Tuesday, August 18

So Long, Summertime

Wow--my last entry was June. Again, not surprising I suppose. Despite the best of intentions I am still a mother of two boys under 5, and that means I don't often have a chance to sit down for the quiet reflection of journaling. It has been a fun summer, and some of the last days I'll have weekday freedom to take the boys on outings to West LA or downtown. Beginning later this month I'll be tied to Redondo in order to make Liam's pick-up and drop-off times to and from Transitional Kindergarten. 

While that may be the case, we've made the most of our time this summer. With pool parties and lots of visits to museums, the LA Zoo, and Knott's Berry Farm, it's been a summer full of family fun. 

Liam and I also started working through reading lessons. What a struggle that has been! The material challenges him, but I've worked with him enough to know it is not beyond him. His squirminess, defiance, and goofy behavior are honed to push my buttons and--he hopes--convince me to just give it up. My son is stubborn, but where does he think he gets it from? Lessons continue, and we've had victories along the way. The last story he read for his lesson he legitimately read. He is learning reading skills and the time we've invested is going to help him in the classroom. And, by the time we finish Lesson 100 sometime this fall, he will be reading at a second grade level. 


It's been a fun and productive summer, but I welcome the coming routine of the school year. Liam is ready for it and will benefit from it. It's time he had another big boy upgrade. Of course it will be bittersweet for me--especially the early mornings--but it's exciting too. Liam's world is going to expand a little bit more this school year, and he's going to begin to find out more about his world. 

Monday, August 10

Power and Pathos

A week ago I finally had the opportunity to see the new Getty Museum exhibition Power and Pathos: Bronze Sculpture of the Hellenistic World. I was eager to see the exhibition in part because I was assigned to write a blog post for Art Muse LA on it, but also because Hellenistic bronzes are some of the most expressive and interesting works of art surviving from the ancient world. So I packed up the boys for the hour-long drive to the Getty Center, loaded them up in their double stroller, and trekked up the hill to see this once-in-a-lifetime gathering of Hellenistic bronzes. The boys were amazingly well behaved for most of my time in the galleries, allowing me to jot notes for my article in a palm-sized notebook, but by the last gallery I was juggling Connor on one hip and trying to take some final notes. A trip to the Getty Center is always worthwhile and it was a gorgeous day. Once my business with the bronzes was concluded, I took the boys out to the gardens where they walked around, finding snails and in general being little boys.

In a way, the field trip to the museum and taking notes on the exhibition was the easy part. The hard part was synthesizing all of the information in my head and that I had collected into a coherent, written form for my Art Muse LA article--all while a toddler whined and/or hung on me as I typed and someone was constantly yelling, "Mooommmyyyy!" Let's just say it was a challenge. Despite the typical motherhood obstacles--or perhaps because of them--I am particularly proud and pleased with the resulting article. You can read it here.