12/30/2009 10:55 AM ET
Roy Oswalt: Home sweet home
Right-hander helped to design his house, father logged
I studied architectural drafting in college, so I took on the challenge of drawing up a lot of the blueprints for my house. I thought it would be more meaningful if I designed the house myself. So my wife, Nicole, and I came up with a plan and we took it from there.
It's a ranch style farmhouse. It's got a giant front porch with a swing outside. Inside it's pretty traditional with hardwood floors. We actually added an upstairs later on. I'm not a big fan of stairs, so I initially designed the house as a single story. There's nothing like going home to a place that truly belongs to us.
I've always been good with my hands. So has my family. My dad went to Vietnam when he was 19 and returned home when he was 21. When he got back, he got into logging, something my grandfather had been doing. My grandpa logged until he was 78 years old. When he retired, my dad took over the business and continued until he was 60 years old. I'm glad I was able to convince him to retire at that point, though, and now he lives on my ranch.
For those who don't know, logging involves getting up before dawn and working until the sun goes down. We didn't have a tree cutter until later on, so we did everything with a chainsaw at the beginning. We cut them down and used a machine to pull the logs onto a ramp. You have a load there that cuts the branches off and loads them onto a truck. You then haul it to a lumberyard where they process it from there.
Sports was also something my family has always enjoyed. I've grown up around baseball all my life. My dad loved baseball. He played softball on the weekends for as long as I can remember. I used to follow him when he would go around and play in tournaments.
I remember those days well. He would work until 5 p.m. and rush home so he could take me to practice or a game. He spent a lot of time working and spending time with me. He coached me until I was 13 years of age and was at pretty much every game until I hit the Minor Leagues.
He's been there the whole time, and I am very appreciate of that.
Roy Oswalt, from the small town of Weir, Miss., has been one of the National League's top pitchers in his nine years with the Astros, posting a 137-70 record and a 3.23 ERA.