Thursday, November 26, 2009

Oak Alley

Tuesday, Edd and I took Aimee and Mattie to go see "Oak Alley" one of the neat plantation houses along the Mississippi River!

In the front of Oak Alley are Virginia Live Oak trees that were planted in the 1700's! The trees are amazing!!!

We learned some interesting things on the tour, like back in the 1800's the men were only about 5'4'' so the table and chairs were quite a bit lower to the ground! We saw a working "shoe fly" and learned what it was used for! When the boys turned 15, they had to move out of the family house, but they lived in their own little house on the family's property.

"Oak Alley" was a sugarcane plantation. Cotton doesn't grow in our area, the climate is too wet!!!! Sugarcane is a tropical crop and does well where we live! You see it growing everywhere...looks a lot like corn growing. It's nice to know something besides mosquitoes like the humid climate where we live! :)

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Bethany's claim to fame

Bethany, our eldest child, is once again honing her musical skills. About a month ago, we found Bethany a classical violin teacher.

Bethany started taking fiddle lessons in first grade from our good friend, Tonya Hopkins. Fiddle lessons continued on for about 5 1/2 years. Bethany enjoyed fiddling!!!

Once middle school started, Bethany decided, with the help of her parents of course, that she should pursue her musical talent and join the Riverwood Middle School orchestra. Bethany played with the orchestra for two years and was also in the region orchestra her last year in middle school.

After the big move, Bethany tried out for the Northshore Philharmonia orchestra, one of the Greater New Orleans Youth Orchestras. The director gave recommended a lady named Lauren Miller as possible teacher for Bethany.

Well, Bethany is now a student of Lauren Miller! She is a very good teacher!!! After Bethany's first lesson, she recommended that we get Bethany a new violin...better quality=better sound. A few weeks ago, Edd took Bethany to pick out her violin. She also got to pick out a bow, they are all different, you know...we sure didn't, but are learning very quickly!!!

Bethany picked out a very old, but very nice sounding violin! If I can sneak a picture of her with it I'll post it. I'll even try to post a clip of her playing/practicing! :)

Anyway, last week I took Bethany back to the violin shop so she could pick out a few more bows to try out. Her teacher thought she needed to try a few more. While we were at the shop, a lady came in. The owner of the shop, Keith Davis, told Bethany that this lady, Joan Davis, could make her famous! Turns out she is editor for The Daily Star newspaper! She'd come to the shop to write an article about Keith Davis. She took a few shots of Bethany while she was trying out different bows.

This week when I went to pay for the bow that Bethany had picked out, Mr Davis had a surprise for me...he handed me a newspaper and it had Bethany's picture on the front page!!!

I thanked him for the paper! He had saved it for us! What a fun surprise! I put the paper in Bethany's violin case. Later that night, I asked her to make sure I had purchased the right bow. A few minutes later she came back grinning ear to ear holding the paper!!! :)

SIDE NOTE: It's kind of funny....I'd gone into Mr Keith Davis' store a few months ago to get all our violins restrung when Aimee and Mattie started their violin lessons at school. The whole time I was in the shop, I kept thinking to myself how much Keith reminded me of my dad!!!

Well, when Edd and Bethany went to pick out her violin, the came back home and said the same thing! They could be brothers!!!! They look quite a bit alike and have very similar personalities!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

picture of the day

Some people like to post their picture of the day. Thomas is a little different! He likes to print a picture each day! This is the one he chose today. It only took 15 minutes and 14 google pages of hippo pictures to find this one! (RECORD TIME!!!)

Every morning after the kids leave, when I sit down at the computer to check email, Thomas runs over! He climbs up onto the desk as he asks, "Can you print me a __________?"
Once all the pictures come, Thomas carefully looks at the thumbnails of each picture. If he likes one, he says, "Make that one big!" He then inspects the BIG picture to see if it meets his critera for the day. If it doesn't, he'll say, "Nah, not that one!" and we move on. Finally, we find the lucky picture and I hear, "Print that one!"

But we're not done there, we have to copy it, paste it into word and make it as big as we can before we can print!

Usually I have to print dinosaurs, but occasionally we look at Thomas' other favorites! The trickiest thing I've had to look up is a "fire T rex!" But, I quickly learned the "fire T rex" is one of the characters from Andrew's DS game, "FOSSIL FIGHTERS!" It took me a couple of days to figure this out though.

This activity is a good nap guide: sometimes I'll doze (not on purpose) while Thomas is inspecting each of the thumbnails. When Thomas is ready to look at the next page he'll say, "OK, go to the next one!" If he has to tell me 2-3 times before I react, I know I'm tired.

The other day, I was sooo tired, that I didn't react at all!!! Then I heard Thomas say, "WAKE UP, MOMMA!!!" But I couldn't respond until he'd said it a few times!!! I should've gone right then to take a nap!!!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Thomas jumping :)

This is how we spent our Friday night! Edd took Aimee and Mattie sailing with a friend from work. B was at a football game. I was home with the boys. Thomas ended up performing for quite a while. After jumping, he did dino imitations!!! Funny kid!!! :)

I don't know what the blue guy is that he is talking about...hmmmm?????