Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Trick Question?

Laurence was packing his backpack for school this morning, and paused to read the label on his envelope that comes home from the office every Tuesday...

Laurence: "O'Neil. Laurence Emmerson. Grade 5K." A short pause... "Mom, do you know Mrs. Winter's last name?"
Me: "Winter."
Laurence: "Oh, right! Then her first name must be Advisor."

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Beginners Lesson in Camera Parts

If you've come here for a lesson is DSLR photography, stick around, you might actually learn a thing or two. I've just begun the journey myself with this fine Nikon D40 beauty you see pictured here. We were thrilled to have the chance to purchase this camera from a friend, who recently upgraded to go pro. She's quite fact, it would be well worth your time to give her website look, after you're done here, of course. By the way, if you know me you'll notice we share the same last name, which is totally coincidence. I do, however, think she chose me as the new owner to keep her baby in the "family." (She really did call it her "baby!" Oh, the pressure....)

Anway, we've had some fun with the camera and have gotten some pretty decent shots, for beginners. We also purchased a new lens this past weekend and it came with a hood, which you can see in the picture - it's the slightly flared cylinder that surrounds the end of the lens (and lens cap, in this case). This hood is the reason for this post and the picture, actually, so look very, very closely... As Bill was putting it on, Laurence was watching very intently and said, "I know what that's for..." Not really surprised based on the information the kid absorbs, we both turn to him just as he says, "It's so the camera can't bite its stitches!"

That's the extent of your photography lesson folks. (Now go back and check out that link.)

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

What Do You See? I See a...

"Mommy, read 'Brown Bear, Brown Bear,'" is music to my ears. Of the hundreds of kids' books we have in our house, "Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?" has got to be the most requested of all. It was always a favorite of Laurence's, and one of the first books he "read" (memorized). In case you're not familiar with this well known book, written by Bill Martin, Jr. and illustrated by Eric Carle, each page introduces a new animal and a new color, in the repetitive format "Brown bear, brown bear, what do you see? I see a red bird looking at me. Red bird, red bird, what do you see? I see a yellow duck looking at me." and so on. Laurence worked very hard to learn every animal and every color, and once he mastered that, he'd guess the animal on the next page before turning it, and quickly memorized the order, eventually being able to recite the book without having to turn a single page. This is very telling of his learning style & personality. And then there's Loic. He's also loved this book for quite some time, and has moved on from the boring old memorization of a few months back. We, or I should say, he, read the book last night, and here's how it went:

Brown bear, brown bear what do you see?
I see a red bird, with a black eye, and a beak, and brown feet looking at me.
Red bird, red bird, what do you see?
I see a yellow duck with purple feet looking at me.
Yellow duck with purple feet, yellow duck with purple feet, what do you see?
I see a blue horse with sharp teeth that says "neigh" looking at me.
Blue horse with sharp teeth, blue horse with sharp teeth, what do you see?
I see a green frog, with a purple tongue, blue eyes, a toe, a toe, a toe, a toe, a toe, a toe, a toe, a toe, a toe, a toe, a toe, a toe, a toe, a toe, a toe, and another a toe looking at me.

Can you picture it? He pointed to each of the frog's sixteen toes as he "read," and on he went, observing details I'm not even sure I've noticed in the 36,263 times I've read the book.

Ah yes, our boys. Laurence the regimented, self-challenging intellect, and Loic the creative, detail-oriented free-spirit. What will Alastair be like? Only time, and a few more thousand readings of "Brown Bear, Brown Bear," will tell.