Category Archives: model railroads

A NO SNOW snow day

stormwarningNormally, I would be driving to school right now, but instead I am home in the basement nestled in my cave. It’s a snow day. The weather guys predicted the storm several days ago and the media is in full hype. Right now, there is less than half an inch covering the sidewalks and roads, but it is predicted to get worse, probably much worse with the bulk of the snow arriving midday just in time to release kids to walk home from elementary schools with unplowed roads and snowy sidewalks.  It is just a bad idea.

The call came in at 5:23 from my kid’s school district announcing that “due to the expected heavy snow, all school and afternoon activities for Tuesday, March 5th are cancelled…” My district called a couple of minutes later with the same news. I’d already been waging a war with the alarm clock, and losing, I might add, when the phone rang. I turned the alarm off and W came in to make sure he could sleep until he wakes up, he was excited, but probably not enough to keep him from falling back to sleep. I tried going back to sleep, but I couldn’t so I got up and went downstairs. Continue reading A NO SNOW snow day

Old toys

takeanumberI had been looking forward to last weekend for almost a month because I knew it would be a good opportunity to visit one of my favorite shopping haunts – a hobby shop. Unfortunately, circumstances foiled my scheme.

We have a railroad layout in the basement, not twenty feet from where I sit, dream, plan, write, grade, fume, and for the most part, avoid real work. I suppose I could be over at the table avoiding work instead of sitting here, but the layout has been gathering dust for the at least the past year, perhaps two, who knows, I’ve lost count. I have been lured away from my railroad by other activities – family, sports, scouts, school, and you can just about name it, whatever it was it had a higher number than railroading. Continue reading Old toys

The List – Part 2

Over a year ago, I wrote ‘The List.’ It was blog post about winning the lottery, or more specifically, what I would do if I won the lottery. With tonight’s jackpot listed as $540 million or a half billion, it was hard not to think about it as I drove home, yesterday. I mentioned to grandpa and grandma that a lot of good could be done with that much money and it could. So, I decided to dust off last year’s post, revise it, and repost. Continue reading The List – Part 2

President’s Weekend – 2012

It is the second long weekend of the calendar year and I am home, Beth and the kids are skiing in Michigan and having fun. They took off Thursday evening because the kids had no school Friday or Monday, making escaping the city and running off to the north woods a three-day fun-escape and much more inviting than staying home and cleaning the basement or other chores. I won’t be cleaning the basement, either I have a stack of papers to grade and get back before next Tuesday and I have time to make it happen. Continue reading President’s Weekend – 2012

Ben and Jerry

There are so many excellent parts of summer, it is difficult to select, just one. So, in fairness to my taste buds, I am going to pick ice cream as one of my favorite parts of summer. I have had an ongoing love affair with ice cream since my youth. I can remember grabbing the carton and sitting down again against the bookcase and spooning it directly out of the carton. Whether it was Blue Bell (from Texas), Häagen-Dazs, Ben and Jerry’s or any other ice cream it comes right out of the carton and into my mouth. Continue reading Ben and Jerry


I pulled into the driveway this evening after a long day at school to find no one at home. Ivy greeted me enthusiastically, as she always does, and I searched the counter for clues. I found none and called Beth’s cell, only to discover it lying on the kitchen counter beside me. No help, at all. Continue reading Railroading…

New President Car and quiz

It is the final day of February and the month’s answer was President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, the 32nd president of the United States of America. I will need to call my model railroad dealer to make sure I get the car. The caboose and the Benjamin Harrison car arrived last Tuesday after I posted my last update. Here is this month’s question:

Question for March: Which President graduated from Yale ranking second in his class, taught his wife to speak again after she had a stroke during his presidency and is the only President to have also served as the Chief Justice of the United States?
*All answers must be submitted by email to by the March 15th to be eligible.

Good luck and let me know what your answer is! Try entering your name with MicroTrains and see if you can be selected to win Presidential Oath of Office car. Making the Days Count, one day at a time and someday (soon), we will run our trains!

President’s Day Weekend Recap

It is Tuesday morning, and normally, I would be wrapping up teaching my first section of Language Arts block and heading off to duties, meetings, and lunch. However, today’s schedule includes evening, leaving me a few moments to re-think and review the President’s weekend. Continue reading President’s Day Weekend Recap

Day 53: Conclusion and my birthday, #49

The plane is pulled from Lake Michigan, read the story for more information

Today is my birthday and I had a flashback to seventh grade yesterday. Well, I have flashbacks to seventh grade every day, but this one was different. The headline for the Daily Herald was World War II-era plane recovered from Lake Michigan and I remembered my birthday gift, a plastic model kit probably a P-47 Thunderbolt or some other World War II era fighter. I remember I reading everything I could get my hands on about the WWII, War in the Pacific and Europe, and I enjoyed building plastic models of aircraft from the time period. Continue reading Day 53: Conclusion and my birthday, #49

Day 45: Traverse City and the Great Circle is complete

My trip around Lake Michigan June/July 2010

 Monday looked to be a busy day. On Saturday, after breakfast, we had stopped in The Bicycle Shop to look at bikes and the two bikes William was looking at – were gone. The staff said it could be at least a couple of weeks before they expected to receive more bikes from Trek. Therefore, Sunday afternoon Beth looked at bikes online and found a dealer that had two bikes in stock – one for William and the other for Olivia. However, the store was in Traverse City and it was over an hour away, so we made plans to drive over Monday morning. In addition, William and I were diving home to Wheaton Monday afternoon so I could attend a planning meeting at school and William could attend the Tuesday scout meeting. We would be coming home after sixteen days away and we would complete our trip around Lake Michigan. I would be in the car quite a bit on Monday. Continue reading Day 45: Traverse City and the Great Circle is complete