Monday, June 30, 2008

Electric Avenue

So...I got to the Lake Region Electrical Cooperative (LREC) at about 7 only took me about 30 minutes instead of an hour. Anyways I filled out the application and then they told me that they needed $250 deposit (I had been under the impression that it was $25). So I asked and they told me it was a "deposit". By deposit they meant that I could get a check back for $220 of it if I didn't miss a payment for a year OR I could have Com Ed write a letter of recommendation and they would apply the money towards our bill.

So basically I paid them $200 to turn on the electric that never would have been shut off if a realtor had done his job. (Not ours, theirs)
Long story short the electric will be on tomorrow and I will move in if it is on. Otherwise wed.

Lego Gun

They didn't have these when I was growing up. Probably a good thing!
This is the Thrailer Lego Automatic

The beginning

Today the movers come to pack up our stuff. Katie will be there to supervise them. Once everything is packed, they will come on Tuesday to pick it all up. Katie will then leave for Oklahoma on Thursday with her friend Katie. It will be a long couple of days, but I think that they will pass quickly.
I miss her and can't wait to see her. It really feels a lot longer than a week since I have seen her.
I am excited for this to all be done, but a bit sad at the same time.
BTW....anyone who would like to visit...we DO have a pool, great shopping and good food. Feel free to visit soon as the power is turned on. :-D


I have to drive 50 miles to go get the power turned out a the house because the previous owners had it shut off prior to closing. Annoying.
Katie and I tried to get it turned on over the phone, but they wanted someone to come in and fill out an application, pay $25 and then they would turn it on next day.
What! No online payment, check by phone or "Hey, here's a credit card"???
Annoying. And to paraphrase someone I know: Lame. Really, Really lame.

I will update tonight on how it goes.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Sunny Sunday

Finally some sun! It is beautiful out. High of 86 and sunny. I am off to church and then to the new house to drop stuff off. Later this afternoon I am meeting my boss and his wife for lunch!

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Rainy Saturday

The closing went well. I had a lot of signing to do. Since Katie is not down here yet I had to sign my name: Michael O Stenglein as well as hers: Katie M Stenglein. But because I had to sign for her, I had to sign: by Mike O Stenglein after hers.
There was a mix up, however. The previous owners had the electric shut off yesterday. The company that provides the power is only open Mon-Friday from 7am-430pm. So first thing Monday, I will go and get service back on so that I can move out of this hotel room on Tuesday.

Anyways, today brought a lot more rain, which is not supposed to let up until Sunday afternoon. I have to figure out what I can do to pass the time for a while. Does anyone have any suggestions?

Friday, June 27, 2008

Green June Beetle

I found it.
Here is a link that tells you about it. CLICK HERE
Kinda cool color...but I wouldn't want it to surprise me!

New Roommate

OK. I have a quest for all of you. The night before last I was in the bathroom at the hotel and I heard a scratching noise coming from behin one of the wall sconces.
At first I thought it was a mouse and thus informed the desk clerk. Yesterday I came home and heard it again. I looked closely at the light and saw a leg sticking out of a small space between the light and the wall. There was a small hole in the front of the sconce so I could see in a bit. I saw a bright flash of green and an insect head.
I was walking outside last night on the way back from a bike ride and saw a green beetle about an inch and a half long and about 3/4 of an inch wide. It's carapace was bright green.
If anybody feels like searching google (our friend) and finding some pictures let me know.
I would do it but with everything going on today (closing on the house, work etc) I won't have time till tonight.

Thursday, June 26, 2008


Being a salaried employee has it's upsides vs. being hourly. But for IT people it is usually very detrimental. IT usually have odd, very long hours. Being the force that keeps the informational veins of a company going...we usually have brutal wake up calls in the middle of the night...then on to the regular hours during the day. Usually with no break at all. My new company, more importantly, my new boss changes that. I am uneasy about it really...a bit too much for me to process.
Over the past ten years, I have seen all ends of the job spectrum. I have had the 120 hour work weeks, barely able to stand at the end. I have had the jobs where my employer can barely keep me busy for forty...but mainly it has been long hours. Lots of them.
But today my new boss told me the words that I have been fighting to hear for a very long time: "There is more to life than this job."
I almost cried.
I pray for Jesus to guide me so that I may be an asset to my new company, so that I can carve out the time for those other things. To further God, to be able to spend time with my family.

I really don't know what to say.
Thank you is about all I can muster right now.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

95 Degrees

It is kinda weird. Usually, when it gets above 90 I am an irritable git. Down here it is not so bad though. I don't know why. It hit 95 today and when I got into my car to go home, the temp read 104. Ouch (thank goodness I don't have vinyl seats). People have suggested that it is less humid. I think it is the constant breeze. I cannot pinpoint it. It is just weird.

Half Way Through

Half way through my first week. YAY! I always thought that Chicago had the most friendly people in the world. I have to say that the people here in the Tulsa area at least rival them. I am sure that there are exceptions but all the people that I have met so far are quite hospitable.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Have you ever noticed?

That it is during the most quiet moments that you can hear yourself the most?
I tv no radio no distraction of any kind...The kind of quiet where you can hear your heart beating.
What do you say to yourself? (Besides: "Man, it's quiet!")
If there was one thing that you wish that you could make yourself instruction that you don't want to overlook...What would it be?

Storm Clouds

Just a quick post before I get ready.
I have noticed that you can see storm clouds here pretty clearly. Not that I couldn't see them in Chicago, but I think that everything is more open here so you can see more.
It may all be in my head though.

Monday, June 23, 2008

End of a long day

My day started around 5am. 4am really, but that was because I woke early and could not sleep. Most of the day was just being introduced to new coworkers, all of whom were very nice.
I endured the safety and training videos and went over a few things with Steven, the safety manager.
I went to lunch with my new boss at RibCrib and a few others. We had a pretty good time.
One of the highlights came late in the day when I got to tour the plant.
CLICK HERE to see the overhead view of it on google maps. In case the link is HUGE!
I also had a conference call with HQ and other plants around the nation. LOL all of us a big bunch of IT nerds got quite a bit accomplished on a single call.
I got home and had to finish homework but now I do not have an assignment until the 13th of July. YAY. One thing off the plate.
Maybe it is the finality of it all, but tonight I really miss everyone back home.

New Job

I start my new position today. Mostly safety training and HR stuff. I made myself a peanut butter and jelly sandwich for lunch even though my boss tells me that the tradition is that we all go to the Rib Crib for lunch.
I broke 3 plastic knives on the peanut butter before remembering that my wife packed a regular cheese knife in my she always thinks ahead.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

9.5 Hours

Well, I am here. Tulsa.
It took me 9.5 hours to get here. It would have taken me about 8.5 but I will explain why I was delayed.
The entire day was spent dodging storms. As I passed major parts of the journey (mainly bigger cities) I tweeted. All in all it was a really easy drive. I was excited because I loaded my Zen with a lot of new music. Ya gotta love random all!
I listened to the Cubs was amazing...right after I heard Pat and Ron go nuts the radio cut to static. I will miss WGN radio.
BUT here is the reason for the static: looking out the window this is what I saw
storm saint louis
Storm front saint louis
It was clear as I went through Saint Louis and I did get a pic of the arch:
Saint Louis Arch

Then about 15 miles further along I-44 West...A gust of wind hit the car so hard that I felt the front end push down. It was clear skies and then WHAM! No visibility and I was in a pack of about 15 cars that I couldn't see. It only lasted about 3-4 minutes but it felt like a lifetime till the sun came out.
Everything was fine until I filled up the car's tank for the first time about 50 miles north of Springfield, MO.

While in the gas station I heard that familiar BEEP BEEP BEEP...the National Weather Service has issued.....YIKES...65 mile an hour winds, quarter size hail and severe thunderstorms were on there way to exactly where I was in 15 minutes.
I stayed out of it for the most part but here is what I was racing:

Storm Springfield, MO

Storm Springfield,MO
Anyways....I pulled into the parking lot at my destination and as I was getting out of the car this was my view:

Sunset Tulsa,OK

I kinda felt that God was smiling down on me. I had made it. I was tired and sore and actually a bit lonely and I felt like this was his pat on my shoulder saying it's gonna be OK.

So I am here:
Holiday Inn Express Tulsa

This is home for a week. I checked out The Assembly at Broken Arrow this morning. It was nice but a bit overwhelmingly huge. I will blog about it more later...
on to homework.
Hello to everyone up north! :-)

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

What I Meant to Say....Part 3

Stand up.
Stand up and be counted. Stand up and be firm.
Another thing that I have truly learned is to stand up for my faith. A lot of people that I know are "ok" with embracing their faith, but when called to do something in the community...the raised hands seem to disappear. Look. Being part of a community (whether it be a church community, a school community or just a town) is about activity. Being part of a group means we need to take ownership of that group. I see the leaders at Stone Crew leaving a handprint...their imprint on the youth. What an awesome sight it is to see a life changed. But, I think it is time for those that are impacted to start leaving their handprint on the church. Start being active. Start being involved. I have met many youth at Stone...and one of my thoughts is: If you spent 1/4 the energy that you spend trying "not to be invovled" on being active in the group and helping to grow may find that it is something you enjoy.
I used the specific example of the Crew..but it applies (in my mind) to the entire everybody really. Get involved.
I always hear smatterings of "I don't like this." or "I think that it should be done this way!"
Well, at this point we have a choice. 1. We can say something and be heard. 2. We can do something to change it. or 3. We can get over it.
I don't say this to spiteful or mean...merely to motivate.
The point is: take part in what is going on in your community.
Stand up for your faith and stand up for your community. Stand up for God.
Don't back down when you are challenged. Be humble, but be a wall.
Point is that if you are sitting down, in the back of the group "trying not to be noticed" you are missing out...and you deprive those around from learnig from you.
Another thing about sitting down is that life doesn't have stadium seating.
If you are not gonna get to see what is going on.
If you listen to the Cubs (or Sox*grumble*) on the radio and you have never played baseball or seen is kinda hard to know what is going on. Am I right. Yeah.
Fact is, if you don't stand up and allow the world to see are missing out...but really the world is missing out even more.
You may be the next person to change the world. Scary thought huh. It is true.
Stand up.
Be counted.
Change your life. Change your church. Change your community. Change your world.
With God leading you...Todo es posible (Everything is possible)

What I meant to say Part 2

Accountability. It is what you make of it, isn't it? You can be accountable or not. Accountable to yourself. Accountable to your friends. Accountable to your family. Accountable to your God.
There used to be a time in the world where a man's word was his bond. If you said you would do did it. I know that this quality is not as prevalent anymore. It makes me sad.
When P. Erik gave me a chance to speak to the youth in the Crew, I touched briefly on this. At the end of the day, when you turn out the lights and close your eyes...there are two beings that know exactly what you did or did not do that day.
At the end of the day it is just you and God. I know one of those two parties will always keep His promises...Which one do you think?
Fact is that we, as humans fail. But we need to get back on that horses and get riding again. And really? Failing is okay. That is how we learn. I don't know anyone who tried riding without training wheels when they were young that didn't end up with a scraped knee or two.
Look, it really is simple. It is not easy, but it is simple. Do what you say you will, be honest, and keep your eyes on God, the rest of it falls into place.
Like P Erik said a while back: hold yourself accountable to your friends and family and your God.
But the best place is to start is from within you. Holding yourself accountable to yourself is probably the most difficult thing to do. Why? Because a lot of times it is easy to fool yourself. The reason that this is a GOOD place to start is because it presents us with the most opportunities to succeed.
Play games a little longer when you should be studying...blogging when I should be doing homework..:-D.
More tomorrow...I apologize for the rambling and the disjointed writing.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

What I meant to say....Part 1

It has been a while. Sometimes it just takes time to put together what you want to say.
The first part of what I failed so miserably to say on Wednesday is there are a few words that describe what I have learned from Stone Church and the Crew. The first word is Embrace. Embrace to me, means to hold close, to draw in. I have learned to deeply embrace my faith. I feel that in a lot of ways I was a spiritual baby when I first stepped through the doors at Stone Church. I have found that to embrace my faith is a call to use it. As I embrace each of the relationships that have been cultivated, a bit rubs off on each of the two parties. A little stays with me...and a little with you. As I embrace each of the friends that I have met, a little bit of that person's personality and ideals stay with me. I hope that I have affected others in such a way. Embracing something also helps us to grow because in order to embrace something you have to open yourself to it. In order to give someone a hug, you have to open your arms to wrap them around the other person. If we all try to embrace everything in our lives, we become open to more things. Hold close to everything that brushes your life. You never know when it will be time to let it go.
Remember that there is not a single person that enters your life, even for the briefest of moments that you cannot learn something from. By embracing them, there is a better chance to know them, to teach them, to love them.
So, to begin: Embrace. Embrace your life. Embrace your faith. Embrace your family. Embrace your friends. Embrace people that you have just met.
It is not always comfortable to embrace people that we don't know very well...BUT you never know who will be your new friend. You never really know what you might learn until you open yourself up and embrace them.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

100th Post

WOO HOO! that that is outta the way: Do I get a cookie or something? Ice Cream maybe?
Seriously. Ice cream would be grand...I would even take soft serve.
Just kidding.
I will write a better post later.

Monday, June 2, 2008

China's 57 Rules for Olympic Visitors

I get it. They are making a point. I know that generally rules of civility should NOT need to be explained and common courtesy should be just that.

My question is this: if the country of China wants to get a face lift by hosting the Olympics, why would they post the rules that all foreigners are to abide by only in Chinese?
Click here to read the article (click on "Click Here")
I just thought that the whole point of the Olympics was that it is a time for the world to put aside all differences and come together. To compete? Absolutely, but in good fashion and good grace.

Maybe I was wrong.