Monday, October 29, 2012

Hiking on a Gorgeous Fall Day

Abram and I enjoy hiking.  We have made it a point to walk or hike several miles each weekend since our biking accident in August.  Up until October 21st, none of our children would join us.  I decide to insist Carmen and Rachel come "walking in the woods" with us.  Sarai was working that day so she couldn't come.

Here is the image of the fall leaves at the beginning of our trail.  We planned on hiking up Mt. Wachusett.

Rachel and Carmen were very silly walking.  Rachel found a stump which she called a chair, but decided to stand on.

Here is a root base of a tree that had fallen over.

Rachel discovered a great walking stick and used it for some of the hike.

 We took two bags with us.  One was a hydro-pack with water and the other a small back pack with food.  I found it humorous that Carmen would only carry the backpack, she was too embarrassed to carry the hydro-pack and Rachel was the opposite.  She only would carry the hydro-pack.  She thinks it is so cool to drink the water from the tube.

So as we hiked I had to carry either the hydro-pack or the backpack as the two girls couldn't switch off.

When we began our hike/walk Rachel kept asking "where are the rocks?"  I promised her that the rocks will come as we get closer to the top of the mountain. Here are some good climbing rocks for Rachel.

She found a great rock to hide under as well.

And others to look so pretty on.

Abram and Rachel at the top.  Carmen has become too much of teen to offer me good smiles so we don't have many of her on this hike.

She took this picture of us at the summit.

Then one of herself!

Abram used his long arm to get all of us.  We did enjoy the hike.  Rachel and Carmen kept us walking fast at the end.  I did promise them ice cream when we finished (which we did get).  I was so cold that my lips turned purple though!

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Kid's art

It has been so long since I posted last.  So much has happened.  I will try to keep up to date posts as well as ones from the past several months.

I have always had the idea that the study would show case the kids art. A few years ago Abram bought me a matte cutting board and equipment to create my own mattes. Art paper is never standard and it is "easier" to make your own matte to fit a certain sized frame. I made two such matted pictured with frames, but stopped at that years ago. Two weekends ago, we rediscovered many of the kids art work that I had always wanted to frame. With Abram's help we added many frames to our study as well as other areas of the house.

From left to right:
 Two pictures of Tobin.  A friend of Tobin's sketched his senior picture as a graduation gift for him.  I placed it with Tobin's self portrait from 9th grade.  Tobin's portrait is made from magazine clippings using positive and negative space.  It was on display for parent's night at the HS.  I knew it was him immediately.
  Center is pointillism of my dress shoes done by Sarai
  Right is is water color done by Sarai.

Here is a closer look at the portrait Tobin created.

This is the water color painting.  I believe it is of a microscopic organism.

Left is a picture done by Carmen if Rudolf flying in the winter sky.  She did it in 2nd grade.  This was one of first pictures I matted on my own.
Right picture is a digital image of a cat in a bottle by Sarai

A closer look at the cat in a bottle.

This is now the wall the couch back is against.  the top two pictures are done by Sarai.  the flower she did in 5th grade and the fruit and bottle was done last spring.  both are done in oil pastels. The bottom two are done by Rachel.  I believe the bottom left was done when she was in 1st or second grade and the shapes are either from 4th or fifth grade.  The large picture on the right is also done by Rachel.  Another one of the first I matted.  I think it was done in 2nd grade.

The next three pictures are now in my entry way closest to the garage (for those who have been in my house).

This is a mosiac done by Carmen from 8th grade.

This is done by Sarai from her print making class.  They had to carve into Styrofoam  ink it and make multiple prints to create a design.

Also, in that same print making class she created this see turtle.  This picture was entered into the Boston Globe art exhibit winning an honorable mention.

Abram purchased a poster in Spain.  It is a Picasso of a bull fighter.  He now greets all that come down our stairs or enter through the main entrance door.

In 2004 we took a family vacation out to the west coast.  While we visited the Seattle Children's museum Carmen spent almost two hours in the art room.  We learned to use oil pastels in a bucket of warm water.  Using water color paper, she was able to draw and erase anything she did not like before it became permanent.  the oil pastels did not penetrate the paper until the paper dried.  Here is her mermaid that she did the week she turned 6.  She still loves this picture.  It is now in my bathroom.   

There is still more art to frame!

I also began an adventure wall in the living room.  I need to find pictures from all the state parks we have visited as well as great family pictures and ones of Abram and I being outdoors.  Hopefully, many more blogs to come.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Rachel's Fans at Basketball

Rachel played travel basketball this winter season.   She played basketball last year and didn't think she wanted to try out for it this year until her closest friend, Teresa, asked her to attend a tryout with her.  They made the same team and Rachel realized she loves basketball and is very good. 

Her games were played on Sundays. 
Last year she chose the number 23 which is the inverse of Sarai's number 32.

Rachel is a fantastic player.  She is able to steal the ball often and make fast breaks as pictured here.

I always enjoy watching her lay-ups.  Yes, this picture of the hoop looks odd.  At 5th grade they lower the hoops to 8 1/2 feet.  At this gym they cannot lower the hoops so they hung another hoop from the rim of the 10 foot hoop.  It was a bit difficult to adjust, but they managed.

Here is Rachel with Teresa and her game coach, Alex.  Alex lives across the street from us and is a senior like Tobin.
Rachel asked her siblings to come to see her games, but only Carmen made it before February vacation week.  Everyone was free at the end of vacation and planned to see one of her last games. 

Sarai made this sign for Rachel for the game.  Each letter is on a 8 1/2 x 11 construction paper.  She now displays it on her closet doors.

Here you see her cheerleaders! Bill, Sarai, Tobin and Carmne. Abram and I were there too, but since I'm taking the picture I just featured the kids.  Each time Rachel had the ball, cherrs of encouragement errupted from the bench. Everyone was laughing with joy, especially Rachel, during this game. They certainly tried to make up for all the games they missed. 

Rachel is good at looking up and finding open players.

She also will take the ball and control it and keep it from the defending team while moving it to an open player.
Was was a head taller than the players on the opposing team!
Sweet lay-up!

Rachel loves her team.  They have fun and have worked hard to earn their place as 3rd in their league.  tomorrow is the last game of the season with playoffs next week.  It has been great to be coached by the senior captain of the High School varsity basketball team Remy and Alex an experienced senior who lead them to many wins in games. 

Thanks to all who have helped to cheer on this team! 

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Sarai at the Winter Ball

A few weeks ago, Sarai went to the winter ball with Bill McKenna.

Helping her get ready was an all girl affair. Carmen and I worked together to use the curling iron and make banana curls all over Sarai's head. Rachel was given the camera to document the progress.

This is the photo Sarai's calls her family photo:  her, Bill and Zori. 

I tried taking photos in different rooms to see which background was best. 

I prefer the kitchen curtains color as their backdrop color. 

Sarai's dress was simple, but looked great.  When we were shopping for dresses I picked this one out because of the great color.  She wasn't excited about it until she put it on.  She did take Bill shopping for a shirt and tie to make sure it complemented correctly. 

Many people have huge groups gathering at their house for pictures.  We went to one house, took this picture and left quickly.  Even though there were many people there, they did not know anyone there very well.  We did capture a good photo though.   She is wearing Toms shoes in this photo because the shoes she had planned to wear were at Michelle's house.  We are going there next.

This is Michelle, a good friend and someone Sarai has played basketball with for many years.  We drove to her house for more pictures.

Caroline and Sarai, with a Bill shadow on the left!

Liz Belden and Sarai

Sarai is in a Liz sandwich.  Liz Belden is on left and Liz Benbenick is on the right.

Michelle and her date and Sarai and Bill.

Winterball is held at the High School.  It is usually a fun time to dress up and dance with friends. 

Monday, February 20, 2012

Valentine's Day Hike

Abram and I celebrated Valentine's Day with a long hike.  The weekend before Valentine's Day, he had asked what I wanted to do.  Having dinner on a week night when most places are already booked did not seem fun to me.  I'd rather be active, so I suggested hiking.
We often do a long hike up Mt. Wachusett starting at the Audubon Society.  I wanted to do a different hike this time.  Abram had taken the day off on Thurs to spend the day with me; that in of itself is a great gift!

The Midstate Trail goes north to south through the middle of Massachusetts.  It is broken up into several sections.  I wanted to begin at the Barre Falls because I'm intrigued by falls.

Here is the trail marker:

We began at the Barre Dam by 9:30am.  No one was there, it was so quiet and peaceful.

  After a short walk into the woods this was the sight that welcomed us:
A peaceful river flowing through the woods.  I'm glad there was little snow on the ground; although I have missed the snow this year.  I can imagine this river would be much fuller with a good amount of winter snow melt. 

Even though there wasn't any snow on the ground, there was ice in the river along the edges or near tree limbs in the water.

I was amazed that the river could be flowing quickly and still there's snow and ice forming. 

We crossed a bridge at one point.

Here was the sign on the bridge:

We walked for a good 4 and a half miles along the trail and then turned around to get back to the Barre Falls.  We climbed down a steep hill and set of stairs to see the Barre Falls and this view. 

I just love the icicles forming on the rock just above the water's edge. 
I learned a new game that day: Disc Golf. 

Here is a map for hole 4 showing you the path your flying disk should go and what par the hole is. 

This is what you are aiming to get the disks into. 

When I first saw the map on our way to begin the hike I thought it was showing a golf course.  Then when we returned back, a few hours later, people were playing around the falls.  It wasn't until I read the label on the metal hole that I learned about this sport.  By 1pm the Barre Falls had several teams of people around playing this game.  Barre Falls has an 18 hole course. 

Barre Falls is beautiful.  There is a lot of land to walk along.  They have picnic tables and a volleyball court.  I'm glad we discovered this place and had a peaceful hike together. 

Happy Valentine's Day to all.