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Bought a New Boat

07 Sep

I’ve wanted my own boat for as long as I can remember. The last boat I had was more of a family boat that I called mine since I used it more than anyone in the family. It was a 14′ Tri-Hull with a 25hp Mercury pull cord motor on it. It was a great boat, although, I’d rather have had a different engine as I’m not a big fan of Mercury.

When we moved to Georgia, I convinced my wife to let me finally buy a boat. She wasn’t entirely excited about it, but she played along. She is a fan of a center console as am I, but I wanted something more family orientated, so I decided to go with a pontoon boat. Dawn (my wife) wasn’t thrilled about a pontoon boat, but she didn’t express this to me so when I found one I went with it. It was a 24′ Party Barge with a 90hp Force. On a side note, this strengthened my hatred for Mercury. But overall, it was a perfect fit for our family and getting all the kids and dogs on it without being crowded. But what’s funny about all this is, in my effort to get a family friendly boat, it turned out to be just me on the boat 98% of the time. My wife finally expressed that she wasn’t a fan of pontoon boats because “they’re for old people” and so she would never go. When we left Georgia to move to North Carolina, we decided it was time to let the boat go.

When we got to North Carolina, we didn’t have any intention of buying another boat. We bought several ATV’s when we moved here and have been enjoying time out riding those, but I’ve been checking the classifieds for boats pretty much daily. We decided something a little more, let’s say, new age, so that Dawn wouldn’t feel like an old lady. A center console was out in my opinion because I just don’t feel it’s suited for kids, so we agreed on a cabin style boat. Well a year and a half later, I find myself deployed. Still searching classifieds, checking out the boats available for sale. Then. It appeared. A 2001 Seastrike Striper 2101 Walk Around. Interior was immaculate. Motor was strong. I emailed him, but let him know that I wouldn’t be home for a couple months due to my deployment and that was that. Two weeks later, my wife and I were talking and I mentioned the boat and showed her a picture and she loved it too! Emailed the guy back and he still had it! Well, after working the logistics with the seller to get the boat inspected and funds arranged and what not, we finally completed the transaction and now, the boat is sitting in the driveway awaiting my return.

I know what you’re thinking. Yes, I bought a boat, while deployed, without even looking at it lol. But it was entirely too hard to pass up. The report came back from the mechanic and everything was rock solid with the exception of three things. One, the stern light didn’t light 360 degrees. Seller fixed this. Two, bilge pump is not functioning. $50 fix which I will take care of when I get home. Three, hours didn’t match hourmeter. Not a huge deal, there were 303 hours on the motor which is amazing considering the motor is 11 years old (about 27.5 hours/year). Hopefully it’s as good in person as it is on paper. I think it will be!

 
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Posted in Boat

 

Ava Went to the Pound

21 Jan

It is with great sadness that I write this post.

Today we had to take Ava to the pound.  Ava was my daughter Kyndell’s dog and so she wanted to go with me to drop her off.

 

Kyndell & Ava

Kyndell & Ava

As you can tell, Kyndell had been crying and was forcing a smile for the picture even though it was not a joyus time.  Several months ago, Ava become very dominat with our boxer, Bella.  They got into a fight over some dog food and Ava kicked Bella’s ass, causing her the need to get stitches in her leg.  This caused concern, and we had Ava checked out to make sure nothing was hurting her that may have caused her to suddenly start attacking.  Bella is a very, and I do mean very, hyper dog and she loves to play and antagonize our other dogs (Ava & our Golden Retriever Buddy).  We wrote off Ava’s attack as being due to Bella’s rambunctiousness and kept them separated for a few months and slowly started to integrate them.

All was well for the next month in a half or so.  Until about two weeks ago, I was putting the dogs out and Bella didn’t want to go out.  I noticed she was limping and checked her leg and she had deep gashes and wounds.  While we didn’t see any fight, we immediately assumed it was Ava and again started separating the two.  Ava and Buddy would get fed and then Bella.  Bella was chosen to be the one to be separated because Buddy gets annoyed with her as well, but he deals with it by not coming out of his kennel so that he doesn’t have to be around her.  So anyways, back on track.  When this second incident happened, we started looking for a new home.   We posted her up on Lejeune Yard Sales and Craigslist.  This didn’t yield us any results unfortunately.  But we kept her in hopes of finding her a new home where she’d be a better fit.

Then, out of the blue, she attacks Buddy yesterday.  Buddy is the most laid back, down to earth dog you can have.  So this was the final straw.  It was either take Ava to the pound, or risk having her attack one of our kids, specifically our 1 or 6 year old girls.  With that, we decided it was time for her to go to the pound.

The pound was a difficult task.  I did ensure that they wrote down on her papers that before euthanization, they contact us so that we can take her back if in the event they don’t find her a home.

 

 
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I love me some Coke! (Coca-Cola that is)

18 Jan

I have a serious addiction to Coca-Cola.  I don’t know what it is about it, but I drink it like it’s water.  I literally chug them back to back, non-stop.  Look out if I’m doing some late night programming or video gaming.  I drink them like there’s no tomorrow.

We’ve been working extended hours at work, so my junior Marines have got to see a side of me they don’t normally see.  They’ve seen me drink my fair share of Coke at work, but they had no idea until we started working these extended hours.

Read the rest of this entry »

 
 

Bye Bye USAA!!!!

15 Jan

So here’s the deal…

I’ve been a member of USAA for 13+ years. I’ve been banking with them and had insurance with them the entire time. I’ve had a car loan through them. I’ve had renters insurance for 6+ years, I’ve had boat insurance, mutual funds, everything. When we bought our house a few months ago (I went with Wells Fargo) I cancelled my renters insurance to get home owners insurancewith USAA and they wouldn’t insure me because it was hurricane season. So this irritated me a little but whatever. It’s understandable.

Then this morning, I go to transfer some money into savings only to have my savings account not show up in the drop down, so I look at my account listing and theres no savings account. Thinking this is a website issue, I log out and log back in, still no savings account.

So I call USAA and get their emergency line and he asks how can he help me with my debit card emergency or lost card issue and I stated that I logged onto USAA and my savings account was gone. He said I’d need to call back they only handle debit card emergencies and lost cards and I said what about lost savings accounts and he said nope I’d need to call back during normal hours.

I asked him when normal hours were and he gave me the mon-sat spiel and knowing tomorrow is a holiday, I asked if they were open tomorrow. He said no I needed to call Tuesday.

So my savings account, is gone, and they think it can wait until Tuesday??? Granted I didn’t have much if any money in it because I’ve already been having thoughts of switching anyways for better rates but for it to just be gone, scares me. What if I did have money in it? What if it was my checking account?

The only thing I can think of is since I’m fixing to deploy I’ve been trying to get all my accounts linked and setup for auto pay on my bills in the event I don’t have internet my payments are still getting made and maybe they closed it due to suspicious activity, but the problem with that, is I was linking my checking accounts, not my savings accounts and then setting up auto transfers from checking to savings…

Anyways, as of today, I’m going with Navy Fed. I’ve had an account with them as long as I have USAA but it’s just sat dormant since I’ve always used USAA.

 
 

High Dynamic Range (HDR) Photography

14 Jan

I’ve always been intrigued by High Dynamic Range photography.   The photos look so vibrant and alive and I’ve wanted to give it a stab for quite some time.   In October, I bought the Nikon D5100 after selling and upgrading from my Nikon D50.  One of the features I thought was cool about this camera was the fact that it had a HDR feature where, when selected, it would automatically take multiple photos to create an HDR.

Unfortunately, I either wasn’t doing something correct, or it just wasn’t that impressive to me.  This kicked me into gear for giving it an attempt.  So I bought an HDR book from Banes & Noble to give me some tips and ideas and I did a little research online.  I ended up coming up with the following: Read the rest of this entry »

 

Kyndell doing donuts @ Busco Beach 1/8/2012

10 Jan

Well, Jan 7/8 2012 was my free weekend for the next month in a half as I prepare for my deployment.  On Saturday, my wife suggested we go to Busco Beach and go ride the four wheelers.  Without hesitation, I jumped on the idea.  With the highs being 70 degrees, it was the perfect weather to go riding. 

When we arrived, it was packed!  We haven’t seen it this packed for months.  So as we’re riding around, we see a ton of kids out riding their four wheelers and dirt bikes and they looked like they were having too much fun.  So after a short discussion my wife and I decided to bring the kids out Sunday to go riding.  My son wasn’t too thrilled about it.  Ever since his accident where he fell off, he has not wanted to ride them. 

My daughter on the other hand…

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My daughter had a blast doing “zig zags” and donuts.   I’m going to get her four wheeler fixed up with some new rims and tires and some performance mods and see if she wants to race it.  I think she’ll have a blast doing it.  And if not that’s ok too.  We can rip it up together! 

I can’t wait for my deployment to get over…

 
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Posted in ATV, Kids

 

Kynlee is a Year Old Today!

15 Dec

My baby girl turned one today. Who would of imagined time would fly this fast?!!?

Kynlee had an extremely hard first few months. There were times my wife and I looked at each other, thinking, “Is she going to make it”… Luckily, our baby is extremely hard headed and she refused to cave. It was no cake walk for us either though.

Kynlee had some breathing issues on the day she was born but they initially worked themselves out. We were released to go home after the normal three days or so. When we got home, she got really sick. She couldn’t breathe, she was gasping for air and we agreed she needed to go to the hospital. I stayed home with the kids and Dawn took Kynlee to the hospital. They said she was fine and sent her home saying to just give her some tylenol and what not.

After Dawn got home, about an hour later, she spiked a really high fever and so we called the ER back and spoke to them. The next morning, we took her to the doctors and they admitted her to the hospital. She stayed for a week and was required to stay in a tent and got breathing treatments every four hours and she cleared up and was doing really good. Everything came back negative, no RSV, no Flu, no nothing. So they released her and all was well for the first day in a half, to two days.

About that time, she started the same symptoms. We got her into the doctors ASAP and she was readmitted.

We spent two weeks there this time. They did the same treatment. Tested for RSV & other issues. This time, RSV came back positive. She stayed in the tent for the next two weeks and was receiving breathing treatments every four hours as she did the first stay. They eventually got her cleared up and at the end of those two weeks, she was released.

So we’re home, baby Kynlee is doing great. Then, she turns yellow/orange… Yup!! She started getting really high levels of billybean? I think it was called. She was suffering serverly from jaundice. They rushed a machine to the house that had the light thingy and we had to keep her under that until her levels were back down.

And now… Our baby has turned one!

She is doing much better these days. She still receives breathing treatments twice a day, but overall she is doing really good. And best of all, as of today, NO MORE FORMULA!! lol…

 

I Sure Do Miss Big Mama

10 Dec

I miss this woman trememndously. Maybe it’s because I don’t have much of a social life as I never go out (I’d much rather spend the free time with my family) and I haven’t had or used any social media websites such as Facebook in months! And to make matters worse, I don’t socialize with anyone from work on a personal level.

I could always count on getting an email from Big Mama. When I was deployed to Iraq, I would get emails and jokes and daily inspirational prayers and stuff on a daily basis, multiple times a day. As work has slowed up a little bit, it’s got me really missing her right now. I know I’ve already said that a few times and I’ve only written like three or four sentences.

She always had time and was never too busy for me.

Now that I’m preparing for another deployment, I find myself sitting here, staring at the screen… Wishing, praying… That someone would email me. Big Mama is gone, so I don’t have her to fill my void. My wife is busy, understandably so, running the family affairs back home and working and so she gets tied up and can’t email me.

So, here I sit, typing, and writing to myself on this site.

 

Android Development

08 May

For the past few years I’ve really wanted to give smart phone programming a go. It stems back to when my wife bought my first Android phone, the HTC Eris.

Unfortunately I never really persued my desire until just recently.

A couple of months ago, they finally released the HTC Thunderbolt. This phone was great out of the package but my yearning to get more involved with this platform was at an ever increasing high.

So I rooted. This became almost an addiction in itself. I was flashing every rom I could get my hands on. I finally found the one that suits me and I’ve turned my focus to developing apps now.

I’ve been beating myself up trying to figure out what to program. What is it that I’m lacking That I can’t do without

It finally hit me yesterday while driving. The name, the purpose, all of it. I was unsure though because I’ve lived without this app and I never even really thought to look for something like this.

When I got home, I hopped on Android Market and checked it out. Booya!! There is only two other apps in regard to this and both appear to be still early on in development which means I have a chance at becoming a heavy contender.

This morning, after taking care of all my Mother’s Day duties, I hopped on the computer real quick and setup a Google Market account and Google Checkout account. I am now able to post free and paid version apps for download to your Android powered device.

With that said, I have nearly got the initial framework done for the app I’m programming and will need to theme it after that.

I’m excited at the thought of possibly having a hit app available for download.

Stay Tuned.

 
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Crit’s Field Day

02 May

I went to Christians Field Day today. It was a pretty good time overall. I got there and was almost immediately bombarded by him and Quinten, aka “Q-Dog”, “Q Q”, for him to stay the night this weekend. I told them to has mom so they did it via video:

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Mom caved. Unfortunately, when we got home, we got a call from Q’s mom and said that he wouldn’t be able to spend the night afterall due to previous plans that they had.

As for the actualy Field Day, it was a good time overall. Here’s a shot of the boys posing for the camera, from left to right, Crit, Q, Thing 2:

I did almost have to beat a little 4th graders behind today though. He put his hands on my boy trying to shove him around and I flew up out of the bleachers and snapped my fingers at him and said “Boy, you better never lay your hands on him like that again you hear me!” to which he replied “Yes Sir” and then started apologizing to Crit. 

Good times.

 
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Posted in Kids