Showing posts from 2016

Goodbye 2016

I think everyone mostly agrees.  2016 was pretty stupid.

It won't go down as my worst year ever.  That still belongs to 2012 and will be hard to top.  But, 2016 was up there with years I won't miss.

There were some bright spots!  Kim and I spent (another) week in Hawaii to kick it off.  I started work at one of my favorite companies on the planet.  Baby Owen popped in the oven. 

What else?  Hmmmm...can't really think of anything.  I'm sure there is something. 

Here are my lessons from the past year:

No matter how much you are sure something can't happen, it can definitely happen.  Hatred for one individual can blind every day people to even greater faults and flaws. I'm getting older.  Faster than I ever have before. Co-parenting doesn't have to be as hard as many people make it out to be. The sound of 7 year olds talking in baby voices is worse than nails on a chalkboard for me.  Star Wars is still amazing and I am still capable of being a complete gee…

So, about not telling anyone the baby's name...

Yeah, that didn't last.  We've told everyone.


Russell Wilson Aloysius John McCain Beastmode Pankow will officially be...

Owen Francis Pankow.

Now, first of all.  How did we come up with this?

Owen is Kim's dad's middle name.  So, that one was easy.

And, since Kim got her pick which pretty much breaks all my rules for naming (uncommon but not made up and no namesakes), I pretty much bullied her into giving me the middle name.  So, I picked Aloysius.  And she said no.  So, I went with my next favorite Jesuit Saint...Francis! 

I'll be honest...Kim still doesn't love Francis.  She says it's growing on her.  But, it's taken some whining on my part.  Francis is the name of some very strong men and very important people in the history of the Catholic Church.  St. Francis of Assisi (patron Saint of animals and the environment), St. Francis Xavier (founding member of the Society of Jesus, the Jesuits, patron Saint of Catholic missions a…

Merry Christmas!

"Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us."

Merry Christmas, friends! 

Grandma Joyce

Sadly, this past weekend, my Grandma Joyce passed away.  She was 93 years old.

While sad, this wasn't unexpected.  Doesn't make it suck less, but it wasn't a surprise.

Grandma had pretty severe Alzheimer's.  The last time I visited Michigan, a little over a year ago, she didn't recognize me.  The time before that, she recognized me, but that's about it.  She couldn't remember the conversation he just finished having.

And now she doesn't have to suffer through that, anymore.  As a Christian, I know this is amazing for Grandma.  However, I am very sad for the family.  Especially my Grandpa, to whom Grandma was married for 70 years.

70 years!!!  I just turned 39.  I will be surprised if I live 30 years.

Here is Grandma's obituary:

Joyce Constance (Reed) Pankow of Chesterfield MI
October 16, 1924-December 17, 2016
Born in Denver, Colorado to Fred and Elsie Reed of England. Beloved wife of 70 years to Frederick Pankow. Loving mother to Gary Pankow (Coll…

2nd Grade Research Projects

Do you remember doing research projects in 2nd Grade?  I sure don't.  I also don't remember having to do an oral report on my research.

Well, that's what Desmond's class is required to do.

The class had a major project on South America.  This is a significant part of the year.  So significant that the teacher, Ms. Hoch, at the beginning of the year says, "This is a significant part of the year."  So it's not something that can be sluffed off on like it was reading or math or something else.  Each kid was to pick a South American country and present to the class on that country.  Des picked Venezuela.

Anyway...Desmond takes after me in a lot of ways.  One way being that he hates doing any type of homework.  So, this has indeed been a bit challenging.  However, we were able to crank out some solid research.  AND...we were able to do research in more places than simply the internet.  I know the internet is a perfect place to do research.  But, I also think…

Names and why we're not telling

While we have some options, we haven't landed on a name, yet.  However, Kim is pretty adamant that we NOT tell anyone until the baby is born.  I am indifferent.  I am more concerned about my inability to keep secrets than I am about not telling people the name.  But, the boss says we we wait.

While I am not as insistent on waiting to tell people, I get why she wants to.  Seems everyone has an opinion on names.  And I mean EVERYONE! 

I still distinctly remember a couple reactions from when Desmond was still cooking. 

One was from my boss, Denise.  Denise was my boss for about 10 straight years.  About 4 years at the point of the story.  So, we're friends.  The conversation went something like this:

Denise: "Have you guys picked a name, yet?"

Me:  "Yes!  We're naming him Desmond!"

Denise: "HAHAHAHA!  Yeah right.  What have you really picked?"

Me: "Really...we picked Desmond."

Denise: "Sure you did.  In a couple more month…

Knocking up your wife, the 21st Century Way

A quick disclaimer...this post is LOADED with TMI.  If you don't want to hear about it, best to skip this one.


You may have noticed already, but I am not as young as I used to be.  And, while she is much better looking than I am, Kim is EVEN OLDER! 

So, this whole getting knocked up thing was harder than one might expect.

First of was always part of the deal when we decided to get married.  While I have been pretty indifferent about more kids (I wasn't planning it, but I also wasn't opposed and I knew if I wanted to remarry it had to be an option), it was always a big thing on Kim's list.  And, while she is an amazing step-mom, we both knew when we got hitched that we needed to plan for a family addition.

What we didn't know was how hard it would be.

We started trying right away after we got married.  Nothing was happening.  But, we figured we would give it some time.

Finally, after a year, we decided to see…

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them - Jason's Movie Review

Took the fam to see Fantastic Beasts this weekend! 

I will start by saying that I think this was my favorite "Harry Potter" movie! 

WOW!  That is quite a statement, Jason.  Almost sacrilege. 

Yeah...I thought so to.  But, I think I figured it out.  I had issues with just about every single HP movie.  With the exception of the first one, I had read the books before I had seen the movie.  And, every time, I was annoyed that something was left out or that something was portrayed in a way I didn't like.  Especially in the later movies.

HP 7 being the most egregious.  I mean, they get into practically nothing about the Dumbledore story.  And, where the heck did Harry get that piece or mirror he's hauling around?  And, how did Snape know to find Harry in the Forest of Dean?  Too many plot holes.

Anyway...this movie wasn't constrained by an existing opinion of what it should be.  So, I didn't come out complaining about things I thought should have been differen…

Baby Picture of the Day - Rebooted!

I did these way back in the beginning of the blog.  Mostly because there were funny or cute baby pictures that I wanted to share.

Or...I wanted to make fun of something.  Today is one of the latter.

Here is your today's BBOTD:

Why, Jason, would you post such a random picture?

Well, allow me to answer that. 

You see, when I gazed at this picture, I had one thought.  In the time that passed between the original picture and the picture of the baby, how the heck did that not realize that this is totally lame?

That's all.  If you have a baby, or are thinking of having a baby, please don't mail me some announcement of you when you were gazing longingly into the mirror imagining your baby.

Get ready for round 2


We're Facebook official, so I guess it's time to be blog official.

I hearby introduce you to Russell Wilson Aloysius Beastmode Jlaw Francis Pankow.

I should point out, while this is clearly the best name for our baby, Kim hasn't signed off on it, yet.  Heck, we don't even know if baby is a double X or an XY.  What we DO that, come May, we won't be getting sleep, anymore. 

I've been going back to the early days of this blog (back when it was  It's been fun to reminisce.  I expect this to be a completely different experience.  I mean, I will have an 8 year old and I am doing this with a new wife!  A wife who will be "geriatric age" when the baby is born.  I mean, I've always know Kim is way older than me (9 whole months), geriatric makes me feel like I'm married to a grandma. 

We are now safely into the 2nd trimester.  Just past 12 weeks.  Dr. says Russell looks great!  We did the blood test…

How to talk to your kids, by Principal Ramos

Election night through today, I have seen a lot of people on Facebook asking, "How do I tell my kids?" 

Mrs. Ramos, the principal at Desmond's school, offers up the note below, which I would like to share with you because I enjoyed it so much. 

Dear OLG Families,
This week, it has been apparent that our students have absorbed a wide range of feelings regarding this election. We realize that most of them have been exposed to media coverage that can at times be confusing and fraught with tension. They have likely overheard emotionally charged conversations and divisive language. This morning, many families shared that it had been a late night for their whole family, watching election results pour in. We assume and appreciate that you are finding ways that are appropriate for your family to process questions, emotions, and media content related to the election.
As educators, we have been following the news about schools around the country reporting increased fear, aggressi…

Well, that sucked. Now...what to do about it.

Ok, people.  It's over.  Take a deep breath.  Inhale...good.  Now, exhale. Ahhhh.

Better?  No?  Yeah, I didn't think that would work.

But, really.  Here we are.  We have chosen Trump.  Yes, he sucks.  Yes he is a misogynist.  Yes he is a bigot.  Yes, we have picked the asshole that we are ashamed to let our children listen to over the woman with the screechy voice that we hate so much.  And, my family and friends that voted for Trump...I am legitimately ashamed of you.

However, it is what it is.  We now have to deal with it. 

Here are our choices as I see it.

1)  Complain about how this election was chosen by people who hate women/Mexicans/Muslims/whatever and talk about how we're going to move to Canada.  We can discuss the discrepancy between white and non-white votes (because race relations are so awesome already).  We can call each other names and continue to spew the vitriol that has encompassed this entire 2 year long election cycle.


2)  We can take…

I Voted! And, now I am going to complain about it.

I finished my ballot today.  It's stamped and ready to ship out to the proper authorities who will likely throw it in the shredder.

I kid, I kid!

Anyway, voting is done for me.  But, now I get to (most likely) spend 4 years with a President that I voted for but don't support.

You see...I can't stand Hillary Clinton.  And, I am very very annoyed at how folks on the left have granted her sainthood despite her many legitimate faults. 

This is my new favorite site:

I am not a fan of WikiLeaks. Never have been.  Not when they were going after Bush (yeah...remember that?  The left loved them then.) and not now.  I don't like hackers having so much power in an election.  But, just like the Bush leaks, there information is now out and we can't ignore it just because it's coming from a source we don't like.  Please, continue trying to keep them out and put them in jail.  But, with the info exposed, we can't pretend that …

Conversation Pieces: Do you like the Bible?

Desmond: " you like the Bible?" Me: "Yeah." Des: "Do you like Legos?" Me: "Yeah." Des: "Good...then can we go to the book store and will you buy me this book called "The Lego Bible?'"

An Open Letter to my son as he starts 2nd Grade

My homie Emily has a blog called Baby in a Bar.  Seriously...just the name tells you she's awesome.

Anyway, she recently posted an open letter to her little man on his first day of Kindergarten.  It's was sweet and mushy and all those things.  You can read it here:

I feel bad for not posting something like that for Desmond when he started Kindergarten.  And, I don't think I blogged about him AT ALL while he was in 1st grade.  So, to make up for it, I give you this post: An Open Letter to My Son As He Starts 2nd Grade.


Dear Desmond,

Hey...put down the iPad.  I'm talking to you.  No...actually put it down, don't just look at me for 2 seconds and go back to it.

Ok...Dear Desmond,

Son, you are growing up so fast!  I still remember when you were in preschool.  How we had to buy a special "Bubba" just to keep at school with you for when you were sad.…

#NeverTrump - Jason tells all you Republicans why you shouldn't be voting for Trump.

I really should start posting more about my kid and junk.  But, I simply can't downplay how annoyed I am at this Trump thing.  Just how completely dumbfounded I am that he has gotten this far.  And, even worse...PEOPLE ARE ACTUALLY GOING TO VOTE FOR HIM!
I remain baffled.  Absolutely baffled.  I have been a lifelong Republican.  And, here I sit.  Wondering how the heck the party I have belonged to for thirty *mumble mumble* years has become what it is today.

I's true there have been signs.  Starting with the uprising of the tea party, the elections of the likes of people such as Ted Cruz and Michelle Bachman and the continuous venom against anything remotely resembling an LGBT issue.  But...through it all, I would always remember: Republicanism is about less government, lower taxes, a strong defense, states rights and individual freedoms.

Well, that no longer remains true.  At least, not for anyone who isn't white and straight.

I am here, right now, to tell al…

Conversation Pieces - First Communion

This evening, we were discussing how we are starting First Communion prep next year.

Des: "I want to try wine to see what it tastes like before First Communion."

Me: "It doesn't taste that great."

Des: "Then why are YOU always drinking it?"

Time to vent...Gender Identity and Bathrooms

I need to vent for a few minutes. 

I am feeling a bit offended.  Offended and misunderstood.  It's often hard to be a Republican in a time when the Republican Party is falling apart and about to nominate a complete douche bag to be their nominee for president.  But, this isn't about Trump or the presidential race.

This is about legal permission to use the restroom of the sex you identify with rather than the sex you actually may be. I see it...the ability to, without question, go into any restroom or locker room you want. is where many people will immediately write me off as a bigot.  Oh, he's a Republican.  He hates LQBT folk.  He wants them all to burn in hell.

Well, if you think that, you don't know me. haven't even read my blog.

I am a supporter of LGBT issues.  My philosophy on most issues of rights can be boiled down to this: If it doesn't hurt someone or infringe upon the rights of others, I don't care.  And, as s…

Politics and Porn

I know I haven't posted in a while, but nothing inspires me to write like two amazing topics like these.

I am very intrigued by this new little ditty in the news about a Ted Cruz ad hiring a softcore porn star for one of his ads.

Here's the gist.  The Cruz campaign produces an ad and one of the actors has been in some of those movies that you find on Showtime or HBO after your parents have gone to bed. 

Uh, oh...trouble for the Cruz campaign!  Once this got out, they had to pull the ad because Cruz stands for family values and stuff.  Clearly, it's hypocritical for him to employ this woman. 

Ok, I should clarify that nothing I am about to say is an endorsement of Cruz.  I can't stand Cruz.  I will vote for Hilary Clinton before I vote for Cruz and that is saying a lot.

But, here are my problems with this whole porn sta…

Happy New Year!

Well, I am late on this.  And Desmond's birthday post.  And Christmas.  But, I wanted to get this up because I always like reflecting on the past year. 2015.  Easily one of the best years of my life if not THE best.  Here's what went down.

I got married!  To an amazing woman!  Not to kiss her butt too much, but there are times when I still wonder how the heck I got so lucky!  How was she around at just the right time?  Someone so fitting for me?  Well, she was, Praise the Lord, and she is now Mrs. Pankow!  Maui.  I love Maui.  I know this was for a wedding and junk.  But, I will list Maui every single time I go there.  Also...between you and me...WE'RE GOING BACK!  In March!  We love it so!Desmond continues to grow.  And, in amazing ways.  He is so smart.  He is very caring.  One night, Kim was sick.  Sick enough to schedule a doctor appointment.  Desmond handed her Bubba in the morning before he went to school so she wouldn't be lonely and would have something…