Friday, October 31, 2014


Greetings Everyone!
It is with great joy and a little sadness that I type this post - joy because it is my favorite day of the year, and sadness that it is almost over.  Of course, every time I perform one of my middle/high programs it feels like Halloween all over again, so there is really nothing to be sad about! 

The day started bright and early with shows at Martinez Elementary, one of my two Halloween schools.  They have had my programs on Halloween since I first started doing my middle/high programs - and they aren't even middle or high folks!  I had a great time with their 5th graders as usual, and I was able to finally debut the most awesome of canes, which was given to me by my most awesome cousin Morgan!  It has a silver raven as the handle, and will go great with my suit (as seen below) or with the Victorian Steampunk Suit of Awesomeness. 

Coolest Cane EVER!!!
After two most excellent and fun shows, it was on to the craft store and party store for some VERY last minute pirate supplies, along with an assortment of feathers to try and put together something resembling Captain Feathersword the Friendly Pirate from The Wiggles, as the rest of the family already had their Wiggles outfits, and had already debuted them at our Fall Festival a few days earlier.  I was not expecting much in the way of quality or accuracy with my costume - one of the difficulties of having such a busy schedule and staying on the road so much during the Halloween season. 

It was then time to head over to Cedar Ridge Elementary for some lunch and two final shows for their 4th and 5th graders.  They have a lovely stage in the gym and it's got nice lighting features so that one can really set the atmosphere for a spooky show.  The shows went great and the reactions were amazing - an awesome way to end the Halloween Day Programs of Spookiness! 

Afterwards it was time to take the 5 minute drive home to get ready for the traditional Crews Family Trick or Treating Extravaganza!  The first hour was spent piecing together the Captain Feathersword outfit, which I think turned out quite nicely thanks to some creative thinking by my beautiful wife along with a few ideas from yours truly.  It was an awesome evening of trick or treating with friends and family, and we can't wait for next year!  Below are pictures from the evening.  Enjoy!

How we managed to get the next few family pics is still a mystery and a miracle!

Baby Viktor is the Blue Wiggle! 

Viktor Lucian (pronounced Veeeektoooor Looooshun with a Transylvania accent) was happy to pose for a pic with his pirate dad.

Toby was my partner for most of the evening - he got the hand of getting candy pretty quickly.

Toby was posing for pics here!

The Wiggles with Maleficent!

This guy had the Spiderman act down pat.

The Wiggle's Crew!

I know it's hard to believe, but my wife gave birth two weeks before this pic was taken. 

Reagan loves the scary houses.  High five!
 Well, if you have made it this far down then you deserve one last treat.  How about a throwback Halloween pic from around 1990 or so.  I am the Ultimate Warrior, while my brother is the pirate - Batman was one of our friends.  As you can see, I have been a wrestling fan for quite some time, which helps explain why my 2 year old is named Tobias Kane Crews (see previous blog on Viktor's name, which also explains Toby's name). 

I'm thinking this costume needs to make a comeback next Halloween...
Happy Halloween Everyone!

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Fall Season Photos, Comments, and Updates!

Greetings Everyone,
It has been a VERY busy month - from shows every day of the week to the birth of our fourth child, Viktor Lucian Crews (pronounced Veeeektor Looooshun, in a Transylvania accent), to many, many hours worth of traveling, but it has been a BLAST!!!  Below I am sharing a few comments, photos, and links related to some of the most recent school programs, as well as one or two new baby pics.  :)

First up is the link to Muller Road Middle's blog about the Poe program they hosted today (10/22).  I love the collage of pictures that they put together.  Always a fun time! 

Pony Express: "Nevermore" program by Chad Crews

They also had a nice post of the SCASL Facebook page, which I shall quote here:

"Chad Crews brought his Nevermore program to Muller Road Middle on October 22nd as a follow-up to last year's "Authors of Mystery and Horror" program.  Poe books and everything "magic" flew off the shelves as a result!"  

Here are a few photos from Muller Road's performances:
I love this shot of the crowd - I think this was during "The Tell-Tale Heart." 
A classic trick with a Poe twist to it...

Second, we have a comment by Ms. Kellie Justice, the media specialist at Franklin County High, regarding my most recent visit to her school with my "Something Wicked This Way Comes: A Shakespeare Experiment."  Ms. Justice has hosted several of my programs over the years, and this is her second time having the Shakespeare program.  

"I enjoyed the show immensely.  The students enjoyed it as well.  They have been begging to read Macbeth.  I only have about 3 books in the media center with Macbeth in them and they have all 3 been off the shelf since the show!"  - Kellie Justice, Media Specialist, Franklin Co. High

Here is a photo from Franklin County Middle School who hosted my "Authors of Mystery and Horror 2.0" program this week.  One of my favorite pics ever! 
This may end up as a headlining picture on the blog and website - love it!!!
Muller Road had an awesome display for Poe, but I don't have the picture yet, but here is one from N. Gwinnett Middle School who always has a great promotional display!
A lovely display designed by Ms. Clack. 
I also see some pretty cool posters at different schools - here are a few Poe related ones. 

The sign at the bottom says, "The original grumpy cat."  Classic. 
And here is a funny one - I'm sure lots of my readers hear this all the time! 
So funny! 
One more thing before we get to the baby pics - does everyone remember the cool lunar eclipse that took place a few weeks back?  I remember it well, as I was driving that morning before it got under way and was able to watch all but the last few moments of said eclipse on my way to Rabun County Middle for an early morning show.  I was a little bummed that the clouds rolled in as the final part of the eclipse was getting under way...that is until I arrived at the school (which is located on top of a mountain) and saw the view of the sunrise.
Very, very pretty sunrise over the mountains in Tiger, GA.  

 After taking in the sunrise, I turned around and saw that it had stopped sprinkling while noticing this:
Yep, that is a rainbow which you can see even with my phone camera...and to the right of it is a second, smaller rainbow!  

Two rainbows...and after the shows that morning they were still there, only in two different places.  It was pretty amazing if I say so myself...and I do!  

Ok, it's getting late and I have to be on the road by 5am tomorrow - so here are a few baby pics and then it's bedtime!  Enjoy! 
Zombie Boy!

The many faces of Viktor Lucian (pronounced Veeeektor Looooshun, with the aforementioned Transylvania accent)

Yep, they were fanning Viktor to cool him off.  Toby (Tobias Kane - see previous post on HIS name story) is extremely excited about the new baby.

The kiddos made their mommy a homemade sign.  Those two boys (Grady and Toby) look up to no good. 
Have a great day!

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Introducting Viktor Crews!!! (Updated 10/18 with New Details & Pics!)

Greetings one and all! 
This is it - the blog that a few thousand (literally) students and a number of media specialists and teachers have been waiting for.  Of course, some of them are waiting to see pictures of the brand new baby, while others are waiting to see what Viktor's middle name will be.  Well, the wait is over...almost!

But first, let's describe the day of Viktor's arrival in detail.  My beautiful wife Lindsay had left bright and early in the morning on Wednesday, October 15th to make her way to work in Columbia (a little over an hour away from  home).  I had headed out very early as well on my way to Cumming, GA for shows at Piney Grove Middle in the morning followed by afternoon programs at a school in Hall County.  On the way, I got a message from Lindsay informing me that she was not feeling very well and to keep my phone close throughout the day.  (Lindsay and I had a code - if she texted me it was not an emergency, but if she called during the day a baby may be on the way).  A few schools will remember me stopping the program to check my phone - and one school over in Henry County will remember me actually getting a call from Lindsay and having to call her back due to a lack of signal in the media center - although it ended up being a false alarm at that time.

So, after arriving and performing my first show for Piney Grove's 8th graders, I was waiting for the next group to come into the media center and be seated, when I got a text from Lindsay that read, "When you get a chance, please call me between shows."  Now, knowing the code, this did not cause me any major anxiety as I knew that she would call for an emergency.  However, since I had a minute or two before the show started, I quickly stepped outside the room and called to see what was going on - and it's a good thing I did!  Upon answering the phone, Lindsay said, "Now, I don't want you to rush..." at which point I interrupted and said, "Wait, your water hasn't broken has it?"  Lindsay replied that it had indeed broken and that she had been checked out and we had plenty of time before the baby's arrival.  She then told me to FINISH THE SHOW which was about to start and THEN to come home.  I wasn't so sure, but she assured me that things were progressing slowly...and then proceeded to tell me that she was driving HERSELF TO THE HOSPITAL IN AUGUSTA WHICH IS OVER AN HOUR AWAY FROM HER WORKPLACE IN COLUMBIA!!!  Yep, you read that right - she was driving herself an hour up the road to our local hospital - and there was nothing but interstate and trees between the two places.

So, after more reassurance on her end, I began the show by announcing that my wife's water just broke and we have a baby on the way, BUT I have been given permission by my wife to entertain and educate them for the next 45 minutes before heading home - so they should thank her for being able to see the show and for not having to go back to class right away.  Needless to say it was the fastest 45 minute show ever. 

Fast forward 3 hours and I had made it from the Atlanta area to the hospital in Augusta with time to spare - Lindsay's contractions and progress were still just getting started. 

This is a very relieved magical educator who made it back home in time for Viktor's arrival.  Here I am posing with my gorgeous wife, and a very serious looking Edgar Allan Poe.  Lindsay and I were going for the "spooky and mysterious" look...
At this point we expected to be waiting for several more hours, however, Viktor had other plans for us.  Not too long after this picture was taken, the doctor came and checked things out and noticed that Viktor's umbilical cord was in the wrong place and that the situation could get very dangerous very quickly - so the doctor called for an emergency c-section immediately.  After wheeling Lindsay out the room to the operating room, I waited in full scrubs for the medical staff to decide if I would be allowed to come in or not - it was a very tense time for everyone involved.  Approximately 10 minutes after she was taken back, I was rushed into the room and introduced to a crying and very healthy little baby boy.  Lindsay was still on the operating table being sewn up, but I was given the thumbs up that she did great and would soon be on her way to recovery.  So, before leaving the room I snapped the very first picture of Viktor! 
Viktor wondering what in the heck just happened to him...
Viktor was doing great so they let me hold him as we took him to the nursery, where I get to press the button that plays music for each baby born at the hospital - always a treat! 
Right before he was taken into the nursery to be cleaned off and checked out - the family was all taking a peek right here.
A little while later, Lindsay came out of recovery and was able to meet Viktor for the first time - always a very special moment! 
Lindsay was asleep during the c-section, so this is their first few moments together!
A closer view
Mommy and baby are doing great and will be at the hospital until Saturday.  The kids all got to see Vicktor as well, and Reagan and Grady took turns holding him while Toby (our almost 2 year old) mainly ignored him and played with balloons.  We even managed to get a nice pic of mom and all the kiddos: 
It could be years before we get a shot like this again!
But enough of all that!  We all know why you have read this far - to find out what Viktor's middle name is!!!  I have literally told thousands of students the story of Viktor's possible middle name and how it was selected, and I have also been given various other suggestions by students and teachers at my shows, such as Viktor Poe, Viktor Dracula, Viktor Van Helsing, etc.  Of course, you will all also remember that Toby's full name is Tobias Kane Crews - named after the wrestler Kane from our anniversary trip to Wrestlemania (10 year anniversary trip!).  So, did we go with the Underworld movie connection between the vampire "Viktor" and the werewolf "Lucian" so that we could say to the kids when they were playing hide and seek, "Tobias Kane, go and find Viktor Lucian!"?   Or did we go with more of a traditional or family type of name that would be most respectable, but not quite as epic as a vampire and werewolf combination. 

Well, you shall have your answer...the answer you have all been waiting for (at least those of you who have ALREADY seen me this Fall - for those of you who have not, hopefully you have gotten caught up as you have read this, but if not, you can hear all the details in a few days/weeks when I am at YOUR school!). 

So, without further ado, it is with great pleasure and pride that I introduce everyone to the 6 lb 11oz, 20.5 inches long, and newest member of the Crews Family...

Viktor Lucian Crews

(pronounced in a vampire type voice as "Veeeektor Loooshun")  :) 

And there you have it my friends!  I hope you have enjoyed reading about our newest family member.  I know that I have enjoyed sharing the story of his name during our Q/A sessions after my shows - and I look forward to seeing everyone else during the next few weeks. 

Have a great day and God bless!

Updates (10/17/14)!!!

Now then, here are some more details on the naming of Viktor Lucian.  When Lindsay found out it was a boy, she wanted to name him Victor.  I immediately thought of Victor Frankenstein due to mentioning him in my main program for middle/high schools.  However, I also thought it would be very cool to have the named spelled with a "k" instead of a "c" as that would be more unique.  When I mentioned this to Lindsay, she looked it up and thought it was a cool way to spell it so it was decided on "Viktor" for the first name. 

At the same time we had this conversation, we were watching one of the Underworld movies (the first being my favorite vampire vs. werewolf movie of all time) and I randomly mentioned that Viktor was also the name of the bad guy vampire leader in the movie. 
Viktor the evil vampire leader guy. 
Once Lindsay realized that Viktor was a character from Underworld, she immediately began searching on her phone for the rest of the characters names.  She actually like the name "Kraven" (another bad guy vampire) except that it meant coward, which was unacceptable.  However, she then noticed that the main werewolf was named "Lucian" and thought it had a nice ring to it - and I agreed. 
Lucian the Lycan (werewolf) - and all around good guy.
So, with the combination of Viktor and Lucian being considered, one can probably guess that yours truly was estatic with the possibilty of such a name of awesome epicness. (Dear spell check - I don't care what you say, "epicness" is a word and it is spelled correctly).  While we discussed a few other names, such as Viktor Merlin or Viktor King or Viktor Dracula or Viktor Frankenstein (ok, maybe only I discussed the last two examples...), none were as cool as the original combination.

Viktor Lucian = Winning Combination!
Now, while Viktor Lucian has shown no traits of being a vampire - he seems to prefer milk to blood - he has shown a few interesting werewolf type characteristics.  The main one being the large amounts of hair growing, not only on his head (all his siblings were bald) but also on his back, arms, and shoulders.  Don't believe me?  Just take a look:
THAT my friends is a LOT of hair - look at that back and those shoulders!  I expect this will increase during the next full moon of course. 
After performing at some local schools today (Friday) while Lindsay and Viktor had some bonding time at the hospital, I then headed back to said hospital with carrot cake, a lemonade from Chik-Fil-A, and the full Victorian Steampunk Suit of Awesomeness.  I got a LOT of stares from folks in the parking deck, hospital waiting rooms, and staff members, but the real reason I wore the outfit was to have a brief photo shoot with the child Viktor Lucian.  I had one that turned out really well (and a few of him in a top hat that he was none to pleased with, so we won't be showing that...yet):
Best baby photo ever.  Viktor was thrilled...he really was...really. 
Ok, that is all for the updates at this time - another busy day, late night, and now time to crash and hopefully bring Viktor and mommy home tomorrow (Saturday). 

And this is just a random cute pic that Lindsay put together while sharing some quality time with Viktor at the hospital today.