August 30, 2012

Megan turns 38!

It's my birthday!  I got up in the morning to find that my kids had made me cinnamon rolls and that they were up at 5:30AM baking them for me.  I am difficult to surprise.  I was more than surprised, I was shocked.   And majorly impressed.  The cinnamon rolls were delicious.   

I did have to apologize to Kenneth.  On Monday night as soon as family night was over, he was all intense about how I needed to go shopping with him for soccer equipment.  He was looking for clearance cleats for kids who weren't with us.  He wandered around muttering that he was looking for something...  At first I was feeling really sorry for him that he must be feeling very neglected, to need me to come the the store at night with him.  I was trying to be patient, but he was being so trying.  Finally after an hour of wasted time, I gave him a lecture about how Nate's homework wasn't finished and Hazel needed to be put to bed.  He finally finished his shopping and we came home.  He had been stalling to give the kids time to roll up the dough and put it in the fridge.  

I never saw any flour, or dirty mixing bowls.  No one even hinted.  I was so amazed!  It must be true Love.  (On a side note, I did find Truman asleep in the middle of the living room floor this afternoon.)

I don't usually get in many pictures and many of the pictures I am in are not what I think I look like.  Birthday candle light is always flattering!

 It is bad enough that I had pigtails, why did no one tell me that they were crooked?

August 29, 2012

A Note About Reeds

I have started making my own oboe reeds.  So far I have only made one that I would consider a "good" reed.  ( I have made 2 reeds that function but are not pretty sounding, and 4 reeds that I smashed on the wall after making major mistakes)  My oboe teacher told me that this reed is technically correct and that at this point I could only fine tune how it sounds.  I was so proud of myself!  I actually used it during my lesson today and felt happy about it's performance.

Tonight Abby showed me her reeds and I sadly parted with my reed.  I am consoling myself with the fact that I made one, I should be able to make another.  Also, I have 1 in process that shows promise.

August 27, 2012

First day at American High School!

Ladson let me take his first day of school picture in the traditional spot in front of the house.  He looked confident when I left him at school this morning.  I hoped and prayed all day that it would go well.  When I met up with him after school, he had a lot of good to tell me.  One class needed to be changed, but everything else went well.

August 25, 2012

It's been a busy day

 Kenneth taught Ladson to change the oil in the van, this morning.

After lunch we went to the Arizona Historic Society museum.
 Hazel spent a solid 45 minutes fooling around in front of this mirror.
 Christian with long legs.
 Abby with long legs.
 Using the stereo scope.
 Rebekah listens to a recording from history.
 A picture of the fake horse.
 Hazel studying the 1950's menu for the Big Boy Restaurant.
 Hazel and Abby built houses.

 And Kenneth gave Rebekah a lesson on driving a standard transmission.

Now the boys (including Ladson) are engaged in a round of Dungeons and Dragons.

August 24, 2012

Welcome Ladson

Yesterday, our exchange student finally arrived.  We had been so excited for him to get here.  I took all the kids out of school, except Christian (because he was busy being elected Tzar of Academic Decathlon).  When I got to Abby's school, she was waiting by the office door.  I went to sign her out and found that she had already filled in the sign-out sheet.  It the reason for leaving column she had written in tiny print "going to the airport to pick-up our exchange student from Brazil!".   When Rebekah's teacher received the call from the office, he said "I know all about it.  She has been excited all morning."  Hazel was so excited that she sent Ladson a facebook message the night before to let him know what she would be wearing and find out what he would be wearing so that they would be able to recognize each other.

We spent the evening playing some games and talking about what classes he might like to take.  He brought a gift for each of us.  I can tell that he really thought about each person and what they might like.  I think it is very hard to buy gifts for strangers, I can only imagine how hard it would be if the strangers are also foreigners.  I think he did a great job.  He also brought some Brazilian candies to share.  They are all good, it is fun to see how thinks so simple as candy can be so different in some ways and the same in others.  Chocolate and peanuts seem to be universally accepted as yummy.

I am really impressed with Ladson's english.  Somethings we say, he doesn't understand but we can usually explain in another way and he can understand.  I am glad that he tells us when he doesn't understand, because then we know to try again.  He is very smart and kind, this is a good combination. Hazel has been waiting to teach him to play Sorry.  She and Nate played Sorry with him last night and he caught on very quickly and Hazel did not cry when she wasn't winning.

It is interesting to have a new member of the family.  I hope that he will be able to tell me what he wants and needs, so that he is happy here.

August 21, 2012

Panda Bread Attempt #1

This was my first attempt to make panda bread.  It looks more like a puppy.  I bought more black food coloring, I was out and so I had to use brown.  I think I can also control the rising better so it doesn't ruin the face. Maybe next week.

August 20, 2012

Hazel Art

Hazel and Abby collaborated on this fine work of art.  

This is Hazel in a swimsuit.

Here is Hazel in a ballet outfit.

And here she is in real life.

August 19, 2012

Nate and Hazel do the Dishes

Sometimes, I think to myself "I would give anything for these two kids to stop teasing and arguing and just enjoy each other!"

The other day they did the dishes together and they were really enjoying each other, talking and laughing! The cost was that the 15 minute job took an hour and they spent a long time dropping cups while they constructed and photographed their "Super Tall Cup Stack".  
I think the hour of bliss was well worth it!

August 18, 2012

Sousa Wash

Did you know that in order to keep your sousaphone shiny you have to wash it and polish it?
Did you also know that if your son is in the sousa section, you might have the opportunity to have 8 sousaphone cases in your living room?

 I have learned much about these instruments lately.

Some Sousas wear hats.

 After the instruments are clean and polished (and everyone had some ice cream), you might ask a question about how long they (the sousas) are going to stay.  The response is a bunch of guilty glances when they realize that there is no plan about how to return them now that the school is locked.
You might have a chance to see how many sousas you can fit in your spare bedroom!

August 14, 2012

I always wanted an even number!

When we first got married we had many a debate ove how many kids to have in our family.  I argued even and Kenneth argued for odd.  Who wants odd kids anyway.

Well, we are so excited because we are getting another boy.  This will make us at an even 8 and will tie the girls and boys.  His name is Ladson.  He is an exchange student from Brazil.

When I was first asked if we would be interested I was a little nervous.  What if the student is not a good match for our family.  What if he is a trouble maker.  What if he doesn't want to like with such a noisy family, or doesn't want to live with so many kids.

When I got the file with all the information about him, I was not nervous anymore.  He is going to be so much fun.  He likes to read and has read many of the same books as us.  He wrote a very sincere letter and I was so touched.

The kids have been sending him emails and he is excited to do things with them and to be their friend.  Hazel is especially excited because they are both the youngest in their families.  Nate and I read together at night and we are almost finished with the Little House on the Prairie series, so we have been talking about what to read next.  Nate has decided to wait to decide until Ladson gets here so he can invite him to listen to the story at bedtime.

Rebekah made a cute poster for when we go to the airport to pick him up.  Every one is so excited that they check my email all the time incase there is an email from him or the email with his flight information!

The only sad part is that he will only stay one semester.

August 12, 2012

Really? 18 Years?

Today is our 18th wedding anniversary!
We celebrated on Friday.  I picked Kenneth up after work and we went to dinner at a restaurant called Comodore Guadalajara.  It is the first Mexican restaurant we ate at in Arizona, when we were here looking for a house to buy.  The food was much spicier back then.  It was a great dinner.  

After dinner we went to Tempe Town Lake and rode a peddal boat around the lake while the sun set. (Thanks Camille for the idea). We had a great time, even though the weather was still pretty warm.  I think Kenneth was cooler after he took off his life jacket.  All his scout training made him wear it.

We did take some fun pictures.  It was a strange feeling to take pictures of ourselves instead of the kids.

After our lake visit, we headed to a movie theatre to see the Batman movie.  It was fun but I still like the Xmen better.

I found a great deal for a room at a resort in Tempe and we left the kids with a friend for the night.  

For breakfast I found a great place,  when we got there, they were closed for the summer.  Disappointed, we stopped at Cinnabon. 

All was well at home,  and we are ready for 18 more years!

Happy aniversary!

August 9, 2012

A Little Spice in your Lunch Box!

Are your sandwiches boring?  Add a little color!

August 8, 2012

The first day of school 2012

Christian 12th Grade

Truman 10th grade

 Sydney 9th Grade

Abby 7th Grade

Rebekah is in 5th Grade and somehow didn't get a picture?
I am a crazy mother sometimes.

Nate 4th Grade

 Hazel 2nd Grade

 What a handsome bunch of kids!

Our Palindrome Year - 3 in the high school, 1 in Junior high, and 3 in the Elementary school. 3-1-3