In looking at Haley’s baptism pictures, I wasn’t that impressed. So, this past week we had a photo shoot. I tried a new technique, which I liked a lot. The problem is, I shot them at ISO 400, which makes the pictures grainy at large sizes. I’ll pay more attention to my ISO settings next time. Regardless, I think the pictures came out okay.
I’ve also played with some “painting with light” where you take a really long exposure picture at night and use a flash or flashlights or LED’s or whatever to “paint” what the sensor on the camera records. I’ve mainly just done some proof of concepts, but I may be trying some cool stuff soon.
I’ve been training for the MS150 lately. The one I’m doing goes from Graceland to Tunica. We do 75 miles on Saturday, stay the night in Tunica, then 75 miles back on Sunday. Last year was the first year I did it. It was VERY well organized. I was quite impressed with the turnout and with the aid stations.
This heat is killer, though. In order to get in long rides, I have to get started around 6:00 a.m. I was riding some during the week, but now it is getting light a little later, so I don’t have much time in the mornings. It is too hot in the afternoons. What’s a guy to do? I plan on doing a 75 miler on Saturday. Maybe a quick 15 or so on Sunday morning before church. I should be ready in time for the ride in mid-September.
Other than that, not much is going on. We had a meeting for the Africa mission trip I’m going on towards the end of the year. It is really exciting! I’m going to be the team lead now. Pretty soon I’ll have to send out letters asking for prayers and money. I’m not excited about that at all. I absolutely hate to ask people for money. The church really pushes you to send out the letters, though, whether you really need the money or not. Part of building your “mission network”. I understand, and could use the support, but I still don’t like doing it. Guess that’s all part of it, though.
Sunday, August 12, Haley got baptized! It was a very special day. Hayden and I were beaming with pride and joy as we dedicated our baby girl to Christ. Haley looked like an Angel in the special Christening gown she wore. She wore the “Platten Family Gown” that was made for my Dad’s mother, by her Great-Grandmother…and has been worn by almost every Platten since (including my Dad, sisters, and I). So, without saying, you can imagine how priceless this dress is to us. I am so glad Haley was able to wear it on her special day. After church, we had everyone to our house for a big lunch. Hayden’s family (parents, Laura, Ryan, and Grandmother) were in town, my family, and many special friends from church joined us to celebrate.
Kathleen and Julie are now off to college- KJ at Mississippi State and Julie at University of Miami of Ohio, for graduate school. I was SO sad because they both left the same weekend and the summer was NOT long enough. I’m going to miss them a ton. Luckily, we’ll be able to see KJ several times over the next few months because football season is right around the corner and you know we’ll be in Starkville to see the Dawgs play…no matter how well they do!
Another big milestone was hit by Haley as well. She started eating cereal this week! I mention it because we’ve got a video of it on the “video” page. Check it out, it’s so cute! Little hungry tiger.
She caught on amazingly fast and loves to eat…obviously, check out those cheeks and thighs! She’ll be on cereal for two weeks then we’ll add in vegetables…and have to take more pictures because if she’s anything like me she’ll make a ton of funny faces showing us how disgusting they are!
Hayden’s 10 year reunion from Brandon High School was this past weekend and he had a blast. Seeing how people have and have not changed, catching up with old friends, and strutting his stuff on the dance floor kept him and his classmates entertained. There was a good turn out and Leslie did a great job planning.
Hayden and I just got back from our DC trip. Niether of us realized how bad we needed to get away and just be with one another. I was quickly transformed back into wife, not mother. I was surprised at how fast I was okay with being away from Haley and proud of myself for only calling to check on her once or twice a day. What really helped was easing into leaving her in Jackson- making sure she was comfortable in her new surroundings, seeing Hayden’s parents feed her and put her to bed with no problems, etc. Another thing that really helped was seeing all the other families with their young kids and pushing strollers in 100′ weather with kids whining about having to go-go-go around Washington. And that is exactly the right description of our trip: go-go-go. Each day Hayden and I were delirious with exhaustion, but somehow managed enough strength to go out to a nice restaurant to eat. We really lucked out on finding good food…thanks to some great recommendations.
En route to DC on Sunday our connecting flight was overbooked so we decided to volunteer and spend the night in Chicago, the airline offered us vouchers. We were so excited to get tickets for our next get away…the tickets we were using on this trip were from vouchers from our last trip. Traveling for free is so much more fun! We arrived in DC early the next morning and were showered and on our way to Mount Vernon by noon. Seeing George Washington’s house was cool…as in neat, not temperature- Hayden wore jeans because we were planning to eat on the plantation at the “Inn” and he realized instantly that it was a mistake to wear pants. I think he lost 5 pounds sweating that day. He was a trooper and didn’t complain TOO much. The $10 ice cream we bought wasn’t much help in keeping us cool. It took a long time to get to Mount Vernon and back. Since there is so much to do in DC we kind of wished we would have just stuck to the in-town sites. But the next day we did it all!
Tuesday we started early to try and beat the crowds. We definitely did…by two hours in fact. Nothing opens till 10am! So we got tickets to the Printing/Engraving (to watch money get printed) and walked down the whole length of the mall. By the time we arrived at the Capitol building for our tour we were exhausted and soaking wet with sweat. We enjoyed our tour of the Capitol courtesy of Bob Corker (well, his intern), Senator of Tennessee. We were surprised when Corker didn’t ask to take us out to lunch! Next we hopped on our sight-seeing trolley so we could get the fastest and narrated tour of the city. That was definitely the way to go…the only bad thing is it didn’t have air conditioning and we were so determined to see it all we barely sat down to stuff a sandwich in our mouth. We did take the time to enjoy an ice cream from the Hagan-Daas Cart though! Priorities, Priorities.
Wednesday we both woke up thinking, “We get to see Haley today!!” We had fun on our trip and many laughs at how tired we were but we were ready to see that bright smiley face and kiss those adorable cheeks. We did a tour of Arlington National Cemetary, had lunch in Chinatown and then ran for our bus that would SLOWLY get us to the airport. We almost missed our flight. I’m not sure how far the front door was from our gate but Hayden estimates at least 1.5 miles…we’re not sure if we’ve ever run so fast! He was laughing at me because he’s never seen me run like that. I was thinking, nothing is going to keep me from seeing my baby tonight!! On the way home Hayden started feeling sick and we both agreed to take a much lighter vacation next time. I felt so bad for Hayden because for the next 3 days he was the sickest I’ve ever seen him, temperatures staying well above 100′…As if the DC heat came home with him. He’s starting to perk up some and I’m glad because he had me worried, it’s not like Hayden to lay on the couch for more than 30 minutes, let alone 3 days!
Haley did great and Hayden’s parents loved keeping her. Haley’s newest accomplishment is that she can now roll over, the whole way. She was getting so close right before our trip and I was so worried that she would do it while we were gone and I would miss it…but, she did it the morning we were leaving for Jackson so I didn’t miss her big move. Now that is all she wants to do. It’s fun watching each milestone in her life.