Sunday, March 30, 2014

A Bit of Our Week

It just makes sense that at this point I give much of 
the music teaching over to Emily and Kristin so...

... this was James's reaction to his music theory lesson
this past week.

Here's a peek at Helena's flute lesson.

This beautiful splendor greeted us Thursday (and Friday)
morning.  It was glorious!

Of course snow removal degenerated into a snowball

The shovel crew

The main guy on the tractor.
My goodness are we thankful for that tractor!!!
(and the guy)

Helena's snow man with shovel.
He didn't help much.

Finally, two of the all Beckman snow brawl.
I don't know who won, but everyone got soaked.
It was way warm today.  38˚ and sunny!

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

James's First Plumbing Project

James got some tools for a Christmas gift this past
year and he has been very eager to use them.
The need to replace our disposal was a great way
for him to give it a try.

Here he was learning that nothing about
plumbing is ever comfortable or neat.

Jonathan got to do some of the parts that required a
little more muscle than James has at the moment.

How many guys does it take to change a disposal?

Out comes the Christmas screwdriver...

... now to attach one of the fittings.

Okay, so sometimes it's just easier to do it with your

Matthew gets to finish the project in ultimate comfort.
It's always great to find yourself wedged under a 
kitchen sink where a disposal has been leaking into
a bucket for weeks.   Yuck!

Thanks for a project well done, guys!

Sunday, March 23, 2014

First Time for Orchestra

This was just too cute.
James heading out for his first time
at orchestra.

How did it go?  Well, unfortunately, 
by the time he got there he was sound
asleep.  I don't think anyone will play
very well if they are awoken from a 
sound sleep, handed a cello and a piece
of music, and asked to play.
There's always next time :)

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Sometimes You Get Tired

It's hard to keep up with your older siblings sometimes.
James was sure he didn't need a nap but....

... I think he was wrong :) 
 He was in quite a good
humor after he got up.  We all had a laugh over how
when you're young and you have to take a nap, you 
don't want one.  When you're older and you can't, 
you surely would like one!

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Happy Spring! - U.P. Style

Happy Spring Everyone!

In traditional U.P. fashion, we woke to several inches of
new snow, and a job for Matthew :)

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

A Little More Flute

Helena has memorized her second flute piece.
This one is called Fireflies.

I'm looking forward to the first duet with her big sister :)

Friday, March 14, 2014

Happy Pi/Pie Day!

You could celebrate today for many reasons, but we chose
two.  First of all, if you're a math/science junkie like Jonathan,
you can celebrate national mathematical pi day.  (It also happens
to be Einstein's birthday.)

Or, if you're anyone in our family and celebrating their dad's 
birthday, then it's time for our traditional pizza, pickles, and pie
meal.  Yum!

Emily and Kristin made a delicious, but very rich, french silk
pie with a nut crust.  Oh my!

They even made a mini one for a surprise office visit.

Kristin and I were able to sneak away over the lunch 
hour and surprise the birthday guy with the mini pie to
share with his office staff.

We had no trouble devouring the big one with our
dinner later, and as usual, there were lots of 
gift-opening helpers...

...and photographers.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Physics Experiment Video

Jonathan did a video of his physics experiment for
a class demonstration today.  Thankfully,  all the 
results were satisfactory.  (We've found this is not
something to take for granted.)  The experiment
is an electroscope, (a device showing an electrical
charge is present),  demonstrating charging by
conduction and induction.  (Don't worry, I don't 
really know much about it either, but it's fun to 
watch :) )

I should point out that one of my vintage "tupperware"
lids was used/ruined in the execution of this 

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Piano Four-Hands Concert Clip

This is a clip of Maurice Ravel's
Rapsodie Espagnole Feria for piano four-hands.

What you can't tell from the video clip is that the
floor at the front of this church is on a slant heading
toward the altar area.   Kudos to Matthew for 
sitting in a "hole" and still managing to get up 
and turn the pages on time!

Two "Piano" Concert Clip

This is a clip from Rachmaninov's Romance from
his Suite #2 for two pianos Op. 17

This is such a beautiful piece.  If you detect an odd
tinny or reverb sound occasionally, it is from a slight
disparity in pitch between the two "pianos".  
Unfortunately in the hustle before the concert began, 
we forgot to "tune" the keyboard to the piano which
was slightly out of tune.  Oh well, I think you can
still enjoy it anyway.

This is  the last concert clip I'm going to post.  I hope
you've enjoyed listening.

Saturday, March 8, 2014

Flute and Piano Concert Clip

This is the famous flute solo from 
Tchaikovsky's piano concerto number 1.

This piece ended up being a piece of cake for Emily--
not quite so easy for Kristin.

Friday, March 7, 2014

Bruch Trio Concert Clip

This was the first piece from the concert two weeks ago.

Hopefully, it leaves you wanting more.
I'll try to post more clips in the coming days.

Concert Pictures

I'm finally getting the concert pictures posted from
a couple of weeks ago.
Emily with the world's most serious page turner.

Kristin and clarinet playing the Bruch trio.

Matthew also made a great usher.
Of course here he's sitting down on the job.

Usher #2
Jonathan also found sitting to be great while waiting.

Once again, two "piano" repertoire is performed
on piano and keyboard.  Sigh...

Emily and Kristin also played a piano four-hands
piece by Ravel.

It was a beautiful concert with a rather intimate audience
due to extremely bad weather. 
My next post will hopefully be video clips from the concert.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Pre-Concert Rehearsal Pictures

This past concert's venue was a beautiful, historic church.

Like most churches, this one turns the heat way
down during the week when they aren't having
services.  Emily spent most of the time wearing
her coat, not sitting on it :)

You can see the balcony in this picture.
It is so not up to today's standards in our
safety conscious world.  The railing comes
about up to my mid-thigh.  Heights aren't
a favorite of mine, so being up there made 
me a little dizzy :}

I'm told they don't use it any more, but it
is really beautiful.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Indoor Sports

Most Sundays, Grandma comes over for lunch and bridge
after church.

This past Sunday Matthew had a little help with his
hand.  James decided that he just had to ride around
on his big brother.

Now that takes some concentration.  The weight of a
six year old on your shoulders, and the antics of the same
six year old do not help you keep from making mistakes.
All things considered, it wasn't a bad game :)

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Winter Sports

Well, it's now March and even though spring is right
around the corner on the calendar, it's nowhere near
in the U.P.

I'm afraid it wasn't much of a challenge given the 
depth of the snow, but James decided to give some
winter tree climbing a try.

Christopher and Benjamin got together for a short 
game of snowball.

The games have to be short you see since after you pitch,

the ball either hits the batter, gets smashed to smithereens
by the batter, or vanishes in a snow drift.