Several weeks ago Hank emerged from his bedroom dressed entirely in green, from head to toe. I knew immediately that his intent was to camouflage at the nursery, his favorite part of choosing a tree not the actual choosing, but the hide and seek game with his brothers.

Aside from his favorite hoodie, the other thing Tolliver seems to have had on alllll season is a rather old red hat, the kind you picture the narrator of Night Before Christmas in next to Ma with her kerchief. He tends to have something in his hands too, usually a football, sometimes a finger skate board, often a jar of peanut butter.

Meanwhile Tucker wears a near perma-smile (with the occasional and very normal teenaged smirk). His fingers find every nearby piano - at the neighbors' and at his grandparents', improvisational Jingle Bells as regular background noise. 

There are themes in all these pictures, books and rest, Legos and mess, music and paper crafts and pageant costumes and cousins, things that fly and so much time with family, so much love...


so much Decembering!


all the clapping

At some point fairly recently the younger boys began clapping for themselves during piano practice - usually just a couple quick whacks before they're on to the next song. I'm not entirely sure how it started, but I am HERE FOR IT. I wrote a guest essay last summer about the ways I used to encourage my fifth grade students to celebrate. At some point a simple conversation with a few ten year olds resulted in regular Broadway-esque applause in our classroom. I mean, who doesn't love a standing ovation, and why not give one to yourself?

While the boys won't have a formal piano recital until late spring, our neighbor has requested the gift of holiday music at her hors d'oeuvre party later this month, so the house has been full of Christmas-y practice. The calendar has been full too, with recent band and choir and orchestra concerts, plus a field trip to OSU's Celebration of Music. And I am here for all.of.it.