Thursday, June 25, 2009

The Sandwich Days of Summer

School is out and summer is fully under way at our house. That sounds great. But for my kids, the wide open slate of a long summer day actually can be overwhelming. All school year they yearn for more free time, the chance to just be kids and have no schedule. But when that situation finally arrives, they sometimes don't know what to do with themselves. Their days during the school year are mapped out for them and it takes some time for them to settle into the freedom that summer allows. The most frequently asked questions in our house are "What are we doing tomorrow, later, next?"

To ease them (and me) into the lazy days of summer, I have created the illusion of a schedule. I call it our "Sandwich Days".The slices of "bread" are the morning and afternoon activities that we must do everyday: get dressed, brush teeth, make beds, practice piano, household chores and the like. Generally, the bread activities take short bits of time and really help to start the day. The "meat" of the sandwich is the fun stuff we do for the rest of the day: swimming, bike rides, playing with friends and such.

The kids so far like reading the daily schedule each morning and knowing what fun awaits!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Appreciate the good stuff that's close to home

My hubby is a musician...a really talented one. He's one of those people that can play any instrument. Give him a few minutes and he figures it out. His main instruments are acoustic guitar and piano. On those, he's a natural. And he writes and he sings. As with most of us, his creative outlet is not where he gets to spend most of his time. He has a day job, a family, loads of responsibilities. His music buffers his sanity from the real world pressures.I don't get to see him play that often, given my responsibilities for the kiddos at home. But I was able to go to a gig this past weekend. I so enjoyed hearing him play and watching his enjoyment of playing. It's probably good that I don't get to see him play that often, because I do appreciate his talent so much when I see him infrequently. Kind of like living on the take the beauty for granted if you see it every day. After a while, you aren't in awe anymore. So I got my dose of Bo Weevil and it was great. I once again was awed by his talent.
I also had the added enjoyment of trying out my new camera in a low light setting. I got some great shots and was so pleased with the results. Sorry you missed the night, but you can enjoy a little bit of of Bo Weevil here.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

On Father's Day

To my husband and my lucky boys' daddy. We love all that you are. Happy Father's Day!

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Listen could learn something

I love words, learning new ones, using them in unexpected ways, mixing up my personal lexicon. I learned a new phrase yesterday. I was speaking with a friend and this was the conversation:
My friend: "We have to be at the pool for the swim meet at 6:45."
Me: "That is early for a Saturday."
My friend: "To wit!"
Me: (In my head, not out loud)"Huh?"
I had never heard that phrase before and frankly at that moment I wasn't even sure if it was an actual colloquialism or merely a sound "toowhit" as in "woowee" or "yeehaw." Uneventfully, the conversation continued and I was able to follow the rest with no problem.

Skip forward to my bedtime reading. I picked up a book that has been on my shelf for a few years, given to me by another friend. This book never drew me to read it until last night. I picked it up out of desperation for something interesting to read. Three pages into the book what do I read but "To wit..." Huh? Twice in one day? Synchronicity wouldn't you say? That is what my friend said earlier, now I was sure.

So I looked to my favorite secret resource, to clear up this unknown term. Here's what I found:
To wit (Adverb) - as follows, namely, that is to say, videlicet, viz.

You can look up those new words above that you don't know on your own time. Until then, don't you love it? A new way to voice agreement with a statement, a new way to say "obviously." A new way to say "Puh!"

Huh? Wait, you won't find "puh" in the freedictionary. That was a term frequently used by my brothers and me when we were young. It meant "Yeah, right!" "Obviously!" "Don't be a dolt!" Now I don't think my friend was calling me a dolt. But regardless, I am so thrilled to have this new, much more intelligent avenue for expressing myself. To wit!

Monday, June 15, 2009

Sunday Adventures

Sundays are always a relaxing day at our house. It is usually the only day of the week that isn't scheduled out hour by hour. On those uncommitted days, we try to spend as much time together as a family, doing what we enjoy. This Sunday the boys took the lead and started an ecological project of sorts. While exploring a small creek in our neighborhood park, they found magic in the water.It was a magic that made them immediately join forces, two brothers with a common goal, the brotherly squabbles of the fore were forgotten, they now wanted the same thing. They had found...snails. The first thing out of their mouths..."Can we take them home, PLEEEEAASSSSE?" We agreed and the next two hours were consumed with all things snail: collecting them, discussing the habitat the boys would need to create, considering what food they would need (We Googled and found they can eat the same food as our tropical community fish. Phew!), deciding how much water they need in their new home, choosing which sticks and rocks to add for snail ambiance, sifting (yes, sifting) the play sand so their new home would be safe and unsullied. All of this activity went on while hubby and I sat and watched. I love to see the boys have an idea and run with it. They had so much fun creating their snail habitats. They really did a great job. Now our family includes 4 humans, 2 cats, 11 fish and 14 snails. And I bet it continues to grow as the summer progresses.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

The Boys of Summer

Yesterday marked the end of Helios' first ever baseball season. He had a great time all season long. He learned the rules. He mastered the skills. He dug in the dirt as all young little leaguers do. No scores were kept and no outs were counted. Pure fun. But the competition was still serious in all the young minds. And he was SAFE!

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

I Have a New Toy

I just got a new camera! It makes me very happy! I am learning all the thousands of controls. It will take some time for me to master this thing. But I am having lots of fun getting there. Here are a few new practice shots from it.