Thursday, March 25, 2010

Photostory Friday: 365 Week 12

Hosted by Chris

Day 78

March 19: I broke out the guitar for some "Puff the Magic Dragon" with the kids.

Just like the pictures I take of the beat up keys on my piano, I love the wear on the neck of the guitar. It gives the instrument life.

Day 79

March 20: Washing my car. In TECHNICOLOR!

Day 80

March 21: Have you ever known someone, who seemed to be so limited, but just refused to accept it?

These little fingers belong to my nephew, Jackson. The stubbiness of his fingers is attributable to his Down's Syndrome. Jackson is almost three, and coming along at about half the pace of other children his age. His life will have it's struggles.

But don't tell Jackson that.

From the smiles on his face, you'd think he'd won the lottery. And maybe he has, because his life has a purpose -- simply to make people smile. It's his job, and he takes it VERY seriously.

And he is VERY good at it.

Day 81

March 22: For the next three months or so, these little pink pills and I will be very close.

Day 82

March 23: I was going to call this "Spring Promise" or "Budding Beauty" or "Hope."

Instead, I choose to call it "Wandering around in the backyard, looking up."

Day 83

March 24: You know I'm out of ideas, when I resort to this.

Day 84

March 25: Can I confide in you for a moment? One of my favorite parts about being a dad, is coming in the door, after a long day at work, and being met by this little face.

 It just makes everything all better.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Photostory Friday: 365 Week 11

Hosted by Chris

PhotoStory Friday
Hosted by Cecily

Day 71

March 12: I looked up from answering emails, and saw the clock: 11:59pm!

Panic sets in! Is it 11:59:01 or 11:59:59? I have no idea, I dive for my camera, the adrenaline is surging, I can't hold the camera steady, my mind goes blank -- I have no ideas.

Just press the shutter button stupid!

Instinct kicks in, I grab the Darth Vader bobble head. I shoot.

11:59:58  11:59:59  12:00:00

Actually, I learned a valuable lesson here, that I want to share with all of you. After I took the picture, I wandered out into other parts of the house. The clock in the living room said 12:01, the clock in the bedroom said 12:00, the clock in the kitchen said 11:57.

You need to set all of the clocks in your house to different times. That way you even out the odds a little more. If one clock says you missed the deadline, another might be more forgiving. I say, as long as you shoot the picture in the presence of the correct clock, you're good!

That's a tip kids, write it down.

Day 72

March 13: Have you ever wondered where you rank, in the vast food chain of life?

Here's a clue: If THIS guy has a reserved parking space, and you don''re probably somewhere in the cellar.

With me.

Day 73

March 14: It's calling to us -- me and my son. "Turn off the television. Come out, and shoot some hoops. Talk and laugh and play while the weather is warm, and the days are long."

Soon, soon.

Day 74

March 15: Chocolate crack.

Day 75

March 16: I like to clean out my ears.

Really like it.


Probably more than I should admit here.

Day 76

March 17: 10% of me is 90% Irish.

I started collecting these shamrock caps three years ago -- Dublin is the 2010 model.

St. Patrick's Day is one of my favorite holidays of the entire year. I'm not sure why.

I don't drink. My Irish lineage is limited to one branch of the family tree. I frankly don't care whether there are snakes in Ireland, or not. But I love this day.

Maybe it's because it's really a celebration of Luck, and we all have more good luck than we sometimes want to admit.

Maybe it's because I don't have to buy anything.

I mean besides shamrock hats.

Day 77

March 18: I just got carded.

Buying Nyquil.

She asked me if I was eighteen.

I was eighteen, nineteen years ago.

I inadvertently took a self portrait too -- if you look close, you can see my reflection in the bottle. The distortion, from the curvature of the bottle, makes my neck look huge-antic.

The thumb with sunglasses, that's me.

Monday, March 15, 2010

So let it be written...

I think I may be omniscient.

Either that, or the spell check on my computer is on the blink.

Let's run with the first idea.

It seems, lately, that evrything I spel is korect. Thare are no underlines, no blincks, no phlashes, nuthing to say that I am dooing it rong. I kan ohnly kunklood that I hav krost the threshold intwo perphecshun. I kan, literraly doo no rong -- att leist gramatically speeking. This is heddy stuph.

Gnot ohnly doo I spel evrytheeng korektly, buht I kan ahlso maek up gnew werds: phour instunce ihf I wonted to deeskrybe thuh daye as longandtiring, or sunshineiful -- akordeeng to my kumpewtor -- I hav just yoused lajitamut woords.

Wut two dooo wyth such powher iz a wreal skullyscratcher. Shood I yooose my powerz four thuh goud of mankinde or shud I selphishlee exployt themm fore gane?

Iz it troo what Spydermaan'z unkel sed, that wyth graet powher kums graate responsibylluhty, ohr doo I ohnly hav an oblugayshun too my ohwn persunul joyishness and satisfiednessesses? I dohnt no.

Ahl I dooo gno iz that thear wuz gnot wun misspelt werrd ihn that entyer idiotical pohst.

Eyem gnot shur ihf perhpecshuun iz ahwl itz krakt uhp tou bei. Frainklee, I theink mye spelchek just gawt tyred uv beeyng thuh lassed wun ihn Umarika hoo steel kairs uhbowt proppehr werd usageination.

Helllp me pleez.

(Kan yew tell itz sleepifyingly lait, and Eyve bin uhp four comatosifyingly tou long?)

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Photostory Friday: 365 Week 10

Hosted by Chris

PhotoStory Friday Give me your best shot at Better in Bulk

Hosted by Cecily and Lolli

Day 64

March 5: Do you ever look around at inanimate objects, and see metaphors of your life? For some reason my gearshift always makes me think about how close the ultimate cruising speed is to going in reverse...

Day 65

March 6: I paid ten dollars for this picture. That was the price of these glasses, and she's probably worn them once since then (they could be broken by now, for all I know) -- but sometimes a dad is just powerless to resist.

Day 66

March 7: Last night (Saturday night) our power went off at about 10:30 pm. After a minute, I went outside to see if the neighbors were without power too -- they weren't. So I went to the breaker box, which is an older box, on the side of our house. Something wasn't right. Then I realized what it was.

The door had been pulled off of the box, and every breaker was tripped -- not just the main.

Someone snuck into our yard, and shut off the power to our house.

I realize it was probably some stupid kids, but I dreamt about axe murderers that night.

Day 67

March 8: The word on the Gatorade bottle was just calling to me. And it had nothing to do with the fact that it was 11:45 pm.

Almost nothing.

Day 68

March 9: Care to venture a guess as to who one that game?

Day 69

March 10: This is a piece I like to call "Up close and personal, with my pores."

I was trying to get a cool reflection in my sunglasses -- while driving.


(Can you see that stray gray hair in my sideburn?)

Day 70

March 11: How did we get to day 70 already?

Thursdays are hard for me, photographically speaking, because I'm trying to get home and get the link up before midnight, so I usually end up taking pictures of crap in my car, on the drive home.

I did that today too, but on my way into the house, this little flash of green in my yard caught my eye. The people who owned our house before us were -- apparently -- wonderful gardners. We got our first full viewing of the show last year. From early Spring to early Autumn, our front yard is quite a beautiful display (I feel like I'm holding on by my fingertips to keep it that way).

I don't remember what these little starts are, but I know they'll be spectacular.

Have a wonderful week!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Things I did once: #10 (the things I do for you)

Recently, my wife was making Oreo bon bons, which require freezing between the various stages of composition. This was accomplished on a metal pan, which came out of the freezer with a nice, frosty coating.


I'd always wondered...

I'd always heard...

...that if I stuck my tongue to a frozen metal object...

Well, you know where I'm going, I won't leave you in suspense. My tongue stuck to the pan. Really stuck.

Why, you're asking, would I do this?

The answer is simple: research (because, you've always wondered too).

So what's it like?

First of all, it kind of hurts -- depending on how much of the tongue you get stuck on there.

Secondly, you can have the driest mouth in the world, but as soon as your tongue is immobilized, your salivation glands kick in full force, and you begin to drool all over everything.

Third, you cannot speak (try talking while holding on to your tongue) -- everything comes out sounding like "lagalagalagalagalagalagalaga."

Or, when you start to panic: "LAGALAGALAGALAGALAGA!!!!"

Your children come in the room, and immediately start calling friends.

Your spouse barely bats an eye (it's like she's seen this before) -- notice, no one is rushing to get you any warm water, to extricate yourself from the frozen pan, and the growing puddle of drool.

Basically, the universe conspires against you, to make you look like the biggest idiot anyone has ever seen.

Eventually, you free youself from the situation, but understand -- no matter how careful you are -- you will leave a little of yourself behind.

And that, dear readers, is what happens when you stick your tongue to a frozen metal object.

Know that I do not do these things for the glory.

I do them for you.

Sunday, March 7, 2010


What will you leave behind when you die?

That's easy -- you'll leave it all behind. But, let's talk about heirlooms. When you are gone, what are the things that your children and grandchildren will prize, and what will they sell at the estate auction?

I once heard a man say he didn't intend to leave anything to his children, because he didn't want them to be glad he was gone. 

Will the remnants of your life cause conflict among your loved ones, or will they bring them together? Do you want your life to be valued or treasured?

I'm not really sure where I'm going with this, except that I've been thinking about heirlooms in my own life lately. I don't have priceless antiques, or trust funds, or real estate -- I have an old table, a broken electric guitar, and macaroni. 

My oldest daughter, Jordan, has been preparing dinner for the family for the last week. Thursday night she made a family classic -- Hamburger and Macaroni and Tomato Sauce. I capitalized that because it's not only the list of all the ingredients in the dish, but it's what we have called it for -- literally - generations. I'm sure many people have concocted this meal, and probably have a flashier name for it, but we call it Hamburger and Macaroni and Tomato Sauce. This is not revolutionary cooking, it's cooking at it's most basic. 

In our family this dish goes back to, at least, my great-grandmother. I suspect it has it's genesis in the Great Depression. A poor man's lasagna. My own grandmother made it for us countless times, as has my mother. I've made it for my own children. My cousins and aunts and uncles all know the dish. It's not a secret family recipe that we are required to memorize and never write down, and I'm not saying it's even all that appetizing to look at. No one varies from the recipe -- it's plain, kind of bland, but something in our family DNA causes us to love it -- my children every bit as much as I do. It tastes like a warm home, where love and acceptance are the garnishments. 

It's funny the things that cause you to pause. As I sat at the dinner table Thursday night, and watched my eldest step up and take her place in the parade of generations, I was so moved that I had to look away, before Jordan thought I was crying about her cooking (twelve year old girls are fragile). 

Antiques eventually crumble to dust, and material possessions are at the root of most strife and conflict, but this heirloom is one of the ties that binds our family together. 

I'll tell you about the table and the guitar later...  :)

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Photostory Friday: 365 Week 9

PhotoStory Friday
Hosted by Cecily and Kelli

Hosted by Chris

Day 57

Something Sweet

February 26: Rainbow Sherbet. I could eat it by the gallon. 

Come to think of it...

Day 58

Body Parts

February 27: Some of my parts -- but which ones are mine?

Day 59

Black and white (with a little something extra)

February 28: Why is it that your favorite pair of jeans always become the most comfortable, just before they disintegrate?

And thus end the themes.

Day 60

March 1: Spring Cleaning. 

By March first, I feel the way my house looks. 

I need dusting. 


Day 61

March 2: Netflix -- a great way to supplement your television watching with more television watching. I'm currently working my way through Psych: Season 2. 

I'm considering tackling Lost next -- I've never seen an episode, is it worth it?

Day 62

March 3: I was annoyed. 

The house was a mess, and Emma's room was a nightmare.

I don't even remember why I went in there, but I was stumbling and grumbling, and then I looked up and saw this. 

I stopped. I began to breathe again. All the stress went away, and I looked at that peaceful, guileless little face, and wondered what she was dreaming about. 

Whatever it was, I'm sure it was pink and purple. 

Day 63

March 4: It looked a lot cooler on the small viewing screen of my camera. I swear.