Thursday, June 26, 2008

Randumb Thoughts - by Brad

Dubai... crazy skyscrapers and other attractions. I read an article on CNN about a skyscraper they are going to build in Dubai that has floors that rotate individually. It got me looking at all the development that has been going on over there. Makes me want to visit sometime... maybe in 25 years.

Church league softball... our church had our last three regular season games on Monday night. Yes, we had a triple header. We weren't doing so great going into it with a record of 6 wins, 8 losses, but we got on fire and won all three games to finish our season at 9 and 8. Tonight is the first round of playoffs. Single elimination. However, even if we win both games tonight, most of our team won't be around tomorrow (including myself) so we will have to forfeit anyway.

My '65 Mustang... has been out of commission for the past year with a bad clutch. I never got around to getting it fixed, so my dad replaced the clutch for me this week. I can now drive it again! Whoo-hoo! Thanks Dad!

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Camping - by Brad

Here is a follow up to my post about my nephews jumping in the cold water. My parents posted several pictures of the camping trip, but I decided to post a few more.

My sister and my dad whittling hot dog sticks...

My mom reading to Jessie and Spencer...

All of the cousins digging into a half gallon of neapolitan ice cream dumped on the table in their trailer. I have fond memories of this type of activity from when I was a kid...

My mom and me...

Spencer's new whiny/confused face. What if he had a twin???

Friday, June 13, 2008

Plutoids - by Brad

It was almost two years ago that I blogged about the demotion of Pluto to a new category of "dwarf planets". When this term was coined, there were three official dwarf planets; Pluto, Eris (another Pluto-like object way out there), and Ceres (a round asteroid between Mars and Jupiter).

A couple days ago, the International Astronomical Union issued a press release that they are dropping the title of "dwarf planet" and adding a new definition of "plutoid". These plutoids will consist of the larger objects orbiting way out there like Pluto and Eris. Therefore, poor Ceres is now unclassified. I guess since Ceres is the only one of its kind they don't care to classify it.

This step makes sense to me. I like that we can now say we just have 8 planets in our solar system. We shouldn't have to mess around with explaining dwarf planets. If we want to address Pluto, it can be lumped in with the other plutoids that are in a large asteroid belt on the outside of the solar system.

Image from IAU press release

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Griffey 600 - by Brad

I received my first pack of baseball cards from our pastor in Friday Harbor in 1986 (I was six years old). In the following couple years, I grew increasingly enamored by baseball and the Seattle Mariners.

When Ken Griffey Jr. arrived at Seattle in 1998, it sealed the deal for my childhood love for baseball. He was the shot in the arm the M's needed. They were at their best in the early 90's, even thought they didn't make it to the World Series. Then as I got into high school and the Mariners lost all their good players (Griffey, Alex Rodriguez, Randy Johnson, etc.) my love for baseball was lost as well.

Well, yesterday Griffey hit his 600th home run. He is now number 6 on the all-time list of home run hitters. I have enjoyed hearing the reports that he might retire as a Mariner after he hits 600. I would be pretty excited if Griffey made his way back to Seattle. I'm sure it wouldn't bring back my childhood love for baseball, but it would definitely make me want to go to a few games to watch Griffey play again as a Mariner.

This is the catch that hooked me as a Griffey fan (circa 1990)...

I still have a Seattle Times newspaper clipping of this catch that my grandparents gave me (it wouldn't scan very well). It is in a binder full of Ken Griffey Jr. paraphernalia.

Monday, June 09, 2008

Cold Nephews - by Brad

This last weekend, we had planned to go to camping on Whidbey Island with my parents and sister's family. However, the forecast was for mid-50's and raining the entire time. So at the last minute we changed plans and decided to just camp around Wenatchee, with the same company. So we headed to Lincoln Rock State Park where the weather was a little better... at least we had a little sun and a few degrees warmer.

Even though it was only upper-60's my nephews, Ryan and Jake, decided they wanted to go swimming in the 50 degree Columbia River.

They were having a difficult time actually getting in the water above their waists, so I told Ryan that we would video him and post it on our blog if he went all the way under. He held up his end of the deal, so I am following through also. Unfortunately, the camera ran out of space on the card after a few seconds...

We will probably have a few more pictures of the weekend in the next couple days.

Sunday, June 08, 2008

Season 1, Done - by Brad

Over the last couple weeks, we have been wrapping up a lot of evening commitments to take a break for the summer. We are hoping that this means a slightly less busy schedule, but I have a feeling we will find things to fill up our evenings again.

Elliott finished his first year in tee ball last week. It was surprising to see the 5 and 6 year-olds actually improve over the course of a couple months. At the team's end of season pizza party, they got bobble head trophies...

Elliott will have another year of tee ball before he starts playing with strikes and outs... and winners and losers.

Sunday, June 01, 2008

Misplaced Shoes - by Linz

Brad has this terrible habit of taking off his shoes and just leaving them all around the house. It's like he just steps out of them and walks away, leaving them behind in all the wrong places. We have very clearly designated places for shoes, but somehow they end up everywhere except those places. (To be fair, I have to point out that this is really my only complaint with Brad in regard to cleaning. He is a very tidy guy!)

So yesterday, I saw Brad's Tevas under the desk in the kitchen (which is clearly not a designated shoe spot). So I said to him (jokingly, not as a nag), "How am I supposed to teach the boys to put their shoes away, if you don't do it." He laughed (but didn't move his shoes). Later that day I asked Elliott to put his shoes away. He is very good about putting things right where they belong. I am very proud of how good he is about cleaning up after himself. I often joke that he is better at this than Brad. But then I walked into the kitchen and saw this...

Like father like son!