Monday, October 28, 2013

Making Sangria

I found this great recipe, courtesy of Emeril Lagasse, for Sangria on the Food Network website.

I went to Twin Liquors and bought two bottles of Toreo Red Tempranillo, Paul Masson Brandy, and Grand Marnier. Then I stopped at H.E.B., the local grocery store, and got oranges, granny smith apples, limes, lemons, and a bottle of San Pellegrino sparkling water.

At home, I cut up the fruits, then followed the recipe HERE.

For better results, make the Sangria the night before.

Photo taken on October 26, 2013 using the iPhone 5S.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

3rd and 4th Games of the Fall Season

We're running a week behind in our games this season, mainly due to the rain.

Don't get me wrong. We needed the rain, but it does damper the fall little league season.

My son has had four games in the fall season. All games have been against the same teams, the Orioles and the Giants.

This past two games were rough for him, though. His defense was great, but his batting struggled.

For some reason, he fears being hit by the ball. On one occasion, he jumped back and fell on his bottom prematurely when the ball was about two feet away.

On Sunday, I decided to take him to the batting cage and have him practice a few hits. He swung the bat just fine, but being before a kid pitcher really makes him nervous.

His stats dropped during the last two games, but he did manage to steal a few bases during the fourth game.

My son's stats:

Game 1: AB: 3 H: 1 R: 1 BB: 2 RBI: 1 SB: 2 (Against the Orioles)
Game 2: AB: 2 H: 0 R: 1 BB: 1 RBI: 0 SB: 3 (Against the Giants)
Game 3: AB: 3 H: 0 R: 0 BB: 0 RBI: 0 SB: 0 (Against the Orioles)
Game 4: AB: 3 H: 0 R: 1 BB: 2 RBI: 0 SB: 4 (Against the Giants)

Total:     AB: 11 H: 1 R: 3 BB: 5 RBI: 1 SB: 9

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

My son's disappointment with his new TV

After my wife spent the good part of Saturday cleaning and bagging old toys, we decided to redecorate our son's bedroom. And since my son is nine years old, I figured it was time to hook up a TV in his room.

I was about his age when I got my first 13 inch black & white TV. I was excited about it too. I remember having all broadcast TV stations--that means ABC, CBS, and NBC. I use to have to re-position the bunny ears every once and a while to get a clear picture. If I wanted to watch a program, I had to depend on the TV guide. If I missed the program, I would have to wait for reruns, which was usually months later.

I decided to convert one of the computer monitors sitting at home to a TV. I went to Best Buy and bought a DVI to HDMI converter for $20. I took the Blu-ray player from the master bedroom and connected it to the monitor. Voila! The TV worked.

The Blu-ray quickly displayed Netflix and Pandora. I clicked on Netflix and it showed me the menu options for movies and shows. I was excited to see my son's expression of his new TV. I called him upstairs to look at his new gift. He excitedly ran up the stairs and into his room and saw the TV. He got the remote control and surfed Netflix. He was excited, until he exited to the menu to view other selections.

"No YouTube?" he asked disappointed.

"No. You get Netflix, though. And you like Netflix. You can watch all your shows and stuff."

"Oh, okay," he said as he turned the power to the Blu-ray and monitor and left the room.

I would have been ecstatically grateful  had my parents gotten me something like this when I was his age.

Friday, October 18, 2013

Dancing at Whole Foods

Apparently, my son isn't the only one that likes to dance at Whole Foods. I found the following videos of random people dancing at Whole Foods.

Monday, October 14, 2013

Batting practice and showing respect

There are times I find it close to impossible to teach or suggest certain techniques to my son. For example, when I am about to share my thoughts on how he can improve his swing, he responds, "I know, daddy. You don't have to tell me. I know."

So, I leave it up to his coaches to explain how he can improve his game. And many of these coaches do provide some great advice. However, soon after he leaves the coaches, he starts to whine how his coaches tell him things he knows how to do.

"Respect your coaches," I tell him.

"One says to 'watch the ball and follow through.' The other says 'follow through,' I am doing both. They are just not looking. What a waste of time."

Let me back up a bit and explain his comment. So, we got to batting practice at 5:30 p.m. To kill time, I figured we could practice throwing and catching. In the process, he lost his place in line and had to wait another 30 minutes.

"You have to learn to respect your coaches. It's a lesson you should learn before you get into middle school or high school. Coaches there will sit you out, if you show disrespect," I explained.

Nonetheless, he did do good in the batting cage. He just needs to focus on the ball and follow through with his swing.

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Busy but still find time to blog

Work has gotten busy for me; primarily due to a promotion I received a few weeks ago. With the new job and getting home tired, I haven't had much time to blog.

As I've mentioned in previous entries, I started blogging for my family. My wife was traveling on business, so I thought it was a good way she could read what I was experiencing with our son. The problem was, she never read my blog. Her idea of my blog is that it's more of my venue to complain about everything she does wrong.

Slowly the blog evolved into more of what I was going through in my life as an adult, parent, and my many interests.

I began following cool bloggers, such as Calvin's Canadian Cave of Coolness, Geeks are Sexy, and Artodyssey.  Some of their posts provides me ideas of what my next entries.

Many of my entries are done Sunday mornings when my wife and son are still asleep. After a few cups of coffee, I usually complete surfing the various blogs I follow and writing my entries for the week. But because I'm a bit more busy, my entries may be sporadic.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Yes, I am a geek

A coworker noticed that I was wearing the same Green Lantern t-shirt to the gym. I explained that I actually have two Green Lantern t-shirts that are different from each other and I do switch them around. Laughs broke out and we left it at that.

Needlesstosay, his comments got me.

I decided to visit Target after working out and purchase a new t-shirt. I saw a few a liked. There was one of the new Starfleet insignia, but the print was too plastic-y. There was a black AC/DC t-shirt I liked, but it was black and it could get a little hot when working out. There were some light grey t-shirts, but I look fat in grey. And there it was: a green t-shirt. I look great in green, I thought.

I went up to the cashier to make my purchase. She did a double-take when she passed the green t-shirt over the barcode reader. I was wearing a similar Green Lantern t-shirt, which I had purchased a few years back from Target.

"I'm part of the Green Lantern Corps," I explained and walked off with my new green t-shirt.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Second Game of the Fall Season


After the first game of the fall season, the coaches of the league got together to discuss the rules. The week before, our team, the Astros, dominated the field and parents of the other team left the field discouraged.

This is what was agreed to: Rather than the five run limit, the coaches decided to limit runs to four. Also, rather than allowing the pitcher to pitch 75 throws, it was agreed that the pitchers only pitch for two innings.

Regardless of the rule change, the Astros again won. The win over the Giants, however, was not easy. This was the same Giants team my son played against when he was in the coach-pitch league--the Giants moved up to kid-pitch this fall and have kept many of the same players.

The final score was 6 to 2, Astros.

My son's stats:

Game 1: AB: 3 H: 1 R: 1 BB: 2 RBI: 1 SB: 2
Game 2: AB: 2 H: 0 R: 1 BB: 1 RBI: 0 SB: 3

Total:     AB: 5 H: 1 R: 2 BB: 3 RBI: 1 SB: 5

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

My iPhone


I finally got rid of my HTC EVO and got my first iPhone.

I made the decision to buy the new iPhone 5S.

The first Friday it was released, I stood in line at Best Buy. Unfortunately, the phone was sold out and I had to wait another 10 days.

These 10 days was brutal. My HTC phone was going slower and slower and slower by the day. I experienced lag time when opening a program. It took longer to text message that it should. I wanted to destroy my phone. I was close to smashing it. The only thing that was preventing that was that I would be phone-less.

But alas. I got my hands on the new iPhone 5S, and I am loving it.

So, I've join the family iPhone club. My son has my wife's old iPhone 3, my wife has the iPhone 5, and I have the new iPhone 5S.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

First Game of the Fall Season

While other kids during the fall season play soccer, our son decided to play fall ball. Little league in the fall is mostly instructional. This is the time where coaches teach their players the advanced lessons of baseball. This is the time where players can develop themselves for the spring season.

This is the first year my son plays in kid-pitch. The last couple of years, he has played in the coach-pitch leagues. So, the idea of having a kid pitch a ball to him was new.

His team, the Astros, played against the Orioles. The game started slow, but then turned exciting as the Astros, feeling comfortable and confident, dominated. The score was 18 - 2, Astros.

My son's stats:

Game 1: AB: 3 H: 1 R: 1 BB: 2 RBI: 1 SB: 2 (While playing third base, he tagged out a runner.)

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

The Politics of Little League - Cap-Gate

Five days before the fall ball season was to start, our players received their shirts and caps. The problem: the caps did not match the shirts.

Us parents were instructed to purchase orange socks and belts for our kids, since our team is the Astros and their colors are orange and blue. The caps we received were with the black and red broken star--the old Astros logo.

Several parents and coaches were upset with the mix-up. Being one of the board members, I decided to raise the issue to the board in order to get a quick solution.

"We have a problem. The Astros' team's shirts do not match the caps. The caps are from the old Astros (the black and red star) and the uniform is in the new orange color. This is a problem. Any solutions?" I asked.

One board member suggested we take a collection and purchase the caps for the kids--this was a solution I was willing to take if nothing else was an option. A few of the senior members told me the team should "suck it up."

A lady I had an issue with the year before (See previous blog), stated that she had to beg the company to produce 300 plus uniforms and caps with a quick turnaround, and she didn't want to "burn a bridge" for 15 caps. Then she lectured me that this issue should have followed a chain of command rather than involve the whole board. I then reminded her that the issue was raised by me and another board member with kids on the team.

The following day, one of the other board members looked into resolving the situation. She contacted the vendor and reordered the caps. The right caps were delivered within two days.

My son and the rest of the team wore their orange and blue Astros cap for their first game, Saturday morning.

Needlesstosay, the parents and coaches were happy that the board took measures to correct the problem.