Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Jack's 7th Birthday

Sharon picked Jack up from school and took him to play minature golf at Paradise Island. They ended up playing 36 holes. Jack had a great time; on the way home, he said that this was the best birthday ever. We finished up the evening celebrating his 7th birthday with cake and presents.

click on the picture for a larger copy!

birthday balloons

Moblog Jack 7th Birthday pic 1

7th Birthday

California Historical Landmark #575

California State Historical Landmark #575

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This landmark is located at the intersection of Meiss Street and Highway 16, near flagpole, in Sloughhouse, California. There are 57 other California State Historical Landmarks in Sacramento County. The GPS coordinates for this location are N 38° 29.799 W 121° 11.791.

You can log your visit to this landmark at waymark.com.

California State Historical Landmark #575
Sloughhouse Inn

Sloughhouse, prominent hotel and stage station on the road to the Amador mines, was a favorite stopping place for travellers, notably Leland Stanford. Constructed in 1850 by Jared Dixon Sheldon, it was destroyed by fire in 1890, and rebuilt the same year. Many descendants of pioneers of the community of Sloughhouse, which developed near Sheldon's establishment, still reside in this fertile valley of the Cosumnes.

Sunday, August 28, 2005

A Birthday Party and A Dinner

Jack spent the middle of the day at a birthday party for one of his classmates at Chucky Cheese. While he was gone, Sharon and I worked to get the house cleaned up. Andrea and her new husband Joey came for dinner. We barbecued some steaks and aspargus for the main course.

Saturday, August 27, 2005

7th Birthday Party

We had Jack's 7th Birthday Party at Paradise Island. After his birthday party last year, I swore that we would not try to do another one at the house.

We headed up with six boys from his classes (Timmy, Johnny, Joe, Andrew, Jeffery, and Cody). The boys had a great time. They played in the arcade for a while and then we had pizza, presents and cake in one of the rooms. Afterwards, they went back out to the arcade. Eventually, we herded them outside and spent an hour and a half riding rides, including the Scrambler, Bumper Cars, a Super Slide, Indy Cars and Bumper Boats. A nice mix of parents stayed and Sharon and I had a chance to visit with them while the kids rode rides.

I felt like it was a successful kid's birthday party. I will post a photo album from the party in the next couple of days.

Moblog 7th Birthday Party

2005 Soccer Jamboree

Jack and I spent the morning at the West Lake Soccer Club Jamboree at Bartholonew Park. Jack got his individual and team soccer photos taken. Jack's team had a scrimmage scheduled at the Jamboree later in the day, but we took off to get organized for his birthday party.

2005 Soccer Jamboree pic 2

2005 Soccer Jamboree pic 1

Moblog 2005 Soccer Jamboree

Friday, August 26, 2005

Morgan off to College

Morgan stopped by last night. She is flying to New York early this morning to start college at Sarah Lawrence College!

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

California Historical Landmark #83

A couple of times a month, I spend the day in the bay area for meetings. One of those regular monthly meetings is held in the San Francisco business district. Two blocks from the site and right on my inbound drive is the following historical marker. It is almost half a mile up Market from the Ferry Building and the bay!

Shoreline Markers
California State Historical Landmark #83

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This landmark is a plaque in sidewalk at the northeast corner of Bush and Market Streets in San Francisco, California. There are 48 other California State Historical Landmarks in San Francisco County.

This tablet marks the shore line of the San Francisco Bay at the time of the discovery of gold in California, January 24, 1848, map reproduced above delineates the old shore line.

California State Historical Landmarks

California State Historical Landmarks

Alameda County - 14 of 36 - last updated 11/02/2012
Alpine County - 2 of 6 - last updated 05/27/2011
Amador County - 19 of 25 - last updated 05/19/2011
Butte County - 10 of 10 - last updated 10/01/2018
Calaveras County - 24 of 41 - last updated 02/18/2015
Colusa County - 2 of 3 - last updated 03/30/2016
Contra Costa - 12 of 15 - last updated 03/23/2012
Del Norte County
El Dorado County - 31 of 31 - last updated 12/05/2018
Fresno County - 0 of 8
Glenn County - 2 of 2 - last updated 10/09/2018
Humboldt County
Imperial County
Inyo County
Kern County - 1 of 47 - last updated 07/26/2011
Kings County - 1 of 3 - last updated 5/22/2015
Lake County - 7 of 7 - last updated 04/20/2015
Lassen County - 4 of 7 - last updated 08/08/2008
Los Angeles County - 3 of 103 - last updated 12/05/2013
Madera County - 0 of 1
Marin County - 4 of 14 - last updated 07/07/2014
Mariposa County - 1 of 8 - last updated 5/22/2018
Mendocino County - 0 of 8
Merced County - 1 of 5 - last updated 01/02/2010
Modoc County
Mono County
Monterey County - 1 of 25 - last updated 03/29/2013
Napa County - 17 of 17 - last updated 11/12/2015
Nevada County - 14 of 20 - last updated 05/13/2015
Orange County - 1 of 26 - last updated 03/07/2024
Placer County - 12 of 20 - last updated 12/03/2012
Plumas County - 2 of 13 - last updated 08/21/2013
Riverside County
Sacramento County - 58 of 58 - last updated 10/01/2009
San Benito County - 4 of 5 - last updated 10/07/2010
San Bernardino County
San Diego County - 4 of 71 - late updated 02/29/2012
San Francisco County - 25 of 49 - last updated 05/11/2022
San Joaquin County - 26 of 26 - last updated 10/18/2011
San Luis Obispo County - 2 of 13 - last updated 04/15/2024
San Mateo County - 12 of 34 - last updated 08/26/2011
Santa Barbara County - 6 of 16 - last updated 03/29/2024
Santa Clara County - 13 of 43 - last updated 07/19/2021
Santa Cruz County - 2 of 8 - last update 12/06/2011
Shasta County - 3 of 18 - last updated 08/11/2010
Sierra County
Siskiyou County
Solano County - 14 of 14 - last updated 11/27/2007
Sonoma County - 13 of 27 - last updated 05/29/2015
Stanislaus County - 5 of 5 - last updated 11/11/2009
Sutter County - 2 of 2 - last updated 06/08/2006
Tehama County - 3 of 4 - last updated 11/12/2018
Trinity County
Tulare County
Tuolumne County - 20 of 20 - last updated 07/01/2014
Ventura County
Yolo County - 3 of 3 - last updated 10/16/2008
Yuba County - 7 of 7 - last updated 02/15/2013

Google Talk

Google has released an instant message client called Google Talk based on Jabber.

Monday, August 22, 2005

First 2005 Soccer Scrimmage

Soccer practice started up again over the last three weeks. Jack's team scrimmaged another team tonight to get ready for the season. He picked up pretty much where he left off last year. He scored 2 goals and had three other shots on goal. His team won the scrimmage by a score of 7 to 0. If the other team hadn't had a strong goalie in the first period, the final score might have been even uglier. Overall, this is a stronger team than last year's. There are two or three other kids on the team that can give Jack a run for his money. I still marvel at the fact that he is left footed...

First Day of Second Grade

Today was the first day of second grade.

First Day of Kindergarden Picture

First Day of First Grade Picture

Google Desktop 2

Google Desktop 2

Saturday, August 20, 2005

Friday, August 19, 2005

2005 AHOD Meeting

I spent the day in the IT All Hands on Deck Meeting. I think that this is the fourth year that we have held this annual event. The meeting has grown too large to hold at a hotel so this year we moved it to the Sacramento Convention Center.

The theme for the meeting was the road trip that the organization is taking as we are working to implement an enterprise electronic medical record. One of the morning activities was for each person to decorate a t-shirt with themes from a road trip that they had taken and to share the story with the table. The table selected the best story. I built a blog before the meeting and we had each table post their road trip stories to the blog using a mail-to-blog function and their blackberries. The end result was the SH EHR Road Trip Blog.

I also spent the week before the meeting organizing fifty MVP awards. This included creating placards for the tables with the picture and contribution of each MVP. I got up in front of the group after lunch and briefly explained the process for selecting the MVPs and asking them to stand to be acknowledged.

The very last part of the meeting involved the 700 plus people being divided randomly into seven groups. Each group had a percussion instrument. The goal was to teach the group a one minute routine and then come back play it. I was the group leader for about 150 people with drumsticks. With no musical talent, I quickly drafted Rudy Jugoz to help me. When Rudy asked the group of 150 people who had played the drums before, no one raised their hand. He did a great job of teaching the group a simple two part drum routine!

As part of the program, Rudy was also responsible for leading small team playing percussion instruments earlier in the day.

Moblog AHOD pic 3

Moblog AHOD pic 2

Moblog AHOD pic 1

Thursday, August 18, 2005

More VoIP Planning plus

I spent all day in the second day of a planning session with the Burton Group and our internal teams. Although the two days was titled a working VoIP session, VoIP is a piece of a larger set of services and strategies; we are not viewing VoIP as an end in and of itself. Other services include an integrated set of voice, video, instant message and real time collaboration.

Afterwards, I headed down to the Sacramento Convention Center to help set-up and do a dry run of the agenda for the IT All Hands on Deck (AHOD) Meeting. Rudy Jugoz et al were getting organized to lead the afternoon group activity! We are expecting more than 700 people tomorrow.

Sacramento Convention Center

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Drew's latest CD

Drew has updated his www.andrewheringer.com web site.

He is now selling his latest CD titled & we hope on-line!

VoIP Planning

I spent all day in a planning session facilitated by the Burton Group. We are working on our Voice over IP (VoIP) strategy. Although there are some good underlying standards, I did not realize the degree to which the hardware and software from different vendors does not interoperate.

Monday, August 15, 2005

California Historical Landmark #678

Lassen Emigrant Trail
California State Historical Landmark #678

See this location on Yahoo Maps in Flickr
See this location on Google Maps

This landmark is located on Highway 36, 2.5 miles west of Westwood, California. There are 6 other California State Historical Landmarks in Lassen County. The GPS coordinates for this location are N 40° 18.863 W 121° 03.361.

You can log your visit to this landmark at waymark.com.

Through this draw passed many covered wagons and gold seekers enroute to California over the Lassen Trail during 1848-1851, approaching this location from the North, the trail passes what is now Bogard Ranger Station, proceeding Southward to Big Springs and Big Meadows (now Lake Almanor), it then turned westward to Deer Creek, which it followed generally to Vina in the Sacramento Valley.

Saturday, August 13, 2005

Star Wars: Episode V

Sharon, Jack and I watched Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back.

Arcade Creek Golf Course

Sharon, Jack and I played the front nine at the Arcade Creek Golf Course. I started out playing well and was thinking I might be able to break 50. I had trouble with my tee shots on the seven and eight and ended up shooting a 54. Sharon carded a 59. Afterwards, we had lunch at the MacKenzie's Sports Bar.

Thursday, August 11, 2005

Back from Southern California

Up fairly early, Sharon swam in the pool, while I went for a 4.5 mile run. This time I went South at the Venice Pier and into the Marina Del Rey neighborhoods. I went as far as I could go, the main canal, and then looped back along the Ballona Lagoon.

After a little breakfast in the room, we checked out of the hotel and headed towards Hollywood. We stopped for a while near Hollywood and Vine and looked at the Walk of Fame. From there we headed back to Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills. Sharon and Morgan did a little bit of window shopping and we had lunch at 208 Rodeo on Via Rodeo.

Our next stop was Getty Center. This is a very specutalor museum on a hill top in North Los Angeles. We toured the special exhibition which was a show of Rembrandt's Late Religious Portraits and walked through a couple of other buildings. Tactically, we made a mistake of not leaving enough time to spend at the Getty.

In the late afternoon, we jumped back in the car and headed to LAX. As Sharon said several times over the course of the three days, "how does anyone live down here?" It took us about an hour and 20 minutes to go 11 miles back to the airport from the Getty. We caught an early evening flight home and were back home by 9:00 p.m.

Originally, I had tried to talk Sharon into spending three nights instead of two. It would have been nice to have had another day to spend entirely at the Getty...

Hollywood and Vine

Corner of Hollywood and Vine


Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Southern California

Sharon and I both took early morning runs. I ran about 5.5 miles north along the Venice Beach Broadwalk to Santa Monica.

After a lazy breakfast at the hotel, we took the car back to Venice Beach. Sharon and Morgan wandered off to do some shopping, while Jack and I walked on the beach and explored the area.

Linking back up, we rented bicycles and headed North. We got as far North as the beach north of the Santa Monica Pier before we turned around and headed back.

Back at the hotel, Sharon and Morgan went to get manicures and pedicures, while Jack and I swam in the pool.

In the late afternoon, we headed to Dodger Stadium to see the Dodgers play the Phillies. It was an odd game. There was a two run homer in the top of the first and a three run homer in the bottom of the first. With the score tied 5 to 5 in the top of the ninth, the relief pitcher hit the first batter. The runner stole second. The Dodgers intentionally walked the second batter. The third batter was walked on five pitches. The fourth batter hit a grand slam! The Phillies won 9 to 5.

Moblog Chavez Ravine

Dodger Stadium

Moblog Venice Beach

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

To Marina Del Rey

Sharon, Jack, Morgan and I caught a morning flight to Southern California. We are spending a couple of nights at the Ritz Carlton in Marina Del Rey. We got to the hotel before noon and dropped the car.

Much to Jack's chagrin, we walked to the Venice Beach Pier and had lunch at Mercede's Cuban Grill (I later measured this at more than a mile.) We walked out on the Venice Pier and then wandered North along the waterfront past Muscle Beach. Morgan and Sharon scouted the shops with the intention of coming back later. Eventually, we caught a taxi back to the hotel.

We spent the rest of the afternoon hanging out at the pool swimming in the pool and sitting in the spa.

For dinner, we went to the Jer-ne Restaurant in the hotel. Sharon was initially a little disappointed in the selection on the menu, but the food, the presentation and the service turned out to be excellent. Sharon got a couple of presentation ideas for future dinner parties!

Moblog Marina del Rey

Sunday, August 07, 2005

Larkins for Dinner

Sharon, Jack and I traveled up to visit the Larkins in the afternoon. Jack had a great time feeding carrots to the horses, taking a dip in the pool and running through the sprinklers. Cindy and Joe served a great dinner in the pool house.

Saturday, August 06, 2005

Almanor 2005 Day 8

The week at Almanor always seems to go slow at first and then it is over. Sunday, Monday and Tuesday seem to stretch on forever, but then the next thing you know it is Saturday morning and time to pack up and leave.

We had an excellent group this year. The Hunters, Wallens, Tomasins and Wallen's brother Bob were in the four two bedroom cabins, while the Snipes and the Heringers were in the two one bedroom cabins. I particularly glad to see the Snipes back for the week after a couple of year absence.

After living in the cabin with five people for a week, it took me most of the morning to get the dishes done, everything packed and loaded into the truck. Since Sharon had left late Wednesday to come back and work on a lease and the big kids slept half the morning away, most of this work fell to me. By the time all of the boats were out of the water, the group photos were done and we said our good byes, it was after 12:00 p.m.

Traditionally, the groups heading south make the run into Chico on Highway 32 and then stop for lunch at the Graduate. I followed Tomasin down the canyon and we got to the Graduate about 1:30 p.m. We were back on the road a little about 2:45 p.m. and pulled into the Elk Grove shortly before 4:30 p.m.

With the hot weather in the valley, the weather at Almanor was great this year. We had a number of calm, hot afternoons. We never really had an afternoon during the week where the wind will come up like it can when it is cooler in the valley. There was no rain or thunderstorms this year. The only negative to this is that with little or no cloud cover the sunsets were not as spectacular as they have been in other years.

Drew asked me on the way home how long I thought this group vacation would hold together. This is the 18th year that I have gone to Lake Almanor to the Dorado Inn with this group of friends. Morgan was one year old when we went the first time; in three weeks, she is going off to college. I said that I thought it would continue for some time unless there was some kind of unforeseen event, such as the Dorado Inn shutting down. I do believe that we will start to lose some of the older kids. This year were only missing Becky Wallen. Drew noted that it might not be too long before there were some grandkids to drag along!

All of the Kids

Hunter and Loren

Snipes and Keith

Friday, August 05, 2005

Almanor 2005 Day 7

We spent another great day at the lake. Jack and I slept late, not getting up until after 9:00 a.m. After breakfast, Jack and I went out on the Hunter's boat with Hunter, Loren, Jessica (Loren's friend), Danny and Nathan.

I have been talking to Jack all week about getting him to try and ski. With me in the water with him, Jack made a couple of attempts to get up on double skis. He was not successful, probably more due to having not having the right equipment than his ability. Switching gears, we put Jack on a kneeboard. He had a great time on the kneeboard.

Everyone else in the boat went on the wakeboard, while I skied on a single ski. Jack eventually took a second turn on the kneeboard. By the time, we got back to the dock it was after 1:00 p.m.

With the Hamburger Hut closing this fall, a large group wanted to go back again one last time. We spent a couple hours on the deck at Lassen View having lunch. Jack and Mikey played their own version of cribbage for most of that time!

When we got back to the cabins, the kids ran the waverunners for a while. Jack went for long rides with both Drew and I.

The Chabriers showed up with their patio boat which we tied off at the end of the dock. While the kids swam and ran the waverunners, the adults had drinks and appetizers lounging on the patio boat.

The Tomasin's made dinner. After dinner Jack had a great time playing badminton and wrestling with the older boys on the lawn.

Hamburger Hut

Hamburger Hut Lassen View Resort

David and Tomasin

Jack on Kneeboard

Thursday, August 04, 2005

Almanor 2005 Day 6

The morning started slow. I sat and read my book, while Drew and Jack played cribbage on the picnic tables.

The kids quickly discovered that the owners of the resort were willing to let us use their two waverunners. We spent a huge part of the rest of the day running the waverunners. Kurt and I were handling keeping the waverunners full of gas and helping provide some order to who was next. With 15 kids all wanting to go next, it was a challenge to keep order.

Jack went out on the waverunners about five times, three times with me and twice with Drew. By the time we finally tied up the waverunners for the day, it was late afternoon.

Jill and I took Jack for a short ride on the tube. Afterwards we joined the adults relaxing in the shade on the boat ramp, while the boys played king of the mountain on the swimming dock.

Julie had made dinner reservations for the adults at the restaurant at the Almanor West Golf Course. The service was very slow. We had a long, lazy dinner. We got there about 7:00 p.m. and it was after 10:00 p.m. by the time we settled up the bill and headed for home.

Relaxing on the boat ramp


Snipes and Craig

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Almanor 2005 Day 5

I spent a long morning on the lake. I went on early run with Tomasin in a full boat that included Jack, Chris, David, Nathan, Cal (Nathan's friend), Carol (Wallen's niece), Tomasin and I. Tomasin and I single skiied while the kids all wakeboarded.

Afterwards Tomasin and I dropped everyone off and picked up Drew. Drew wakeboarded as we made our way towards Lassen View to fill up the boat with gas.

Back at the cabins, I took Jack and Drew back out in the Tomasin's boat and took Jack tubing.

When I got back to the dock, it was almost 1:30 p.m.. Hunter was getting everyone organized to go to the Hamburger Hut. I ended up driving down to the Lassen View Resort with Tomasin, Drew, Morgan and
Jack in the truck. We had a nice afternoon sitting on the deck at the Hamburger Hut and enjoying the view of the lake.

After all of these years of going there, it is difficult to believe that the Lassen View Resort and the Hamburger Hut might not be there next year. The resort is in escrow and is apparently going to be sold for a subdivision.

After we got back, Tomasin and I started playing cribbage on the picnic tables. This attracted a fairly large crowd for the first couple of games. Tomasin whipped me the first two games, including muggins me for about a dozen points much to the crowd's delight. I ended up roaring back to win the next three games and take the set three games to two.

During the cribbage game, there was a lot of trash talking going on about horseshoes. Tomsain and I challenged Drew and David to a match. It is a very surreal experience to be playing Drew and David. They are both whole grow men at this point. Tomasin and I trashed them fairly easily; we won the first game 21 to 4 and the second game 21 to 10.

The Wallen's fixed dinner. After horseshoes, we sat and had drinks and appetizers in the front of their cabin. Jack insisted that I play cribbage against him during this time. The Wallen's served pasta for dinner.

The adults sat and enjoyed some CDs after dinner, including a copy of Drew's new album. It was interesting to listen to the other kids keep asking Drew if that was him on the album.

I finished up the night playing badminton with Jack.

Drew, Jack and Morgan

Drew, Jack and Morgan

Tomasin and Chris

Tomasin and Chris

Hunter and Danny

Hunter and Danny

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Almanor Day 4

After a late night, no one was moving very quickly on Tuesday morning.  Sharon and I had set aside this day for a hike.  She had a hiking book that described a hike that was actually very close to the Lake.  Looking at a map over the last week, I was very interested in trying to reach this spot.  The trailhead was about 11 miles off of highway 89 on dirt roads.  After about 5 miles on the dirt road, we had climbed about 2,500 feet and had an amazing view of the Indian Valley to the south. 

Unfortunately, the road was getting narrower and the side of the hill steeper.  With five miles more to go to the trailhead, we made a decision to bail and turn around.  This turned out to be an adventure.  Sharon would not stay in the truck with Jack while I worked to turn the truck around the in a small bend in the road.

Getting back to the main road, we decide to regroup and head to the Bizz Johnson Trail.  We went to the Mason Station Trailhead, had lunch and did a three mile hike.  This part of the trail is not as nice as the section that we hiked two years ago.

Finishing the hike, we headed into Chester to do some shopping.  It was our night to cook dinner for the group.

Back at the cabin, Jill Wallen and I took Jack out for a short tubing run.  Sharon and I then started to get things organized to cook and serve dinner for 25 people.  While we were working on dinner, I got a kick out of watching Tomasin and Wallen play horseshoes against Drew and David.

Sharon and I served drinks and appetizers before dinner.  We cooked barbecued chicken, baked potatoes and salad for dinner and finished up the evening with ice cream sandwiches.

We finished up the evening watching the sunset over the lake and trying to figure out which planets were seeing in the night sky.


Tomasin and Drew playing horseshoes

Jack Tubing

Jack Tubing

Bizz Johnson Trail

Bizz Johnson Trail