Thursday, May 5, 2016

Back and Better Than Ever

My life has changed considerably since I last posted in March of the previous year. 

The most notable of those changes is that I have transitioned from my Human Resources Director position to Stay at Home Dad.  What a huge change in lifestyle.  In November of last year, my wife accepted a position in Northwest Kansas. 

We found and bought a house.  She moved up to start working once we were back from our Disney trip.  I stayed in my position and lived in South Central Kansas with plans to move up at the end of the year when the kids semester was over.

As it turned out, the person replacing me was not able to start until January so I stayed on for another 3 weeks to train the new Human Resources Director.

Time has flown by since then.  It feels like I was just working last week.  Now I stay home with my 3 year old daughter and greet the boys when they get out of school at 4:00.  They only have a 4 day school week so we have a weekday together as well. 

A lot went through my mind when deciding if this was the right direction for my life.  Leaving the working world can be a career buster if you stay out too long.  I was ready for a change in my career path anyway.  At some point I will either go back to school for a new career path or hopefully start something on my own.

I considered what people will think.  That has led to most of my decisions in life.  They were not all bad decisions, I just wasn't really happy.  I am 37 years old.  It is time to start living my own life.

Money wise, we are better off than we were before.  I thought that we could really stack in the money if I took another job up here.  That may still happen at some point, but for now I am enjoying my time with my daughter, and I'm not sure money can buy that.  

Since my transition, I have found out that my 3 year old daughter loves fishing more than I do.  She has already out fished me once.

I do chores around the house and transport kids to all their sporting event stuff.  We have to travel 20 minutes to practice and games.  I do a few things on the side to bring in some extra money, but try not to do too much as I am home to take care of my daughter.

Recently I picked up a landscaping and mowing job at a local business to have a little extra spending money.

I have started playing online poker again with limited success.  I was having good success until yesterday.  Every player ended up having pocket aces any time I got a decent hand.  Thankfully that streak broke this morning when I played.

I have been considering adding to the blog now that I am playing again and have more time to do so.  This seems to be the right time as I leave for Vegas tomorrow.  Every year I try to make it out to meet a friend from Ohio.  It has been a year and a half since our last Vegas adventure. 

Next week I should have some fun stories to share with you. 

BREAK

I wrote this quite a while back.  A lot has changed quite majorly since I wrote this and I will catch you up on that in a future post.

O.K. Maybe it's time to give a little update.  Reason for lapse in posting:  Rattlesnake bite to the groin!  No, not really.  I guess I just needed a break, had a lack of things to write about, got really busy with 3 kids, etc.

So what have I been doing?  I can tell you that poker has taken a back door.  I still play in a local game occasionally but took a break from it as well for most of the summer.

Recently, I have started concentrating on the game again and have found some success.  The first week of the year I won the local game.  From then until a few weeks ago I did not make the final 4 places.  The game has gotten bigger, the rules have changed a little, the players are getting better.  I have a lot of excuses.  The main thing was that I was not trying to improve.

A few weeks ago, I played online to get my groove back.  I read some card player magazine articles.  I focused on my play and the play of the others at the table.  Since I started doing that, I have finished 3rd and 2nd at the local game.  The payouts were a nice boost to my depleted bankroll.

My plans were to go to Las Vegas in October.  I had everything planned out and approved by the wife, then I changed gears.  Some friends offered to take us along on their Disney World trip in November.  Once I decided to do that I knew all of my discretionary money would be going towards that. 

The trip has been booked and mostly paid for.  Now it's time to start planning a trip to the desert.  I'm thinking January would be a good time to go.  I might have to go out sooner.  I'm craving a Vegas Vacation.

This summer has been really busy.  We moved to the country.  The boys and I have picked up several yards to mow in town.  It has rained every week.  The grass has needed mowed a minimum of once a week.  On top of the town yards, I have several acres to mow at home. 

Now that we are in the country, I have started a garden, hatched and started raising chickens and guineas, built coops and pens for both of them, and drive the kids back and forth to town for sports.  That takes up all of my time.  I'm ready for fall.

I decided to set up an account for Draft Kings.  I had heard very little about it out here.  I am excited for the first week of NFL now.  I have several teams drafted in several of the contests.  I might have gotten a little carried away this first week, but I think it may turn out to be profitable. 

I have done some dabbling on some of the other sports, and have finished o.k. in a couple of the contests.  I just don't pay attention to baseball, mma and golf as much as I do football.  I'm not an expert by any means, but it looks fun to try.

Going forward I am not going to be posting on a regular basis.  I will try to post a little more than twice a year.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Quick Trip Report

I'm back from Vegas. It was a quick trip and a lot of fun. I didn't play any poker, but I did stop by and look at a couple of poker rooms as we were checking out the strip. 

I went to Freemont street on Sunday night to get fried Oreos and check out the light show. As soon as the light show was over we walked to Mermaids for fried Oreos. No luck. They were cleaning up shop. 

One thing I noticed out there was a complete lack of tourists. It was almost like a ghost town compared to usual. It is usually slow this time of year but on Freemont street during the light show I counted 5 people out watching it not including us. 

I bid farewell to the Riviera. From now on if I go to Vegas I will be staying at a casino that offers poker. My next trip will probably be during the WSOP with the intentions of playing a lot of poker. 


Friday, February 13, 2015

Riviera Hotel and Casino to be Demolished?

 
Last week I saw that Riviera Hotel and Casino was being sold.  Today on vitalvegas.com I saw that Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority is buying Riviera with plans of demolition.  Vitalvegas.com mentioned that the official announcement is still a few days off with an expected announcement at the sale on Feb. 17, 2015.
 
The Riviera Hotel and Casino has always been my favorite casino.  I have a lot of good stories that came from staying there.  I will miss this gem in the desert. 
 
With my upcoming trip and stay booked at the Riviera next Saturday and Sunday, I will be paying close attention to the news next week.   
 
 

Thursday, February 5, 2015

2 Weeks and 2 Days



This month is going to fly by.  I tried to slow it down by booking a trip to Las Vegas the 21st - 23rd.  Usually it takes forever for a Vegas trip to get here.  Not this time.

I have poker on Monday nights.  Basketball is over, but my nights are now filled with preparations to buy a marina.  I have put together a business plan and my wife has helped tremendously by getting the cash flow projections together.  We have looked at personal finances, start up cost, calculated labor cost, and much much more.  We were able to get a lot of financial information from the original owners and they have been extreemly helpful in answering additional questions as they come up.

On Saturday they were on their way back to their Condo in Padre and sat in their car to keep cell phone reception just to answer questions for me as well as just talk about the business in general.

Tomorrow I meet with a SBA loan representative that also can write developement loans and authorize certain grants.  All of our hard work will be scrutinized tomorrow.  We have a bank that will carry the loan.  We just need the SBA to sign off on it.

I feel a lot better after looking deeply into the financials.  I knew there had to be a way to make money in the business and the financials show that I am right.  The owners confirmed that I was right and the owners accountant assured me I was right. 

If everything goes as planned I will be purchasing a marina by early March and transitioning to a business owner and operator immediately following.  I will be leaving a great job, so it has been a tough decision.  My dream is to wear shorts to work.  I may be doing a lot of that this summer.

I will still have some major work to do after tomorrow, and before we purchase the business.  I will be busy with my current job, preparing to leave.  I will be busy at night getting my ducks in a row at home. 

My wife is planning on staying behind for a while so we have a second source of income.  She can support us with her pay.  I will move up in a pop up camper and live behind the marina for the immediate future.  Campground showers and restrooms.  I'm planning on working 16 hour days, 7 days a week.  I know there will be some slow times I can take some breaks.  In the beginning the days will be a little shorter until we reach the busy season. 

I still plan on putting in my time to make this business venture successful.  I enjoy working hard.  With the business only being open 7 months a year, I plan on playing hard on my off time.  I may be able to find a job that I can work during my off time.

My life is crazy right now.  I have a whirlwind of emotions every day.  For the most part I am excited.  I feel alive.  I feel like all of the work experience I have gotten the last 13 years has been for this.  Marketing, Management, H.R., Payroll, Accounting, Purchasing, Bookkeeping.  All of this will contribute to the success of this business and make my transition a little easier. 

I have wondered why I have been tested so much the last 13 years.  This may be why.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Vegas in February - EllisMania 10

Last night we had our weekly game.  I was card dead the whole first half of the game.  I won 1 hand the first 2 hours.  Even the hands I folded I would not have caught anything on the flop had I felt like playing 8 3 offsuit.

After break I came back to 4 bb's.  I had just talked to one of the players outside before the break ended saying that I will come back to a mid pocket pair within the first 2 hands, go all in and get called and lose.  It always happens when I am low stacked. 

The first hand back was not quite a mid pocket pair.  It was 66.  I was early position and went all in.  One of the other players hem hawed around and said he was going with his gut and called.  Everybody else folded.  He turned over 10 3 hearts.  He hit a 3 on the flop and a 3 on the river to send me packing. 

After the hand he said he was sorry, he made a horrible play.  I told him it wasn't a horrible play.  It was the best call I could have asked for with him only having 1 over.  He went with his gut and it worked.  I told him not to worry about it.  I figured with my chips as amunition he would make it deep, just as I probably would have with his chips had I won.  He ended up cashing in 3rd place.

On a good note, I have booked another trip out to Las Vegas.  I will be bringing another newby out, so probably not a lot of poker this trip.  He plays a bit so we may be sitting at some tables over the weekend.  I booked it for Feb 21st - Feb 23rd.  We get there early Sat morning and leave Monday afternoon.  It will be a quick trip. 

I wanted to have something to look forward to after a busy start to the year.  We will be staying at the Riviera again.  I really like the size of the rooms.  Plus they let me use my comps for a room on the weekends.  Play a little too much on the slots there I do.  If only they had a poker room.

We've already booked tickets to EllisMania 10 Saturday night.  I am not sure exactly what it is, but the guy I'm bringing said he listens to Jason Ellis on XM radio.  They were having EllisMania 10 the same night we get to town.  This could not be coincidence.  I booked the tickets before I knew what it was about.  From what I have heard random people do challenges on the radio to have a chance to go to this and fight.  The last one had a musical chair fight, 4 man shock collar fight and some other crazy fights.  It sounds like they put on one heck of a show.  I'm excited to go see it and bring back some interesting stories to put on here.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Muck Em

After winning last week, I had a target on my back for the $20.00 bounty this week.  It was apparent at the start of play that I was going to have to have the best hand from start to finish every time.

I had pocket aces fairly early and had 2 callers all the way to rivertown.  I had 1 beat.  The other caught their flush on the river.  Painful. 

This week was not at all like last week.  I could not buy a hand.  Actually I got creative one time when I was about out of chips and called an all in from late position with 7 2 when nobody else called.  There were a lot of chips in the pot.  He had JQ.  I caught a 7 on the river to win.  It was pretty exciting.  It was apparent that I showed up last night to eat, drink and have fun.  With the cards I got I do not think things would have turned out any different if I had played seriously.

I did have fun.  The host always makes a meal for us.  This week it was a baked potato bar, with a snack tray and cakes.  It's a rough way to spend my Monday evenings.

My last hand of the night was 4 2 s.  I went all in and had 2 callers.  KQrag out the gate.  Big stack bets, other player goes all in.  Uh Oh!  Big stack folds.  Other player has a Q.  A 2 hit on the turn.  No love on the river.  I was third out of the game.  I had 1 BB left when I went all in.  I had just gotten out of the blinds with 8 3 and 9 2 with raisers and callers ahead of me.  I had 4 more hands to make a move.  When I looked down at the power hand 4 2 I knew it was time to put my chips in the middle. 

Not this time.