Sunday, April 29, 2007

April pictures

I haven't been keeping up with downloading all the pictures I've been taking. Here are some from April.

This morning, before Owen's baseball game, we went to a Scottish festival in Woodland (about 8 miles north of here) - the 131st annual Sacramento Caledonian Society's Scottish Games & Festival. The kids really enjoyed themselves.

We got to see a bagpipe band, which was extremely loud as it went past.

Here are Dan and Owen buying some lemonade at the festival. I liked the lemon-shaped stand.

The kids enjoy sitting together in this chair. Here they are playing with some of their Playmobil "guys." They still spend a lot of time playing with them.

Yesterday it was pretty warm so they played on the Slip 'n' Slide in the front yard with a friend. It was pretty grungy after being outside all winter but I managed to get it cleaned off.

This picture was taken at the Chabot Space & Science Center in Oakland. There is a view down toward the Bay.

Owen and Douglas enjoyed dressing up like astronauts.

As well as climbing in an actual spaceship from some 1960 or so mission.

Here they were after returning from the zoo with their new stuffed tigers, "Hobbes" and "Tiger."

Douglas in a space helmet.

Running in the sprinkler!

And last but not least, selling lemonade on the street.

Friday, April 27, 2007

Dan's work picks up

The Senate got through a bunch of stuff, so Dan is suddenly getting a stack of bills on his desk a mile high. It looks like things are getting busy over there.

We're having great weather, although we spent much of yesterday afternoon indoors since Douglas had Goal Getters. That was fine though. Owen gets to do some reading during that time, although he is starting to get a little bored with being there for an hour. I got to go through raffle packets (chalk up another $760).

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Raffle continues...

Dan and I have been counting money every night. Whee! We're up around $9600 right now. Still many that haven't been turned in yet though.

It's been beautiful for the past couple of days. Yesterday after school several of Owen's classmates were meeting at a local park so I took the kids. They had a blast doing a major engineering project in the sand. They got a little creeped out by a dead baby rabbit someone found, but other than that it was fun. The cottonwood trees were blowing white fluff all over everything. It looked like it was snowing and brought out a lot of allergies.

Monday, April 23, 2007

Owen the saints... go marching in...

Owen is learning "Oh When the Saints" on the guitar and prefers to refer to it as "Owen the Saints."

It was rainy this weekend. I spent all day Sat. at a conference in Sacramento, which was interesting. Dan took the kids to Explorit Science Center and they got to see some raptors, which sounds like it was cool.

Sunday Owen's baseball game did go on despite some drizzle. He got a great hit, a double into the outfield. His second hit was a pop fly that went almost as far, but a kid on the other team caught it - it was a great catch! The first fly-out we have seen at this level. He didn't even move, just held his arm out to the side and the ball fell right into it. Pretty amazing.

The sun is finally out again, so hopefully we will have some nice weather this week. Our school raffle officially ended on Friday, but fewer than half of the kids seem to have turned their packets in, so we still have a lot to do before it's over.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Doolittle's going down

The FBI raided Rep. John Doolittle's home in Virginia yesterday. This morning he resigned his seat on the Approps Committee.

Doolittle represents CA-04 which is to our east, stretching from suburban Sacramento northeast to the Oregon and Nevada borders. He's awful and has been involved with the Abramoff scandals. Hopefully this time things are going to stick.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007


The kids had a lemonade stand on Monday afternoon (25 cents a cup) and made a decent haul ($4.75). They really enjoyed it. Yesterday Owen tried it again at a friend's house who lives on a busier street, so more passers-by to buy lemonade, and they had a lot of fun with it. One of the passers-by who stopped in front of our house was a woman who lives around the corner but I hadn't met before, and it turned out we were in college together (but didn't know each other there). That was fun, to meet her. She is a grad student in the ecology dept. here.

Happy birthday to Dad!

Monday, April 16, 2007

Space museum

Yesterday we drove up into the Oakland hills to go to the Chabot Space and Science Center. The kids had a good time getting into a capsule from the Mercury space mission of the 60's, playing by a pond that had koi and two turtles in it, and playing in the fun "Discovery Room" that had all kinds of science and art toys in it. They got to dress up like astronauts, put together a giant tiger jigsaw puzzle, do some artwork, etc. There was also a cool exhibit about animals who come out in the dark, complete with an enormous model of a bat's head that showed how echolocation worked.

One guy we saw there was sort of a biker-looking guy with a leather jacket and bandanna around his bald head. Douglas looked up at him and yelled, "All right, pirate!"

Douglas seems to need to pee constantly lately. He went to the bathroom 5 times between 6:45 and 8:30 this morning. He went 4 times at the space museum. I doubt he has an infection though because he just finished a course of amoxicillin for an ear infection. Plus, although he usually gets up during the night to pee he didn't last night, so I don't think it's a "can't." I don't know what that is about.

Saturday was Picnic Day, the UC Davis annual "open house." Unfortunately, it poured all day. I did manage to take the kids to the Doxie Derby, the dachsund races the vet school runs. They are pretty hilarious. They are held on the floor of the rec hall where they play basketball. They have a box at one end that fits six dogs. The dogs tend to have names like Precious and Little Miss Muffin, which the MC reads out. The vet students have a stuffed animal tied to a string wound around a bike wheel at the other end. They unwind the string and show the dogs the stuffed animal, then lift the door and start winding the string to pull it across the floor and give the dogs something to chase. However, it didn't work very well this year; most of the dogs ran randomly around the floor, ran up into the stands, or jumped on their owners rather than going in the proper direction. It is quite a crowded gym - there are probably 1000 people there or so at a time - so maybe the dogs find it overwhelming. It's entertaining though, particularly on a rainy day.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Quiet week...

Spring break is passing by slowly. The weather is coolish (65 or so) and windy (luckily it rained only one day). We have been to various parks, to the library, to the bookstore, etc. Really not too much to report.

I went to see Blades of Glory last night with a friend. Will Ferrell has no shame.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007


It is spring break for both the kids this week, and I took them to the zoo in Sacramento yesterday. Apparently all of Sac had the week off too because it was packed. We enjoyed seeing the penguins that are on loan from the San Francisco zoo. We were in the gift shop at the end and Douglas was enjoying playing with a plastic flamingo, along with another little boy who looked to be about two years old. His mother then told him he couldn`t have it because "It`s for girls." I was pretty aghast at that. Flamingos are now for girls only because they`re pink? She probably doesn`t let her daughter eat blueberries either.

I had a nice birthday. Thanks to all for the gifts. Dan got me a book called the Museum of Kitschy Stitches which is quite hilarious. She also has a blog with all kinds of interesting photos on it like this one.

Sunday, April 08, 2007


We got down to Marin yesterday and it was drizzling. We also managed to take the wrong exit and end up in San Francisco, but our friends, who were at the right exit, called us and suggested the Discovery Museum (in the Golden Gate Nat'l Rec Area, right by the GG Bridge in an old military complex) instead, so we went there. The kids had a GREAT time.

This was taken after the bridge finally became visible. It was fogged in during most of the time we were there.

Owen peeking out of the porthole of a boat there.

Owen and Caleb fooling around at lunch.

Douglas, Helena, and Elizabeth pretending to be bees.

The kids love pretending to build the Golden Gate Bridge.

Elizabeth dressed up like a seal.

Owen and Andrew playing with trucks.

Friday, April 06, 2007

Conversation yesterday

Owen: Why don't we go hunting?
Me: You want to kill and eat a deer?
Owen: Well, we could hunt a cow.

I related this to Dan and he said, "Yeah, that'd be a challenge."

Tomorrow we are going hiking with friends at the Tennessee Valley Trail in Marin that ends in a beach. It's supposed to be an easy walk, but we wonder how Douglas will take it (1.6 mi or so). The antibiotics are doing him some good, but he's still not sleeping all that well. It does seem to be getting better though, slowly but surely.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Ear infection

I took the kids to a park yesterday with some friends and Douglas suddenly went downhill fast. In half an hour he went from playing happily to lying on my shoulder crying, saying his ear hurt and he wanted to go home.

Luckily, the urgent care was still open when we got home at almost 5 so we made it to Sacramento by 5:30 and he got in to see the doctor. He has an ear infection (again). This bug is about to wipe us out. He's been waking several times during the night needing one thing or another (nose wiped, eyes wiped, blankets pulled up, whatever) and we are tired. The doctor said she's seeing a lot of it - she thinks it's a new adenovirus. Owen has it too, and so do I, but not as bad as Douglas.

The raffle is going on and I've been busy with that, collecting money, giving out new tickets and so forth.

Monday, April 02, 2007

Germ city

Poor Douglas. First he had a fever, then a cold, now another cold, with cough, sniffles and conjunctivitis. We had loads of fun sitting in the doctor's office for an hour and a half on Saturday waiting around for the resident to give us some eye drops. Douglas is truly thrilled about receiving them, as you can imagine.

Owen had a baseball game yesterday and got three hits. He also managed to get a kid out at first. Baseball seems to be going well for him. So is guitar - this week he's learning "Twinkle Twinkle Little Star," "Yankee Doodle," and "Jingle Bells" (notes, rather than chords) and it actually sounds like the song - enough to be recognizable. Without being told what he was playing, Douglas started singing along from the other room.

Sunday, April 01, 2007

Douglas yesterday

Douglas wanted to wash the car, so he and I did that and then he went inside to change since he got his clothes wet. He came out in his bathing suit and enjoyed playing in the puddle in the gutter for a while.

Everything seems to be blooming, including the Santa Barbara daisy.