Sunday, August 26, 2012

Heigh-ho, heigh-ho

After church today we went for a hike along the new Red Mountain Park trails.  Although the girls were enthused on the way in, it wasn't long before they were groaning about being hot and tired.  They managed, though.

As we began our hike, Kendall picked up a large walking stick.  "Look, Mommy," she said, striking a rock with it. "Pshhhhh!  I'm like Moses."

Since the Israelites journey out of Egypt had been the subject of this morning's Sunday school lesson, we were pleased to see that Kendall had been paying attention.

Emily was quick to want to join in. "If Kendall is Moses," she said, "who can I be?"

"You can be Aaron," Misty told her.  "And Daisy can be Pharaoh."

Amazingly enough, Emily did not balk at pretending to be a boy -- perhaps because Kendall had assumed the role of a boy, too.  The game amused the girls for a while as we walked until Kendall pointed out problems with the assignments.

"If Daisy is Pharaoh, why is she in the front instead of behind?" Kendall questioned.  "And why is she all by herself?  Shouldn't she have an army with her?"  Good points.

After less than a mile we came upon one of the old closed-off mines, which had been our goal.  The girls noted that this was like the Seven Dwarfs mine, but they were more interested in checking out a rusty old car radio full of yellow jackets.

On the way back we saw a few people riding the park's zip lines.  It looked fun, but I'm not sure I'd be brave enough to try it.

We also came across this moth lying along the trail.  It appeared to be injured, and Emily was a little upset about it, but not being experts in moth veterinary medicine there was little we could do for it other than admire its beauty.

Monday, August 20, 2012

First day of school

They both look happy in the picture, but don't let that fool you.  Only Emily was excited (though still a little nervous) about the first day of school.

Much like yesterday, Kendall was none too happy to be going to kindergarten.  As we led the girls into the gym to line up with their respective classes, she sat there with an angry look and refused to even give Misty a hug.

I did notice her chatting with the girl next to her in line a bit (someone she'd already met this summer at the pool), so that was a bit of a relief, but even when they got to their classroom Kendall still wasn't going to give up her grumpy attitude.

Of course Misty was already teary-eyed about our girls growing up so fast, so Kendall's stand-offish behavior didn't help.  Maybe she was nervous and this was just her way of dealing with it.

After saying goodbye to our brand new 3rd grader and kindergartener, Misty and I went to work out at the Y, had lunch at Saw's BBQ, and went shopping for new running shoes.

By the time we returned to pick the kids up, everything had changed.  Kendall immediately told us that she had a great time at school.  She talked about new friends she'd made and activities they'd done in class.  She's even excited about going back tomorrow.  Emily had a great day too, but that was no surprise -- she's always enjoyed school.

As tradition dictates, we celebrated with cups of flavored ice.  All is well.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

I don't wanna go to school

Today was meet-the-teacher day, and the girls got to check out their new classrooms before starting the school year tomorrow.  Upon meeting her 3rd grade teacher, Emily told Ms. Davis, "I was a little worried before, but you seem nice."  Emily was also impressed with the black-and-white decor ("zebra print" as she called it) and the fact that they had a few computers in the room.

Kendall, on the other hand, was less than thrilled.  She had little interest in meeting her kindergarten teacher, checking out the classroom, or talking to any of the other kids.  Instead she sat and scowled.

I have a feeling it'll all get better once Kendall actually spends a day at school.  But for now, she's not making it easy.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Drenched - but not by the rain

To commemorate the end of summer vacation we hoped to have a fun night out for dinner, but things didn't go as planned.  In fact, it was pretty much a disaster.

Since all of us love Mugshots, we headed there for burgers.  Upon arriving, we were warned there would be about an hour wait.  No big deal -- we expected as much on a Saturday night, and we'd left home early for just that reason.  Unfortunately, it was raining, so killing an hour outside the restaurant wasn't easy, but we managed.  We wandered around the Vestavia Hills City Center under the cover of umbrellas, and after an hour our buzzer lit up right on schedule.

As I mentioned, Mugshots was crowded, and the rain drove most of the people who were waiting for tables onto the covered patio.  We got seated on the patio.  There were so many people out there that we essentially had to yell to hear one another at our table.  People waiting were hovering all around us, so it wasn't a very relaxed setting.

But the real calamity came a few minutes later.  As our server brought out our drinks, he spilled a large glass of ice water on top of Emily's head.  She didn't just get wet -- she got drenched.  Her hair, her glasses, her shirt, and her pants were all soaked.  It was horrible.

Emily was so embarrassed, and she started crying.  The waiter ran off to get her a towel, but there was no way that was going to dry her off.  Misty asked her if she wanted to leave, and Emily nodded yes.  I scooped her up to carry her to the car and it became immediately apparent that she was also freezing.

On the way home we hit the drive-thru at Captain D's to get the girls something to eat (luckily, they thought this was a real treat).  By the time we got home, Emily was fine.  She asked Misty if she was going to tell her friends at work about what happened and offered, "You can if you want to."  She may have been acting OK, but it was obvious she was still hoping for some sympathy.  She certainly earned it.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Toenails and pop stars

Earlier this evening Misty and Kendall had the following bizarre conversation...

Kendall: "I keep finding pieces of big toenail in my mouth. I have no idea why this is happening."

Misty: "What in the world? Have you been chewing your toenails?"

Kendall: "No. I told you. I have no idea why this is happening."


And just now I heard this exchange with the other kid...

Misty: "Emily, you need to go to sleep."

Emily: "But wait, Mom, before I do can you look up 'How do I become a famous singer' on the computer?  You know, like Gwen Stefani."

Misty actually did Google the subject and read Emily some tips before insisting that it was time for her to go to sleep.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Neglected tennis courts

Since the YMCA has effectively abandoned the Southcrest tennis courts, it's apparently now up to our neighborhood to keep the area clean to avoid a junked-up blight.  This isn't an official responsibility -- it's just how things work out.

A couple months ago I filled a bag with trash I collected around the courts.  Today I brought along a broom and dust pan to sweep up a bunch of broken glass.  There's nothing I can do about the fences being overrun with kudzu, though.

It's a shame this spot is being neglected by the Southcrest YMCA.  While I don't play tennis, the courts provide a nice safe place for my daughters to ride their bike and scooter.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Anti-social at the dog park

We took Daisy to the new Beneful Dream Dog Park in Alabaster this afternoon.  Even though she barks at our neighbor's black lab through the fence all the time, acting like she's real tough, Daisy is actually a sissy when it comes to other dogs.  She doesn't know what to do when she comes face to face with them.  She spent most of her time huddled along the fence and didn't want to have anything to do with the fountains, fake grass, or four-legged friends.

Hopefully, with practice, she'll come around and start acting more like a real dog.  In the meantime, the girls had a great time getting drenched.