Wednesday, April 02, 2008

BANG THE DRUM AND SHOUT isn't going to be updated any more. Why? because I can't keep up two blogs for two kids.

TWO KIDS?? What happened there? Well, Min has joined the family. You can read about her things by going to HER SPECIAL BLOG.

To read more about the adventures of Laina and Min you can visit them at:

Two Sugar Plums

Friday, January 11, 2008

These are just some more pictures from her "3 year old" birthday pictures.

Friday, January 04, 2008

It happened yet again--I held my breath long enough and the "Holiday Season" passed me by without too much damage. Our neighbors had a great light display, enough for all of us. I didn't put a wreath on our door or get a christmas tree or put up any lights. I think our neighborhood thinks that we're the Scrooge family. I'm pretending I'm a Jehovah's Witness. I think that this is the last year I can let the Holidays slide by, though. Laina loves the sparkley lights and the pretty ornaments. She's a true Raccoon person.

We spend the Christmas Holiday at my Grandmother's house in San Luis Obispo. She's 94 years old and said that she's not planning to do any more Christmas decorating. She's giving away all her decorations. She's given me her olive wood "Jesus, Mary, Joseph and the shepherds" manger scene that we bought for her when we were in Jerusalem. I don't know when that was--1982 or something like that?

Laina and Cousin E. had a great time visiting with each other. They managed not to do any lasting harm to each other or any of the things they came in contact with this time. Here are a few pictures of the last month:

On the 13th, Laina celebrated her 3rd Birthday. Here's a picture of what she looked like:

During our Christmas time we spent some time on the beach. Here is Christmas day on Avila Beach. This is one of the great things about California--Christmas on the beach without getting frostbite. Laina ran onto the beach and as soon as her feet hit the sand, she bucked off her clothes and started running to the waves. I'm trying to teach her a little bit about social norms around here and since we're not living in the Munich English Garden, it's more appropriate to keep bits covered. After a little negotiation, she agreed to keep her bottoms on. She and Eli had a great time on the beach.

Right now I'm listening to the 2:00 news. Everyone on KCAL is all twitterpated about the upcoming "rainstorms". It's going to be the most rain since 2003!! or is that 2005!! It's going to rain more than 2 1/2 minutes at a time and they are dedicating the whole news program to it. There was some poor reporter out in Ventura with a plastic bag in her hand and saying, "look, look at this bag waving in the wind...the wind is really blowing...look at this bag". OK she didn't say exactly that, but that was the main idea. It reminds me of the reporters who wait out on the Sylvan bridge in Portland at the first rumor of snow so that they can talk about how it's snowing. If it rains enough to get all of the ground wet at the same time in my yard then I'll be really happy. So far, since I've lived down here, it has rained maybe 4 times. I've boycotted watering my lawn and I'm reminded that humans aren't supposed be living in orange county anyways.

Monday, November 12, 2007

I've been learning some new things with my old photoshop program. I'm not great a editing pictures, but I have fun with it. One of the things I thought would be fun would be to give some of Laina's pictures the "Andy Warhol" treatment. So I've taken one of my favorite pictures and totally went crazy with it. Here are a few examples:

I found some web site that will do this kind of thing with a photograph that you send to them and they'll print it out on canvas and then give it back to you after they charge you $450 or more. I know I'm not all that great at "Warholization" but even if someone is really great at it, I don't see how they can charge $450 for it.

Anyways, it was my artistic outlet for the day.

Thursday, November 01, 2007


Yesterday was Halloween and Laina and I decided we would take part in some of the celebrations! First thing that we did was go to the local market and buy some pumpkins: one for me and one for her.

Laina helped me do the scooping!

Laina enjoyed washing the seeds and playing with them. I thought that we might toast them for a snack, but after so much washing and being played with, I decided just to dump them in the trash.

She was so excited to go trick or treating that she had her costume on at 6:00, she didn't actually go around the neighborhood until around 7:00.

When she went, Jorg took her and I stayed home and gave out the candy. She came back with quite a haul!

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Ode to a Conny Francis song

Last weekend Laina and I drove up with my parents to visit my Grandma (She's called Gi-gi). On Sunday we had a very nice morning. Around 10:00 or so, we drove out to Avila Beach to play on the sand and walk around the little beach. Laina and my mom and a great time hopping the little wave, digging in the sand and watching the Pelicans dive. I sat and enjoyed having my mom watch Laina for awhile.

On the ride back, Laina fell asleep and slept for about 20 minutes. After lunch, I decided to see if she would go down for a nap in the pack and play. My rule for naps is that she has to stay in the crib for an hour regardless of if she sleeps or not. Laina didn't sleep at all and spent the time talking to herself, singing, and yelling, " naptime over?". Just before naptime was over, my mom walked by the room and peeked in the cracked door. Mom came back and reported, "Laina's standing in the crib with one leg hanging over the side". I quickly went to the room and sure enough, one leg hanging over the side and she was reaching out trying to get something that was just out of reach on the desk close by. The desk chair was knocked down on the floor and as I walked in she dropped my cosmetic bag that she had in her other hand. She'd been caught and she knew it. This is what I saw:

I started laughing and called my mom in to see. Laina had gotten into my make up bag, taken out my lipstick and had smeared the whole tube over her entire face. There was some amount of toothpaste involved, but not too much. There was lipstick everywhere: on the side of the crib, on the blankets, on her shirt, in her hair, on her hands, all over. So. I took papertowels and wiped off her hands and face, stripped her down and threw her in the shower (not literally, people, come-on!). Her shirt was dunked in hot soapy water and left to soak overnight. The blanket was an electric blanket and couldn't be washed, so I wiped it off the best I could with some rubbing alcohol. The P-N-P was scrubbed with some cleanser and got mostly clean.

Laina was scrubbed mostly clean, but I could see sparkles from the lipstick on her scalp for about 2 baths afterwards. Laina, my little monkey-girl. Gotta love her!

Lipstick on your collar
Told a tale on you!!!

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

I've finally uploaded a bunch of pictures and I'm trying the new Flikr function so I've made a little slideshow and if all works out well you can see it if you follow this link:

So, let's see if it works. Oh yeah, and here's some nice music to go along.

Get this widget | Track details |eSnips Social DNA

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

To my 3 blog readers: There is big news on my parallel blog that I've been keeping. BIG news...HUGE!!
Check it out:
Hang on Little Tomato

Now I have to upload a ridiculous amount of pictures from the digi cam that I've neglected for too long.

Friday, July 27, 2007


My friend Scott and his family gave Laina this very nice velour jog suit. It's sized as "18 months". When I first got it, I couldn't believe that Laina would EVER be big enough to wear it and I had to roll up the legs for the longest time. Have a look at it now! It's almost highwaters now and I think I'll have put it in the "wait for the next one" bag. Thanks again, Scott and Mrs. T for the jogsuit! Laina really has enjoyed wearing it and would pet her legs and say, "it's so soft!" when she had it on.

Another nice gift we've received recently came from our neighbor Anne and her sons Andrew, Brandon and Christopher. Anne had been collecting these adorable little dolls for years and she came to the time in her life where it was time to let them go. Guess who has them now!! Laina loves them and calls them her "babies" and she puts them in her tricycle and gives them rides around the block. Thanks Anne!!

Sunday, July 01, 2007


I've managed to get a picture of Laina and this Monkey about every 6 months since we came home in October 2005. Here's the series as it is now. The monkey is a little statue at the front gate of the Santa Ana Zoo.

June 2007

Novemberish 2006

Julyish 2006

December 2005

Sunday, June 17, 2007

So, what do you do with 3 dirty little kids after they've played in dirt all afternoon?
You toss them in the tub!! Rub a dub dub--3 kids in the tub...

Thursday, June 14, 2007


Laina and E. spent a good deal of time doing what kids should be doing-playing together and getting very, very dirty. Filthy even. So, I'll let these pictures speak for themselves.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007


This weekend we went to Sacramento to visit Aunt Aimee, Uncle Ryan and Cousins Eli and Amelia. On Saturday, the highlight of the day was...THE AIRSHOW!!! The Jets and airplanes were loud and fast. The kids were great and we stayed there all day.

Ryan and Eli sat in the cockpit of a Giant Transport Plane (a Boeing C something or other (sorry Airforce...I can't remember this stuff).

Laina had some nice photo ops, too.

I took lots of photos this weekend, so check back for more tomorrow!

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Until we have some more interesting news, and especially because we have no interesting news, I present a picture of Laina!