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Saturday, December 26, 2009

Merry Christmas! - More Andrew Photos

We have been trying to figure out how to get a decent shot of the two kids together for a while now with little luck. Our house is terribly dark leaving a narrow window of opportunity for photos when the sun is shining in and with Elizabeth being sick we have been trying to keep the two separated as best as we can. Now that they are both well again we tried to pose them some place safe where Elizabeth couldn't drop Andrew if he started to squirm, our bed. This photo was about the best we could do... Just what exactly do you think Andrew is thinking in this picture? I think it would make for a great caption contest! While we at it we also snapped off a few more a Andrew. Enjoy!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

More Baby Photos

We just got everyone home over the weekend and have finally got things around the house into a quasi manageable state. In between Andrews numerous trips to the all-you-can-eat milk buffet we took advantage of a narrow window of opportunity to snap a few pictures.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Andrew's First Photos

Here are a couple of Andrew's first photos. He came in at 8lbs 15oz, and 23 inches in length at 4:27 am. Everyone is doing great, Andrew is eating well and Kate is feeling great.
We'll have more photos in the days to come... check back again soon!

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Thanksgiving


We have so much to be thankful for this year to include our wonderful families. My mom and dad came out to Colorado on Thanksgiving Day and brought the beautiful Texas weather with them. Thanksgiving and the Friday after were in the mid-sixties and we made the most of it by spending a lot of time outside at parks, sitting on the back porch and going to Boulder.


Elizabeth loves going to the park and the more people to go down the slide with, the better. After grandma and grandpa went down the slide about 10 times, they figured out that Elizabeth would still be entertained if they just stood at the top of the slide instead of at the bottom. You see, Elizabeth will continue to ask you over and over and over again to go down the slide with her until you give in. She goes down all by herself but enjoys the company. I think she needs a playmate. Hey! How about a little baby brother!

On Saturday, we headed up to Pearl Street in Boulder. The highlights for Elizabeth were the rocking pig outside a store, an ice cream cone (I've never seen anyone devour ice cream like Elizabeth) and her butterfly balloon hat! We found a great place for lunch, the West End Tavern, and the highlight for dad and Jan was the Odel's Bourbon stout. They liked it so much that (1) Jan tracked it down at a specialty liquor store so that they can have it again the next time my dad visits (I must mention that a bottle of this been costs more than most bottles of wine we purchase) and (2) we had to go back to the tavern this weekend for seconds. . . and they were out.



Elizabeth does not understand locations yet so the entire time we were in Boulder, she asked us "where is my boulder?" So we found this big boulder to take a picture but Elizabeth was not convinced. She kept saying that this is not a boulder, this is a rock!

CD Release!


So a while back you may remember I was asked to play the drums on a recording project for church... Well a few weeks ago we released the CD, Immanuel, and it is available on iTunes. Here is the link to our website: http://forefrontchurch.tv/immanuelep/

Here it is on iTunes: http://itunes.apple.com/us/album/immanuel-ep/id338287974


While I have performed on several CD projects over the years, this was my first on the drums, and let me just say, it was a huge learning experience. Recording drums is an art form in an of itself and you quickly learn that every nuance of your playing is easily heard. This is great when you are playing ineresting parts but is also a double edge sword; being the only person in the band not playing a stringed instrument every mistake really stands out.

I also learned why studio drummers have several snare drums. Depending on the song, some snare drums will complement the music and add life and energy to the song where others just stick out like a sore thumb and take away from the music. Getting that great sound turned out to be much more difficult than I thought.

In the end I am pretty pleased with the music and the way it turned out although I can hear a couple little imperfections that will probably drive me crazy forever!

Next year we are planning to record a complete album which should be great! I know of several things already that I will do differently this next time around and hopefully we will continue to get better. In the mean time, I'm sure you'll enjoy the music, its pretty darn good if I do say so myself!

Monday, November 23, 2009

Trick or Treat

Better late than never! Grandma Lois visited for Halloween and what a treat for Grandma and Granddaughter alike. Elizabeth picks up on things pretty quickly, but when it comes to new fun activities (especially ones that involve treats) she picks up on things immediately. After carving and coloring her pumpkins, Elizabeth put on her Little Red Riding Hood outfit, held onto her pumpkin flashlight (story to come later) and pumpkin basket and was ready to go. I stayed home to answer to door while Jan, Lois, and Elizabeth went off to the neighbor's houses.

Elizabeth's first stop was our house for a practice run. When Elizabeth realized that if she said "trick or treat" and/ or "happy Halloween" that she would get candy (and lots of it) she was a little girl on a mission! It was a little bit chilly outside and I thought Elizabeth would maybe last 10-15 minutes. An hour later, the trick or treaters returned with a full pumpkin basket and a very excited two year old. Elizabeth did great and absolutely loved trick or treating! She ate some peanut M&M's (strangely her favorite . . . the girl loves peanuts) and a lolly pop and that was dinner for the evening. She wanted to go out for more so Jan and I took her to a few more houses.

So back to the pumpkin flashlight...Grandma Lois gave Elizabeth the pumpkin flash light which she brought from MI. Elizabeth loved it and played with it for the two days prior to Halloween. On Halloween, the flashlight of course did not work. The bulb was broken and Elizabeth was very upset because she just loved that flashlight. Jan went to the Home Depot and purchased a $5 light bulb for the $1 flashlight. Need I say more? What parents will do for their kids!

Monday, November 2, 2009

Baby Belly


Jan did a great job taking a few belly pictures. As you can see in this picture, Elizabeth thinks that my belly is a great seat, pillow, resting place etc. I don't mind at all as it means more hugs for me!
I really wanted to get a picture of her kissing her baby brother to be. The picture turned out to be more difficult to achieve than we had thought. It took a little bribery with a few vanilla cookies to capture this shot but I'll take it!

The best part of our family shot was the "behind the scenes." Lois was taking the picture and our friends Ben and Tiff were jumping up and down, trying to get Elizabeth to laugh. It got us all laughing and was pretty entertaining. I wish we got a picture of them as well!

When I was pregnant with Elizabeth, our friend Traci took some belly photos. If you go to her website, you can see a very similar belly shot (same pants and shirt even!) that was taken when I was about 8 months pregnant with Elizabeth. The only difference is that this time around, I am quite a bit bigger!!

(at her website go to families, portfolio, bellies and look for the same black pants)


Friday, October 30, 2009

Trick or Treat? I think we got the Trick!

Last Wednesday and Thursday (Oct 28-29th) we definitely got the trick. Yes, these are pictures of our back yard in October! We got over 2 feet of snow over a period of two days. But only in the state of Colorado can this happen on a Thursday and the sun be shining and melting away the snow by Friday. Come Saturday, the sidewalks and streets were clear and trick or treaters were out in full force. Unfortunately, we didn't get the chance to play with Elizabeth in the snow. She has a bit of a "pants and jacket aversion" right now and would not put on her snow pants or snow jacket. Instead of starting WWIII (Elizabeth is a very determined little girl. . . I wonder where she gets that from?), we just hibernated inside for a few days.



Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Pumpkins everywhere!

We made it to the pumpkin patch on Saturday morning (along with every other family in Colorado). The place was crazy busy so we only stayed long enough to get a few pictures, go on a hay ride and climb around on the pumpkins.


I put the same sweater on Elizabeth that she wore to the pumpkin patch last year. It was huge on her last year and just a bit snug this year. My little girl is growing up so quickly! I can't believe the difference a year makes.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Elizabethisms


Elizabeth: Knock Knock
Mommy or Daddy: Who's there?
Elizabeth: Buddy Gio
Mommy or Daddy: Buddy Gio who?
Elizabeth: Buddy Gio at the front door?

Followed by absolute hysterics and 5 other versions of knock knock with mommy, daddy, grandma, grandpa, Baby Dane etc. being at the front door. Elizabeth learned how to say knock knock jokes in Texas from her cousin Avery and has been attempting ever since. She is just like me when I was growing up and will not stop at just one but rather continue on and on and on for what seems like forever. Payback time, my dad tells me.

Another new Elizabeth development is that she likes to sing! In the past, Elizabeth would sing along a little bit to a song but never initiate one or be able to sing one all the way though. About a week ago, Elizabeth just started singing songs on her own. She'll sing as long as she does not know that your listening or make a big deal about it. Her favorites are twinkle twinkle little star, the incy wincy spider, the ABC's, baa baa black sheep and the Barney Song. My favorite is the Barney Song as I always get a big hug and kiss!



And for the past week, Elizabeth has been sleeping in her big girl bed. For a week, we had it set up in her room along with her crib. She would read books in her big girl bed and then go to sleep in her crib. Last weekend during nap time, she wanted nothing to do with the crib anymore and there has been no turning back since. She is doing pretty well with it but needs to learn how to sleep in a little bit longer for everyone's sake. 4:30 in the morning gets really old really quick! She'll wake up, start hollering for mommy or daddy and that she had a good nap. Then the list of her favorite foods starts? Elizabeth wants peanut butter crackers. Elizabeth wants wrapper cheese (string cheese) etc. etc. The funny part is that she does not realize (or maybe she is just not sure about it yet) that she can get out of her bed whenever she wants.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Recording Project

So a while back you might have seen that I have started playing drums for a church here in the area. Recently, the band leader, Shelly, decided it was time we we make our own CD and asked me to help out with the project. I absolutely love song writing and recording so I couldn't turn down the opportunity.
Studio time is extremely expensive and it can be very stressful if you go in unprepared. To get ready for the project I spent some quality time with the new drums practicing usually while Elizabeth was taking a bath. After her bath, Elizabeth would usually come down and play drums with me which is always a treat! I set up two drums from my old set on the floor for her and she bangs away with me and has a good old time! She is great about wearing her hearing protection too! After a couple of serious song writing sessions to work out all of the parts it was time to head up to the studio and get it all on tape - which these days is actually a computer hard drive.
Kate and Elizabeth came up to check the place out while we were setting up and had fun playing with Shelly in the woods outside the studio. Here is my amazing new drum kit set up in the studio prior to recording! It sounds absolutely spectacular!
Bob is the guy who owns the studio and is doing all of the recording work for us. As it turns out he also goes to the church and is playing a few of the guitar parts on it as well.
Once we got rolling it was like a well oiled machine, we did each song in about 3 takes making sure we had solid bass and drum parts as well as some basic guitar tracks. The guitar guys went back later and laid down some additional guitar tracks to fill it out and thicken it up.
We had a great time recording and I can't wait to hear the finished product! We are having a release party/worship night on Nov 1st to release the CD. It will also be available on iTunes too. I'll be sure to put up a post once it's out.