Sunday, January 28, 2007

old friends

I went to a baby shower for a dear friend of mine this weekend. Kelly was my roomate and best friend in college. We went to Appalachian State and shared a little 1 bedroom apt. for a year before moving out to Banner Elk with 2 more friends for our senior year. I had not seen Kelly, Kara, or Courtney in almost 4 years. Kelly lives in seattle now and is expecting twins! Courtney and Kara are both maried and living in NC. We had a great time remembering the good ole days:)

This is a picure that a photography friend took of us back in 2000 when we lived together.

This is at the Shower on Saturday.

I told Daniel that it didn't look like we have changed. He said that's because we are all getting older and don't notice it in each other!:)

Daniel spent the day with the girls playing on the trampoline, building a fort and a fire then going to the ice cream shop and toy store. A fun day with dad!

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

teaching dance and tiling and sweet moments

That's what I've been doing this week. Actually, I haven't been teaching dance, just trying to get a job doing it! I contacted the local park to see if they wanted to start up some dance classes. I was very hesitant to make the call because I get nervous when I have to promote myself or try something new. I didn't really know for sure if they had a space or any interest in having dance. But, last Thursday I made contact with the park manager who was very interested in my ideas. He said they used to have dance classes but the teacher left and they just didn't try very hard to find a new one. I brought him my resume and some ideas for classes and he didn't even hardly look at it before telling me to come back so I could fill out an employee packet! I was so shocked since I was so sure that this was going to be a lot more difficult. :) It's been difficult to communicate with this man. He seems to be a great basketball coach and I know the park has a big football and baseball program but I just couldn't get much information from him. I guess that's a good thing. I can just do whatever classes I want anytime I want and they provide everything--the advertising, facility, paperwork. I just get a nice paycheck. Speaking of pay, I'll be making more here than I've made in the past since my profit depends on the amount of students I have instead of being paid by the hour like in Indy. I've designed some new classes this time that will combine dance and gymnastics which should start in March. I'll be offering 2 beginning dance and gymnastics classes, 2 intermediate dance and gym classes and 1 toddler dance class for 30 mins with parent participation. The classes will be on Thursday afternoons and Saturday mornings. The parks advertising program has already gone out for this season but they will advertise on the web and I'll be putting up fliers. I think my biggest challenge will be getting the word out.

In addition to the dance thing, I've been putting down tile in our little master bathroom. When we first moved into the house one of the first thing I started doing was ripping up the old tiles. Not only was it horribly ugly, it was so stained and the grout was cracking. I've tiled a bathroom before so I knew I could do it! But like all do-it-yourself projects it was a lot more complicated than I planned. After ripping up the first section of tiles last semester I realized I needed to put the project on hold since we were so busy with other things like getting used to a new town. Plus I didn't want to spend any more money on it. We got a few Lowe's gift cards for christmas and I used those to buy most of the products I needed. I started working on the floors again a few weeks ago.

The first problem I had was the subfloor. It was a concrete bed and as I was pulling tiles up pieces of grout were hard to get up and the top layer of concrete was also coming up! So I had to use conrete patching. (very hard to use because it dries in 10-15 minutes so you have to do all your work that fast!) Then the cutting and laying out was a challenge. I borrowed a little tile saw from a friend and that part went pretty smoothe. It was just time consuming. That's what I did for most of Saturday. Then once I had all the tiles ready I had to figure out how to put the mortar down without mixing up the tiles. I hadn't thought of it ahead of time but as i'm spreading the mortar under the tiles i had to put sections of tiles and pieces of tiles on top of each other. That may not make sense but I was a little confused while doing it myself! My thighs and knees have been soooo sore after squatting in tight spaces for 2 days. I didn't even realize I was using those muscles so much until the next day and I could hardly walk. All I have left to do now is the grout which is actually kind of fun. It's messy and goes by pretty fast and the results are awesome.

I was going to do that tonight but I laid with the girls while they fell asleep tonight and got out of their room too late. I don't usually lie with them after we read our stories but sometimes it's just nice to be with them. They usually say the sweetest things. I can just imagine their imaginations as the rest with their eyes closed. Ellen said, "mommy, I'm so comfortable right now I feel like I'm a baby in a soft crib. . . I'm so comfortable I feel like I'm flying." Her head was on my shoulder and her arms were wrapped around mine. how sweet.

Sorry for the long post. Guess I had a lot on my mind. Hope you could make it through!

Friday, January 19, 2007

Early learners

Posing with the pengiun craft we made outside the zoo.

Ellen and Arianna with 2 friends from the coop and Hudini the hawk

petting the baby flamingo

look at the crowd

look at Ellen's face

We meet every other Friday with a homeschool group called Early learners coop. There are probably 7 or 8 families with k-2nd graders plus younger siblings. Sometimes we meet at someones house and sometimes we do fieldtrips. One parent chooses to "lead" a meeting and they usually decide where to go and plan an activity or craft. Today we met at the zoo for a picnic lunch then we read stories and talked about penguins and together we all made our way through the zoo before finishing the day at the penguin feeding at 3:30. I think I've mentioned in the past that the zoo does a great job with spacing out feedings throughout the day so you can get a close up view and listen to a little talk about the animals. We stopped at the bird show where they bring out a scarlet macaw, a hawk named Hudini, a baby flamingo, and a black vulture. We've watched this show probably 4 times and I knew a lot of what they were going to show us and talk about. Every time they get volunteers out of the crowd to hold up hoola hoops for the hawk to fly through. This hawk swoops through the crowd and does a few tricks--pretty amazing. Anyway,since I knew this was coming I asked Ellen if she wanted to volunteer and she did. Ellen has been known to be pretty shy in public especially around people she doesn't know. But, recently, she has come out of her shell a bit. So she was excited about the opportunity and ran up there when the lady asked for volunteers. Arianna was soon to follow with the little boy in the red hood (Sam from our group). They were so cute and held those hoops up and listened to the instructions while the bird keeper told them exactly where to hold them. Once the bird flew low, then high, then through the tiny space between the hoops then up through one and down the other. (shown in those last 2 pictures)I wish I had taken video of it.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Arianna update

She is doing fine. The swellig has gone down and the scab is about to fall off. The doctor told us that the glue should start pealing off by the end of the week and that's what it looks like it's going to do. The only problem is that it is itchy and she can't scratch it. She just wiggles her nose and that usually helps. It really hasn't changed the way our days have been. I am paranoid about every step she takes and I still get kind of sick to my stomach when I look at her lip. Some kids act funny around her. They don't really know what to do and then stare at her. The bold kids ask her what's wrong and the shy ones turn away. After playing for a little while it seems like they just get used to it. At the museum yesterday for playgroup I had to hold her hand and tell lots of kids and parents what was wrong with her lip. We have taken a little break from the trampoline. I jump on there with them holdig Arianna's hand so that she doesn't fall and bump her face. A few people have asked me if I'm going to make a rule that only one person can jump at a time. That doesn't seem like much fun to me:) Part of the fun of the trampoline is bouncing and playing games with friends. We'll definitely be more careful when little ones are on there with big ones.

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Arianna's trip to the ER. . . she's ok. (written by Daniel)

We had one of "those" days today. It started out normal. "They" usually do. That's the thing about horrible bloody accidents. You never plan for them. Of course there are certain factors, when put together, that certainly make them more likely. Add a bright sunny warm day to a new trampoline, two excited, laughing, light girls, and one overly enthusiastic, heavy dad and stir well. The world is at peace, all is well, and I descend with a perfect double bounce. The girls ascend all smiles. But wait there's something about that angle. It's not right. As if in mid-fall slow-motion Arianna rolled back and Ellen floated on top of her while they headed toward the mat. Once there faces collided I knew we were in trouble. Ellen got off of Arianna howling, but not bleeding much. But when I took Arianna's in my arms my hands and her face were stained red. I took a quick look and from what I could tell Ellen's tooth went straight into the front of Arianna's upper lip. It was deep and nasty. So, just like that we entered crisis mode. The whole family rushed to the emergency room, with our newly acquired Medicaid in hand, and sat through all the stages of waiting. Finally after a couple of hours Arianna was glued back together (when I was growing up this was a stitches affair) and we were sent on our way. "That feeling" in my gut is now starting to subside. What a way to spend a Saturday. And it wouldn't be a Kruidenier tale without mentioning the stoic strength and endurance that Arianna maintained through the whole ordeal. Think about her over the coming days as she heals. And of course a card or phone call would be extra special for her

Here is Arianna resting with a full tummy of Soy-Delicious (Vegan ice cream) and Bugs Bunny on the tube. Most of what you see is drainage. The cut was very clean and should heal up nice and tight. And if anyone is thinking, "Dammit Daniel, be careful!" I know, I know I have been thinking it all day...

Saturday, January 06, 2007

A playdate in January

warm days in january.

I know it has been unusually warm everywhere, but we were so warm yesterday that the girls put on their bathing suits and wanted to run in the sprinker. We had some of our new friends over. We met them at our first tea party club meeting back in August. Melissa and I hit it off immediately when I told her I had lived in Boone and I realized she knew all about it and wanted to move there. Her 3 girls Micaiah(6), Anna(4) and Alexis(3) play wonderfully with Ellen and Arianna so we have been getting together about once a week for the past few months. So, when we got home and got the trampoline set up the girls were very excited about having their friends over to jump with them. The weather was supposed to be stormy and I'm so thankful that it never actually rained until later in the evening. So we had a wonderful, breezy, warm day filled with outdoor play!

I have been scrapbooking with Melissa on Friday nights. We had planned to get together last night but as I mentioned the storm came through right when I was about to leave and I HATE driving in the rain and didn't want to transport all my pictures and stuff in the rain. So, we canceled it and I went down the street to rent a movie instead. It was my turn to pick the movie and I got a true "chick flick" called Stepin Up. I highly recommend it for any of you who like to watch good dancing. It was like watching that show "so you think you can dance" without the commercials. The plot was predictable and unoriginal but we (even Daniel) thought it was entertaining. I think I might watch it again tonight. :) So if you like movies that have good acting and a good plot, this one might not be for you. But, if you just want to be entertained this one is a good pick.
Did I just write a movie review?!

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Christmas Vacation part two Mountain City

After visiting with Daniel's side of the family, we traveled to Boone and Mountain City to see a few friends and some of my side of the family. Neal and Paige (my brother in sis-in-law) and his family go to Mtn City to stay with mom every New Year so we met them there. On our way, we stopped at Anna and Scott's house in Boone for lunch and a long afternoon of playing. We got to mom's on Thursday evening where we opened the last of the Christmas presents and settled in for a few more days of vacation.

We went skiing at Beech Mountian, NC. Daniel spent all day towing the girls up the bunny slope and they soon learned how to ski down and stop. Even though I'm a decent sckier I was not comfortable taking the girls down a regular slope. I went down a few slopes by myself but soon found I'm not the skier I used to be. In fact, I'm a big baby and was scared of being hit or falling the whole time. I did get hit from behind one time years ago and I'm still not over it! :) or at least that was my excuse. We were very proud of the girls!

As if that wasn't enough adventure. . . we all went ice skating the next day at Appalachian Ski Mountian right outside of Boone. If you've never tried it, ice skating is a lot harder than it looks!! The kids skated behind those little things that you push along the ice and hold on to. We had lots of fun and laughs.

Neal and Will

Way to go mom and thanks for treating us to a wonderful weekend! (That's mom in the yellow sweatshirt.)


Monday, January 01, 2007

Christmas Vacation part one Charlotte

We are driving back from our 10 day Chistmas vacation. Daniel is driving, the girls are asleep and I’m thinking about all the things I need to do when I get home! I want to share about all our adventures starting in Charlotte before Christmas and ending in Mountain City on New Year’s Eve. Since so many things were going on I’m just going to post a bunch of pictures and notes.

We stayed at Grandaddy William's house while in Charlotte. The girls were cozy on their palette on the floor in their new Christmas feety pajamas. That was one of their favorite presents because they had been asking for them for so long. They didn't want to take them off.

These are Daniel's brothers and sisters--Liz, Stephen, David and Anna.

We spent Christmas day at Gail's house. We ate tofurky and opened tons of presents! This is us playing monopoly--one of 3 games that was played over the 2 days. We had so much fun!!

Is that Dave wearing Khaki's?! Although that looks just like Daniel, it actually is his twin brother David. This is the first time I've seen him with a beard and they really do look like twins now! The girls had a great time hanging out with their aunts and uncles. We wish we could see them more often.

The girls got their beloved trampoline for christmas (thanks to all the grandparents who went in together). Since we were in Charlotte we didn't set it up but just surprised them christmas morning with the big boxes unopened in the garage. They really wanted to see inside so we took the top off of one and they ended up playing inside that box for most of the afternoon.