Saturday, June 11, 2011

Lilac Parade

Since moving to Rochester 10 years ago I have been looking for a good parade.  Rochester does a lot of things well, which is why we live here.  Parades are not one of those things.  The biggest problem is that most of the high schools around here have orchestras, not marching bands.  The marching bands make the parade.  I did my time in the high school marching band and want to be able to appreciate it as a spectator (granted, I was last chair clarinet and only pretended to play when we marched in parades.  What?  Shocked?  Don't be, my band teacher loathed me.  The feeling was mutual.).

Anyway, a friend recommended the opening parade for the Lilac Festival.  So off we went.  It did not disappoint.  The flowers were lovely.

While we waited for the parade to start the kids and Scott stumbled across a little spot where a large tree created a kind of fort.

The tree was really cool.  Old and big with gnarly branches.

Perfect for riding.  We'll be visiting this tree again on our next visit to Highland Park.

It started to sprinkle a bit but the weather held for the parade.  Poor Adam is wearing a hand-me-down raincoat from a friend.  I am pretty sure it's a girls coat.  I guess it's a good thing he's not yet at a point in his life to care about such things.

Jane loved all of it.  Her favorite were the "princesses", also known as "Miss (fill in the blank with any number of pageant titles) ".  I'm not sure how to feel about her early fascination with beauty.  I about threw up in my mouth when "Miss Barbie Rochester" came by waving out the sunroof of an SUV which I am pretty sure was being driven by her mother.  Just what every mother wants for her daughter, to be a sexist, unintelligent and unrealistic stereotype of womanhood.  Nice.  Moving on.

All in all the parade was awesome.  Marching bands abound as well as floats and those guys in the tall hats that drive the go-carts in fun configurations.  Love those guys.

Jane, forever my rule tester, loved walking down the middle of the road without holding anyone's hand.  This picture is actually a perfect metaphor for her personality. 

Verdict?  Go to the Lilac Parade.  It's the best I've see so far, except for the Wo-Zha-Wa Parade in my hometown, it was awesome, but that may be a bit far.  And don't ask me what Wo-Zha-Wa means.  I have no idea. 

Cinco de Mayo

Except it fell on a Thursday and we celebrated on Saturday, so the actual title of this post should be, "Siete de Mayo". 

I made lovely centerpieces from mason jars and tissue paper.  Very festive, no?

Lots of people came and brought their favorite Mexican dishes to share (FYI, the best kind of party is when other people do the work).

It was a bit chilly, but manageable. 

I made tamales, and apparently, they were quite good.
There was a zipline, much to the delight of the children.
And also a pinata that went a long ay in keeping the little people happy.

Jane found a good use for the broken pinata.
The end.

It's Not Easy Being Green

Actually, it's easier than I expected.  We made some changes this spring that we thought we'd share with you.  We purchased this little beauty on CraigsList:

Is it a play house?  A cage for my children?  I wish.  I think the neighbors might complain.  We also bought these supplies:

Then we went and picked up "the ladies".  Meet Blueberry and Clementine.

That's right we have chickens.  Laying hens to be precise.  And, yes, it's legal (always the first question).  My guess is that your opinion about this will fall into one of two categories.  First, "You're nuts!"  Or, second, "Awesome, tell me more!"  We've had these ladies for a while now so I can tell you that they don't stink, even when cleaning the coop (which is not difficult).  They are very well behaved and my kids love them, sometimes more than chickens care to be loved. 

When the coop was delivered Scott said we could take bets on how long it would take Jane to climb inside.  The answer?  Not too long:

This was before the chickens occupied the coop and she hasn't been back in since, but it is one of those perfect examples where Scott is always right (I assured him she wouldn't fit and couldn't get the door open).

If you are a Facebook friend then you may already be aware of our other addition:

They are up and running.  We figured they take care of about 1/2 of our electrical needs.  Not too shabby.

There you go.  We're officially the weirdos on our street. Not that we needed much help in that department.