Sunday, December 16, 2012

One year older...

I had a nice, albeit modest, run where I was churning out 15 to 20 blog posts a month.  The frequency of posts started to become more infrequent when school started back up in August. Then basketball season started and things have slowed to almost a stand still. 

No worries. I'm still Waiting 'til Next Year and I even have some Cubs related posts planned for the near future.

In the meantime, let me show off a little bit of my birthday haul. 

For the record, today is not my birthday, nor is it my mother's.  Yet, our birthdays are four days apart and we try to always celebrate together before the holiday season starts.  Just in case you were wondering, Mom received some chocolates, shoes, a new winter coat, a crock pot, and an autographed picture of Little Big Town.

Let's start with the birthday card below: some of my loyal readers may remember it from a post in September.  In this post I described the Starlin Castro Triple Play puzzle produced by Panini and how it hangs on the wall in my Man Room.  Thanks again for an awesome gift, Vince!

I wasn't going to complete the 2012 Triple Play Panini set, and after I read this post from Joe Average Collector I was already thinking about the 2013 set.  Yet, part of me thought that it would be cool to throw all the Triple Play sets into a binder, including 2012.  I really do enjoy the "art work" of each card.  So, I'm in.  I'm going to complete the 2012 and the 2013 set.  Yes, there will be more 2012 posts on Triple Play and eventually I'll get a want list up on the blog as well.   Thanks, Mom & Dad!

 My sister, on an annual basis, gives me my favorite clothes to wear.  They're always super comfortable and feature my favorite team.  This one is manufactured of dry fit material.  I love it! The first time I'll wear it will probably be at the Cubs Caravan in Peoria on January 16th.  Then it will soon find its place in my summer rotation of baseball related attire. Thanks, Jane!

Jane also gave me a baseball trivia calendar.  I'm taking it school and I plan on writing hall passes for students on the expired days of the calendar.   Should be fun!
The answer to the question is Babe Ruth.
 I was also given this Scrabble Slam! Cubs edition game to play.  Laura and I love word games to play and hopefully we'll have some fun with this one soon.

I already have a decent baseball book library.  Today it just expanded by three. 

Out of My League by Dirk Hayhurst. I've read Hayhurst's first book and it is easily in my top five books.  If this one is half as good as his first attempt, then I'll be a happy man.

Last Days of Summer by Steve Kluger.  This one I had never heard of, but it looks to be an interesting and quick read. 

The Catcher Was a Spy by Nicholas Dawidoff.  I've heard of Moe Berg, a backup catcher, and that he was employed as a spy.  I'm excited to learn more and possibly pass it on to my Grandfather after reading.

This last gift one was given to me by my loving wife, who won it on Ebay, and then paid for it using my Paypal funds that I had acquired by selling some baseball cards.  Ironic, huh?  No matter, I gave her the idea and love it even more now that it is my hands.  It is a special trading card set that features the main figures in Ken Burns Baseball documentary.  I started watching the series on Netflix, but basketball season started and it was placed on the back burner.  I'm hoping to continue the series this spring and post the cards as I go.  It should result in a fun series of blog entries.

 The photos above doesn't show everything that I received, but it highlights the baseball side of my gifts.  But wait, there's more! Laura baked me a cake, Mom and Jane prepared tacos for lunch, and I was able to watch the Bears game with Dad & Grandpa. Yep, I'm a pretty lucky guy to have such a loving family.  Thanks again, everyone!

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