Friday, March 31, 2006

The Chair's too big -- or is it?

Ben's getting so big! Here he is sitting in his Dad's chair, and wearing his overalls.

But you better move over, Ben. Aunt Sara will be there tonight, and I don't think she's going to let you sit by yourself! Posted by Picasa

Kobs in Uganda

I know, I stopped posting Africa photos a while back in the middle of the game park, and mostly have posted photos of Ben. But here's a shot from QE Game Park. These guys were abundant there, but still cautious. Never know when a lion might be close by!

Kobs in Uganda
Originally uploaded by hughejw.

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Lake Flies -- Entebbe, Uganda

This amazing photo was taken on our last day in Uganda. What appears at first to be rain or clouds in the background, are really lake flies. There was a huge hatch that day, and the wind drifted them over town.

For the flyfishers out there, they were about like gnats. Don't know if matching the hatch would have caught anything from Lake Victoria, but actually this was one hatch you didn't particularly want to be caught in. Posted by Picasa

Ben - Lounging After His Bath

This was Ben last night cuddled up right after his bath. Looks like all is well with him! Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Sara's New Puppy, Winston

Winston has brought a whole new level of entertainment to Sara's home. Winston, who is two years old and has a lot of Cocker in him, loves to ambush Cooper, Sara's other dog who is quite a bit larger. Winston will get on the bed, or if that's not available, the couch, and wait for Cooper to come into range. Then with a mighty leap, Winston glides onto Cooper's back.

Winston Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

The Little Red Truck

The little red truck officially has a new home.

There's a strong sentimentality attached to this '89 Ranger. I bought it new in '89 and drove it and loved it for many years. All three kids drove it. Sara did her daughter thing and took it off to Harding her Junior year -- leaving me the Geo Prism she had picked out and been in love with a year earlier. She did return it upon graduation. John drove it some -- including the time a woman ran a light and bashed the side in -- but never as "his" vehicle. But then it would take many posts to just list all the vehicles that John drove over the years -- and to briefly describe their fates. Just to show that change is possible, he has owned his current vehicle for six years. So as I was comfortably settling back into the Ranger, Mark followed his sister's example. We had found him a red Geo Metro to drive which he liked really well at the time, but sure enough, after a year of driving it, he somehow talked me into letting him have the little red truck and I ended up driving the Geo for several years. That was in high school, and he ended up driving it all through college. He got to be good buddies with a mechanic in Abilene, mostly because he took the truck to some places it was not designed to go on fishing adventures. True to his word, he returned it upon graduation.

My intent was to restore it and drive it some. It wasn't so much that I wanted to drive it, just that it represented a lot of memories and I couldn't part with it. So it had a new home in the driveway. Too many times to count, people stopped by and offered to buy it -- only to be told it wasn't for sale. Still it sat.

The happy resolution began when my new neighbor, a young guy with a nice family, moved in. He eventually told me that if I ever wanted to sell it, he would like to buy it. That in itself didn't do the trick, but it did plant the seed. It took the city threatening action if I didn't move it to get me moving. I still couldn't bear to sell it -- how do you put a price on memories? But I did manage to make a deal with my neighbor that made us both happy. I gave him the truck, and he lets me look at it. I still have my memories, and he is well along the way of restoring it. In fact, I think it's going camping soon.

The Little Red Truck Posted by Picasa

Saturday, March 18, 2006

The Parking Lot

A man, small and slender,
Whose head traveled in front of the rest of his body,

And bending over from his waist,
Resting his hands on his knees,
He stared intently at a small piece of the parking lot.

Shuffling ever so slightly forward,
He seemed to be looking for something lost,
Something precious.

In a moment,
Without ever changing his focus,
He reached down,
Picking up something tiny,
Perhaps something imaginary.

In one smooth motion
He raised up and transferred the object
From his hand to his left wrist,
Pushing it into the spot where his watch would have been.

Then he stood up,
Looked straight ahead,
And shoved his hands into his jean pockets,
Looking satisfied.

Turning around,
He walked away,
One of God’s children,
Lost in his own world.

And leaving me with so many questions!

Jim Hughes
March 2006

Friday, March 17, 2006

Happy St. Patrick's Day

Ben, eight weeks old today, is displaying his pride in his Irish heritage. We don't know how much there is, but there are lots of folks named Hughes in Ireland, as Eloise and I found out a few years ago on a trip there.

We didn't see any of them as cute as Ben, however. If you can't read the shirt, it says "Kiss me, I'm Irish."

Thanks for the photo, Kathy! Posted by Picasa

Thursday, March 09, 2006

A new Nana and Ben Photo

Nana and Ben got along great, as this photo shows. Seems Ben likes being held as he sleeps, and we made sure that he got what he wanted. Now Kathy has to teach him that he can sleep in his crib again. Posted by Picasa

Ben and his Mom, Kathy

Now you know why Ben's so cute! Posted by Picasa

Ben at Six Weeks

Here's Ben on his six week birthday. Posted by Picasa

Carpet Layers

Mark and I spent last Friday putting carpet down in their master bedroom. A job like that always seems so easy until you start. Moving furniture, taking up the old carpet and pad, removing the tack strip, etc. We installed the new carpet tiles, and covered 80% of the floor in about 30 minutes. Then came measuring, cutting, and fitting the pieces around the edge. Leaves you with a renewed appreciation for the folks who do this for a living! Posted by Picasa


It was Sunday afternoon, and Frodo the dog and I were exhausted. Eloise and I were in Midland for four days to visit Mark, Kathy, and Ben (and Frodo), and I guess we just had too much fun. Posted by Picasa