Thursday, August 30, 2007

God My Provider!

A few days ago Robin called me at work to see if I was interested in meeting her at the local Maytag store to look at dryers. She really wants a new one since our current isn't working very well. We looked and found that they were too expensive. Our current dryer has some major issues. A couple of years ago the timer went out so the dryer runs foreevvvveeerrr until you open the door to stop it. After we moved into out house the cable man was working in the attic and dropped his 100lb roll of cable out of the attic right onto our dryer leaving a huge dent. The worst part about our dryer is that a load of towels takes around 3 hours to dry. Needless to say our 10 year old dryer is on its last leg.
Well today I was leaving work and got a call from a lady I do computer work for. She needed assistance with getting her fax machine to receive faxes. I told her I would swing by and check it out. As I was working on her faxing issue we caught up on things since the last time I was there. In our conversation somehow the talk of Robin and I looking at dryers came up. I told her our current one is pretty much on its last leg and that we really needed a new one. She immediately said that she new someone that was selling a dryer and that it wasn't that old. So in my head am thinking $200, $300, or maybe $350 for a newly used dryer. As I was finishing up she said she would call them real quick and see if they still had it for sale and how much. After she hung up the phone she turned to me and said they would sell it for.........are you ready for this.....$50 bucks!!!! Yes I typed it correctly......$50 Bucks!!! So she gave me the number and directions and off I went to see it. I arrived and found it to be in excellent shape. I loaded it in truck, paid the man, and brought it home to surprise my wife.

Now it’s hooked up in the garage and already drying a load of laundry. The best part is the timer works! No more staying up till who knows when waiting on the clothes to dry before I can go to bed. Also it is a Kenmore that matches our washer and old dryer to the tee! So all this to say that God is good and does know all our needs and even when we don't think there is a way he can make it very easy. Jehovah Jirah My Provider.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

NASCAR Race at the Bristol Motor Raceway

OK for starters, I think you might find it interesting that I am on I-75 heading back to Florida and I am blogging at the same time. Isn't technology wonderful? We are also watching National Treasure and dad has the sound hooked into the car speakers. Pretty Cool!

Here are a few pictures I took at the NASCAR race. Because both races were at night, I couldn't take very many due to it was dark. Every race we go to at Bristol starts off pretty much the same. They introduce the drivers, a parachuter drifts into the raceway with a huge American flag, and they sing the National Anthem. This time they had a cards at each seat and had all the fans hold up their card during the anthem. When they gave us the signal, we held up the signs and made the USA on one end of the raceway and the American flag wrapped around the rest of the seats. Then we flipped them over and did the second one, which showed the Sharpie 500 and Bristol on one end and Sprint giveaway on the other end. It also wrapped around the entire raceway. The Raceway contacted the Guinness Book of World Records to document it as the biggest Card Stunt ever done. It was so cool to see the signs develop. We all thought it was awesome to be part of breaking a world record. After that, Air Force jets soar over the fans at mach speeds. I got a decent picture with one turning on his afterburners. Then someone says “Gentleman Start your Engines” and they start um up. It is REALLY LOUD!!!

As you can see the 2 pictures of the cars are very dark and hard to see so I decided to put my camera away and just watch the race. Again, Dad hooked us up with awesome seats in the handicapper section. So we all got to be together to watch the race. The race was a pretty good one but again none of our favorites won. The race ended around 12am and had to wait for an hour or so before we could even leave the raceway. We didn't get back to the house until 2am.

Now for the funny part. David and Audra really wanted to treat us to dinner so when we got to the house they were cooking us dinner. They had grilled steak, salad with all the fixins, baked potatoes, and freshly made tea. I must admit I have never eaten steak at 2:30 in the morning before but it was awesome! I may have to try it at home some time with Robin and the kids.

Busch Race at the Bristol Motor Speedway

Here are some of the pictures from the Busch race. Dad got us some awesome seats in the handicapper section. Robin told me to take more pictures then just the cars. I hope I did to her satisfaction. The pictures are of my Dad, my brothers Mark and Tad, my sisters Ann and Nina, friends Barry and Farah, and Jacob of course. We had a blast. None of our favorites won but the last few laps made for a very awesome finish. We were glad to get to be together and have a good time.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Fun with the Family!

Well we made it to Bristol!
It has been fun spending
time with the family. I
put together some pictures
of us with my nephew
Sebastian. It's always fun
hanging out with my
brothers and sisters.
Mark's friend Barry came
from Jacksonville as well.
We are having a great time!
Wish everyone else was
here with us.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

NASCAR at Bristol Motor Speedway

Just in case you have never been to a NASCAR race, here is a little taste of what it's like up-close and personal!

Make sure you turn up the volume really loud for the full effect!

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Off to the Bristol Motor Speedway!

Well it's that time again! Tomorrow, Jacob and I are on our way to meet up with my dad in Lake City, park my truck at the Walmart, and hop in his van for the 13 hour trip to Bristol, VA. Twice a year my dad, some of my brothers, Jacob and I make the same road trip to Bristol for the Races at the Bristol Motor Speedway. We usually go to both the Busch and NASCAR race. The cool pictures of the fans holding up the colored signs were from this past February’s race.

I remember the trip we took in February of 2006. On the way up to Bristol we hit the mountains between Tennessee and Virginia and they were covered in snow. That was the first time Jacob ever saw snow. I had my dad stop and we jumped out and played in the snow for a few minutes in our shorts, t-shirts, and flip flops. On the day of the NASCAR race it was sooooooo cold and the race was delayed due to snow. When we arrived to the raceway the drivers and their pit crews were having a huge snowball fight with the fans. We loved being at the race but just about froze to death. It was a good thing David and Ann had some winter clothes to let us wear.

It's always nice to go up to Bristol because we get to see my sister Ann and my Brother David's family. They live in the house I grew up in when we lived in Bristol, Va. It is really cool to get to stay for free in a house that is 15 minutes from the raceway while all the other fans pay outrageous prices for hotels or have to travel from a hotel 2 hours away. Also it is very nice to get to sit in prime seats because your dad gets in the handicap section. Parking is a perk too; we get to park right by the entrance! Very nice for tailgating too!

It is always a blast to spend time with my dad, brothers, and Jacob on the long van ride there and back as well as spend time with David’s family and Ann. We always go to the best fast food place called Pal’s. They have great burgers and the best Peach Tea. We watch movies together and just hang out. We are very blessed to get to go on these very special trips with our family. Great times!!

Jacob 'CHILLIN' with his Grandpa, Uncle Mark, and Uncle Tad. Really!!

Thursday, August 2, 2007

My New Ride!

I bought a new ride this week, it’s a Snapper riding
lawn mower. I am so exited to get it up and running. I need to give it a basic tune up and it should be ready to go. It's one of those "Oldie but a Goodie" buys. I got it for a great price and hopefully it will turn our 2 & 1/2 hour mowing job into an hour or less. Also, Jacob seems really eager to hop on it and try it out! So maybe I have mowed my last lawn. We will see! He is a great helper with getting the weed eater out and doing the perimeter of the yard and house. He’s a great helper indeed, after I've push mowed the yard for over 2 hours I'm not to ready to get the weed eater out. I did convince Hannah to come out and help one time. She did a great job up until she got hot and sweaty and removed her glasses. The next thing I knew she hit her head on a tree branch and was finished. She went in to check it and I never saw her again. I told her she should know better than to operate heavy equipment without her eye protection! She didn't think that was funny. Who knows maybe I'll get Robin on it and have her mow too! Yard work should be a family effort.

Webelo Woods

Webelo Woods camp is set up for the Webelos to do everything by themselves and the parents sit back and just watch. 4 days of activities setup for them to attend and earn badges and such. The staff is boy scouts, barely older then the Webelos leading activities. Whoever thought of that, I'd like to know.
Anyway, this was Jacob's and my second year going. Last year we had a blast as well. There is always swimming at the camp. During free swim all the boys that passed the swim test can go in the deep end and, of course, jump off the diving board. The swimming test consists of 4 lengths of a 25 meter pool, non stop.
One of the adult staff members, who is charge of the swimming area, weighs around 350 to 400 pounds and his nickname is Cannonball, always holds a cannonball contest. Of course, he has been the champion for the past 5 years, hence the nickname Cannonball! Well, last year I took it upon myself to brag a lot, out loud, and challenge him for the championship. Unfortunately, last year the contest was cancelled do to a rain storm and all I could do is leave camp yelling out loud "Cannonball is going down!"
This year we met again at the pool and I challenged him for a rematch. The whole weekend he watched all the boys do their best to impress him to make it into the contest. I am proud to say that Jacob made it into the kids cannonball contest! Any dads that wanted to be in the adult contest were automatically entered. Everyday Cannonball would get up on the diving board, shout and growl at everyone and put his hands to his ears and listen to everyone chant his name - Cannonball! Cannonball! So I decided I would get up on the diving board and growl and shout back and show all of my 190 pounds of skinny white boy muscles back at him. But instead of me getting cheers and chants, all I got was a bunch of BOO's from the crowd. After that I was named “Black Bart!”
On Saturday at free swim we had the cannonball contest. All the boys that made it into the contest did great and had a fun time. The last contest was the Dad's vs. the 5 time champion Cannonball. We all had our turn and did our best cannonball - of course the champion did a huge cannonball and made a huge splash. But in the second round I laid the best cannonball of my career and delivered great form and a huge splash. It all came down to Cannonball and his last jump. He got to the edge of the board and um...busted into the water.
That night at the final campfire ceremony they announced the winners of each category and Jacob tied for 2nd in his division and I became the undefeated for life Cannonball Champion of Webelo Woods. Only because Jacob will be going into Boy Scouts next year and we won't be going back to Webelo Woods again.

A definite "What’s Up With That"

This is what 3 weeks of All-Stars does to your yard! I had to mow it twice and it still looked like it needed mowing.