Monday, August 2, 2021

"Look, The Cue Matches the Ball!"

I am loving mornings around here!  Kyle was upstairs and ready for DS9 before 5.  Fortunately, I was home from my walk.

Adele and Camille wanted to watch, but they also wanted to get the bagels in the oven.  They have observed what I do -- and they put on headphones while we worked together.

I made a note of the time.

Camille coached Adele how to turn the bagels in the boiling water.

I wasn't even the sous chef this morning.  I kept an eye on things, but pretty much I was relegated to washing the dishes.

These girls know the routine and they work well together.

And the bagels were delicious.

Adele has learned that DS9 is less scary when she takes her headphones off.

Just so you know, there is a scene here where I always cry.  Even this morning.

After breakfast, it was time for pool.  Kyle and I played a normal game.

When Camille joined us, I racked the balls for Extreme Calvin Ball.  Notice the two cue balls.  This is a game changer for me, in a good way.

Lewis wanted to join us, but he didn't want to play.  Camille and Kyle decided we needed an advisor.  Lewis is standing on a stool keeping track of how many balls each of us have on the table.  This was delightful.

Adele fed the fish at 9:20.

I blocked out the morning so we could paint.  While Camille searched through my cupboards looking for suitable items, Janet returned from her weekend adventures.

Lewis had to show her all the fun things in Papa's tank.

Adele chose to paint a cactus plant.  First, she studied the leaves and sketched them on paper.


Camille chose a Japanese salt shaker.  We positioned it at eye-level.  She experimented with my watercolor pencils.

Kyle joined us while he worked on math.  We had a cookie break before he left with Papa and Steve.

Lewis took one bite of one of my cookies -- it was a big bite with a couple of chocolate chips in it.  But he wouldn't touch the rest of the cookie because it has walnuts.  I'm considering making a batch without walnuts, but I haven't firmed up that decision yet.

We had a wonderful time together, and the girls are great artists.

In the meantime, Lewis was catching up on some mommy-time.

Will joined Papa, Steve and Kyle at a shooting range.  He was excellent at coaching Kyle.

Kyle enjoyed shooting Papa's 357.

He did well with the 30-06.  I had concerns that this might affect his pool game, but he assured me he'd be fine.

After painting, the rest of us went to Costco -- my idea of a good time.  Upon returning home, we threw together a pasta meal based around the basil growing on my kitchen counter.

Lewis thoughtfully contributed chocolate-covered raisins to the meal.

For dessert, Papa required everyone to participate in his ice cream taste test.  No one resisted.  This was a lot of fun, and tasty, too.

After lunch, Lewis and Adele opened a vet clinic.

Kyle, Camille and I returned to the pool table.

I was delighted when Camille observed that her dark blue swirl pool ball was the same color as her pool cue.

While retrieving more animals from the downstairs closet, Adele found an ancient Twister game.  Papa taught them how to play.  As you can imagine, this was hilarious.  After a few minutes, I began hearing unhappy noises.  I told Adele and Lewis that a time-out was possible if I continued to hear sad sounds.  Immediately, everything became very quiet.

A few minutes later I spied Lewis rustling through the books.  This occupied him for quite some time.  I wondered where Adele was and I left the pool game to search her out.

She was very cheerfully organizing the animals on the shelves in the closet.

We discussed going swimming all afternoon, but it was raining, and it actually never got above 80.  The forecast said the weather would clear up, so Camille and I chose to assemble the dry ingredients for our baking projects.

Camille asked if I had cinnamon.  I said I did, but she'd never find it.  She asked me if that was a challenge.  What I meant was that it was in the back of a cabinet because I rarely use it, but it was a funny moment.

All of a sudden, we were at the pool!

Janet and Lewis jumped right in!

Adele loves the pool toys.

Lewis wanted to be tossed in the air.

Camille worked on form.

Steve invited Janet to take a turn.  She started laughing long before the jump.

She continued to laugh while she was in the air.

Maybe this didn't end well.

As I left the pool, I was delighted to come across this dragonfly posing for me.  I have seen these guys during the summer as we've fed the koi, but they moved so fast I haven't even tried to get a picture.  As my camera clicked away, I wondered if he was even alive, but as I finished, he flew away.

Sunday, August 1, 2021

You're not Lewis, I am!

Star Trek was playing so early that my camera couldn't capture all the groupies in the room.

Lewis, Adele and Kyle have become pretty devoted.


I had help making chocolate cupcakes this morning.  Camille demonstrated her prowess in cracking an egg with one hand.  She picked out the shell and washed her hands afterward, and yes, we laughed quite a bit.

Adele creamed the butter and sugar.  We had a blissful time.

There was time for pool this morning.

Kyle now shoots the cue ball past the racked balls and hits them from the other side.  It's pretty cool.

Adele is working on her movie star look.

Kyle usually beats me, but not always.  He's great fun to play with.

After church and lunch, Matt showed up.  Kyle and Matt knew exactly what to do.

I often catch Adele asking Papa questions about the tank.  She knows the names of all the fish, both their common names and the names Papa has given them.

Mel, William and Annika arrived just as dinner was ready.  Today is Will and Annika's first anniversary.  For the record, that picture was taken more than two hours ago, and the older group is still at the table laughing.

I sat with the younger group.  We talked about Percy Jackson and bake sales.  I noticed Lewis had not tasted his butter chicken.  After watching his sisters have seconds and then thirds, he finally agreed to take a small bite.

He thought about it.

I pride myself in my butter chicken, so inside I was dying.

This took an incredible amount of time.

The verdict finally came in.  He threw back his head and said, "I love it!"  This made my day.


I have to say, this group was very noisy, and my table kept laughing at some of things they said.

I was pleased to see Kyle having seconds.  He was the taste tester a decade ago when I successfully figured out how to make my own tandoori paste.

Of course, we did not forget dessert.

Adele reminded me that it was Camille's turn to feed the fish and we took care of that.  I'm impressed that the girls have no issue with gently tapping the brine cube in order to evenly distribute the morsels to the hungry fish.

It's not possible to show this on a blog, but Rose is indeed moving up the rock wall to get better light.  The girls and I are anxious to see her tomorrow.

"Look, The Cue Matches the Ball!"

I am loving mornings around here!  Kyle was upstairs and ready for DS9 before 5.  Fortunately, I was home from my walk. Adele and Camille wa...