Gabriel’s 1st Birthday

Amazing. We have a 1 year old in the house.  Not only that, the little guy is actually starting to walk around!  He took his first steps at Christmas, and has been getting better and better.  Now it’s not unusual to see him walk from the living room into the kitchen.  There is still a lot of falling and crawling, but he is getting so much better.  It’s exciting and scary!

For his birthday we had an awesome Robot themed party on my birthday.  I imagine we will be sharing lots of parties together from now on.  At least non of the big birthdays will land together.  (me turning 50 while he’s turning 16 or something)  The party was lots of fun, with our friends and family over.  Gabriel also gave 12 people special presents that came.  In the week that followed 12 of us got sick with a nasty stomach bug!  We thought it could have been the food until we took Gabriel to Mothers day out and they said that the week prior all the kids and teachers had gotten sick also.

I know I haven’t posted in a while so here is a quick run though of the holidays:

Christmas was great.  I think next year will be more fun with Gabriel as this year he just seemed to enjoy the wrapping paper.  Although that’s not to say he doesn’t enjoy all his new toys, he does love them.  We finally put up most of his baby toys, and now he has big boy toys.  🙂  Like I mentioned earlier, Gabriel also started to take his first steps at Christmas.  We tried to get this on camera, but of course he is very camera shy.  ‘Oh look camera, I better stop what I’m doing!’  I don’t know if you may have noticed in my photo albums but Gabriel had a visit from Santa.  We got some great pictures and he seemed to really like Santa.

New years was pretty low key.  Gwendolyn’s parents came over and our friends Cory and Annie.  We played some Beatles Rock Band and shot off two fireworks.  It got way to cold to stay outside!  Luckily our neighbors had plenty of fireworks we can watch from the comfort of our home.

Check out all the photos: Santa, Christmas, 1st Birthday

Slaying the Beast

I’m ashamed its taken me this long to write about an awesome weekend.  I’m finding it harder and harder to write continually, I guess I’m just going to have to power through!

IMG_7673.JPGThe weekend for which I’m speaking was the 4th of July.  It started off Friday morning with my sister, Joann, flying in from Cleveland.  We spent the morning chatting and getting ready for the party.  Later Gwendolyn’s family arrived along with our friends Cory and Annie.  Once everyone was over, we fired up the grill, and cooked those delicious hamburgers once again.  Then we all had to wait patiently for the sun to set so we could start the show.  Once the sun set and with a few hundred dollars in fireworks, the show did not disappoint.  There was also a few exciting moments, when we tried to fire off 6 artillery shells, and the shock from the first few knocked over 3 other tubes, the first went flying towards are neighbors, which exploded over their heads.  The other two that happened to land facing our house.  Oh and Patrick and Joann were standing there. 🙂  They hit the side of the house and bounced down and exploded in the grass.  Later we had a small artillery shell, and lost the launch tube for it.  Patrick decides to throw it in our field.  His aim was a little off as it went straight to our fence and exploded, catching the grass on fire.  I could do nothing but laugh as Patrick ran to the fence and started to stomp out the fire.

IMG_7702.JPGSaturday Gwendolyn went home with her family to spend time with her brother, while I went to Kemah, to spend time with Joann.  Kemah was fun, and while there we decided to ride on The Beast.  The Beast is a speed boat that takes you out for 20-30 mins, that goes really fast and plays loud music and gets you really wet.  Now that last part I wasn’t so sure of.  Yes I saw people walk off soaking, but I couldn’t imagine how you could get so wet on a boat.  I’ve been on a few boats and never got soaked unless I jumped in.  I did see that the employees had water guns.  Given that, I thought that they must go around and just soak everyone or have some hidden fire hose to drench you.  When we were buying our tickets we had just missed a boat leaving, which turned out fine as I got to go change into my swim trunks.  Then again, when the boat came back a lady ended up slipping on the ramp off the boat and paramedics had to come get her.  After waiting an extra 20 mins, we finally boarded and headed out.  It starts off nice and slow heading away from Kemah, but then you get on open water, and then you feel the speed.  We had gotten seats in the middle of the boat, thinking it may be a good place to stay dry.  Then the boat starts to turn.  We hear a family behind us to the right screaming, and turn around to see them getting soaked with water.  It was amazing how much water was coming on board.  It stayed that way for about a minute with the people behind us getting soaked and us laughing at them.  Teaches them for sitting in the back.  Then suddenly it was our turn.  It felt like 50 buckets of water were being shot from the lake.  All you could do was laugh at how wet you were getting.  Then the boat would turn away and you’d enjoy the ride for another minute or two, until it turns your way again, and then it was like sitting through a monsoon.  Just put your head down and laugh as the water pours off your head and back.  Since we had a late start getting out, the captain kept us out another song or two.  The ride was a blast, and fairly cheap.  I would definitely do it again.  There was a casualty though.  Since I didn’t think we were truly going to get drenched, I had wrapped my camera in my shirt.  After the first soaking or two, I looked at it, and my shirt was soaked through, and my camera was sitting in my lap in a puddle of water.  I shook it off and put it in my mothers purse.  After the ride I looked at it and saw that water had seeped in where it shouldn’t have.  I tried to dry it out but alas, it was gone.  I felt a sense of loss as it was my first digital camera, and a good one that I’ve had for the past 6 years.  :'(  I’ll miss you my sweet Canon Powershot G1.

After the ride on The Beast, we went to eat at Babins.  I thought the food was great and although the service was a tad slow to start, it did give us time to dry off.  My sister got the Blackened Tuna, which I tried for the first time.  It was pretty delicious.  I had the catfish and shrimp which was also pretty good.

After Kemah my parents went home, and I went to Gwendolyn’s parents.  We had a great night with the family there, going to the book store and then a stop for ice cream on the way back.  We had a great night just hanging out and chatting, we stayed till about midnight before heading home.

Sunday morning, Joann was going to see if she could change he plane going home.  She was due to leave that afternoon but decided to see if she could leave on monday.  I called over there early Sunday and find out she did change her flight.  She wanted to do something fun and outdoors, so we all decided to head to lake Conroe and rent a boat!  We were able to get an 8 man ski boat, and a giant tube for $90/hr.  I couldn’t believe how cheap renting a boat was.  That also included free gas.  I would have thought renting a boat costs way more.  Anyways, off we went onto the lake.  First we decide to just test out the boat, which was pretty fun, although the lake was pretty rough, so we had some pretty hard slams into the water.  I decided to move up to the front where Joann was sitting and where its much rougher.  It only took a second for my hat to decide it would much rather be in the water.  I watched as both Gwendolyn and my mom tried to grab it, but it maneuvered perfectly around them and dove in the water.  Being this was my World of Warcraft hat, I demanded the captain, my dad, to turn the boat around.  I kept my eye on the hat and guided us back to it.  Once close enough I dove in and rescued my WoW hat!  Since I was now wet, I figured we might as well try to do the inner tube.  Oh what a way to torture yourself.  There really isn’t a better way to beat your chest and arms, unless it’s on an inner tube behind a speed boat.  It really was fun, and somewhat painful.  By the 3rd or 4th time, I couldn’t take any more.  My skin was raw at my elbows and my knees.  Joann had hit the tube so hard that we thought she broke her nose, although she did hurt her jaw pretty bad.  It was such a beautiful day to spend outside and on the water.  I wish we could do that every weekend.

Like I said, that was the most fun I’ve had on a weekend in a long time.  And it was great to get spend it with my family and sister!

Pictures!

Graduation Day

The weekend after I got back from Ohio, we went to Beaumont to celebrate Patricks Graduation. We drove up Friday night and stayed with Patrick. On Saturday morning was the graduation. He graduated from Lamar University with a degree in Electrical Engineering. After the graduation, we caravaned out to Galveston. We headed south to a secluded area of beach. Its a good thing too. For Patricks graduation, he had gotten a 16,000 roll of Black Cats firecrackers! Not to mention the few boxes full of other assorted fireworks. We spent the night sitting and eating around a bon fire, and blowing stuff up. What more could a new graduate ask for? 🙂

Sunday was mothers day, so we had breakfast with Gwendolyns family, and then headed over to my parents. We spent the afternoon with them, and took my mom out to eat. It was a great fun weekend.

Check out the photos here.