Saturday, June 23, 2012

Cute Little Monkey!

Have you ever walked out your front door and seen a little monkey cuter than this one?

I don't think it's very likely :) 

Janae was a monkey this year for her dance recital--her group danced to "I Wanna Be Like You" from Jungle Book (note: "wanna"--not much dfferent from "gonna," which I discussed in my last post!)

I volunteered to be one of the two "class moms," so I got to help take care of the monkeys during the dressed rehersal and backstage during the show.  I had one great fear, and it came to pass: all the little monkeys had to use the restroom at the same time :)  We made it through, though.

I also got to have an early and behind-the-scenes view of the show, which I really loved.

Here is a scene from the dressed rehearsal,

and one backstage before the actual show.

In putting on Janae's make-up (including eyelashes), slicking her hair, and persuading her to wear tights, I somehow forgot to bring her arm bands.  Luckily I was able to call "Super Dad," who ran home, FOUND THEM, and raced back all within about 20 minutes (i.e., in time for the show to start--which was especially important, since the monkeys were third to perform).

After the performance it didn't take long for Janae to rip off her hat--all the other monkeys wanted to do the same, but luckily the other backstage mom had the sense to forbid it; otherwise we would have been trying to sort out 10 little hats that all looked the same :)

We got to join the audience at intermission, where Janae got a present from Daddy that she'd been hoping for . . . a big bouquet of flowers!

Of course, if you know Janae, you know she'd rather be doing this . . .

But either way, we are very proud of our little monkey! 

Monday, June 18, 2012

Ain't No Such Word As "Gonna" (Or So I've Been Told)

Some of you might recall that in 1999 I was granted a Master of Arts degree in English. Afterwards, I started a career in college English teaching--where I instructed hundreds of students in academic writing, literature, ESL, and technical and business writing. I think of these experiences as my life’s greatest accomplishments.

And this background will help you to experience the full impact of the story I am about to relate.

Last Saturday Jason and I had to take the kids on somewhat of a long drive. On the way home, they started asking if we could stop for fast food, and--being the health-conscious mother that I am--I replied, "We’re just going to make dinner at home."

Except it sounded a bit more like, "We’re just gonna make dinner at home."

From the back seat I heard an authoritative Grade Two voice say, "There’s no such word as 'gonna.'"


Of course, Ben was right. I would never WRITE the word "gonna" (except for the purposes of this post--and even this makes me feel a little uncomfortable), but as I thought about it in that split second after being corrected, I came to the shocking realization that I SAY "gonna" all the time.

(You can probably guess that Jason thought this was hilarious and had difficulty controlling the van the rest of the way home because he was laughing so hard.)

I acknowledged Ben’s correction and complimented him on his excellence in understanding English usage, but I’m not sure how flattered he was by my compliment, seeing as how I am obviously someone who has much to learn about the language.

So how does a person go from teaching English to having her speech corrected by an 8 year old?

I have no idea. All I know is that I’m gonna try my best to say "going to" from now on. It's worth a try, ain't it? ;)

Monday, June 4, 2012

8 Years of Ben

My oldest child and only son, Benjamin, was born eight years ago, yesterday.

I remember walking the halls with him at the hospital the following night and wondering when I was ever going to get to sleep! It's been that way ever since :) Ben is our boy who never sleeps--at least not until late at night. He has so many ideas and lots of energy to make them happen.

Ben has had lots of hobbies/obsessions over the years. Remember when Ben wanted to cut the grass every day with his toy mower? Or when he memorized Horton Hears a Who? (Ben even wanted to name Alaina Horton before she was born!) Remember all the pirate songs (and piles of "treasure")? And, of course, we all know how much he loves Star Wars.

Anyway, we were looking at some pictures and thought about making some enlargements to display for his birthday . . . but since there were so many great ones we ended up printing a collage!

This year we celebrated Ben's birthday with his favorite things: Star Wars and Lego.

Ben had a Star Wars marathon over the weekend--his plan was to watch all six movies, starting with Episode I, but then Janae surprised him with her gift: Ben's very own copy of The Clone Wars (which comes in between #2 and 3, for those who might not be as familiar with Star Wars as I now am!). So he watched that, too.

Some might think that might be too much Star Wars (i.e., Alaina) or too much TV (i.e., me), but Ben LOVED it.

Sunday morning our birthday boy woke up to a new Lego set, which he and Jason built before church.

Ben also squeezed in time to help me break up some Skor bars for a recipe I was making :)

After church we had Grandma and Grandpa and Auntie Tina's family over for snacks,


and, of course, cake.

As Ben was going to bed he said, "I had a good birthday!"

What more could I ask for?

I'm so glad I've got my Ben :)