Saturday, August 29, 2009

Bags set, complete with flair!

After receiving a great homemade bean bag toss set as a wedding gift (thanks Mike!) last summer, we were a bit resistant to use it. Not because it wasn't a nice set, but because it seemed like it needed a bit of flair, if you will. Well that is exactly what it got.

My very creative and talented wife Hillary went to work and designed and painted the bean bag toss set. She said I could either have a Detroit Pistons or Hope College theme. It turns out the Hope "H" is a bit easier to paint than the Pistons logo.

Now, we just need to figure out how to mass produce these for a profit! :)

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Social Networking and me

Ok, the secret is out, I am a social networking junkie. Now, I realize that the social networking "craze" is not for everyone - however it is no longer a fad... it is here to stay.

I thought I would take this opportunity to post my thoughts about the main social networks I use, how I use them, and how I view their various roles.

First of all, a crash course. Scott Monty, the head of social media for Ford Motor Company, stated the following about the "big 3":

LinkedIn is the business meeting; Facebook is the hallway conversation; Twitter is the cocktail party.

The bread and butter of the social networking revolution. Facebook was started exclusively for college and university students (I was one of them) and has since ballooned into a dominant force of over 150 million users.
I view Facebook primarily as a "social" place to keep up with friends and people I know in -- real life.
Jason Cash
Jason Cash
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Twitter is the true free for all. My initial reaction to the service was confusion. Since then, it has quickly become my favorite and most checked social network. As opposed to Facebook, I do not know (in real life) the majority of my Twitter "followers" and people I follow. It provides a great way to quickly share short ideas and links with people who have similar interest areas. I mostly interact with higher education or marketing professionals, and enjoy the connectivity of the community.
Twitter requires that all "tweets" be 140 characters or less, which forces everyone to get the point.

The other major difference is that you don't have to "follow" everyone who follows you. Some people or organizations I choose not to follow back, because they seem to be spammers.

    follow me on Twitter

    I prefer to use LinkedIn as a professional network. Primarily for people I have worked with in the past or present, or have another type of relationship. LinkedIn is my wad of business cards, and provides a great resource for networking and recommendations.

    How do you use your social networks?

    Sunday, July 5, 2009

    The new patio and deck stairs

    After hours and hours of hard work and plenty of help, the new stairs off our deck and patio are finished! A special thank you to Paul for his help on the steps and to my dad mom and father-in-law for their help with the patio. I am really pleased with how it all turned out.

    See pictures of the "inaugural camp fire" on the new patio.

    Thursday, July 2, 2009

    Celebrating 1st year anniversary!

    Hillary and I celebrated our 1st year of marriage together by heading up to Traverse City Michigan for the weekend. We enjoyed downtown TC, dinner at North Peak Brewing Company, and ice cream at Moomers, voted best ice cream in America! We also spent some time checking out The Village at Grand Traverse Commons (a former insane asylum). Dinner was very nice on the deck at Boone's Long Lake Inn.

    Saturday was mostly spent visiting wineries. Lots and lots of wineries! Including:
    Left Foot Charley's
    Black Star Farms
    Chateau Chantal
    2 Lads
    Ciccone Vinyard (owned by Madonna's dad)
    Tandem Ciders
    Leelanau Cellars (a personal favorite)

    We enjoyed driving out to the lighthouse at Mission Point and also discovering the beautiful scenes of Suttons Bay.

    Of course out weekend wasn't complete without getting the old wedding cake out of the freezer. Surprisingly, it wasn't that bad!

    Happy Anniversary to us, here's to many more!

    Thursday, May 14, 2009

    Alaina Jeanne

    We are an aunt and uncle again thanks to our brother and sister, Eric & Betsy,
    Baby Alaina Jeanne was welcomed to the world on Wednesday, May 13th weighing 8 lb 5 oz. Here are some pictures from our visit to the hosptial.

    Monday, May 11, 2009

    Hiking trip photos

    I had a great time hiking in the mountains of West Virginia with Hope friends for the past few days. We hiked a total of 24 miles in 2.5 days. I am pretty sore, but it was well worth it, we had a great time and saw many beautiful scenic views. Below you will see some of our pictures.

    My personal goal before the trip was to do at least 1 thing I didn't think I could do. Well, I did it:

    Tuesday, May 5, 2009

    Hiking trip of the century!

    View Larger Map

    Beginning this Wednesday evening, myself and 3 Hope friends (Kurt, Aaron, Mike) will be driving down to Seneca Rocks, West Virginia and meeting up with 2 other Hope friends (Matt & Josh) where we will be hiking in the mountains toward Spruce Knob Peak. Our travels will be well documented, and we look forward to coming back with many great stories!

    Track our progress through Google Latitude!

    Tuesday, April 14, 2009

    Monday, March 16, 2009

    Thanks Mr. D

    This past Friday, Bill Davidson, owner of the Detroit Pistons, Palace Sports and Entertainment, and Guardian Glass died at the age of 86.

    Mr. D was the greatest professional sports owner of all time. He stayed out the limelight and hired great people and trusted them to do their jobs.

    He was the first owner to privately finance an arena (normally paid for by local taxpayers) and The Palace of Auburn Hills is still one of the state of the art facilities in the country.
    He was also the first owner to provide a private jet to his team (in the late 80s), which to this day, former coach Chuck Daly still attributes to his teams championships.

    Mr. D was classy, and no nonsense, which in my opinion is a lost art these days. He had a great business model, and was an incredible philanthropist.

    My greatest memory of Mr. D is from the 2004 Championship parade in Downtown Detroit and Rally in Hart Plaza. Mr D., a man of few words, got up to the podium, frustrated by the "experts" who said the Pistons had no chance to beat the Lakers, and said: "that's a bunch of bull crap." (note: censored)

    Here are some links to great news articles on the one they call, Mr D.:
    Mr. D did things right
    Bill Davidson avoided the limelight, not responsibility
    Sports world mourns 'greatest owner of all time'

    Wednesday, March 11, 2009

    Vistra Creative

    I have recently joined forces with my friend and colleague, Scott, and am now a proud contributing member of Vistra Creative!

    Vistra Creative offers custom designed websites made specifically to fit any company’s needs, and offers domain registry and site hosting.

    If you are in need of web design help, please contact me at:

    Sunday, January 11, 2009


    Our favorite show, Lost, is coming back with a season premiere January 21. We can't wait!

    Friday, January 2, 2009

    Christmas Season

    Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. Jason an
    d I realized we did a bad job of taking pictures this Holiday season. We took zero pictures of all the fun things we did, But we have been BUSY!!
    Starting all the way back on December 17, Jason took me out to eat at the Melting Pot for my Birthday. Its one of my favorite restaurants, but a little to expensive that we only go on special occasions. We celebrated my birthday a day early because on the 18th we celebrated my dad's retirement. His squad had a retirement party for him at Brann's Steakhouse. Everyone there had many nice things to say about him and his many many years of service. It was fun to hear stories and learn how other people look up to my dad too!!(Just like we do!) My dad is looking for a job and hopes to find a more low key one. My dad and I both had "jobs" on our Christmas list this year.... Santa didn't bring those yet...maybe someday soon.
    A funny side story about his retirement party - My two year old nephew was at the party and knew it was my birthday, so when he saw the cake which was for my dad he said "He-he's birthday cake" (He cant say Hillary so he calls me Hehe) We told Evan it was Papa's cake for his retirement, that made no sense to him so it became "Hehe and Papa's birthday cake!!" We let it go at that, but my dad and I were happy to share our special occasions together :)
    The following weekend we had Jason's work Christmas party. It was a 70's theme, which made for a fun night with his co-workers. That Saturday, our good friends Matt and Julie were in town from South Carolina, so we had dinner with them and then had them and a bunch of other college friends over for drinks, playing the Wii, catching up and many good laughs and memories made!!
    On Sunday we headed to Brighton to spend time with the our Cash family. That night we went to the Transiberian Orchestra. It was amazing!! We went with Jason's whole family, plus his grandma, aunt and two family friends. It was a great night.
    Monday (Dec. 22) we celebrated Christmas with Mom and Dad Cash, Kirsti, Zach, Jim, and Gerri (and their dog Nola) . Mom Cash made a nice dinner and we opened gifts.

    Tuesday we went to the Pistons game. We saw a victory!!
    Wednesday we spent the afternoon at Grandma's house, helping set up for Christmas, and visiting with her. We also visited with Uncle Bob and Aunt Suzanne and cousins Matt and Tara and their three kids. It was great to see them.

    That night we went to the Christmas Eve service with Mom and Dad Cash.
    Christmas Day we drove back to the west side of the state to spend all of Christmas day with my family. We opened presents, ate a very nice lunch, and played an interesting game (its tradition to get a new game every year..this year not such a good game!!)

    Christmas night Jason and I exchanged our gifts to each other. After we finally got into our house... we had been gone for four days and the snow was so piled up at the end of our driveway that we had to shovel/snowblow it all away before we could get the car into the garage.
    We were very blessed this Christmas season with much time spent with families, friends and many great gifts.
    The week after Christmas was busy with errands, visiting with other friends, my dad's side of the family Christmas party, dinner with both sets of parents and A LOT of relaxing and spending time at home.
    New years eve was spent with some great friends. First we had dinner with Josh and Erika, who now live in New Jersey, then we all headed over to Kurt and Steph's house for the second annual New Years Eve Bash. It was a fun night of ringing in 2009.
    New Years day we watched football and had my parents over to watch the Rose Bowl.

    We had a great 2008. A year we will always remember. The year we got married, bought our first house together and made many memories with family and friends. We both reconnected with friends from High school, missed friends who moved away and started our search for a new Church (something that will hopefully be accomplished in 2009!!) We are excited for what 2009 will bring!!! (Maybe a job for me (and my dad) a new niece or nephew in May a few weddings we have to look forward to and many more exciting things.

    Thanks for catching up on whats going on in our lives.... Sorry I'm a lot longer winded then Jason.. I guess that is why he usually posts!!!

    Tuesday, December 16, 2008

    CASE V

    Hillary and I spent Sunday celebrating her birthday with her family and then running off to Chicago so I could attend the CASE V Conference and Awards.
    We were able to meet up with friends Bethany and Micah for dinner at the Cheesecake Factory (my favorite!)
    I was also on hand to accept an award on behalf of Hope College for a campaign fundraising publication that we put together.
    Although it was a terrible drive home with the weather, we had a great couple of days in Chicago.

    Friday, December 12, 2008

    I found this new site called Wordle, which allows you to place a bunch of words and creates artwork out of them. This is a collection of words used on this blog. Pretty cool!

    Sunday, November 30, 2008

    A Thankful Weekend

    We had a great Thanksgiving holiday weekend. It started with a get-together downtown Holland Wednesday night with friends Kurt and Steph. We ended up seeing a lot of people we know including Karl, Dustin, Mike, and Zach.

    Thanksgiving day, we enjoyed a great family get-together with Hillary's extended family at Aunt Jane & Uncle Jim's house. After a full day of food, we saw the movie "Four Christmases" with a group of cousins.

    Friday, I woke up at 1:30am and arrived at the Jenison Meijer at 2am and was 11th in line for a 42" Plasma HDTV (pictured). We love our new flat screen! Hillary spent the day shopping black Friday deals with family members.
    We drove to Detroit area Friday night and met my dad at the Pistons game, and were pleasantly surprised by the halftime show, Hillary's all time favorite Quick Change! Plus we saw a Pistons victory.

    Saturday we got to see my brother Jim and sister-in-law Gerri's furnished house, and spend time with my family the rest of the weekend.

    We are thankful for the many blessings in our lives!

    Monday, November 17, 2008

    Weekend in Chicago

    This past weekend we took a trip to Chicago for a little weekend getaway. We stayed in the Courtyard Marriott Downtown, spent most of the day shopping, enjoyed dinner at Weber Grill, and dessert at the Cheesecake Factory.

    We spent Sunday visiting friends who live in the Chicago area, Bethany and Micah, and Bain and Laura.

    Monday, November 3, 2008

    Memphis, TN

    On Thursday, October 30th, I left with a few Hope friends for a 10+ hour road trip to Memphis TN to visit our friend Karl and Matt who was in town for a conference. It was great to see everyone again.

    Sunday, October 26, 2008

    Evan Says Go Pistons

    Looks like our nephew Evan likes the Pistons chair.

    Monday, October 20, 2008

    A day in Fennville

    Hillary and I enjoyed a great fall Saturday with Kurt and Steph in Fennville Mi. We started out at Cranes Orchard and picked some apples, followed by some cider and donuts. Then we went wine tasting at Fenn Valley winery, and topped it all off with dinner at Su Casa. Good friends, great times!

    Monday, September 15, 2008

    New Landscaping!

    A few weeks ago we worked with Grand Rapids Landscape Management and Shoreline Sprinkling of Zeeland to landscape and irrigate our yard. In the front we have 2 maple trees, 1 evergreen tree, 2 dwarf evergreens, ornamental grass, black eyed susans, spirea, and hosta. We had hydroseed sprayed in the front and back yard and Jason mowed the lawn for the first time last weekend. Here are some pictures.

    Friday, September 5, 2008

    Jason's wedding present

    Hillary truly knows me well. For my wedding present, she completely refurbished an old chair and turned it into a "Detroit Pistons Chair" with materials from my old Pistons clothes and jerseys. It is truly one of a kind. Now I just need the season to start so I can put my sweet chair to use!

    Monday, July 21, 2008

    Honeymoon in Maui

    We were so lucky to have the opportunity to stay at the Kaanapali Alii resort in Maui, Hawaii during our honeymoon. We had a blast!

    Thursday, July 10, 2008

    Our Wedding!

    June 21, 2008 was the best day of our lives. We were so blessed to have so many friends and family present for our wedding day. Our wedding was held at Bethany Christian Reformed Church in Holland, MI and our reception was at Raleigh-Woods in Holland as well. We are so blessed to have such great people in our lives to share these memories with.

    Tuesday, March 25, 2008

    6414 Bradenwood Drive

    On February 18 2008, we put an offer on a house in Hudsonville, MI.
    On March 25, 2008, we closed on the house and we became homeowners!

    Monday, September 24, 2007

    Our engagement photos

    A few photos from our engagement photo shoot in Downtown Grand Rapids.

    Friday, January 26, 2007

    We're Engaged!

    On January 26, 2007 we got engaged!
    Jason and I were aplanning on going to his house in Brighton for the weekend. I was running a little late, and was freaking out because Jason was right on time. After we packed up the car and were about ready to leave, Jason informed me that he needed to take a picture of a "peaceful place" for one of his classes before Monday. He said he had written his paragraph about Window on the Waterfront (a park in Holland). The park is a place that Jason and I visit frequently in the summer when we rollerblade, bike ride or take walks. He pulled into the parking lot and started getting out. I stayed seated in the car thinking all he had to do was take a quick picture. Jason then informed me that I needed to take a picture of him in the spot as he grabbed his backpack from the backseat, claiming "he needed to check the assignment." As he started to walk to a deck in the middle of the park I began asking if we could just take the picture from the parking lot, with the stuff behind him. He said no and started walking through the snow to the deck. I had on clogs and began complaining about walking through the snow. At one point I said, "Oh I should have grabbed my gloves" Jason asked if I wanted to go back and get them. I replied "No let’s get this over with." Jason was trying to be cute and asked me to hold his hand and I told him no, I was going to walk in his footprints so I didn’t get snowy feet. (As you can tell I wasn't being a good sport about this :) We finally get to the deck and I asked if he came here frequently without me, he said no, and I commented that this was the first place we had ever talked about getting engaged. Jason informed me that he had a confession to make, there was no picture or assignment, but that he had a surprise. He took a blanket out of his bag and set it on the bench. He then took out a book that he had created and had professionally printed and bound full of pictures. He told me to read the book out loud which he had written his own words to "Oh the Places We'll go" based off the Dr. Seuss book. I started reading and by about page five I was crying so hard I could no longer see the words. After he read some of the pages to me, I got to the end which read:

    "So there comes a time for everyone,
    To take that next big leap.
    I have a pretty big question for you,
    But I am afraid you might just weep.

    As I read that page, Jason got down on one knee, took out the ring, and popped the BIG question. Of course I said yes instantly as he put the ring on my finger. We both have not stopped glowing since :)