Sunday, November 21, 2010

Autumnal Rite of Passage

We took advantage of the beautiful weather last weekend for to clean up some of the leaves in the back yard. The Kid was never into the whole "jumping into leaf piles" thing, but she sure changed her tune this year.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Been a while, hasn't it?

So, yeah, I've been letting this lie fallow for a bit. getting back the creative spirit that left me for some reason. Been busy, too, but I'll catch folks up on things in short order.

I figure this is like a farmer's field. I can't have something in it all the time without some depletion of the underlying nutrients.

I'll have more in the next day or so. I promise...

Friday, May 21, 2010

One Day...

I am the father of a 3 year old, as well as a bit of a history buff. These two seemingly disparate worlds came together yesterday in a rather amusing way.

The Kid is beginning to express her independence, so she likes to "read" her books to herself. She looks at the pictures and then makes up stories about what she sees. The stories usually go something like this: "One day, there was a bunny rabbit. Then he took a nap." It's pretty cute, really.

She's also fond of using the potty all by herself, only needing us at the very end.

So yesterday, she goes into the potty and tells me to wait outside the door until she's done.

Don't worry, I'm getting to the history part in a minute.

Through the door, I hear, "One day, there was a man with a moustache..."

I peek inside, and there is my daughter, sitting on her little potty, reading this month's Quarterly Journal of Military History.

I'll give you three guesses who is on the cover this month.

Answer here.

Friday, May 14, 2010

A Sad Day

At Chez Lex. For the two or three of you who read this, but not that, please drop by and leave him a note.

Friday, April 23, 2010

To My Daughter on Her Third Birthday

I cannot begin to tell you
what a difference you've made in our lives
Your smiling face in the morning
your sleepy face at night
There is nothing in the world
that can compare to when you say
"I love you, Daddy."
When a hug and a kiss
can make you feel better
lets me know I'm doing at least something right
You're becoming your own wonderful person
a little more every day
a true testament to your amazing mother
I cannot look at you and not be filled
with love, hope, and joy
You make everything I do worthwhile
Just remember that I love you more
than you can ever know.

- Your Loving Father

Monday, February 8, 2010

Snow-pocalypse III: Welcome to the Thunderdome

The National Weather Service is calling for an additional 10 - 20 inches beginning tomorrow afternoon. Heaven help us all. 4 feet of snow on the ground is a bit much, don't you think? I can shovel it just fine but where will am I going to put it? The snow bank next to the driveway is already 8 feet high. Pulling into the driveway is like flying an X-Wing through the trench to destroy the Death Star. Reminds me of bulls-eyeing womp rats in my T-16. Good times.

By this time tomorrow, this town is going to be like a really cold version of Max Max, complete with roving gangs of marauders and to-the-death cage matches for toilet paper.

At least one area school system has already said that school is closed until Tuesday. Next Tuesday.

Will we ever get out of here?

Snow-pocalypse II: Electric Boogaloo

Again? Hey, I love snow just as much as the next guy, but this is ridiculous. Redonkulous, some would say. It started at about 1 in the afternoon, and 24 hours later there's well over 2 feet on the ground. An inch per hour for an entire day, and it didn't stop until later that night.

A friend calculated that, assuming 20" average snowfall across the state of Maryland, it amounts to about 4 cubic miles of snow. It would make a snowman (using the standard 4:3:2 ball ratio) about 21,000 feet tall. That's quite a snowman.

We're trying to keep The Kid occupied, since getting out is a non-starter for at least 24 hours. She can play reasonably well in a foot of snow, but this stuff is up to her chin. Where's the fun in that?

On the upside, we didn't loose electricity, which is more than I can say for some of my friends in the area. Now that I've said that, I fully expect to be in the dark any second now.

Nope. Still here.

Our living room looks like a Chinese landfill with all the toys scattered about. We're all terminally bored, except the cat. He's pretty much business as usual. What I wouldn't give to be him.

On the upside, we're had The Wife's famous chicken and dumplings for dinner, which is just about the very best thing to have when you're snowed in.

I'll post some pictures as soon as I have something to take a picture of that isn't just a wall of white.

Did I mention that we're getting another 5+ inches on Tuesday? Gulp.

Snow pictures 2010

None of us went to work today. The Wife tried, but only got about 4 miles down the road before she turned around. Discretion being the better part of valor and all that.

We dug out yesterday, and I came to the conclusion that I am an old man. 2 1/2 feet of snow weighs a lot.

Here is what our driveway looked like before we began the shoveling.

About 3 hours later, we had most of the driveway done. For a sense of scale, here's my car, snow still on the roof.

Yes, that's a MINI Cooper. One of the smallest cars on the market.

BTW, we didn't put it in the garage because we were operating under the theory that the leaving it out would mean less snow to shovel off the driveway. I didn't get any statistically valid measurements, but I think it worked. Especially with the amount of snow that we got.

The back yard? Yeah. Won't be visiting that for a while.

We did get The Kid out in it yesterday, but there's not much to do in snow that deep.

Still calling for more snow tomorrow night into Wednesday. At least 5 inches, probably more. daytime highs in the high 20's. Down into the low teens at night.

Lastly, our good friends the Stuttses (who are stationed in Hawaii) posted some photos of the view from their kitchen window. Here is what ours looks like. I'd rather have theirs.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Happy 2010

Now that it is almost February, and the snow is (almost) all melted, I'll go ahead an put up a new post. I was going to make a New Years resolution to blog more often, but then I remembered that I don't do resolutions. Too much work.

Anyway, we had a wonderful Christmas, surrounded by all manner of friends and relatives. New Year's Eve was a night to remember as well, if only we could remember all of it.

The Kid, being 2, really cleaned up this year. Loved everything she got, especially her new rocking horse, which she promptly dubbed "Midnight". Oh, how she loves to gallop along.

We spent time with our Midshipman, to whom The Kid is becoming more and more attached.

Graduation day in 2012 is going to be tough. On all of us, methinks.

Now, for no particular reason, The Kid, with donut. And a donut shirt. Very po-mo.

Lastly, The Wife was out of town last weekend, leaving me to watch The Kid for 3 entire days. Haven't done that in over a year. Saturday was crummy weather-wise, so that meant a lot of playing in the house. On Sunday, I decided to take The Kid where all little girls love to go and probably dream about. That's right, the Greater Washington Model Railroad Expo. We rounded up Grandma and Grandpa and then made our way to the Dulles Expo Center.

Before I get to the pictures and (gasp) video, a quick warning to reader Toolbox:

Please, please try and contain yourself, especially when you realize that your granddaughter absolutely LOVED all of this. Loved it, loved it, loved it.

Back to the expo. The place was packed, and was quite impressive.

All the different scales (HO, N, Z, etc.) were represented by some truly astonishing layouts. Here's a switchyard in (I think) N-scale.

Thomas was there, of course, in may different forms. There was even a Thomas that the kids could ride, but the line for that went pretty much all the way around the building, and could have ended somewhere in West Virginia for all I know. We kept The Kid away from that particular part of the exhibit hall.

One of the modelers had built a special Thomas track that the little ones could see. Nice touch. Note the Lexan sneeze/drool/booger shield.

So yeah, she liked it well enough. She liked the big ones too. Here's a representative example.

After we got home, The Kid apparently decided that she wanted to hypnotize me into getting her a train set.

Like I would ever refuse...