Sunday, June 18, 2006

Father's Day, 2006

In church each year on Father's Day, our pastor has all the dads stand up for a moment of recognition. It's become for me one of the prouder moments of my year and I always look forward to it. I stand up to say that I'm proud to be Rachel's dad...well...step-dad. I'm proud of the love she has for me and amazed at the unconditional love I've been given for her. When Tammy and I first began dating a little over seven years ago, I wasn't really looking to be a step-dad again. I'd done that once before and it was not easy. I love(d) David and Joe but we never achieved the bond that Rachel and I share.

We celebrated Father's Day yesterday as I had to work today. I got up early and was on my bike by 8:00am headed 50 miles southwest to LeSueur. It was a hot day and I rode as well as I've ridden in a long time. I'd had my bike into Flanders the day before and had some adjustments made so that it's now back to its original setup. Here's my route. With the way I was riding, I thought for a while that I might be able to finish with an average speed of 20 mph. I was averaging 19.7 through 85 miles but headwinds and uphills the last 10 miles brought my speed down to 19.3. Total mileage was over 103.

After I got home I spent some time working in the flower gardens doing some weeding but also working on some stretching. I'm terrible when it comes to stretching and I find that working in the gardens gets me into positions where I'm able to work some of the tightness out of my quads and hamstrings.

We made a brief appearance at a graduation party for a neighbor girl and then headed into St Paul to see the Body Worlds exhibit. Rachel has been wanting to see this and this was the first chance we've had. There is also a Body Worlds movie which played in the Omni theater and costs extra but is definitely a must see. I wasn't sure what I'd think of seeing the dead bodies on display. I suppose I thought it would be morbid and disturbing but it wasn't anything like that. They're more like works of art.

We left the Science Museum and headed for Cossetta's for dinner. We used to find an excuse to eat there every few months but not lately. It's a great place to eat...nothing fancy...just very authentic Italian food.

We watched Glory Road over the weekend. 5 stars!

Speaking of videos...I finally put together a video of one of the songs from Rachel's dance recital last month. I'm a bit disappointed because they wouldn't let us use our video cameras in the auditorium as we've been able to do in years past. Well, actually we weren't allowed to do it in years past either but nobody was enforcing it and so we did. We always buy the overpriced DVD they sell so we figure we're not hurting anybody and this way we can focus the camera on Rachel. Anyway, here's a video Rachel's dad captured with his digital camera's video option.

Thursday, June 1, 2006

The Way We Were

I got an email from my older brother a few weeks ago telling me that he'd found the super8 mm home movie tapes which he'd lost several years ago. They were small 3 minute movies from the late '60s and early '70s...no sound...just movies of us mugging for the camera. He asked if I was interested in them and I told him I absolutely was. I got them in the mail a short while later and took them to National Camera Exchange to have them digitized. I got them back last week and have been adding some background to a few of the better ones. Some of the films are quite good and some are not so good.

This first one (YouTube version) was taken in 1968 while my brother Bryan was home on leave from the Navy. Your typical home movie stuff where all us kids are mugging for the camera. I'm the overly energetic red headed kid.

The second video (YouTube version) is also from Christmas 1968 and is taken in the basement of our home in Bloomington, Mn.

The third video (YouTube version) is from September 1970 and finds us celebrating Bryan's 21st birthday and Keith's 8th birthday. I love the music to this one!

The final video (YouTube version) is an eclectic mix of several of the film reels and has some nice footage (the only footage) of my grandmother dancing.

I'm so glad to have these film reels recovered and preserved. I was pretty sure I'd never see them again.