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The Year of the Blog: Turning it up to 30!


You may have noticed that the last couple months have not looked very much like “the year of the blog” for me. Turns out, my attention was focused elsewhere; Southern California to be specific!

It’s shaping up to be a big year. Carrie and I are leaving our twenties behind and hitting thirty. I will be arriving in California June 1st to start a new job. And then Carrie will arrive a week later just in time for us to celebrate our 9th wedding anniversary in a new and unfamiliar town!

But before all that we have to get our house up on the market and wrap up loose ends here in Peoria. I would say that I’m also going to try to get back into reading and writing during that time, but that might have to wait until we’ve made it out there. It definitely hasn’t happened this week as Carrie and I have been completely wiped out by the beginning of allergy season.

All that to say, things are a bit up in the air at the moment as our plans for the year have been turned on their head. Stay tuned!

A Year of Reading: January Books


I didn’t read a lot last year, but all the great books I got for Christmas have inspired me to get back into the routine of reading regularly this year.

Here are books I read in January (and the last bit of December):

The Power of Habit, Charles Duhigg
The Original Jesus, Tom Wright (a.k.a. N. T. Wright)
The Return of the Prodigal Son, Henri Nouwen

Amulet Vol. 1–6, Kazu Kibuishi
Explorer: The Mystery Boxes, ed. Kazu Kibuishi
Valdemar “Arrows” Trilogy by Mercedes Lackey
(that is: Arrow of the QueenArrow’s Flight, and Arrow’s Fall)

Stay tuned: I still have a pretty substantial stack of new books I want to work through. And the list of books I hope to add to that stack continues to grow!

A Year in Review


2014 was a pretty good year! Here are a few events that stuck out for Carrie and me:

Vineyard Peoria started a junior high ministry.

The whole reason we moved to Peoria was to help with the beginning of the Vineyard church here, so every new benchmark is pretty exciting! Carrie worked with Ben and Lamar to launch the junior high ministry back in February, and it’s been going strong. There are around eight kids total in the program and it meets every other Sunday morning.

Carrie quit her job.

After a change of management at Prairie Lakes, Carrie decided it was time for a new chapter and quit her job. It been a nice adjustment as it allows us to be a lot better in eating healthy and getting things done around the house. But more on that later!

A new generation of “Bob…” fans.

I may have told the junior high kids at church about my remake of “Bob and That Other Guy and the Search for the Green B’s”. Their surprising enthusiasm motivated me to polish it up, fix some bugs, and get it up for download on my website.

Adam moved out and got married!

As nice as it was having a roommate to help pay the rent, Carrie and I have been enjoying having our house to ourselves. No more need to shut the door when using the restroom!

This change was catalyzed by Adam’s engagement and consequent marriage. We were honored to both be included in the wedding party.

We got a gym membership.

We’re getting old and our bodies need a little more deliberate attention than they used to. So even though my resolution for 2014 was to not work out, we went ahead and signed up.

We started “renovating”.

Okay, so maybe not real renovations, but when we bought our house two years ago we took advantage of the fact that it was move in ready and didn’t do any painting or change any fixtures.

Once Adam’s furniture was all out, it was time to start adding our own touch! The living room was first; the walls got painted, curtains hung, piano hauled down to the basement. One room at a time! Maybe this year we will tackle the kitchen.


At the beginning of November, one of the executives at work stoked a bit of department rivalry and got the IT department roped into a Christmas decorating showdown.

The competition escalated throughout the month, into the final run up to the Christmas company meeting. When all was said and done, I had cut over two hundred snowflakes using a Silhouette brand cutting plotter and a snowflake drawing app of my own design.

Everyone else pitched in other various pieces. We had a fake fireplace with a Rudolph head hung over it, Christmas trees, and all our cubicles decorated like log cabins.

snowflakes Xmas Aisle

Other Miscellaneous Happenings:

There was a turkey in my work’s parking deck. I mean, how is that not a highlight?!

I fell down a hill walking around Bradley park playing disc golf and scraped myself up pretty badly.

I got stuck in the attic while no one was home and had to wait for someone to come save me!

And I also got stuck in an elevator on Halloween! SPOOKY!

The Year of the Blog


It’s a new year, which means that it’s time to dream big! New Year celebrations are over, the Christmas gifts have all been open (unless your true love has decided to distribute them over twelve days, in which case you are just now reaching the lords a-leaping), and so it is finally time to get down to what you want to accomplish in the next twelve months.

Which for me includes reviving this blog. My conservative goal is to put something here at least twice a month. Updates on my other goals for the year, anecdotes and happenings, and perhaps the occasional art; we will see.

I’ll be sharing links to new posts on Facebook and Twitter, or your can fire up your feed reader and plug-in my site to follow along there.

I’ll wait to say any more until my next post, but in the meantime here is a (slightly blurry) picture of the gifts I distributed to the Egli family this Christmas. Here’s to a new year!

xmas gifts



A background I made by request for my brother’s birthday.




Is your skin porous
Sometimes I must trace its lines to be sure
Find again the telltale blemishes
The assurance of your humanity

In dreams I hover
Fourteen inches above the ground
Press forward and let the earth become a rushing blur

Can you see me then
Shifting my weight between worlds
Breaking and shattering into a thousand pieces
Hiding beneath the support of all things



It is hard to keep these double-edged words sheathed,
With my hand on the hilt and blood
drowning out sound in my ears.

It is hard to keep my eyes focused above the horizon,
Against the sun’s bright glare.

Tomorrow may be cloudy and cool
but today the heat stings upward from a glaring pavement.

Pipe Dream


These backgrounds are based on a pattern I draw with pencil and paper when my mind wanders. The underlying structures were generated with JavaScript and HTML/CSS, captured with PhantomJS, and then manipulated in Photoshop to give the final results.

Pipes 1 Pipes 2 Pipes 3