Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Paintings for Your Kids

These are paintings I made for a friends of mine. I painted one for Ainsley for her coming to the world present, and mom commissioned me to paint the other three.

I like the new stylized nature names. It's more fun to design, draw, and paint.

If you'll notice, these four names have a LOT of "y's" and "n's". There are not a lot of "Y" or "N" animals to choose from. I had to go with yak, yellow-throated magpie, numbat, and newt.

Oh, well. You've got to go with what you have.

You can go to my art website,, to see the details. Discounts for The Desert Chronicles readers!

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Behind the Scenes

The family photos that I posted the other day were taken by a photographer named Maria. Here website is Scrappy Doodles Photography. She spent the entire day photographing families in front of the T-38 and huge-normous American flag. It must have been a very long day, but we are so thrilled she did it for us!

Our photo shoot was scheduled for 3:45 pm so we all got on our fancy Christmas clothes and headed to the flight line to find the right hanger.

The girls wore Christmas dressed that Jerry's mom made. They are fantastically well done.

Jerry wore his flight suit. It's like a big, green, zippered pouch. It's loose and comfy. I wore a too tight tunic with black tights and kind of hoochy knee-high, spike-heeled black boots. I didn't mean to look so slutty provocative but my closet is pretty empty. I'm not much of a shopper (for myself at least!). My belly was kind of flat but my booty looked quite bubble-licious. Oh, well. Three kids and lack of willpower will do that to you!

Josh didn't have a Christmas shirt so he wore a green frog shirt his grandma made him. He looked dashing. I tried kissing him with his frog shirt but he was already a prince!

Here's the flight line with the T-6 trainers parked for the weekend.

Come on, slow poke! I know you're wearing long sleeves and it's 85 degrees out here, but whatever! Get a move on!

We found the right hanger and there she was, the beautifully prepped T-38. That's what Jerry flies for a living. The big, fat, lucky duck. No, he's not fat, but rest is true enough.

There were a few other families there either helping Maria or on the way out after their photo shoot. The kids had a great time playing fetch with a chuck-it and tennis ball thrown inside the cavernous hanger. The floor was very slick so I had not fun walking very slowly and trying not to fall in my ridiculous boots.

After the photo shoot, that lasted all of five minutes, we headed home. The kids hung up their fancy clothes and put their Target sales rack items back on. I took off my make up, hung up my dress, put the stupid boots back into their box, and put back on my yoga pants.

Sometimes it's OK to be all dressed up with nowhere to go. Home is an awesome place.

It's where my yoga pants live.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas! We hope you and your families had a very joyful, happy Christmas! God bless!

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Santa on Final Approach

Cool! Look at that T-38 coming our way! Those things sure are awesome! (And loud!)

Who's that inside the jet? Someone wearing red?

Hey look, kids! It's Santa Clause! (Dude, what happened to the reindeer and sleigh? Yes, you're right. This is much more awesome.)

Santa! Watch out! You've got incoming! Children at your 8 o'clock, moving in fast!!!!

Oh, my. You're fat. How in the world did you fit into that cockpit?

Watch out, you're in the midst of Christmas-crazed children!

Whatcha got in that sack of yours, Santa?

Candy canes! Yummy! As you can see, Santa, my boy, the redhead in the black vest, is front and center in the candy-receiving line.

He's my Candy Man.

Phoebe must be in there somewhere, and there's patient Paige waiting for her turn.

Nice score, Josh! Yes you may eat it now.

What? You were "like" the last one to get a candy cane? Thanks for being patient. You are wonderful.

Merry Christmas, everyone! May your Santa land more quietly than a T-38!!!

Friday, December 23, 2011

Just Another Barrel Ride

Another farm-tastic activity at the Hondo corn maze farm was a little barrel wagon ride. While Josh was shooting corn cobs out of a cannon over their with the men folk, the girls headed over to the wagon ride.

"Who are we supposed to give this token to?"

Give it to the lady as she comes by.

Phoebe, give it to her. It's OK, she's supposed to take it. Give it to her. GIVE. IT. TO. HER.

Thank you.

"Where's Josh? Still shooting corn?"

I guess. Or else he's lost in the corn maze again. You know how he tends to wander.....

"Don't remind me. I'm the oldest. I'm always the one to have to go and find him."

("I wonder if space is four dimensional. And if so, how does compactification work? Is string theory even plausible? If so, is a 10-dimensional perturbation expansion reasonable for an 11-dimensional theory?")

Paige, what are you thinking about?

" know....nothing much."

There they go! It's a good thing the spray truck went ahead of them to spray down the dust. It's mighty dry around here.

I hope they're having fun. Paige seemed a bit pensive. I wonder what was on her mind?

("Are there any other strings than the D=10(11) and 26 ones? What about black holes, do they exist? Maybe I'll draw Stephen Hawking a picture. I wonder if he likes ponies?")

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Being the Oldest Sucks!

Also at the corn maze place in Hondo was the "Corn Popper", a giant, in-ground inflatable bouncing platform.

We waited 10 minutes so our kids could have a 10 minute jump. The kids were divided into two groups: Those under "x" number of inches tall, and those above "x" inches tall.

We were mean and made Paige jump with the kids under "x" inches tall. She was none too pleased to have to jump with the "babies".

But her indignation was just beginning.

I was the youngest sibling of two. I was the spoiled one. I still am. Having raised an oldest child for these past eight years, I have come to realize that being the oldest sucks.

For example:

Go ahead Paige and Josh, have fun!

Oh, wait. Phoebe can't climb up the undulating, slippery bouncing surface. Go ahead and keep jumping Josh, you're the middle child and so exempt from just about everything.


Thanks, Paige! Good job! You're a great big sister.

Uh, oh. Phoebe fell. Again. Girl is having serious balance issues on this thing. Josh, ignore them all and continue bouncing in your bliss of oblivion.


Thanks Pai.....oh, no. She's down again.



Yeah, you're right. Phoebe is too little for this thing. I'll just get her down so you can bounce and have fun. Before I need your help again. Thanks for being a great oldest child!

(I've explained to Paige, many times, that we parents are hardest on our first borns because if we mess them up then the younger siblings will be messed up to. But, in exchange for us being more strict on the first born, they also get all new clothes and toys, and get to have all of best experiences first.

I'll remind this to Josh as Paige drives away for the first time at 16 and Josh is left home pining for freedom. I'll remind him that once upon a time, while Paige was rescuing Phoebe, again, he was bouncing peacefully in his own little world. Now it's his turn for it to suck.

As for the baby? She'll be spoiled. Forever. But that's OK. Somebodies gotta be!)

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Lost in the Maze

Down the road a bit, on the way to the big city, there is a small town called Hondo. On the eastern side of town, right on the highway, is a farm that hosts yearly family fall activities. There is a hayride, corn cob shooting, a pumpkin patch, kettle corn and turkey legs, Texas-sized slides, photo opportunities, an in-ground bouncing thing, and best of all, a corn maze.

Jerry's parents were in town for a visit so we decided to take these farm owners to a farm for a change of scenery. They are good sports.

Every year the maze is regrown out of hay grazer, not corn, and after the initial sprouting the maze design is cut into the seven acre field. You can click here to see this year's design. (There was a lady behind me who asked what kind of plant this was. I told her it wasn't corn, but some kind of drought resistant grass. She said, "Hmm. I don't think so. This isn't corn or grass, but certainly maize." Maize=corn. She had obviously been wandering around lost and dehydrated in the maze for many hours.)

Before entering the maze you can pick up these sheets of paper that have a quiz on them. Answer the questions correctly and the answers will tell you the fastest way to get through the maze.

We began OK, but it didn't take long before we started losing some of our party....

The first to go was Paige. Paige!!! Where are you?

Phoebe? Where are you Phoebe? This isn't funny!

Jim? Where did you go? Hello?

Oh, good! You found Phoebe, Linda. But where did Josh go?

Jerry, I'm scared. First Paige, then Jim, then Phoebe and Josh, and now your mom is gone! What are we going to do?


Hello? Where did everybody go?

I'm scared!