The Drawing on the Wall Incident

One thing that I forgot to mention that happened yesterday was that Abby, for some unknown reason, thought it would be a good idea to take a crayon that she found and start writing on nearly every wall in our living room. She thrust the crayon into Emily’s hand and wandered off waiting for the yelling to begin. Jennifer found Emily with the crayon in her hand and started to survey the damage. It was readily apparent that Emily wasn’t the one who decided to do some artwork on our walls. The lines were out of her reach and there were people’s faces drawn on the windows in our living room. A tale tale sign of a four-year-old not a two-year-old. Anyway, a lot of yelling and spanking happened and Abby was sent off to her room. Today Abby surprised Jennifer by apologizing for drawing on the wall.

Abby stayed home from school again today because of her sore throat. Right now we are to the point where we don’t know what to do with her. She won’t eat because “her tummy says that she’s not hungry” when it’s time for dinner, but once dinner is done she complains that she’s hungry. It almost sounds like an excuse not to eat what we are having for dinner.

I finished the Joel on Software book I picked up while on vacation in Houston. This was by far one of the best software management books I’ve ever read. I’ve been a fan of Joel’s site for years and you can pretty much read the entire book online by reading all of the articles on his site, but it was nice to re-read the articles in book form. He really gets down to the basic foundations of building a successfully software team. It isn’t some whiz bang method like Extreme Programming or some other crazy method. If you don’t have the basic methods he describes, you don’t have a good foundation to support your software project. Anyway, if you are in the software industry, I recommend this book highly.

Today’s picture is another one from our trip to the Houston Zoo. This time it’s Emily on one of the zoo animals on the merry-go-round.

Abby’s Tummy Problems

It’s been another busy week at work and next week is the last week of our second milestone, so it will probably be even busier. Abby hasn’t been feeling well this weekend. Her throat has been sore and we took her to the doctor on Friday, but they said it wasn’t Strep Throat. However, she’s been very weepy all weekend and she keeps saying that “her tummy tells her she isn’t hungry.”

We finally found a Mongolian BBQ restaurant and went there today. It was closer into town, near downtown, and took us a while to get there. We might start going there after church on Sunday since it would be closer going from there. It was pretty good and I thought it was comparable to the one we used to go to in Houston.

Today’s picture is from when we went to the Houston Zoo. The girls had fun riding the merry-go-round which had different animals to ride.

Too Cold for the Park

I had the day off from work today and so we decided to go to the park this morning even though it’s been pretty cold here the past couple of days. The high temperature today was 58 degrees, which obviously isn’t cold for most of the country, but it’s cold for here in Central Florida. Also, it’s pretty cold when last week the high was in the 80’s all week long. Anyway, we were there for only forty minutes before it became too cold and we headed to Chick OlĂ© for some indoor playing.

While talking to Jennifer’s sister on the phone today, Abby admitted that her fish were named “Nemo” and “Dory”, so that puts to rest what the name of the fish are. I suppose my arguments against naming them after herself and her sister actually were having an effect.

I finished Ratchet & Clank today. This game was okay. It wasn’t stellar, but had its challenging moments. What I didn’t like about it was that I had to collect a certain amount of money in order to kill the last “boss” creature to end the game. I got online and found a cheat in order to collect a lot of money so I could win. When you have to resort to that type of tactic in order to finish the game, then there’s a flaw in the overall design, in my opinion.

Today it was announced that Electronic Arts has paid ESPN for exclusive rights to their brand. This effectively deals a one, two punch to our biggest competition Sega/Take Two who had their ESPN line of sports titles for the past two years. The exclusive NFL license killed their football game and now our ESPN license has killed pretty much all brand recognition that they built up. All I can say is: “It’s good to be the king.”

Today’s picture is of Emily playing a little soccer (with a basketball) while we were at Grandma and Grandpa’s house in Houston.

The Shelf Life of PC Games

We got out and did some shopping at Best Buy today. I’m about to finish Ratchet & Clank so I wanted to get the next game I was going to be playing. I received Half-Life 2 as a gift, but I hadn’t played the first one so I went in search of a “Collector’s” version of Half-Life. I was able to find one and found out the reason it’s hard to have old versions of PC games still on the shelves. PC games age rather quickly. I had a tough time getting the six year old game to run on my modern PC. When Half Life came out, 3D video cards were in it’s infancy. It’s funny because you usually don’t have the same problem with console games. If the console is still running, you know that a game bought twenty years from now will still run on that system. In fact, you still see the original Nintendo and Super Nintendo for sale in video game stores today even though both systems are over ten years old now.

After Best Buy we went over to Chuck E. Cheese. We usually try to avoid the place on the weekends and we were reminded of the reason why. It was crawling with people. And for some reason, they redesigned the place in order to cram it full of more people. Instead of having a place where you dine and a place where you play, it’s all inner mixed now. It made it real awkward trying to help Emily play Skee Ball and a few feet over a family is eating pizza. As you can see from today’s picture, Abby got her picture taken by a contraption which makes a “sketch” of the person posing for the picture. She was very proud of the picture and has made me hang it up in her play room.

It’s a Girl?

It’s been a week since my last post so I guess I’m going to have to do a week in review. The biggest news this week is that we went to our first ultrasound appointment for the new baby on Friday. The nurse couldn’t tell if it was a girl or a boy, so we are pretty much going with the assumption that the new baby is a girl. This is the third time that the first ultrasound has ended in “I can’t really tell”, so I think it’s a pretty safe assumption. We are a little disappointed since we were hoping for a boy, but I guess I’m destined to be in a house full of women.

We did get some fish. Abby says they are named “Abby” and “Emily”, but we are holding off officially naming them. I’ve tried convincing her to name them “Nemo” and “Dory” or “Shrek” and “Fiona”, but haven’t had much luck. So, for now they are called “the Fish”.

The reason for the lack of posts is that I’ve still be working really hard at work the past week again. It’s starting to get a little easier as more and more of the project starts coming together, but it’s still really chaotic. My new boss has come up to speed rather quickly even with the programming staff having doubled over the past two weeks. There’s still going to be a rough couple of weeks as we try and plan the entire project while finishing up our second milestone.

TiVo is amazing. At work, Tom and I were talking about this particular television program, Mr. Show with Bob and David, on Wednesday. It was on HBO in the 90’s and I wasn’t a big fan of it, but I knew of the show and the two comedians who were on it. Last night my TiVo recorded it. How does it do that? Apparently TBS is showing syndicated versions. Amazing. I set up a season pass.

Today’s picture is of Abby who fell asleep with her chair turned upside down. She doesn’t take naps anymore and she usually paints or colors while Emily takes her nap. However, sometimes if she’s had a fun time at school that day, she can’t help but curl up and doze off. We just thought this was a weird way to fall asleep.

Abby the Fish

Abby has been asking for a pet lately. We knew we couldn’t get a dog because we would have to build a fence in our backyard. Both Jennifer and I are allergic to cats. So, we settled on some fish. We told this to Abby and now for the past few weeks that’s all we’ve been hearing from her. How she would “really like a pet fish”. So, we decided to go get a fish tank with the money the girls got for Christmas. We got a small five gallon and put it in the kitchen. I asked Abby what she wanted to name her fish and she said, “Abby”. I said, “That will be confusing.” “Nope. I want my fish named Abby,” she replied. So hopefully, we will be getting “Abby the fish” on Monday.

Today’s picture is of Abby helping Grandpa pain a shelf. Yes, she’s wearing a plastic bag over her clothes.

Happy Birthday, Emily!

Sorry, but I’ve been so busy at work lately that I haven’t had time to put an entry into Frenchville. However, I had to get an entry in for Emily’s birthday. We celebrated her birthday in Houston last weekend, but today was her actual birthday.

We are still trying to get everything unpacked from the trip. Abby and Emily have been riding their new scooters around. I put the Barbie Jeep back together, but there isn’t any room to store it in the garage. I had to put it on the back porch and the girls have to go off roading in order to get it around the house and into the front yard. Hey, it is a Jeep after all.

Three Events While on the Road

We made it back home all in one piece. That drove from Houston to Mobile and then to Orlando is way too long. We drive from 7:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. both days. Abby’s new statement was that she was “tired of this trip”.

We had three events all happen while we were driving for the past few days. First, we were called around 2:00 yesterday while driving through southern Louisiana, by our alarm company. The alarm on our house was going off and they asked if they should send the police. We told them yes and then we called one of our neighbors. We didn’t hear anything back from the alarm company, but our neighbor walked around the house and said that everything was okay. We found out from one of our other neighbors that the police did come to our house, but didn’t see anything wrong. Once we got home, everything seemed to be in order.

While we were strolling through Mississippi, the “MAINT REQD” light came up on the dashboard. Our car is only a couple of months old and just has over 5,000 miles on it. When I noticed the light we had 5,003 miles on the car. Even though Jennifer went ahead and got the oil changed right before we left, I figured it was just a light to remind one to get their oil changed. Once we got to our hotel in Mobile, I used their Internet connection to confirm my suspicion on

Finally, today while driving through Florida, I was called by one of the managers at work to inform me that my boss had quit. I don’t know the reason why, and may never know. So, my life at work just got more complicated. I guess I will know more of the fallout tomorrow.

Longhorns Win Rose Bowl!

Happy New Year! We spent the switch to the new year here in the Central Time Zone asleep. I guess roasting all the marshmallows made us a little groggy.

We went ahead and celebrated Emily’s second birthday while we were here in Houston. Abby and Grandma made a cake with sprinkles on top, of course, and some more homemade ice cream as well. We sung “Happy Birthday” and she blew out her candles with some help. She was much better than Abby on her second birthday who cried when we started singing.

What a great showing by the Texas Longhorns in the Rose Bowl today. They defeated Michigan in the last seconds of the game and showed everyone that they did belong in a BCS game. Vince Young and the offense looked great. It was the defense that I wasn’t too happy with. The secondary kept giving up the pass over the middle and it was getting very frustrating. They marched down the field in the last seconds and kicked a field goal two win with two seconds left in the game. Very exciting. HOOK ‘EM HORNS!