Category Archives: Family


Ten years ago today yesterday was a day that would change my life forever: the second date with my lovely wife.  It was extremely romantic, with me going to her apartment that she shared with three roommates, VHS movie in hand.  I can neither confirm nor deny the presence of microwave popcorn.  The movie was that classic romance, Stargate.  While perhaps better remembered for aliens building the Egyptian pyramids, Stargate demonstrates the irrational acts people perform in the pursuit of love.  Of course, I have not yet had to teleport myself into a departing alien spacecraft to save my love while a nuclear bomb is set to go off, but there’s still time.  Living with Minnesotan winters seems irrational enough for now.

Why not count the first date, you ask?  We never really counted that one once we started officially dating.  Plus, I don’t remember the exact day so this works out a little better… 

And so, to my lovely wife, I say, “I love you.”  It has been a wonderful decade.  Ready to start the next one?

Take Me Back To Panama, Part 3

In previous episodes, our hero was seen battling the horrors of air travel and participating in a wedding of epic proportions.  And now for the thrilling conclusion…

Dylan and SandraWith the happy newlyweds heading off to parts unknown for their honeymoon, we settled down for a relaxing week at our beach house.  The house was amazing, with plenty of room for the Sweeney clan.  It was great being so close to the beach and the wedding site.  While it seems odd to have a pool so close to the beach, it was actually very nice.  It was much easier for the kids to be in the pool than down in the ocean, or perhaps it was just easier to watch the kids in the pool. Continue reading Take Me Back To Panama, Part 3

Take Me Back To Panama, Part 2

And now the part of the story where things start to go well for our protagonist: The Wedding!  In the previous episode, we navigated the horrors of traveling sick and experienced the wonders of Miami Airport efficiency.

rehearsal_dinnerOn Saturday evening, we had the wedding rehearsal and the rehearsal dinner.  The dinner was held before the rehearsal at the beach house my parents had rented.  Lovely grilled chicken and as much real sugarcane Coca-Cola as one could ingest.  The bridal party was a little late arriving and the rehearsal didn’t start until really late.  Elaine fell asleep on the lap of the maid of honor during the rehearsal, but she got to practice her role as flower girl before she couldn’t keep her eyes open anymore.

Continue reading Take Me Back To Panama, Part 2

Take Me Back To Panama, Part 1

Beach house in PanamaI don’t know about anyone else, but I’m ready to go back on vacation.  Nothing like going from 90° F and sitting on the beach to 0° F and shoveling ice/snow.  It was an amazing time, with a gorgeous wedding, crazy reception, and many days of relaxing on the beach.  However, even this vacation started off on the wrong foot…

It all started on Wednesday night (the 16th), the day before we were to leave.  We were finishing packing and setting our alarm clock to wake us up at 2:30 AM (our flight was scheduled to leave at 6 AM), when I noticed that my throat was starting to hurt.  Not a good sign, especially when I woke up at 2 AM with a fever of 102° and a very difficult time swallowing.  Of course, there was no way I was going to miss our flight or try to wait a few days.  With the wedding on Sunday the 20th, there was no time for delays.  So I toughed it out, loaded up on ibuprofen, and filled up the taxi with all our gear. Continue reading Take Me Back To Panama, Part 1