Sunday, July 31, 2016

Reading and Poker

Jen decided to curl up on the couch to enjoy a book while I taught the boys to play Texas Holdem Poker.  Actually, once the boys got the hang of it, they turned out to be pretty good.  Thinking it was a good thing there wasn't any actual money on the line or I would be broke.  I won the first game, Clancey won the second, and Marshall won the third.  Looks like we will have to play the tie breaker tomorrow.

Bike Ride

The first thing we decided to do as a family was head out on a bike ride.  It's only a couple miles into town so we thought we would ride in a have lunch at the lighthouse and throw the frisbee a bit.  Not sure what the plan for later is but we are on island time now so there really is no rush.  Probably just head back and relax a bit.

Morning Coffee

As I said yesterday, I'm enjoying morning cup of coffee and enjoying the view this morning.  I'm not sure we could have gotten a better forecast for the week.  Going to be in the mid 70's and low 80's all week with no rain.  The water temp is good and it's looking to be a great week.

Saturday, July 30, 2016

At The Rental House

It was a bit hard to find but we made it to our rental house for the week.  The place is probably the nicest rental place we've had on the island.  Great living space with a big window that has a view of the lake.  Looking forward to enjoying a quiet cup of coffee in the morning while I enjoy the view.

On the Way With the Truck!!

We are officially on our way to Beaver Island and the truck is on the boat with us!  The truck was literally the last vehicle to get on the boat and the only reason I think it got on was because it was so big.  There was a spot that couldn't fit 2 cars but could fit my truck so I got bumped ahead and saw the truck get on  just as they were getting ready to close up.  Going to be nice to get there early and get settled in before midnight tonight.  As you can see the family is all pretty stoked about our 2 weeks on the island.

Waiting For the Boat

 We made it to Charlevoix and now we are waiting for the boat to get here.  When I went in to talk to the boat people they said there are a lot of cars on stand by right now so it isn't very likely that the truck will get on this boat.  At least I can park it behind the gate which means we can go over on the 2:30 boat and I'll just have to walk back at 11:30 to get my truck.  I'm really hoping that the truck gets over before 11:30 because I'm not looking forward to the 5 mile round trip to and from the rental house and unloading the truck at midnight.  Wish us luck!!

Friday, July 29, 2016

Headed To Beaver Island

Here we are on our way to Beaver Island for our first 2 week stint on the island.  As you can see with the truck we were able to pack a whole lot of stuff for the trip.  The plan is to stay in Grand Rapids Michigan tonight and then head up to Charlevoix tomorrow and see if we can get on an earlier boat to the island.  We are currently scheduled on the 8:30 pm boat which won't get us to the island until nearly 11:00pm which is pretty late.

Monday, July 04, 2016

Ironman Is Coming

Just like the past 8 years, I have Ironman Wisconsin coming up in only two shorts months.  Unlike other years I have been a complete lazy turd and not really done any training at all.  I get the urge stick too it for a couple days and then stop for a couple weeks.  Kind of been in this cycle for the past few months but time is running out.  Wisconsin is not an easy course at all and it's very hard to fake it.  I could probably get through the swim and run at this point but right now I have zero confidence I could complete the bike.  The bike course is just too hilly and if last year is any indication if you don't train you are in for a bad day.  Last year I trained at least a little and I struggled.  This year I haven't trained on the bike at all.  If I'm going to have any chance of finishing the race in just 69 days I'm going to need to focus on biking.  I've told myself that I need to bike almost every day between now and Ironman if I'm going to have a shot at actually finishing.  Time to buckle down and get the work done!

Grand Mound Fireworks

Been a couple years since we've actually been to a Fireworks show.  Normally by the end of day on 4th of July we are completely tired and end up just going to bed early.  Well this year we decided that we should actually make any attempt and go to a show.  I was talking to my neighbor Joel this afternoon and he recommended the Grand Mound Fireworks show.  Surprising that we've lived here 12 years and have never heard about this show.  Turns out that it is one of the best in the area.  They have a huge event and people get there mid afternoon to get a good spot to watch the fireworks.  We did not get there early and ended up watching them about a mile away on a gravel road.  The show was still good and certainly better than not going.  Maybe next year we will actually get the motivation and go over early for a spot.

Parade #2

We just got done with parade #2 of the day and I'm actually surprised we made it.  After we grilled lunch and got the kitchen cleaned up Jen and I thought it would be a good idea to lay down for a quick nap for 45 minutes.  I set an alarm and we were both asleep almost immediately.  Apparently staying up until midnight for the past few days caught up with us.  Well 45 minutes came and went and we got to a little over an hour.  The plan was to leave at 2:45 but we woke up from our nap at 2:50 after the alarm had been going off for 20 minutes.  We rushed around the house and got on the road and made it to the parade in time.  This parade wasn't as packed as the last one and it was quite a bit hotter but the boys still had a good time.  After today the boys got a couple more followers on Facebook and Instagram so who knows maybe this will turn into more customers.

Grilling Time

It just isn't a 4th of July celebration without out a little grilling, especially when you are rocking a new Weber Grill.  Besides not being able to swim in the pool and being grey it really isn't a bad day for the 4th.  Actually can sit outside without melting in the sun.  Thinking while were in between parades here I'm just going to sit on the back patio, listen to some music and relax.

Parade Time

As you can see the float ended up coming together really nice.  Pretty sure it was one of the coolest floats in the parade.  We've been to the parade a number of times but, Wow, I didn't realize how many people came to the parade.  At the beginning it was freak crazy packed.  The boys had a really great time throwing the candy out, in fact, so much so we are going  to go to another parade in Oxford Junction this afternoon.  Not sure how many new customers we will get out of this but it's way more fun to be in the parade than it is to sit and wait for everything to come by.

Sunday, July 03, 2016

Getting the Float Ready

Kind of as a spur of the moment kind of thing the boys asked if they could be in the Tipton 4th of July parade tomorrow.  Being I'm clearly running in the red on wife and family points from 3 weeks of travel I immediately agreed.  The float isn't all the way complete but as you can see Jen has once again come through with an awesome design.  Might be a little girly but it will be one of the nicest floats in the parade.

Ice Cream With the Family

Yesterday turned out to be kind of cold an damp so it turned into a lazy indoor day.  The boys and I fired up our Xbox Ones and played Destiny in our own 3 person fireteam for most of the day.  Today it's still not that warm but we needed to head to the Quad Cities to run some errands.  On the way back we decided to stop in Dewitt for some ice cream.  Just not summer without a little ice cream.

Friday, July 01, 2016


After a short flight from MSP to Cedar Rapids and a quick stop into the office to physically attend the meeting I was virtually in all week I made it home.  It was nice to get home and see the kids, at least for the short time before they headed back to the video game room.  Wouldn't want to lose any of that precious video game time.

Slumming It At The J.W. Marriott

Last night I was sitting at MSP waiting on my 9:53 flight home and it kept getting later and later so finally around 9:00 pm when the flight had been delayed to midnight I pulled the plug.  I could see more and more flight getting cancelled and more and more people trying to find a place to stay.  I've played that game before and knew what was going to happen I would sit here until midnight it would get cancelled and I would be on a sleeping pad at the airport for the night.

Instead I booked a room at the JW Marriott which is a decent enough hotel, ok I'll correct that, it's a luxury hotel, and spent the night.  So instead of sleeping at the airport I'm refreshed and ready to go for the day.  Have to say I'm looking forward to sleeping in my bed tonight and seeing the family.