I know, I know…we’re a little behind on blogging. (Okay, a lot.) I promise to catch up one of these days. But yesterday was a Very Important Day for children around the nation: Halloween! The Gribble kids had an extended holiday. We always start the season by painting windows at the businesses in downtown Lafaytte with Phoebe’s friend Fritz and his family. The kids got a spot at Eats and Sweets, a local ice-cream and sandwich shop, which meant that their paintings were probably seen by a lot of people!
The PTA at Benjamin’s school, Alicia Sanchez International Elementary, threw a Halloween bash last Saturday. There were art projects (Día de los Muertos skulls to color, Tootsie Pop ghosts to create, cookies and marshmallows to decorate); a costume contest; a photo booth; snacks; face painting; and dancing in the darkened, decorated gym. The kids were excited to try out their Halloween costumes!*
I insisted they be photographed before we could walk over to the party. Phoebe’s school friend Maggie Jane came along as a play date.
On Monday night we had an evening free, so we carved pumpkins.
On Tuesday night our piano teacher, Walt, did a recital with a soprano who’s been singing with our choir, Paige Sentianin. We only stayed for half of it, due to bedtimes, but dressing up was encouraged and the kids got to wear their costumes again.
On Halloween morning, Benjamin came home from school sick and was disconsolate about missing the parade. After a check-up, I decided to bring him over to school to process across the stage with his class. He was feeling a lot better and was annoyed when I dragged him home again—he missed some sort of decorating project—but I had a phone meeting. Working parenthood!
My colleagues always comes up with a theme for Halloween costumes. This year, we were “zombies through the decades,” based on a series of books we’re publishing on pop music through the decades. I had to pick up Benjamin, so I didn’t make it into the group photo.
We trick-or-treated with the Gawenuses this year; the Brinkmans have grown up, and they went out with individual friends. While we missed seeing them, it was nice to be close to home. We ate some pumpkin-shaped pepperoni pizzas and Phoebe’s vegetable owl, and I made chocolate-chip-Werther’s-caramel cookies. Phoebe and I really enjoyed smashing the Werther’s with a hammer on the garage floor (in a baggie, of course).
The Gawenuses’ neighborhood was wonderful for trick-or-treating; the big kids (Phoebe and Fritz) stayed out for an hour. Benjamin and I went back early to warm up (it was pretty chilly) and help Lisa pass out candy. When the big kids got back, they dumped their prodigious bags on candy into one huge pile and shared it out evenly. Benjamin got every “odd” piece; the fifth Hershey’s bar, the third Whopper package (which Phoebe kept pronouncing “Whooper,” to my delight). The redistribution was their idea and gives me great hope for the future. Everyone managed to eat a disgusting amount of candy before we dragged the kids home for bed.
*Note: This year, Phoebe wrote “start sewing costumes” on the school lunch calendar on October 1. I don’t think I started until October 8, but I was pretty pleased with the results. Now the sewing machine is back in the garage, to be resurrected on October 1, 2019, or when I need to fix a seam, whichever comes first.
As you know, Phoebe and I have been taking piano lessons from Walton Lott, the accompanist at church. He’s an amazing pianist, and he’s been challenging us to learn some music theory along with playing the music on the keyboard.
The first third of life committe, of which I’m the chairwoman, planned a youth Sunday. It went really well! The kids did a great job, and the adults really enjoyed having them as part of the worship service.
Benjamin is now enrolled in three therapies. Here he’s working with his physical therapist.
Phoebe won an individual and team medal in the Noetic Math Contest!
Phoebe took a video of Benjamin’s first soccer practice:
Even on Mother’s Day, the kids and I make our weekendly trek to the grocery store, but it enabled me to make a delicious beef stew.
Dave and I took the morning off work to enjoy first Phoebe’s second-grade class “Shelebration,” at which the kids acted out and recited Shel Silverstein poems from memory. Next, we watched Benjamin’s kindergarten carnival, which was a celebration of the end of the kindergarten year.
Rock ‘N Roll Band
Phoebe and I were invited to Gwen and Bill Wharton’s house to watch the royal wedding with other church friends. We had to be there at 4 a.m., so we climbed out of bed and dr
Later that day, the kids and I joined the Gawenus family for Lafayette’s first Ninja Warrior festival. A Ninja Warrior gym just opened next to XTreme Altitude, the gymnastics facility. Lafayette is such a cool town! It was freezing that day.
During Dave’s last performance of Gypsy with the Longmont Theater Company, he took a time-lapse video of all of his instrument changes.
After Dave’s Longmont Concert Band concert, he played in a saxophone quartet.
I caught only a few seconds on video:
This is Benjamin working with his occupational therapist. Mat man teaches kids to draw a body so they don’t draw arms and legs coming out of a head.
It’s rare for us to have a camping trip with WiFi, so I thought I’d take advantage of the luxury to put up a quick blog post about our trip to Mesa Verde (still ongoing). So, the post will be pretty short on prose in favor or pics.
We left the front range after work and B’s soccer and a quick Chipotle dinner at around 7:30. Since it’s about 7 hours of driving to Mesa Verde we arrived around 2:30 in the morning. I think everyone was more than ready to climb into the tent which is precisely what we did as soon as I got everything setup.
Saturday morning we slept in a bit, made a yummy pancake breakfast (with sausage), and made our way back down to the visitor’s center to buy a new park pass and get tickets for one of the guided cliff-dwelling tours. The kiddos enjoyed learning about nature and making beaded necklaces and bracelets with some CU students while I waited in line for tickets. One of the dwellings (the Spruce Treehouse) is currently closed due to some recent rockfall, so that left just 3 options. While waiting in line, one of the volunteers gave a short description of the options and it was clear that the more adventurous Balcony House tour was perfect with its 32’ ladder and tunnel, so I got us tickets for the 5 o’clock tour.
That pretty much wraps up day 1 at Mesa Verde. Everyone had a blast and we hope you enjoy the photos.
I went on a field trip with Phoebe’s class to Sombrero Marsh in Boulder. I didn’t even know it was there! It was freezing that day, but we still had a marvelous time learning about birds, insects, plants, and animals.
Benjamin had a fever and stayed home from school.
Now Phoebe’s home from school.
The Alicia Sanchez kindergartners had a choir concert. This time, Benjamin was appropriately dressed! (More or less.) It’s early June now, and he’s still singing some of the songs from their performance. It was terrific.
Some work friends and I got together to bake Mittens the Cat Cake, an incredibly complicated recipe Jane discovered on NPR around Thanksgiving.
Phoebe fell in love with Harry Potter and read it over and over.
Benjamin did ten weeks of physical therapy at KidSPOT, which is owned by his first physical therapist, Jessica Fuentes! He worked hard, had fun, and progressed a lot. He earned his hot chocolates. (KidSPOT is located below Vic’s Coffee Shop in Louisville.)
I interviewed the kids about their plans for being a grown-up.
Benjamin was working on a melty bead project and singing a song from his school concert.
I tried to get Benjamin to come to Take Your Children to Work Day, but he declined. Phoebe came with me the day after the official day; BVSD schools were closed because so many teachers were marching in Denver for better pay and more money for schools.
Phoebe won first place for second- and third-graders in the Lafayette Youth Poetry Awards! She was invited to a reception to read her poem, which was truly wonderful.