Main > Joel's April 2007 News
.:Picture of the Day:.


Sunday, April 27th 2008

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Apple vending machine @ Macy's

We had all sorts of folks visit us this weekend, and more coming today after I head to the airport. We still haven't watched Mr. and Mrs. Smith yet. Darn. Last night, I went to Macy's and bought a whole mess of dress pants. Time for a little updating of the wardrobe. I took Josh with me to the fitting room. He kept getting on his hands and knees to look at other people under that semi-wall that divides fitting rooms. Also, he couldn't figure out if this was the bathroom.

BTW, check out the pics on the right. In the Men's department, there was an Apple vending machine which dispensed iPods, headphones, and other Apple hardware. I hadn't heard anything about this. Also, there is an Apple store in the adjoining mall. Weird!

I'm off to Toronto on business in a few mins. To save a little money on the budget, I'm going to drive my own car, and park at the airport. It costs me $300 roundtrip via car service, so let's see if this is better. Weather looks decent this week. See you all on Friday.


Thursday, April 24th 2008

Bob Seger & the Silver Bullet Band - "Against the Wind"

Play Against The Wind (4.09 Mb)

It seems like yesterday
But it was long ago
Janey was lovely she was the queen of my nights
There in the darkness with the radio playing low
And the secrets that we shared
The mountains that we moved
Caught like a wildfire out of control
'Til there was nothing left to burn and nothing left to prove
And I remember what she said to me
How she swore that it never would end
I remember how she held me oh so tight
Wish I didn't know now what I didn't know then

Against the wind
We were runnin' against the wind
We were young and strong, we were runnin'
Against the wind

The years rolled slowly past
And I found myself alone
Surrounded by strangers I thought were my friends
I found myself further and further from my home
And I guess I lost my way
There were oh so many roads
I was living to run and running to live
Never worryied about paying or even how much I owed
Moving eight miles a minute for months at a time
Breaking all of the rules that would bend
I began to find myself searching
Searching for shelter again and again

Against the wind
A little something against the wind
I found myself seeking shelter sgainst the wind

Well those drifter's days are past me now
I've got so much more to think about
Deadlines and commitments
What to leave in, what to leave out

Against the wind
I'm still runnin' against the wind
I'm older now but still runnin' against the wind
Well I'm older now and still runnin'
Against the wind
Against the wind
Against the wind


Wednesday, April 23rd 2008

The mural in Josh (and one day Lily's room) is shaping up nicely. This was the 2nd week, and the artist/student finished most of it. Next week, she'll put the finishing touches, and it's all ready to go. I'll take a picture and post when it's all done. I'm wondering what else we can do in their room to decorate and fix up. Oh yeah, a light fixture.

Guess again. The electrician came this morning, and installed ceiling light fixtures in both the kids' room and the guest room. Yeah, we don't have to rely on table lamps and my floor lamp. All that's left is painting both rooms.

It's been an interesting two months or so with all the little fixes we've been doing. We're talking about starting gardening this weekend, but we'll see if we have time. At least we should tidy up since the winter should be over now. The weather has been so nice this week.

I do say that I'm pretty tired getting up at 5:30am this week just to make that bus to NYC. I don't know how these other folks do it so regularly, day in and day out. Up at 5am, on a bus for 90 mins plus whatever walking/subway/bus to get to work, and then do the whole routine in reverse in the evening. Oy vey.


Tuesday, April 22nd 2008

Today was my birthday, and can you believe it? I completely forgot. My wife tells me "Happy Birthday" in the morning, and my first thoughts? "What? Oh, if yesterday was the 21st, then today is the 22nd. Oooh yeah." So out of it, I tell you. Well, I do have bouts of cluelessness.

Thanks to everyone who wished me birthday wishes. For those of you who didn't, shame on you. J/K :)

It was a pretty splendid birthday, if you ask me. Now ask me and I'll tell you why.

  • On the bus, I took out my laptop to work, and found two birthday cards secretly placed by my wife and my kids (oh, like those two kids think of anyone besides themselves.) Thanks, family.
  • Some of my friends at work took me out to lunch at Adrienne's Pizza Bar over on Stone St. Thanks, buds.
  • I was meeting with my boss in the afternoon, when someone called me to participate in a meeting. I went over to the conference room, and a bunch of them had assorted mini cupcakes from Crumbs for me, plus one large "Artie Lange" cupcake with a candle. Talk about nice people. Thanks Pat for buying the cupcakes, and everyone else for being sneaky yet thoughtful.
  • In the evening, there wasn't too much traffic on the way home. Thanks.... cosmic forces usually thwarting me for taking a day off.
  • My wife had some balloons and a wrapped present for me. I opened it to find a brand new toolbox for all my future derring-do. I opened it to find another wrapped gift. What? Huh? Nums also got me the Garmin nuvi 660, which I've had my eye (nay, both eyes) for the better part of a year. Widescreen 4.3" screen, built-in traffic receiver, removeable nunchuks , and made of solid 24-carat gold. I just don't get my wife telling me to get lost. Nums, you're full of surprises!
  • Josh and I went to Home Depot to pick up the remaining light fixture for the electrician to install Wed morning. On the way home, we picked up some Indian food for dinner. Thanks for taking a break, dishpan hands.
  • Finally, my wife picked up a small birthday cake for dessert.
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Happy birthday to me!
My dinky 8-year-old toolbox
New monster toolbox
Garmin nuvi 660

Not a bad day at all.


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Cobra Commander
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New Dark Knight teaser poster

Monday, April 21st 2008


Sunday, April 20th 2008

Busy weekend.

Saturday, my Num's sister (visiting from Virginia) and their mother came over to visit for a few hours. In the evening, Num's father brought dinner. Yea for not cooking! To top it all off, my sister's husband was free for the evening, so he came over too for dinner. Talk about an impromptu dinner party.

Next day, Josh and I took my sister-in-law to the Trenton train station to catch her Amtrak train back to Virginia. Josh wanted to see the trains, so we hung out down on the platforms to watch the trains come and go. Josh loved it, and especially enjoyed watching the Acela trains blow right by in the blink of an eye. I smell a new obsession after dinosaurs wear themselves out.


Tuesday, April 15th 2008

Mr. MIA has returned, albeit weary. I hope you all saw the big announcement last month. The Ipes are surviving the trials of being new parents. We'd almost forgotten how tiring it is to raise a newborn infant. Constant feedings every two hours, burping, diaper changes every hour or so. I don't know how my wife has the energy -- while I'm trying to stay awake when she's up at 4am for a feeding, even I'm falling asleep. God bless mothers and wherever they get their energy from.

It's been a busy two weeks. My first two weeks after Lily arrived, I've been working from home. I had planned to take two weeks of vacation, but since I'm leading an audit, I don't have that luxury. I just took this past Friday and Monday as vacation days, making it a 4-day weekend of sorts, not that we're going anywhere.

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Installed light fixture in the kitchen
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Installed curtain rods and curtains in the master bedroom

The past month has also been interesting, as we've been in overdrive in home improvements. It started last month when I found a leaky toilet in the master bathroom. I bought the parts and repaired it on my own. Since then, I've hung up one framed photo (oooh, manly), installed curtains and curtain rod (not the curtain holdbacks yet) in the master bedroom, replaced a light fixture in the kitchen (no electrical fires yet), and today I replaced both sets of locks in the front and back doors (deadbolts and locking doorknobs, two different doors.)

I've been on a tear, but I recently found my nemesis -- plumbing. Remember that we bought a new fridge back in October, but we never hooked up a water line for dispensing water or the icemaker. I bought PVC tubing and a saddle valve to tap into the kitchen cold water line under the sink. I spent an entire Saturday afternoon, but no luck getting the saddle valve to actually pierce the pipe. During my last attempt to tighten the saddle valve further, it broke, and now can't be removed -- I'm not sure if it ever pierced the pipe. The cold water is not flowing to the fridge, since you have to turn the valve back open (and I can't do that as it's broken.) If I remove the valve, and it DID pierce the pipe, then I'm going to experience the "Niagara effect", and flood the kitchen.

I have given up; the plumber is coming Tuesday morning to put right what I made wrong. And to charge me an arm and a leg for it. :(

Plumbing. It's a bitch.

Outsourcing isn't bad. Last month, we also redid Joshua's closet, hiring one of those closet companies. Now it's all organized into "HIS" and "HER" sides of the closet for Josh and Lily. It came out great. We have someone painting a mural in their room this week, based on (of all things) a pillowcase cover that my wife has been saving for this event as the inspirational design. Finally, we have an electrician coming next week to install some completely new light fixtures in the upstairs bedrooms.

I'm experimenting with uploading home video to Vimeo. I will let you know the results -- success or defeat.


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