MLK Day

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The kids and I had yesterday off. Heath and I were still in a food coma or something and could not get out of bed for the longest time. Eventually she got up and got ready for work and I took the opportunity while she was home to go for a quick mile run. My joints were full of BBQ sauce or something and it was a tough mile.

Once home I got busy on dinner. I had cooked a bunch of chicken in the crock pot the night before and I shredded it all up and used the broth to get some dry beans cooking then put all the bones and skin and random parts into another crock pot to make more chicken stock. The kids got up earlier then i hoped so I had to get them eating breakfast. We worked on laundry, making beds, cleaning rooms, wiping counters and other cleanup most of the morning. We did a 30 minute exercise video that was also harder then it should have been.

Just before lunchtime we put on old shoes and clothes and packed a little Bean carrying pack with some supplies and headed out for an adventure. I picked up 3 $1.99 happy meals on the way. We parked and hit the trail.

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We hiked a ways and took lots of breaks to play and explore.

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I’d been wanting to check out the RC plane area ever since I noticed they put in a wood stove but had not gotten a chance. We hiked there in hopes we could watch someone flying.

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It was empty but a great spot for a picnic.

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Berry ran all over the place while we ate. Once the kids had their fill I gave them a peep for dessert and then we got back on the trail.

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We went around a loop taking a different way back for much of the way. This time we took longer breaks.

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Also we spent a bunch of time playing in the ice

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After the ice I let Bean do some walking too.

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We got back to the truck and headed home. We took off our muddy shoes and Bean went right down for a nap. The other two relaxed on the sofa with a movie. I cut off some hair on my head and a bit off the edges of my beard. Then I went out to cut some wood.

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My saw was in need of sharpening so I cut for a while then loaded my truck up and moved a load to the back yard and left it in my truck back there. I was feeling pretty stinky, hairy and woody so I decided to take a bath. Bean got up just in time to join me.

After our baths all the kids and I did a bit more cleaning up. We finished laundry, swept, vacuumed and then I sent them all outside to play so I could do a bit more dinner prep. I had it all ready when Heath got home so we opened a couple beers and talked on the couch while the kids were outside.

Shin and Sarah, a coworker of his joined us for dinner. She had a son Peanuts age and they really hit it off. We had a lot of questions about the police lab and what kind of work Shin is doing. We had actually met Sarah many years ago at a wedding and the boys had played.

So here is what we learned about Shin’s job stuff. He and Sarah do a lot of DNA analysis and forensics work for their crime labs. A company in New Zealand came up with a new product that lets you test something to see if it has useful DNA in 30 minutes. Previously these tests took 48 hours. The Kansas City lab was the first lab in the US to buy and use this. They took on a major project getting this method accept for the courts and then took advantage of the short time to start testing all their old cold cases. The New Zealand company had them write up a bunch about what they are doing and their experiences with this new product.

Shin’s lab in Japan was looking for a way to find out if there is saliva on cloth reliably. There are some methods now but they are not great (expensive/unreliable). So his lab found the stuff the KC lab is doing and set up him to come do a 3 month research project. So he is not working for or with the KC lab but using their lab and this product to find out if it would be a quick easy way to find saliva. He is working with them for 3 months but so far he says it does not look like it will be successful.

Sarah was pretty interesting and didn’t mind answering all of our questions about crime labs and kc police and all sorts of stuff. We ended up talking until bedtime. We saved the dishes and cleanup for tonight and got in bed.

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