Tag Archives: thoughts

Yule Thoughts

  • Another Christmas movie is under the belt; this time it was Christmas Vacation.
  • So far we have seen Santa Claus is Coming to Town, Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer, Frosty the Snowman, Home Alone, Elf, The Christmas Shoes, and Christmas Story.
  • On our list of “to see” we have Scrooged, Scrooge (A Christmas Carol), It’s a Wonderful Life, and Miracle on 34th Street.
  • I like sappy family Christmas movies, clay-mation and cartoon Christmas movies, and I like goofy Christmas comedies.  I can’t really say that one is more preferred over the other.  It depends on my mood.
  • I have a couple of things I need to pick up today or tomorrow for Christmas gifts, but thanks to my wife I don’t really have much to do.
  • Marcela has purchased and wrapped nearly everyone’s gift already.
  • We do not yet have a full sized Christmas tree.  We have a couple small ones, but not the big one.  I am not sure if we are going to at all.
  • I am still enjoying Christmas music around the clock.  I don’t have the Pandora thing going yet, but I do have my Mannheim Steamroller, Trans Siberian Orchestra, and various other Christmas favorites of mine playing all the time.  I also have a radio set to 93.9 for 24/7 Christmas tunes.
  • I also plan on making our annual trip to the Clot family Christmas house in Pinecrest.  We usually grab some spiced apple cider and walk around looking at the Christmas displays that this kind family puts up every year for the community to enjoy.
  • We have been going to visit the Clot house for so many years that I cannot even remember how long it has been.  Sometime in the very early 90’s if I am not mistaken.
  • Global warming is really kicking up some winter storms, record lows, and snow storms across the US.  One bonehead was quoted as saying that the rapid cooling shows just how much global warming is accelerating.  Huh?
  • I guess my next thoughts will be on Christmas day.  So until then, Merry Christmas!

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Thought Soup

-On Tuesday night, I enjoyed a Christmas party for one of the Life Pointe Life Groups.
-We had some great food including “dump cake”, BBQ wings, beef stew, chicken salad, pizza rolls, brownies, macaroni salad, and pound cake.
-The highlight of the evening was a group game of Taboo in which my dominating team gave up a 10 point to lose right at the end.
-People really got into it and took it pretty seriously. It was fun and funny. If you’ve never played, you should try it out some time.
-I took my Raleigh Technium down to Jeremy at the bike repair in Sports Authority in the Homestead Pavilion just off Campbell Drive to get it tuned up, repaired, and ready for action. Even though the bike is now over 17 years old, it’s still very light and functional.
-Most road bikes now are equipped with more user-friendly gears on the handle. The controls and gears on the Techium are down on the frame. That’s OK though.
-My dad and I were talking about taking a ride out to Everglades park for a camping trip or to walk Anhinga trail. I think I’ll take my road bike since it’s lighter and far more efficient than the mountain bike.
-I forgot how much fun cycling is. When Trav and I were teens we would frequently ride out to the Redlands or to Cutler Ridge Mall. Those were the days.
-FYI, it was my Technium that I would ride on those trips.
-In the world of politics and news, this has been a big week. The governor of Illinois has attempted to sell the soon to be vacant US Senate seat for president elect Barack Obama.
-According to Obama’s staff, Obama had conversations with Governor Blagojevic about the seat, however Obama has stated that he hasn’t spoken to the governor about the seat. Is this the start of a scandal? Better believe that it is.
-Once again, Obama is distancing himself from an ally. The words “I really didn’t know him that well, we weren’t close” have been uttered once more.
-Add Blagojevic to the growing list of those close to Obama which he does not really know that well, including Rezko, Ayers, Rev. Wright, Al Capone (EKOJ).
-Jesse Jackson Jr. has been confirmed to be the mysterious “candidate #5” discussed on the phone by the governor and his surrogate and the amount of $1 million has been mentioned in exchange for the seat. Jackson vehemently denies any wrong doing.
-Why did they end the investigation so quickly. They could have let it play out to catch the players who were involved, instead they got a flimsy conspiracy charge that may not even stand up in court.
-They say that this is just the Chicago way. You have to “pay to play.”. There are actually talking heads who are defending this garbage.
-Change you can believe in? Is that change from incompetence to corruption? This will be a long 4 years.

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Filed under Blogging, camping, Homestead, life pointe, politics, sports, thoughts

Thoughtsgiving

  • I love Thanksgiving so much.  I am so grateful to have the time available.
  • I was planning on having to work today, and I looked forward to the money that comes from double time for two days (tomorrow is also a holiday).  But I decided that a little extra money is not as nice as having the time to spend with my wife and family.
  • There is Christmas music playing in my living room, two freshly made pumpkin pies in the fridge, a ham in the oven, a broccoli casserole being prepared by Marcela, and a orange/cranberry relish being chilled.  My mom is making the turkey and dressing, Kelly is preparing the rolls, mashed taters, and sweet potato casserole.  We are going to have a grand feast!
  • Marcela and I will go out tomorrow and buy a couple of things, and I am sure it will be a madhouse.  But unfortunately, we do not have a plan except that we will look for a few DVD’s.
  • Today we will eat, watch some football, play a few board games and Wii, and hopefully get a chance to watch some Christmas specials.
  • Max just got finished running around like a mad dog.  It was funny seeing him try to keep up with the neighbor’s Belgian Malanois.  The neighbor’s dog’s name is Phoenix, and she loves Max.  But Max is so low to the ground that he has to jump up to play with Phoenix.  Phoenix is an expert fetcher, but Max is just learning.

Have a happy and blessed Thanksgiving!

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Brisk Thoughts

-Thanks to Chris for the cold weather alert. This chill we have had for the last 4 days has been great.
-Global warming is a funny thing. When it gets hot, they say it’s global warming (makes sense). When it gets unseasonably cold, they say it’s global warming. When it rains a lot, you guessed it! When it’s dry, that’s global warming too. When there are record frequency and strength, they say that’s from global warming. But don’t forget, we just had record low activity, so I guess that’s global warming too.
-Max loves the cool air. When I let him out, the cool air hits him and he just has to run. I guess he’s enjoying this global warming.
-I have a doctor’s appointment this morning. I’m actually at the doctor right now. Gotta get some updates on my BP and my weight.
-I’m doing OK on my nutritional plan. So far, I’m down 20 pounds since about July.
-Next week I have a planned cheat day or two because saying no to my mom’s cornbread dressing, sausage balls, and broccoli casserole will be almost impossible.
-I’ll probably hang out with my brother, Kelly, mom, and dad tonight for the big game. Miami has a tough game tonight against Georgia Tech that they pretty much must win. A win means we are one game against NC State from the ACC championship, probably a rematch against FSU.
-Marcela and I are watching 24 on DVD. We are at the end of season 2 right now. We’re trying to catch up with the whole series to date.
-I gave up double time on Thanksgiving and Black Friday via trade. So my schedule for the next week is that I work Saturday, Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday, then I get the next 5 days after that off.
-I may go spend a couple of days in the keys with Marcela, but one thing I have to do is take Marcela to a couple stores on Black Friday to grab a few DVD’s and maybe a few other items.
-Since it’s another weekend of work, I will see some of you guys next weekend at both Homestead and Plantation Key. I love being part of Life Pointe!

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Filed under animals, Blogging, church, family, fantasy football, food, football, games, health, Homestead, Hurricanes, life pointe, Max, Miami Hurricanes, Pets, schedule, sports, thoughts, TV, work, worship

Fresh Thoughts

  • What can be said about living in South Florida this time of the year?  The weather is absolutely beautiful, the sun is bright, the air is fresh, and the temperature is perfect.  I love it.
  • With all the talk we have had over the past few years about man made global warming and increased hurricane activity, we have now had two years of extremely low hurricane activity in the northern hemisphere, the lowest in 30 years.  We have also had record low temps for this time of the year all over the globe, and even in our back yard.
  • My washer kicked the bucket.  Brandsmart USA has to send someone out to fix it.  I hardly ever buy the extended warantee on my appliances and electronics, but that was one item I decided it would be a good idea to purchase it for.  It’s covered.
  • There are some great opportunities that may be coming open for me soon.  It would have an effect on my schedule, which should mean that I can be at church every weekend.  I pray that it works out.
  • Tonight I have to be at work and I don’t get back until the weeeeeeeee hours of the morning.
  • Maximus is a funny little guy.  We still have not decided when we are going to have him clipped, but he is a big fluffy ball of soft hair.  He doesn’t really run, but he sort of hops around like a rabbit.  Every now and then, he gets a big burst of energy and just takes off through the house weaving through all the furniture in and out of all the rooms downstairs.
  • I went to Lou’s this past weekend and picked up a new Glock, and I think I am going to get a Mossberg 500 next week.  That should be enough for a while.
  • The Hurricanes are playing some decent football now, and so are the Dolphins.  There is some real talk of the Dolphins making a run at the playoffs which would have seemed impossible last year.  At 4-4, they are favored to win again this week.  So far they have been beating the best teams on the schedule and losing to the worst.  The Canes are looking at the possibility of a decent bowl game, maybe a run at the conference championship.  It did not even look possible after losing two conference games.  But the ACC does not have a dominant team, and they don’t exactly have a doormat either.  Any team could beat another any week, it seems.  That leaves for a competitive race.
  • The Citizen Cane fantasy football squad has a tough game this week.  As of now, I am projected to win by one point.  We shall see.
  • My property taxes in Homestead have gone up considerably.  The state passes a doubling of the homestead exemption, and Homestead passed a tax increase because they know we are paying less.  That’s just lousy.
  • I really enjoyed service down in the Keys on Sunday.  I’m sorry I won’t get to be at the launch, but I will be there in a week from Sunday.  It’s not exactly the theater, but it is a blast.  It was cool hanging out after church and looking at the football scores.  See you in a week and a half!

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Line of Thought

-Yesterday in the early afternoon I accomplished my early vote. I felt like I was back in college registering for classes again. I had to stand in line to wait so I could stand in another line, then stand in one more line to vote, then stand in one final line to cast the ballot. Line, line, everywhere’s a line!

-At about 4:30, I went back to the city hall to stand with my wife so she could vote. The line moved quicker it seemed and she studied up prior to voting. This time, she voted much quicker than I did since she was better prepared with the city’s charter amendments, the state’s constitution amendments, and the judges.

-I believe this is the first time I cast a vote on each item of the ballot. It helps to have a blackberry so you can look up some quick info on judges and amendments prior to marking your ballot, but it also slows things down a little.

-Some entrepreneurial kids were outside the polling place practicing some good old fashioned capitalism selling “President Obama” t-shirts. I probably should have bought one and given half the money to someone on the street. 🙂

-A truck covered with Obama/Biden and Joe Garcia stickers, posters, and signs was parked by the street. On the back were two flags, about 4′ by 6′. One was Puerto Rico and the other was another Caribbean nation. I asked the guy that if he wanted Americans to vote for his preferred candidate then shouldn’t he have an American flag at least somewhere in the area. I don’t think he was targeting Americans. Some of the people there in line were not impressed with the truck.

-The elections workers were very helpful, patient, and for the most part professional. Water was provided for everyone who was standing in line outside.

-The whole process for my voting experience was about 1 hour and 45 minutes, and 1 hour and 10 minutes for Marcela.

-I’m voting absentee next election. I have said it before, but this time I mean it!

-I saw 3 different families from Pathway Christian School, some of which I haven’t seen since before Hurricane Andrew. I barely recognized one of them until he told me who he was.

-There are less than 6 days until all ballots should have been cast and counted. It may be months before we know for certain who our next president is. In our letigious society, we will probably have to wait for the courts, judges, and lawyers to “weigh in”.

-There have been roughly 9000 attorneys hired to contest election results in the battleground states. Obama is out-lawyering McCain in this election by more than 2-1. How did we get to this point in our elections.

-No matter who you vote for, please be sure to inform yourselves. I suggest bypassing the biased “mainstream” media which more and more seems to be a branch of the left, and pay no attention to the clever advertisements on both sides meant to scare you into voting or not voting for a candidate. Develop a political philosophy and base it on a sound world view and economic common sense. Vote for the candidate or party that best represents your philosophy. In other words, be informed about your vote. While neither candidate is ideal in my opinion, and both are more liberal than other candidates I have seen in the past, but they are very different choices in their philosophical approach.

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Jobs, Benefits, and Thoughts

  • I was talking to someone at work this week, and he swore up and down that he was poor.  He works a job 3-4 days per week and makes roughly $55,000 per year.  He has a nice house, insurance for him, his wife, and his child, a nice car, goes out to eat when he wants, and does not lack for material goods, but he argued with me for 15 minutes that he is poor.  What is wrong with this picture?
  • I had another discussion for over an hour with a friend who is a veteran, pro-American, free market minded, and has a strong opinion (like myself and others who disagree with my position).  He raised some great ideas for ways to fix our current health care problems.  Be ware, this could be offensive.
  1. Make a separately run government health system of hospitals, doctor’s offices, and clinics which utilize students and doctors who went to school under a government contract who must give a certain number of years service at a very modest salary.
  2. The current medicaid recipients and income qualified get to use the services of this health system.  If you agree to those services, you waive the right to sue for monetary damages.
  3. Hospitals that are not under this system do not have to do more than basic treatment to stabilize a patient who shows up.
  4. Legislate a restriction on the amount of money that can be awarded for damages, both actual and punitive in court and mandate that attorneys cannot receive higher than a certain percentage of those damages, and institute a “loser pay”  requirement on the plaintiff side.
  • That should reduce expenses and the continued problem of costs being passed on to the payers from those whose bills are written off due to their inability to pay.  Those who utilize the private system through their insurance benefit from the weight of non payers being lifted, tort reform bringing relief to the massive liability insurance required for doctors to practice medicine, and the emergency care of the uninsured should be reduced if not ended.
  • As for our food stamps system, why do we give cards to those receiving benefits to go to a grocery store where they can buy name brand products, cola, candy, and cake?  I am of the belief that grocery stores and big food companies have lobbied the government for the current system.  A much more efficient system would be to end the qualification process so that everyone can benefit from government distributed food.  You could have surplus foods marked with “government issued” which would supply staples but no frills.  Milk, canned meat, rice, beans, and veggies available for all.
  • As a case manager for 7 years, I have seen the cart of many food stamp recipients.  This may not apply to some of you out there who receive food stamps, so do not take offense if not applicable.  But many times it is filled with sugary snacks, junk food, name brand colas, name brand cereal, and so forth.  I am no person to look for nutritional advice from, but if you look in my grocery cart (paid for with money I have had to earn) you will find fresh meat, frozen veggies, cheese, lettuce, and very rarely a case of store brand cola.  Yet, a food stamps EBT card cannot be used to purchase cleaning supplies, bleach, diapers, or toilet paper.  Something is wrong with this picture.
  • If you closed out the current system, it would be so much more cost efficient, it would end the common practice of food stamp recipients of buying groceries for people without benefits and selling them for cash at a discount rate so that they can purchase booze, cigarettes, and even drugs.  If people are forced to go to a government center to receive their benefits or vouchers for commodities and staples, it would hopefully cut back on the fraud and place back a level of accountability on those who anonymously shop for their groceries without the stigma of the old food stamp system.
  • The current front runner according to the national polls believes in a system of taxation that is in essence a form of welfare.  95% of Americans under his plan will get a tax cut.  Roughly 60% of Americans pay taxes.  Therefore, if you look at this promise, there will be a significant portion of Americans who will receive more tax refunds than they pay in, in some cases receiving a check even though they paid no taxes at all.
  • The purpose of taxation should be to fund legitimate functions of the government.  If it was about fairness, everyone would pay the same rate and all credits, deductions, and graduated rates would be stopped.  Taking people off the tax rolls completely takes away incentives to succeed and move from one class to another.
  • As a married couple who own a house and have no children, Marcela and I pay more in taxes than most.  We pay for schools we do not use, do not get to claim more exemptions on our taxes, and we do not get the child tax credits.  Those who have children and do not own a house or property get the credits for the children, they get to claim more people on their taxes, and they do not pay for the schools they use.  Like I said, our current tax system is not geared toward fairness, but welfareness (my new word).
  • Enough of that, lets talk about something else.  I am considering accepting the offer to take off Sunday so I can be at church.  Usually on Sundays, they ask for volunteers to go home since we are overstaffed on weekends.  If I go home, I will lose 8 hours of pay, but I will get to be at church.  I still have not decided.
  • I am considering heading down to Plantation Key for service if I do.  We will see.

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