Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Nothing to Report, Sir!

Okay, I've been trying to think about something new to write about, but nothing exciting really comes to mind. I've been diligently reading my "Rough Guide to Switzerland" and learning a lot about the country. Nerdy, I know. Hey, what can I say, I'm excited.

Jennie and I found some great deals at J. Crew today. I'll be wearing my new pants tomorrow. We ate at the all new 5 Star Taco Bell in Lapeer today. There's something wrong about eating 89 cent tacos in such a nice restaurant. I should have taken some photos to share. Maybe sometime soon!

Jennie and I are presenting at a conference in Detroit in March (more to come on that.) We're also teaching a community-education class at the Ed-Tech center on Thursday nights.

Okay, more to come...

Friday, January 26, 2007

Welcome, Mom and Dad!

I wanted to take a minute to welcome my mom and dad to the information Superhighway. Before January 23rd, they were only on the information "highway." Actually, it was more like a dirt trail. I'll still never understand how they managed so long with so-so dial-up internet service. But enough about the past, they now have DSL and I've noticed an increased use of the World Wide Web. Good for you! Since you've got a lot of catching up to do, here is my suggested list of things to do (in no particular order)

-Download all of your Windows updates
-Watch lots of video (YouTube, Google Video, Cable 6, etc.)
-Check your email hourly
-Start a blog
-Scan in photos and upload them to a site to share
-Download Skype
-Get a webcam

Have fun, Mom and Dad!

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

It's a Good Thing I Like Toblerone!

Jennie and I got some great news today! We both have been accepted into the University of Michigan Flint's Master's of Arts in Education program. It's called "Technology in Education - Global Program."
The program runs 15 months. As someone who loves to travel, the best part about the program is sure to be the two consecutive summer residencies we'll do in Geneva, Switzerland.

So, our planning begins...

So, Step 1 (get everything in order to apply)

Step 2 (get accepted)

Step 3 (celebrate)

Step 4 (find money)
IN PROGRESS. If anyone out there reading this has some extra money lying around, I will be taking donations for the next 15 months. Jennie and I are both filling out our FAFSA forms in the hopes of securing some loan money to help us out. We'll be stretched with both of us in the program at the same time. I know we'll work it out, but seriously, if you have extra cash, I take PayPal!

More to come. Thanks to U-M Flint for taking a chance on me! And to those of you who were kind enough to write letters of recommendation, expect some Toblerone sometime in August!

Sunday, January 21, 2007


Thirty years ago yesterday, the world forever changed. Whether that change was for better or for worse is largely the opinion of who you talk to. I turned the big 3-0 yesterday. Now that I am 30 years and 1 day old, I can tell you that being thirty is much like 29. I am going to use the event of the dawn of my third decade to make some positive changes in my life. Not that I'm doing all that bad, but I would, for example, like to get to the gym more.

Anyway, back to my birthday. Jennie really went all out for my big day this year. She planned a surprise party for me at 227 Bistro in Rochester. Until about midnight the night before, I really had no idea! Here is the abbreviated story:
About a month ago, I noticed that my boss, Tom, had taken me off of a Saturday at WDIV and replaced me with Phil, one of the full time directors. I found it strange that Phil would want to come in on a Saturday. I grilled Jennie about whether or not she had for some reason called Tom. She said yes, and I figured the just wanted to spend the day together. Cool!

Then, about a week later, my friend Todd called and said that he would be coming up from Cleveland to see us. Again, I didn't find this strange, since he owed us a visit anyway. I honestly didn't even know if Todd knew it was my birthday. Still, I had no idea.

It wasn't until about 12:30am Friday night (or Saturday morning) that Jennie, Todd and I were driving back from the city that it hit me. I once again grilled Jennie and she, being a slightly below average liar, cracked. However, I still had no idea who would be there.

The night was great. After a fabulous steak dinner at 227 Bistro, we went to Gus O'Connors, just down the road. You should have been there, it was a great time. Thanks again to my wonderful wife, Jennie, for orchestrating the whole thing. You did an excellent job!

More photos below.....

More Photos From the 30th Birthday Extravaganza

More Photos from 227 Bistro, Rochester, MI

Jennie, Chris and I.

Lora and Jennie

Chris being naughty.

Dorothy, Mike, Jennie and I.

Jennie and Marina.

Marina, Jennie, Mike and Mary!

Erik and I.

Angie, Olive and Todd. What a group!

Mmmmm. Thanks Olive!

Dorothy and Mike.

Enjoying the Artwork.

Marina and Ryan.

Mike and Mary.

How Cute! Soon to be Daddy and Mommy again!

Friday, January 19, 2007

Hey Honey...

I want a sailboat.
:) Posted by Picasa

Final Exams

If you've been following along at home, you know that I work at a Career and Technical Center. Each day, I get students from the 5 school districts in the county who are bussed in to take my class. It's really a great way for the ISD to offer cutting-edge programs like mine that would be too expensive for each district to operate.

Anyway, we are in the midst of semester exams once again. This is the only time of year that having students from 5 unique districts can be complicated. Today, for example, our biggest district is off, as is one of our medium-sized districts. So, this morning, I have 8 of my 24 students. We're being as productive as possible, but it's a challenge. I can't really work too far ahead or else those off will be behind. This chaos lasts about 2 weeks and then it will be back to normal.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Stop Kidding Yourself, It's NOT A TiVo.

This post is directed to all of you who refer to your inferior DVRs (stands for digital video recorders) as TiV0. Face it, you're not in the club. I know you want to be...and there is hope. What am I talking about?

If you have a DVR from a company like Comcast, Dish Network or DirectTV and you don't see the friendly little TiVo person (as seen in the photo,) then you don't have a TiVo. True, you do have a DVR, but it is no TiVo, my friend.

Owning a TiVo is an experience in itself. Let me explain.

It all starts when you boot up your TiVo. After a few minutes of thinking and or organizing, you are greeted with a welcome animation of TiVo at the TiVo factory (where they apparently make gumballs.)

From there, TiVo slides into his (or her) spot at the top of the screen, ready to guide you through the TiVo experience. You will see a list of things to watch, either alphabetical by date or in neatly organized folders. Once you select a program, you'll see a little information about the show along with some options at the bottom. Press play and TiVo happy snaps into action with a little 'chrip.' How soothing.

If you have a show you really like, TiVo will help you record every episode! Just use the 'season pass' manager and TiVo will record the show any time it's on, only new episodes, or only when it is on a certain channel. Plus, you can tell TiVo how many episodes you'd like to keep! For example, I record David Letterman every night, but TiVo only keeps the current two.

What's more, TiVo likes to learn about you. For example, if you watch CaddyShack and then, maybe, Groundhog Day, TiVo thinks "hey, this guy must have a thing for Bill Murry. Hmm...I see I've got some extra space in my brain right now....and...What About Bob starts in 15 minutes....I know...I'll record it just in case!!"

There is no additional commitment on your end. If you don't watch What About Bob and TiVo needs the space, it will automatically be deleted.

I don't even have time to get into all the cool networking stuff you can do.

Now, I'm sure your DVRs do the same things--at least some of them--but nothing can compare to TiVo. So, please, if you have a DVR, call it that. If you have TiVo, welcome friend, welcome.

220 hp, 5 speeds, 0 cupholders

For those of you who know me, you are aware that last summer I purchased a 1995 Saab 900se Turbo Convertible as my commuter car. You also know that I got a great deal on it (at least until you add up all the work I put into it.)

I am writing to report that I still love the Saab. It's peppy, stylish (for 1995) and has heated seats. But, why can't it have at least 1 good cup holder?!?!?

That's right! Not even one stupid cup holder in the car. Sure, there are things that they probably call 'cup holders'. For example, if you flip up the center console, there is a 'hole' in the top in which one could probably put a drink. Two problems. First, when you flip up the door, it is literally in the back seat and you need to clock your body about half way around to fetch anything out of it. Second, the hole is only about an inch deep, so anything bigger than an 80z coffee cup is going to go flying out of it with any turn or sudden stop.

The next location that I've found 'cup holders' is in the glove box. These cupholder are also great...if you are having a picnic while parked on a very level surface. They are more indentations that actual cup holders.

I have had to be creative to come up with a solution for my beverage holding needs. I have resorted to driving around with a large roll of 2" gaffer's tape (like duct tape, only for video cabling) that I put on the passenger-side floor. The hole in the middle is big enough to hold most beverages...20oz bottles, stainless steel coffee mugs, etc. Problem solved....until I have a passenger!!

I just can't believe that in 1995 no one was drinking tasty beverages in their cars! I was just down at the auto show and I can confirm they have corrected this problem in the 2007 models. Whew!

Tuesday, January 16, 2007


Not too bad. kind of like the jeep compass.

Auto Show Bound...

My Interactive Media class is heading down to the auto show with the Sales and Marketing class. we are almost there!