Monthly Archives: April 2012

The devil went down to Georgia last night . . .

The Charlie Daniels Band in Forsyth Park. Oh yeah. You know we had to be there. OK. Truth be told neither Raymond nor I could come up with a single Charlie Daniels song other than Devil, but that one song was enough.
The crowd, and my children, went wild. Priceless.

Get the Dirt on Dirt

I’ve been saying for years that nothing makes me happier than dirty toes.

(Did you feel that shudder? That was my mother cringing.) But it’s true – as far as I can tell really dirty children have been having a really good time. Happy children. Barefoot in the backyard climbing trees children.

According to a new report out by the National Wildlife Federation, there really is something to the dirty = happy equation. Studies have shown that simply having contact with dirt, whether it’s through gardening, digging holes, or making pies out of mud, can significantly improve a child’s mood and reduce their anxiety and stress.

What’s more, dirty children also means healthy children. Many kids who live in an ultraclean environment have a greater chance of suffering from allergies, asthma, and other autoimmune diseases that we would otherwise be protected from through the simple pleasure of playing with some nice common dirt.

No need to take my word for it – you can download the full study here.
So what are you waiting for? Go dig in the dirt! It’s good for you!

(And don’t worry, Mom. They’ve had a bath now.)

Hula hoop, baby!

I can’t believe it has taken me so long to post this, but for the past 2 weeks we have had a full-on hula hoop obsession in this house. That sparkly purple baby has been spinning pretty much constantly since it arrived, to the point where it’s sparkly purple coating has almost entirely peeled off! These photos and videos were made the day the hula hoop arrived, and you can tell from the smiles and giggles that it was an instant hit. These kids are naturals!!

 

Museum kids

The kids are off from school for spring break this week, so yesterday we headed downtown to the SCAD museum for a little looking around. I love that my children are museum kids. I love that they go automatically into the hands behind the back museum stance when looking closely at something. I love that they are open and curious and interested in understanding what they are seeing. And I love it when they have strong reactions to the art they are seeing, as was the case with the new exhibits we encountered yesterday.

The kids always love the video room, though Lola Gray was a oddly fascinated and terrified by Bill Viola’s The Crossing the last time we were there. Now SCAD is exhibiting 3 videos by Sigalit Landau, an Israeli artist who Raymond saw at the 2011 Venice Biennale. The main work showed a pair of boots, heavily crusted with salt from the Dead Sea. The boots were placed on a frozen port in Poland and filmed over the course of a day as they slowly melted the ice and sank from view. Lola was fascinated. We watched the video through 4 times and only convinced her to leave with the promise of lunch.

The second exhibit to elicit strong reaction was by South African artist Jane Alexander, but the reaction here was not so positive. Alexander makes these amazing human/animal hybrid sculptures which she then places into real landscapes and photographs. Both the photos and the actual sculptures were included in the exhibition, and while Fletcher wanted nothing to do with the creatures from the get-go at first Lola thought it was a wonderful game. We would select a photograph, then go in search of the sculptural figure from the image. But after a few minutes, Lo started to walk slower and skirt around a few of the figures. Finally she confessed they were too scary and she wanted to leave. “I can’t stop looking at them.” she whispered.

And that’s kind of the point, isn’t it?

I don’t know that these kids are going to grow up to become artists. I don’t even know that I would want them to be artists if I had a say in the matter (which I obviously do not.) But I do want them to grow up with an appreciation of beauty in all it’s many complex forms. I want them to maintain that sense of fascination and wonder that comes along with viewing incredible things. And once again I am so grateful to SCAD for the opportunity to visit with these works and share them with my children right in my own back yard.

Happy Easter!

Another beautiful Easter has come and gone, and it truly was a beautiful day. After Easter baskets and breakfast we headed to church where Fletcher read Luke 24:1-9 during the children’s service. We stayed for the 11am service as Fletcher was the acolyte, and I was happy for the excuse to stay and enjoy the beautiful Easter music.

This video was made during the practice immediately before the service. Raymond was cracking up at how Fletcher looked like a typewriter moving the paper back and forth as he read!

After church we headed to Grayson Stadium for a Sand Gnats game. Cold beer, cool breeze, baseball, and snuggling in the bleachers with my favorite kiddos. It doesn’t get much better.

EGG-stra special

An EGG-ceptional Saturday morning hunt

The annual egg hunt was on this morning! It never takes long, of course, to hunt down all those plastic, candy filled gems. But what a wonderful way to pass a cool April Saturday morning, running through the grass with friends . . .