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Saturday, March 27, 2010

Local news

News about Straight No Chaser, which includes two local members. (One of whom I went to high school with, sang in high school choir with and I sang with his sister in a girls choir.  My cousin was in a boys choir with him too)

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Fire and Ice

Fire and Ice
by Robert Frost

Some say the world will end in fire,

Some say in ice.

From what I've tasted of desire

I hold with those who favor fire.

But if it had to perish twice,

I think I know enough of hate

To say that for destruction ice

Is also great

And would suffice.

We've lately been reading some poetry now and then.....I've picked some from my college textbooks.  Although I know she doesn't understand much of it, I figure exposure to good poetry is never a bad thing and might in some way inspire her.  Besides, you have to be exposed to the good stuff in order to recognize it.  Yesterday Leanna decided to memorize this poem all on her own.  I'd mentioned that I wanted her to start memorizing some poetry, but I hadn't picked any out yet for her to do.  I suspect she picked this one at least partly for the length, but she's rather proud of herself.
I was going to add a video of her reciting it, but since blogger changed, I no longer have a link to add movies (the one for pictures doesn't work). 

Sweet artwork

One night Leanna made me this banner and duct-taped it to the doorway.  For no particular reason, she just thought it would make me feel good.  I guess I can't be doing EVERYTHING wrong when she's so sweet all on her own! 

Scenes from downtown

I took a few pictures downtown today, I still always feel funny doing it, I think people are wondering what the heck that woman is doing taking pictures of buildings and things!  But it's still kind of neat to look at it through the eyes of a camera.  You notice things that you might not see otherwise.  And despite the city seemign to get worse and worse, there are still many parts that really are very pretty, if you take the time to notice. 

This house just had some neat architectural details: the tops of the windows, the ornamental pieces on the higher windows, & the brick arches.
A downtown clock
These two shots were taken right by the Baum (it's the red brick building.  The trees just looked really pretty, and I took the second shot to show the school as well. 
The ever-present scaffolding, somewhere downtown always seems to have it. 

More Christmas presents, finally used

Justin made me these pictures, just because!  Cute marker by number kits by ALEX (though Justin just colored how he wanted). 

Life as education/little pleasures

These are from today, just sitting for a few moments outside a construction site.  I love that picture of Justin, it gives a glimpse of what an older Justin may look like (I think).  I know, he needs a haircut.  Every week we have time to kill while Leanna's in her art class-it wouldn't make sense to walk home, we'd have to turn around and walk back out again in about an hour; plus everyone wants to take off their shoes and socks and get their clothes all dirty when we get home, so I'd just have to re-do everything before leaving again! 
So instead me & the boys walk around downtown.  I confess we do often visit Dunkin' Donuts (coffee fix!) because it's a pleasant way to kill some of the time and get rid of extra change in my pockets, and we visit the dollar store too.  But we also walk around and look at the neighborhood.  It's times like those that I am grateful to be a stay at home Mom, because I have the time to stop and watch the street cleaning truck go by, the man lower himself down into the manhole, the workers wash the windows hanging from a platform, workers washing windows from the ground with long squeegees, the jackhammer buzzing away, digger trucks loading dump trucks, streets being paved, and construction workers slowly errecting buildings.  These are all things we've stopped to watch and talk about.  The boys are just fascinated with this stuff.  Occasionally workers have waved at us or even stopped to talk.  It's nice not to be in such a rush that we can't stop to do that, or even to have the time to notice these things in the first place.  I've noted before that many of our best conversations come when we're out many topics come up naturally.  Life itself really is an education.  It's one of life's little pleasures that I am able to appreciate. 

The building we've been watching go up since November, when Leanna started Art Classes. 

What all the toddlers are reading......

Jacob spent last week's art class-walk-home perusing a real estate magazine in the stroller.
(His sister has a habbit of picking up free magazines, but then not wanting to carry them home).  

Support for parenting teens/letting kids tell their own story

A thoughtful post on the lack of support for parenting adolescents and the topic of letting your children tell their own stories online....both interesting topics. 

I like her idea of blogging only with children's initials instead of names so that what you write about them doesn't come up on a search engine.  Right now I'm fairly safe as my kids are all young, and three of them have very common first names.  I have googled them to check that their info is relatively safe, and it is.  I imagine that sometimes it would be difficult because you'd like to talk about some aspect of your (older) child's life, yet it is not just a part of your life, it's their life too and they have the right to have some control over it.  I'd imagine it's all about balance, like everything else in life. 
Yet another aspect of parenting that my parents and grandparents never had to deal with! 

Monday, March 22, 2010

World Repair Kit

Pretty cool, a bit pricey at $25.00, but I love the idea: World Repair Kit

Just a reminder

Anyone buying books for easter, or any other occasion, is more than welcome to use the search bar for amazon on my blog......and in the process support a struggling family!!  (I still have no sales and not even a click through!  :  (  So keep me in mind when you make an amazon purchase) 
Or if I post a link for an amazon product here, I get credit if you click on the link)

Curiouser and curiouser!

A page with some Alice in Wonderland quotes.  On the surface they may seem just nonsense.  But if you read with care, Lewis Carroll (Charles Dodgeson) really did have something interesting to say.

(The story behind the books is pretty interesting too, it would be pretty awesome to have someone make up a story just for you and then have it published and turn out to be a classic book!)

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Buncha pictures

Smoothie face Jacob & silly Leanna
Leanna, playing with her friend
Jacob and his beloved Sunbutter, or as he says it, Shun-butter!  He's just really happy that he can eat his own "peanut butter and jelly" sandwhiches. 
According to the nurse at our last visit, it's safe, although it says soy is processed on the same equipment-and previously I was told to avoid those types of products.  (as though the allergy stuff wasn't confusing enough, I've been told different things by the allergy doctor, his nurses, and the secretarial staff over the phone!) 

Nails by Leanna

She does not only my nails, but also her brother's.  She's recently begun mixing colors for more fun!  We found an old purse of mine full of nailpolish, so she's been in nailpolish heaven.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

This amused me

Taking a slight break from all the packing and cleaning.  We suddenly got internet back last night, and we have no idea why, but I'm taking advantage of it while it lasts!!
This one still makes me laugh: While packing last night, I started going through piles of papers Tom had tossed on the floor to be thrown away.  (I've learned to check through for important stuff)  And sure enough, I found a stack of recent bills amongst the trash.  "Tom!" I turned around, "Did you really intend to throw away all these bills?!"  He replied, completely seriously, "They'll send more." 
Well, he has a point.

Dinosaurs Love Underpants!

Sorry for all the product posts recently, but I found this book tonight and intended to look it up and to add it to my wishlist for Justin!  Dinosaurs and underwear???  Perfect! 

I found this book tonight at Barnes N Nobles, and flipped through it.  Really cute. 

Friday, March 19, 2010

Moving discoveries......

I am thrilled that I found

while packing up my craft room books. I love love love this series of books, though I only have two.  I loved them as a girl, and I remember I did attempt to share them with Maree, many years ago.  But she wasn't much interested.  Leanna, however, I am happy to report was just as into them as I was.  They're a great personal look at history....short stories with a moral-but not overly preachy-that a curious and strong willed child can certainly relate to. 

Talk to me Like I'm Someone You Love

I ran across this book on a post from Owlhaven, Talk to me like I'm someone you love

It made me immdeiately think of some feuding family members of mine.  : )    
Might make a nice resource for a therapist too! 
From Owlhaven's blog review of the book:

Some examples from the book:

–”I was making a big deal out of something that just isn’t that important. I want to let it go.”
(How nice would it be to hear that one in the middle of a disagreement? And what a gift to give that to a loved one!)

–”When you are so intense, it’s hard to take in what might be valid about what you’re saying.”
(so much better than saying, “Stop yelling at me!!” — a line I’ve tried on several people without any noticeable effect. )

–”I am upset. This doesn’t mean you are a bad person…It means that if you could just listen, I would feel incredibly loved.”
(for those moments when you need a listener, not necessarily a solution)

–”I love you. I hate fighting. Can’t we just hug?”
(this one is used not to ’shut down’ a person, but to come to some peace when a heated discussion isn’t seeming to get anywhere.)

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Further explanation of Leanna's sculpture (and a cool book)

The book read by John Lithgow. Good advice, for anyone, of any age. If you don't already know it, this is an extrememly popular book to give as a present for graduates.
Around 2:35 you can see some of the structures Leanna's class used as inspiration for their sculptures. The whole class' sculptures were really neat. All twisty arches and houses on stilts and such. Hers actually looks much better in person than it does in the picture(I'm not sure why).

On a related note......(to the soy post)

See how excited he got when he saw I got more lotion (right now I'm just using petrolium jelly because it's cheaper.  Normally we use a generic version of Aquaphor).  He got so excited he took off his pants right away so we could put some lotion on him immediately! 
Inspired by a morning of art, Leanna came home and made jewelry for people she loves. 

Artwork from the last class of the winter semester

Leanna's sculpture (inspired by Dr. Suess's Oh The Places You'll Go)
and her city-scape watercolor pencil drawing (cool tecnique using salt and water to make the snowflakes)

What would you do for a kit kat bar?

For a kit kat bar, Timothy will write his name, perfectly. 

Today's artwork

Today's artwork that she brought home, anyway.  Today we had to stay after, so that the teacher could photocopy Leanna's drawing of her class, because she just thought it was so cute.  She asked Leanna if she could keep it, but Leanna said no, so she made a copy.  These are just the pictures she made during their free time at the beginning of class. 

Soy is everywhere

After a while, you really begin to wonder why they put soy in EVERYTHING?  Did you know you're drinking soybean oil in that soda?  Ewwww. 

Finding inspiration online

Today's the first time in a while I've visited SouleMama's blog, which I always find so inspirational.  I love this sweater she made for herself!  Although she thinks it's too big, I think it fits perfectly. 
I'm still in a funk, but I figured I have to keep posting stuff if I want anyone to use my amazon links (a way to make a tiny chunk of change) and if I decide to try for an online writing job, I should keep my blog current.  I'm not sure I'll even bother with that route anymore, but I don't want to completely close the door either.   
At this point I feel like I'm continually waiting for the other shoe to drop....the next bad thing to happen.  I'm getting scared because it's been getting worse and worse, so I really hope it stops soon before anything truly tragic occurs.  I'm worried that something will happen to one of the kids next, and I don't think I could handle that. So I can't guarantee for the future, because more bad stuff might happen, but for today I'll post a little more.