Monday, December 28, 2009

[day 365... dec 31]

Niall went to the Seattle Art Museum on a field trip with his class to see the Alexander Calder exhibit (they were learning about making art with wire so it was a nice tie-it to his work) and was really inspired about art afterwards. He asked if we could go back to SAM before January 31 so he could see the Michelangelo exhibit, since there wasn't time for his class to tour that as well. So today we dropped off Cory for a playdate with Grandma Shannon and drove downtown to SAM.

I hadn't been to SAM in many years (nearly 15, I think) so it was great to have an excuse to visit, and to have a special outing with just Niall. Of course, he tired pretty quickly of all the fine detail in the Michelangelo exhibit but we enjoyed looking around at other art as well. One of our favorites was the huge cape made from replicated soldier dog-tags - really striking. The cars with the firecracker lights coming out of them were very cool too.

[day 364... dec 30]

I'm so happy that Becky Higgins struck out on her own this year and that she created a new version of Project 365 (called "Project Life") that we can use to quickly and easily (and cutely, as she would say :-) scrapbook photos-of-the-day week by week. Last year there was an overwhelming demand for the Project 365 scrapbook kit that she designed and only a small percentage of people were able to get it. Very disappointing!

But it's worked out pretty well to keep up with daily photos on a blog, and now I have a kit to use to create a hardcopy version. Although now I'm starting to dabble in digital scrapbooking (finally have a copy of Photoshop Elements, after all these years of thinking about it), so I'm leaning toward creating digital layouts and either printing them and having them all bound into a book. Decisions, decisions. Nice to have options, though!

[day 363... dec 29]

Another item on our "go see it someday" list was the Bellevue Botanical Gardens holiday lights show, Garden d'Light. This year we finally made it!

It was very pretty, but something of a madhouse with people swarming everywhere, kids loudly singing rap songs or screaming at each other, plus a light drizzle coming down (thus I took just a few photos with my cell phone - didn't want my camera to get wet and my pocket camera is in California with Tynor!)

But I'm glad we went to see it, at last. Next year I want to go to the Point Defiance Zoolights display in Tacoma. Another one I've been meaning to go see for years and have never gotten to. Time to start a new list of "places to go" for 2010!

[day 362... dec 28]

We took our long-overdue trip to the Pacific Science Center today. Remember how we tried to visit last September and it was the one week of the year that they're closed all week? This time, though, it was all good. We roamed the exhibits for a bit, then saw an IMAX movie in 3D: "Santa vs. the Snowman." It was pretty intense, especially for Cory who has never been to an IMAX movie OR a 3D movie! But he did pretty well. Fortunately, the movies are just over a half hour long so that made it more manageable too.

After the movie, over to the Center Court for lunch (Subway and pizza). The Christmas model train setup was in full swing and we enjoyed watching the trains too. And there was also a dance performance of excerpts from the Nutcracker (among other dances). Cory recognized some of the music from a field trip his class took to see "The Steadfast Tin Soldier" so we watched the dancing for a bit to see what was similar and what was different. Mostly different! It was fun to give the boys a tidbit of Nutcracker, though - up close and personal, too! - without committing to a whole 2+ hour production of the ballet. (We may do that another year. :-)

Back at the Science Center, we spent some time with the butterflies, got flashed at the shadow wall (a big hit!), and lamented the lack of water toys outside. Well - they're there but not working. Most of the water is gone for the winter. The big black rotating ball was fun to play with, though. And to take pictures of. :-)

[day 361... dec 27]

Niall got adventurous with the Legos this afternoon and spelled "Lego." I challenged him to spell his own name in Legos too but he'd lost interest by then. Oh, well.

[day 360... dec 26]

We've been enjoying some lovely walks around the block in the beautiful sunny weather we've been having. Well - I walk and the two boys ride their bikes. Works out well, most of the time.

I couldn't resist this photo of Cory riding in his spunky outfit of shorts over pants. ;-)

We explored a new path (to us) the other day and found a family of goats and a sheep. It's just been nice to be out in the fresh air, striding along the paths and roads (or riding, depending of course).