Time to play catch up - a bit from before our travels, plus lots since we returned!
New - and informal - family pics (taken with my phone, on a tripod, while we all tried to both smile and get the kittens to look at the camera) for the Six Kitten Rescue social media pages!
A fresh batch of photos of the flowers in my dad's garden!
|RIP, Big Buddy|
Most mornings this summer I've dropped Will off at school just before 7:30am for his two-hour bootcamp workout. Last week I discovered in the parking lot - which is usually relatively empty - three 18-wheeler semis, three or four passenger buses, and a few additional large capacity vans. The side of one of the semis read, "Blue Stars Drum & Bugle Corps", and below that, "La Crosse, Wisconsin." Realizing the Blue Stars were somehow connected with marching band, I texted two of my band mom friends to ask if they had any information about these visitors. Both confirmed that they were practicing at the high school that day and the following day, ahead of a performance in Houston, and that later that evening they would practice as a full group in the stadium (rather than in sections on the many practice fields).
As a lover of marching bands - and as a Wisconsinite - I made plans to attend the evening rehearsal. Hallie claimed to enjoy marching bands as well, and she confirmed her fandom when she joined me in watching for 90 minutes in 103 degrees.
The Blue Stars were founded in 1964. They began as a color guard, but eventually added brass and percussion to qualify as a competitive drum and bugle corps for young adults between the ages of 15 and 22. The group is committed to helping members learn "teamwork, dedication, perseverance, goal setting, and discipline" - skills that will hopefully lead to success later in life - through the performing arts. The Blue Stars have enjoyed periods of national and international success, even taking home the World Championship in 1989, 1993, 2001, and 2003. They aim to be competitively successful and entertaining to audiences, but also a place where young people can feel like they belong.
While we didn't see and listen to the Blue Stars' entire show start to finish, we were able see and watch many of the theatrically elaborate scenes and complicated musical numbers start to finish. Additionally, we learned a lot about how groups of this size rehearse and shows of this scope come together. Such a cool way to spend a Thursday evening!
When Hallie hit puberty, her naturally wavy hair became quite a bit curlier. Neither of us are curl experts though, so her hair was never cut or styled quite right; we tried a lot of different products and methods, but either they didn't work or we weren't using/performing them correctly (or she wouldn't follow my instructions because #13yearsold). I stumbled upon a local stylist who specializes in curly hair, and one appointment later...
Full confession: we've yet to duplicate this at home. Curly-haired people shouldn't wash their hair every day, and shouldn't brush their hair the same way people with straight hair do...but Hallie has to wash her hair almost every day because it always has product in it from dance, and she has to brush her hair A LOT to get it back into a smooth ponytail and/or bun. She also has to shower at night (again, dance), so in order to do this hair for school she'd have to shower a second time or completely wet her head down in the morning. So her head is a work in progress, but we're thankful to have gotten a good start with a great haircut, as well as advice on washing/drying/styling/products, from an expert!
|Every summer we get a pic of these two with Ms. Darby after |
her intensive. Avery didn't make it to the intensive this year because
she was sick, so we recreated the photo a few weeks later.
|These three coordinated their patriotic |
ballet ensembles prior to the 4th of July.
|Hallie made this charcuterie board for herself |
and a friend - I snuck a few treats for myself...
|Drinks with my favorite people at our favorite place.|
|Hallie "made" me a special banana.|
|Will guest-played with another team for a tournament |
last weekend and they brought home first place!
|Way to go, Navasota Mafia!|
|My mom came across this |
throwback pic - an oldie but a goodie.
|Tom's new birthday grill and smoker!|
Happy weekend, friends!