Monday, April 30, 2007

Inner Peace

On Saturday we drove over to a park near the mountains. The park features a stream flowing down a smooth rock that people like to slide down during the summer. We felt it was a bit too cool out to be in the water, but there was another family out there sliding down. I think we'll make a trip out there next month and get in the water. We were there on Saturday just to check the place out.

We walked up stream a ways to enjoy the view. I was taking some pictures of Meredith and Cari sitting on a rock when I turned around and saw this.
The boy trying to find inner peace.

I'm not sure where he picked this up. It certainly wasn't from me. I wouldn't have even thought to pose him like that. He knew I was amused by it. He sat there for a few minutes while I snapped a couple of photos.

I don't know what he was doing, but I'll tell you this; he was well behaved the rest of our trip.

Saturday, April 28, 2007


About twelve years ago Cari brought a kitten home from work. She was working at a grocery store and found this kitten in the parking lot. The black and white kitten was dirty and mangy looking. Cari named her Maggie. I named her Maggot. I was not excited about this kitten at all.

After Cari cleaned her up and fed her I started enjoying the kitten as well. In many ways, she was like a dog. She would follow me around the house wherever I went. She would play fetch with the plastic rings from milk cartons. She begged for table scraps. Her favorite was Pringles. If you picked up a can, she would come running and try to swipe a chip from your hand. She always, ALWAYS slept in the bed with us.

When I would sit down at the computer, she sat in the corner of the desk with me. After not wanting her at all, she became MY cat.

Not long ago, she became sick and Cari had to give her insulin shots twice a day. She got much better.

About two weeks ago she got very sick again. She stopped eating and stopped using the bathroom. Her kidneys shut down. Cari ran her to the vet and it seemed there was nothing we could do to help her.

She had eaten the Easter Lilly and it turns out it's a very poisonous plant. Maggot always ate the plants in the house. She even ate Poinsettias without consequence.

We made the decision to let the vet put her out. Obviously, it was not something I wanted to happen, but she was so sick.

There is no cat begging for my food anymore. Rings from the gallon of milk go in the trash now. There is no cat watching me at the computer anymore.

Falling Behind

I feel like I am really falling behind on the blog this week. It's been a busy schedule. Several things took place in the evenings this past week, and I haven't really spent that much time on the computer. That means not only have I negleted writing as much as I would have liked, I have not been checking the blogs I read as frequently this week.

I plan on spending some time writing this weekend, so I should get all caught up.

I still haven't met the Atheist neighbor, but he has provided Cari and I some good laughs as we make fun of him together.

Have a great day, I'm going to bed.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Watch your words

Someone asked me yesterday how come I haven't been writing as many funny or embarrassing stories about Cari.

Are you kidding me!? Have you ever poked fun at a pregnant woman?

I tried it once.

I won't be trying it again anytime soon.

Monday, April 23, 2007

I've moved in

Now that I have used my office for a week and got it mostly organized, I thought I should post a photo of it. I had a hard time deciding how I wanted to show it and explain it to you. I took a few shots the other night. They were ok. I thought about filming a tour of the room, but that takes a lot of time.

About five minutes ago I stood in the doorway to MY office and took five shots. Rotating a bit after each shot to give you the above panoramic. It's not a perfect panorama, but it met the needs to explain my room to you.

Here's a copy of that picture with notes. Click to enlarge so you can read the fine print.

I can't explain how much I have really enjoyed this room. If you think I'm giving this up, you must be kidding yourself. I'll chain myself inside the room and barricade the door. At least until dinner is ready. (I know I'm going to hear about those last sentences from Cari after she reads this).

I could talk all night about my room, but I won't. Not tonight.

Friday, April 20, 2007

The Easter Video!

I spent some time today working on the Easter video. I took the seventeen minutes of footage and crunched it into seven minutes. The video features, a dog, a girl, a boy, a mud pit where the pool goes, and an egg hunt. If you make it through all that you will learn what the mystery item is in every plastic egg.


Thursday, April 19, 2007

Haunted House

Our favorite neighbor has moved. He sold his house a few weeks ago and left yesterday. They only moved about fifteen minutes away, so we may still see them from time to time. He and his wife took Cari and I out to lunch today.

During lunch he told us that our new neighbor was an atheist while in high school. The guy is roughly 30 now, so he may have changed. While packing, my neighbor had several people from church come over and help him load the truck. The pastor was among that group. After the trucks were loaded and everything was out of the house, the pastor lead a prayer for the new home owner. The last thing the pastor did before leaving the house was leaving an inspirational booklet in every drawer of the house.

Tonight is the first night the atheist will be sleeping next door. I'll be waiting to see when he comes out screaming that his house is haunted. His arms will be flailing as he runs circles in the front yard in his boxers. The spirit of Jesus has taken up residence in that house. Good luck, atheist!

We haven't met the atheist yet, but we do know two good things about him.
#1. He is not a Yankee!
#2. He or his wife is afraid of my dog and will not come over to see us. When we meet, it's going to be when Cari and I go there.

Talking about Jesus being in the house reminded me.

Jesus told me to have peanut butter on my sandwich for breakfast. . .. . . and I did.

If you have a funny caption for this picture, I invite you to put in a comment.


sorry for the delay in posts this week. I've got one coming tonight and another tomorrow afternoon.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

My first job!

I haven't been writing as much lately because I have been so busy at work. After work I have been busy moving furniture to different rooms.

Also the other day I got my first paying photography job!!!!!!!!
I took bridal portraits for the daughter of one of my co-workers. Cari came along and was a huge help.

We all had a great time while I snapped around three hundred photos.Imagine taking three hundred photos and then trying to find the best one. That's what I did a few nights ago.

First I loaded all the photos into Adobe Lightroom. Then I scrolled through them and identified the possibilities for best shot. These were just quick glances looking at lighting, framing, and focus. That process got me down to about fifty great shots. During that process I also eliminated the fun shots where the bride was making faces at her mom and all the shots of primping the dress.

I took those fifty shots and started to examine them closer. Zooming in close and really checking focus, especially around her eyes. At this point I started to do some touch up on the photos. Adjusting color and exposure. Slowly I eliminated photos in search of the best one.

I got the group of fifty narrowed down to fourteen shots. I turned one into black & white and then printed a proof sheet of the fifteen best photos.

This entire process took about two hours.

The bride selected the shot she wants printed as her main photograph. I spent another hour this morning selecting and touching up another twenty five photos. I'm printing these out as another proof sheet for her to select some shots to be printed as 4x6. Some of these are the more candid shots.

So far they seem very pleased with the job I have done. I ordered a 16x20 for her this morning that will take almost two weeks to get.

I've posted some pictures on flickr from this day. Here's a couple more.

The Office

I'm almost ready to put up some pictures of my new office. I'm having a good time making it mine. I don't really want to post pictures until I get some of the clutter picked up from moving all the rooms around. Give me a few more days.

I didn't end up painting it. The room is a blue color and I didn't see much sense in painting it a slightly different blue.

It was asked if I would keep this room after the baby is born. The answer is not so easy. I might get to keep my room. There are several factors that will decide this. I'd rather not discuss the possibilty of losing my room. I've only had it for three days and am still setting up.

After work today I went into my office and closed the door. This was after I spent a little bit talking with Cari about her day. After about five minutes, Cari came in and asked if I felt like I was seperating myself from the family, locked in my room.

"For the next fourty minutes, that's the goal.", I replied.

I can't wait to show you some pictures. I just need to clean up a bit.

Thursday, April 12, 2007


I have been working on my new room for the past two days.
Part of getting organized required me climbing under the house and moving the cable for the internet. We also rebuilt the desk I was using. Partly for size, but mostly redesigned it to better suit MY needs.

This left the computer in pieces between two rooms for the past two days.
Having a day or two without the internet made me feel like I was in a blackout. What do people do without the internet?

So, it's obviously all hooked up now. I'm going to go continue getting the room set up. Pictures coming soon.

Monday, April 09, 2007

Joke of the Day

The extreme cold weather we have had for the past few days caused some to change their habits.

Delicate plants had to be covered. Pets that live outside had to be cared for. Winter clothes had to be dug out of the closet one more time.

Oh, and the hummingbirds had to bring an ice pick to the feeder this morning. . .

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Happy Easter! Celebrate!

Just a short post this morning to say happy Easter!

As is my way, I stayed up too late last night. This morning Randy woke me to let me know the Easter bunny had left him some treats. Shortly after that, Meredith came running in to tell me what she got. Time to get up.

After church I hid some plastic eggs in the back yard while the kids got changed. They think the bunny put them in the yard last night. After the hunt, the kids came in to see what was in the eggs.

I filmed the egg hunt this morning. As soon as I find time, I'm going to edit it and get it posted here. I can't wait to show you what was in those eggs!

We're headed to the neighbor's house for lunch. Have a great day.

Friday, April 06, 2007

Not my conversation

I walked into the office today and was thrust into a conversation between two women. As the door shut behind me, they looked up at me and I knew then that this was not a conversation I should participate in.

I looked down at the papers in my hand hoping they would not notice me.

Paula said that her husband can't seem to open the dishwasher to put a plate in. His plate always ends up on the counter near the dishwasher. Brandy replied to this with her own story of her husband. He also can't seem to even scrape the food from his plate.

I took a step back toward the door, still staring at my papers. I was thinking I would just come back some other time. Then they spoke to me. "Tell us that you know how to use the dishwasher."

"Oh, I know how to use it just fine." The tone in my voice must have given me away. They pressed me to tell if the dishes get into the dishwasher.

"Honestly, a lot of times, my plate doesn't leave the table." This statement caused Brandy, whose back was to me, to turn around. "When I do clear the table, the plates go on the counter." Brandy looked like she was in shock.

She said, "I thought you were better than that." Then some comment about being mean and abusing wives was made about men. I opened the door and was excusing myself. Another guy was just getting ready to walk into the office.

"Be careful Jim. You don't know what you are walking into!", I warned.
He replied, "Thanks for stirring them up!"

Thursday, April 05, 2007


We took Randy to the skating rink for his birthday party. We were able to rent the place out for a few hours to make it a private party. I didn't take many pictures there, but I did snap a couple before my flash batteries died. It was also before any guests arrived.

Randy was skating in his Heelies. I'm not sure what happened here. I looked up and he was laying on the floor all spread out.

I like this picture of Meredith because of the black background. Looks creepy. Kinda gives me the heebie-jeebies.

Here's a shot while a handful of the kids were doing the hokey-pokey. I didn't skate this day. I felt like the children would plot against me and try to hurt me. I stayed in my shoes, off the floor of the rink. Do you know what happened?

I still fell down. I can't tell you how, it's too embarrassing.

Monday, April 02, 2007

My April Fools post update

I really like April Fools Day. I will always post something on April 1st. If you should believe it or not is up to you.

So yesterday I told you that Cari is pregnant. A few hours later I had a few comments and I was very disappointed that it seemed nobody was catching on to the date. I questioned if anyone would catch it. Then I received a few e-mails last night and this morning. Some people were starting to question it, even my mom.

It only works if people buy into what I wrote.

Last year on April 1st I wrote about that I would no longer write the blog. That wasn't true.
This year I wrote that Cari is pregnant. That IS true.

Thank you for the comments yesterday and today. My plan was to announce it on April Fools Day to cast some doubt into your minds.

Guess I'll have a lot to write about now.