Our Googly Girl

Two nights ago we had popcorn. I think because my husband finds popcorn disgusting, we really don't have it very often. But, he was gone, and the little girls wanted some, so I set them up with a movie and a large bowl of it.
As they were finishing the bowl, I looked up from my laundry-folding to see Monkey D carefully picking at the kernels in the bottom of the bowl. She was very focused on what she was doing.
I went back to folding, but a couple of minutes later, she came up to me gently cupping a handful of unpopped kernels. She said, "Mom, I think you might want to put these somewhere special". I took them from her and thanked her with a big smile. She gave me a look of satisfaction and walked away.
What was she thinking? Did she think we could use them again? Did she think maybe I could plant popcorn? I'm not sure, I didn't ask her, but I thought it was such a sweet little gesture. I have them in a baggie on my dresser right now.

Yesterday, I decided the floor needed mopping. My poor husband bought me one of those awesome scrubber/suction/squeegie machines to clean wood floors, yet I still find myself doing it the old fashioned way. So with bowl of vinegar/water and cloth, I got to work on hands and knees and went to work. I'm so glad I was on my hands and knees, because I found something precious way down there at floor-level.
About a year or so ago, MD starting drawing. She learned the first initial of her name, "G", and would point to it wherever she saw it. She also loved to draw it. Once as I was walking in the hallway to my bedroom, I noticed about 15 handwritten G's penciled on the walls and baseboard. There were also about 15 tiny smiley faces. I thought it was cute that she had done that, but gave her the little lecture on not drawing on the walls, and scrubbed them all off.
But guess what I found as I was scrubbing my floors! I had missed a little G and a little smiley face from way back then. I was so happy! A year ago, I cared too much about my "newer" home and wanted those walls and baseboards clean, clean, clean. But after finding those precious little drawings on the baseboard yesterday, I was happy to leave them, and know that they will stay there as long as we are in this house.

Yesterday I looked over and saw this. I grabbed my camera and thought about how only a child would be perfectly confident and happy eating a bowl of ice cream with reindeer antlers on.


Hot talent

Wow! I decided to post this, because I love it! I love that he is 10 years old. I love that he has numerous boxes of yo-yo's in his room. I love the look of concentration on his face. Yo-Yo's! This reminds of me my childhood, and how at one time my brothers and sister and I would try to do stuff like this with our yo-yo's. We didn't even come close. But this is just hot, don't you think?
(The song "Stronger" automatically plays with this video. If you don't want to hear it, just click on the sound icon at the bottom of the video screen, and turn it down or off. I watched this video while listening to one of my playlist songs, and I thought it was a better fit. Click on Jeepers Creepers by Frank Sinatra :).


It's not like Archie

My daughter is an artist.
She picked up a crayon as a toddler and has never put it down!! She went through the usual phases of drawing. Starting with pictures of herself, sketching the big circle head, and long stick legs. She always filled in the empty spaces around herself with clouds, sunshine, birds, trees, etc. Her style is fearless, confident and bold with uninhibited strokes that always make for an eye-popping picture.
She went through her "horse phase" of drawing nothing but those powerful,
beautiful creatures. She loves horses, and occasionally she will revert to her earlier subjects. Occasionally.
But right now, in this stage of her 13 year old life, her subject matter has turned to something else. Something that annoyed her parents at first. Something that made me wonder if she was wasting her talents. BUT...she has become VERY good at it, and we are proud o
f her creativity and talent in trying to perfect this style of art. What is it? Manga. Yep, manga.

The picture on the left is an example of some Manga books.
Here is a definition I found online:

Manga are Japanese comic books. Manga is often made into Japanese cartoons, or Anime. The art in Manga has a very definite look to it and is often referred to as “Manga Style.” Recently, Manga has become popular in America. It has been a very successful new medium that has become very popular with young people. Manga, and the Anime that it has inspired, has been seen on T.V., in movies, and has even influenced the art styles of certain American artists like Ed McGuinness, Brian Wood, and Frank Miller.

My kids actually like Archie comics, Peanuts, Calvin & Hobbes, and the Far Side. Manga is not what I think of when I think "comics", but I guess I need to keep up with the times.

Anyway, here is her latest drawing. She is going to enter it in a contest at her school for the Anime club. Pretty good, don't you think?

It is a picture of the characters from a series called "DN Angel". Dark is the name of the black haired "phantom thief". Satoshi is the bespectacled teen devoted to capturing Dark. Daisuke is the boy with "Wiz" the bunny-like creature on his shoulder. Wiz becomes Dark's wings when he needs them. Okay...sound a little confusing? My older kids love to read Manga, and they know all these stories and characters, and it is a whole other world for them. Just thought I would share some of it with you too.

I'll let you know how her drawing does in the contest. Oh, and she does not trace, or copy pictures, she just familiarizes herself from reading, and knows what they look like, and transfers that to her pictures. I'm proud. Good luck Jo Bugs!


Body and Mind

Last week I played a lot of tennis. I think I played too much tennis. I know...how can I play TOO much tennis, there is really no such thing. But 3 hours on Monday, 2 hours on Tuesday, 4 hours on Thursday, and 3 on Friday really made me exhausted by Friday night. I decided to switch gears. No, I NEEDED to switch gears.

My sister and I had just had a conversation, and she mentioned the movie, The Lake House. Oh yeah, despite my love of Keanu Reeves, I had never seen it, and from what I knew of it thought it was some spooky, heartbreak of a movie. But because all I wanted to do was chill out and rest my tired body, I decided to put in the movie that my mom lent me about 5 months ago, and watch it.

Needless to say, this seemed to start some sort of mental marathon to see how many thought-provoking and love-filled stories I could fit into my weekend. I didn't mean for it to happen, it was just kind of like a snowball effect, and I found myself enjoying the switch from physical stimulation to mental. Just so you know, I'm not a big movie person andI don't like crying. I do love books though, and I always want happy endings.

I started with The Lake House. Loved it. Loved it. Did I say that I loved it? I don't know why. I was so irritated by the end that I cried and clapped and shouted with joy at the final scene. Then watched the dancing scene once more the following morning. I admit it, I really did.

Because of The Lake House, I went on to the lovely writings of Jane Austen. Now I have to admit something, and many of you will shake your heads with shame. I have never read Jane Austen. WHAT? True, cross my heart. I have seen Sense & Sensibility, Emma, and Pride & Prejudice, but...never read J.A. My dear sweet romantic of a sister gave me the complete works of Jane Austen as a gift a few years ago, and I have meant so many times to start, but never did (sorry, Kris). SO...I opened up to page 931 of my book, and read Persuasion.
I have not much to say, but FEEL...well... how about this. The letter from Captain Wentworth?...It rocks.
"I can listen no longer in silence, I must speak to you by such means as are within my reach. You pierce my soul. I am half agony, half hope. Tell me not that I am too late, that such precious feelings are gone for ever. I offer myself to you again with a heart even more your own than when you almost broke it, eight years and a half ago. Dare not say that man forgets sooner than woman, that his love has an earlier death. I have loved none but you..."
Oh, but you must read Persuasion to get the rest. I do not fancy myself a romantic, but alas....I melted when I read that letter.

Then as a family we watched October Sky. This movie is from 1999, but worth seeing if you have not. It's a true story about a boy and his friends that live in a small mining town, but aspire to be more... rocket scientists. It's a keeper. AND, the bonus is that watching Jake Gyllenhall as a young boy reminded us so much of our son, we got a kick out of it. The soulful eyes, and full mouth, and his expressions were so similar. He could do worse than being compared to Jake. Anyhoo, a great feel-good movie!

Then, while putting away Jane Austen, I noticed a small book my sister-in-law loaned me about 2 years ago. (I'm so on it, aren't I? TWO YEARS!) The Notebook. Okay, time for another...WHAT? You haven't read OR seen The Notebook? Nope. For some weird reason I cannot explain, I don't always want to love what everyone else is loving. So I don't. Until it is old and past, and I can enjoy it without the hype. I know, I told you...weird. Also, romance with crying scares me, so I will avoid it if I can, and I heard that people cried when reading this book. So, anyhow, I gave in, picked up this little gem of a novel and read.
Well, I cried but I smiled and I thought it very sweet without mush. That was one darn good story about love, and it made me kiss the heck out of my man and vow to appreciate him that much more every day.

I ended this little mental fest with one of my favorite movies. One of our home movies, this one a video from 2003 when my kids looked like this picture you see here. Five years ago. They were all little and cute with sweet voices and loving arms. Trev and I looked at each other a few times with that "this won't last much longer, will it?" look and again I vowed to myself to appreciate.
I didn't want to cry, but almost did. After all the other stimulus this weekend, I was done with crying. I don't like crying, it gives me a headache. And I think by Sunday night, I was mentally done.

So I welcomed Monday morning with dry eyes and a rejuvenated body and spirit. It felt great to hit those fuzzy green balls and think of nothing but the game.
However, I am anxious to read more Austen. I am wondering if the movie version of Notebook is worth watching. I am wanting to watch more Keanu - A Walk in the Clouds maybe - I like that one.
It's easy to become too focused on one thing sometimes. After last week and weekend, I think I'm going to work on mixing it up a little more. More good stuff for body AND mind.
Just hold off on the tear-jerkers for a while though. I can only handle a little of that at a time.