Sunday, November 30, 2003

Sharon went shopping for food for her parents in the afternoon. After dropping off the food, she went to the Kings versus New Jersey Nets basketball game. After leading by 32 at halftime, the Kings held on to win 105 to 93.

One of the my goals for this year is to do all of my Christmas shopping on-line. I am going to make an effort to see if I can avoid going to the malls completely! I started by ordering some presents on-line for Sharon and Jack today. Sharon's parents have an old tabletop hockey game that Jack loves. I ordered him one for Christmas.

Saturday, November 29, 2003

I spent most of the day putting up the outside Christmas lights. We bought a set of icicle lights for the roof-line three years ago when we moved into the house. I started having problems with the lights last year. For example, a short section would go out. This year I had even more problems. Short sections of five of the light strings were out. While I was struggling to get the lights working, one of the neighbors stopped for a second and told me her husband refused to put up icicle lights anymore due to problems with section of the lights going out! Eventually, I ended up getting two strands working and replacing three more completely.

After dinner, Sharon and I watched Bruce Almighty.

Friday, November 28, 2003

Drew's 19th Birthday!

While Sharon went out to brave the malls, Drew, Jack and I went to breakfast at IHOP. After breakfast, we made several trips to storage to get all of the Christmas decorations and started getting the outside Christmas lights put up. Drew headed up to Placerville to visit some friends from high school.

Jack and I went to the Kings versus Rockets basketball game. The Kings won 103 to 74. Jack has gotten a little spoiled in the last two weeks; this is the third game that he has attended.

Traditionally, She has had a girl's night out on the Wednesday night before Thankgiving. This shifted over to the Friday night after Thanksgiving several years ago. Sharon, Janie Daigle and Laura Melish went out for dinner and drinks at Centro Cocina Mexicana.

Thursday, November 27, 2003

Thanksgiving 2003

Sharon and I hosted Thanksgiving at our house this year. The group included her brother Tom's family (Tom, Becky, Kevin and Eric), her brother Tim's family (Tim, Kathy, Erin and Eileen), her parents (Rosemary and Jack), a friend of the family (Jim Dunn), Sharon, Drew, Jack and I.

The kids had a great time playing basketball, video games on the big screen and football.

Sharon had gotten a Branigan Turkey. The dinner was great!

After dinner, we brought out a pumpkin pie with candles on it and everyone sang Drew happy birthday. Drew's birthday is Friday, November 28.

As they were leaving to get Jack and Rosemary home, Kevin kept telling his mom Becky that he did not want to leave and that this was the best Thanksgiving ever!

Wednesday, November 26, 2003

I like monkeys.

Jack and I went to pick Drew up at the airport; he flew back from Irvine for Thanksgiving. I was dumbfounded by the number of college kids getting off the planes. Three Southwest flights arrived fairly close to each other: one from Los Angeles, another from San Diego and Drew's flight from Orange County. It seemed like the flights were full of kids from Southern California schools and they were all wearing school sweatshirts or t-shirts.

Tuesday, November 25, 2003

Sharon and her brother Tim went to watch the Sacramento Kings play the Memphis Grizzlies tonight. The Kings won 109 to 89.

Drew and I exchanged IMs in the afternoon; he was on his way with a group to see The Producers at the Pantages Theater at Hollywood and Vine in Los Angeles. Jason Alexander and Martin Short are cast in the leading roles.

I spent a big chunk of Monday in a new internal group called the Technical Architecture Council (TAC). To meet tighter seimic standards, Sutter Health is building a number of new hospitals over the next few years. The CIO has put together a group that will be focused on the “hospital of the future.” The group is working to answer a number of questions. How will we leverage our information technology with the work flow of these new hospitals? What kind of technologies will need to be supported in hospitals that are coming on-line in four to eight years? What is the impact of these technologies on the physical design of the hospital?

Monday, November 24, 2003

I got the following e-mail from Brun about Velta's Name's Day.

It started me wondering what exactly is a Name's Day?

Here are a couple of references I uncovered as I tried to figure out what this was all about: Czech Name Day; Celebration of Namedays in Greece; Celebrating Your Patron Saint's Day, and;
From:    Joe DiGiorgio

Sent: Monday, November 24, 2003 1:49 PM
Subject: Velta's Names Day
Today is Velta's Name's Day !!
It's an European tradition where everyone has a names day

that people celebrate... whereas a birthday is something
only close family and friends know when it happens,
everyone knows when your name's day is [they publish
country specific calendars... it's the same date every year].
Instead of party and gifts like a birthday the host

[named person] has open house for well wishers to come
by and say hi. Gifts are not considered standard although
our Czech receptionist says flowers or chocolate is OK :-)

Sunday, November 23, 2003

As part of her role as a wedding coordinator, Sharon became an eucharistic minister for the church. A couple of times a month she will serve as eucharistic minister for communion during Mass. Today was one of those days. Jack went to kinderchurch, while Sharon and I attended Mass.

Sunday afternoon, Sharon, Jack and I went to the Kings game. We watched the Kings beat the Chicago Bulls by a score of 110 to 99. The Kings set a franchise record with 12 3-pointers in the first half.

One of our neighbors across the street put up his Christmas lights today! Only 32 shopping days until Christmas...

Saturday, November 22, 2003

Most of the morning and afternoon were spent shopping for the moulding for the upstairs hallway and then getting the project started. There a number of pieces that need to be cut to fit and painted. Conceptually, Sharon has a design for the upstairs hallway that creates two large spaces to display photos.

We are hosting Thanksgiving for Sharon's family and talked about cooking the turkey in the Weber this year. We did a test run on Saturday using a rotisserie in our Weber barbecue, but were not happy with the results; the turkey was too dry in some parts and underdone in others. We are going to punt and just cook the turkey in the oven.

After getting Jack to bed, Sharon and I watched Charlie's Angel: Full Throttle. This is an odd movie which can best be described as a cross between a music video and The Matrix with elements of the movie Three Kings stirred in.

Friday, November 21, 2003

Nooter and I have talked over the years about how the passage of time can feel like falling faster and faster down a dark tunnel. The last three weeks have definitely been one of those periods. I feel like I have spent all of the last three weeks sitting in meetings all day long every day or traveling to meetings. Combined with a trip to Rochester, Minnesota and Sharon being gone last weekend, it has been a blur.

I spent this morning in the TMC (Technical Management Council) meeting; this includes all of the Regional CIOs and the Directors. For lunch, the CIOs and Directors worked the serving line for a Thanksgiving lunch for the Mather staff. We served lunch to over 400 people. The afternoon was spent in a IBM database presentation.

Sharon made a court appearance in Auburn for a conservatorship that she has been working on.

Sharon worked for an hour and fifteen minutes as the Art Docent for the afternoon kindergarten class. The lesson plan was titled "Animals in Art." The lesson talked briefly about John James Audubon, Marc Chagall and Edward Hicks. It highlighted a painting by each Artist: Peaceable Kingdom by Hicks [shown below]; I and My Village by Chagall and Wild Turkey by Audubon. As part of the lesson, the kids choose a picture of an animal and cover the animal print with three different colors of construction paper.

Thursday, November 20, 2003

Rudy Jugoz, Leesa Williams and I went to CPMC in San Francisco for a late meeting to work on a strategy for incorporating them into the enterprise change management processes.

My fantasy football team won week eleven by a score of 89 to 83. The team's record now stands at 8 wins and 3 losses. One team in the league has a record of 10 wins and one loss, while one other team has a record of 8 wins and 3 losses. The fourth best team has 6 wins and 5 losses. The top four teams make the playoffs which start in week thirteen.

Wednesday, November 19, 2003

I spent the morning driving down to Redwood City to look at the old Excite@Home data center. This is one of the possible sites that we are looking at for a hot site, EICU location and office space.

On the drive from Redwood City to downtown San Francisco, I talked with Rob Nooter for about 30 minutes. Although he is having some challenges, Rob is working on starting up a dairy project in Tanzania. He and Barb are flying over to scout out houses. If everything goes according to plan, they will be moving their family to Tanzania after the first of the year.

I spent the afternoon in the West Bay CIO meeting.

Tuesday, November 18, 2003

As part of my parent hours, I spent just over an hour tonight cutting out paper Thanksgiving quilts that Jack's class had colored!

Sunday, November 16, 2003

With Sharon at Sea Ranch until Monday, I spent a large chunk of the day working to finish painting the upstairs hall two more colors. We are trying to get it done before we have Sharon's family for Thankgiving. Next weekend, I am going to finish up the project by cutting and painting the moulding.

I bought Jack a Peja jersey on Friday night. He refuses to take it off and has wore it constantly for two days. If possible, he is even more manic about the jersey after watching the Kings game this afternoon; Stojakovic scored 33 points and was 4 for 6 from 3 point range in the King's victory.

Saturday, November 15, 2003

Jack went to Kellen's birthday party at Tricks Gymnastics. Kellen is one of the boys from Jack's old day care. We have been to this place once before for a kids birthday party; they have quite a machne and have one birthday party after another tightly scheduled.

After getting Jack to bed, I watched The Lord of the Rings - The Two Towers. While I thought that the first installment was pretty good, I was disappointed in how some of the second book was adapted for the movie. This film is a good example of how difficult it is to adapt a book to a movie; there are a large number of key plot points from the book that are ignored or substantially modified.

Friday, November 14, 2003

2003 Kings versus Raptors

Friday morning, Sharon, Janie Diagle and Jeana Hultquist took for a long weekend at a house they rented at Sea Ranch.

Sutter Health IT had its annual "all hands on deck" meeting. This includes all of the IT staff from Support Services as well as each affiliate. In total, there were probably close to 600 people at the meeting. In addition to a number of team building activities and guest speakers, John (the CIO) spent some time reviewing what we have accomplished and the awards that IT has received. More on some of that another time. It is interesting to look back over the last five years; it has been the most professionally rewarding period for me in twenty five years of working for a living.

Jack and I went to the Kings game. Although they have not been playing that well, the Kings beat up on the Toronto Raptors by a score of 94 to 64.

Larkin used our season tickets with Gene and I got another set of seats for Jack and I. They were great seats, about eight rows off the court and just down from center court in Section 115, row D, seat 7 and 8. Jack had a great time.

Our regular season tickets are in the second row of the upper deck just about center court. I have always liked those seat because I can see the whole floor and watch as teams work to run plays. I was struck by the speed of the game sitting down low on Friday night; you get a much better perspective on just how quick the players are.

I also gained a new level of respective for Gerald Wallace. In the second half, several players were jumping for a rebound and soaring above everyone I saw Gerald Wallace. From my angle, his head was above the rim.

Thursday, November 13, 2003

On the way back from Rochester on Wednesday, I finished reading The Return of the King. I had never read any of Tolkien's books before this year. Since January, I have read The Hobbit, The Fellowship of the Ring, The Two Towers, and The Return of the King.

Although my taste runs towards harder science fiction, I enjoyed the books. The level of detail of the world created in the four books is impressive. Next year, I may try to read the Harry Porter novels.

My fantasy football team lost week ten by a score of 90 to 64. The team's record now stands at 7 wins and 3 losses. The play-offs for fantasy leagues start in week thirteen. At this point, the team would be seated second or third in the play-offs.

Wednesday, November 12, 2003

The morning was spent with IBM finishing up the briefing. A large part of IBM's presentation centered around using ISeries processors as a platform for running Linux, Windows and AIX in partitions. As I told the group, this does not fit very well into my world view. Sutter Health uses ISeries machines to host one purchased application, not as a key component of our infrastructure. Nevertheless, it is something that we need to evaluate and test as part of our technology planning process.

After two "nice" days (highs were in the high 40's and low 50's), it was snowing sideways when we left the briefing center and started for the airport. The flight from Rochester left about an hour late, but we had a long lay-over in St. Paul. We got back into Sacramento right on schedule about 7:20 p.m.

Sharon and Jack picked me up at the airport. I was great coming down the escalator and seeing them waiting there for me.

Tuesday, November 11, 2003

We spent all day in a briefing on ISeries directions and had a tour of the IBM plant in Rochester.

We had dinner at Michael's in downtown Rochester (Voted "Best Business Luncheon" and "Best Steaks" by Where Locals Eat).

Monday, November 10, 2003

To Rochester

Yvonne Risch, Rudy Joguz and I spent all day winding our way to Rochester, Minnesota for an IBM briefing on ISeries directions.

The group had dinner at Victoria's Fine Italian Cuisine in downtown Rochester.

Sunday, November 09, 2003

The Kings are the oldest team in the NBA with an average age of 29.472 years. I think that maybe their age is starting to show based on the results of the four game road trip (1 win and 3 losses). The good news is that I am not an Oakland Raiders fan; the average age of their team appears to be 59.472.

Sharon is serving as her nephew's sponsor for his Confirmation into the Catholic Church. We went to church with Sharon's brother's family at Saint Ignatius Loyola Parish and she participated in the initial step of Kevin's Confirmation.

Saturday, November 08, 2003

We spent most of the day working on the project to paint the upstairs hallway. The project includes a couple of different color paints and some moulding to create two large areas to display photos.

Sharon and I had started talking on Friday night about cooking up a couple of lobsters for dinner on Saturday night. After Sharon got back from working out in the morning, we decided to see if we could throw an impromptu dinner party. We invited two other couples and cooked up a couple of pots of lobsters for dinner!

Drew called during dinner from Disneyland; he was in line for the Matterhorn ride. A big group of the people he has met at college got season passes and have already gone to Disneyland a couple of times on weekend.

Friday, November 07, 2003

Rudy Jugoz organized a small "golf tournament" for selected IT staff with the Sutter Health CEO at Whitney Oaks. I played in a foursome with Rudy, Dave Hamilton and Lew Gasper. Van Johnson, the CEO, played in the second group with Debbie Sleigh, Todd Peterson and Julie Cooper. The third foursome was John Muncaster, Mike Marchant, Ed Brooks and Allen King.

I was in trouble from the moment I stepped on the driving range. I have never felt so uncomfortable on the driving range. I probably should have walked back and got a second bucket of balls to hit, but I did not. I got off to a terrible start; I shot a 26 over the first three holes and a 64 on the front nine. I started to settle down about the seventh hole and actually had a 55 on the back nine.

The fourteen was the closet to the pin on the back nine. I teed off first for the group and hit a great 7 iron to within about 18 feet of the pin. Dave got up right behind me and hit a shot within about 6 feet of the pin.

I ended up with a 119 and "won" high gross. Lew won low gross with an 89, while Dave won closet to the pin on the back nine and low score using Callway.

Afterwards I met Sharon and Jack at the rental in Citrus Heights. The rental has some dry rot and Sharon had done a walk through with a contractor to look at what needs to be done. It is the same contractor that we used to fix up the East View property before we sold it in 2000.

Thursday, November 06, 2003

I spent almost all day at Sutter Health's conference center at Glen Cove in Vallejo for the TAG meeting. TAG is a regular meeting of all the IT Directors from the different affiliates within Sutter Health. I realized part of the reason that I feel like the pace has increased at work. While sitting in the meeting, I was trying to schedule a couple of other meetings to do some hardware planning for 2004 and the first dates I could find were in the middle of December. My calendar is almost completely full for the next month!

We had parent/teacher conference with Jack's teacher on Thursday evening. Jack is doing well academically. Jack is in the morning kindergarten class and there is 13 boys and 6 girls. The teacher is having some problems with the boys, including Jack, in this class. After going to the morning kindergarten from 8 a.m. to 11 a.m., almost of the kids go to extended day together. They spent from 11 a.m. until 4 p.m. or later together in a more unstructured environment. While they have some structure work in extension, the boys spent a lot of time playing basketball and football. They are very physical with each other and this get carried back into the classroom.

My fantasy football team won week nine by a score of 89 to 72. The team's record now stands at 7 wins and 2 losses. There is one team in the league with a record of 8 wins and 1 loss; I play that team this weekend. One other team has 6 wins and 3 losses.

Wednesday, November 05, 2003

For her law practice, Sharon travels back and forth between a couple of different sites in Northern California. She wanted to be able to sit down with her PC at any site and send and receive e-mail and browse the internet. After looking at a number of different options we got her a Sierra Wireless Aircard 750 using the AT&T Wireless Network.

Although not as fast as a 802.11b wireless connection, it is faster than a 56kb dial-up connection. Additionally, we have found connectivity to be very good. We have used it up and down the west coast. Sharon used it to do an hour of legal research from a bed and breakfast in Port Townsend, Washington, while I used it to exchange instant messages with our CFO from the Las Vegas airport.

Since I bought the card for Sharon, our Chief Technology Officer (CTO) and one of the other directors has also gotten the same card. Our CIO got a similar product from Sprint about a year ago. I carry a Sprint cell phone, while Sharon has an AT&T cell phone. Based on this experience, AT&T's network has better coverage, particularly when you get off the beaten path.

I spend the bulk of Wednesday going to CPMC and back for the kick-off of their Kronos project. Donna Gainsley, Denis Axtel and I went down for the meeting. I sat in the back of Donna's car and using the Aircard had a solid connect to the internet all the way from Natomas to downtown San Francisco. I exchanged instant messages with Drew at UCI and Lew at 345 California Street, worked on answering some e-mail and browsed the net for almost one hour and 45 minutes without ever having the connection drop!

I spent 30 minutes this morning tracing pilgrim hats on construction paper as part of my parents hours for Jack's school.

Tuesday, November 04, 2003

The pace at work has increased; in addition to a huge number of projects, there are several organization change balls in the air.

I spent most of Tuesday in SOMA, the steering committee for out-patient electronic medical record (EMR). Sutter Health started its EMR projects more than five years ago and now has several foundations that depend entirely on an electronic medical record rather than paper records. Without the availability of the EMR system, these foundations can not function. This creates some real urgency around the technology support and infrastructure issues.

More recently several other major healthcare organizations have started the same type of project using software from the same vendor, including Kaiser and UC Davis Medical Center.

Sunday, November 02, 2003

Sharon and Janie Daigle went to a pur$e party in Davis.

Jack and I went to the Baskin Robbins in Placerville; Morgan started working there last weekend. Jack and I sat and had some ice cream and then got a chance to visit with Morgan for a while. It was a cold cloudy day and there were few other customers!

Saturday, November 01, 2003

We spent some time wandering around Home Depot getting supplies for the next project; we are going to paint the upstairs hallways and create some areas to hang pictures.

Sharon got some new pictures for the dining room walls; they are very large. The afternoon project was getting them hung in the right place.

Saturday night, we watched Rocky. I had actually never seen the movie.