Sunday, March 30, 2014

Sing, O Muse!

Live Poet's' Society is one of the joys of home schooling. 

Once a month, we have a gathering of big and little poets who recite a poem to an audience of their peers—anything from Shakespeare to Mother Goose. Afterwards we have cookies and juice and some really feral outdoor play.

Come to think of it, it's only a "home schooler" event because it happens on a school day. It could be an anyone event.

My children hate (HATE) performing, and admittedly public speaking is one of the weak spots in home schooling. (To this day the very sight of a microphone makes me weak in the knees.) But I am pressing on, in the hope that by the time my children leave home they will be able to speak audibly to a group and maybe even remember some Lewis Carroll or William Blake. Or Ogden Nash, in a pinch.

It's fun to see how family culture affects the literary choices of this group. My own boys tend toward the absurd and humorous, while another family makes very classical choices of Shakespeare and Tennyson, and another enjoys the whimsy of Robert Louis Stevenson and Hilaire Belloc.  There are at least a hundred toddlers (or so it seems...) who come along to observe and be inspired. 

I am looking forward to the day when someone will write their own poem for this happy meeting! And performing plays is just around the corner.

And while I was snapping pictures, I got a selfie of Will and I! Which is rare, you understand, since we don't usually goof off with cameras, and besides...

...this is what we usually look like: 

The picture above is a metaphor of our life. 

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Frodo Baggins

Our dear little friend  Kai is turning seven, and we decided to make him a hobbit.
I've been hoarding these gorgeous early 19th century buttons "Made in Czecho-Slovakia" for a special project. They would do any hobbit proud.  

Meet Mr. Baggins. Opinion is divided: is he Bilbo or Frodo? I say Bilbo, but Hugh made him a little magic ring out of gold wire, hung around his neck on a string, and declares him to be Frodo.

Body is slightly lumpy and disproportionate (haste, my natural state) so I made him a suit of clothes, tiny and rustic like a hobbit.

French Knots for hair

Hugh made Sting, the hobbit sword, and the Ring of power.

The cloak is made from my grandpa's WWII  military blankets. A GI-Joe messenger bag completes the outfit

Farewell, Bilbo, the road goes ever on and on!

I stuffed the extra leather string into Bilbo's bag. When our sweet little friend Kai opened the bag, he said, "Oh look! Elven rope!" 

Kai, you are precious. Bilbo is bound for wonderful adventures with you.