Tuesday, April 15, 2008

UP the Chicken Soupy Nile...

Carter's most recent quest is to get in contact with Maurice Sendak. As we have mentioned before, he reads and memorizes books, and his current favorite is Sendak's Chicken Soup with Rice. Encouraged by Lea, Carter began to play with the words after dozens of repetitions, substituting alternatives for the official text. It began in a simple way - with substitutions for rice (noodles, barley, octopus). Carter upped the ante by changing other parts of the text as well. He decided that September's rhyme is made better by replacing "...down the chicken soupy Nile..." with "...up the chicken soupy Nile..." For reasons only a 3-year-old can comprehend, this is hilarious. So confident is Carter in his word choice that he has decided that we should "call Maurice Sendak and ask why it isn't UP the chicken soupy Nile." Below you can see him reciting September (with Sendak's official prose) and October.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Jayhawks on Parade

Our town continues to revel in last week's men's NCAA basketball national championship victory. For those of you who have never visited us, a trip to Lawrence, Kansas quickly reveals that it is a basketball town. The inventor of basketball, James Naismith, was the first coach at the University of Kansas (although he is the only coach in Kansas history to record more losses than wins), and basketball legends like Wilt Chamberlain played here. During the tournament in March, students and townies live and breathe hoops. The championship win set off a frenzy that has yet to fully settle down.

Today was the second official public celebration: a parade through town. When the parade was announced, Erik was skeptical about attending. Tens of thousands of fans flooded downtown streets on Monday night (as well as the previous Saturday after the win over North Carolina), and he expected traffic and parking to be impossible to manage. With the weather cold and wet early in the week, we were not sure that we wanted to trek downtown on foot. But, the parade route was expanded to pass only two blocks from our home, and the day was chilly but sunny. We were joined by our friends John, Hong, and their daughter Rose.

The Lawrence Journal-World reported an attendance estimate of 100,000. This exceeds the total population of Lawrence by 15-20,000 people! We situated ourselves in a less populated area and got good views of the whole team. Below, you can see pics of Coach Self, Sherron Collins, Mario Chalmers, Russell Robinson and the NCAA trophy.

Rock Chalk Jayhawk!

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

A Man of Letters (and Song)

Although we have encouraged him to sing aloud, Carter has been reticent until lately. Perhaps he has been deterred by his parents' less than melodious voices. Whatever the reason for his shyness, he seems to have found his muse in the alphabet. Carter loves letters: he enjoyed a recent visit to the optometrist intensely, asking when we could return to "play with the letters." He tried to "help" his father on the eye exam, revealing the letters that Erik's less than 20-20 vision could not identify. He loves all letter toys, and is already reading (and memorizing) books. The video shows Carter re-mixing the alphabet song lyrics into his own tune.