Sunday, August 30, 2009

Beth the Baker

Beth got a bread recipe last weekend from a friend of ours and decided to give it a try today. When it comes to cooking, Beth does all of the baking in the house because I don't have the patience to measure everything out(which is required in baking). I prefer cooking when I can just throw random ingredients together and make something good out of them. I don't have to worry how many tablespoons I put in. Anyway, the bread Beth made was Italian bread with a bunch of different herbs. The final product was pretty darn good, I must admit.





We had a pretty good weekend although pretty uneventful. Friday night we just hungout and had dinner at Charleston's. Ever since I took Beth there for the first time, we've been hooked. I think that was our third time to go there in the past few months and considering we haven't had many weekends in Tulsa, that's quite a few. Yesterday I got up and went and played golf with my good friend Matt T. I've known Matt since I was about 8 and we were roommates our freshman year of college. I've started playing golf a little bit more lately and was pretty excited when I shot an 86 on Saturday.

Last night, we had Matt and his girlfriend over along with my friend Seth and his wife Karen over. We just hungout, grilled out, and played corn hole. Beth and I bought a patio set at Garden Ridge a few months ago and it was the first time we got to use it. It was a lot of fun for us all to get together. We had planned to go to the Hard Rock Casino after dinner to check it out, but it ended up getting late and we decided to pass.

Today we got up and just hungout around the house. Then we went and ran a few errands before coming back and watching golf(Beth's favorite). Stacy had a pretty good weekend at the Safeway Classic in Portland and we can't wait to watch her play in person at the Northwest Arkansas LPGA tournament in a couple of weeks. After watching golf, we decided to go play some tennis and then go running. Beth and I decided on an impulse last weekend to buy tennis racquets and start playing tennis. I must admit, Beth has gotten a lot better since the last time we played. Which is a little surprising considering I don't think she's played since the last time we played. Oh well.

On a side note, my sister and her husband are getting ready to be the proud owners of a new house in the French countryside west of Paris. They stumbled upon a great house that they instantly fell in love with. And fortunately for them, it was in their price range, and their offer was accepted. Beth and I are really excited for them and the kids and can't wait to get over there to see it in person. You can check out my sister's blog here.

Next weekend we are headed to Dallas for the OU/BYU football game. Should be a good time to hangout with friends and watch a great football game at the Dallas Cowboys' new stadium.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Just Skype Me

Beth and I started using Skype last summer when Janet(Beth's sister) was over in France for study abroad. I had heard about using the internet as a video phone before but every experience I had ever had was slow and boring. The video feed was terrible and the delay was so bad that it didn't even make it worth your while. But now that Skype is around, I've definitely changed my tune. It has really given us the chance to talk to my sister and the kids nearly every week and actually get to see them while we're talking to them. And did I mention that it's free? A free phone call to France is pretty nice. It was also nice for Beth and I during our 4 months of being in separate cities. Sometimes just seeing each other(even if it is on the computer) makes you feel closer. Yesterday we got a call from my sister and the kids and enjoyed hearing what they were up to. We don't get to visit them as much as we'd like, but at least we get to see them nearly every week.


Thursday, August 20, 2009

Let's play some Corn Hole!!!

Beth and I were first introduced to corn hole about 3 years ago when we went to Ohio for a golf tournament.(At least I had never played it before) This summer, our games of corn hole got pretty serious up in Ohio(with Dale and I dominating everyone of course) and we decided it was time to get a set of our own. After playing again during our trip to Portland, I went on a search to find a good set.

We had first thought about making our own but as we figured out how much it would cost and the hassle of it, I found a great website that you could build your own set and have it shipped to you. Today, our new corn hole set arrived!


I got a "rivalry" set which means each board is a different color from opposing teams. As you can tell, one board is burnt orange and one is crimson and cream. To go with the Alma Mater theme, I got dark green and light blue bean bags which match Beth's high school alma mater, The Woodlands High School Highlanders and my high school alma mater, the Bartlesville High School Bruins. I think I know what we'll be doing this weekend. Playing Corn Hole!!!!!

I've also included a couple pics from our painting. The first one didn't turn out that great because I couldn't get the flash to work. The second pic is of one of our guest bedrooms. As you can tell, there's not much in the room(a bed, a tv, and a desk).


Tuesday, August 18, 2009

NO MORE PAINTING!!!

This past weekend marked the ending of painting our house! Beth's Dad was nice enough to come spend the weekend with us to help us finish. Luckily we only had three rooms left and were able to get them all done. We painted our two spare bedrooms the same color as the other common areas in our house. And we painted our master bathroom a blueish color. Since we just painted our last house in Houston last year, we were very experienced in not only picking out colors, but also figuring out the best way to paint. (Not to mention Beth's Dad is a painting expert)

On a side note, we ate very good this weekend. Friday night we went to The Brook on Brookside(One of my and Beth's favorites!). And on Saturday night we ate at Hideaway Pizza(another favorite). I think we've convinced Beth's Dad that there really is good food in Tulsa. Speaking of good food, we have yet to find any good Mexican food in Tulsa. We've been to Ted's, Abuelo's, and El Tequila so far and have been disappointed each time. Any other suggestions? Coming from Texas, we're used to the good stuff and have yet to find it.

Anyway, we'll post some painting pictures soon and hopefully write more when we get a chance.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

1 Year!

I'm not sure if Beth ever wrote about this so I figured that I would really quickly. Beth and I celebrated our one year anniversary two weeks ago on July 26th. We were actually coming back from Portland on the day of our anniversary so we couldn't really celebrate a whole lot. Although we did go out to dinner at TGI Friday's at the airport in Minneapolis. Talk about romantic!

The night before, we celebrated our anniversary at this great tapas restaurant in Portland called Toro del Bravo. I would definitely recommend checking it out if you are heading to Portland. The white sangria was great and it was kind of fun trying a bunch of different things.

(On a side note, I do have a few other recommendations if you are in Portland. White Water rafting with Zooraft, breakfast at Pine State Biscuits(the best biscuits around although a little expensive), Byways Cafe for breakfast, and Stumptown Coffee(you can get it at some of the restaurants, but they also have a few cafes in Portland as well))

After getting back from Portland, I decided that we could do a mini celebration of our anniversary on Monday after I got done with work. I know that one of the main ways that couples celebrate their one year anniversary is by eating the topper of their wedding cake from the year before. Unfortunately for Beth and I, this wasn't possible as we lost our wedding cake last September when we lost power for 16 days following Hurricane Ike. So instead of eating our own wedding cake, I decided to get a cake similar to ours from a local bakery. We also had a bottle of Champagne that I had bought last year for our wedding, but that we didn't end up drinking. There's a flower shop in my office building so I stopped and got some flowers on the way out the door and we had a nice enjoyable anniversary celebration.





Since it has been a year since we got married, I figured I would do a quick year in review. Over the past year either Beth, myself, or both of us have done the following:

  • Traveled to 4 different countries(Thailand, China(Hong Kong), France, and Belgium)

  • Changed jobs twice(Beth started at a new school last August and is now starting her third year of teaching at her third school)

  • Sold our first house

  • Bought our second house

  • Moved over 500 miles

  • Gone to New York City

  • Went to the Orange Bowl

  • Lived apart for 4 months

  • Painted our entire house(with a little help of course...thanks Dale and Carol!)

  • Bought season tickets to OU football!!!!


And realized how much we love each other and hated living apart after finally moving back in together in June after living in separate cities because of our jobs.

Confession

I like to drive fast. And for those who know me, this isn't really much of a confession at all. In fact, those who know me and either A. know how impatient I am or B. have ridden with me, to say I like to drive fast is an understatement.

I will admit though that as I've gotten older, I've definitely started driving closer to the speed limit and in fact probably drive the speed limit(or maybe just a tad over) more times than not. And now that I think about it, I'm pretty sure that Beth was the last one of the two of us to get a speeding ticket. It's been about 3 and a half years for me, but maybe only 3 years for Beth.

A few years ago I was lucky enough to go to Germany and drive on the autobahn. A lot of people think that the autobahn is a special road in Germany with no speed limit. Really though, the autobahn is just the german word for the federal highways in Germany. And not a specific name given to a certain stretch of road. It would be like an Interstate in the US(think I45 between Dallas and Houston just without a speed limit).

While in Germany, I must admit that I had a ton of fun driving between the many cities we visited. The top speed I drove was 155 mph with an average speed of about 130 mph. The great thing about driving in Germany is not only the lack of a speed limit, but also that everyone there knows how to drive. They know that unless you are going faster than EVERYONE else or passing someone, the left lane shouldn't be driven in. You didn't have to worry about traffic because everyone was driving in the right lane. If you wanted to pass, you just passed them. I can't wait to take Beth to Germany someday and not only show her around but drive on the autobahn again.

Fast forward to now when we are living in Oklahoma. I literally almost have a nervous breakdown on a daily basis as I drive to and from work. Not only do Oklahoma drivers drive slow, but they also drive slow in the left lane, the middle lane, the right lane, and any other lane that can be filled with slow drivers. If the speed limit is 65, count on most people driving 60....and in the left lane. So not only are you driving under the speed limit, you can't pass because there are cars in every lane! This absolutely drives me crazy. In fact, I've even said before that if I was ridiculously rich, I would spend the money on a national PSA about driving in the left lane. Beth knows how much I hate this and likes to joke that it is a "pandemic." It's funny, but may actually be true. The definition of pandemic is "an epidemic over a wide geographical area" and based on my experience, this holds true. I have a close friend that even told me that he drives under the speed limit to save gas(thus saving money). I told him that if he lived in Houston, he'd either get shot or beat up.

When I pass a slow driver in the left lane, I'm always fascinated to see what they are doing. I want to know how someone could be so clueless. In Oklahoma I've noticed people texting, on their cell phone, talking to their passenger, or just not paying attention to the world around them as reasons for slow driving.

So what's my point? Not sure if I have one really. Most people I talk to about this problem, complain just like I do(maybe not quite to the same extent). Which leads me to believe that either everyone I talk to never drives slow in the left lane or people do it and just don't know it. My thought is the latter. So this is all I ask.....drive the speed limit and stay out of the left lane unless you are going faster than everyone else or passing someone. After all, if you took drivers ed.(like I did), it's something you were supposed to have been taught.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Officially a Jenks Teacher

The lack of posts is due to the fact I have actually started working again. I can't believe how fast the summer has gone and that it's already time to start back to school. I have to say this summer has been especially short since Texas schools get out later than Oklahoma schools, so I got about a week or two less than normal. It hasn't been a regular schedule yet, but every day this week I've had various meetings with people at the intermediate school where I'll be working and district type of stuff for new teachers. It's just as overwhelming as it has been the past two years being new to a district and re-learning everything. I am SO ready to stay at a school for more than a year! I'm not very stressed out about it though because I know it all works out fine in the end and you always find your people to go ask about things.

I'm going to be teaching 6th grade math, science, and pre-algebra. I've already met with fellow teachers to go over curriculum type stuff. Now it's down to moving in, which is tomorrow. The school has had a bunch of renovations this year and no one has been able to go into the building this summer. So everyone is going to be frantic tomorrow trying to get things in and organized. I'm hoping Tony will be able to help me either tomorrow afternoon or Saturday because I have a lot of boxes that we brought. I'll be glad when those are gone from the guest room! Needless to say there are some heavy ones, so hopefully that will work out. To add to all the moving in stuff, I have to take a certification test on Saturday at noon. Oklahoma has 3 certification tests, Texas has 2, so I have to take another test to be fully certified. I have 2 years to do this because I'm temporarily certified for 2 years, but with our relocation package they reimburse my job expenses within the first year. Tests ain't cheap, so I'm going to go ahead and get it out of the way.

So that's what the next few days look like for me. School actually starts next Thursday. Lots to do before then!

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