Sunday, August 31, 2008

2008 Spring/Summer Tour - Day 151

We made some waffles and had Tim and Jude over for breakfast, then we went to church while Tim and Jude headed over to the Festival. At church, Roseann was asked to fill in again for Becca's class, and I joined her after a while, and just in time, as apparently she really had her hands full with a large group of kids in a small room.

After church, we went to the Festival and made it there just in time for Tim and Jude's set. Tim is probably best known as a children's performer, but this set was meant to feature more of his acoustic Americana music, though he did one new children's song, which was really good. He is definitely a talented songwriter and performer, no matter what material he's doing, and we enjoyed his set very much, which also featured Jude playing some impressive fiddle on a few songs. We said goodbye afterwards and headed over to the playground area and the girls had a lot of fun there. They have a zipline swing that is really cool and that's always a favorite attraction when we go to that park. We stopped at the performer hospitality area for some food, which we had skipped out on yesterday, and then headed home and went to bed.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

2008 Spring/Summer Tour - Day 150

I had a show this morning at the Tumbleweed Music Festival, which is an annual concert held every year at a park here in Richland. My show was only the second of the day, so a lot of people were still coming into the park during my set, but I had a decent throng of local fans there and it was a fun show and a really beautiful day for the event. We stayed for a while and listened to some music and the girls got face-paintings, and then we went out for lunch and then back home for some final house rearranging.

At about 6, Tim Noah and his son, Jude, came over. Tim is a legendary children's music performer from the Seattle area and we'd been hoping to meet him at some point, so when someone from the Tumbleweed Fest contacted us to ask if we could provide lodging for some of the out-of-town performers, we were happy to offer the clubhouse beds to Tim and Jude. We all went out for dinner and talked for quite a while, then came back and put the girls to bed, then talked some more. Tim and I definitely seem to share some perspectives and experiences with our kids' entertainment, and it's been great to get to know him and learn more about his extensive career.

Becca and Evee with pigtails (Evee picked out her own clothes this morning!)...

Running around like crazy during "Hot Sand"...

The last "This Little Light of Mine" for the summer...

Friday, August 29, 2008

2008 Spring/Summer Tour - Day 149

I got up bright and (too) early at about 4:30 this morning to go into the KVEW (local ABC affiliate) TV station to do a segment on their Good Morning Northwest show. I did a brief interview and then performed "The Elephant Song" with the two anchor ladies and the weather lady acting as my peanut gallery. I had intended to record the show and include a clip of it here on the blog, but by mistake I set our DVR to record "Northwest Today" instead of "Good Morning Northwest". I flipped through the recording later, but apparently I didn't make an appearance on "Northwest Today". Oh, well...

We spent more time today cleaning and rearranging things between our house and the clubhouse (where my studio is). It's all looking a lot better and I hope to be able to get back to some music work starting on Monday. I took a nap in the afternoon and then we had dinner and put the girls to bed. Gramma Jean was supposed to monitor them while we went to our game group, but the girls heard her come in and wanted to get up to hang out with her... Roseann ended up leaving the game night a little early to come home and relieve Gramma (who had put the girls to bed again after a while), and I stayed there a little later.

Setting up for a game of Stone Age with our friend, Nyck...

Thursday, August 28, 2008

2008 Spring/Summer Tour - Day 148

We mostly hung around the house today and worked on various things, including a lot of spring cleaning (which can be done in the summer, apparently) and redecorating. We made some pizzas for dinner and watched the movie Nim's Island, which we thought was pretty good, then went to bed.

The girls having a tea party...

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

2008 Spring/Summer Tour - Day 147

I had a show this morning at the Albany Library, and it went very well, but I have to make an addendum onto the rule that I stated after my show at the Crossroads Bellevue that said; "If ever there is a show where I plug in my guitar but don't actually turn up the volume and strum it quick to make sure it's working correctly before the show, that will be the time when the battery for the pickup will have died." I have to add: "-or- that will be the time when the cord will have died." Now, I am always prepared with an extra cord, however, I forgot to replace the extra guitar cord that had gone dead a few months ago, so the only extra cord I had was a very small cord normally used to connect my wireless system to my sound system. Roseann could tell during the "Name Song" that my cord was dead, so she went rummaging through my equipment box and found that tiny cord and had to laugh. I plugged it in and used it, but for my guitar songs I was limited to kneeling on the floor right next to the sound system, which was a little awkward.

Anyway, after that we stopped at Skippers for lunch but I regretted getting the "all-you-can-eat" shrimp and fish, because I was already very full after the first serving... it kind of defeated the purpose of the "all-you-can-eat" aspect. We drove about five hours back home, thus ending the travel for our spring/summer tour this year. I have a show at the Tumbleweed Festival in Richland on Saturday, so that will officially be the last show of the tour, but it's good to finally be done with the traveling for now, as much as we've all enjoyed it.

This is a picture of The Invisible Band that I hadn't seen before...

The little cord...

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

2008 Spring/Summer Tour - Day 146

I had a show this morning at the Woodinville Library and there was a really terrific audience there that was laughing and playing along with full exuberance. We left from there and drove for about five hours to Albany, Oregon. We were slow going in traffic for a while near Portland and a car drove around the traffic at an exit point to pull up next to us onthe roadside so the lady in the vehicle could yell, "We love the elephant song!" It definitely put a smile on my face... It's wonderful when someone really goes out of their way to say something nice like that. It was pretty late by the time we got to the RV park, so we pretty much went right to bed.

Becca making it clear that Zeke and I are not the same person...

Monday, August 25, 2008

2008 Spring/Summer Tour - Day 145

It was raining again this morning, so we stayed in the bus for a while, but by the afternoon we really needed to get out, so we went to eat dinner at Izzy's, a favorite pizza buffet place of ours, and then went over to the Everett Mall. We stopped into a hobby store, where Becca and Evee eagerly played with their Thomas the Train display. It's really hard to tear Evee away from those!

We stopped into Petsmart next and looked at the rats and fish and birds. We were thinking that someday we'd like to get a parakeet (I had some when I was young), but that wouldn't work out while Tiggy is around, because although he'd like us to get a parakeet, too, he wouldn't have the best of intentions for what to do with it. Realizing, though, that we'd forgotten to celebrate Tiggy's birthday (which is, best we can guess, around August 1), I ended up buying him a fun toy with a bird that sways around and tweets. He really loves it and spent much of his time this evening playing with it.

We went browsing through a few other stores and then headed back to the RV park and played some games before going to bed.

Tiggy enjoying his new bird toy...

Sunday, August 24, 2008

2008 Spring/Summer Tour - Day 144

I wasn't feeling so great today, and I was totally wiped out and needed a nap, so we ended up staying put and taking more of a literal "day of rest". We did some reading, played some games, had some dinner, and talked to some family and friends on the phone. Not much else to report...

No pictures today, so I'll take this opportunity to get caught up with some of the video snippets we took with our digital camera during the trip... (These go from where I last left off through the end of June... I'll catch up with the rest of them soon.)

05/29/08 - At Uncle Brent's in Dallas; Evee playing with Audrey and Becca doing magic tricks for Daniel and Brent...

06/03/08 - The girls singing "Chocolate Rain"...

06/05/08 - A few clips from a show in Galvez, LA...

06/12/08 - "This Little Light of Mine" from a show in Scotlandville, LA...

06/12/08 - Dancing at Boutin's Restaurant in Baton Rouge...

06/13/08 - Horseback riding at Maranda's in Zachary...

06/16/08 - Tiggy amusing himself in the bus...

06/16/08 - A snippet of "How to Move a Monster" at the Greenwell Springs Library in Baton Rouge...

06/17/08 - Becca's first lost tooth...

06/17/08 - Tiggy meeting a smitten kitten...

06/22/08 - The puppet Louis singing "Under the Bridge" back at Brent's, with Audrey and David looking on...

06/26/08 - Dancing along to Monty Harper in Oklahoma City...

06/30/08 - Watching the Duttons in Branson...

Saturday, August 23, 2008

2008 Spring/Summer Tour - Day 143

I had a couple of coffeeshop gigs today over on Whidbey Island. Of course, I used to do nothing but coffeeshop gigs before doing kids' music, but it's very rare that I do them anymore. But I saw a listing looking for people to do acoustic gigs at Mike's Place in Langley, and I figured as long as I'd be staying out in Everett at this time anyway, that I might as well go ahead and do that. And it turned out that the owners of Rockhopper's Daily Grind in Clinton (also on Whidbey Island) recognized me from their grandkids watching the YouTube videos and asked if I could stop in and do a show there as well.

Seeing as the fee for transporting a motorhome on the ferry is pretty exorbitant, and these weren't really high-paying gigs, I rented a car for the trip over to the island. But it turned out that the car wasn't quite as "mid-sized" as I hoped, and there just wasn't room for all of my equipment and for my entourage, so Roseann and the girls stayed back and hung out in the bus, playing and watching movies and having a nice girls' day together.

Mike's Place had a sporadic audience coming in and out, as is usually the case for coffeeshops, but I had fun singing a variety of songs for the people who hung around. I used to have a set list of over 300 songs when I was playing these kind of gigs all the time back in Buffalo, but I was shocked at how few of them I could still remember at this point. I couldn't even remember some of my own originals... Nonetheless, I was able to dig into my memory enough to fill out the time and everyone there seemed to enjoy it quite a lot, but next time I do a gig like this again, I'll really need to go over some of those songs again, or bring along some cheat sheets, at least.

The Rockhoppers show was just put together a few days ago, so there only ended up being a few kids there and a smattering of adults, but every one of the kids was already a big fan and knew my music very well and the adults played along very generously and we all had a really great time together. After the kid songs set, I did a few of my coffeehouse songs for the grown-ups there, and then a couple more kids songs for some kids who showed up later.

I went back over the ferry and got back to the RV park in time to put the girls to bed.

A picture from the ferry ride...

Doing "The Bicycle Song" at Rockhoppers...

Friday, August 22, 2008

2008 Spring/Summer Tour - Day 142

We ran some errands and did our laundry this morning, then after lunch we drove into Seattle to meet our friends Farida and Tony at the University Village mall. Becca and Evee played with their daugher, Maddalena, at the play area while we talked, and then we had dinner and headed over to Magnuson Park to see Recess Monkey. They were a lot of fun and we had a really great time. Becca and Evee danced like crazy during the show (with an emphasis on "crazy"... all of their animal/robot/70's dancing at my shows has given them a rather strange repertoire of dance moves) and we stayed after to say "hello" to the guys in the band. The girls were exhausted (no naps today), so they went right to bed when we got back to the bus, and then we drove back to the RV park, stopping for some groceries on the way.

With Farida, Maddalena and Tony...

The girls dancing at the Recess Monkey show...

With the Recess Monkeys...

Thursday, August 21, 2008

2008 Spring/Summer Tour - Day 141

It rained a lot again overnight and the sky was looking very ominous this morning, so we had to make a decision about my show in Everett, whether to have it outside in the park, as scheduled, or whether to move it in to a smallish meeting room in the park complex. Now, I'm no meteorologist, but though the sky looked dark and gloomy, it just didn't feel like it was going to actually rain, so I went with that feeling and we set up outside. Thankfully, I was right, and the weather held out, with the sun even coming through now and then. I think we lost some audience because of the iffy weather, but a good number of people ended up coming out, regardless, and they were a really fun group.

After the show, we went back to the RV park and pretty much vegged out for the rest of the day. The girls played with each other and on their computers, and we did some computer work and watched a couple of movies; Hide and Seek, which was kind of creepy, and The Italian Job, which was okay.

Evee was the only kid braving the front of the stage area at first...

...but not for long...

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

2008 Spring/Summer Tour - Day 140

It was raining pretty hard this morning, and though it stopped by about 9, the ground was still very wet at the park in Kirkland where I had a show, so it was held under the big pavilion there, which worked out well. There was quite a lot of wind, though, underneath the pavilion, and there was some kind of conflict with the wireless frequency that made my microphone a little choppy at times (I should have remembered that the same thing happened at that place last year). It threw me off a little bit, but I tried to make the best of it and the show went fine, regardless.

Thinking about it now, I am happy and somewhat amazed to be able to say that in four years of doing several outdoor shows in the Seattle area during the summer, none of them have been rained out. (knocking on wood) In fact, I think this is the first one that was even moved "indoors" because of the weather. When I tell people around the country that I live in Washington, they often mention how it rains there all the time. Of course, that's definitely not the case in the Tri-Cities where we live, but even in Seattle, I think that's overstated. Yeah, it'll rain fairly regularly here, but usually not for very long, and there are quite a lot of days when it's sunny and beautiful. At least, that's been my experience.

After the show, we stopped for some pizza, then went to an RV park in Everett where we'll be staying for the next several days. We went out shopping for a while, then came back and the girls played on their computers and Roseann and I watched the movie, The Illusionist, which we'd seen before but enjoyed enough to watch again.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

2008 Spring/Summer Tour - Day 139

We spent a few hours this morning cleaning up and packing up for a week of shows out in the Seattle area. After being in the bus for over four months and coming home for only two weeks, we were surprisingly unprepared to all go out together again. We left at about 3 pm and drove out to an RV park in Bellevue and stayed for the night. Not much else to report, but it's good to be back on the road as a family.

Babysitting Zeke's kids...

Monday, August 18, 2008

2008 Spring/Summer Tour - Day 138

The temperature finally came down into the 90s today, so we went next door to the clubhouse and I did some work while the girls played. There is a window air conditioner there and a couple of fans, but they just weren't cutting it when it was 105. Today, it was at least bearable over there.

Roseann did some work painting some dressers for the girls room, but she wasn't feeling very good later in the day, so I ended up having family home evening with the girls while she rested. We played together on the Clavinova and did a "name that tune" kind of thing, then we played several rousing rounds of "Hide and Seek". For Becca and Evee, there is probably no greater thrill than playing "Hide and Seek", and the funny thing is, they barely even play it right... they'll hide somewhere and then jump out to expose where they are if you're even remotely near their hiding spot. It kind of defeats the hiding and the seeking... They have also played "Hide and Seek" in the bus, where there are maybe two or three hiding spots, and even in empty library meeting rooms after my shows, where there is really no place at all to hide. But they don't care... There's something magical about the act of counting and seeking and hiding... or at least pretending to hide in the case of the empty library meeting room... and they just go nuts whenever we play that game.

Becca drew the picture below of The Incredibles, and insisted on taping it to our mailbox outside, in case The Incredibles themselves might come by and see it (after all, they could be working incognito for the Post Office). Becca's greatest wish is to make cartoons come to real life, and she keeps asking how that can happen. Of course, there is always that possibility in her imagination, and with things like Disney on Ice... but I also tell her that who knows... someday she might help develop real-life moving and talking cartoons.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

2008 Spring/Summer Tour - Day 137

The girls serenaded us with an impromptu jam session this morning, with Becca on toy guitar and vocals and Evee on toy recorder and shaker. It was quite a beautiful noise, I must say, and the picture below captures their exuberant enthusiasm very well, I think.

We went to church and Roseann was asked to sub for teaching Becca's 5-6 year old class. I wasn't called on to sub this week (my church calling is, essentially, Sunday School pinch hitter), so I joined Evee in her class for a while and then helped out Roseann with Becca's class.

It was still 100+ today, so we were eager to change out of our church clothes when we got home. We had dinner and watched The Ant Bully, which was fun, then we went to bed.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

2008 Spring/Summer Tour - Day 136

Another hot one today... 105 again, I think. We mostly stayed inside and did what work we could during the day and then went out shopping and ran some errands. I met up with my local game group for a couple of games tonight. Normally, Roseann would have joined me, but our babysitters (her folks) are out of town, so she stayed in with the girls and they started work on a new abstract tree painting for one of our walls, which Roseann finished later after they were asleep.

Friday, August 15, 2008

2008 Spring/Summer Tour - Day 135

Roseann and I brought in the pieces for the Clavinova (heavy!) and Roseann attached it all together. The girls enjoyed playing on that and it will be a big improvement from our old piano, which we picked up free from down the street, missing a key and all...

It was about 105 today, and the clubhouse where my main work studio is doesn't have air conditioning, so I didn't get much done in that respect today. I should mention that the Tri-Cities area, being a desert climate, typically gets this hot in the summer, which is why it's nice that we're usually not around much in the summer. In any case, with the heat expected to stay about this high for the next few days, and us leaving again for Seattle next week, I've become resigned to not really doing much actual work until September. On Labor Day, I will labor...

We went out and did some shopping and got some materials for Roseann to do some home makeover stuff that she's been wanting to do for a while. The girls went to bed and we worked a little bit on a video project then went to bed ourselves.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

2008 Spring/Summer Tour - Day 134

I had a show this morning at a park in Renton, and it was even hotter than yesterday. I had about 50 die-hard people camped out in the sun in front of where I was performing, and then about 100 or so waaaay back under the shade of the trees across the field. You can see what I mean from the picture below... So it was kind of a strange show in terms of the audience proximity, but it turned out to be a really fun one. I was drenched with sweat by the end, but I had a blast throughout.

After the show, I made a couple of stops to pick up some things in the area that Roseann had found on craigslist, including some mattresses for the bunk beds (we had borrowed some mattresses from Jean) and a Clavinova. I drove home and got back just in time to put the girls to bed.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

2008 Spring/Summer Tour - Day 133

I didn't sleep very well last night... there was a fly in the RV that kept landing on me and tickling me awake. I felt too tired to get up and try to swat it, though in retrospect I probably should have just taken care of that right away.

I had a summer concert series show at the park next to the library in Mill Creek. Last year when I performed at the same place it was so hot that my entire audience was huddled off to the side under the shade of the trees, and there were a few canopies up near the stage where more people were huddled. This year, it was hot out, but not quite that hot, so I had the same basic audience arrangement, though there was a group of kids who braved the sun and hung out right in front for the whole show. Normally, when I'm doing a show outside and it's really sunny and hot, I would cut back on the more active, dancing around kind of songs and do more story songs and other things like "The Elephant Song", where there's participation but you don't need to get up and move around so much. But this group of kids was really eager to dance, the heat notwithstanding, so I actually skewed the show the other way and did more dancing songs, though I kind of felt bad about working them out so much in the sun like that. Then again, they obviously had tons of energy, so it was almost certainly more of a workout for me.

Drew from the fun Seattle kids' band, Recess Monkey, was at the show with his daughter, Mira, and we talked for a little while after the show. I've been trying to hook up to see a show of theirs over the past year or so, but we haven't been able to get the timing right. They came out to the Tri-Cities to do some shows earlier this summer, but of course, we were gone then. I think we'll be able to see their show next Friday in Seattle, so I'm looking forward to that.

I was feeling desperate for a nap, so I had planned on getting one when I got to the RV park, but when I saw the pool there I ended up going swimming and felt a lot better after that. I did some computer work and made some dinner before going to bed.

Back at home, Roseann and the girls went shopping and played together and went to a play group meeting at a park.

With Drew and Mira...

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

2008 Spring/Summer Tour - Day 132

Mary Jo and her kids left early this morning. We hung around and did some work and laundry and such, and I watched some tube with the girls. I left in the afternoon to drive out to Seattle again for some shows tomorrow and Thursday. I stopped in to meet with a game group in Bothell, then went to an RV park nearby to stay for the night. Roseann and the girls played a rousing game of The Sims on Roseann's laptop. Well, the girls don't "play" it so much, but they like to help Mommy decorate the houses and give names to the families, and they have a lot of fun with that.

Monday, August 11, 2008

2008 Spring/Summer Tour - Day 131

It was a beautiful day here so the girls played out in back quite a bit and we all had lunch out on the back porch. Roseann and I worked on a graphic project and then I tried to do some recording/editing work, but didn't get much done beyond updating my software program and transferring files from my laptop to my desktop. I don't expect I'll get too much done on that until September when my show schedule slows down, but I'm eager to get working again on my next album, so I'll pick away at what I can in the meantime.

We rearranged the girls' bedroom a little, putting the bunk bed against the far wall, which gives them a lot more room. We put them to bed and then stayed up for a while and chatted.

Evee in an interesting outfit...

Having lunch with (clockwise) Nate, Larry, Jean, Roseann, Mary Jo and Josie...

Sunday, August 10, 2008

2008 Spring/Summer Tour - Day 130

Today was my first full day back home since we left in April, and I didn't do a whole lot, which was just fine with me. We went to church this afternoon and it felt good to be back at my home ward. We had dinner afterwards with Jean and Larry (Roseann's parents) and Mary Jo and her kids, and then the girls played for a while with Emily before going to bed. Roseann and I watched the movie My Name is Bill W. and then went to bed. Tiggy continues to be super snuggly as if to say "thank you, thank you, thank you for bringing me back home!" See below...

Saturday, August 9, 2008

2008 Spring/Summer Tour - Day 129

I had a show this morning at the Bellevue Regional Library. It started out as a small crowd but built throughout the show and by the end everyone was up and dancing, kids and adults alike. I drove back home, stopping for a nap on the way. I was attacked by hugs from the girls when I got home, which is always a great feeling. Grandma Jean made some root beer floats for everyone, so we enjoyed those before going to bed.

Becca and Evee with their cousin, Emily...

Friday, August 8, 2008

2008 Spring/Summer Tour - Day 128

I had a show this afternoon at the Crossroads Mall in Bellevue on behalf of the library. There was a good crowd and the show went well in general, but there were a couple of glitches worth mentioning... First of all, there is a law related to my performing that says; if ever there is a show where I plug in my guitar but don't actually turn up the volume and strum it quick to make sure it's working correctly before the show, that will be the time when the battery for the pickup will have died. There was just enough juice in the battery so the sound was still being picked up, but I had to crank the volume all the way up and it was kind of distorted. Thankfully, there were only three guitar songs in the show, so it wasn't a big deal.

I also have a new law to remember that states; whenvever I give my squirt gun to someone else to fill up, make sure that they've put the cap back on it well enough. When I picked up the squirt gun during "Monster in My House", a big gush of water came out through the top and all over my arm. I tried my best to keep from laughing, but I don't think anybody noticed, anyway.

At the show were my friends Farida and Tony and their daughter Maddalena, and we got some food at the food court there and talked for quite a while. We never lack for conversation, because Farida is a storyteller and singer for children, and we enjoy discussing our mutual interests in children's entertainment and music, and Tony is a game designer, which is another big interest of mine. Maddalena was disappointed that Becca and Evee didn't come, as they all had fun together last time we got together and went for ice cream.

Back at home, Roseann and the girls hung out and played and went to the park with her sister Mary Jo and three of her kids, who are visiting from Rexburg for a few days.

With Maddalena, Tony and Farida... looking at two different cameras...

Thursday, August 7, 2008

2008 Spring/Summer Tour - Day 127

I had a show this morning at a park in Kent. Summer park concerts are always favorites of mine and this one had a good throng of kids and families eager to dance and have fun, even though it was quite hot out in the field there. This was my third time doing this particular series, so I mixed things up a bit and added some songs I haven't done there before and also opened up with "Monster in My House" instead of the usual "Hot Sand". One particular benefit of not opening with "Hot Sand" is that I'm not exhausted after the first song! A woman came up afterwards with her kids who have seen me there the past two years and now refer to that place as "Eric Herman Park" whenever they go there to play. I'm not expecting a statue to go up anytime soon...

Otherwise, I mostly hung out at the RV park and got caught up on some reading and e-mails and stuff. Back at home, the girls and Roseann did some shopping and worked on some craft projects and began designing and constructing a new dollhouse. For bedtime, Becca got her turn on the top of the bunk bed. I think they'll be switching back and forth from night to night for a while.

The girls on their new bunk bed...

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

2008 Spring/Summer Tour - Day 126

The girls were so funny when they woke up this morning... they kept running around the house finding whatever toys and things hadn't been brought on our trip and saying, "Hey, it's our piggy bank!!" and "Hey, it's Buzz Lightyear!" Becca asked who watched all of their toys when they were gone. She was concerned about how they got along without her and Evee.

We went to Gramma Jean's house and all had breakfast together. The girls played and Roseann and her mother got caught up on things while I took care of some things that needed to get done before I had to leave for Seattle.

I headed out in the afternoon and stayed at an RV park in Bellevue. I do enjoy being able to go out by myself once in a while, and you might think after four months together in a motorhome that we could all use some more alone time, but the truth is that I feel pretty lonely when I'm away. I can fill up the time by working on things (it is nice to be able to concentrate better on that) or by playing games on my computer or watching a movie or something, but there's still a palpable emptiness when all three of my girls aren't buzzing around. We call and talk a few times during the day, but I think I'm going to buy some webcams so we can do some videoconferencing.

Back at home, Roseann went out to get mattresses and bedding for the new bunk bed that we picked up in Boise. The girls were very excited about that and Evee got to have the first night on top. Roseann took some pictures of the girls in the bunk bed with Jean's camera, but unfortunately, that uses a Compact Flash card and Roseann's laptop doesn't take that, and we can't find the USB cord... so anyway, no pictures for that.

Evee wasting no time getting reacquainted with some of her stay-at-home toys...

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

2008 Spring/Summer Tour - Day 125

We did some shopping in the morning, then met up with our friends, the Thompsons, at a park. Brad Thompson is a terrific singer/songwriter and he performs with our friend, Steve Brown, in a "BNL meets Simon and Garfunkel" duo called Border Crossing. I've known Brad for many years (he was Redbeard on "Blackbeard, Bluebeard and Redbeard" and he and Steve sang the backing vocals for "Cowboy Bergaleoukaleopaleous"), and we've become good friends with his family since we moved out to the Northwest. We try to stop by and hang out together whenever we pass through Boise. We ate some pizza and got caught up with them all while the girls played at the playground.

I had a show at the Garden City Library at 5 pm. I've been there four times now and it's always a very receptive crowd. Well actually, the first time I did a show there only about 3 people were there, and they didn't even know I was performing... the librarian who had booked me had moved to a different library in the meantime and they hadn't replaced her, so they had forgotten I was coming. Whoops! They've been terrific since then, though, and it was a fun show to end the main part of our tour on.

From there we drove about five hours to a place called Richland, WA, which we haven't been to in over four months and which we otherwise call "home". We brought the sleeping girls into their beds and did a little bit of unpacking before going to bed. Tiggy was ecstatic to be home... he was running all around and jumping up on the bed and acting like he was a crazy kitten again. I don't blame him... he barely left the RV for over four months!

Well, it's really good to be home, but the feeling will be short-lived for me as I need to leave tomorrow for some shows in the Seattle area over the next few days. Roseann and the girls are going to stay at home and take a break from the traveling for a bit, and then they'll probably come out with me to Seattle for some shows again in a couple weeks. I usually go out for the shorter length stints on my own, anyway, so we'll see how the girls are feeling after a week or two at home. Since the Seattle shows are still technically part of the "spring/summer tour", I'll keep blogging daily through the end of the month and then I'll probably just post now and then when I have shows or other things to share.

In any case, as this does mark the end of the trip, we need to say a very grateful thank you to all of you that we visited with. We really had a wonderful time and this trip was a particularly special one because of all of the people we were able to see, which included much of our family, many of our friends and many new friends and musical colleagues. I really hope you all enjoyed your time with us as much as we enjoyed meeting with you. I'm also very grateful for all of the schools and libraries and other venues that had me come out and perform and to the generous audiences everywhere. We look forward to seeing you again as soon as possible.

With the Thompsons...

Becca the boxer...

Is this seat taken?

A nice view on the way home...

Monday, August 4, 2008

2008 Spring/Summer Tour - Day 124

At the RV park this morning, the girls made some crafts, including some Monsters Inc. face masks and some strange musical instruments (see Evee's Mike Wazowski and the girls' fork-straw bagpipes below). We went over to see the new Twin Falls temple, which was having an Open House. The girls were happy to go inside a temple and behaved very well throughout, even though the lines were very long and the movement was very slow going.

We stopped for lunch at Arctic Circle and the girls had some playland time, then we drove two hours to Boise. We checked in at an RV park, then met Roseann's niece Bethany for dinner. Bethany had just moved to the area from Pocatello, where her husband, Chris, is still fixing up their house until they sell it. She and Roseann were always very close growing up, so I took the girls in to bed right after they were done eating so they could have a better chance to catch up. Afterwards, we went back to the RV park and went to bed.