Friday, December 18, 2015

2 more crazy weeks in the books

my last post missed the actual publish button by a week.  It was ready to go in draft form for a while though!  So two posts today!

In the last 2 weeks we've had a lot going on.  I finished the closet flooring but we still have a long way to go to get the floor completely finished.  I need to get back on it.

Last Friday night I got a late phone call.  Around 1 AM.  Which is never a good thing.  My dad ended up having a pretty bad heart attack.  So i jumped in the car and headed to hays.  Met my mom and sister there and we waited while they performed a heart cath on Dad.  He had a 100% blockage in his right main artery and that is what led to the heart attack.  They were able to stent it and get him stable.  He spent a few days in ICU though.  I got home at noon on Saturday and got ready for Kelci's cousins wedding.  It was a nice ceremony and nice to see all of Kelci's family get together.  I left fairly early so I could catch up on some sleep and then Kelci and I headed back to Hays on Sunday morning.  Dad was settled into his ICU room by then and was just dealing with some lingering AFIBS and blood pressure issues.  We spent the afternoon in Hays and headed home in the early evening.  Monday we just hung out as a family and then Tuesday when Kelci got off of work we headed back up to hays.  Dad was in a regular room so we could take the kids.  Andi's whole family was there and we were able to celebrate my moms bday.  which was put on hold for a few days!

Wednesday and Thursday we just hung out with the family.  I did try and ride my bike in the morning on Weds.  But i had 2 flat tires, and my bike pump had quit working.  Also my powertap stopped transmitting and so did my cadence censor.  So i bought new batteries for everything and hopefully Saturday morning i can try and spin my legs a bit.  I'm hoping to get back into the swing of training by the 28th and try and start the year on a good fitness kick.  I'm heavy and Lethargic lately and i know i need to do something about it.

Well I have a big weekend planned and I'll hopefully write all about it.  Sorry no pictures this week!

almost missed a week there

Between sickness and the holiday we had a pretty crazy week.  Boston is dealing with ear infections and Ben has croup.  So lots of fun over thanksgiving at our house.  Weds Ben was home with a fever so he ended up going to work with me.  I had to go in to make some calls for my trip next week.  I think he liked walking through the Brick Plant with me and hanging out in my office.  I took him some play dough and he made some bricks of his own.

 The night before Thanksgiving Ben spent the entire night with a high fever and a horrible cough.  We tried the nebulizer and it just wasnt working.  So Kelci used her pull at the hospital to get Ben admitted as an outpatient and got him epinephrine shots.  Since it was Thanksgiving of course we had 2 meals we were supposed to go to.  Kelcis family for lunch and then mine later in the evening in Russell.  Well I stayed home for Kelcis with Ben, and then she came home and switched places with me so Boston and I headed to Russell.  To make matters worse we were hit with a pretty strong Ice storm that evening and we headed home early since the roads were iced and just getting worse.

Friday I was the only one in the office.  I hung out up front and just watched a few tv shows.  Only phone calls were from our other plant.  So it was pretty much a waste of a day.  Kelci had the day off so she hung out at home with Kamben who was feeling a bit better.  But Boston has ear infections so that day she was the sick one!

Saturday Ben was again feverish and having a rough day.  Boston also had a fever in the morning but she was still pretty happy.  Kelci headed to Wichita with her mom and sis in law for some shopping so it was just me and the kiddos all day.  About as lazy of a weekend as you can have!

The following monday everyone was feeling better.  Work entailed getting ready for my trip.  Tuesday bright and early i headed to KC for a lunch meeting with one of our distributors.  After that I headed 3 1/2 hours east to St Louis.  Got into town around 5, checked in at the hotel, then headed to Chipotle for Dinner.  I've now eaten Chipotle in 8 States.  Hopefully I can keep adding to that total.  After dinner I headed to the St Louis Outlet Mall.  Which was a huge mall with tons of stores, but it was pretty much empty.  I was there to see the final Hunger Games movie in IMAX.  Moving away from wichita i've really missed having that massive 3 story movie screen only a mile from my house!
Weds I had a meeting in St Louis and then a 1:00 meeting a few hours south in Cape Girardeau.  That meeting didnt go so well so i was pretty unhappy that i spent 5 hours in the car for not alot of gain.  But anyways i had about a 10 hour drive home from Cape Girardeau.  Back up to St Louis, then over to KC.  At KC i had to stop and take a break.  So ran into a book store at Legends and got some Cold Stone.  Then it was back in the car for the 4 hour drive home.  Around Midnight i pulled into the driveway.  With 15 minutes left on my Audiobook :(.  Still havent listened to Awol reach the peak of Katahdin!

Thursday Kelci again went to Wichita for Ben to have a Dentist appt and do more shopping.  So bossy and i hung out until late when Kelci got home.

 Friday was Kelcis work Christmas party.  It was a Oriental carnival theme.  So we had a nice dinner and were getting ready to play some games.  Unfortunately Kelcis Grandma had an emergency and we had to rush out of the party and over to Doris's house.  She had yawned and felt her jaw move out of place.  So we took her to the ER.   It turned into a big ordeal and I went home at 10 to take care of the kids and Kelci was in the ER until midnight and then stayed at Doris's house to keep an eye on her through the night.

So Saturday was just spent lounging around the house and playing outside.  It warmed up considerably and was nice to just all hang out.  Sunday we headed to a pancake feed fundraiser around lunchtime.  Then i had a basketball game in GB.  We only had 4 players show up for the game which was pretty disappointing.  We of course were out played but we made the most of it and actually didnt lose by nearly as much as we could have.  I had a few good plays and made some baskets but it was pretty discouraging.  Hopefully next week we get a better turnout.   Then Sunday night was Steelers Football against the Colts.  It was a great game to be a Steelers fan as they blew them out pretty handily.  Steelers are right in the mix for a playoff spot but there are still 4 games left!

Well that gets it all caught up.  Hopefully this week we get a little further on the floor and keep getting the house in better shape.

Monday, November 23, 2015

Guess what Im still working on....

Tuesday and Wednesday evenings I was back to work on the floor.  Got quite a bit of the kitchen done.  Ran into a issue where i am a 1/8 of an inch off on my gap between the entrance way and the door to the kitchen.  Somehow when i made my way through the doorway from the dining room into the kitchen or the transition from the living room into the entrance way something got moved or angled and it was just enough to add up to an 1/8 by the time I got 20 feet forward.  Only option is to put in a transition piece on the floor between the two rooms.  Kicking myself that it happened but there aren't any other options without taking a couple hundred square feet of floor back out!

Friday was just a fun night in with the family.  Didn't worry about the floor.  Ben and I made a trip into GB to get some brad nails for the trim, then grabbed some Bruams and headed to Grandma Nancy's to hang out.  Nancy bought us a huge area rug for the living room.  Which was a blessing in that we got a 300 rug for free but also made my wife nervous because she is particular about how she wants the room to look.  Luckily the rug worked out perfectly.  Although i question all the effort I have put into this floor and now we are going to cover half of it up!

Saturday was spent finishing the flooring in our Kitchen table area.  Also got the quarter round trim stained.  Its much yellower than the rest of the trim in our house though. I'm going to give it a second coat and see if that helps it to darken up a bit.  The current trim is almost a little bit red in comparison.

Sunday was a busy day.  Up pretty early and got to work in our detached garage getting things organized and making room.  We have had lots of our stuff still in storage at Kelci's Grandma Doris's house.  Well she wants to put her car in the garage so we got to work moving stuff out of there.  While we were moving things we also moved household stuff out of the detached garage and into the basement.  Then in the evening Doug and Della came over and helped us move our living room furniture up from the basement.  So alot of carrying heavy furniture up and down!  But we got the living room situated how we want it.  Although its still missing all the trim!

Sunday afternoon i had our 3rd basketball game.  The team we were playing was fairly similar to ours in that they had a couple good playmakers and then avg rest of the team.  But i think we ended up stealing the win from them.  We had a great run at the end of the first half that put us ahead by 12.  Then in the second half they closed to within 3.  It lead to a very intense last 3 minutes of the game.  I had a few good rebounds and scored around 10 points.  got fouled late when they were in desperation mode and sank both free throws.  Which was great since i had missed the first 2 I took earlier in the game.  We only had 6 guys show up so got to play all but 4 minutes of the game.

Saturday night Kelci though maybe Boston was too cold at night and that was why she kept waking up all the time.  So in the middle of the night she bundled her up and she slept the rest of the night.  So Sunday she started her out all warm and cozy.  And.....   she slept the longest shes ever slept straight.  It was wonderful!  She looked pretty silly though :)

And that was our Week!

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

30 and i feel like i am just getting started!

Monday was my 30th Bday.  It was a pretty low key affair and i honestly don't feel any different.  I still feel like I have alot to accomplish and alot of growing up left to do!  But looking back over the last 10 years and alot of life has happened.  I've had the greatest moments of my life and also my absolute worst.  But I'm expecting great things out of the next 30 years for sure!

Saturday we were up early and headed to Wichita.  It honestly felt weird to be visiting Wichita from Hoisington and not the other way around.  The plan was to meet up with Sean for some disc golf, then get together to eat and go watch the Wichita Thunder hockey team.  Sean said he needed to have his son Aiden with him all day so we decided to bring Ben along for the trip as well.  When we got to town we did a little shopping then Kelci wanted to go to Chick Fil A for lunch and to let Ben run around.  Sean and Aiden met us there and the 4 of us headed to the Warren to watch the new Peanuts movie.  We decided it was too windy for throwing disc, plus we had the boys with us.  Ben did good at the movie.  He was pretty engrossed and didn't move from the previews right through most of the credits.

After that we headed to All Star Sports.  It was a bit of a mad house but we had a bag of tokens from last year when we had gone to play games and we divided those up between the boys and let them run wild.  Ben is just starting to get the hang of playing games and he gravitated towards the bike and car driving options.

Once the boys had traded their earned tickets for a few bouncy balls we went to River City Brewery for dinner.  I love the atmosphere and delicious craft beer so it was the perfect spot.  Plus its fairly close to the Arena for the hockey game.  We drove over to the Arena and parked in our favorite free parking spot only 2 blocks away and headed in.  I hadn't purchased tickets yet but knew they had corner bowl seats for only 9 bucks.  Well we got there and they told us that those seats were sold out and we would have to get seats behind the nets for 20 bucks each.  And the boys needed their own tickets!  so a 30 dollar semi pro hockey game turned into a 60 dollar game and for that amount its just not worth it.  Kelci doesn't enjoy hockey and Ben wasn't particularly interested either.  At least the game was exciting.  Went into overtime and then a shootout.  Unfortunately the Thunder came out on the losing end this time.

After the game we headed to our hotel over by Dugan and settled in.  Ben was still pretty wound up so we had a fun time playing in the room before bed.  Since I didn't know he was going to be going when i booked the room i had only got a queen bed.  Luckily Kelci was able to throw a little bed together for Kamben on the recliner in the room and we didn't have to worry about him squirming all over the place on our bed!

We woke up early so Kelci could get some more shopping in and then headed to brunch at Granite City.  Met up with a few of my old co-workers and their families.  The brunch at GC is fantastic.  We loaded up on breakfast stuff and then went right into the prime rib and pasta.  Its expensive but worth it when you realize your probably not going to be hungry again that day!  After eating we hit up Lowes and Sams and got headed out of town.  I watched the Steelers game on my phone while Kelci drove.  Love it when the Steelers can hand it to the Browns!

When we got back into town i took a quick power nap and then headed to GB for my second basketball game.  Got there just in time for the game to start so didnt get any warm up and had to come in off the bench.  We were playing a team with a bunch of guys around our age and skill level and it was a close game.  Again the Ref was terrible and there were fouls galore.  Since i play under the basket most of the time I got pretty beat up.  But had a few good rebounds and put backs.  The game came down to the wire and unfortunately ended up losing by 3.

Monday we went to my inlaws for dinner.  Della was awesome enough to put together a delicous Meatloaf feast and invited Bryan and Ashley.  So we ate up and enjoyed time with the family.  Ben loves to see his uncle Poey and with hunting season now in full swing it will be pretty much holidays only when we get a chance to see them!

Well that was our busy weekend and the start of the last year of the 3rd decade of my life.  Im going to work my ass off to make it one of the most memorable yet!

Friday, November 13, 2015

Pretty much just more flooring = Boring

A new week is here.  and so is Daylight Savings Time.  I enjoy leaving for work at 7 in the morning and having it be light out.  But not more than i absolutely despise it being dark at 6:00.  My new job means i get off at 4:00 and have a few hours of daylight but its just not enough.  And Winter isn't even here yet!

Monday was a pretty lazy day.   Kelci's volleyball team had their final games.  They ended up going the season undefeated.  It was pretty cool to see Kelci participating in a sport.  She has never had the time or chance to play before we moved to Ho-Town and its great watching her compete!  We are hoping to get a coed team together so she can keep playing.  We are trying to get Ben to go to bed earlier and tried to use the time change to make it happen.  So off to bed at 8 for him.  But i think hes got my plot figured out. He just plays around and sings in bed for an hour.

Tuesday was a sales meeting in Concordia KS so was after 5 when i got home.  Then got right to work on the floor again.  Had a time consuming cut around our angled hall closet entrance but then was able to get in a grove and get some work done.  20 boards later it was time for the kids to sleep and the saws and hammers got put away for the night.

So only a few hours meant only a few boxes of boards got put in.  But progress is progress!

Wednesday was work and then some basketball practice.  an enjoyable but fairly unproductive day!

Thursdays are Kelci's current call night.  Part of her new job is covering the ER at the local hospital.  Since she is new to working in a ER setting she has been shadowing the other PA's and Dr's.  She got to come home for about half an hour before she had to head back to the hospital.  So i was in charge of feeding the kids and playing.  Since I couldn't work on the floor I took the opportunity to knock out some laundry, and general tidying.  I know Kelci has been particularly frustrated in our mess of of a house lately.  Both of us cant wait to get it to where we can just live in it!

Friday meant a little time to work on the floor then off to bed.  Nothing too exciting!

Saturday I got right to work on the floor.  got to the doorway into the kitchen from the dining room.  So i had to tear the floor up behind the fridge and in the main kitchen area.  Well when i got to that i noticed the floor was wet under the fridge.  Turns out our water line has been leaking for some time.
So instead of knocking out flooring most of my time went to fixing the subfloor and wall.  Took a few hours in the afternoon to meet up with my friend Heath to go into Great Bend for a late lunch and a beer.  Great escape from my flooring problems!

Sunday i got back to work on the floor and filled in the area under the fridge so we could get it back in place as well as about half of the kitchen area.  Then it was off to Great Bend for a my first basketball game of the season.  Unfortunately not much of our team showed up and we were playing the reigning league champs.  We kept the game close for the whole first half and never really let it get away but did end up playing from behind for most of the game.

I didn't feel great before my basketball game and felt pretty bad when we went food shopping after it. Ended up feeling terribly nauseous all night and staying home Monday from work.  A day of rest was pretty helpful and i felt better by Monday evening.

Tuesday was just another day, nothing special.  We did make a trip out Spuds the new restaurant in the old Shaneys.  It wasn't anything too special unfortunately.  I don't think we'll be making many trip back.

Weds was Veterans day.  When i worked at the bank I always had Veterans day off.   I didn't expect that when I started at the Brick Plant but turns out they take the day off as well.  So that meant another day working on the floor.  Was able to completely finish the dining room.  Then we had a parent teacher conference at Ben's school.  Turns out he is extremely bright but he isn't the best listener.  Who could have guessed!  We spend lots of time every day talking about letters and numbers and counting and reading and coloring and all that jazz.  So in his preschool class he is expected to be able to count to 10 on his own by the end of the year.  Well in the first semester he can count to 39 :)  and actually can go quite a bit higher with prompting.

Thursday was Kelci's call night so it was just me and the kiddos until we had a 10 min Kelci sighting at 10 pm.  then she was gone again until 12:30.  The ER was really jumping on Thursday!  Ben was tired and went to sleep without any help on the couch before 7.  So i just put him in bed.  But Boston is fighting double ear infections and she took 3 hours to get to sleep.  It was pretty frustrating but I need to work on patience and understanding that its not something shes doing on purpose.

Well this weekend is my bday and we are going to Wichita to see friends so it should be great!  Also here are some pictures of a beautiful 7 month old!

Monday, November 2, 2015


I’m busy with work, putting down a new floor in our house, and now I’m playing on a basketball team.   Kelci is busy figuring out her new job.  Trying to open a new clinic in a new town being a new resident.  Also learning how to work in a ER for the first time.  While also trying to get things unpacked and organized in the new house, while cleaning up after the construction messes I’m making.  Bens busy figuring out preschool.  Almost playing on a soccer team and just being a rambunctious 3 year old.
Last weekend we started tearing out the carpet and tile in our living room/dining room.  It was just nasty and had to come out. 

Here’s the before:

Kelci and I both wanted to replace it with a wood floor and we settled on LVT planks.  Basically laminate that is on top of manufactured wood.  It uses tongue and groove to lay down pretty quickly.  The first night I tried it I was having trouble getting everything to seal well and basically ruining the boards by overly hammering them to get a tight fit.  Checked YouTube for some tips and saw how other DIYers were having better luck putting them together backwards.  So that’s what I did.  And it started working pretty nice.

Process is pretty easy.  First we put down an underlayment that is supposed to spread the load out from the individual planks and also help with noise management in the basement.  Then starting in the corner you work in a stagger pattern.  Putting the table saw, miter saw and jigsaw to good use!

Thursdays Kelci is on call in the ER in Hoisington.  So that puts me on dad duty for the night.  But a few weeks ago i got invited to play on a basketball team in great bend.  Has a few old friends from high school on it so it should be alot of fun.  We ended up getting together on Thursday to play a pick up game and dust off the cobwebs.  Since i haven't played basketball in quite some time I'm going to be hurting for a few days!  Kelci and i are so blessed to have her parents here in town.  Her Mom and Dad are usually able to grab the kids for us when we have something else going on that we need to do and might not be kiddo friendly.  We are so grateful that they are there for us.  Kelci was called into the ER immediately after work and her parents were able to watch the kids for a few hours.

Friday was family pictures with Kelcis family.   Kelci had purchased her mother a picture package back on Mothers day and we finally got around to using it.  Unfortuately that also happened to be the only day we've had any sort of rain lately.  So we ended up inside to take the photos.  After that it was a nice dinner out then back home.

Saturday we were up early so i could get back onto the floor.  Worked about 6 hours, tearing up more carpet and pad and pulling staples, and getting another layer of boards in the living room and got most of the entry way finished.

After that it was time to get cleaned up for Halloween.  Ben decided he wanted to be a rocketship so Kelci bought a Astronaut costume for Boston.  They looked pretty much adorable together.  We visited all the family before dark and then headed out trick or treating with Bryce, Abi and Grandma Della.  I stayed home on candy duty and passed out the candy to tons of kids.  it was pretty great.

Well that was our week!

- Kevin

Friday, October 30, 2015

obligatory "1st Post" post

Life moves way too fast.  Almost to the point where important things fall through the cracks of time and are lost from memory.  So the point of this blog is to serve as a journal to remember what the heck I’m up too.  I can remember when Ben was born how busy I was.  Between a new house, transferring jobs, and training for an Ironman I know I had a lot on my plate.  But I don’t remember the particulars.  So that’s what I’m hoping to do.  Record the particulars so I can look back and remember. 

Blogs were pretty cool.  Back in oh 2008ish.  Now not so much.  But I can barely read my own handwriting so a journal is out, and Kelci and I take lots of photos on our phones.  Now I have somewhere to dump them with some words for context. Since we never seem to get any pictures printed scrapbooking is out (not to mention playing with stickers, glue and decorative scissors isn’t exactly a favorite hobby of mine)

I’m looking forward to recording our life so while it seems pretty plain and boring at a glance I can remember how complex and intricate and beautiful our lives really are.  I relish the idea of pulling up my site and reading back through.  Seeing lots of mishaps and a few triumphs.  Seeing what I thought was worth remembering and how I saw things at that time.  Will I stick with it?  I sure hope so.  If not it means I didn’t get out of it what I thought I would and wasn’t worth the time put into it.  I’d say there is a 50/50 shot right now. So let’s bring it all up to date.

I am almost 30.  I have had 3 wonderful children, Maxton was born first.  March 31st of 2011 was easily the greatest day of my life.  We were only given 2 months to enjoy Max.  He passed away from SIDS 2 days after Kelci returned to work from her Maternity leave. That happened to be the worst day/period of my life.  Before Max I knew I wanted kids but wasn’t sure how to handle a baby.  Other than brief encounters with my young niece I didn’t know anything about babies.  And I was too much of a kid and too selfish to be a great father.  So my experience with Max made me grow up, and the best gift he gave me was showing me how much I needed to appreciate what I have and to be present in the moment.  I took life and the future for granted. 

A year later our second son Kamben was born. He is a rambunctious 3 year old with a mischievous streak.  He also ridiculously smart and loving and adorable.  And a cute redhead to boot.   We also have Boston.  She is currently a 7 month old who constantly smiles and wakes up happy and is just a joy.  I was scared of what being a father to a daughter meant.  And I still nervous about what the future holds but I am absolutely wrapped around her finger.

I'm married to Kelci Jo.  The only woman I’ve ever met who puts up with my shit.  Whether its my excessive sarcasm and quick tongue that can get me into trouble fast, or my obsession with a million different hobby's she puts up with it.  Sometimes she struggles with it, which is understandable, my nature is a pain in the ass.  But she loves me for who I am and I truly strive to be better for her.  And to be honest with you I know that I am better because of her.  She is a PA with a new job in a new clinic back in our old hometown.  We recently relocated because I found a new job and so she uprooted her life for me. (she sounds pretty wonderful huh)  So her stress meter is through the roof but being as amazing as she is, shes doing pretty fantastic.

My new job is along the same vein as my old one.  Since as people say Sales is Sales.  But my old sales position was mainly to up sell consumers and push financial products at a credit union.  Now I'm selling bricks.  I work for the brick plant in Hoisington, Kansas.  I work mainly with distributors that sell our bricks nationwide.  Its definitely a change for me, it involves travel and a different approach to sales.  More networking and facilitating vs actual sales.  I never talk to the customer.   I like the hours and my coworkers and the job itself.  So as far as occupation goes. I’m definitely excited about what the future holds.

Here's the about me part.  I most easily identify with being a triathlete.  A swim bike runner.  That is what people would say first when asked to talk about me.  I grew up swimming.  Enjoy biking, and pretty much despise running most of the time.  Life has made a lot of other things more important than fitness the last couple years so my attempts at racing have been half-hearted at best.  I'm hoping to change that once life settles down a bit.  Outside of triathlon I have lots of hobbies and goals.  I like to play golf, disc golf, and throw around a football.  Basically I love being active.  I backpacked up my first mountain earlier this summer and would love to spend more time in the outdoors.  I like to play games, from cornhole in the backyard to Halo on my old xbox its all fun to me.  I love to watch Movies and keep up with a few tv shows.  I love to work with my hands.  Woodworking, mechanical things, yard work, home improvement are all things that get my hands dirty and give me things to think about.  I’m also a nerd.  Tech toys fascinate me, I’ve built a computer and a whole home theater.  I like to research things to death and then build.  I’m a fanatical Pittsburgh Steelers fan.  And I enjoy the Penguins and Pirates as well.  I grew up in the Pittsburgh area and have followed those 3 teams my whole life.

Well I guess that’s enough background.  From here on out it should be just content.  A scrollable timeline of my life from this day forward.  Something I will be able to look back on and laugh or cry.  And hopefully it will help me remember something that time would have otherwise eroded from my mind.