Monday, December 21, 2009

Violet decorating the tree

We got a new little camera the other day, since my big one was in the shop. I have been messing around with videos on it, so I hope you guys can see this.

We decorated the tree last week, and here is a little video of Violet helping.

I also wrote a column about the tree, which isn't online yet, but when it is, I will post a link.

Here's to looking forward to the holidays!


Sunday, December 20, 2009


Lilly's birthday is a low-key affair, since we had a half birthday party for her in June. She was born five days before Christmas, which sucks for her.

So today we had some cake and candles, but no presents -- we are saving those for Christmas.

Of course for the third time since October, Cindy and Violet are both sick. I am feeling fine, and who knows about Lilly. Little fever and sore throats. Ick.

All of our anniversary plans were put on hold and so over the Christmas break Cindy and I will probably steal a date somewhere -- maybe to see Avatar or dinner. I dare to dream about a coast weekend, without kids, but that probably isn't in the cards this year.

Well, time to get back to laundry and football!


Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Intel Engineers Shot Out of Cannon, Recreate

And my wife works for that company... I wonder when they are shooting her out of a cannon. :)

I have to make sure she doesn't get transferred to Finland. :)

Monday, December 14, 2009

Oh sure, NOW want your picture taken... heh

This morning as we were getting ready for our day -- Violet off to school, Cindy to work, and Lilly and I to hang out and do laundry -- the girls were sharing the same chair at the breakfast nook. Of course NOW, just 12 hours later, are all wanting their pictures taken.

I didn't dare put them in front of the Christmas tree, because then there would have been a meltdown again. I just know it.

I may take some time today and Photoshop them in front of the Christmas tree... now there is an idea!

Today is nice because it's just Lilly and I hanging out. I didn't take any freelance for the rest of the year, so I'm going to be helping when my boss goes on vacation next week. I am also trying to line up a bunch of stories so I can take some time off around Christmas and the New Year. Cindy is taking two weeks, I think, so I want to spend some time with the family.

Thursday is my 14th wedding anniversary and we are considering doing a date night Friday. Of course there is a Parent Teacher Organization meeting that Cindy needs to attend Thursday night.

Well, off to chase Lilly today!

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Christmas meets Terrible Twos

Here are some out takes of our Christmas photo shoot from Hell this afternoon. Lilly is two.
She didn't want to have her picture taken, was sick of it, and threw a fit. Wouldn't be talked into it, bribed, asked nicely, coaxed or even tricked into having her picture taken.

So, our Christmas photos are going to be very interesting this year. Maybe next year we will do this professionally, instead of having me do it.

The twos are soo much fun!


Saturday, December 12, 2009

Ballet Practice

This week was a busy one. Violet had her Christmas program at school and a ballet recital in the afternoon.

I have had a head cold the last week, so I am a bit off my game. I should be updating this more often in the coming year. Going to use Facebook less and this more.

Well, I am waiting for my first Zune Movie on the Xbox to download -- Terminator Salvation. Hope it downloads quickly because that is not a kid-appropriate movie and I would like to see it tonight.

Gotta run, other stuff to do.


Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Violet and her class pumpkin patch trip

IMG_9571, originally uploaded by Canby Chacal.

Violet and I went to the pumpkin patch with her class. It was a blast and she has a friend -- Claire (I believe).

I also wrote a column that appeared in the Canby Herald and Wilsonville Spokesman about the trip. I will share that with you when it gets online. Some folks think it's pretty good -- I share my experiences with a pumpkin cannon at the farm.

Well off to get tortured by my trainer. Fun stuff.


Sunday, November 01, 2009

Happy Halloween!

That's right, we dressed Lilly in all black for Halloween. We are such good parents. :)

Actually Cindy was walking with her the entire time, and they went over to Hope Village -- a retirement home where you can walk around without being on a road. Then Lilly rode in the hot pink stroller for half the trip.

I was on front door patrol, handing out candy to the kids. We got about 40 trick or treaters, and now I am wondering what to do with our extra candy. I'm pretty sure it's not on my training diet. Heh.

Well, this weekend was bad for the diet -- ok the lifestyle change -- but I didn't have Coke, that's a positive right?

Lilly is crying so I better run. Hope you all had a fun and safe Halloween.


Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Playdate at the park!

IMG_9164, originally uploaded by Canby Chacal.

Violet, Lilly, Cindy and I went to the park the other day and I took some shots. You can see all of them on the slideshow at the upper left of the blg.

I also have photos from Violet's pumpkin patch trip with her class today. I will post those sometime this week.

Lilly said yesterday "I'm a baby!" so she is starting to put words together -- or just copying what Daddy says. :)


Saturday, October 24, 2009

The Race: Director's Cut

The set up: I had the great idea to see what would be faster during rush hour traffic -- our new commuter rail or a car. So we raced. I was with former Indy car driver Parker Johnstone in his car, and my editor rode the train.

The above video is one I made, before I knew that the Wilsonville Spokesman Web site could only take 2 minutes of video. So of course I spent too much time making an 8 minute video. Guess that shows me how I should have paid attention during the Web training, huh.

This was my first attempt and there is a 2 minute one that is a cut-down version of this on the Wilsonville Spokesman Web site -- and I can't seem to get it to work. So, when the shorter one is online I will link to it. Heh.

Here are the links to the stories:

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

New Website and Ken Block

Yes this post is all about me. Me. Me. Me.

First off, I wanted to wait to see if it wouldn't suck, but here is the new Website for my paper: . I like it, now I am just waiting for the bosses to figure out how they want to handle content on it. I am excited so I am always posting stuff -- I am sure it annoys them.

Oh, then there is this. One of my favorite YouTube videos of all time. Wait until the 1 minute mark. I NEED to figure out how to drive like this guy. I may even try to go pro....

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Dance Party!

I was messing around with my iTunes Friday night and a Def Leppard song came on, I turned around and the girls were rocking out... Here is the video. Enjoy!

Oh, and now every time I play a song, Violet says "Def Leppard ROCKS!"

My little hair metal chicks. :)


Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Operation: Fat Ass



Today I started Operation: Fat Ass.

I turned 39 this year and I have decided that I can't keep going through life carrying around the mass of Jupiter on my frame. In 2007, Operation: Work Out was an utter failure with me buying a year of gym, and going twice.

This year, I have decided to also hire a personal trainer for the time being, to get me going on a program and to make sure I work out.

Today was the first day I worked out with my trainer, who looks like she weighs about 3 grams. We did some cardio today, and then I hit the free weights.

When I think of weightlifting I see the dudes on the World's Strongest Man competition where I am lifting Volkswagen Bugs. My trainer informed me today it's about reps when you are trying to lose weight. So I get to use these little 10 pound "girl" weights.

Oh well, so much for macho.

I will chronicle my results.

Weight: Mass of Jupiter is
1.9 x 1027 kg which is 318 planet Earths.
Lost so far: 0

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Twice in one week

No, I don't have new photos of the kids. I promise to work on that tonight.

I am boasting a little. Just a little because it isn't in my nature, really.

Most of this is just from building relationships and flat dumb luck, but...

So over the course of the last few weeks I have been writing about the Langdon Farms property near my house. The owners of the property want the right to develop it, the city and farmers near it don't want to see it developed.

Well, I have been getting materials from unanimous sources about an Indian tribe interested in putting the property in trust. If they did that, they could develop it without following local or state land use policy.

As it turns out, these documents have only been coming to my paper, and no where else. So I have had some pretty cool exclusive coverage. I'm not sure if the bigger papers aren't interested or what -- they have done stories on the property in the past -- but I keep running these articles with new information.

Then today, I covered a county meeting and got the story online before the big metro daily in my coverage area.

While some people would feel like they were king of the world, I have my Mother's sensibilities.
I am waiting for the other shoe to drop.

Yes I should enjoy it, but I just know I screwed up some major fact, mis-spelled some name, or totally missed a big story.

Then I have to keep reminding myself I am only part-time, so I need to chill.

Tonight is a good night. I should enjoy it.

So with that, I am off the computer, cell phone and blog. I'm going to take the night off and take pictures of my girls and not worry about what is going on in Wilsonville or who is going to kick my butt tomorrow.

I need to sigh and take a rest. Tonight seems like a good night, on a high note, then face deadline day with new vigor.

Ah, screw it. Time to make some more phone calls for a story I am working on!


Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Hey, Silverton!

I was reading this article on my iPhone and noticed that "Road Warrior" and "Mad Max" were filmed in SILVERTON Australia. Who knew. Anyway, here is the article about a guy crazier about Mad Max than I am about Batman.
Oh, and I finished my Batman game. Too short if you ask me, but... it was so cool!

Mad Max fan builds replica Interceptor, moves to Outback

September 1, 2009

A British man's 27-year obsession with the post-apocalyptic biker movie Mad Max has led to him moving his family to a tiny town in the middle of the Australian Outback, The Times reported.

Adrian Bennett first saw the iconic Australian filmMad Max and its sequel The Road Warrior, which starred Mel Gibson as a revengeful drifter who wanders the Outback with his police Interceptor car and his devoted dog, as a double bill at the cinema when he was a teenager in England in 1982.

Now 45, Bennett has decided to fulfill his dream of living in the same town where the first two movies were made and has moved his wife Linda and two of his sons from their home in Bradford, Yorkshire, to Silverton near Broken Hill on the border of New South Wales and South Australia.

He says he moved to the tiny and remote Outback town, which is located more than 800 miles west of Sydney and has a population of just 51 (including the Bennetts), so he can set up a Mad Max museum in his backyard where he can park his custom-made made replica black Interceptor.

"From the opening credits of the first film to the closing credits of Mad Max 2 my jaw was on the floor, I couldn't believe what I was seeing and I was totally hooked," Bennett told The Times of the moment his obsession began over two decades ago.

He says it was "everything—the costumes, the characters, the location and the vehicles" which attracted him to the film and led him to a life of collecting Mad Max-related memorabilia.

A panel beater and crash repairer by trade, Bennett even created his own version of Max's Interceptor car after exporting a Ford Falcon Coupe from the U.S. He has even acquired his own blue heeler cattle dog, aptly named Dog, after Max's own faithful companion in the movie.

The Bennetts first moved from England to Adelaide in South Australia three years ago before finally buying a house in Silverton last month, and are now living off their savings while Bennett begins to plan his museum.

— SCI FI Wire Staff

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Fence update

I had a busy weekend and was only able to get one more section up. I had Violet's birthday party, see pictures below or on the slide show at the upper left, and a bunch of freelance stuff to get done.

I have three sections left -- well two and a half -- and I have six sections done. I am thinking about getting some help next weekend and just finishing it off. We also had someone come over and cut all the bushes off a the ground. The stumps are still there, but they are pretty close to the dirt. The Rhodie is still out there, I couldn't get it in this shot.

After this project I think I am going to start painting inside the house. We may do a few more yard projects before the rain comes, but once it starts raining I think we are saving any more improvements outside until it dries out.

Well, I have some stories to write...


Happy Birthday Violet

Violet had a good birthday party, she turns 5 this week. About four of her friends showed up at Safari Sam's in Sherwood, a former grocery store that was converted into an arcade, jungle gym and put-put golf course.

Friday night we spent having Violet practice blowing out candles, so at the party Saturday, before we could sing, she would blow out the candles. If she saw flame, puff!

Lots of princesses, clothes and puzzles. Had a lot of fun!

Oh and my dad hit the ice cream cake a little hard -- and was dancing on tables with a tiara.


Friday, August 28, 2009

These are not the droids you are looking for

Lilly and Violet got back from swimming Wednesday and took a shower. This is Lilly after the shower -- she looked like a Jedi! Or a Jawa without the glowing red eyes.

She has the voice of a Jawa. So maybe she is a Jawa. I will have to watch Star Wars again to make a determination.

I have a bunch of work to do this weekend and we are having a big birthday bash for Violet on Saturday at Safari Sams in Sherwood. The kids love it there and a bunch of Violet's school mates are going to be attending.

Should be fun. Now, if can keep Lilly from screaming tonight -- she is grumpy -- it will be a miracle. Tough week at work, and I am a bit fried. Six stories in two days. Not bad.

Well, off to find someplace quiet.


Monday, August 24, 2009

Monday hanging with the girls

Today is a nice quiet day at home. Cindy opted to stay at home and sit in my chair to help her back -- the heat and massager help I guess. So she is working and the girls and I are running around having fun.

I was up too late last night working, and the girls got us up at about 7 a.m. Ouch. My own darn fault. So when they go to swimming I may try to catch a nap (around 6 p.m.). Or I may get caffeinated.

Well, I think Lilly is trying to bite Violet again. Better run.


Monday, August 17, 2009

Too much fence, not enough kids

Two posts in a row about a dumb fence? Let's change that!

That's a 2007 picture of Violet in the Raiders hat I found that I like. Anyway, I couldn't sleep tonight and figured why not post some photos!

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Fence day 2

Section two of the fence went up this morning. The next section requires me to replace a post, so I am saving that for next weekend, since I only have one section painted and I would have to put up two. I am out of paint, so I need to get paint.

If you look at the top picture you will see I have a little bow in the fence, so I'm not real happy about that, but it's sturdy, so I guess it's OK.

No injuries yet, which is amazing, and I am crediting any success I am having with this project on the fact I bought a Carhart hat I am wearing when I work on the fence.

Keep your fingers crossed!


Saturday, August 15, 2009

My first "major" home improvement project



The before is the other end of the fence. The after is what I put up after a section fell over back in March during a wind storm. This is a major accomplishment for me -- and no trip to the hospital (I have my insurance co-pay in my wallet just in case).

Well, here is the deal. I got a C in woodshop in middle school. They kicked me out of metal shop in high school. When I worked at a truckstop, there are many, many stories of my high jinx about being a total and utter clutz. By the time I turned 25, I realized that I have very, very limited skill when it comes to anything to do with building, hammering, leveling or working with my hands at all.

So, as a homeowner, I have relied on my wife and parents and in-laws to help me out. Recently I put in a garbage disposal on my own -- my wife did help a bit on that one -- and last month I put up new lights in the bathroom by myself. I think those two projects gave me a false sense of security, because I looked at the fence and decided to take it on.

My fence I think is the original 1980s fence, and it has seen better days. At the end of the winter we had a wind storm and part of it blew over, and so I waited for the neighbor to fix it. He has a fishing boat so I figured he was more of a do-it-yourselfer than I am.

Three months past and no fence.

So I decided to bite the bullet and take it on. Last weekend I bought the wood -- Canby Builder's Supply rocks and is less expensive than Home Depot believe it or not -- and started staining the boards. Today I decided to put up one section of the new fence. I have eight sections total to do.

My first big decision was to leave the existing posts, because they seem to be in pretty good shape. I also opted to use screws instead of nails, because that's what my next door neighbor did. Plus you get me an a hammer together and only bad things happen.

So there is the first section. Now I figure I will put up a section a week -- and stain the next section, letting it dry for the week before I put it up. Today I may stain two sections and see if I can't do that next weekend. Maybe might even put up a section tomorrow.

Honestly, I have no clue what I am doing, but I am bright enough to use my level to try to make things look semi-right.

No hospital trip today, believe it or not. I will keep you informed.

Oh and give props to Cindy for tearing out an Oregon Grape stump that was pretty nasty so I could get in and do the fence.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009


Every Monday and Wednesday the girls go swimming. Normally, since I would just sit and watch in the stuffy pool, I take the hour they are gone as nice quiet time at home. I read or play video games or just enjoy a quiet house while doing chores.

I have a couple of freelance assignments shooting photos for the chamber directories in Canby and Woodburn, so I took tonight as an opportunity to shoot some pool photos. I took several of other people, but figured while I was there I would also get some new shots of the girls swimming. I have some of Cindy and Lilly together, but I was informed that if I posted any photos of Cindy in a swim suit I would forfeit the rest of my life.

I tend to believe these threats.

So, I am sneaking one in on danger to life and limb, the others will have to remain in our private collection not for the Internets.

Hope all is well,


Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Biker gang

Today we took the kids out in the sprinkles and rode bikes. OK, well Lilly would basically walk around her little bike and Violet is still learning to ride hers.

It's good to get out and walk around the track and get outside. I love the rain. LOVE IT! It means my allergies will back off a little bit.

Violet is turning into a pretty good little bike rider, for her third time out. I'm sure she will be flying around in no time.

Well, off to help Violet and Jen figure out Viva Pinata on the Xbox.

UPDATE: I just figured out how to do slideshows on Flickr for each post. So just click it to see the photos, and click it again to see the large photos on the Flickr site.

Saturday, August 08, 2009

Fun at Wilsonville Town Center

IMG_2825, originally uploaded by Canby Chacal.

We went to a birthday party in Wilsonville today and the girls played in one of the water park.

Monday, July 06, 2009

We all scream (and burp)

Had some 90-degree days here. Ice cream for all. Oh and burps too.

At least they are sharing. :)

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Violet the flower girl

Went to Violet's teacher's wedding tonight. It was pretty fun -- hot -- but pretty fun. They didn't really have a photographer, so I kind of helped a little. I didn't go all "Carrie Wedding" on them, I just took a few shots.

Violet was a flower girl and she throws flower pedals like a pro. She did have a wardrobe malfunction, she couldn't figure out how to wear flip-flops, so during the service she was playing with her footwear the whole time (there is a picture in the slide show to the left I think if you click on it).

Lilly also went to the wedding was a handful. She and Cindy wrestled during the whole ceremony and then we took her to a side room during the reception because she was getting fussy and very active. It's one the reasons I stay home with her on Sundays, she is just so active right now.

Hope all is well with you.


Friday, June 26, 2009

And now for something completely different

You have the watch this whole thing.

1. Are there no editors in this news room?
2. Where did they get the prop?
3. Why even duck?
4. My God, that bear is Spider-man!
5. I hate TV news, but love this stuff.

Hopefully will have girl pictures up tomorrow -- going to a wedding and will take my camera.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Be a clown! (It's my motto)

Well there are about six million little girls dancing in this recital, and our seats were pretty far away. We are getting the DVD, so I will see if I can't put some of that up on here when we get it.

Anyway, sorry this looks like the Zapruder film, but it's what I had.

Violet is the second from the left.


Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Stayin' Alive!

Tonight I was updating my iPhone and going through my music. I was playing a song that Lilly REALLY liked. It's a long movie, but she is so cute! This is Violet's recital week, so I am sure we are going to have some photos or something by the end of the weekend.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

All the Marsh kids!

So Carrie and Dwight are trying to catch up with Cindy and I. Good luck with that.

Meanwhile, I saw this the other day and thought Jim and Dwight might want to check it out.


Wednesday, June 03, 2009


So this week has been crazy. Had a pretty big freelance job sneak up on me, but got it done tonight. Now I just have to work the rest of the week on my real job. No biggie.

It's amazing how fast kids learn things. Lilly is at that age where every day it seems like she learns something new. Last week it was nodding her head (she had the shaking her head down).

She is so cute!!!

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Parades and bubbles

Took photos of a parade and an art festival in Wilsonville today. You can see the photos at and then search for Wilsonville Spokesman.

After I got home Jen came over and we played with bubbles on the back porch. I noticed that we had a lot of photos of Violet, and Lilly was getting the raw end of the deal. So I changed that tonight.

If you look at the slideshow at the upper left, you can see a bunch of bubble Lilly pictures.

I am wiped out, sunburned and have a bunch of freelance writing to do tomorrow, so I am going to eat ice cream and veg for a few minutes.

Have a good weekend.


Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Fun at Silver Falls

Had an interesting day on Monday. We went to Silver Falls and noticed that pretty much everyone in the valley had the same idea. I usually only go to Silver Falls when it's raining or snowing (or when I was at The Appeal there was a movie being shot there, a suicide or missing hiker).

Anyway, billion people, two little kids and things were just nuts. We had fun, but it was crazy keeping an eye on Violet and Lilly. We are like that, we don't let them just run, we like to keep track of the little buggers.

I got distracted and Violet disappeared. We ran around calling for her, and then noticed she walked down to wade in the creek (with about a billion other little kids). We had a good lecture, but we decided it was time to go home.

A good scare will do that to a fun day.

Well, I have stories to write and photos to go through. I uploaded the photos from the trip to Fickr (the slideshow at the upper left).


Friday, May 22, 2009

I liked the new Star Trek, for the record

Trekkies Bash New Star Trek Film As 'Fun, Watchable'

I found this funny and thought I would share.

Have a great Memorial Day weekend. I plan to take a bunch of photos of the girls and post them. Maybe even a movie or two. :)


Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Dance OFF!

Tonight I came home and the girls were dancing like crazy. Violet is feeling better after three days of 103-degree temperatures and a pretty nasty ear infection. Lilly is climbing now -- it's like living with a small version of the movie "Cliffhanger."

We have been very busy, and with my Mom and Dad at the coast this week, a holiday on Monday, we have been having some babysitting issues. Hopefully that will all work themselves out next week. Yikes.

Of course I have the city of Silverton newsletter to put out next week too, so it's going to be crazy. I can't wait for my birthday week, as it should calm down a little mid-June.

Well, off to take a walk and enjoy the sunshine and get some exercise in.


Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Ear infections and the new V

So ABC is going to have a new V miniseries. I think the classic '80s one should be left alone, but whatever.

Violet has a pretty bad ear infection, so no sleep for us.

Oh and in the clip above I feel like the reporter, until the woman (alien) says "Wouldn't this interview advance your career."

Well, off to a busy day.


Monday, May 18, 2009

My birthday

My birhtday is coming up and I thought I would give you guys some gift ideas. OK, one gift idea.

Give me this, and it will be the best birthday EVER!

I prefer slate gray, but I'm not too picky. :)

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Ballet performance

Cindy is such a stud.

She took BOTH kids to Violet's dance performance the other day. She let me stay home -- they didn't want too many parents at the small retirement home where they performed. She also wanted to take Lilly so I got 90 minutes of a quiet house. Yes, I know, blissful!

Here is the performance, Violet is in the middle. It's pretty funny.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Photos from the beach

Last month we went to Lincoln City for a week. I have been lazy and not getting these up on the blog. So here are some shots.

Man I want to go back to the beach...

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Ford, where quality is job 1

I don't know if any of you remember, but a couple of summers ago, I purchased a car from Newberg Ford.

It was a lemon. The headlights would randomly go out at night. The entire electrical system was fried and I spent a bunch of money on a car that I was hoping would be a nice little commuter.

We fought with Newberg Ford, because they also never processed the title, so I couldn't get it changed to my name or even sell the darn thing until they got around to it. They also never gave me the full-sized spare tire they promised.

Overall it was a horrible buying experience -- we had two of those that year because when we bought our van at Gladstone Toyota it was horrible as well. I guess we got spoiled with the Saturn walk in and buy a car and not get jacked with.

Anyway, we got this letter in the mail the other day. Yes, it was printed upside down.
Now I know why Ford never got any of that bailout money -- they filled out the forms upside down. Their bottom line was the top line. Oops.

The best part is in the letter Steve Clay says, "If you have any questions or if I can be of any assistance, please feel free to contact me." Sure Steve, you will be a big help as long as it doesn't involve loading a printer or doing any type of office work.

If this is how their promotional material goes out, I wouldn't trust them with financing or trade-in paper work.


Thursday, May 07, 2009

When are they doing the Cindy one?

I can't wait to see Cindy's ad. :)

Cindy Johnson
Garbage man of the software industry
She does the code no one else wants to

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Happy Mother's Day

Saw this today and had to share.


Where have we been?

Yes, I have been slacking. Between work, vacation, playing with the girls and continuing my elusive search for the things that keep Cindy happy, I have neglected the blog. Oh, and Facebook had something to do with it too. Dang Web 2.0.

Here are some updated photos I took this weekend. I promise to be better out here. It doesn't take long to update and more relatives visit this than my Facebook page.

Hope all is well with you, and I will try to post more here. Again, sorry.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Babies don't sleep on vacation either!

So, here I am at 1:34 a.m., not able to sleep on a couch.

No, Cindy and I didn't have a fight. We are on vacation and have a house at the coast. Violet and Lilly are sharing a room, Cindy and I have a room and Jen has a room upstairs.

For some reason Lilly won't stop crying. I think she is hungry, but she had a bunch of milk and continues to cry. So instead of leaving her in with Violet, so we have two exhausted kids today, I told Cindy to take Lilly to our room and I would find a place to crash.

So far, the couch isn't working. I figure if I stay up and get tired enough, it will work. :)

Now, mind you this isn't complaining. Nope, I mean if this is going to happen, when better than on a night where I don't have to be back to work for another six days? Perfect if you ask me. I am actually enjoying the little silence I get between muffled cries.

Oh, and Cindy got a nap today. So while she is probably tired, it isn't like she is operating on four hours of sleep. All in all, things aren't bad.

But I am up at this hour updating the blog, because it's quiet. :)

Now I think I will read. I bought two books today at the outlet mall.

I will post pictures and videos during the week, and do some updates.


Sunday, April 12, 2009

Happy Easter

Cindy has informed me that I have to update this blog more often. I have been updating my Facebook pace like a fiend -- I can do it from my phone, which is very nice -- but I have been neglecting this. I may see if I can find a tool that will allow me to update this with my iPhone too.

Anyway, Cindy remains defiant that she will not get on Facebook. I think she has a page, but will not check or update it. Way to be with the times, Ms. Computer Nerd!

Today we went to church and had a nice meal out at the Marsh's. Larry is talking about expanding his real estate empire again, either by buying a house in California (again) or some other property in the Colton area. I am trying to sell him my house, so let's see how that goes.

I'm not holding my breath.

Here is a picture of the girls this morning before church. These were the dresses they wore for Carrie's wedding, and I think this is the last time Violet will get into the dress -- it was a pretty tight fit.

Things are stressful at work, but I keep reminding myself it's a part-time job. :)

I will try to update this more often when we are on vacation with photos (we are going to the coast later this week!).

Hope you had a good Easter. He is risen!

1 a.m. Update: Really trying to catch up on laundry. We straightened the garage between 10:30 and 11:30 p.m. (the girls were sleeping), and there was one last load of laundry to do. I opted to stay up and do it. Anyway, this evening I took this video of Violet reading and thought you might like it.


Sunday, April 05, 2009

Palm Sunday Concert

Today is Palm Sunday. So Violet and her Sunday School pals did a concert in church this morning. I took a video from too far away, sorry.

Anyway, enjoy.


Saturday, March 28, 2009


Saturday Carrie and Jim are coming by for their last visit before they go back to Boston. So we are cleaning up the house. Violet got me up at 3:30 a.m. needing a cough drop, and then I couldn't get back to sleep, so I stayed up until Cindy scared the snot out of me at 7:30 a.m.

Then I tried to go back to sleep, and Cindy was cool and got me up at 12:30 p.m. I have been having these headaches, I don't know if they are stress related, or sleep related or a tumor. :)
So of course this afternoon I woke up with a bad one, had break---errrr -- lunch and now I am taking some Advil.

Cindy is off at the store with the girls while I vacuum, take out trash, recycling and put car seats back in her car. Fun times.

Now, if I could get this headache to go away, I would be doing well. I might be coming down with something again... grrrr.

Who knows.

Have a good weekend, and if I can I will update again Monday or Tuesday.


Sunday, March 22, 2009

Reading and drumming

Here's a couple of movies for you. Lilly with a drum (thank you whoever got that for us, it's a lot of fun... grrrr.) and Violet reading. I love the way Violet says "cat."

Anyway, it's naptime, so I have to go herd some kids to bed -- always fun.


Thursday, March 19, 2009

Crash goes the Lilly

There is nothing like ending a crazy day at the office, chasing stories, answering phones, grilling public officials and writing like a mad man, to a nice LOUD, CRASHING SOUND FOR HOURS ON END.

To the person who gave us the "music" set when Violet was born.... You are dead. Your family is dead. Your pets are dead. I will burn your house down, and leave in the ashes these two little cymbols from HELL (This is a joke, Department of Homeland Security).

We got lucky with Violet, she never figured out that if you slammed these two metal plates together, you could send your parents to the loony bin.

Well, we didn't get so lucky with Lilly, which is why in the video you can hear me say "apple juice" over and over for no apparent reason -- I am half nutty already. Tonight she escaped after I fed her (which is why she is naked) and found the cymbols while I was cleaning peanut butter off the ceiling.

Now if you will excuse me, everyone is sleeping and I just want to sit in my chair and enjoy the silence....


Monday, March 16, 2009

I love Mondays

Mondays are wonderful. I get to hang out with the girls and play and semi-check e-mail, but for the most part I am not working. Tonight I have a city council meeting, where I expect to catch some flack for the editorial we ran this week. Part of the job, but just messing around with my girls makes me realize that while people can get upset at what's in the paper, at the end of the day I have these two great little girls to come home to.

Sorry I haven't been updating more, but Facebook has been keeping me busy. I really should ditch it and just post here for all you non-tech types.

Well, Violet is trying to stifle Lilly again. Gotta go be referee!


Monday, March 09, 2009

Having fun

3 ounces.

We are trying to fatten Lilly up so we can put her in a forward-facing car seat. Also the fact she is in the 15th percentile for weight is a good reason to try to fatten her up.

YOu would think in a family like ours -- we weigh as much as the entire population of Denmark -- we could fatten a child up properly. Nope.

My theory is that she doesn't eat food, she throws it, mashes it, spreads it out and sits on it in her highchair. When you feed Lilly, you strip her down, put on a diaper, wrap her -- and the kitchen -- in blue tarp and watch the show. It's like going to a Gallagher comedy show.

Last night Violet came in our room at 4 am and said she was scared. Wanted to sleep with us. Sleep turned into playing mermaids on Mommy's head. When Violet woke me up again at 7 this morning, Mommy was in Violet's room sleeping. Violet had made a bed in the hall, and it was snowing.

Yes, March 9 and snowing. I am debating as to whether I should make the run to Mount Angel today or not... might wait to later.


Friday, February 27, 2009

Child abuse

Lilly takes after her dad!

OK, that isn't beer, it's root beer. And the bottle was empty and Cindy was messing around. So don't turn us into DHS.

If she did get some of the root beer can you imagine how gassy she would be?!

Cindy is insane sometimes. I guess these will be good for the divorce next week after I win the $175 million Powerball jackpot Saturday.


I'm starting to feel more and more like a dinosaur

Sad day today. A large daily in Denver closed it's doors today. I worry about where my profession is going...

Final Edition from Matthew Roberts on Vimeo.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009


IMG_4800, originally uploaded by Canby Chacal.

Wurstfest fun

IMG_4709, originally uploaded by Canby Chacal.

So I got to go to Wurstfest Saturday to do a freelance gig. Had some OK shots, but the Statesman sent out a "real" photographer. My photos didn't show up in print.

Covering festivals is fun and easy, but sometimes the coordinating between Silverton and Salem gets a little tricky. I am the one that ends up wasting my time. Oh well, I still had the story appear, so I guess it's OK.

Here is one of the shots I had. I might put more on Flickr, if anyone cares. :)

Busy week for both Cindy and I, so the blog is probably going to be kind of slow until this weekend. We are getting a plan of how to start fixing up the house to move. I think this weekend we might start taking down cabinet doors and sanding them.

With the kids it's like planning a army invasion. I think I will do the sanding work, and Cindy will watch the kids. I get them most of the week normally (not this week), so it will give her a chance to mess around with them.

Well, I am off to a meeting and drop Violet off to school. Jen is here today babysitting and without her and our parents I wouldn't be able to work... so I am so thankful!!!

Saturday, February 21, 2009


Today I am covering the Mt. Angel Wurstfest (Sausage Festival) and was charging batteries and whatnot to make sure everything was ready to go. I am shooting it for the Statesman Journal, and writing a story for the Silverton Appeal. I may, if I have extras send one over to the Woodburn Independent (they are in the same company I work for part-time).

As I was making sure things were ready I snapped a few shots of the kids. They are up on Flickr (the slideshow in the upper left).

One of my articles made an Oregonian blog (too bad the blogger,Kimberly Jacobsen Nelson, plagiarized my boss's editorial).