Creeper is a song I wrote a couple months ago. I used a program called music masterworks. This isn’t one of the programs where you just tie a bunch of riffs in a knot, though i do use a program like that called MTV music generator to make some other songs. But it can only export to a *.wave file, which can get pretty big. It was originally going to be music for a game i’m making, but as it evolved, it seemed to wonder away from the type of music that would fit the game. The music the game had to go with it at the time was a large file, causing it to take about 5 minutes just to save and load up. So i got rid of the old music and wrote Creeper. But it strayed away and now i need to make more music. Here is the music file.

Producer’s note: Aaron composed this in about two hours one Saturday morning, using music notation software. That means he wrote it note for note, part for part, and he practiced some of it on recorder to help him settle on the melody. The song has four parts, using four instruments, which he selected from the sound card, but then we plugged this into my synthesizer, recorded it with my 8 channel digital recorder, and compressed it with iTunes. So begins the Hernandez Composer’s and Recording Label.

Another church gig!

   So today, we had another church gig, donated, of course to the cause. The children’s youth director, Sue Carpenter, has decided to retire, and we threw a big party for her, and Cyndi volunteered us for a portion of the entertainment. On top of that, Aaron and I volunteered to accompany the small kids(Arianna’s age) for the in-church prelude:”We are One in the Spirit”.
   One complication was that this week, the boys went on their respective end-of-year school road trips(Adam went white water rafting in West Virginia, Aaron went to Washington, DC; more on that later), so we did not have much time to practice.
   Aaron got back Wednesday late, and Adam got back Thursday. We rehearsed Friday and Saturday the same songs that we performed for the Fish Fry earlier this year, and added a new one: “One Note Samba.” Although we did not perform it, Aaron and Adam sound awesome on it. On my long list of stuff to do is record us and post it here.
   Anyway, we had to go to 8am service in order to set up in the parish hall. When 8am service ended, Aaron and I set up for the prelude, and rehearsed with the little kids, then did it for the 10am service. We make a good duet, him on bass, and me on acoustic guitar. In fact, Aaron started to ad lib on bass during the service, at one point, playing a few words of the melody with the kids. I need to get in touch with the guy who was videotaping it, because it was really special. Afterwards, Aaron and I talked about it, this gift that he has, and I was pleased to figure out that Aaron is really having a good time doing this sort of thing, creating in this medium, and yes, he thinks its cool to be this good at it.
   When service was over, we hustled to move the bass equipment into the parish hall and played “Do Nothing ‘Till You Hear From Me” while the crowd was getting settled. We added a fourth to our trio, Kevin Carpenter, who is the youth director’s son, on trombone. He got an ovation for his solo, and we got an ovation for the song. Adam impressed me with his ability to play different grooves for each chorus; he is learning how to phrase and color the song to add variety. Then the kids sang another song with our choir director on  piano, and Adam played drums for it. Then we had the presentation, speeches, and so on, and when it was over, we played more songs while they crowd cleaned up the parish hall. The boys got lots of compliments again, and I was very proud. Did I mention I am really enjoying this?
   Here’s some pics of us getting ready to play, and one of us playing. That’s Kevin on trombone:

PS: Notice the difference between Aaron’s and Adam’s attire. Can you pick out the near-high-schooler and the skateboarder?

Chalk Art at D&M

Last weekend, mom and I were invited to a chalk art project on June 7th(today) by D & M Art Studio. There were a lot of other people there, but we came in pretty much first. We got to choose from a lot of pictures/paintings to replicate. We chose one of Vincent Vangough’s self-portraits. It took a while for everyone to get there, then one of mom’s friends from work came and showed people how to grid it out and some tips on conserving chalk. Then we got down to buisiness. It was pretty fun, and arianna went around taking pictures of everyone else’s chalk art, so we have a whole bunch of pictures.
here is one the one we did together

If you look carefully, you can see where arianna smudged the lens.
Here is one mom did herself:

If you ask me, this is crazy! It looks like a photograph taped to the sidewalk!
This was done by a couple of teenage students from the studio:

Impersonators detected, Comments cleaned up

   So, finally, I realized that someone’s been impersonating a genuine relative of ours and posting odd comments. Using a combination of tools available to me(technology works both ways, pal), including my brain, those comments have been removed. For the rest of you who were wiser sooner and wondered aloud why someone in the family would say things that didn’t quite make sense, wonder no more. Apologies to the relative who exclaimed, more than once, “Hey, I didn’t write that!”
   I won’t happen again.

Grandpa Paul Retires!

   It’s been a long time coming, but Grandpa Paul has finally retired. He writes:

“Yep!  I’m retired (or “retarded” as Raivo calls it).  Been taking it real easy painting, installing shelves, building fences, planting bushes, mowing the grass and getting the RV ready to go with the Tacoma attached.

We also entertained Flat Heili and took her down to Riverfront Park and showed her the falls.  They are still rocking with the river still a foot above flood level.


Finally got the Nintendo Wii installed and have practiced boxing, bowling, baseball, golf and tennis.  It can be quite a workout


The “big” projects are out of the way except for painting the kitchen which will get done this week.”

   We’re all glad Paul has finally made it, and I know he’s long overdue for his second childhood. Congratulations!!!


Flat Heily at near record level Spokane Falls, downtown Spokane, WA

Grandpa Paul trying his hand at Wii, retired(armchair) style; the boys will teach him he needs to stand…

The fence

Egyptian grafitti

The annual cultural festival at DHMC was on 5/22.  Ancient Egypt was the culture studied this year. We’ll have to post more about it, but for now I want to share this with you.  Aaron’s class built a fairly large (4′ x 6′?) replica of an Egyptian tomb.  In the vestibule leading into the tomb, the students all contributed heiroglyphics for the walls.  Here is Aaron’s with one of his:
 Translation:  “ is sweet”

Flat Heili visits Michigan

Note to the unitiated: There is a children’s book named Flat Stanley, about a boy who was flattened in an accident, and who is then able to travel all over by mail. 

By connection through the extended family, we met Flat Heili and she came to visit Michigan.  The non-flat Heili is in 3rd grade in New Jersey, and her flat self has been travelling where ever she can as part of a geography lesson.  Before she came to visit us, Flat Heili had been to several places, including Japan; Marietta, GA; and Spokane, WA.  

I think Flat Heili enjoyed her visit.  Cyndi took her to work, where Heili was able to see one of the things the Detroit area is famous for – manufacturing.  Flat Heili took a ride on the seat assembly line at one of the manufacturing plants that Cyndi works with.  She also went to gymnastics class with her new friend Arianna.


Planting time in Michigan!

Memorial Day weekend semi-officially opens the planting season in Michigan.  Cyndi and Arianna have been busy, and Adam helped too.

First we started with pulling an astonishing amount of weeds out of the garden area, tilling the soil and adding a “cobblestone” border. Then we went to our favorite greenhouse – Robson’s – to get our plants.  (I’ve given up starting from seeds. Despite good intentions, they never get started early enough, or get enough attention.) This year we planted tomatoes (beefsteak, roma and cherry varieties), jalapeno peppers, chili peppers, green beens, and broccoli.  And a few flowers.  (The tall trellis is to guard the garden from stray basketballs.)

The next weekend, Arianna and Cyndi went to help plant flowers at church.  For the last few years, Robson’s has donated a plethora of petunias to dress up the sidewalk next to our church.  This year we had 57 flats.  I didn’t even bother to figure out how many plants that is.  A lot.  Thank God it’s not hot yet!

Arianna dug holes, planted flowers, watered, and collected all the blossoms.  (Virg insists on cutting off all the flowers so the roots establish better.)