This is the website of Abulsme Noibatno Itramne (also known as Sam Minter). Comments here or emails to me at are encouraged... or follow me on Twitter as @abulsme.



July 2020

Egg Hunt


Pics from Feb 2014


2014-02-01 20:58 – Daddy and Alex at a birthday party at Everett Children’s Museum

Screen Shot 2014-03-13 at 07.16.45808

2014-02-01 21:13 UTC – Alex perched on Daddy’s head (screen cap from a video)


2014-02-03 02:23 UTC – Alex with Grandma Ruth watching some TV


2014-02-04 03:28 UTC – Waxing Crescent Moon


2014-02-04 03:35 UTC – Two moons


2014-02-06 03:02 UTC – Grandma Ruth gives a quick pose for the camera


2014-02-08 06:33 UTC – Alex and Amy at a late dinner


2014-02-08 18:06 UTC – Alex shows off making a snowman treat he learned how to do in cooking class


2014-02-09 04:05 UTC – Sweeping the snow away in the back yard


2014-02-09 04:14 UTC – Walking Roscoe and still sweeping snow


2014-02-09 17:30 – Ready to attack the morning snow


2014-02-09 18:00 – A winter weathervane


2014-02-09 18:02 UTC – Making his own snowball


2014-02-09 18:40 UTC – Observing the people in the snow


2014-02-09 22:22 UTC – Proud of the big snowball we made in the back yard which we watched melt for the next few days


2014-02-13 23:27 UTC – Pic by Brandy – Dentist time for Alex!


2014-02-14 01:51 UTC – Pic by Brandy – Shopping for screws and nut and bolts


2014-02-17 22:00 – Pic by Brandy – Nap time


2014-02-20 05:14 UTC – Pic by Brandy – Snack time


2014-02-21 01:21 UTC – The new projector screen arrives. Note the fallen boxes in the truck.


2014-02-22 01:12 UTC – Roscoe lounges


2014-02-22 18:25 UTC – Step carefully, the porch is slippery!


2014-02-22 18:25 UTC (posted earlier) – Going for a walk in the flurries


2014-02-22 18:34 – Umbrella joy


2014-02-22 18:34 UTC: Umbrellas are fun upside down too


2014-02-25 04:00 UTC – Watching Ghostbusters


2014-02-27 02:21 UTC – Rebecca visit selfie


2014-02-28 18:27 UTC (posted earlier) – Working hard at school

[Edit 20:58 to change the Snack time picture to show it was taken by Brandy, not Amy.]

Christmas Day 2013

I actually wasn’t going to, but I was asked by email for some pictures of actual Christmas events (rather than just the tree in the early morning). So here come a few…

Alex contemplating the tree.


The kids with Grandma Ruth. (Amy would like to point out that despite appearances in this picture, she IS wearing pants.)


Alex with the favorite new toy of the day.

And that’s about it for pictures that came out decent. We actually didn’t take a lot of pictures this time.

A Man and his Duck


Amy caught me napping the other day, and took this picture… On MY phone. I just found it today!

Backstory: Alex wanted me to watch him play with some stuff he had set up in the hallway, but I told him I was tired. So he got a cushion from a Poang and laid it out on the floor for me to lie down on. And he gave me his duck. I apparently fell asleep in the middle of the hallway with the duck. Amy found me and took the picture. I woke up an hour or two later and moved to the bed, completely unaware that a picture had been taken while I was asleep on the floor… With the duck.

Donaghy/Minter/Roney Halloween 2013

Alex had been insisting for weeks that he did NOT want to wear any costumes for Halloween, and he did NOT want to Trick or Treat.  But we took his old Thomas costume from last year to school with him anyway, and right at the end of school, when I was picking him up, when a teacher asked he finally agreed to put on the costume, and was immediately happy with the positive comments he got.


But that was not the real event.  When we got home, Alex went in to play with his trains, but Amy got to work decorating the house.  (While I cleared away things that needed to be cleared away.)  Amy made a little graveyard:


And I put out a handful of Halloweeny metal things:


And Amy finished up the porch:


But then was the main event…

On the 30th, when we were asking if he was sure he did not want to dress up, and if he was sure he would not want to trick or treat, Alex suddenly remembered something from many many months ago.  It may have last been mentioned in the summer, but I’m pretty sure it originated last Halloween.  Alex suddenly got very upset, because Mommy had said she would make a train out of his wagon, but she hadn’t done it.

So…  that night, Brandy stayed up late with a bit of cardboard, tape, poster board and a utility light we had hanging around…  and during the day picked up some appropriate clothes…  and…


Alex had kept his reluctance to dress up or trick or treat until the first kids showed up at our door.  Then he urgently wanted to get into the conductor’s outfit and get into his new train, and go out into the neighborhood.  He was excited and thrilled.

Of course, he spent most of the time hunkered down and hiding a little:


The first few houses he absolutely refused to get out of the train.  He had me ring the bells, then peeked out of the train when the people came out with candy.  He got lots of complements on the train though, and eventually he worked up the courage to ring the bell himself.


After just a couple more houses though, and maybe a total of 20 minutes trick or treating, Alex was ready to go home. When we got there, it turned out Amy had added more light to our driveway to entice people in.

(Picture by Amy)

Amy had been giving out candy and glow sticks and rings that light up while dressed in her bunny suit:


Right about then, we suddenly had quite a line… more than you can see in this picture. Alex just wanted to sit in his train and watch them come and go.


I had forgotten to wear a costume up to this point, but this was a good time to grab one I’d found in the garage a few hours earlier. Alex fended me off with some of the candy he had acquired.

(Picture by Amy)

At some point Amy handed over candy distributer duties to Alex.


But he was getting chilly, so…


Alex would peek out when new people came by, while letting me distribute the goodies.

Meanwhile, he was in his train under the blanket gorging himself on candy.

It was a good Halloween.


Alex was very wired from all this of course. He was up for many hours. And very active. Finally, at about 1:30 AM, I got him to lie down with me in my office on his Thomas couch and watch a maneuver the Soyuz capsule was doing around the International Space station on NASA-TV. He likes learning about satellites and such, so he was enthralled… but 20 minutes or so of it finally did the trick…


Of course, then I stayed up to do this post. I need to be up in about four hours. Oops.

Hope everyone else had a good Halloween too! Goodnight! :-)

Amy is Eighteen!!!!


I screwed up and didn’t set up a post to go automatically at 14:07 UTC today (7:07 AM Pacific, 10:07 AM Eastern) when she was EXACTLY 18 years old…  but in any case…

Today’s is Amy’s 18th birthday!!!!  One of those “significant” birthdays.  Happy birthday Amy!

Welcome to adulthood.  :-)

(In the picture above, taken on September 7th, she is in the process of wrangling the soccer team she coached over the summer into position for the official group photo.)

Visit with Cousin Holly & Andrew


I have a daughter! (Legally, Finally)


After a few moments of swearing to the fact that we all wanted the adoption to happen, and that I could be a good father, the judge signed the official documentation, and as of about an hour ago, after almost 10 years of it being the case de facto, Amy is now my daughter de jure as well.

I have a daughter! Yay!

Less Eventful 6th (UTC)

The day began with intense lego concentration:


Brandy played with Bananagrams:


Amy was more educational with the letter tiles:


Alex was still all about the Lego though:






Before leaving my office, we needed to take a mugshot:


Then we finally left the office and headed for the traditional trains. Alex saw the monorail:


But first we waited for the Seattle Streecar (previously known as the South Lake Union Trolley”):


Which was ridden with varying levels of interest:



We got off the train to look at a fountain:




If you look carefully, you’ll notice we left Alex’s backpack on the train.

Brandy called to make sure they knew it wasn’t a bomb. Then we made sure to catch the same train to go back, and retrieved the bag from the driver.


Then it was time to eat:


And monorail:


And running with sister at Seattle Center:


And there is the Space Needle!:


(Picture by Amy)

But eventually, kicking and screaming, it is time to start heading home:


One more monorail ride first of course:



And a trip to the bookstore:


Alex of course fell asleep on the car ride home. He almost made it. But not quite. Fell asleep and was sleep eating a rice crispy treat for awhile.

Then I put together my post about the 5th:


Later, once everyone was up again, Alex watched a portal walkthrough video while I got ready for my day:


A couple hours later he was still watching it. He had switched to the iPad, and hadn’t watched straight through, instead watching and re-watching parts he really liked. I’m not sure he has made it all the way through, but I know he has watched the ending a few times, and many of the parts in between. :-) He studies it very intently.


Finally, we headed out to the Apple store, because Amy’s phone had recently been acting up… and as she was getting ready to go to the Apple store for her genius appointment, she dropped the phone magnificently, and smashed its front, back and sides as bad as any smashed iPhone I’ve ever seen in person. So any chance of getting it replaced under warrantee because it was just acting odd went out the window. :-)

Anyway, on the way there, Alex fell asleep in the car…


And thus I spent the last couple hours of the 6th (and another hour or so of the 7th) sitting in the car with a sleeping Alex while Brandy and Amy took care of Amy’s phone and a few other things. Can’t say I was totally thrilled by this time in the car. But I did listen to a few podcasts and read a bit of my twitter and news feeds, so I guess that was OK.

Anyway, thus ended our two days of holiday fun.

Eventful 5th (UTC)


(Picture by Amy)

As we usually do, we went to the Bellevue Family Fourth.


This time my mom joined us.


Alex was ready for fireworks.


If only they weren’t so loud!


Pretty though.


Then after the fireworks, while driving home, Amy saw a loose dog running in the road.  A 30 minute pursuit followed, first in the car, then on foot, first on big roads with plenty of traffic, then onto a small residential street.  Toward the end we were joined by the people in a second car.  After much skittishness and running, the dog finally climbed into Amy’s car.  It had no collar or tags.  We ended up taking it to a 24 hour vet recommended by the people at the non-emergency police line.  They confirmed it had no chip identifying it either.  For now they are keeping it, and it will be on all the appropriate lists of missing pets in the morning if the owners call in for it.  We’ll check in on her too to make sure her people find her.  (Roscoe would NOT have been pleased if we had brought her home. :-) )


In the morning, I assembled the weekly podcast, sometimes with Alex’s help.

After that, we went out for some late breakfast, then headed to my office.  The first stop was the cafe area, where Amy and Alex immediately found Lego…


This was good, because the original plan to look down from the 9th and 11th floors at construction underway didn’t work out, because apparently the construction folks had the 5th off…


The Lego building lasted a long time…


As the 5th ended, Amy and Alex were still playing with Lego.

The usual adventure of train riding was still yet to come.