Watson Family News

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

BFA Party Pics

This was the gallery before and during the Show.

Lee's BFA Show

Well, I'm about a year and a half behind, but it's summertime and I will try to get everyone caught up on what us Watson's have been up to. This first post happened in April of 2007. This is Lee's Bachelor of Fine Arts Show at Columbia College. Here you'll see images of her drawings, paintings, ceramics and sculpture. The Larson Gallery was full of Lee's best work, closest friends and family, as well as some wonderful food and drink. Even though it was raining outside, the day could not have been more perfect. Oh...it would have been more perfect if Grandpa had made the flight from Vegas with Grandma and also, if the gallery's namesake, Sid, hadn't been in Hawaii at the time with his lovely wife Mary. Otherwise, it was a great day!

Saturday, January 06, 2007

Blood Lust II

Nikie's latest film, "Blood Lust II" started today with a promotional photo shoot of all the characters. Nikie is playing a vampire in the film. Her good friend Eli came along just to see the action and read over the script. We still need to figure out how we are going to adhere her fangs to her teeth with braces in the way.

Actual filming begins Feb. 3 and will conclude sometime in May. Post-production occurs over the summer typically. The premeire of the film will be held in the Fall. I don't particularly like the dark eyes (creepy), but it's all in the name of art. Nik loves being a part of film making!

Friday, January 05, 2007

The Whole Mall was Cracking Up

Isn't this the most hillarious thing you've ever seen? Here is what happens when you take your 2 year old grandsons to the Galleria without a stroller. Drew and Trey meandered to the Victoria Secret window all on thier own. We just weren't aware of how early in life this behavior begins.

Every stranger walking past us for maybe 10 full minutes started bursting out in laughter seeing these two little guys in utter amazement of this woman (mannequin). Is it mommy? Why doesn't she move or talk to us? What is she wearing?

It was incredible! So funny! You should have been there!

Goodbye Tobin

I'm so sad to know that my elementary school (as well as my mother's and thousands of other people) will be torn down soon to make room for a new building. The children do deserve a newer facility, it's just so hard to know that I will never be able to visit those classrooms again that I hold in my memory so vivid. Here are just a few images I shot while in Burbank, old and new. Congrats Kids of Burbank... make some
memories for yourselves! Just don't chase kindergarten boys behind the piano for kisses. Mrs. Klasna never knew how lucky Curtis Krouse was in 1968.

Spencer Joins the Family

Well, Lee has bought her first car! Saving all of her paychecks since she started working 5 years ago, we found a great deal on a Toyota RAV4 on December 28th 2006. I had searched on-line all over the country with Auto Trader and ebay, for about a month. The list of criteria was 2002 through 2005 (certain body style), black, automatic, 4WD and Lee wished for a sunroof. Well, we had to compromise on the sunroof, those were rare.

Since we were going to St. Louis to see the kids I singled out two possibilities in that area to go test drive. First we saw a 2004 with 41K miles. They wanted $16.5K. The car was clean and very nice. Lee loved it. The second one was a 2002 with 49K miles and they were asking $14K. It was pretty worn. Well, after that, Lee wanted the first one we saw because it was much nicer. Though in my mind...there was this one in Chicago I found on-line that was a 2005 with 11K miles...I knew they wanted $17K for it and thought to myself...If it is newer and cleaner with less miles then what we've already seen...maybe I could talk the guy down. Kind of a combo of the first two we saw...good condition, great price.

Well, we got up to the Chicago area, still about 20 miles from the car lot and a little black RAV 4 came screaming past us on the 294 toll road. Lee shouted, "Mom, do you think that could be it?" I saw it had Indiana plates, so I said, "No, that can't be it". Then Lee said, "Well as soon as we get to the lot the first thing I'm going to do is see if it has Indiana plates". We got to the lot and the car hadn't arrived yet, so we waited a few minutes. And wouldn't you know...when he came pulling in, the car had Indiana Dealer plates on it. The car we came to see, screamed past us on the toll road at 90 miles an hour. That was our first impression of the car. We now knew what it could do on the highway. His delay was washing it first before we saw it. Little did he know...

So we love the car! I hated leaving it, but we needed to talk about it, call the bank, the insurance people, etc... We drove a couple of blocks away and parked in a Dunkin Donut parking lot (they are on every street corner up there). I made lots of phone calls, did some math and then we called the dealer back to say, "We want it!" He came down to $16.5K. The car retails for more than $21K, because of the year, low miles and extras like better wheels, hood scoop, spoiler, etc...The only catch was that it had a salvaged title. So the next morning I ran a CarFax on it, made a bunch more phone calls and found out as much as I could about the car's history. The final step was getting it to Toyota for an inspection. It passed everything with flying colors! No frame damage and no air bag deployment. Only body damage that had been repaired very well. Nothing mechanical damaged either.

We couldn't believe it. What a deal! What a clean, beautiful new car! Lee named it the second she saw it, but did not want to tell us the name until all of the papers where signed and the keys were handed to us. "Spencer" she said. To Lee, it looked like a "Spencer". So there you have it.

I drove "Spencer" through the Metro area (from Des Plains to Burbank) and to Uncle Bobby's driveway (night shot from upstairs bedroom). Everyone got to see "Spencer", Dave, Dan, Janet, Uncle Bobby, Uncle Ron & Aunt Barb, Uncle Teddy, Joanna, Greg, Will and Jill. It was nice to be able to share that experience with those family members. In Columbia we miss having that connection with my side of the family. I should also mention what a great time we had while in Burbank. Phil's Pizza, great converstaions, a roaring fire, presents (Janet!), Chocolate Pistacio Cake (Dan!), lots of hugs, a warm California King bed, huge fluffy towels, nice getting to know Mike West better, talk with Uncle Teddy, goofing with Uncle Ron, complimenting Aunt Barb, photographing Tobin (my elementary school that they are about to tear down), driving past my old house which looks extremely embarrassing these days (where do these people get their taste or lack of?) and just plain experiencing the ora of Burbank as the airplanes come in just over the rooftops for a landing at Midway Airport. I do regret not seeing Mr. Wally though. So I'll need to get back up there real soon!

So back to "Spencer"... After meeting much of the family for a nice two hour breakfast, we headed on to St. Louis. I drove Spencer again until we were south of Joliet, then I handed it over to Lee. She and Nikie were about to have their very first road trip (shot at gas station in Dwight Morris, Il) with the added security of Mom and Dad being only a few feet ahead of them the whole way. I never drove watching my mirror 95% of the time before. Lee did great for her first highway experience. We started out slow (Illinois is only 65mph anyway) and gradually built up to 70 and 75mph. I thought I'd have to switch drivers again as we approached St. Louis, but Lee appeared to be doing so well, that she took it all the way on in to Tom and Cristin's house.

We surprised them with it, (Tom and Crisin's house centered above Spencer) they did not know we wound up buying it. So that was fun. They all loved it. Lee took Tommy for a ride. Cristin and Drew sat in the drivers seat for a while. Later that night Annie got to ride in the back with her booster seat, up to the store.

Then the next morning, we came on home . Spencer looks really nice in Lee's driveway (next door to our house). Today he got his lisence plates on and then he drove us to dinner to celebrate. I do believe he is going to be Lee's best friend for a long time! Most importantly Spencer will get her safely through her next 5 years at Kansas State University (keep your fingers crossed). It looks like an architects car, doesn't it?

It's such a fun car to drive. Spunky, turns on a dime. The other two we drove moved like molasses. I'm just so glad we found it. Originally this car was sold at a Springfield Missouri dealership to a resident there. So we were only doing the right thing by bringing Spencer back to Missouri where he belonged. I've been trying to get in touch with the previous owner to see if she has an extra key. So please...Email me if you googled us!