2008 in review, part 3

Continuing my retrospective of 2008. You can catch up on Part 1 (January and February) and Part 2 (March and April) if you haven’t already.

May

By and large, May was rather uneventful but it did see a continuation on the job search front; I hadn’t yet ramped up to it but I did have the first of several interviews with a company that seemed promising. It ultimately didn’t work out, unfortunately, but it was definitely a good experience.

Memorial Day weekend we had a garage sale and cleared out a good portion of stuff that had been accumulating over the years. We went all-in on it, running an ad in the Bulletin as well as on craigslist; set up everything neatly displayed on tables in the driveway and the garage, and wouldn’t you know it—rain. I don’t remember if it rained on the first or the second day, though. It may have been the second, since we hustled and we were able to get everything pulled in to the garage and out of the weather.

At the end of the month, another beer blogging score: I received free tickets to Deschutes Brewery’s Chocolate Beer Pairing Dinner. This was our first event at the Brewery (aside from their annual garage sale), and we were pretty well blown away. The food, the beer, the company—all were excellent.

It was another notable blogging milestone, which I’m realizing more and more (as I write these) that 2008 was a hell of a good year for blogging (for me).

June

Naturally, the big news of note in June was that it was the month that I was laid off and officially became unemployed. As luck would have it, it coincided fairly neatly with the final week of school, so it turned out that I would have the summer off with the kids, and we could save money on childcare as a result.

Of course, since finding out my hours were cut, we cut spending way back and worked from a budget, which only got much tighter in mid-June. Saving money was the theme of the summer—along with "Job Search"—which you may have deduced after the fact when I wrote about free summertime activities on Hack Bend.

However, it was our tenth anniversary in 2008, and we had been planning a trip for months, and decided we weren’t going to abandon those plans despite being unemployed. That’s how the second half of June found my wife and I spending a weekend in Las Vegas, splurging and staying at the Venetian in one of their Medici Suites.

We gambled (eh), we saw Wayne Brady, and my brother and sister-in-law even drove up from San Diego to see us (whom we hadn’t seen in almost three years). It was hot—damn hot—but ultimately it was a good time.

The final weekend in June we ended up taking another trip to Portland and then to the Oregon Coast (we apparently traveled a lot in 2008!); lest you think this was yet another splurge, we actually had several agendas that coincided nicely: an eye doctor appointment for the kids (their specialist is in Lake Oswego); I had a job interview with an internet company; and we were able to visit my best friend and his and his wife’s new baby.

Since we had to be in Portland for the day anyway, we made a weekend out of it. You may remember I wrote about the trip in detail, and even posted pictures.

Of course, while in Newport we squeezed in a visit to the Rogue Brewery that I could write about. Of course, the really cool find was their Rogue Spirits Distillery; we still have some of that yummy Hazelnut Spiced Rum in the pantry.

…Now I need to go drink some.

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