24 January 2015

I Want to Be Big Like You, Okay?

Title's a recent favorite Franklin quote. Happening pretty quick too, though maybe not from his perspective...

Just a few bits of the last couple weeks:

Playing at his favorite park, Hiawatha:
Hiawatha Kick
Hard to spot with all the action, but note that as he's kicking the soccer ball he's also holding a tennis ball, ready to throw it :)

Snack break:
Hiawatha Snack

Followed, as you may have heard, by a tasty dinner at Circa:
Dinner at Circa
Tasty, and diaper-free! Exciting times!

Calmer moment at home last week:
Matching Towers
He's really into matching lately, so here he's trying to replicate the block towers on the box—glad we hung unto the box long enough for him to enjoy it on this level!

Less calm moment at daycare last week, as he and his classmates invited us (and Grandma, per Franklin's request) to a potluck and a play:
Play and Potluck

Goldilocks, with the kids trading off parts. Franklin ended up in a lead role, but as you'll see he missed a cue:

Or was he hamming it up for the crowd? Hmm...

Lest this end up being Franklin's blog, here's a bit from a couple of weeks ago:
Cocktails at Vito's (cool place!) before hearing some Baroque music at Town Hall.

Fun night, and I saw my first theorbo, so that's cool:

Otherwise, well, as you probably know the Seahawks are in the Super Bowl, and Franklin is excited:

Russell Wilson Jersey

And the Jayhawks are looking great lately too. Fun time watching them beat Texas today with Wendy and Roman and the rest of the Seattle KU alumni crew:
Cheering for KU with Roman

Go Jayhawks!
Rock Chalk, dear reader.

11 January 2015

Awards Season Buzz

Now that awards season is in full swing, here'a quick word on some of our 2014 favorites.

I was thrilled to see that Gina Rodriguez won a Golden Globe for Jane the Virgin. Great show:

Having trouble finding good links, since in many cases the rave reviews—like the one in the New Yorker—came in articles about more than one show, which doesn't seem quite fair... But, well, I guess that's what the awards are making up for :)

And no harm in noting that the average from 21 "top critics" on Rotten Tomatoes is, yes, a not so shabby 100%.

In many ways it's quite different, but my other 2014 favorite is Mozart in the Jungle, which shares a kind of dreamy a-bit-more-than-realist tone.

Such a great show. We already watched the whole season (in barely a week), and I'm already looking forward to re-watching it, the sooner the better!

We recently read a pile of lists of the best albums of 2014, and picked up a few, all quite good. Hands down, though, my favorite is the New Pornographers:

Haven't seen quite as many movies as we'd have liked, but recently saw a couple of solid entries.


Very good. Not my favorite ever, but definitely worth seeing.

And the Imitation Game:

A movie about a computer scientist and philosopher? Named after a section of a philosophy paper he wrote? Yes. Doesn't hurt that the cast is great and the story is incredible either.

Almost as fun as the movie was returning home and reading the 1950 paper about whether machines can think. Good stuff. And free online: http://mind.oxfordjournals.org/content/LIX/236/433.full.pdf.

Also fun at first was the cryptic crossword referenced in the movie (solve it in 12 minutes or less and come help the British crack the German enigma code!). Fun at first, until I realized that there was no way I was going to solve it any time soon...

Well, that's about all for now. Meanwhile the award for best Halloween costume of 2013 (yes, 2013) goes to... the bee! Franklin spotted it after his bath tonight and insisted on wearing it for a while:
Costume Renaissance
Cheers, and congratulations to all the nominees!

31 December 2014

Happy 2015!

Not Times Square or the Space Needle, but I'll take it. Happy New Year!

Popped some poppers, popped some corn:
New Years Eve Popcorn

Good chance for slo-mo, no?

See You in 2015!
That's it. See you in 2015!

29 December 2014

It covered everything as far as he could see

Thanks to Emily B. and Pete for a great weekend in a snow-covered cabin!

(And a belated thanks to Ezra Jack Keats for the amazing book that I'm quoting in the title of this post.)

I was glad that Franklin's snowsuit (which was pretty roomy last year) fits perfectly this year. He was pretty happy too:

What? A river, with rocks for throwing? Yes, someone had a fun weekend.
Middle Fork Teanaway River
In the Teanaway River Valley. Read about it here: friendsoftheteanaway.org.

Walk In the Snow

Pete, Emily, Franklin, and Emily
Pete, Emily, Franklin, and Emily, looking for ice to crunch through.

Crunch Crunch!

And just like magic (just like a picture book?), it was snowing when we woke up Saturday morning:
Throwing Snow with Pete

Snow Men

Of course, the only thing he liked wearing more than the snowsuit was the KU jersey he got in his stocking on Christmas morning.
Kansas Jersey, Day 4
In his stocking Christmas morning, and on him for the next four days straight :)

The only time he wasn't having fun at the cabin was when he remembered that we didn't bring the dinosaur puzzle that he got for Christmas. This is within five minutes of returning home:
Dinosaur Puzzle
Thanks Magen, Dave, Braxton, Amelia, and Evan!

Oh, and if you want to brush up on dinosaur names, here's the online Picture Legend.

Speaking of Christmas presents and whatnot, here's a quick look back at the holiday:
Molasses, Butter, Sugar

Working on gingerbread cookies, mostly as a gift for Franklin's teachers at daycare:
Flour, Ginger, Baking Soda, Nutmeg


Decorating the Cookies


Franklin's Cookie

And then it was Christmas morning:
Snowman Pancakes

Opening the Forklift
One of his favorite presents, a forklift from Nana & Papa.

Christmas Morning

And for dinner, eye round roast, Moroccan Sweet Potatoes, deviled eggs, and more!
Eye Round Roast, Moroccan Sweet Potatoes, Deviled Eggs

Hey, so did anyone happen to read that New York Times piece about Religion Without God? It hit almost exactly how I had been feeling, especially this bit:

... two anthropologists, Caroline Humphrey and James Laidlaw, go so far as to argue that ritual isn’t about expressing religious commitment at all, but about doing something in a way that marks the moment as different from the everyday and forces you to see it as important. Their point is that performing a ritual focuses your attention on some moment and deems it worthy of respect.

I had in fact been considering asking Emily to bring us to mass on Christmas, but couldn't quite get there. And the logistics were tricky...

Anyway, we settled on singing some carols together, just to make the point a little clearer:
Christmas Carols

I hope you won't mind one more quote from that article:

Atheists trust in human relations, not supernatural ones, and humans are not so good at delivering the world as it should be. Perhaps that is why we are moved by Christmas carols, which conjure up the world as it can be and not the world we know.

May the spirit of Christmas be with you, however you understand what that means.

Merry Christmas!

22 December 2014

A Cheery Grin Will Get You In

At Myrtle Reservoir Park
I think Franklin is basically guaranteed admission to Santa Claus' party, at least according to these lyrics:

For whatever reason, that seems to be Franklin's favorite Christmas song... He heard it on one of our CD's, but it's not one I know very well, so I'm happy to have that video to help out!

Meanwhile our holiday festivities will take place under some great new decorations:
Kuta Family Painting
Santa & reindeer from Grandma Christine, plus super cool painting of Grandma Christine (third from right) with the rest of the Kuta family:
Kuta Family Painting Closeup
Franklin's Great Aunt Pauline, Great Uncle Al, Grandma C., Great Grandpa & Great Grandma Kuta, Great Aunt Dorothy in her Sisters of the Resurrection habit, and cousins (once removed) Alex and Louis in front.

Great painting, and great idea to hang it there, Emily!

And in front of that painting, we will toast and celebrate and listen to even more Christmas music. A little incongruous but here are a couple of my current favorites:

Also heard some nice music last week on Alki Beach during the Christmas Ship Festival. No sound, but here are a couple of photos:
Christmas Ship Approaches

Christmas Ship

And now, at last, I'm on holiday break. So, let's see... how about story time at the downtown library?
Library Story Time

Franklin was really into the puzzles afterward:
Puzzles at the Library

Very Hungry Puzzle
I'm pretty sure he did this by himself. But can't be positive: he was really in the zone, and when I came over to see he said, "no, you go away!" :)

Also time to do some complicated cooking! Like this delicious Winter Vegetable Curry from the Times:

Photo: Fred R. Conrad/The New York Times

Even time, as you probably heard, to join Franklin's class from the Intergenerational Learning Center on their first field trip!
On the Bus

Bus ride!
On the Bus with Anson

To a park!
Pax at Myrtle Reservoir Park
Myrtle Reservoir Park. Definitely have to go back there soon!

On the Ropes

Climbing at Myrtle Reservoir Park
All right, I'd better go wrap presents! Have a great holiday, reader!