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Funagain Games

Dragon's Hobbies©2002

Dragon Castle


My Secret Blog

1999: Started by Nathaniel Dragon
2002: DragonsHobbies.com domain name registered on March 15th
2003: Website moved to new server
2004: Converted to a PHP/MySQL-based multi-user weblog
2005: Created an online game based on Conquest of the Empire
Go to www.dragonshobbies.com for the latest.

Tuesday 12/31/2002 12:30

This is the last day of the year… the last time that I'll be writing a regular update for My Secret Blog. In 2003 my blog will be moving to the home page of my website at dragonshobbies.com. I do still have plans for My Secret Blog though. I'd like it to be the home for My Past Year, an overview of things that have been important to me in 2002. I might convert it to a monthly review, but I'll see how it goes. That reminds me… I need to read up on my journal entries of this year so that I can refresh my memory on some things.

Today I pre-ordered SimCity 4 from EBGames.com. They were having a special offer for free shipping if the order was placed before 14:00 today. Thankfully, Beth woke me up a little earlier to ask about a phone number that she had left at home. I figured I might as well get up, so I got online and went to one of my current favorite websites, simtropolis.com, and from there I went on to EBGames where I found out about the offer.

I just got off the phone with my friend Dave. He told me that he just got an X-Box for a sweet deal with a couple games. He's been talking about getting a new PC soon, but he's waiting a little while to see how prices will be in the new year.

My recent play list includes Faith No More "Album Of The Year" (4), Faith No More "The Real Thing" (4), Demon Hunter "Demon Hunter" (4), Zao "Parade Of Chaos" (4), and Living Sacrifice "The Hammering Process" (4).

Sunday 12/29/2002 10:15

I put in a few hours of overtime this week, thanks Christmas. That should be nice for the paycheck next week. That will help cover the cost of my new computer monitor, which I picked up Friday.

Most of this week I haven't done much except read about SimCity 4 while I'm at work and play StarCraft while I'm home. I was going to play Neverwinter Nights with Keith, but I guess I wasn't planning the times out right because it clashed with my work schedule. I did create a couple SimCity 4 wallpaper images for a contest at Simtropolis.com. Not much else.

Beth and I were planning to go see The Lord Of The Rings: Two Towers this weekend with Dave and Krista, but Dave wasn't feeling well enough to go. Beth and I decided just to do a little shopping and spend the night at home. We borrowed the Tomb Raider movie from a friend, so we still had something new to watch. (Tomb Raider wasn't as bad as I was expecting it to be.)

I thought that we were going to buy The Lord Of The Rings: Fellowship Of The Ring in the DVD set that included the bookends. Dave told me that there is a coupon for a movie ticket of Two Towers with the DVD. When I talked to Beth about it last night though, she said that she wants to wait until all three movies come out and then buy a boxed set of the whole trilogy. I guess I'm ok with that, although I was hoping to get the cool boxed set that was out now. Wal-Mart didn't have any in stock last night anyway, so there went my chance for compulsive buying.

This weeks play list finally showed one other CD being played being listened to as much as Demon Hunter. Demon Hunter "Demon Hunter" (9), Korn "Untouchables" (9), Embodyment "Embrace The Eternal" (2), Leaderdogs "Lemonade" (2), Eternal Decision "III" (6), Living Sacrifice "The Hammering Process", Zao "Parade Of Chaos" (1), Enigma "Le Roi Est Mort, Vive Le Roi!" (2), Living Sacrifice "Conceived In Fire" (2), Vengeance Rising "Released Upon The Earth" (2), Blindside "Silence" (3), Klank "Still Suffering" (2), Eso-Charis "Eso-Charis" (2), and P.O.D. "Satellite".

Tuesday 12/24/2002 07:45

Yesterday afternoon I got an email from my friend Dave. My boss needs me to come into work for a 12-hour shift tonight. I knew that I was going to be working tonight, but I hadn't planned on working an extended shift. On top of that, I woke up early yesterday, so I was awake all day and couldn't stay up at night like I was planning to. Now I guess I'll stay awake for a while this morning and then go back to bed to get some more rest before heading into work.

I went around town to price out a new computer monitor. (I'm still using the one with the blurry screen.) I also compared some monitors on Pricewatch (www.pricewatch.com). The best deal that I found for a 19" monitor was at Office Depot. They have one for $169 (after rebate). Unfortunately, when I went there yesterday they were out of stock. One of their sales reps said that they should be getting another shipment of them this week.

Over the weekend Beth and I went to Brandon to visit family. We stopped by Meagan's to visit our nieces first. Tim also decided to drop in, which made Meagan a little uncomfortable since he didn't tell her that he was going to be there. After a little while Tim decided to leave and get some food. I took some pictures while we sat around and chatted. Meagan read some blonde jokes to us from a website that she found… it was especially funny having to explain some of the jokes to Meagan. How often to you have a blonde tell you a blonde joke and then ask what it means?

After leaving Meagan's, we went over to my parent's house. I talked to Dad about creating a web page for his Tree Service and what he would be interested in. He showed me a flyer that he was having printed out for his business and a Tarzan drawing that he wanted to doctor up. We took the clip-art Tarzan and a clip-art lumberjack to make Tarzan with a chainsaw. Yesterday I set up the first draft of the web page. I sent the link to Dad (www.dragonshobbies.com/tarzan/) so that he could check out what I have now and to see what more he wants or what he'd like to change.

Late Sunday night, Uncle Brian showed up with his family. I guess they are going on a vacation traveling around Florida before heading back to Michigan. It was nice to see him again. My cousin Brianna looks a lot different than I remembered. Of course, she was quite young the last time I saw her. I guess she is about 10 years old now - right around Lazer's age.

Well, I guess I should wrap this up so that I can take care of some other things this morning too before going back to bed.

Demon Hunter is at the top of my play list. I think it's the best album that I've heard all year. Anyway, here's my recent play list: Demon Hunter "Demon Hunter" (13), Eternal Decision "III" (4), Klank "Still Suffering" (2), Zao "Zao" (2), Zao "Parade Of Chaos" (2), Deftones "White Pony" (2), Living Sacrifice "Conceived In Fire" (2), Apocalyptica "Inquisition Symphony" (2), Staind "Break The Cycle" (2), Blindside "Silence" (2), Embodyment "Songs For The Living" (2), Faith No More "The Real Thing" (2), and Faith No More "Album Of The Year" (2).

Friday 12/20/2002 04:55

Today my friend Dave (aka Cinemax) gave me a "Non-Denominational Holiday Gift". Approximately a week ago he asked me about giving me a Christmas gift for Hanukah. I said, "That's fine, but Hanukah has already passed." Today he had some gifts to wrap up, and since I won't see him at all next week, he gave me my gift. It's a really cool dragon figurine, dark blue with brown and gold highlights, standing on some skeletons.

I've been going to a few different official band sites recently, mostly checking on shirts and stuff. I'd consider buying a Demon Hunter shirt if they had long sleeve, but all they have are a few short sleeve t-shirts and a hoodie.

The new Lord Of The Rings movie is out this week. The Two Towers is definitely a movie that I want to see in the theater. Dave said that he is going to wait for the initial commotion to die down, so maybe we'll all go see it next week.

I've really been considering an offer at lowestcosthost.com for hosting my website. It would be a new adventure, dealing with a different service, with many more options, much more space, and more things that I have to deal with on my own. The main thing that I'm worried about is losing my domain name. Well... I also don't want to get into it and find out that I don't have enough understanding of how the setup works in order to maintain everything myself. I guess maybe I should check out their forum and see if anyone else has had similar concerns.

Last weekend Rabbi Sivan prayed for me and other health problems that my wife and I are concerned about. Yesterday I had a dream about my healing. Maybe it was prophetic, I don't know, but it sure seemed like it to me. I wouldn't consider the dream to be literal, but I do believe that there was meaning behind it.

I dreamed about meeting a couple people who were very kind. After talking with them for a few days they told me that my kidney was going to be ok. I asked them how they knew that. They replied, "Because ten days from now* we are going to fix it in your operation." (To clarify, the * (star) means that 'now' might have been a different word.) The point about this is that my operation is not in 10 days; I'm also not having an operation to fix the kidney or the passage, only to remove the stint, which is currently in the passage. I'm convinced that this is a confirmation of faith that I will be healed. Of course that doesn't mean that I'm going to try to abuse my body, since I've learned the need for water during this past month or so.

My recent play list includes: Demon Hunter "Demon Hunter" (6), Embodyment "Songs For The Living" (2), Staind "Break The Cycle" (1), Alice In Chains "Facelift" (1), Creed "My Own Prison" (1), Apocalyptica "Inquisition Symphony" (2), Eso-Charis "Eso-Charis" (2), Living Sacrifice "Conceived In Fire" (2), Blindside "Silence" (4), Korn "Untouchables" (4), Zao "Parade Of Chaos" (2), and Eternal Decision "III" (2).

[Updated at 08:45]

Beth just called. She was involved in another car accident today. This time there were three cars involved. Beth was rear-ended again. She says that one of the cars drove away. Beth was driving the rental car when it happened. That's real nice. It's a good thing that she got the rental car insurance cleared up before taking that car. Beth says that they weren't hurt this time. I hope that they are sure about it all. (I wonder how the medical bills would be paid then - Split between two drivers?)

Wednesday 12/18/2002 03:45

I'm feeling pretty tired right now, but I need to stay awake for a couple more hours in order to adjust to my work schedule. I figured that doing some updates on my website might get me through the night, but I'm not feeling very creative… at least not enough to make all the necessary updates. Of course, I'll be updating My Secret Blog with this journal entry, but that's about it.

Monday morning my computer monitor died on me. I was doing some housework, away from my desk doing laundry, when the monitor just stopped working. I didn't notice it immediately because I have the monitor set to turn itself off after 15 minutes of inactivity. When I got back to my desk the screen wouldn't come on. The light came on, but not the screen. I tried to unplug the monitor and reboot the computer, but that didn't seem to help. Eventually I plugged up a secondary computer monitor and it worked. I was glad it wasn't my video card, although that might have been a better thing to blow. Tomorrow I'm going to try calling Gateway Country to find out what kind of repair bill this could be. If it's not reasonable, I'm just going to by a new pc monitor.

I was doing some shopping around online for some upcoming birthdays and I found a couple cool gifts. I'm not really the best at picking out gifts, but I hope that this time I will get it right. It seems like many times when I buy gifts for someone, I end up getting something that someone already has or something that the person doesn't have an interest in.

I watched "Dusk Till Dawn" on Monday night. The first half of the movie seemed pretty cool, and then they got to the vampire bit. That totally threw off the movie. I think they should have stayed with the mood of the first half. They could have just made the bar full of a tough gang members or something… but no… they just had to go there. It went from an interesting and dark humored action movie to this crap with weakling vampires where almost everyone gets killed off right away except the stars of the show. And what's with Cheech Marin showing up in three different roles? Couldn't they have gotten two unknown shmoes to play those little bit parts? I thought he was in the right role at the entrance to the bar, but why did he need to play in those other parts? Anyway… that's enough about that movie.

We still haven't had our home inspection yet, and we're not sure when they are going to get around to it. Beth has been trying to contact the agent to find out when they plan to come out, but apparently it's not an easy task to catch these people.

I wrote a letter to my Aunt Dawn yesterday. She's one of these people that think if she never gets a computer she won't have any information online. It's a precaution for her, I don't know why, but personally I can't agree with her on that. She might have more reasons than that for not wanting to get a computer, but I guess that's her choice.

I guess I should also write a letter to my father. His birthday is coming up soon. It's kind of hard to forget since it's on New Years Eve. He sent me an email from my Aunt Dinah's place a couple months ago. I really do need to let go of the past. I just don't know how to have a relationship with my father anymore though. I don't know how to treat him or how to react to anything that he says. I don't try to treat him badly; I'd just rather not contact him. I hope he's happy with what he's doing now anyway.

My current play list includes Blindside "Silence" (1), Leaderdogs "Lemonade" (1), P.O.D. "Satellite" (1), Demon Hunter "Demon Hunter" (3), Living Sacrifice "Concieved In Fire" (4), Zao "Parade Of Chaos" (2), Eternal Decision "III" (2), Living Sacrifice "The Hammering Process" (2), Fantomas "Fantomas" (2), and Eso-Charis "Eso-Charis" (1). By the way, for those who bothered to read this in my blog, I hope that this helps you find some new music to enjoy. For those who skip over it, I'm not going to be concerned until you start buying CDs for me. This basically is just an example of what I like to listen to right now. Take it or leave it.

Sunday 12/15/2002 16:00

Beth and I just got home from a busy day around town. We started off by going to Sears around 10:00 to look at dishwashers. We found one that we were interested in but we wanted to compare that with what other stores had available. Then we looked around at some other baby furniture and other stuff.

After leaving Sears, we went to Home Depot. We discovered that they had nothing to offer us in dishwashers. We looked at some linoleum and some carpet before going to Lowe's.

At Lowe's, Beth started talking to the sales rep in the appliances department. He couldn't tell us anything that the lady from Sears didn't already say but Beth just had to ask more questions. I started getting aggravated and since Beth didn't wasn't getting the hint that I wanted to leave, I just walked to another area of the store. Beth found me and for the rest of the day she seemed even more indecisive than before.

We went to Wal-Mart to buy some medicine and check on a couple other things before heading into McDonalds for a bite to eat. Beth became even more aggravating there, but I guess I was being a bit touchy about things.

We went back to Sears where we talked to the sales rep some more about the dishwasher options before settling on the one that looked at originally. When we tried to use our debit cards to pay for the purchase but for some reason the payment wouldn't clear. Beth called the bank to find out what the problem was. She waited about 10 minutes on the phone when the sales rep tried the card again and it finally cleared. I bought some slippers on the way out and then we were on our way home.

I decided to sit down and read my email. I noticed an email from Ryan Lowe, creator of one of my favorite online games - Rat Trap. I had written him an email on Friday night after getting the top score in the game. I spent about 5 hours trying to beat the top score by a player called IR RAT ICATOR. My previous score was about 30 points shy of his. Now I topped that by over 150 points. My new high score is 393! Ryan wrote back saying that he is IR RAT ICATOR. He thought that he "had the competition licked". It's a nice feeling - beating the creator at his own game. (www.ryanlowe.net is his home page.)

Today I listened to Demon Hunter some more today and some mp3s of stuff from Solid State Records. In the truck I had one of my MP3.com demos playing, but spent more time talking with Beth than listening to music.

Sunday 12/15/2002 07:25

Yesterday morning we took Steven, Billie, and Eddie to church with us. Amanda was planning to go originally but she wasn't feeling well. Andy's grandma grounded him so he wasn't allowed to go. After church we came home and Beth made fried burritos for lunch. A few hours later the kids went home to get ready for the Christmas parade and I went to bed.

This morning, since I went to be so early, I woke up around 04:00. I got up and updated The Sims Online beta so that I could check it out again before the official game comes out. I met some really cool people with a nice lot in Alphaville. The place is called Las Vegas. It has to be my favorite place so far. The owners are very hospitable toward guests, and they are very talented property designers. I played 3 of 4 gambling games (all dice based) that they offered there. Since the slot machines and roulette tables are implemented yet, there aren't many options for aspiring casinos. I gambled most of my money away, attempting to get the high payouts. I liked "Hardways" and one that I referred to as "High and Low" the best. "Hardways" is a single player game, where the gambler is going against the house. In "High and Low" you are betting against another gambler and the house. I got my Sim's name (Troy Matthew) on the VIP board for winning $1500 on a bet, although I did win a higher amount later. I think $2250 was the highest I won in a single bet. I'm still not sure if I want to buy The Sims Online when it comes out this week, but I was definitely impressed by their Las Vegas property.

Beth and I have some house cleaning to do today and other things to get ready for our home inspection. We'll probably be going out to Home Depot soon to check on getting a dishwasher installed. We have the garage to clean. I'm not sure what else we'll be doing.

Since this weekend was the big lotto jackpot, $100 million, I checked the lotto numbers this morning. I've only got two numbers right on my closest quick pick. Beth found online that there were 4 winning tickets. Some lucky winners just became $25 million richer!

I already recorded my CD Play Points yesterday but since I didn't write a journal entry then, I'll just include those in today's Play List. By the way, which is the correct way to list a CD title? The way I've been doing it, or this way? - Eternal Decision "III" (2), Six Feet Deep "Struggle" (2), Vengeance Rising "Human Sacrifice" (2), Zao "Parade Of Chaos" (2), Embodyment "Embrace The Eternal" (2), P.O.D. "Satellite" (1), Leaderdogs "Lemonade" (2), Living Sacrifice "The Hammering Process" (2), Apocalyptica "Inquisition Symphony" (2), Living Sacrifice "Conceived In Fire" (2), and Demon Hunter "Demon Hunter" (5).

Friday 12/13/2002 06:50

I've had a decent night at work, nothing extreme happened during my shift. I did go to the bathroom quite a bit, but what else should be expected when you're running on one kidney and you drink nearly 4 liters of fluids in a night? (I've been drinking much more water now than I used to.)

This weekend's big lotto is over $100 Million! I'm going out to buy my tickets this morning! I've made an agreement with my buddy Rick that if I win, we split the money 50/50; Rick made a mutual agreement to split the money with me if any of his tickets are winners. Beth is in a 5-way pool with her friends.

Today is BONUS DAY too! What an exciting weekend this will be! Now to go out and buy my new laptop computer and a PS2 - Yeah, Right!

I'm still waiting to get my new CDs from Tooth & Nail Mail Order. If they are coming 4th class, I probably won't get them until closer to Christmas.

[Writing stopped at 07:05 and resumed at 09:20, after coming home and buying lotto tickets.]

At the end of December I plan to make some more changes to my website. Instead of a "Secret Blog" page I'm going to have a "Year In Review". I plan to read over all this years journal entries and write a summary for that page. My blog would be moved to the home page to get more exposure and hopefully encourage more visitors to look around the rest of the site and become active in the message board.

Today I also came up with a scoring method to keep track of which CDs I like to listen to the most. If I put a CD in and listen to 3 songs or less, I will mark one point down (with special consideration for an EP). If I listen to more of the CD, I will mark two points down. Listening to the same CD over again without switching in a new CD would be worth three points, even if the entire CD were played. (It's easier to listen to the same CD than to go to the difficult task of changing discs.) If the CD is replaced and then later put back for another listen, that will go back to how much of the CD is listened to the second time. For example, while at work I listened to "Blindside: Silence" - that was worth 2 points. On my way home from work, I decided to listen to that same CD again. Now that CD has earned 4 points for today because I had replaced "Blindside: Silence" with a different CD and later on decided to go back to it. (Might sound complicated and meaningless to you, but I'm sure that there are others like me that might find that method useful.)

Today's play points are: "Blindside: Silence" (4), "Focused: Bow" (2), "Eternal Decision: III" (2), "Living Sacrifice: The Hammering Process" (4), "P.O.D.: Satellite" (2), "Luti-Kriss: Throwing Myself" (2), "Vengeance Rising: Destruction Comes" (1), "Entombed: Wolverine Blues" (1), "Cool Hand Luke: …So Far" (2), "Zao: Parade Of Chaos" (2), and "Apocalyptica: Inquisition Symphony" (2).

Thursday 12/12/2002 09:25

Last night I finished watching "Brotherhood Of The Wolf" before going to work. It was an interesting movie, reminded me somewhat of "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon" and "The Matrix" with the action.

When I checked my email late last night, I found an email from Lyndon Perry of Leaderdogs (formerly known as Leaderdogs For The Blind). He sent me a note to say thanks for mentioning his band in my journal. I was shocked that anyone actually read my site, let alone a band that I have listened to for years. Of course he just happened upon my site because of his band name showing up in a search engine, so it was even cooler when he actually replied back to my email. He said that he "recently put a band back together for the purpose of pursuing Ld". After browsing my site a bit, he was also interested in checking out my artwork because he was considering a tattoo. Too bad I'm not a better artist.

This weekend will be spent cleaning up our garage and getting a few other things taken care of around the house for our home inspection. Since we're planning to adopt a child, we must be approved by the state to take them into our care. We're planning to get a new dishwasher this weekend as part of the preparation. (Our old dishwasher isn't working anymore, not that it ever did much anyway, and the electrical situation with it probably wouldn't pass the test.)

One of these days I'd really like to get my navigation bar updated. I have it all planned out, but I'm not sure if I want to use Java Scripting for it. I'd rather use CSS but I'm not sure how to set up the page with it. I'm going to put the test page up at http://dragonshobbies.com/test.html and maybe someone who knows more about CSS can help me with a conversion … or maybe I'll just use what I have there.

My recent play list includes: "The Mothers Of Invention: Freak Out", "Korn: Issues", "Eternal Decision: III", "Living Sacrifice: The Hammering Process", "Eso-Charis", "Tourniquet: Psycho Surgery", "Vengeance Rising: Destruction Comes" and new stuff from the following bands at MP3.com - Leaderdogs, LiveCoal, Norma Jean, Dead Poetic, Stretch Arm Strong, and Underoath.

Wednesday 12/11/2002 18:45

I guess I slacked off from updating my journal recently. There's been a lot of stuff going on lately and other than that stuff, I've been feeling too tired to write anything.

We got a Christmas card from Aunt Dawn and Uncle Joe. We also got a Christmas gift from Caroline. That does not offend me, and if they believe that what they are doing is in remembrance of our Messiah… in some ways I'm glad that they continue their traditions. I'm not saying that I think I'm better than them, but I just believe differently. Next year we'll probably do more for Chanukah. (That might sound confusing to someone who doesn't understand our Messianic beliefs.) I guess it's the holiday season either way.

Last week I order a couple new CDs from Tooth & Nail Mail Order. I got a great price for the CDs but I didn't realize that the shipping was going to take so long. Most of the time when I've ordered CDs online I've gotten them within 3 or 4 days. I got an email from Tooth & Nail Mail Order just yesterday that mentioned that all orders from now until Dec 23 would be shipped First Class instead of their usual 4th Class. I hope it doesn't take that long to get here.

I've got quite a long list of recent music that I've listened to, since I haven't posted my play list in a while. I'm sure I'm missing some, but here goes: "P.O.D.: Satellite", "Klank: Still Suffering", "Embodyment: Embrace The Eternal", "Deliverance: Weapons Of Our Warfare", "Extol: Mesmerized", "Eternal Decision: III", "Circle Of Dust", "Leaderdogs For The Blind: Lemonade", "Six Feet Deep: Struggle", "Blindside: Silence", "Holy Soldier: Last Train", "Living Sacrifice: The Hammering Process", "Zao: Parade Of Chaos", "Sepultura: Beneath The Remains", "Deftones: White Horse", "Eso-Charis", "Zao", "Circle Of Dust: Disengage", "Embodyment: Songs For The Living", "Vengeance Rising: Released Upon The Earth", and "Tourniquet: The Collected Works Of…"

Thursday 12/5/2002 06:05

Since my last journal entry I've been busy. Monday morning Tim came over and played StarCraft with me. (He's getting better but is lacking confidence because he can't beat me in a regular fight. He did beat me in a Greed battle once though.) I watched "Windtalkers" by myself on Monday night, and then I watched "Big Fat Liar" with Beth when she got home. On Tuesday I had my last Intro to Computers class - the only thing left is the final exam to take next week. On Wednesday I picked up my CD player from Dan's Circuit Repair and then later that day we went to our adoption class to make up for the one that was cancelled last two weeks ago.

At work, because of the holiday season, we are doing ops checks every half hour instead of every hour. Double work means less time to do the other jobs and even less time for surfing the net and stuff. Fortunately, all my school projects are done so I don't need time to do homework anymore. That still gives me a little time to write a journal entry or do other stuff occasionally.

Beth told me that Andy wants to play StarCraft with me online. Unfortunately I haven't had time to play this week. My schedule, with all the classes, didn't even allow me to play Neverwinter Nights with Keith. It's not working out to play NWN on a weekly schedule anymore. At first it was great, then other things started getting in the way. Now the only time that I have to play video games regularly would be on Tuesday nights or on the weekends. Those times don't usually work out though because even those can't be planned too far in advance. If I try to make plans to play during a time that Beth is home, she complains that I don't spend enough time with her. I'm better off waiting until someone comes over to the house to play or just getting online on my own and getting into a quick game here or there. That's another reason why StarCraft interests me more right now too - if I don't have much time to play, the games usually don't take too long; if I have more time to play, I can just play another match.

My recent play list includes: "Blindside: Silence", "Zao", "P.O.D.: Satellite", "Circle Of Dust: Disengage", "Eternal Decision: III", "Vengeance Rising: Released Upon The Earth", "Living Sacrifice: The Hammering Process", "Embodyment: Songs For The Living", "Luti-Kriss: Throwing Myself", and "Zao: Parade Of Chaos".

Monday 12/02/2002 02:00

My friend Dave (aka Cinemax) became father to a little baby boy on Friday. I'm very happy for him. His own little David Edward Jr.! (I think that my cousin's name is David Edward Jr., of course his last name is different.)

This weekend we had 3 boys stay over with us. Andy, Steven, and Eddie were at our house until about 21:30 on Saturday night. We went to church that morning and had a good time at the Hanukah service. (Andy even mentioned that he wanted to go to church with us again next week.) In the afternoon we played video games and watched movies together. By nightfall I was ready for them to go home. Despite the fun times, those boys got very aggravating to each other and to me at times. They would argue with Beth about what movies to watch (mostly coming from Steven); they would complain that there wasn't any fun stuff to do, but they weren't ready to go home; they would argue about which one of them was going to play which game… and so on. On top of all that, I won't be getting my CD player back until Tuesday, so I've been a little agitated already. (I'm a Coca-Cola junkie and a Heavy Metal junkie. Right now I'm limited on both.)

I just filled out the checks to pay the bills. We're doing much better this month than we were a couple months ago. The biggest problem is the phone bill. It's hard to keep that down. One of these days were just going to have to drop our family plan with AT&T and go with a cheaper service, but until we find something that seems to fit what we want, I hope Beth will chill out on using the cell phone so much to call other people.

I watched "Stand By Me" tonight. It was a good movie. I don't remember seeing it before. Beth said that she thought I had. I really don't remember it. Anyway, it was a good flick. Dave (Cinemax) has mentioned that movie several times before. Chaz (a friend from church) suggested it because Andy, Steven, and Eddie reminded him of the boys in the movie. Andy watched about half of it with me tonight when he came over with Steven to have Beth help them with homework. Andy thought of himself as River Phoenix' character, Chris. I really hope for Andy that he gets some more people in his life that will be a positive influence on him, rather than the negative that he has lived with in the past.

Tonight I listened to "P.O.D.: Satellite", "Eternal Decision: III", and some music on MP3.com.


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