Month: July 2005

  • Every now and again one runs into an example of sloppy writing that
    causes one to do a doubletake.  Case in point is this news
    headline at BBC:  'Taleban' shoot dead Afghan judge

    If he's dead, why shoot him?  

    I clicked on the link to make sure it was,
    in fact, poor writing and not a matter of someone in the Taleban
    deciding some poor deceased Afghan judge wasn't quite deceased

  • Today Dmitry had three Russian siblings over to hang out both at home and pool.

    HA!  Gotcha!

    It's three different siblings this time:  Elveera, Olga, and Viktor.  

    Dmitry sorta falling in, as Viktor watches from up above.

    Okay, his turn.

    Jumping in unison, from left to right, are Olga, Elveera and Dmitry.

    There's nothing like escorting a pair of teenage girls to the pool,
    though, to throw into sharp relief just how different they are, as Olga
    and Elveera, though certainly spending time jumping and swimming, also
    made time for stretching out on the lounges (eerily reminiscent of me at their age).  In contrast, when the boys are with us, none of them would dream of wasting perfectly good swim time by laying on a lounge chair.

    We had a super time! Ate hamburgers (courtesy of Central Market's
    frozen food and bakery sections), the boys played video games while the
    girls watched videos, then they - the girls - and I got down to some
    serious Durak playing (that's a popular Russian card game). 
    Elveera won twice and then I won twice.   
    Dmitry and Viktor got in some Yu-Gi-Oh, then it was time to take them
    home, and we sang along to some Larisa Dolina songs on the way.

    This evening I'm to drive to Gladney to attend a "Collaborative Group
    Something-or-other" involving parents who adopted older kids.  Not
    sure what sort of turnout they'll get, seeing as how Gladney is way out
    on Fort Worth's southwest side, while the parents are scattered all
    around the Metroplex.  It'd take lots of them well over an hour to
    get there, and it's a work night.  We'll see.  It'd probably
    be better for Gladney to select a more convenient location in
    future.  If we lived in Mesquite or Keller there'd be no way I'd
    go, frankly.

  • Looks like we aren't hosting Viktor and Vladimir after all . . .
    barring any unexpected problems with their paperwork, an adoptive
    family's been found for them.  Isn't that terrific? 

  • This evening we held an "open house" here so various family members
    could visit with Alex, Beth, and Hannah. What's amusing is, it was set
    for 6 - 9 p.m., but everyone pretty much showed up about 6:15 - 6:30,
    and were gone at 8 p.m.  It was quite crowded at one point! 

    We had a terrific time, however. 

    Mom with sweet Margaret.

    I have no idea what caught Marebear's attention, but for sure something
    did.  She was so funny!  You know how kids love to look at
    the pictures on the digital camera, right?  Well, Marebear and
    Brianna and Margaret had clustered around me, begging to see the photos
    I'd taken so far.

    Naturally, I obliged them.  We ran through them but I finally
    said, "Okay, the rest are of Hannah."  Marebear looked at me
    earnestly and responded, "Then you need to take more pictures of me!"  

    Don with Brianna and Hannah.

    We even had a mystery guest!  Who, oh who, could it be behind that coyly held subwoofer?

    Hah! Got 'im when he wasn't expecting it. 

    Hannah with Mom.

    And after the party, playing with Daddy. 

  • I thought the shower for Jill went right well.  She certainly got the goodies!  ;^)

    Signs of the times:  there was exactly ONE "wrapped with a bow"
    gift.  One.  All others were nestled in gift bags. 
    Well, it does cut down on the clutter and mess of traditional wrapping,
    but I rather miss seeing a pile of boxes of all different shapes and
    wrap and bows.

    But first, Gran holding her beloved Bryson Bunny. 

    My sister, Jeanne, my youngest daughter Jessica (mother of Brianna),
    Jill the Honoree, and my sister Elaine, who co-hosted the shower with
    me, and in whose new home it was held.

    One of Jill's gifts was the book on baby signing with Marebear's photo on the cover.  Good choice! 

    While opening the presents the attendees played Baby Bingo, wherein
    they first filled out blank bingo cards with what they thought Jill
    would receive, then hoped they'd get a straight line bingo:

    She was keeping track of both her own and Jill's, not double-dipping. 

    Jessica was one of the winners . . . there was a three-way tie (what a mercy I brought extra prizes!).

    Jill couldn't wait to try out the yellow ducky towel.

    Mom hard at work on the memory game (several baby things laid out on a
    table, studied for a few minutes, then one sees how many one remembers

    Here are the contenders in the "Which baby food IS that?" game. 
    The girl with the long dark hair, facing the camera, was the winner.

    After the shower Beth, Alex, and Hannah visited with us and had supper.  It was a lovely day!

  • I'm surprised to discover that, contrary to my initial response, I'm
    now eager to see the remake of "Wille Wonka" on the big screen.

    Yes, Johnny Depp is supposed to give a boffo performance, but that's not the reason.

    True, the sets are said to be over-the-top magnificent, but they're not the reason, either.

    No, it's something completely different.

    Twenty squirrels.  Twenty squirrels painstakingly trained to sit
    on little stools in front of a conveyor belt while shelling walnuts.

    That's worth the price of admission.

  • [ingratiatingly]  Speaking of kittens . . .

    Charles arrived home two days early, complete with cat and kittens.

  • Brianna was over today while Jessica worked; she and her Granddaddy had
    fun playing games, then we baked cookies and Brianna decorated them:

    About three o'clock the Waybourn boys arrived, and it was off to the club for swimming, diving, and jumping:

    They had a super time until thunder caused the lifeguards to clear the pool.    Still, they got to swim for over an hour, so that's not too bad.

  • Perhaps I'd best forego any plans of taking up meteorology, seeing as
    how Emily has dropped to 105 mph, making it a category 2 storm once

  • I enjoyed the swim class graduation immensely.

    Far more than did Marebear, unfortunately. She squealled and squalled
    the whole time, until Elaine took her out of the backyard so her cries
    of "Don't watch me!  Don't watch me!" wouldn't be the voiceover on the other girls' families' videos.

    Mind, she did a first class job when called upon to do so - "sink or
    swim" when literally the case tends to do that - but as soon as her
    precious face came out of the water, her adorable mouth opened, and
    mercy Maud!  She was forthright in expressing her displeasure
    about the whole proceeding. 

    At this point we hoped she'd chilled out a trifle.  Here they're getting ready to strut their aquatic stuff.

    Hmmmm.....this bodes ill.

    She could do it, she just wasn't cheerful. 

    Margaret took it all in stride for the most part.

    Here's Meredith swimming for the yellow rope dangling in the water on
    the left.  The instructor took pains to assure the audience that
    it was not actually used as an instrument of torture. 

    Though that was sort of hard to believe.

    Margaret's turn!  Lookit her go!

    Here she is (not yet two years old!) being dropped into the pool, whereupon she paddled to the young man in the foreground.

    Came out a bit shadowy, but here's Elaine and the incipient Esther Williams. ;^)

    This'll slay you....when it came time to leave Meredith said when she gets home she wants to go - what else? - swimming