Friday, August 31, 2007

The Origin of Vessel

     Okay so some of you have asked and wondered why we named our son Vessel. What does it mean? Where did it come from? Well here’s the story behind it. 
     When Mike and I found out we were going to have a boy I was temporarily crushed because it meant I had to throw out my 2 page list of girl names. But after a day or so, my disappointment faded and we then started thinking up names for our future son. We looked through several baby name books and when something popped out at one of us we’d write it down. When we read over our chosen names to each other it was a mess because neither of us liked the other’s selections AT ALL. We couldn’t agree on anything, and that’s how it was practically the last 4 months of my pregnancy. 

     As we sat in Sunday school class one morning, I started flipping through the Bible for name ideas. Shephatiah? Hezekiah? Elijah? Haggai? Zechariah? No, no no. This wasn’t working. Then I just saw the word “vessel” in one of the verses. It might have been Isaiah 52:11 which says “be ye clean, that bear the vessels of the Lord.” Well I jotted the word down and told Mike about it. Mike found another scripture with a reference to vessels. Towards the end of Moroni 7:31 it reads: “…to prepare the way among the children of men, by declaring the word of Christ unto the chosen vessels of the Lord, that they may bear testimony of him.” The more we thought about it, the more we liked it. It was the first name we actually agreed on! 

     The dictionary says a vessel is “a person regarded as a holder or receiver of something, especially something nonmaterial” like a vessel of love, or a vessel of grace or mercy. We thought, "how perfect." Not only does the name sound beautiful but the meaning behind it is beautiful as well. 

     We wanted our son to be a literal vessel, or a person by which others could learn through. A person that others could receive the gospel through. A “holder” of love, charity, compassion and other Christ-like qualities. "A chosen vessel of the Lord." What a name, right? I always wanted my children to have unique names with significant meanings.  Vessel seems to meet both requirements to me.  

     But because it is so unique, I often find myself repeating the name several times to strangers or having to explain the meaning behind it. Over the phone people will confuse the name with “Russell” or will ask, “Oh you mean like a blood vessel?” That’s what we get for choosing such an original name I guess. 

     For awhile there we were thinking of using the middle name Omen.  Even though there are good omens, the word “omen” is more often used negatively as in a “bad omen.” We eventually decided against it. 

     While I was in the hospital right after our little boy was born, we had to figure out a middle name to put on the birth certificate. Taking one more look through the baby name books we came across the name Noah, and we went with it. We felt like it sounded good with Vessel, plus it’s the name of a really cool prophet, so it was settled. 

     As far as nicknames go….we have a plethora of them. We call him “Shippy” a lot, for a couple of reasons. Before he became more mobile and started losing all his baby fat, he was such a roly poly baby that we always said “he’s as big as ship.” Grandma Bates often calls him “da ship.” Also, vessel is another word for ship…so we just call him Shippy. Other nicknames include, “Shippy Shipmeyer,” V-Dawg,” V-Bone,” “Mr. V,” just plain “V,” “Vessel-kun,” “booger,” and so on. Anyway, hope this post helps anyone who was curious!

10 monther

     Vessel just turned 10 months old on the 28th. He’s developing beautifully. Vessel is a happy little child, continually smiling and affectionate. He’s very inquisitive, but what child isn’t? His new thing lately is opening doors. If any door in our house is slightly closed, he will push on it until it opens. He gets into everything. The other morning he found an opened bag of peanuts leftover from our hike up Ensign Peak that I had left in the diaper bag. Apparently he crawled over to his dad and Mike saw that he was chewing on something. So Mike smelled his breath and sure enough it was peanuts. That was kind of scary, but we had to laugh. Well, at least we know he’s not allergic to them.  

     What else? Vessel likes music a lot. It seems to comfort him, no matter what style of music. What I mean is it doesn’t have to be classical. In fact, music with words seems to comfort him more than just instrumental. Playing the radio in the car always calms him down. Recently my sister sent us one of those iPod docking stations with speakers. It’s nice because we can download whatever songs or cds we think he’d like and put the iPod in his room at nights so he can listen to music before he falls asleep. 

     He likes books a lot too, especially the ones he shouldn’t touch. (Rip, tear, rip.) He is also “talking” more. Actually, he’s been calling me “mom” (not “ma” or “mama”) for the last month. You might think he’s just babbling, but he definitely knows who I am because he won’t say “mom” to anyone else but me. If he ever wants my attention, he’ll say “mom mom mom mom” until I respond. I’m telling you, he honestly calls me mom, no joke. 

     He also says “bah,” “mgah,” “nan,” “da,” and various other syllables. Still trying to figure out what those mean in babytalk. Fun times. He makes us laugh a lot. One thing in particular is his crawl. I don't know why, but most of the time he crawls on his hands and feet instead of his hands and knees, kind of like a bear. It's really funny to watch when he gets going fast. Cute kid, that Vessel Bates. 

     But there are things about this age I'm not the biggest fan of. Like when he throws everything on the floor. I put him in his booster chair at the table and give him something, and whatever it is (food, toy, cup, spoon, etc.) he will chuck it to the ground. He never gets bored with that game. It's a continuous cycle. He throws something on the floor, I pick it up, he throws it again, I pick it up again, ad nauseum. 

     He also gets really restless at church nowadays, but I guess that's pretty common for even most adults. ;) Anyway, he's a lot of fun and has brought so much joy into our home. Mike and I are astounded each day that we created such a sweet, easygoing, adorable, lovable kid.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Ensign Peak

For the Young Woman activity this week, the girls and some of the leaders hiked up to Ensign Peak. The leaders gave a great spiritual message and the view was so beautiful. Everyone had a good time. Even Shippy (who rarely likes being in a carrier) seemed to enjoy getting toted up the trail on my back.

As we neared the top, the sun was just about to set.

From left: Valerie, Cara, Josie, Kelli, Amber, Emily, and Amelia.

Shippy and me enjoying the view.

Rock statue at the peak.

View of the Salt Lake Valley.

The leaders and young women squinting for the picture.

The sunset. This is where you say "aaawwww" and think of Josie and her husband Cortney kissing.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Simple Pleasures

Spending some time with my boy.

Vessel enjoying the swing at the park.

The sheer joy from playing with an empty box. Who needs toys?

My baby's rad fauxhawk.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Better Bread

I had to get a picture of this loaf because it turned out much better than my previous one. I didn't punch all the gassy, yeasty air bubbles out of the last dough before the second rising, so there was a hole in the bread after it had baked from where the air bubble was. This loaf, however, turned out virtually perfect. Hurray!



The Day The Babies Crawled Away by Peggy Rathmann

Whenever we go into Barnes & Noble I usually head straight for the children's section and spend the whole time sitting on the floor with numerous books around me. Besides the sheer simplicity, I think what I love most about children's books are the illustrations. This book has black silhouettes against beautifully colored skies that change as the day turns to night. I fell in love with this book the first time I read it and so Mike gave it to me our first Christmas as a married couple.

Here are a couple summaries/reviews: 

While the grown-ups are immersed in pie eating and other outdoor carnival festivities, their babies crawl away. The only one to observe this phenomenon is a toddler in a fireman's hat who follows them and saves them from such disasters as bat caves, cliff-hanging, and hunger, along the way shouting very responsible warnings and imprecations to "behave." When he brings them safely home, he is, of course, a hero. In the penultimate spread, it transpires that the tale is the boy's fantasy story retold by his loving mother just before he falls asleep. The babies and their adventures are rendered in stunning, sharply detailed, Pienkowski-like silhouette against a subtly changing backdrop that reflects the time of day. The boy's fireman's hat makes him easy to follow on each spread and also conveys his gallant status. This book has levels of complexity. Adults may be put off by the seeming parental neglect, but children will doubtless latch on to and enjoy the fact that the hero is a child, that none of the escapees seems in any real jeopardy, that the softly glowing pastel backgrounds lend a mood of unruffled calm, and that the story is, after all, fanciful. The verse doesn't always scan and occasionally does not rhyme, but oh those beguiling babies-they're irresistible!-Kate McClelland, Perrot Memorial Library, Old Greenwich, CT
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Is the book worth buying? Yes. The conceit is clever, the artwork is creative and lovely, and children with patience and imagination will find a bit more to see than they might find in a book with conventional art. Ilene Cooper
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

Happy Parent, Happy Baby

Just wanted to say that Vessel slept 10 straight hours last night. He never even woke up at his standard 5 am time. We finally must be doing something right!


     As a kid, I used to constantly tape music off the radio or other peoples' CDs using blank cassettes. I've accumulated quite the collection of cassette tapes over the years, and just recently decided to listen to them all to find out if any were worth keeping. I've come across these songs that I had at one time taped. Although I think these songs are great, some people might think they're kind of er, uhm... odd or unusual. I actually think some of them are a little bizarre too, compared to what you might traditionally hear on the radio. You've probably heard some of them, if not all of them. If not, try going to Rhapsody to get a sample.

Bobby Gaylor---Suicide
Katalina---DJ’s girl
Nada Surf---Popular
Oingo Boingo---Weird Science
Porno for Pyros---Pets
Right Said Fred---I’m too sexy
Cornershop---Brimful of Asha (Everyone needs a bosom for a pillow)
The Eels---Novocain for the soul
White Town---Your woman
Tori Amos---Caught a lite sneeze
They Might Be Giants---Particle Man
Squirrel Nut Zippers---Hell
Trio---Da Da Da


This evening we spent a couple of hours at Liberty Park. Vessel fell asleep towards the end so Mike told me he'd watch the boy child and do some of his homework so I could take my longboard around the park a few times. I don't get a lot of pushing practice since I'm usually riding on an incline, so I was excited to work on my pushing techniques more. Well, 2 times around the park and I ended up with this delightful little thing.

Monday, August 20, 2007

Betty Flip'm Crocker

     Okay, so I'm not Betty Crocker, Sara Lee, or even Martha Stewart. But I made bread! From scratch no less, and in a loaf pan! Yay! (That's not to say I'm dissing on anyone with a breadmaker, wink wink, nudge nudge, David and Karen*) Well, it's not the first time I've ever done it or anything, it's just been a really long time since I've made it. 

     I know, you're probably saying to yourself  "but Jamie, you don't like to cook/bake." Well, that's true. I may not like it that much, but that doesn't mean I can't do it! Let me just say that a Kitchen Aid mixer is one of the best appliances you could ever invest in. The one we have was my Grandma's until she bought a new one and passed her old one down to us. It comes with a bread hook so you don't have to break your arms and back kneading dough. 

     Now, you'd think massaging dough would be a favorite part of the bread making experience for me, since I consider myself a sensualist and all. But I've got to be honest, I'm not a big fan. When you think of the knots you'd get in your neck and back from repeating the same arduous movements over and over for 8-10 minutes, you'll be thanking your Kitchen Aid mixer for doing the kneading for you. I know I did. 

     Anyhoo, I love homemade bread. Who doesn't? The smell, the taste, the warm spongy texture in your mouth. It's all great. Mike and I decided we're going to make our own bread from now on.  We're even considering getting a wheat grinder too. Man, I feel like a modern day pioneer. Well, except that the pioneers weren't lazy enough to use a Kitchen Aid mixer to knead their bread dough.

"Everyday in every way, we are getting better and better"

     Last Wednesday I was talking to a friend who has a little boy a few months older than Vessel.
Since Mike and I had had some stressful nights just previous to the day we talked (due to Vessel's sleeping, or should I say non-sleeping habits), I brought this up to my friend and she was absolutely shocked that Vessel was still waking up in the night and couldn't go to sleep without being rocked in our arms. I ultimately had a pang of jealousy when she told me her son actually gets excited to go to bed, and sleeps 12 hours straight through, (8pm-8am.) I jokingly asked if she was sedating him, but she assured me there were no tranquilizers involved. She basically told me what everyone else has told me. They follow the same routine every night and he just goes to sleep on his own. He doesn't need to be rocked, held, or nursed to sleep. They put him in his bed, turn on a CD, he talks to himself a bit and drifts softly into dreamland. 

     Whenever I've tried to just put Vessel in his bed like that he screams his bloody head off until one of us goes to "rescue" him. I told my friend that Vessel had just developed some bad habits and I felt like it was too late to break them since the ideas of being rocked and nursed to sleep and being rescued when he makes the littlest peep have been ingrained in him since birth. But she said (as so many others have suggested as well) that I just need to be firm on the issue. It might be days, weeks, or even months of hell until Vessel adjusts to a new sleeping routine, but it would be worth it in the end. After not getting a good nights sleep for the last nine months, what do I have to lose? 

     I have no idea why Mike and I have never established a bedtime routine. I've heard and read over and over that babies thrive on schedules, repetitions, routines, and structure. But for whatever reason, that whole theory was thrown out the window. Vessel has never really had a schedule for eating or sleeping. I've just always fed him when he's been hungry, or rocked him when he was tired and fussy. I could always kind of predict when these times were, but they were never set in stone. 

     So after talking to my friend that night, I went home and told Mike we really needed to buckle down and get our kid sleeping through the night. I know that at his age he doesn't NEED to be eating in the middle of the night. I know that he doesn't NEED to be held in order to fall asleep. So, this is what we've done since last Wednesday: evening meal, bath, pajamas, brush teeth, bedtime story, turn on some music, turn on the disco ball (it casts colorful lights on the ceiling), kiss him good-night, put him in bed, put a blanket over him, and leave the room with the door shut behind us. And he did exactly what we expected. He cried. But instead of giving in too quickly, as we usually do, we let him cry a bit. And you know what? After no more than 20 minutes he was fast asleep. The next day we did the same thing. But this time, he only cried for 5 minutes. Then the next day, same routine, but this time he was asleep in less than a minute. I thought it would take forever to work, but he miraculously caught on. 

     And as far as waking up at 5 a.m.? Instead of going to get him immediately, we let him cry for about 10 minutes and he soothed himself back to sleep until about 7 a.m. Can you believe it? It was like a dream come true. Some of you might think I'm being harsh or whatever, but for those of you who value your sleep as much as I do can relate. I'd rather let my son cry a bit to teach him how to self-soothe and learn that night time is sleep time, than be up all hours of the night feeding or entertaining him, only to be totally exhausted the next day. And I can't really expect to be the best mom I can be when I'm functioning on such little sleep every night. Mike and I are proud of ourselves. We stayed unified in our decision, we didn't back down, we just set the routine and now it's like chaos has ceased at nights. It is wonderful.   

Even with food all over his face, this kid is the most handsome thing I've ever seen. 
I decided to put bubbles in his bath a few days ago, just to mix things up. He thought they were great, and apparently edible as well. 

Thursday, August 16, 2007

You Know You Want This Desk

So, school starts up next week which means I'll begin working from home in the mornings Monday through Thursday. My office set me up with a computer strictly for work related stuff to use at my house. We recently purchased a larger desk to accomodate both PCs, so now we are trying to sell the one above. It's only a year old and in excellent condition. If any of you are interested, we could make a deal. C'mon, you know you want this desk, am I right?

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Just Thinking

      Right now I’m just watching Vessel play. He’s focusing so hard on one particular toy at the moment. He has the most serious expression on his face and nothing I do can distract him. It’s really cute to watch him concentrate so intensely like that. I can’t believe he’ll be a year old in 2 ½ months. These days he smacks his lips for “kisses,” he waves at people, he cruises around the furniture, he can climb stairs, he attempts to talk, he can curl his tongue to one side, he can feed himself small pieces of food, he’s got 8 teeth now, he expresses a variety of emotions, and he’s so curious about EVERYTHING that it’s hard to keep up with him as he probes around the house.  

For instance, the other day Mike and I were in our room and Vessel decided to go exploring. A couple of minutes later we heard the toilet flush and we looked at each other like, “did our kid do that?” And sure enough he happily found the flusher and the roll of toilet paper. So now we have to keep the bathroom door closed at all times.

     Also, today I decided to bake some bread so I had the pantry door open and the flour and sugar buckets out on the floor. Vessel crawled into the empty space of the cupboard while I was mixing up ingredients. I thought he’d be safe to just investigate in there, but when he grew tired of it, he tried to climb out himself. Unfortunately he fell out onto the linoleum on his head. The poor tyke.
     He is about where he should be in every area of development. The only area that seems to be a problem these days is in the sleep department. He still has difficulty sleeping through the night and sometimes wakes up once or twice. He also has a hard time taking a nap for longer than ten or fifteen minutes. Then he fusses and whines for hours afterward because he’s tired. I just wish he’d sleep when he should instead of trying to resist it. And for the past couple of months he’s been waking up at 5:00 in the morning everyday. It doesn’t matter what time we put him to bed at night, he will be up at 5 a.m. sharp, ready to start the day. Hopefully that changes soon because it’s much too early for me. He’s such a morning person. Are all babies like that?
     Vessel is a really great kid and overall he’s been pretty easy to take care of, but recently he’s been so demanding, attached, and clingy. He would probably benefit from being in a playgroup around other kids his age. He’d even benefit being around other adults besides me. I don’t want him to be isolated every day. However, I personally don’t need a “play-date.” I don’t need the socialization, but I think Vessel does. He’s become such a momma’s boy. I know that term sort of has a negative connotation, but I don’t mean it like that. It’s actually kind of flattering, but a little exasperating at the same time. Even when Mike gets home from work Vessel will still follow me around, climb on me and basically cling to me. He usually won’t play in a room that I’m not in, and if I leave his sight for even a few seconds he will cry a little bit. I think it’s just the age that he’s at right now. Plus Vessel and I are together all day, so I’m familiar to him. I’m his security. Another reason he’s so attached I think is because he’s got some emotional ties to nursing. I’m still a source of nourishment for him.
But anyway, I’m sure it wouldn’t hurt him to get out more though. 

     Last night I took him out on the lawn to play with some of the other kids in the complex. My friend Robin and her friend Cathy sat down and started talking to me and they offered to watch Vessel for a little bit so Mike and I could go for a ride on the motorcycle. It was a blast. I haven’t been able to go for a ride with Mike for weeks now, and it was a lot of fun. Then Mike drove me up to Sugar House so I could longboard for awhile. Even though I haven’t had the time to go for a few weeks, I had my best run of all time last night. It just comes back to me so naturally. I don’t think Mike realized how important it was for me to get out and ride after being pent up in the house all day. He’s so sweet to drive me up the hill as many times as I want. I’ve got two great boys in my life.

Vessel in the pantry

Right before he toppled out onto his head :(

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Baby Steps

     While I was attending Ricks College (now BYU-Idaho), I decided towards the end of my 2nd year that I wanted to major in dietetics and become a licensed dietician with my own practice. I was, and always have been very interested in nutrition, and I felt like I could make a profession of it, helping people with nutritional deficiencies or health problems such as diabetes, obesity or eating disorders. I wanted to create specific menus for people based on their individual needs and body types. I developed a love for chemistry and enjoyed learning how different vitamins, minerals and other nutrients interacted in the human body.  

     During the transition from Ricks to BYU-I, they did not offer a major in that field, and so I simply pursued my general eds in hopes of transferring to a school later that DID offer my major of interest. I graduated with my Associate degree the summer before Mike got home from his mission. We were engaged shortly after, and then 4 months after our marriage we moved to Japan. So, I took about 2 ½ years off from school. 

     Back in the states we started college classes again at the U of U. I was excited to get some more schooling under my belt and get started on my nutrition degree. After my first semester at the U of U I had an epiphany: I really didn’t like school. I liked going to lectures and participating in classroom conversations, but I despised having to write papers, do homework, complete projects, research material, read texts, meet deadlines, and all the stuff that comes with college. I was also a little disappointed to find out that the U of U offered either a Doctorate program or a minor program in dietetics. There was nothing in between. By this time I started to question whether or not I was committed enough to complete the doctorate program there. My goal was to at least get my Bachelors degree in nutrition, and maybe take some time off to raise children, and then go back. But without a Bachelors program, I felt like I didn’t have the patience or the will to continue 6 more years at the U of U. I thought about getting a minor, but what could I do with that? I was still interested in food and health and I had taken numerous nutrition and cooking classes. But my perspective started to change.  
     The thing is, I really like to learn new things, but I like to do it on my own time in my own way. I don’t enjoy the pressure of having to read 5 chapters a night from a textbook. So, even though I’m not in school right now, I still make it a point to read different nutrition articles or excerpts from books now and then. So where am I going with this? 

     I guess that for the past couple of weeks or even months I have been concerned with my lifestyle. I feel like I’m fairly versed in the basics of nutrition. I know what I need to eat and do to sustain good health. And although I know all of the blatant ways to better my health, I continue to defy the knowledge I have attained. Not only academic knowledge, but family history knowledge. I’m totally aware of the health problems in my family. Cancer and heart disease are the top two. My mom’s cause of death was revealed to be more or less a heart attack. She was only 43. That scares me a little. Okay, a lot. But for some reason it’s taken me awhile to realize I need to start making some changes. I just haven’t been able to get motivated for some reason. Like I’ll tell myself I’m going to start exercising regularly and even make up a regimen, but it will last for maybe a week, if that, before I give up. Mike and I know how horrible eating out can be, and yet we have had a really bad habit of eating out multiple times a week. Personally, I hate cooking. I hate trying to calculate everything so that each part of the meal comes out hot at the same time. I hate that cooking essentially leads to another thing I hate, which is cleaning up the mess and washing the dishes afterwards. In the summer especially I hate cooking because using the range, the oven or both at the same time heats up our house to a sweltering temperature, even if the swamp cooler is on. Plus, the dishwasher creates added heat when it’s running a cycle. It seems much more convenient to just grab something and bring it home. But even if we try to eat out at “healthy” places, I know I’m doing my body a complete disservice.

     But, I have to say I am so proud of Mike and myself. We decided last week we were going dedicate ourselves to making every meal from home and make them all from scratch when possible. I know Mike actually likes cooking. But I’m not going to lie, it’s been a real challenge for me this week. I was skinning tomatoes for homemade tomato soup one day and stupidly sliced through 2 of my fingers with the paring knife Mike had just sharpened. Yeah, it hurt quite a bit. I burned myself a few times last week too. But overall, there were minimal injuries and I’m proud to say we created some really good homemade meals this past week. Like, I even used whole wheat flour instead of white for pizza dough. Instead of using my traditional banana bread recipe which calls for an unnecessary amount of shortening and sugar, I tried a healthier recipe that actually tasted much better and was even easier to make. Instead of buying flour tortillas for tacos, I made them from scratch. 

     We've been eating more whole fruits and vegetables too. We made vegetable tempura a couple of nights with mushrooms, green peppers, onions, and acorn squash. Okay, so it’s battered and fried vegetables. At least I’m eating vegetables, give me a break! But seriously, it’s only been a week and Mike said he can already tell a difference in the way his body feels. The whole cooking thing, as hard as it is for me, has been good. I want to be able to be self-sufficient and teach my kids how to make “real” food. And I know we have a long way to go before we are where we need to be. But we are trying. Even if I never fulfill the dietician career, I don’t need a degree in nutrition to know what I need to do to be healthy and have a balanced life. It is time for me to stop being apathetic, stop procrastinating and stop making excuses and just change my lifestyle. I need to keep exercising, I need to keep eating better, and yes, I even need to keep learning and not give up on school…
Baby steps. Baby steps. Baby steps.

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

Lava Hot Springs

Last weekend we met my sister at Lava Hot Springs in Idaho and swam for the afternoon. It was Mike's first time there and it was Vessel's first time in a real pool. We bought him a blow-up floating device to sit in and he practically fell asleep in it from all the bobbing around. I don't think he was all that impressed with the big pool but I don't think he hated it either. He just seemed to have a neutral attitude towards the whole thing. He either clung onto me or Mike, except for in a couple of these pictures where I thought it was so funny to watch him float with his big inflated water diaper. We actually got rained out 45 minutes after we arrived there. Mike went to change thinking we were leaving...but Steph and I knew how quickly Idaho weather can change, so we waited it out and about 15 minutes later it was sunny again. That's why there are no pictures of Mike here. He's all dressed and dry operating the camera. Thanks for taking one for the team, babe!

He floats!

The Big Jump

There's Steph on the 3rd platform, contemplating whether or not to jump. It's about a 30 foot drop from the platform to the water.
  Here she is getting advice or encouragement from the other jumpers. 
She's pretty nervous. 
Still thinking about it.... 
Yaaay! She finally jumped after 20 minutes!

Friday, August 3, 2007


A.I. Artificial Intelligence

Okay, so I'm a little late watching this movie since it came out like 6 years ago. I'm not the biggest fan of science fiction, but I decided to give it a try. So Mike and I watched it a few nights ago and we both thought it was pretty good, at least better than what we expected. In fact, I found myself wanting to cry at several parts. Any of you who have seen the this normal? Was I just extremely emotional when I watched it or is the movie a little heartbreaking at times? I was kind of disturbed by a few of the scenes. The flesh fair was one of them. The woman abandoning her robot son was another. I got really attached to the character David the robot and was sad for him. Sad because his creators made him to take the place of a human child in a family and to feel the emotion LOVE without the guarantee of receiving love in return. There were a few flaws in the film, but overall it was a good flick and kept my interest. No regrets.

Here is a summary of the movie:

In the not-so-far future the polar ice caps have melted and the resulting raise of the ocean waters has drowned all the coastal cities of the world. Withdrawn to the interior of the continents, the human race keeps advancing, reaching to the point of creating realistic robots (called mechas) to serve him. One of the mecha-producing companies builds David, an artificial kid which is the first to have real feelings, especially a never-ending love for his "mother", Monica. Monica is the woman who adopted him as a substitute for her real son, who remains in cryo-stasis, stricken by an incurable disease. David is living happily with Monica and her husband, but when their real son returns home after a cure is discovered, his life changes dramatically. A futuristic adaptation of the tale of Pinocchio, with David being the "fake" boy who desperately wants to become "real". Written by Chris Makrozahopoulos {}

In this futuristic fairy tale, "David", a highly-advanced robotic boy, hopes to become a real boy so that he can win back the affection of the human mother who abandoned him. Like Pinocchio, he goes on a long journey hoping to find his "Blue Fairy," who can make his dreams come true. Written by

Thursday, August 2, 2007

Baby Swap

  My sister, Kathy, and my wife holding each other's babies.

  Jamie thinks Vessel looks a lot like her mommy in this picture.

*Photos courtesy of mom. Thanks mom!

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Walker, Vessel Ranger

Vessel uses his Tonka Truck as a walker to cruise around our apartment balcony. He's a bit wobbly, but he sure is cute. I especially think it's cute when he's concentrating so hard that he sticks out his little tongue.  

To see video click here

The Sandbox

We're going to have to get a sandbox for our kids to play in when we have our own house someday. This week we went out to the community play area in our complex. Vessel definitely liked getting dirty as he experienced the sensation of sand on his skin, and yes, his mouth. Fun times!

Vessel found a rock to gnaw on. 

Where'd my legs go?

Vessel and mom with the sand volcano 

Can I interest you in some sand?

I'm totally going to red point this route.