Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Some of my black and white photography

Some of you know that I'm taking a photography class this quarter. I thought I would post a few of the photos I've gotten so far.

A photogram (exposing the paper without using a camera and film) of my high school band shirt.

The boys on our front steps.

The boys after church one Sunday.

And, one of my favorites (though this isn't the best print, that one got turned in today.) This is the boys after bath one night.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Baseball has begun!

Tonight was A.J.'s first baseball practice of the new season. He was supposed to start last week, but it got rained out. This season he is a Pirate; he wasn't real thrilled with that when he realized they are division rivals to the Cardinals. But, I think he got over it pretty quickly. The core of his team was together as the Pirates last year, and I think they will be pretty good. The kids are solid on the basics, mostly.

The real story of the evening wasn't any of the 7 and 8 year olds, however. It was Levi. Anyone who knows him in person will not be surprised by this. He was determined to be involved. He wasn't trying to bat, or practice throwing and catching. He just wanted to voice his opinion, and random thoughts that floated through his head. Aaron commented that he was the team's bench coach (the equivalent of first assistant coach, and takes over when the manager is ejected or cannot be at the game). I disagreed. I think he is front office material. He reminded me of the overbearing supervision and involvement of George Steinbrenner of the Yankees a few years ago. Steinbrenner (a.k.a. The Boss) has since mellowed, but now his son is picking up where his dad left off. Can't leave well enough alone or let his opinion go unnoticed.

If anyone said "A.J.," Levi went running (or riding his bike, whichever was faster) onto the field to find out why someone was talking about his brother. He mostly wanted to talk to Coach John (there are two Coach Johns, but Levi figured out which one was in charge and stuck by his side the whole time.) While Coach John was playing pepper with the kids, Levi stood right by his side, handing him a new ball. When the kids were introducing themselves: full name, school, grade, age, Levi was sitting next to them in the dugout. "Hey, Dad," he said, "What's my last name? Hey, Dad, what grade am I in?" And after every kid introduced himself, "Hey, I want to go up there!" Mostly, he was John's big helper. When John would call a kid to bat next, Levi repeated it. At the end of practice, when the team huddled up for the cheer, Levi was right in the middle of it.

I don't think the coaches minded his involvement, but I think they think he's nuts. And they're right, but I have a feeling this is one aspect of his personality that won't change much as he gets older. There's nary a dull moment with Levi around, that's for sure!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

A car crash!

Hi, this is A.J.

A bad thing just happened outside! There was a car crash tonight. A fire truck came, too. The firemen talked about how they are going to solve the problem. There was a white car and a red car. The white car crashed into the red car and the hood of the white car was bent. The firemen called a tow truck. The tow truck pulled away the white car, but the red car was staying because it wasn't all smashed up in the back. This is how they got into a crash. The red car was just driving like normal and the white car came speeding down the lane. Then they got into a crash.



Sunday, February 15, 2009

Laura's handmade challenge

My friend Laura posted a challenge. The first five blog readers to do what she challenged will get something handmade by her, sometime this year.

To meet the challenge, we have to post the same challenge. So, dear readers, for those of you who blog, post this "pay it forward" challenge, be one of the first five to comment and tell me about it, and you'll get something made by me!

I make no promises as to how much you'll like it, or when you'll get it. I will do my best to get it to you sooner, rather than later, and to make it something you will like, since it will be made just for you! After you get it, be sure to post a picture of your fabulous gift on your blog. After I announce the five lucky winners, we'll work out how to get me your address, if I don't already have it. Have fun thinking of what you will give your five winning friends!

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Hole in the Wall

Well, the rains have come to Southern California, which has sent us indoors-- causing our children to seek out new and innovative ways to entertain themselves under such restrictive boundaries that they're not used to. Most of their exertions have been in begging to play the Wii beyond all known limits of human/rectangular buttony thingy interaction capacities. The only capacities that have so far been reached are the parental capacities for hearing the Wii sports and Mario Cart Wii theme music, which has only resulted in artificial limits being placed on their Wii time by their parental units.

So what, oh what, do they do? These amazing children have invented ways to play the Wii without using the Wii. Now maybe they got the idea in its basic form from Aunt Brenda at Christmas time, who showed them how to pretend Wii box, where nobody gets hit. But they have carried the concept to it's furthest extreme. To wit, the children will play indoor versions of any sport--baseball, bowling, golf, volleyball, toy car racing, etc.--while "controlling" the other child with a pretend Wiimote and singing the corresponding theme music. Levi will loudly proclaim, "to make me jump, push B, and to make me run push up." And so the game goes, even while playing with small figurines in Sacrament meeting (especially the loudly proclaiming part, as any of you who know Levi know that the concept of whispering is completely lost on him and that when you tell him to whisper he looks at you like you've just asked him to eat a dirty sweatsock and ignores you completely).

Anyway, they discovered a new game tonight--it's a Japanese gameshow import picked up by Fox called Hole in the Wall. If you haven't seen it you'll get the entire gist of the game from this picture:

So it's great fun if you like walls with blocky people icon shaped holes sliding quickly towards you under duress of falling into a pool of greenish water if you don't make it through the hole, which our children invariably would like. So after watching an episode of the show this evening, they had to think of a way to play this game themselves. So they had me, dear old Dad, come at them holding an arrangement of pillows which they would attempt to jump over, under or through, lest I should knock them into the water. The next logical step as I see it is for them to play this game whilst controlling each other with a pretend Wiimote. If they ever come out with Hole in the Wall as an actual Wii game, I imagine they'd be all over it like a donkey on a waffle.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Mommy's birthday

Hi this is A.J.

It was mommy's birthday yesterday. We got a football cake with very thick grass. Mommy turned 29 years old. We got her a bath robe,a wii game, a waffle maker and a cup. We had balloons,but no party hats. Mommy had ice cream and cake.


Sunday, February 1, 2009

My Birthday...with help

So, the boys helped Aaron with my birthday things, including the cake. They all went shopping yesterday to get a few gifts, so it was nice to have the house to myself after a week of being the only parent on duty. Here is the cake they came home with.

Yep, they got a super bowl cake. It's the 43rd super bowl today, for those of you caught unawares. No, neither of those digits is in my age yet. Yes, I'm an 80's baby. Not to make you feel too old, or anything. :)