Monday, August 28, 2006

Sometimes I feel like this is how my car looks...or at least runs sometimes

I got my car back last week after a minor $780 repair. It seemed to run great for about a day. Then it would not start every now and then. The best part is when it did not start when I was trying to drive the boys back from the pool. Luckily our neighbor was able to come get us because Jaime's van battery died earlier that same day and that was still stranded at the park. So our neighbor dropped off the boys and then took me to get Jaime's van. Later that night our friend took me back to my car which started and then I dropped it off at the shop. I then went to Walmart and bought a battery and changed it for Jaime. The next day I learned that my starter was going out and needed to be replaced. I had already deduced that I needed a starter and had priced it online at $149. The shop quoted me the same price...with labor adding another $50. I guess I am grown up because I know how to change a starter, but I opted to have someone else do it. "My time is worth more than $50 an hour, right?" That's debatable, but I at least have my car back now. It appears to be running at the moment. I have high expectations for the car and hope that all these repairs will serve beneficial. My hope is that I can get at least 1 year life out of the car and then I will be satisfied.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Hey! Hey! We're the Monkees!

Finnegan has always loved dressing up nice for church. He is our little Alex P. Keaton. Grayson does not prefer to dress up as much but obliges at times. Anyway, when we were out in Utah over Christmas, we hit the outlet stores in St. George. We were able to find matching blazers in their sizes. They were extremely cheap and we thought that it was fate that they were in both of their sizes.

This picture was taken after Sawyer's baby blessing. WHen I saw it it made me think of an album cover from the 60s.

Maybe I can use this as a portfolio to get my children into the entertainment industry. Finn has expressed that he wants to become an actor and go to Hollywood. We asked him to develop a fall back plan just in case things don't work out. He has decided that he will become a lawyer if things don't work out.

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Improving Home Improvement

So it seems that I have become quite the handyman lately. I have been working on a number of different projects. This year with some tax return money we decided to buy a swing set for the kids. The booklet said that it would take 10 hours to put together. When all was said and done it probably took more like 15 hours and I had a variety of people helping me along the way.

The funniest part was when I started the base of the swing and the wind blew it down that night. I had cut and replace to pieces rather than have the manufacturer ship them to me. With that said, I only incurred an extra cost of 15 dollars. Definitely small potatoes when compared to the original price.

Needless to say, the boys absolutely love the swing set. We then decided that we would build a privacy fence to keep the boys off the street. I am happy to report that the fence is complete (after weeks and weeks of hard labor). That however, will have to wait for another post.

Tuesday, August 08, 2006


I hope that you have a great birthday. It is an honor to have you as my dad. As I see my sons grow, I find it surreal to think that the feeling and emotions that flow through my heart are the same that flowed through your heart as you watched me grow. I almost feel that I come to love and appreciate you more as a father the more that I myself experience as a father. Happy Birthday, with many more to come.

Sunday, August 06, 2006

Does the car go on living?

So at church today I asked all the guys in the High Priest Group regarding the status of my car. They all seemed to think that it would be worth looking at what it would take to fix it. The more I got to thinking about it, the more I am cautious about going into debt in order to buy a new/used car. We have been working so hard for so long to continue to work our way out of debt. I just feel that if I were to take out a hefty loan for another car that it would contradict all the things that we have been working towards lately. I am not sure how much life I can squeezed out of this car at this point. My hope is that by putting out a small chunk of money that I can get the car up and running again.

Stay tuned for further updates..

Thursday, August 03, 2006


So the diagnosis is definitely a blown head gasket. Off to the junkyard. At least it only cost 20 bucks to see what was wrong with it. Problem is, I don't even feel like going back for it. Now I just need to find the spot (it's a secret) where I hide my money and see if I happen to have 15 thousand dollars.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

My Car Has Died...or at least I think it has

So I have basically been on vacation for the last week. I have not driven my car the whole time. Yesterday however, I drove to Blacksburg and back. No problems at all. This morning when I am heading to work I start my car and the engine starts to shake and then this giant billow of puffy white smoke comes out of the exhaust pipe. I am not kidding by saying that it was literally as tall and half the size of my house. I ended up driving the 1986 Dodge Ram Pickup to work instead. This thing is a beast. It has no AC, no radio, and I think it takes about 7-8 dollars to make one round trip to work.

This is kind of like the car I had except mine doesn't have fashionable tinted windows.

I did a little bit of research and the odds are looking that the engine may have blown the head gasket. Seeing that my car was already ten years old, I feel that it is probably going to be not worth the cost to fix it. The only problem is that I don't have a hidden savings account where I was stashing money away for a new car.

This is like the beast that I am now driving except that mine is blue.

Around 11:00 tonight I drove my car to a shop so that they can look at it in the morning. Gratefully, I was able to get my car there without it blowing up or something. I long for the day when I live in a world without car trouble. Perhaps it is my destiny to always have car trouble surrounding me, but maybe I can break the cycle.