Friday, February 24, 2012

Friday Favorites

It has been an interesting week. Let's see what we can find.

1. We started the process of getting things organized to move some kids around. Edith has been in our room since birth and it's waaay time for her to get her own room. Plus, it just feels good to go through things and get organized.

2. The art center I'm putting together is a big hit. The kids have been having fun using it and I've been enjoying having my kitchen table back. I can't wait until it is really organized and done.

3. Rophone's grandma passed away on Monday at 105 years of age. I know this probably doesn't seem like it should be a favorite, but Grandma GiGi just hasn't been herself for a while and really wasn't enjoying life much. So, I say this is a favorite because I'm so darn happy for her. I know she's better off and that she's with people she loves. Will we miss her? Sure. But we've been missing who she was already and this isn't really about us. I know this is best for her, so it's a favorite.

4. We attended a funeral this week for someone who left the earth earlier than we had hoped. Not a favorite, but it has caused us to reflect and helped us appreciate. Always good things. 

5. Edith was doing squats tonight, saying 'stand up' and 'down' as she did them. It makes me feel a little like I should be working out, but so dang cute.

6. I got Edith to eat a little bit of ham and turkey lunch meat for dinner. Welcome to protein, baby! I'm hoping this will help her sleep a little better. Now if only she'd get those darn teeth...

7. I love my kids. Really, I do. I know this sounds a little like I'm trying to convince myself, but let's just say I'm glad we all made it through the week. It's something to be celebrated sometimes, I think.

8. I have a fabulous husband. I love him lots. He makes me feel like everything will be okay and with him at my side I believe him. I like that.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Word Art

When we were trying to figure out Pen's schedule for this semester we found that the class she really wanted to take didn't fit into her available slots so, on a whim, she signed up for an Illustration and Design course. After seeing her latest project, I'm thinking it's a good thing. A really good thing.

I love how she used words. It took me a moment to realize that even the mouse and cheese are words. So neat. I'm hoping to be able to frame it, but Pen thinks the teacher may use it for her example portfolio. I wouldn't be surprised. 

Way cool, Pen. 

Monday, February 20, 2012

The Artist

We have always known that Bud is an artist. Practically from birth he has loved to look at patterns and feel textures. I am in the process of setting up an art center and he couldn't be happier. Last week Bud finished up taking a 5 week long art class offered through the city. Based on the resulting projects and the joy on his face and in his demeanor, it's clear that we need to sign him up again. 

I took some pictures of a few of his completed works of art. I love them all and I'm so excited about all of the different mediums he got to use-- watercolors, tempura paints, oil pastels, clay (both hand-building and wheel), crayons....

I think this next one is one of my favorites. I have it hanging on a ginormous blank wall in our entryway. I've always wanted a huge statement piece there to wow people right when they walk in the door. Well, now I've got it. It's bright and colorful and just perfect. (Ignore the fact that it looks like Bud's self-portrait has a fatal wound to the jugular-- the teacher hung it up before it was quite dry.)

I also love these clay pieces that Bud made. I can't believe how well he threw the two bowls on the wheel. He did them all by himself with no help from the teacher. Those of you who have worked with a pottery wheel before know how impressive that could be considered for a 6 year old. I'm pretty sure he's better than me (not that that's saying much). I told Bud I love them and asked if I could have them for display, but he told me 'no'. I guess he loves them, too. 

I can't wait to decide which of Bud's artwork I'm going to frame and can't wait for him to take the class again so I can hopefully get him to let me have a few things. You're a great artist, Bud and I'm glad you've found something you love to do so much. I love you!

Friday, February 17, 2012

Friday Favorites

1. I posted about this already, but on Saturday morning I got to see what Big's been up to at basketball. Fantastic.

2. We went as a family on Saturday afternoon to try to find some amazing deals on some clothes the kids needed. Pretty much a bust, but it was fun anyway. We went to the grocery store and purchased a load of fantastic fruits and veggies, too. I love to see my fridge stocked with the good stuff.

3. I ended up getting really sick on Sunday (no, not a favorite) which lasted several days, but I was still able to help the kids with their Valentines and Valentine's boxes. I'm glad I was a tough cookie because the kids were really happy with what we came up with. Ginger's birthday cake Valentine's box even won 1st place in the contest held by her fifth grade class. Woohoo!

And, yes, of course I copied someone else's idea for the Valentines. The boxes on the other hand? They were all me. And the kids, of course. I constructed Bud's and for Ginger's I cut the hole in the top and did some of the more difficult hot-gluing. I think they both did a great job decorating the boxes and bringing them to life. 

4. Nothing else to report about Valentine's Day, unfortunately. Mike and I were both sick so even the kids didn't get anything this year. But my favorite part about that is apparently they didn't need anything. They reassured us that they know we love them and that's all they need. Big did say he wants our love and a cherry picker, though. 

Edith's crying. Gotta go. Pray for teeth!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Hoop Dreams

Finally. The day is here. Big has been dreaming of being old enough to play basketball for years. Really. Those of you who follow my blog and know Big are aware that I'm not kidding. He has been obsessed with the sport for as long as I can remember, has been able to dribble since before he was two, and has pretended to be players from the NBA for ages. Heck, he even pretends that everyone in the family is in the NBA. I was Gordon Hayward today for a while and Edith actually answers when you call her Big Al. That should tell you how much a part of Big's life basketball is. 

This year Big was finally old enough to begin playing basketball through the city. It's a parent-child program at Big's age, meant to teach the kids the fundamentals of the game. At first Big was annoyed that they wouldn't be playing games, but once we explained how much the pros practice, he was excited to do what they do. 

Here they are doing a little warm up at the beginning. I had to laugh that Rophone positioned Big in a spot where he had a little room to maneuver and two little boys quickly scooched right close again. 

It kinda cramped Big's arm-circling style.

To my surprise, one of Big's favorite parts of his practice are all of the defensive drills they get to do. I think it's because it's all new to him. He loves to practice the defensive slide and how to run backwards. I think those are his favorites.

Big also loves the shooting, of course. He's working a lot on his layups. 

I think his favorite part of this shooting practice was when Rophone had him shooting high, trying to hit his raised hand. Since Big does so much shooting inside the house, we are always trying to do things to get him to maintain the arch in his shot. I mean, look at the kid's smile.

They also practice a lot of dribbling and passing which, for the most part, is pretty easy and unexciting for Big. But, he knows it's really important to practice so he does it with enjoyment. Maybe just not as much enjoyment as some of the other things. 

I think that my favorite parts of Big's practice were watching him listen intently to the coaches as they gave instruction...

....and just watching all of the expressions on Big's face as he played. His tongue is the most amazing part; I don't know if you noticed, but not only does he stick it out but he flips it completely over, too. Awesome. 

Big was absolutely exhausted that morning-- he was so excited to go play that he only ate half of a banana for breakfast. As a result, I captured a lot of shots of a very low energy Big, too. Poor kid.

I had the best time watching Big finally get to play and I know he's been having a great time playing. He loves that he gets to do it with his dad, too. This morning Big told me that he wants to be in the NBA when he grows up. He then said to me, "I want to be on the Utah Jazz and do you know what? They're going to want me because I practice so hard." 

It's true. I don't think I've ever met a kid with such focus. And tonight one of Big's coaches told Rophone that out of the over 100 kids in the program this year, Big is the best dribbler. Keep it up, Big. You're well on your way.