Or of the stay at home dad…

image

Posted from WordPress for Android

Advertisements

How to Install an In Ground Trampoline – with or without margaritas

### looking for my birth mom!!!###

Everything you never wanted to know about correcting an incorrectly installed in ground trampoline. Boing!

We inherited an in-ground trampoline when we bought our house earlier this year and its been a great activity for our kids.  And the grown-ups too.  And that brings us to our project today.  This grown-up caused about 4 springs to rip off into the air at about mach 5.   NORAD now tracks them in orbit.

Needless to say we ordered a new trampoline mat and springs to replace the ruined ones from www.funspot.com (let me know if you buy from these guys).  Highly recommended if you need replacement parts and I think the least expensive place on the web.  Something you will find out about this SAH dad is that I am frugal, or as my wife translates “cheap”.

After receiving the new mat and springs we went to install them only to realize the frame had torqued and was 4″ too wide in one direction across than the other.  The reason?  The original homeowners did not install a retaining wall in the trampoline pit and therefore over 4.5 years the sides slowly collapsed in on the frame bending it out of shape.  Lucky us, we had a surprise Home Depot project.  Yea!

Because I am so “frugal”, we decided on the following method for a retaining wall.  Its cheaper and less permanent if you ever want to lose the tramp and fill the hole in or convert it to a hot tub.  Here is how we did this thing:

First we dug the hole out wider and took the old frame out.  Once out, it pretty much self-adjusted back into shape.

IMG_2566

We fit the frame back in the hole to make sure it was round and everything was going to fit up.  Note the white spray paint where we marked the location for the 4×4 posts.  The hole had to be widened by 4″ all the way around to accommodate the posts that were going in.

Next we rented an auger from Home Depot with an 8″ bit and dug 12 holes for 12 48″ pressure treated 4×4’s to be cemented in to hold back the retaining wall.  This wall would be built of 36″ high welded wire fence wrapped on the outside with 36″ silt fence wrapped outside of that.  See below.

IMG_2568

my sweet wife pulling a string to make sure the posts across from each other are level

IMG_2569

The 4×4’s laying on an angle are just for support till the concrete cures.

After the 4×4’s cured, I cut two 2×4 horizontal supports to fit between each post.  Use a radial miter saw to cut the angles as it saves a lot of time.

IMG_2582

Next I bent the remaining top 4 or so inches of welded wire fence over the top and tacked both sides at the top with fence staples.  I then wrapped the loose silt fence over that and stapled it in place.

IMG_2581  IMG_2585

Last, back fill the trench between the wall and the dirt.  Stomp it down and you’ll notice the wire bulge out some.  Acceptable give in my opinion.

IMG_2586

We smoothed out the bottom and lined it with the remaining silt fence sans attached sticks.

IMG_2587

Colorado is a very dry climate – the evaporation rate is higher than the precipitation rate so I didn’t worry too much about drainage other than grading the top away from the hole.

Next drop that frame in the hole, assemble, add springs, mat and voila!

IMG_2588

Lets see how cheap I really am!

Silt fence                       $30

Welded wire fence    $35

12 PT 2x4x8’s              $36

6 PT 4x4x8’s                 $48

box of screws               $5

box if fence staples     $3

auger rental                    $46

6 bags quickcrete          $27

Total Project Cost         $230.00

I am happy to respond if you have any questions.  Have fun!

Chuck Norris installs in-ground trampolines with a roundhouse kick to the kit to assemble it then he stares it down..literally, he stares at it till is sinks into the ground with fear.  It usually only takes about 3 seconds.

Balloon Boy – just a pop and a corn away

The story that has captivated the world for the past few days began only 6 short miles from our house.  I remember feeling so sad for the family while at the same time angry at their stupidity for creating circumstances that would allow a 6 yr old boy to fly 50 miles from home at heights of 20,000 ft.  Of course that all pales in comparison to the truth surfacing now – that it was all a hoax.  Now my heart breaks for those 3 kids.  That their parents are so narcissistic.  That their dad may be abusive to his wife.  That they may lose their kids to the state for their actions.  That their parents Richard and Mayumi Heene may go to prison.  All in the pursuit of fame and money.

No boy - just hot air

 When I was younger people used to surprise me at the evil that they were capable of, but now nothing surprises me.  I know anyone, anywhere at anytime is capable of the most heinous evil not even imaginable.   Unless people believe and subscribe to a moral idea outside of themselves there is no lasting restraint available.  We either live for ourselves or we live for God.  Even Mr. T doesn’t have enough pity for those two fools.

The mystique of the stay at home dad

He also coined the title, “Pity Da Fool” or “PDF” courtesy the all-American A-Team hero and renowned star of Snickers commercials Mr. T.  He states “[It’s the] Mom who looks at [us] with varying degrees of condescending pity.

I do run into the PDF every now and then, but I find much more frequently the “BAD.  The Broad in Awe of Dad.  She’s the checkout lady, the miss in line, the woman at the bank, the mom’s at dance or karate class who say, “So you have the kids today?” and I reply so self-assuredly, “I have them everyday babe- all FOUR of them.”  Instantly a profound gaze of wonder appears over their faces as they contemplate the miracle of nature before them.  Against all odds, what they could only imagine in a science fiction novel or during their thirth-thousandth time srubbing behind a toilet,  stands before them: the elusive stay-at-home dad.    “A man who does what I do!  If you could only talk to my husband!” they say as their eyes well up with tears.  It’s about that time I smirk and note just how easy this job is.  “You know, watching Jerry Springer, drinking beer and eating left over fish sticks, breaded and dreaded.  Its paradise.”  “Way easier than the business world.” I reply.  “Now THAT’S work!  Hey, when the kids remember their hunger, I toss them their 1000th fruit snack and get back to Madden ’09 on the Wii.”  This usually results in a mouth a gape to which I fling out the old rescue, “I’m only kidding!” The BAD is restored.

Don't drop that gogurt!

These spanx rub!

When my wife is enjoying her 3rd free business lunch of the week and I’m eating Ramen and hot pockets again, (not that often) I remind myself that even though the reality is, it is the toughest job I’ve ever had, I wouldn’t trade it for anything.  The time spent with the kids, watching them grow into real people with all our good qualities, and bad, is truly priceless.  <I had to pause here to put my youngest son in timeout for hitting his sister> Plus being a stay at home dad of mystique ain’t all that bad either.  It’s like being James Bond, but with juice boxes.

staying (at home) power – Stay at home dads

Do you ever get the feeling that the longer you stay at home the more obsolete you are becoming to the rest of the world? How about feeling like once the kids grow up you won’t be able to merge back into the working world into a decent paying job? Like running a race, being a stay-at-home (sah) parent, particularly a dad, is 1/2 mental. Yes, it makes you mental, but you must remain mentally fit to achieve victory in the daily skirmishes, the onslaughts, the quiet. Its tougher for a man because our societal roles have conditioned us to a felt need to provide money for our selves through successful business employ. Its equally as tough and demanding a job for a mom, but that one factor, I would argue, upsets the male mind’s balance of ego: value, importance and significance. In today’s world where women seem to be expected to enter the workforce because being a mom is so debilitating, thanks to the evils of feminism, the female mind may be adopting a similar psyche attribute. But I’m no chick so I’ll leave those who are better anatomically suited to comment on that!
Mind yer mind or ye may feel like this

Mind yer mind or ye may feel like this

Adventures in tampons

Clean up, on aisle "your face!"

Clean up, on aisle "your face!"

Nothing is more fun than grocery shopping with multiple assailants with a bent for anarchy.  especially when they behave like Sinanju ninja’s trained by Chiun himself.  Over the summer I have all 4 with me but now that school is back in full swing its the two youngest ones who leave the wake of terror.  And of course I am always in a hurry which exponentially increases the defcon level.

So yesterday, as I am crossing off everything on my grocerygame list, (I’m already frustrated because I can’t find things I am looking for because King Soopers puts organic items in their own complete section [thanks environmental wackos]) and I come to the dreaded end because guess whats left?  Well if you read the title you guessed it.  By now I didn’t care because when I am mad appearances don’t matter as much anymore.  I am furiously pacing up and down the feminine hygiene products aisle and see every form of maxi-this and panti-liner that but no tampons.  Thats when a store manager taps me on the shoulder in front of his female associate and asks if I need any help.  I turn to find he’s a former colleague from my mortgage business days.  I state, quite loudly, “Yes, I can’t find the tampons!”  It was a glorious moment in the epoch of man.  Needless to say I bought pads and tampons like I was stocking up for armegeddon.

These things need a slogan campaign like Taco Bell's hot sauce packets

These things need a slogan campaign like Taco Bell's hot sauce packets

Of course later that evening my wife lets me know that she doesn’t use pads, but liners so now all these wonder inventions of the 21st century will now have to be returned to the store by yours truly.  In a moment of grace and self-sacrifice my dear wife told me she would return them to spare me the torturous task of having to be humiliated again.

The reality is I don’t mind buying that kind of stuff.  It just adds to the mystique of “super husband”.

Saving money at the grocery store – 50% everytime

Do you spend money at the grocery store and save at least 50% EVERY WEEK?

I do!    www.grocerygame.com

I use this service every week when I grocery shop and save at least 50% off the bill EVERY TIME.  It has more than paid for itself. Its $10 every 2 months.

Now you can try the trial for free for 4 weeks and see what you think. 

What makes it so cool is you only cut the coupons you need by saving the coupon flyers in a folder each week.  The Grocery Game tells you which coupons to clip from which flyers because they track the sale trends from each store and you don’t buy until that product is at a historic low.

Never cut a coupon until the list tells you which ones to cut out only for what you want to buy.

 If you use the free trial please make sure you mention us whelchelfamily@gmail.com when you sign up so we can get the referral credit. 

Saving at least 50% every week is no small matter.

 Let me know what you think after you have tried it.

 We have been using this service for going on 2 years now.

 www.grocerygame.com

The Best Onion Dip (.)

Pan-Fried Onion Dip

Makes 2 cups

Barefoot Contessa Cookbook

                       2   large yellow onions

                      4 Tablespoons   unsalted butter

              ¼ cup   vegetable oil

      ¼ teaspoon   ground cayenne pepper

       1 teaspoon   kosher salt

      ½ teaspoon   freshly ground black pepper

          4 ounces   cream cheese, room temperature

              ½ cup   sour cream

              ½ cup   good mayonnaise

  Cut the onions in half, and then slice them into 1/8-inch-thick half-rounds.  (You will have about 3 cups of onions.)

 Heat the butter and oil in a large sauté pan on medium heat.  Add the onions, cayenne, salt, and pepper and sauté for 10 minutes.  Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook, stirring occasionally, for 20 more minutes, until the onions are browned and caramelized.  Allow the onions to cool.

 Place the cream cheese, sour cream, and mayonnaise in the bowl of a food processor and pulse until smooth.  Add the onions and mix well.  Taste for seasonings. 

 Serve at room temperature.

Thanks to Carol L for getting this to me!