Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Sam's Play Willy Wonka

Sam is the third kid from the left on the top row. SO CUTE!

Sam's play was a HUGE success. He had so much fun with his fellow UmpaLumpa's. They danced. They sang. It was really fun. After the second night Sam told me he for sure wants to do it again next year. I was really impressed with the set (designed and built by the kids). I thought the kids were very comfortable. They acted well and were actually really funny. I did not record the whole play just the parts Sam was in and I wished I had but oh well next time. Sam had to much fun and really that is all that matters. My little budding superstar!

Friday, August 8, 2008

Kindergarten Orientation

Yesterday we went to Kindergarten Orientation. I picked Sam up from school and we went to McDonalds because we really didn't have time to get home and get back in time. We had about 45 minutes to kill. He would not even play he ate as fast as he could and then said let's go. He really wanted to go through the drive through. Which I think is just funny because he always wants to stay and play. So we got to his school about half hour early. But we talked to the coordinator and his teacher for a while. Then orientation started and the kids got to make name places for themselves while the teacher talked to the parents. It really was not anything that I was not expecting. I was excited to learn that the class was not full (it still could fill up but...) but that means that there are only nine kids in the kindergarten class. Talk about one on one time.

They have a great literacy program that I am so excited to start. They have a goal for their class to read 1000 books. Sam and I are rearing to go and get started. Sam is so excited to start chapter books. He thinks that is so cool.

They will study language & literacy, library media, social studies, math, science, art, information technology and healthy lifestyles. One of the dads commented on the information technology category. He was excited about it but just expressed the thought my how times have changed.

They gave us a list called The 10 Best Ways to Help Your Kindergartner Succeed in School: A Parents To Do List
  1. Encourage reading in any way you can
  2. Treat your child as though he's an author
  3. Make math part of everyday life
  4. Teach your child how to listen
  5. Support your child's teacher and the school rules
  6. Tell the teacher everything
  7. Make sure your child is ready for school
  8. Spend time in your child's classroom
  9. Encourage responsibility and independence
  10. Ask your child about school every day

I am really excited for Sam to start school. I am happy that he is in such a great school that has such wonderful, thoughtful teachers. We are lucky.

Oh the funny thing was after it was over Sam was kinda mad at me and I asked him why and he said that was not much of a Kindergarten Celebration (orientation ... celebration ... you see how confusing it could be! :) ...)

Americas Favorite Dancer

I missed the first few minutes of the show because Sam and I were at Kindergarten orientation (which I will speak about in its own post) but right when I turned on the television I saw Katee and Joshua dancing Bollywood and I thought wow this is even better than the first time. I really liked seeing my favorites dances from the season again: Mark & Chelsie doing Bleeding Love; Will & Katee doing that amazing contemporary; Mark & Courtney preforming the Garden; Twitch and Katee dancing the Door; Katee and Joshua's No Air; and of course Twitch and Kherington doing that lovely Venetian waltz piece by Jean Mark Generaux. I loved seeing Mary Murphy and Nigel dance. It reminded me that they do in fact know what they are talking about. Wow about Mary's legs. She is sitting behind that table I had no idea they were so long and lovely. Nigel was funny. I liked it. I loved the Old and New dance it was pretty fun. It was fun to see some of my old favorites dancing with the new. I though the guests were great the Debbie Allen Dance academy who danced with Nigel such cute kids. The cast of Believe - talk about amazing. Sam really liked that one. And of course (my good friend Jenny's favorites) the Jonas Brothers. I thought this was one of the best finale's I have ever seen. It was all about the season and the great dancers and choreographers. There was the poppers but they were awesome. None of this who was the worst and let's celebrate them. No, it was great. I loved seeing all my favorites dances again. I thought the guests added to the show. And it all came down to Twitch and Joshua. And America's Favorite Dancer is.... JOSHUA!

After the show we were going downstairs and Sam said I'm sad. So I asked him why he said because it is over forever and it was your favorite show. Ahhh isn't that sweet. He wasn't sad for him he was sad for me. What a good boy I have!

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Fabulous Four

First, Cat Deely was absolutely golden. She is a chameleon and she is lovely. All the dancers danced with everyone so it made for some very tired dancers.

The solos first: Courtney was lovely in yellow and I loved that Missy Higgins song she danced to I felt it was very lovely and full of passion. Twitch's cameo was perfect. He is such a humorous, fun loving person. He is an entertainer. Katee really is amazing and so beautiful to watch. Josh has such charisma when he dances solo. I liked them all.

First up, Twitch and Courtney danced a Hip Hop routine from Tabitha and Napoleon. It was a fun fighting couple. What is it with Twitch and fighting with his girlfriend? It was fun and I liked it.

Back together yet again, Katee and Joshua danced a Wade Robson contemporary (digression: I love Wade and I was so sad he did not choreograph more this season but glad to have him back ... I want to go to Vegas and see Believe!). It was beautiful. When the camera caught Katee at the beginning I felt real pain there she is an actress as much as a dancer. I liked it.

Katee and Courtney were up next doing a Tyce Broadway. It was so fun to see the girls pretty and girly. I liked the dance it was fun. Very old Hollywood.

After the break we came back with the Russian Troupec. Wow and more wow. I didn't know anyone could jump that high, Josh was flying. It was a powerful performance but it also really entertained. You could tell they were having a lot of fun. I liked it.

Foxtrot - The dance of death. But no Twitch and Katee were superb. It was lovely and romantic. Twitch was so handsome and gentlemanly. And Katee and that dress so beautiful. I loved the lift it was elegant and effortless. I LOVED it.

Last up was Courtney and Joshua and it was fun. But it was slightly disappointing. They are such great dancers but it just didn't have the omph. But I liked it.

Finally they all danced a Mia Michael's contemporary. I really liked it. I didn't love it as much as they judges but I really liked the Scottish theme and the dancing was very powerful.

It was a great evening of dance. I would have died after dancing five dances in two hours. All the dancers did an amazing job. I don't know who will win. I think they are all great dancers and deserve to win. Sam voted for Twitch two times so I guess if it is up to Sam Twitch will win it all.

We will be at Kindergarten orientation tonight so we won't know until later who wins it all...

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

What I am Reading to Write

Almost a year ago I wrote a very rough draft of a novel and then I drawered it. (You know shoved it in a virtual drawer and left it to fend for itself). There were two reasons for this drastic action. One was because I just could not stand the sight of it anymore and the other was I was stuck. I had my beginning, middle and end but something was missing. I was not sure where to look or how to find that missing component so I drawered it. I picked up a novel idea that I had been working on for some time and was making good progress but again something happened and I do not know what but I knew that something was missing, something was just not right.

So I took a break. And I started reading. Not that I do not read like a crazy person in general. We are talking about me but I started reading about writing. There are a lot of books on writing but I am certainly not going to read a book on how to be a successful writer by a person that I have never heard of and has not got one single book on a best sellers list. Not that I am aiming for the best sellers list I would be happy just to finish a novel, and it would be joyous to get it edited and it would be brilliant to get it published. So what books should I read by authors who know what they are doing?

Well, for some time I have had on my list of things to read On Writing by Stephen King. And I finally got around to reading it. I read it once and immediately went to Barnes & Noble and bought my own copy so I could mark it up and really use it. I thought it was brilliant and I would suggest it to anyone who wants to write in any medium. Although I must give warning he uses a lot of four letter words. That does not really bother me but if it bothers you maybe should not read it.

After I read King I thought "this is excellent but I want to write in speculative fiction" (otherwise known as science fiction and fantasy) so I went looking again for a good read. I found a great book by Orson Scott Card called How to Write Science Fiction & Fantasy. Card specifically mentions that his book is not about writing, it is about writing speculative fiction. It was extremely helpful and again I bought it so I could mark it up and really use it. Then I got his book Characters & Viewpoint which was very helpful for me because I have a tendency to switch viewpoint frequently (and I learned that isn't necessarily bad I just have to be in control not just randomly switching). Lastly I bought Elements of Style which both King and Card recommended as the book for style. Eventually I will buy or go to the library to read Writers Market.

It has been an epiphany. I am so excited to write both my novels now I don't know which one to work on first. I have always loved to dream up stories but felt nothing compared on the page with what was in my mind but I think I have a better feel for how I can get those stories told.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Me and Wrong

Ok. So me and wrong apprently are still best friends. But I'll get to that in a minute.

I absoletly loved the group number. It was lovely and elegant and I really enjoyed it.

I loved Little Demon. The little six year old breaker. I honestly held my breath when he did every single trick thinking, who will catch him if he falls on his head? But he didn't and he was so cute. Sam thought that was pretty fun as well. I hope Sam doesn't try to spin on his head. We might have to have a conversation about that come to think of it. But the second guest? What? Lady Ga Ga is strange. I have heard the song before and I like it but holy strangeness batman.

Onto the eliminations. So the girls are up first and Katee is sent immediately to safety. No surprise there.

Then the guys and they send Joshua to safety - again no surprise.

So back to the girls. I have not really liked Courtney until the last few shows. I loved the Venitian Waltz that she did with Mark and I discovered she really is very elegant and classy and perhaps it was not her fault that the costume designers and choreographiers kept making her a vixon. But I was still completely and utterly surprised when she beat out Chelsie. I was and I will admit it freely a little tearful because I think Chelsie is so dang cute. And I will miss her but I am excited to see her on tour.

The guys so it was between Twitch and Mark and really it could have gone either way I would have been happy because I really like them both and it could have gone either way and I could have been sad because I relaly like them both. But in the end it was Mark that was sent home. So my Bleeding Love couple is gone. But I am really excited about the final four. I think it will be a great show. Tune in on Wednesday for the Finale!