Beware the diopter.

I got my beloved camera back on Saturday. We live around the corner from this fantastic camera shop owned by a man and his wife for nearly 40 years. He told me that they are in the process of retiring because they haven’t been on a vacation in that entire time. He also told me that there wasn’t a thing wrong with my camera. Hmmm….you mean there is a button on the camera that makes the view through the viewfinder blurry? That can’t be right. Why would you want that?

Well, fellow non-manual readers, there is a button. A dial to be exact called the diopter on the SLR camera which you can use to adjust the view for your eye. Oh. Oops.

Thankfully the camera man charged me nothing for this valuable lesson and even cleaned my lens.

This unnecessary break from my camera did force me to bring out my point-and-shoot camera and remember why it is good to have a pocket-sized photo machine.



The last photos I took.

Here are the photos I took moments before the moment I think I might have broken my camera. I still haven’t heard the verdict.

Anyway, Zach was hanging out with Dash and Watson in the backyard and called to me that I might want to bring out the camera. Zach was throwing the tennis ball for Watson and Dash was having a fantastic time watching. He has a Watson dance which basically is just convulsing every part of his body when Watson walks by.

This one is Zach’s favorite picture. The concentration, the form – Zach says he looks just like a pitcher on the mound.

Watson loves any attention at all and a game of catch puts him over the edge. He was prancing and wagging like crazy which gave Dash plenty to laugh about.

It is so fun to have warm weather and be able to spend more time with Dash outside. If my camera is gone for a long time at least we had a good last day in the sun together.

The tulips are coming.

I love Tulips. They are my all-time favorite flower, I think.

I love their perfect, smooth petals, their thick green leaves, and the way they pop with bright color against still winter-barren landscapes.

Another item on my all time favorite list is Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo. My grandparents bought my family a zoo membership each year when I was young and my mom says that she and I would go every evening and walk around while we waited for my dad to get off of work. The Omaha zoo is not about petting animals, or staring at tired, sick-looking animals in cages. Yes, they do have cages, but the zoo has always put the people in the animals’ environment with beautiful results.

Butterfly Pavilion opened in May 2008

Anyway, on one of these Spring evenings of my youth, my mom and I spent time watching a tiger named Tulip pace back and forth in a menacing way.

When we got home she said to me, “Oh look! The Tulips are coming up in the backyard!” I apparently made the toddler’s mistake of thinking words had one meaning and refused to go into the backyard for fear of finding tigers lurking around the swing set.

The Tulips have come up in our neighborhood and will probably not last much longer with the windy weather we have.  But as long as they’re here, I am going to take lots of walks and try to enjoy them as much as possible.  And now that I am older and wiser, I know there are no tigers in the backyard — only a shaggy lion futilely chasing squirrels.

Fast Forward 9 months

Our baby test run went well! He did a lot of sleeping, but he is such a happy 5 month old when he is awake that I think we would have been fine if he was up more. We fed him, changed him, went for a walk around the neighborhood, went for a car ride, and had lunch at a restaurant – all with a baby! Zach also managed to get in nine holes while the baby slept, test out a baby carrier, not change a diaper, and watch the Masters while holding a sleeping baby.

We found out that the jumparoo is an awesome baby product.

This little guy had a good aerobic workout and enjoyed the experience. He may look concerned, but I think he was just worried that I was not finding the right shutter speed to catch a jumping baby in action.

After our stroll around the neighborhood he fell asleep in Zach’s arms.

Looks pretty natural, doesn’t he? Again, I was having some shutter speed problems, but I think you get the idea. We’ve got a soon-to-be-dad who can put a baby to sleep and watch the golf.

Even Watson seemed to accept the idea of another person to go on walks with. We all did pretty good! Now we just have to wait 4-ish months to get a little tiny one of our own!

Bring on the Baby Boy Gear

We’ve know this little guy was a little guy for just over a week and our  family has already started to build up a very respectable little boy wardrobe for him. I hear the birth of the first child of an only child who was also the first grandchild on both sides of the family ends up being kind of a big deal. I don’t think Zach’s family is any less happy for us, but there are eight kids and already eight grandkids so so they’ve been here before.

Anyway, on to the fashion show.

From an aunt and uncle and cousins:

This is funny because we sometimes refer to our little babe as “Mr. Derick Peanut.” We read an interview that Paul Rudd did of John Hamm in which John Hamm said that Mr. Peanut’s first name was Derick. We thought this was hilarious because we think Paul Rudd is hilarious and John Hamm is so cool. Feel free to just move on if you don’t agree or click here to read the hilarity.

This loot was from another aunt:

I love the color green because Zach has green eyes and there is a high probability our little boy will have green eyes just like his dad’s. I am always trying to get Zach to wear more green and now I have a bunch of little green outfits for the baby! When Zach is holding our screaming child in one of these outfits someday soon maybe I will see the color and be reminded of how much I love both of them and their eyes. Yikes.

These are from my mom:

I saw these sweet little embroidered onesies online and asked my mom if we could make something similar. Luckily in my world that means my talented mother will just go make me whatever I ask without me actually having to stitch anything. (Does anyone watch Modern Family? Did you see the last one where the oldest daughter pretends she can’t crack eggs so her mom will make all the cupcakes to “teach” her daughter the right way? Works every time. On the other hand, many of my sewing projects come out looking like the daughter’s cupcakes tasted so I don’t know that my mom has any other choice.)

Here’s a close up of the embroidered lion:

An Easter present from my mom and dad:

I saw this bib at Babies ‘R’ Us and loved it. I was telling my mom last weekend about how cute it was and she had already bought it and the baby art book. You can’t see it in the picture, but we have a Keith Haring print hanging in the living room that Zach got for me. The baby art book has black and white images from famous artists so my mother – a docent for many years – can start teaching art appreciation to her grandson right from the start.

I have other cute goodies to share, but that is enough for one post. We are thankful for such a generous and loving family and I am excited for our little boy to meet them. I know that they will welcome him,  love him, and support him just as they have for us.

Alpo Flavored Birthday Wishes

Someone is having a birthday in our house…

Watson turns three today!
On Monday I took him to get a birthday bath and his favorite treats at the Brookside Barkery & Bath. They have big tubs in the back of their store so you can hose off your large dog just like some kind of farm animal.

Watson tolerates it, but I love it. I normally give him a bath at home, but there is always the possibility he will leap from the tub and run through the house shaking water from his mane.

The Barkery also has big, super powered air dryers to get Wats all fluffed up.

And they have a selection of doggie colognes to help extend the life of the bath. I sprayed Watson down with one that is supposed to repel dirt. I doubt that anything can come between Watson and dirt, but he still smells pretty good.

Watson has been with us through some major life changes – first house, new city, a graduate degree, new jobs – and now preparing for a new family member. I don’t think Zach will ever fully understand the joy of having a fuzzy-faced companion to “cheer” you on in good times and bad. But I really am glad to have this  big goofy dog in our lives.

Happy Birthday, Watson!