Tuesday, January 31, 2006

1st Doctor vist!

Today was Christy Lake's first trip to the Pediatrician to make sure she is doing well since leaving the hospital. She's been given a clean bill of health and is still around 8 pounds, the same as she was on Sunday. The Dr. said that she probably lost a bit more right after leaving the hospital, and is gaining weight, so nothing to worry about.

As we got home, grandma was waiting with a camera to take our picture in front of the house. It was so nice outside, we strolled our little angel around the block one time. Now it's time to get some rest. :-)

Monday, January 30, 2006

We're home!

We're finally home! We were released from the hospital around noon yesterday, and were greeted by this sign on our garage door - how nice was that?

Everyone is in great health! Christy Lake only lost 6 ounces before leaving the hospital, so it should not take any time at all for her to regain that weight and grow, and grow, and grow! Christy has been recovering well herself - she's been on her feet some, but keeping her feet off the floor for the most part. What about Dad? Well, I'm getting used to getting up every 3 hours or so to help Christy feed - I wouldn't miss it for the world!

This morning, we let Christy Lake try out her new swing - it put her to sleep in no time! Look at all of that dark hair and she has a wonderful complexion. She sleeps well between feedings, and is very well mannered when she is awake. More pictures to come soon!

Friday, January 27, 2006

Please welcome Christine Lake Hewitt to the world!!

It's a girl!!! Welcome Christine Lake Hewitt to the world! She was born today, January 27th at 15:11 at 8 lbs. 6 oz. and 20.5 inches in length! She's got a head full of dark hair and beautiful dark blue eyes. She has a bit of a mark on her little forehead from where she was pressing up against Christy's pelvis bone - not very comfortable! The doctors said that she'll be just fine.

We'll call her Christy Lake - named after Christy and her mother, whose name is Mary Lake. :-)

Thanks for the congratulations and hip hip, hooray!! Baby Hewitt has finally arrived!

Today is the Day!!!!

As I type, I am sitting beside Christy in room 464 at St. Francis Women's Hospital in Greenville. The doctor says that we should be introduced to our new baby by the end of today. Yippee!!

It was quite an eventful morning to say the least... Christy woke me at 7am saying that it was time to go. It's about 45 miles from Greenwood to Greenville, and we were right in the middle of rush hour traffic, but we made it here in about 40 minutes.

Of course I brought along my digital camera, so as soon as I am able to grab pictures after birth, up they'll go for all to see! Stay tuned!

Monday, January 23, 2006

Bell 206B III included in top 20 best heli's for FS 2004

I was delighted to see on a recent screenshots forum post by Steve (Bear) Cartwright that the Bell 206B III I developed last year has made #19 of his top 20 helicopters for FS 2004. Many thanks for that!

The project pretty much fell into my lap due to a unique opportunity I was presented back in January of 2005. My brother is currently a video photographer for WBTW in Florence, SC, but several years ago worked at WIS in Columbia, SC. During that time, WIS held a 50th anniversary celebration in the streets near their studios. My brother had let the right people know that I did flight simulation development, and they asked me to put a quick demo together of the default Bell 206B (at the time in FS 2002) of their newshawk helicopter (a small picture of it is seen on the WIS homepage). I set up a small kiosk next to the real helicopter, and low and behold, it was a huge success. There were people lined up all day to have a chance to fly the virtual newshawk over Columbia.

That demonstration stuck in the heads of the leadership at WIS, and presented me another project - this time a bit more involved. They asked if I would do the same for them, but the demonstration would be on display at the South Carolina State Fair. Since this was going to be a week-long event, I felt that I needed to give more attention to the project. I had plenty of time - the project was offered in January, and the fair was to occur in October - so I decided to build a new 206 from ground up.

It took approximately 2 months from start to finish for me to get it done. I actually modeled the news heli from WYFF in Greenville, SC as the publicly released news version (the paint scheme has been changed slightly), adding the appropriate camera and antennae for the WIS bird later on for the SC fair demonstration. Heck, since the fair has been long since finished, I probably could release the WIS version - if there's enough interest.

Anyway, the Bell 206B III was a nice diversion from my normal fixed-wing development - I had a lot of fun doing it!!

Smithless in Seattle

What a day of football! The Pittsburgh Steelers blew by the Denver Broncos without batting an eye in the AFC Chamiponship game - silencing the crowd there in Denver. I watched some of that game because my brother-in-law had it on.

Everyone in the house was glued to the set to watch the NFC Championship game - the Seattle
Seahawks versus the Carolina Panthers. I was pulling for the underdog, who I *thought* to have been Seattle, for a couple of reasons: 1) It would get on my wife's nerves that I would pull for a non-area team and 2) I liked watching Leroy Hill play at Clemson.

Well, the Panthers didn't even show up in Seattle. I really believe that the 12th man had a huge influence - that crowd was the loudest I can remember hearing in an NFL game. The double, triple, and quadruple coverage of Steve Smith left the Panthers "Smithless in Seattle" - except for his punt return for TD, which half of the Seahawks gave up running because of a flag thrown on the play - later retracted by the officials.

Great game, Seattle. I'm glad to see a deserving team head to the Super Bowl for the first time in franchise history. I believe that Paul Allen has made the right move in giving so much support to his team - well done!

Friday, January 13, 2006

Listen to live ATC streamed over the 'net!

A good friend of mine sent me a link the other day for streaming ATC chatter. The site's called LiveATC.net and if you have an interest in hearing traffic at your favorite aiport, give the site a "look and listen." There are a lot of major airports in the USA and some international ones as well. All that is required is Windows Media Player.

Thursday, January 12, 2006


I've been quite busy lately trying my very best to get the Twin Comanche virtual cockpit constructed before the arrival of our little one. It is shaping up really well, and you can see a couple preview pictures of it here and here. Hence the reason I haven't been too vocal here lately - sorry. Hopefully soon I'll have all kinds of posts when our little one makes his/her entrance into the world. Tata for now!

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

It's Official! - Microsoft announces FS X

I've been awaiting this moment for quite some time now. FS 10, or FS X, has finally been announced with the opening of CES by keynote speaker, Bill Gates. Flightsim.com has published a great press release that includes an FAQ and many screenshots. If you want to see what the next gen flight sim experience will entail, head on over to give a read!

Now that the cat is out of the bag, we should be hearing more and more about the technology that is going into this new version of FS from the many FS dev blogs. It is all very exciting news, for the ACES team, 3rd party developers (such as myself), and end-users! Bravo ACES on the work thus far - I look forward to the progress!!