Our Medicine Cabinet

Posted by Jon in HB | 3:35 PM | 4 comments »


Don't go to the drugstore, just stop by the Michell's.

I needed a good laugh!

Posted by Jon in HB | 6:17 PM | 1 comments »

I haven't seen Karate Kid in about ten years. And I can't remember the last time I sat down at four o'clock on a Thursday afternoon to watch a movie.  But when the "Black Death" is hanging over your house, the two events will eventually cross paths. 

When it was over I went to IMDB to see what, bad boy, Johnny had been up to. While surfing the web I found this...it was the big chuckle I needed to lighten things up in the Michell infirmary.

Something's Gotta Give!

Posted by Jon in HB | 8:31 PM | 3 comments »

Do you remember Circus of the Stars? I don't know if was Jamie Farr or Tom Bosley or one of those other 70s-80s sit-com hacks trying to jump start his has-been career, but one of them spun plates in it. You remember how it works, a bunch of sticks pointing up, a bunch of plates, add some cheesy music and a glitzzy ruffled dickie...Ta-Dah!

Well that's what I feel like with out the music and costume. You see I've been home from work all day taking care of the family. Gina's had a fever between 102-104 all day, and Dylan's been puking in a tupperware bowl all day (bet you'll think twice about eating the salad next time you invite us over for a potluck).

How do they do it? How do mom's take care of everything? EVERYTHING? How do you keep all those plates spinning at once? Just when I got one spinnin' real good the next one starts to wobble, oops there's another wobbler, then CRASH... the first one is on the ground in a million pieces.

So at the end of the day, these are the plates I have in the air: Gina's fever is down and she's asleep, Dylan had a popsicle three hours ago and fell asleep without throwing it up, and Megan got fed and went to bed on time. Plates wobbling: dishes are stacking up, laundry is piling up, and not sure if I gave the dog her meds. Broken plates: personal hygiene and rest.


It's all relative...

Posted by Jon in HB | 11:24 AM | 0 comments »

I came home from work early today because Gina is now sick and worse than I was, worse than I've ever seen her for that matter. And now Dylan is sick too. As run between their two bedrooms, taking temperatures, giving meds, and cleaning puke, I think how tired I am and how difficult it is to get my work done that I brought home so I could be with them. Then I read a new post on a blog of a friend in Africa, and I realize my troubles aren't that big of a deal.

Get Well Soon Daddy.

Posted by Jon in HB | 7:41 PM | 2 comments »

Why does it take being sick to get you children to become angles?
I'm fighting a cold and can hardly talk. I want nothing more than to crawl under a blanket on the couch and watch the Academy Awards in HD on my new 42" LCD 1080P (I'm not bragging, it's just, it's my new toy, and the thing is so cool I had to mention it). And Dylan asks me what he can get for his sick dad. I ask him for a cup of water and he bolts out of the room and brings me a cup of water and a coaster. A few moments later Gina said a cup of tea sounded good. I didn't realize that Dylan was in earshot. I told her that's what I really wanted when he asked, but I didn't want him messing with the tea kettle. So that little guy went in to his bathroom and turned on the hot water and let it run while he got a glass from the kitchen and a tea bag. He then scribbled out a sign that said "Get Well Soon!! Love Dylan", and taped it to the side of the glass after filling it with the tea bag and the hot tap water.

It was the best luke warm tea I ever had.

Why can't that little dink, be that angelic all the time?

The next time he starts arguing with his sister about who gets to push the elevator button, who gets to open the car door, close the car door, hold the dog's leash, wheather or not Joseph's brothers called him "Joe"; the next time he talks back, starts whining like a two year old because he can't get his shoe on, drops his toothbrush, breaks his pencil; next time he starts being a dink...I'm gonna act sick. It might be a cold, the flu, twisted ankle, who knows, but I'm down for the count! If you see me out and about and I look like I'm on death's door, don't worry about me, just remember...I'm a good actor and my son's just being a dink.

DVR = no life?

Posted by Jon in HB | 9:45 AM | 1 comments »

So we just got back from vacation. Now we need another vacation to get caught up on our shows that we DVR'd. We just got the silly thing and it's already controlling our lives!


Posted by Jon in HB | 8:53 AM | 0 comments »

With a very foggy drive down the mountain, our vacation draws to a close. We spent the end of the week in Lake Arrowhead. We had a great time and were joined by two families (The Templeton's, sans Kristi, & the Swart's) for fun in the snow. We've never seen that much snow at the mountain house before. It was so deep we couldn't even open the gate to the driveway.We had to park at the bottom of the hill in the garage.

We sledded down the back hill of the property...

...some better than others.

Then drove to Snow Valley on Saturday for some time on the slopes. We had a really fun time with all of our friends. Gina is the most amazing organizer of our Arrowhead trips! She brings enough stuff to keep all the kids busy and enough beer to keep me busy as well. 

Friday night, Curtis, Dave, and I stayed up until 2am discussing God, war, golf, and the Master Hunter. 
The drive back down was so scary it was around 7pm and we could see clouds climbing up the mountain side. At some points you could only see the road by looking at the raised yellow reflectors in the medium, and only ten feet in front of you at best. But we made it back safely and now our normal routine starts up again.
This has been an awesome family week!

The Griffith Observatory

Posted by Jon in HB | 8:22 AM | 1 comments »

After our day at the Ronald Reagan Library, we headed back home stopping at the newly renovated Griffith Observatory. It had been a long day for the kids and the whole astronomy thing was kinda over their heads. But two cool things came out of it. First, the new show in the planetarium was awesome. Great storytelling with wonderful visuals, a must see. Secondly, was the lunar eclipse. It was completely coincidental that Gina planned to be at the Griffith Observatory on the day of the eclipse. There were telescope geeks camped out all over the front lawn and the clouds broke for a phenomenal view of this really cool sight. Everyone said that it was going to be so cloudy that you wouldn't be able to see anything. But just as the Earth's shadow started to creep across the face of the moon the clouds pushed back, and there for all to see...

The whole time I was in the planetarium and while looking at the Big Picture, I was struck by how big it all is and how small we are. They said scientists think that 14 billion years ago the entire universe was the size of a molecular atom and then presto-change-o, poof, along came the universe. Going through my head was one of our favorite Chris Tomlin songs, Indescribable...

...From the highest of heights to the depths of the sea

Creation's revealing Your majesty

From the colors of fall to the fragrance of spring

Every creature unique in the song that it sings

All exclaiming
Indescribable, uncontainable,

You placed the stars in the sky and
You know them by name.

You are amazing God

All powerful, untamable,

Awestruck we fall to our knees as we humbly proclaim

You are amazing God...

We actually heard this song on the way down the hill.

Ronald Reagan Library

Posted by Jon in HB | 8:42 AM | 1 comments »

WOW! This place was great. After we spent a day at Universal, we headed to Simi Valley to check out the Reagan Library and Air Force One. The drive up the hill to the Library was beautiful. It's nestled atop some rolling green hills and looks over this gorgeous valley vista. This is the only presidential library we've ever been to and it was awesome. Tons of displays of his acting days, Governor days, and the White house, as well as entire hall of over 80 of Nancy's dresses. Highlights were a replica of the Oval Office, Reagan's actual Air Force One that you could walk through, and a recreation of the Ronald Reagan Pub in Ireland (of course I had a pint, duh!).

Reagan was the first President I was aware of growing up. He seemed so charismatic and warm. When he spoke he was so engaging. That is something I've missed since he left office. I've been waiting for someone to represent our country with a voice like his. Ironically while I don't agree with his politics at all, Obama has been the only one in a long time to captivate me as a listener like Dutch did. Why can't the GOP find another winner? McCain just doesn't have the presence for me.
BUT I DIGRESS...all in all the library is a must see no matter what your party affiliation. It's a great tribute to a wonderful couple and captures the nation and world during the 80s.

Universal Studios

Posted by Jon in HB | 8:03 AM | 1 comments »

I'm on vacation this week and so are the kids. We've been taking some short little day trips. The first of which was to Universal Studios! We had a great time. The kids were a little bored with the back lot tour (my favorite part). But they loved the rest. It was a gloomy overcast Tuesday, which made for short lines. I hadn't been there since I was in high school. They no longer have the E.T. ride or the Back to the Future ride, which were two of my favorites. They've made way for newer shows like the Mummy and the Simpsons. It was a fun time at the park, but Gina hit the nail on the head when she said, "It feels like a big commercial for all their show." After she and Megan saw the Animal Actors show she felt pressured to go out buy a copy of Evan Almighty on DVD. And the Movie Magic show that used to be all about the cool green screen and camera tricks that Hitchcock used in all his old movies, now felt like a big plug for The Mummy and Heros. All that aside we had a great day! As we were leaving Dylan told me, "Dad, after seeing all that stuff I know had to make a movie. Can we go home and make one?" Now we just need a studio deal and about $100 million.

Friends, Don't let Friends Drink...

Posted by Jon in HB | 6:59 AM | 1 comments »

...and then use their camera. This Presidents' Day we invited a bunch of friends over to the beach house for a day of fun and sun. Had a little BBQ going. Flew some kites buried, the kids, the whole nine yards. When checking out the pics I realized someone had borrowed the camera. I won't out this person (you know who you are) but I will make sure to not ask them to take pictures for us anymore after they've had a libation or two.


Posted by Jon in HB | 11:13 PM | 4 comments »

This year I decided to give up Catholicism for Lent.

Happy Valentine's Day

Posted by Jon in HB | 6:34 AM | 2 comments »

One Dozen Long Stem Roses = $80

Romantic Dinner for Two = $150

Bottle of Moet & Channdon White Star Champagne = $45

A School-made Valentine card from Dylan that says "To my hole famle" = priceless

Me & Meg

Posted by Jon in HB | 3:38 PM | 1 comments »

Disneyland annual pass = $379

Stepping on my Maui Jim sunglasses in the parking lot = $250

Lunch and snacks for two = $25

Souvenir for Dylan who went to school = $18

Lazy day with Megan at Disneyland = priceless

Roy Scheider Dead at 75

Posted by Jon in HB | 10:36 PM | 0 comments »

My absolute favorite scene in one of my top 10 favorite movies of all time is when Chief Brody is chumming with that cigarette hanging out of his mouth and then we see the shark. He pops up, close up on Brody, cut back to shark, cut back to Brody backing up into the cabin, and then he says to Quint, "We're gonna need a bigger boat". A great actor with some great roles died today (here's the obit). Go rent Jaws, Marathon Man, 2010, Blue Thunder, or All that Jazz in tribute to him this week.

My Dad Rocks!

Posted by Jon in HB | 8:43 AM | 0 comments »

While I was at work, yesterday, Dad stopped by and fixed my dishwasher and oven. He also told me I was not crazy about the dishwasher parts not fitting, the ones I went to the hardware store three times to get right! He said that the wrong size fitting was in the package, so I bought the right size but it would never have fit because it was mispackaged. By the way, Gina told me that he had to go to the hardware store three times too, so it wasn't just me (see Handy Man entry below for the full story).

Dad's a smart guy. I've learned a lot from him throughout the years, here's the top 10...

1. Assembly instructions are for lesser people.

2. All things that come "Some assembly required" always come with extra parts just to mess with you.

3. If after you take something apart and put it back together again you have extra parts, that's ok. They probably weren't needed in the first place.

4. Keep your head down, and your eye on the golf ball. Don't worry about watching were the ball landed, he'll do that, just keep your head down!

5. Don't stand too close to him when he lights the pilot on the furnace, especially if you value your eyebrows! (true story, we were both eyebrowless for a while, and all I did was hold the flashlight)

6. Don't play with the automatic window switch in the car. It was made to work a finite amount of times and every time you play with it, that's one less time it will work when you need it. And a couple of of months ago when my window was stuck down in the rain, whose voice do you suppose was ringing in my head?

7. God punishes you by giving children that act exactly like you did.

8. Let your wife win all the little insignificant battles, so when it comes to the big ones come, you can tell her how it is.

9. Never lie. It starts out with small white lies and then it becomes easier and easier to do. Next thing you know, you're cheating on your taxes and off to jail.

10. And most importantly, and I've passed this one down to my son Dylan, "Don't be a dink!"

Open House

Posted by Jon in HB | 8:07 AM | 0 comments »

It looks like no one is safe from the foreclosure craze hitting the nation. I heard yesterday the Michael Jackson is three months delinquent on his $23 million loan on his Neverland Ranch. Can you imagine going to that open house. How would the relator pitch that one? "Very spacious, kid friendly with lots of privacy. Wine cellar, fully stocked with sellers private collection of 'Jesus Juice'."

My name is Jon and I'm an addict...

Posted by Jon in HB | 7:28 AM | 1 comments »

to Wii! Gina and I were up past midnight playing that stupid thing. And not even cool shoot 'em up or racing or action games. No we're addicted to Carnival Games. It has every game you ever played at a carnival (scary looking carnies ARE included). You can play in head to head competition or single player mode which get you tickets you can earn and collect. Then the tickets get you cool hats and props and stuff that you can dress your little animated characters up in. I'M IN MY THIRTIES AND STAYING UP PLAYING WII ALL NIGHT!!! What's up with that? And it has the most basic ghetto graphics too. I need a hobby.

I am not a Handy Man!

Posted by Jon in HB | 1:33 PM | 1 comments »

I have never been to the hardware store for a project ONCE! Why is it a simple little thing turns into three trips to the hardware store to figure out you STILL don't have the right piece. We bought a new dishwasher and oven and I decided to install them myself. Well first I decided to pay someone to come out and install it but they were jerking us around with when they could do it and neither Gina nor I had an entire day to open up for their "window" to come out. I thought hey a dishwasher is easy, right? Plug it in, connect a supply line, connect the drain, poof your washing dishes. Did you you know they don't sell dishwashers with electrical cords?!?!? What is that all about? My neighbor helped my remove the old stuff before they delivered the new ones. He said you might want to save the cord. I told him he was crazy, of course the new one would come with a cord. BUT NO, it didn't. Trip number one. buy a cord. Came back wired that on, went to connect the supply line and realized it was a completely different kind the the last one. Trip number two buy a new supply line. Wrong size. Trip number three get correct one. Wrong size again. Now I'm running late for work so I'll have to make Trip number four tomorrow. "Kids, we're eating on parer plates again tonight".

Super Duper Tuesday

Posted by Jon in HB | 12:42 PM | 0 comments »

It’s the first time Californians feel like their primary vote counts. I have to go vote today, or I should say I want to go vote today. Gina always votes absentee. The other year she talked me in to it too. At the time I liked the idea. With all of California’s propositions to vote on, it was a better idea to sit at home and go through the minutia of props and try to decipher if a “yes” vote actually meant “yes” or “no”. And why are they always about the same thing? Indian Gaming and how to spend our money? Isn’t that why I elect State Assemblymen and Senators to make all these decisions for me? Who cares if Running Bear wants some more slots and a bigger stage to listen to Kenny Rogers or the O Jays? I generally don’t care too much about the props, but one year there was an interesting one that I was sad to see pass. It was to outlaw the consumption of horse meat or the sale of horse meat for consumption. I’ve never eaten horse, but why couldn’t I if I wanted to? Why is it ok to eat cows, chickens, or pigs but not horses or dogs for that matter? I think in this enlightened age there should not be a class war in the animal kingdom. That reminds me, fois gras was also outlawed in California a year or two ago. It wasn’t on our weekly menu at home, but the rare times I came in contact with it, I rather enjoyed it. And all of this in the same state that conceived Fear Factor eating challenges.
But this year is a big year. It’s for all the marbles, it’s the Prez! I can’t just sit at home in my sweats and fill in a box. I’ve get out and vote. Gina can’t be bothered with waiting at the polling place, she’s usually busy on Tuesdays. But I feel like it’s part of the Democratic process. Voting and Jury duty; it’s where all socio-economic lines converge. Waiting in line with all ages and walks of life in some rec-center or someone’s driveway is what being an American is all about. I’m still bummed they’ve gone to touch screen. I miss the whole thrill of the dangling chad.
Besides, at home, you don’t get the cool little “I voted sticker”. Stickers aren’t just for kids. There are only two stickers an adult can get away with wearing, “I voted” and “I gave blood”.

Nice Day to Start Blogging

Posted by Jon in HB | 9:43 PM | 1 comments »

Gina ran a 5K today. In the pouring rain no less! I took the kids to church early to watch the cast of our first Drama Ministry skit rehearse before service. I was off work today so after a little family Wii action we all went to check out the new Veggie Tales movie. Grabbed a little Chinese on the way home (afterall, next week is the Chinese New Year - Feb 7th, if you want to mark your calendar) and watched the last quarter of a very exciting Super Bowl. Gina is wiped out after a long day and a big run, so the kiddos are off to bed and I thought "what the heck, let's start a blog". So there you go, that's how this began.