of stuff in their garage that we will slowly chip away at. Most of the furniture is going to be arriving on Sat. - our bedroom outfit and living room couches. So we probably won't be moving in until those items are set up. Fine by me, since my cable modem won't be going in until Sat. as well. Must have internet connection...

Overall things are going pretty well. We only had two casualties from the move so far. A "pie protector" that toppled over when I hit the loading ramp funny, and a decoration my daughter pulled out of a box and bounced on the ceramic tile by our fireplace (wife wasn't happy about that one).

I have a feeling I'm going to need another vacation after this week :) TL, you going to bring that truck up or what?? I'll check back in when I have broadband to the house, if not sooner. (PS, I have my gigabit switch and wireless router all ready to go...)

User Journal

Journal Journal: Closed on the house! 7

Believe it or not we actually closed on the house tonight. The inspection passed, the occupancy letter was faxed to the bank and the money was wired to my builder by 4:30pm. We drove out to the office and signed some paperwork. They wrote me out a decent check for my allowances and a small credit we had.

They still have about 10 items to go. Most of it is minor though the dirt still hasn't been graded yet... We're waiting for that to happen, hopefully it will be this weekend but I'm guessing some time next week.

I ended up accepting some $$ for the garage floor to put epoxy on it. It wasn't all that great of an offer (basically enough to buy the epoxy), but the more I think about the floor the more I think it may be OK after it is used. If not I can put the epoxy on.

This weekend will be busy- we have a few guys coming out to wrap up some of the items and that will be going on throughout the week. We plan on moving our stuff out of storage on Tues with a U-haul. Whatever we don't get in the u-hual I'm going to have the movers get. Hopefully I'll be able to round up more than just my dad to help move... :)

Well we are definitely excited and I've got a full weekend ahead of me- going to try and install the garage door openers and finish up the ethernet wiring (mostly the wall jacks). Have a great weekend!

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Journal Journal: A few mo' updates.. busy day 3

Got some really cool stuff today in the mail from Microsoft for our upcoming user group. Talk about SWAG! Virtual Server, VS.NET 2003, Halo 2, Project Gotham Racing, and a buttload of books. We're going to have some great prizes at our next meeting.. Come if you are in the area!! (TL, that includes you!)

In other updates we had our "homeowners orientation" tonight, which was basically the walkthrough on all the final cosmetic items we are allowed to pester them about until we give them the final draw and are officially completed and ready to move in, which is looking like it will definitely be next week (probably Mon or Tues). I was surprised they got so much done today. They are down to about 10 items on my list now, none of them major. The house is now ready for final inspection and that will happen tomorrow morning. After that we can submit the certificate of occupancy to the bank so they can get the last draw to the builder. The biggest items remaining are finishing the grading up and possibly doing something on the garage floor. The more I look at it the more I think it will be fine, I think it is because it just has had some funny wear on it and the stuff that has the glossy finish needs some abuse to turn it grey. At any rate I'm going to see if I can get some epoxy out of them.

In case anyone was following my last JE about the Microwave Hood for GE, I have some good news. I spoke with the sales person and pitched a minor fit. She tried to tell me that since the letters "BK" were somewhere in the sears part number that I should have known it was black. I told her that I just didn't make that connection, obvious as it may seem to her. After arguing with my fine logic skills (tongue in cheek) I got her to admit she was making the assumption that since I ordered a black stove I must have wanted a black microwave hood. Anyway, we both ended up admitting some fault (I should have checked the box...).

To make a long story even longer... She gave me a few options. #1- she'd be glad to give me a refund and not charge me a restocking fee. I about blew my lid on this one, but kept my cool long enough to tell her that was "unacceptable" as I would have to pay at least $100 (according to Sears retail) to pay for installation. I then explained if I were return it, it is unlikely I would be able to get a competitive price since I'd only be buying one item. So I asked her about returning the stove as well, and she said she'd have to charge a restocking. Again- unacceptable. I asked her if she could speak with her manager about it, or if I could. She then offered to give me a $200 credit on the thing if we kept it! I decided that would possibly be worth it, seeming how it only cost about $275 to begin with. I called my wife but I already knew the answer.. She wanted the stainless steel one (even if we could sell the thing on eBay and turn a profit)! I emailed her back asking if I could get a straight out exchange for the stainless model plus a half the cost of installing a new one ($50). To my surprise, she said yes and upped the credit to $100. So... a lemon into lemonade. That was a big highlight. Plus, Sears has kept a customer and I will certainly go back.

Stepping back a bit, I'm realizing there are a lot of stressful things in building a house and much of it tends to come at the end. It can be hard when your spouse has strong feelings about things you don't feel the same way about. My wife and I have learned a lot about each other in the process and overall I think it has been a good one though there have been a few bumps here and there. Overall we've grown together. Now we're both really excited to finally get in the thing. I am ready to put it all behind me and move on!! It seems like it's about all that has been on my mind outside of work for the last 6 months, especially the last 2-3. Not sure if I could do it again because it is just sooo long and drawn out. I can see why building tends to be cheaper than buying an existing house.. :)

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Journal Journal: House Status Update 2

Went out to the house last night. They have been pretty busy and finished up a lot of things, including the *microwave hood (microhood) and the electrical. Except the microhood was the wrong one, and they didn't put any of the cover plates on the switches where we added dimmers (about 6) and one of the flourecent bulbs for the under cabinet lighting was bad. I decided to bypass the bull- ran to Anderson's (kind of like a walmart) and plunked down $10 and went back to the house and did it myself- took all of 20 minutes. That probably saved me half an hour of complaining and getting the electricians back out. :) My builder told me "thanks, I appreciate that" this morning, how nice :)

Anyway, I wasn't able to sleep much last night. My daughter was complaining about her ear hurting so she ended up staying up until midnight. She was running around on the floor, banging on a plastic drum she got for her birthday and singing several different songs (from "Old McDonald" to "Gotta Shake my Silly's out") - not bad for 2 years old.. She gets excessively busy when she is tired or not feeling well. On top of that I had a lot on my mind w/ the house, some things at work, etc. Nothing bad, it just kept me up.

So I got out of bed at 5 this morning, showered up and went to the house to go through my check list. There are about 15 things remaining, at least half of those should wrap up today. If so we are going to do our "homeowners walkthrough" tomorrow morning at 8am and should get our certificate of occupancy later that day if all goes well. With any luck we will be able to "close" that evening (meaning the final draw is disbursed, which apparently the bank is waiting until we get the certificate). I'm going to give them a call today and see if they can expedite things and wire the check to my builder. That would put us in a good position to start moving things this weekend.

Realistically, I think we will be ready to close come Monday which would also be just fine. Honestly I didn't think that would be the case yesterday but it looks like they are taking care of business. I still haven't heard any word on the garage floor but I told them I will probably want an epoxy put down. The manager hasn't been out yet to look. Hopefully that can be arranged and even completed this weekend.

* Luckily I have an email trail for the microwave hood. I went through Sears Contract sales, and have an email where I asked them for a price match for the model I wanted, they agreed. I also have an order form that has a description along with the matched price. However, the order form doesn't have the actual model number, only a sears part number, which I would have had no way to tell if it was wrong. So I think I have some leverage and am going to see if I can get them to come out and uninstall the incorrect one and install the correct one. The one they actually gave us was significantly higher priced versus what we could have got the model we wanted at a local store. The model I want has a "message center" (make voice recordings) on it and is stainless steel- they sent me a black model with no message center. Probably a good $50-75 difference.

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Journal Journal: Weekend Update 3

July 4th weekend went pretty well. Got to go to visit my parents and we checked out the fireworks in a town called Grandville, which is about 30 minutes east of where my parents live. It is also the city where Denison University is. We opted to go there instead of contending with the 400,000+ people that were going to the Columbus fireworks (Red White & Boom). The fireworks in Grandville were actually quite nice. As an added bonus there was a carnival going on and my daughter and grandparents got to ride the carousel together. We got back Sat. and got some pool time in. Sunday was pretty uneventful, though we did find a great deal on a washer / dryer. Monday we went to a neighborhood bash (in our new neighborhood) that rocked. We got to meet a lot of the families there- all of them seemed really nice and down to earth. The family hosting the party does it every year. It was a potluck but they also had a pig roast catered. I met someone in the neighborhood who actually used to live where my parents live (in Pickerington) so that was kind of cool. Another couple taught at the high school and he was the football coach.

Now to the house update. Things are supposed to be wrapping up this week. Of course that is yet to be seen :) They got quite a bit done Fri and Sat. There are still about 25 items on my list that need completed. In addition, we noticed something fairly major this weekend. The garage floor covering was removed by the builder on Fri. I looked at the floor and it looks really bad. The concrete originally had a "mirror finish" on it. Now it has some significant scratches in it. Additionally, the finish appears to be scaling- basically, it looks like alligator skin in certain spots. On top of that the middle expansion joint is chipping. I spoke with the builder about it and he said "it is normal". Shyeeah. I'm going to be setting up an appointment with the manager. My biggest concern is structural issues- which he assured me there aren't any. If that is indeed the case I'm going to ask them to put in some kind of treatment. Possibily a floor epoxy. There is one that sounds really good called "EPOArmor". Anyone have suggestions? I'm not sure what my options are since the floor is already sealed. Can't really paint it and I don't think epoxy will stick. The other option is to probably have the remove the floor and repour it. I'm not excited about that for a few reasons- 1) I don't want a heavy concrete truck anywhere near my driveway and 2) It's probably overkill if there is nothing wrong with it other than the finish.

UPDATE 1:25 pm EST- Talked with the manager. He is going to take a look at it. I described the same issues and he had a similar response (that it is all normal). I told him the floor looked really bad and wanted to see if he could check it out and get back to me. Hopefully he will be reasonable as I don't look forward to pitching a fit on this.

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Journal Journal: Update

.NET User group meeting tonight- click here if you are in Northwest Ohio and want to come check it out. Plenty of pizza, prizes, etc. to give out at the meeting.

This week has been going by pretty fast. I'm planning on taking Friday off for the "Homeowner Orientation" assuming we get that far this week. Carpet went in last night. I haven't been out to see it as they were still installing it at 8pm. I may go out tonight to check things out. Today we submitted the final draw and they generally try to do the closing within a few days of that. I believe most of the inside is ready for the final inspection. My list is down to about 20 items, most of which are cosmetic. I am going to try and hold off on the closing until a good chunk of the items are completed-- especially the inside ones. I really don't want to move in and have people coming through to fix things. The outside is a different story- I'm willing to let them come back after we close to fix those things up so long as I can get it in writing that they will :) (Ex. Grading, power washing brick, fixing garage door vinyl caps, etc.)

Some good news in other areas as well. I'll be posting another update next week on that, can't get into it just yet. Just hoping to finish up this week and move in next week after July 4th (taking off a week of vacation when we get our move-in date).

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Journal Journal: Weekend Update

Been a nice weekend so far- birthday went well (we celebrated last night). Got to play in the pool with my daughter and the rest of the family and we had some pizza. Later I got to play Halo 2 with my ten-year-old cousin and we kicked some butt.

Everything w/ the house is going pretty well. I posted some pics from a week ago after the drive was completed and the rest of the lighting installed. Click here to see the them. This weekend I was pleasantly surprised by the work they got done. All of the baseboard trim is done, and carpet will be going in on Monday. The main general contractor was out since thurs working on misc stuff such as cleaning up debris, patching the crack in the concrete on the outside wall, figuring out the stairs, screwing down the osb on the floor, etc. I went out today and actually put some screws in the floor myself since I had a little time in the morning, and was waiting on a call from a buddy for the wiring schematic for an rj45 connector (I forgot to bring my cable). I also crimped 4 cables in the basement so those are done. Things are coming along well. The trim carpenter was out and it took him most of the day but he finished our stairway. It turned out being a 119 degree angle from the wall as opposed to the 90 he typically does- needless to say it was a little more difficult for him. We are pretty pleased with the way it turned out. I'll try to get some more pics posted tomorrow.

It looks like we may just be done by the end of next week. I am planning on taking off Friday. It would work out great if we could do our closing at the builders which is on the way to Columbus where we're heading to celebrate my birthday and my sisters at my parents. Her birthday happens to be July 2nd. Should be a lot of fun- we may even get to catch red white and boom (which is a big firework show in Cols on Fri night).

Looking back on the last nine months has definitely been quite a roller coaster ride. We're nearing the end right now... at least the part where the ride is over, and you're waiting to get off :) (Speaking of which, I want to get out to Cedar Point sometime in the next few weeks!!). If anyone is thinking about building, it is a lot of work emotionally and a huge drain on your pocket book... I can't believe all the little things we didn't think of, and things we did that turned out to be more expensive. But that is all part of it and it is definitely a good learning experience. I'm sure it will be well worth it.

I'll have another debriefing on the house once we move in, hopefully that will be my last JE series on the house for a while!! I'll have to find something new to write about. :) On a somewhat related note, I've already got the local cable company set to come out and install on July 11th. It's 3.5 m/bit download, 100+ channels, and an HD box (mostly local channels) for under $70 a month! I'm in an area that actually has competition so it's great. Normally I'd be paying over $100 for that package. There is no DSL just yet, but in about a year (when the price goes up on cable) DSL should be near by.

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Journal Journal: Woot.com 9

Anyone checked woot.com out? I just came accross the site per the recommendation of a co-worker yesterday after I was asking about any good deal sites (currently, I frequent bensbargains.net but it seems to be getting worse). Anyway, I checked out "Woot" and it is kind of a neat concept. Every night at midnight, they put up a single item for sale. It's usually a really good price and sells out by noon the next day (or sooner). Today they were selling some kind of LCD remote control car for $70. Yesterday it was a "Sonic Blue" home stereo w/ DVD for around $150. Neither of those things interested me, but I figure I'll check it daily and there may be something that eventually piques my interest.

Anyway, I went to woot yesterday and they had a link about Tiger Direct sponsoring the sale of the day. I clicked on the link and it told me I could get a 3-cable pack of some extension cables (USB, RJ45, and phone). That ended up being the tipping point- I went ahead and ordered a dlink 8 port gigabit switch and a $20 refurbed wireless router (802.11g).

Just thought I'd post about it in case anyone else is interested.

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Journal Journal: Some Updates 16

This has been a long week (I guess I can relate to Em). I think I am starting to get burned out-in general- and need a vacation. And by vacation, I don't mean a working vacation, which is probably what I'll have in a week or two when the house is (hopefully) done. I'd like to go to the beach and sip the proverbial lemonade. I'd even settle for some iced tea. I guess the in-laws pool is about the closest I'm going to get for now. Went out in it with my daughter last night and it was a lot of fun. She really likes the water.

For some reason I just feel like I'm in the mood to do some naval pondering. Do you ever think back to a point in your life where you were at a "crossroads"- knowing that you could make decisions that would significantly affect the rest of your life? Sometimes I think back and wonder "what if I would have done this..." and how my life would be different now if I had decided otherwise (it can be a fun game to play). Honestly, I've been pretty happy with the decisions that I've made along the way- but sometimes I do wonder about a few of them.

My "career" decision is kind of one of them. Back in my last year of college, I was raising support to go overseas on a 1 year "internship" that was basically a missions trip. I was starting to have serious misgivings about that, mainly because of the people I was going to be there with, and that I didn't really have the right motivation to go. Aynway, I wasn't 100% "not going" but I made a decision to get an internship in a local company near by and try out software (web) development. I was hired by a man that turned out to be a great mentor and encourager, and I worked for him not only at that company, but also another company after he moved on (and I followed). I worked for him for about 4 years total and learned quite a bit. I felt it was time to move on because of some other situations at that company and eventually landed where I'm at now, and have been here for 3 years now. I really like this company and have a good mentor, and hopefully will be moving up the ranks.

Anyway, I sometimes wonder what I'd be doing, if I'd be a different person, etc. if I would have went down a different path. I imagine I'd probably be doing some kind of full-time ministry either with a church or with the organization I was going to be interning with. I doubt the later, because most friends who went down that path have all ended up doing something different (in many cases moving into a career).

I am pretty happy with where I am at in life right now. Work, church, family life, etc. is all good. Building a house has definitely been a stress-add but I think it will be worth it after we move in. Work is going well- just hoping for some opportunities to materialize soon. Church is good- we're growing. Though sometimes I feel like I'm only in church on Sunday, and I'd like to be a little more "sold out" in my day-to-day life. Family is great, though things can be a little stressy every now and then (more now and then's when it's time to pay bills..). One thing I can say is that God always has provided, and I don't doubt for one minute he won't continue to.

In conclusion, I'm thankful for my 29 years here. And hopefully there will be many more to enjoy!

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Journal Journal: House Update

Things are running behind. Originally they were supposed to be wrapping up this week- now this week is next week. Things have been idle for a few days but they are hoping to work on it steady until it is done from today on. Today the builder is supposed to be out fixing our stairway, which is going to involve extending the wall by 6 inches. They basically made the steps about 6" too long. Adding the extra 6" to the wall was not something we wanted to do, but we figure at least the stairway is a little bigger and should still look nice. Extending the wall out will reduce the opening to about 7'6".

The worst thing about the delay is that I have to pay rental on our storage for the entire month of July. On the positive side, I'll have all of July to make sure they get it right. It's in my best interest to let them take their time- if they go past the 20th I get $1000. But realistically I don't think they will go that long.

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