Saturday, April 14, 2012

The Bellaire Toy and Plastic Brick Museum

Today we visited the above-mentioned place, which is NOT an official Lego museum, but I'm sure that's because of legalities. It is housed in a former school building, and contains three floors of exhibits, including a world-record making image spanning an entire gym floor.

Kwamai, Felicity and Erol all had a good time. I did too, but I manned the camera in order to not overload too much on tons of things to look at!

I'll post just a couple of pics to keep the computer from choking on me.

This last pic is a ship Kwamai built in the playroom and left as his own contribution to the exhibits. You can just see in his eyes how proud he was of his work.

Monday, April 2, 2012

Kwamai making Pisanki

Just had to share these great pictures of Kwamai that his friend's father took the other day. The group of kids were making Polish style Easter eggs -- Pisanki. The bottom one reminds me so much of his little baby face. :)

Friday, March 30, 2012

Choked-Up Mama Moment...

Last night as she was rummaging for something to do, Felicity exclaimed "Oh, I know!" and pulled the Children's Dictionary off the shelf to read.

**Sniff** How beautiful ...

Monday, March 19, 2012

Felicity: KofC Youth of the Year

To borrow a phrase from our Aussie cousin, Christine, Felicity was quite chuffed to receive the Youth of the Year award at the Knights of Columbus awards dinner on Saturday. She was awarded this for her help with shopping for every breakfast and for helping out for the last several months cracking eggs, handing out fruit cups, and such like.

Congratulations, Felicity!

(Yes, it looks hand-written, because it is, but a computer-generated form is on its way.)

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Digital Archives!

I've realized what a wonderful place a blog is to save all of those artistic creations that fill our house. Here are a few, not so recent, that I've scanned for posterity. Here is a card Kwamai made for me on my last birthday. :)

This is one of Felicity's recent works of art. She loves colors and creating things.

Somehow this came out backwards from the scanner. Kwamai did not really write !MOM backwards. Between the body shape and the hair I could not resist holding on to this one!

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Happy feast day

Felicity poses for a few feast day photos.

Today is the feast day of St. Felicity. Actually, it's Sts. Perpetua and Felicity. They were martyrs in Carthage, Tunisia in the year 203. They were young women, both with newborn babies: Perpetua a noblewoman and Felicity a slave. You can read their story here.

Friday, March 2, 2012

Here Come the Wild Pictures

My children are definitely not camera shy.


The stars of the show have been begging me to reactivate this blog, as they have recovered from the embarrassment they once experienced at the realization I was blogging about them.

And now they both can read.

So I guess I can't do much parental editorial.

But that's ok. Every day of parenting is a new and glorious adventure.

Felicity is now begging me to post that they are having a delightful time shredding old financial documents. Honestly, this is a deeply coveted activity in our house.

Guess why Kwamai grabbed a blanket for the photo shoot.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Pictures from Felicity's Birthday Party

Ok, I'm not such a great birthday party photographer. I admit it. I'm not that much for throwing fancy parties, either. But there was cake, there were friends, there were presents, and there was rejoicing.
Some photographic evidence:

Kwamai was on task with a short video:

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

And Felicity Goes to Art Class

Today I actually had the experience of having both children in classes! While Kwamai was investigating school, Felicity attended her first homeschool art class at the local Center of Music and Art.

Last week we happened to stop by there to drop of a poster to advertise a benefit concert I'm organizing. I had never actually been inside before, and both Kwamai and Felicity were very excited by the place. Kwamai wants to take drum lessons, and Felicity was awed by all the art supplies. The Center offers a class for children ages 5-12 twice a month, and as Felicity is less than a week from 5, it seemed fitting for her to try it out. There was only one other girl who came to the class today (as it is a session-by-session class, so people can attend when they wish), and she happened to be 12. So the teacher was able to work with each of them at their respective levels. Felicity learned to draw people and make people out of clay, and she also drew and colored some lovely flowers. They use high quality art supplies, which is probably the most fun of anything. Felicity said she can't wait for the next one because she's excited to discover everything there is to learn. I think she has also discovered her new favorite place to shop.

Kwamai's First Day of School

Kwamai spent today visiting a 3rd grade class at the local Catholic school (Bishop John King Mussio Elementary). He asked me a few weeks ago about the possibility of him going to school, and I suggested that he try it out for a day, sort of taking a test drive. He went through phases of being excited about it and then wanting to forget about it. But then with the passing of time, he simply took it as a serious experiment in which to participate today.

He sprang right out of bed at 7 this morning, and was remarkably polite to me as he got ready, ate breakfast, and tried to figure out what to do before we left at 8am. We arrived just in time for morning prayer in the cafeteria, where the Principal met us and was rather surprised by how (as she put it later) about 3/4 of the kids greeted Kwamai by name!

I got at least a partial report on the way home. Over all, he said he enjoyed the day but likes homeschooling better. He said the best things were that he traded his potato chips for Doritos at lunch time, and that he made friends extremely fast. But he said also that with our style of education at home, "you just find the answer, not the problem." I think that translates thus: he values learning in a natural setting, where finding the answers to questions makes sense in a real-life context. School, on the other hand, seemed to propose a lot of abstract, fictitious reasons, like textbook questions, to find answers that held no apparent meaning.

It seems he enjoyed the experience, and wasn't surprised by much of anything. But he's not itching to make a permanent switch. It was also sweet to see that he really missed Felicity. Upon returning home, he asked "Felicity, will you play with me? Yes, or yes?" I don't know that I've ever heard him explicitly ask her to play with him like this before.

As I watched all the kids file out after morning prayer, I couldn't help but notice how young they all looked. That particular school only goes up through 5th grade, so I suppose Kwamai is right in the middle age range.

The Principal asked me if I was nervous for him all day. Pfft, I said, heck no. I was just really interested in hearing everything he would think about it.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Easter Egg Hunt

Kwamai just carried out a neighborhood Easter egg hunt that he organized. And believe me, he organized it all quite apart from my involvement (and even knowledge, and schedule-approval at first!). It all worked out, though, sort of. There were about a dozen kids from 3-10 who gathered at the school yard behind our house (the school has been closed for a couple of years). Kwamai and Felicity hid the eggs, and the other kids found them. There was some dissent especially among the older ones who didn't like having to share with the smaller ones, especially that smaller crying girl, Felicity. One of his friends was quick to point out Kwamai's organizational flaws: not enough eggs, having to share with the little ones, everyone let loose at one time. Kwamai was a bit put out by the complaints at first. But then the kids from one of the families all marched back and started thanking me for the Easter egg hunt. I told them they'd need to thank Kwamai since it was all his doing. So, they did. I think that made Kwamai feel a bit better.

I was really rather impressed with Kwamai's initiative, leadership, and the direction he gave the group even though of course there were a few bumps. I hope he also took to heart the lesson of having disgruntled kids on his hands, because somehow I can sympathize with how that feels!

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Kwamai's Christmas Letter

I am late to post this, but this was the letter Kwamai gave Felicity for Christmas. We've quoted it several times since then. It states: "I love you Felicity and you are a cat. Ho ho ho, Love Kwamai"

Felicity likes to meow a lot, in case you were wondering.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Christmas Eve Pageant

Here is Felicity dressed as Mary for the Christmas Eve pageant. She did a great job traveling to Bethlehem and laying baby Jesus in the manger.

Here is Kwamai suited up as Fr. Alexander. He claimed to be blushing significantly as he walked up the aisle.

Here is the video of the pageant, minus the first minute or so when Mary and Joseph made their entrance. It is hard to make out the narration, but the idea was that after talking about the Christmas story, it talked about the gift of the priesthood and the priests who have been pastors of our parish. Kwamai played the role of a priest who is currently visiting us as a graduate student from Kenya. He was not available to play himself, but our current pastor was. You can tell which one he is because he is a bit bigger than the others.

Monday, December 7, 2009

St. Nicholas Day Photos 2009

A day late again this year, but who's counting?

It is getting rougher and rougher to persuade these guys into serious pictures, so we go for the slightly silly look in most of these. Felicity's first fashion pic was a summer dress, which would be right up her alley, but at the last she settled on her last year's Christmas dress with no tights. Close enough. Kwam the recalcitrant did not want to dress whole hog fancy, but a white shirt and black jeans is a fairly good concession.

A very sweet shot of The Girl, which unfortunately is just a tad fuzzy.

My favorite shot of Kwamai, with a glimpse of sad Felicity whose turn it wasn't to be in the picture.

The official twosome shot.

Kwamai's silly sequence

Can't figure out how to get that third picture to line up, but oh well...

Felicity's candids: true to form she is crafting, then shopping.