This week David performed in his first school Musical. Here’s the 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.
Just because I’m blown away by what this band is about, I’m going to start with this before I talk about what’s been happening around my life lately.
Anamanaguchi is an 8 bit hardcore punk band that plays music they create with hacked Nintendo NES hardware.
I’m going to repeat that, because it bears repeating.
They sell their “album” directly from their label site for $5 using Google Checkout. And they allow anyone that wants to to embed the following multimedia version of their album anywhere on the interwebs. What’s stunningly, joyfully and aesthetically exciting about all of this is how it is simultaneously nostalgic, contemporary, and completely different.
It’s been a pretty interesting first half of 2009. Halfway through it seems, at a national level, that 2009 is living up to being a year of the really hard work that creates lasting change. We’ll see if we manage to do it without furthering the empty saber rattling and mind-numbing hate that is the “culture wars”. Don’t you have to have a culture worth fighting for to have a culture war? Seems like we’re starting to get into cultural scorched earth territory.
On a more personal note, this year has been a year of really dramatic change. My work continues to challenge, surprise and puzzle me. I like puzzles so it’s been pretty cool.
David is getting ready for Kindergarten and amazes me daily with his maturity. Wednesday morning this week he announced, after he put on his shoes.
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.
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.
Sometimes I’m struck by how poorly historic lessons fit the challenges we face today. Especially with regards to globalization, especially collaboration, management and staff/team development.
Here’s a great video
by XPlane that sums it up quite effectively.
Thanks to out to the folks at The Innovation Weblog for bringing it to my attention.
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.
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.
Well it’s finally happened. I’ve received my first “look at my kids” video in an email that links to YouTube!
David is officially a two-year old.
Sure signs are:
- He repeats things for hours on end ("hot potato" from the wiggles right now, "that's a cool place" and other things Laura and I say to each other, with no warning whatsoever that David will latch on to them for days)
- He does things he knows are wrong to see what will happen (throwing in the house is the biggee)
- His verbal skills are getting hysterical. (After misbehaving I will ask him to say "I'm sorry Daddy", he will usually apologize to all the characters of the 100 acre wood before he'll say "Daddy". He usually starts with Tigger.)
- He is starting to ask alot more questions
- He is learning to actually dance, rather than just sort of sway like he used to. The Wiggles have been very involved in this, especially the "stand on one foot and shake your hands" dance.
Some funny stories from the last week.
He has developed a funny habit of calling Laura and I "guys", as in "Let's go guys" or "thank you guys". We likely will not discourage this, as we find it very amusing.
Tonight he was getting ready to go to Baja Fresh for dinner, and as I was putting his jacket on, his stomach was sticking out so I tickled him. He ran over to Laura and said, "Mommy's tummy is oh so cute."
David has been trying to jump for the last couple months. He finally figured it out this last week.
Here's a video:
I'm not sure if this will work or not, but if it does that'd be super. I think you need QuickTime installed.
David has had a low grade fever for the last four days. The pediatrician says he's fine, it's just a mild respiratory virus going around, and that it could take a week.
As Laura started her new job yesterday, I got to stay home and watch David yesterday and today. (We don't take David to day care when he's running a fever as A) we don't want to get the other kids sick and 2) they won't let us.)
So just in case you were wonderiing, David is a bundle of energy even with a low fever. Here's a list of what we've done the last two days:
* invented two games,
* thrown the baseball in the front yard
* run laps around the house
* gone into my work to pick up some stuff I usually bring home on the weekends.
The trip to work was especially funny as I had to bang out a few emails real quick. After a few minutes David got bored and started exploring. The first time, I caught up with him about 5 feet from my door. The second time he made it all the way back to the front door, about 60 feet from my office, and a co-worker, Elaine was walking him back when I caught up with him. The third time I couldn't find him anywhere.
I was walking around saying "David, David" and near the front door I heard a voice saying "I'm in here Daddy!" coming from the elevator. He'd learned how to operate the elevator visitng Laura's Parents. So I opened the door expecting him to look a little scared and upset. He was just standing there looking at me like he wanted the door to open on the second floor.
Laura is going to be the new Internal Communications Adminstrator for AAA Arizona.
New job? What happened to her old job?
Laura has recently left a position at Best Western (BW) International Headquarters. This was a very difficult decision for Laura as many of you may have already talked to her about. Laura spent most of her 10 years at BW doing Employee Communications. Over the last year BW has been through quite a bit of change, not the least of which was the Communications Department getting moved into the Marketing Department. As a consequence of that change the Employee Communications role was distributed accross many staff members and Laura was moved into other duties. Well she really missed that aspect of her job and after the other duties didn't seem to fit very well she and BW decided it was probably better to move on to other things. It was, of course a mutually agreed upon solution as both Laura and BW are class acts.
Why AAA Arizona?
A couple months ago she heard about a position at AAA Arizona that seemed like a great fit. This position is specifically Internal Communications, which is almost entirely employee communications. That combined with the similarities between AAA and Best Western, combined to provide a remarkeably good fit for her. After many phone calls, interviews and networking, AAA Arizona and Laura figured out that which seemed obvious at the onset, was still true after due diligence was applied. AAA Arizona and Laura would work very well together.
How did she find out? Is she excited?
Yesterday on the way home from the store, Laura got a phone call and was given a verbal commitment from AAA Arizona for the position. She's excitedly waiting for the offer letter to arrive in our mailbox so she can "officially" accept the position.
Laura is very excited about the new position and knows that her difficult decision to leave BW was a good one. One of the thing that AAA Arizona has specifically reassured her on throughout the interview process is that they value their employees personal / family time and do not believe that one should suffer for the benefit of the other. Thanks everyone for all the support and kind thoughts during this transition for Laura. You are the best!
So, this sounds pretty weird if you don't have kids, but if you do have kids, well it probably will still actually sound weird but at least you'll understand how it could happen.
Skunchie Man (Note: the lack of an "r" in the spelling, it's very important that you don't use an "r".)
Laura was nice enough to agree to have her voice recorded for this.
In a way it's both an indictment and a complement to the catchiness of "Iron Man" by Black Sabbath. I'm sure the last thing that Ozzie Osbourne and the rest of the band wanted to do was write a song that could be repurposed in such a manner. But then Bach probably didn't expect to be on cell phone ring tones either.
Here's a good site with many Nursery Rhymes on it. It will be handy now that we have a little boy in the house. It's a bit more fun than the others I've found because it explains the origins of the piece. I mentioned it to Laura last night and she asked me if I knew why most nursery rhymes were based on 'negative' things. I said I wasn't sure but I thought it was a way to scare kids so that they didn't do stuff that was bad for them, and the reason they rhyme and are about simple characters etc. is so the kids will remember them. She said, that's what she thought too. I guess it's true but it's sure interesting to read about the specific way a particular rhyme came to be.
All of todays media for kids is much more positive of course. I think it's good that it's so positive now. I take it as an indicator that life is easier now and there's more time to have kids hear things that are inspiring and wonderful, as opposed to training kids that life is very hard and bad stuff will happen to them if they aren't careful. Of course bad stuff can still happen.. but what the heck.
I look forward to reading some of these rhymes to David.