Tuesday, August 31, 2010

A Girl and her NEW bow

You've seen T-Rex and her archery bow, which she has now traded for fencing lessons...... but now T-Rex has added a new bow to her repertoire......

Let the um....... playing (ahem) ...... begin.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Reader's Theater

Blondie wants so badly to be able to enjoy reading, but it is a struggle for her compared to other children. Her teacher introduced the class to reader's theater this week. Each child gets a script, and instead of doing a play, they read it with appropriate emotion, etc. She was SOOOOOO excited.... the hitch.... they performed it today at 2:00..... when I was teaching my own students and couldn't leave. I was bummed because it was yet another event (added to awards ceremonies, kindergarten performance during the day, fieldtrips, etc) I couldn't attend.

THANKFULLY, Grandma Cathy was able to show up, provide audience support, and take pictures for me. Mom was quite impressed with Blondie's ability to flip the script pages with one hand. Blondie told me grandma was silly because all you have to do is slide your finger between the pages and then whip it over. That girl is always problem solving.

Friday, August 20, 2010

AAARRRRG me hardy

This afternoon around 4:30 my neighbor Cathy called me to see if T-Rex was going to the "pirate thing." Ummmm..... I had no idea what she was talking about (T-Rex told Dad not Mom), so she clued me in to the fact that Buddy S and T-Rex and the other fencing kids were invited to the state museum for their pirate night exhibit. The museum was showing Princess Bride, opening up late for their big pirate exhibit, and having fencing as a bit of entertainment.

Crud..... they also had to dress up. So on very short notice, and raiding my sister Natalie's closet (she is a bellydancer so she has a lot of costumey kind of "stuff") this is what we came up with.
Once at the museum we saw all kinds of people dressed up.
Rick (the coach) had the older kids suit up in their fencing gear while the newer kids stayed in pirate gear and talked to the audience about swords/foils/sabers/cutlasses, etc. Rick had T-Rex walking around with an actual cutlass and showing people, while other kids had other weaponry from the time period.

As the older kids fenced he gave a running monologue about the difference between movie fighting (like Princess Bride) and actual fighting (someone dies in about 10 seconds and 3 moves). The kids would then rotate out and finally T-Rex and Buddy S got to face each other. T-Rex wasn't thinking about her footwork, and Buddy S was really putting together some great lunges.

Eventually one of the boys rotated in and the coach spoke about how it was one of the few sports where men and women competed against each other. The kids had a great time, and T-Rex really seems to be loving this whole thing.

If she starts to get really serious then we'll have to move on to a more competitive group, but this has been a pretty good, casual introduction.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

First Day of School

First day of school pictures are a bit of a tradition here.

Big Al started 8th grade. Age 13

T-Rex beginning 6th grade in middle school. Age 11

Blondie looking forward to 3rd grade. Age 8

Cheesie off to 2nd grade. Age 7

Everyone came home very happy and looking forward to a good year. Kids seem happy with their teachers, and I'm really looking forward to this group of students. I'm optimistic that we can stay positive and have another fantastic school year.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010


Cheesie turned seven today. She is such a funny little thing - sweet, smart, sassy, and an absolute control freak.

My sister has a tradition where she takes the girls out for a special day after their birthday - she might take them shopping, to the movies, dinner, something fun. Last week Christy was out of town, and Cheesie realized that there was something she wanted for her birthday and she figured she would never get it. I walked into the living room to find her crying:

Me: What is the matter?
Cheesie: (sobbing) Aunt Christy is gone this week.
Me: Yes, but she'll be back on Thursday.
Cheesie: (still sobbing) but I want to go shopping because I really want something.
Me: What is it you want that you can't wait for your birthday to see if you get it?
Cheesie: A Tervis Tumbler.
Me: Seriously?
Cheesie: YES, I want a bunch of them.

I walked out so she wouldn't see me laughing. My almost seven year old wants a 10 dollar plastic cup that doesn't leave rings on the tables, and can hold hot and cold drinks. She thinks they are awesome. I was given one for my birthday, and one from my school, so she has wanted one for awhile apparently.

Seven year olds are very tech savvy, and mine went online and googled tervis tumblers, and made a list of what she wanted. She also wanted an erector set. Thankfully, she received two of the cups (flip flops, and her initial), as well as a big erector set that she can't wait to build things with, and a couple of puzzles that she loves to do. Family came over for dinner tonight, and helped her celebrate. This weekend she'll have a couple little girls spend the night, and play. I think she was pretty happy.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Back to the zoo with Dad

Brian took the girls to the zoo this past Saturday while I worked in my classroom. We were very curious about the new baby flamingos that are white until they eat enough shrimp to turn the pink/coral color.
Something about the zoo makes all kids climb on the statues and pose for pictures that they've posed for a million times. Our favorite is the orangutan statue.

Enjoy the pictures. School starts Thursday and everything is pointing to a good year. Looking forward to my new students, and the girls are looking forward to catching up with friends and new teachers.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Last Weekend

Last weekend we headed back to the lake for one last weekend before I have to go back to work. Friday I got to catch up with a friend from high school who now lives in New York. Her little boy played with my little girls, and they all had a ball. The difference between parenting one and parenting a whole bunch are quite noticeable.... Lan would check on them if they were loud, while I only moved if it got too quiet. Their little guy is being raised in Brooklyn, so the lake was a great place for him to be -- walking barefoot through the grass, seeing the ants on the sand, the fish swimming near him in the lake. If it weren't for the huge thunderstorms that day it would have been perfect.
As for the rest of the weekend it was pretty typical:Big Al perfected her round-off, and then practiced cartwheels off the dock.

Cheesie tried forcing water through the noodles.... if you can perfect that then you can ambush sisters and parents.

Big Al took the little girls canoeing.....

Blondie built more sandcastles.
We all picked some muscadines from the vines out back (all of the pears have disappeared from the trees)
Brian and the older girls caught a crayfish for me for my classroom (mine died last year) but after playing with him for awhile we decided to let him go. This one has always been wild, while the ones we use at school are bred at a science company. This one was an absolute gorgeous red and black, and very snappy.

I go back to school tomorrow, and the girls go back next week. I'm looking forward to a couple more swim weekends at the lake, but not sure when we'll get back there. Hopefully soon.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010


Last week T-Rex started a fencing class. She has been wanting to do this for about a year now, and was very patient waiting for the opportunity. She has always been interested in unique extra curricular activities, and in adding fencing to archery and horseback riding I frequently tease her about growing up and becoming an Elf from Lord of the Rings.

On the very first day she learned about footwork, found an outfit and foil that fit, and got to spar with another student. She is very excited to be learning to do this, and is already talking about competing - which is thrilling because she generally stays away from being on stage. She enjoyed it so much that she kept talking about it to her buddy "S" and now Buddy S is signed up for lessons too.
Here they are competing against each other. T-Rex is on the left, Buddy S on the right.

Fencing is a workout!

Back to blogging

More than a week ago I was doing research for a class I'm taking, and downloaded a virus.... apparently a pretty vicious one. The computer went to the fix-it store and when we got it back we couldn't connect with the new wireless. So, over the next few days I'll post what we did without a computer.

On Saturday July 31 we went to the Medical College of GA's epilepsy surgery reunion. We had a nice lunch, and listened to a bunch of testimonials. Afterwards we walked around the museum where it was held. Our real reason for going though was actually to meet the Hardy's. Their daughter "A" had a hemi when she was even younger than Blondie, but it was great to meet her family. They share a lot of our opinions and determination in raising a hemi kid, and their daughters are absolutely charming. "A" didn't let anything slow her down, and she was constantly chatting up a storm. It was fantastic to watch a little girl move past her surgery, and absolutely bloom.

After the museum we walked along the waterfront in Augusta which is absolutely beautiful. It did start to rain, so we headed home.