Tuesday, July 1, 2008

2008 Westbury Little League All Stars

Kevin just concluded his second straight summer being selected to the Westbury Little League All Star team. His 10 year old team defeated Bellaire in thrilling fashion, but then dropped two closely fought games to West U and Post Oak. Darrell once again was selected as a coach of the All Stars and enjoyed strategizing with his co-coaches and getting the team prepared for the District All Star tournament experience!

Good Bye, Oscar

Our family is saddened today by the loss of our companion, friend, and fearless dog Oscar. Oscar's been with Darrell for 12+ years and it is estimated that he lived a life of 18 years! What a resilient and faithful pet. Oscar ended up in kidney and liver failure and in bad shape this past weekend. He fought gallantly and hardly seemed fazed by his body's shut down when we said our good byes on Monday. Dinner last night without him at our feet was tough. This morning getting ready for work without his slumbering body sprawled across the hallway was difficult. He truly exhibited the qualities in a dog that led people to describe canines as "man's best friend". We'll miss you, Oscar!

Monday, March 24, 2008

Graham's First Baseball Game

Graham played a baseball game (coach pitch/T-ball) for the first time in his life last night. The Yankees and Mets battled on Masini Bacak Tadpole Field at Westbury Little League. Not quite Darrell K. Royal Texas Memorial Stadium at Joe Jamail Field, but we're awfully proud nonetheless.

Graham was so excited to finally get to play baseball like his big brother Kevin. Here's Graham in his uniform before heading to the fields. His mind is on baseball, but his heart is with the Longhorn basketball team's run to the Sweet 16 here in Houston.

And finally, here's a video clip of Graham racing from third to home. Much to everyone's complete surprise, Graham slides home! He wants to play his next game "so I can hustle and slide some more..." The innocence and humor of 5 and 6 year old "baseball" was a sight to behold. Come on out and see for yourself. Graham's good for some hustle, a slide or two, and that big Graham Bacak smile!

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Our Trip to The Big Easy

The devastion of the flooding in New Orleans post Hurricane Katrina was something surreal to witness even through the lenses of video and coverage on TV. The above photo was from post-Katrina in the Ninth Ward. It has been over two years after the flooding, and Shelby and I just returned from a weekend get away to New Orleans. For two straight days we ate, shop and partied in the French Quarter of New Orleans. You would not have known what this city experienced from the sights, sounds and atmosphere of the French Quarter.

Before our return, we embarked on a guided tour of the city and post-Katrina New Orleans. We witnessed the levees and canal breach locations, as well as the recovery efforts in affluent neighborhoods like Lakefront. Many of the homes and businesses in this area have yet to return. All through the tour, you could see the brownish yellow line which still marks the water line that branded much of this city for three weeks. Our tour also took us through the storm ravaged, lower and middle class areas of Chalmette and the Ninth Ward. Much of these areas remain ghost towns to this day, with homes gutted, mold infested and awaiting demolition. Other homes have yet to be "reclaimed" by owners that evacuated only to never return. There are positive signs of recovery even in the hardest hit areas of New Orleans. Habitat for Humanity has teamed with local celebrities to build new homes for those still yet living in FEMA trailers and other accomodations apart from their pre-Katrina homes. Below is a picture of some of the uplifting images of post-Katrina Ninth Ward.

The city and lives of those impacted will never be the same. Many will never return. Many will never rebuild or recover to the full extent. Visiting post-Katrina New Orleans was a humbling, sickening, and uplifting experience all in one. The Big Un-Easy is slowly returning to its Big Easy roots and life pre-Katrina.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Expanding the Bacak Sphere of Influence

Bacak nation grew this week, as we now officially have a new nephew/cousin! My brother Rusty and sister-in-law Jenn officially welcomed Treston Jeremiah Bacak into the family via formal adoption. We were blessed to have spent this past weekend in Moulton with Grammy and Grandpa, Rus, Jenn, Emma, Jax, Justus and Treston. Check out Jenn and Rusty's blog linked to from our home page for all the scoop, and the wonderful story of God's hand in touching the life of Treston and each of us. Welcome to the fam, Little T-Bear!

Trinity's Play

This is absolutely one of the greatest finishing plays of a college football game I have ever seen. Enjoy!

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Wild Kingdom - Hawk vs. Squirrel

Got Squirrel?

Got Hawk?

Yesterday, Shelby witnessed the most amazing confrontation between a hawk and a squirrel - right in the back yard of our home in southwest Houston! Living in the big city, you lose sight of the battles of nature that occur. Anyone else experienced some amazing "Wild Kingdom" stories in the confines of "civilization"?