A few random shots off my phone as I experience autumn on my daily walks around the lake by my house. After our rough spring, I think we had no hope of such an enjoyable October, but it has been just that with our perfect autumn weather.
I most definitely have butterflies on my mind. On Saturday we celebrated a beautiful day near the lake at The Monarch Festival with lots of friends from school. It has been such a wonderful yearly event that my boys count on it each year.
The Heart of the Beast puppet theater was a new and delightful addition to the festival this year! Don't you just love the puppet show emerging from the suitcases?!
And we always enjoy the new crafts...masks and wet-felted caterpillars were fun.
They offered the steam roller printing again which was a huge hit the first time around (see here), I'm happy they continue to offer it. And the sun prints (here) are always fun too.
Also, over the weekend we took care of Julen's first grade class caterpillars. It was so much fun I think I gazed at them several hours each day. I didn't realize how they can mess up that cage in a hurry!! I learned quite quickly that caterpillars are like babies...all they do it eat and poop.
They truly are so fun to watch. I took care of my friend Susan's chrysalis pods over the summer and had such fun watching them open into butterflies.
Funny. I started this post in early July. So why not finish it now? This, the last day of August. In my mind, the last day of summer.
I've had a dry spell on this blog, while here in Minnesota we've spent a summer trying to conquer the damage all the past winters' heavy snowstorms followed by early spring thundershowers have had on our poor city. It's been a season of some of the craziest flooding I've seen here. Sink holes, street closings, many basements filled with water. My daily walks around the lake by my house have been tricky all summer, trying to navigate the heavy waters that had pushed themselves, first over the walkers path, then the bikers. Everyone shared the streets with the cars for a while. We try to get along. I loved seeing the kayakers (in the above photo) boating over the biker's path...an image I had to capture.
There has been a serge of wildlife moving in too. Blue herons, egrets, raccoons and I even encountered a deer one evening on my walk, I was desperate not to frighten him onto the nearby highway.
I've missed this space, my happy place while I was away from the blog world. I didn't have the best summer. I'm trying to put it behind me and instead count my blessings, thankful for my boys who bring me the light and joy of each day. I won't get into the details of what went on, because really, I want to move forward, but my sweet school, my precious school that I've worked so hard to build suffered a blow so strong that it almost had to shut down. A major conflict between my teaching partner and I left me believing there was no future for the school. While we are not completely resolved, we are moving ahead, trying to work things out the best we can.
I've missed this space! This space that motivates me to continue to create, explore, play and connect. I'm not ready to leave you yet. I hate not documenting all my trials and experiments. I'll be back. See you in September! xxx
(I just had to include this photo of Claudia's mom and daughter...how sweet are they?)
What a special treat to see the wonderful mosaics and mural artwork at Roosevelt High School today. I am so proud of my sister (art teacher) who has worked so hard with artists Greta McLain and Claudia Valentino, students and staff to transform the main entrance of the high school into a wonderful diverse explosion of color and light and inspiration for all who walk through the doorway.
I can only imagine what a challenge it was to work around all the pipes, fire alarm, doors and windows, corners and vents...but they did so quite beautifully. I couldn't be happier for them, it is quite an accomplishment and they worked on it right up until today's opening...the grout barely had enough time to dry. If you live locally (Minneapolis), it is so worth a visit. Visitors are more than welcome.
For more photos on the process, check out Greta's Tumblr.
Yesterday was the monthly First Tuesday Build a Lego model for free at the MOA. I love this event almost as much as my boys do. Children age 5-14 are invited into the Lego store to build a fun project to take home for absolutely no cost. The project is one that never will be available for purchase, so I guess they are somewhat rare. Last month they made helicopters, yesterday...these adorable fire-breathing dragons. Next month they will be building a Jet Ski. Click here for more information and look under News + Events. Rawr!! So cute.
Today was a perfect day for a parade and The Heart of the Beast Puppet Theater along with thousands of volunteers made this years 40th Annual May Day Parade a huge hit. It was glorious to be outside with the sun kissing our cheeks. Minnesotans came out in droves and it was wonderful to see so many happy happy people.
The story of spring that is told through puppetry did not disappoint. From the giant sized caterpillar with who knows how many bodies helping it creep across the grass, to the magic of the crysalis it spins on an equally large flower, then the birth of a butterfly...it all made the crowd go wild. We are so in need of spring here. Yes. May is going to be a terrific month.
Found on my walk around the lake. So much tree bark on the ground, covered with lichen. I don't know if it's newly fallen from the trees or it's just reappearing after the quick melt of snow cover. Such pretty colors emerge and such wonderful shapes. It's fun to look at. And what crazy shadows they cast.
With only an hour before I had to pick the boys up from school, I knew I would never make it. The checkout line was eighty people deep!! Then someone announced wool and yarn and cash only and she would come to you and add up your things and you could pay and be on your way. I didn't waste a second and easily filled the above plastic bins. The smaller bin had shetland wool and 262 yards of beautiful chocolate hand spun inside...$4!
So, I went a little crazy, but any of you knitters out there understand...all the above, lovely cones, hand dyed and hand spun, assortments of wool yarn and oh so much more...this plus a bin of beautifully dyed roving all for fifty-seven dollars. Yes. Most definitely...Merry Christmas to me.