Wednesday, December 14, 2011

New Post

With the popularity of Facebook, I have let this blog slip into neglect. Shame on me. Seems everything takes precedence over maintaining this blog.
What's new? Well, since my last posting, I traded in the old family sled (Voyager minivan) for a new Toyota Tacoma pick up truck. And what's a truck without something to haul around... like perhaps a boat. Okay, picked up one of those, too. :-)
Now Christmas is almost upon us and we are still trying to get the house ready. The tree is up and decorated. I fixed the oil leak in the Kitchenaid mixer so cookies and such can be made for the Holidays. Turns out the gear case grease will separate if it overheats or sits for too long without use. Who knew?
Our fireplace insert has been keeping the house warm and toasty and my electric bill hasn't varied by more than $10 since the weather turned cold.
And with that, it's time for me to have some dinner.
Until next post...

Monday, November 01, 2010

Hildred Powell Griffeth
March 12, 1920 - October 28, 2010

I always knew that this day would come. You never know what form it will come in, though.
Two weeks ago, I tried to call Gam but got no answer. I figured they were all out for the day and I didn't think anything of it. Later that weekend, I heard that Gam had gone to the hospital but had returned home. Thursday a week ago, we learned that Gam had returned to the hospital in pain. Tests were done, that should have been done the first time, and she learned that she had B-Cell Lymphoma. We had no idea how bad or what her prognosis was at the time.
By days end, I learned that it must be pretty bad because she had elected not to receive the standard cancer treatments (i.e. chemo and radiation therapy) and decided that it would take too much out of her to fight this disease and make her feel worse than she felt already.
At that time, everyone in the immediate family wanted to go to Florida to visit her before the end. I had planned on visiting soon but when word came that her time was extremely short, it was too late for me to get there before she was put on morphine and went to sleep.
Less than 2 days later, at 1:45 am, she passed away, holding hands with Amy and Debbie. They say she went with a smile on her face.
And that's how she lived.
With a smile on her face.
Rest in peace, Gam.
I love you.

Thursday, May 13, 2010


It's the things that nightmares are made of. Living out in Washington, I can isolate myself from the "deconstruction" that took place over the past 2 weeks. I can live in denial (no, not the river that bisects Egypt) and pretend this nightmare never happened. After all, I am 3000 miles away and I have lots of pictures and even more fond memories from my time living down at the river.
I have my own live out here in the Seattle area and I wouldn't trade it for anything. However, comma, a small part of me had hoped that the house would somehow be a small part of my future. Who knows. Maybe a family reunion. Maybe a retirement party. Maybe a relative's wedding that we fly in from Washington to attend. Who knows?
While I know that I am not the first or only person to see their childhood home be dismantled piece by piece, it still cuts to the bone. I am glad that some of the wood was salvaged and will be used in other houses.
I think what hurts the most, aside from losing my "anchor", is the fact that the home that our family lived in for 53 years was regarded as "not worthy" by the current owners. It's like selling your prized '57 Chevy to someone and watching them tear it apart and keep only the frame so they could build a super hot rod. The rest either went to the junkyard or to a parts store.
I don't hold any animosity toward any party involved. Had the shoe been on the other foot, I probably would have done the same thing.
But I am just venting and grieving now and nothing I write here will, nor was ever intended to, change the way events are unfolding. Remember, this is just my therapy for dealing with the loss of something I cared deeply about. It's not like it's the end of the world. It's just a house. I still have my beautiful wife and wonderful family out here in Washington. The entire family as a whole was not weakened by any of the events of the past few years. Even though we are scattered from here to there across the country, we are still and will always remain family no matter how geographically close we all are or what houses we live in.

Thursday, May 06, 2010

A tribute to the house that built me

It's like losing your anchor. They say that home is where the heart is and right now my home is in Washington State. But then there's your "home home" which is where you are from. For us, it's on the east coast. For me specifically, it's Maryland.

In 1953, my grandparents bought a log cabin along the banks of the Severn River. There was nothing spectacular about the house. It was just a log cabin on the banks of the Severn that had been added to over the years to accommodate our growing family. The additions didn’t even match the original log exterior of the house.

But, the house stayed in our family for 53 years and it’s those 53 years I want to make sure are remembered. I am quite sure that the previous stewards of the house are long gone and any memories have been eroded away by the passage of time or have been locked away, forgotten in an old steamer trunk in the attic of a previous owners great grandson in the form of faded photographic paper and ancient 8mm celluloid.

This tired, old log cabin was more than just tree trunks and mortar with some windows. It was where our family grew up. It was where we all gathered when the family got together. It was the scene of countless crab feasts and birthday parties. It was where we hunkered down against the occasional hurricane that made it up to the mid-Atlantic coast. It was where I learned how to swim and how to water ski. It was where I learned how to play the guitar. It was where all of the “summer friends” played flashlight tag on lazy, hot summer evenings. It was where we all were stranded for a week after the blizzard of 1979 (or was it 1978?). It was where we all got together for holidays.

It was the house that built “me”. It was my anchor, my home home. But what made this collection of logs and lumber and concrete special was family. This was where our family gathered for special occasions. It was where we gathered for not so special occasions. It was the only place where we all gathered together as a family.

Over the years, maintaining the property became more and more difficult. In 2006, with sections of the old log cabin deteriorating and requiring extensive TLC to repair, my grandmother sold the property that had been on our family since 1953.

Our family is now scattered across the country. With a stroke of the pen, the one thing our family had in common was sold. While we will always and forever be family, the only thing we will all have in common now are the memories of our lives and times in our home on the Severn. There is no longer a single gathering place for all of us to gather as a family.

Our family home is now being disassembled by the current stewards to make way for a more modern home. From now on, this old log cabin that housed and comforted our family for 53 years will exist only in our memories, in our stories, and in the countless pictures and home movies that we have accumulated over the last half a century. I will try to share some of my memories and pictures from the Severn on this blog as time permits.

This is my way of saying goodbye to an old friend, my home home, and the house that built me.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Another nice Sunday. Too bad the Seahawks couldn't pull it together in the final 2 minutes of the game to come back and beat the Bears. Nannette made a delicious pot of broccoli cheese soup. Yummmmmm.
Now we just need to work on getting everyone well that is starting to have flu-like symptoms.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

No Global Warming, huh?

Today has been hot here in the Seattle area. We usually don't get this warm until mid-August... and then for only a week or so. Our forecast for the next week or so is a barn burner. Mid-90's all week and temps dropping back to a comfortable level only in the wee hours of the morning which makes for really bad sleeping weather for those of us that don't have air conditioning. A circulating fan can only do so much. Luckily we have an abundant amount of trees surrounding our house and we don't suffer as much as people who have direct impingement of sunlight. While great for our veggie garden, the constant barrage of photons from our host star is wreaking havoc on our yard and our patience. We need rain and lots of it.
We usually have on and off wet weather well into June and the weather doesn't truly stabilize until mid July. This year the waterworks was shut off in mid-May. Part of one of those El-Ninyo thingys? Perhaps.
I saw a report on the drought in Texas this year. What a mess. They were able to tow cars out of rivers and lakes that had been submerged for years but now the water level is so low, they're able to find and remove the wrecks. So maybe we don't have it all THAT bad here in Seattle.
Hey, I wonder if they'll find Jimmy Hoffa in there...

Monday, May 18, 2009


Emily wanted her picture taken in front of Taylor Swift's tour bus after the concert on Saturday night in Portland. It was actually a good show.
Emily had a blast.
Maybe now she won't look down so hard on country music. :-)

Monday, April 20, 2009

It's official

I'm broke.
Madeleine got her braces on today.
In 2 years when she gets them off, Emily will be ready to go into them. Ugh...

Saturday, February 28, 2009

A few updates.

Since it's almost March, I thought I'd post... since it's been since December since my last post.
Well, the living room is almost done. A few finishing touches and then some window blinds will round out the package. Got started working on the bathroom. New light, vanity, and mirror were a must. We have the new tiles for the floor but I'm waiting until I get a long weekend to work on it.
Nannette got her acceptance letter into University of Washington, Tacoma. Woo hoo!!! She's worked hard for the past 2 years to get where she is now. Tacoma is lucky to have her.
Can't think of anything else at the moment. It's still early in the morning and I haven't had my cup of bean juice yet to get me going. Yawwwwwwwn.

Monday, December 29, 2008

The Living Room is almost done!


It's taken almost 3 years to get where it is now but I finally got the walls done in the living room. The only things left to do is trim out one of the windows and then paint all of the trim.
Click here to see some pictures from the remodel/repair at my Flickr page.

In other news, the girls (ok... the parents, as well) are having a blast with their new Nintendo Wii game system. Hands down, their/our favorite game is Mario Kart. Lots of family fun in front of the tube.
The recent snowfall out in Western Washington is finally giving up its ghost and melting away. There are still a few piles left but at least our roads are clear of the white stuff. I no longer have to ask my refrigerator customers if their roads are clear and passable.

Our county trash removal service has resumed after a 3 week hiatus. You would think that since the service was interrupted on our scheduled pick up day, they would resume with those customers. Not so. They started with their regular schedule and that means that we have to wait almost another week before our mound of trash gets picked up. Do you really think they're going to get paid their entire amount for this quarter???

That's about it for now. Hopefully I can update this more often.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Not much to share

Just like the title says, there's not much to talk about unless you want to hear about all of the refrigerators I've been fixing over the summer or the drywall work I've been doing in our living room.

Ok, I'll post pictures of the progress next time I upload my camera. Getting the finish smooth enough to paint has proven to be the most time consuming of the entire process. I just finished installing the wiring for the baseboard heater that is in that section of living room. It was originally installed way off center so on Nannette's suggestion, it will now be centered under the window.

School starts back up soon and I will be jumping back in to finish up one of the classes I started in the spring. I started two classes in the spring but had to ask for an extension due to a change in job and work hours. I finished one class during the summer ( I got a B) and the other will be finished this quarter. I hope I do as well as last class.

That's about it for now. I'll post the pics of the living room remodel when I upload the camera.
Until then...

Monday, May 19, 2008

One house closed, one closes later this week. Another offer on a third house has been accepted and will be inspected next week. Real estate is picking up. Woo hoo!!!

In other news, I'm still working on both of my online classes at Green River Community College. I'm a bit behind but both professors understand why and are willing to work with me.

New job with Sears is going ok. I should get my own truck in 2 weeks.

Not much else going on lately.

Monday, May 12, 2008

What's happening...

New job at Sears as a repair tech. 2 houses in escrow at RE/MAX. 2 online classes at Green River Community College. 1 stalled remodeling project in the living room that I need to rev back up. One project in the bathroom that was supposed to be only an hour or so has turned into a multi-day repair job because of an excessive use of adhesive by the previous owner of the house. That one is well on it's way to being complete, however. Need more duct tape, tho.
Grass that is growing too fast now that it's spring.
Had an anthropology test last week that I should have done better on. Not happy about that but there's nothing I can do about it now.

Time to go get some duct tape. Bye for now.

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

I'm a student!

I was able to get into both online classes at Green River so now let's see how I do with them. My first assignment is already due on the 7th and I haven't even gotten the book in the mail yet. Fingers are crossed.
In other news, Nannette got her eyeballs adjusted and tweaked yesterday morning in one of the most amazing feats of modern technology I have ever seen. She underwent LASIK surgery yesterday morning with vision in the neighborhood of 20/400 and this morning she can drive without her glasses. The whole thing only took about 20 minutes. They let me watch from the next room over from the operating room. It's amazing what they can do these days.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Happy Easter everyone.

I guess I have been very lacking to say the least regarding my blog updates. What's been going on at the Huber house? Well, Nannette just finished her second quarter at Olympic College and is doing very well. Her first quarter she earned a GPA of 4.0 and this quarter will probably be the same. I am extremely proud of her.
Emily just spent 3 days / 2 nights out at Olympic Park Institute where they learned a bunch of stuff about the outdoors. Hopefully Emily will get to go again next year as a 6th grader.
I am on the waiting list for 2 online classes at Green River Community College. I've decided to go back to school and study geology. It's always interested me and I've been wanting to go back to school but to finish the engineering program I started back at Anne Arundel CC didn't thrill me.
Anyway, not much of an update. Maybe once I get into school I'll have more to write about.
Happy Easter!

Saturday, September 08, 2007

Ok, so I started a new project today. A neighbor was getting rid of some lumber from their garage and they gave it to me. I am in the process of turning the 2X4's and such into a new workbench for myself. Not really woodworking, per say, but since it's been nearly a year since I made anything, I'll let that one slide. I'll post a pic or 2 when I'm done.
I have an open house tomorrow from 12 to 4. Come one, come all.... and bring your checkbooks. :-)

Friday, September 07, 2007

How could I have let my poor blog go so long without even a snippet of a post? How could I neglect the cyberworld by not posting to my blog for almost 5 months? Has it really been that long? Seems like just yesterday I was writing about my newfound freedom from Uncle Sams Canoe Club and getting my first listing as a real estate agent.
Since I have been so neglectful, I will try to bring things up to date.
I have had 4 listings since embarking on this journey and have successfully sold 2 of them. The other 2 canceled their listings due to the downward trend in the real estate market. I am looking forward to re-listing them in the spring when the market is expected to get better. I have sold a few other listings to help keep food on the table and there seems to be a steady flow of customers that I am able to provide services for. As long as I keep up the hard work, I will be able to maintain until the market trends reverse and things get better again.
Let's hope things get better quickly.
See, that's why I haven't blogged. I have been doing nothing but real estate and to most people, it's (yawn) boring.
Until next time...

Friday, May 11, 2007


I got my first contract signed all around today on a plot of land in the north end of the county today. Now I just need to get his existing home sold and I need to sell the home from my previous post.
Wish me luck. :-)

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

My listing!

I have a listing on the MLS that I am selling. It's a double wide manufactured home on 1 acre of land down in the Collins Lake Community in Mason county. Priced to sell at only $169,950. Come and get it!!!

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Happy Birthday!!!

Ok, let's all sing together...

Happy birthday to you
Happy birthday to you
Happy birthday dear Emily
Happy birthday to you.......

Emily Bemily turns 10 today.
She's no longer a single digit midget.

I am 10 days separated from the Navy and I am in a duty rotation once again. This time it's different, though. I am on the floor duty rotation for RE/MAX so if any calls or walk-ins come in while I am on duty, I get to take care of them whether someone wants to look at a house, put theirs up for sale, etc.
Much better than the duty I stood for the past 20 years. :-)
Let's hope something good happens today.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Day 3 and counting...
Day 3 started with writing out 11 personal notes to various clients and then a nice trip to Central Market in Poulsbo for some breakfast, a little grocery shopping, and a little prospecting for new leads. Follow that up with some phone calls trying to get in touch with a new client that I met at the open house I held last Saturday. Can't seem to reach them to make an appointment to search the MLS down at the RE/MAX office. Maybe I'll catch them tonight.
That's about it for my life as a real estate agent for today. Let's hope I can make something happen soon.
So, if you were thinking of buying or selling a home, or knew a neighbor that was, am I the realtor you'd refer them to?
I'd like to be.

Sunday, April 01, 2007

Day one of my new life!
Today is my first day as a civilian. As of midnight last night (March 31, 2007) I am no longer considered active duty. I am USN (Retired). What will I do with my time? Well, I have a wonderful family to spend more time with, I have a yard and a house to take care of, and I have a real estate career to launch. I've actually been working in real estate since late February and I'm beginning to build a small client base, some of which are looking to buy soon.

The open house yesterday went alright. The home didn't sell but I did get hooked up with a family that is looking to buy very soon and maybe an older couple that wants to sell their existing house and buy something larger. Let's hope both of those pan out.
And thank you to everyone that has written and left comments regarding my first day of freedom from Uncle Sam's Canoe Club. It means a lot that so many of Nannette's friends would take the time to write to me. :-)

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Open House

2406 Madrona Dr. SE. Port Orchard, WA
Wish me luck. At $224,950 this home won't last long.
Come on out this Saturday from 12 to 4 and see a nice little house in Port Orchard.

Friday, March 23, 2007

Open House!

8879 SE McBreen Ln Port Orchard, WA 98367

I am hosting an Open House off Banner Road Saturday from 12 to 4 pm. Everyone is welcome. Just remember 2 things...
1. Please remove your shoes when you enter
2. The real estate agent is generally a nice guy and won't bite

Wish me luck, everyone.


Friday, March 02, 2007

Ok. It's official now that I have a real business card now. I just finished the first 5 days of the Buffini "100 Days to Greatness" course and we'll see where that takes me. I am very excited about this opportunity and want to take full advantage of it.

One last thing...
If you were thinking of buying or selling a home, or had a friend or family member that was, do you have a Realtor that you could refer them to?
If not, I would like to be that Realtor.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

I finally did it!!!
I am now officially a no kidding, honest to goodness, licensed real estate agent. My license was sent to the Washington department of licensing today and signed by my broker, Linda Rowe, of Re/Max Town and Country in Port Orchard.

Now let's see what I can do with it. :-)
Didn't Nannette take a good pic of me for my business cards?

Thursday, January 04, 2007

In Memoriam

How do you sum up someones life in a few short paragraphs? How do you say goodbye to someone you've known for every day of your entire life, knowing that this day would come some day in the future?
My grandmother, Dolores Huber, went on to be with God on December 28th, 2006 at 11am. I got a phone call from my mother around 7 am Christmas eve telling me that my grandmother was taken to Franklin Square hospital in Baltimore, MD with a bad infection and it didn't look good. I had gotten a few calls similar to this over the past couple of years but for some reason I knew that I need to be in Baltimore for this one and I found myself on a plane heading for BWI by 8:30 that night. Now for anyone that knows Grandmom Dee, you know the sense of humor she has. When she found out that I was heading home to see her, she said that I was coming out there because I thought she was going to croak. Those were her words, not mine. Dad and I headed up to the hospital as soon as ICU allowed visitors. The look on her face when I came into her room made it all worth it. Words can't begin to describe how happy she was to see her first grandson after almost 5 years. She had said that she was afraid she'd pass before she saw me again. One of her most valued treasures was her family. She enjoyed having family over for all of the holidays and even just when we popped in unexpectedly just to say hi. One thing I looked forward to every Christmas was going down to see Grandmom Dee and Pop and having dinner with the whole family. She was the glue that held the family together. Her house was where I saw my relatives most of the time when I was younger. She was always one to decorate up for every holiday. For almost every Halloween I can remember, she had made up a witch that sat in her front yard. I can remember several Halloweens going down to her neighborhood to go trick or treating. Those were fun times.
So, the last time I saw my grandmother alive was December 27th. Her kidneys had failed, probably from the last dose of chemotherapy she received the week before. Being too weak to go through dialysis, they sent her from the ICU to the hospice on the forth floor. The doctors and nurses did their best to help keep her comfortable. They say that kidney failure is a fairly painless way to go. The toxins build up in your body similar to how alcohol builds up in your body and has a similar effect. She was unable to form words and was very tired by then. When asked if she was in pain, she was able to respond. One thing I thought she'd never do was stop talking. Grandmom Dee loved to talk. Not even a stroke could keep her quiet for very long earlier this year. The last time I talked to her on the phone on December 18th, she seemed like she had never had the stroke in the first place. She even seemed a little better having had her second dose of chemo. She said her skin wasn't itching as much and she felt better.
But early Thursday morning, we had heard that she'd slipped into a coma sometime overnight. Aunt Jo got to the hospital by around 10 am Thursday morning to visit with her. Still unconscious, she drew her final breath at 11 am with Aunt Jo at her side. Somehow I think she knew that she wasn't alone. A few days earlier when she could still talk, she told us that she had seen my grandfather who passed away 10 years ago. I've heard that the dying will sometimes see loved ones that have gone before them. My uncle said that he had also seen my grandfather 2 days before he passed away. Seems my grandfather was a busy guy last month.

So, how do you sum up 88 good years of life in just a few short paragraphs? Truth is you can't. I could probably write an entire book and then some. She was so much to so many people. She was the matriarch of our family. She was someone to be admired for what she believed in and what she stood for. She was a faithful wife to my grandfather for over 55 years. A loving mother to 3 children and a wonderful, caring grandmother to 6 grandchildren and 9 great grandchildren. I really didn't want this to read like an obit. Sorry. If everyone she knew were to write down what they remember about Grandmom Dee, you would probably get just as many different stories. But one thing is for sure. There would be a common thread in each and every one of them. She was a kind, loving, and caring woman that loved God, loved life, loved her family, and loved her friends. She was never bitter, never complained, and never swore.
Nannette often told me that I should never teach the kids anything I wouldn't want them repeating in front of Grandmom Dee. She never said that about anyone else but her. The way she lived her life earned her that type of respect.
She was buried next to her husband of 55 years at Zion Evangelical Lutheran Church in Baltimore, Maryland on December 30, 2006 where she was a lifelong member.

Together Forever

Rest easy, Grandmom Dee. You've earned it.
I love you.

Monday, October 02, 2006

To Post or not to Post...
That is the question.
Well, seems I'm really lacking on posting to my blog lately all the time. Been just a bit busy out here at chez Jack and Nannette. Seems the last pic I posted is in not quite accurate. The previous pic posted was of a Yamaha Majesty scooter. The dealer didn't have any of those in stock so I opted for the similarly priced Honda Reflex ABS pictured below.As you can see, it's very similar. It gets 70 miles per gallon and will do highway speeds with ease. I also passed my motorcycle safety course with flying colors and am now fully licensed to drive on 2 wheels.
In other news, I have completed my real estate course and am now studying to take the Washington state license exam. The nearest exam facility is in Tukwila which just happens to be near one of my favorite music stores, Guitar Center.
I stopped by a Windermere Real Estate office this afternoon and they would like to talk to me Tuesday afternoon about coming to work for them. I hope things are falling into place on that front.
I have been working on painting out our bathroom over the past several days. I just put a coat of Kilz primer down and attempted a repair of the textured surface in some areas. I hope that little texture gun we bought does the trick. I am having a hard time controling the size of the droplets that shoot out so we'll see how it turns out.
That's about it for now.
Until next time...

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Any help welcomed:

Pretty nice looking bike scooter, huh? I am now accepting any and all donations for the "Help Jack get new wheels" fund. With gas prices as high as they are, it will benefit me financially to buy the bike and use it for commuting back and forth to work. Especially when this puppy gets between 75 and 85 miles per gallon. Wish me luck. :-)

Saturday, July 29, 2006

Ok. So I finished my real estate course in just over 30 hours time while maintaining a 90% average on all of the quizes. The only thing left to do is the final exam. What's missing??? Hmmmm... Oh, yeah. The requirement that the course should have taken 60 hours to complete. So, I'm burning up the extra time to study the older material from the beginning of the course. Hopefully I can brush up on all of that stuff and use up the required hours so I can fulfill ALL of the requirements of that course and get my completion certificate so I can get my license. Well, was that a run-on sentence or what??? :-)
We finished up the one wall I was working on in the living room. It is now Nannette's "Fiber corner" and it looks really nice. I think Nannette has a pic posted of it on her blog. I relocated the connection for our HS internet line to a less obnoxious and less conspicuous place without puting another hole in the vinyl siding. I even had to make my own drill bit out of a hardwood dowel rod so I could match up the inside hole with the exterior hole. Next thing to relocate is the telephone connection. I have the cat3 cable to do the job. Just need the motivation to do said job.
Hey, at least the recent heat wave has broken. Maybe that will be sufficient to motivate me to get some work done. ;-)

Friday, July 07, 2006

Busy busy busy
Seems all we do these days is work and then more work and then more work on top of that. Some of the work is by our choice and that's ok. We just finished painting one of the walls in the living room. I had to put in new molding and yes, I cut my miters properly. :-P~~~~
Next on our list is the kitchen wall. I hope it goes smoothly. The biggest project that we're going to try to tackly this year is the living room wall that had that God-aweful wallpaper on it. The paper is mostly down but we're taking care of some of the smaller projects before tackling that wall.
In other news, we went camping up in Whatcom County at a small park called Silver Lake. We had a nice relaxing time up there. Nannette has some pics posted somewhere. Next camping trip will be to who knows where and who knows when. Seems we have lots of busy weekends this summer. Birthday parties, visiting family, unfinished house projects that can only get done on weekends, etc.
We had a really nice 4th of July this year. We went to see the local baseball team, the Kitsap Bluejackets, beat up on the Moses Lake Pirates. We were treated to a really nice fireworks show and a local rock band after the game. There wasn't a huge crowd and traffic was almost non-existant getting out of the ballfield area. We were under an almost constant barrage of fireworks displays the whole drive home from the game. It was nice. In our neighborhood, the local residents were busy setting fire to what had to be thousands of dollars worth of locally purchased fireworks until about 12:30 am. Since the next day was a work day, the evenings activities did not go on until the wee hours of the morning.
So, with that, I'm signing off for the evening. Nannette just made some decaf coffee and we have small cupcakes (or as Sarah sometimes mispronounces "pupcakes").
Until later...

Sunday, May 28, 2006

Not too much to write about lately
All is going well at the new house. We've painted the wall with the fireplace and today we're going to prime the kitchen walls. We're also going to experiment with wall textures. Wish us luck. We'll post pics on either this blog or Nannette's blog when we get the chance.
Like I said, not much to write about today. :-)

Monday, May 15, 2006

Yes, I am still alive.

I know it's been nearly a month since my last post. It's also been a very busy month with moving into our new house and setting everything up the way we want it. No pictures yet.
I'll probably have time to put up a decent post this weekend... Maybe even complete with pictures.
Until then...

Monday, April 17, 2006

Couldn't Resist!

Twas the night before closing
And all through the house
Not a creature was stirring
Not even the previous owners cat
The boxes were packed
In the old house with care
In hopes we'd have movers
To get them all there

But as it turns out
We're doing a DITY
Movers left us high and dry
And I think that's kind of shi crappy
We're renting a U-haul
And clearing our shelves
We'll load up our truck
This weekend ourselves

The glow from the sun
Through the thick clouds above
Sheds a light on the wallpaper
They left us to love
But there's no way in Hell
That paper will stay
So the first we'll do
Is rip it away

We'll put paint in the kitchen
To the cupboards delight
And we'll cover that paper
What a hideous sight
Then once we get
All of our stuff moved in
We'll take back the truck
And say 'Never Again!'

This is actually a day early since we don't get our key until Wednesday but I couldn't resist. Nannette ordered address labels, new checks, and "We've moved" post cards from Colorful Images. In 48 hours, we'll have the key to our house!!! Woooo Hooooooo!!!!!!

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Less than a week!

With less than a week to go until the big day, what are we doing around chez Jack and Nannette?
1. Taking stuff off the walls
2. Packing lots-O-boxes
3. Waiting
4. Waiting some more
5. Calling various utilities to open up new accounts (still need to call to connect water service)
6. Scavenger hunt for more boxes
7. Yes, Nannette has packed most of the boxes
8. Reserving a moving truck and enlisting the help of a few friends to help with the heavy stuff
9. Signing home purchase related papers
10. Hoping the water heater in the new house can keep up with 2 adults plus 3 kids
11. Hoping the kids can learn to turn out a light when they leave a room
12. Trying to come up with a suitable remedy for the hideous wallpaper that's in the house now

I'm sure if I thought about it, I could come up with more stuff but you get the idea. I was outside until 9:30 pm last night doing a complete disassembly of our picnic table so we can move it. Before I put it back together, I plan on replacing any worn boards and sanding down all the rest of the boards. Since we're out in the Pacific Northwet area, I plan on puting a nice coat of Thompson's Waterseal all over it to keep it from getting nasty again.
Not much else going on. Just a bunch of moving stuff. :-)

Friday, April 07, 2006

Tick Tock Tick Tock...

Tick tock tick tock, Clarisse. I think I spelled that name from "Silence of the Lambs" properly. LOL. Now that we've submitted all the required paperwork for the house, it's just a waiting game until the time we close and move in. We need to find boxes now that we've decided that using Navy hired movers would not be in our best interest. Time to start pinging on the local grocery stores and hitting up friends that have moving boxes left over from their move. We've enlisted the help of a friend or two for the truck loading and unloading on the 21st and 22nd of this month.
Not much else going on over at the casa de Jack and Nannette. Busy busy busy. It's all worth it, though. In just under 2 weeks, we'll be in OUR house. Not the Navy's house. OUR house!
Who'da thunk that we'd have our own house so quickly?
Until next time...

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Price Reduced!
Seems the VA uses books that aren't quite up to date so that forced the price of the house to be lowered a wee bit. Shucky darn! So, now it's just a waiting game between us and the finance company and the sellers and the real estate agents. Tick tock tick tock...

Now it seems the sellers would like to close on the 19th instead of the 21st. Ok, let's call the movers to reschedule our pack up and delivery. Just remember... The only thing that's constant is change. It's what keeps us all on our toes. :-)

Friday, March 31, 2006

Gimpy Gimp!

You may have noticed in recent pictures that I am on crutches whilst strolling about the grounds of the house we are trying to buy. Seems years ago I tore something called a plantar plate in my left foot. It made my second toe stick up in the air and caused me lots-O-pain when I walked. The doctors at Madigan Army Hospital decided that because they couldn't see any reason for the problem on an X-ray, they had me get an MRI of the area. That showed a torn plantar plate and a dislocated second toe along with a dislocated tendon that is supposed to keep my second toe in proper position. So, after a nice dose of versaid (sp?) and a local block, they proceeded to repair the plantar plate, position the tendon back into it's rightful place, and they shortened my second metatarsal bone by 1mm so it wouldn't prodrude past the first metatarsal bone. My first met was shortened when I had my bunion surgery 15 years ago and that may have been a contributing factor in my ruptured plantar plate.
So, here I am almost a month post-op and I'm able to hobble around and put some weight on the heel of my left foot as long as I wear my "ugly slipper" that keeps me from being able to walk "normally" and bend my foot at the toe joints. Hopefully I'll be done with that on April 10th. Fingers are crossed. I can't even legally drive because I'm still impared. So far I have a fairly confirmed ride to work every day next week. Not so confirmed for a ride home, tho.
So, until next time...

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Here's something nice about being in the military. Turns out they are paying to move us out of housing and into the new house. One of the benefits of retiring from the military is that they will pay to move you out of government housing into "the local economy" and then up to a year after retirement, they will pay to move you anywhere in the country you want to move to. If you are just separating from the military, they will only pay to send you back to your place of entry or an equal distance. The separating service member would be responsible for covering the extra cost of going further than that. So, I just got PSD to get off their collective behinds to get my authorization paperwork drawn up (I began asking for it 2 weeks ago) and it's now submitted to the Personal Property Office for processing. The only downside of that is that the PPO submits it out for bid and the lowest bidder gets our contract. That means that any joe-blow-the-ragman moving company that pays their employees $6 an hour because they have only worked for that company for 2 months could possibly be the ones that pack us up and move us into our new house. Should I trust a mover that gets paid $6 an hour to exercise the proper precautions necessary to ensure all of our goodies and such make it from here to there in one piece with no damage? And that they even make it there? Aye, there's the rub. So, any items that have a high value, either sentimental or monetary, will be moved by us in our trusty mini-van. I'm willing to go that far to ensure our wedding photos and my guitar collection and vintage amplifier, and Nannette's spinning wheel, etc. all find their way to the new house unscathed.
Until later...

Monday, March 27, 2006

Not much going on these days on the homebuying front. It's just a waiting game now. Nannette and the kids have been vigorously shaking the tree (our present house) to see what junk falls to the ground to see if we can sell at out upcoming yard sale this weekend. She says that next time we move, SHE's the one that's going to have foot surgery so she can sit around and watch me do all the work. Fair enough.
On the music front, I've been enjoying my new Martin DCX1E guitar. For having manmade sides and back, it has a beautiful sound. I don't even mind the "stratabond" neck. If I didn't look at it while I was playing it, I wouldn't know that it wasn't carved from a solid piece of mahogany. I guess there really is something to these Martin guitars after all. :-)

Time for one last cup of coffee (de-caf) before we turn in for the night. We have to drive down to Tacoma tomorrow morning for another post-op appointment. Was supposed to be today but someone decided to drop a 30 ton crane across the Tacoma Narrows Bridge early this morning and it blocked traffic all day. They didn't reopen the bridge until this evening. So when I called the podiatry clinic from my mobile command center cell phone and told them I was stuck, she knew that it was because of the bridge before I even told her. So she rescheduled my appointment for tomorrow. Yipieee.
Anyway, my java is calling my name. Time to enjoy the rich flavor of a nice cup of "why bother" coffee. Until later...

Friday, March 24, 2006

Numa Numa!!!

Ok. For anyone looking for the now very difficult to find Numa Numa video done by the guys on the Enterprise, I've put a link to it on the right side of this page. Enjoy.
I went up to PSD today to get my paperwork necessary for scheduling the movers to come pack us up and move us out to Port Orchard. Typical Navy crap, what they said I could get taken care of today was not possible. Now I need to go back up to the PSD annex on Bangor next Tuesday to get my orders. I wonder what will cause that not to happen. Meanwhile, my move is not getting scheduled because of said paperwork and I hope that we can actually have movers when we need them. I would hate to have to move all of our crap by ourselves. Ughhhhh. Anybody have a winning lottery ticket they'd like to donate to our cause? :-)

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

I've found my evil twin!

Seems back in 1997, a guy named John Huber who lived on 8th Street in Bremerton decided to skip town whilst in hock to Uncle Sam to the tune of just over $17,000. In comes our hero (yours truly) 9 years later who is trying to buy this lovely home you see in the picture. When a title search was performed, guess what turns up? You guessed it. The title company thinks that I may be that same John Huber that is, by now, in much deeper doo doo with the government than he was when that paper was printed back in 1997. The problem was cleared up quickly when our social security numbers were compared. I would hate to be that other John Huber. Funny how something as innocent as a title search on a house can turn up the most obscure things in someone's background... even if it isn't your own background. Remember... Big Brother really is watching.

Saturday, March 18, 2006

Inspection Time!!!

We went to the new house with the house inspector yesterday. He only found minor problems that should be no big deal to fix. The only safety issue that I am insisting on having repaired is the flue damper in the chimney. The inspector said that it doesn't work properly and should be fixed. There were only a few other minor things. We knew from looking at the place ourselves that there shouldn't be much wrong with the house. You can tell that it was maintained properly over the years. Now it's our turn to give the house some TLC. I still don't know where my workshop/luthier shop will go... Hey, anyone want to make a donation for the cause? I accept PayPal. :-)

Thursday, March 16, 2006

Quick! Somebody call an ambulance!
Nannette and I were driving up to get the key for her Girl Scout meeting this morning and what do we see when we pull up to the Jackson Park Community Center but this:

I thought something had happened to one of the workers at the community center but that was far from the truth. The Pacific Northwest truth to this story is that the ambulance in the picture was converted to a mobile latte stand several years ago and they drive a regular route every weekday (or weekends for special occasions) to bring various caffeinated products to the doorstep of those Washingtonians that can't get through a morning without their daily shot of espresso, latte, cappucino, or regular cup-o-joe.
Nannette had mentioned that she'd seen them several times in the past few years but I had never seen them until this morning. Isn't that funny? Their name is Mocha Medics and they can be found here. Isn't that too funny? Oh, and for a 5 drink minimum, they will deviate from their normal route upon request. They're also available for parties. LOL.

In other news, our house inspection is tomorrow morning. One more step toward owning our own house. After today, if everything goes well, we'll just be waiting anxiously for closing day. Then we can move in. I've already scheduled our move through the Navy's move set up website. All I'm waiting for now is the retirement orders issued from Bupers so I can fax them to the personal property division that pays for the movers to come and do their thing.
Until latte later...

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Email me if you want our new address.
Closing date is 21 April 2006 and we'll move in that following weekend. We can finally get out of Navy Housing. I can't wait. This place has really gone downhill recently and it's all because they changed contractors who operate housing and they've cut way back on the budget for maintenance and such.
Updates to follow.