Saturday, March 14, 2015

Layered paintings

Today, Grace and I visited the the Akron Art Museum.  Their front lobby is a glass atrium and the lighting is just amazing, even on a cloudy day.

When we pulled up to the museum Grace said that she remembers being there before and reminded me of what it looked like inside and that she played with giant blocks in the main entry.  That was two years ago!  I love how certain things have an impact on her.

She was excited to walk around looking at the paintings and sculpture.  In each gallery we entered we chose the one piece we liked the best and told each other why. There was a furniture exhibit (we liked everything - modern but comfortable)...

...and she had fun mimicking some of the statues.

The real reason we went to the museum today was for a kids' studio art class.  There were about 20 kids and two instructors.  Grace said they took a tour (she giggled about the nude paintings) and then went to the classroom to learn how to layer paint and etch a design.

The art classroom was pretty cool!

I think she had a good time and it was a fun way to spend a rainy Saturday afternoon.  Hopefully this will be one of the things she remembers the next time we are there. 

Sunday, March 8, 2015

March Royale

March has marched in like a lion - no surprise, this is Ohio, after all. The lake is still frozen and there is snow and ice everywhere even thought it is March 8.

But today there was a little feeling of spring in the air when we went with Grace to Kent State University's School of Music and Performing Arts for the Ohio Music Teachers Association (OMTA) Ribbon Festival.

Grace has been practicing "March Royale" by Melody Bober.  It is described as "a cheerful and triumphant march in F major with with the occasional use of eighth notes and a variety of articulation to add character."  Grace had to go into a room with a judge and perform the piece from memory.

That has to be a pretty difficult thing to do.  This was her second year in this festival and her teacher mentioned when she was done that this was her hardest piece of music so far.

Next week at her lesson, Grace will get a report of how she did and from that, her teacher will set goals for the next year.  No matter what the report says, we were very proud of her!

Friday, February 27, 2015

Singing the whole time

The echo in the bathroom is not lost on the next singer on the Voice.  Grace was so funny making up her own songs! Laughing and singing (and making sure I was taking photos) the whole time.

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Setting records

It is super cold here.  Record-setting cold.  Today it was -14 with the wind chill. school which means Grace and I spent the day together.  It included getting nails done, getting a haircut, going out for lunch, and shopping for new winter clothes.  We both loved this North Face fleece and added in some mittens for the snow!  I wish we were shopping for spring clothes, though!

Monday, February 16, 2015

Grace's Glorious Moments

The entire second grade had a timeline project to do over the long Presidents' Weekend.  They have been reading biographies of famous Americans so this fit in with the important events of other people's lives.  We looked back at the blog books from Grace's 7 years and she chose events that were significant to her.  It was a lot of fun remembering how little she was and I was really happy that I have been taking photos and recording milestones.  We even had exact dates of when these things (and many others) happened.

For her "glorious moments" Grace chose:

  • The day she was born in Guatemala (May 23, 2007)
  • When she moved to Ohio (March 12, 2008)
  • The day she walked 8 steps on her own (July 27, 2008)
  • Getting her first pet (she doesn't consider Daisy "hers") - a goldfish named Dorothy (May 1, 2009) 
  • Going to New York to meet Connor and Ryan (July 13-17, 2009) 
  • Starting music/piano lessons (February 25, 2012) 
  • The first day of kindergarten (August 24, 2012) 
  • When she lost her first tooth (January 2, 2013)
  • Starting ballet (September 2, 2014) 
  • Getting her ears pierced (December 26, 2014)

This one is my favorite photo from today....I told Grace to pose like a 3rd grader!  She has been telling me she is getting closer to being in 3rd grade every day.

Of course, Buddy needed to come see what was going on.  Look at how BIG he is getting! That cat is always hungry and we find him eating Daisy's food several times a day.

Wednesday, February 4, 2015


This photo was posted by Grace's dance studio of the young ballerinas watching one of the older girls dancing in a custom-made costume. 

Saturday, January 31, 2015

Do you want to build a snowman?

What a wonderful, colorful snowman Grace and Kyle made in our backyard!  He is keeping watch over the lake.

Great idea...they used pieces of sidewalk chalk for the eyes, mouth, and buttons!

Squinty eyes because we are not used to having SUN during winter in Ohio!

Sunday, January 25, 2015


As always, Grace had a great time playing with her cousins.  She is certainly a girl that can keep up with all the boys!

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Frozen on Ice

Kellie and I took our girls to see Frozen on Ice.  We were all pretty excited by the front row seats we had...close enough to touch the ice!

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Welcome 2015!

We know it is going to be a great year!

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Water, water everywhere

Our tradition for the last several years is to fly to Florida on Christmas Day to spend some time with the Brennan/Marino clan and soak up some December sunshine.

After a delicious and lively dinner at Aunt Phyllis and Uncle Mickey's, the first full day of our trip started out with rain but that didn't stop us - it was still warmer than Ohio!  Nancy and Chris, Grace's Godparents, took her to get her ears pierced.



Grace was very brave...she didn't even have one tear!  We love the rainbow flowers she chose as her very first pair of earrings.  Thanks, Aunt Nancy and Uncle Chris!

The rest of the trip was all about the water.  We went swimming in the pool every day for HOURS!

We watched the boats on the intracoastal waterway and looked for manatees.  The only sea creatures we saw there were jellyfish, though!

We took walks on the beach and found some great shells to bring back to our beach on the lake.

Friends from Ohio joined us on the beach for the day.  Grace, Madeline, and Jonah had a great time building sand castles, running in and out of the waves, and playing together.

Inspired by the boats and jet skis driving past the condo all day long, we decided to rent a jet ski in Boynton Beach.  That was so much fun.  Grace loved jumping the waves and going super fast!
It was a wet and wonderful vacation and a great way to end 2014.
Now that we are home we have a different type of "water" outside our windows....still pretty but much colder!

We are ready for 2015!  Happy New Year!