January 2018 Misc Roundup

Will finished out his holiday visit with a board game with our neighbor Adam, and flew home with his giant backpack.

Lucy has a kindergarten buddy at school; got to bring home the class “pet” for a weekend; helped decorate for a surprise birthday party for her best friend’s mom; hung out with friends a lot; went rock climbing with her class;and is preparing for the school play.

Becky and I played Mario Kart with the Swenson kids while they took Grandpa Ken to the new Star War; enjoyed a dinner with good friends at Holdfast, procured a new pencil pouch; and started using this new sous vide thing.


Hank turned 3 this month!

#5: Firefly Marathon

It’s hard to find anyone who can stand sci-fi that doesn’t like Firefly. The show itself is popular, but the drama surrounding its making and cancellation is pretty engaging on its own. Becky has seen the whole series multiple times, but for me it’s only been once, so it was time to relive the magic.

This is part of our 100 Things in 2018 challenge. Make sure to click on the photos!

And yes, that’s us dressed as Mal and Kaylee for Halloween in 2010.

Ben: Oh man, this series was soooo good. It had so much potential, and it was hard to watch knowing the end was so close to hand. I loved the little details; the Chinese swearing, the little grammatical regionalisms, the nuance with which they treated the sex trade. I mean, the science was iffy at best, but the fiction. Now that we’ve finished I’m sad there’s no more to watch. This show deserved six more seasons.

Becky: It’s been 8 years since I’ve watched these through. They were a favorite of mine & Mike’s and we shared them with Ben & Margaret. Rewatching reminded me of just how big of a story this was supposed to be and just how unfinished the cancellation left each character’s storyline. The character development and their relationships are the best part of the show; you can’t help but be drawn in and want to know even more. The movie (years later) helped, but couldn’t reach the depth needed. There will always be a special place in my heart for this amazing story that almost was.

#27: Explore a New Beach Town; Oceanside

Now here’s a Thing that keeps showing up on our list. We love the Oregon coast, and there’s still plenty of it that we don’t know very well.

This is part of our 100 Things in 2018 challenge. Make sure to click on the photos!

Our new beach town this year is Oceanside, which is straight west of Tillamook. It’s off the beaten path, so it’s pretty small and quiet, which is exactly what we were looking for. We found a lovely Vacasa rental right over the beach, and it was even better than we had hoped for.

We spent two days and some change hiking, reading, watching movies, planning our podcast, eating (mostly in, but we did discover Roseanna’s Cafe, which is way better than it has any right to be), and just vacationing in general. It was perfect.

#82: Ben – Weightlifting App

Every once in a while, the skillset I’ve honed over 15 years in software development helps me out in my everyday life. If I were a carpenter or a plumber or a diesel mechanic, this would probably happen a lot more often, but given how weirdly divorced my profession is from the real world, I’m just glad it happens at all.

This is part of our 100 Things in 2018 challenge. Make sure to click on the photos!

I’ve been doing Crossfit for a while, and part of the program is weightlifting. When I first started, I had a paper notebook where I kept a log of what movement I was doing, how much weight, and how many reps. Then, the next time I did that movement, I’d have some idea of how much I could do. For example, if I deadlifted 185 lbs. in a set of 5 last week, I can probably do 195 in a set of 3 this week, and maybe more. This is much better than complete guesswork.

For a while I was going to a gym where this wasn’t so important; most of the movements were body weight, or light weight with lots of reps, and we’d do them maybe once a month, so writing them down seemed silly. But now I’m back at a Crossfit gym, and it has once again become useful to know how much I deadlifted last week.

Pen and paper would work, but it’s hard to search. So I wrote a simple web page where I can record my lifts, and look for them later.


You can use it too! Head over to weights.straub.cc, click Login, and provide a Google identity. If you’re nerdy like me, you can look at the source code, too.



December Misc Roundup

Lucy did a baking project with her friend Soha; she participated in the boys-in-pink day at school; and she and Will had fun tromping around the newly-frozen backyard.

I went to my last few workouts at the soon-to-be-closed Fit Ave, and I made a paleo gingerbread cake, and channeling the Great British Bake Off, topped it with fancy Italian meringue icing.

Becky and her sister helped sort through her dad’s medals and awards from TriMet, and some fun Polaroids from a holiday party she and Lucy attended.

The pups loved us; Hank is the neighborhood watch; and he made a friend at Camp Bradley.