Tuesday, December 11, 2007
Sunday, November 4, 2007
Thanks to all for making this a great halloween. Lots of love.
Saturday, October 27, 2007
During a soccer party, I was able to discuss some of the great work one of the moms is currently doing as around diabetes treatment through her startup and some follow on implications. Without going into details, the wheels started spinning, and a few of my medical and chemical engineering brain cells started firing again, and we agreed to get together in a few weeks to understand further where this could lead.
So I did it. My brother and I started to put down on paper a few key questions that will help build a better long term business plan, and understand the local economy and dynamics. I'll put a little time into firing up the network, and do some exploration with a few of my local buddies. Figuring out if this will help the kids situation will be critical to the next steps, too. I don't know where this journey will end, I only know I (with Frank's support) have taken the first step down the road.
Wish us luck ( prayers are welcome)
Sunday, October 21, 2007
Coming this week: Character parades at School, no school Thursday / Friday (again, Grrrr!), Susan and Luca and Cole are coming in this weekend.
Friday, September 28, 2007
PS - Happy Birthday, Kaydee!
Sunday, September 23, 2007
Top of the list:
Santa Fe Wine and Chile Fiesta: A+ Paired tasting: La Casa Sena and Ridge Vineyards. Just say mmmmm. Great company, great food, great wine, and I could actually tell the difference between two red wines of the same variety. Who'd a thunk it?
The Greek Festival: A Yet another annual tradition that is becoming one of my favorites. The annual pilgrimage to St. George's Orthodox church with the Kidders was wonderful, car accident not withstanding. The food, deserts, jumpers, and general atmosphere made for one of the kids favorite things so far this fall.
Rio Grande Arts and Crafts Festival: It seems like quite a few of my favorite and some new exhibitors have taken the level of the festival up a notch this year. I walked away with only one new painting (Claudia Young), and a couple of bars of cinnamon soap from Sage Mountain Soap. Mom's out of town guest seemed to enjoy this this year.
Dixon Apples: A+ products; A+ Customer Service - my MOM and DAD; D+ Customer Service @ the orchard: This year it appears they are sorely in need of an industrial engineer to keep the customers around. Long wait in, long wait at the orchard. The constraint = the cash register and parking capacity if I'm not mistaken. I have a great story, though. How I miss the early days - a nice little known secret and fun day trip.
State Fair: A - consistantly good stuff - people to watch, food to eat, animals to see, stuff to buy. Best part was watching Grant throw a dart to pop a balloon on the midway and have him almost hit the carnie.
Fall Football: Ouch, we lost to BYU. The Lobos play Wyoming this weekend. Oh yea, the Aggies lost again. I am starting to feel bad!
Philadelphia Eagles are up to C+ after a 56-21 victory over the Detriot Lions, and a bye week since.
Chicago Bears have moved up to a "D" after beating the Packers this weekend. After the Bears started off the season giving the gam to the Packers, they recovered enough to warrant a passing (but not great) grade. They automatically got an F when they lost to the Dallas Cowboys, just cause I said so.
Extra for my bro: Chicago Cubs are in the playoffs, but the run is over!
Saturday, September 22, 2007
Monday, September 17, 2007
Brett is loving school this year! He has new friends, loves the playground this year, and has a spring in his step like I haven't seen in a couple of years. He is a fierce chess master, having spent all summer tuning up his chess skills on Lego Chess. (they teach you the moves I never learned about like "en passante?" He is also playing AYSO soccer again this year, and excels at playing halfback and defense. He made some great passes last week that resulted in goals scored. I had the honor of running like a crazy person up and down the field as a referee.
Grant has his good days and his bad days. Academically, he's in good shape, but his impulse control continues to be something he is learning. He hit someone yesterday at Explora with a wooden block, and today had his play time cut short because he pushed someone when he wanted the ball. So instead of hanging out with Lindy tomorrow night, he may well be at home in bed. *sigh* I just keep thinking "at least its preschool - we have some time to figure it out before he goes to kindergarden."
Saturday, September 1, 2007
First Lobo football game (Go Lobos). State Fair time. Green chile roasting. Corn Maize open. Wagner's Farm. Dixon's Apple Farm. Santa Fe Wine and Chile Fiesta. Windows wide open at night means mornings are crisp.
School's in session. Principle's office. Kid sent home from school. *sigh* Okay - maybe not the highlight of my week, but part of the transition for Grant from flying solo to being part of a team. I need a couple of prayers here - he's not really getting the whole "hands off" thing quite yet.
Busy last couple of weeks. Work assignment has been really tough (trying to create order out of chaos) and many of colleagues from past lives at Intel have moved on, as a result in reduction in force at the plant, making it a littler harder to be onsite this week.
Had a WONDERFUL afternoon last Friday with just Carmen and Brett - lunch at Wimpie's Burgers, a walk to Explora, where we closed down the place, and then a jaunt over to Tiguex park for ice cream. (Pics to come). We played in the Rio Grande last weekend, and made a number of trips to Pop-Pops Italian ice this week.
New addition: Scott and Ronda added Jaedon Scott Welton to their tribe Wednesday at 12:15 am - on Emmy's birthday. 8 lbs, 2 oz; 20 inches. Black hair. Rumor is - he's really cute! I'm sure I'll edit this over the next couple of days, but I have 30+ pounds of wriggling Grant flesh in my lap asking "what are we going to have for breakfast!" Get out and see NM - see you at the festivities.
Sunday, August 19, 2007
Its 91 degrees at 7 as we pull into the Albuquerque Zoo parking lot. The kids are loaded onto a beatup old wagon, and we make our way to the entrance. Its an interesting mix of mostly sun-damaged faces - young professionals, retired engineers, hippies, vatos, matching his and hers ponytails. We all want the same thing - a shady spot to park our gear and hunker down for the Los Lobos concert. The usual jockeying for position, smell of KFC, barbeque beef, and the slightly acrid scent of zoo. As the sun drops closer to the horizon the shade gets longer and the crowd unknowing heaves a collective sigh of relief. Lines queue up for a beer, burger, bathrooms, but its a relaxed, it's going to be alright kind of attitude rather than the corporate hustle and bustle, let's git this thing moving kind of line. Strangers chat with others, musing whether its a better idea to buy a bottle of wine or a glass. The band comes out, starts to tune up, lets lose with a couple of Santana riffs. Obligatory announcements - "don't block your neighbors view - dance over there, please..." and we settle in for the music. Shoes are off, blankets spread, cicada are singing, cottonwood umbrellas obscure a slightly hazy upper atmosphere. A bass guitar starts to tremble, just different enough to hear that its a live show. soon there is an agglomeration of guitar notes overlayed with drum, a flute, even an accordian. In an interesting juxtaposition, a graceful swan swims in front of the stage while the crowd starts to get up to dance to the pulsating rhythm.
The absolute best part of the night is now, watching my boys burst into dance. It is in this moment I realize that I am truly content, a rare occasion. Since we picked a spot with a view that was slightly obscured by the biggest cottonwood at the zoo, there was an oasis of grass in the field of blankets. The strip of grass ran about 20 feet. I think Brett is inspired by watching "High School Musical 2" last night - his solo performance included hat throwing, bows to the crowd, and flying feet. I watch with surprise as Brett tries to do some of the same spin moves with Grant that I have done with him in the living room. Grant laughs as I pick him up and spin him around in circles until I get dizzy... I wish Frank is here. They dance their hearts out in bare feet, finally collapsing on the blanket. Finally, with the encore in full swing, the boys are loaded sweatily back into the wagon and ride in relative silence back to the truck.
I realize part of why I am happy. My family is close - my brother came with us tonight. I also know my sons are growing up exposed to a culture I have come to love. At my college job, we listened and breathed and danced in the back room to cumbias, salsas, rancheras. I realize that I know the words to "la bamba" from elementary school and state fair, not from the movie. I eat chile on my burger, and revel in the funkiness of the cars driving down central on the way home from the zoo. Low riders, beat up pickups, and a red scooter parked next to the Sunshine Theatre.
In my 30's, I read a Georgia O'Keefe biography. I remember identifying with the sentiment "New Mexico is a hard place to live." For tonight, that is definitely not true. I hope it stays that way for a long time to come.
Saturday, August 18, 2007
Another big transition has been Tally's move. Brett's buddy Tally and his family have made the big leap to San Antonio, and Brett and Tally have been close friends since preschool. While it hasn't hit home too much with Brett yet, when school starts, I think he will feel it acutely.
While Rusty has been a GREAT addition to the family, his transition hasn't been perfect either. He apparently has some elements of fear aggression that we are working through. In the house with us, or on a leash, he is the sweetest dog. However, if he gets out in the front yard off leash, he is highly likely to run after cars or other dogs. While he hasn't gotten in a fight yet, I am sure he has scared a neighbor or two. We are working with some dog handlers to understand how to modify this behavior. They say it's common, but I still wish I knew better what to do to make him less fearful outside the house.
On a happier note, our little social butterfly Grant is going to start polishing his social skills in preschool at Sunset Mesa this year. We did a trial last week, and think he is going to blossom around other kids.
Other than the transitions, our last couple of weeks have been fulfilling. Frank is in Vegas with his brother, we've gotten to do Biopark Music, movies, neighborhood walks with the dogs (and cats, much to our neighbors amusement), housewarming at Heather's, and even ITZ as a back to school present for the boys. We took my mom's sister Vicki to the major metropolitan center of Ma-drid New Mexico, and regaled her with second hand stories of the shooting of the movie "Wild Hogs." The boys, I, and Bruce are going to the Zoo to see Los Lobos tonight - which should be a hoot.
All in all, life is good.
Friday, July 27, 2007
Frank and I talked, and felt the best life lesson for him was to push through and gut out the camp. So with some encouragement (all right, bribery) he went back to camp on Tuesday and Wednesday, with similar results. On Wednesday night, he was practicing jumping in the kitchen, and much to our surprise, he was jumping super high. I noticed, commented, and he proudly showed me several more times how high he could jump. Since he was in better shape since starting the camp, I asked to see his muscles. Boy what a treat - when he flexed, you could see his bicep. He was so surprised he put his arm down and back up again, like he wanted to see if it would disappear. It didn't and his excitement level rose. He showed me his other arm, and then proudly raced upstairs to show Frank. Frank promptly tested his jumping ability and sure enough, he's much more agile than he was before the summer. He's even excited about soccer now - "mom - I can make the biggest rainbow kick ever over all the defenders." He actually went to camp with a spring in his step Thursday.
To celebrate his successful completion of camp, we took everyone, including his best friend bowling.
Life is good.
Wednesday, July 25, 2007
" Water makes the fire go away, and fire makes the water go away.
Clouds make the sun go away, and the sun makes the clouds go away."
How Zen and smart is that? (From the same kid who was trying to ride a grasshopper statue...)
Monday, July 23, 2007
Friday, June 29, 2007
Saturday, June 23, 2007
Saturday, June 16, 2007
Monday, June 11, 2007
Just wanted everyone to know we are welcoming a new addition to the family. Rusty, a miniature Australian Shepherd, will be moving here soon. Since Ulysses passed away, the house seemed a little empty, and the boys and Arrow still miss him. Rusty is a little over a year old, been raised in a family with 3 young girls, and needed to find a new home when his family had to move back to Australia. I put his link on the side. The family we're adopting from is great - people I'd like to meet in person. We're working the details over the next couple of days.
Sunday, June 3, 2007
Grant did one of the craziest firsts I've ever heard of. Frank and I signed up for a 2 hour sunset ATV ride (with the boys) up to Cabresto Lake (~18 miles, round trip). Frank spent most of his time with Brett hanging on for dear life behind him, and I spent most of my time with Grant in front of me. He would either hold onto my arms, or push the buttons when I told him to shift gears. He did great most of the way to the lake, but needed me to slow down every once in a while when the road got too bumpy. He did typical 3 year old stuff, including throw rocks in the lake. When we started to head back, he just kept getting quieter and quieter. About 2 miles in, he dropped off completely. After that, I drove the ATV with one hand until we got back to the bottom of Mallette Canyon. What troopers!
Saturday, May 26, 2007
Friday, May 11, 2007
Tuesday, May 8, 2007
OK, in my inaugural post, I'll highlight the perennial battle working families have. Do we let our kids do like we did when we were little (which was absolutely nothing but play with the other kids in the neighborhood), or plunk them down in a series of camps to keep them occupied - since they need child care anyway? Short version of the story for now -
- University of Santa Clara family camp for week, Vacation Bible School basketball camp and inventor camps for the oldest.
- Gymboree and athletic camps for the youngest, lots of free story time and mighty mites.
I hope the money doesn't run out. Wish me luck, and we'll check in a little later to see how we're doing.