on images to
|The book fair moved from the
library to the gym this year, and was its usual record setting success.
|Both Gail and Kristi are
working hard in this picture: can you find them?
|Doug showing excellent form
on a grounder to second base.
|Brad showing excellent form
on a runner called out at second base.
|Keith and Doug ride to school
one foggy March morning.
|We went to have dinner with
Papa and Grandma while they took care of the cousins.
|JoAnn, Kristi, and Bob watch
Brad catch in a game.
|Doug and Keith (lower left) on a
hike at Agua Caliente with the rest of the Sioux Tribe.
|It wasn't so hot that the boys
couldn't play a little desert football (Doug throwing).
|Brad went to a birthday party that
included go cart racing.
|If February ended with Book Fair set up, then
you know exactly how March began. Kristi
and Gail Bigelow worked long hours and pulled
largest, most successful Schoolastic Book Fair yet. Too cramped by the
limited space in the
center, the book fair this year moved to the multi purpose room (what
we used to call
a gym when I was elementary school). Partitions were put up to cordon
the room for the fair. Posters went up on the walls and
decorations were festooned from the basket ball hoops, and the fair
went on for
6 or 7 hours a day, sharing the room with multi other purposes like
lunch, band, P.E.,
and after school enrichment programs.
|After 6 days, including one early
open (Breakfast with Books) and one evening close to allow working
attend with their children (and buy books), the fair grossed $18,000.
Other schools are now sending their book fair coordinators to our
school to see how it's done. Although there were plenty of
parental volunteers, either or both of Kristi
and Gail were nearly always there to monitor, coordinate, make
decisions, and reorder depleted supplies.
|The week to 10 days that it takes to set
up, run, and tear down the fair is a time of distraction from
everything else for Kristi. As busy as she was, it was recognized
that being involved up to her eyeballs really helped Kristi forget
about (and therefore cope with) the remodel. Kristi's distracted
week is also one of the few times during the year
that Keith is asked to really step up and take care of the boys in the
manner to which Kristi has allowed them to become accustomed. It's a good thing that the book fair
happens only once a year: the boys can only stand so much frozen pizza
and Jack in the Box drive through when Keith is in charge of cooking
|The weekend following the Book Fair, we
headed back up to Anaheim, this time to Disneyland. Now I could
paint it as a calculated reward to Kristi for surviving the Book Fair,
or to the boys for surviving the sole care of their father, but that
wouldn't be true. The annual Southern Californian promotion that
they run to get locals to come to the parks in the winter was a buy one
get one free admission. So after attending California Adventure
last month, we had to attend Disneyland within 21 days to dollar cost
average down. Although I resisted the temptation last month, I
did make a dedicated photo page of our trip
this month, probably because the weather was better and the resulting
basketball season wrapped up. They were knocked out of the
playoffs by a outside buzzer beater by the other team. Just the
type of game you dream of (if you are on the winning team). Doug
is noncommittal about playing more basketball.
|But who can think about basketball when
baseball games has begun for both boys. As one of only a couple 11 year
olds on the
team last year, Brad struggled last year “playing up” from the Minors
to the Majors. He swears basketball is his new
love and this will be his last year playing baseball. His parents are
disappointed, as he has always shown such an aptitude for baseball and
it so much for the last 6 years.
|This year, the
all new, including the coach,
and Brad is one of just two returning 12 year olds from last year's
team. Brad and the other 12 year old (Win,
over-the-back-fence neighbor who was born the same day as Brad) are
looked to to lead the team. Brad responded by having a monster March,
going 15 of
17 at the plate, Brad is reviewing his earlier pledge that this would
last baseball season.
|Doug was on a
basketball team made up nearly entirely
of boys from Deer Canyon Elementary school. The situation
reversed on the baseball
team, where he is one of the few boys not from Adobe Bluffs. PJ
Fabijanic is on
so he does have one built-in friend, and his parents have someone they
sit with at the games. This is the first
year with kids pitching to one another. Everybody
on the team was asked to pitch a couple of innings this month, and Doug
control on his throws that he will be asked to pitch again.
Unlike Brad, Doug still considers baseball his number one sport.
games as well. He started off in the
Minors, with 10 and 11
year old players, working in tandem with an experienced umpire. The
ump was behind the
calling strikes and he "played" in the field, calling the bases. As he
experience, he will go
plate, as well as umpire the Rookies (9 year olds like Doug) alone.
Along with the invaluable experience of
realizing umpiring is hard work, it doesn’t hurt that this is the first
he’s getting paid for: $10 for the field, $15 for behind the plate or
|By school rules, as a third grader Doug
has the option of riding his bike to school, a privilege denied younger
students. For some combined reason of parental over protection
and lack of desire on his part, it took him until two thirds of the way
through the school year to get around to actually doing it.
looked after by caregiver Linda,
has never really regained her strength and stamina from the December
falls. She spends more time in her
wheelchair than walker. She does have
therapy twice a week. Perhaps more troubling, however, is her confusion
delusions this month. She believes she
is on a ship at sea, and she is quite concerned that she doesn’t know
started or where it’s going. A fascinating metaphor for life, really,
somewhat troubling for Betty’s observers who believe we are grounded in
|Bob and Joann Rafferty came out from
Illinois to take care of the boys' cousins Quinn and Kelsy while
Jeff and Chrysanne visited South Africa. Isn't that always the
way it goes: you get one grandparent
to come out to take care
of your kids while you go to another country, and then your brother
in law gets two grandparents to watch his kids while he goes to another
continent. While they of
course stayed at Jeff and Chrysanne's house in La Mesa, we did get
together several times, including dinner both out and at their
house. Also, the grandparents did make a point of catching a
baseball game for each boy.
March we experienced a phenomenon
that will undoubtedly become more common as the boys grow older: the
its separate ways. Bradley went with the
Church Youth Group to a one night, one day camp; Kristi went with Gail
annual post book fair spa day, and Keith and Doug went camping with Y
some sort of replacement for the birthday party he never got back in
December/January, Brad got his parents to pay for a night and a day at
Camp Surf, a county YMCA camp right on the beach. One of the Youth
Group leaders at church is also a counselor at the camp, so he found a
weekend with some open attendance spots and arranged for our youth to
attend. Brad was not enamored with his first (or was it second
by this time) attempts at surfing. Too little action for too much
work, he thinks.
was the second year Kristi and Gail worked together on the Book Fair,
and the second year they treated themselves for the job well done by
going to a spa for the day and getting facials, wraps, and
driving desert sand storms,
Agua Caliente was perhaps the only place in the county less hospitable
own house under construction. Still, that's where Keith and Doug ended
up. But after
a very windy first night, we had calm, hot days and clear cold
nights. Doug inexplicably threw up the first night, and
Keith learned there were indeed more difficult situations than living
in a house undergoing remodeling. Like trying to clean vomit from
a tent and sleeping back in the middle of the night. After the
episode, Doug was just fine, so we threw the soiled sleeping bag out of
the tent, turned the remaining bag into a comforter we both could sleep
under, and made it through the rest of the night, and weekend, without
|The remodel got messy this month, really
messy. Messy to the point where we questioned our decision to
inhabit the house during construction.
positive side, the addition was weather proofed and doors and windows
were installed, so the old walls in the family room (first floor) and
bedroom (second floor) could come down, truly adding the addition to
the house. This was a great psychological gain, as we saw the
vision coming to fruition. On the negative side, after that there
was no more outside the existing house work, so they moved inside with
a vengeance. They jackhammered existing foundation in our family
room and moved walls in both the family room and bedroom. Very,
very dusty and dirty.
blow of all, however, was the demo of the kitchen. The
refrigerator moved to the family room. The microwave and coffee
maker first moved to a card table in the family room but were
eventually displaced to the workbench in the garage. Gone was any
delusion we had maintained thus far of normal meals amidst the carnage;
now we either ate out or had some meal on paper plates that could be
Mentioned on this Page:
|You may have missed
links within the text above.
A Day at Disneyland
month's remodel progress