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April, 2004
(Hold your mouse over a picture for its caption.)


April 1, 2004

Mark went to Patrick's class Easter party this afternoon while I was at the elementary school in the art class.  They made "stained glass" crosses and played Pin the Tail on the Bunny.  Patch was so excited to have his Daddy there!

Making his stained glass cross


April 3, 2004

Mom is up in Michigan helping with funeral arrangements, and Dad came over tonight for dinner.  The kids were in rare form and kept us all entertained while we enjoyed a nice visit.


April 4, 2004

We've had the most beautiful weather lately.  Mark spent the whole day working in the yard while the kids played and I shopped for new plants.  Spring is in the air!

Helping Daddy till the vegetable garden


April 5, 2004

We went out to dinner tonight, and while we were waiting for our food, the kids wanted us to give them math problems.  They blew our minds!  I worked with Patrick on addition, subtraction, and simple multiplication.  Mark worked with Alex on -- are you ready for this? -- division, square roots and squares of numbers. 

The kids made tie dye shirts yesterday, and wore them with pride today.  I told them to sit on the couch for a picture, and this is what I got!

This is the way I like to see them!


April 8, 2004

We had a magical moment tonight at our house.  Both boys wanted to practice their music.  Patch realized that he could read Alex's guitar music, so they started playing the song together.  It was a precious moment that will stay in my heart forever!

You can tell the concentration on Alex by the tongue. learning together - building bonds for life! (Or so I hope!)


April 10, 2004

We woke up bright and early this morning and made the trip up to Michigan.  Mom flew up the day after Grandma died, so Dad traveled with us today.  Aside from being a v-e-r-y long day, the trip went well, and the boys were angels.  They burnt off energy at the airports and stayed in their seats on the flight.  Who could ask for more?

David got to my aunt's house about the same time we did, so we had a happy reunion.  Then it was time for a terrific family dinner, and Easter egg coloring!

A very happy group!

We got a different kind of egg coloring this year - tie dye! And they didn't break even one!


April 11, 2004

Just like Mommy said, the Easter Bunny actually found them in Michigan!

Gee, I wonder how the Easter Bunny knew they loved Bionicles?

We had a fabulous visit with my Dad's side of the family this afternoon.  There was only one person who couldn't make it.  It's the first time we've had the whole family together in years!!!!

What a great-lookin' family!

Aunt Lois and my dad My cousins, Gloria and Tom, on the left, my Aunt Lois, Dad and Mom in the middle, and my brother, David, and me on the right.

My cousin, Tom, and my brother, David My aunt had my Dad and Mom in stitches

Gee, I wonder where we get our zaniness from? Poor Patrick was bored to death in a sea of adults

Our Palm Pilots kept the kids entertained through most of the trip.

He can get comfortable anywhere! Daddy raising a little techno-geek.  LOL


April 12, 2004

My aunt lives in this wonderful neighborhood with woods all around.  During our visit, we saw three or four raccoons visit her bird feeders several times, and got a special visit from a couple of deer who came into the yard. 

David and I went over to my other aunt and uncle's house so David and my Aunt Penny could practice some music for the funeral tomorrow.  Penny's sister and I sat and listened to them practice for a couple of hours - it was absolutely beautiful. 

While we were gone, Mark took the boys out for a hike this morning.

Just hangin' around Way too cute I have another favorite picture in a tree!

Look!  We found bones!  :O

Alex and Patch have been going crazy without other kids to play with.  My cousin, Rod, came out tonight with his family and the kids were in Heaven.  We ended the day with a heated game of Uno.

Intense competition


April 13, 2004

Today was Grandma's funeral.  The family gathered beforehand for the visitation and the kids got reacquainted in a side room.  While we were all sad to say goodbye to Grandma, it was incredible to have the whole clan together for the day.  As with most Brant family occasions, the gathering went late into the night!

Goofing off in the car on the way to the funeral home Silly faces!

My boys with my cousin, Rick's, boys Patch snapped a shot of David and me

All of the pall bearers:  Mark, my cousins Rick, Scott, Rod and Dan, and my brother, David. Checking out their picture on the back of the camera

We had a reception at Mom and Dad's hotel after the funeral.  The kids all brought their Bey Blades. The boys finished off the evening with a good wrestling match


April 14, 2004

We had another long travel day coming home today.  We were soooo happy to pick up the dogs at the kennel on the way home!  And oh my oh my, is it ever good to be back home!


April 15, 2004

The Easter Bunny brought the kids some blue and green hair paint!  (Don't worry - it washes out!)

They look completely disreputable!


April 18, 2004

We have the most wonderful neighbors.  We have a tradition on Easter Sunday to have a big picnic in the front yards and a HUGE water balloon fight.  We were so sad that we would miss it this year since we would be in Michigan on Easter.  The neighbors all agreed to have it a week late, and one neighbor even adjusted her daughter's birthday party to accommodate us!

I managed to sneak a couple of pictures before I was spotted and attacked with balloons and had to hide the camera!

Patrick aiming at Anthony Mark and Alex battling around the car


April 19-22, 2004

We've been trying to get back into our routine, but things have been hectic!  I've been inundated with closings this week (good $$$$$ but it's been crazy!), and the kids have had sports games and all the other normal stuff to squeeze into the schedule. 

Alex is going to an extra class at school now and he loves it!  This week they did "Junk Box Wars" (a take off on the TV show, Junkyard Wars - one of the kids' favorites).  They split into teams and were given a box of odd items and told to make a bridge at least 30 cm tall that will hold a cup of pennies.  He talked about it the rest of the day - he loves this new class!


April 23, 2004

We had a bit of excitement thrown into our day today.  Alex's bus had a substitute driver this morning, so when the bus was late this afternoon, none of us thought much of it.  Substitutes always run late.  But after 30 minutes, we started to get concerned.  Someone tried to call the school, but the phones aren't manned after 3:30.  One of the moms knew a teacher's cell phone number and finally found out that the bus had been in an accident - with a semi!  We soon found out it wasn't serious and all of the kids were fine.  But we didn't know whether to stay at the bus stop in case they finally arrived or drive to the accident scene, and if we did, would they release the children to us.  It was insane, and I must say, the school needs to come up with a way to handle this much better than they did.  The parents were never called and had no way to call and find out anything.  It was very unsettling.  We finally learned through several cell phone calls that they were releasing the kids to parents at the bus so we all drove and got our kids.  They had been sitting in the sweltering bus (it was 85 degrees outside, and hotter on the bus) for almost an hour.  Of course, Alex thought it was awesome and kept talking about how exciting his day had been!


April 24, 2004

Happy Birthday, Becca!

We had a much-needed morning at home today.  To add to the relaxation, I borrowed a friend's neck massager (surprise, surprise - I've had some tension in my neck lately) and the kids thought it was awesome.

Chillin' Ya gotta love those dimples!


April 26, 2004

I chaperoned Alex's class on a field trip to an environmental center.  We went on a hike and learned about several native Florida plants, and went to their museum and got to pet an alligator, turtles and snakes.  I'm proud to say that Alex knew almost every kind of snake they had!

Alex holding a VERY long black racer.

Grendel followed me into my closet this evening and started nosing around in the back behind some hanging clothes.  Suddenly she started growling and barking like mad.  I parted the clothes, not sure of what I might find, then started laughing my head off.  She'd found an old mirror we had stored there!

She even scares herself!

 


April 29, 2004

You may remember that several weeks ago Alex broke his front tooth in the neighbor's pool.  This morning he went to the dentist to have it bonded.  He also had a tooth pulled that had refused to come out months after the adult tooth already came in.  He had laughing gas and did great for the whole thing.  He didn't realize the dentist had even pulled the tooth and only fussed about his lip being numb afterwards.

A friendly game of chess


April 30, 2004

Mark and the boys attended the preschool's "Daddy and Me" event tonight.  There are no mommies allowed, since they make Mother's Day gifts.  So I took advantage and Becca and I went out for a girls night out! 

"Shaving" Daddy and Daddy And Me