Since March 8th, my wife and I have celebrated the arrival of our first child, a boy and future LEGO addict, Heath Christopher Hettinger. A truly enveloping adventure which has had me building less, but I'm still designing MOCs in my head. In fact I have a very large architectural model designed and am working on how I'm going to get the parts for a build later this year.
A bit about where I want to go
I am a distant-email-member of the TwinLUG group - living vicariously through their pictures from meetings, as we don't have a LUG in my area ... So ... I hope to start a LUG in the Iowa! If you are in Iowa, and better yet in Des Moines, please feel free to introduce yourself to me! You can find the "Iowa LEGO Users Group (IowaLUG)" on Facebook too - It's a public group that I created to find other LEGO enthusiasts. If you can get to that, feel free to contact me directly at cjhettinger @ gmail . com
A bit about my works
I displayed my first MOCs since my "Dark Ages" at Brickworld 2011 in Chicago. I took my 801 Grand Avenue, and my letter "L" of TwinLUG, fashioned like a old hotel marquee sign stylish in the 50's, complete with the running LED Lights. (Thanks to LifeLites for their product and help.) Both were part of the Micropolis community layout.
A bit about me before all of that
I'm a 30-something kid, but professionally I am a website and software engineer from Des Moines, Iowa who hasn't decided to grow up. I fondly recall my first memories of playing with LEGO bricks; designing every manner of flying contraption and setting up cities hosting air shows ... I always had a surplus of LEGO aircraft sets and my own creations, as aviation was another of my youthful passions. My family has kept my connection to LEGO alive every Christmas and birthday. I very much thank them for that ;) Especially my wife, who embraced me and my hobbies and even encouraged it herself by adding to my collection. (So, this is all her fault, really) :)
When I was about 12 my Dad took me to see a exhibit that came through town and had on display a U.S. Capital Building made with over 1 million bricks (something ridiculous like that.) With that memory, I went online looking to find if anyone was still building big LEGO models like that, and if so where I could go to see them. I learned of thriving AFOL community and of Brickworld which was just a few months away. Being that I'm a June birthday boy, I knew what I wanted to do for my birthday ;) My wife and I went, we saw, and we were inspired by the creations and the community; I was hooked. It was all I needed to pull out my collection and start build again!