Saturday, April 24, 2010

Willy Wonka's Chocolate Factory

Just as promised, here is a picture of Maddie in her starring role as and Oompah Loompah at Paterson Elementary's presentation of "Willy Wonka". This particular scene is the closing number with all the OLs out on stage. Maddie was in the "Mike Tevee" scene. She was really excited about the play until it came up that she'd be wearing a green wig. To add insult to injury, goggles were included into her scene. The play was really good. They always do such a grand job and I'm always amazed at the performance Mr. Gould can pull out of these children. The play ran Thursday and Friday evenings with a Saturday matinee.
Here is a good look at Maddie and her outfit! She didn't want any pictures with the wig, but I felt that as her mother, I was entitled to a few. She liked the socks just fine. The costumes were rented so she didn't get to keep any of this and I didn't have to sew it either!!
Good job, Missie Pie!! Enjoy the cast party!Here is an update on my tomatoes. There are lots of flowers and two tomatoes. I am so proud of them and I love them with all my heart. I hope there will be more. This one in the foreground is about an inch in diameter. The one in the back is about a half an inch.
We finally got around to planting the hay bale garden and it looks rather nice. It grows mushrooms easily, so lets hope it grows vegetables! The garden gets a lot of attention and love. We haven't had much rain, though. it looks rather like August here.
Last weekend was the Annual Young Women Fundraiser Dessert Auction. I made this beauty. I think it was picked up for $40. People are on a big budget these days. I thought it turned out pretty good for someone who still doesn't know what they are doing with fondant and the fondant really doesn't work out. I can still eke out a little something from the mess I make. I think this cake really speaks to who I am. I like the colors and design. The little marbles around the edge are always my favorite.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

In Which Jen Gets Reaquainted with her Car

Spring Break was so wonderful. I relaxed and got things done at the house. No one had lessons or classes or any of that kind of thing. I drove the kids around a bit, but nothing strenuous. And one of the best things was that I finally finished my purple sweater. It is so pretty. I know, it would look better on a different model, but I made it for me and until I morph into something more attractive, this is the best I have. I'm pleased with the sweater. I already knit the socks that match this sweater, too, which is a very exciting thing to behold. I am really pleased with the fact that I have knit two sweaters in one year. I have already started a new sweater!!
We finally had a chance on Monday to celebrate Morgan's birthday. Hannah and Mikel came over with their new baby, Jocelyn. Hannah's parents also joined us. We had a feast of tacos! I got the queso at Moe's and the beans at La Napolera and it really made the dinner extra good!! It was delicious and Morgan was so happy. She kept hugging me and saying "thank you" and "I really liked my dinner." She is always so grateful. We had so much fun, though, and sat around the table talking until 9:30 which is way past my bedtime. The reality of the week, though, was me in the car. Rozzie had dance team clinics at the high school Monday - Wednesday at 4:30. Well, she doesn't get home until 4:30, so that meant me driving to get her at school. That may not seem so outrageous, but Rozzie's junior high is 12 miles down the road! Some of you have been to the school and know just how far away it is. Adding to Rozzie's busy schedule, Maddie is in the play "Willy Wonka" at the elementary school and the play is next week, so they are in their major practice schedule and she had full rehearsals all week. Plus they had violin, dance, and Young Women's New Beginnings. I was spending 4 hours a day in the car!!! Maddie has another big week ahead of her. Look for pictures of a cute Oompha Loompah next week!
Rozzie had her dance team tryouts last night. We had prepared her for the outcome. Freshmen rarely make the team. There were 52 girls trying out. She worked had with McCall one night and also worked with her friend Caleigh each day. Caleigh lives down the street from us so the girls would practice at the bus stop and also at each other's houses each night. The dance called for a headstand with a roll over and Roz was shaky on the headstand. I could help her with that as I am still a headstand pro!! Lani came over to help Roz with her hair (Lani is the big hair/hair spray pro). We were trying to make Rozzie look like ... at least ... maybe ... a sophomore. Rozzie and McCall took off for the school and I sat down to knit to keep myself busy. Travis came home and we thought we'd bide time by going to La Napolera for dinner. On our way there, Roz called to report she was done and could be picked up. She was still shaky from the audition but she said she felt really good about her effort. She had to do a few mandatory things and then one optional "trick". She chose for her optional, "The Worm". Apparently, when she came out of the audition, everyone told her that her Worm was really good. We picked her up and took her to dinner with us. It helped kill time until the team was posted at 9 PM. We got home at about 8:30 and started checking the website. I was just sick. Morgan was even on pins and needles just DYING to know. It was really a toss up as to who was the most nervous: Rozzie, me, or Morgan! Finally at about 8:50, the list was up. The screaming started and I ran over and there was "Rozzie Smith" and right underneath "Caleigh from down the street". There were a few tears and lots of screaming. McCall made it again and they are excited to be on the team together. Rozzie actually knows a number of girls on the team from her dance studio. Rozzie ran down to Caleigh's and Caleigh didn't know yet, so Roz told her she was so nervous and check the list. There was more screaming. Here are the two new Golden Girls of Fleming Island!

I'm really excited for next year, now. I get to see Rozzie out on the field dancing, and Morgan out on the field marching. I couldn't be more proud of them. Morgan is looking forward to auditioning for drum major in two weeks, if that doesn't pan out, she'll audition for section leader (which she did last year). And guess who had trouble sleeping last night!

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Swimming Season is OPEN!

Spring Break has come to a close and I am very sad. I don't know that I can face seven more weeks of my students. They are all starting to go stir crazy which transfers itself into constant vigilance and redirection by me. Time will pass, I know. It is just the toughest part of the year. It seems harder here in Florida than it was in Minnesota and I think it is a direct function of the weather. The weather in Minnesota moves slowly to summer, so as students, we weren't faced with the desire to sunbathe at the lake until late May. However, we have hit beach time here in Florida and so the students are dreaming of sun-tans already and it is hard to keep them focused.

We took advantage of the weather, though, and went to the beach in St. Augustine for an afternoon. Morgan brought reading material - AP European History. She has a month until these exams and she is trying to use her time wisely. She is taking the ACT as I type, for which she has been studying over Spring Break, too.
Morgan turned 17 on Thursday and for a special Spring Break/Birthday treat, Travis took the girls south to Miami or Boca or whatever. They went to see a Panther's hockey game and loved it. Here they are sporting jerseys. There was some pleading to Dad to buy the jersey, but at $130, it was out of the question. They loved the game and excitement.
Here are Rozzie and Maddie enjoying the pool. Morgan opted to study for the ACT in the room.
Travis thought they'd be coming straight home, but the girls had other ideas. Their minds, like most of the youth in Florida, were on the beach!! So he took them over there for a little bit. The water is much prettier down there! Maddie didn't plan on getting wet again.
Rozzie is all about the beach, tans, and swimming suits! Morgan got out and enjoyed the beach but there wasn't a good picture of her.
While everyone was gone, I enjoyed a quiet house for two days. Lani and I went and toddled around St. Augustine and had a delicious lunch at The Columbian. They serve Cuban food and it was DELICIOUS!!
I finished my fingerless gloves!! They turned out great. The second one wasn't nearly as maddening as the first and it went SO fast. I had it done in a matter of days. Of course, being off from work helps me get more knitting done!

We got Rozzie's quilt back from the quilter and so there will be pictures of that as soon as it is bound and on the bed. She is rather pleased with it!!

Monday, April 5, 2010

The Olympics

Maddie's sixth grade FINALLY had their Greek Olympics. They were supposed to happen during the Olympic Olympics but it was too cold. Then it was supposed to be on my birthday, but rain was in the forecast (and in actuality) and Maddie had shingles, so it was postponed March 31. Maddie was over her pain and agony and was able to participate. She took her camera and then some others sent me some pictures since I was working. Maddie was asked to design the flag for the entire ceremony!! She was very pleased with the honor. She drew it all up and then asked me to do my graffiti for "Mount Olympus."
Next, she was chosen in her class to design the class flag!! Her class' color was white and they were the Minotaurs (obviously).
She participated in the chariot race and the fox-tail toss. She placed 1st in the fox-tail toss by about a centimeter. Here she is atop the podium.
In other feats of Olympic proportion. Morgan finished her 2nd pair of socks. She is becoming an adept knitter. She finished these and was immediately hunting for a new project (pictures forthcoming). I have an Olympic sized list of things to accomplish over Spring Break. The first was to paint Rozzie's room. her quilt will be done any moment. I was able to get the painting done in one day. I am quite pleased with that. The complete transformation will take more time. once we have the quilt we can start working on other parts of her room - like where to put the trash can. Right now, you can see the big mess that is left.
She has been throwing things away for three days and we are still finding more that can be discarded. It is a cleansing process. We will be painting flowers and paisleys on the wall to match the quilt. I bought some paper lanterns at Target about a year ago that will be hung over the bed. Other than that, her room will remain the same size with the same furniture. Here is a better shot of the bluish color. We like it lots!!
Now on to my next project!! And I'm back an hour later with a picture of the ring I just made! I have had these beads sitting here since January and now I have a pretty ring for the summer! Another project checked off my Spring Break List! And a lot of exclaimation points!!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

What, This is Bad?

I love the blog "Cakewrecks." I read/look everyday. they posted April Fool's Day cakes and started out with this:For a full write-up, check out this link: It is a very funny site or I wouldn't check it everyday. Back to the sandwich loaf...My mom made the best sandwich loaves and we had them at every single graduation party in my very large extended family. The cream cheese was always dyed the school colors of the graduating senior. Our family expected sandwich loaves and fought over the discarded crusts. Can that many people be wrong?

I saw this and had to laugh and really wanted to call my sister, from the Shoebox Castle, but my students were coming back from lunch in mere minutes and I knew that this conversation would need more time to consider the depth of this faux pas.