There have been so many things that have been passed by as far as blog posts.  I wanted to at least record them, especially since my blog has pretty much (temporarily) replaced my actual scrapbooks.

First band concert of the year.

Joshua plays the saxaphone, and despite what anything sounds like when you're just getting started, he's beginning to sound pretty good.

First piano recital.

Listening to them practice is not the same as watching and listening to them play for others.  They did a magnificent job.  Music is such a wonderful thing, and even if they don't end up being concert pianists, I'm sure this period of time will have enriched their lives. 

The four oldest take lessons, and while they're all at different levels of accomplishment, they all enjoy playing, especially when their music starts to sound like songs!

This is one of my most recent finds on Craigslist. 

The brass didn't do it for me, so....

I painted it and then hung it in my sewing room.  It's much prettier than the ceiling fan that used to be there.

My sewing room...organized (AGAIN!)

Everything always feel so right when all is in its place.  (This was 2 weeks ago, and already it is a mess again!)

  This is what it looks like in my house when there is something left over that is too small to divide equally.  I think that this time, Jon or Amelia had half of a cinnamon roll that they weren't going to eat (big shocker here, because usually no one has sweet stuff left on their plate) and everyone was vying for that piece.

The lucky recipient:

Who quicly shoved it in his mouth before someone's mind was changed.

And finally, basketball.  The older two boys have been playing since November, but I've been a slacker getting pictures taken and posted.  I love sports pictures with intensity on the face like this one:

And concentration:
Joshua won his age group for the Knights of Columbus Free Throw Contest...he gets to compete again with other winners in his age group in February!  He commented that he doesn't think he'll play basketball next year, and is still debating playing baseball this summer.  He is a gifted and talented athlete, but I don't think he likes to work hard at it.  This is that place as a parent that I must sit back and encourage him gently and then respect whatever decision he makes.  We always make our kids finish what they've started, but we vow not to push them into something that they're not interested in, so when a new season approaches, it is a new decision.  (I hope he continues to play!)

Jakob's seaon is already over.  It was spread out, but went quickly.  Jakob reminds me of me as an athlete...talent, but not 100% natural.  He works hard to get better and does the best that he can.  He too is a good athlete and I hope that he continues to play...it is fun to watch, especially the improvement from start to finish!

There is much more that keeps us busy every day.  It is often a challenge to find and keep balance, and I've had to step way out of my comfort zone and ask for help...getting boys to and from practice and games, finding places for them to go after school, giving up one starting an activity because of what is already on our plates.  Setting priorities.  Whew...I can only hope that I'm doing it gracefully!