Monday, October 31, 2005


Gabby and her sister came over to trick-or-treat and paused for a moment to get a picture with Devin. Now, you may be wondering why Desirae wasn't in the picture. Well that is because at this particular moment Desirae and I were at urgent care having her "pink eye" looked at... Yep mid afternoon Desirae's eye closed up and turned all red... Perfect timing! So I came home from work, changed, loaded Desirae up and headed into town. We ended up getting home around 2030 hrs... Oh well...

Sunday, October 30, 2005

Sometimes I wonder...

If this is what the kids think their father looks like? I think this was Denise's way of saying that maybe, just maybe, I take too many pictures. This was from the birthday party and I thought it was pretty funny.

Well I guess work today wasn't too bad considering it was a Sunday. I would have rather stayed home but I think we finished what we planned to. Plus the overtime won't be a bad thing... I even mowed the front yard albeit when the sun was going down and I finished in the dark. But at least that is done...

I am still not sure what we are going to do for halloween and I don't except anyone to actually come to the door. I guess there are a couple more houses around here so it is possible that someone would come - but last year we had NO ONE...

Saturday, October 29, 2005

Gabby's birthday party...

Today was one Gabby’s (one of Devin’s friends from school) birthday party at the park here in town. This was also the first day Devin and Desirae have been out of the house. Both Devin and Desirae have been looking forward to this party for over a week and we were glad they were well enough to go. Gabby’s parents did a wonderful job of setting it up with a great spread of food and a bunch of activities for the kids including many different games and a piñata. Denise did capture some video of that and I still have some editing to do before I can post that. All the kids had a lot of fun and everyone stayed about four hours before everyone started packing up to leave.

I actually got up early this morning for a boondoggle with Kris down to Los Angeles to visit Samys Camera. He wanted to see and touch the Canon and Nikon digital SLRs to figure out what camera he wants to get. With so many different models and options to choose from nowadays I figured Samys would be the best place to go with the largest selection to look at. The folks there were very helpful and answered all our questions and Kris got an opportunity to look at all the models he was interested in. It looks like he is going to go the Canon route probably getting the 20D model. Looked like a really nice camera and seemed to have a good feature set.

It was really nice to head down there and have some time to really look around and talk to people without any of the kids around. I think we got a lot of good information and I think I learned a lot. I think that place is a pretty good resource and that just MIGHT justify the “extra” cost they charge for buying in the store. Their prices are a bit less when you buy online.

Anyway, I did make it home in time to catch the last hour or so of Gabby’s birthday party. I was actually a bit surprised when I arrived home and Denise and the kids were not here.

Oh, for the bad part about today… While I was in Los Angeles I received a call from work informing me that I needed to come in tomorrow morning. On the positive side it will be a few hours of overtime so I guess that isn’t a completely bad thing.

Thursday, October 27, 2005


Well everyone is really starting to feel much better, including Deanna. I think my thing was not full blown and staying home yesterday was a good move.

However because we put Devin back on the steroids they would not give him a flu shot - so no flu shot for him this year. The doctor also said he needs to stay home again tomorrow - but he will be good to go for monday... So Devin didn't go to school all week.

I am just glad that tomorrow is FRIDAY! I have a class I have to sit through all day tomorrow - but I think the change should help make the day go by faster.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

A little better...

Well, I am sick now... I think this is fairly evident to me since I just about finished this blog entry and then hit the wrong button and dumped the entire post. Pretty frustrating...

Everyone else is starting to get a little better and we did make it through last night without anyone throwing up though we were not sure about both Devin and Desirae for a while there.

This evening Denise brought out the construction paper, bat & ghost templates, and set everyone on their way to cutting out these creatures for our halloween decorations. I didn't even know we were going to do halloween decorations. I took the pictures then spent the rest of the time pretty much laying down being a big baby...

Tomorrow Devin will go to the doctor to get checked out and a note saying he can go back to school. If he is considered not sick he will also get a flu shot. Otherwise, if he is still sick they won't give him it and he probably won't get one this year.

That Lacie Porsche drive arrived yesterday (I think). So it appears to be working alright. I have all my photos, videos, and music backed up to the new drive with an automated routine setup to perform daily backups. I have also reformatted my other external and made a copy of everything (minus the music, not enough space) and that is in the safe. So at least my backup routine is better...

Monday, October 24, 2005


So everyone (except Deanna and I - for the moment) are sick in the house. Devin basically kept throwing up until about 0200 hrs this morning so we kept him out of school. Hopefully tonight will be better - but my confidence level isn't high. So without a lot of sleep I am pretty well beat. So - sorry about the limited blog entries and hopefully everyone will start feeling better soon!

Saturday, October 22, 2005

Renaissance Festival

Denise went to the Renaissance Festival today and I stayed home with the kids. Well she did take Deanna with her, but I am not really sure if that counts! Anyway she had a good time and she said that it was pretty good and a bit better than last year. I wish we could have all went but with Devin getting sick (again) it wasn't a good idea.

We did start moving things around today in preparation for the new table. We did get the book shelves moved. We are not done yet but we should be tomorrow. So when the table arrives we have the spot ready for it!

Friday, October 21, 2005

Weather is changing...

Well, this photograph doesn't really have much to do with the title of today's blog - but I like the picture and I haven't posted it before so I figured it was appropriate! However the weather is changing around here and it is getting much cooler and nicer. The lighting has also been beautiful and I need to find something to capture that.

So, this week is over and the day is just about done. The significant event for today was the fact that Devin received his new glasses today. They look pretty good too.

I know your thinking, "Okay camera boy, why isn't there a picture?" That is a very good question and one I don't really have a good answer for. I guess I could attempt to make an excuse. Okay, here it goes, my backup hard drive has locked up and become unreliable. I spent most of the time when I got home today getting what I could off the drive and trying to recover - and maintain a backup of my data (read photos). I think I have been successful. I have also order a Lacie Porsche 250GB firewire drive from Apple. Now I hope that this is a good drive and works as advertised. My "plan" is to buy one of these drives ever couple of months and then rotate the backups.

Okay - so why am I so paranoid about this? Well I was talking to a fellow shutterbug (he is much better than I am) at work today that just got back from a 2 week trip to Africa. He bought himself one of those nifty external drives with a card reader and proceeded to take about 6000 pictures on his once-in-a-lifetime-trip. Well, he got home and the thing CRASHED on him. It is currently back at the manufacturer where HOPEFULLY they are going to swap the drive out and save his photographs - otherwise he has lost EVERYTHING. Anyway - that has made me a bit paranoid and I want multiple backups of my images...

On the weekend I am not really sure what we are going to do. The only plan really is for me to take some things back to the stores (like our cordless telephones, my external hard drive) but I think I will be doing that solo. There is also the renaissance fair going on tomorrow in town, but with the kids sick I don't think it is going to be a family affair. That is really too bad because they make really good photo opportunities too, but oh well!

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Great Pumpkin...

Devin and Desirae delved into the pumpkin carving duties for the large pumpkin Denise bought last week. Devin has been hounding us to let him carve it up for the last few days so today was the day. Devin is the one that REALLY wanted to do this. Anyway - the kids helped choose the design and then Denise did all the "finishing" work. I think they did a might fine job!

Not much else is going on and I am really glad that the weekend is almost upon us. This has been a difficult week and I am fairly glad it is almost over.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

In loving memory of...

Loyd C. Long, born 16 Oct 1911 in Gould, Oklahoma and passed away on 15 Oct 2005. The service was very nice and small with military honors being presented by the Kern County Veterans Association. There were about 25 to 30 people there. After the service some of the people went over to my dad's house to visit. Rev Milt Cole told a few stories about my grandfather mostly related to camping and hunting. As I mentioned in a previous entry camping and fishing was one the main memories that I have with my grandpa.

Below are some of the photographs that I took. For the most part I didn't go over board with the pictures.

Grandma Leatha and my Cousin Ronda

Grandma Leatha and my brother Daren

My grandma Leatha watching a video of my brother playing at the Crystal Palace in Bakersfield

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Not much...

Is going on around here today. They closed the school today because of flooding - so no school for Devin. Devin did do a really good job of looking after Deanna today and gave Denise the opportunity to get some things done around the house. I have been kind of beat lately so it has been a little difficult to take any photographs.

Monday, October 17, 2005

Denise & Deanna...

I had not really planned on doing a blog entry for today and was going to just leave it alone tonight. However, I was editing some pictures that I took tonight of Denise and Deanna and this one really jumped out at me. I was actually in the "office area" watching a how-to-use-flash video and I started taking pictures of Denise and Deanna. I was basically just messing around. Denise wanted to show me the snuggle kiss that Deanna can do and that's when I capture the above moment. Anyway since I have been in a melancholy mood I thought this might lighten things up a bit.

Sunday, October 16, 2005


Well, this was kind of a depressing day. I found out today that my grandfather passed away last night. He hasn't been doing well for a while so it isn't a big surprise or anything but it is unsettling nonetheless. I spent the afternoon reflecting on the things my brother and I used to do with him when we were growing up like camping, playing in the garage and basically probably just driving him crazy. I know this is just part of life but it is just strange when it happens. It is a defining moment when the story basically ends there is nothing more.

So I say just take a moment to pause and appreciate the person next to you.

Saturday, October 15, 2005


Denise purchased two small pumpkins for the kids to DRAW on instead of cutting up. Devin and Desirae had a pretty good time drawing on their respective pumpkins. They also decided to name them too; Devin named his Charlie and Desirae named hers Angel. The ink idea might not have been a good one because it would come off and Devin kept touching his pumpkin so it go all over his hands.

Denise also put together her craft table she bought last week when we went to JoAnns. It looks like it is pretty nice and is going to work out well. She also wants to put it in the dinning room when she isn't using it, with a table cloth, and use it as a serving table (or something like that). I just can't visualize it but I am sure it is going to be good.

Speaking of tables we haven't received any update on our table - but it should be on it's way here now. We are both really looking forward to having that show up!

Here is also a video of Deanna getting a breathing treatment... Not a lot of fun - but it is something we have to do regularly now...

I also printed the photographs for the new frames Denise bought me last week... I went ahead and made smaller versions to post on the web. I was really happy with the way they turned out especially the one with the bird. Denise asked me to make that one and originally it wasn't even on the long list for possible prints. But after some cropping I think it turned out really nice.

Friday, October 14, 2005

Hey! Nana & Max!

Nana and Max made the long trip back down here from Livermore to visit the kids (and us!). They drove down today and got here pretty early. Both Devin and Desirae have been asking about them for weeks now and they were REALLY looking forward to them visiting. It does kind of suck that Deanna is sick and I am still under the weather. When I got home from work everyone was playing in the living room and visiting.

Devin wrote a book in school about the new puppy that he wants. He illustrated (pretty neat work for a 6 year old, he’s an illustrator now) the pictures and wrote the story. Needless to say he did mention in the story that “I don’t think daddy wants me to have a puppy…” I am not sure but I have a sneaky suspicion that I might loose that battle…

Well like I mentioned above Deanna and I are still not 100% but we are both getting better. Deanna still has to have her breathing treatments regularly but afterward she seems pretty good so things are definitely (have you ever noticed I use that word a lot in this blog) getting better.

We have not heard anything more on the referral for Deanna to go to Children’s Hospital. It generally takes a few days for the medical group to draft and authorize the referral but I assume we will get it maybe sometime next week or the week after.

I am beginning to get a little sick and tired of UPS... In the last two weeks they have screwed up two shipments for us. The first one was the books that Denise order and the latest one was a B&H Photo order I made for a replacement eye cup. It seems they can get the package in the local area - and then they send it to the WRONG place!!! I wrote BH and asked them to credit me the shipping (that I paid extra for to get it YESTERDAY). I am thinking that I am not going to use UPS anymore - at least for a while

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Another tiring day...

Deanna is doing much better - with her air treatments and antibiotics. She still isn't sleeping throughout the night - but her breathing is much better and she appears to be feeling better. When Denise picked up the new nebulizer for Deanna and Devin they also gave her some "special" masks. I think Deanna is a bit too young (duh) to really appreciate them, but they are kind of cute. The funny thing is that she really doesn't mind the mask whereas Devin HATED the masks and would freak out every time we tried to use them. It is a bit frustrating that we have to use the same stuff with Deanna and I think we are both hoping this is an isolated event and not something that we are going to always have to do like we do with Devin.

Well I think among everything else I have also gotten sick so I am pretty beat and I am going to call it quits...

Okay - so I was a bit more out of it than I thought and I forgot to actually push the "publish post" bottom to post this on the blog... So it is a bit late, but here it is nonetheless...

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Getting better...

It's hard to believe that all our concern over the last 24 hour has been because of Deanna. I mean doesn't she just look sweet and innocent? So Denise took her back into the doctor today to see how she has responded to treatment and the answer came back good. So NO HOSPITAL stay! However they are concerned about that growth on her neck. Kind of weird that they are worried about that now. So they went ahead and did 6 x-rays to check her heat and hip. I am not sure what they are thinking on that one but I guess it is just something else to worry about. But at least they are referring us to Children's Hospital again! Woohoo!

With everything that has happened in the last couple of days Devin has been REALLY behind on his homework. But tonight he caught himself back up and did just about all of the work on his own and pretty fast. There was also a note from Jadye saying that Devin walked the entire way to and from the lunch area (which is about as far as you can walk at school). So all in all I was pretty impressed with him today.

Well Devin is starting to wear his new eye-patch! I tried to get him to let me take a picture wearing it but he wasn't really happy about the whole situation so I refrained from taking it. I think he thought the idea was cooler yesterday BEFORE he had to actually wear the darn thing. I just hope that it actually helps! Considering the success we have had working with his legs maybe we can have the same success with his eyes! We can hope can't we!

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

You got to be freaking kidding me…

So now Deanna is FULLY sick and the doctor is VERY concerned it might be RSV or pneumonia. Denise took the kids into town primarily for Devin’s eye appointment and thought she would take Deanna by Dr. Burchette to have her check to make sure she was okay since she wasn’t breathing well. Okay – first let’s set the stage – Denise went into town around 1130 hrs and waited… Then waited some more… Then waited some more, and then finally had to leave Dr. Burchette’s office because she was going to be late for Devin’s eye appointment. So she left that office to go to the other for her 1330 hrs appoint and then waited there. She wasn’t finished at the eye doctor until 1600 hrs and then was on her way BACK to Dr. Burchette’s office.

Now I hadn’t realized this but while she was waiting before they did to an x-ray of Deanna’s lungs because they were concerned about that. However NO ONE would say or do anything else because of Deanna being so young and premature. I think we both expected Dr. Burchette to say ya – she a little sick – but don’t worry about it. Well, she didn’t say THAT! So she gave her multiple breathing treatments while Denise was there and a bunch of prescriptions for more breathing treatments at home and antibiotics. Denise has to take her back in tomorrow so they can see if the treatment is working. If it is GREAT otherwise they will admit her into the hospital tomorrow to test for the RSV thing or to treat the pneumonia.

Anyway Denise called me around 1800 hrs and said that I should just start heading down there because at the time we didn’t know if they were going to admit her tonight or not. Besides we still had to get the prescriptions filled and there was NO WAY the pharmacy in town would be able to fill it tonight. Basically we got home around 2145 hrs and are planning for a long night…

Devin’s eye appointment went well and he is getting a new prescription for glasses and the optometrist wants him to wear an eye patch on his good eye for two hours three times a week. So that should be fun… Had everything not gone to pieces with Deanna Denise was going to get him a pirate patch… Oh well…

Monday, October 10, 2005

Remember yesterday when...

Remember yesterday when I mentioned that I think I messed my back up? Well - this morning I could barely get out of bed nor could I really move around. I was in major pain - well technically I am still pretty well laid up right now. I am trying to move around to stretch it out - because the longer I lay down the worse it is when I go to get up. I probably should have followed Denise's advice and gone into urgent care today - but I didn't. So tomorrow - if I can't get up in the morning I am going in so I can get properly medicated. I had a sneaky feeling that I had done myself in but I was kind of hoping that I was wrong…

Deanna is still having a tuff time when we put her down. This has been especially hard today since I have been out of commission and our plan was to do things around the house. So… We didn’t get much accomplished today…

SIDENOTE - Denise ordered two books from Barnes and Noble. Well she has been following the UPS tracking all week and everything was to be delivered on Friday. However, the package scans at the UPS Ontario location and then just disappears. No package was delivered - and UPS's tracking does not show any other movement of it. Denise did call B&N today and they were happy to state, "We didn't lose it, UPS lost it. So I am sorry there is nothing we can do until UPS admits they lost it". So according to policy they have 1 to 8 days to try and find the package before B&N can do anything for use. Great customer service! I mean I guess there really isn't much they can do - but it would have been nicer if they could have been a BIT more helpful.

Sunday, October 09, 2005

Los Angeles Zoo

Well we changed our minds about going to the Zoo on Monday and went ahead and loaded up and went today! It was A REALLY LONG day, but it was a lot of fun! We got on the road about 1000 hrs and drove into the parking lot a little after 1230 hrs. That included a lunch stop, getting gas, and a potty break, so all-in-all we made really good time. When we got there someone also held a handicap parking stop for us and that was REALLY nice of them to do that.

Devin was the real trooper of the day and he WALKED the entire way and we never had to put him in anything. He held in there all the way to the end even though he was getting VERY tried toward the end of the journey. Denise and I were both really proud of him for that and there were a lot of other kids that were in strollers that didn't make it so it was pretty impressive. Especially considering that a lot of the walking was up and down hills which is even harder for him.

We did not get to see EVERYTHING but considering how larger the park/zoo is I am not too surprised. I think if we would have been fully mobile we would have been hard pressed to get around the entire park. We did get to see everything the kids wanted to see (snakes, lions, and elephants).

Fortunately before we left the house Denise said I probably shouldn't bring my camera bad. When she said that I was in the process of taking things out of the bag to lighten the load. However, after see mentioned that I though she had a point so I only brought the Nikon D70, Nikon 17-70 3.5~4.5, Nikon 80-200 2.8, extra battery, extra memory cards, and the mono-pod. This setup actually worked out really well and made for a fairly light load. I may have to think about that in the future. There were a few instances that I wish I would have had a different (faster) lens with me - but this setup worked pretty darn good. As it turned out I didn't need the extra battery or any of the memory cards!

I created a smugmug album with the rest of the pictures and the link is HERE!

Since we were basically in Los Angeles when we were done with the zoo we too a trip down into LA in search of someplace to eat. We had planned to find a Mexican restaurant however we ended up going to Wendy's on Sunset Blvd just down the road from Hollywood High School. On the trip out we drove right by the Kodak Theater which was kind of interesting.

Anyway I am pretty well beat and I trashed m back today. I have taken a bunch of pain killers and I need to finish this up and go to bed. I just hope Denise and I are both back to normal tomorrow.

Saturday, October 08, 2005

Why did we go into town?

We had this BRIGHT idea to do into town for some reason today. Denise wanted to go to Jo-Ann's to check out a craft table she was wanting. She received an online coupon for it and wanted to see if they had one. So we headed into town for a grand adventure. So our first stop, well actually our second stop - no wait a minute our THIRD stop was at Jo-Anns. I will go more into that later! Anyway - back to the story - they did have the table she wanted and she also found some patterns that she liked. The new "SUPER" store that they just built is really nice and pretty darn big especially compared to their old store. They also had a really large FRAME selection, so I might just have to go back and find some nice frames (they are expensive though).

The wind was really blowing today and every time we got out of the van Desirae felt like she was going to get blown away. Denise did put on a sweater for her right after this picture because she felt like she was FREEZING.

Okay - back to stops one and two. Our first stop was to Ramon's Mexican restaurant which I am sure is a BIG surprise to everyone reading this blog. It was nice and we actually ran into one of Devin's old aids. It has been about three years since we have seen her and she was really excited to see Devin. Actually she said she recognized us (since we were sitting down) by Denise's hair. Anyway it was really nice to catch back up and she has gotten out of the teacher aid business and has started her own house cleaning service. We thought that was pretty cool - and we might even employe her services.

The second stop was to the Jeep dealership in Lancaster. Denise had seen a new Jeep on the road (I have read about it online) that is like a bigger version of the Grand Cherokee. However, Lancaster being Lancaster they didn't have any of the new models so it was a stop and run type of thing. See - that's why I didn't start out with that stuff because it wasn't that exciting. Besides I didn't have any pictures of that - and I needed to lead with something that went with the picture!

Our next trip (after Jo-Ann's) was to Barnes and Noble books. I was wanting to look again for Photoshop books and photography books. I really lucked out on the photo book because I found EXACTLY what I was looking for in Spring into Digital Photography. I have been looking for a book that covers the fundamentals and this one really hits the nail on the head. Everything I have found before this book (and didn't buy) just wasn't what I was looking for. This one goes through all the basics; lighting, compositing, rules-of-thirds, leading lines, etc. The other book I found was Adobe Photoshop CS2 one-on-one This one wasn't really the one I was going to get - but it came with a two hour video tutorial from the same company that did the tutorial that came with my Photoshop box. Denise found three different puzzles that look like they will be interesting.

Well it wouldn't be a normal trip into town without having to stop and feed Deanna. She was really pretty good for the trip and we only had to stop once. Other than that she pretty much slept the entire time.

Our plan for the remainder of the weekend is to make a trip to the Los Angeles Zoo at some point. We were thinking about going tomorrow but have decided we need to get some things done around the house. Since Monday is a holiday for me we are thinking we will just head down there then

Friday, October 07, 2005

Children's Hospital

Today was the BIG day. We made our way down to Children's Hospital down in Los Angeles. The drive down there wasn't too bad and only took us a little over 2 hours to get here. The appointment went well with the doctors saying that he is actually doing much better than was indicated in his physical therapy referral. They also didn't think now was a good time for either the botox or the surgery and thought that we should wait and see how things go. They also very happy with the way his muscles would flex and thought that was a very good sign. There are still problems - but he seems to be doing well. They did prescribe new AFOs and gave me a detailed prescription for that before we left. We also had a chance to talk to a few different people about different types of insurance. We have a couple more people to call next week - but I think we are leaning toward Blue Cross/Blue Shield as a PPO.

Devin (being Devin) got really bored waiting in the doctors office and I let him play with my phone. There are some games on it so in the picture he is trying to play the games. In retrospect it wasn't really a good idea because when the doctors started coming in all he wanted to do was play the game and not anything else... That was a bit frustrating but oh well. The main good thing is that it appears all the work we have done with him - and that he has done - to work on his legs seems to have paid off. I told him a few weeks ago that the botox and surgery thing was all up to him and that if he worked really hard that they may not have to do either. So that is where we are now - so I was pretty proud of him for that.

On that note he wanted to walk around A LOT in the hospital and we made our way around the garden area and their little circle there. We also got a bit lost in the parking garage and ended up going to every floor until we came back to the right one. Devin really got a kick out of that.

One thing that was kind of funny that I just didn't realize is that we were near the "Hollywood" sign. We actually saw it when we were having lunch in Burger King. We were eating and I glanced out the window and saw it. I pointed it out to Devin but I am not sure if he really got what he was looking out. It was pretty cool though - and I took that cheesy picture to capture it.

Speaking of pictures, that camera store (Samy's Camerea) is freaking HUGE! I mean it is a four story building with different departments on each floor. They also had a great selection of stuff to include Domke bags. I was seriously considering buying a Domke bag but they didn't have the color of the style I wanted so I just waived it off. I did have them look at my 20mm lens and their service department said there was really nothing wrong with it so that was kind of cool. I also had the chance to check out some different lens that I was curious about. Their sales staff was pretty friendly and helpful too. Oh - and that part about them having valet parking - well it's true - and even the valet was pretty nice!

The real amazing thing about it is that Devin wanted to WALK up the stairs. I didn't think it was a good idea but he insisted on it. So we went up three flights of stairs to the digital camera area. It was slow going but he REALLY wanted to do it. It was really cool to. We even came down them too. So he walked his little bottom off today.

Okay - so basically we got home - I gave him his meds and came over to the computer to download the pictures and update the blog. So - there is a probably more I need to say - but I am beat and I am going to call it a night!

UPDATE! I forgot to mention this last night on the original post but the traffic coming back was TERRIBLE. The drive from Fairfax to Sunset Blvd which took me 15 minutes earlier in the day too almost an hour on the trip out. I think we hit EVERY stop light and on a few that were green we couldn't go because the traffic wasn't moving. Earlier in the day going the opposite direction I think I did better because I took an off street and drove through a residential area. I think that bypassed a lot of the traffic and got me moving fast - plus it wasn't 5 o'clock traffic either.

One thing I am surprised about is the fact I don't mind driving down in LA that much anymore. Before when we would have to go down there I would freak out and just about have a panic attach. Too much cars, motiion, traffic, people etc. But I think I have FINALLY gotten over that I am don't mind so much doing down there. I still don't like the parking lot freeways and I think I will stay away from the 405 but once you get off the freeway and if you travel surface streets is isn't so bad.

Thursday, October 06, 2005

Thank god it's...

Friday? Wait a minute it's not Friday... It feels like Friday I don't have to go to work tomorrow... So it must be Friday! Okay So maybe it isn't Friday but at least I don't have to go to work tomorrow!

Not much happened today. However we did get news today that our table is finished and it should start heading our way on Monday. We are not really sure when it will get here - but at least it is on it's way.

Denise also made a trek to Costco to check out their vast inventory of Halloween costumes only to find that their VAST was NOTHING. So, now what? I suppose it doesn't really matter because it appears as though this year the IT/COMM section is NOT going to do the trick-or-treat thing. Kind of depressing because they really put on a great event for the kids and Devin and Desirae were REALLY looking forward to it. Now it is possible that since I am in a dark hole and out of the loop on EVERYTHING it might still be on and just have not been able to find the information. But - I seriously doubt it.

Denise also received her new FoodSaver vacuum thing today - but she hasn't had a chance to vacuum anything yet.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

"Sing Me to Sleep"

Deanna is continuing to get upset when she is put down. Today Devin decided to try his hand at calming her down. He did a pretty good job and just get Deanna to stop crying for a little while.

Devin was out of school today for his follow-up appointment with his doctor. She gave him a clean bill of health and said he is doing much better. He still has a ton of medication he is taking but again he is doing much better. Desirae is still coughing a lot and threw up again last night. Hopefully we can make it through tonight without having to change the sheets on her bed. I wish she would just not throw up in her bed...

Devin has his Children's Hospital appointment on Friday. As it stands right now he and I are going to go down and Denise, Desirae, and Deanna will stay here. I just need to make sure that I write down all our new questions before Friday! On another note somehow I found Samy's Camera down in Los Angeles and it is about .6 miles from Children's Hospital and they seem to carry EVERYTHING!

SewingDenise picked up her new (used) sewing machine today. She hasn't had a chance to do anything with it today and I haven't even seen it out of the case yet. But she is happy to have the new one. It should be neat - and it does more things...

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

A very long day

So there isn't going to be much for today. I figured the video would be appropriate for a short entry!

It was a LONG night and a hard day (to stay awake). Desirae was up in the middle of the night because she wasn't feeling good. She didn't throw up or anything - but once I was up I couldn't get back to sleep. I SERIOUSLY considering calling off work today - and in retrospect I probably should have!
FYI - I did find the "white bar problem" for windows users on the site. As it turns out I had some bad HTML code that caused the formatting in Internet Explorer to be off. I replaced the code with something else and it appears to have fixed the problem.

Monday, October 03, 2005

Phantom hair puller...

We have had this recurring problem where Deanna will start wailing in pain with the only problem being that SOMEONE is pulling her hair. For some odd reason she will just grab a big ol' handful of hair and start pulling. Then, as she gets more upset, set starts pulling harder. We end up having to tap on her hand to get her to LET GO. It is a bit sad because she really works herself up. Some folks have thought, when Denise told them of the Phantom Hair Puller that it was one of the other kids doing it to be mean. So just to clarify if Denise speaks of the PHP it is Deanna doing it to herself!

Well Desirae decided she wanted to take pictures today so Denise let her use new little camera. The really sad part about this is that this is one of the better pictures of Denise - and I didn't take it! For some reason I just don't do very well on that. So who knows - maybe Desirae is going to be the next photographer of the family!

I wish I could report that everyone is feeling better but sadly that is not the case. Desirae is still sick and not feeling very good and Devin is still coughing. HOPEFULLY tonight everyone will sleep throughout the night without any problems. I know Denise and I both need some sleep!

Oh - my new full version of Adobe Photoshop CS2 arrived today. Basically there is nothing different from the try-out version I was using with the exception of the days to expiration dialog that came up every time you ran the program. The other nice thing is that it came (unexpectedly) with an hour computer based training DVD that seems really good. I still need some more work with layer masks but the information is really great. Oh - the other thing is the manual that came with the software is a REAL manual as opposed to the garbage that generally comes with software today. I guess considering the full price I can understand Adobe including a better manual - but I was genuinely surprised by that.

Sunday, October 02, 2005

Then there was two...

sickrabiitHoly cow, well now Desirae is sick! So this is moving through the ranks and through the house. Denise is VERY worried that Deanna will get the crud that Devin and Desirae has. Desirae threw up last night and sounded very croupy this morning. HOPEFULLY we will be able to keep both Denise and Deanna from getting anything, but my confidence level isn't high right now. At least Desirae doesn't have the asthma thing going against her so maybe this won't be so bad.

airfilterSo with everything going on - to include the fires down below - we decided that we should just go ahead and purchase an air cleaner. The funny thing is that we were going to purchase one of those ionic living air purifiers and just go that route but when I started searching for them online all I found was post after post about how BAD they are and how they can be harmful to your health. We finally check said screw it and bought a Kenmore. This one at least had good reviews, was AHAM certified and moves a lot of air. We just HOPE that it make a difference.

The worst part about having to go into town is how much TIME it takes to do it. 45 minutes to drive down there - 45 minutes back and then whatever you need to do while there. I did the on-line purchase thing for Sears thinking that I would just walk in, scan my card, and be on my way. Boy was that a mistake. I could have bought the darn thing in the department, get lunch, and then it might have been ready. So I don't think I will be doing that again any time soon. I was really hoping that it would have sped things up - but it didn't.

I did make a run over to Barnes and Noble to look for a cook book for Denise and more photoshop books for me. Both where a bust as they didn't have the cook book she was looking for At Home Cafe: Great Food and Fun for Everyone and I couldn't find any Photoshop books that really jumped out and answered any of my current questions. So I bailed on that idea.

It is truly amazing what you can find when you just keep hitting the "NEXT BLOG" button at the top of the page. I was doing that tonight looking for different ways people had formatted their style when I came across this one site that had a SHADOW on their text. Now they didn't need a shadow, but they had one. So I did a quick view source and found the magic little code that puts a drop shadow on text. I have been beating my head against the wall trying to figure a way to make the text look right on my new header - and now I have it. I just told it to drop shadow the text with black and now you can actually read everything. Anyway I thought some of you might find that interesting out there...

With that, I think I am going to sleep...

Hmm, it looks like this may only work with the Safari web browser... Will have to check from different machines tomorrow...

Saturday, October 01, 2005

Wait a minute - where did the day go?

Hmm, so we THOUGHT about rearranging the house and setting up the crib in Desirae's room. So what happened? I am not really sure. The kids were cleaning up their rooms and the next thing I know it is 1800 hrs and the day is about over. Let's backtrack for a moment and try and figure out what happened.
  1. We woke up
  2. Made coffee, umm coffee...
  3. Checked email and read forums
  4. Denise made Breakfast Stuff, umm Breakfast Stuff
  5. Denise went to get hair cut, I did nothing...
  6. Oh wait a minute, I took a shower, ya that's something!
  7. We loaded everyone up and went to Ramon's for lunch/dinner
  8. We came home...
Okay - so that doesn't really sound like much... I did take a nap... Hmm, I think I might have wasted this day, I hate it when that happens... I know, it's xbox! That's the evil that stole our time! That damn Microsoft!

More Photoshop CS2

I was playing with my trial version of Adobe Photoshop CS2 and following along with the book Denise got me and did the photo above. I think this is a picture I posted in the past - as a color photo - but I followed the tutorial on B&W conversion, framing, and finally the name thing. I think it looks pretty cool and the Epson R1800 did a pretty good job of printing the B&W image. I know everything I read says that it isn't great for that and that the Epson R2400 is better - but I think this one did a fine job.