Saturday, September 26, 2009

9/26/09 home improvement

Whew, worked hard today...a "quick" trip to the Salvation Army to get rid of a few things turned into a full pickup-load worth of stuff. More garage cleanup/organization, not nearly enough but some pathways are cleared.

Then I unpacked a box or two....can't believe we still have packed moving boxes in the house, but I'm tackling the stragglers that got shoved to the back of closets upon move-in. (The stacked boxes in the garage don't count.)

The biggest accomplishment was clearing out entire backyard so we could see it afresh. We drew some lines and did a rough layout of the future deck, patio, lawn and planting areas. Ready to talk to a landscaper now.

Much of the afternoon was spent working with Gabriel on his "Star Of The Week" presentation for next week. It's 10-15 minutes long, and that's a LOT to prepare for. We practiced him talking about things he likes to do (BMXing, piano, ice skating, with photos); things he'll bring to "share" (Lego creations, his Big Bunny Fun Run trophy, his Bear, and his F-16 Fighting Falcon model); and his family members.

The "culture" thing is still throwing me. What's culture? Well, what would I say our culture is if we were in India? That made me think: music, art, food, dance, pasttimes. Easy! So, what could be more uniquely American than Ragtime? I had a great idea: wouldn't it would be really cool we brought our little piano and Gabriel played a short snippet of The Entertainer? His teachers are always looking for extra effort, and he's turning out to be Mr. Bare Minimum. But he wouldn't hear of it. No way, no recital. So much for my great idea.

We worked in two sessions, as he gets tired after a while and can't concentrate, but he did the second session under duress since he'd developed a 102 temperature. But even with that, he really liked helping us measure and figure things out while we were working in the backyard, and had no trouble concentrating when I showed him an easy way to multiply 7 times 13. Before long, he was back to pestering Julian and pulling Katrina's ponytail, so I guess he'll recover quickly.

He'd better recover tomorrow, because we still have a lot of reviewing and practicing before we're ready to present his life story in 10 minutes.


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