Saturday, January 31, 2009

Finally -- a Design and Randomness in 25 Parts

Tammy and I just finished watching the movie, Fireproof. I probably shouldn't mention that it's a movie based on Christian principles because that may turn some people off but in the interest of disclosure I'll put that out there front and center. It's a film about a couple's crumbling marriage and the process of trying to save it. It doesn't matter how secure you are in your marriage; this film will have meaning for you.

The last time I looked at the outside temperature today it was 42 degrees. I was glad to finally be able to spend an hour out in the driveway removing the layer of ice that fell in the form of rain some four weeks ago before a hard freeze set in. I'm back to a fully exposed driveway and I'm glad. A north facing concrete driveway requires a bit of work in the Midwest when it comes to the slippery stuff.

I woke up this morning to no back pain whatsoever for the first time in over two weeks. I have a new appreciation for a healthy back so my days spent with pain weren't all a loss. I've been slowly getting back into my rowing machine workouts over the past few days. Rather than going at it full out as I was doing (I know...real stupid) I'm taking it much slower/easier this time. There are some games on the rower's monitor which allow you to focus more on them than on your effort and I'm finding that they work well for me. It's nice to be working my upper body again. I think I've found a friend for life with my rower.

Tammy and I have been struggling with a stained glass design for the six panels above our entertainment center in the basement. We toyed around with the idea of a Minnesota scene and were pretty set on doing that. The left two windows would represent southern Minnesota. We planned to do a farmland scene and a windmill. The middle two panels would be the skylines of both Minneapolis and St. Paul. The right two panels would be upper Minnesota and the North Shore; Split Rock Lighthouse and a birch tree scene. I still like the idea but it wasn't happening. It's been two years since we finished our kitchenette windows in the basement and we both wanted to get moving on the entertainment center project. We've procrastinated long enough. It's felt like a monkey on my back and I need to get it off.

Anyway, I spent this weekend coming up with a fully functional drawing for the panels. I'd made a Frank Lloyd Wright inspired design a dozen years ago for the windows in our den and decided to use it for these panels too. I think it's going to work fine. There will be lots and lots of tiny pieces to work with but I like doing that sort of stuff; so does Tammy. It shouldn't be that bad as they will all be straight cuts. Each of the panels measures approximately 9" x 28". We're still working on the colors but I think we've got that figured out for the most part. We stopped in at J. Ring Glass Studio in St. Paul Wednesday night to pick out some glass but after getting it home I'm not feeling so good about our selections. J. Ring doesn't accept returns so we're stuck with what we bought. I went back there today and found some glass that I'm feeling much better about. I hope to be cutting into it this week. Photos to follow.

In the past few days I've been 'tagged' by four 'Facebook Friends' requesting that I list '25 Random Things About Me'. The first person to tag me was my brother Bryan. I liked the witty responses he'd made and thought mine would be lame sounding in comparison so I dismissed the idea. Besides, I was too busy designing a stained glass project. Then I was tagged a few more times by other people and I decided that it was time to put together my own random 25 list. Here goes.

I can begin this by saying that I very much love my wife and my daughter so I'll save the other 25 for things you may not know about me.

1. I love politics.

2. I used to boast that I'd be the last guy in Lakeville to go on-line. That was up until 10 years ago when I got a computer and never looked back.

3. Being betrayed hurts but remaining in the bitterness hurts even more.

4. I cried when Snickers died but not when my father passed away.

5. I always carry dental floss with me but sometimes I'll go an entire day without using it.

6. I voted for Bush twice. I now regret it.

7. My all time favorite album is Supertramp's, Crime of the Century. My favorite song from the album is Hide in Your Shell.

8. I finished toward the bottom of my class in high school. I didn't learn that until years later but I always suspected it.

9. I swear it's true that I remember my baptism when I was merely an infant. I know that sounds impossible but nothing is impossible with God.

10. I get irritable if I don't get to workout.

11. I used to think I could sing somewhat well until Tammy told me that I couldn't. Rachel confirmed it. I still sing.

12. I have a fear that my life will be cut short by an inattentive driver while I'm on my bike. I still ride.

13. I hate politics.

14. I've never changed a baby's diaper.

15. I can no longer write cursively.

16. I have a strange ability to remember dates from trivial to important happenings in my life. I can also remember the phone numbers of friends from over 35 years ago.

17. I love blogging; it's therapeutic.

18. I pray daily.

19. If I didn't live in the U.S. I think I could easily make my home in Australia.

20. I'm very much the same person I was 30 years ago.

21. My facial expression often gives people the wrong impression of what I'm feeling.

22. There are many people in my life whom I would die for but I wouldn't expect them to do the same for me; not that they wouldn't.

23. Arby's used to be my favorite fast-food place but I'm not sure anymore.

24. My favorite movie is Breaking Away. I so much identified with David Stoller.

25. I love life.

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