Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Evan's Haikus

Amidst all of the joys of homeschooling, there are tears at times also. This happened last week with both of my kids. I was really flabbergasted at how they were struggling with simple, simple things. I made sure we took breaks, I made sure I wasn't speaking a different language and they couldn't understand what I was saying; I just didn't have a clue as to why they were struggling with some things. Just a bad week, I guess.

I decided to do something fun--haikus. I don't understand it, but I've had enough people tell me that writing for the majority of boys is torture. I take their word for this, as it's proven true for my son. However, he has to do it once in a while. I thought haikus would be fun, he likes nature and he likes poetry. Not so much.....we thought of several together, he understood the rules as far as the number of lines and syllables and that it had to be about nature, but he couldn't grasp that it needed to be beautiful language depicting a moment in time. I even gave him descriptive language words to use, and I thought the many examples we did and read would help. He came up with one and it was quite humorous and gave us all a laugh and I accepted it, but then made him do another one more along the lines of the beauty of nature, and he was successful. Here are his haikus:

The black and grey geese
They are very annoying
As they land on ponds.
*We all thought this was hysterical, partly in the way he read it--guess you had to be there.

Fish swim very fast
As they glide through the water
With their scales shining
*I was very proud of him for this!

Despite the "torture" it was for him, I think in the end he was proud of himself--and that's the most important thing. He did something he really, really, really didn't want to do, did a great job, but I'm sure now he's thinking, "I can check that off and never have to do it again!" LOL!

Monday, January 13, 2014


Yea! A new year is upon us. I know that this is going to be a year full of change for our family. As I think back on the holidays, events, and activities and all of the pics I took but didn't post, I'm kind of sorry for that. I'm not sure that this year of blog writing will be any better than last year. In fact, I kind of enjoyed the break. Here we are already on the 7th day of January, and I'm just now posting. Oh well....

I was going through my camera today uploading pics onto the computer as well as a couple of videos. I thought I'd go ahead and post the ones regarding Lauren's dance team. In June she went through a month of training at the NorthWest YMCA and in July tried out for the competitive dance team. She made it! This year was the first year for teams under the age of 10. She was one of 4 girls on her team for the ages of 8-10. There is also another team ages 5-7, and then of course the older girls team that has been around for a few years. However, after a month of team practices, the other 3 girls on Lauren's team were blatantly ignoring her and not being friendly. I couldn't believe that I was witnessing these mean girls treating my daughter like this. I brought the subject up to the head coach and she wrote me back saying one of her pet peeves was mean girl behavior and she would change it. However, by this time it was too late for Lauren and she was ready to leave. Besides the mean girls, the head coach was also the head coach for cheer and you could tell that is where her heart was. She rarely came and worked with our girls, or got to know their names. Also, she was very pregnant, so I think between pregnancy, two new dance teams, and the responsibility of cheer and dance, she was overwhelmed herself. We pulled Lauren off the team in September, and thought about putting her in the Y advanced dance academy classes. This would support her love of dancing, hopefully she would be around nicer girls; she just wouldn't compete and Lauren was good with that. The next thing I knew, a friend of mine whose daughter is the same age as Lauren and had been dancing on the competitive team for the South Y contacted their head coach without my knowledge and told me her coach wanted to talk with me about the possibility of Lauren having a private audition and joining their team. I called the coach and we chatted about Lauren's experience and set up an audition. The coach kept telling me this group of 5 girls had been together for a few years and were advanced. I wasn't sure what that meant for Lauren, but she had a great audition. About halfway through the audition, the coach came out to talk to me and I was holding my breath as to what she thought of Lauren's abilities. I told her Lauren was a more outgoing then what she was showing, and the coach said she could tell and she could also tell Lauren was a little nervous, but was still doing well. I also told her Lauren's weakness was ballet because she hadn't had a lot of practice, and the coach said all of her girls on the team were the same way. She said she was impressed with Lauren and could see the potential she had and said invited Lauren to join the team! I was so happy for my daughter!

The South Y team has been so welcoming to her. The girls are not mean and Lauren has especially bonded with 3 of the girls. I really like the coach. She is only 21 years old, and has been the coach since she was 17. She is young, but talks very nice to the girls, but yet disciplines when she has to. All that being said, I'm not sure what next year with this group holds. I don't like the 25 minute drive one way to the practices, especially since the NW Y is only 7 minutes away. Also, some of the dance moves in the routines seem a little too mature. I'm not the only one who feels that way either. Roger has noticed it and so have some of the other moms. Also, Lauren thinks she might want to take acting lessons and a break from dance, so next year remains to be seen. I'm kind of hoping that things might work out at the NW Y some how, or she might be able to dance for the place she is thinking about taking acting lessons from, Christian Youth Theater. In the meantime practices continue in preparation for 6 competitions between the end of February and April. Two will be out of town and the rest in town.

The pics are from the Haysville parade the girls walked in October representing the South Y. She looks so cute and had a great time with her new friends. The two videos are from December when they danced two of their routines at Breakfast With Santa. The girls weren't at their best, but they've gotten better in the little bit of time since then. I wish I was computer savvy and could pop up an arrow on the screen above Lauren's head that would follow her around the screen as she dances, but since I can't, enjoy the girls dancing, and if you can spot Lauren then enjoy her performance.