Monday, May 28, 2012

45 Hours With 42 Teenagers

Whew...what a weekend!  We were so excited to be heading into a 3-day weekend, everyone feeling the need for a long weekend.  And what better way to ensure that your weekend is long than to spend it with 42 teenagers???

Actually, it was most delightful.  Loved it.  It was the annual trip to Seaside for all the varsity-lettering band kids.  And Brad and I chaperoned.  Fortunately, Alex doesn't mind having us around, and for the most part we don't "embarrass" him. 

And those kids are some kind of entertaining!  It is fun from start to finish with that bunch.  Watching them walk around Safeway and pick out groceries for the weekend?  Pretty funny.  You can tell the ones who have a bit of experience in a store, and those that have no clue.  It's a flurry of gathering chips and soda and Spam and eggs and Pop Tarts.

Some of the most fun was watching their performances, some planned, some not.  They played on the board walk for a modest but enthusiastic crowd.  One gal was happily shouting out requests and clapping along, as well as asking us for quarters to buy some trinkets.  Hey, at least she was an appreciative audience.

Then they marched down main street to the turn-around and played again.  A large crowd gathered there, and it was stunning to me how many people pulled out their cameras and took pictures.  I thought only parents did that!  I can't imagine them getting home from the weekend and saying, "And this is the high school band that we saw playing!"   Ah, well, they were a fun audience. 

This dog, "Lady", we encountered several times around downtown.  You probably had to be there, but this dog had the most hysterical, ridiculous, walk.  It looked like its legs would snap if it tread to heavily, perhaps that's why Lady pranced.

But the best?  Watching Alex and Michael walk through downtown playing Yakkity Sax.  They were extraordinarily entertaining, and people were loving it. 

They hatched some crazy plan to play Yakkity Sax in as many places around Seaside as they could. 

They drove around in a surrey playing it.

They rode the carousel playing it!

That was hysterical.  They played it for the entire length of the ride, changing the tempo every time through.  The ride operator was hesitant to let them on with the tuba, but he did.  And then he totally got into it.  A big crowd gathered to watch, and they got a rousing applause when the ride ended.  I told them they should have opened the saxophone case beside the ride, they could have made enough to buy themselves an elephant ear or something.

They then took their gig to the arcade and other places, and finally to the beach, playing as they walked all the way back to the hotel.  Nutty boys.

And there was lots of time to hang out and pay on the beach. 

Alex led the pack in doing the twist to make their legs sink in the sand.  Nice.

On the second night, they had their annual bon fire on the beach, preceded by a rabid game of Ultimate Frisbee.  Man, these boys play to win.  The girls were wise to stay away.

Anyway, while we were there, we were able to squish in a lot of fun ourselves.

I don't think it's right to go to the beach and not get an elephant ear!

Brad and the girls rode the bumper cars, of course.  I happily took pictures.

And we enjoyed so much beach time.  Loved it.



Fun times, great memories.  A perfect weekend!

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Shining On Stage As A Hot Box Girl!

My sweet girl, who has said for years how much fun she thinks acting would be, finally got her chance on the stage!  The last few weeks have been one big lump of reward for a girl who stepped out with courage and decided to just do it!  She danced on the line of whether or not to try this, wondered (out loud) how embarrassing it would be, whether or not she was good enough, if it would be worth the mortifying experience of the audition.  We encouraged her, letting her decide for herself.  She told me back in February how she always wanted to be a flapper girl in the 1st grade Valentine program, but was too shy to say she wanted to do it.  She calls that decision her "biggest regret" of elementary school.  So I told her it would be a shame to let not trying this be the biggest regret of middle school.  And she went for it...

To try out for Guys and Dolls, she had to sing a solo in front of the people who were running this and all the other kids who were auditioning.  And she's not a girl who likes solos.  Or singing in front of people.  And then she had to do a dance in front of them.  She was fine with that part, mostly thanks to her confidence from cheer.  But she did the comfortable and uncomfortable, and I'm so proud of her for just doing that much.

Then she got the role she really hoped to get...a Hot Box Girl!  Woo-Hoo!

The performances?  I had no idea how much I'd love them.  Brenna is just a ham.  So much more than I ever expected.  I knew she had it in her, I've seen her silliness around the house with her sister.  But to do THAT on stage??  And she loved every minute of it.  She danced and sang and was so hilariously expressive...she just cracked me up.  My cheeks hurt from smiling and laughing by the time it was over.  All the kids were amazing.  So fun and inspiring to see the amount of talent that lies in these kids.

Thursday night was the first performance, and we were responsible for her hair and make-up.  They wanted Brenna to have BIG 50's hair.  And bright make-up.  Bright red lips.  After searching and realizing we had no idea how to do the big hair, we called in the pro:

My sweet Marlece came over and made Brenna's hair BIG!  And no, there is nothing underneath that bump...just a ratted nest of teased hair!  Brenna's Gramma Kay would be so proud of the hair teasing that went on!

The finished product!

And then in was performance time!  These are pictures from the last performance.  And we weren't allowed to use flash photography, so the pictures aren't great.  But you can get an idea of the fun that Brenna had...

Singing "I Love You, A Bushel And A Peck"

Gaby as Arvide, singing her beautiful solo

The Mission

"Sit down You're Rockin' the Boat!"

Closing number "Guys and Dolls"

Beautiful girl, shining from the inside out!

A guy and three dolls.
(Sorry, couldn't resist!)

Getting congrats (and Reese's Pieces!) from Julia.

Miss Adelaide, Arvide and the cutest Hot Box Girl!
(Kate, Gaby, and Brenna)

And then the aftermath...

This is the undoing of the up-do that we had to sort out both nights.  It was a ratted mess, and hilarious to try to put back down!

Brenna did so great that the director invited her to come be a part of Annie this summer!

So proud of you, Brenna!  Great job stepping out, being courageous, and making us LAUGH!!  You are beautiful from the inside out, and I love bet your pretty neck I do!!! 

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Cinderella and Prince Charming, Prom Style

I have a dizzying amount of pictures to post, so I will keep the words few and let the pictures speak.  Mostly.

Let me just say....hmmm.  I have to be careful because my son occasionally reads this blog.  But I will say that it has been a beautiful thing to watch him figure out how to be a boyfriend.  He's a very good one.  He apparently has been listening all these years, and we are finding great joy in watching the fruit of much prayer, much love invested, and so much more.

And his Cinderella?  I pretty much adore her.  And I should leave it at that.  For now.

Prom fell on a gorgeous, glorious Saturday.  Blue skies, warm sun...just lovely.  A big group of great kids, lots of pictures, dinner at Pellegrinos, dancing at the Flight Museum, hanging out at a friend's house...a great night.

I only got to be there for the picture part, I wasn't really invited to the rest.  But that was enough.

Almost ready to go, texting Alaina to tell her we were leaving in 2 minutes.

Which was just enough time to get our picture with our little boy.  And no, I did not match him intentionally.  He's more blue, I'm more green, anyway.

Then we arrived, and the obligatory corsage/boutonniere exchange began!

Had to get an up-close of the corsage!  This girl is wild about giraffes, so we found a way to add a little giraffe-bling to her corsage!

Truth be told, they were pretending to know exactly what they were doing, for pictures.  Then Alaina's dad stepped in to secure the flower.

Beautiful and Handsome.

Had to get a shot with the recently-won medals!

This is one of my favorites.

Posing with the group!

Another of my favorites!

Funny story...this girl is about a foot shorter than Alex.  So she got 4-inch heels for the dance, and she rocked 'em!

Aren't they so cute???

After this shot, we told them they were done and they could relax and go have fun.  But then as we drove by, I saw this...

See?  It really is Cinderella and Prince Charming!