Friday, November 21, 2008

Random Notes from Beginning of School year

  • Ivy (8) and Maddy (9) are in the house reading the dialogue to a game on Ivy's Nintendo DS. I remember how last year the two of them were so interested in forming reading classes, some of which I taught. Today, they read on and I walk on by.

  • James (17) just threw a touchdown pass to Gregory (11). Celebration! Today it's four on four in the parking lot.

  • I lob a long pass to Nici (7) and hold my breath as he runs toward it...he looks back, stretches out his hands as far as they can reach and YES, he pulls it in while running full stride! He turns to look back at me with a huge grin on his face. Celebration!

  • Nici, Gabe (9), and Kevin (7) are in the parking lot practicing football plays. It's amazing how fast they have improved in less than a week. On Monday, they barely knew the rules; now they organize their own games, make plays, and practice fundamentals.

  • Lily (8) and Verity (5) just left me at the recently formed "Club Camp." I am in communication with them via walkie talkie while they do a school patrol. Club Camp is a very cool place. There is a sleeping area and a nice big rock is used for putting out food to share. Club Camp is situated under a tree near the parking lot and has been a major hub of activity over the last four days. The tree and its surroundings have been carefully decorated with flowers, woven grasses.

  • Arlo (9) just got back from a trip to Greece, so I asked him how it was and what he did. "I hung out at the beach in Crete for a week," he said. "It was a nine-hour ferry to get there! In the morning we would hang out for awhile in the room because it was really big. Then we would go to the beach." He said the waves were medium small and were perfect for swimming. He and his family spent three days in Athens and a night in Santorini. He told me a few more things and then we were interrupted; he was dragged off to a game.

  • Lily is reading a book to Max. Lily is learning to read, Max reads very well. They laugh at the Dr. Seuss brilliance. When Lily doesn't know a word she points at it and Max readily jumps right in.

  • The football games continue to improve. We get in the bus, drive to the nice fields. When we get there we carefully mark the boundary with cones and warm up with some drills. We pick teams and play. It's so cool to see the older kids help the younger kids play. Even though the games are competitive, everyone is included. There are arguments, there are fights and intensity. We work things out, sometimes we are still working it out on the bus drive back to school....

  • Stuck in traffic on the bus ride home. I hear Gabriel (10) imitating Joseph Biden's V.P. debate performance. He is making fun of how Biden kept saying Bush's name. This leads to a discussion of Palin. No one likes her.

  • Delayney (13) playing piano while Sage (8) and I lie on the floor with our eyes closed and listen. I notice Delayney is using the sustain pedal to wonderful effect. She has little or no formal training but spends a lot of time experimenting. I mean, she really plays a lot. And it sounds good. Now she is talking of taking some formal lessons.

  • Robert (14), Gabe (18) and I have started a morning exercise plan. Everyday for the last week and a half we have met first thing and practiced a routine. It's a great way to start the day.

  • Michelle (13) let me read the first two chapters of the novel she is writing. It reminds me of Tom Robbins. She doesn't know who that is. Seriously, she is an amazing writer.


Amanda said...

I'm amazed at how everybody is developing and growing up, minds and talents expanding. A lovely set of observations. I gotta say though, Matt, you've rounded some of these kids' ages up--my Biden-mocking Gabriel isn't quite 11 yet--and I bet you'll get busted by Arlo, because you rounded him DOWN. (I check the phone list for ages frequently, because I can't believe these kids just keep getting older.)

Doug Alt. G said...

thanks for busting me on the ages of the kids!!! i was totally going to double check before posting and in fact didn't even mean to post this, but i hit the wrong button and it went live. i will correct the age mistakes!

Unknown said...

Appreciate the happenings detail. I love spoofs, wish I coulda heard Gabriel's Biden. Thanks Matt.