So…funny story. I was on a flight. I put on my ‘Lion King’ CD. I fell asleep.

Next thing I know, I haven’t made a post in 9 months.

Man…jet lag sure is rough. That is how that works, right?


I don’t know if you heard, but it snowed this weekend.

Just a little bit

It’s been 2 days and the roads are still unusable. This means we’re soon entering day 3 stuck at home with an almost-3-year-old. Hey, how bad can it be? She’s just one kid.

Heh heh heh

This was something I learned from Samantha’s preschool this week. Food-coloring mixed with water in a spray bottle makes for some very pretty ‘snow paint.’ For some reason this really amuses toddlers. I can’t explain why, but I’m glad it works!

That only lasts so long, however. Luckily, Lori planned ahead and bought all sorts of craft-supplies last week so we had lots of projects to do.


The crazy flower people were one such project. Once again, I can’t explain why this makes toddlers laugh, but it does. (Not pictured: Cotton snowmen on a stick.)

On day 2 the snow actually stopped falling so we spent a bit more time outside.

What? Like you don’t wear Minnie Mouse ears everywhere?

Needs more green!

Uhm…could someone carry me?


Wheeeeee, again!

Serious business

I had found 2 boxes of JELL-O on the top shelf, so we made some thin pans and got out the-cookie cutters. Samantha was very meticulous to make sure everything went perfectly with this critical project.


Send your compliments to this chef

So it’s been going pretty well so far but it looks like we won’t be getting out Monday at all either. Who can say what will happen? All I know is, I have one last secret weapon left. When all else fails:

Dinosaur Tattoo!!!

My sister and her husband moved to Brooklyn last year and we finally got around to visiting. They live in Park Slope, which looks like this.

We were excited to learn that this is the exact neighborhood that Mo Willems used for the photos in his book Knuffle Bunny. The book features color drawings on top of black and white photos. It looks like this.

Bunny hijinks ensue

So we gathered up our own Knuffle Bunny and, thanks to the internet, found the actual laundromat from the book!

Living the dream

There it is…machine ‘M.’ This is like the Graceland of 2 year olds. She was a bit surprised to learn that we could actually visit Knuffle Bunny’s home since none of her other books have come to life yet. This is when she started to think that last night’s 5 hour drive was worth it.

Next up, a subway ride.

Are we there yet?

A quick subway ride brings us to…

Times Square!

A typical tourist pose. I know, I know. Give me a break. I’ve got a killer candid in a pizza shop coming up soon that totally makes up for this.

But for now we decided to go to the huge Toys R Us in Times Square which is where we met the…

…uhm, T-Rex?

So there’s a life-sized T-Rex in Toys R Us. Good to know. There’s also a 3-story tall ferris wheel, so this place is pretty cool. There was also a Spider-Man, a Candy Land, and (just when we thought things were as good as they’d get) an actual Barbie house!


Naturally, my brother-in-law was thrilled with this development. Samantha was off playing with trains at this point, I think.

Now it’s time to go to the zoo. Penguins! They feed them in an hour! We’ve gotta get there to see the penguins!

Remember to stick together!

Hey, does anyone know where Waldo is? These guys are looking for him.

Not Penguins

So then the first tragedy of the day struck. The zoo’s penguin house was closed. So sad! It’s what we wanted to see more than anything!

I got to see the Apple store cube on the way out of the park, so that kind of made things better. But still, I have an Apple store at home. I do NOT have penguins at home!



What’s the only way to dull the pain of missing penguins? Some good old NYC pizza.

A long day makes for a tired Samantha. So back to the apartment for nap time!

What’d’ja bring me?

Let us all take a moment to consider that wonderful workplace invention, the cubicle

Artist Representation

The wide expanse of sandy walls give endless possibilities for artistic expression. What will you hang in your cubicle? What (management approved) photos will represent you to your coworkers? Why do questions in essays always come in threes?

Honestly, I don’t really care. I’m just here to brag about my own awesome cubicle, so get with the program. Here we go!


I’d assumed this sort of thing would be commonplace in corporate-America, but you’d be shocked if you knew how many questions I’ve gotten about this. What is that? Why is there a chicken on your wall? Is there someone else here I can talk to?

Honestly, people. It’s just a rooster. A framed, stern-looking rooster. The real question is why don’t YOU have one in your cubicle? People are so strange.

Face it. My baby is better than yours.

It’s hard to tell here, but this baby photo is big. It’s over 1 foot wide and 2 feet tall. It’s also hung where anyone walking into our department is pretty much forced to see it.

In other words, I make the whole office cooler just by existing. Strangely, no one has congratulated me on this yet.


Oh, I forgot to mention before, but the chicken photo was an anniversary gift from my wife. (She really gets me.) This Delorean was also from her. It’s laminated and everything. This poster also reinforces the old adage: You can’t go wrong with vector art. Case in point:

Safety First!

No, I don’t own this because I love safety. I have it because that’s me! I bet you didn’t know that vector art was based on real people, did you? Well, it is. I was praised for my revolutionary ‘hand on knee’ pose in this one. I really brought out the emotion of ‘caution,’ I think.

Thanks to me, everyone in the building now knows how to handle  spilled coffee. I like to think it’s one of the many small things that make me so important to the company.

Gold Record Prop

If you had to make a gold record prop for a video shoot, you wouldn’t throw it away, right? The text on that card reads:

Weezer is sort of cool. But really not. But that’s what makes them cool, you see, so really they are.

But don’t actually SAY they’re cool like I’ve just done or you’ll ruin the whole thing! They have to be un-cool in order to remain, well…you know.

This little puzzle has destroyed some of the greatest minds of our time, so don’t spend too long thinking about it.

In fact, you’re probably better off if you just pretend I never brought it up at all.

That’s the kind of thing they put on real gold records, right?

You may also notice that the record is signed by “Wendell the Bird.” I don’t have time to explain the complicated art of prop-making to you, but trust me, it’s a science.

Well, that’s the quick tour. Join me next week when we ask the question: What the hell is this thing?

Seriously. If you know please tell me.

Lorikeets: A Practical Guide

A lorikeet is a small parrot native to the Pacific region. Like all birds, they are cute and you will want to play with them.

Like all birds, this will prove to be a costly mistake. This guide will aid you in your foolish endeavor.

Part I: Finding Lorikeets

The best way to attract a Lorikeet is to bring along someone named Lori. I did this and it worked very well for me.

If you don’t know anyone named Lori, consider legally changing your name. Lorikeets are fairly stupid and will usually fall for this ruse.

Please note that the names Laura, Laurie, or Lara are NOT suitable substitutes. Attemping to pass a ‘Laurie’ off as a ‘Lori’ will only enrage the Lorikeets. You do not want to know what that means.

Part II: Identifying the Lorikeet

Lorikeets are easily recognized by their bright colors, screechy calls, and ‘crazy eyes’ that stare right through your soul.

As noted above, you should avoid any parrot you see if you value your fingers. Having gone this far, however, I don’t suppose you’re going to stop now. So we’ll move on to part 3.

Part III: The Initial Attack

Once it spots you, the keet will quickly take the high ground. At this point there’s little to do but enjoy the feel of tiny claws all over your head.

See video below.

Part IV: Your Escape

At this point you have only one recourse left at your disposal:

Sugar water.

You can use it to distract the bird long enough for you to run like hell. If you time it right you stand a good chance of getting away.

Hopefully you brought some with you. I probably should have mentioned that upfront. Good luck!

Some of you may be wondering what my tag-line up in the banner means.

“Everything except duck catching.”

What I’m saying is that I’ll use this space to talk about whatever I want to but duck-catching will not be one of those things. You see, Lori and I are not so much into touching ducks and very much into touching penguins.

A fine line, I know, which is why I took the time to explain it. I wouldn’t want there to be any confusion.

The first post must be boring, right?

My name is Jeff Carpenter. I’m a video producer with a wife and daughter who lives right outside Washington DC. I’ll be talking about whatever I want but be prepared for a lot of Mac, iPhone, and video production talk.

Also, penguins. You can never talk too much about penguins.

Thanks for visiting!