A much belated update and some new photos of Kyle

I guess I haven’t done any real update throughout the year so here is the year in brief.

Photos of Kyle:

  • January – April: 9th birthday party, Liberty Science Center, science fair, Rutgers Day
  • May – December: Beach, Wales, London, apple picking, Halloween, Christmas

We’ve done a bunch of things with Kyle’s Cub Scout pack including the Pinewood Derby in January (didn’t make district this year), an overnight at the Liberty Science Center in February, a campout in Watchung Reservation  in June, and the fall camporee on a cold night in October. Over the summer, Kyle had another good year at Watchung Cub Scout day camp with a few weeks at the YMCA day camp to round out the time.

Kyle and Lucy at our house in FanwoodKyle at the 2015 Coles science fair

Over the summer, Suzanne and I spent a long weekend, flew out Wednesday night and came back Sunday, in England to attend the black tie social event commemorating the 50th anniversary of my organization’s reason for being, the Cambridge Structural Database (CSD50). I then flew back the next Saturday for a week to attend the three day scientific symposium. We also managed to head out to Sandy Hook for a day at the beach in early August.


Travel picked up for me in mid-August, starting with most of a week in Boston for the American Chemical Society fall meeting followed almost immediately, two nights at home between, with three weeks in the UK. Two weeks were vacation after which Suzanne, Kyle, and my dad flew back while I stuck around for another week in the Cambridge office. The first week was in Snowdownia, Wales while the second was in London. We all had a really nice time. (See the posts below for more.)

Kyle, Suzanne, and Paul hiking along the Aberglaslyn GorgeKyle with Beefeater at the Tower of London

Just after our trip, Kyle started 4th grade, his last year at Coles as he moves to Terrill Middle School for 5th. I ended up doing a bunch of traveling for work later in the fall, doing a workshop at UMass-Dartmouth (near Fall River/New Bedford), doing a workshop and having some meetings in Santa Fe, New Mexico with an add-on to visit our good friend Paul Murphy in Carslbad, and then another week in Cambridge, UK just after Thanksgiving.

Kyle on his first day of 4th gradeKyle and Firetruck Santa at our house in Fanwood

An update and some photos

I know it’s been a while since I’ve done and update or published a batch of photos, so here they are. We hope things have been well with you in the meantime.

Here are links to the new photos of Kyle:

  • Jan & Feb: Some new photos from Kyle’s birthday party
  • Mar & Apr: USS Intrepid, Philly Brickfest, and Easter
  • May & Aug: Camporee and American Museum of Natural History

We have had a fairly busy few months. In late January, Kyle placed third in his group at the Pack 98’s Pinewood Derby. He was very excited as it meant he got to go on to the district race later in March. In early February we had a very nice birthday party for Kyle at the Trailside Nature Center in Watchung Reservation. We had some live turtles and snakes. Later in the month, Suzanne started a new job at Baron Environmental. She actually had two offers at the same time. While the other paid better, this job was more what she wanted and was only six miles from home. (The other would have been a 60+ minute commute.) Obviously our plans to move to Boston had shifted a bit. (More on that later.)

Kyle playing at Coles School

At Kyle's 8th Birthday Party at Trailside Nature Center in Watchung Reservation


The first weekend in March we had a wonderful overnight with Cub Scouts at the Philadelphia Zoo. We slept inside but did a nighttime tour, a talk by a snake handler, and a tour in the morning. I took some time off during Kyle’s spring break and we visited the USS Intrepid which Kyle had been wanting to do for some time. Seeing the space shuttle Enterprise was a real highlight. We spent a quiet Easter here at a home.

Kyle and the Space Shuttle Enterprise at the Intrepid Air and Space Museum in New York City

Kyle doing an Easter egg hunt at our house in Fanwood


In early April, we headed down near Philly for the Lego Brickfest. Kyle absolutely loved seeing all the Lego creations and getting some special custom Lego stuff, including a Star Wars stormtrooper. In mid May, it was time for the Spring Cub Scout Camporee. They brought in a couple of vehicles from the Army National Guard which Kyle loved being able to climb in. It was also nice to camp again and we had good weather. The next weekend, we headed to NYC to visit the American Museum of Natural History, especially to see the dinosaurs. Suzanne and I had visited in 2004 (a friend’s wife worked there at the time, so we got the whole package for free), but Kyle had never been. He really liked it, especially the meteorites and other rocks and gems.

Kyle at Philly Brickfest 2014 in Oaks, PA

Kyle At the Spring Cub Scout Camporee at Winnebego Scout Reservation in Rockaway


Our big and absolutely great news came in late May. I was offered a position with the relatively newly opened (January of this year) NJ office of the Cambridge Crystallographic Centre (CCDC). They’re located on the Rutgers campus in Piscataway only 11 miles from our house, so I moved back to NJ in late June. (It’s quite close to where Suzanne used to work for her previous job before they moved her office.) CCDC, a registered charity based in Cambridge, UK, provides scientific data and software centered on small molecule crystallography. I’m providing a mix of software technical support, some scientific support, some development, and a bit of IT. Our office is only five people (just added our fifth this week), but there are plans to grow here. I actually had a lot of contact with CCDC when I was a post-doc in Marburg as they were a partner in the consortium I was involved in. The person I worked most closely with is now their deputy director. I was over there for a week a couple of weeks back and it was great to see Jason again and meet the new people I’ll be working with. Plans are for me to visit the home office two or three times a year.

As I said, I was in the UK for work, so I added a few nights in London over the adjoining weekends. I don’t have any photos posted yet (I did take ~1000), but I had a great time. I was in London most of Saturday after arriving at my hotel around 9:30 AM through Sunday about 3:15 when I grabbed the train to Cambridge (a bit under an hour) and then again Friday evening through very early Sunday morning the next weekend. During that time, I visited the area of Westminster, Big Ben, and Whitehall; visited the Churchill War Rooms; strolled around Piccadilly and Soho; did some shopping on Oxford and Regent Streets; hit the British Museum and the British Library (all Sat & Sun before Cambridge); toured St. Paul’s Cathedral; walked around the City, Covent Garden, and Hyde Park (Sat after). I also hit a few pubs here and there and had several evenings to walk around Cambridge. It was really jam-packed but really enjoyable. Our plans are to go as a family next year, perhaps daisy-chaining with a work trip.

Parliament and Big Ben from Westminster Bridge in London

Westminster in London

Kings College In Cambridge

Kings College Chapel in Cambridge


As for upcoming things, we have a few minor events here and there. Jack and Mary Lou will be up in a few weeks as Kyle’s camps, which he thoroughly enjoyed, especially Cub Scout Day Camp, end a week before school starts. Our big plans are a vacation to Washington, DC later in the fall.

Update and Photos

We hope everyone had a good holiday and start to the new year.

Latest Kyle photos:

I also posted the trip report and photos from our Disney trip:

We have done a few things over the past few months. For Thanksgiving, Suzanne and Kyle came up to Boston on Wednesday and we headed up to Burlington, VT to visit with my dad and step-mom for the holiday. My aunt Lucy and uncle Ken came over as well. We had a very nice time. On the day after, we did Christmas early so they could get to see Kyle open his presents. We headed back to Boston on Saturday so Kyle and Suzanne could catch the late morning train back to NJ on Sunday. While they did a lot of traveling (4 hours by train each way to Boston and 3 1/2 hours each way from Boston to Burlington), we all had a nice time.
Kyle & GrandpaKyle & Nana

Of course, after that, was Christmas. We had the holiday at our house a couple of weekends before, so that was nice. On the Saturday before Christmas, we packed up the car and headed down to South Carolina. We had a wonderful time down there seeing everyone, though Kyle and Suzanne had just been down a bit over a month before. Ally has grown so much in the last year. (Of course, 6-18 months is a huge change.) On Christmas morning, Kyle and Ally opened their presents first thing in the morning while the rest of ended up doing so after breakfast. Santa brought Kyle a Wii which he loves. The rest of our time there was pretty quiet. We decided to head back home on Friday to have some time to ourselves as I was off through Jan 1st (Wednesday).
Kyle & Ally with Grandpa

First thing in January was my and Kyle’s birthday. I ended up driving to Boston on Wednesday Jan 1 only to have the university close early on Thursday and be closed Friday due to a serious snowstorm. It ended up being okay Friday afternoon, so, after stopping at a client site in Framingham, about 30 minutes west of Boston and on my way home, I made it home easily. Normally I wouldn’t spend only two days in Boston, but wanted to be home for our birthdays, which I did by working from home on Monday and taking Tuesday off to travel back. While we didn’t do much, aside from going out to dinner, it was nice to be there.
BirthdayPlaying Wii

Since then, nothing too exciting has happened. Kyle’s Cub Scout pack had their Pinewood Derby. Kyle came in 3rd (out of 10-12) in the Bear group and 6th in the “grand finale” round (all the cars that were in the top 3 in each of the four groups), so he was excited. He even gets to compete in the district race in March.
Pinewood DerbyKyle & Cicero

We do have a few things in the next little bit. Kyle’s having his birthday party at the Trailside Nature Center in a couple of weeks. They’re going to do a Reptile of NJ show, so that should be exciting. A bit after that, we got tickets for Kyle and I to see the Harlem Globetrotters play in Newark, so that should be fun. (As an aside, a member of the team used to be a parent at Kyle’s school.) In early March, Kyle’s pack is doing an overnight (indoor) camping trip to the Philadelphia Zoo, which should be very cool. I think that’s it for now.

Update and some new photos

We hope things are well with everyone.

I posted some photos of Kyle

We’re doing okay. In early August, we spent a day at the Red Mill Museum in Clinton (about 30 minutes west of us) during the Revolutionary Soldier encampment. A couple of weeks later, we spent a great day at the Greenwood Lake Airshow in West Milford. We got to see lots of stunt planes and some historic ones. Aside from them having to cancel most of the second flight session due to an nearby accident requiring medevac helicopters, it was very enjoyable.

Colonial KyleWith a B-25 at the Greenwood Lake Airshow

During the week before Labor Day, we spent a day in Philadelphia. Kyle is really into the Revolutionary War, so he enjoyed seeing the historic sites and getting another Junior Ranger badge. Aside from the rain, it was very nice. We even got to see them “ring” (really lightly tap) the Liberty Bell as it happened to be the 50th anniversary of Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” speech.

With the Liberty BellAnother Junior Ranger

The weekend after Labor day, my family got together and rented a house in Newport (actually Middletown) RI to have a memorial for my Grandfather. We always like spending some time with family. We were also only a short walk to the beach, but it happened to be on the cool side that weekend, so it was a bit chilly. We also did our annual apple picking trip to Terhune Orchards in Princeton. The cider and donuts afterward are always a treat.

First Day of School

Our big thing in October was our trip to Disney World. We met up with my brother Allan and my mom (the latter for the first part of the week) and had an excellent time. I’m still working on photos, but will have them posted along with a trip report (hopefully) soon.

Suzanne and Kyle are currently visiting with her parents in South Carolina. I’ll be heading up to Berlin/Gorham to see some of my family while they’re down south. No big plans for the rest of the year. We’re planning to head to Vermont for Thanksgiving, but we don’t have further plans aside from continuing to get the house ready to sell.

An update and some new photos of Kyle

Hope everyone is well.

Not too much has happened in the last few months. We had a quiet Easter at home. Kyle had a good time playing little league once again. In mid-April, we headed off to spend a few hours at the Edison National Historic Site in West Orange. I had been a couple of years ago (on a Veteran’s Day I had off but Suzanne and Kyle didn’t). We also have our National Parks pass from our trip out west last summer, so it was free. We had a very nice time. Kyle enjoyed it and got another Junior Ranger badge.

Easter MorningKyle the ballplayer

We joined a community supported agriculture (CSA) farm. (A CSA is a program where ones pays a fee for a share. Then, each week, you get a delivery of produce from the farm.) It’s interesting in that each week we get something new, perhaps something that we wouldn’t normally buy. So far, I have eating more greens that I probably have in the rest of my life combined. In early June, they had a potluck at the farm (out in Andover, NJ, about an hour from our house). It was nice to meet some new people, to meet the farmer who would be growing our food, and see his fields. There was a bunch of stuff still in the field that was harvested and delivered to us just a few days later.

Kyle at the farm

Farmer John

The next week, we went with Kyle’s Cub Scout pack their semi-annual camping trip. In the fall, it was a district-wide camporee. This time, it was just his pack. We headed down to Allaire State Park, about an hour away, and had a nice time. In July, Jack and Mary Lou came up for over a week and a half starting just before the fourth, which was nice for us and Kyle. (Suzanne had to be in RI for the next week.)

Learning some knots

No big plans for the rest of the summer. We’ll probably spend a few days here and there while Kyle is between camp and school. Of course, we heading to Disney World in October which should be a great, especially as we’re going to be there with my brother Allan and my mom.

I have finally managed to put some more photos of Kyle:

Brief Update and Some Photos

We hope everyone is doing well. I thought I’d pass along a brief update and some photos.

We had a very nice time visiting with Suzanne’s parents over Christmas. It was great to see our new niece Ally. My mom and Allan came up to visit with us as well, so we really got to see a lot of family. After the holidays, we celebrated my and Kyle’s birthdays. A bit later, we had the Pinewood Derby at Kyle’s Cub Scout Pack. He did okay, especially for the first time we built a car and my general lack of woodworking skills.

In early February, we had Kyle’s birthday party at Dairy Queen. It was a great time with lots of kids. Kyle also did his first science project. (Suzanne has some photos on her phone, but I haven’t gotten them off yet and it’s non-trivial to do so.) A big event near the end of the month was Kyle’s Cub Scout Pack’s trip to sleepover on the Battleship USS New Jersey. Kyle had been looking forward to this since it was announced in Sept. It was a great time, though the 2 1/2 hour tour on Saturday evening, much spent outside in the 40 degree, drizzly night, was a bit long. As I write this, Suzanne and Kyle are in South Carolina as Suzanne had a business trip to a conference only 20 minutes from her parents. We don’t have any other big events planned for the time, but I’m sure something will come up.

At Kyle's birthday

At Kyle’s birthday

At Kyle's birthday

At Kyle’s birthday

At Kyle's birthday

At Kyle’s birthday

On the USS New Jersey

The USS New Jersey at night

On the USS New Jersey

On the USS New Jersey

On the USS New Jersey

On the USS New Jersey

On the USS New Jersey

On the USS New Jersey ? Taken by Kyle

On the USS New Jersey

On the USS New Jersey

Kyle and the USS NJ

Kyle and the USS NJ

Update and a Few Photos

I know it’s been a couple of months and I’m behind with photos. (What else is new?) We’ve had an fine past couple of months. In March, we headed up to Paramus to spend a couple of hours at the New Jersey Children’s Museum, where Kyle had a great time. At the end of March, Kyle started T-Ball. He really enjoyed it, especially since his best friend Robbie was on the same team.

We had a quiet Easter at home. In April, we hit the Somerset Patriots (minor league baseball team who plays about 30 minutes from us) Fan Fest. This included games for the kids and a game of old-fashioned baseball. Kyle didn’t want to stay long enough to run the bases like he did last year. In May, we visited the Bronx Zoo again. (We have a membership for the year, which pays for itself with only two trips. We try and do four for the year we are members.) For Memorial Day, Suzanne’s parents came to visit. It’s always nice when they come, though it’s likely to be a while before they get back as Suzanne’s sister Beth is due any day now.

The big thing last week was Kyle’s graduations from the YMCA’s Kinderwrap program and Kindergarten. It’s hard to believe he’s already that old.

Kinderwrap Graduation

Kindergarten Graduation

Kindergarten Graduation

Kyle just started summer camp at Oak Crest Day Camp today and had a wonderful time. He’ll be there for a total of 7 weeks this summer, but will go the YMCA’s program for the week before our trip out west as Oak Crest ends a week earlier. Next week we’ll be camping with my Mom in NH for a few days. Kyle has wanted to go camping for a while and this should be a good intro. We’ll have a tent, but we’ll see if we end up sleeping there or in the motorhome. Aside from our trip at the end of the summer, we don’t have any big plans for the summer. Undoubtedly we’ll have a few birthday parties, and we hope to hit the zoo one last time. Maybe by then I’ll have more recent photos posted. 🙂

Brief update and a few photos

It’s been a while since I did any kind of an update. Not that that much has changed in the past few months. We had a very nice Christmas, with Jack and Mary Lou coming up for some of the time. We both get the week between Christmas and New Years off, which is always nice. (Well … Suzanne actually has to take it as part of her vacation time as the plant is shut down.)

In late January, we had a wonderful birthday party for Kyle. It happened to be on the one day of snow we had all year, but the roads were decent enough to get around and no one was coming from very far. We had a science, mostly chemistry, themed party with a bunch of experiments making some kind of goo. Several people from my work loaned by stuff which was great. Suzanne did a wonderful job organizing it. I don’t have many photos as I was busy helping the entire time.

Kyle's birthday party

Kyle and Robby at Kyle's birthday party

Last weekend, Kyle had another party to go to at a bowling alley in Garwood. He had a great time. It worked out very well for us too as it was 4:30-6:00. Suzanne and I were able to leave a grab an early dinner at a nearby (excellent) Asian-fusion place by ourselves. Many kudos to Mikey’s parents. Sunday, we visited what will be Kyle’s day camp for most of the summer. It’s a really nice place (Oak Crest Day Camp), but not cheap. (At least his school year costs will drop a lot next year with full day school.)

Not too many plans for the near future. It looks like we’ll be heading our west to the Grand Canyon and southern Utah at the end of the summer. We’re still working on airline tickets, but we’re pretty excited. (Okay, maybe that wasn’t so brief.)

Extra: I had to toss in the one last photo of me at a recent metal (Megadeth & Motorhead) concert.

New Kyle Photos

I know I have been very remiss in not posting recent photos of Kyle. (The most recent ones were posted in April.) I have finally managed to go through and tag/catalog all the ones I have (up to a couple of weeks back). I’ll be posting them over the next few days. Please keep in mind that in order to finally catch up, I decided to simply batch process all the images, so they may not be up to the usually standards. (Normally, I manually process each image, but that’s quite time consuming.) Anyway, the first batch is up at Kyle: May & June 2011. Here’s a couple of images:

At Ben & Jerry's

At the Providence Zoo