Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Alternate Puppet Stage Uses

Emily & Kaylee had a terrific third birthday celebration. Friends & family were very generous to them. In true three year old style, they have found some novel uses for some of their gifts.

Yesterday, they were putting on a puppet show for some stuffed animals. I was in the kitchen, impressed by the happy sounds I heard coming from the living room. A couple of minutes later, I looked in to see that their puppet show had turned into this:

Monday, December 04, 2006

The Continuing Adventures of Emily & Kaylee

Kaylee and Emily wanted to know how "things that can't move can move in videos." So we did a tiny animation together. They did all the object movement, checking of each picture, and the voice over. Here it is:

Here are some recent quotes from the wonder twins:

"I've got Jesus bears because I'm Jesus. That's what He's got in heaven. Sometimes He sleeps a little bit."

"My robot's name is Johnny Boobonovitz."

"Yesterday Kaylee married me, so now I've got a ring!"

"God is confusing me."

"Somebody pooped in here, which was a bad idea. Oh, it's just a raisin!"

Here's Emily and Kaylee doing "The Wheels on the Bus."

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Nukes, Yanks & Funky Booyah

For the past couple of years I've been downing about a book a week. Then I found Orvil in the garage and now I'm dropped to about a book a month. I can literally feel my few remaining neurons disengaging.

Here's the new Orvil vid:

Kim Jong-il's Yankin' Flamin' Maple Leaf Roadshow:

Be Orvil's "friend" & give him a visit on MySpace

Monday, November 20, 2006

Orvil Deals With Some Unsolicited Lovin'.

Inspired by the two frame per second brain-death-inducing power of "Mighty Hercules," Orvil the Orange is back to vie for the title of crappiest-animation-ever.

So hit the little play button below and check out Orvil's other half's other half (and a tip of the hat to my favourite action-hero missionary hipster).

If you want to be Orvil's "friend" give him a visit on MySpace

Food Fight

I've slacked on exercise for a few weeks. I also had a little "food rebellion" last week and got off my plan ... so I flat-lined this month: I've lost a grand total of 000 pounds since the last weigh-in. Pretty special, I know.

I've still got 12 to go to reach my goal by the new year.

If I don't do it, please don't forget to beat me up, reject me thoroughly or lock me in a hermetically-sealed food-proof room.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Spammers Begone!

I managed to make it through many months without having my blog spammed ... until tonight (3 stupid "make money at home" comment spams). So I've enabled moderation of comments. Go ahead and comment as you normally would. It'll just take a little longer for your comments to appear as I now have to approve them.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Waterproofed Old Ladies

A couple of days ago toddlerX2 climbed up their bookshelf to the very top shelf during "nap" time. Once up there, they retrieved a bottle of Vaseline and proceeded to use all of it's contents on themselves from head to foot. They used most of it on their hair! After two showers and numerous strategies, we finally discovered that corn starching their hair before showering them works.

Emily and Kaylee spent most of last night running around with white hair saying, "I'm an old lady! I'm an old lady! I'm an old lady!"

It's amazing how much energy the elderly have.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

The 2XCute Tornado

On Sunday we were visiting the church we attend when we are out at Rosen Lake. It's a Baptist Church with a fair bit of gray hair. Just before communion was served, Kaylee sat on my lap and began playing with the buttons of my shirt. The Pastor started to lead the congregation in prayer, so I closed my eyes. When I opened them, my entire shirt was unbuttoned and open! And the Pastor and two of his henchmen where up front looking back at me! (Thanks Kaylee).

Here are a few E & K quotes from the last few days:

"This backpack from China isn't broken!"

"You're a boy baby, so you've got a beard."

After explaining to Emily that she can't have a baby until after she falls in love with a man and gets married, she turned to Kaylee and asked, "Kaylee, will you be my man?" (Kaylee said, "yes.")

Overheard coming from their room shortly after they woke up: " When I put this on my head it still works!" Response: "Amazing! Amazing! Amazing!"

Monday, November 06, 2006

Orvil's Mailbag

Orvil's been picking up a few views lately ... enough that I felt motivated to waste more of my precious free time animating him yet again. So here he is answering his mail (Warning: Orvil's mouth is a little looser than mine, so you might not want to share this vid with toddlers ... especially my toddlers).

If you're a MySpacer, go make friends with Orvil:
Orvil's Myspace page

Bonus points to you if you pick up any of the three hidden messages at the end of this video (I'm trying to get a little "viral" with Orvil).

Sunday, October 29, 2006

All Hallows

In the years before I had children, I explored several strategies for dealing with Halloween. These included attempts at abstention, replacement and even a mild form of protest. The point of exploration that I am now at, with my wife and kids as participants, is the full celebration of All Hallows Eve. Here’s why we now celebrate Halloween:

1. The historic roots of Halloween are very similar to both Christmas and Easter. There is a complex collision of ideas, cultures, calendars, theology and marketing involved in all three events. Like Christmas and Easter, that collision includes pre-Christian ritual, divine symbolism and cultural imperialism. Cultural imperialism is a big, strong and ugly version of cultural engagement. And cultural engagement is at the very heart of my Church’s vision (but it’s small, gentle and hopefully not too ugly).

2. Halloween is one of the best times of the year to relate to those you live amongst. How many other times do you go to the doors of dozens of people in your community and greet them? How many other days do they come to your house? Missing this relational opportunity because of some dark stuff doesn’t synergize with a savior who visited boozy, prostitute laden parties and entered into discussions in the middle of the marketplace.

3. Halloween is a tremendous tool of catechism: A stylized human face with light streaming out of it from a flame deep within. Garments representing good and evil spiritual entities, historical figures, heroes and villains. Giving something sweet to anyone who comes to your door without getting anything in return. Without even getting to the great-people-of faith aspects of All Saints Eve, there are a lot of tools to teach my Children about spiritual realities and Christian conduct.

4. Halloween is fun. I know that is a pretty weak argument on the surface, but bear with me. I remember being shocked and feeling great sympathy as a child when I discovered some of the children I went to school with had to skip out on holiday celebrations and their birthdays because they were Jehovah’s Witnesses. The witness I received from that experience was that Jehovah was a killjoy. Contrarily, I now know that he is the joy-bringer. I want to share that joy with those who don’t know it. I want to celebrate those aspects of their lives that are joyful already. And I want my children to learn to have a good time doing that.

Yes, there are evil dimensions to some Halloween celebrations. We need to be aware of this, pray and keep our kids safe. There are evil dimensions to the way other holidays are celebrated too. The increase in drunk driving, greed, depression and even suicides associated with Christmas does not make me throw away the celebration of the incarnation. Neither does the occult rituals that happen around the Spring equinox (Easter season). Devil worship and horror movies will not make me trash All Hallows Eve. My kids don’t dress as devils or devil worshippers. Interestingly, only one Child who came to the Halloween party my church sponsored at a secular Children’s indoor playground dressed as anything that could be construed as evil (a very kindly-looking witch). And most of their parent’s didn’t know the party was church-sponsored when they showed up!

I respect and understand the reasoning of many Christians who abstain from Halloween or make up an alternative. I’m not trying to force my perspective on you if you’re one of those people. I’m just sharing why my family celebrates Halloween and asking for your respect and understanding in return. I’m more than happy to talk about it, even if you strongly disagree with me.

All the best,

Saturday, October 28, 2006

All Hallow's Orvil

I took a couple of hours during the girl's nap on my day off to re-animate Orvil out of his persistent vegetative state in time for Halloween.

Like every other fabricated person in the western world, Orvil now has a myspace page. You can dig into the deep recesses of his personality and watch his vids there. So visit him, make him a friend and fear the fruit.

Orvil's Myspace page

Happy Halloween from Orvil:

Monday, October 16, 2006

Weigh In

It's been over a month, so I'm overdue to check in on my weight loss progress:

I'm down to 212 (lost 12) and am half-way to my minimal goal of 200 (or under) by the end of the year.

Hey Hey Hey.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006


Yesterday I finished encoding the first video-cast of a King's Bridge Sunday message, uploaded it to YouTube and then faced all sorts of problems in getting it embedded into the KB website. So for therapeutic reasons, I'm embedding the video here until I get enough time to solve the website issues. Just click the little play button.

Monday, September 18, 2006

Little Jokers

This morning I went into Emily and Kaylee's room to get them up and saw what you see in the picture to the left. Emily had extended herself precariously over the edge of her crib, grabbed the clean diaper bin, pulled out all the pull-up training pant diapers and put all of them on! This was an act of comedic genius according to both girls.

A couple of days ago they were talking about missing Nicole (who's now in Africa ... link to her "Journey" blog to the right). I suggested they pray for her. They both prayed, "Dear Jesus, help 'Cole not to do up her buttons wrong." Then they both began pretending their index fingers were Nicole and had an extended dialogue with her, complete with a made-up high pitched voice every time the finger spoke. Emily then stuck 'Cole in her nostril and laughingly declared, "'Cole's up my nose!" Kaylee started chewing her finger and said, "I'm eating 'Cole!"

For more toddler madness (Involving crab apple hygiene and monster babies), take a look at the following video:

Monday, September 11, 2006

Gluttony is My Favourite Sin

I've got some weight to drop. Actually I've got a lot of weight to drop. A few years ago I was 20 pounds heavier than I am now, so I know I can drop weight if I work hard enough. I've just got to commit and then do it.

I'm egocentric enough that I can't stomach making a semi-public declaration and then not following through on it. This is why I'm announcing my weight loss plans here ... announcing it means I'll actually have to do it.

I'm gonna drop to 200 pounds (or less) by Jan. 1, 2007. Today I weigh 224. Every now and then I'll update my blog with a new weigh in (at least once a month).

If I don't make it to my goal by Jan. 1, 2007 I expect you to abuse me maniacally. I wanna hear things like "how can you even type this blog with those flabby fingers fried-chicken-face." I'm counting on the callousness of my friends to help me here ... I know you can do it. Don't let me down. Feel free to quote the video below if necessary:

Thursday, September 07, 2006

RIP Summer 06

It was a good summer.

I haven't had an out-of-control, painful to the diaphragm laugh-attack in 16 years. I had two this summer when my brother visited us at Rosen lake!

I made a slide.

I made a dock.

I had several teary early morning worship times.

KidX2 got stronger, faster, smarter, cuter.

WifeX1 got weaker, slower, smarter, cuter.

I got weaker, slower, dumber, and grew my cuticles.

I had a working sabbatical and managed to both work and sabotage (sabaticize? baticalize? batterize? portage?)

I had some good visits and chats with my folks, some friends and angry smurf-like people that no one else seems to be able to see.

Every single person I know between the ages of 15 and 85 was either pregnant or welcoming a new kid into the world.

I discovered that King's Bridge is not the only group of people trying to follow Jesus without imbibing western evangelical culture.

I blogged infrequently, frogged occasionally, grogged regularly (discovered the luxury of Irish cream and milk at the end of the day).

I was reminded of the struggles and pains of life; The graces and joys of Christ; And the reasons I have to be deeply grateful.

And I took pictures along the way.

Friday, August 18, 2006

Wife is Good

Today Stacey arrived back safe and sound and thoroughly worn-out from her two-week long work trip to Trinidad. Emily and Kaylee were ecstatic over her return, and were permanently attached to mommy all morning (as evidenced by the picture to the left from the airport play-area) . I got my chance to have an old-person catching up conversation with Stacey this afternoon (while the girls were napping).

It is so good to have her back. I feel a whole new level of sanity and joy returning to me (of course I've never claimed to have a very high level of sanity, even when Stacey is contributing to my mental health).

It's amazing how 10 years of marriage weaves your soul into another person so much that you cease to function as a whole person when you are separated from them for a long time. I am really grateful for how much Staceyness has infiltrated my system (Those of you who knew me in my pre-Stacey years are probably grateful too).

"No longer two, they become "one flesh." This is a huge mystery, and I don't pretend to understand it all." (Ephesians 5:31b-32a. The Message).

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Bad Bert

It's a long-held piece of Scott family wisdom that none of us make any big decisions without consulting our resident Public Relations professional, Stacey.

Unfortunately Stacey is out of town, and Bert is new to the family. Since he was quite upset by my previous post regarding his questionable posturing, he decided to take matters into his own hands and underwent an image overhaul. He slapped on a durag, grew a soul-spot and purchased a knife. He's now claiming his arm injury is the result of a gang-war with the Sesame-GTOs.

He's really a good guy at heart. His injury was healing well with the help of Emily and Kaylee coming in to my office to give him kisses every day.

Last night the police picked him up, shaved him and snapped his mug shot. I don't know where things went wrong. This is what happens when Stacey's away too long I guess.

PS: The mug-shot to the left came from bert is evil. After finding the image and posting this, I went back to the site and discovered that it goes way too far into offensive territory (in my opinion), so if you go visit it, you've been warned.

Of Potties, Providence & Pains in the Posterior

My wife created a story to help my twin two-year olds in their struggle to master the intricacies of human plumbing involved in potty training. I'll leave it to your imagination to fill in the narrative and I’ll get straight to the story’s conclusion: a wise ladybug character informs her protégé to "just let it go."

That's easier said than done when your two years old and bladder control is just barely within your grasp. It’s also easier said than done when you’re 34 years old the intricacies of human internal emotional control are barely within your grasp.

None of us can function healthily in the world any better than an un-potty- trained toddler if we can't learn to let things go. We end up hanging on too long to foul things within us. And the result is that we leave a stink (or worse) behind us for others to deal with.

But how do we tap into the emotional release mechanism’s necessary? This isn’t a rhetorical question. I really want to know how you find emotional release. How do you really forgive when you’re the victim of an offense? How do you overcome your biggest anxieties? How do you “let things go?”

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Would the Real Bert Please Stand Up

I hate to feed an urban myth that's always annoyed me, but I have no choice:

I purchased some large, lawn-gnome-like sesame street characters for my kids (cuz no-one should deprive two-year-olds of stuff that breaks easily).

Sure enough, Bert received a painful amputation on his second day at our house. I took him into my office and left him on my desk to writhe in pain until I could find some time to re-attach his arm.

When I re-entered my office later I noticed that Bert's arm was not lined up in the original, friendly-greeting pose you see above, but had moved into the effeminate, check-me-out-baby pose you see below.

I'm still trying to figure out why Stacey didn't appreciate me chasing her around the house last night demonstrating both poses while proclaiming "Gay! ... Not Gay! Gay! ... Not Gay!"

PS: Just to add to the weirdness - My kid's have never actually watched Sesame Street, so they named Bert "Boogey Man." And no-one can change his name now - we've tried.

Cod in the Dock

There are no cod in Rosen Lake. In fact, I think there are no cod in fresh water lakes anywhere. And for that matter, I think there are only two or three left in the ocean. But there is one more dock on Rosen lake cuz I built one (which seems more momentous to me when it’s announced under the title of a C. S. Lewis pun).

The dock saga began a couple of years ago when a two-piece floating dock drifted into our shoreline. We left it there, expecting it to be claimed. It never was ... until this spring, only a month after we decided that if no-one was going to come get it, we might as well swim it into a good position and hitch it up. It was a great place to sip my morning coffee (but was too small for more than one person).

After the owners came and took back their dock this week, my kid’s walked around saying "A lady took my dock away!” in their best deeply saddened, horribly offended, never-going-to-get-over-it two-year old voices.

So a couple of days of labour in the hot sun later, we have a dock, built from lumber harvested on our own land. It's a permanent, fixed dock (floating ones are for sissies and people who aren't overweight). And now my kids are walking around saying, "No one’s going to take our dock away!” in their best I-think-I’ve-found-a-reason-to-live-again’ two year old voices.

Monday, July 10, 2006

Orvil Had Died, Orvil (was found in the garage), Orvil Will Come Again

Eons ago, in a time when history and mythology were still united, Orvil the Orange walked among the teenagers of Forest Lawn. As with many of us who walked among the teenagers of this great 'hood, he met an untimely and violent demise (Actually he was just lost in a box in my garage; which makes me wonder if all my old youth group kids are also in a box somewhere in my garage?)

Orvil was the mascot for a weekly video I worked on as a part of the youth program when I worked at St. Luke's Anglican Church many years ago. Over the past week, Stacey's been working on a "proof of concept" claymation video for some youth-oriented promotional material to be used for a big youth outreach in Victoria, BC. She'd initially asked if I could find Orvil or some old Orvil footage, so she could use that to get the ideas flowing. I failed to find Orvil or any footage in time for her project, but luckily was able to find him in time to make a completely pointless claymation video for no good reason ('Cuz you know, after work, business, a day full of toddlerX2 and the rest of life, I have so much free time I'd just stare at the walls if it weren't for projects like this).

PS: Re-animating Orvil's little corpse made me feel really old, because the last time I put the paddles on him it was with a very expensive, cutting-edge Pentium 110mhz abacus ... Err, I mean computer. The encoding process alone took 8 hours (I'm not joking)! Making this new idiocy took just under an hour from deciding to do it to emailing it to Stacey.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Porcelain Pugilism

The "Kill My Toilet" contest finished with a bang (followed immediately by a disgusting goosh) on Saturday night. In case you missed it, the winning entrants explanation of why she should win was:
"I should win this contest because I have a very special relationship with my toilet and I am not allowed to reduce it to rubble even though I would love to. My relationship involves rounds of toilet hugging vomit-fests because the little parasite I like to call my unborn child is doing a great job of sucking all the life out of me. If I had a sledgehammer I might be tempted to go after my own toilet so you should give me the opportunity to kill yours before another toilet gets hurt."
Ahh, the sweet nurturing thoughts of a new mother (I know we're all looking forward to reading more of Michelle's motherly musings in the upcoming "Chicken Soup for the Soon-to-be-incarcerated Soul.")

To see the toilet get tanked, click on this link.

You'll probably need QuickTime 7 to watch the video. If you don't have it, it's free. Just click on this link and wait for your new, improved life to download right before your eyes.

I'm flushed with appreciation for all the relief each of your entries in this contest brought to me. I'm sad to see the contest end, but as all of us have been taught by the porcelain prophets in our tiled temples, all things must pass.

The Hideous Champions

The winner of the hideous face contest is the "gentleman" on the left side of this picture. Apparently the BC medical system has decayed to the point where even a member of the "got balls" gang can practice medicine out on Vancouver Island. That's as far as I'll go in revealing his identity, so you won't fear for your life if you ever meet him in an emergency room (although I hear he wears this toque at the hospital, so fearing for your life is probably unavoidable). The winner was chosen not just because of the hideousness of his facial expression, but because of the appropriateness of the prize.

In one of their frequent gangsta moments (see picture to the left), Emily and Kaylee suggested that the prize for this contest should be a "funky durag." (Should a father be worried when his 2 year olds walk around saying things like, "step-off sister" and "what's up baaaaby?") Our friend the "got balls" boy definitely needs an upgrade to a "funky durag" if he's going to tear up the streets and earn some 'spect.

Life is unfair and so are my contests. If the contest was judged on merit alone, the young woman below would have won. As it stands, she'll only have the comfort of knowing she was a just a durag's width away from winning. She too will remain anonymous, so as to not jeopardize her work as an undercover cop hunting down the "got balls" gang.

Contesting Canada Day

Here are the three folks who split the Canada Day party prize for the most audacious show of patriotism. I will let them remain anonymous to those who don't already know them, as they all have high profile positions in society that I don't want to jeopardize. I think it serves as a good challenge to you young whipper-snappers out there that the greatest show of audacity came from three people who just might be slightly over the age of thirty.

For their pains, these three Canadian heroes received a spectacular prize package which included (among many other things) a self-inflating whoopee cushion and a "Horry Petter" action figure (not to be mistaken for the less socially-awkward "Harry Potter").

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Callousness Confronts Kindness in the New Centre of the Universe.

It is now more expensive to occupy office space in downtown Calgary than it is in Rome.

Housing prices have risen by more than 42% over last year.

Retail spending in Alberta exceeds that of British Columbia, which has a million more consumers.”

Calgary sits at the cusp of 1 million residents, growing consistently by nearly 20,000 people each year for the past 10 years.

In mid-May, I walked through a nameless, gleaming, wing of a large, hub-city airport. And I was consumed by the same sense of busy, sterilized, newly renovated professionalism … and unmitigated largeness that I have in Los Angeles, Melbourne and Toronto. But this time I was home. It was the new WestJet arm of Calgary International, and I was just hopping over the mountains to Victoria to see my brother.

Home is changing. Fast. It’s full of brushed metal. I see more truly exotic cars on the streets ... a couple each week. I find myself often beside people who suddenly have obscene amounts of money and don’t know what to do with it, except to show it off.

The city used to be comfortably master-able, familiar to anyone who’d traversed it a handful of times. Now it’s moving faster than anyone can track; faster than builders can keep up with; faster than new workers can arrive; faster than any of us can map or contain it. And this inability to stay familiar feels cold. Even in an unusual May heat wave.

Of course few Calgarians really begrudge this growth. Salaries are up. The lucky folks who own homes suddenly have serious investments surrounding them. And it feels cool to be at the centre of the universe. But sometimes cool simply feels cold: When rush hour eats up what once was leisure time; when the lineup at your local coffee shop shifts from familiar faces to a group of strangers; when the same circumstances that are making so many people rich conspire to raise your rent, jack up your grocery bill and leave you with less resources to fight the cold.

And in a city once noted for its kindness, I wonder if callousness is growing. Money-fuelled callousness. Power-fuelled callousness. Anonymity-fueled callousness. Big-city callousness

After my brief reflection in the brushed metal glory of the airport, my plane takes off. The mountains flow out like a wave consuming more and more of the horizon. The fields, rivers and trees spread in all other directions. The city shrinks. It suddenly stops gleaming and becomes a strange sort of defect - a grey blotch on an otherwise cohesive natural whole. As is so often the case in Calgary, it is an especially meteorologically active day. Dark clouds now almost parallel to my perspective literally begin to disintegrate into the ground below as rain falls. The sun begins to set, and a few thousand feet later a new unblemished and ever-changing natural world emerges. The topside of clouds run from horizon to horizon in a gentle curve.

And all of a sudden I feel like a foreigner even to the once familiar city of my memories. The little old Calgary of my youth feels just as distant as the big new Calgary of adulthood.

There is a part of us - of all of us - that is foreign to all we’ve built. It’s foreign to everything that bears the mark of man. It’s as equally foreign to everything that Calgary once was as it is to everything that it is now becoming. It is the part of us that is at home only in that place where all that we’ve built has decayed into insignificance: the mountain vistas, the rock-crowned hills of cowboy country, the quiet gurgling of a tree-lined creek.

When this part of ourselves emerges, we too are threatened with decay and insignificance. Yet somehow as we shrink it brings comfort. Somehow we are more at home in this insignificance than when we glory in being the new gleaming centre of our nation.

Our Father’s fingerprints are all over this place. It’s home. All that we’ve built; even our most majestic cathedrals are small and temporary. The exploding city is small … even as it grows at an exponential rate it can never expand beyond this smallness. And neither can we.

But we can transcend it. We can drop into the familiarity of this larger world; into the arms of a loving God, a God who entered the smallness, imprisoned Himself in it, spoke of the larger world from within the small; And was tragically strangled by our smallness. Entombed. Dead.

Except that His largeness, His transcendence could not be held within even the iron fortress of death. He rose. And we can too, even if the smallness inflates itself into a pretension of largeness. Even if the callousness swallows the kindness. Our true home cannot be swallowed. It has already been swallowed by the larger, eternal world.

And so long as enough of us reside in this larger world, callousness will never overcome kindness in Calgary.

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

(D)Anger Man

Last Sunday a young stoner walked into our Sunday night Cafe event in Kensington with no shirt on. The person working the coffee bar promptly informed him that he needed a shirt in order to come in (I was unaware of this rule, so I guess my plan to jump from "Beer Priest" to "Shirtless Padre" will have to be put on hold).

A few minutes later the same guy came back in wearing ... a garbage bag shirt! He accented his new garb with a belt made from "warning - danger" tape from a worksite (he intentionally tore off the "d" to make what he called his "anger belt." I had a good conversation with him after the message (You can actually hear him on the recording of the message at the end say "Hey, wait, wait, WAIT!!!" to me). Kudos to this guy for his innovative shirt solution and bigger kudos to Randy (our guitarist) who bravely lent the guy his guitar to play some licks on immediately after he told Randy that he liked to vent his anger by destroying guitars!

How could I ever go back to doing “regular church” after experiencing crazy-fun people like “(D)anger Man?” I love it!