Kiddos!

Here are some recent pics. Milo already looks older! Oh--and how adorable is he in his cloth diaper??!




Lockwood Park is (almost) Perfect!

The kids and I (I have to say "kids" now because there's a boy!) have been on the hunt for the perfect park. As you probably know, our yard is tiny & it's a mess & it's just not too fun to be in. I have plans to make it the most beautiful tiny yard in the whole city, but that's just not happening right now. Anyway--we really need a park to play in! And it is amazingly hard to find a good one, let alone the Perfect One.

There are three parks within half a mile or so of our house, and although we've been to each many times, I'm just not happy with them.

The first one is very dirty. There is always trash all over the place. Which I don't really understand, because it always looks like the lawn has just been mowed, but there is still trash everywhere. Lucy has also pretty much outgrown this one, too--it seems to be geared more towards toddlers.

The second one was fine last year. We actually used to go to this one a lot. But this year a creepy guy seems to have taken it over. I don't know--a forty-five year old guy just should not be sliding down slides and swinging on the swings all by himself. Even if he lives right next door--which I am assuming he does because he is always there.

The third one is pretty good as far as playgrounds go. It also has tennis courts, basketball courts and a baseball diamond which are always packed in the evenings and the weekends, which gives it a great 'city park' kind of feel. There's even a guy with an ice cream cart! It's just really fun to be in the middle of that much summer-in-the-park activity. The drawback here is that--being a city park--there are A LOT of fist fights and cussing in the under 8 years old crowd. Hitting and rude words are Lucy's biggest problems right now, so I'm a little worried about her learning things from the other kids.

And the biggest problem of all--none of them have bathrooms!!

So--we've been looking for the perfect park. I figure--if I have to drive across town to get to the park, we better be able to spend the whole day there. It needs to be relatively clean, and it needs to have bathrooms, a really great playground, and at least a little bit of nature--like a trail we can walk down or something. Oh--and it can't be too huge, because I have three kids to keep track of!

Well--I think we found it today! The Perfect Park! It's got everything! Two playgrounds! A little bit of nature! Bathrooms! No Creepy Guy! And best of all-- Horses!! The only problem is that it is 20 minutes away. But that's not really that big of a deal, I guess. Church is 20 minutes away, and so is the grocery store. So I think this might be our new park. If you're ever in town--you should come to the park with us!

love ya, Val

CD Release Party


Starlite Radio CD Release Party
on May 31st (doors open at 7pm, show starts at 8pm)
at Memorial Hall (downtown Rockford)
Tickets are $5
check out www.starliteradio.com (more info to be posted soon)

For anyone that may not have known, I have been an extra musician in this other band for a year and a half or so, and it has been pretty good for me. It's really helped me to not feel like I used to be a musician.

When they started making their album, I thought it might be a fairly reasonable homebrew effort, but it grew into something much better than that such that I can confidently say that I'm proud to be a side musician on it, and should you be fortunate enough to hear it, I think you'll agree.

The project took most of a year to make and was mixed by Don Chaffer of Waterdeep fame (or obscurity depending on which circles you travel) which is a pretty big deal for me.
This thing is also full of sweet bgv's, which it turns out are hilarious to record. If you happen to be in the state that evening, it might be a fun time.

some of the album is actually available for listen here
http://www.myspace.com/starliteradio

bgv's are background vocals. Jargon is like an inside joke or something.

Shawn

First instinctive thoughts about having a boy

Dinosaurs and trucks! This is gonna be awesome!

Shawn

Family names

So it turns out that Milo has a great great great uncle Milo, who is his father's mother's mother's uncle. Who would have thought? I never knew a Milo, nor did I know about my great great uncle milo. (My grandma's uncle)

Turns out that the same grandma had a sister named Ruby. (Ruby's great great aunt)

I actually was a little unsure what other people would think of the name Milo. I mean, I liked it, but you always wonder who will think it's cool and who might make a wrinkly nose face when they hear a baby name. Lots of people have responded positively, which is really vindicating! He seems like a really cool kid so far, but I think it takes a few weeks before you can tell what personality you have anyway.

Shawn

By the way, adjusting to 3 kids is pretty overwhelming. Well, maybe that's not accurate exactly. Really, I think that when you add a baby to whatever routine you had pre-baby, everyone is a little lost for a little while, so I don't think it's the number 3.

Family activities?


I don't think Lucy likes board games, but I think Ruby really does. They're really different kids in a lot of ways, and I'm not sure if they'll enjoy many of the same activities.

It seems like Padgetts all liked the same kinds of things sort of and maybe that was really convenient for family relationships. I hope our kids do everything together.

I'm asking the girls what to tell our friends on our blog.
Lucy says "We can tell them that we love them"
I asked Ruby what we should send to our friends and she said "a brown horse"

Here you go

Shawn

Milo

2:54 PM by valandshawn 2 comments