Thursday, April 17, 2008

Look Out Hollywood!

Jack and Nora made their Allen School acting debut yesterday in the school's production of a play called The Granny Awards! They both did an awesome job...shows were at 9am, 1pm, and the grand finale was a 6:30pm performance. Grandma, Grandpa, Auntie Anna, Karen & Declan Smith, and of course Mom & Carmella & Gina all were in the audience cheering them on. The show was loosly based on the Academy Awards but with fairy tale character and awards for their performances in their stories. Snow White won the best female character, Jack (from Jack & the Beanstalk, not MY Jack) won Best Male Character.

The next award was for Best Dramatic Scene, and the winners were Cinderella and her stepsisters. Nora played the part of one of Cinderella's (evil) Stepsisters, a role that she was born to play, according to Carmie and Gina! She had a solo in their song entitled "A Corn Upon My Toe" which was both hilarious and beautiful at the same time. Nora has a beautiful voice, and did not seem nervous at all up on stage! She wore a beautiful silver gown and HIGH HEELS...and like all the girls, insisted on having some make-up for the play. We didn't overdo it, though I can't say the same for the other stepsisters! I almost think Nora's voice was too sweet for her role, but she sure did a good job fighting over the shoe with the other girls!!

Jack's part in the play was that of the Big Bad Wolf, and throughout the play, he was sneaking across the stage behind the main action trying to steal one of the "Granny Awards" which looked an awful lot like basketball trophies and bottles of Mrs. Butterworth's syrup! It was the job of Sleepy (one of the 7 Dwarves) to guard the awards, and whenever he fell asleep, the audience had to scream "WAKE UP, SLEEPY!" and thwarted Jack's attempt at stealing an award. Then at the end of the play, Jack had a solo in Little Red Ridinghood's rap song called "Big Bad Wolf" in which he explains to everyone, "I know sometimes I lose control, but I'm merely acting out my role. I'm just an actor through and through, the director tells me what to do! HOWL!" And then he receives an award from Granny for the big happy ending!

In addition to the cute storyline, the play was filled with lots of singing and dancing, and the cast had an absolute BALL doing this play. Nora is so sad that there won't be any more drama club meetings or rehearsals. She even was wishing this morning that her directors would surprise them with another surprise performance this morning. No such luck, but the whole school was buzzing about the play from the day before. Nora said several kids asked her for her autograph, and Jack said the same had happened to him. Even I was approached by several other teachers in the building telling me how great the kids were, especially Jack. Everyone knows he's the smart kid who won the spelling bee and mathlete competition...but now they got to see him in another light, and were amazed at his on-stage presence and the personality and confidence he showed with his funny dancing. It was certainly another huge highlight in our first year here in Aurora.

Saturday, April 12, 2008


My cousin of the pregnant with twins! OK it's actually his wife who is the pregnant one, but you know what I mean. And she's SO stinkin' cute, it's just not fair. They both are so adorable with that soon-to-be-parent glow, and they are going to make wonderful parents. Here's the happy couple and yes, I made Dayna stand so I could get the profile of that beautiful belly! From the looks of things, at about 7 months pregnant with twins, she's probably as big as most full-term single pregnancies, so Dayna is surely uncomfortable at night and can't get comfortable. We talked about seeing little hands and feet sticking out occasionally and trying to determine if a particular lump might be an arm or leg! It was almost enough to make me wish for another....almost! Hang in there, Dayna (& Matt) and I'll be praying for a quick and painless labor and delivery and of course 2 healthy baby boys.

Here's a picture of the delicious cake they served at the baby shower today. I'm having some not-so-nice feelings about my camera though. Can someone out there tell me why the right half of the cake is in focus and the left side is all fuzzy? I'm about to go back to using my old 35mm SLR with *gasp* real film. Help!