Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Black and White Wednesday

Saw this on another blog (The Long Road to China - Black and White Wednesday) and thought it might be fun to try. I'm having a lot of fun learning about my new camera!

Monday, March 22, 2010

Catching up...

Yeah, I'm still here. Busy, busy. A few things to catch up on, but I'm just going to lump them all into one post!

I splurged a bit and bought myself a new digital camera a week or so ago. It's a Nikon D5000 DSLR with two lenses (18-55 and 55-200). I've been playing around with it a little, as we're going on vacation again in a few weeks and I really want to get some great photos! I've only taken some "basic" shots around the house over the last few days. Saturday, the weather was so incredible, and Sophie and I decided to kick the soccer ball around a bit after dinner. I thought this was a good opportunity to take some shots in "sports mode", but they all came out blurry!

Well, last night K and I watched the training video and guess what? I learned a lot! I wanted to try out the action shots again today, so I had the girls dance around (and jump!), and giving the shutter priority over the aperture did wonders!

Last weekend, we also bought Sophie a big girl bed! FINALLY!!!! She really likes it!

About three weeks ago (when there was still a bit of snow on the ground), K got out EJ's first bike...this cute little Madeline bike. Sophie really felt like a big girl on it!

This past weekend, we went to a Manchester Monarchs hockey game. The Monarchs are an affiliate team of the LA Kings. EJ's school chorus sang the national anthem. The first two pics were taken during the sound check, when the parents were allowed on the platform. During the real performance, EJ was on the Jumbotron!!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

EJ's first dance competition

EJ joined her dance studio's dance company this year. She takes five classes (four required and one optional), and they compete at three local competitions. This first competition was held this past weekend at our local high school, and it was a LONG day (had to be there at 7AM, got home at 11:30 PM). Here are some fun shots from the day, most taken in the hallway while they were practicing:

"The Conga" - jazz. Check out the clip-on pony tail and shimmery rhinestone earrings! She's in the back row, left.

Lunch break!

"Tutti Fruitti" - tap. I love this costume!

Striking a pose (front right):

"Double Dutch Bus" - hip hop. They have a giant yellow bus made out of PVC pipe that they push around the stage for this number - very cute!

Front row, center:
"Tout Doucement" - ballet. Yikes, don't know my French, not sure I spelled the name of the song correctly? Anyway, these costumes are quite hypnotizing when there are 14 of them spinning around on stage!

"Dream" - lyrical

Her team won five high silver awards. The next competition is the second weekend in April.

Our trip to PA

Here in New England, most schools give students a one week break in February and a one week break in April. Personally, I'd rather have the extra time off in June, but I'm starting to dream about warm tropical vacations right about now, so perhaps a winter break isn't such a bad idea. Well, we did go south, but it wasn't was southwestern PA to visit family. Here are the girls with Pap Pap and Mamaw S:

EJ and Mamaw played dress-up one day and then played cards. EJ looked like a real card shark!

Here are the girls with their Great Great Aunt A:

On Wednesday evening, EJ, Pap Pap, and I went tubing to Hidden Valley Resort. We had a lot of fun - mostly because there were only a dozen other people there, and after the first 75 minutes or so we had the whole hill to ourselves!

Here are the girls striking a silly pose with their Great Great Uncle C:

And here they are with their Great Grandma K (my maternal grandmother). Sophie loved riding in the wheelchair!

The first night we were there, we met up at a local pizza shop with some family and friends. Here I am with two of my best friends from high school, S and R:

We had a lot of fun, despite the foot of snow that fell the day before we left, or that K, Sophie, and I were all fighting colds while we were there. A wind storm tore through southern NH and knocked out the power at home on Thursday night. We were hoping to return home Saturday afternoon, but we had a late start (still recovering from the snow at my dad's and the traffic jams in the Scranton area), so it was around midnight Saturday when we pulled in. The house was only 45 degrees, but thankfully it hadn't been cold enough to freeze the pipes. We plugged in the generator and fired up the furnace and the pellet stove. The power didn't come back on until Monday afternoon, but we were prepared. Our only loss was everything in the fridge and the freezer on the fridge (everything in the basement freezer was still frozen solid). Sheesh, two major power outages in 15 months! I do give PSNH a lot of credit for their communications plan this time. They waited until they had a full assessment of the situation before releasing estimated time of restoration to everyone. And they had regular updates on Twitter, which were great to follow!