It’s Tuesday. A February Tuesday in the Pacific Northwest. I would say that normally this means rain and a dreary sky with shivering temperatures, puddles resembling ponds, and rare time spent outdoors. But not today. No, for the last few days we’ve had some gloriously clear skies. I am not one to complain about the weather. Most certainly not. Complaining about it does nothing. However, it does certainly raise my spirits as assuredly it must for those around me. Walking through the man made forest of sky scrapers on my way to where I spend countless hours engineering software it definitely serves me well to look past the Sound and see snow capped peaks and forests.
Today my boss comes into my office with a bottle of Glenmorangie Scotch Whiskey letting me know that the ad framework I have been working on and integrating with my team into our applications and an eventual SDK has been fantastic. As I sip it smoking a fine cigar I am quite pleased that I have been blessed so much since embarking on my software engineering ride. It has not always been smooth. There have been hard times, late hours, on and on. It feels good to know that what I trade my precious time with my children and wife for to earn a living is worthwhile and appreciated. This makes an excellent opportunity to take an expand my horizons both professionally and privately.
For example, I have enrolled my family at the local YMCA. Henry is in a tumbling class getting to play with other children around his age. He is learning to move and listen to instruction from people other than his parents. He, no they all are, growing at a phenomenal rate. Crystal bought him some sneakers recently and boy, has he inherited his father’s massive feet! He is a kind boy and I hope to instill in him my own fascination with critical thinking appreciation of liberty and freedom. His current likes are things like Legos. He loves trucks and trains. His drawing are increasingly complex and intricate. We have taken steps to limit movie and game times to encourage imaginative play always taking the time to explain things and answer any questions he has with honest answers. This last Christmas we explained that there is no Santa Claus but he refused to hear it. We decided to play along and told him that the idea of Santa Claus was a reward for our good deeds of the year. That Christ is the ultimate arbitrator of these things and that gifts were merely a superficial nicety to enjoy our short stay on this globe. It is fascinating to hear him because he truly grasps these topics. He likes to help me and I have changed the oil with him in our cars.
I try to always find ways to include all of the children trying to spread what little time I have with them so they get a chance to learn and see life around them. Helen is without question my princess. She is also kind and loving giving me kisses and hugs when I come home from work. She wants to learn at Henry’s level but becomes frustrated. She definitely spells and sounds out letters which Henry has difficulty with but for Henry it is no matter. She loves her doll house and will often play alone but will not shy from an oppurtunity to run with the boys. She loves animals. We adopted two kittens over the holidays: Charlotte and Watson. She will carry them gently petting and talking to them. That kind, nurturing spirit within this precious little girl is already developing.
Harrison is our current little monster. I insist that he is the most destructive of the three. Whether it is his desire to garner more attention or that he has two siblings teaching him much faster than if he had been alone he is always observing and imitating. He walks and says words. I admit that Crystal understands him much more than I but he is a wonderful little boy. He, I think, looks like me which makes him amazingly special in my heart. I often wondered after Henry how could I love any more children. It is possible to increase my love with each child to love them equally. I had no idea I had this capacity to love.
I have been taking the time to take care of myself a little better. Pay a little more attention to how I present myself. Relax by reading a book and learning. Expanding my horizons doing things that I felt exceeded my comfort zone. Recently I acquired a motorcycle license after taking a weekend class. It was wonderful to step out and accomplish something like this which I probably would have been putting off indefinitely. My mother-in-law dropped off an antique kerosene heater for which I replaced the wick and purchased fuel and got it working again. I finally bought a shot gun which I have always wanted but waited on for one reason or another. I have made mozzarella cheese and plan on making more of it before I graduate myself to cheddar or other delicious dairy derivatives.
It is all these little things that add up to who I am, I suppose. I have been effective in removing seemingly negative or non attentive influences and acquaintanceship and attempted to strengthen the opposite. Crystal and I surround ourselves with folks who push us to be better. To be more. To accomplish more. My beautiful wife has been inspiration to me. She takes care of the family and the home creating an inviting place to weather the storms. She toils and creates things we eat and use. I see with the years that we grow closer together as we allow each other to be better at who we are.
I am not sure where things will be in the coming months. I have currently a couple projects that are interesting and we shall see how they progress. My music has taken a break as I experience a few month writer’s block. I was not sure if I would ever venture into the world of starting my own company again but here I am. A little wiser taking what I have learned, am learning, and will learn and applying it a little more gracefully. It is an exciting time for sure. Unfortunately, I cannot give out any details as it is under wraps but in six months time I can’t wait to share.
I have several books on my list of reading. I am currently engrossed in Slavomir Rawicz’s The Long Walk having taken a break from The Bastiat Collection. I have a couple books to read which a friend has lent me which I need to read as well. On my nightstand is Mises’s Human Action which calls to me. When I am not reading I am playing a game or two here. Crystal and I have been playing Star Wars: The Old Republic which has been a fascinating and fun way to spend time together as an alternative to watching movies. I will admit that it is hard to put much time into anything and the thought has crossed my mind that sometimes I (or we) stretch ourselves a little thin.
In the world the financial markets are tumultuous. From my interpretation of events it seems that massive deficit spending on a global scale has indebted most countries into a corner of artificially created boom and bust cycles which wreck havoc on one malinvested sector or another. I have searched far and wide to better understand these things and if it is not obvious, I feel that the Austrian understanding of these issues is the best. This, however, is unpopular because the solution of such an understanding is painful to undertake and will eliminate the illusion of bureaucratic supremacy. I have mentioned this here before: degrees and so-called experts supporting the status quo are not the solution nor is their opinion any more valid than an unacknowledged blogger, alternative news journalist, or a critically thinking you and I. I find it fascinating that the people who argue in its defense are complicit, lack understanding, and have much fear. It pains me for it seems that many will relinquish principle, freedom, and liberty to maintain the illusion of safety in all areas of life. I do not preach, but the facts simply do not support a world view which most people seem to idealize. The painful aspect of liberty, freedom, and self governance is personal responsibility and action without relenting to the false security brought by redistribution and protectionism. So many laws, deception, ommision, and tyranny run rampant; have they always?
I’d like to go on about the specifics. I may some day soon. However, when reason, history, evidence, fact, and critical thinking are so rare I do not know if it is even worthwhile.
On a more encouraging note, Crystal and I are excited to see where the next year and a half take us. We locked ourselves into a two year lease to stabilize ourselves. We are seriously discussing purchasing enough property to start a micro dairy some day in an effort to gain skills and have some semblance of self sufficiency. Perhaps a smaller plot with some sheep and chickens would suffice. I do not know. The more property the further I am from my current or potential employers and business in Seattle which means more time commuting. However, it would be wonderful to learn and do things that seem tangible and to pass that on to our children. A lot of personal satisfaction comes from that. We’ve also discussed taking a vacation here and there. If it weren’t for our familial commitments I know we’d be traveling a lot more than we are now. It will all come in good time.