Monday, July 28, 2008

Sweet!

Just saw that Juliana Hatfield will be on the Tonight Show (ugh. Hate Jay Leno) on August 25th. More importantly, she will be playing Seattle one month later on 9/23 at the Triple Door!

Time to get me some tickets!

edit: Tickets be got! Now. Who's gonna babysit?

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Oh yeah!

All this complaining about Haley I've done? Well, I'm hoping it's a thing of the past. Since she's been home, she hasn't been perfect, but she has been great. She's been back to the Haley we all know and love.

Marci and I are gonna work on charting Haley's eating, resting/sleeping habits and moods. We think they're all linked. With some notes, we're hoping to get a grasp on the mood swings.

For now, I think it's helping tremendously that she's home and in a place where there's room to play and be a kid. Down in CA, the space we had was limited and it wasn't the most kid-friendly place around either.

So, in a nutshell, she's doing great. Thought you'd all like to know.

Update

Nothing fascinating to report these days. I have been continuing my push up program. I did my week 4 exhaustion test (do as many as possible before failing) today. I hit 41 before I pooped out. Not bad, but I was hoping for 50. Next week I begin week 5 and it looks to be a killer. Start at 40, then 32, then 32 and on and on. I've kicked ass on the first 4 weeks so we'll see how week 5 goes.

I have been a bit of a lazybody since our vacation. I didn't work out in CA (save for doing my push up routine every other day). When I got home, I worked out once (did Tae Bo, of all things!) and continued my push ups. My excuse is that Ted (Marci's dad) is staying downstairs while he's in town. Truth be told, he's upstairs most of the time and I could squeeze in a 20 minute workout if necessary.

I guess it's not necessary.

In Lund Bros. news, I've been spamming message boards and emailing friends and posting on myspace and things to steer people to our Austin City Limits page. I kept thinking we had to hit #1 to advance. Turns out we need to be in the top 100 to move to round 2. As of right now, we have 71 votes. Band # 1oo has 210 votes. I just want to be band 100. So, if you haven't voted, go here and vote. If you have voted before, make sure you're going on a daily basis until we get in (or the contest ends). I would LOVE to make round 2 just to see what happens. Thanks to those who have helped us so far.

We rehearsed the other night and it went pretty well. We'll be debuting 3 new songs on Friday, August 1st. I'm looking forward to it. Also, it is the Doll Test's CD release party, so that should be a big draw for a lot of people. I know the Unsmashable crew will be there. Hopefully some of my homies will be there too.

No news on the Riley front. We have a doctor's appointment in a few weeks. That should shed a lot of light on what we do next. Do keep the little dude in your thoughts. He's pretty cool.

I guess that's about it for now. I'll be back in a few days. Cheers!

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Family is back!

After 3+ weeks, after 3200+ miles, after lots of drama, the crew is back in Bellevue! They showed up yesterday afternoon and it was all good. The kids were in good shape, as were Ted (Marci's dad) and Marci. Strangely, they all smelled like fried food.

I was quite happy to see everyone, and they were happy to see me. Unfortunately, the good vibes didn't seem to last long enough as Marci and I were a little prickly to each other. Maybe it was the time apart. Maybe we needed to get back in the mindset of having vacation over. I don't know exactly what it was, but both last night and today, we've had some minor moments.

It seems Haley is being quite good. Though she had one little brat moment (she said she wanted to be stinky late in the afternoon), she's been the Haley I remember from months ago. No being rude, no talking back, only a little feeling sorry for herself. I just have to remember that she's 6 and she's not perfect.

Riley has been crazy. He's been good, for the most part, but he's been a mile-a-minute and talking non-stop! He's a fun little dude and it's been great to be with him the past day.

Tomorrow it's back to work for me!

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Uh oh (not bass related)

Marci, Ted (my father-in-law) and the kids are on their way home today. Sounded like it was business as usual. Riley even had to make another pit-stop in Bakersfield at the same place he did on the way down.

Anyway, it appears our trusty portable DVD player may be on the fritz. It's easy for me to say that they should just have the kids look out the window and enjoy the scenery because I'm not there. So I won't.

I just hope Marci and Ted stock up on the patience as they make the long drive.

Quick update

I didn't trade for the bass. Couldn't do it.

Marci and crew are on their way home today. YAY! They'll be back on Saturday. Which means I have to clean the house! BOO! Drive safely, guys.

I went to see Aimee Mann last night at the zoo. That was cool. More importantly, my companion was an old friend who I hadn't seen in a year or so. Incredible! We spent most of the show catching up and chit chatting. Good times.

See you later.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Ugh

I took the Sterling to rehearsal last night. It played like a champ! I liked the sound, but it's much more subdued than the SB-2.

So, what's the verdict?

I don't know! I have the bass here at work. I just checked it out. It's so pretty! The Sterling, that is. The orange of the body is beautiful. The bird's-eye maple neck is exquisite. My history with it is long and involved. Yet, if I keep it, it'll just sit most of the time.

If I trade it, undoubtedly the SB-2 would get playing time. But I'm having a hard time justifying 3 of the same basses. Plus, the sentimental value attached to the Sterling is keeping me from boxing it up and sending it across the country.

Decisions, decisions!

Monday, July 14, 2008

Uh oh

I like to peruse for sale bass ads at Talkbass.com. When I see one for an SB-2, I always keep an eye on it. I saw one last week where a guy is selling/trading one. One of the trades he'd accept is for a Sterling with a maple neck.

Say. I have a Sterling with a maple neck!

I offered it to the guy and he sounds like he wants to do it. So now, I'm torn. The Sterling has been with me for 12 years or so. I bought it back in 96 I guess, from Bass Northwest. I used it pretty much exclusively for many years. I bought other basses over the years (Geddy Lee Jazz, Fender P, Spector NS2000, Ibanez ATK300) but always went back to the Sterling.

That is, until I bought an SB-2 last year. And the Sterling has been sitting ever since. :(

Now I have 2 SB-2s. My original that I got last July. Now I have a second, which I bought a few months ago. It's a tribute model, but it sings and it's black and nasty. I have my eye on a 3rd and the guy has given the go-ahead for the trade. I just sent him an email telling him about the Sterling and some of its history. His SB-2 is bombtastic and would be a worthy addition, for sure.

But, I already have 2 SB-2s!

And, the Sterling is my baby!

So, we'll see what happens. If he still accepts after my email to him, I suppose I could always bail, but then I'd have 3 basses I'd play, instead of 2 and one that just sits.

Stay tuned...

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Haley

Since I wrote one about Riley, I suppose it's only fair I write one about Haley.

I really lucked out with Haley. When she was born, she came 5 weeks early. At the time, Marci and I were enrolled in a birthing class for the Bradley Method. The plan was to have the baby, named Marvy at the time, without drugs. We took these classes every Monday from about 6 to 9 or so for several weeks.

The trouble with taking the classes was by the time I got there after work (and dinner, I suppose), I was in no condition to study. In fact, the book I borrowed from Alison (she delivered her kids using Bradley) was filled with doodles and scribbles by Yours Truly.

Anyway, with Haley coming early, and being a C-section to boot, that meant all of my inattentiveness during our classes wouldn't matter. All I had to do was stand there and take pictures of my precious daughter being born.

I guess I was kind of hoping for a girl. I grew up with 2 brothers and, even when I worked at the Y, I always enjoyed the girls more than the boys (does that sound creepy?). Though I would've been happy with a boy, having a girl first really made me happy.

When she was first born, we didn't have a name picked out. After a few hours, Haley was what we came up with. We were also going to give her a Chinese middle name and asked my parents to come up with it for us. They gave her a name that meant Heavenly Fragrance, which phonetically pronounced, is approximately Tien Shing. We were set to go with that, but my brother Knight said, "Why don't you translate Tien into English?"

Brilliant!

So, "tien" means "sky" in Chinese, and, with that, Haley Skye was named.

Over the years, as Haley got older, it became apparent to us and our family and friends that she was the type that was "always on". She had a motor and had limitless energy. I was always proud of the fact that she seemed further ahead with her physical skills. She was more daring than her friends. She could do a lot of things that the other kids had problems with.

When Riley came along 2 years later, Haley was a great older sister. She and Rye hit it off really well. She was never the jealous sibling. She really cared for him and nurtured him along the way.

Haley did really well in preschool. She got along with all the other kids and seemed to be quite popular with playdates and such. She got her alphabet down and numbers, too.

This past year, Haley had kindergarten. She seemed to do pretty well, but as the year progressed, we noticed she didn't handle certain things very well. To me, Haley has always been a kid that needed a nap, but once she decided she didn't need them, she just stopped taking them. This has caused problems because when she gets tired, she can be quite cranky. Add in going to half-day kindergarten (at 7:50am) and we had many mornings with emotional drama.

I thought it would get better as the year progressed and Haley got used to things, but it didn't. In fact, it seemed to get worse towards the end of the year. There were many times in which Marci would take Haley to school and have to leave her there crying with the teacher. Other times, they wouldn't even get out the door for the car and Haley was already a crying wreck. We chalked it up to her being tired.

Well, more recently, maybe in the past few months, Haley has upped her game considerably. Instead of just being tired and inconsolable, she's turned into a smart mouthed little monster. She seems really fed up with Riley (even before we received the ACM diagnosis). I don't think we give more attention to him, but out of necessity, we do have to do certain things for him that we don't for her. She goes from one extreme to the other. We'll ask her once to stop what she's doing to help clean or something and she'll go, "FINE!" and throw whatever she's doing aside and come "help" us. She'll do something she knows she shouldn't, then apologize immediately for it with an insincere, "Sorry," and think it's ok. She will talk back to me and Marci (and now her grandparents). Every day there seems to be an epic battle of some sort.

What makes it worse right now is I'm at home and they're all in California still. Now, they will be home in a week, so Marci and I will be able to pool resources, but it's getting ridiculouser by the day.

Tonight, I got on the webcam to see them. Haley was fine and we were talking about their trip to the zoo today. Riley sat up and I asked him if he saw monkeys. Then Haley started whining about how Riley wasn't letting her talk to me. She started crying and sobbing and I kept telling her that no one was telling her she couldn't talk to me. I guess she wanted me all to herself of something.

After that, I got to talk to her a little as Riley was taking a bath. Haley's turn was next and that's when it all went to hell. She said she didn't want to take a shower. Marci said she had to as they got all gross at the zoo. Marci put Haley in the shower and Haley immediately turned off the water and got out. What made it worse was Haley's behavior. She was parading around saying tauntingly, "I'm out of the shower. See? Ha ha ha!" So, at this point, Marci said Haley was done with the shower.

Even though Haley didn't want to take a shower in the first place, she lost it. She begged and pleaded to take a shower. She screamed and yelled and slammed doors. I was yelling over the webcam. Marci was controlling it on that end. Haley ended up without a shower, but with an enormous tantrum, complete with rude comments and unacceptable behavior.

Now, I understand they're in California, and have been for going on 3 weeks now. They're in a place that is kind of small, with very little for the kids to do. Having said all that, Marci is busting her butt to engage the kids with activities and cousins, but Haley seems to find something to complain about every day. Not only that, she's playing the victim, claiming that no one likes her and we want to "throw her in the garbage". We tell her all day long that we love her, and that it's her actions that she needs to change, but she just starts going on again about how no one likes her.

I'm not even there and it's incredibly tiring and frustrating to deal with. I am totally looking forward to them coming home, though, so they can get back to their regular lives, and so Marci and I can join forces once again.

People tell me she's going through a phase, that she'll grow out of it. I sure hope so, but I also doubt what they're saying. I'm thinking there's something deeper at work but I don't know what it is. I think Haley has learned some of the behaviors from Marci and I, as we have had arguments in front of the kids, but I find it hard to believe that she'd act like this on a daily basis.

I also get concerned about Riley as when Haley is freaking out, Riley is usually who she blames. When I ask Rye if Haley is like this, he'll nod and say, "since she woke up," or something to that effect. Thankfully, he seems to take it in stride. I think he knows if she's being stinky and he's good, that just makes him look that much better.

Anyway, if you've made it this far, congratulations. I just needed to vent and the good ol' blog's as good a place as any.

I miss my Haley S.

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Back at home

It's weird, being home without family. The house is empty and quiet. I don't have to be home in a hurry. I can do what I want. It's weird.

I got home on Sunday and the first thing I noticed was that our weeds went crazy in the backyard. That kind of bummed me out as I'm gonna have to get my butt out there sometime to work on it.

The past few nights have been fun/boring/no big deal. I went to dinner with my brother and sister-in-law at a sushi restaurant that I didn't care much for on Monday. We had a good time, though. Knight had knee reconstruction surgery last week and is gimping around with crutches. It's painful, but kind of funny too.

Last night I ate at home. I can't cook and it sucks. I went to the store the night before and spent about $30 on food. Now, at my advanced age, I'm starting to think I need to watch what I eat more than I ever have. So, since I can't cook, that means Lean Cuisine instead of Hungry Man. And, sadly, Lean Cuisine isn't that much better for me.

Anyway, I had some healthy chicken taquitos for dinner (nearly singed to a crisp!) and did a bunch of push ups (up to 111 total over the span of 5 minutes or so) and sit ups.

So much fun.

This bachelor thing isn't all it's cracked up to be.

I miss my family.

Thursday, July 03, 2008

Coming to you LIVE from California

We have been having fun in California. For the most part. When the kids (re: Haley) are good, things are great. When Haley decides to be bad, well, it sucks.

Since I've been in California, I've come to tears 3 times, all because of the kids. Once was for Riley, the second was for Riley and Haley, and today it was for Haley. Riley because of his new found affliction (see Life of Riley blog) and Haley because of her extreme brattiness and my inability to help her (and her inability to say why).

Frustrating.

Us at Legoland. Riley is goofing, not sad

Yesterday we went to Legoland and it was a good time. We had taken Haley there when she was 2.5 or so and had fun, but I don't think she remembered much, if any, of it. Marci and I were supposed to have a day without the kids, but we decided at the last moment to take them to Legoland for a good memory.

We got there just after opening and started our tour around the park. It was pretty much as I remember it being. Fun, full of Legos, and lots of trashy people (especially the big white girl with cornrows and shirt that read "Cutie with a Bootie". For real? Seriously?).

The kids really enjoyed it, and I loved sharing my fondness for Legos with Riley, who has recently shown a lot of interest in them.

Sadly, we hit almost every Lego gift shop at the park and couldn't find ONE Indiana Jones set. They don't differ any from any IJ set I could get at Fred Meyer, or even the Lego store, but the fact that I was at Legoland meant I could actually get one. When I get home, I probably won't get one. :(

After Legoland, Marci and I hit the little ocean side town of Oceanside, a little north of San Diego. We stayed at yet another WorldMark resort. This one was definitely the worst of the three, but it was functional and served its purpose.

We went out for dinner at a place called Joe's Crab Shack (think Hooters with seafood and better dressed waitresses) and ate like pigs. I partook in a margarita with Marci, complete with Pop Rocks! It was interesting.

We had a good night and a great night's sleep. We hit Ruby's at the end of the Oceanside pier (about a 10 minute walk from the beach to the diner) for breakfast, then headed back to reunite with the kids.

I have 2.5 more days before heading home to the dreary (still!) PacNW. I can't wait to rock out with the Lunds on Monday, but beyond that, it'll be pretty boring being a bachelor for 2 weeks. I may complain about the kids a lot, but I will miss those dudes (and Marci!) terribly.

Tomorrow, it's onto the 4th with the Hortons in San Clemente. Ya bo! (That's how Riley says Yahoo!)