Saturday, June 28, 2008

Anticipation kills sleep

I wake up before 6:00 almost every morning to get ready for work. When the weekend arrives, I really savor the idea of that extra hour or so of sleep that I might get. Not today, though.

At 5:53 a.m., I woke to the sound of Emily's joyful voice. "Hi, Mommy and Daddy," she said. "I got all ready!"

Indeed she had. She was dressed in the outfit Misty had laid out for her to wear to a friend's birthday party today. Unfortunately, the party doesn't start until noon, so we're a little ahead of schedule.

There was no point in trying to stay in bed once Emily climbed in with us. Now I can look forward to six hours of her asking, "Is it time for the party yet?"

Friday, June 27, 2008

Talking to kids about 'Wall-E'

I spent about four hours working on this project today, so I hope everyone will watch it. It seems like a lot of time to devote to a five-minute video, but it was fun.

Kid critics review "Wall-E"

What I learned from the experience: See the movie yourself first, because when you interview kids, one or two of them are bound to blurt out the ending.

Still, I can't wait to take Emily to see it.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Father's Day at City Stages

Here's one more video from City Stages.

Dancing to The Wailers

Emily had so much fun at the festival. She sang along to the songs she knew from The Wailers and danced like a fool during Michael Franti's performance, all the while demanding, "I want to see Flaming Lips!"

When her favorite band finally came on stage after 10 p.m., Emily wasn't disappointed. She was wide-eyed as Wayne Coyne rolled out onto the audience in a giant plastic hamster ball, confetti shot from air cannons, more than a dozen Teletubbies hopped around on stage, and huge balloons dropped on the crowd. She turned her head to me and yelled over the noise, "I love it!" That moment right there made it a perfect Father's Day.

She only made it through two songs before she started to nod off on my shoulder, but it was worth it. If you watch the two Flaming Lips videos in the post below, you'll see why.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

How I spent my weekend

I'm taking a comp day today to recuperate from an 80-hour work week. I've been running myself ragged handling coverage of Birmingham's 20th annual City Stages music festival. Here are a few highlights from my weekend.

L'Angelus - "Iko Iko" live at City Stages Unplugged

Billy Bacon - live at City Stages Unplugged

Erin McCarley - "Love Save the Empty" live at City Stages Unplugged

Carolina Chocolate Drops cover "Hit 'em Up Style" at City Stages

Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit - "Goddamn Lonely Love" live at City Stages

Act of Congress - "In the Middle" and a cover of "Clocks" at City Stages

The Dexateens - "Makers Mound," live at City Stages

4 Guys with Guitars - "This Colorful World" live at City Stages

Ingrid Michaelson conducts "Far Away" with a lightsaber

Ingrid Michaelson covers "Creep" at City Stages

Feijoada - live at City Stages

Michael Franti & Spearhead - "Yell Fire!" live at City Stages

The Flaming Lips - "Race for the Prize" live at City Stages

The Flaming Lips close out City Stages with "Do You Realize??"

Suck it, Bonnaroo.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Sleep is for sissies

Because I'm a glutton for punishment, I went out to WorkPlay last night to watch Maria Taylor in concert. It wasn't her performance that was punishment (it was quite lovely), it's the fact that I'm heading into three straight 18-hour work days with City Stages this weekend. Staying out past 11:00 last night may not have been wise, but it was certainly an enjoyable evening.

Here's a clip from the show. Check my other blog for more videos.

Maria Taylor - ''Song Beneath the Song,'' live at WorkPlay

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Redacted prayer

Misty has declared Monday nights to be "Cajun night" at the Cuthbert household. Last night was the first installment, with dirty rice on the menu. Misty tried to offer Emily an alternative, but I guess dirty rice sounded too fun to pass up. Nevertheless, after one bite Emily's face scrunched up and she quickly grabbed for her milk.

While Misty made her a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, Emily offered an ammended prayer for the meal for which she'd just given thanks. "I'm sorry I didn't like the dirty rice, God," she said. "It was too spicy. I'll eat butter and jelly instead."

Saturday, June 07, 2008

Yo Gabba Gabba Dance Party

Our family has recently discovered the Nick Jr. show Yo Gabba Gabba, and all of us are hooked. Misty and I love how zany it is, while Emily and Kendall love the non-stop dancing. Whether or not you have kids, I recommend you check it out. It's really wild.

Yo Gabba Gabba Theme

Party in My Tummy

Who wouldn't love that?!

Thanks to Yo Gabba Gabba, there's been even more dancing around our house than usual. Emily has even taken to planning her own dance party. Here's a note she had me write for her mom while Misty was trying to watch a cooking show.

"Something's wrong with you. You don't make me have a dance party. Someday, I want to have a real, really, really, really, real dance party, Mom — not pretend."

Take that, Rachel Ray.

Monday, June 02, 2008

God, I hope you weren't listening

This morning when Misty woke up and went downstairs to check on the girls, she caught Emily in the act of praying. Our daughter was sitting on her bed, hands together, saying "God, please bring a baby boy to Mommy's tummy." For parents who are already worn out from the laborious task of raising two kids, it's the sort of thing that sends a chill down your spine. When questioned as to why she wanted a baby brother, Emily replied, "I like boys. They're fun." I hate to disappoint her, but we have no intention of introducing a new sibling into the mix, boy or girl.

We didn't teach Emily about prayer -- it's something she picked up when she was in day care. Personally, I don't like the idea of day care teaching my kids about religious practices -- I think that should be the parents' choice in where (or if) they go to church. Still, Emily's "prayers" are harmless as far as I'm concerned, so I'm comfortable with letting her continue.

Besides, it provides for much amusement at dinner time when Emily delivers her version of a blessing, which lately has been something along the lines of: "God is great. God is good. Thank you, Mom. Thank you, Dad. Thank you, Kendall. Thank you, Emily. Amen."