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It goes without saying that the last few months have been completely crazy. The entire world is coping with a strange new virus, and our family is not an exception to that. The end of kindergarten became virtual for Felix at the end of the year, and now we’re preparing for another round of virtual learning set to start in just a few weeks. Hopefully the district’s plan for remote learning goes well, but we are working on our own plans to supplement what our school will be offering.

We had planned a trip to Japan at the end of May that of course ended up getting canceled. Instead, we decided to take a road trip to Yellowstone, which was lots of fun. Felix enjoyed seeing the animals, and also the “stinky” geysers. We were even treated to a snowfall in the middle of June.

In July, someone at work posted his Honda S2000 for sale. After I drove it, I knew it was a car I wanted. I did quite a bit of research and ended up finding one in New Orleans that was a better fit, and ultimately I ended up buying it. I had it checked out at a Honda dealership there, completed the purchase remotely, and had it shipped. It was definitely unnerving, but I really love my new car! It’s only got 21,000 miles on it, which is crazy for a 20-year-old car. It’s immaculate inside and out. Felix was gracious enough to model it for me; photos are posted. I currently have it in the shop getting a clear bra; I can’t wait to get it back so I can drive it.

Posted by nick.steinbaugh at 12:04 PM
Filed under: Cars, Travel, Wyoming, Yellowstone

It's been over a year since my last post, and I'm not sure where the time has gone. Felix started kindergarten in August, so we've been very busy with school things. Nhu and I are both volunteering in his class regularly, as is my mom.

In March, the small company I work for was acquired by a much larger government contractor, CACI. This has resulted in some upheaval, but engineering has gone largely unchanged. It remains to see how the benefits situation will change in the medium term, but in the short term the new owners have kept them mostly the same.

Last November I raced in last year's El Tour de Tucson again with former coworkers from IBM, and this next Thursday we will be driving down to Tucson to do the same this year. Of course, it's really just an excuse to hang out with friends, eat at Guadalajara Grill, and have lots and lots of gelato at Frost. We'll be taking the long way home to see some of the sights in Arizona and Utah, and we'll be home on Thanksgiving day, much to the consternation of my mom.

We do have some travel plans in place for next year as well. In February, we'll be taking Felix to Disneyland, and then we'll head down to San Diego to visit Nhu's brother and his kids. In May the three of us will be going to Japan. Nhu has been before, but it will be my first time to Japan, and Felix's first trip out of North America. We're very much looking forward to it.

I've also managed to process and post some photos of our recent adventures, including some beautiful fall leaves.

Posted by nick.steinbaugh at 2:13 PM

Life with a little one is so busy! It seems like most everything else takes a back seat. Felix is doing great though, and he’s growing so fast. He’s four years old now, and he’s correcting his grandmother’s English as well as my rarely-spoken Vietnamese. He seems to enjoy preschool, though he is usually quiet and reserved, definitely more so than your average four-year-old.

Despite our busy pace, Nhu and I were able to take a week off for a trip to Iceland and New York City. Grandma Thu stayed home and watched Felix, so it was just the two of us. Icelandair wanted a pretty hefty sum for the nonstop flight from Denver, so we flew on United through Newark instead. We rented a car when we got to Iceland and travelled the entire south half of the island. Although this year has been the country’s least sunny summer since 1984, we were incredibly lucky: we only had one day of rain and a half day of gray, with the sun showing up the rest of the time we were there. It never really got dark, and we took advantage of the beautiful weather, hitting up all the Iceland scenery we could. We stayed at a nice little bed and breakfast, though if we had it to do again, we’d probably stay at a few different places to cut down on the driving. I definitely want to go back again to see the north side of the island, as well as some of the mountains on the eastern coast.

On our way back to Denver, since we were stopping in Newark anyway, we spent a few days in New York City. Nhu had never been, and I hadn’t been since my one trip right after college. We did most of the things that I didn’t get to the last time I was there, such as riding the Staten Island Ferry and walk along the High Line. We also visited the new One World Trade Center, as well as the nearby memorial, which was sobering; the last time I was in the city there was nothing there but holes in the ground.

Photos from both Iceland and New York City are now posted; I just got around to finishing them up today.

Posted by nick.steinbaugh at 3:14 PM
Filed under: Family, Felix, Iceland, Nhu, Travel