Wednesday, January 27, 2016

End of January

Here's some of what's happening:

  • Baby T has been enjoying her mini-markers, scissors, construction paper, glue stick and Kumon cutting book.  I'm thinking of picking up another Kumon workbook, as they have lots of nice cutting, pasting and stickering workbooks for the preschool set.
  • D has been a little under the weather.
  • C is working on her snippet of the 1812 Overture and playing In the Hall of the Mountain King.
  • C is interested in doing an open mike at a tea place in town.  She really likes performing.
  • C and I are also in talks about doing an Alaska ukulele cruise in 2-3 years.  They also do these things to the Caribbean and Hawaii, but an Alaska cruise would be most convenient for us, as we are in and out of Seattle anyway about once a year.  It's a sort of floating workshop/small festival, combined with the usual cruise stuff.  

Saturday, January 23, 2016

Peak ukulele?

I was just looking for ukulele covers of the Beatles' "Let it be" and one of the first ones I found was a Hungarian language tutorial for the song.

C is working up a snippet from the 1812 Overture for a school performance.  She's just starting the book Easy Classical Ukulele Solos, and she's really enjoying the difficulty level of classical pieces.

Monday, January 18, 2016

Potty training?

Baby T has been informed that once she uses the potty all the time, she gets all the things.  Here is a rough list of the stuff she has been promised:

--a new pink Little People plastic doll house (we used to have one, but it had an unfortunate accident)
--a Melissa and Doug ice cream play set
--some odds and ends I have been pulling out to entice her with (including a couple of new My Little Ponies)
--a Melissa and Doug magnetic fishing set

Baby T has been talking excitedly about getting the ice cream set and having a PARTY for her My Little Ponies.

Has this translated into actual potty use?  Not yet, but she likes the idea.

I have a number of small items (key chain and stickers and small finger puppets) that I can dole out as soon as there is any progress, but the big items (doll house and ice cream set) will have to wait until there is consistent performance.


Here's some of what's happening:

  • Baby T was helping her daddy paint little pine cones gold for us to use as Christmas tree decorations.  (We have a bunch of big gold ones from a previous project some years ago--the old ones have done a number of years of service.)
  • The Christmas stuff is taken down and put away.
  • Baby T has had a chance to ride her balance bike outdoors a couple times on campus!  (She'd previously enjoyed it indoors.)
  • C is working on a snippet of the 1812 Overture on the ukulele for an arts night at school.
  • D is going to be in an indoor rock climbing competition.
  • Baby T has been enjoying LEGO.
  • C is back for a new term of therapeutic riding.  She got to ride the big cart horse.

Monday, January 4, 2016

Christmas break

Christmas break is almost over.  Here's what we've done, in no particular order (because I can't for the life of me remember what happened in what order):

  • We've been stocking up with goodies from World Market.  They have their Christmas stuff on sale right now.  Some of it is still on the expensive side, but we have really enjoyed rose TurkishTdelight, dark chocolate-dipped marzipan,  lemon Italian nougat (not like the nougat in US candy bars) and a dark chocolate orange.
  • There's been lots of curry.  Oh, and World Market also has a nice selection of jarred Indian and Thai curry sauces.
  • We got a big tree for the living room and a little tree for the dining room table.  Very nice, although I can't see D!
  • We got through our home Christmas prep pretty well.  Christmas notes are going to have to wait until I get Baby T back into parents' day out, if they happen at all. 
  • D made a "MERRY X-MAS" in LEGO for the shelf where I have my Christmas cards.  Awww!
  • The kids got to go skating a couple of times.
  • We went to Austin and C and I went to Fiddler's Green (a small Irish music store with a large ukulele selection) and C tried out ukuleles until she decided on a koa-top concert ukulele from Snail.  (I'm not totally sure if it's solid or laminate koa, but it's very nice.)  Meanwhile, my husband took D and Baby T to the Thinkery, an interesting but loud Austin children's museum.  We took Uber over there (my first ride--so impressed!) to meet them.  At the museum, a worker saw C's ukulele case and asked for a quick uke lesson, as they had a donated ukulele.  C gave him a 5-minute lesson.
  • For those of you counting at home, C now has one cheaper painted soprano ukulele and two mid-range concert ukuleles (price ranges from 30-something to 200-something).  She likes her new one best.
  • School is about to start and several of us are feeling a little under the weather, especially C.  She had a 102+ fever this morning and Baby T has a cough.  I'm a little sniffly.    

Sunday, December 13, 2015

Hi, Sarah!

Here's some of what's happening!  (I got a Christmas card mentioning the blog, so I thought I should put up something new.)

  • The leaves have finally started coming down hard, but the temperatures have been oddly high off and on.  I haven't had to wear socks much yet.
  • I forget if I blogged this previously, but C had her class play.  It was a short version of Shakespeare, she had a minor role, and it went fine.  It was a big relief to be done, as the drama teacher had been having the kids do an average of two hours of outside-school practice every single day, including the day of the play when they also had an in-school performance and an after-school performance.    
  • C has been practicing Christmas carols on her ukulele and she and D have tried singing and playing.
  • Very excitingly, it looks like there's an instrumental music class at school next year for the class C will be in then.  The ensemble plays in chapel and C says they are very good.  That will be both a nice music and social experience for C if she gets to play with them.  
  • D continues to enjoy the big college climbing wall.  He's also interested in visiting other climbing walls and a local trampoline park.  It looks like the trampoline park may be offering morning toddler hours, so very excited! 
  • I have some big Christmas plans for day trips/excursions, which may or may not happen:  a climbing wall, a field trip to a big city music store so C can try out ukuleles, the trampoline park and ice skating.  It may be possible to combine some of those.  
  • One more week of school, with a varying number of half-days for the kids (C has several exam days).
  • In a frenzy of Christmas spirit, I ordered a blue large-print hibiscus Hawaiian shirt for C, a red one for C, and then a matching red hibiscus print dress for Baby T.  (I just asked D if he wants one too--NOPE!)  
  • We recently got a recumbent bike (mainly for me) because I had been enjoying using the recumbent bike at the college gym and watching HGTV on my Kindle Fire.  (Yay, capitalism!)  Having had a number of not-so-great conventional stationary bike experiences, I've really been enjoying the recumbent bike--the posture is better, the seat is more comfortable, it's an all-round fantastic product.  We wanted to get the bike for me so I'd be able to exercise over Christmas.  One of the ironies of life just off a college campus is that when you really NEED exercise (Thanksgiving break or 2+ weeks of Christmas break) the gym is closed.  Fortunately, we have a big enough house that exercise equipment doesn't crowd us out.  Both big kids have enjoyed trying out the bike.    
  • With regard to Christmas stuff, I think we have bought just about all the gifts we should buy (which is not to say we won't buy more).  Somehow, between the three of them, our kids have five Christmas parties (two school, one preschool, two (?) CCD).  We're supposed to send something for just about every one, which looks like it may delay our family Christmas preparations quite a lot.  One down, four to go.
  • Baby T's preschool teacher sent home a paper stocking for us to decorate for her.  I subcontracted that out to C.  She didn't do a conventional red and white stocking, but she did ADORABLE Sharpie animals (including penguins and what looks like a winged dragon in a Santa cap) and then Baby T colored it all orange.
  • I haven't seen C draw animals other than dragons and horses for a long time, so it was nice to see her artistic range.    
  • It looks like the big kids will try fencing again in January.  

Sunday, December 6, 2015

Pony birthdays

Baby T asks out of the blue, "Do ponies have birthday apples?"

She noted that, "Horsies eat apples, too!"