Runner’s Day

I was up way too late, and ended up sleeping in a little later than I really wanted. Summer and I went to the old house to pick up some things, and then Walmart to get groceries for our big steak dinner for everyone. We made a quick detour to Lowe’s for a couple free Mother’s Day plants, and then it was back home to start prepping.

I had a little trouble with the fire again because I’m always stubborn and don’t go straight to a nice, clean, oil-soaked paper towel. I even spilled a bit of oil on the deck, so that spot may just be water resistant forever. Summer helped prep everything for the twice-baked potatoes, which I decided to cook in the smoker this time. This ended up being a learning experience as well.

We picked up a rosemary plant at Walmart so I could try and make a garlic herb butter for the steak. It was a neat addition, but I don’t think anyone felt particularly strongly one way or the other. The smoker was a super dry heat on the potatoes. I had a water pan with them, but I ended up cooking them way too long for such a high temperature, and the outsides got overly charred. The one plus to this was the fact that the flesh was super easy to scoop out of the hard shells. Once I got the potatoes re-stuffed, I stuck them back on the grill and took a quick shower.

My parents, Julie, and Kevin all showed up pretty close to the same time, just as I was putting steaks on the grill. I got them seared and they cooked quickly, so we all went inside to eat. I really wanted to try the sous vide cooker again, but that would have been too many new variables for one meal. Ultimately dinner was pretty good, and everyone was reasonably chill apart from just forgetting how to sit down and eat.

Summer had to go in to work for a while, which I thought was for a meeting, but she actually did work stuff for a while and got home late. I cleaned up as much as I could, and got to bed late. Hopefully I’ll sleep well, but now I need to get someone out to troubleshoot our air conditioner.

Why is the air so thick in here?

The Stumble Guy

Summer decided she needed to go terminate some folks in Greenbrier today, so we thought we’d make a day of it. I got cleaned up and left Eaddie home since she had some work to do. I got us to the wash, and we only barely escaped being sideswiped once. Summer would be a while, so I had to kill some time. My first stop was McDonald’s, but I couldn’t get anything there because they said they were struck by lightning and had a couple fires in the kitchen. I offered to help if the problem taking orders was with their computer system, but the “owner wouldn’t let them use the fire extinguisher,” so they wouldn’t let me help either.

I drove around the parking lot and found Dollar Tree, and I managed to spend enough time there that Summer was ready to go just as I checked out. I picked her up and we headed to Conway where we tried to eat at Los 3 Potrillos. They had a 20 minute wait to be seated, so we left there and headed downtown where by complete luck we stumbled into Toad Suck Daze. We ate at a place called Salsa’s that was super good.

After we ate, we walked around downtown to see what was there. It seemed like it was mostly vendors, but then we found a bunch of carnival rides. Just as we decided we were finished, we ran into Ernie while he was taking a smoke break from hanging out at the renaissance festival tent.

We eventually made it out of downtown and headed to Kohl’s for some shopping. Summer wanted to look for some shoes, but was misguided by the purposefully difficult pricing there, so we stopped into Shoe Carnival and got her a couple pairs. By then it was time to make it across town for our movie. As we pulled into the parking lot, I thought we’d have a moment to stop at Bargain Hunt again, but we ran out of time quickly and the checkout line was long, so we ran out of there and made it to the movie.

Without a doubt, we thought The Fall Guy was an awesome flick. It was paced well, and we had a good time the entire time. Afterward, we headed straight home and settled in pretty quickly.

What is a Toad Suck, anyway?

Donut Be Discouraged

I was a little early out the door, so I decided to stop at the new donut place on the way to work. I ate a bacon, egg, and cheese croissant on the drive, and made some coffee when I got to work. Shortly after I sat down with it, I took a sip that went down the wrong pipe, and coughed into my cup. Coffee went everywhere all over my clothes and keyboard, so I spent a while cleaning that up.

I wasn’t at all interested in cheesy pull-aparts, so I just had a couple donuts for punch. There was an office full of people behind me all day, and Kim spent most of the day on the phone trying to find someone to come out and fix her washing machine. I tinkered with a laptop and eventually pieced one together for the stage that ought to really scream compared to the old piece of crap they’ve had out there.

After work, I tried to wind down quickly. I fed the fish and then came home to Summer making a really good shrimp pesto pasta. Eaddie didn’t have anything going on, so it was just the three of us for dinner. Then I sat on the couch and watched the first episode of Heroes with Summer until she went to bed.

Find something fulfilling!


I had a terrible time getting to bed last night, and contemplated pulling an all-nighter. I didn’t fall asleep until after 3:30, woke up a couple of times, and almost stayed up at 7:30. Somehow I managed not to sleep the entire day, and got up to some coffee with Summer before she went to the gym. She was back and forth on whether she would have to go to work, but did end up going in for a little while between rainclouds. Eaddie went to a band concert in the afternoon, so I just bummed around the house all afternoon.

Mom made bún bò Huế for dinner, so the girls and I headed over as soon as Eaddie got back. We visited for a little bit, but then the girls had to come back home to do some laundry for the week. I had to go drain the sump room, and Eaddie was up a little late making chocolate covered strawberries since she had a late-start Monday. I’ll have to go to work extra early for testing on Tuesday, and I really need to request a meeting with Harry before contracts are due. The end of the school year just has me lazy.

I need a break.


There was a threat of rain again today, but I don’t think I ever saw a sprinkle on my drive in. It took me the entire trip to finish my bagel, but I guess I was glad to have something occupy the drive. I made it in a few minutes early, but wasn’t any more productive for it. Kim was back, and she’s always particularly chatty after having a day off. I didn’t break anything, but I didn’t fix anything either.

After work, it was a relative breeze home to feed the fish and grab a box to take to the new house. I stopped by the high school to try and catch Eaddie so she could return the robotics toolboxes that have been rattling around in the trunk for the past few weeks, but she was just leaving as I was pulling in.

I got home and took a beat to relax before trying to take a bicycle over to Dad on my Onewheel. I got to the end of the street and had to bail due to uneven ground, and the rear tire of the bike just fell off! I struggled to get it back on, but eventually had it in place on the wrong side of the chain. That was enough that I could at least pick it up and carry it while riding the Onewheel.

After I dropped off the bike, I continued a long ride around the neighborhood before Eaddie and I went out to try and find some food. We weren’t super hungry, and couldn’t decide what to eat. We thought we’d just swing by the wash to see Summer, and then find something to eat on the way back. Eaddie decided on New China, so we drove all the way across town to find they were closed. I drove us back to town to get gas at Casey’s, which took forever because the pump was super slow.

We ultimately ended up going to Cici’s, which was a miserable experience. It was a little bit late, but not alarmingly so. There were no store hours posted on the door, but there were people inside. It wasn’t until after I had a salad that I went back up to the bar to find they had combined everything under one heat lamp. There was no variety, so I ended up with a plate full of pepperoni pizza. They’ll get a review for that move, because a relatively large family came in as we were leaving, and they weren’t opening the bar back up. There was no telling what that family ate.

We got home just as Summer did, and we settled in quickly. The week is flying by, but the work hours are crawling. I could really use a win.

Stupid bubbles.

OneDrive Me Nuts

I took the Murano to work this morning because of the rain, and it looks like that will be a trend all week. I had a bagel on the way, which really helped pass the drive. As soon as I got there, we had to wheel my portable touch panel down to the nurse so she could use it for teaching a “Stop the Bleed” class all week. Though I think it wise to teach the subject matter, I find it upsetting that it’s only normalized with the rest of the active shooter drills we do in schools now.

Otherwise it was a pretty quiet day. It dragged on a bit for me, but I finally fixed my problem with OneDrive by installing it before I try to block it. It’s perfectly Microsoft in its logic.

Brody called and offered a bunch of crappy soundbars that his predecessor purchased without need or purpose. Luckily Summer was home early, so he just dropped them off at the house for her. After work, I went straight home for dinner because Summer fried some rice with some ground chicken. It was questionable, but tasty enough. Eaddie and Eli came to eat, and then Eli had to run for a concert, which Eaddie attended later.

I went for a short ride on the Onewheel to my parents’ house and then around the neighborhood. Then when I got home, I tested out a soundbar in the bedroom. It was even worse than I expected, but still better than some of the worst TV speakers we have in the house. After that, I was pretty sleepy but still struggled to wind down for the night.

Next up, we’ll take it back to a little pink house with Jack and Diane.

Preclipse Day

I got up and made Summer a freshly-ground cappuccino this morning, which she seemed to like. I’ve only used it twice, but so far I’m pretty happy with the grinder we got. I finally cleaned up the corned beef and had a shower, and then struggled to start the smoker to get the ribs cooking. Summer and Eaddie ran to Kroger to pick up some charcoal for me, and the lumps were tiny. I eventually got the smoke rolling, and the girls prepped the bikes to go for a ride downtown.

We parked at the middle school, which in retrospect wasn’t much better than if we had just left from the house. The girls biked and I rode my Onewheel through some neighborhood trails before going back up to Kroger and heading downtown. There weren’t a ton of visitors there that we could tell, but there were tons of cops and “workers” riding around trying to look important. We stood in line and got some stuff from NASA, and I couldn’t tell whether I had actually offended the guy when I asked how long NASA has known the moon and sun are the same size, and why they were keeping it from us.

We didn’t really find much exciting at the depot after that, so we got Eaddie a shirt and then rode through Tech to Bona Dea. We did a small loop and then headed straight back to the car. Eaddie decided to ride all the way home, and I actually had plenty of battery to do the same, but I drove Summer home instead.

I decided to assemble the outdoor sink and prep table with the hopes that I could use it for the ribs. Summer “helped,” but we didn’t get it done in time, and I ended up bringing the ribs inside to wrap. Eli came over, I eventually got the ribs sauced, and then we had dinner. The meat was way too tender and just turned into mush off the bone, but it was still good. I just wanted a bit more bite to them. Everyone else loved it. Summer made mashed potatoes and Brussels sprouts, and we had a good meal.

The kids hung out for a while and Summer wound down quickly. I started dragging pretty hard, and felt a bit sick from sinus trouble. I assumed it was allergies this time, but I just felt crummy all night.

He’s really not gonna like my questions about why the moon is a flat circle instead of a flat square.

Lab Aid

McDonald’s was super busy this morning, and the lady inside was yelling at all of her employees for wasting food. I didn’t realize until I got to work, late again, that they didn’t put egg on my bagel. More on that later.

I had a few distractions throughout the day, but my big accomplishment was getting Kim out after lunch to replace 17 more lab computers with me. We had a student help as well, which was nice. We ran out of video adapters and cables, which was a bit of a surprise. The entire lab was set up with HDMI cables, so we had to go from DisplayPort to VGA. I don’t want to spend any more money than I have to, so we’ll limp along for the remainder of the year.

I had run out of gas on the way to work and had to switch over to my reserve, so I stopped in Ola for some gas on the way home. I couldn’t tell if I was flying down the road or not, because yesterday I kept getting passed at an unexpected rate. Wind isn’t my friend on the Shadow, so it’s just not comfortable going fast. I prefer something more upright.

When I got into Dardanelle, I stopped to file my complaint at McDonald’s, and bartered some free fries for my missing egg. They were the hottest, freshest fries I’ve ever had from McDonald’s, so that was a treat on a surprisingly cold ride home. Then I fed the fish before going to Orr to check on the status of the Pathfinder. Tim said it would be about three or four weeks before they could even look at it.

I stopped to see Summer at the wash, but left as it continued to get colder. Just after I got home, Dad said they had leftover spring rolls and chow mein, so I took the Onewheel over there, narrowly beating Julie and Kevin. Food wasn’t at all ready, so Kevin and I watched Julie eat spring rolls, and then Kevin, Dad, and I had chow mein once that was done.

Summer was in the bath when I finally made it back home for the night. Eaddie got home late after band solo and ensemble. We all caught up a bit, and then it was off to bed at a reasonably normal time.

Boy, do I miss Tres.


I didn’t think I was running behind this morning, but I got to work about five minutes late after stopping at McDonald’s along the way. Kim had texted that she would be out sick, but I didn’t expect every single administrator to be in the back office meeting. I spent the entire day tinkering with my task sequence as I imaged more computers. I almost skipped lunch, but got hungry and grabbed some pizza a little late.

There was a threat of rain in the afternoon, but I never saw a drop. The roads were a bit gritty, and I kept getting stuck behind jerks that would kick all of that crap up into the air. I headed straight home for fear of getting caught in something if I went to feed the fish first.

Summer made burgers, which I re-pattied and grilled. Eli made it here before Eaddie did, and they made music in the bathroom after we ate. Weird, right? I cleaned up the grill afterward, and then the rest of the night went by really quickly as I struggled with the anxiety of feeling like I was forgetting to do something.

Full self driving would have been perfect for this.

Rolling Cycles

Mom said we were having beef spring rolls today, but we weren’t sure if it was for lunch or dinner. We invited everyone to eat at our house since we had more room, so Summer went shopping so she could make cupcakes and banana pudding. I got up to some coffee and then cleaned up the dining room. I wanted to set up two cooking stations for the beef, and three plates with veggies. Noah came over too, so we had eight people to fit around the table. I couldn’t find our new electric skillet even though I knew I brought it to the new house, so I ran to the old house to make sure. Summer ended up finding it above the refrigerator.

I stopped by my parents’ house on the way home to get some of the food. Then Dad brought over some more, and Julie and Kevin showed up. I thought the dining table worked out perfectly for that many people. The only thing I would have changed was the seating arrangement, just to make sure someone mindful was next to the rice paper water bowls.

Once everyone left, I had to take a couple trips on the Onewheel to give my parents the things we forgot to give them on the way out. We got the kitchen cleaned up, and then Summer and I ran around town to O’Reilly for an oil filter and oil, and Superfast for some tools to change the oil in the Shadow.

Unfortunately the oil pan we borrowed wouldn’t fit under the bike, so we went to borrow one from Dad. We still forgot wrenches for the drain plug, so once we got back to the old house, we decided to just take the bike to the new house to do the work there. That was when we also realized that the dip in our driveway gave us enough room to use the oil pan from the shop.

Rather than dirty up Dad’s oil pan and funnel, we decided to go back across town to get the dirty one we borrowed from Superfast. We also brought the R1 over to the new house, so I could bleed the front brake line and change the oil in it as well. Once we got everything in place, Summer was quick to drop the oil out of the Shadow. She had a fancy new headband light too, so I didn’t even get to hold the flashlight for her. The bike took a bit more than the 2.5 quarts of synthetic oil that I expected, but Summer signed off on the leak check and it was good to go. She can wear the pants in the family all she wants, because I was just glad to keep my hands clean.

I ended up riding to PDQ to air up the tires, but tomorrow may rain anyway. I may not even get to ride it, but it’s ready. The kids stayed up a bit late, and Noah ended up staying the night, but I finally convinced him to sleep in a bed this time. We’ll take the small wins with that one.

I bet we wouldn’t have had to use more than half of that one bottle if we had just let the first two bottles drip a bit longer.