Sunday, October 15, 2006

(If you can think of a good title that pulls all of this together, please suggest it in the Comments section below)

We got out twice this weekend, because you can't deny the power of a beautiful October weekend when the air is crisp, you've got to put on a jacket and you enjoy the particularly clear quality of the Autumn air.

I should explain that we initially intended to get out once (at least) this weekend, but events transpired to get us out more than that. Lynda and I knew that our community was holding a Fall Festival this weekend at one of the local parks close to our house. We figured that would be a fine way to spend some time outside with the girls . . . food, carnival games, crafts. So, we were all set on Saturday afternoon . . . spurred on by the fact that we chose Saturday morning as the day to finally paint Grace's bedroom and we knew the paint fumes and paint-drying times would push us out of the house.

So . . . Friday night we wiped off the walls in Grace's room and Lynda put up the painters tape on the jambs and baseboards. Then Saturday morning, we started cutting in along the baseboard, across the ceiling and down the corner seams. Then Lynda took the kids to the grocery store while I put down the primer coat. By the time that was done, we both had paint headaches and were ready for lunch. So, off we went to the Fall Festival . . . only to discover a big fat bunch of nothing at the park.

Turns out we had the wrong day . . . which, I suppose we should have known seeing as how the OSU football team actually playing a football game that day and it takes nothing short of a nuclear bomb to get people to consider other things on Football Saturdays. So, we punted, turned around for home, packed up a picnic lunch and returned to the quiet part to eat a lunch and play for a while, waiting for the primer coat to finish drying.

When we got home, we got the kids interested in some movie or something and quickly started painting the walls--three a light purple and one dark purple for accent and contrast. (Grace had chosen the purple color. You may also remember that we did something similar for Sarah's room, but with shades of pink.) We let the paint dry overnight and got the kids to bed late--Grace slept in the guest room (sometimes known as the Haunted Room, according to Shirtless).

Today, after church we headed back to the park for the actual festival, which was pretty fun. The food choices weren't as varied as I would have preferred and the carnival games were all ticket-based (this was a fund raiser for some community organization), but we spent some money on games. Sarah had a good time on the rock-climbing tower and I herded Grace through the inflatable obstacle course. They clambered for cotton candy and then proceeded to be pretty underwhelmed by it once they ate it.

When we got home, feeling good about being outside two days in a row, I finished putting Grace's room back together. I am pretty happy with it, I must say. It looks like a bigger girls room and not a baby room or some unknown kids room. I think the kid's are beginning to impose their personality into things now and that is okay.

Speaking of imposing personalities, you might recall the post about Grace's daycare photos from last March. Well, she got another set of photos taken recently and you can see that she is growing up rapidly. Most important of all, however, especially considering how hard it was to get her to smile last year, this one is REALLY good:


In other random news, I have finally gotten another of Sarah's books scanned and ready for viewing by the anonymous internet masses. She wrote this book during our trip to Arizona this summer. When she wasn't learning about the different kinds of cactus or ignoring the grandeur that is the Grand Canyon, she sat at her Great Aunt's dining room table and created storybooks. This was probably the best one she made during the trip:

It's entitled Bippity Boppity Boo. (I will provide transcriptions of the text, not because I don't think it is legible, but because when I repaired the book with staples, it cut off some of the text along the margins and so the scans are not as clear as they should be. Unfortunately, my daughter is not yet aware of the concept of a book's gutter.)

(You can see that she already has the author's need for recognition.) "My Mom is magic." (Presumably she means that her mom has magical abilities or is a magician, not that her mom is the personification of the concept known as magic.

"I go to school and I tell my friends about my Mom. But they didn't believe me."

"When I got home my Mom was practicing her magic trick. 'Mom,' I say, 'What are you doing, Mom?'"

"The next day my Mom is going to the Magic Show. I got to school. 'Bye!' says Mom."

"I am sad my Mom is not coming tonight. The next day my Mom comes back."

"I had so much fun." (Playing checkers with Mom--not pictured.) "I like magic."

"I love my Mom. This is for two-year-olds from PBS Kids." (I found it startling that she branded the book and even considered the book's level. Completely unprompted, by the way. Do you think I would encourage this? It's best when such things are spontaneous and surprising.)

The End


Hopefully, you have enough patience for one more observation that occurred to me yesterday evening. While cleaning up after the kids and putting toys away, I took a good look at the box cover of the Princess Monopoly game.

This probably says more about me than anything regarding the Disney company, but the poses of the myriad of princesses seemed to say something about their personalities to me. Ariel, front-and -center exudes a girlish charm that befits the youngest princess. I would say that Disney is being anti-ethnic by placing Pocahontas and Mulan on the edges, but there is Arabic Jasmine right near the center. (Placement must have something to do with overall box office receipts than with nationality.) Princess Aurora, nee Briar Rose, nee Sleeping Beauty is mirrored by Cinderella on the flanks. Both seem to carry themselves with the confidence of many years of Disney Princesshood. Similarly Snow White exudes a confidence of stance that I do not think is appropriate considering her antiquated style of singing. I don't really know why Belle (of Beauty and the Beast) is the only princess with her back to the "camera." But she has the best come hither expression of all the princesses and I must confess that I like her the best--she's got book smarts, you see.

Now that I think about it, all of the princesses are foreign--with the exception of Pocahontas. They all come from other countries or kingdoms. Belle from France, Sleeping Beauty, Snow White, and Cinderella from undisclosed European places, Mulan from China, Jasmine from Stereotypical Arabia, and Ariel from Under the Sea. Pocahontas was from Virginia.


lulu said...

If you want to know which Princess is Disney's favorite, check out their Monopoly real estate. Who gets Boardwalk? And who gets Baltic?

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