May 31, 2012

United Republic of the Russian Dragon

The Front Ensemble for marching band made their poster representing their section.  Russian Dragon is the title of one of their warm-ups.

May 28, 2012

2 Boys and Bessie

Truman and his little cousin enjoyed a bit of tuba music together.  (until the stand fell over)

May 24, 2012

Cute Cupcakes

Sydney and Abby had a cake decorating activity at mutual.  They came home with some super cute cupcakes!

May 22, 2012

Prepared for Real Life

I spent much of my life before college preparing for "Real Life".  At school, teachers were always telling me that I would need to have better penmanship because "Next year, your teachers will not accept this".  Guess what, by the time I got to college, no one cared if I used D'Nealian or cursive or if I just printed.  Don't get me wrong, there is much I learned in High School that is invaluable, like how to write a great 5 paragraph essay.

Tonight I was laughing to myself as I made fortune cookies with Sydney at ten o'clock at night.  I realized that I had been prepared for just this moment in the Young Women's Program.  I was 16.  My friends and I were responsible for conducting every few months and part of that job was to focus on one of the Young Women's values.  I remember it was integrity that we were highlighting that month.  We made fortune cookies with the definition of integrity as the fortune.  We had so much fun making and sharing the cookies.  I never thought that I would share that same fun with my own daughter 20+ years later.  I thought I was learning leadership skills.

Epic Pinata

Last Days of School

I love summer because the kids are out of school and they are all mine again for a couple of months.  Thursday is the last day of school and I have been contemplating my goals for this year's adventures.  I have decided to have the kids decide, I made a form for each kid.  I am thinking if we start out organized, we might be able to meet everyone's expectations.
Here is my form:

This Summer, these are somethings I want to....
Make:  Stained Glass Sun
Do:  Practice with Abby everyday
Learn:  Flip turns in the pool
See:  Phoenix Children's Museum
Read:  The Enchantress, Middlemarch
Eat:  Smart (i.e. all my fruits and veggies)

What are you doing with your summer?

May 9, 2012

Major Life Decisions

Abby and I have been talking much about whether she wants to keep playing the flute or change to oboe.  She is finding that switching instruments is more work than she thought it would be.  So after many family discussions (and asking the high school band directors for their opinion), she has decided to give the oboe a full year of work.

Along the way, we talked about taking lessons from someone better than me.  She's not interested enough for me to put money on the decision.  I was pretty excited for her to take lessons.  I wish I would have practiced better and learned more when I had the chance.  I was a little jealous.  Maybe, I should take lessons.  Hmm.

Long story, short.  I have a lesson today at 11AM.  I am so excited and nervous.  It has been nearly 20 years since I had a lesson.

The only music I have worked on lately is the Muppet Show theme and the Baby Elephant walk.

Wish me luck, maybe I will be an oboe player when I grow up.

May 6, 2012

Tucson pt 2

While in Tucson, we also went to the Arizona Historical Society Museum.  They had a cool exhibit of quilts from every county, commemorating Arizona's centennial.  I didn't think about taking pictures of the quilts, they were interesting. 

The hands on gallery upstairs was a hit with our kids.  

There were clothes, food and tools available to try out the Arizona pioneer life style.

The horse riding was popular. 

Truman found a hat to go with his suit.

Abby and I were impressed with how buff pioneer women would be after ironing with 6-8 lbs of iron.

Checkers are more fun when played in the Mercantile.

Tucson - Our Saturday Trip

Truman played in the All-State Band on Saturday afternoon.  The festival was hosted by University of Arizona.  The musicians traveled to Tucson by bus on Thursday morning and rehearsed about 7 hours a day.  The concert was at 3 on Saturday and was amazing.  The choirs were beautiful, the Band was, of course, my favorite   I thought about leaving before the orchestra/symphony played.  It had been a long day and the little kids were getting a bit restless and hungry.  Truman had told me that they were playing Mussorgsky's Pictures at an Exhibition, which happens to be one of my favorites.  We stayed.  It was wonderful.  It was fun to leave feeling musically satisfied.

The rest of us came to Tucson after breakfast (and of course some practicing).  We did some museum hopping.  We first went to the Southern Arizona Transportation Museum.  It was small, free and fun.
Here is Hazel listening to one of the displays.  You pick up the phone and listen to people talk about what it was like to ride a train, or drive the train, or even a lady telling about working for the railroad. 
Christian and Nate learning about Morse code.
Engine 1673 and 6 of the 7 monkeys

May 4, 2012

Reclaiming Nate's Bedroom

3 days, 2 bags of trash, 1 basket for the Goodwill, several pairs of scissors that belong to his teacher, 3 stacks of books, and 4 reconstructed dresser drawers later; Nate's room is clean.

I have developed an even deeper gratitude for my own mother who did not throw away everything I owned and make me live in a cardboard box in the back yard, or even scream at me. (Thanks Mom!)

I have hope for Nate because I was that big of a slob as a kid.

I do hope he has a kid just like himself, because he is a very interesting and engaging personality.  I just hope he remembers to be calm when it comes time to clean his room.

P.S. Kenneth, I found your hammer...