Monday, February 28, 2011

2011.02.28 Monday

Final day of February. 2 down, 10 to go.

Work was more quiet than normal.

Post-work was mostly uneventful. I played games and relaxed some. Kelc eventually got off work, so we went out for a late dinner to Chipotle. We had a buy-one get-one-free coupon. Worth it.


2011.02.27 Sunday

I woke up early, so I had a leisure morning. Surfed the internet and played a bit of Minecraft. Apparently version 1.3 had come out and I wasn't paying attention. I ended up having to wake up Kelc and start a rush towards a scheduled brunch. My sister organized a brunch at Chez Zee to celebrate her birthday. There were 8 of us total, 2 parents, 3 children and their significant others. It seemed weird that we all had a significant other.

Went back to my parent's house for some games and social time.

I went home to work on homework and play games, Kelc went on some errand runs.

Later I went out for a late-night skate session with Ryan. On a side note, I think Kelc is starting something that is blog-worthy, but I will let her disclose what that is if she feels like it.

2011.02.26 Saturday

The sleep paid off. Spent some time just waking up and soaking in the relaxation some.

Went to the mall to pick up a few things for both Kelc and myself. Then I went over to Twin Liquors to pick up a gift for my sister. Normally I would get something like a bottle of liquor or something since my sister likes to party, but I'm going to push a little class instead. I picked up some El Guapo wine, a peculiar blend, and some cheese to go with it.

Kelc and I parted ways. I went home to work on homework, she went to *drum roll please* work! Very exciting times.

Mid-evening, Habs recieves a phone call saying the internet at the hotel is down. I hop along for a fun ride over to the hotel to see if I could help. Supposedly their IT department is pretty terrible about responsiveness. We walked around a few rooms, and one thing looked like the LEDs weren't blinking like normal network activity. A simple power cycle and the internet was working again. What device was it? No idea. What kind of internet service is it? Maybe DSL, but no idea. The whole network closet was rather disorganized.

Kelc got off of work early because things started getting slow. We watched another Smallville. Bedtime.

Friday, February 25, 2011

2011.02.25 Friday

Wow, some crazy dreams last night. I remember waking up in the middle of the night thinking I had hornets in my bed. Once I went back to sleep, I had an interesting dream about a long-ago crush I had. It was a mix of chasing someone and being chased by someone. Good dream, would dream again.

Work went by fast. Football time was there before I blinked. Within the first few minutes of playing, a guy dislocated his finger when he went for a grab at a flag. He seemed half in shock, and half non-caring. For a second, I thought he was going to keep playing while his finger was still dislocated. Yeeaaahh. There weren't any other major injuries, but since we are having about 1/week it's starting to put me on edge. I wonder if work is going to make us stop playing, or if maybe I'll be the next one injured.

Ended up staying later at work than it felt like. I had to cancel my intentions of a weekend trip because of time constraints.

Kelc and I cooked up a simple dinner, watched a smallville then went to bed.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

2011.02.24 Thursday

Woke up normal time, but today is different. Today, I will be going to the Palmer Event Center downtown to judge local area middle- and high-school students' science fair projects on behalf of my company. Very exciting, and at the same time I have no idea what to expect.

I should have expected traffic.

The judging was fun. Lots of very bright students out there. With all the negativity towards math and science in the media, it's good to see that there is still hope. Our team of judges just wanted to pick out the top projects that were related to our business, but we found that to be a tad challenging. One thing that also amazed me was the ability for these students to present themselves. I remember being pretty bad with presentations.

Slight tangent here: All through middle school and high school, up to about 10th grade, I had no problems with presentations. What changed? A required class called Speech. The class only lasted half of a school year. I had a few problems with this class. I had the teacher previously as an English teacher. I'm not sure why, but she started off already disliking me. She had a big problem with playing favorites with a small subset of students. Those students ended up getting high A's all the time, the rest of us scrounged for low B's and high C's. Add to that the fact that the teacher never really taught anything, but expected us to know everything in the book. The book made me super self-conscious about the tiniest things when giving a speech, like having arms above the waist and using good motions, projecting voice at appropriate volumes but varying it up to keep attention, expressing certain faces during critical points. The goal of the class should be to build up confidence in students, and feel free to express themselves, not beat them down for the stupid details. End tangent.

We deliberated and came up with a primary choice and backup choice for the winner of the award. I wanted to stick around, but felt obligated to get back to work. I don't want to get too far behind with my hours at work.

Work went by both quickly and slowly. It seemed like everybody was gone when I arrived. It was also rainy and gross outside. I grabbed a quick last-minute lunch at the cafeteria before they closed.

After work, I went straight over to Kelc's to hang out. We caught up on stuff happening within the last few days since we hadn't seen each other. Lots of changes happening.

We played a round of Scene-It, and a card game of I Have Never.

I went home, exhausted. Sleeeeeeep.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

2011.02.23 Wednesday

I woke up today knowing it is going to be a long day, and that just set the mood for the rest of the day.

Work was much more vocal today. Lots of people wanting to come and talk about things, so I couldn't tackle the task I had been assigned. I stayed late into the evening because...

Later I went to the Palmer Event Center to pre-judge some science projects. There were hundreds (maybe nearing thousands) of projects set up on tables. It's pretty cool to see how social topics can influence the direction of curiosity in science. I guess what I'm really trying to say is: there were a ton of "green energy" related projects, and "oil spill" related projects. Not that it is a bad thing. I got lost a few times going through the tables and reading up on what experiments were performed. Some students showed an interesting understanding of the english language.

Home, pretty darn tired. Cooked up some pasta (hopefully that energizes me tomorrow). Played L4D2 with Mark for a little. On a whim, I bought HL2:EP2 for $1.99. It's hard to pass up that price.

2011.02.22 Tuesday

Another day? Well, yes. A long one too.

I'm starting to play around with virtual machines at work. I actually had a virtual machine inside a virtual machine. (Inception anyone?) I'm curious to how deep you can take this.

Class wasn't that bad. The prof and most of the students just wanted to get out of there, but a few students were adamant about asking questions. I think it's hilarious.

After work I started to gather the documents to file my taxes. Turns out I'm still missing some pieces. Tried making some calls, but nobody is open around 8pm on a weekday.

Watched another Smallville with Kelc.

Monday, February 21, 2011

2011.02.21 Monday

Oh it's Washington's Birthday, so random businesses give holidays while others do not. I woke up before my alarm today. I guess my mind just started thinking about all the stuff coming up this week and I wanted to start getting stuff done.

Worked an extra long day to try and get a head start on hours I will be missing later. Once I arrived at home, I figured that this will be one of the few days where I don't have much to do after work. Left 4 Dead 2 commenced.

Finished some laundry and slept well.

2011.02.20 Sunday

Late again getting up.

Lunch at the Sushi place again, but with friends instead of family.

Went over to Kelc's house to just lounge about and not do anything in particular. We ended up watching Survivorman and Infested.

Long overdue shopping at HEB.

Smallville *gasp* yep. We watched an episode of smallville. Only have 4 seasons to watch... then we can be done. Forever.

2011.02.19 Saturday

Woke up later. I always take a slower pace to the day whenever I sleep in. Cooked up some bacon, Habs cooked up eggs and we joined food in harmony in our tummies.

The three roomies had a jam session that went pretty well. We pulled out some other instruments that we don't normally play. This has inspired me to try and get back into trumpet some, but we'll see how long that lasts.

Played some L4D2.

Went over to Ryan's for a evening skate session and to hang out. We caught up on lost time.

Left with Kelc for Taco C, then home to change for Scott's party. We both decided to take a nap because we were exhausted.

Scott's party was cool, and the keg was floated at a reasonable time. I like how the people were really chill instead of wanting to get super trashed. I had slightly feared the latter.

Went over to hang out with Ray and Marisa. Ended up talking about Minecraft with her sister. It's like a cult.

2011.02.18 Friday

Ahhh sweet, finally a day off of work.

Woke up slightly late today. As I was preparing for my planned morning activities, I noticed that the roads were wet and didn't look like they were going to dry up anytime soon. Time for plan B.

Well I took my car to the dealership to get some recall work done on it. I got to spend the day driving around a 2010 Mazda 3 in the color I actually preferred. So far, all my dealings with the Mazda dealership with service/maintenance has been pretty smooth. I know that they try to take care of the customer, but that comes at a pretty hefty price tag (normally).

Kelc and I went on our way to go pick up an old friend that is pretty much starting life over. He said all he has is a dresser and a bed. Well now he also has an awesome new skateboard. Unfortunately the weather is poop so instead of going to a concrete skatepark, plan B is kicking in. We went out for food at the fabulous Taco C. Then went off to Dave and Busters to play games. Fun stuff.

We went home, watched some videos and hung out for a bit, but then split ways. I needed to go back to the dealer to pick up my vehicle. After I got my baby back, played around with some Left 4 Dead 2 for a bit.

Kelc Habs and I carpooled to Justin's show. This time he played down south at the Stomping Grounds. The sound was pretty good and balanced, considering they didn't have an elaborate mic and PA system all over the place, and for a venue this cramped it wouldn't have made sense. The show started early, almost too early. To me, it felt like it was late in the night and I was already yawning, but it was barely 8pm. The crowd ended up being mostly friends and such, and the drinks were reasonably priced. I kinda like these intimate shows.

Went home, crashed.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

2011.02.17 Thursday

Late again waking. I'll get this eventually.

Played football with the guys at work. Win or lose, it's always fun. My thumb still feels jammed, and some movements just hurt.

After work, I went for a haircut. I had Jenny again, but she reintroduced herself... so I also reintroduced myself to not feel so awkward about it. Then, we started talking about video games. Cool right? Makes me seem really nerdy, but whatevs.

Stopped by my parents house to pick up mail. I'll eventually get my taxes done. I hope.

Took it easy for the rest of the night.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

2011.02.16 Wednesday

I snoozed a bit too much today. I had about half as much time to get ready for work as normal, but I was still ready on time. Success.

Work went ... swimmingly. I will be attending a high school science fair next week for judging, and a project I worked on was praised for "doing the impossible".

After work I went for a run. This time, I got lost. I made a wrong turn from what I had planned beforehand, and I ended up on streets I didn't recognize. In light of this, I was still able to run a pretty lengthy distance. I also timed myself and found out that my pace is about 9 minutes per mile. Not bad.

Cooked up some ground angus beef, bowtie pasta, baby carrots and hummus for dinner. Kelc liked the angus beef; it was not seasoned at all.

Played Left 4 Dead 2 with the boyz.


Tuesday, February 15, 2011

2011.02.15 Tuesday

Oh goodness am I groggy today.

Work, then class. Free Pizza!

Then over to Kelc's for dinner number 2, and some hanging out.

Then back home to play L4D2 with Mark. Dark Carnival.

Tuesdays are pretty plain and simple since all my time is scheduled already.

2011.02.14 Monday (V-Day)

Happy Valentines Day to all. Today we celebrate... well each other really. This is a made-up holiday, and even though more people know that, they still get hurt if nothing special happens. Cool holiday.

Work is going along sludgingly. Yeah I just created a word.

At the end of work, a handful of coworkers went to the cafeteria to watch Jeopardy. Today is a big day for computers, as IBM has created a "smart" machine able to piece together intricacies of human language to respond to the clever puzzles of the game. I texted Kelc and my sister about "Watson" being on Jeopardy, and they both thought it was my sister's ex boyfriend. Hilarity ensued. Oh and Watson did rather well on the game show.

Went home, ran for 1.5 miles uninterrupted. I think at the very end I was starting to get a second wind, or a "runner's high", or something. My calves felt like they had a lot of lactic acid buildup, which is a lot better than having shin-splints. After that, Habs and Taytay wanted to go toss around a some discs outside, and I brought the football along. Those disc-golf discs are not multi-player friendly.

Took a shower, played some L4D2 until Kelc came over.

We had a romantic candle-lit dinner with a gourmet chicken dinner. A dozen pieces of chicken breast lightly breaded and pressure-cooked in peanut oil, with a whole chicken breast breaded and prepared similarly. The whole chicken breast was placed plainly on a two pieces of wheat bread that was lightly buttered and toasted. To supplement the pieces of chicken, a spicy vinegar based orange sauce was used for dipping and sampling. As a side, a handful of potatoes were sliced at perpendicular angles repeatedly, then tossed in a blend of canola and palm oils until slightly golden, then pulled out and sprinkled lightly with salt. To drink, we started with hand-squeezed lemons, add plenty of water and sugar to make a delicious lemonade. --Yeah we had Chik Fil A.

After that, we took our candle-light evening to my room, where we watched Playing By Heart. Lots of big name actors doing less-than-spectacular acting.

The rest is history.

Monday, February 14, 2011

2011.02.13 Sunday

Woke up late. Sleeping in went well. I spent the morning taking care of a few last-minute errands for Vday. I went over to FedEx Kinkos on Parmer. Unfortunately their system was having a hard time, so I waited around for 20 minutes or so, tried using some of their self-service terminals, but really just needed a person to help me. So I left. Went over to another FedEx Kinkos that had plenty of staff and a running computer system. They were able to help me within minutes. Then I met up with Kelc.

She was strategically located at Momiji Hibachi and Sushi with family and friends. I just happened to be in the area, so I joined in on their fun. After the meal, I decided I really wanted a shake. Here is why I was stressed out for half of Sunday.

First stop, Sonic. America's drive-in. I spent about 5-6 minutes waiting at one of the car slots (pushed the button twice) and received no response. I thought that maybe this spot was broken, and might have better luck with the drive-thru since other people seemed to be getting served. I spent another 5-6 minutes waiting at the drive-thru and still didn't receive a response. Thats enough waiting, going elsewhere...
As much as I dislike about McDonald's for being fake with everything, I figured they know how to run a business. I mean, they are open most hours of the day, and strive to serve people as fast as possible. So I wait in a 3-car line at the drive-thru to get a shake. By the time I get to the intercom, the service associate on the other end says "sorry, we are out of shakes and ice cream products". That leaves me in a shock. First off, I cannot believe they are out of a menu item. That is uncommon for McD's. Secondly, how is a shake not included in their "ice cream" category of food? *gasp*
Next, I figured that if a business couldn't fulfill my desire for a shake, I might as well do it myself. I drove across the street to HEB. I spent about 5 minutes trying to just drive across the parking lot. There were ZERO spots available, and everybody would follow people with their shopping carts to try and get a spot. Once I made my way across the parking lot, I continued onwards to Target. Surely they will be less busy and have what I need.
Parking and getting in to Target was relatively easy. Unfortunately the ice cream is on the opposite side from the entrance, so I had to walk the length of the building. Grabbed something that looked decent (Blue Bell was 7 bucks for a half-gallon) and headed for the checkout. I couldn't tell if people were giving me looks, but I was walking rather swiftly past them. At the checkout, I was behind a young lady, and two older ladies. Well guess what, both of the older ladies paid by check. I didn't think they were that old. By the time the girl in front of me was getting attended to, another cashier came up to me saying they were available to help me out. A sparkling moment of generosity in a monumental stack of failures. Maybe things will turn around from here.
Grabbed my goods, pulled out of the parking spot and was about to turn on to the main path of the lot... and was stopped by another older lady driving a convertible, but she was really sitting in the middle of the road. Eventually she put it in reverse and went some random way through the parking lot. Unpredictable driving is just begging for wrecks. Made my way through the HEB parking lot again, and right as I get to 620 to leave, a huge pack of cars recently released from a red light heads my way. Icing on the cake really.

At Kelc's, we spent a few minutes exchanging some Vday stuff, then watched The Social Network. Interesting movie. I didn't feel like the music was very intrusive on the story, just nice ambiance. I still haven't formed a solid opinion about the movie, but as typical Andy-style, I don't think it was that great, just interesting. I also don't like how Jesse Eisenberg has one style of acting.

Watched the tail end of Cyrus after that, just trying to finish what Kelc and her mom started. I barely remember seeing previews for this movie, but it's exactly how I imagined it would be. Awkward.

After the movies, we played around with Kelc's new hd-dvr box from time warner cable. Seems like some channels have a hard time coming through, but the emptiness on the hard drive allows the box to be really responsive.

Dinner time. Kelc and I went to Applebee's. The usual. We met a high school friend who talked to us about various bands and things he has kept up with.

Went home, colored with some crayons. Bedtime.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

2011.02.12 Saturday

Slept in super late today. Felt pretty darn good.

Spent the day relaxing, gaming, whatever-ing. Also felt pretty good.

I received a call from Mark to make some shirts with him. We were dying most of the late evening. It's hard to work on something, then know you have to wait to see the fruits of your labor. To take our minds off that, we played some SNES and NES games from yesteryears.

Home, sleep.

Friday, February 11, 2011

2011.02.11 Friday

Woke up today and began to get dressed. When I put on my undershirt, I felt some extra fabric on my arm. Surprise! It's that sock that went missing weeks ago when I did laundry. I thought I was going crazy for losing a new sock.

During lunch time at work, the guys went out to play some flag football. Good times were had.

I spent most of the evening relaxing and playing games. Mark has L4D2 now. Kelc is in Michigan. Good times.

2011.02.10 Thursday

Today started off just poorly. To make things better, I started getting a headache about an hour after I arrived at work. Add some meetings to the mix, and you got yourself a (brain)stew.

Ate a small lunch: salad. Size-wise it's small, but calorie and fat -wise it's probably terrible. Yay.

At home, I played some games online with Habs and Marky Mark. Kelc came over with a chunk of meat, as I was planning on grilling some, but found out we are out of charcoal. I'll have to pick some up next time at HEB.

For dinner we cooked our respective meats, I had a strip steak, Kelc had a top round cut. We boiled up some potatoes and green beans. Good meal. During dinner we watched some of the latest Tosh.O and Office.

Then it was late, but not too late, so I decided to go to bed.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

2011.02.09 Wednesday

Woke up groggy today. But I was able to get myself ready to go relatively quickly, as was Hasbro. Kelc on the other hand... wanted to sleep in.

Work happened. Nothing too exciting to talk about. Lunch was a salad and popcorn (since it was movie day at the cafeteria).

Went home, took care of a few things, then off to Kelc's. From her place, we left to drive all the way over to the 620/71 galleria. There they have a very large Twin Liquors. I picked up some very specific wine options. Merkin Chupacabra, a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Petit Verdot, and Petit Syrah. Other Merkin wines are usually made from Arizona grapes, but this is an exception from California. I actually picked up the last bottle, as the next batch should be coming out this spring. The second bottle I picked up is an Arizona Stronghold Mangus, a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Sangiovese, and Merlot. This one I was particularly interested in trying out. The third and final wine is an Arizona Stronghold Nachise, a blend of Syrah, Grenache, Petite Sirah, and Mourverdre. The wine guy at Twin Liquors says the Nachise is actually one he enjoyed a lot; said to cook up some couscous and lamb to go with it for a wonderful evening. Will do sir, will do.

On the way home, we stopped by Two Hot Mamas Grill for some burritos. Interesting place, and interesting way of filling up their food/customers. Slightly pricey, but good ingredients. I'll probably try it again whenever I'm in the area.

Back at Kelc's place, we popped in the blu-ray of Deliverance. Around the 30 minute mark, the plot still had no direction. If you combine that and my level of tiredness, it makes sense that I fell asleep. So I have a tendency to be critical about movies, just something I do. One thing that bugged me about this movie in particular is the sound. They either didn't match up the audio for the blu-ray edition, or the original sound from the movie was really just bad studio audio overlaying the movie. I think this wouldn't have been a huge problem if they got to the some plot or storyline sooner, but since I had nothing interesting to follow, the lack of audio-sync just kept jumping out at me. Also something to consider is that this was released in the early 70s, so it's not exactly fair to be so critical of the small stuff.

After watching a chunk of the beginning and the chunk of the end, then having been filled in with the remainder of the story, the story wasn't actually that bad. After thinking about it some, I think it's kind of cool that this is a far-fetched story that could actually happen (unlike just about everything in the theaters today, which is super-heroes and futuristic impossibilities). Since the story is a possibility, you really get to see how the actor portrayed someone going through these circumstances, and seeing how that affected them. It's almost more about getting into the minds of the characters and understanding what they are experiencing.

So I have mixed feelings about a movie a half watched. Oh well.

Went home. Fast asleep.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

2011.02.08 Tuesday

Happy half-birthday to Kelc.

Today was work then class. Work was average. Class was half-draining and half-entertaining. Dinner was free pizza. Yay.

At home after class, I felt like I had plenty of time, but it was actually rather late. Kelc came over and spent the evening with me.

Not a lot to write about because the majority of the day was spent before I had any of my own time.

Monday, February 7, 2011

2011.02.07 Monday

Woke up before my alarm, then went back to sleep, then had a hard time waking up to my alarm. Cool. Left for work a bit early to try and get this day started. The faster I get done with work, the sooner I get to see Kelc. I haven't seen her in 2 weeks. Feels like forever.

Kelc ended up meeting me for lunch because we wanted to see each other, and she happened to be in the area. We went across the street to Subway (super romantic, yo) which I've only been to a few times, even though it's so close to work. We caught up on a lot of things, talked about her adventures at the Super Bowl.

Eventually I went back to work and multi-tasked catching up on class at the same time.

Went home, played some L4D2 with hasbro. Kelc surprised me with a dinner of Chik-fil-a since I was denied yesterday. Sweetness.

Spent the night catching up, and watching City Island.

2011.02.06 Sunday

Super Bowl 45 is today. That's XLV in fancy shmancy roman numerals.

Woke up and had to reorient myself with living at home. Being in vacation mode really changes up the daily routines.

I thought it would be a good idea to get some Chik-fil-a for lunch, so I hopped in my car and drove over there. My car needed a decent drive since it had been sitting for a week, and through a snow storm. Upon arrival, turns out I'm an idiot. Why would Chik-fil-a be open on Super Bowl Suday? SILLY ME.

Went over to HEB and picked up some goods for the game. I'll probably need to do some shopping here later in the week as well. I don't have much at home. Picked up some Quiznos for lunch. That turned out to be mediocre, again.

Played some Left 4 Dead 2, then people started arriving for the game. We also started up the grill and threw on some smoke chips. Food turned out pretty tasty, the game was less than epic, and the half-time show was just disappointing. At least I was able to hang out with friends, and eat tons of food.

Cleaned up the kitchen and prepared for bed. I actually spent a good chunk of the night updating my blog from all the vacation days. Sorry if you have a ton to catch up on now. I also don't want to sound whiny, but I miss Kelc. The week before my vacation she went up to New York for family, and got stuck there until I was leaving for vacation. *sigh* Goodnight.

2011.02.05 Saturday - Lake Tahoe

Travel day. I tried to sleep in as late as possible, but other people like to wake up super early and stress about things beyond their control.

I was packed up rather quickly, ate some small bites to eat and was out the door. Then I helped get other people out the door.

We checked out of the condo, then started the drive to the airport. We had quite a bit of time (again), so we stopped by McD's to get breakfast and relax.

We arrived at the airport and returned the rental vehicles, then checked out luggage and headed to security. The lines were rather short and painless. Turns out we were at our gate about 1.5 hours ahead of time. FaNtAsTiC. So we played Apples 2 Apples, because I didn't put that in my checked baggage.

Eventually, we flew off to Phoenix, where we were supposed to have about 20 minutes of layover before boarding, but they took a lot of time preparing the plane so that ran late. Hopped on the next plane to Austin.

The standard flying altitude of 30,000 feet was too choppy, so the pilots decided, "what the heck, let's see what 39,000 feet is like". It was a lot smoother, surprisingly. We were still going to be landing late.

Landed, off the plane and all our luggage in hands within 20 minutes. Love the Austin airport.

Drove home, unpacked, and finally got on the internet after about a week of absence. I almost didn't know what to do with it anymore.

And a day of traveling (waiting) was over.

2011.02.04 Friday - Lake Tahoe

Last full day in Tahoe. We waited around at the condo until we could check in to our flights. In the meantime we watched Get Smart.

Today is another relaxing day. Sometime in the afternoon, we headed out to do some shopping on the California-side of Tahoe, then walked through a few casinos on the Nevada-side, then stopped by an arcade to play some old-school skee-ball. I made money off a penny slot. Woo hoo.

I tried shopping around for gifts for people, but I didn't like the over-pricing and how silly most of the stuff was. I figure it would be wrong of me to add to the clutter of others when I need to de-clutter myself. Also, some of the things I was considering was food, and I'm not sure how long that stuff had been sitting around. Eck.

We tried to eat as much of the leftovers as we could, because the rest would be thrown away. Played some Spades and Apples 2 Apples.

Then snoozed.

2011.02.03 Thursday - Lake Tahoe

Went to Red Hut for breakfast. It's a micro-chain of restaurants similar to waffle house, but super greasy and good.

Today's goal: day trip to Virginia City. This place is old-school Nevada. Home of a mining craze, and Mark Twain (?). I bought some taffy at the the Barrels O Candy store, and some Pistachio Brittle (similar to peanut brittle) at another candy store. Lots of specialty shops, but not a lot of people around. Took some pictures here and there.

Kelc sent a message saying there had been some video shootings of haunted/super-natural activities. I'm not sure if this is what encouraged my dad, but he wanted to go check out the cemetery. I wasn't too keen on the idea, and my sister full out refused to go walk around. Honestly, it seems like a nice place to be buried. I took some pictures, found some Masonic symbols, and felt creeped out a couple times. Oh well.

Stopped by the Chocolate Nugget on the way home. At home I was asleep rather early.

2011.02.02 Wednesday - Lake Tahoe

Today was Spa day. David Willey's spa to be more precise.

I was first in line to receive a 60-minute Swedish massage by Jeff. This was my first time getting a massage like this, so I didn't know what to expect. Turns out this guy used to be in a band that opened for The Offspring way before they hit it big. Far out! Eventually he decided that band lifestyle wasn't for him. Something about stage-freight. I can totally understand that. Also found out that he did some miracle cures for his daughter when she was a baby just by understanding the human body better than the doctors.

My brother started coming down with some sickness, and that's the only reason I had a time slot to get a massage. Also found out he was the best masseuse at the place, and I just happened to be there at the right time.

After the massage, I went to sit in the hot sulfur baths outside. Then tried the steam room, and then back out to the sulfur baths. Super relaxing day.

For dinner, we went to a highly rated (urbanspoon) chinese restaurant for dinner. Quite possibly one of the best cost-effective meals for this entire trip. Super good.

2011.02.01 Tuesday - Lake Tahoe

Today was ski day. Drove out to Sierra @ Tahoe. Geared up and jumped onto some "magic carpets" to take us up the slopes. I was pretty bored with the lessons and wanted to just cruise around. My brother started getting the hang of it pretty well, but couldn't quite get the heelside edge down. My sister was afraid of moving and just kept falling on her butt. (It's very frustrating to watch).

We ate lunch at the lodge there. Just so happened to also be a bar. Pretty good sandwiches actually.

I went back out on the slopes for some more fun. The rest of my family had pretty much called it quits.

Back at the condo, we had baked potatoes for dinner. Everybody is exhausted. Including me.

2011.01.31 Monday - Lake Tahoe

Today we spent a fair amount of time dealing with breakfast again. If it were up to me, I would rather not worry about preparing food and cleaning up.

Drove out to Heavenly and Sierra to get pricing on gear and lessons for skiing and snowboarding.

Went to a highly rated (on urbanspoon) bar in Lake Tahoe that had some pretty awesome homemade recipes.

Drove over to Emerald Bay and around some cool windy roads to take pictures. Breathtaking views galore.

Went shopping around for a little, then picked up some ski gear for a few of us.

Tacos for dinner, then I passed out.

2011.01.30 Sunday - Lake Tahoe

First full day in Tahoe. Starting vacation off right by cooking 3 pounds of bacon. Hellz to the yeah. With all the bacon drippings, I decided to try a new bacon recipe: Scramble-Fried Egg. Now I know how to fry an egg, and I'm pretty sure I know how to prepare scrambled eggs, but I've never seen the mix of that... until now. I whipped together an egg, some milk, and a dash of salt and pepper; then poured this mixture into a pan of hot bacon fat. Results: not bad, but not really something that can be presented well. It looks like you think it would, and it's kinda hard to get out of the bacon fat.

This is slightly out of order, but one of the reasons I was able to cook so much and play around in the kitchen is because a huge snow storm blew across the mountain last night. Since we were on the top floor of a wooden structure way up on a mountain, it was rather easy to feel the building sway back and forth. I actually rolled across my bed because it was swaying so much. Didn't bother me too much. Anyways, the path down to the vehicles was snow covered, and the vehicles were stuck in snow, so we just had to wait. Oh, and this knocked out the cable TV. during breakfast we watched Hot Rod.

Later in the afternoon, we dressed up in our snow gear and went out to the park to play in the snow. We all did some sledding. I dug myself a cave. I like digging caves, but it's hard work.

For dinner, we went to the Lakeside Inn Casino restaurant. Good food. Very filling.

Back to the condo, still no TV (my family thrives on TV). We played some card games and had some classic fun. Then bed.

2011.01.29 Saturday - Lake Tahoe

The day has come; the journey of vacation is here.

Work up super early, showered, took care of some last minute things. I was ready before my scheduled departure time. Great. So I made a call to see if my ride was going to be here at the expected time. Nope. Someone is making excuses for a sensitive stomach.

Even though the ride was late arriving, we were at the airport with plenty of time to spare. Security was surprisingly pleasant; one of the security guys was lively and had a way of taking off some of the nervous edge most people get. For breakfast, I picked up some Antie Anne's pretzels. Breakfast of champions.

Flew to LAX for about an hour of layover.

Flew into Reno. My cousin, Karen, came out of nowhere and met up with us. Grabbed the bags and grabbed a couple rental vehicles. We were in Reno ready a bit on the early side, so we went to In-N-Out to grab lunch. Delicious meal. I had an "extra toast hamburger" with fries and a drink. My sister did a few things that aren't on the normal menu too.

Arrived at the condo early, but luckily that was not a problem. We had the keys, we just needed to unload all the luggage. This proved to be quite daunting of a task. The 3 bedroom condo we had was on top of a hill, and had over 80 steps to climb up to get in. Add near 50lb luggage, the high altitude, and winter clothing... quite the challenge.

Once everybody was settled in, we left to go pick up groceries at the store. Word around town is that a storm is blowing through, and it's possible that we might be stuck up on a mountain for a day.

Cooked up a dinner, drank some wine, and passed out. What a long day.