Categories
Journal

Josiah’s Lego Gun (plus some limericks)

Starting with a book that has Lego gun designs, Josiah built a gun that shoots rubber bands. However the design in the book required a certain spring that Josiah didn’t have. So he used his creativity and modified the design to get it to work using pieces that he did have. So now he has a semi-automatic rubber band gun that can shoot up to five or six rubber bands.

Josiah had to write a limerick for school. So Tim wrote a limerick.
The lad was the youngest of nine.
His Legos were a favorite pastime.
To shoot rubber bands,
He built with his hands
A Lugar, not a rifle or carbine.

One more limerick by Tim.
Made masks on our sewing machine
As they work to find a vaccine.
So we maintain our six feet
And take walks down the street
Until we say “Bye” to Covid 19.

Categories
Journal

Josiah Building the Marble Parkour

Time-lapse video of Josiah building a kit called the Marble Parkour by ROKR. It required no glue. Total time was over two hours. The phone ran out of battery and stopped recording for a while.

The video runs a little over five minutes and shows it working at the end. Plus Jason and Hannah are included for a bit.

Click to view full size.
Categories
Journal

Victoria Sings with the Orange Coast College Symphony

On Leap Day of this year, the Orange Coast College had a concert called “The Sound of Broadway”…featuring orchestral medleys and songs from classic American Musicals. The evening included two vocal performances; one of which was sung by Victoria! Her name was even listed on the poster! She looked wonderful and sang beautifully!

Sarah, Joanna, Jason, Hannah, Jeffrey, Lizzie, Nicole, Josiah, and Jeri before the OCC Symphony concert . Click photo for full size.
Victoria singing with the OCC Symphony. Click photo for full size.
Close-up of Victoria singing with the OCC Symphony. Click photo for full size.
After the OCC Symphony Concert. Click photo for full size.
Concert poster. Click for full size.

Note Victoria’s name on the poster.

Here’s the biography that was included in the program.
Victoria Pau is a mezzo-soprano studying voice at Orange Coast College under Dr. Susan Ali. She started pursuing music in earnest four years ago when her older sisters convinced her to join the college’s opera production. Last year Victoria won third place in the NATS musical theater category. She is also a member of OCC Chamber Singes, with which she performed Mozart’s Requiem at Carnegie Hall. When Victoria isn’t singing or working on papers for school, she can be found playing the piano, crocheting, knitting, or baking cookies.

Here’s a short video montage.

Categories
Journal

Valentine’s Dinner 2020

On Friday, February 14th, 2020, Warner Avenue Baptist Church had a Valentine’s Day Dinner. The young people did an EXCELLENT job planning an enjoyable evening for 14 couples. They transformed our fellowship hall into a romantic, candle-lit restaurant. They had a western theme complete with western decorations and entertainment.

Using card tables, each couple had a table to themselves. It came with a candle, menu, cloth napkins, silverware, and flowers.

Table Setting for the Valentine’s Dinner

Here’s the menu. Because some people (including Tim and Jeri) had special dietary restrictions, some additional items were prepared.

Jeffrey singing “I’m My Own Grandpa.”

Josiah told some jokes and riddles for meal-time entertainment.

Jeffrey and crew led the audience in “Deep in the Heart of Texas”…complete with hand clapping.

Jeffrey sang an old love song.

Katie and Lizzie led the singing of “You Are My Sunshine.”

At the end of the evening, the entire kitchen staff joined the musicians in singing “Happy Trails.”

Jason, Hannah, Jeffrey, and Josiah after the meal.

Jason, Hannah, Jeffrey, and Josiah after the Valentine’s Dinner. Click photo for full size.

Here’s a picture taken of Lizzie, Victoria, Jeri, and Tim in the kitchen after the meal.

Lizzie, Victoria, Jeri, and Tim after the Valentine’s Dinner. Click photo for full size.

Here’s a picture of Nicole, Joanna, the three Thomas girls, and Lizzie in the kitchen after the meal. Clean up has begun!

Nicole, Joanna, the Thomas girls, and Lizzie in the kitchen after the meal. Click photo for full size.

Here is a digest of the evening.

Categories
Journal

Josiah and His Original Gravitrax Creation

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Journal

Living Room Transformation!

What a surprise! Sarah took Jeri and Tim out to lunch and a movie on Saturday. Little did they know that the rest of the family (including Hannah) were busy giving our living room a total makeover. It looks great now!

New sectional, new coffee table, new end table, new lamps, new curtains, new area rug, new mirror, new room decor, and new wall hanging (artwork by Jason Pau).

What a blessing! Everyone enjoys relaxing in the living room now. Thank you, everyone!

Here’s the BEFORE picture.

The “Before” Picture. Click photo for full size.

The AFTER picture.

The “After” Picture. Click photo for full size.

A time-lapse video of the transformation.

Categories
Journal

First Avocado

Finally after a several year wait, we picked our first avocado! It weighed in at 15 ounces (nearly a pound) and was about five inches in length. (And, yes, we zeroed the scale before we weighed it.)

Our First Avocado. Click photo for full size.
Tim holding our first avocado. Click photo for full size.
Categories
Vacation

Girls in Venice, Italy

Nicole, Joanna, and Victoria left on Sunday, November 17th, 2019, for Italy. Departing from LAX, they connected in Paris for a flight to Venice (their first destination).

Nicole and Victoria in Venice. Click photo for full size.

Of course, they had to have some authentic Italian pizza.

Victoria, Joanna, and Nicole at Libro Pizza. Click photo for full size.

Victoria at Cafe Vero.

Victoria at Cafe Vero. Click photo for full size.

Nicole at St. Mark’s Square. St. Mark’s Campanile (in the background) isn’t really tipping over…just a bit of lens distortion.

Nicole at St. Mark’s Square. Click photo for full size.

Nicole and Joanna at St. Mark’s Basilica.

Nicole and Joanna near St. Mark’s Basilica. Click photo for full size.
Victoria taking a picture of Nicole. Click photo for full size.

Nicole and Victoria over a Venice waterway.

Nicole and Victoria over a Venice waterway. Click photo for full size.

Victoria and Nicole on a street in Venice.

Victoria and Nicole on a street in Venice. Click photo for full size.
Categories
Journal

Converse House Reunion 2019

Saturday, October 5th, 2019, was the day of Tim’s dorm floor reunion. Tim and Jeri also drove up to Ames the previous night to visit with a lot of the guys and their spouses.

Saturday morning, Grandma Stogdill took us out for breakfast to the Cracker Barrel restaurant. Aunt Vickie and Rachel as well as Grandma’s good friend, Katie, were able to join us.

Breakfast at Cracker Barrel. Rachel, Katie, Grandma, Vicki, Jeri, and Tim. Click photo for full size.

After breakfast, we stopped by Jordan Creek Mall in West Des Moines. The main goal was to get some steps. Grandma Stogdill tries to get 8,000 a day.

Jeri and Tim at Jordan Creek Mall. Click photo for full size.

Then Tim and Jeri drove up to Ames. First we visited with our good friend, Annette. This was during Iowa State’s home football game with Texas Christian University.

Then we drove to Campustown and saw some old and a lot of new places. We found a place to park and began walking towards the stadium. We first stopped at the Memorial Union.

At the Memorial Union. Click photo for full size.

Here we are next to Lake Laverne.

Next to Lake Laverne with Friley Hall in the distant background. Click photo for full size.

As we walk to the stadium, people are leaving the game. (Iowa State won 49 to 24.) We got a picture in the stadium.

In the stadium after the game. Click photo for full size.

We had a great turnout for our reunion. Our group photo had 39 guys. (A lot of us also met the night before in Ames at an old fraternity house that was converted into a bed and breakfast.)

Converse House Group Photo 2019. Click photo for full size.

After the reunion, we started the drive back to Des Moines (well actually Johnston). Initially we thought to get a few slices of pizza at Casey’s but they were only selling whole pizzas. So we decided to stop at Hickory Park. It was a spur of the moment decision.

The parking lot was packed; apparently lot of people leaving the game had the same idea. Once inside, the hostess told us the wait would be about 20 minutes. Because we weren’t in any hurry, we decided to wait. Fortunately we were called back in less than five minutes.

We split a plate of deep fried appetizers and a veggie burger.

Eating at Hickory Park. Click photo for full size.

We finished with dessert. Chocolate chip cookie dough ice cream with chocolate chips and a cookie. It was so sweet and rich that we didn’t finish it all.

Hickory Park Dessert. Click photo for full size.
Categories
Concerts and Recitals

Smile

Jill, Maggie, Laura, Joanna, and Victoria (in order of appearance) sing “Smile” (music by Charlie Chaplin, lyrics by John Turner and Geoffrey Parsons). “Smile” was the concluding piece for Dr. Ali’s voice recital at Orange Coast College in Costa Mesa, CA on Saturday, September 28th, 2019.