Friday, June 19, 2009

Summer's start

Our first week of summer has come to a close!

Middle Girl did a little half-day-camp this week with the first grade teacher (the kids truly believe that she is magic).

Big Girl wrote all of her thank-you notes for her birthday yesterday, and today sorted through the huge piles of 3rd-grade work that she brought home. (The end of the school year is rough in this way - the mountains of stuff that comes home!) It took her two hours, but she did it! Now that she has ticked these two tasks off of the To-Do List, she can really relax into summer. She needs to work on her math skills regularly, and keep up the violin practice (recital coming up!), but in general she's in summer mode and I am so glad for that.

As for The Boy, I can't believe his first year of preschool is over! It's been a great year for him. His teachers were fantastic, and he had a lot of fun with his friends. He got over his shyness pretty quickly and really enjoyed himself. Now that everyone is home all day, I have stopped making him lie down for "rest time." That's the big news for him right now! Quietly, and without fanfare, Mommy has phased out nap. (He hadn't been sleeping during nap for several months. Believe me, I would still be giving him nap if he were.)

We had a nice weekend getaway to kick off our summer, traveling to my MIL's house and taking Big Girl to see "Wicked" as her big birthday event. She had a great time in the big, fancy theater, and she LOVED the show!

Looking ahead, I plan to spend the summer trying to say "yes." Once, during a Parent Ed discussion, the teacher pointed out the seemingly simple concept that parents don't always have to say "no" to their kids' questions. She challenged us to see if we can say "yes." Every time I try to think this way, it seems to turn out well.

"Mommy, can we go swimming?"

"Mommy, can we make a snow globe?"

"Mommy, can we play Go Fish?"

I'm going to try my best to alter my plans if necessary, and spend the summer saying "yes!"

Monday, June 8, 2009

A full day ... full of awesome!

On Saturday I was on the road at about 8:40 am, headed north on my little solo adventure! I was going to enjoy some scenery, meet a blogger, and earn a little money! A diverse plan!

An hour or so into my drive, I saw this:

Cinderella's carriage, including the white horse! Right there on the freeway! Click on it to get a better look at it - really quite something.
No doubt it was headed to someone's wedding. Not the same wedding I would be working at, though!

I had some companionship in the car with me.

Meet my little friend, Mr. Garmin. (The Hubby's newest gadget.) He talked to me during the drive, telling me where to turn, which freeways to take, where to get gas... we didn't always agree, but that makes for more interesting conversation, right?

Here, Mr. Garmin is showing me that I should take Highway 101 to Highway 101. Very helpful, thank you, Mr. Garmin.

Now looky here! Mr. Garmin and I are in the middle of nowhere!
(I apologize for the blurriness. I was driving, yo. On the open road.)

Mr. Garmin tells me that we are right next to the ocean.

Look! He's right!

Thank goodness for Mr. Garmin; how else would I know to look out the window and find a headland so I can snap a pretty photo? :-D
(yes, while driving. The Hubby was not so happy about that...)

Also out the window of my moving vehicle...
I saw a lot of charred hillsides, after the recent fires in this area:

Then I saw the hillsides adjacent to the burn areas: this is how everything looked before:


(I actually pulled off the road for that one.)

When I got to the town where the wedding would be held, a friend was there to meet me! I got to spend a couple of hours with Heidi from smalltown mom, and we had a lovely time! She showed me around, while we talked and talked. We peeked in shops, and found some fun socks (my recent interest in novelty socks is a sure sign that I am turning into my mother). Heidi even treated me to a delicious lunch!

We had to have a bloggers' meet-up shoe photo! (I forgot about the shoe photo! I chose my shoes that day based on comfort, not cuteness... but check out Heidi's sassy leopards!)

It was so wonderful meeting Heidi... I feel so fortunate to have gotten to know her better! (Heidi, we should have taken a picture of our sock purchases! Well, I'll put pictures of mine here; you can put a picture of yours on your blog, too!)

Hopefully Heidi and I will get together again sometime!

Well, I had to get to work. It was the reason for this trip, after all...

Wedding time!

The wedding was in one of the historic California Missions.

They were having a Catholic Mass for their wedding, and I was cantoring. This means I was singing LOTS of music. I was very happy with how I sounded, and believe me, this is rare. I am so picky and hard on myself, but I was feeling good about this one! I got really nice responses, too, and the Father of the Bride even tipped me an extra fifty bucks! (Note to self: bumping into the Father of the Bride after the wedding can be a good idea!) Clearly, this was one of those days: an absolute *GEM* of a day!

When I got home, the kids were SO EXCITED about their new socks! (I had no doubt they would be.)

I got two for myself, and two for The Boy, since his socks seem to be disappearing.

Everyone HAD to put them on IMMEDIATELY!

Penguins for Big Girl, horses for Middle Girl, trains and clownfish for The Boy, and Chuck Taylors and sushi (!!) for me!

I just love these kitschy-cute sushi socks!

I'll write more about the Chuck Taylor socks later ... I've got an idea for a future post!

Here are a bunch more photos from the day, for your viewing pleasure!

Friday, June 5, 2009

a wee road trip

I'm excited about tomorrow! That fact that I'm excited about something is news in itself.

I've had plenty of things to get excited about in the last six weeks, it's not that... it's that I haven't been excited about anything. I've been feeling rather hollow.

Yes, I know what this sounds like. This is stuff I should be writing about, it would probably do me good to acknowledge it, talk about it...

But I'm not going to.

So, what have you been up to? Actually, I know what you've been up to - I've been reading your blog. Just haven't been able to muster up the energy to type out a comment. I'd like to tell you that your blog has made me smile on more than one occasion and thank you very much for that!

Me? Well...

Big Girl turned 9 years old on Monday! She had a couple of special playdates last weekend to mark the occasion, but no "party" per se. Instead, she asked to go see "Wicked." It's not playing here anymore, so we'll be making a "Wicked" pilgrimage next weekend!

Middle Girl graduated from Kindergarten on Wednesday! She's wistful about it.

The Boy is cute as ever, but getting more and more argumentative these days. Ah, well...

The girls performed in the school talent show. We made up a tap dance, and I made them some colorful, sparkly costumes. They were adorable!

My band usually performs at our town's 4th of July Picnic/Fireworks event, but they have cancelled the gig. Budget, it appears. We are pretty bummed about it. Trying to make the best of it, The Hubby and I have decided to have a party at our house, since the fireworks go off right overhead! I'm thinking pool party / barbeque / potluck / lots of socializing / fireworks show! I am looking forward to it.


I have been hired to sing at a wedding a few hours away, so I'll be getting up bright and early and driving up to ... to ... the small town! Wahoooooo I get to meet small town mom tomorrow!