Hughes Family: November 26th, 2012 – December 2nd, 2012

It’s two in the morning. I need to get to bed. But I really want to bust this post out. For some reason this reminds me of college. I’d often be up late at night faced with a paper deadline. My intent was always to finish it as quickly as possible; rapid mediocrity was the goal. But I could rarely pull it off… I wanted to do my best. Luckily there are no real blog deadlines. No need to fight against the sweet siren song of my pillow. I will work on this tomorrow.

[The next morning] And just like that I’m back.

Work is getting busier. We’re trying to stay ahead of the curve, but each year we get slammed harder than we expect. Of course, we’re still light years ahead of where we were just a few years ago.  I used to sleep at work during the holidays!
A couple of months ago Fran moved out of the office we used to share. It’s taken awhile, but I have finally replaced her with a couch, two pictures, a shelf and a plant. Cumulatively they talk about as much as she did (which is to say when she was at work, she worked). No going back now.

On Tuesday Mike got his Wolf award! Fran is his Den Mother and I know she works hard to keep all the cubs on track. It’s possible Mike might actually enjoy the scouting program though. I wanted to attend the meeting, but I had made plans to see Skyfall with my Dad and brother (before I knew about the meeting). Overall I thought Skyfall was excellent (8/10).

Friday was the Sabin’s Christmas party (SCP). Everyone who’s anyone attends the SCP. Here’s a shot of our lovely hosts, Jason and Rachel… Jason is kind of holding her, I guess. I’m not sure really sure what’s going on. And here’s me and some of the boys. Fran isn’t going to like the picture of her I posted. I have no idea what hanging out of her mouth, but I love her.

Party goers played games, ate delicious food from Rubios and the evening culminated with the white elephant gift exchange. The gifts ranged from slightly thoughtful to comically obscene. I’m sure the full scoop will be provided by Rachel later this week. I don’t know why they do it, but a big thanks to the Sabins for another fun party.

Saturday brought another party- Mike’s ninth birthday. We rounded up a few of his friends and headed over to the Lehi Jack & Jill’s. First up: Bowling. Kids love bowling. I think for them it’s like a chance to break something over and over without getting in trouble. The kids turned out to be better bowlers than the adults (excuse: kids had bumpers).  I think Fran will be okay with this picture of her. She was an excellent party coordinator.

After pizza and cake it was time for Laser Tag. I really like the Jack and Jill’s setup and it’s nice to see what you are shooting (visible beams). Once again the kids the kids beat the adults (excuse: gun issues and uneven teams). After laser tag we opened presents and returned home exhausted.

On Sunday we ate at my parent’s house (sandwiches… I love sandwiches!) and reveled in their cool nativity (I used to play with pieces from this same set when I was little). When we got home we were able to get the tree up, but the only thing that got decorated was Mike. Maybe next week…  if we have any energy left.

B&B Fusion Exhaust & Mild 2 Wild

For the last five years I have had an APS exhaust. I’m pretty sure that APS stands for Auditory Pain System. Satan himself crawled out of hell to design this thing. The drone was always bad but after swapping the engine it was just too much. It had to go. And I won’t miss it.

The C6 Z06 Corvettes come with a bi-mode exhaust. Under normal driving conditions the exhaust flows through a muffler. Once the car reached 3500 rpms (and the accelerator is pressed down at least 25%) a valve opens to allow the exhaust to escape though less muffled pipes. It’s an interesting idea and something that I never really got to experience. It sounded like a chance to have my cake and eat it too. After a bit of research I picked the Billy Boat Fusion exhaust with  3″ piping.

The B&B Fusion exhaust is excellent. In quiet mode there’s no drone at any speed (well, nothing that I would consider drone). With the valves open it’s a got a nice rumble and sounds like a muscle car (nothing obnoxious but there is good amount of freeway drone). I am super happy with this upgrade. It makes a huge difference in the level of driving enjoyment. And I can actually hear my stereo now (no, that’s not a joke).

I popped in a Mild 2 Wild exhaust controller so I could fully enjoy the novelty of a bi-mode exhaust. The best part is that I can open and close the exhaust’s valves with my integrated garage door opener. Quiet or loud with the touch of a button.

For anyone curious: The Mild 2 Wild works by replacing the exhaust fuse located under the passenger kick panel. This gives the user the power to cut or allow power through that circuit.  The fuse powers a solenoid which controls a vacuum line that opens and closes the valves inside of the Fusion (or the stock bi-mode exhaust on applicable Corvettes).

I recently discovered that there’s an “extreme” version of this exhaust that’s available for special order. It was made specifically for high horsepower Corvettes. Interesting.  For the time being I’m happy, but I may consider that at some point in the future.