Monday, February 25, 2008


Cam liked what Glen Hansard said during his Oscar acceptance speech, "Make Art."

But I thought Marketa Irglova was the epitome of gracefulness. "No matter how far out your dreams are, it's possible. And, you know, fair play to those who dare to dream, and don't give up."

"This song was written from the perspective of hope, and hope, at the end of the day, connects us all, no matter how different we are."

If you haven't seen it yet, see Once.

Thursday, February 21, 2008


Recently, on our first open door Sunday, Sam and Timila came up with the idea to construct their own eco-
friendly bowling alley.

We appreciate having tolerant neighbors as we aren't sure it was acoustically friendly to have plastic bottles fall from the second floor balcony.

They had a blast and played for hours.

For more photos, go to this Flickr set of Sam and Timila bowling with plastic bottles.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

SF Pillow Fight '08

On Valentine's Day afternoon, our neighbor and friend, Gaju generously offered to bring Sam with him into the city (along with three of our pillows) so we could meet Cam and his class from the Academy of Art at SF Pillow Fight '08.

Sam and I had fun warming-up by hitting people in my office and strangers on the street, on our way there.

Then, Cam told us we were supposed to be non-nonchalant and covert with our pillows until the fighting started at precisely 6pm.

We sat on our pillows for a bit, then took a few runs through the fountain. Soon it was 6pm.

I loved the first 10 minutes of the pillow fight but you know how you can get too much of a good thing? I think that's what happened. I was feeling so exhilarated on the periphery that I decided to move further into the swarm of pillow fighting.

Suddenly, I was whapped hard in the face. Ouch. I stayed in a bit longer but the next blow to the head hit my glasses pretty squarely and hurt. I checked with Cam and Sam to see if they wanted to move out with me. They didn't.

Sam stayed in the mix for 30 minutes, before checking in with Cam and I at the meeting place. He was ready to go back for more. We took him for a quick dinner break. When we were done, at 7pm, the fight was still going.

I jumped back in with him and we enjoyed wading through the crowd, waging little skirmishes along the way and made it safely to the ferry building in plenty of time to whack the nice man who takes our ferry tickets, before boarding.

Cam came up with the idea and wrote about our experience here. Other people posted their pillow fight pics here.

Check out this Flickr set for my favorite pictures from our '08 pillow fight. I say we go back next year.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Sam & Leo's 1st Sleepover

Leo is in Sam's class this year. They are in Robotics together and have been having fun playing at school for awhile. Recently, the school directory came out and we had Leo's family's contact information. We gave them a call and shortly afterwards, Leo was at our house for a sleepover. They had lots of fun.

Sam's been invited to a sleepover at Leo's house this weekend. He's excited. We're thankful and appreciative of nice people and new friends.

Check out this Flickr set for more of their silliness.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Fortunate Mistake

This week, I have been inspired by's "Yes We Can" video (which was inspired by a speech given by Barack Obama). We sang parts of it, when we needed encouragement, during our 14 mile hike yesterday.

On Friday night, I set about trying to identify all of the performers. I wanted to know more about them and to support them as a way of thanking them for supporting Barack.

Cam found this MTV article that listed several of the performers.

Next, I searched for images of them and was able to identify some of the artists who had given my favorite performances from the video but I couldn't identify everyone.

Finally, I searched itunes by the performer's names.

I sampled and bought music by John Legend, Esthero, Kate Walsh, Common, Harold Perrineau (Michael from Lost), Nick Cannon, Nicole Scherzinger, Scarlett Johansson and Ed Kowalczyk from Live.

So far, of these purchases, the music I have enjoyed most is by Kate Walsh. Today, I tried to find out more about her and realized there is more than one Kate Walsh. One is an actress from Grey's Anatomy, who supports Obama and was supposed to be in this video.

Kate Walsh, the folk musician, lives in the United Kingdom. I don't know how she feels about U.S. politics.

I do know I am happy I found her music.

To paraphrase a line from Your Song, "It is so pretty, to me."

Wildcat Camp Hike

When we set out on this hike, for some reason, I thought it was going to be a 10 mile hike.

Already, that seemed like a very serious hike (for us) but I was excited about it.

It ended up being 14 miles and we are out of practice taking long hikes.

I am sore today but not miserable and some of that soreness is in a good way.

I'm happy for the exercise and am looking forward to longer, more active days.

We're enjoying our first front door open day, today.

Check out my Flickr set of our hike to Wildcat camp.

Cam wrote about it and posted pictures too.

I hope you enjoyed your weekend.

Seeing elephant seals with Amy & Sebastian.

During their recent visit to the Bay Area, my cousin, Amy and her husband, Sebastian paid us a visit.

Since they were here while the elephant seals were migrating, we suggested we head out to Pt. Reyes and see them.

We lucked out and saw an elk herd too.

It was a beautiful day and I'm glad we were able to spend it with them.

Go to this Flickr set to see us making binocular face.

Saturday, February 09, 2008

Our first Waterfill Hike of '08

For our first big hike of 2008, we returned to Cataract Falls on the north side of Mt. Tam.

It was as lovely as last time, maybe even a bit fuller.

Visit this Flickr set for more pictures from our Cataract Falls '08 hike. I took a bunch of videos, to share the waterfalls in action, but most of them are sideways and I'm not sure how to rotate a video image yet. Maybe I'll learn and post them later.

For now, I need to get going. Cam's taking us on a 10 mile hike, to a waterfall that flows into the sea, today.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Yes We Can.

"There has never been anything false about hope." Barack Obama

Yes We Can.

Saturday, February 02, 2008

Our Snowy New Year's Eve

I'm never such a good shot. (I'm happy I didn't hit him in the face. My aim is so bad. Have you heard the story about how I accidentally hit my middle school principal with a grape?)

I was having such a wonderful, nostalgia filled afternoon on New Year's Eve. After ice skating with friends, while walking up Michigan Avenue, I called to see how Cam and Sam were doing.

They'd bailed on ice skating because Sam seemed wiped out but after a few hours of resting, they were willing to venture out a bit.

One of the things we wanted to do was watch the New Year's Eve fireworks over the lake. Not sure we'd make it till midnight, we decided to try to catch the 7pm family fireworks display.

First, we grabbed dinner at the Big Bowl where Cam and I went on our first real date then headed towards the lake.

When we got to the lake, since it was overcast, we could hear the fireworks but not see them. We didn't mind though, we much preferred the several inches of new-fallen snow.

A giddy snowball fight ensued.

We tried to make a snowman and each created large balls of snow but when we tried to stack them, they collapsed.

I had fun making a snow angel.

The weather was so mild, we would have liked to have stayed out longer but a couple of us needed to find a bathroom. By the time we were back in our hotel room, we decided we were in for the night.

Sam was enjoying his Manga. Cam and I tried to find something on TV and considered getting a pay-per-view movie to help us stay up until midnight but there was nothing we were really excited about seeing. For awhile, we enjoyed some Saturday Night Live tribute show but ended up falling asleep around 10pm. (8pm California time)

At one point, I woke up and Sam, who was still awake, said it was just a few minutes before midnight. I was able to count down with him and Cam mumbled a sleepy Happy New Year to us too. But by 12:02am on 1/1/08, the lights were off and it was time for bed again.

Last year, we brought 2007 in on an airplane, after having been stranded in Dallas for a couple of extra days.

While our New Year's Eve snowball fight on lake Michigan was memorable and quite fun, I really want to give Sam an enjoyable countdown experience next year.

Help me remember, OK?

Go to this Flickr set if you want to see more pictures from our happy new year.

Happy New Year to you.