David got the Ninjago Epic Dragon Battle Set 9450 for Christmas this year so we built it today. As usual we did a time lapse video of the build process.
Wow, I haven’t posted in a while! David and I built a very cool Star Wars Lego model today, Annakin & Sebulbas’s Podracers (Set 7926). It was a larger model than we’ve built in some time, so I did a time lapse video of the build.
My Mother-in-law, Mary Ann Utriainen, passed away last Friday night.
My wife and I collected images and created this video, which we played at the memorial service.
I think it turned out pretty well, but we’re still quite sad.
Today is David’s last day of Kindergarten. We walked to school together as we often do, and I grabbed the camera so I could shoot a companion video for the one I shot for David’s first day.
This is that video:
This Week David’s reading group performed a play. This is that play.
Another Christmas day, another Lego build session. This year we got the LEGO® Castle Medieval Market Village (10193) which is about 1600 pieces.
Normally I just bang it out in one day, but as this is the third big model we’ve done like this I knew how long it would take and decided to do a time lapse video.
The music is Bounce of the Sugar Plum Fairies by Don Byron off of his wonderful Bug Music album.
We had a nice Labor Day weekend. This video sums it up nicely.
we had a nice visit with Emerson a friend of David’s from pre-school. We went to the Children’s Museum of Phoenix, and had lunch at American Taco, a new place for us which we really enjoyed. After lunch we played around the house and were joined by our neighbors Mark and Caroline, who we’ve not played with enough lately. We swam in the pool Saturday night (video at the start of this post) and David and Laura went to bed early from our busy day. I stayed up and watched VaTech in a valiant effort against Alabama. Good game, too bad the Hokies lost.
Started out with my attending a lovely service at the Church of the Beatitudes. Some of the members of the bell choir performed at the 9:00 AM service and sounded great. After the service I was chatting with our vocal soloist Stephanie and she mentioned that if I wanted to sing with them at the 10:30 service, they would love it, as they were missing their bass voice. I really like the piece they were singing, Lord I Know I Been Changed so I jumped at the chance. It was really fun to sing with a small group A Capella, first time I’ve done that.
While I was at church Laura played with David as he created a TV set out of a cardboard banker’s box that was just amazing, complete with a remote control and crackers all made out of cardboard and decorated with magic markers. I’m going to post a video of him providing instructions for use later this week.
After I came home from church and we had a fun Sunday afternoon of Star Wars Lego - The Complete Saga on the Wii, more swimming and a few errands.
Monday - Labor Day
I like to grill on holiday weekends so we had Laura’s parents over this evening. Most of the day we tidied up the house and prepared for our guests. David had some nice play time while Laura and I took care of the chores. The barbecue was alot of fun. It was great to have Laura’s parents over.
It was just awesome weather for a three day weekend. One of the nicest Labor Day weekends for weather in the 17 years I’ve been living in Phoenix. Started out with a great Monsoon storm Saturday morning and stayed in the high 90’s or low 100’s for the rest of the weekend. Started to peak back up into the 105+ range on Monday afternoon.
Today I walked David to his first day of kindergarten. We had a nice conversation during the walk and he was very excited for school to begin.
So I really highly recommend going out to help build a Habitat for Humanity house. It’s a great way to help someone out and you get to use power tools and all.
This house is for an entire development of Habitat for Humanity houses around 12th Street and Baseline. Habitat purchased on “infill” plot of land big enough for quite a few homes. We’ve many more weeks on the house our church is involved with, so it’s not too late to join in the fun :). Schedule says
- May 2 is install finish carpentry
- May 16 is Irrigation / Planting and Landscape Rock
- May 23 is cleanup
- May 30 is Dedication and Housekeeping
David, who’s five now, is getting old enough to understand the connections between things, which came up Friday night. I was explaining to him how I wasn’t going to be able to play on Saturday morning, like we usually do, because I was going to help build a house for a family that couldn’t buy a house without our help. He didn’t much respond to that at all, but 30 minutes later the weather brought the topic up again.
In Curious George Rides a bike, there’s a wonderful section where they show you how to make an origami boat that actually floats.
It’s great to see David making a boat just like I did when I was a kid, and using the same source for instruction.
I got David involved in the political process today - he helped me turn in my early voting ballot. I didn’t get it into the mail fast enough, so we dropped it off at the polling place today. We went about 9:00 a.m., so there weren’t any lines.
See the cute snap below. I asked if I could take the photo at the polling place and I didn’t use a flash so I didn’t freak everyone else out.
David and I also had a discussion on polling places vs. bowling places. He decided when he goes to the bowling place, he wants a green ball and get lots of strikes.
David had lots of fun, especially choosing a doughnut afterward. Yep, our polling place serves free snacks. I love America.
Sometimes I’m surprised to hear myself sharing what I did on the weekend with the folks I work with at Earth911.com. I feel myself thinking something like: you know that was pretty cool, I really didn’t think about it that much while I was doing it.
This past weekend David read for a commercial for a business that’s run by an old friend of mine from my USWeb/CKS days. He had emailed me a couple weeks ago just catching up and suggested David might be good for his upcoming ad.
It’s actually a great business. Mick’s shop provides green building supplies for green homes. It’s hard to describe exactly what it’s like so best that you should just go to the AKA Green site and check it out.
Part of the shoot with David was to dress him up in adult clothes and have him repeat phrases that relate to green building concepts. Don’t ask me what the ad is going to be like but as a parent it was quite humorous. Especially to hear David attempt to repeat the phrase Solar reflective coefficient (or something like that). It was pretty difficult not to laugh out loud for that one.
I can’t wait to see the edited commercial. There were a ton of kids and I guess they were shooting the entire day, so even if they don’t use David’s bit, it’s nice to know they were getting such great takes.
After watching one of the conventions, David announced he had a speech to make.
This stuns me.
Also it gives me an opportunity to try out Viddler for video sharing.
I think this is my favorite.
It’s from our trip to the new Phoenix Children’s Museum.
There’s many others from our first visit there.
Here’s an example of how it’s fun.
So you’ll begin seeing more videos in my posts I think.
Putting all the ornaments boxes back in storage today.. I ran accross on of our favorite holiday cartoons
It’s always amusing to run accross this while we are doing our holiday decorating.
David continues to grow up quickly. In the last few weeks he’s really been joking around a lot more than he ever has before. Most of these jokes are related to inserting the words pee pee or poopy into a song or a statement.
Speaking of songs, it’s really fun to hear him play around with melody. He knows a few songs now, so he will occasionally just start softly singing a tune to himself while he’s playing. He also makes up little nonsense songs on his own, which I really enjoy as I’ve always enjoyed doing that myself.
The other day he looked at Laura very seriously at the breakfast table, and said to her:
David: Mom, I have something to tell you.
Laura: Yes, David, what is it?
David: Mom, I know you like apples. And I also know that Daddy likes apples.
David: But Mommy, I do not like apples.
We naturally found this to be extremely amusing.
I came home from work last week and David greeted me at the door. As I walked in I held up my hand and said “High Five”. He looked at me and, out of nowhere ran me through the whole:
“Gimme Five, Up High, Down Low, Too Slow!” routine.
I don’t know where he picked it up but he found it very amusing how stunned I was that he pulled it on me.
It’s amazing to play with him and talk to him. He’s such a smart kid. I don’t know how it’s possible that he’s about to turn 4 years old. I remember before we had David, someone telling me that the great thing about having kids is when they are old enough to have conversations with you, and how it gets better and better as they get older. Now that we’re getting into David’s fourth year, I can see how that’s true.
I get, um, alot of email..
The other day someone in my family decided it would be fun to send one email to literally everyone that they classify as family.
I have a large family. They have spouses, cousins, aunt's, uncles, parents and children. This is a long list.
So I responded to all, not realizing that all was so big.
My favorite response came from my brother Dan. It was one word: Unsubscribe.
So I'm glad I responded to the email but Dan's response was simple. I don't have time to join this discussion, and I don't want to be included in it anymore.
The mute button is easier and less prone to offending but really it's a little unfair. I don't like getting email I don't want to receive and letting people know that I don't want it prevents me, my mail program, and my mail server from having to filter it out. This is why email is basically broken. We'd rather just delete it or easily filter it out than ask someone to stop sending it.
I had to study for a month to go to a rock concert. I mean, every day before the concert, my musical selections were predetermined, all so I could feel "ready" to go to a rock concert. This is probably the antithesis of rock-n-roll.
Let me explain. My husband is very musically inclined. I like music, but not as much as he does. He prefers music so much that he won't wake up to an alarm, but he will wake up to music. He will also wake up to me yelling, but that's not very melodic. However, it is song-like, in that it has several loud choruses, spaced about 7 minutes apart.
So, when the husband's new favorite band The Hold Steady was coming to town, on his birthday, we made plans. The plans included lining up Grandma for overnight babysitting, and booking the "Romance Package" at a local resort. So I had a quite a bit invested in the evening. I figured I'd better enjoy the music as well. So to do that, I had to listen to it. A lot.
My husband aided and abetted this effort by giving me an iPod Nano for Mother's Day. (We have a three-year-old son, so big ticket purchases are rare. Except if it is for him.) "You've needed an iPod for a while," he said. By chance (not), the first download included two Hold Steady albums.
So that's what I listened to, every day. In the car, Hold Steady. Doctor's waiting room, Hold Steady. At work, Hold Steady. At first my response was, "This is very loud and I don't understand the words." (Yes, I'm one of those type of music listeners.)
After looking up the words, I started to appreciate the songs. At first, I thought it was odd, since the band are guys in their 30s, singing about kids in their teens getting high and trying to deal with the Catholic version of God in Minneapolis.
Then I started to feel the common elements. I've been a teenager, I've been in my 30s. I grew up Catholic in the Midwest, and some of my family lives in Minneapolis, so I'm familiar with many of the local place references. I haven't ever gotten high, though. But I have gotten drunk. I can also appreciate a good turn of phrase, such as, "Shoes and socks, baby, socks and shoes. We spent the night last night in Newport News."
The night of the show arrives. We get to the hotel and drink the cheap champaign we get as part of the "Romance Package". We also enjoy the very large "executive" suite, complete with huge conference table. We were upgraded, since it is the dead of summer in Phoenix, and not much is happening in town. The hotel is literally 1 mile from our house, and I chose it because I wanted the fun to start as soon as possible when we left our driveway.
Yesterday, Laura was having kind of an allergy headache and needed to lay down for a while after I got back from church.
It was about 11:00 and it occurred to me that 1) David and I had no idea what to do 2) the Red Sox were in town.
There was no way that we were going to make the game though because it started at 1:40 and David goes down for his nap at 1:30 (ish).
So then I think to myself.. if we bring water, pack up a lunch and buy the worst tickets in the ballpark, we can have a nice time in the air conditioned ballpark.
So off we go and got a Brandon Webb action figure as a promotional item.