Tuesday, November 29, 2005

so. much. work.

So, I started working at the fruit stand on Saturday. I worked for eight hours on Saturday, then eight hours on Sunday. Then I worked four hours last night. I have two more days of four hours each day. That is a lot of work for me, who has never worked. I am still doing eight hours of research at Carnegie, which makes for long days. However, it is hella cool. I really am enjoying myself. I miss Courtney, though. I don't get to see her as much. I hope to do something like 16-20 hours a week, which will be a little better than this 28 hours a week.

Saturday, November 26, 2005

Awesome day at the store

I went in this morning for some training at the computer store. I started getting really antsy by the afternoon, so they let me out on the floor. Man, it was a lot of fun. I sold two computers! I learned a whole bunch today. What a fun job. And they are paying me!

Thursday, November 24, 2005

We finished!

Courtney and I just finished the Trot for Hunger this morning. It was a beautiful, but cold, morning. I was reminded of the road races I ran with Clint O'Neal back when we were in junior high and high school, driving to Hot Springs for the Mountain Valley Spring Water 10 K or Hope for the Watermelon days fun run. This run seemed easier than those, maybe because I didn't worry so much about competition. Courtney finished in 30 minutes 35 seconds, and I finished in 26 minutes 45 seconds. We ran the first half of the run together, then split up. Then we walked along the mall to the Smithsonian metro station. What a great start to Thanksgiving! I hope everyone is enjoying being with their families right now.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Courtney and I are off to the Trot for Hunger! Wish us luck.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Starting at the Computer Store!

Yesterday I went in and completed all the paper work at my part time job: tax forms, NDA, etc. So now, I am officially a worker at the computer store downstairs from my apartment. I have to train from 9-6 on Saturday and Sunday, but I don't think that will be all that bad. I am sort of bummed that I can't start on Friday, which should be the craziest shopping day of the year. Oh well. Courtney and I are thinking about heading to Target at 6 am on Friday, though. We don't really have much to buy, but we want to see the spectacle of it all. We are gluttons for punishment.

Monday, November 21, 2005

Trot for Hunger

Courtney and I have decided to do something new for Thanksgiving this year, since we won't be heading home due to cost. We are participating in the Trot for Hunger to raise money for helping the homeless. It is sponsored by SOME. Should be a great time on Thanksgiving morning. We are looking for a soup kitchen or other facility at which we can volunteer in the afternoon, but it seems that a lot of them already have all the volunteers they need. I think we might just have a small dinner at home. It would be a little weird to run for hungry homeless people and then cook an eight pound turkey just for Courtney.

Sunday, November 20, 2005


Courtney and I did some shopping today. We bought some stain to color the furniture that I brought from Arkansas. We got American walnut stain, but I think maybe we should get something called mahogany. Sounds better to me, even if the color was the same. Oh well. We will stain it and see how it comes out. It will be lots of work, I think, if anyone wants to help us this weekend.

Friday, November 18, 2005

New Stuff

We have the living room set up now with new stuff. A new couch, a new chair, and all the old stuff from Arkansas. Now, no one has an excuse to not come by and see our place. Oh, and our DVR from Comcast is acting funny. There are little pauses every six seconds or so on the recordings. Anybody have that problem?

Tuesday, November 15, 2005


Wow. Mom and I have been driving from Little Rock to Nashville. From about halfway from Little Rock to Memphis, we had tremendous rain, lightning and thunder. We started to get worried when Margaret called us and said that there were tornados in the area we were driving. She also found that there was hail and 70 mph winds from the thunderstorms. When she told us that a tornado would be going through Old Hickory at 7:01 and we were driving through it at 7:00 we decided that we should get off the road. We headed to a McDonalds and sat for about 10 minutes before the electricity blinked off. A generator came on and the staff ushered us to the interior wall, near the bathrooms. We would have gone into the bathrooms if the wind or a tornado had blown out the window. However, there were high winds, but nothing happened. After waiting for the winds to die down (about 30 minutes), we headed to Outback Steakhouse. We ate a little something and then headed to a Holiday Inn Express. That is where we are now, enjoying the free internet access.

On the Road Again

Well, tomorrow Mom and I will head up to DC with a UHaul trailer in tow. We have all my furniture packed up (nearly), and will leave about nine in the morning. It has been a really hectic weekend, but really terrific fun seeing all my great friends and family. My friend Michael Bragg took a beautiful picture of Trulie and Ryan as they were leaving their wedding reception. I will tell more about the wedding when I get back in DC, or if we stay at a Ho-Jo tomorrow with free internet.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

In Arkansas

Well, I haven't been so good about posting in the last couple of days. I am right now down in Arkansas, helping set up for my sister's wedding. She is having the reception at our house, so there is a lot of decorating to do. In the wedding plans for DC, it is getting increasingly more difficult to find a reasonable place that we can afford (with food) around the DC area. We have a raft of requirements, which makes it more difficult: have to have alcohol, must be on Saturday, must be sit down dinner, etc. I know Courtney is getting a bit frazzled because of it. However, last night, to celebrate a great interview for a job at the retail store in my apartment complex, we went out to eat at the Cheesecake Factory. If anything can de-frazzle a person, the Godiva Chocolate Cheesecake can. Man, that was good.

Sunday, November 06, 2005

American Consumer

Our weekend was filled with consumerism. In the first instance, we spent much of the weekend looking at wedding ceremony and reception sites. It seems like weddings are the ultimate consummation. We visited the Thomas Birkby House and Whitehall, but the real winner was Oatlands Plantation, a plantation near Leesburg, VA that has beautiful gardens surrounding a Greek revival mansion. Some of the history of mansion centers on the Civil War, and I joked with Courtney that we could reenact a battle on the site, with my family as the South and her family as the North. No doubt the South could win this time, if only because numbers are for us.
To continue on our consumerism, we spent much of the weekend shopping. We visited an outlet mall out in Virginia, and I picked up a coat for the winter. Courtney bought a dress for Trulie's wedding. Later, I bought some new shoes to replace the ones with holes I wear now. We also stopped by Old Navy to return some stuff, and found a button-down shirt for $6. Score! Finally, we looked at a couple of sofa sets at Value City Furniture, but didn't find anything that was cheap enough and perfect enough for us. We will keep looking.

Friday, November 04, 2005


I went by the store yesterday where I want to work, and they were very understanding about the bounced e-mail from the former manager. I filled out an application, and gave them a copy of my resume, and they said they were "Very interested." I say, if I can't get a part time job in retail, selling computers (which I have been selling officially and unofficially for about seven years), with a degree in computer engineering, then I am going to just give up completely on working. I will be a stay at home person. And I will be happy about it.

Visitin' Weddin' Sites

Well, we have a full weekend of visiting wedding sites. Tomorrow we are going out to Prince William County to see the Ben Lomond Historical Site and Old Manassas Courthouse. Also out there is Rippon Lodge. Then on Sunday at noon we are visiting White Hall Manor. I think it should be good fun. Maybe if we search hard enough we can actually find a place we can afford.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

A new desk?

Well, I played hooky today from work (actually, Sara said that I should unpack, since she is away today), and I am thinking about a few things that I might need. I need a desk, I think, and I am considering this one from Target. The price is right, and I like the way it looks, but I want to make sure I really need it, because Courtney has done such a good job scaling back our spending, I don't want to buy something that I don't really need.

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

I am Here!

I have finally arrived! I am still working on my Ph.D. work, but I will be working in Washington DC with Sara Seager. Last night I flew in on British Airways into Dulles, and it was a wonderful flight. The spinach risotto was excellent, and it had cheese on it. I love Courtney and my new apartment. It is going to be so much fun here. Well, back to the stars.