Sunday, March 18, 2007


It's been a busy few weeks. The week of March 5-9 Anne and I were on vacation. While being away form work and spending a lot of time together as a family was fun, it didn't leave a lot of time online to blog, upload pictures, or anything else I do online.

We also took Friday, March 2 off and spent most of the day driving over to Mount Vernon, Washington. Mount Vernon is about an hour north of Seattle. Aunt Marta lives there and we spent the weekend visiting.

Sydney took to Aunt Marta just fine. In fact, Friday evening when we left her house Sydney gave Aunt Marta a kiss on the cheek.

Sydney Kisses Aunt Marta

Sydney handled the long car ride fine. We got a portable DVD player when we signed up for DirecTV a few months ago. It seemed like the ideal time to pull it out and use it. We saved it as a last resort toward the end of each leg of the trip when we knew she was getting antsy to get out.

Sydney got to watch Cinderella for the first time. She really enjoyed it and laughed hysterically at almost every scene with the mice.

While in Mount Vernon we drove to a nearby town to meet Aunt Janie. Aunt Janie is actually a cousin of Grandma M. But she's still family. She's wonderful and nice and really took a shine to Sydney. We had a great dinner at a Greek restaurant. It was good to meet her.

Sydney Mommy Aunt Marta and Aunt Janie

It was also the time of year for blue herons to be around the coast there. Apparently they come every year. We went to a nearby beach to see them. They like low tide when they can find easy food. unfortunately, we went at high tide and saw no herons at the beach.

They were plentiful at along the side of the road as we drove around, though. Unfortunately, driving past the blue herons makes for lousy picture-taking conditions, so I have no pictures to share.

I do, however, have this glimpse of Padilla Bay with Sydney, Mommy and Aunt Marta in the shot.

Sydney Mommy and Aunt Marta at the Beach

We also went to the Children's Museum in downtown Mount Vernon. It was geared for a little older than Sydney, so she didn't understand anything there. But she really enjoyed the playing with stuff she didn't understand! There are a couple pictures of her there over at my Picture Trail album.

While on vacation I think we ended up spending more money than we would have if we had actually gone and taken a real vacation.

The shower shell (no bathtub) in our master bathroom was cracking on part of the floor. It didn't have very good support under that small section so we had to replace it. Anne has always wanted a tiled shower so that's what we're doing. While more expensive it actually makes sense. The large shells for showers and bathtubs you can get and Home Depot or Lowe's or any place like that are too big. They don't fit through doors. They have to be put in before the plasterboard when building.

So we're in that process now. It should hopefully be done this week. But we spent the first part of our vacation at home shopping around for tile and setting up the work to be done.

We also stopped at Best Buy one day. I have been saving my allowance for a high definition television. When we were at Best Buy I showed Anne the one I was looking at. (I also figured that choice would change since it would be a while before I had the cash saved.) The lady talking to us mentioned that they had a 12-month same as cash going on as well as all the HDTVs on sale.

I didn't really think much of it until we were driving home and Anne said, "you know, we could get it now. We'd have it paid off within the year."

So we bought a new HDTV while on vacation, too. DirecTV comes out to set up our HD service tomorrow (Monday). Yay!

We also got a lot of little things done around the house that needed to be done.

Then it was back to work last Monday. Except I had a short week. In February I worked some extra days to cover someone who needed some weekend time off. So I planned to take Thursday and Friday off this week so I could watch the NCAA basketball tournament opening rounds. (Not in high definition, though. Oh, well.)

My friend Mark also called and asked what I was doing Friday night. Part of the tournament was being played in Spokane and he got tickets through work. The clients he wanted to take were out of town so he gave two tickets to another client and her husband. That left an extra ticket and he called me.

We got to watch the Texas vs. New Mexico State game and the USC vs. Arkansas game. Our seats were five rows up off the end of the visiting team bench. It was incredible. And free (other than the food, shirts and hat I bought).

For my birthday today I got two games for the Wii. Both are games I wanted.

The great thing about the Wii is that Anne is enjoying playing it, too. She was never much of a gamer, but this has really got her. And it's something we can do together when we have the free time and nothing else to do.

I also got some great birthday socks hand-knitted from Grandma B. They are maroon to go with all my Washington Redskins stuff so I can wear them on game day.