Sunday, January 23, 2011

H stands for...

Harry, Hermione, Hagrid, Hedwig, Hogwarts, Hufflepuff, and Happy Birthday.

"Mom?  Can you put a little R next to it for Ron?"

Levi had his party last week.  Clearly, it was Harry Potter themed.  He adores Harry Potter.  His favorite character is Ron.  I'm not really sure why, since Ron is kind of a dork.  He's a lovable dork, though. :^)

First, each guest had to be sorted.  This was a way to make them wear nametags.  About half the kids were from church, and half from school, and there's not a lot of overlap between the groups.  And, I didn't know some of the school kids.  So, it helped us, too.  The sorting hat was the same hat I used for my snowmen as a kid.  It's nice and well-worn.

The next task was to make/decorate a wand.  We bought little dowels and had them use markers, crayons and stickers.  Then we added some metallic pearl crinkle (fancy Easter grass) to make it look like a spell was coming out the end.  One little boy (whose dad is a professional magician) decided he wanted to make his wand black.  He spent nearly 30 minutes painstakingly coloring it perfectly black.

Following the pizza (yay, pizza!) they went outside for quidditch practice.  They worked on throwing three quaffles through the hoops.

Then, they used our foam bat as beaters hitting the bludger away.

Since it's hard to keep your glasses on while flying around on a broom, they played "Pin the Glasses on Harry" when they came back in.  Some of the kids were cheaters and looked out from under their blindfold.  Others felt the glasses already on the poster.  Some were happy with wherever they put it. 

After putting the glasses back on, it was time for Potions Class.  We picked up several pop rocks kits that included test tubes and a sour ingredient.  We provided the tall vase of elixir, and the powdered dragon's egg, crystallized unicorn tears, crushed lizard teeth, and dried mandrake root.  When these were mixed properly, it fizzed and foamed, and then would make the drinker invisible.  The kids took this very seriously, and were very careful with the ingredients.

The foaming was impressive...

but the taste, not so much.

The cake and ice cream turned out to be the most dangerous part of the party.  One little guy fell off his chair and banged his mouth on the table. :(  He quickly recovered, though, and finished his cake.

It was a really fun party, but 12 kindergarteners in the house at once was a little crazy.  I didn't mind seeing them go.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

And Now We are Six.

Yesterday, Levi turned 6.  He has been so excited for his birthday.  All week he's been asking, "Is it my birthday tomorrow?"  (He's not so great with spatio-temporal analysis.)  I've tried to figure out how to write something for him, but he's tricky. 

He's hard to pigeon-hole.  You can't put his personality in a box.  He adores the spotlight.  That's why he likes baseball so much: you get to go the plate by yourself, have your name announced to the crowd, and show off your mad hitting skills.  He can be very emotional.  This is both good and bad. :)  He is a master of the waterworks.  He can turn on the tears when he feels he will gain some benefit from it.  However, he can't always control them when he'd rather not cry.  This embarrasses him at school sometimes when he cries at being frustrated by the trickiness of a worksheet or a puzzle.  He even came home with shiners under his eyes from pressing on them to try to stop the tears. :( 

He is very aware of others and their feelings.  Even when he was very small, he knew when I was having a bad day.  He would ask, "Mama, are you happy?"  Now, in school, he sometimes gets upset when someone else is in trouble.  While reading Harry Potter, he doesn't get scared when Harry or Ron are about to get attacked or are in danger, he worries that they'll get expelled.  Silly boy.

He also loves to play the bad guy.  A.J. got a Star Wars Lego ship for Christmas, and Levi got one for his birthday.  But I knew he would love to be an Imperial fighter, so that's what he got.  I am not convinced this is a good quality, and I'll try to train him away from the Dark Side before it's too late. 

He loves music, especially jazz.  He asked me to teach him to play the piano, and was very excited to see some piano lesson books wrapped up for his birthday.  He is brave enough to sing in front of others: he sang with A.J. at Susie's funeral a year ago, at Grandma Belcher's funeral last month, and they sang a duet as part of the Primary Program in October.  I can't wait to see where this interest goes.

Levi is a really fun boy.  Let's see what six has to bring.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

11 years

We've been through:

6 addresses in 3 states.

birth of 2 boys.

6 major road trips.

a few crazy medical things.

3 1/2 college degrees.

9 years of one or both of us being in school.

10 different employers between the two of us.

11 professional baseball seasons.

7 little league seasons, two with Aaron coaching.

11 cars.

3 couches.

And I wouldn't change a thing.