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Archive for January, 2010

Halloween in January?

by on Jan.07, 2010, under Alyssa Bingle, Amber Bingle, Ashley Bingle

As usual, we attended two Halloween parties this year. Alyssa volunteered to do a post about the Chick-Fil-A party, and it fell to me to do this post. Our youth group had a party at church, which included a costume contest, and that is what I am writing about.

Alyssa has been attending youth group, even though she is in fifth grade still. Because she was not officially a middle schooler, she decided not to go all out with her costume. Her end result was a black cat with white paws.


After much thought, I decided to be a three-tone grisly bear.


I have a cloth hump, Styrofoam cup nose, pipe cleaner ears, foam claws, cloth tail and glove paws. While at the party, I held a stuffed bear that had a fish in its mouth. He was my cub.

Ashley decided not to go with the animal theme. She was a barrel shaped traffic barrier.


We got a large plastic barrel from a friend of Dad’s, cut of the top, flipped it over and cut a hole in the new top. She spray-painted orange stripes on it and added a real barricade reflector (that Dad had in college), which she rigged to flash. She wore an orange sweater, orange and black ski mask, plastic orange sunglasses and a hardhat. She wore a pair of Dad’s old work boots and his old pants.

Both she and I were trying to hide our identities. The reason for this was that we had apparently won so many times that we were no longer allowed to win… unofficially. We made sure to arrive at different times so we did not look like we were together. Also, neither of us spoke and we avoided each other during the party.

No one could tell who she was (except the youth director). The other kids followed her around, asking questions she would not answer and trying to guess her identity. The work boots threw them off but they found out she was a girl when they pulled up the ski mask and saw her hair. I was not as successful, but confused a few people for a while.

After a few games (none of which we could participate in, because of our costumes) the contest was judged. The rules of the contest were simple. The costume has to be creative, original, and homemade. There were three third places (each for different attributes) a second and a first.

I received third place for most work put into the costume, and Ashley came home with first place! The prizes were $10 of iTunes money, and $50 dollars at Walmart, respectively.

Alyssa can’t wait until next year (when she could potentially win) when she will be a– wait! It’s so secret even I don’t know! I guess you’ll just have to wait until next year!

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by on Jan.07, 2010, under Amber Bingle, Richard Bingle Family

So we finally got a chance to go fishing again. We needed a break from school, and it seemed like good fishing weather (foggy and overcast) so we tried at 9:30 in the morning. We tried using yet another different bait: bologna.

It seemed to work rather well, as the fish started biting right away. However, almost as soon as the bait was in the water, it was gone. It simply slipped off the hook.

Ashley and I tried for a while, and finally Ashley caught something. It was a brim, and about medium in size. It was at least something.

Pretty soon she was just pulling them in. Three small brim later and Alyssa decided to try too. She got a lot of bites and soon had another, larger brim landed. The next one she caught was even bigger.

Ashley caught one more and then we ran out of bait.

Dad had been at jury duty, so he got home earlier than usual. Hearing about the luck we had had, Dad took us out fishing a bit longer right before sunset. We got another slice of bologna and headed out.

Alyssa went back to her “perfect spot” and soon caught two more, large brim.

Dad rubbed a rubber worm on the bologna in an effort to solve the problem of it just falling off. It worked, and he caught a fish.

It was Ashley’s turn again, and the fish were getting smaller. Then Alyssa caught two more. This brought the totals up to seven for Ashley, six for Alyssa, and one for Dad. Ashley caught more fish than she has in the past, put together.

I was beginning to feel a bit left out, as I was not even getting any bites. I tried moving over to Alyssa’s spot, but she just kept pulling them in next to me.

While Alyssa was catching her last fish I thought I had a nice one, but the reel seemed to stop working, then suddenly the line went slack. In this case “the one that got away” was HUGE. I should know, two minutes later I actually caught it.

Yet again the reel stopped working, and I could not figure out why. Everyone else could, and started shouting at me to back up and pull it out of the water. When I did I understood why the reel would not reel: the fish was too strong.

It was an Alligator Gar.

We caught one of those a few years back fishing at one of the tournaments, but this one was bigger.

It, of course, had a lot of teeth, so none of us wanted to try to get the hook out. Thankfully, when we tried to pick it up by the line, the hook came out. That left the tricky task of trying to get it in the water. We took some pictures first, including the one below.


That proves that the fish was about two feet long, as my hand is approximately 8 inches across when spread like that.

After a bit of trouble we got the rag around the fish so Dad could pick it up. He said he had to squeeze pretty hard, or it would just flop back and fourth until he dropped it. We got a few more pictures, displaying the fish’s underside and back. (Look in the gallery for these.)

Finally we put the fish back in the water and went inside. We had had enough bites (from bugs and fish) for one night.

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3…2…1… Happy 2010!

by on Jan.01, 2010, under Richard Bingle Family

Just a quick post to wish everyone a Happy New Year!

We spent the night at home and “celebrated” at about 11:00 p.m. with some sparkling apple juice and then went to bed. I guess we’re getting old.

Plans today are to visit the folks, Marie and Wayne, and their daughter and son-in-law Karen and Lee Mitchell at the folks’ house.

— Rich

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