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When I'm writing a novel, I'm dealing with a double life. I live in the present at the same time that I live in the past with my characters. It is this that makes a novelist so eccentric and unpleasant.
-- John Phillips Marquand

Blog Posts for "jacob"

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Birthday Bowling


Yesterday was Cub's 6th birthday, and he wanted to go bowling for his big day. He had a couple of friends at the party, and my niece and nephew were in town for the occasion.

Bowling was a good time. I'm a bit unorthodox in my approach - I like to try different methods - and in the video below (click on it), Cub helps me to try and clean up for a spare. He's happy to just hit pins... me, I'm wanting the spare ;)

As Bari graduated from high school, and Nick and Aaron move into 9th and 10th grade in high school, it doesn't seem like it was that long ago that the older three were that young.

Almost makes me wish for more... or to rewind a bit.


Tags: jacob
by Brett Rogers, 8/13/2005 7:50:13 AM

Ledges and Brookside


Went to the park early in the morning before the heat got obscene and played around. Nick, Ali, Austin, and Jacob had fun... oh, and me too.

Ledges is a beautiful park with a stream that runs through it. I had expected that the water would be higher, but unfortunately not, as you can see.

Nevertheless, it was a good time.

And scenic...

Then off to my favorite city park, Brookside in Ames, Iowa. It sports huge oak trees and several playgrounds.

And if you're there long enough, the little guys get to see a train or two pass through. Which we did.

Ali and Nick goofed around on a park bench.

I can't imagine the two of them breaking up. They're wonderful together, which is great to see for my son.

Good way to start the day.


Tags: nick | austin | jacob | my life
by Brett Rogers, 7/23/2005 5:33:02 PM

Happiness Is...


...a really big tent.

ETC: And then later, getting ready to "call it a night," but not before Cub stirred up a bit of late-night wrestling with his brother, Austin.

I bought the Eureka Extended Stay Tent from It's a 50-pound package that only cost me $5 in shipping and I ordered it Monday; it got here Friday. Great deal.

The tent itself is very good - roomy, great ventilation, good design - but there are a few things I wish were different. First, and probably of course, the setup instructions were lacking. It took me about 30 minutes to set it up, and I'm a very experienced camper. Second, it would be great if the base of such a large tent had more opportunity for staking to pin the floor down better. And third, I'm not sure that the rain flaps reach quite far enough if there is a really good rain - but then that's true for all tents pretty much.

As I lay in the tent last night, it occurred to me: it's the first time that I hadn't thought about work and the big project for a couple of weeks. The project has literally consumed all of my waking hours, so the reprieve was nice. Fortunately, the project is right on schedule, so I could relax.

Nick is back this morning from his trip to Arizona and the Grand Canyon, and he just woke up, so I'm ready for all of his great stories from the trip.

Nice to feel a little back to normal. The project will go on like this for about two more weeks, so today and tomorrow is like a vacation. :)


1 Comment
Tags: my life | jacob | austin
by Brett Rogers, 7/1/2005 8:40:59 PM

Father's Day



Tags: jacob | austin
by Brett Rogers, 6/19/2005 1:59:15 PM

First-Time Photographer, Part-Time Weatherman


Jacob and I went to the playground today and messed around in the large wooden fort near my home.

We played hide-and-seek and, like any kid, Cub loves to have his picture taken. But today, he asked a different question:

"Dad, can I take pictures?"
"Hmm... sure, why not."

So, I taught him where the button was and he went to town. Here's his first picture:

And then you can see in the following set of pictures where his real interest lies:

Yep - the boy likes cars.

On the walk back home, he announced that he would like me to take a movie of him giving the weather report.

I love just hangin' with the boy.

One other thing: I discovered late last night. If you go to the Folk section and choose Syd's "Back Home," it's an amazing song. Among others that I found. Some of the songs are free downloads, and for those who want to push their music to the world (re: Kris!), it looks pretty cool.


1 Comment
Tags: my life | jacob
by Brett Rogers, 6/11/2005 3:14:24 PM

Surrounded by Boys


This weekend, the little guys are with us. Lots and lots of playtime...

We bought Boggle Jr recently and it's not at all the same as Boggle, but leave it to Cub to then take the cards and start organizing them into a coherent story.

"See Dad? The S U N was out and people ate C A K E after they got to the party in their C A R..."

The kid could be entertained for hours with a toilet paper tube. I love that about him. We played for a while and then he got bored with spelling and started being his creative self.

Austin and I played some checkers. When it comes to logic games like that, I try to play in such a way that they learn things from it. One of the rewards of parenthood is seeing your kid apply what you learned in such a way that they become good. The little rascal beat me in the second game - and legitimately so.

You can see by the look in his eyes that he knows I'm history. It's a rematch tomorrow ;)

Sundays are always special breakfast day. I make chocolate chip pancakes and everyone pigs out. Being sugarfree, it's tough sometimes to remember not to lick my fingers. And it occurs to me - I've had no chocolate for 3 weeks. D'oh! But I will behave and be very satisfied with my morning smoothie - I swear I will.


Tags: jacob | austin | boggle | my life
by Brett Rogers, 6/4/2005 9:23:17 PM

The Pla Grod Is Go


Here's Jacob's artistic contribution to a wonderful day.

I love my son. He drew this after our walk today and our playing on the playground. He's right; "THE PLAYGROUND IS GOOD." Unfortunately, he ran out of room for the word, "good."


1 Comment
Tags: jacob
by Brett Rogers, 4/2/2005 9:22:27 PM

Saturday Morning Walk


Jacob and I went for a long walk this morning. I took a bunch of pictures... here are a few...

At one point, Jacob shouts to me, "Dad! Did you see that dog in the car?"
I turned in the direction of the sedan, but couldn't see anyone inside. "No, Cub. What kind of dog was it?"
He looks up at me and cocks his head and an eyebrow. "Don't you know?"
"Um, no. I didn't see the dog..."
He sighs and shakes his head. "Dad," he explains, waving his arms to enunciate his point. "All dogs are CANINE."

Of course they are :)


Tags: jacob
by Brett Rogers, 4/2/2005 12:32:36 PM



More progress on the vegetable still life.

Comparatively, painting a face or a complicated street scene is much easier, I think, than painting a simple vegetable. For that reason, I'm enjoying this.

I'm applying the washes and getting a sense of the detail. Still using big brushes for this. And for some reason, my monitor has taken to an occasional flickering that removes all of the red and leaves only blue/green. Which makes a red pepper look more like an eggplant.

I hope to finish this during the weekend. I have all five kids this weekend, and they like watching me paint. You know, when I'm programming, I'm not social at all. But when I'm painting, I actually like talking with people while I paint.

Jacob and I discussed the finer points of silent "e" as I painted. He was reading a book, and the notion of long and short vowels is a new concept. He's in kindergarten, and his progress in reading this year has been wonderful. So he sits in the chair next to me and makes comments as I paint ("Dad - that's pink. I don't think it's pink like that in the picture.") And reads a snippet or two from his book. Or asks about words that are complex. Later, we'll probably watercolor together.

One of my favorite books - just to look at - is The Treehouse Book. And we're not talking little simple treehouses... no, we're talking houses in a tree.

Now that's a treehouse.

I find this sort of thing very appealing.


Read the whole story of "Red Pepper and Onion"
Tags: painting | watercolor | jacob | treehouse
by Brett Rogers, 3/12/2005 9:06:14 AM

Da Boys



Tags: jacob | austin
by Brett Rogers, 3/1/2005 9:11:15 PM