May 23, 2016

'Tis the Season for Duets

The kids had their last piano lesson with their teacher, Sierra, today. Well, last until we're back in the States a year from now.



Reid has been playing less than a year (though since he was three, he's been quietly playing with toys on the floor next to the piano while Liam and I practiced--perhaps there was some osmotic learning going on there). There have also been some moments of him pretending to play along with his brother:



It's been so fun to watch them learn (kinisthetic and spacial and harmonic and relational parts of the brain firing all at once) and to hear the music in the house. Liam has left me in the dust after three years of practicing, and Reid is quickly headed that way, though I learned a ton this second time round through Reid's sheet music written with animal faces. C is a cat face, D is a dog, E is an elephant, etc.
 

I wouldn't mind if all music were written with animal faces.

Reid's most recent recital piece--Banana Boat:



Liam's recital song--Off to the Races:



And another duet--Star Wars by Liam and his buddy, Bergen:



These duet videos just make me happy!



 

May 20, 2016

Liam's dream

"I dreamed I was a superhero who was a toad."

Oh, really? What superpower did you have?

"I had sludge power!"

May 15, 2016

39 Years Big!

Tim turned 39 years old this weekend! We celebrated by walking to Pat's Pizza for a greasy spoon breakfast…
Playing cards before breakfast:

Walking home from the farmers market
Tim and his alien admirers:
We had a bunch of friends (and their parents) over for lunch and a raucus game of birthday kickball:

An awesome birthday card in Cyrillic from Sophia:

(A shout out to the Hansons who sent an awesome buffalo birthday card, family who sent cards and gifts, and friends who called--all were very appreciated!)
Tim remains our bolt of lightning, our tall kid at heart, our ever positive daddy and partner. We adore him!

May 11, 2016

Seattle Cousins

Not only does Seattle have Brian and Anna, great art, and a hip vibe, it also is home to some of my favorite cousins. We were able to get together with several of them from both the Quirk and Bulger sides on the evening of Dad's birthday. What a fun reunion!












May 10, 2016

Reid's artwork, May 2016

Reid and Liam are both major artists these days. It's lovely to see, and it's hard to keep up with. They produce a non-stop stream of art, from stuffed animal plays, to Liam's origami, kirigami, and pok√©mon drawings to Reids lego designs and school artwork for them both.  Here's a set of Reid's recent school artwork.

Clomnesaurus! A newly described species, clearly.


Reidasaurus. Of course that's an old classic.  You can always tell a Reidasaurus by it's ability to breathe fire and all the wings. So many wings.



Stage 1/2: it's raining and the luggage is getting loaded on the big plane while a parachutist is descending.



 Stage 2/2: The large plan is has taken off, before the parachutist landed (see unfinished parachute?). The small plane is hurtling down the runway making a "VVVVVVVVV" sound. Ah.  So satisfying, these drawings. So clear and purposeful. - Daddy.


Space Needle, Chihuly, a Troll, and More

See if you can decode this message:
Riding the monorail to the Seattle Center:

Seattleites make awesome playgrounds:






In their UMaine preschool, Liam and Reid studied Dale Chihuly. Now this preschool is one of a kind, which means that when the kids "studied" Chihuly, they really just did Chihuly-esque work/play of their own--painting with brooms and making melted plastic chandeliers. As a result, visiting the Chihuly museum was a hit:






One highlight of our Seattle Center day was meeting up with Uncle Mike. Quirk brothers, separated by a generation:

Chihuly liked to collect things, among them, accordions:




The gum wall near Pike Place (Seattle loves its art, even of the chewed variety):




We didn't make it up to the tulip and daffodil  fields north of Seattle, but the market was in full bloom:

Pinball Museum:


The locks:

And, of course, the Fremont troll: