The horror, the horror.
My stepson, Wes. He’s always said that you cannot have “awesome” without “Wes”.
*sigh* Welcome to my world.
A Panoramic Photo: Grundy Center as seen from the passenger side of my son’s car. West bound on G Ave. Friday March 11, 2011
Things aren’t too bad here in the Ozarks. It’s drizzling outside right now as I’m doing volunteer guard duty at church. My church is hosting their second Wild Game night this weekend. There are lots of donated hunting mounts. Insurance requires there be at least people inside the building 24/7. I volunteered for the 10-2 shift every day this week.
I’m still looking for work, I’m being a little choosy as I want to continue working in industry in some sort of capacity. What I mean is that I’m applying for work with jobs that involve graphic design in some sort or another. I’m not applying for a job flipping burgers. God is providing me the opportunity to do so. Ashya and I are in agreement that we are not hurting financially and we can afford for me to look for a job I’ll be happy with as opposed to “Ah we need Stev working NOW.”
In the meantime, I’m keeping myself busy:
Project 40 Eridani A is my attempt to get some freelance work. I’ve already got 3 pro bono projects in the works, just to get my name out in the community.
Project Connor is an all new, non-Stev story that I’m working on. The Hand of F.A.T.E. I’ve got character sketches put together for the five main protagonists. I’m excited about this one.
United or Untied is my serialized Stev story. I haven’t abandoned it, it was just one of the things stored on the mysteriously erased thumb drive.
Demotivational Posters and other cool Photoshoppy stuff are now being done under Project 40 Eridani A…..
Ashya and I will be celebrating our 3-month anniversary next week. It’s hard to believe (in a good way) that it’s only been three months. No news is good news, all four of the boys seem to be doing well in school. Private Black Spartan has confirmed that no aliens have invaded in the past week.
I hope to have the next installment of United or Untied up this week or next. I’ve also got more demotivational posters in the works, I’m just stuck on some of the “jokes”.
I just finished reading Ender in Exile. This is the most recent book in Orson Scott Card’s Ender Universe. I saw the book in the bargain bin at Wal Mart. Even though we are counting our pennies, my wife saw the look of glee on my face and acquiesced to its purchase.
Card’s stories about genius children saving the human race from the onslaught of an invading alien menace has got to be one of my favorite fictional universes. The book was excellent and for the first time in a while I was immersed in world that I could not put down.
This is not a review of the novel.
What happened was this, Ender makes constant reference to his jeesh, a small private army of your friends who you know has always got your back. I got to thinking that Ender was a pretty lucky guy to have a group like that. Then I got to thinking who would be in my jeesh were I fortunate enough to have one…
In no particular oder:
Berin Kinsman; a superhero currently living in the desert southwest. We have never met face-to-face, but he is a brother in every sense of the word. During my darkest moments surrounding the death of Mrs. VS, Berin was there as an ear to listen, a reassuring voice, and source of inspiration.
William Lawton; my brother, my friend, my GM. My daughter introduced us when she told me that I should come play in her gaming group. Bill is one person who can honestly say he lives in my head (scary thought). He gets me.
Brook Ullum; the children’s pastor at church. She allowed me to once again use my puppeteering skills with children. She shares my sense of humor (another scary thought).
Hank Harwell; an expatriated Texan. He is an officer and a gentleman. He shares my faith and has been a rock when I needed it. Another of my brothers-from-another-mother. We’ve never met face-to-face but I do know that someday we will.
Adrienne Paradis; my writing partner of over 20 years. She’s one of the few people who knows Stev as well as I do.
S.L. Shirley; a fellow Dire Paladin. Stefan would follow me into an autoduel with no questions asked.
48 Fan & Private Blackspartan; yes they’re my kids. How many dads can say that they are friends with their children?
Lady Ashya T’Sai; my friend, my partner, my wife. We were friends in high school. I missed asking her out by three weeks. She shares my sense of humor, my likes, my worldview, and many other things. God brought her back in to my life after 25 years. I don’t know what I’d do without her.
President Roosevelt declared the date “A Day that will live in infamy”. Webster’s defines the word as a state of extreme dishonor.
The United States was attacked without provocation, drawing us into a war that claimed many of our finest young men and women. That certainly lives up to the definition in my opinion. We stopped Hitler from expanding his influence across Europe, sent the imperial hungerings of an island nation back to their home islands.
After the war America rebuilt Europe, we rebuilt Japan and rebooted their economy. Today Europeans look at Americans with disdain. Our economy is a mess because we import so much of our consumer goods from Asia. Does today’s generation realize the sacrifices of that generation? Do they even care that our freedoms which we take for granted were bought and paid for by the blood of those who gave their lives in service to our country?
Take the time today to seek out a WW2 veteran and thank them for their service to our country. Then take the time to thank a current member of our armed forces and thank them for the job they are doing. Just remember that we would be living in a very different world had it not been for the events of Sunday December 7th, 1941
I’m sitting here in one of Springfield’s public libraries contemplating the last twelve months of my life. A year ago, Virginia had been declared cancer free by the doctors. My daughter was planning on coming home for Christmas. For the first time in a long time there were presents we had bought under the tree (not just presents donated to a less-than-fortunate family). I had a good job that I enjoyed immensely.
Here I am November 2010. Mrs. Vulcan Stev is gone. #48 Fan is 400 miles away. I’m laid off and looking for work.
What do I have to be thankful for? LOTS!
I have been blessed not once but twice in finding Mrs. Right. Ashya and I partners in EVERY sense of the word. I miss Mrs. VS and I’m not belittling anything of the 22 years we were together. However, Ashya and I fit like two peas in a pod. God has blessed me with a very beautiful woman for me to love, care for, cry on, and be with.
I have 5 very wonderful children. Pvt. Black-Spartan is protecting our country. I am honored that my daughter is serving our country proudly. Soccer Dude is very much his mother’s son. He’s a natural athlete and I’m happy to cheer him on. #48 Fan is maturing the time he’s spending away from Dad. I’m seeing glimmerings of the man he’ll become. The First Mate and The Pirate keep me on my toes. I’m having a blast carting the both of them to and from the library to have internet time.
The fact that I’m not currently working has allowed me to get things done for the family that otherwise would’ve required either myself or Ashya to take time off work.
I prayed that God would heal Mrs. VS. He has. When I stop to think about how she could be just lying in a Hospice bed, not knowing anyone, not responding to anything, I realize that God has blessed us for saving her family from the pain of watching her ebb away.
I have air in my lungs. I have food in the fridge. I have gas in the car. I have money in the bank. There are others out there off far worse than I.
Being thankful means more than looking at all your stuff and living for that. Being thankful means looking at your place in the universe and realizing that you are where you need to be.
Thank you God for all you’ve done for me in the past year.
A lot has happened since I last wrote anything for this blog. Where do I start?
The Pirate and I moved all of the important stuff (except #48 fan and his belongings) to the Ozarks right at the end of October. I’m discovering that enough of Springfield Missouri (ca. 1985) remains that I’m not completely lost. It’s strange seeing trees out my window instead of cornfields, but I’m getting used to that.
Ashya and I got married on Oct 29th. We’re realizing that there are more differences between us than Coke vs. coffee, but that’s not a bad thing. Things like how I fold laundry, sort the DVD collection, wash the dishes (yes I do laundry and dishes) are all foreign concepts to the new members of my family.
The Pirate has been enrolled in school. He’s liking the new environment and is making new friends. His reservations about moving down here are lessening each day. He’ll be ok.
We’re all adjusting to the new reality. But we are working on it.
The biggest thing I’m facing is still no job. It’s not like I expected the Ozarks to open wide it’s doors and say “Here Stev, take your pick of employment.” I’m just not used to sitting at the computer in a Library looking for work and calling it a productive day.
We can’t seem to find anyone who can give us unlimited net connection at the house. Plenty of companies are willing to hook us up but with three boys wanting to play internet games and me looking for work, we need unlimited DSL.
I’m on ye olde Book of Face when I’m at the library. I’ve still got plenty of posters in the works, but job hunting comes first. I’ve got an invitation from members of the old gang for a game night. I’ll be taking them up on that in the near future.
I will get back to regular posts. I promise you that. Life just hasn’t allowed me much of an opportunity to do so.
This is just a brief note to let everyone know that the blog has not been forgotten, neglected, or left to rot. The job layoff has necessitated some changes. Limited ‘net access for the near future is one of them.
I am working on a few different things and will post when I can.
It’s no secret. Ashya and I are planning on getting married sometime in the near future (ie within twelve months). There are too many indicators that she and I are destined for each other. She meets each and every one of the criteria I had prayed about that my next wife should have (including the bonus ones that I could live without).
We’ve been wondering about the time table for our eventual nuptials. We’ve been concerned with the melding of two families, who’d have to move, which school system the boys would attend. Typical stuff to be sure in this day and age, but we want to make sure that we do this right.
I had a good job here in Iowa. She has a good job in Ozark country. Soccer Dude and First Mate enjoy the schools they attend, likewise #48 Fan and the Pirate. We weren’t entirely sure which direction the we were headed.
I make no secret about the fact that I believe prayer works. We began praying for direction. Today I got a shock. My boss informed me that due to rising costs and falling revenue, my position was being eliminated. I didn’t take it too well at first. I packed my desk and left.
I notified family and friends. There were tears, questions about what I’m gonna do, and promises of prayers and support.
The more I talked with my Ashya and my Dad, I began to realize that this piece of bad news has a VERY large silver lining. I left on good terms with my boss. He was very sorry to let me go. I really liked my job and really didn’t want to leave. God replied by having the job leave me.
So I will be looking for work in the Ozarks. Why? Ashya already has a good job and there is no reason for her to leave it. My house in NE Iowa is to small for the combined family. We found a nice house big enough for all of us in her neck of the woods (literally woods).
So, I’m updating my resume and portfolio. If you have any freelance graphic design work you need done don’t hesitate to give me a holler. Things are gonna be a little tough but we’ll make it.