Friday, June 28, 2013

Having a ball on a hot summer day. . . .



Now all together.




All together, go!

That's better.
 No. . . Dorie.

 Ester Williams.
 Mermaids in action.
 Mermaid one.
 Mermaid two.
 Life Guard on duty.
 Is that Lloyd Bridges?
 "It was something like this. . . well kinda."
Hey Life Guard, aren't you suppose to be on duty?

I am going on a pilgrimage . . .

Well, you know how much I love great bread. A cup of tea and a slice of really good bread with butter is culinary heaven to me. Probably not all that good for ya, but none-the-less . . . . .

After eating at Red Lobster this last week (one of wife's favorite restaurants) I have decided to try to find a recipe for their wonderful biscuits.

Wish me luck, and if it takes years, I promise to complete this pilgrimage.

Monday, June 24, 2013

High Flyin' Summer Fun!

Mom and daughter first started the weekend making homemade Raspberry Jam. YUM!

Ya gotta do it from scratch.

 Then it was time to hang out with (2nd) cousins and practice swimming like a dolphin.

 High flyin' fun with dad.
 Just chillin'
 Raft race!
Goin' for style points thanks to cousin.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Late Spring fun. . . .

 Chalk art!
Cleaning off the trampoline!
 New deck and new pool liner!
 First jump off of the new deck into the new water in the new liner!
Second jump and friends having fun!
Birthday Party with cousins!

A couple fun sites for photo fun. . .

Turn a photo into an old polaroid here.

Or merge an image of yourself into something fun. . . .


(if you are wondering, of course those are my wife's legs! Who else would have a giant photo of me in the bedroom?)

Friday, June 7, 2013

EPIC! - Hardly

Ever on the look out for great animated movies to take daughter to, we checked out EPIC last night.

And as I alluded to in the title of the post, it was hardly that.
I am probably being a little rough on it because I was expecting so much, but I think I am being fair.

While at times there were moments of stellar animation, there were also many times when the quality of said animation let it down.

Also true, while there were moments of great character animation; M.K., Mandrake, Mub, Grub and Nim Galuu, along with some of the lesser characters, there were also moments of bad character animation; Nod, Queen Tara, Ronin.

At times the background paintings were awesome. Then at other times they would not be much better than some T.V. fare.

The story was nothing new, almost being a combination of 'The Great Fairy Rescue', 'Fern Gully', 'A Bugs Life' and 'Honey I Shrunk the Kids'.

The slug and the snail had the funniest moments. The main bad guy was very well done, but was nothing new.

The lead character, M.K., jumped to quickly into her new world, without any shock or surprise (maybe kids in this high-tec age don't get shocked and surprised as much,).

'Nim', voiced by Steven Tyler of Aerosmith fame, was my favorite in both animation and voice, but even that character seemed stolen from 'The Wizard of OZ'.

Although I like Josh Hutcherson, the voice of 'Nod', in most things, the animation of his character let down his performance.

M.K's father was also well acted and drawn, but was to much like Rick Moranis' character in 'Honey I Shrunk the Kids' and "Dr Griffiths' in 'The Great Fairy Rescue."

The best animation seemed to be reserved for the lesser characters, some of which were very well done.

I was hoping the animation of the forest atmosphere would be on the lines of 'Avatar', when in fact it didn't even measure up to the 'Tinkerbell' movies.

The battles and conflicts were not epic enough.

Even with a few visual delights, I came out a little disappointed.

Daughter found parts a little scary and dark, but over all she liked it.

So, for these reasons, I can only give it 3 Mub's and Grub's out of 5

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

It's my wife's fault - or - we've created a monster, but on a much happier note than the last post.

She's only been a fan of baseball now for a little less than a week, and we have already had her at two games.

We were all a little burned out from storm clean-up, so we decided to take a day off and go to another ball game.

Her she is waiting for the train.

Busch stadium number three.

Wife and daughter getting tickets.
Now, I have never bought a major league baseball ticket.
Even though I have been to all three Busch Stadiums since the 60's, I have never purchased a ticket.
To the First Busch Stadium, I would have gone with my parents and a Cub Scout game. Barely remember it, but we do have a pennant from it.

Went with a cousin from England to one at stadium 2.
Didn't buy a ticket for that one either. She got picked up in a bar, he bought tickets on the street and we insisted I, the non-baseball-lover, go with her as chaperon. Yea, me!

And first time at this new stadium we were given tickets to the club house.
So, I almost fainted when I found out the actual price of a ticket. You almost had to give me one of the twelve dollar 4oz beers to keep me upright.

But in we went.

We arrived sometime in the third inning. Just in time to see. . . . .

. . . going. . . going . . .

. . . GONE!

Just in time to see her favorite (two ball games and she already has a favorite) hit a home run.

Her sandlot favorite.

We were also lucky enough to be at the game that also had . . . .
. . . 'Kids run the bases' event going on.

So we lined up with probably several thousand (no probably about it) other kids to run the bases.
(So many kids that Fred Bird had to go rest his 'high five' hand before we got to him.)

All those little red dots going around the bases in semi-controlled order.

Her she is after her mad dash.

Mom and daughter at the dug-out.

Hangin' with 'Stan the Man!'

Well, I guess I need to start checking on the price of season tickets.

(Can we sneak our own beer in?)

Monday, June 3, 2013

The fortunate ones - Tornado, just one block away.

We lost power about 7:30 pm on Friday evening as the storm came through.
When we peeked our heads out the basement door we spotted shingles in our yard.
First we were thankful all was OK, then we were worried that the shingles were ours.
We gathered our flashlights and once the storm abated we checked our house, then checked on our neighbors.
We all had downed trees and flying trampolines and trees in our swimming pools, but no major house damage and no injuries.
Sat. morning, light of day, we started finding plywood and shingles in the street and yards.
We don't know how far this piece had traveled.

A piece about the same size was planted in our backyard so far that we could not pull it out.
Knifed straight in, then broken over.

Helicopters flying over all day surveying the damage just two streets away.
Houses leveled.

Chimney gone, as well as siding and roofing.
Someones fence in the street.

Tree through someones roof.

Roads were closed because of downed trees and power-lines. It stayed that way all day till it was safe and they got it all working again. Took us fifteen hours to get our power back.

Trees twisted and bent.

(This image is from the newspapers) showing roof damage or missing roofs. This was not the worse.

But this may be.
(Also from the newspaper).

One of our local arenas had one of its A/C units picked up and slammed into its side wall leaving a truck size hole.
Clean up started.

Most of the damage was to roofs and trees, but in one small area about four houses were leveled.

On each street everyone just got busy. First working on their own places, then helping neighbors that were worse off..
We cut trees, picked up plywood and shingles and cleaned up our street.
Some are going to be inconvenienced for a while with damaged roofs and destroyed pools, but we were all able to stay in our homes Saturday night.

Only just found out (11:34 Monday morning) one of our daughters school friends lost their house in all this. This is them in the photo discovering the damage. Here is their story.

Again, photo from the papers.

We were the lucky ones.