Friday, April 29, 2011

Believe Memphis!

We jumped on the Memphis Grizzlies bandwagon last summer when Greivis Vasquez was drafted in the first round (from Maryland!). We got more into it when we attended the five games I got Scott for Christmas. And then the Grizz made the playoffs for the first time in 5 years (I think). But, in their 10 years as a team here in Memphis, they had never even won a play off game.

They knocked that one out very first thing as an eight-seed, playing the 1-seed San Antonio Spurs! The series kept going and when the tickets went on sale for game six, with the Grizz leading the series 3-2, I got some and Scott and I went.

I've never been to a professional play off game. And there's something about what's going on right now in Memphis, with this team, that is magical! The game coincides with Memphis in May Music festival, so, Beale Street is crazy!

Here it is, almost at the end, with us winning and knocking out the number one seed Spurs!

It was unbelievable being there for this game! We wandered down Beale for a little while afterward to celebrate!

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Rising Waters

This has been a particularly rainy, stormy spring here in southwest Tennessee. You may have read about our fun in the tub. We did that a few more times, as well as fun in the hallway at our schools:

The only reason I took that shot is because we were so impressed that our students continued working on their Honors Precalculus while the tornado sirens were going off!

All the rain has lead to some swollen rivers. Right now, the Wolf River is threatening my school. This picture is taken on Houston Levee traveling north just north of my school. Normally, you cannot see the river at all as you drive over the bridge.

We got out of school early today because the water is starting to flood the parking lots at school, making it a bit unsafe for our student drivers. The Wolf is supposed to crest early tomorrow morning and I think our buildings will be ok, though I am taking everything out of the bottom drawers of my desk and getting boxes off the floors, because this is the view out my classroom window:

Here are our practice athletic fields (usually dry):

The Wolf flows through Shelby County to the Mississippi River. Here is where it moves into a large park called Shelby Farms. It is currently flooding the fields to the north of the river and the pathways to the south. The good part about all of this is that's what it's supposed to do! The water is going where everyone would like it to go, and avoiding the businesses that are right around it.

Closer to home, the Loosehatchie is also way over its banks. Across Old Brownsville and behind the next neighborhood is the Bartlett animal shelter which has been evacuated. The water has not reached the shelter yet, but it is getting close. Here's a picture of the dog park just next to the shelter:

Stay tuned...the Mississippi is supposed to crest May 10!

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Later that day...

We went to explore a nature center near Mom & Dad's today. They had a neat little outdoor play area and the weather was perfect!

Jillian shows off what she's learned in gymnastics:

She loves climbing!

Future naturalist?

Chasing a skink:

Later we celebrated Aunt Gus's birthday:


We opted for a late mass and slow morning.

Ryan read the letter from the Easter Bunny:

Then it was out back in pjs and boots to hunt for eggs.

Unfortunately, the Easter Bunny hid the eggs outside last night, so a good many had ants in them. After salvagin the ant-free treats, we dumpes the eggs in a bucket of water. It made for a highly eventful hunt!

Then it was time for treats!

An Easter Bonnet?

Finally, all dressed up for mass:

Happy Easter!

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Happy 40th Anniversary

Part of our reason for going back to Charlotte for Easter was to surprise Mom & Dad for their 40th wedding anniversary. Katy and I worked with my aunt to get all their local Charlotte friends together for a party. They didn't have a clue!!

At first I felt bad because we couldn't get any of their "old" friends from Maryland to come down for it, but I learned a lot about their new friends that day. They've been blessed to make some great new friends in their neighborhood down their and it was wonderful to meet so many of them!

One friend made this cake:

Here are some of the girls:

And the guys:

Happy Anniversary, Mom & Dad!

Friday, April 22, 2011

Dying Eggs

at Nanny & Gramp's house.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Back to Hendersonville

We were headed back to Charlotte today, and since Scott was already there working with some of his properties, it was just me and the kids driving out. We weren't in a rush, so I thought I'd surprise Ryan and go to one of the places he really wanted to see when we were in Hendersonville a few weeks ago: a gem mine!

Okay, there was no mine. You pay for a bucket of sand...

...and get to sift through it to try and find gems. But the folks were really friendly and the kids had fun.

Jillian found some citrine (in her left hand):

They helped us classify the rocks afterwards. The ones I was most impressed with: two amethyst, a few small peridot, a small garnet, and maybe a small emerald!

After that, we took a drive out to "Jump Off Rock" which was something I had wanted to see. It wasn't too impressive.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Jillian's Gymnastics

Jillian and I have been going to a Mom & Tots gymnastics class at River City Gymnastics for a few weeks now. She is finally getting the hang of the routine there and starting to get into it.

They start by ruinning, hoppig, marching, and bear crawling back and forth down the mat:

Next, it's stretching, all done with songs and rhymes to make it fun.

Tickle your toes:

Bringing home my baby bumblebee (which she'll now do on her own sometimes):

Hi mom!

Butterfly, better hide!



Coach Kendall in the distance:

Attempting a bridge:

Next we do a bunch of obstacle course kind of things. First up is the caterpiller where they climb up and over a bunch of foam shapes.

Onto the balance beam which was an early favorite of hers:


Sopme of her friends waiting for the next station:

The very popular rings:

Moving across the uneven bars. She did NOT like this in the beginning and is getting where she can do it herself now.

Coach Kendall helps them hang from another set of bars.

And then it's the big balance beam!

Did I mention that she likes climbing?

Last actvity is jumping on the trampoline and into the foam pit:

She's skipping, but still not jumping yet. I am hopeful that this will help and she'll be jumping with two feet soon!

At the end of class, Coach Kendall gives everyone stamps. The very first class, Jillian saw all the kids going over and pulling up their pants legs to get stamped on their shins and she went right over! Loves her stamps!!