April Photos of the Day

April 1

I'm loving the clean dining room table. (Nikon D700; Nikon 50mm lens)

Every other week, Elvia and her crew stop by for about an hour to make our world a cleaner place. I cherish the too-few hours after they leave when, although still cluttered, the house is clean and tidy. See our dining room table? By tomorrow, it won’t look like this. Within a week, you won’t be able to tell cleaning ever had occurred. This is where the boys do homework and projects (where “projects” = leave their junk) and conveniently “forget” to put things away. But I’m not concerned about that now, as I gaze upon my uncluttered, shiny table. I’m just happy that every other week it’s actually clean!

April 2

The #2 son checks out discs at Academy. (iPhone 3GS)

We love three-day weekends! The boys are off school today for Good Friday, so we went to Pei Wei for lunch and then stopped at Academy to look at discs. I always think the #2 son has enough of them, but he disagrees. He didn’t want to buy any—he would’ve had to spend his own money; that might have stopped him!

April 3

This iPad is mine! (Nikon D700; Nikon 50mm lens)

Today was iPad launch day, which I had been looking forward to since the iPad was announced. I had opted to have mine delivered by UPS. It finally came before 11:30 a.m., and it happily distracted me the entire day.

April 4

My sister-in-law’s beautiful azaleas (Nikon D700; Nikon 105mm lens)

Today we went to my brother- and sister-in-law’s house for dinner. Their azaleas were mostly in full bloom and looked beautiful. As usual, we had a great time with Mike and Paula, as well as my SIL Carol and our niece Melissa and nephew Daniel.

April 5

Back to the government! (Nikon D700; Nikon 50mm lens)

It’s census time! There have been a myriad of TV commercials and signs—even on the school marquees—reminding us to fill out the census and send it back. For me, there were a couple of problems with filling out the form: First, of course, I couldn’t find it. I put it in a stack of papers, and it was MIA for awhile. Really not surprising if you know me (JJ, I’m looking at YOU!).

Second, the first question asks how many people live in your house as of April 1. Which meant that you couldn’t truthfully answer until April 2 . . . especially if you’re superstitious (meaning that if you say four people will live in the house on April 1 before that day, something will happen to at least one of them). I wasn’t about to tempt that old Evil Eye!

So why wait an extra three days to mail in the census form today? Duh! I just found where I had put it!!

April 6

Akeelah torments us at our front door. (Nikon D700; Nikon 105mm lens)

This afternoon as I walked past the front door, something caught my eye. I stared out the front door glass and could see a huge . . . yes, HUGE! . . . bee sitting on the door. I hit the door, and the bee flew off, but it hovered nearby. Of course, I ran for my Nikon to try to get a photo . . . from INDOORS. I wasn’t about to tempt fate by going out front via the back door and trying to snap a shot. Maybe if I owned a 400mm lens and could shoot from across the street! The bee stayed for a long time. I would smack the door, it would fly off, only to come back again. Finally, in the late afternoon it left. Much to my relief, it didn’t call in all its stinging friends to try to exact revenge for my door-hitting actions.

April 7

Holy cow! Or, rather, holy bee!! (Nikon D700; Nikon 50mm lens)

This morning I was curious to see what was on the door that had attracted yesterday’s monster bee. Look at how it was gnawing at the wood, leaving a hole! If I hadn’t stopped it, that big buzzer might have gotten through the door in a matter of, oh, a year!

There could be the makings of a horror movie here!

April 8

Lisa tests out the Nikon D5000. (Nikon D700; Nikon 50mm lens)

My pal Lisa wants to buy a better camera for her trip of a lifetime this summer . . . and to take pix of her two gorgeous daughters. And her handsome hubby. So today we drove to the Houston Camera Exchange for her to try the Nikon D5000 and the Canon Rebel T1i. They didn’t have the Canon in stock but did have its XSi predecessor. Lisa liked the Nikon better (yay!); however, they didn’t have one to sell her. Frustration! She hopes to pick one up this week.

Afterwards, we lunched at Chipotle and had a great chat. I had a terrific time!

April 9

Water droplets on one of our roses (Nikon D700; Nikon 105mm lens)

Our roses in our front yard look gorgeous! Despite January’s freeze, they’ve erupted lush in both looks and quantity. I snapped this photo early this morning while the water droplets from the sprinkler system made the roses look even prettier.

April 10

Gotta hand it to the Mister!

Gotta hand it to the Mister! (Nikon D700; Nikon 105mm lens)

Today we planted a spring mix of flowers that we bought from ProGrad. The Mister did most of the work, although he did make me get my hands dirty when he got tired of bending over. Glad I didn’t buy a lot of plants!

April 11

The Mister watches our #2 son tee off. (Nikon D700; Nikon 105mm lens)

As I watch the Mister and our #2 son play disc golf together, I can’t help but smile. How lucky is our son that his dad plays a sport they both love. How lucky is the Mister that he can share this athletic passion with his younger son. And how lucky am I that I get to witness how much they love and respect each other. I marvel at the fun and success that they’ve had during the past two-plus years of playing disc golf. And I am very thankful!

April 12

My #2 son skies during the triple jump. (Nikon D700; Nikon 70-200mm lens)

This week is the three-day, season-ending district track meet for my #2 son. He’s had a great season! Today he finished seventh in the long jump and fifth in the triple jump among all the district’s freshmen boys. Way to go!

April 13

My #2 son has a lot of ground to make up in the 800 meters. (Nikon D700; Nikon 70-200mm lens)

Today was qualifying for the 800-meter final. #2 had to run one of the top eight times out of 15 freshmen boys to advance. In this photo you can see how far he was behind his friendly opponent Zaib (they went to middle school together). Right before the finish line, #2 caught up to Zaib to place third in his heat! He ran the fifth-fastest time to qualify for Thursday’s final and ran his best 800 ever: 2:18!

April 14

My Honda Pilot’s flat tire gets taken off. (Nikon D700; Nikon 50mm lens)

Whenever I’m in a hurry, it seems that’s when a warning light glows on my Honda Pilot’s dashboard. Today I saw the tire warning indicator when I started up the Pilot, but I was too lazy to get out of the car to check the back right tire. I was in a hurry to meet three friends (Audrey, Joyce, and Sheri) at Panera Bread and figured the tire would be okay. It was . . . until I was done with lunch. Of course, the tire was flat. So I called AAA Texas and used Panera’s wifi with my iPad while I waited. Within an hour I was on my way with the spare on and the old tire with its tiny yet effective cut in the back of my car. Wish I had at least gotten 60,000 miles on that tire before it flattened!

April 15

Two weeks later, the dining room table is messy. (Nikon D700; Nikon 50mm lens)

Scroll up and check out the April 1st photo of the day. Now come back to today. Notice anything different? Yep, two weeks have gone by since Elvia and her crew were here. The dining room table looks like a schoolwork volcano exploded all over it. Glad the cleaning gals are coming this afternoon!

April 16

The #2 son shakes his iPod Touch. (Nikon D700; Nikon 50mm lens)

My #2 son downloaded the Impossible Test app for his iPod Touch today. He played it and then wanted me to give it a spin. “Impossible” just isn’t the word for it! You need to be a psychic to advance through the test. He definitely had fun with it.

April 17

My #1 son and Chase set up a scene with partially-hidden Brandon. (Nikon D700; Nikon 50mm lens)

My #1 son and Chase filmed footage for a new Honorable M.D. Dr. Judge video. Their friend Brandon joined in on the insanity.

April 18

I capture a rare smile from Dr. Judge (my #1 son). (Nikon D700; Nikon 50mm lens)

Videoing continued today, but this time with Chase and the #1 son. Insanity continued to reign supreme, though. Love when I’m able to snap a pic of #1 smiling!

April 19

My #2 son shows some attitude on the practice putting green. (Nikon D700; Nikon 105mm lens)

My #2 son wasn’t content to just hit the driving range, chip, and putt today. No, he also challenged me to a putting contest! Here he’s insisting that I play after I initially begged off, because I don’t golf at all. I ended up putting one of my first shots directly into the cup! But in the end, he defeated me four rounds to two. And I had to admit I had fun!

April 20

There’s too much sun for the #1 son. (Nikon D700; Nikon 85mm lens)

After my #1 son received his high school math award for Pre-Calculus, we went outside to take a photo. This was the first one I snapped—he’s pointing to the sun to let me know why he’s squinting. Yes, too much sun for my son!

April 21

Pink macro water? (Nikon D700; Nikon 105mm lens)

The filters on our reverse-osmosis drinking system need to be changed. But first the little water left in the tank must drain. As I watched it drip into empty water bottles, it intrigued me. I snapped some shots, but they seemed to be missing something. The Mister had left some neon pink address labels on the kitchen island, so I grabbed them and put them behind the faucet. Voilà! Mysterious pink macro water!

April 22

Mission Burrito celebrates Earth Day. (iPhone 3GS)

Today is the 40th anniversary of Earth Day! I was a high school junior for the first one—I wrote a skit that was acted out in the auditorium. I knew I wanted to be a writer even back then. But enough reminiscing! To celebrate Earth Day, I took advantage of Mission Burrito’s one-day-only special of a veggie bowl including guacamole (which is usually $1.50) for $4.22. Clever pricing! By the way, I don’t think MB can hold a candle to Chipotle, which is my favorite restaurant. I wish Chipotle decided to have an Earth Day special!

April 23

The #1 son’s favorite drink mixes. (iPhone 3GS)

On my grocery list were lemonade and pink lemonade drink mixes for the #1 son. He likes to take a water bottle to school and then mix in one of these flavors at lunch. As I looked at them, I began to get misty-eyed. Causing me pause was the realization that each box had 10 packets. There are only six weeks left of school, which means that I only need three boxes of drink mix (and not even that many, because #1 won’t be at school for lunch several days next week due to the TAKS test or the final week of school due to finals). This is what life has come down to: I’m measuring school days by the number of drink packets I need to buy. I’m not looking forward to those dwindling days.

April 24

The #1 son reads a book on our iPad in the car. (Canon PowerShot A590)

Ever try to take a photo of someone in the back seat of a car? Even when stopped at a light, it’s difficult! There’s just no way to maneuver with a seatbelt on. But today I tried my best, because I wanted to show how my #1 son reads a book on our iPad in the car (and note that he has a physical book under his left elbow, too). Even if I wasn’t driving, I couldn’t read while in motion. I admire my son’s skill!

April 25

Lounging in the backyard. (Nikon D700; Nikon 35-70mm lens)

I love south Texas’ spring days! I snapped this photo as I was lying in a lounge chair enjoying the early evening breeze in the backyard. The sky was brilliant blue, the temperature was in the 70s, and it was nice to just kick back and take it all in. By the way, it looks like my ankles are dirty . . . but they’re really not!

April 26

The #2 son climbs aboard the bus to go to school at 6:42 a.m. (Nikon D700; Nikon 35-70mm lens)

Today starts TAKS week at the high school. Everyone except the seniors who passed their standardized tests last year have to take at least one TAKS exam this week. That means that my #1 son doesn’t have to go to school until after lunch (noon) for one stinkin’ class (physics; he’s off the last two periods of the day). It’s great being a senior in Texas! That also means that his younger brother has to take the bus to school. So instead of waking up at 6:40 a.m. (they leave at 6:50 a.m. to drive to school), #2 is getting on the big, yellow bus. He wasn’t a happy camper, of course. By the way, his TAKS test was in math on Thursday. Hope he did well!

April 27

Glen and my #2 son walk along the disc golf course. (Nikon D700; Nikon 105mm lens)

At tonight’s Southwest Handicap Mini at Quail Valley, my #2 son was on the same card as his best bud Glen. Because they’re in different divisions, they rarely get to play together unless they’re competing in doubles. They really enjoy each other’s company, so tonight was a special treat for them.

April 28

Hey, there! (Nikon D700; Nikon 50mm lens)

This morning when I looked out my office window, I saw a squirrel perched on a rock in the front bed staring back at me. Shooting through the open faux-wood blinds gave the window a grass-colored stained-glass effect! I think the squirrel just wanted to stop and smell our beautiful roses . . . can’t say I blame him!

April 29

Russell Hantz is ready for the reward challenge. (Nikon D700; Nikon 50mm lens)

The Mister and I have been married 20 years! We celebrated our anniversary by going to dinner at the Marriott Hotel’s Burning Pear restaurant with our #2 son (#1 was working). Once #1 came home from the library, we all watched “Survivor”—the reality show that we love to see together. It was perfect!

April 30

My #1 son smiles at Willie’s, his favorite restaurant. (Olympus Stylus Tough 6000)

We ended a week of little schooling for my #1 son by going out to lunch at Willie’s. He was telling me funny stories from the book he was reading, “The Best of the Best Uncle John’s Bathroom Reader.” Behind him, the crawfish flag flies!

5 responses to “April Photos of the Day

  1. Pingback: Here’s the Bluebonnet Buzz! « Random Snippets & Apertures

  2. Pingback: One-Third Done With My Photos of the Day « Random Snippets & Apertures

  3. Years ago when my son asked me to buy him a toy at Wally mart I decided to tell him to use his allowance and after thinking about it for a minute he put the toy back. He is twenty-six now and that is how my wife and I started teaching him how to be responsible with his money.

  4. Dabir Dalton

    It will but the real trick is to have him earn his allowance so that he can begin to appreciate money and the value it represents.

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