My House’s Got Talent

28 05 2008

I dread the elementary talent show every year. Is that terrible? I can barely stand to watch the youngsters belt out country music hits about Chevy trucks and boyfriends and things that “his Mama don’t know”. Yikes.

This year was no exception. An hour and a half of smarmy mumbled singing from paralyzed primary schoolers. Of course there were a few exceptions. Like the kid that composed a song himself and played it on his guitar. And three girls that did incredible gymnastic routines. And North and Abbie doing their talents that have been previously showcased in the “Birthday” post.

And then there were my kids. The best of the bunch, of course!

I present to you….Sophia playing “Scarecrow Dance”

(sorry about the links – the videos refused to embed…)

And Maya. Oh Maya. I told her that I was against her doing this following number with her friends because she already had a talent. Piano. Didn’t she want to something that she knew she was already good at? When she looked me in the eye and told me that she didn’t think I should be able to tell her what she was good at, I finally, begrudgingly, acquiesced.

And boy was I wrong. She is the one in the middle.


Today is the Day

26 05 2008

I am 36!

I keep waiting to become magically grown-up with each passing birthday.  There were a few years there where I used to look forward to, even yearn for, this magical moment.  I am now old enough to know better and will do anything in my power to stop it.

Therefore I throw myself extravagant birthday parties in my back yard.

Sophie was the official photographer of the event and took some wonderfully well composed pictures of some of the decorations.

I call this one “Irises by a Green House”:


And this one…”Candles with Orange and Red and Tan Placemats”:


And “Janice and Roxi’s Joy”:

I received many gifts, not the least of which was this little beauty…

And it comes with recipes!!!

Later in the evening Sophie arranged a Talent Show.  She was ony able to get three people (including herself) to participate.  Here are the entries in order of performance.  I apologize profusely for the darkness, but notice that we have two (count em, two!) fire pits and a many strings of white lights…but no proper movie lighting.

Abbie sings a beautiful song from “Mulan”.  By the way?  She is in second grade.

North plays the violin:

And MY child. My wonderful, talented Sophie…pulls her pajama bottoms up over her arms and onto her shoulders, making a pajama-pant cocoon. You can barely see it as she strolls past the fire pit.

There is something to be said for the unexpected.

In her infinite wisdom, Maya was having none of it.

Happy birthday to me! I hope you all had a wonderful day on my behalf!



A Mid-Dinner’s Night Dream

14 05 2008

During dinner tonight the topic of conversation was our favorite literary characters.  Who was the funniest?  The meanest?  The nicest?  The weirdest?  And who had the best name?

We settled on Bottom from A Midsummer Night’s dream.  Puck was right up there, too. 

Sophie was trying to figure out what story they came from.  Here eyes lit up and she yelled, “Oh!  He’s from the same story as Herman and Sylander, right?”

Hermia and Lysander, I presume.


8 05 2008

Hey!  I just realized it is my third anniversary as a blogger!  Wow.  It all started with this rant.  It is completely amazing how far my life has come since that point.

The traditional gift for the third anniversary is leather.

I’ll let you all just use your imaginations on that one.

The Wearin’ O’ the Green

7 05 2008

This spring Sophie was, once again, one of the stars of the Spring Play.  When I say “stars” I mean that she had a small speaking part.  She is dedicated to these parts that she plays and invariably learns her lines and everyone elses’ to the  point she mouths the words as the other children say them during the play.

Being her mother, I find this adorable.  It is quite possibly irritating to others.

They had after-school practice for some weeks and I was able to pick Sophie up on one of the last practices before the big show.  This particular practice was important enough that many of the teachers and the principal were in attendance.  As I waved down my daughter, she came running to meet me with her friend (and my best friend’s daughter) Abbie in tow.  It was a dress rehearsal so Sophie had her skateboard under her arm.  And Abbie had on a dress, a crown, and……and a VERY interesting necklace.

This was the sort of necklace that immediately grabbed my attention and bugged my eyes out a bit.  I looked around at the adults in the room, searching for someone who must have noticed its lack of appropriateness in an elementary school setting.  Alas, there was no such recognition.  I smiled, chatted a bit while biting the inside of my cheek, and left with my daughter – promptly forgetting the entertaining interlude.

Then, the night of the play arrived.  As I zoomed my camera to its most telephoto setting to get a picture of Sophie and Abbie standing at the side of the stage I noticed the inappropriate necklace had made its way through dress rehearsals AND the school performance that day with nary a remark from any responsible adult.

This made me laugh really, really hard.

Through the chortling,  I was able to convey to Megan (Abbie’s Mom) the story of the necklace.  She looked at her daughter from across the auditorium and gasped.  Abbie’s Dad, riding the white horse of heroic Dadliness, sprinted to the side entrance of the stage and snatched the necklace from around her neck right before she was to walk out on the stage.

I don’t know….but I think the faculty should have noticed this.  What do you think?  (Sorry about the quality of the photograph, but much zooming and cropping had to be done.)


Little House in the Northwest

6 05 2008

I just got back from the local Comcast office and have officially cancelled my television all together.  

From now on: 

  1. I will insist that the girls refer to me as “Ma” and their Dad, John, as “Pa”.
  2. We will all wear matching calico dresses.
  3. We will make our own maple syrup by hammering something into the side of a tree.  This may not turn out to well as I don’t believe I know what a maple tree looks like as compared to say, an oak tree.
  4. We will butcher a hog with knives and make head cheese.
  5. There will probably be a lot of fighting.
  6. Can anyone say “NPR overload?”  

The girls and I have decided to save the money for a year and then go on vacation to Mexico.

Thank God we have an overabundance of imagination.





4 05 2008

I have been busy with the onset of spring.  Well….with what should be spring but isn’t yet.  It has been cold and rainy and awful here since November.  Usually around March things really change.  Cherry trees blossom, daffodils do their thing and tulips go crazy.  This has finally happened a few weeks later than usual.  Unfortunately it has happened under a monotonous grey sky that drizzles and hails unexpectedly almost every day.

As much as I would like to just stay in bed and listen to The Cure’s “Disintegration” CD (the most melancholy and suicidal of all The Cure’s CD’s don’t you agree?), I haven’t!  I submit to you the last month’s worth of projects (click on images for larger pics)….

 The living room crisis is my crazy attempt at pulling up all the gross carpet and heaving it out the front door.  The floors, under the crazy paint and sheet rock putty stuff, are beautiful hardwood that I plan on finishing myself this summer when the girls are in Montana.

The yard pictures try to capture the torturous pain of digging up sod in a strip along my insanely long front fence.  I used to like the size of my front yard….Now?  Not so much.  Sod is heavy.  It is also cumbersome.  And one thing that I learned early on in this project was that you just can’t change your mind once you get started.

Thanks to Freecycle (yay!  Freecycle!  Everyone should use it!) I was able to have people come to my house and haul away the sod in their truck.  It was like magic.  I have also learned that I oftentimes start projects without realizing the implications of my labours.  Had I thought of how I was going to get 65 feet of sod off of my lawn once it was dug up?  No.  No I did not. 

Sometimes I get very, very lucky.

And the fancy landscape-y type bushes and ornamental grasses?  All free.  F.R.E.E.  My very good neighbor and friend sets up conferences and trade shows for a living.  A Toyota truck display had insisted on hauling in rocks and bushes and other nature-like things….but then didn’t want them once the show was over.  This is how I stumbled upon about $400 worth of plants.  Once again, lucky.

The girls helped out with all of it, and we left some space by the front of the house for a vegatable garden.  Who knows what the price of food will be by the end of summer.  If only I could grow rice…..

Oh!  And most important of all – my Mom now has a computer and is reading my blog.  Sometimes this will be a good thing.  Sometimes not so good.  But she made it through the last post’s “ass” comment alright, it seems.  Everyone, say “Hi” to my Mom.  And while you’re at it, tell her where you are from and maybe your favorite color or something.

Mom….click on the “Comments” button below this post to meet all my blogosphere friends!