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Last week was Spirit Week at Christopher’s school. Each day, the kids had a theme for what they would wear to school.

Monday was sport team day. None of us are really sports people, so the closest he had was his Virginia Tech shirt.

 

 

Tuesday was pajama day. We had just bought him a cool new pair with a Boris Karloff Frankenstein on it! Awesome!

 

 

Wednesday was mismatched socks day. That was easy…just put on one of each of his old soccer and t-ball socks!

 

 

Thursday was red shirt day to show he is drug free. Since their elementary school field day shirts were red, that was simple, as well.

 

 

Finally, Friday was crazy hair day. A spiked ‘do with some white colored hair spray caused everyone to call Christopher “Grandpa” that day.

 

 

—Matthew

Halloween 2008

As usual, we had a big time on Halloween this year. This is probably the holiday we look forward to most every year, next to Christmas. The decorating, the carving, the horror movies, the trick-or-treating, the cool weather, the horror movies, the turning of the leaves, the costumes, the horror movies…we love it all, especially the horror movies. So, in preparation for the week of Halloween, we (mainly Christopher and me) had been watching a lot of the horror movies on AMC’s FearFest. It’s hard to remember everything we watched, but I can definitely recall “Halloween” (the classic), “Halloween 4”, “Halloween 5”, “Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers”, “Christine”, “Pet Sematary”, “House on Haunted Hill”, and “A Nightmare on Elm Street”. I’m a big fan of FearFest (formerly MonsterFest), so I loved being able to share it with the boys this year (yes, even Xavier watched some of it). It was edited for television, so all of the “really bad” stuff was taken out. Earlier in the week, we went over to Maw Maw Patti’s house to carve some pumpkins. Patti did a skeleton, Christina did a witch, I did a female vampire, and Christopher and I workd on a headless horseman together.
Gutting!

Gutting!

Christopher shows off his gooey hands while Maw Maw assists.

Christopher shows off his gooey hands while Maw Maw assists.

Preping the pumpkins

Preping the pumpkins

The completed pumpkins

The completed pumpkins

Halloween night was a blast! We all dressed up again…Christina was a hippie, I was a member of the Baseball Furies from the movie “The Warriors” (great movie, rent it if you haven’t seen it), Xavier was a monkey, and Christopher was Slash, former Guns N Roses guitarist, but now popular for the younger crowd due to Guitar Hero. I thought the costumes all looked awesome, and we got a lot of good responses from people (especially on Christopher’s outfit).

Our little monkey

Our little monkey

Welcome to the jungle

Welcome to the jungle

The hippie, the monkey, the legend, the fury

The hippie, the monkey, the legend, the fury

We left to go trick-or-treating in a nearby sub-division around 6:00. This area was packed last year and this year was no different. Nearly all of the houses there decorate and hand out candy. I get that warm fuzzy feeling on Halloween when the streets are packed with kids and parents out there. It was great. We finished up around 8:00 with TONS of candy. We visited with our neighbors across the road (Shawn and Jennifer) for a little bit. After going home and changing our clothes, our friends Josh and Michelle came over for more celebrating. We ate pizza (a staple of Halloween night celebrating) and after Xavier went to bed, we watched “The Strangers” (another good movie, rent it). We wrapped up the night with a final viewing of John Carpenter’s original “Halloween” movie (unedited this time, of course). All in all, a great night, and just like every other year, I’m kinda sad to see Halloween go, but hey, it probably wouldn’t be so special if it lasted longer or came more often.

—Matthew

We’ve been wanting to kick start this whole blog thing for awhile, but never got around to it for one reason or another. So, we figured now was the perfect time to do it, with an introductory entry about Monday night’s Hotel Café tour! Christopher and Xavier spent the night with Maw Maw Patti, while Christina and I took the 2 and ½ hour trek to Carrboro , North Carolina for the show. Besides Washington D.C. , this was the closest spot for the tour, and it was something we were both looking forward to seeing. This is the second time Hotel Café has put together a nationwide tour, and this version was all female artists. The main selling point for us was Meiko. The fellow Crawford County Comprehensive High School alum (she was a freshman when I was a senior) has made a name for herself the past couple of years, and after Christina got me her cd for our anniversary this year, I wanted to see her live. The tour featured a rotating group of singers, but Meiko is the only person performing at all the dates.

 

We left fairly early and got there in plenty of time to eat before the show. We ate at a little place called The Armadillo Grill (sorta like a mini-Moe’s…I say mini because the burritos aren’t monstrous like Moe’s). The doors to Cat’s Cradle (the club where the concert was at) opened at 7:30, but they didn’t start playing until around 8:30. We were right in front of the stage. This was definitely a lot different from any other concert we have been to. Instead of lulls between artists, the girls did a rotating set, where each of the five performers did 2 songs, left the stage, and another hopped on stage for her 2 songs. After the first round, they came back out to do 3 songs each, followed by a final song with the whole group on stage. They tour with a “house band”, I guess you could say, of 4 guys playing various back-up instruments on certain songs. It was pretty cool and made for a solid 3 hours of uninterrupted songs.

 

The line-up consisted of Samantha Crain, Erin McCarley, Thao Nguyen, Meiko, and Ingrid Michaelson. I had never heard anything by Crain, McCarley, or Michaelson, but Christina had checked out their MySpace pages and listened to tracks. Samantha Crain may be short in stature, but her singing packs a wallop. She reminded us a lot of Brandi Carlile, and she belted out an awesome acoustic cover of Radiohead’s “Creep”. Erin McCarley was the big surprise of the evening for me. She was definitely a lot more rock than the other artists and had some songs that I liked immediately. We saw Thao on tour with her band (The Get Down Stay Down) over the summer, opening up for Rilo Kiley, so we knew what to expect. We weren’t disappointed, because she delivered another powerful, energetic set. Meiko was just as great as her album, and she even gave me a little “shout out” during the show, telling the crowd we had an art class together in high school. Ingrid Michaelson was the big name attached to the bill, and not only were her songs catchy, but she was pretty funny, too. She even added in a little medley of her version of “Ice Ice Baby” and the theme song from “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air”.

 

 

After the show, we got to chat with Meiko for a few minutes and she signed a mini-poster for us. We ended up buying a cool brown t-shirt with a little chick (as in baby chicken, not woman) on it that says “Meiko” and a Meiko magnet for the fridge! We didn’t get home until 2 AM, and we both had to wake up early for me to be at work by 7 and for Christina to get Christopher to school, but it was all worth it. A great show, and I look forward to maybe seeing these ladies again sometime (on stage performing, of course)!

 

—Matthew
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