Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Old Friends

My younger son was in a special ed preschool for ages 3 and 4. In hindsight he really didn't need to be there, but at the time I was told he did and wanted to do the right thing. Turns out he received some benefits I didn't realize until later. He was the highest functioning child in the class and helped everyone. He just wasn't talking much at almost 3 when the district had their testing. Older son was still in public school at the time and younger son would have been going in at kindergarten age too.

Younger son learned some life lessons about compassion, helpfulness, and patients. Older son learned from the experience too. He entertained the class as a magician and loved playing with the kids. He realized early on how blessed he was just to have normal physical and mental ability. By the second year all the teachers were telling me he really had no reason to be there, but he had friends :) At age three this boy and younger son were inseparable. Younger son moved on to a private school kindergarten and this boy stayed in public school and also moved to kindergarten. They were the only two able to move on, so they had a little ceremony for them the last day. We had play dates and visited each other for a few years. The other family ended up moving a couple of times and we lost touch about 6 or 7 years ago. Out of the blue yesterday the boy called my son from his grandma's to say hi and see if younger son wanted to get together. What a shock when they saw each other. I still saw the same little boy from years ago in his face, but they are both taller then I and their voices are a little different too :)

Now they both have their driving permits, computers and exchanged cell phone numbers. I am thinking they will do this staying in touch thing better then we parents did!


I had to post a couple I had my camera out today and he was just sitting there looking up at me :)

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Can It Be?

Can it be possible older son just turned 20! Not even a teenager anymore. To top all that off he just graduated too! I am very proud of him. He has a degree in Criminal Justice and will be old enough to get into a police department come January. It seemed like it was such a long process getting him into college and ready for life and now it is over way too quickly. I would like time to stand still for just a few moments. I remember clearly when he was born and very colicky. I was sitting up all night with him for months. I was sitting in a big recliner in the corner of my living room looking out my patio door watching a bank clock down the street click away the minutes. I thought morning would never come and I would never sleep again. I had the foresight to realize my time with my newborn would be short and I made myself stop for a minute and capture the memory of me holding him and him being all mine for that moment in time. I look back on that moment at just about every milestone and while I am still not sleeping waiting for him to get home late at night. I was right, it did go way too fast. My time with him living with me will be coming to an end. He is an adult and needs me less and less as it should be. Once a police department hires him he will have one year to move into the suburb he will be working in. So once again I am trying to capture the last few being at home memories I can get with him. It isn't easy since he is hardly ever here! I am so happy for him, he has a good job, a degree, a girlfriend, a car, and is ready to take on the world. I am trying to get use to letting go just a little at a time :) Younger son is struggling between having his brother move out and having his own room. He pretty much sees it as a win/win situation!

It was a nice family party and we had his friends over that evening for a party too. They played a lot of Guitar Hero and Rock Band. I remember one cake throwing incident that I would rather not mention except in passing :)

Over at Pioneer Women, Wetsy just had her son yesterday, I hope she is already capturing memories in her mind because it really does go by way to fast!

The Family Ready To Celebrate

The Graduation/Birthday Cake

My Sister, Older Son & His Girlfriend

Make A Wish


Monday, July 21, 2008

Today Was The Play!

Today my sister and niece drove in from Indiana and we all went to the Rialto where Kevin was doing The High School Musical Showcase. Older son and his girlfriend met us there along with my parents. It was a lot of fun to see him up there on stage. He was easy to find since he was the only guy :) I thought he was wonderful of course! He had a great experience and was even asked for his autograph for the first time. The little girl was so cute. I posted a picture of them. The look on her face was priceless. After we all went out to eat dinner and my sister, niece, younger son and I came back to our house. Younger son is all packed. He went home with my sister for the week. He is working this week at their vacation bible school. He is doing drama with the kids. He loves working with younger kids. My sister spoils him while he is there. I sure there will be movies, eating out, and lots of game playing. So this week I am kinda on my own. Older son isn't home much with work and school. So I am planing on getting a lot done on our family cookbook. It is way too quiet with younger son gone.

Younger Son On Stage At The Rialto

Younger Son Singing

Taking A Bow

Younger Son Is Asked For His First Autograph

Saturday, July 19, 2008

On Stage At The Rialto

Most of the pictures I took of the cast on stage were dark and grainy, but here are a couple I liked.

The Cast On Stage

The Cast

The Cast Rehearsing

The Marxs Brothers

In the 20's the Rialto was originally a place for vaudvile acts. The Marxs Brothers use to play there. This is located right across the street from the theatre.

Joliet Area Historical Museum

Working Loom

There was a room dedicated to working looms. There are a group of women that come in and work on these while the museum is open. You can buy some of their work in the gift shop.

The Blues Brothers

A Chicago/Joliet icon


As a collecter of many things, this really was right up my alley:) This is a collection of postmarks from every city on the Route 66 map. The collector took two years to find each post office. A lot of them were with special 75th anniversary postmarks.


Well tomorrow is the big day! Younger son has his High School Musical. We were in downtown Joliet for two weeks of rehersal. I usually stayed in the building with him becasue after the doors locked you couldn't get back in until the end of the day. The first week there was a couple of days of rain and the second week was hot and muggy. I did manage to take a couple of days to explore the town. The highlight was the Joliet Area Historical Museum. It had the first floor dedicated to Route 66. I really enjoyed the musuem. The first week they had the streets closed off for a race car rally and each friday they had the streets closed off for a farmers market. The first week in August they have the streets closed off for a kidzfest. The cast is coming back to sing a few songs in front of the Rialto for the event.

I have a bunch of pictures of the cast rehersing on stage, but most are just to dark and grainy. I am hoping for some better pictures this Sunday. The directors that worked with them were great. Younger son is excited and looking forward to tomorrow!

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Coming Home

Crazy Week

They all are really when you have kids, don't you think? I was thinking this Summer we would relax, take our time getting things done, and just enjoy a few outings. Then came Younger son last play and now this drama workshop. He is really enjoying it. The ride takes us about a hour to get there. Parking is only available either by meters or parking garages. Then he is there from 8:30am until 3pm. He is exhausted because he has been busy all day and I am exhausted just waiting for him :) So we have been gone from 7:30 until at least 4:30. Now I know a lot of parents do this on a regular bases if you have kids in school and work full time. One of the pleasures of homeschooling is being on our own time frame. I swear we are doing nothing in August! Now that I typed that maybe we will see something besides the inside of our car next month!

I will post some pictures of the area and things I have been doing down there with the play pictures next week. I want to batch them all together. Last week younger son had a softball game with our churches' youth group. I was there to cheer and take pictures :) I am having a problem with putting pictures on my computer and editing them in the photo editing program I have. I think it is how much space I have left free on the computer that may be the problem. I need a friend that lives close to me that is a computer person.

This weekend we are home. Instead of updating I am suppose to be doing bills and laundry, but I enjoy this a little more :) Milo is certainly glad we are home. Speaking of this weekend, I want to wish my Canadian friend a very happy birthday!!

Next week we finish up the drama workshop with a wonderful performance in the Rialto. The following weekend is my older son's birthday and college graduation party. So lots of fun coming up. Hope you are all having a great weekend!

Sunday, July 06, 2008

The Evil Eye

Saturday, July 05, 2008

Fireworks Last Night

The fireworks last night were really nice. The rest of the pictures are in my Flickr account. I took about 230 pictures and keep between 70 & 80.

Younger Son At Last Night's Fireworks

One In A Series Of Benches

This is one of the benches I was talking about in the post for 4th of July. You can see them all on my Flickr account along with a few historical miniature buildings.

Friday, July 04, 2008

Younger Son On The Tilt A Whirl

Younger Son On The Bumper Cars

Happy 4th Of July!!

SOC last night at Lake Katherine Nature Center and Botanic Gardens

Happy 4th Of July!!

SOC last night at Lake Katherine Nature Center.

Happy 4th Of July!!

I have been wanting to post the last couple of days, but my photo program has decided not to work and I have been fooling with that since I wanted to post pictures with the posts. Some shots are ok on their own, but you can always find something to do with them.

We got up early Wednesday to go to the Rialto Theater to sign younger son up for a Disney's High School Musical Camp. They will learn the songs, choreography, and scene from High School Musical. They have professionals that will work with the kids on scene study, voice, diction, improvisation, singing, and dancing. They will do a performance open to the public on their stage at the end of the two weeks. It hold 1900 people and is a beautiful theater that dates back to the 1920's. The director gave us a tour when we signed up. I am hoping to be able to get some pictures.

Wednesday night younger son and I headed to a local car naval in town for the 4th of July weekend. I think he was kind of board walking around with me. He is ready to be able to go places with friends. I enjoy walking around taking picture. Younger son mostly waited in lines. He went on three rides and played one game. We took a few pictures and headed home. The local carnivals used to look so big to them when they were little now not as much :) One of the big reasons I made a effort to get there is I happen to like cotton candy. Fresh not the stuff you find in stores, so once or twice a year I find some at a local carnival. Can you believe there was only one bag left as we were leaving and there was a line so this year I skipped it. Something to look forward to for next year :) Although if older son goes with his girlfriend he usually picks me up one:)

Thursday I did something I have been talking about doing for weeks. I went into a town a couple over from us where I grow up. They have a great main street and have redone the whole downtown area the last few years and are still doing much more. A year or so ago for summer they put out benches that artist have painted. They are so cute. I loved them. So Thursday I grabbed my camera and parked at one end and walked up and down taking pictures of all the benches. I am looking forward to putting them up here. It is probably a good thing I went by myself. I would have made the kids sit on the benches as I took pictures and that would have made it a little hard to see the art work :) Last night I found a fireworks display a few towns over so I again grabbed the camera and tripod to practice for tonight! As I took the first picture my battery light went on! Uggg, after fumbling with the new batteries in the dark and figuring out after numerous tries which way them go I manager a few nice pictures before the end. The great part was the fireworks were at a nature park so it was really dark and the trees made a great background.

Today both sons and I went to see Hancock at the theater. I really enjoyed it. Then we went out to lunch and dropped older son back home. He is going to his girlfriends for a barbecue and then they are going to see fireworks tonight. Younger son and I headed back to the theater and saw WallE. Younger son enjoyed it, but I didn't like it as much. Now we are back home until dark then going to see the fireworks.

Hope you enjoy the weekend!

Thursday, July 03, 2008

Freedom Never Dies