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This morning my little girl headed off for her first day of first grade. She looks so pretty, as always!

my little first grader!

Marc and I walked her to school, and my Mom met us there. She was excited to go, but nervous when we got there because of all the kids and noise. Then she saw her friend E, and ran over and they hugged. It was so cute! Lily and E were at Play and Learn together, from the time they were babies until they started kindergarten. They’ve always been friends. Unfortunately again this year they are not in the same class, but at least they will see each other at recess and after-care.

Thanks for stopping by!

Dawne

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I finished reading Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen. I loved it.

I thought the ending sentence was a bit odd though…”Between Barton and Delaford, there was that constant communication which strong family affection would naturally dictate; and among the merits and the happiness of Elinor and Marianne, let it not be ranked as the least considerable, that though sisters, they could live without disagreement between themselves, or producing coolness between their husbands.”

So the two sisters got along, not that there was any question in my mind that they ever wouldn’t. And their husbands got along too. And everyone lived happily ever after!

To me, “sense” represents common sense, and “sensibility” represents the expectations of society and culture, and perhaps emotions as well. Or maybe emotions are part of “sense”. I’m not sure. I don’t have time to look into it right now either. Anyone out there have any thoughts on the subject? I would love to hear them!

I adore Miss Austen’s sense of humor – she can be quite hilarious. I very much enjoyed whenever she wrote about Mrs. Ferrars…”Though it is not to be supposed that Mrs. Ferrars can have the smallest satisfaction in knowing that her son has money enough to live upon…” Miss Austen has a very good understanding of the motives behind human actions.

I was so happy that Elinor and Edward finally got together. I just love Elinor! I think she is wonderful, and would like to be more like her myself.

I liked Marianne as well – her impetuousness, her emotional honesty – she was quite the drama queen! But she was also fun, and felt things deeply. And had no problem letting everyone around her know!

Now I’m reading Pride and Prejudice . I’m enjoying it, but not as much as Sense and Sensibility. There are a lot of unlikable characters (Miss Bing, Mrs. Hurst, Lady Catherine, Mrs. Bennett, who might be the most unlikable – wait a minute – why are these all women?) and I’m not really sure where the story is going. I like Elizabeth but she’s a bit of a weird one too. I like Jane very much, and Mary too although she is a minor character.

I can’t believe I’m doing this again
Here is a picture of Lily on her first day of school on Tuesday. It’s going well so far. I’m drowning in the usual first-week-of-school paperwork. Lily is happy and enthusiastic about school and getting to ride a bus.

ready for education

Thanks for stopping by!

xoDawne

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sea and crabs and doughnuts – oh my!

We were in Ocean City MD over the weekend. This was our fourth year there.

Because Lily started kindergarten on Tuesday, we only stayed from Saturday to Monday.

We did decide, however, that we will never leave on Labor Day again, because instead of the usual 3-hour ride, it took 5 hours. Five long – very long! – hours. Five hours in a car + a 5-year old = a meltdown for all involved.

It was a good time though. Hurricane Irene seemed to have left little damage. I thought the beach was a bit chilly – the wind was relentless! My one disappointment was that there were no shells to be found. I managed to gather a few fragments, but that was it.

We ate at Harrison’s Harbor Watch on Saturday night and then “walked the boards” as my mother-in-law says. I forget what restaurant we ate at on Sunday, but it was very good. We took Lily to the Jolly Roger amusement park after.

And what has quickly become a new tradition, we had to get doughnuts from the Fractured Prune. Delicious! Freshly-made, hot, with a variety of glazes and toppings to choose from – I highly recommend them!

My husband and I always go for a walk along the beach at night. It’s an interesting experience – mesmerizing, disorienting, and mysterious. When it’s really dark, you can see so many more stars than we can see at home (I remember when I was little I could see the Milky Way, just at home. It’s so built up now, you’re lucky you can see 20 stars at night.)

Jupiter was in full force again, as it was last year – so big and bright! It’s amazing, how a planet so far away from us, can be so bright and beautiful.

The ocean is so fascinating. The rhythm, the colors, the smell. I love it all.

It’s like a dream that we were even there.

But here are some photos to prove it.

Lily was really into digging.
let's dig!

On Monday we spent a short time at the beach, so that we could fly Lily’s kite and say good-bye to the ocean.
let's fly!

Lily, flying her kite. That lasted a few minutes. She was more interested in the water.
let's fly!

And of course the ocean.
to the sea

Thanks for stopping by!

xoDawne

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happy birthday lily!

My sweet little girl is 5 today.

my angel

she’s a rose
in a lily’s cloak
she can hide her charms
she runs like the fire does
just picking up daisies
comes in for a landing
a pure flash of lightening
past alice-blue blossoms
who follow her laughter
and then she’ll surprise you
arms filled with lavender
it is her time
yes my angel
it is your time
so you just run
with ribbons undone.

from Ribbons Undone, by Tori Amos

xoDawne

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a little trip down memory lane
After returning from our first trip to Ocean City in 2007 I made a book for my in-laws, chronicling the story of a certain little girl’s seaside adventures. I made the book as a birthday gift, as both of their birthdays are in October. I borrowed the book last fall to scan it (when I originally finished it, it was a bit down to the wire and I didn’t have time to scan it at the time!) and put it on my blog. After I scanned it I decided to hold off on posting it until we got back from Ocean City this year – it seemed more appropriate.

So here is the book. I wanted it to have an old-time, beachy feel to it. I started with a whte blank board book and painted the edges of the pages. I then covered the pages with paper. I played with the photos in Photoshop to make them look more old-fashioned, and I framed each photo with ribbon. And of course there are plenty of glitter glue dots! This is one of my favorite creations and I hope you enjoy it.

lily's seaside adventures

lily's seaside adventures

lily's seaside adventures

lily's seaside adventures

lily's seaside adventures

lily's seaside adventures

lily's seaside adventures

lily's seaside adventures

lily's seaside adventures

lily's seaside adventures

lily's seaside adventures

lily's seaside adventures

lily's seaside adventures

lily's seaside adventures

xoDawne

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getting it together
I started reading The Artistic Mother by Shona Cole. It’s really good. I have especially enjoyed the chapter Motivation, which encourages writing an artistic vision and determining long- and short-term goals. I took the time to write my own artistic vision and goals.

Some of my long-term goals (over the next 2 to 5 years) include participating in art retreats and classes, learning to solder (perenially on my to-do list), submitting my work to various magazines, creating mixed media jewelry, and further exploration of digital art.

My short-term goals (from now through July) include submitting a couple things to magazines, spending a half-hour per week on digital art, updating my sadly-neglected flickr page, and making a scrapbook for my son.

The other chapter that I’ve really enjoyed is the one called Planning, in which Miss Cole describes the art action plan. Basically you take your short-term goals and break them down into individual steps. You then plan for the coming week which steps you will do each day, taking into consideration how much time you have. So I made an art action plan for the past week….and failed utterly at accomplishing pretty much everything that was on my plan. The only things I got done were a blog post and some things for Mother’s Day. The blog post took way longer than I was expecting. I am hopeful however that my art action plan for this week will fair better.

prom time!
So yesterday was my son’s girlfriend’s senior prom, and today is his. He decided to go with an all-white tux with a blue vest and bowtie to match her dress. They make a lovely couple, don’t they? She is very sweet. I have to say these pictures don’t do them justice.

This is yesterday, at her house.
prom

Also yesterday, at her house.
prom

This is from earlier today, at our house.
prom

and finally
I did manage to fit in a little digital play this past week, with this photo that I took of Lily. She’s wearing her new favorite Disney princess nightgown and a pair of my shoes.

lily

I played with the color a bit and applied a filter to get the “drawing” look. I think it turned out very nicely!

~toodles!

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in the water
A couple weeks ago we went to the Camden aquarium with some friends of ours and their very adorable son, who is a few months younger than Lily. It was a fun afternoon, and we went to IHOP afterward (just about the only restaurant we can take Lily to at this point in time). Here are some photos:

Lily at the starfish tank (I think!)
lily

Checking out the jellyfish.
lily & jellyfish

Our attempt at a family picture. Someone did not want to cooperate.
family

Lily and Daddy hangin’ at the hippo tank.
hippo

Lily & Daddy.
lily & daddy

A shot of Philadelphia from across the river. It looked so pretty!
philadelphia

Of course we stopped at the gift shop on our way out, where Lily discovered (against all of my efforts to keep her from seeing them) a pink magic wand that lights up and makes noise. My favorite kind of toy! And of course we bought it.

~walking tall~

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