Sunday, June 29, 2008

July 4th with the family

Yesterday was West Bountiful's Independence Day Celebration. Yes, it is still June, but our city does our stuff on a weekend far from the national celebration so as to avoid conflicting with everything else that happens. We're a small town in the middle of a large urban area (we still have horse property all around us!), so we have the feeling of a smaller community. I really enjoyed our little parade, carnival, and then time afterward as a family. The whole day was kind of up-and-down; there was a lot of complaining and crying and disappointment and outright boredom, but there were also a ton of smiles and mingled in our myriad of activities. I was pondering life issues this morning and I realized that it was truly a memorable day, and a fond memory at that, so it is worth recording here.

It began with our city parade. Ella and Tolman sang in the school choir, so they got to ride and sing in a float.

Thomas and Olivia seemed to really enjoy it. Olivia was up and around, cheering for the floats, and waving enthusiasticallythe whole time; between that and chasing after all the candy thrown out, it was quite the interactive event.

Then we went to the park where the first performance was the school choir. Naturally, Ella sang with all her might; Tolman sang some things, though I don't have a picture to prove it. The kids did well... for kids. But it seems to be more fun to watch what they do on stage that isn't part of the performance, especially when they're supposed to be performing.

Of course, the kids had to go on the blow-up slides and obstacle courses; anyone who knows Olivia, Tolman, and Ellie will recognize a bit of their personalities in each of their styles.

And this is where I have to give a hand to Lynnette, because she took every one of these pictures; Thomas went down a slide, too, but we don't have a picture of it because I took him to the different one that he wanted to go on, and I don't typically take pictures. Sorry about that.

So then the cousins invited us over for swimming, just to make the day perfect. (That last picture is of Ella's legs: she's doing a handstand underwater.)

Yes, I'm skipping over the part where Thomas threw screaming fits at the park, and where I was disappointed at going swimming because I wanted a peaceful afternoon at home. But for some reason it's easy for me to forget about those parts as I consider what yesterday meant to my family. And I didn't even mention how the kids got to stay up late at the neighbor's house (yes, all the kids), or how I helped take down at the park, or how Lynnette and I put together a few bookshelves, and how we quietly watched the city's fireworks from afar on our porch.

Hm. Yep. A heck of a summer day.

Monday, June 23, 2008

A Poetic Performance

Here is a Pop!Tech performance by "slam poet" Vanessa German who impressed me with her imagery and topic and fantastic energy as well as her word-smithing. It's worth 5 minutes of your time; I listened to it on my iPod while doing something else, and it energized me.

"If my hands were anything other than hands!" Her words have illuminated brilliant videos in my mind's eye. Thanks, Vanessa!