Welcome to The Ranger Project!
I’ve started and stopped, resurrected and forgotten, and just let this blog sit here and collect dust more times than I can count.
Or maybe eight times. I can count to eight.
Either way, I wanted to put up this first post because I am going to try again. Now that my school work is over (other than that pesky dissertation – more on that in a moment), I feel I can devote a few minutes a day to keeping this blog alive.
This blog is going to document a lot of things about my life. You’ll learn a lot about me and my family and some of the things we want to accomplish. I’ll be honest – the theme of this blog may be a bit different at times, so I completely understand if this isn’t your cup of tea. On the other hand, if you like random things, this might be right up your alley!
This one refers specifically to my family life. We have a fairly inactive YouTube Channel called RainTree Productions, so named because I have both Cherokee and Shawnee blood in my family tree and one of my closest Indian relatives had the last name Raintree. We just thought it had a nice ring for our videos.
I’ll periodically post videos about our lives, what we do, what we like, our plans, et cetera.
In the last year and a half, we have become huge Disney fanatics. It happened when we took our son to Walt Disney World in May 2014 and he had a very literal and exciting language bump. Our son is pretty much on track now, but he does have a bit of an articulation issue with his speech, and we discovered that every time he goes to Disney, he seems to have a bit of a speech explosion when he returns. (It could potentially be not connected at all, but we cannot deny that we all have a great time at Disney World.)
We just got back a few days ago. Seriously. We love the place.
I’m not saying every vacation we ever take will be at Disney World, but we do want to get our debt paid off we can join the Disney Vacation Club and go once a year.
We have plans to do our kitchen in a Disney theme. I’ll probably post about Disney once a month or so, just to keep the magic alive.
Disney is one of those things that people either love or hate. Perhaps not surprisingly, I’ve found that a lot of people who hate Disney haven’t even gone.
All I can say is this – Walt Disney World truly is a magical place for my family, and I see us going many, many times for the rest of our lives.
Speaking of Disney and wanting to join the Disney Vacation Club, we have a fair amount of debt. Nothing crippling, but more than I’d like, for sure. Tina and I both have healthy student loan debt and we want to see this gone. I’ll periodically post about how we’re living as frugal as we can (90% of the time, anyway – we do still go to Disney sometimes) to get this debt paid down quicker.
People like Dave Ramsey and Suze Orman say that we should live like paupers to get our debt paid off. I’m not entirely sure that’s smart. I’d rather take a little longer to pay off our debt and actually enjoy my life.
Still, that doesn’t mean I’m not a big fan of avoiding needless expenses. We don’t really eat out. (We do get pizza every Monday night, but that’s because a local pizza parlor has a special with half-off pizza once a week. We can get a thin crust cheese pizza for $5.29 that feeds all of us. That seems like a decent deal, and it also has the added benefit of keeping us on track with avoiding eating out.) I try to stretch the grocery budget as best I can. We’re frugal, not tight. Oh, and I’ve also found some painless ways to make a little money on the side, too, which I’ll talk about from time to time.
We love food! I love to cook, and I’m going to share my recipes and my interpretations of recipes on occasion. We also have an Instant Pot which we love. Granted, it is now the HOT kitchen appliance of the moment, but if you’ve ever used one, you’ll understand why. It really is a great appliance. One of my first recipes is going to be for my super-easy roast beef in the Instant Pot.
I’m fat. I’ve been fat for a long time. I’ll write a longer blog post in the coming days about my weight loss efforts, but I’m going to weigh-in every Friday in 2016, starting with New Year’s Day. I weigh over 400 pounds right now (around 415, last I checked), and I’m tired of being fat and unhealthy.
While I do plan for this blog to be a positive place, I may occasionally rail on the disturbing trend that now exists for some people to glorify obesity and promote bad health. There are people out there (with audiences, sadly) who claim that it is impossible to lose weight (it’s not), that medical research says obesity is healthier than being normal weight (it’s laughably not), and that if we just eat ‘til we’re full our weight will settle where it’s supposed to (yet some who have made this claim have packed on the pounds since finding Health at Every Size).
So again, most of my weight loss talk will be about myself, but when studies come out that some of the elite trained researchers out there wildly misinterpret to suit their own needs, I’ll probably have to talk about it here.
The Ranger Project
So, why is this blog named what it is named? Because I want to be a Power Ranger!
Seriously. I want to lose weight so that I can get a movie suit and cosplay as the Blue Ranger.
And I’m not doing it fat.
I hope you’ll stick with me. I think this might be an interesting journey.