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Week ending Sunday, January 29th, 2011
Short Update

This is going to be a short update since I am not feeling well today. I was supposed to do a solo but AGAIN the wind is higher than 10kts so they won't let student pilots fly in anything but darn near perfect weather. I've soloed in far worse weather conditions and I understand why they are trying to limit the conditions we fly in but I need the seat time! Ah well, I am going to try next week and see if the conditions improve.

Nothing else new. Work is going fine and I am getting a lot done. I spent yesterday (Saturday) helping clean up the rental place. We've already filled two 22x8x4 containers and we'll probably need at least two more. I can't believe how much junk is in that house. This place would have been perfect for an episode of "Hoarders" -- and I mean that. It's a complete mess and in utter disrepair.

I have an appointment to talk to the mortgage officer and finalize all the details on the new house. I guess I am supposed to sign a mountain of paperwork in the next week or two. In fact I'll have to take a vacation day to get everything done. Once that is complete and I get the keys I'll have to spend either more vacation time and burn weekends getting everything moved over that I can move myself. I still have to get the blinds, throw rugs and get my living room furniture selected. So much to do, so little time to complete it. I am excited though and looking forward to it.

Well that is about it. Hope you had a blessed weekend! Lord knows I've been far more blessed than I deserve!



Week ending Sunday, January 22nd, 2011
Fantastic!!! I'm a homeowner!

Yay! Last week I updated the blog early on Sunday AM before I went to look at new places to live. We looked a lot on Sunday but I was worried about not being able to fly (more on that later) so we looked at 5 houses, which of course none of them I was interested in. Monday was a Holiday so we went in the morning to look at places. We looked all over close to work and then where I live right now. Nothing looked decent and the neighborhoods were bad. I was probably frustrating my Real Estate Agent (good thing she is patient).

The last place we looked at was a brand new Townhome. I was thinking in my head "I really want a house but I'll look at it anyway". Turns out the place was just completed in December and it was FAR nicer than I thought it would be. Not only is it nice, there is no one in front of me and no one behind me, even though it's a middle unit! Guess what the back view (where my bedroom will be)?! It faces the runway for Leesburg Airport! How cool is that?! I'll be able to WALK to the airplane now when I want to fly instead of driving. So cool! The front area faces the Blue Ridge Mountains so I have a great front and rear view where I live.

It's 4 bedrooms, 3.5 baths with an attached 2 car garage (nope, my truck still will not fit!). It has all brand new appliances (stainless steel in the kitchen!) and cherry hardwood floors in the living room. The guest master bedroom is on the first floor and the rest of the bedrooms are on the 3rd floor. The middle floor in the living room, dining room and kitchen and it has a remote "fireplace". You just push the button and voila! A roaring fireplace! All the hardware is really nice too including the sink and lamps and such. It has outlets to install ceiling fans so I will install them in all of the rooms once I get settled in. I still have to buy blinds, throw rugs and living room/dining room furniture. That's going to cost a lot so I will do it over time. That means I am getting rid of all the "bachelor" furniture that I have had forever. If you know anyone who needs it, let me know otherwise I will give it to charity.

Photos of the house are HERE and you can find the link on the main page.

I am really happy about this. Even though the house is more than I really wanted to pay it's something I really like. It's a new community and they aren't even done with the other half of the homes. I hear the neighbors are really cool I just hope they are quiet and don't blast music, lol. It's supposed to close right around my birthday so keep your fingers crossed. I should start moving in the first week of March!

I didn't get to solo this weekend at all. It snowed on Friday night and Saturday AM and the weather was too bad for a Private Pilot without an IFR rating. It was bad the entire weekend but I hope for better weather next week. Saturday I drove down to Dumfries to help my boss out. He had some bad renters at his place and they tore it up. We spent all day tossing out the stuff they left over (saving what can be donated). He's going to have to spend thousands of dollars to get it back to where it used to be. It's the least I could do to help him out. You gotta lend a hand when people need them and that's one thing I have definitely learned through my faith in Jesus. He wants us to help and love each other (which is why forgiveness is so important).

That's about it for the week. I have talked a lot but I just got back from the Go Kart race we had today and I finished FIRST! Not bad I was very close to the record for the 6.5 HP carts. The 9HP carts we can't rent just yet. Maybe next time? Hope you had a great week and we'll talk to you later!


Week ending Sunday, January 15th, 2011
Another decent week!

So, not a bad week overall. Definitely busy again at work which is what to be expected but as a bonus I had so much overtime from last weekend that I got to take 1 hour a day and then 4 hours on Friday off from work. Add in that tomorrow (Monday) is a holiday for us, it'll be a nice long weekend! Actually got a lot of stuff done and we're making progress so that is good. I really like what I do and where I work so I don't really have any complaints.

Yes. It's cold in VA (it seems to be more often cold than warm here) and I am getting used to it. I've looked at a lot of possible homes but so far I am not finding anything great (except the one house I made an offer on last week that I did not win the bid on. Meh, it happens!). Besides, Manassas is a long drive to work and I really don't want to waste 3 hours of every day sitting in traffic. You have to trust in God that His plans are better for you than your own (and I do!).

I was supposed to solo on Saturday but it was too windy so my instructor said "NO GO". That was fine, I am getting used to it. With the cold weather often comes winds so they don't want newby pilots flying around in really bad weather for us. I did get to fly today with my instructor and we worked on power-on stalls. I hated them at first but I am getting used to doing it. I also need to work on my navigation skills. To help with out with all of that information I added a bunch of private pilot applications for my iPad2 which is helping out a lot (thanks to my boss for giving me such a cool gift for Christmas!). Since tomorrow is a holiday I am going to try again to get another solo in.

Yesterday I went to hang out with a friend at "Clyde's" in Broadlands which is a really cool restaurant. They were playing the Bronco/Patriot game so we had some good food and watched the game. When I got home I listened to some of Pastor Bob's sermon before I got really tired and had to go to bed.

So other than work, flying and the gym that has pretty much been it for the week. I did manage to connect to one of my old friends from San Diego that is doing a lot of track days and she asked me if I wanted to be a control-rider so I said "Absolutely". I am really looking forward to getting back on the track and getting some plastics for my CBR. I definitely don't want a brand new CBR1000RR Repsol bike on the track without some aftermarket racing plastics on there. The stock plastics are far too expensive to replace if you bin it (win it or BIN it, lol!.

Hope you had a fantastic week yourself and stayed out of trouble. I'm still looking for a house (investment) so I will keep you up to date on that progress. Otherwise, take care and talk to you next week!



Week ending Sunday, January 8th, 2011
A good start to 2012 so far...

As it says above the start to 2012 is going pretty good so far. You really have to keep God at the top of your mind when you're doing things to make sure that you're aligned with His plans for you.

This week was really busy at work even with the New Year holiday (which of course I stayed at home and really had no desire to go drinking and acting like a fool). Instead of doing that I cleaned up the house and got some chores done. I also did some grocery shopping which I don't do often at all so now my place is full of good food instead of eating out all the time. I even used the new Crock Pot cooker my sister gave me for Christmas and made some really good stuff I am enjoying using this thing and it's pretty good. I have some steaks that I am thawing out right now to watch the Steelers/Bronco's game -- which I am watching only because I have to root for my fellow Gator, Tim Tebow!

During the week I actually got a lot of work done at the office including working 12 hours yesterday (Saturday) to move a Clariion array from one side of the Server Farm to the other side. We had a few issues that made the move take a lot longer than it should of but by the time we left everything was back to what it should have been. Now all I need to do is add the two other shelves in that need to be added then we're looking good.

I've also been talking with a good friend from back in SOCAL who sent me an email about which Churches to check in the area that I live. Apparently he has a good relationship with a lot of elders so I definitely trust his advice when he says "Look at this Church -- it's my recommendation!" :) That's always a good thing to hear when someone is offering advice and he wouldn't do me wrong, of that I am sure. So far I've still been listening to Pastor Bob's services from Horizon and its sort of like still being there (Definitely miss that Church a lot).

Last week I talked about checking out a few houses and I found one that I really liked and it's right near the Manassas private airport (which will be good when I get my Private Pilot's license -- more to come on that in the next paragraph). Talked to my Real Estate agent and initially I was going to offer the bank a little less than they were offering because it needs paint, new carpets, drapes and it has no Refrigerator or Washer/Dryer. After talking it over with her I went ahead and made an offer since I am already approved for a V.A. loan and I really want the house. There are two other people bidding on it so I hope that I win. Then the real work begins. Definitely appreciate the prayers! :) We will find out about the house later this week.

So today I flew with my instructor at Leesburg and we had talked about soloing. I watched the weather to be sure that it was OK to fly so he let me go do the pre-flight checklist alone. Once the checklist was done we talked about some things I was doing wrong in the pattern then he basically stepped out of the plane and said "Go fly! Do three landings, full stops and full takeoffs..." which I did. He complimented me (over the radio) and was so excited that we (not just me, he gave me all the knowledge and I know the Lord was watching over me) took a few pictures of my first solo and posted it on the flight board. How cool is that? Now I can fly by myself and get all my practice in without having to schedule it with him.

We'll be posting the pictures on FaceBook later but it's been a long time since I've flown a small plane by myself and am really looking forward to getting my license and flying myself around wherever I want to go :)

As I said, it's a good start to the year and we'll see how it pans out later. I'm not worried about it as I know that He makes the plans for me, not myself, and I just have to make sure that I am aligned with those goals, not my own.

And don't forget to tell my Sister LISA Happy Birthday tomorrow!!!

Hope you had a great start to your New Year and will talk to you later this week when I have more info!


Week ending Sunday, January 1st, 2011

Well I hope you all took a few moments from the New Year's celebration to be thankful for the many things we have all been blessed with. Be it family, friends, relationships, jobs, etc. There are so many things to be thankful for that I wouldn't be able to count them if I tried. Let's start with what changed from this time last year. I was still living in San Diego, doing the job that I love (SAN Engineer and still doing that!) and the next thing you know I moved to VA for a new and exciting SAN Engineering job -- and started taking flying lessons. About the only real issue here is (other than not too much to do) is that I haven't found a good Church, though I am looking and haven't made a lot of friends. But that is ok, it will come in time and I am patient and always wait for God's will to be done in my life. Can't complain about that.

I didn't write last weekend because I spent 5 days in San Diego which is really home for me. Yes, I lived in OC for years but to me San Diego was much more my speed with a great Church and people who are friendly. In fact, I would say most of my friends were made in San Diego and not LA or OC. Virginia is really hard to make friends, at least in the NOVA area because everyone here is like LA people. Always busy, on the go and pretty much stick to their own space. It's not hard for me to make friends because I'm always the first one to smile and say hello. And you know, everyone has a story -- and I am interested in hearing it. I guess that is why I ask so many questions. I'm not nosy -- just want to hear your story!

So I flew to San Diego a week ago Thursday (Dec 22) and spent some time with Jack and Jane and they even let me stay at their house in Solana Beach (which is a beautiful area of San Diego and there are lots of pics on FaceBook). That night we went out for Sushi -- some of the best I have had yet and then we talked a lot. On Friday I had to drive up to Orange County and see the plastic surgeon who fixed all my head scars. He was pretty satisfied with the work he had done. I stopped by a friend's house to see if he was home but he was at work so I drove back down to San Diego in time for my 3pm appointment. Of course, they messed it up and said it was Thursday but that was impossible as I was on the plane then. They said they'd talk to my Doctor and see about setting it up again for the next time I am in San Diego -- but I have no idea when that will happen again. Just depends on my vacation time I suppose.

That night I hung out with Chance and Victoria as we went to the Gas Lamp (that is where the accident occurred that nearly killed me a couple years ago). We had a great time and I stayed clean and sober so no issues there (I didn't drink much and don't like drinking). On Saturday I went to see John and we had lunch at Hodad's in Ocean Beach (greatest burgers ever!). Then I went to see my old boss and say hello and then went back to the house in Solana Beach. I was going to go to Horizon's but it was so packed it was nearly impossible. That's ok I will go next time.

On Sunday I drove up to Northridge to spend some time with some close friends. We had a really great dinner and a fun gift exchange. One of the nicer Christmas times I've had in a while and of course, it brought back a whole lot of memories that I had suppressed for years now. It was a good and healthy experience for me knowing that "I'm ok, God. Thank you!" I drove back and then hit the sack at 9pm their time (I'm still on EST anyway) and then got up early to do some reading, cleaned up my stuff, washed a few things and then headed to the airport. I got back to VA around 8:45EST but didn't get home until 9:30. Just had enough time to take a shower, read my bible and then hit the sack to get to work at 7am.

All in all it was a very good, fun trip. Again you can see some of the photos that I added to FaceBook which you can see if you click the link. Of all things I definitely was feeling a bit homesick. There at least I can drive without a GPS but in VA I still need one to find certain places. All I know right now is NOVA and from what I am learning from flying but eventually I will get around and see more things. When I can get some friends to come visit me then I will get to do the tourist type of things.

This past week I just got back to work and busted out a lot of things that needed to get done, got back to the gym and of course, TRIED to fly on Saturday (yesterday) but the silly 172 got a flat front tire so we had to call it a day. I am supposed to try and solo tomorrow so let's see how that goes. As for New Years, I stayed at home and kept away from the people who were probably driving that shouldn't have. My faith keeps me away from doing the self-destructive things I used to do and every day, as often as I can, I thank God that He has good plans for me.

Well that is it for now. Hope you had a fantastic New Year and I will talk to you next week.



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