Friday, July 25, 2008

to circus or not to circus...

When Nathaniel was very young we went to the Ringling Brothers and Barnum and Baily 3 ring Circus. It was in a huge stadium packed with thousands of people. It was like going to the Superbowl of circuses. Proud parents sauntered by with wide eyed toy encrusted children. The smell of popcorn and mounds of sticky pink or blue cotton candy screamed fun and happiness. We glided to our seats rapt in anticipation. Until the chaos started. It was like trying to keep track of 3 elementary school playgrounds full of kids all screaming "Daddy, Daddy, Daddy, watch me!" In ring one horses prancing with bedazzled women dancing on their backs. In ring two a motor cycle zips around the inside a massive metal tea dispenser. In ring three an endless stream of fireman clowns squeeze out of a VW Bug painted like a fire truck in a bumbling effort to save another clown from her "burning" home. Once started the chaos refreshed itself every 10 minutes culminating in a final farewell. We were exhausted. I left disillusioned and pretty much finished with the circus. I vowed to never again go to a circus performance after spending more than $50 on "the greatest show on earth".

So when Janice called me about going to the circus in the next town my head started to spin. Before I could answer Janice did what only mommies can do... she lovingly handed me the argument with little red and yellow guilt sprinkles. "The kids are very excited. They saw some pictures on the computer and really want to go." Still dragging my feet she added my favorite topping - it was only $5 per person. So on I found myself following google maps to Cario, NY (pronounce that Karo) to see the Kelly Miller Circus.

It was a smallish affair with maybe 400 people at best and about 15 performers. In place of a huge stadium was a rather old red, yellow and black circus tent. We cut through the dust and humidity to find our seats on fold out aluminum bleachers just as the performance was starting. Instantly I was hooked. The performers were only 30 feet away in a single ring and you could tell they loved what they were doing. Every slip or stunt was met with a gasp, every stumbling clown with laughter and every finale with roaring applause. It was not the Superbowl of circuses it was something different. It was you and me putting on a costume at the family reunion, dad comically announcing the next act with grandpa and grandpa "cutting the rug" just like last year. That was a real circus so I recanted my vow of against the circus and can proudly say I would gladly go again (even without the guilt sprinkles on top).

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Vacation destination: HOME

(click here for gallery)

Going home is a vacation for me and here is proof. The quiet fields and cool breezes of Greenville are a stark contrast to the noisy streets and blustering subway landings of NYC. I love coming home. The gallery of Evelyn is adoreable although I do have a favorite (and it is not Evelyn).

The boys had a great time and I have some of the greatest BigWheel footage of all time! Well, maybe not all time but it has to be in the top 10.

Monday, July 14, 2008

final interview with the kids (part 3)

(if you cannot see the video click here)

Were any of you aware that our little Joelle could be that loud? She was having a blast. It was a wonderful time and we will all count the days until next year. Camp of the Woods is quite a blessing and we are fortunate to be able to enjoy it. (If you missed the "part 2" video click here)

Saturday, July 12, 2008

interview with the kids (part 2)

So should Janice try out for American Idol? Maybe they will have one for moms.

Friday, July 11, 2008

interview with the kids (part 1)

Sunday, July 06, 2008

What!? We have to go home?


We went on vacation to Camp of the Woods (insert applause here). It was wonderful, relaxing and down right painful when we realized we had to go back home. Check out their website if you are not familiar with or if you are interested in attending a week at camp. It really is a refreshing time. The daily speaker was John Guest and I attended a fascinating seminar on raising children in an increasingly sensual culture held by Kelly Brady (I have the CD's of both speakers if you want to borrow them). Listening to amazing speakers was about 10% of our time there. The placed is packed with activities for adults and kids of all ages. (crafts, miniature golf, canoeing, hiking, mountain climbing, skiing, sailing, etc) And of course there is the beach. Benjamin could have stayed on the beach all week (we had to contact the US Embassy in China about the hole he created on day 5). The weather was beautiful and we took a BUNCH of pictures which is what I will leave with you. I am especially excited about the group of panoramic images I took of the lake view. It was a great time and I will put more pictures up as soon as I can.