Friday, January 25, 2008

Treasured Locks Milestone

Our traffic has been steadily increasing. I've been watching anxiously as we approached the 1 million page view mark. Yahoo's running graph shows the last 120 days of page views and as we've edged up, I wondered if, after the holidays, we'd creep over the 1M mark or fall back down. Well, a couple of days ago, we made it. 1 Million pages viewed on Treasured Locks in the past 4 months.

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Saturday, January 19, 2008

Pic of Ty and Kayla

I just like this shot. Got a few more at the game that are pretty good, too.

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Shayna's Basketball

The 2008 season has begun. Shayna's team is 2-0. They've had two very competitive games. The level of play is way above what it was last year. They've started to call traveling, double dribble and three seconds more strictly. So, the girls are getting a better feel for the game. The ref this last week though did something nice (and different). When he called an infraction on a team, he would stop them, explain what they did wrong and give them the ball back. I really like that idea for a learning league. By stopping them, he was giving them incentive to improve. But, the game would be full of turnovers (discouraging the girls) if they actually turned the ball over every time.

Shayna has scored 4 points in each game. She's not as aggressive on the court as we would expect her to be, on offense that is. On defense, she shuts her man down. But, she's just getting comfortable with handling the ball.

Lots of shots at her from the game on Flickr. Here's one:

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Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Hazel & Tango

Kayla has been begging for a guinea pig for two or three years now. Every spare moment has been spent on the internet researching guinea pigs. She's checked out books from the library. We've gently but firmly said "not now" for the last couple of years. But, she would not give up.

Finally, a couple of "free" guinea pigs became available from a friend of a friend who breeds them. The girls spotted their opportunity. They agreed to pay for the initial costs (cage, water bottle, etc.) if we'd agree to the on-going maintenance of the guinea pigs (see where this is going?). So, with each of them committing to forego their allowance for the next couple of months we headed over to the pet store to get the needed supplies. $45 for a cage, $10 for food, $6 for a bowl. The "free" guinea pigs cost us a mere $110 out the door.

We were told that guinea pigs are social creatures. So, getting two would be better than getting one. The older guinea pig (Hazel) had a daughter (Tango).

After we got all the stuff home, the girls were ready to go pick up the pigs. When they got there, the friend told them she was getting out of the business. Suddenly, their $70 investment dropped to a mere $20. So, Shayna was already paid up with leftover birthday money. The girls have agreed to all of the care of the guinea pigs. We'll see...

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Sunday, January 13, 2008

Shayna's Actual Birthday

We don't have birth days. We have birth weekends or birth weeks. Shayna's celebration started out with friends over on Friday night. Then it was Red Robin for the free birthday burger on Saturday. Finally, it wrapped up with the actual day today (Sunday, January 13th). Shayna insisted all day long that she was not yet 8 since she wasn't born until almost 11pm. I tried to wake her up at 10:45 to tell her she was 8. But, she was zonked.

Unfortunately, she did not get a birthday dinner on the day of her birthday. After having pizza on Friday night and a cheeseburger on Saturday, we decided to return to some sanity and we had a chicken thigh concoction I whipped up on her birthday. But, she did have some sparkling apple cider in a champagne glass.

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Saturday, January 12, 2008

Shayna's Birthday Party

Last night Shayna had her 8th birthday party. For some reason, she was content with keeping it small only inviting three friends over and she opted out of having a sleepover. They played Wii and foosball. Unfortunately, Shayna hasn't learned to take it easy on people in Wii yet (she has said so herself) and she is the best in the house at it. So, she pretty much killed her friends at Golf, Tennis, etc. but they had a great time. Kayla slept over at Megan's. So, Shayna was sad when she was leaving (she hates to be here without Kayla).

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Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Spring in January

Yesterday, the temperature hit a record high of 69 or 70 degrees. It was partly sunny and just absolutely beautiful. It was so warm I just had to pull out the grill and fire it up for a good thick steak. I only like steaks grilled and since we don't have a hood, we can't grill inside. I had some ribeyes I picked up a couple of months ago. Mine must have been about 3 inches thick. I got the grill as hot as possible and cooked it for exactly 3 minutes per side. Perfection! It was a great prelude to a not-so-great Ohio State game.

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This one I took without a flash, just to see what it would look like.

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We Almost Stole a National Championship

Before this season began the Buckeyes were ranked no higher than 10 by anyone in the country. This was supposed to be a rebuilding season for us. After graduating (and losing early) an unusually high number of players everyone expected our team to be devastated on both sides of the ball. But, we kept winning game after game and when we crept up to number one in the rankings, I thought we might actually have a chance to sneak in a National Championship during this "off season". After the loss to Illinois and our precipitous drop with so few weeks of the season left, I just knew we were done. We needed for six teams ahead of us to lose in just three weeks of playing time. And you know what? They did. Suddenly, we found ourselves in the National Championship game for the third time in just six seasons.

There are those who would say we didn't deserve to be there. Ohio State plays a weak schedule. And considering we were chosen to finish 3rd in the Big 10, it was amazing that we were there. But, we were. Unfortunately, we looked rusty again last night. And, uncharacteristically sloppy and undiscplined. Turnovers, in-fighting and personal fouls cost us the game, even after a fast 10-0 start kicked off by a 60+ yard run by Beanie Wells and a monster stiff arm on another play that seemed to set the tone that the Buckeyes were going to get physical with LSU.

It was a weird year. The Bengals were expected to make the playoffs and did not (didn't even come close). The Buckeyes who were not expected to even make the Rose Bowl proved they are a great team by going to the big game for the third time since 2002. And, all indicators are they might be able to get back there again next year. But, for now, football season is over (except the NFL Playoffs) and I'm looking forward to some golf.

Sunday, January 6, 2008

New Nexus Band

We have a new Nexus Band. Chuck Wiggins who led us for our first year and did a great job of choosing and performing music that was spiritual without being religious has moved on. It was cool doing Todd Rundgren in church. But, everything must change.

Chip Bramlage has taken over and made his debut on Sunday. I caught a little of the first song on video. But, Chip was having some technical difficulties with the mixing board, and I lost battery power. So, the video is not really representative of how the rest of the singing went. Ty's loving being in the band and is looking forward to performing more since it looks like she, Bekka and Cydney will be performing together.

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