Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Kindergarten Gems

It seems that we have had an unusually quotable kindergarten class recently.

Getting the kids settled down at carpet time
Teacher: "Whoa, be careful, boys! We don't want any casualties."
Boy: "That's okay, Mrs R., I went to the dentist and he said I don't have any."

Things that Start with the Letter Z
Teacher: "What are some words that start with the letter Z?"
Various Kids: "Zebras." "Zucchinis." "Zoos." "Zamboni machines." "Zero."
Little Boy in the Back Row: "Zucchinis."
Teacher: "We already talked about zucchinis."
Little Boy in the Back Row: "No you don't eat them, you wear them."
Teacher: "I don't know quite what you mean; tell us more."
Little Boy in the Back Row: "They are waterproof underwear and you can swim in them."
(Teachers all look at each other in bewilderment)
Little Boy #2 to the Little Boy in the Back Row: "No, it doesn't start with a Z, it starts with a B."
To the teachers: "He means bikinis, not zucchinis."

Rainforest Animals
Teacher (just back from a trip to Costa Rica): "We saw monkeys and snakes and we heard the birds up in the trees, just like in the story I just read."
Child: "Did you see any jaguars like in story?"
Teacher: "No, jaguars usually come out at night and sleep during the day, so we didn't see any. Boys and girls, who knows what we call animals that sleep during the day and are active at night?"
Little Girl: "Party?"

Monday, March 20, 2006

For the ages

There is nothing better than learning something new!

Although our photos are neatly and chronologically arranged in fifteen large photo albums occupying a very long shelf, although I have always enjoyed browsing through them, still...I've always felt there was something missing.

In some cases, what was missing was my memory. How old was Pedro in this photo? Or, good heavens, was that Erkie instead? Was this the Rose Parade in '82 or '86? The train cake was cute for his third birthday, but what games did we play and what were those kids' names again? I never realized how the cherished details of their childhood would blur beyond recall, buried in day-to-day bustle and an avalanche of time.

I always wonder what the boys think when they turn the pages. Do the photos mean anything to them, other than an interesting view of what they looked like when they were small? Do I bore them when I mention details that certain photos evoke or does it make the images live? It certainly seems to me that the albums need a narrative to be complete.

And why in the world have we put each and every photo we've ever taken in these albums? Some are out of focus, some have every person with shut eyes or that strange manic smile peculiar to those being photographed, some have faded, some compositions are rubbish compared to the lucky shot taken a minute later.

Now I am enjoying the satisfaction of orchestrating creative, heirloom, archival scrapbooks. The history major in me loves the story behind the pictures. A picture may be worth a thousand words, a photo without any words isn't worth three cents, but an image with a description of some basic who-what-where-when-and-whys is priceless! These books may mean something mostly to me at present, but someday...I hope they eventually will be the catalyst for rousing yarns, the source of tolerant laughter, or a surprise discovery to the reader.

I've been a crafter my whole life, but the delight I am taking in scrapbooking is almost beyond description. Scrapping is satisfying to the artist in me who loves color and line, to the painter who loves a well-composed scene, to the wife and mother who loves her family, and to the historian who believes that stories make the past live again. These disparate elements can occasionally combine to create a story that rocks!

And now, I'm off to work on yet another scrapbook page...

Sunday, March 19, 2006

Things that make life worth living (1)

From deep in March: The silvery fur of pussywillows. A scrubjay's crackle. The drip of sugar maple sap. Being able to sleep in on the weekend and getting up early instead to enjoy the sunrise. Newborn calves. Soil loosened by a winter of frost-heave. 106 male robins on The Paved Road. Remembering Arches. Possibilities.

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Hum along

I love the sun!

Don't get me wrong--I appreciate the snow. It's fun, clean, beautiful, crisp. And I even like rain sometimes, even though it's wet. I couldn't raise colorful flowers and a thick lawn without the water they eventually provide.


It's March. If winter wanted to be here, it should have arrived when it was scheduled and then politely left. Storm after storm, delayed starts for kindergarten, icy bridges, cancelled soccer practices. Winter, give it up! You have till Monday when Spring officially begins and then I expect you to gracefully adios. I'll be thrilled to see you again next year. Have fun in the southern hemisphere. Say hi to them for me when you get there.

Today, I'm thinking that "Here Comes the Sun" may be my favorite Beatles song ever.

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

HTML pride goeth before a fall

OK, I finally decided that I have a limited amount of time in my life and I couldn't spend all my time sitting in front of the computer wondering how my previous webpages could have been so easy and why the one I had created around Christmas was so very uncooperative. So...I have caved, taken the easy path, gone over to the dark side. Yes, I have given myself permission to use a blogging service and a TEMPLATE rather than doing it all myself from scratch.

Hmm, instead of doing it from scratch and using a template...sort of like using a cake mix or the microwave on a regular basis to save time and still serve a nice dinner. I do that and never feel guilty. And when I do get the "do it from scratch" urge, I have the time and do a great job. I'm suddenly feeling a lot better about all this website/blog in a box business.

And the purpose, after all, is to communicate and have fun doing it! Yeah, I do have a smile on my face. So, folks, welcome to my blog, enjoy! And watch out for falling rocks.