*Note, I just found this post that I wrote in the fall and had saved as a draft - I don't know how I never pushed the 'publish' button, but oh well! Better late than never!
I have this friend Amy, who I've known for about 4 years. We have a lot in common, she's pretty amazing and takes awesome photos. She even sent us Pip!
Up until last month... we'd never met in person.
But she said they were heading out this way for vacation, so of course we had to get together.
Our three boys patrolling the neighborhood.
The day they arrived was a busy day for us, and because they got stuck in traffic we ended up having about 15 minutes to chat while I tugged boys into their martial arts uniforms. Basically I showed them where they'd sleep and where I keep my laundry detergent and then had to leave for a while.
Some people might have thought it weird to leave 'strangers' in your house while you weren't home. But they weren't strangers. Also, I immediately got the feeling that they 'got' us. The whole chasing the boys around to get their uniforms on, giving step by step directions to Thomas (they deal with some similar issues) was nothing new to them. That was refreshing.
At the dinosaur museum.
They were terrific houseguests. The kids loved Zach, and they all got along. I was super excited to take Zach to the dinosaur museum. Dinosaurs are his THING. And it was awesome.
The boys posing with their 'scared' faces. ?
They stayed until after church on Sunday, and Amy even subbed in my primary class when my co-teacher had to bail at the last minute. Cuz she's cool like that.
I was glad about that, because Thomas was a bit overwhelmed having houseguests, but I think on Sunday she saw the 'real' him.
After not 'meeting' each other for years, it was pretty awesome (and cute) to see our kids walking to church together.
Amy also gave me lots of pointers on cub scouts, which Thomas will be starting soon. Now I'm excited about it!
Amy, it was nice to 'meet' you (you know, four years ago - but also lately).
So, I am totally lame about getting around to using our scanner, but I've been wanting to show you guys some little prints from my new toy. I got an Instax mini camera back in September.
Isn't it cute? And yeah, it's really taken me this long to scan them.
If you haven't seen one of these cameras before, it's an instant camera, like a polaroid, but the photos are smaller, the size of a credit card. The photos print out of the top.
I LOVE playing with it. I have to think about the shots more since each shot costs, unlke digital. There are hardly any controls to mess with, and when I do try to mess with them to trick the camera it never works anyway. ;) The poor little thing can't handle too much light input, and I've had things really overexposed - but I tend to like that.
I bought it just before our last beach trip, here's a few shots I liked. I'm thinking of framing all of my CA shots together in one frame.
Below I caught a wave sneaking up on the girl (in the background).
I tried to take a panoramic triptych:
I also went ahead and bought a case for this camera, which I'm glad of, because it can hold both the camera AND a bunch of prints. Good when you're out on the go.
Sometimes the results are 'meh', sometimes they're suprisingly fun, but something I've learned is that it's just not worth taking indoor shots. They just don't turn out well.
I tried to take a photo of a dance class when I first got this and was trying to figure it out - I've since tried several more indoor shots, and they just don't EVER turn out how I want them, even if there is some natural light.
However... I did mess around at Swan Lake dress rehearsal and kinda dig the floating black dancers on the right.
So ... you never know, it's all about experimentation with this little camera.
1. You have been my go-to wedding reception date since you were about three. By the way, your dad loves you for this, too. ;)
2. You breathe books and love the library.
3. You practically potty-trained yourself (and taught yourself so many other things). While this sounds embarassing now, it was HUGE when you were 2 and you made motherhood seem pretty easy. If you hadn't, you may not have ever had any siblings...
4. You used to look like this:
5. You still love dolls and fairies and dressing up.
6. You think EVERYTHING is fun (unless I asked you to clean something).
7. You don't walk, you dance. Even in public. And you don't even realize it.
8. Given the choice between Justin Bieber and The Clash, you would pick The Clash every time.
9. You are super responsible and have been such a help to me - especially with your brothers.
10. You like EVERYONE.
11. You have many talents, which makes for lots of fun things to go watch you do.
You know my kids haven't come naturally to bike riding. They're just not that into it. Last year we did a bike chart where they got stickers for practicing every day, ending with a reward.
Last year the girl took off and now rides her bike every day. She's going to have a dance stretch/exercise chart this summer instead. Monkey had no problems but just isn't into bikes that much. He'd rather run.
Thomas really struggled. He wouldn't ride unless I was 'holding on' (just touching his back) and would count the number of times around the circle and stop exactly when he was done. By the end of last summer I was proud that he'd do a quarter of our little circle without me holding on. But that was it. And once he got his prize, he would ride his scooter, but he didn't ride his bike again.
Until yesterday, when I broke out the bike charts again.
He didn't want to do it.
Fine, I said, but you can't open your prize until you do.
He still didn't want to. Until he did.
He asked me if he could just do one lap today. I agreed and promised I wouldn't let go. Baby steps to start.
After his one lap he stopped. And asked his sister and brother to come race him.
He took off by himself (slowly) and went a few more times around the circle.
Actually, like a trillion times.
More bikes came out - all the neighbor kids had bikes, trikes, or scooters in the circle, and he loved it. Once when he got stuck in a crack and I helped him out of it: Don't hold on, Mom!
Seriously? What happened?
Something clicked yesterday, and I'm SO proud of him! I think he might actually learn without training wheels at some point. I wasn't sure, honestly. I was thinking of getting him a gyrowheel this year, but they're so expensive and this year will be the last one he fits this bike (why isn't there a booming used market for gyrowheels?).
He rode for like an hour. By the end he was picking up speed. I was shocked. When we had to take his sister to dance, he tried to talk me into letting him stay and keep riding. Sorry, bud.
When we got home he came inside for a few minutes, but when Aaron got home he wanted to race his dad and rode until dinner.
Which he scarfed, and then rode some more. Those legs were pumping.
This morning he woke me up at 6:03am (he's not supposed to get up until 7:00) fully dressed (yesterday's outfit), glasses and shoes on, and asking if he can go ride his bike.
Holy cow! I'm still so surprised. This kid just does things on his own schedule. But when he wants to do something, nothing can stop him.
And I love his red hair sticking out of his helmet (which I know isn't on right - I picked my battles yesterday).