Monthly Archives: January 2017

Old Film

camera

You ever have one of those things that you end up moving around from home to home that you live, but you always just end up tucking it away somewhere, only to find it the next time you move again? That’s pretty much how this camera has existed for as long as I can remember.  I couldn’t recall how old it was, or any of the pictures I took with it.  But I knew it had to be 10-15 years old.  So I finally took it in to get developed, fully expecting that none of the pictures would turn out.

Luckily, the pictures DID develop.  But unfortunately, there’s not much that’s juicy or even all that interesting in there.  Just the same, I figured I’d share what was in the time capsule.  Often what’s in the background is more interesting than the subject of the photo.

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Who is that cat?  I’m pretty sure this is my old cat Rosie.  At first glance it looks like my Mom’s cat, Fuzz.  But based on the other photos in this roll, this picture would have had to have been taken around 2001 – 2003.  Fuzz wouldn’t have been born yet.  Rosie ended up getting out of the house when I lived at the trailer park.  I searched and searched, but never found her.

That Video Chair is pretty legendary in my mind.  That was one of two matching chairs we had in Ingalls.  I sat in that chair for hours playing Nintendo 64, setting Mario Kart 64 records and perfecting my GoldenEye skills.  I can still hear the creaks of the wood as you rock back, and feel the ribbed upholstery on my fingertips.

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This is my roommate Aaron.  He and I worked together at Arby’s in Aggieville.  We hit it off pretty well as we had some common interests.  Video games, rock, well and that might wrap that list up.  He was a good roommate most of the time.  We would stay up WAY too late playing Grand Theft Auto on PS2, and would jam out once in a while with him on the guitar, and me on the drums.  Towards the end of being roommates he started hanging out with some new friends, and smoking weed and I had no interest in following suit.  My last vivid memory of Aaron was him trying to patch a hole in the wall he punched after his girlfriend broke up with him.

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I’m not really proud of my college aged self.  Had a pretty hard time adjusting to real life and trying to figure out how to make it all work.  This picture above is a pretty good representation of the perpetual state of my room, and also my state of mind at the time.  My room was always a mess.  To the left of that pile of crap behind the telescope was the door to my closet.  It would always have clothes, maybe dirty, maybe clean, just piled on the floor.  Makes me feel gross now thinking about it.  But also in that closet was my original N64 box and all my N64 game boxes.  Wish I would have saved that stuff now.

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Look who it is!  This is the first of many Andrea selfie’s on this roll.  Before selfies were cool.  What a trendsetter.  She must have just seen this camera laying around over the years, and figured she would snap a pic real quick.  What a babyface!  Peering through the green fog, this would have been sitting at the end of my bed in the trailer house.  Fun fact, Luke has the headboard from this bed in his room now as his first “big boy bed”.

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Another picture of Andrea!  But I would have taken this one.  Pretty sure that hat and shirt are still floating around here.  This would have been my apartment in Milford.  One of the few pictures I have of that place.  What a great place that was for me and my stage in life.  I’d screwed up some stuff bigtime, like maxing out credit cards and spending all my money.  But this place was $260/month ALL BILLS PAID!  The walls were pretty thin, but it was my first place all on my own, and helped in getting life straightened out.  And look at that N64 box!  If only I could reach into the frame and pull it out.

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When Andrea didn’t have school for a few days, she would drive up from Winfield and stay at the apartment.  This must have been an ambush photo shortly after she woke up.  Judging by the look on her face, this was probably a mistake.  This is a pretty good representation of the apartment though.  About as basic as it gets. I don’t remember using the oven a whole lot.  I don’t even think I could fit a full sized frozen pizza in there.  This place was so tiny, but again I miss it a bit for what it was.

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Andrea Selfie #2 & #3.  I think she would just snap these pictures as a way to say Hi to the future me when I got this film developed.  Mission accomplished.  I for the life of me can’t figure out where this picture was taken though.  And the background doesn’t leave much to go on.

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There she is again!  And this would be home #3 for this roll of film as this is the computer room in the Manhattan Apartment.  2005-ish.  I sorta remember that lava lamp lamp.  For whatever reason the lava would just dissolve into a bunch of tiny bubbles… not too impressive.  The 49ers decoration still hangs in our basement today, and the James Bond poster is now in storage.  After this picture was taken the camera itself would go back into storage and it would be another two years before another picture was taken.

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Home #4 for this camera.  We were just moving into our house in Ogden and probably found this camera.  Look, it’s the same lava lamp lamp on the right.  Luke’s headboard is leaning up against the wall.  Most of that junk has followed us to the present day.  If I’ve learned one thing in life.  Shelves are a thing worth investing in.

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Oh, look what else we found while unpacking.  Photo-Op!  Obviously!  This picture has waited a decade to be seen again.  Totally worth it.

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Things have gotten a little more organized in the Ogden house, and this past is starting to look a little less distant than the others.  Andrea still has the same computer desk, speakers and keyboard.  And through the window you can see I’ve already painted the Toronado, so this picture is probably late 2007 before winter sets in.  I wonder who the Christmas present on the desk is for?

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Hey, 5 years into the life of this camera and I finally make an appearance!  This is again in the Ogden house and in the computer room.  The poster behind the door is an autographed Disciple poster that we still have around here somewhere.  The T-Shirt I’m wearing is from our GameDay Quarterback remotes we would do with KJCK before the K-State games.  I got my tickets to the game by working the remotes.

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It’s Daisy!  She found a home with us while we lived at Ogden.  I’m reminded about how run down that old little house was when I see that fake wood floor leading to the living room.  The center of the living room actually bowed down to the point that the couch was literally leaning forward.  It was an itty bitty house, but it was something Andrea and I really wanted at the time was to say goodbye to apartment living.  It cost $700/month plus utilities, and I’m pretty sure the heat and air went straight out through the roof.  I have no idea how we made ends meet at that place.

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There’s Nala.  Remember that disgusting room earlier when we just moved into this house?  Well we’ve tidied it up a bit since then.  The big box on the right was for our TV that we thought would come in handy when we decided to move.  Pretty sure it took up so much space that we just ended up throwing it away.

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Here’s your classic up nostril shot.  Still in Ogden here in the living room.  I remember when we first moved into this house, we had a terrible bug problem.  Come to find out that window above the air conditioner had an inch wide gap that bugs were just flying straight in to the house!  We stuffed some towels in there, problem solved.  Same shirt, so I imagine the previous 4 pictures were probably all taken on the same day.

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Let the wedding planning begin!  This is the cake topper that would eventually be at our wedding.  I can still remember that excited feeling and wondering how life was going to change once we were actually married.

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The Toronado.  This would have been less than a year after I painted it.  Before the El Camino came a long.  I eventually just took to parking in the backyard because with the one lane driveway, the person who needed to leave was inevitably in the front.  You can see the tracks through the back yard from the previous tenants.  I wasn’t going to be that lazy.  I decided to at least walk back to the alley to my car instead of driving through the yard.

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Here’s Andrea’s old car!  When I first met her it was all the dark red color and I remember thinking she had a pretty sharp car!  Of course 2 deer hits later and it came to look like this.  A few years down the road and in another town, we’d repaint it black.  In retrospect I should have invested in a bottle of Round-Up for the sidewalk and driveway.

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Andrea Selfie #4!

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And the final frame on the roll.  I still have the same computer and desk.  And due to the age and exposure you can see time had started to eat away at this photo on the right hand side.  This last picture would have been taken in late 2007 or 2008, then the camera got hauled around to three more houses after this one.  And finally developed in 2017.

I admit, it’s all fairly unremarkable.  I had hoped I’d find some old photos of my Ingalls days or something, but it didn’t go quite far back.  If I had to guess, this was my last camera I had before I bought my first digital camera.  After that, this little disposable camera didn’t have much use and just ended up capturing randomness.

Still kinda miss that feeling of charging up a flash, hearing the click, and winding the film.  Then waiting for days to discover your had your finger in the picture or something like that.

A cool little time capsule to unearth though.

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Looking Forward to 2017

For whatever reason, 2016 has been a weird year.  It was certainly a tougher year at work.  Feeling like I was working harder but not really doing a better job.  But then again, the job itself got harder.  A lot of times I’ve wanted to sit down and write on the blog, but all too often I could just think of things to complain about.  That’s not what I wanted to fill the blog with anyway.

But in 2017 I’m looking forward to some things.  First, the new baby that will be coming sometime in June.  I’m excited.  I think back to when we first found out that Andrea was pregnant with Luke.  We had tried for a while, then just decided, “whatever happens, will happen.”  That’s pretty much exactly how this one happened too.  And I remember thinking back then that I was excited, and knew my life was going to change, but didn’t exactly know how.

I feel a little better equipped, at least in the experience department this time around.  But all those same things keep coming back.  What will we have to sacrifice to afford him or her?  How will we find time on top of an already packed life?  Will they be healthy?  Feelings and questions that are pretty familiar.  But knowing we’ve gotten through it, and how fun and exciting it’s been up until this point takes a lot of that worry away.

That is definitely one of the things I’m going to be doing less of this year.  Worrying.  I used to be so good at not worrying.  Guess that gets harder the more you become responsible for.  When it’s just me, who cares.  I’ll be fine.  If I fall down, I’ll get back up.  For home and work, I still find it difficult to force that attitude upon others.  If I fail, now it affects more people than just me.  I might feel fine taking the risk and bouncing back from mistakes, but others may not.  I guess that’s part of growing, and leading.  Knowing that your choices do affect others.  How I can reconcile that with my own personal “Everything will be fine” perspective, is still a work in progress.

Without worry though, I hope for that to free me up to do a few more things.  You can call them resolutions I guess if you want.  For me, it’s just getting back to what makes me happy.

Strengthen my faith.  I’ve felt more negative this past year than any time I can remember since sixth grade.  One thing that really brought me peace was my faith, learning and growing my relationship with Jesus.  I used to be so confident in my thoughts and feelings.  But as I continued to give more and more of myself to the church in time and effort, I was only asked to give more and more to the church.  Finally I broke when I felt like I didn’t have anything more to give.  It didn’t weaken my faith in God, but certainly weakened my feelings toward church.

I’m still not sure where to go.  I have very little desire to seek out a church anymore.  But I do want to focus more on my relationship with Christ.  The best thing I can think to do is to make it a goal to read the Bible in its entirety this year.  I’ve quite a bit, though it’s been some time.  But I’ve never truly read the entire Bible.  On one hand, it’s a “just see if I can do it,” sort of thing.  On the other, you can’t get that much of God’s Word and not find some good in it.

Cook more.  Over Christmas I baked Snickerdoodles with Luke, and baked a Pecan Pie at Mom’s house.  I realized it’s something I really like to do.  Not good at it.  But enjoy it and it’s something I can share with others.  I want to try new recipes.  Taste things I remember from years ago, and also some things I’ve never even had!  The process of measuring, mixing, and baking, just feels very therapeutic.

Get organized.  Almost the entire year I feel like work was just flying by the seat of my pants.  I want to set some boundries.  I do a lot of things at work, and that ends up meaning that the work is never done when it’s time to leave.  I am only one person.  I know I’m good at what I do.  But much like the church discussion from earlier.  There’s only so much I can give.  My goal is to structure my day.  Leave that structure able to be flexible, but dedicate time every day to one of the many things I have to do.  Show, Sales, Production.  Find out what I can REALLY get done in a day.  Be flexible.  And when I can’t get it all done, start finding people who are as good, or probably even better than me and give them an opportunity to knock it out of the park.  I struggle with that last part, because I’m not the manager that gives out raises.  But I feel like I was always given my raises in my job, because I was always willing to do more without asking for more.  Suppose I should expect the same from others.

Write more.  This is such a great place to vent.  To decompress and really parse out my experiences.  Just writing all this has been useful.  Doing so on a regular basis I think could be huge for my mental health.  It strengthens my convictions.  It helps me articulate better in normal conversation.  It’s just a good muscle to flex.  Being a bit more contemplative and to off load many of these thoughts I think can really help.  Of course it takes time.  Time that could and perhaps should be spent doing other things.  I just have to believe that the value of it in the long run is worth the investment in time it takes now.

That’s probably enough.  I don’t want to get too carried away or nothing will change anyway.  It’s hard.  Hard to focus on what you really want to do when the rest of the world is screaming so loudly what it think you should do.  Who cares.  Who really freaking cares.  Suck it world.  I’m taking my life back.