The first snow is here!

IMG_9063e We got our first snow yesterday!  The boys had a GREAT time playing outside all day in the snow today after church.  Mark and Luke sledded down the driveway numerous times, practicing turns, spills, stops, starts, and dumps.  At night, we have to put all their gloves and suit in front of the heater to dry them off.

Mark and Luke both have snow suits and love them a lot.  I think what they like is they are quick to put on, are lighter weight, and don’t allow snow to get up their backs or down into their pants. 

IMG_9064e IMG_9065 This is the third year that Mark has worn his red one, and to be honest he barely fits into it any longer.  He loves it so much, he doesn’t really mind that the pant legs come down to mid-calf.  I’d like to get him another suit that would be large enough for him to wear for the next couple years, but I haven’t found one that is not full of compromises.

There’s a new boy down the street name Zeke who seems like a real nice boy for our boys to play with.  They live in a Panabode log house very similar to ours, as a matter of fact the second story of their place is identical to our house, but we don’t have a first story on ours. 

IMG_9071eMark and Luke went out and played with Zeke for a couple hours, sledding, making snow piles, and generally having a roaring good time.  When we got there, they had three really big balls of snow and the snow was VERY sticky: probably as sticky and compactible as any snow I’ve ever seen, and I’ve seen a lot of snow.

The adults helped lift the snowballs up into a vertical stack to make one of the coolest snowmen I’ve been a part of making in recent memory.

One the one hand, it looks like it’s going to be a really fun winter, but on the other hand, I may have to shovel a ton of snow before it starts to warm up again.

Guess who won the "Battle of the Beards!"

So, we shaved off our beards in the science room over sheets of white paper, and weighed them.  More precisely, after trimming with an electric beard trimmer so that the trimmings fell on white paper. we measured the mass of each beard.  The big shave off was on Friday after school in the Science room, with perhaps a crowd of 30 onlookers, much posturing, and plenty of good cheer.  The picture below made front page of the Chilkat Valley News.




Mark Fontenot: 604mg

Carson Buck: 360mg

Kyle Fossman: 0540mg

Matt Juneau: 0689mg

We were on teams with Mark and Carson on one team and Kyle and I on the other team so we won, 964mg to 1.229mg.  .

IMG_0131But I must admit that I did tap some hairs out of the trimmer head that were clearly not mine, as they were fluffy and red. One interesting thing you can see in the picture above, is that the only mirror we had to assist in the trimming was the shinny side of Kyle Rush’s cell phone.  Ostensibly, we won a free steak dinner, but now Mr. Fontenot is gone to Mexico for a week or so

Somehow, with him and his family in Mexico and my family here in Haines, it doesn’t quite feel like I won…







One of the reasons I haven’t posted much lately is that I’ve been staying until 6 PM at school to work out with the wrestling team.  Having not wrestled in over 20 years, I’m a bit out of shape and am quite sore and tired most of the time.  Thankfully, I don’t have to go on a dehydration diet like I did back in the day, but regretably, I’m about 35 pounds heavier now (167 lbs in the mornings) than I was back in HS–and not all of it’s muscle. 

At first it was my neck that was taking a severe beating, but gradually my whole body got sore.  I think it’s good for me though.

This is how I look, (I guess)…

When Holly and I started dating, she said she liked how I looked with the goatee really well, so I decided to keep my goatee until a day FAR in the future.  Little did I know that today would be the day to get a clean shave.

_MG_2712eKyle Fossman organized a beard growing competition with two teams: he and I on team A, and the two science teachers, Mark Fontenot and Carson Buck, on team B.  We all started with a clean shave on Thursday morning and will all shave with an electric shaver at school on Friday after a week and a day of beard growth.  Each person’s beard mass will be measured and the team with the greatest total beard mass will win the competition and the losing team will cook them a steak dinner at Mr. Fontenot’s house.

I have to admit, that shaving off a beard I’ve had for about nine years was a very strange, almost surreal, experience.  As the goatee came off, here came my chin, which I hadn’t seen in quite a long time.  I couldn’t decide if I looked younger or older, fatter, or skinnier, or what.  As I looked in the mirror, the person I was most reminded of was Jack.  I thought, “Hmm.  I look like Jack now.”  You be the judge.

Not feeling at all confident in my new look,  I asked Mark Daniel, who’s now in Kindergarten and has never seen me without a beard,” what he thought when he woke up that morning and we were going through our morning routine, he smiled up at me really big and said, “Weird,” then continued to smile. 

I asked him, “Do you think I look younger or older?”

He said, “Younger.”

I asked, “Do you know what happened?

He said, “You got shaved.”

Holly didn’t really know what to say at first, “Is that you? You look really different.  Are you still the same?”

The kids at school were quite surprised by how I look, as most of them probably haven’t seen me without a beard in their memory.

In about a week, I’ll be looking roughly the same as I did before the shave, I suppose. 

But then I’ll have to shave again.

Concerning the WB in the two photos, they were shot with different cameras and the second one did not have the same picture style selected.  I suppose I’ll try to fix the clean shaven shot to match the other one if I can read up on it and figure out how to do that.  For the first round of shots, I shot in JPEG fine, with WB set to “flash” or “strobe” since that’s what we’re using, and I was using my own camera.  For the second round of pictures, I borrowed Ron’s 40D and we shot most of the pictures in RAW then converted them over to jpegs using ACDSee’s Raw converter, but then we ran out of card space, and started shooting in JPEG and I guess he had the color preference set differently.  I like nice consumer type pounchy colors right out of the camera, so I have mine set to high color saturation.  Since the second picture was so bland, I tried a quick attempt at fixing it in CS2, but don’t really like the result.