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Those of you who follow me on twitter may have noticed that the family took a trip across the country, and I posted about once a day about the trip. We drove about 4250 miles over about 16 days. Went from California to Iowa, spending nights in Nevada, Utah, and Nebraska on the way. Then, went to Minnesota, did a festival in Decorah, IA. Visited my father-in-law and his brother in Red Wing, Minnesota; Maiden Rock, Wisconsin; and LaCrosse, Wisconsin. During the trip, we decided that we had a chance to see parts of the country we had never seen before - so we went back through South Dakota (saw Mount Rushmore and some of the Black Hills area) and Wyoming (drove through Yellowstone and saw Old Faithful).

The kids were overall pretty good during the trip. I can't say that they really enjoyed it, since all the sitting in the car was quite boring for them. They started wanting to see the "Bee Movie" over and over again - maybe seeking one familiar thing with constant change going on around them. They ate lots of cheap Kraft macaroni and cheese at all the diners we stopped at. I won't say it was all bad for them - they did get some good play time in hotel swimming pools, and both seemed to really enjoy the cave in South Dakota.
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As announced here, my sister [livejournal.com profile] drarwenchicken gave birth to a baby girl, around 6pm tonight.

My little niece shares a birthday with my beloved wife, Valkyrie. Happy birthday to the two of you!

Six Years!

Sep. 30th, 2006 12:00 pm
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Six years ago today, Valkyrie and I dressed up in some really spiffy clothes, looked deep into each others eyes, and said "I Do."

Thanks for asking me to marry you, Valkyrie.

It seems to have become a tradition of mine that I will remember this occasion with a short post in my LiveJournal - I wasn't using LiveJournal until September 2003, so my third anniversary is the first with a note. There are also posts for the fourth and fifth.

Somehow, this year we didn't put a lot of time or thought into gifts to each other. I got Valkyrie a card that made her very happy.

At six years together, we seem to be settled down into the comfortable groove of a life together. Our kids are growing nicely, with Corwin in kindergarten, and Kjersti a Terrible (and Terrific) two.
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The family and I are taking a week off, up in the snow at Lake Tahoe.

Today we are getting snow! Lots of snow! It's sticking!

This is exciting because the last couple of days we were getting rain. It just wouldn't stop. Last night it started hesitantly changing to snow, now it looks like just snow is coming down hard.

The kids seem to be having fun, although getting prepped to go out is a bit of an ordeal. Pouring a 2-year old into a snowsuit isn't something the 2-year old usually likes, but Kjersti is putting up with it quite well. (I know, her birthday hasn't happened yet, but she's very close to her b-day, so I am starting to think of her as being two.) And, the snowsuit enables her to roll in the snow and stay warm.
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Many things went wrong yesterday:

  1. The hard drive in my laptop went CRASH! I managed to get one last (damaged) backup off of it, which I'm using now.

  2. I decided that the old PC running Windows ME needed to be reinstalled, so it would actually work. It was getting to the point where it could never complete the scandisk process, and also would never shutdown cleanly ...

    However, the dang thing has something flaky in the hardware, so the reinstall wouldn't work either. I tried pulling memory out (under the assumption that the problem might be memory) and it stopped responding. ARGH!

  3. Kjersti shoved a peanut up her nose (again!) This time, we couldn't get it out ourselves, so we took her to the emergency room. No more peanuts for her!

And, to continue my computer-related woes, on Monday I had a battle with my Sun workstation at the house - somehow it decided to stop booting. I managed to fix that by getting a fresh copy of Solaris NV, and patching that OS image. Solaris NV now uses GRUB for booting, and the config was intact.

So, three out of four functioning computers in my office had to have major surgery this week. I am keeping my fingers crossed that the fourth won't come down with any maladies, as that would be a major pain to recover from.

Today was much better. It was dry(!), warm, and sunny out, and Valkyrie took the kids to the zoo. My computers are mostly limping along ok, and Apple will replace the hard drive in my laptop. The only down note is that Kjersti started throwing up at dinner time.

A footnote: it turns out that we got the peanut out of Kjersti's sinuses without much help from the emergency room doctor. He suggested that Valkyrie perform mouth-to-mouth and blow the peanut out; which Valkyrie did, and Kjersti found this amusing.


Dec. 31st, 2005 11:11 pm
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Kjersti just stuck a peanut up her nose.

Aside from a few moments where terrible images flashed through my mind of what might happen if it got jammed in her sinuses and we had to take her to the hospital to get it out, I found this overall very amusing. It was hard to not laugh too much.
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Louis Crosby Wyman is my great uncle. (My father's mother's brother.) He made history, in a minor way.

I never met this guy. I never heard about him until within the past month, when my mother and brother were talking about family history.

To give you a remote idea as to how close my father was to his parents and family - I probably have met my paternal grandparents a half dozen times, and I think it was always at their Sun City home. My father has one older brother (who I think I never met) who has three children, and I think I met one of them once - the memory is very vague, and my father disagrees, he thinks we never have met any of my cousins on his side.

My kids are certainly growing up differently, in that they are put into contact with their grandparents, aunts and uncles far more often. As of now, my children have no cousins, but it is certain that if they ever do get a cousin, they will meet.
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Valkyrie and I are feeling somewhat exhausted and emotionally drained. This past weekend we hosted the annual holiday gathering of my siblings, parents, and their significant others - and I'm happy to report that all went well, and all went home happy.
More on the event )
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I believe that I've mentioned in this space before, that my wife Valkyrie's parents are divorced. Both live out in Iowa, but in different parts. I believe we have seen them in the same place at the same time only three times now - our wedding, Corwin's baptism, and now Kjersti's baptism.

Corwin knows Grandma Gwen and Grandpa Dana (my parents) as a unit. We see them together all the time. However, he probably doesn't know yet that grandparents come as pairs ... so he probably doesn't realize that Grandma LaVerne and Grandad Paul were a pair.

Tonight, we had both of them over to our house for dinner - both are in town for Kjersti's baptism. Shortly after Grandad Paul arrived, Corwin dragged Grandad over to Grandma, and said "Grandma Verne, this is Grandad Paul."

Valkrie and I broke out laughing, and retreated a bit to conceal it some. Corwin's heart is absolutely in the right place, and introducing people to each other is the right thing to do ... but how can he know that they have known each other for around 60 years!
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Kjersti in her christening gown Kjersti in her christening gown

Christening gown is hand made hardanger. (Not sure of the spelling, the term referrs to a Norwegian lace style.)

Today was a bit of a wild day. We had to juggle two grandparents (my in-laws are divorced, and rarely see each other, and don't get along well), two kids, assorted family, the children of Kjersti's godparents ... but all went well, and it was fun.

The outfit Kjersti is wearing has a lovely bonnet too, but by the time we could take pictures, she was tired of wearing it and didn't cooperate. She cooperated well enough for this photo, but we can do better.
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Saturday was a good day. It got off to a slow start, with Kjersti sleeping until noon. However, once we did get up and going, we loaded the kids into the bicycle seat and trailer, and took off for the coffeehouse.

I think that the distance is about 3.5 miles. It still takes us about an hour to get there - and most of the time is spent going up this one loooong hill. Valkyrie and I aren't in good shape, so we walked the bicycles up it. The kids were good, and mostly patient - they got some fun with the ups and downs, and took the long slow part in stride.

An hour plus of playing at the coffeehouse later, the ride back went more quickly - what's one long hard trudge uphill becomes a fast glide back down, and there's really only one section on the return where we have to get off the bikes and walk.

I think this season is Cameron Park and the Sierra foothills at their best ... the weather not too hot, not too cold, the air is nice and clean, and the views are great. We are enjoying the days here now.
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Scene: sitting around the dinner table, at the Catnip Coast.

Kjersti (pointing at me): dada!

Hippie and Valkyrie: Yes, that's right! dada!

Kjersti (pointing at Valkyrie): mama!

Hippie and Valkyrie: Yes, that's right! mama!

Now, we point to Corwin.

Valkyrie: Kjersti, who is this?

Kjersti: (pointing at Corwin): dunno!

We all break out laughing.

Dinner was a silly affair that night. That was good.
holyhippie: (Coffee)
Five years ago today, Valkyrie and I dressed up in some really spiffy clothes, looked deep into each others eyes, and said "I Do."

Thanks for asking me to marry you, Valkyrie.

It seems to have become a tradition of mine that I will remember this occasion with a short post in my LiveJournal - I wasn't using LiveJournal until September 2003, so my third anniversary is the first with a note. Last year I also posted a note for the fourth.

Anniversary gifts for the fifth anniversary are either wood or silverware. Somehow, we ended up doing both, I think. I got a nice set of silverware for Valkyrie; and while we were shopping for the silverware, Valkyrie found four nice wooden chairs that we are now using in the kitchen.

After five years, we seem to be settling down into a comfortable life together. The kids are growing, the house is steadily becoming nicer and more organized. Kjersti radiates cuteness. Corwin is great fun, and a playful three year old. The two fight some (like kids that age will), but overall, they are very good to each other.
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I'm not sure she's even aware of this, but my sister, [livejournal.com profile] drarwenchicken, has an entry in the Internet Movie Data B.
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Shortly after noon today, Valkyrie took her first cat, Princess Shee, in to the veterinarian to be euthanized.
Goodbye to Princess Shee )
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First, I should enter a chart here. This entry describes a lot of people, with a chain of relationships several steps long.

First, there's me, and my wife (Valkyrie). We have two kids, Corwin and Kjersti.

Then there are my siblings, StoneCarrier, [livejournal.com profile] evannichols, and [livejournal.com profile] drarwenchicken.

DrArwenChicken has a boyfriend, who we will call J.

J has a cousin, C. C is married to T (who is a stay-at-home dad).

C and T have two kids, Walker and Sam. Walker is a week younger than Corwin, Sam is about two months younger than Kjersti.

I first met C, T, and Walker a bit over two years ago, at a birthday party DrArwenChicken threw for herself at the beach. At this time, we noted an eerie resemblance between Corwin and Walker, and took this picture of them: Valkyrie holding Corwin, and C holding Walker ) I'll also note that there's a resemblance between Valkyrie and C.

We went to Portland again last weekend, and this time, we took this picture: StoneCarrier holding Kjersti, and T holding Sam ) This time, I note that not only does Kjersti and Sam look similar, StoneCarrier and T could be brothers.

And in a final, "Aww, isn't that cute" moment, I got a really good picture of Corwin this past weekend: Corwin playing in a tree )
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