Any Ideas?

June 4, 2009

This is my lawn mower.

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As you can see from the photos – it’s a 6.5 HP Toro.  It’s self-propelled and “guaranteed-to-start.”  It’s been a good mower.  For roughly five years it has chewed grass and weeds and (more recently) a few of Chester’s toys with ease.  Until last week – when the relationship changed.  I was mowing – which I might remind you doesn’t even rank on my list of enjoyed activities – when the mower stopped.  It has oil.  It has gas.  It started and was running fine.  And then stopped.  It’s still stopped.  No roar of the mighty 6.5 HP engine.  No grass flying from the side exit.  So what am I to do?  Hire someone to care for the yard?  Buy a new one?  Have it repaired or shall I assume that the cost to repair will set me back so much that I should just purchase another?  I’m not sure about City ordinances – but I’m tempted to buy some goats.   

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30 Cents

May 11, 2009

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The sandwich cost $5.99.  The chips cost $1.19.  The paper cup for water set me back an additional 30 cents.  Am I wrong to be frustrated?  Should I just provide my own empty container in the future?

On Saturday, I experienced my first Old Timer’s Day Parade (as well as post-parade activities and food selections).  Here are some images from the day. 

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I found it odd that the float promoting a “dog park” was without any canine representation.

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Some “old school” assault weaponry.

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And should the ban on assault weapons remain – no worries – we can just throw axes.

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Please Provide A Caption

April 15, 2009

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admittedly, this could be a dangerous topic. but i’ve taken preemptive measures to ensure that i won’t get into any sort of trouble. rhonda and i just celebrated six years of marriage. i love being married and i truly love her. she’s been an amazing partner. she’s supportive, she has great faith, and she keeps me from having a stroke on my more trying days.  for our anniversary we took a trip to hilton head island.  it provided a great time to relax.  on the trip i was reminded of two distinct things about my wife.  first – she’s competitive.  i mean really competitive.  we started playing tennis on day two of our adventure.  she played a little in college.  i played a lot in middle and high school.  our playing in the years since has been sporadic for us both.  we hit around for a bit.  then rhonda asked to play a match.  i won the first game.  i won the second game.  and so forth.  i asked if she’d like to just hit again – you know – no score keeping.  she said no.  after going 0-18, rhonda won a game.  she wasn’t going to stop until she tasted just a little victory.  she’s determined – without question.  and did i mention competitive?  the other fun observation is her fear of alligators.  it’s not uncommon to find alligators in or around the ponds and lakes at hhi.  i haven’t verified this – but she’s convinced that they can run 50 miles an hour.  i’m unsure of their top speed but i have heard that you’re suppose to run zig-zag patterns if chased.  so anyhow – whenever we spotted a gator – i wanted to watch, capture a photo, and throw a stick at him/her and see what would happen next.  rhonda on the other hand – pedaled her bike as quickly as she could and scolded my interests.  when we ran into other people in the vicinity of the gator(s) – rhonda would share cautionary tales of danger and certain peril if they didn’t hurry back to the safety of their cottage or house.  she doesn’t seem to trust them.  she has little patience with gators of any size.  at least she is patient with me (unless of course i’m waiting to harass an alligator).

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I’ve made apologies in the past for long breaks between posts.  I think I should just admit my ongoing inability to make this a priority.  I do hope that you’ll check back often, but please don’t be shocked if there isn’t new content.  Don’t take it personally.

Our Cross Point Dickson office is located in a shared warehouse.  We selected the spot for it’s proximity to DCHS (where we meet for worship) and its potential for expansion.  Our landlord was once in the tractor business.  He just recently moved a fleet of lawn tractors from the warehouse to the parking lot.  It’s quite a collection.  It got me thinking about a story from my childhood.  My grandparents owned and operated a diary farm.  I regret some of my decisions during those years.  I preferred Little Debbie Snack Cakes and Scooby Doo episodes.  My sister on the other hand spent much of her time playing in the garden and enjoying the outdoors.  I didn’t have much interest in farming.  I wanted air-conditioning and entertainment.  There was one occasion when my interests and the farming community collided.  My grandfather ordered a tractor with an air-conditioned cab and radio.  A very cool concept from my perspective.  I knew that it was to be delivered soon – but wasn’t exactly sure of the timeline.  I recall riding in the backseat of my grandmother’s car as we rounded the curve in the road before their farm.  In the distance I could see this wonderful new machine.  I began to jump up and down with excitement.  I jumped so hard that I hit my head on the ceiling and nearly bit my tongue in half (I did recover).  I should have spent more time soaking up the experience (and actually participating in the efforts around the farm).  Not everyone has the chance to encounter farming firsthand.  While I don’t know how to drive a tractor, herd cattle, or plant soybeans – I did learn that jumping up and down in the backseat of a car is not a smart move.  

If you could turn back the clock on some missed opportunities – what would you have done differently?

 

Got Hitched

February 23, 2009

Over the weekend, I had the privilege of sharing in my cousin’s wedding.  It was a trek to get there – but it was well worth the effort.  I stayed busy ushing (or whatever ushers/groomsmen do).  As a result – I didn’t get many photos of the event.  I suppose that’s why they pay the professionals to capture the day.  Here’s my cousin (Will) relaxing with my grandmother post-service.

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Here’s my grandmother again – along with my sister.  Not sure how she manages a rich tan this time of year.  Oh wait – I know – but she’s tired of hearing my thoughts on tanning beds.  She teaches Special Ed in Hickory, North Carolina.  I don’t get to see her often enough. 

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Rhonda and Chester didn’t make the trip.  I came home to discover one of Chester’s little tricks.

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I’m uncertain as to how Chester’s toy got to the rooftop of our garage.  But I can say this – Rhonda needs to supervise our dog more closely.   

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WORTH THE WAIT?

February 18, 2009

For Valentine’s Day – Rhonda and I (along with some friends) headed to the greater metropolitan area of Fly, TN. When you live in Dickson (pop. 12,244 according to the 2000 census) – you probably shouldn’t take cheap shots at “small towns.”  However, after some extensive research – I’ve discovered that Fly doesn’t have a population.  Again – according to 2000 records – the smallest town recorded was Silerton with a population of 60.  Shall we assume that Fly has fewer than 60 people in its vicinity?  My in-laws have that many people over for Christmas dinner.  Anyhow – we made the trek to Fly because of the outstanding reputation of Papa Boudreax.  Deep into the highlands of Fly – you’ll find a yellow cinder block building that houses Papa Boudreax’s Cajun Catering & Cafe.  We arrived at 5:30.  The projected wait for a table – “at least an hour.”  Given the distance we had traveled and the fact that I didn’t have a Plan B other than Sonic – we determined that we could handle the wait.  The projected wait provided ample time to travel to Columbia to search out an ATM.  You see – Papa Boudreax doesn’t take plastic.  Though his prices could lead one to think otherwise.  The wait turned out to be more like 2 hours and 15 minutes – but who’s counting.  Once we ordered, the food arrived quickly and was quite tasty.  And we enjoyed the company of our friends and the sweet tunes of the gentleman sitting on a stool with a guitar and a completely unnecessary PA system.  The place seats 30 and is made of block.  The speakers were a little much (those of you who think that the music at Cross Point is too loud will identify with this sentiment).  Overall it was a pleasant experience.  What’s the longest you’ve ever waited for a meal?  And was it worth it?   

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$$$

February 10, 2009

I’m not an economist.  I get the basic concept of supply and demand.  That’s about the extent of my understanding.  I listened last night to a portion of the presidential press conference.  A lot was said about the Economic Recovery and Reinvestment Plan (which I think is the same as a stimulus package – not sure why they went and changed the name).  Anyhow – I was struck but Chuck Todd’s question following the scripted briefing.  

“In your opening remarks, you talked about that if your plan works the way you want it to work, it’s going to increase consumer spending. But isn’t consumer spending, or over-spending, how we got into this mess (emphasis mine)?  And if people get money back into their pockets, do you not want them saving it or paying down debt first, before they start spending money into the economy?”

I can’t quite articulate why I like this question so much.  It just seems like a legitimate question to ponder.  Sure – lending institutions took absurd risks and unprecedented advantage of individuals.  Yet – what about personal responsibility and sound judgment (or lack thereof)?  I’m really not going to go any further with this – just wanted to revisit the question.

Speaking of finances…

On Saturday, February 21st – Casey Graham of ReThink Money will be leading an event in Dickson.  If you’d like to participate in this short-term financial experience – just let me know and I’ll get you the details.

it was nice for a moment

January 28, 2009

Waking up to the ice and snow was exciting.  Even our dog was intrigued with the outdoor conditions.

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Now that the frozen stuff is beginning to melt – I’m not so impressed with the landscape (even on a perfect day – there isn’t much inspiring about a gravel parking lot – but you get the idea).

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I’d much rather relax in a place like this:

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What’s your favorite destination?  Do you prefer the snow or the sunshine?