Woodworking Class

Bruce held his first woodworking class for the kids yesterday and it was a rousing success. (Perhaps a little loud when all 11 kids were hammering at the same time, but super fun nonetheless.)

Finn helped with a little cleanup before everyone arrived.

Finn cleans up before class

He really likes the shop vac, so long as he has his “ear mops” on.

Finn cleans up before class

Once everyone was here, Bruce gave a demonstration on what they were going to make: a platform.

Bruce demonstrates

Bruce demonstrates

I also took a couple of videos.

Then, the hammering began.

Making platforms

Chapin hammers

Finn and Kai hammer

When the platforms were all built, they painted them.



Poor Ezra was sick and couldn’t participate in the class. He slept through most of it, only coming downstairs during dinner to drink some juice and promptly throw up all over the patio. After that he felt much better.

Ezra not feeling so good

I don’t have any pictures of the finished products because we moved directly from the class into dinner and drinks. The kids ran around like crazy and the parents had a chance to chat. It was great! (Except for the throw up.)

Aveson Art Show

Aveson’s K-2 and 1-2 combination classes put on an art show on Wednesday night, the culmination of an 8 week art course. The kids were all so proud to show off their work and the event was wonderfully crowded. Here are some pictures.

Ezra shows off his self-portraits.

Ezra shows Finn and Bruce his artwork

Ezra's art

Ezra’s other artwork — the zombie is actually separate than the piece underneath, which is a fort, a cloud (the box), and the “mighty volcano.”

Ezra's art

Ezra's art

Ezra’s two heads.

Ezra's head

And, finally, his drawing (the brown one on the bottom row) which is Bruce’s favorite.

Ezra's line drawing


It’s a pretty soggy here today, which is good because a) we need it and b) there’s water in our new stream! Fun!

Water in the river!

Fun at Target

Finn and I had a surprisingly enjoyable trip to Target yesterday morning. He kept so busy stacking and scanning items that there was nary a mention of going to the toy “sectionary.”

Scanning at Target

Stacking at Target 2

Stacking at Target 1

A Few Pictures

No extensive post today … just a few pictures.

Finn utilized one of the boulders in the backyard while he was preparing for some sort of war with Ezra and Bruce.


The boys tried to light bird poop on fire in the driveway. (Lots of smelly smoke, but no flames.)

Trying to light bird poop on fire

Family study night.

Family study night

Fun at Cottage today.

Finn walking

Ezra walking

Rain Gutter Cleaning

One of Bruce’s projects this weekend was cleaning out the rain gutters, something that desperately needed to be done but is an intimidating job. I am not at all comfortable with the process.


But I do like this cool Instagram photo I took of the ladder!

Instagram ladder

Finn’s Book

Last night while Ezra was working on his math, Finn was writing a book. Here’s page one.

Finn's book, page 1

Here’s page two.

Finn's book, page 2

You get the idea. He really is quite fond of Teacher Sahar.

Little Woodworker

Finn has been very interested of late in anything that Bruce is doing in the garage. And, he always wants a project of his own.

Finn does some woodworking

On Friday, Bruce mentioned to him that he’d been thinking about making him a workbench all his own with his tools and everything. Needless to say, Finn was quite enthusiastic about the idea and wouldn’t really let it go until Bruce followed through. So, voila.

Woodworker Finn

Woodworker Finn

A Warm March Day

Friday’s warm temperatures lured the boys into some water play in the front yard. They started with the hose and then once they were soaked they decided to try to get the stream going by pouring a bucket of water into it. They forgot they’d made a rock dam at the bottom.

Making the river work

Making the river work

They refilled the bucket but realized it was too heavy to move over to the stream, so they dumped it out on the driveway (which makes me a little crazy).


Funeral for a Bee

Toward the end of our after school play date at Loma Alta park this afternoon, Finn came over and asked if I had anything “pretty” because they were having a funeral for a dead bee. As we moms pressed the kids for more information, we learned that some “bad teenagers” had killed the bee.

The kids — Ezra, Finn, Ruby, Chapin, Sydney, Kylee, Jack and Sofia — proceeded to collect flowers, grass, leaves and sticks to surround the bee. Jack’s mom sent this picture of the “ceremony.”

Bee Funeral

And Ezra took a couple of pictures with my phone.

Bee Funeral

Bee Funeral

Ezra’s 7th Birthday

We celebrated Ezra’s birthday this weekend by going down to San Diego for a trip to Sea World. We started out at Grandpa Bill and Grandma Therese’s house for Saturday afternoon and night. We had cake.

Happy Birthday cake

And, at Ezra’s request, we waited until Sunday morning (his actual birthday) for presents.

Looking at Finn's present to Ezra

Checking out the Star Wars book with Grandpa

First try

A little later in the morning we hit SeaWorld — Ezra’s pick because they have penguins there and he is penguin-crazy. Right off the bat, we saw these guys — the Magellanics that come from South America and (obviously) like a warmer climate.

Magellanic penguins

Ezra was pretty excited.

Super excited to see the Magellanics

Next we went into the Penguin Encounter area where the colder climate penguins live. They have about 350 penguins in there and it’s 25 degrees.

Penguin exhibit

We also saw polar bears.

Polar bears

Beluga whales.

Beluga whales

And the Shamu show, which, I have to say, is still as thrilling as it was when I was a kid.



After lunch and a couple of other attractions, Ezra and I split for the Penguins Up Close tour while Bruce and Finn headed to the Sesame Street area. While we were waiting, Ezra saw this seagull on one foot and said, “He’s doing yoga!”

Seagull doing yoga (according to Ezra)

He then proceeded to attempt the same pose.

Seagull yoga

Finally, we got to go “back stage” at the Penguin Encounter and meet this adorable little macaroni penguin.

Cute macaroni penguin

We got to pet her.

Ezra gets to pet a penguin

And watch her wander around a bit as the keeper was talking.

Checking out the lab

Then we braved the 25 degree weather to go inside the penguin area. They really are particularly cute animals.

Lots o' penguins

Lots o' penguins


Needless to say, Ezra was thrilled.



After our behind the scenes tour was finished, we met up with Bruce and Finn and went to see the turtles.

Giant turtle!

Of course, we had bought some souvenirs.

On a turtle

Then it was time for the crazy dolphin show in a very warm and sunny arena.

Waiting for the dolphin show

Crazy dolphin show

Finally, it was time for dinner and the long drive home. Both boys took their penguins to bed with them and I snapped this picture of a very exhausted, newly-minted 7-year-old sleeping off a very exciting day.

Exhausted, happy birthday boy

I took a lot more pictures; a slideshow of the rest isĀ here.


Just a couple of pictures from today. This afternoon after Ezra got home from school and the boys had a chance to unwind with some Angry Birds and Cut the Rope, I shooed them outside to play while I was making dinner. When I checked on them a little later, they were having a meeting on the lawn. They always gravitate toward the little hill we put in.

Meeting on the lawn

Later, when it was time for books before bedtime, I walked in to see them in swim goggles and their LACMA badges.

Ready for book time