Friday, November 06, 2009

Clayton Family Christmas

The list for the exchanging of gifts is on the Clayton family blog here.

Hope this works for everyone!

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Last Call for "Vamps & Wolves" Shirts...

Mike's making the order tomorrow.

If you would like a shirt, please click here.

They will be shipped out by Monday, November 15th and will get to you before the blessed event!

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Mike's Big Costume is T.G.I.Fantastic with a side of Triple D!!!

I did it again! Was going to be one thing... but at the last minute switched to another!

I was going to be Iron Chef Mario Batali, but I couldn't find a pair of size 14 orange Crocs, so I switched gears and with a $10 bottle of light blonde hair colorizer and a $1 black sweatband, I became:

The hair is permanent, so I hope my students don't laugh at me too much come Monday.

Here is a close-up with my little princess:

Halloween 2009: Kids Edition

Here's what the kids were this Halloween:

Aaron was "Bookface" (... only fans of The Office will get it)

Aimee was a "Black Cat" (Which was a $5 costume, if you don't count the black long-sleeve shirt and the black jeans that we bought to go with it.)

Alex was a "Soccer Player" (We really didn't have a costume for him and he had a game earlier that day.)

Andee was a "Princess" (Thanks to the Andersons for letting her borrow a dress-up.)

... and Austin was a "Bunny Rabbit" (Thanks again the to the Andersons.)

Min got a haircut...

Min's been wanting a haircut for sooooo long. She she went and got one yesterday. Her friends told her to go to Albert and he would do a great job.

It ended up being a free haircut since Albert cut off 10" worth of hair to donate to Locks of Love. Even after that and much thinning, Min still had alot of hair left to style.

Looks good doesn't it.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Austin is 227 Days Old!!!!

Lately Austin has been doing this toothless grin when we say his name. Finally decided to capture it and share it!

Alex Loves Soccer!

Alex is playing soccer for the first time this season. He's a little bundle of energy on the field. He's trying to get the gist of the game, but right now it's a way to get his abundant energy out!

"Take a picture of me Dad!"

Sunday, October 25, 2009

The Puzzling World of Winston Breen

Aimee is reading "The Puzzling World of Winston Breen" by Eric Berlin for her GT (Gifted & Talented) program.

The book is full of puzzles to complete as you read.

Aimee was having trouble with a puzzle and didn't want to mark up the book, so we scanned the page and printed a few out. Min, Aaron, Aimee, and I worked the puzzle out individually and came up with same answer... WE WANTED TO DO MORE!

So Aimee and I were preparing to scan the rest of the puzzles when Min had a brilliant idea: "See if there is a website with them."


The Puzzling World of Winston Breen

So we downloaded them, printed them out and will work them out throughout the day!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Monday, September 28, 2009

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Saturday, September 19, 2009

"Pratt's Hatts" is now live...

My sister-in-law Jill asked me to convert a blogger account into an online store so that she can sell these crocheted hatts that she makes.

She's my sis-in-law, I couldn't say no.

So after spending some time over two weekends Pratt's Hatts is open for business.

Please check it out... and maybe buy something.

Avast, me hearties! It be "International Talk Like A Pirate Day!" (9/19/09)

14 years ago, John Baur and Mark Summers (Ol' Chumbucket and Cap'n Slappy respectively) proclaimed September 19th as a day each year where everyone in the world should talk like a pirate. Here's a bit o' history:

According to Summers, the day is the only holiday to come into being as a result of a sports injury. He has stated that during a racquetball game between Summers and Baur, one of them reacted to the pain with an outburst of "Aaarrr!", and the idea was born. That game took place on June 6, 1995, but out of respect for the observance of D-Day, they chose Summers' ex-wife's birthday, as it would be easy for him to remember.

At first an inside joke between two friends, the holiday gained exposure when John Baur and Mark Summers sent a letter about their invented holiday to the American syndicated humor columnist Dave Barry in 2002. Barry liked the idea and promoted the day. Growing media coverage of the holiday after Barry's column has ensured that this event is now celebrated internationally, and Baur and Summers now sell books and T-shirts on their website related to the theme. Part of the success for the international spread of the holiday has been attributed to non-restriction of the idea or trademarking, in effect opening the holiday for creativity and "viral" growth.
So in honor of the holiday, here is a guide of simple pirate phrases:

Ahoy! - "Hello!"

Avast! - Stop and give attention. It can be used in a sense of surprise, "Whoa! Get a load of that!" which today makes it more of a "Check it out" or "No way!" or "Get off!"

Aye! - "Why yes, I agree most heartily with everything you just said or did."

Aye aye! - "I'll get right on that sir, as soon as my break is over."

Arrr! - This one is often confused with arrrgh, which is of course the sound you make when you sit on a belaying pin. "Arrr!" can mean, variously, "yes," "I agree," "I'm happy," "I'm enjoying this beer," "My team is going to win it all," "I saw that television show, it sucked!" and "That was a clever remark you or I just made." And those are just a few of the myriad possibilities of Arrr!

So with your new vocabulary in tow... start talking like a pirate! Arrrrr!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Monday, September 07, 2009

Lucky Number 13!

Thirteen years ago today...

My how things have changed...

... and I wouldn't want to change a thing.

One Good Man (Trailer)

Saw this trailer over on the Apple Trailer page:

I'm not a huge fan of Mormon-Cinema, but this movie looks like one of the better attempts at capturing the spirit of the church.

Take a look at the trailer.

Saturday, September 05, 2009

Austin's not the brightest kid we have...

You've got the binky in the wrong way bud.

(Oh yeah... he's asleep too.)

Friday, August 28, 2009

The end of the first week of school...

... and all of the teachers survived.


Thursday, July 30, 2009

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Aimee drew a picture of me, and I said...

"Nice picture Aimee, but why is my neck so round?"

"Because it's you inside of a TV, Daddy."

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Austin is 4 months old

Just got back from the dr and Austin is doing great! Here's his 4 month stats:

15 lbs 5 oz, 50%
25", 50%

and oh, SO ADORABLE!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

"I am going to get you!" (aka Austin's Laugh)

Austin was in a pretty good mood tonight... and I was able to capture his laugh.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Easily amused...

Austin is trying on Aaron's glasses.

We really need to get Alex a helmet... with a face mask

Third time's a charm.

... and I'm not paying for another ER visit.

After breakfast, Alex was running through our room on the way to the stairs when he did a little spin move through our doorway and smacked the jam.

The result: a split lip that bled worse than the others.

So we calmed him down, got a wash rag, stopped the bleeding and surveyed the damage: two cuts on this lip from where it curled up over bottom teeth and got punctured by the top and bottom teeth and a small tear to his top gum.

Alex has asked that we not take pictures of it and put it on the blog... and Min agrees.

We don't need CPS knocking on our door.

With this being Texas, I should be able to go to Academy Sports and get a junior sized football helmet right off the shelf, shouldn't I?

Shockwaves 2009!

Last night was the Shockwaves "End of Year Party" at the Stoneridge Pool.

The Shockwaves is the name of our local swim team. Aaron has swam for them for the last three years and Aimee swam in 2007 and 2009 (she skipped a year because she didn't want to do it).

As a member of the swim team, you practice every morning (Tuesday-Friday) and have Swim Meets against other local clubs on Monday Nights (and yes, it does count for Family Home Evening... at least for us - HA!).

Aimee and Aaron really enjoyed doing it this summer, and we are so proud of them.

Here is Aimee accepting her participation trophy for swimming with the 7-8 year-olds. This year she overcame her fear of the "Deep End" and swam the Freestyle and Backstroke events at the meets. Aimee surprised us... and we couldn't be more proud.

Aaron swam with the 9-10 year-olds this season and learned all four strokes: butterfly, backstroke, breast stroke, and freestyle. He competed in the butterfly and freestyle, and along the way participated in the Team Medley and the Individual Medley.

Aaron was also awarded the "Most Improved Swimmer" in his age group. He was worked very hard this year and we are quite proud of him.

Here are our two goofballs with their trophies (they spin this year... oh joy).

They can't wait for next season!

Friday, July 10, 2009

A "Shout Out" to the folks in Pflugerville!

I just want to publicly thank Betsy and Nate for taking me in for the week.

Each summer I teach a 5-day workshop at UT Austin for DMA, and its far easier for me to make the drive from Pflugerville than from San Antonio everyday.
  • San Antonio to Austin = 73 miles each way
  • Pflugerville to Austin = 23 miles each way
I usually bring the entire clan with me, but due to van problems (that have yet to be resolved) I made the trek alone.

So thanks for letting me sneak out in the morning and walk in in the evening.

... and a special "Shout Out" to Isaac for giving up his room for the week.

Thanks a bunch.

... and hopefully we'll be coming up later this next week.

Sunday, July 05, 2009

Aimee's Backstroke Event

I have to apologize to Aimee for the intention of putting the video up.

She's a great swimmer and did a great job, but her trying to get out of the pool is what had be rolling.

She's in lane #2.

Alex "borrowed" my FlipVideo Camera... and this is what I found.

Thursday, July 02, 2009

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Rest in Peace (June 2009 - "The Force" Edition)

(l-r) Farrah Fawcett (6/25), Ed McMahon (6/23), Billy Mays (6/27),
David Carradine (6/3), Michael Jackson (6/25)

Sunday, June 21, 2009

I request for my family in Southern CA...

... I'm not sure if y'all know that I collect "themed" Mr. Potato Heads.

There were some Disneyland exclusive "Star Wars" themed ones that came out a few years ago, and I managed to get them off eBay (for a ridiculous price).

Well, there are three more coming out in October '09: Mashter Yoda, C-Three-Potat-0, and Chipbacca (seen below)

If any of you California cousins -- that plan on going to the Disneyland this Fall -- that would be willing to pick these three little guys up for me, I will pay for them and shipping and a little extra for your love and hard work.

Please let me know in the comments and we can work out the details.

Thanks in advance!

Austin is a little over 3 months old!

... and smiling more every day!

... and the winner is!!!!

#3 - Don't Hold Your Breath.

We've had this up for about a week but forgot to post it.

When all the votes from email/Facebook/comments were tallied it was a tie between #1 and #3.

Min and I broke the tie.

... but the pic doesn't really match the shadow/lighting for the others, so we are rethinking it.

"They call me Mr. Fish!"

Last week I cleaned the pond and used my [early Father's Day present of a] power washer to clean the algae scum off the sides of it.

We counted 16 fish this time (we've lost two in the last six months) ranging from a 3" goldfish to an 11" koi... that we have dubbed "Mr. Fish".

Now that the water is clean, we can actually see them swimming in the pond.

Mr. Fish is the orange fish with black and white spots (in the middle). He started growing the barbs on his mouth about 9 months ago. He was about 7" long when we go him in February '08.

Update: Alex's Eyebrow

Oh Wow!... it's been quite the wee with Alex and his head wound.

But so that you know... it's healing (CLICK TO SEE HOW IT'S HEALING...).

Monday - Before the swim meet, Min notices that the wound is open at one end and is bleeding. A little pressure stops it.

Tuesday - The wound appears swollen and opens at the top and start to ooze (and it don't smell pretty).

Thursday - I take Alex to the doctors and then say that it is indeed infected and put him on a strong antibiotic (Cleocin) that tastes so bad it is recommended that we mix it with chocolate pudding. Alex likes this prescription. The steri-strips come off and we clean the outside of the wound. We are told to use hot compresses twice a day as well.

Friday - I take Alex back for a follow up and the infection is going away and the swollen brow is returning to normal...

Friday night - ... but it appears that the wound starting to separate and open up. A call to the ER asks us to come back in that night (this is around 11 PM) or come in the morning.

Saturday - I take Alex to the ER and the same doc that glued happens to be there and inspects the wound and announces that it "looks great" (that's doctor "looks great" as compared to parents "looks great"). I guess it's suppose to open up as it heals since wounds like this heal from the inside out. She prescribes a bacterium ointment to help dissolve the glue and help in the healing process.

Sunday - Alex is feeling great... but is getting sick of having chocolate pudding three times a day.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

"He looks like a boxer."

For the second time in a month, we've been to the ER with Alex.

Last time it for the cut across the bridge of his nose. This time... the right eyebrow.

I had just gotten up to give Min the phone when I heard a WHAPP and a SCREAM.

Alex came around the corner holding his eye, and I moved his hand, saw the gaping wound, and yelled: "MIN! WE'VE GOT A BLEEDER!"

So she hung up (sorry Susan) and quickly called a friend to watch the other three as we went the the ER.

Since our house is "on the market" I sat and applied pressure to Alex's head and she and the others tidied the house up and cleaned up lunch.

Then we were off.

We were the only folks at the ER this time around, so we got in and out really quick (less than an hour).

Here's the beautiful wound:


They put some medicine on it to numb it and covered it with the gauze and a netted hat. Alex isn't asleep, the netting just hurt his eyes.

Once again, no stitches required. It was a clean "pop" so they Dermabond-ed this one too. For good measure, the doc put steri-strips on it too.

Hopefully this is the last time this summer that we make a visit to the ER. *knock on wood*

Heading to the ER again...

... Alex just split his right eyebrow open on the kitchen table.

More later.

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Good thing Min tooks pics yesterday...

... here's what happened today:


You guessed it.

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Please Choose For Us...

In our hallway upstairs we have this hanging...

Now that Austin is here, Min wants to update the photos and replace Jesus with the new addition (sacrilege... I know).

She has all of the other pictures chosen... except for Andee's.

We can't decide... so we'll put the power in your hands.

Please vote for one of the four images below.

#1 - The Surprise Smile

#2 - Tongue in Cheek

#3 - Don't Hold Your Breath

#4 - The Wrong Side of the Bed

Voting will be tallied this Sunday Evening (June 7th) and we will print the winner and reveal it on Monday (June 8th).

Thanks in advance.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Friday, May 22, 2009

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Happy Birthday Alex!!! You're Five!!!!!

Last Sunday Alex turned 5... but due to circumstances beyond his control (i.e. Dad's too busy to decorate his cake or get a present) we postponed the festivities to Tuesday night after swim team.

For his birthday he wanted Pokémon Diamond (for the DS), but instead we got him some Number Busters!

Alex is our little whiz with numbers and love Pokémon type things... so naturally, we knew he would like these.

These are little dinosaur/monster/creature figures that come with a random number on their feet that you use to play a game that's kind of like War. They also come with a set of cards that you can use along with the figures to add points to their number and alter the outcome of the battle.

The trick with these is that you need to have more than one of each kind or else you can memorize the number and know which one's to pick... so we'll have to get another set soon.

So... the cake held up the party.

Alex wanted a cake like Andee's, but green... so I trimmed the ears and made a Green Puppy from the Blue's Clues pan (Andee had Magenta for her cake).

He loved it. He wanted an ear and the eyes.

Andee got an ear. Aimee got the hat. Min got the back leg and rump. Aaron got the face. I took the present.

Alex loved and was happy his birthday was extended two more days.


Saturday, May 16, 2009

Thursday, May 07, 2009

Finals are over...

... and now I just have to finish the grades.

Oh Happy Day!

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

ER: The Photos...

Here are the promised photos.

Here's Alex's wonderful injury. A nice split right across the bridge of his nose:

After about an hour, they called us to the back where they accessed the wound and numbed it with some "cold stuff" on a cotton ball taped to his face. Here he is watching "Martha Speaks" on my iPod while he waits for it to numb the area.

The nurse had to clean the wound with saline solution. Alex did very well... but got soaked.

The doctor said the wound closed very well and in lieu of stitches she opted to superglue it together. She said it would start to fall/peel off in 10 days... the day before Alex's 5th Birthday!

Good job Alex!