Friday, June 30, 2017

Day 10.171: Four day weekend?

Rumour has it that, having made it to the end of this work-week, my presence is not required at work until Wednesday. Yay!

Here are some kinetic sand monsters who may have an opinion on that:

OK - maybe not, but they're very cute.

Thursday, June 29, 2017

Day 10.170: Kickin'

While I was at the parade taking 340 photos last Friday, Exile #2 took Exile #4 to her karate test and took exactly 0 photos.  Fortunately, I found some (thanks to the dojo) of Exile #4 doing her thing!

We're very proud of all the hard work she has put in to reaching this point.

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Day 10.168: Dress code

School may be out, but the dress code is real!

Monday, June 26, 2017

Day 10.167: If they don't win it's a shame...

...but they did win!

We had a great evening at the Portland Sea Dogs baseball tonight with a group from church.

Sunday, June 25, 2017

Day 10.166: Exile #2's Sunday Column #182

Exile #2 writes...

We're a little tired this evening, having spent a couple of hours providing background music at a restaurant in a neighboring town. It was very pleasant. The restaurant building was a sweet yellow cottage set back from the road. We were outside, on the deck in the garden, with a huge old maple tree as our backdrop.

The few rumbles of thunder that accompanied a couple of grey clouds, came to nothing and we enjoyed the support of friends from church, who were an enthusiastic - and much appreciated - audience.

Saturday, June 24, 2017

Day 10.165: Sidewalk Arts Festival

This morning, we stopped in at the Saco Sidewalk Arts Festival. It was rather hot and and Exile #3 was a bit sore from her exertions yesterday, so we did not stay long and the kids were happy to accept a sno-cone from the stall of one of the local churches.

Later, Exile #2, E5N1 and I were walking near our house when Exile #2 related that Exile #4 had "taken a movie here because ants were making a colony on the pavement".

E5N1 immediately complained about her choice of words. Thanks perhaps in part to this morning's reminder, I corrected her - "sidewalk" not "pavement".

"That's not what I meant!" corrected E5N1, "She meant 'video' not 'movie'!"

Life with multicultural children is a minefield.

Friday, June 23, 2017

Day 10.164: Big day

It was Exile #4 and E5N1's last day of school and a day of recovering from her friends' visit for Exile #3. In the early evening they all celebrated by participating in their main extra-curricular activities - a dance parade for Exile #3 and E5N1:

and a karate test for Exile #4:

Photo courtesy of the Karate school's Facebook page

They all did very well and ended the day in various stages of exhaustion.

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Day 10.163: Sleepover

Exile #3 has some friends here for a sleepover tonight as part of her birthday celebrations. We just fed them and then E5N1 and Exile #4 have joined them for a game of "Mother May I?". E5N1 managed to take the role of Mother and is now bossing five teenage girls around.

I didn't think it was his birthday.

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Day 10.161: Zero to fifteen

Happy Birthday Exile #3!

Her favourite birthday gift was that today was her last day of school for the year!

Monday, June 19, 2017

Day 10.160: Bottom of the heap

The other Father's Day photo - me with all three kids piled on top.

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Day 10.159: Exile #2's Sunday Column #181

Exile #2 writes...

Exile #3 was feeling pretty tired and sore today after dance show, so we left her home while we went to church. Actually, Exile #1 and I felt surprisingly tired too. I guess it takes quite a bit of emotional energy to get through a day of watching your offspring dance. We had only planned to go to the first show, but in the end stayed for the second one too - and we are so glad we did. Being shorties, we snuck up on to the bleachers second time, and got a much better view.

We had a multi-purpose celebration meal out afterwards. For, of course, Father's Day weekend has been somewhat swallowed up by yesterday's events, and by Exile #4 having her friends over this afternoon for a late party. Still, as Exile #1 is usually our household taxi/Dance Mom (except for the tricky braiding - somehow that falls to me!), what could have been more appropriate? Happy Father's Day Exile #1 - you're the best dance Mom! ...and a great Dad too.

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Day 10.158: Dance recital

It was dance recital day today - and it was an amazing show. All done in an hour (each of two performances) with great choreography and dancing. E5N1 danced with his hip-hop class and Exile #3 danced with her ballet, modern and hip-hop classes, her own self-choreographed solo and with the student company.

We feel very lucky to be part of the Collective Motion Arts Center family.



Friday, June 16, 2017

Day 10.157: Fox cub at dawn

We've seen a fox fairly regularly at the back of the house over the last month or so and we wondered if it had a den nearby and whether we would eventually see any cubs. The other morning, as I was getting ready to leave for an early start run, I saw an adult and a cub on the sidewalk. I watched them for a while and eventually caught the cub running across our front lawn:

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Day 10.156: Ogunquit Museum of American Art

Exile #2 and I escaped for a few hours last Saturday to visit the Ogunquit Museum of American Art. There was a wide variety of art on display both inside and outside - and the setting is stunning - especially on a perfect sunny-but-not-hot day like we had.

Incidentally (or not), we discovered that the imposing figure in the top centre photo is not a friendly Dementor, but actually St. Francis of Assisi.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Day 10.155: Turtle time

A few days ago I had a rare brief conversation while out running - the man walking his dog commented that we were near the spot where he had seen a snapping turtle laying eggs two years in a row at about this time. The next day was Exile #4's birthday and as I was going out to buy birthday breakfast, I saw a turtle on the road a couple of miles away. Two days after that I saw two along the section of path where the dog walker had tipped me off.

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Day 10.154: Hot and bothered

The last three days have been very hot. I got out in time to run before the worst of the heat hit on two of them - but the rest of the day was not weather for doing anything strenuous unless in an air conditioned space.

Unfortunately, yesterday I found myself with two activities that caused some distress in the heat. The first was not a coincidence - getting the air conditioning window units out of the basement and fitting them in the appropriate places in the house. They felt a lot heavier than they had on the cool autumnal day when I removed them.

The second was an unfortunate coincidence - putting the spare on the car having discovered that the normal occupant of this corner had an impressive piece of metal hardware through the treads:

Boy, that was hot work! Thanks to Exile #2, the hole is now fixed and the car back to normal. Fortunately for us all, the weather is due to return to more seasonable warmth as of tonight.

Monday, June 12, 2017

Day 10.153: Thirteen in pictures

...featuring: Wonder Woman, cake and an evening walk on the beach.

Sunday, June 11, 2017

Day 10.152: Exile #2's Sunday Column #180

Exile #2 writes...
Exile #4 reached teendom today. Yes, thirteen years of those curls and that laugh. Also, we should have figured out the karate thing a bit sooner. Someone early on commented that she looked ready to take a swing at someone in this baby photo with Exile #3.

So, appropriately enough, we headed out to celebrate her birthday by watching the new Wonder Woman movie. I do look back with a certain fondness on watching Lynda Carter as Wonder Woman - the amazing special effects that made her transform before our very eyes, the big jumps she could do (maybe not all in one shot but we got the idea...) and the uncertain way she would run towards the screen because she couldn't see properly without her glasses. I, for one, however, am pleased that the satin tights have been replaced with something a whole lot tougher. I'm also pleased that the movie managed to tell a good story without excessive numbers of noisy fight scenes and the destruction of a major metropolis. All in all, the movie got a big thumbs up from us.

We're going to head out to eat later and if everything goes to plan, Exile #4 will get to celebrate again next weekend, but this time with her friends.

Saturday, June 10, 2017

Day 10.151: No strange wooden animals?

Today was our last day (for a while anyway) with just one teenager in the house. Exile #2 and I celebrated by leaving her in charge while we had a midday outing. I'll tell you about it another time, but it included this scene - which made us laugh. We weren't sure at first what the sign was banning - and then we saw that it had already failed its mission:

We managed a few other tasks - a 16 mile run and cutting the grass for me, summer holiday planning and birthday cake baking for Exile #2. The kids all got some work done, so hopefully we can enjoy the celebrations tomorrow.

Friday, June 9, 2017

Day 10.150: Mr Lettucehead

We may not be in the presence of Lord Buckethead, but we still know how to celebrate the beginning of the weekend:

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Day 10.149: Four horse, race

A few days ago we saw these unusual vehicles passing by:

Tonight, we're watching some very interesting election results coming in from the UK.

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Day 10.148: In the outsides

I ran a total of 15 miles today (7 in the morning and 8 while Exile #4 was at karate this evening) in the outsides and it didn't rain on me. This is fairly remarkable in several ways - the weather one being the most significant.

The views as the sun started to go down were rather nice too:

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Day 10.147: Where there's smoke...

...there will soon be tasty food.

Tonight was definitely not a grilling night thanks to steady rain and a series of parent-taxi trips. The weather this spring has been pretty lousy so far - cool and wet much too much of the time, but we've still managed to use the grill three or four times so we're not doing too badly.