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What types of things do you do to keep cool in the Summer?


Water Fight

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Yesterday my son’s friends and their parents came over for a grill out/adult beverages (for the adults, silly), and a water fight. Lucky it was 90˚F in WMI yesterday. It was really fun for the kids, with water balloon wars, squirt gun fights, water wand (soaker) shooting and me trying to keep all the refilling stations … well, filled with water. I’m pretty sure all the water really helped the lawn too.

There were grand parents, close to a dozen kids, and one dog, who thought it funny to play with the local black and white “kitty” the night before. Yay. I really needed to use the rest of my skunk recipe just before a party.

We threw up a canopy to add to the already shady back yard, but most all the kids found sun to hang out instead. Consequently the boy child got sun or heat stroke last night. I spent the night trying to keep Tylenol down him and ingesting water. Finally around 3:55am he floated off to sleep. And so did I. I can’t say this vehemently enough: DRINK FLUIDS – and not ones with diarrhetics, like alcohol or caffeine in them when it’s hot and or sunny.

So – Do you have a pool, lake or other fun way of keeping cool this Summer? And are you drinking enough water?


Really – REALLY looking forward to this weekend


Soccer GamesThree soccer games this weekend. The Boys U10 have a double-header against 2 teams that we either lost or tied. We’re much better than the beginning of the season. The boys are 2-2-1. I’d just be happy with one win. They’re having fun and playing very well. That’s all I really want.

Gonna be a hot weekend, here in WMI, though. I’m taking a canvas tenty-type cover for shade. Don’t need them getting all dehydrated in the 90˚ temps.

The Girls U12 is going up against a team we lost to last week. My girls didn’t show up to play last weekend. Hopefully they do tomorrow. We could’ve beat them if we’d wanted to win. The girls are at 2-3-1 – we need this win to end at 50-50. There was only one game that we weren’t in and had no hope of winning or tying. A team from Rockford MI. We should win this last game – they just have to want it. And they have to enjoy it. Unfortunately if they’re not having fun, they’re not winning.

Wish me/us luck. Any words of advice on how to motivate 11-12yr old girls: I’m all ears. *Puberty!*

Next up is my son’s birthday party. Lots of work to get the yard ready for that one. I’m taking this afternoon off to mow. I have 1.5 days to get ready.

More luck needed.

Michigan Weather Haiku


Perfect May Day near Lowell MI

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This AM, Jon Shaner (Weather Guesser from WXMI Fox 17) wrote a weather haiku:

What’s a perfect day?
Today will be close to it.
Sunny & pleasant.

Sums up today’s weather in West Michigan. Lovely!

In about 29 minutes I’m moving my desk outside to the patio.

Day 2: Back on Caffeine


Caffeination - and quitting a New Years ResolutionYes I gave in. Tuesday night I got 1.5 hours of sleep. I couldn’t function with out caffeine yesterday. Last night I was in the bed for 10 hours. I received about 8 hours (which is a huge improvement from the 4-5 I’ve been getting on average). Between late nights, early mornings for work and an early Spring in Michigan, I have permanent bags under my eyes. What’s that Bare Naked Ladies song? “Who needs sleep? You’re never gonna get it. Who needs Sleep? Tell me what that’s for.”

I woke up every hour on the 1/2 hour to blow my nose and cough last night. So this AM, I took the last cup in the pot. In my defense (other than the reasons listed above), it’s 1/2 caf. And at 8:30am in the morning – a very late start to the day for me. I needed something to clear the cobwebs and go. Do any of these resonate with you?

So much for that New Year’s Resolution. Anyone else kill there’s and how long did it take?



Michigan tulipUGGGH! Allergies are kick’n my derrière. Spring came early to Michigan – 6 weeks early actually. Well, Spring Temps/Growing Season came early. Normally, at this time of year, we still have winter temps. I still have 2.5 cords of wood to burn, and most seasons I’m splitting my backup stack to make it through March/April. I’ve actually only burned 3 nights since March 20th. Prior to that (you know the actual start to Spring), I was only burning nights, but not during the day. That’s how it goes in April, generally. The plow is still on my tractor, but I plan on putting the mower deck on this next Saturday. I’ve already gotten the first bike ride in of the season. Like 4 weeks early.

The budding foliage has created a faucet on the front of my face. I don’t know all the flowers that I’m allergic too, but which ever they are – they’re up now. Between work and allergies, I’ve gotten an average of 4.5 hours of sleep per night for over a week.


Crocuses full out at the beginning of March in West Michigan.

Now if you live in MI, you already know this – so I want to hear what you like or dislike about this Spring. You know, the Spring that started out with 87-90˚F temps. Have you swapped out your winter clothes for Spring/Summer? Do you have a trash basket and box of tissues on your desk/ottoman/dining room table (where ever you work from), like I do?

If you’re reading this somewhere other than MI, has this season been drastically different from previous years?

My Brackets Sucked


I completely filled out my brackets – terribly. In case you weren’t aware, March is Madness – madness, I tell you – for NCAA basketball in the US. Even if you don’t watch another game the rest of the Mens’s College Basketball Season, you probably head down to the local BW3 or Applebees to watch a few games with your work pals. I’m sure many of you have filled out brackets. Probably you did a much better job than I did. I have one team left in the final four. I’m 156th out of 369 in my pool. I am ahead of a bunch of my friends and colleagues, however. Who picked Duke to go out in the first round?

Anyway, I’m not winning any casholla this year. Here’s to next year!

Anyone Else Heat With Wood?


Let’s just jump in shall we?

  1. Do you buy your wood or cut/chop your self?
  2. Do you have an interior burner or exterior?
    • If interior, is it free-standing or an insert?
    • Do you have a blower?
    • If exterior, how big is your unit?
  3. How much wood do you use per season?
  4. What was your initial investment?
  5. If interior, does it tie in to your existing ductwork?

Ok – go.

Do You Like Snow?


Winter’s not really showed up in Michigan this Winter. But if it had, I’d have the snowmobile running and a hill sled run set up. We’re down like 30+ inches from last season at this time. This was ‘supposed’ to be a big snow fall year. Don’t get me wrong, not burning through the wood so fast is nice, but if it’s winter, I kinda like having snow on the ground.

So if it snows where you live, do you like it? Do you do fun things in it, like downhill skiing, sledding or ice fishing? Ooh! Snowshoeing (or snowshoe hare hunting?).