Saturday, April 24

and ceremonial arm wrestling to celebrate my friend Katie's birthday.

Thursday, April 22

Poor Peter. The child of a painter never has a picturesque moment to himself without his Mom saying, "Ooh, just hold that a moment!".

Tuesday, April 20

One of Henry's big strengths is sorting. He can sort by color or type or size very well. But he also just likes to play with this collapsible basket filled with beanie babies and stuffed toys, emptying it out and then lobbing the toys back in. He may be putting the animals back in some kind of intricate order, but if so, it is too complex a pattern for me to discern. Anyway, with the advent of this beautiful spell of warm weather I've noticed that he has taken to lugging the basket out onto the porch, where he can do his sorting thing while enjoying the balmy air.

Monday, April 19

Today is Paul's 42nd birthday and he finally did the champagne cork experiment he's always wanted to do (we finally have a big enough yard!). Man did it fly!

Sunday, April 18

The Randalls stopped by yesterday morning on their last day in town. Taylor ran out and got an enormous sack of pastries from our local french bakery. It is REALLY french, run by people from France who still have accents and who sell those little round tins of fruit pastilles by the cash register: proof! Anyway, a few minutes after the hordes descended on the delicacies, this is what was left, a couple of Kings fit for a feast!

Friday, April 16

Yet even more visitors from far away chose this week to visit Philadelphia. My friend Sonia and her family moved to France last summer. Here her two daughters clamber in our Japanese Maple tree like two beautiful "Maple Fairies".

Thursday, April 15

Seems like many old friends are in town this week. This morning I went with the Powells, in town from England, to a riding lesson for their daughter Ellie. Ellie's grandmother volunteers at Sebastian Riding Associates, a wonderful place where they do riding therapy for people with special needs. So I tagged along and got to see several sessions, and talk with the people who work there. Here is Ellie getting ready for her lesson on Kahlua- what a delicious name!

Wednesday, April 14

Our old friends the Randalls who broke our hearts by moving far, far away are back in town for a visit. Despite the rain, the kids just had to go out and play. And as usual, they end up playing with planks and sticks and old bricks instead of the many pieces of equipment we've bought for them! Kind of refreshing really. Here are Olivia and Hugh working on a fulcrum design. Or something.

Tuesday, April 13

Only Hughie and I dyed eggs this year. Peter was exhausted after a soccer tournament and just wanted to lie on the couch and read, Paul was tapping away at the computer, and Henry was terrified of remaining downstairs because I had used the blender (just for a moment) a few minutes earlier! He is really Blender-phobic these days, although his terrible fear of our cat, Daisy, has greatly abated . This is pretty good, as Daisy is around constantly but I only use the blender on rare occasions. Hughie and I had fun, just the two of us.

A wonderful thing we did on Easter was to go to the movies as an entire family! We have never all 5 gone together before because of fearing how Henry would do. I will always have a soft spot for the very silly Disney film we saw, "Home on the Range", just because it marked a first for us. It is always a red letter day when we find some new activity we can all enjoy together.

Sunday, April 11

Friday, April 9

On our visit to San Diego we went to Torrey Pines nature reserve and took a long walk along the beautiful beach there. At one point we stopped for a snack among a group of rocks and discovered that someone else had recently been there and left us a beautiful greeting.

Thursday, April 8

That's where I have been for the past few days of blog silence. We went to San Diego to see a few new sites and revisit some old favorites like this one: the Torrey Pines Gliderport. No, we did not let the boys leap off the cliff!

Thursday, April 1

This is the dome of the State Capitol building in Harrisburg, PA. It is a magnificent creation. But, being a mother, the most beautiful thing I can think of is a loving look from one of my children. Sappy but true.