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

Greetings Strangers

Anyone still visit this site?  You do?  Awesome, well here is some stuff that’s been going on!

First my favorite new project, our art car is going along smoothly.  My dad and I towed it out to my uncles (Thanks Uncle Dick!!) house in tomball, so it is now much more accessible to us.  It’s also stored in a garage with all the tools I could possibly need.  The best news though is we got it moving!  Turns out that the axle bearings were bad, so 100 bucks later and we are driving around.

Gabriel is doing great.  He’s almost 6 months old now.  I can’t believe that.  He’s takes notice of everything around him now, and tries to grab everything.  He’s almost at the sitting up stage.  I should also post new videos of him laughing.  He finally has that down pat.  🙂  Other achievements have been his baptism on June 7th, with his Godparents Jonathan and Delena.  Unfortunately they couldn’t make it to the ceremony so we had to have my cousin Dan and Sarah stand in for them.

Gwendolyn turned 30!  We had an awesome birthday party.  We did a murder mystery set in the 1920’s.  Gwendolyn and I were hosts to the new speakeasy, The Four Dueces, in town and throwing a grand opening celebration.  All the high society players were there, when Big Jim Ravioli was murdered.  We had to spend the rest of the night figuring out who would do such a thing and why!  It was an amazing party and everyone really enjoyed themselves.  I am still amazed by the costumes and how everyone really brought their characters to life.

We went to the Art Car sneak peak back in may with our friends Cory and Annie.  Gabriel was also there for the first time checking out down town.  The cars were amazing and we were able to talk to a few of the owners for tips and support.  The next day we meet our families downtown to watch the parade.  We enjoyed the show and can’t wait to be in it next year!

The end of May Patrick and Mandy came down to visit.  Gwendolyn and Gabriel spent the week with them, and had a great time.  I think Patrick and Mandy fell in love with Gabriel, and Gabriel loves them just as much. Maybe we’ll be getting a niece or nephew soon too? 😉

The end of June our friend Beth was also turning 30, along with another austin friend Evans.  Beth decided to through a big birthday/house warming party which we attended.  It was our first long trip with Gabriel and I have to say he did amazing.  This gives us hope for our trip next week to Wisconsin.  The party was awesome, lots of great people and it was good seeing Jake, Beth, and Brian.

And thats about it.  Wow that wasn’t so hard.  Why haven’t I been updating this?!  Gwendolyn has also said she has been interested in writing a post or two.  It must be because of twitter.  She needs more than 140 characters. 🙂

Gwendolyn’s Twitter
Jay’s Twitter

Photos:
Easter
Gwendolyn’s 30th

Oh and happy 123456789 day! (12:34:56 on 7/8/9) or 040506070809 (04:05:06 on 07/08/09)

Halloween Party 2008

halloween 2008 011That’s funny,  I thought I had written about this last year, but it doesn’t look like.  Anyhow.. this past weekend was our 2nd annual Halloween party.  Spooky Sarah and Ghostly Gwendolyn have put on a great party for two hears in a row now.  There were delectable treats to be had along with pumpkin pong.  This year I came as my WoW character Zuria, who is a Troll Shaman.  It just so happened at BlizzCon they were selling a mask that happened to look exactly like my character.  I just had to buy it.  They were also selling Blood Elf ears, which would go with Gwendolyn’s Elf costume, which turned out nice, thanks to her mothers help.

I’m glad the party was as successful as last year, so we can keep it an annual tradition!

Photos

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!

Geocaching

Another busy weekend. After buying a new TomTom GPSr (GPS Receiver) on Memorial day, I wanted to try a new hobby, called Geocaching. After hearing about it a few years ago, I’ve always wanted to try it. Unfortunately the main piece of equipment you need is a GPSr, which I never had. Now with my new receiver I wanted to give the hobby a try. I knew our friends Cory and Annie would also like it. To sum it up, its basically a modern day treasure hunt. Who doesn’t love hunting for treasures? First you log into geocaching.com. Then you can search by zip codes for nearby caches. Pick and print the ones you want to go look for, and then plug in their coordinates into a GPS. Now GPS’s are only so good. They get you pretty close to where you should be, but then you have to use all your other senses to actually find the hidden cache. Once the cache is found, you sign a log saying you’ve been there and trade items if you choose.

IMG_7176.JPGOn Saturday we headed to Annies apartment in the Woodlands, and went out to eat at Nit Noi, which turned out to be pretty delicious. I’m not much for Thai food, but I might have to give it another shot now. After eating we went on our treasure hunt. I plugged in the coordinates for ‘JoslinsROCK!!! #!’, and off we went. The GPS lead us into a nearby subdivision. We parked in a cul-de-sac where there was a small forest between two houses. The location was showing beyond the trees. We got out of the car, and made our way through and around the patch of trees, to a nice little pond/park. It would have been easier coming from a different direction, but TomTom didn’t realize that. Once we started to get closer, we read the clues again saying ‘check the mightiest of pine trees’. I looked around and saw one that stood out. I walked in the woods a bit, and found a green ammo can covered with pine needles. We had found our first cache! Opening up we found wonderful treasures beyond our wildest dreams. No, I wish, they were just little kids nick-nacks, but fun none the less. We took a magic pterodactyl towel, and left a pirate rubber duckie. After that first find, I knew I was hooked.

IMG_7179.JPGOur second find was a little harder. We found the right area, in another forest like park. The area was too big to really look around aimlessly. Unfortunately my GPS doesn’t seem to work good with that kind of tree cover. We looked around for 10-15 mins and we were about to give up, when Cory, the natural outdoors man, went running deeper in the forest. A few mins later, he comes back with the cache. We all got excited, again and opened up our second cache. This time we took a small skull key chain, which I attached to my thumb drive, and left another duckie.

We tried for a third, but again, the area was too large and with my poor GPS being ‘off road’ it was a lost cause looking for it. I guess I need a new GPSr! One for hiking. Maybe not, as Cory said he had one that he’s never used. We were going to have to change that. We made plans for next Sunday to go out and make a day of Geocaching. I can’t wait!

On Sunday we headed back out to Gwendolyn’s parents, for a going away get together for Patrick. We had a great time with the family, and I went on Patricks last trip for a while to Fry’s. A store he will surely miss. 🙂 And of course we will miss him too. Hope everything goes great for you (and soon to be Mandy) up there in TN bro!

Iron Maiden

Thursday we went with Jake and Brian, and our houston friends to see an Iron Maiden concert at the Cynthia Woods Pavillion. Never been to Iron Maiden before, but it was definitely worth it. The stage was pretty awesome, and they had some nice pyrotechnics, and giant puppets. I was really impressed by how hard they all rocked out. The lead singer was running and jumping around the entire time, and never let it show. If it was me, after the first song, I would have died. They put on a hell of a show, and a perfect way to hang out with everyone.