Sunday, May 04, 2014

The trouble with a kitten is that . . .

. . . eventually it becomes a cat. ~ Ogden Nash

Fergus turned a year old this week, and he has gone from a tiny ball of fluff to a full grown feline. He has seen the weather warm up and has managed to escape out the front door about once each day. Of course, he has plenty of reason, what with all the interesting birds and flowers that have finally graced us with their beautiful blooms and songs.

Our frisky feline has done a lot of growing up in his first year, but he’s family, so we’ll forgive him for not remaining a tiny kitten. 

Judging by the way the other kids treat him sometimes, he may not have made it unless he put on some size and bulk. 

That said, he can stop now.

The children do not seem to understand the concept of danger. Mike caught the two of them climbing the backyard gate and fence as they chatted with our next door neighbors. 

Mike had meetings on Monday and Tuesday. His Tuesday meeting took place up at Auburn Hills campus of the Thomas M. Cooley Law School, where Jacqueline Stavros and Matthew Cole presented a K-12/higher education leadership seminar. Part of the program included a video by Dewitt Jones called Celebrate What's Right with the World.
Image from

We became familiar with Jones’ work from our employment development work at church, and Mike was grateful for the reminder of some of Jones’ central messages along with Stavros and Cole’s presentation about leading for strategic change. This material will be very useful both for his summer class and for our family as we contemplate our future career and family moves.

Speaking of photography, we have captured some of this year’s flowers and trees using our cell phones. We’ll leave the professional work to the Dewitt Joneses of the world and keep our memories.  

(OK, Mike captured some WSU architecture too.)

Here's the contrast in just three days:
May 1

May 5

May 1

May 5

We did have an aspiring professional, our friend Kensi, take our family photos at various iconic locations in Detroit on Thursday afternoon. We’ll post some samples once we get copies back from her.
(Not one of Kensi's)

Mike started feeling under the weather again, and during the photo shoot he began feeling fever and chills like he had a week ago coupled with a sore throat. Earlier in the day, he and Landon had gone to Defer's Volunteer Tea. It's not likely he caught anything at the event, but a lot of people did share in the fun and the food. . . .

By Friday morning, the illness had progressed into a full-blown form. Definitely not the best physical state to grade final papers and finalize next semester’s syllabus (perhaps he should have made more time on Monday and Tuesday after those all-day meetings. Ha!). He had promised to read to the kids at Landon's school, and thinking perhaps all he had were allergies, he went and read them Tell Me Again About the Night I Was Born in honor of his adoption finalization and sealing anniversary. The kids seemed really interested in Landon's unique homecoming story, and he's just now getting to the point where he can understand some aspects of being adopted that were not as easy to explain before. 

A pair of mourning doves has roosted behind the center column of our front porch. Dad and Fergus are equally fascinated. 

Watching the male dove forage for nesting material on the ground while the female settles in
The kids brought home new art from school: Easter stuff from Eliza, and modernist/bored kindergartner from Landon. 

Landon's school will have an art show next week. 

The father of one of Landon’s Sunny Days school friends has a serious illness, and our friend Sara coordinated a fundraiser on his family’s behalf. Families watched the movie Frozen, ate pizza and popcorn, and participated in a raffle with fabulous prizes. We were glad to all go and support the cause as well as see Landon’s Sunny Days teachers and some former classmates, and we wish this great family well, whatever the future holds for them. 
Dolled up and ready to party!

Ever the friendly sort, Landon immediately found a new companion for the event named Joshua, and the two palled around the whole time. Eliza remarked at the end, “Let’s do this again!” We love these kids’ gregarious natures!

Mike had a rough night’s sleep, but the head and body aches finally abated by morning, leaving mostly the sore throat.  Hoping he hadn’t contracted strep throat, he finally went to the local urgent care and got prescribed medication. No strep, but we’re not sure what it is. By Sunday, he was feeling relatively better.

Meanwhile, Hallie rallied the troops Saturday morning. To celebrate the anniversary of our adoption finalization and sealing to Landon, Hallie took him out to Dutch Girl Donuts. They brought home lots of delicious classics to share. 

Later, she took the kids to watch the annual Grosse Pointe Park Little League Parade. Landon won’t be participating this spring, but we plan to get him involved later in the year.

He has increased his involvement in gymnastics, attending classes on Wednesday and Saturday this week. That’s where he went after the baseball parade. Mike and Eliza tried to help (but mostly hindered) our amazing friend Priscilia as she scoured our kitchen from ceiling to floor, making it immaculate. She is one of the hardest workers we know, and we are so grateful for her. 

We had intended to go to the Ford Drive In, but the movies started late enough that we couldn’t make a go of it with our tuckered out kids (OK, it was Dad’s fault and the rest of us should have left him home). Such is the nature of outdoor cinema in the northern latitudes; movies start late, and double features end even later. No wonder they used to be so popular with the teen set! Mike needs to take Hallie out on a date to there and soon. . . .

We spent a (relatively) quiet day Sunday at church and at home. Yawn. 

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