Received two degrees from CCC
After graduating High School I went to Clackamas Community College with no real goal in mind. I took a mishmash of classes, including business, psychology, political science and even Shakespeare. I took classes for the enjoyment of taking classes. After two years I figured I should make a plan and ultimately graduated after four years with over 160 credits. I earned two Associate Degrees, one as a Network & Microcomputer Specialist and the other as a Computer Application Specialist.
Went on a road trip
In 2003 two friends and I decided that we would take a road trip to see the world. Our plan was to do a southerly loop through California, New Mexico, Utah and then head back to Oregon. We made the trip in just under two weeks and visited eight states. We saw many great sights, had many great laughs and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. Most notable was waking up in a horrible New Mexico hotel after a long night of drinking to turn on the TV and see 9/11 unfold.
Bought a house
I had been living in an apartment in Gladstone with my cousin for about a year, when two weeks before we were due to re-sign our rental agreement, he decided he wanted to move out. With such little notice I decided my best move was to move back in with my parents and save money to buy a house. After house searching for nine months I found a house in Canby, just 7 blocks from where I was working. I knew it would be perfect and made an offer. It was accepted and I took possession three weeks before my 23rd birthday.
I met my future wife through a co-worker. They dated for a while but ultimately it did not work out (for them). We began talking and started dating shortly thereafter. We dated for almost three years before I decided I was ready to propose. My mom was kind enough to give me the diamond from my grandmother’s wedding ring to have made into a new ring. My grandparents were married for 53 years before my grandmother died of a stroke, so the diamond has strong family history. I proposed in an underwhelming fashion and Angie and I were married at Christ the King about a year later in 2003.
Mom got leukemia
In October of 2003 I received a call from my dad that my mom had been admitted to the hospital with some bruising on her legs. After some tests they diagnosed my mom with Leukemia, which causes your platelets to drop and random bruises to form. She spent the next 27 days in the hospital receiving chemo. She emerged triumphant however and we were able to celebrate five years of remission with her this year.
Had a kid
On August 23rd of 2005 after 11 hours of labor and three trips to the hospital (they kept sending us home) Angie gave birth to our son Gabriel John Baker. That date is quite special for because it is also our wedding anniversary, as well as the birthday of one of our good friends. Gabriel received his grandfather’s name as his middle name as is tradition in my family. Gabe just celebrated his 3rd birthday and is a bundle of energy.
Shortly after Gabriel was born I was diagnosed with ulcerative colitis and began a long string of hospital stays and surgeries. Over the course of three years I was hospitalized eight times, and had three surgeries. I became intimately familiar with the gastro team at OHSU and ultimately had my entire large intestine was removed. I am feeling much better now, and my life is back on track.
Angie is pregnant
Not too long ago Angie and I found out that she is pregnant with our second child. Roland Paul Baker is on track to be born at the end of January 2009. He will also get his grandfather’s name as his middle name per tradition. We are excited and nervous to see our family grow, although our house may need an upgrade here soon. Hopefully the housing market will cooperate and we can move into a larger house next summer.
Got a job at CTA
This year I celebrated my 10th year at Canby Telcom, which is the local phone company in Canby. I started at Canby Telcom just out of High School and cannot imagine doing anything else. I am the network administrator which means I keep the Internet side of the company running. Everything from e-mail, to DSL, to Fiber, to web pages come across my desk. In 2005 Canby Telcom became one of the first companies in the nation to launch IPTV services, which was both exciting and scary. Now we offer phone service, internet service, and television service (triple play). In 2006 I was named Employee of the Year, much to my surprise! It has been a fantastic ride and I look forward to another 10 years.