Snow pictures, news, and things to come

This winter has been long and cold, and record snow amounts in Richmond. Anyone that knows Richmond knows that even with a threat of snow, the place shuts down. Almost the entire month of January we were covered under snow, with two weekends back to back bringing a foot each.

This did give me a chance to get outdoors and try out the new T1i with some snow pics, which you can see by clicking the picture above or just going directly to the set here.

But I have to be honest…I’m really tired of taking pictures of the snow. Its a beautiful time, but im ready to really have some fun with this camera without having to adjust for over-exposure or such a solid color.

Otherwise, there is quite a bit going on. I recently celebrated my 27th birthday, which was amazing. We ended out having a few friends over for a potluck dinner, and everyone had a great time. I’ve also been doing a ton of stuff at work – all of which is paying off and still fun as ever to be involved with. Finally, I have been playing a ton of video games. I finished Assassin’s Creed 2 (and the first DLC) as well as Modern Warfare 2 shortly after they came out. I have been playing Left4Dead 2 quite a bit as well. But more recently, I picked up my copy of Gears of War (the first) recently after letting a co-worker borrow it, and finished that (its a rather short game). Currently I am playing Gears of War 2, which is so much better than the first, and a really great game.

Recently, I also have been getting quite a few post ideas that I would like to share soon. I have a few things I want to write about software development, some home projects, as well as some general thoughts I have been having, especially when it comes to online communication. While I don’t want to set a timeline on these – I do have a growing list of ideas, I can’t wait to share them.

A somewhat disconnected and very enjoyable Christmas!

I didn’t get online much over the Christmas break, and for good reason. I was enjoying (as well as cursing at) the joys of home ownership (as well as celebrating the holidays).

Earlier last week, I started taping off most of the office. After we finished our Christmas shopping, we stocked up on supplies we needed for projects over the long weekend. The office is a light blue, and the living room / dining room/ halls will be an off-white color. After everything was prepped, it was time to ‘sign off’ and get to work.

After working half-day on Wednesday, we started moving a few items that were no longer needed from the office to other parts of the house. I was able to put up a coat of primer, mainly to give me a standard surface to paint on rather than the mix of thin lime-green paint over what used to be a pink room (note: this is the one room we did not touch when moving in). That night we went to go visit my dad’s side of the family for Christmas dinner and a gift exchange. We didn’t stay long, but it was nice to catch up with parts of the family, as well as to learn more about my cousins baby (who was born that morning!)

Deborah is still a little kid at heart on Christmas, so we usually get up rather early (that, and we are just so used to getting up at 7AM or earlier now, its hard to sleep in). After relaxing until 8, we exchanged our gifts. My wife (being the awesome one she is) gave me some cool new things:

  • Left4Dead (for the 360) and LittleBigPlannet (for the PS3)
  • Cocoa programing for Mac OS X – what I hear to be one of the best resources for learning Cocoa
  • Strut Tower Brace for my car – helps reduce body-roll in unibody cars. The SE-R’s have them, and her Stratus had one from the factory as well.
  • A Massage gift card – since im an old man (or at least feel like one), I get to relax for an hour and try to feel better!

Afterwords, there was a whirlwind of visits throughout the day, with the hopes of at least getting one coat of paint up. After going to her moms for breakfast, and then visiting my parents, we came home to cut-in and do the first coat of paint. This was able to dry while we went to my moms large Christmas dinner, and see quite a few faces we only see a few times a year. Friday we drove to Suffolk, VA to visit a close friend and her family, as well as do some shopping in Norfolk to just get out of town.

Since part of Saturday was pretty nice, we decided to get outside and start cleaning up the yard. But after the ‘perfect storm of events’ – tall grass, to much wind, and surprisingly little amounts of leaves to actually pick up, I just cut the front yard and called it quits. I usually love yardwork, but leaves are the one thing that really kills me. The weekend was already coming to an end, and I had yet to really get a chance to relax (or to finish the room).

Sunday was that day. I started painting the rest of the office, but ignored the ceiling and touch-ups (they will come when we move everything back out in 3 or so weeks). After playing some video games for a while, we put things back together in the office, and I also setup a new wireless router and redid part of our network.

During this entire time, I really never sat on the computer to check my feeds, respond to many emails, or see whats up on Facebook. The only time I actually really used the computer was to stream music while working. Though, I wasn’t fully disconnected, I obviously had my phone on me the entire time. I was able to respond to emails, check prices, chat with friends, and keep in touch like normal. This really attests to the iPhone’s versatility, and how useful a product like it can actually be. In some ways, the simplistic phone interface actually made tasks much easier than it would have been using a computer.

All in all it was  a great holiday. I have the office back to normal (somewhat) and ready to start on the next task (which is, in short, repaiting a large portion of the house, moving everything we own into 2 rooms, and tearing up carpet!).