Thursday, December 30, 2004

Weird Week

OK...I'm "unofficially" taking this week off from work. It's something I worked out when they hired me. I only got two weeks of vacation, but had plans for this week with the in-laws coming into town and my own extended family's Christmas gathering on Monday.

My boss just asked me to be generally available for phone calls and check e-mails occasionally. Well, thanks to my Blackberry, I get e-mails at my hip all the freaking time.

Anyway, back when I took the job, we were all unaware of this major calling campaign we were going to be making at year-end. Now, I'm feeling pressure (most of it self-inflicted) to help out with this, even though I really am off this week.

My wife's been understandably pissed because I've been working (or wanting to work) this week while her folks are here. I get why she's pissed off, but at the same time, I'm really wanting to make some good impressions in my first month on the job. Tomorrow's the last day for this campaign and I'll try to squeeze in an hour of calls...hopefully, I'll have some success with that. After that, though, we're heading over to my brother-in-law's girlfriend's house for a little tour and then out to Mimi's for brunch.

At least I won't have to clean up the kitchen tomorrow!

On a more positive note, we had a great (fourth) Christmas tonight. K made an awesome ham for dinner along with some seasoned green beans. I contributed with scallopped potatoes and some dinner rolls. We all got some cool gifts.

I got a couple of books (The DaVinci Code -- yeah, I know I'm the only one on the planet who hasn't read that yet; and The Long Way Round, a travelogue by actor Ewan MacGregor and another actor whose name I don't remember as they made a round the world trek on their motorcycles), a nice sweater and a gift certificate for dinner and a check to cover babysitting expenses...very cool.

This does mean that after four Christmases this year, I need to go out and buy some DVDs I didn't get (Rounders and maybe the Star Wars trilogy) and some CDs (since I didn't get a single one of those).

The biggest post-Christmas purchase, however, will be a Dyson vaccuum. Yeah, it's ridiculously expensive, but I've heard nothing but great things about it and we've always had shitty vaccuums. We're also going to be getting a new kitchen table sometime soon....just not sure exactly when.

OK...that's enough for tonight.

Have a good one.

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Sunday, December 26, 2004

Post-Christmas Update

OK...as many of you may have realized by now, I have four kids.

Those four kids tend to get a lot of books as presents. (My mom's a librarian.) This Christmas was no different.

My kids got a total of...get this...25 books for Christmas. One of these days I'm actually going to count all of my kids' books.

And this happens almost every holiday too...Easter, Thanksgiving, Halloween and Valentine's Day. I think that about covers it.

I want to know if any of your kids come close to that number.

In other news...

Today was clean-up day at our house. I did a whole bunch of laundry, ran the dishwasher (twice) and took out all of the Christmas-related trash.

Tomorrow is extended-family Christmas in Holton, KS. Should be fun with all of the cousins, their kids, and my aunts and uncles. There should be close to 50 of us overall.

So what about you guys? Who's working this week? Who's taking the week off?




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Saturday, December 25, 2004

Merry Xmas!

Merry Christmas everyone!

Been a crazy, busy, fun and tiring day. Had a great time with the kids this morning and my family this afternoon and evening.

It was good to get back home around 8:30 to the disaster that we call our family room.

Adding that fourth kid this year has yielded a lot of extra packaging and trash this Christmas!

Tomorrow will be spent doing laundry and cleaning up in prep for K's parents' arrival on Tuesday, since we'll be going to my extended family's Christmas gathering on Monday. It will be our first Christmas since my dad's mom passed away earlier this year. I know it's going to be tough on my dad and his four sisters, but I'm glad they're keeping the annual holiday gathering as a tradition.

As for me for Christmas, I got some pants, a sweater, TWO musical bottle openers (and I don't even drink that much), a Jayhawk Football book (I'm surprised it's more than 10 pages long), a really cool framed set of handprints of baby M, Ocean's 11 on DVD (two copies), some computer games, a Joe's Crab Shack bowling shirt and a bunch of gift cards and some good ol' cash. (There was other stuff to, but I'm not going to list every single thing.)

How was your Christmas?

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Wednesday, December 22, 2004

Kid Quote

Holy crap!!! (NOOO...that's not the kid quote.) I can't believe I've actually posted two days in a row!

Work was work today...nothing huge...just more work with my prospect file.

So anyway...about the quote.

Tonight we're driving home from Cracker Barrel. (Can you believe I'd never eaten there before? I wasn't impressed with my country fried steak.) Anyway, J starts complaining about his arms hurting, so we asked him when they hurt. He says they hurt when he stretches his arms.

So, his ever helpful twin sister L decides to help out by telling him, "Don't stretch."

I love it when 4-year-olds talk like that.

How was your day?

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Tuesday, December 21, 2004

De La Solstice

Happy Winter Solstice everyone!

Although it's cold now (here in the midwest anyway), the days get longer from here. Hooray for more daylight!!!

Sorry for the lack of posts, but I've really been trying to focus on the new job and getting off to a great start. Not a whole lot going on except doing a lot of database work and preparing my contacts for next year.

I'll be heading back to Tucson the first week of 2005 for a couple of days and then I imagine I could start travelling as early as the following week. I'll admit that I'm getting a little concerned about what my travel schedule is going to look like next year. It could get ugly real quick.

On the plus side, I just found out that my new employer will be paying for ALL of my health and dental premiums for the whole family!!! WOOHOO!!!! I'm very psyched about that.

As for Christmas, I'm done with shopping for my family except for my brother and dad...still have to figure out what I'm doing for them. And I still have to wrap all of the gifts for my wife. Other than that, I'm in good shape.

I don't think there will be any trips to the mall for me this week, though.

That's it for now...if I don't get a chance to post again have a very Merry Christmas! (Or Hanukkah or Kwanzaa or whatever you might celebrate.)

Until Next Time...

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Monday, December 13, 2004

Back to Reality

And by reality, I mean the cold, hard reality of winter in the Midwest.

My week in Arizona was a good one and I thoroughly enjoyed the weather there.

While in the desert southwest, I did get to go out to dinner with the founder of the company. And, to get there, I got to ride in one of these. Let me just say that is one sweet ride. I wonder if I could pick one up for $15K or so...whaddya think?!

I'll be back here in KC for the next few weeks until the New Year just working on my list of contacts and researching prospective clients. I have an entire database of prospects and today I only made it through the companies that started with A and B. I have a long way to go.

I've been battling through some technology issue, but the biggest hurdle of getting my Blackberry successfully set up has been cleared. Now if we can get me connected to the VPN while on my home wireless network, I'll be in heaven. For now, I'm tethered to the router with an ethernet cable.

How's your week going?

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Thursday, December 09, 2004

One Year & Counting

Yep...today marks the one year anniversary of the birth of Play By Play.

I have no idea how many posts I've had, but I'm guessing somewhere in the 300+ range. As is the case with most new endeavors, I was full of gusto as I got started and was posting multiple times a day and then the enthusiasm slowly died down, but never completely disappeared. With that, though, the frequency of the posts have become fewer and farther between.

I still hope to remedy that situation, but with starting a new job and having our new baby, there just isn't always enough time in the day.

That being said, I want to thank each and every one of you who swing by here from time to time to read what's been going on and especially those who take a minute to send me a comment. I always like to hear back from the readers.

In other news...
I'm still in Arizona where it's sunny and 65 today...absolutely gorgeous. But even with the great weather, I can't wait to fly home tomorrow night. I REALLY miss my wife and kids. It looks like I'll get to stay home for the next few weeks and will probably come back out for two days in early January and then I'll start travelling to meet with clients more regularly. 2005 should be an interesting year.

By the way, if you ever find yourself in Tucson, AZ, and you like Mexican food, you MUST try a place called Cafe Poca Cosa (sp?) in the Clarion Hotel downtown...simply AWESOME!!!

Well...I've been posting this from the hotel lobby because I had yet to successfully test the wireless capabilities of my new laptop, but now it's time to head back up to the room and relax until the chairman/founder of my company comes by to pick me up for dinner tonight.

Until Next Time...

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Thursday, December 02, 2004

Movin' On

Well...today marked the end of an era for me professionally. After spending the past 6-1/2 years with the same company, I am moving on to what I hope to be greener pastures.

A small group of guys from my sales team went to my favorite pizza place, Papa Keno's here in Overland Park for lunch. And then, after work, about 10 co-workers came out to a local watering hole to have a few farewell drinks.

I only had three shots (2 tequila and 1 Jagermeister...my first ever Jager shot) but had a great time anyway.

I'm definitely going to miss the people, but can't wait to start this new opportunity.

I was also pleasantly surprised to arrive home from the festivities to see a big box from my new employer that contained my brand new Dell laptop and Blackberry phone...good times.

You'd think after spending that much time with one company that I'd have more to say about this, but I'm just out of worthwhile ideas at this point.

So next week, I'm off to Arizona for a full week of training. Should be fun.

Until Next Time...

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