Saturday, December 31, 2005

05 Recap

Well, we got back from Ohio to our house piled with junk and a zillion things needing done. It's kind of nice in a way to know that life probably won't be as chaotic as we go....eventually we'll get unpacked and eventually we'll get that shower working and eventually we'll both be able to park in the garage and eventually we'll get the table and counters cleared off enough to eat here.
We got lots of great Christmas cards but we were pretty lame about what we sent out (message-wise we didn't say anything) but at least we got it done.
So, 2005 ends tonight. Avery lost her first teeth, started kindergarten and is wonderful. Alec started talking, singing and saying prayers and is a stinker. Erin is doing awesome at work even though she's only supposed to work 3 days a week. Our cats are fat. I've got a studio and a big house with fun stuff to work on like electricity and gas lines. I ran for a couple months this year....hmmm maybe I should pick that back up tomorrow. Well, Happy New Year and Happy Anniversary to my folks (38 years and nobody's been poisoned yet!).
Pictures will follow.

Monday, December 19, 2005

Saturday, December 17, 2005

Much Done


Today was a day that had tons of visible accomplishment. That's good, we need days like this. We moved lots and lots of stuff over, the kids had fun at my folks, I got a lot done for Sunset's Directory, and I got ready for teaching tomorrow. (By the way, 5th and 6th graders are awesome to teach the Bible to. They are ready to really get into it at a deeper level than Noah built the ark.) Anyway, now I'm beat but it's that good tired. I miss Avery and Alec though, it's too quiet and there's no broken glass to clean up or anything when they aren't here.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

First Night on Maple


Tonight is the first night that we are all sleeping as a family at the Maple house. We still have a lot to do but we are getting there. It's been tough balancing photography, kids, holidays, birthdays, marriage, tiling, wiring, plumbing, cleaning, moving.....and God but somehow I've managed to watch tons of tv. Just kidding.
Tomorrow I've got a business meeting but I think Avery is getting sick again. We brought the cats over today so they would be used to the new place by the time we leave for Ohio for a week. That'll freak em out. I hope to take Avery back to the Dayton Art Museum like we did last year. That was a really special father/daughter outing for me. She's so cool about art, just like her mom.

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Monday, December 12, 2005

Thursday, December 08, 2005

Avery's Cake





By the way, the last picture in the last post (the shot of Dan) was taken by Alec.

Avery's Birthday





Avery's Birthday was yesterday. She is already six and she was so excited....it was really cool. We are having a party for her on Saturday but we took her to Incredible Pizza and opened presents with my folks. My folks got her a REAL Bible with a leather cover and her name embossed and everything and she was totally thrilled. She said it was the best present ever.
Erin and I had gotten her a V-Smile which is like a Nintendo but you subconscously learn numbers and math and problem solving and stuff. It's that thing on that commercial where the kid says "can I go to bed Mom?" and she says, "as soon as you've finished playing your game" because it's supposed to make you so smart.
But Avery was way more interested in the new Bible and I held back from saying, "put your Bible down and try the video game!" because somehow that didn't seem like the message I should be sending her.
At Incredible Pizza she and Erin rode in one go-cart and raced me in another and I would have won too but they totally cheated and cut me off and drove in a reckless manner. I really think women shouldn't be allowed to.....well, I don't know how many people read this so I'll just stop there.

Monday, December 05, 2005

Saturday, December 03, 2005

Monday, November 28, 2005

Thanksgiving


I'm thankful for my new studio. And that Adam came by just in time to take a group photo with me in it.




Paul

This is Paul 15 years from now.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Commissioned Project

Sorry Adam, nobody appreciates that kind of freaky art. Don't cut off your ear.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Monday, November 21, 2005

Good Friends Make It Fun





Brief intermission

We are gutting our new house right now and I've got to do a ton of urgent stuff so....I'll have tons of photos to put up later. Bye the way, if you want to comment and it won't let you, just email me your comment and I'll quote you.

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Fast?




So it sounded like we weren’t going to get the house on Maple at the last minute. Because they were so close to foreclosure they had couldn’t get the loan payoff amount figured with the attorney fees added in, in time for tomorrow’s close (Friday). Then after I had pretty much resigned the situation as just not being a part of The Big Guy’s plan, it came through. I’m happy and anxious and excited but I was all of those things before too so I’m kind of just a little tired now on top of it all. Thanks for your prayers good people.
Angie (my sister) was here today and she and her hubby will be up next week for some Wild Turkey. Not the drink, actually it’s probably not going to even be wild. But anyway, I was so dazed with my world of confusion and what-not to really visit much so next week I hope we can catch up more.
Today I did retakes at the daycare and the little ones were really cute. Got some great feedback on the Old Testament thoughts. I think Kyle and Jane are both right but it’s just so weird to think about what those guys way back then had to do to be holy. I remember one time Brian Hudkins asking us to pray and to fast if we are called to. I was like, “Fast? What’s that? You mean BREAK-fast, right? You want some waffles?” And then I was all interested in studying about modern-day spiritual fasting. (Not that I could pull it off for more than a few minutes but hey, I can dream).
So then, what about fasting? When do we do it? Why do we do it? When do we teach people about it?
While you ponder that:
“I hope if dogs ever take over the world, and they chose a king, they don't just go by size, because I bet there are some Chihuahuas with some good ideas.”

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Jell-O




Photo#1. Erin Amundson and Alec Amundson
Photo #2. Jell-O
Photo #3. Avery Amundson
Things keep getting better and worse and better and worse with the house situation. I won’t get into it too much but it’s currently a little hairy as to whether the sellers will have their stuff together enough for us to save them from foreclosure. In the meantime I’ve got happy parents from a daycare shoot that I did and Avery is writing sentences out of the blue which is way ahead of her kindergarten class. She figured out how to write “the sun is hot; the stove is hot; etc”. She’s amazing! Alec is in one of his sweeter but more destructive phases which are kind of fun to watch. But it’s also hard to discipline him when he’s being so sweet.
Church was great tonight and I think it was the perspective I needed. Paul Johnson gave a great talk that helped me and Erin both remember that we’re stressing out over something that really isn’t that important in the grand scheme. You won’t hear people saying somebody had a great house at their funeral.
It sounds like we’re going to be able to see Angie while she’s in town tomorrow. That’ll be good, she always makes me smile. J
Erin made some Jell-O tonight.
Kyle Brice had some interesting comments I’m contemplating, you should read them-he posted them the other day here.
And finally: If you're a Thanksgiving dinner, but you don't like the stuffing or the cranberry sauce or anything else, just pretend like you're eating it, but instead, put it all in your lap and form it into a big mushy ball. Then, later, when you're out back having cigars with the boys, let out a big fake cough and throw the ball to the ground. Then say, "Boy, these are good cigars!"

Branson High

Monday, November 14, 2005




Well nobody wanted to comment about the Bible question (or they were so shocked by the lame Photoshop image of Bobby) or maybe I should give it a day or so.
Anyway, finally both kids are healthy and it feels like fall. So we are rushing to get things done before we move. No time no time.
Angie (my sis) will be up here this week but she’d doing missile inspections or something for her work. She’s like James Bond’s helper or something.
We’ve got Scout and Winnies’ travel crates out so they’ll get used to having a special place when they get to the new house. They’re both pretty weird cats so they’ll need all the comforting they can get.
Anyway, the kids are always fun to put to bed, Alec likes to walk on us and get up and giggle and ask for things in his strange Yiddish/Portuguese/Korean language. OK, I’m too tired to type anymore

Sunday, November 13, 2005

Does it matter how you cook a goat?



Avery had a fever again this morning. Erin stayed home with her and Alec and I went to church and then to the little youth Thanksgiving lunch. It was a lot of fun and the Samuels did a great job, as did Michelle Lindsay. I’m glad that there are so many people who care about the kids.
One thing that I noticed/pondered from Joe’s lesson was about Jonah and the Ninevites. It seems like there is little evangelism of any kind in the Old Testament which is another one of the big differences between it and the New. But here’s a situation where it’s clear that God was interested in non-Israelites before Acts. The differences and similarities between the Old and New have really plagued me for a long time. What is “the Law” that is irrelevant to us now and what is still the way things should be? Obviously we should still keep the old “Thou Shall Not Kill” going but what about the Sabbath? What about the sideburns and the head coverings and the “don’t cook a goat in its mother’s milk” bit that really seemed to be a big deal back then? How and where do we decide what is no longer important or applicable to us these days? I’ve heard people say we have a new Sabbath now, Sunday. But that doesn’t make sense to me really. Sabbath mean’s Seventh, not “Special” or “Bible Day”. Give me a comment here, I’d love to have some input and thoughts on this.

Saturday, November 12, 2005

Calm before the storm




Photo#1 Foggy Bathroom Mirror
Photo #2 Mouse and Keyboard
Photo #3 Avery sick in the backseat

This morning was really nice. We took our time and got up slowly and went to Village Inn for breakfast and ate and ate. Then we went down to Silver Dollar City and met up with the kids and my folks. Avery wasn’t feeling good again and after seeing “A Dickens’s Christmas Carol” we decided to go. Avery wanted to go home…she was that sick. Then when we were almost to the car she ralphed. It was pretty sad and smelly and I won’t even tell you about the mozzarella chunks. We got her cleaned up and headed in and she kinda threw up again before we got back.
When we got back it felt like 10:00 but it was only 6:00.
Then we had tornado warnings in Republic. The horns went off and we had to hang out in the bathroom with Alec wanting to see the rain and Avery wanting to lie in bed. It didn’t take long though and we are alive, (which is a good thing or you’d have nothing to read).
One of my favorites: “The crows seem to be calling my name,” thought Caw.

Alec's Better, But




Avery was sick today, she had to stay home from school. But after awhile she was feeling great and she and Alec were driving us crazy with their shenanigans and wild schemes. Neither one is 100%. I got a lot done today somehow and yet I can’t see my desk under the piles of….well I don’t want to use the word “crap” but…
Tonight Erin and I are going out on a date. She’s such a hottie, I’m a little nervous. The kids are spending the night with my folks in Cassville.
Then I dreamed of McDonald’s. (See photo)

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Old shots can be new



Shots: 1.Self from shoot today 2.Old shot of horses revisited

Tired. It’s so gorgeous outside and I’m too busy to go out and shoot. Some of you know what I’m talking about, it’s frustrating. My friend Marc was saying the same thing awhile back and I thought, “Just go back and make new images of old images with some wild editing” and now I’m thinking, “Yeah whatever, self, I want to go outside and shoot, I’ve already seen my old shots”. And then I think, “What am I doing thinking back and forth to myself like I’m in a sitcom or something, I need to go outside and get some air and take some pictures”. And then I think, “No, I’m too busy”.
Had a shoot today that took so long to set up, and so short to shoot, that I had to make a quick self portrait for the trouble.
Now it’s dark out. We’ve watched Batman Begins and it made me nostalgic for my days in ninja school and all the glacial sword training.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Some Things Considered






Photo Captions: 1.Avery sees a face 2.Dorothy’s tail 3.Sickboy 4.Jumpy Flowers

The little guy’s fever came back and now I feel kind of guilty for not putting up with his fits yesterday. He probably wasn’t feeling too great. But that Tylenol stuff is potent…he was doing this howl-whine thing and burning up this afternoon and then after the Tylenol kicked in he was giggling and shooting Avery and me with his blow-gun. We’d fall down (real spaghetti western style) and he’d crack up and then we’d miraculously get back up (real Friday the 13th Jason isn’t quite dead yet style) and he’d shoot us down again. Erin kept him home tonight and Vry and I went to church.
On that note, we wrapped up a study on baptism with Earl Brown that’s been pretty fascinating. The idea is to get away from discussions on requirements and limitations and legality of baptism, and take a look at it from a far more deep spiritual view. The idea that, at Jesus’ baptism you’ve got the Father the Son and the Spirit all present there in the muddy waters, is something I had not contemplated much. From that point on it’s go time for Jesus. Service, ministry, suffering, sacrifice and death. At his baptism, he “starts” his death. So too (whether we fully understand it or not), when we join Jesus through baptism, we begin our life of service, suffering, sacrifice and death to ourselves. Key phrase from tonight that really stood out was that we live with Christ as our spiritual environment. Earl also made a great comparison to marriage and baptism. You may or may not fully understand what you’ve committed to when you said “I do” but that doesn’t make it less valid. Same is true in baptism and the commitment you are making to God and He to you.
OK, Deep Thought for today is, “If they ever come up with a swashbuckling School, I think one of the courses should be Laughing, Then Jumping Off Something.”