Friday, April 28, 2006

West Side Story

This weekend was the first two shows of West Side Story. I have watched these kids grow up, some as early as kindergarten, others not until high school. I am, once again, in awe of the dedication and talent of these teenagers. I had not seen any costumes, any rehearsals, had not heard Emma practice any songs or accents. The only thing I had seen was the dyed hair and tans of some of the girls trying to be Puerto Rican. WOW! From the opening scene to the closing, I was mesmerized. It was amazing they could pull that many boys together to sing and dance. The anger and hate of Action was real, yet was pulled off by a sweet senior boy without any malice in his body. The love between Tony and Maria was truly magical. There were literally stars in each other's eyes. When Tony killed Bernardo, my heart ached for him and the devastation he felt. His cries for Maria brought tears to my eyes. The ending scene, in which Tony is killed, and Maria says "I can kill now!, because now I hate!" had me sobbing. The loss of inocence, the loss of love, the loss of family, was all so real and raw. I know I was the Mom of the leading lady, but I witnessed others who felt the same way and were coming out of the auditorium, faces streaked with tears blowing their noses. I can't wait to see it again this weekend. I never tire of my kid's productions.

Audrey's jeans

Audrey had this pair on jeans that came from her sister. I think Emma had worn them on a work trip or something and had gotten paint on them. Audrey did not like them and they sat around for a while. Inspiration hit a couple weeks ago when A took a pocket off. Then they just sat. Apparently, inspiration hit again, and out came the paint, duct tape, sharpies and scissors. She slashed, painted, and taped to her "Hearts" content. Notice the handprint on the butt, somewhere on the inseam towards the bottom is the word love. I think they are totally cool and totally Audrey. What a creative kid!
 Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Make do crazy quilt

This project fits in perfectly with Use What You Have. It was started in June of 2003, when a neighbor and I went through our stash and crazy pieced blocks. Our goal was not to buy anything new. Well, we ended up buying a small bit of floss and rick rack, but that is it. We barely made a dent in our fabrics, but I have definitely gone through some DMC floss. Through the years we have been slowly embellishing the blocks. I have 30 pieced blocks half of which are embellished. One of the problems I have is going back to blocks that I finished and deciding they need more. In this block, the pink with Audrey and a rose on it is from a stocking she made in Girl Scouts (?), the dog is from a sock that she decided she wanted to cut up and keep the dog, and the blue on the left is a favorite shirt, so soft. On to the next one. Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

I've been tagged!

What I was up to:

20 years ago: I was newly married (1 year), looking for houses where the real estate was so ridiculous that buyers had to put in bids over the asking price. You snooze you loose, was the motto. We bought a sweet little cape cod type house in town. I believe this is also the year my Mom signed me up for a quilting class as a birthday present.

10 years ago: We had an enourmous snow storm that year. So much that it prevented entrance into vehicles. A huge snow blob fell off my neighbors roof onto my brand new car and dented the roof! This was the year that My Handsome Prince had his 5th surgery to reconstruct his leg from a cancerous tumor. This was the surgery that pretty much saved him. We got to pick him up in a limo, curtesy of his Dad, the girls were thrilled to death! Both to travel in a limo and get to bring Daddy home. We bought our third house, the one we are in now, for the view. We also attended MHP's 20th high school reunion.

5 years ago: We started our camping trips with other families. This first one was a spur of the moment thing and we've been doing it ever since. We attended our first Military Gala. We had beautiful Christmas weather that year as we have a family photo of everyone outside enjoying the day. Emma mad 15 polar fleece boas that year and hasn't picked up a pair of scissors since. Our friends, Doug and Sherry, married, both diagnosed with cancer, Doug dyeing the next year and Sherry now a survivor.

1 year ago: My Handsome Prince and I celebrated 20 years of marriage! We spent 5 days kayaking and biking along the Potomac river. We had the best time!!! I lost 20 pounds. Sammajamma came along. Best summer ever! Lucinda Williams concert, along with Chesapeake Bay Blues fest with Dr. John, Shamekia Copeland, Delbert McClinton. Hmmm, who else did I see? This was also the year of the lice infestation. Who has ever heard of high school and middle school kids with lice? Ugh! Li'l Sister ended up with it too a couple months later. OMG, never forget that!!!

1 month ago: A lot of time blogging. Tasha and I really started to work out and hang out. Military Ball. Went to Audrey's drama productin which was quite a hoot! Always makes me feel like I'm doing the right thing running them around. Emma turned 18. I started being more productive and creative (even though I still feel like I get nothing accomplished).

Yesterday: Trying to get motivated after the trip to Boston, but unsuccessful. Managed to run 3 miles after a cycle class so felt like I was on track with training. Ran the kids around like crazy! Managed to get Emma's audition for scholarship recorded, pick Audrey up from school, take E to get hair dyed and skin tanned (West Side Story is this weekend). Audrey and I ended the evening watching our favorite together "24".

Today: Taught kickboxing class, lifted with Tasha, cleaned house, sent out open house e-mail invitations, taught cycle and bodysculpting classes. That's about it and that's about all I needed! Although a glass of wine and some stitching are in order later this evening.

Tomorrow: Plan of action is to swim then cycle. The day is free until 2:30ish when I meet Tasha to lift, then work 4-9pm. I plan on a little relaxation during mid day, pulling some sort of handwork out. And My Handsome Prince comes home from Italy!!

Thanks Jeanne! That was kind of fun! Lisa, do you feel like joining in?

SPT-April Fool's - more teeth

Trip to Boston: $500
Bottled Water: $4.00
Souveniers: $60.00
Fake Teeth: $.50

Laughter and fun: Priceless
 Posted by Picasa

Sunday, April 23, 2006

There's no place like home, but Boston was pretty cool.

I'll admit I had some reservations about this trip. I was to be a chaperone for approximately 40 high school kids, 16+ hours total on a bus, night shift duty checking rooms, sleeping with another woman, basically unknown, touring an unknown city... Those things had me a little worried. At the end of this trip, Emma said "I think you had a better time than I did, Mom."

In simple words, these kids affect lives, mine, theirs, a random tour guide, a restaurant full of people, an honorary member at home, and who knows what others. What an amazing group of teenagers! They have a gift and share it.

Some random memories of the trip: First and foremost, all three choirs placed First in their categories (Chamber, mixed, show), and the Show choir won First Place overall out of all choirs competing (Mens, womens, chamber, mixed, show, etc.) Emma had tears in her eyes after performances and when they placed. What a way to end your school choral career! Kid's rehearsing in the back of the bus, breaking out in song at Hard Rock Cafe (the restaurant bewildered as to what caused it), bed check, a fort in boys room, singing to the tour guide who was surprised and awed with their ability and willingness to sing to him only, boys phobias of sharing beds vs. girls ability to share everything, the logic and fairness of sharing 2 beds with 3 boys, chaperones dancing, fake teeth, bottled water, a bill for valet parking for one of the kids (huh?).

I was incredibly proud of these kids with their performances, their grace at acceptance, their awe and appreciation of other musicians, their ability to interact with each other and adults. I could go on and on and will when I write letters to the board of education, the principal of the school, the superintendant of music, and the choral director. This is why music can not be taken out of the schools.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

A Mama and her peeps

Okay, I know it sounded queer, but aren't those girls of mine precious? Posted by Picasa




and just plain silly.

Li'l Sister's Viewing Pleasure

Sisters laughing

Carlman and Emmagirl playing nerf darts.


Delta Doolittle

I'm off!

Today I leave with Emma, the show choir, and the chamber singers for competition in Boston. I will not be blogging or checking for a few days. Should be fun!

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

SPT-April Fool - Show those pearly whites!

I have always been accused of having too much in the gum and teeth department, especially in photos. I think this confirms it. Posted by Picasa

Sunday, April 16, 2006

Happy Easter!

I don't think my children will ever be too old to hunt for Easter eggs. At 18 and almost 14, they still wanted the candy Easter baskets and to look for eggs. Next year, Sammajamma will be looking too. Isn't he the cutest thing ever?! Emma's Youth Group did the Sunrise Service this morning, which we attended. Afterwards, we stayed for a pancake breakfast, Audrey helped the Assistant Minister with a puppet production for the kids. We got to Mom's early and hung around until the rest of the gang arrived, which consisted of Lil' Sister, hubby, and 3 offspring, my Aunt and Uncle. Lil' Sister is doing well, her hubby is "The Man" (he took their 11 yr. old daughter shopping for an Easter dress after cleaning house, taking care of baby, taking care of Mama, etc.). Auntie brought her jewelry box of give aways and all girls had a grand time picking out what they wanted to keep. It was a beautiful day, lot's of sunshine, but best of all spending time together. Posted by Picasa

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Use What You Have

I finally had a chance to photograph this week's Use What You Have projects. After shopping at Anthropologie and other various stores, I noticed a lot of the clothing is embellished. Rather than spend bucko bucks on new stuff, I added to one of the skirts I already owned. I'm so please with the results. All I did was add the lovely white cotton lace onto the bottom of a skirt. Made all the difference in the world! Really sparked the skirt! The little purse was made from a chenille/courderoy skirt purchased from Goodwill years ago (with no project in mind) and some leftover cotton fabric from a jumper I made my sister at least 15 years ago. I found the snap grommet kit in my container of trims. It's just big enough to fit my wallet, cell phone and keys. Perfect! I'm still working on a stuff sack for Audrey made out of a linen spread that got destroyed by a certain dog (I'm not naming any names).

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

SPT - April - Too Much Buffy

"Mom, Let's take a picture. You pretend you're biting me and I'll pretend I'm scared."

"Oh, that's scary. I don't like it."

I think we've all watched too many seasons of "Buffy The Vampire Slayer". Posted by Picasa

Monday, April 10, 2006

I Finally deserve that A

When I was a senior in high school, I took a home economics course. Yes, it was home economics. This one specifically focused on handwork, or at least that's the part the impressed me. I learned huck weaving, embroidery, and...crochet. The teacher started us with a small hook, fine thread, and the pattern for one of those symetrical snowflakes. That thing was worn, dirty, and anything but symetrical when I was finished with it. I swore I was never going to crochet again! Wrong! Over winter vacation, we had a home assignment, yup, crochet something, anything. So, on winter break, we visited my Grandparents. Luckily, Mama crocheted (and knitted). Well, she tried her best to teach me. She sent me home with the pattern and two brand, spanking newly made potholders. Well, by the time we got home and school started again, needless to say, I had very little done. My Mom told me just to hand in one of Mama's. So I did. I got an A. No, I've never felt bad about it. I have always known how to sew and do hand work. I've never gotten along with the home ec teachers who try to re-teach me and give me poor grades or try to give me a complex. No, what I felt bad about (bad enough to learn how to crochet 24 years later) is the grungy look of the dear potholders my Mama made - the one's I own and my mother's, and the loss of that tangible evidence of my Mama's presence. So, over the past two weeks, my Mother has taught me how to crochet. She, herself, just learned within the past few months and is a master. I have recreated my own version of Mama's potholder. The white with blue rick rack is Mama's and the green with white rick rack is mine. Posted by Picasa

Sunday, April 09, 2006


Look what My Handsome Prince brought me from the Eastern Shore. Soft shelled crabs. Mmmmmmm. Absolutely delicious little things. Dredge their little bodies through flour mixed with a little salt, pepper, and Old Bay, lightly fried in olive oil, on bread with mayo and lettuce. The only thing missing was a thick, juicy tomato. Not in season yet. Audrey plucked her legs, ate them, and left the plump little body. That's okay, it'll be my snack later. Posted by Picasa

Friday, April 07, 2006

She's Home

Li'l Sister went in for surgery on Wednesday and came home on Thursday. She was one of the few people who have completely ruptured the tendon that connects the hamstrings to the bone, or one of the lucky few who have been diagnosed. She is in a brace from her hip to her foot, keeping the knee in a 90 degree angle, hip flexed slightly back. She can not sit. She was brought home in a van with all seats removed and just about the entire household's supply of pillows. My sister is the most amazing woman I know. She did not utter a complaint, in fact had quite a sense of humor about going commando. Her kids missed her terribly, especially Sammajamma, who just did not know how to act, fuss, laugh, or sleep. I will be going back as often as possible to do whatever I can. I am so relieved that the surgery went well. It will be a long road to recovery but she can do it. BTW, the WWW is amazing. During the time between the diagnosis and surgery, she found someone who had undergone the surgery (there are not many done) and was in contact with this couple. They kept her informed of the man's progress and let her know what kinds of things to expect. Wow!

Wednesday, April 05, 2006


Here are all ten blocks finished and ready to go! I'm mostly happy with them. There is one that I'm not too kean about and with the deadline extended, maybe I'll whip up an extra next week and send it. This was a great experience, working without patterns. Each block was randomly made with pieces of fabric on the table or next to each other or whatever. It was a freeing experience, too. Away from perfect points and straight lines (other than squaring them off at the end). It was similar to Gwen Marston's liberated technique. Gotta love Gwen! They will be put in the mail by Friday. Happy, happy, happy! Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

April Fools - SPT

Granted, this is not a self portrait. It is a photo that appears in my 40th Birthday scrapbook, made for me by My Handsome Prince, friends, and relatives. Everytime I come upon this photo, I laugh! I have no idea what I am ranting and raving about, and yes, I am sure that is what I was doing at the time. I am totally fired up about something. What you don't see, is My Handsome Prince, standin beside me with a totally disgusted look on his face. Is he disgusted at his wifes rampage or is he disgusted along with me? I will never know. No one seems to remember what was going on in this photo. I wish I had the original but I am so glad I have this copy. It still just cracks me up!

The caption balloon reads "I'm turning how old?!" Ha, ha, that's from my SIL.Posted by Picasa

Monday, April 03, 2006

Busy, busy, busy!

I can't believe I have not posted since Tuesday last week. I guess I got caught up in the mundane tasks of life. Well, not all of it was mundane but I will not recap.

Today was extremely busy and yes, most of it was daily tasks. I managed to go for a run, after my cycle class, in training for a mini triathalon. I think I ran 2 1/2 miles and walked 1/2 mile. Not bad, but I have muscles in my legs I never knew existed (and that's saying a lot!). I taxied Audrey around to a friends house and back. I will try to remember to keep my camera handy (no, A did not have hers, surprisingly). One visit, there were chickens in the trees. It was hysterical! I've never seen them in the trees! Next visit, one of their peacocks blocked the driveway with his plumage in full glory! Wouldn't move for anything.

Dinner has been made, most put away, Audrey is making cookies and 24 is on tonight. I'm finishing up the last two blocks for the swap so I can send them out tomorrow. Life is good, although I'm missing My Handsome Prince (who is in Arkansas this week).