Friday, February 25, 2022

High Five for Friday (2.25.22)



Last Thursday night Will performed in his first orchestra concert of the semester. Sadly I had to miss this concert, but both Tom and Will said it went well and I'm grateful Tom took both photos and videos so I could enjoy Will's pieces later that evening.  

Tom said he was listening to the tuning pitch...Will said he
was looking for Tom. (The teacher gives parents a minute before
the concert starts to come up to the stage and take pictures.)


Why did I miss Will's orchestra concert, you ask? Because Hallie and I had tickets to RENT! (I bought these tickets months ago, long before Will's orchestra concert was added to the calendar.) 

I spent the last three months preparing Hallie for this show - the show centers around adult themes and both the storylines and character webs are complicated - and when Thursday night arrived, she was more than ready...and she LOVED every minute of it. 

The last musical I saw here in College Station was Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. It's one of my favorite shows, and the traveling production that stopped here was - I hate to say it - awful. So my expectations for RENT...well, they weren't high. I had high hopes, but low expectations. Thankfully, this production far exceeded my hopes and expectations - it was the best I've seen in at least four viewings of RENT throughout the last 25 years.


Following our busy Thursday evening, we enjoyed a nice LONG weekend - our district calendar gave us both Friday and Monday off from school. We still had dance on Friday night and Saturday afternoon and soccer on Sunday and Monday afternoons, but overall we weren't terribly busy...which left time for driving practice, a track meet (both Will and I love to attend other sporting events, especially when we know kids competing), art projects, video games, and recreating a rain forest in Mandi's classroom.


On Saturday afternoon, Hallie took her first ever pointe class. She was beyond excited, even though this first class was something of an introduction for the girls - they just learned how to sew the elastics and ribbons on their shoes. I can't wait to watch this next adventure unfold for her... 


Happiness Highlights

Kaylee and Tux
Thanks, Facebook, for the memories.

Molly likes the Hallmark Channel.

Bill prefers The Mentalist.

I mean...look at that stud.

This shirt makes me very happy. I want one.

First ever CFA frozen lemonade. What
a surprise and delight for the tastebuds!

Happy weekend, friends!

Tuesday, February 22, 2022

Grumpy for 11 Years

The Packers didn't even come close this year, y'all. Their season ended at the beginning of the playoffs with a depressing loss to the San Francisco 49ers, so we've been grumpy for weeks now.

The emotion in the first picture of this series - at the bottom of the post - was captured accidentally. On Super Bowl Sunday I brought out all of the kids' Green Bay gear for one more wear. As Will pulled on one of his Packer shirts, he asked excitedly if the Packers had made it to the Super Bowl. When I explained that no, the Packers weren't playing that day, the authentically forlorn expression you see above passed slowly across his face. Hallie, on the other hand, just didn't feel like smiling for the camera.

Hopefully 2023 will be the year our Green Bay Packers rise to the top once more, because while I used to say that this tradition - Will and Hallie wearing their disappointment on both their faces and torsos - would continue as long as was necessary, I think this year might have been its last. Let's just say that cooperation levels decreased dramatically since last year, not to mention the fact that the emotions on the faces below - annoyance with their mother and each other - are as authentic as emotions come. 😂

Go Pack Go!

Teenagers keepin' it real.

Nothing says grumpy like cuddling a kitten.

Will brings his A-game with a swollen black eye.

Intense and unblinking.

Trying not to laugh and annoyed at the laugher.

2017 (official)

2017 (bonus)
Note the unilaterally flared nostril.

Adorably angry and trying not to smile.

Indifferent and trying to make herself cry.

The year of the toothy growl.

My favorite. Just cute.

The OG.

Hallie's range of emotions is one of my absolute favorite details to capture in photos. As you probably know, she's has never had any trouble flashing a turned-down mouth and furrowed brow - staged or sincere - for the camera. Will, on the other hand, has to work really hard to make an angry face the rest of us can take seriously. He almost always bursts out laughing as soon as he hears the camera click. 

Friday, February 18, 2022

High Five for Friday (2.18.22)


February's AMCHS flower subscription arrived a little earlier than usual this month, just in time for Valentine's Day, and the arrangement is gorgeous. I love having fresh flowers in my kitchen, and I'm so grateful for the opportunity to support the high school and its students this way.

Look at that adorable vase!


Last Friday night, my besties Mandi and Jenn came to watch Will's high school soccer game. I highly recommend finding yourself friends like these two, who - among other great characteristics - love and support your kiddos so authentically.


We don't go out or go big for Valentine's Day. We do, however, have a fun treasure hunt tradition. (Which the kids still love, even though they're old and sometimes kind of teenager-y about this kind of thing.) I buy the kids a couple of small gifts and create a photo book from the previous year for Tom, hide all of these gifts, and then set up a treasure hunt throughout the house and yard leading to their location. 

Hallie took off (straight from dance, still
wearing a mask and a new dance costume.

Will followed behind a little more leisurely, and Tom
stood in the living room and ate his unfinished lunch. 😂

My favorite pages of Tom's photo book:
1. Pics of Will sleeping with kittens.

2. Pics of all of us with Tux.

3. A flower pic I took. (I always put one
of my flower pictures on the back cover.)

We also usually indulge in a few fun snacks and/or desserts; this year we went with a charcuterie board (made by a woman from our dance studio) and Valentine's Day cookies (made by a friend from the kids' elementary school - you can find her at Wren Bird Bakery). Delicious!


SNOW!!! Like actual snow, and it fell for almost 10 full minutes. This girl nearly cried, she was so delighted.

Will was less excited. (Maybe because he was dressed for that morning's temperature, which was 55 degrees. Texas weather is weird, y'all.) This was as far out of the house as he was willing to venture, so this is how I took a picture of them together.

Proof, in Will's hair.


Happiness Highlights

My parents, rocking their Tigers gear and cheering for
Will (from afar) ahead of last Friday night's soccer game. 

Will's first high school assist!!!

The new varsity banner is up, and it's awesome!

Also, you're apparently not allowed to smile
in sports photos if you're a high school boy. 

In keeping with the soccer theme, this photo popped up in my
memories from (?) years ago. These boys have come a long way.
(Will is the tiny one wearing a black hat in the front row.)  

Loving this pic of my parents and niece,
Lily, after her most recent dance showcase...

...but loving this pic of Lily and fam even more.
Could Carter BE any more excited about dance? 

Happy weekend, friends!