Monday, May 28, 2012

Memorial Day Weekend Fun and Projects

To begin, I want to THANK our service men and women, both living and dead, for giving all they have so that we may be free.  Period.  So many people (including me) get sidetracked by the 3-day weekend fun that they forget the reason for the holiday.

That having been said, this time with my nuclear family has been amazingly relaxing and productive. There was bike riding, swimming, yummy grilled food, toy purging followed by trips to the recycling center and Goodwill, and we are about ready to move Ethan to the Thomas the Tank Engine bed (sooner than expected because he is now climbing freely from his crib at will).

In addition to the aforementioned fun, there was...
a lot of running

lawn care

a long nap or two (note Andrew's Woody/Buzz tuck-in that happened sometime in the middle of one of his naps)

hanging of two new canvases

finally getting around to covering the remaining five dining chairs

and today, right now, RAIN from tropical depression Beryl.  we had big afternoon swimming plans, too. [sigh]
The hard part about this weekend is that it totally feels like summer. And we still have school for one more week. Oh, well. Summer will be here in just five short days and we are READY.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Andrew's First Preschool Music Program

Wednesday evening, Jon, Ethan, Grandma Cathy and I were treated to a cute performance put on by Andrew's school.  It was his first ever because he was sick and missed last year's show.  Here's a highlight video and some snapshots.
getting a little embarrassed


his best preschool buddy joseph

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Another New Bed for the Big Boy

Mother's Day was great and relaxing.  The only torturous part was yet another realization that our eldest son is growing up way too fast.  Grandma Cathy gave her bunk beds to us, and Sunday was the day to move Andrew from his Thomas bed (which uses only a crib mattress that has been too short for him for months) to the full/twin bunk set.  Ethan will inherit the Thomas bed when we feel comfortable giving him the potential freedom to roam free of his crib (not anytime too soon on that one, mind you).
dismantling of the old bed.  ethan assisted.  andrew entertained.

work was left to dad as the boys rocked out together

bed is gone; now it's time for the cheap labor

more cheap labor

finished product.  the currently mismatched room will be getting a star wars face lift this summer.

first tuck-in

happy man! thanks, grandma cathy!

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Andrew Welch Burbank

Happy Mother's Day!

This guy made me a mother for the very first time on June 7, 2007.
My first pregnancy, however, was in the late fall of 2005, 3 months after Jon and I had moved from WV to South Texas.  We were so excited that we told everyone as soon as it was confirmed... I was about 4 weeks or so along.

The next doctor's appointment was not so happy, though.  We were expecting to hear a heartbeat for the very first time and there was none.  Apparently, the baby's growth had stopped as a fetal pole.

We were devastated.  I underwent a DNC procedure that January and we moved along with life.  This included purchasing our first home, and adopting our dogs, Maddie & Dora,  two months later.

Nine months later, on October 7, 2006, we learned we were pregnant again!  This time, things were perfect.  We waited 12 weeks to tell anyone, though, just to be sure.
Here's an ultrasound of Andrew from around 18 weeks along.

I was showered with showers!  This one was in March of 2007 in WV,
thrown by my family and best friends. 
Both of our mothers (both first-time Grandmas) were there, which was extra special for all.

Jon gave me a heart-shaped locket that Mother's Day. It was inscribed with "Mother to Be 2007."  I have kept various photos inside over the years of all the sweet men in my life.
I was induced very early on June 7. It was a long day.  We had waited the many months to discover the baby's gender on his or her birthday, so we were doubly anxious to learn if we would have a son or daughter.

Big BOY Andrew was born at 10:40 pm with one fist pushed up beside his head as if he were a super hero.

Named after my father, Charles Andrew Welch, who we lost way too early in 1996, our very own Andrew Welch Burbank powered his way into our lives and hearts and forever changed his first-time mother.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Get in the Pink 10K/5K

Jon did his 2nd 10K today (last one was in 2004)! It was his 4th race since September. I pushed Ethan in the 5K. It was my 7th race since September, and the 6th one Ethan has ridden along in. It was really fun for all three of us.
"Get in the Pink" benefitted breast cancer research.  This is their beautiful logo
(and exactly how I look when I run, btw).


Pre-10K.  Beautiful day for racing through the gorgeous neighborhoods of 5-points. (me = more landscape envy)

Jon is starting out.

He grinned at Ethan and me.

This is the BEST post-race photo we could get.  It makes me laugh.  I swear that the man in the photo IS indeed Jon. Next race, I will scope out the potential photographers a little better.

Monday, May 7, 2012

West Virginia: Full Circle

As I mentioned in an earlier post, Jon, the boys, and I recently spent a whirlwind weekend in West Virginia.
The purpose was so that Jon and I could present a workshop on teaching African musical concepts to my former Orff chapter: The Northern West Virginia Mountain Laurel chapter of AOSA.

For the first time ever, we spent all our time in Grafton, WV at my dear friend Heidi's gorgeous home, and visited Morgantown (our ol' stompin' grounds) for a total of five hours (just long enough for the presentation).

The trip was "full-circle" for a few reasons, as pointed out really neatly by Heidi.  Jon and I were presenters at the first ever Mountain Laurel workshop, for one.  I was one of the founding members and the chapter is definitely near and dear to my heart.
The boys were AMAZING travelers this time.  Best ever (even though Ethan looks unhappy about the hand-holding situation here).

This is a workshop photo.  I (brown pants) taught Pata Pata, a South African folk dance, to the participants.  They had stellar moves.

Here's the teaching of a West African stick game.

Jon was the main focus of the workshop, with his amazing knowledge of numerous drumming and dancing pieces. Everyone loved his energetic spirit, great teaching, and what they could take back to their classrooms.

Back at the Lucas ranch, Heidi helped the seven kids make mini pizzas!

Six of our seven, seated around the table that their crazy parents sat around ten years ago.  This = FULL CIRCLE.

Jennifer's Cori and our Ethan were having a massive tea party.

Dance party!

The dance party continues...
We LOVED the quick moment in my home state of WV. The workshop was fun, I happily caught up with many old friends (Heidi, Jason, Jennifer, Kevin, Janet, Mike, Debi, and Stacy, among numerous others), and the kids had an amazing time playing together. Hope to see all these people again really soon.

Friday, May 4, 2012

AWESOME end to a really crappy week = Jon's "Press Play" Percussion Concert!

Hellooooo, full moon.

I knew you were here before I even looked into the sky.

This was a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad week in many ways at school and at home. 

S.T.R.E.S.S.F.U.L.  Enough about that, though, because...

The week ended on an amazing note, as my steel band students performed two tunes on the high school stage tonight for Jon's annual percussion concert.  They were part of a district all-star steel band (first time this has ever been done here), and played with about 50 other students from local elementary, middle, and high schools.

these beautiful 5th graders were REALLY excited before the concert

more excitement!

this artist painted during the entire show and her work was sold at the end via silent auction.  beautiful.

one of the more high-energy, storytelling African dances

"Mr. Burbank" announces our first steel tune as my students eagerly await

lead pan players from my school

the definition of concentration

Jon wrote this Taiko piece and tonight was the premiere!  AWESOME.


Another good concentration photo during the finale: Big Country.  BEAUTIFUL.

Jon is VERY proud.  See?  He should be.

love this post-concert one of some of my students.  I am dying to know what was being discussed.

Ah, here are the smiley ones we were looking for... sort of.  These kids are GREAT spirits and musicians.