Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Last Day

Last day of swim lessons for H yields lots of pics because I promised him he could show them off to his brother and sister and tell them all about touching the bottom of the pool, diving through the hula hoop, swimming to the edge, jumping off the diving board, finding treasure, and swimming on his back. H was not a huge fan of swim lessons this year, which surprised me because he has few fears (other than the mysterious "nightmare in my closet," thanks to a book by Mercer Meyer). But he was a trooper and didn't complain too much about going to lessons every day. 

And last day of school for the kids.

I have mixed feelings about the end of school this year. I'm usually more than ready to have my kids home again. But this year, while I celebrate no more packing lunches and helping with homework, I am worried about my ability to teach my online class, get my Primary duties done, manage the increasing fighting (between H and Sweetie--they both like to be the boss), and lead the kids in fun summer activities. I will also miss my alone time with H, who is really delightful one-on-one. When I read him books before naptime, he puts one check next to mine and hooks his arm under my chin to place his little hand on my other cheek. He's a great shopping buddy, as long as I bring a fruit snack and let him help put the cans/boxes/produce in the cart. He rocks out to my tunes in the car, and he tells me all kinds of fascinating made-up things from his vantage in the middle seat.  I am ready, however, to be done being his sole game-playing-companion. To say H loves playing games is an understatement. We play at least 4 a day and usually don't play by the rules (which annoys Sweetie to no end). I will love the kids' company, but I will not like seeing my happy little companion turn into a shouting, crazy, trying-to-get-attention, almost 3-year-old.

Oh well, ready or not, here comes summer!

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Where could H be?

Too bad he "got dressed for church" today. Those darn shoes give him away every time.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

It's that time of year

Recital time. This past week we were lucky to watch Sweetie dance her heart out at her dance recital.

Both kids also played in another teacher's piano recital (since I teach them myself, they wouldn't get that opportunity). But I think it's a good experience to prepare a song (or 2, in this case) and to play it in front of an audience. Mister heartily disagreed and we had some drama before the recital, but in the end, he played, but not without the music. Regardless, he did a great job, as did Sweetie. We didn't video them--just a still shot--so you are saved feeling obligated to click on the video and listen to recital pieces :) Instead, if you see them this summer, grandparents, ask them to play their pieces for you, please!

 It's also the time of year for weddings, and this week was the wedding of one of my old Laurels, whose dad was the bishop that J served with and whose mom is a good friend of mine and the kids' old preschool teacher. So I was happy to help ice cakes for the wedding. My friend made 42 9x13 cakes to serve, and I made the frosting and iced them into 21 double-layer cakes, 2 per cake box. It took me much longer than I thought (as is always the case with me--somehow I think I'm so much more efficient than I actually am!) And in the end, my kitchen looked like a powdered sugar bomb exploded in it, but the cakes were iced and tasted great.

I spent most of my spare time this week grading papers, and after submitting grades yesterday, I woke up this Sabbath morning to a few complaints already present in my inbox. So today I am frustrated with teaching writing online, but unlike the kids' elementary school, which ends this Thursday, this semester is hardly over so I will continue plugging along.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Poem of the Month:

In honor of Mother's Day (although it's never been one of my favorite days, as I've shared before on this blog). Still, I love this poem by my Segullah friend, Sharlee Mullins Glenn. You can find the original here

"Blood and Milk"
by Sharlee Mullins Glenn

I dreamed of Oxford . . .
(spires, a thousand spires, endless lectures, musty halls

a solitary self in a Bodleian expanse

A good life, my dear Wormwood. An orderly life.)

then awakened to laundry
and things to be wiped
(countertops, noses, bottoms)
How did this happen? And when, exactly?

Time flows, it flows, it flows
and there are choices to be made:
left or right?
paper or plastic?
blood or milk?
There’s freedom in the bleeding;
bondage in the milk—do not be deceived.
Ah, but it’s an empty freedom; a holy bondage,
A sweet and holy bondage.
Five times I chose the chains, those tender chains,
(though once will bind you just as well!)
and checked the crimson flow.
Suckled while dreaming of Trinity Term
but awakened, always awakened, to the laundry
and to that small and cherished captor at my breast.

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Celebrating these Fine Souls

In this last catch-up blog post of Mister's birthday and Sweetie's birthday, I need to first say that I love to celebrate the days of their births because each of those days brought me a blessing beyond compare. Most days, I go to bed thoroughly exhausted and thoroughly grateful for these fine souls I get to love forever.
Mister's Birthday(s)
Mister's birthday began with chocolate milk and waffles. At lunchtime, I brought him his favorite orange chicken from Panda Express. In the evening, we went to the school carnival and he got his free ribs from his favorite restaurant. On the Sunday after his birthday, when J was finally home again, J cooked him up his favorite wings for dinner, and the Rocks joined us for presents and cake.

Sweetie's Birthday(s)
Sweetie didn't want anything special for her birthday breakfast, other than the much-loved chocolate milk. I also took her Panda for lunch, and she chose steak for her birthday dinner. She couldn't wait for the Rocks to join us to open her presents so she opened them on her birthday and we had her cake a couple of days later.

 J and I gave Sweetie a whiteboard (because of her love of drawing on every single thing) and a karaoke microphone and stand (because of her love of music and of being in the limelight). We put that to good use right away. Notice H dancing his little fanny off while the older kids sang.

I'm going to try posting a couple of videos of the singing action (and the rapping action--they are their father's children, after all):

 When the Rocks came over we played minute-to-win-it, elephant march, which was pretty funny. Alicia was the big winner, knocking over the water bottles in only 20 seconds!