Saturday, February 26, 2011

Asian Celebration 2011

Both Emily and Elisabeth performed at the Asian Celebration this year. It was held at the fairgrounds.

Leilani wasn't able to come with us, because of YW basketball, but Benjamin was very excited to watch his sisters.

They both played on the big Taiko drums. (I had video, but it is too big)
They both really enjoy the drums, but they also both received bruises and owies while learning the songs. Apparently it REALLY hurts to get hit with one of the Taiko sticks. They learned not to stand too close to the person playing the drum!

The older girls did a couple of dances with fans.
I have video of all this, but it is much too big a file to post on blogger, so the pictures will have to do.
The younger girls just danced without any props.
Our school chose three grade levels to perform at the Asian Celebration: K, 2nd and 5th. Each of the grades performed separately and then they sang all together. These pictures are of them singing together. I was blessed to be able to get Elisabeth, Emily and their cousin Kyle all in the same frame as I filmed them. In the picture above, Elisabeth is standing in the front row of the kids in back, Kyle is sitting behind the microphone and in front of the girl in yellow, and Emily's head is at the bottom between the two boys.

Here is a close up of Emily.
And here is another shot of Elisabeth and Kyle.

The kids did a good job, and they had lots of fun. Benjamin was even singing along with some of the songs, so I guess he has a head start for next year. It is too bad that they don't have any more performing opportunities after they leave grade school. Leilani would love to still perform!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Some Valentine Fun

Happy Valentines Day!

We had some fun this year for Valentine's Day. I found a great hair blog, with tons of videos and tutorials on different hairstyles. So, I tried out some of the Valentine ideas on my girls. (Well, not Leilani, because she is too cool for that now - but she did say I could do her hair for crazy hair day tomorrow!)
Emily is sporting the heart braid...
and we did a three heart twist on Elisabeth's hair. I am excited to try more cute ideas in the future. If you want to check the site out, here is the link:

We also did our nails - except for Leilani again. She's a party pooper :( But she did have me just braid her hair down her back and put a heart ponytail on it. Who knows why she wouldn't do her nails? Elisabeth is sporting her own individual style of red and pink alternating nails.

I made the kids pink "love cakes." We dyed the pancake batter pink, and then Emily decided that we should add frozen blueberries because I told them how my dad used to add all kinds of fruit to our pancakes on Saturday morning. (She originally wanted to add orange slices, but that just sounded gross to me. My dad used lots of fruit - apples, pears, bananas, etc. - but never oranges.) I just used cookie cutters to make the shapes on the griddle. I learned that it is much easier to remove the mold if you spray it with PAM first, but they will come off if you use a knife to loosen the edges.
The finished product was yummy! Benjamin asked why I made Mickey Mouse shapes for Valentines day. I said, "Do we love Mickey Mouse?" They all answered "yes," and the matter was settled.
I also decided to try making a conversation heart candle this year. It turned out cute, and it was fairly easy.
I bought a white pillar candle and some sweetheart candy. I traced around each heart with my mom's ceramic tool, and then carved the wax out of the hole and pressed the candy heart into the hole.

I melted the leftover wax and put a layer of wax over the candy hearts to seal them. I needed a different brush for this part, and I needed to keep the wax hot instead of letting it cool down and then have to heat it up again, but live and learn! I enjoyed making it, and it is a cute decoration. Next year I am going to try a picture frame. Did any of you do any cute crafts for Valentines?

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Pinewood Derby - a few years early

Our ward made the pine wood derby into a ward activity this year. The cub scouts raced their cars first, and then they had an open class for anyone else in the ward to compete in. Everyone in the ward also made banana cars to race and then they ate banana splits afterwards. My kids thought this was great!

All the kids were very excited about the racing (and so were many of the adults). You can see my kids and their cousins sitting down at the end of the track.

We didn't start our cars very early - we started Monday and the race was Friday - so they were pretty simple. My dad cut out wedges of wood for the car bodies, and we bought "official" wheels. The kids sanded and painted them (I helped Benjamin paint his), and the girls decorated theirs with glitter. Alan drilled the axle holes and glued the wheels in. They were very light weight, even though Alan glued some lead into the bottom, so the kids had to tape more weight onto the top of their cars. You can see our cars above: Benjamins is the green one with orange wheels (#26), Emily's is the silver car with blue wheels and two stripes down the middle (#25), Leilani's is blue, purple and pink with blue wheels and glitter all over it (#23) and Elisabeth's is dark pink with light pink polka dots and lines and black wheels (#24). They are pretty simple. The nice Oregon duck car on the right belongs to my brother Chris and his son Kyle. It was very nice looking - they did a good job in that department...but Ben and Elisabeth smoked them in the speed department :)
Here is Benjamin winning on of the races. He beat the "duck" car in this race.
Benjamin took 3rd in the open class competition. He was pretty excited! He beat both his cousins and their dad's (Jeff/Danny and Chris/Kyle). Elisabeth took 4th. Emily lost a wheel in one of the first rounds, and her car never competed well after that. Leilani...well, I think all the glitter may have impeded her racing :) But they all had fun!

This shows Elisabeth's car jumping the track on the final race off. It put her in 4th place.
Emily and her race car.
Elisabeth and her car (it was hard for Grandpa to accept a pink car - too many years of it being a boy event I guess!)
Leilani and her car. Notice that she even glittered the inside of the wheels...I do not think that helped her in the speed department. But she sure had fun making it!