Archive for March, 2011

School Plays

For the past couple of months I have been taking part in a play.  These plays have been happening  since I was in first grade.  I was actually in the very first play ever performed by the home schooling group.  The director was very interested in drama and wanted to start a theater group.  It has really been a great opportunity for me as well as other students who wanted to participate in acting troupes.  The group is called Scene 7 and the first play included home schoolers of all ages and was opened up to students who attended public school later on.  We all help with the scenery and set up, and people who don’t want to act can still participate as stage crew.  I like to act, but I can remember being very nervous when I first started doing plays.  In the beginning there was no stage and we used shower curtains for the curtains.  Costumes consisted of whatever people could gather from home.  But each play got more involved, with more props and better costumes, and now we have a big collapsible stage with painted back drops and a huge costume supply.  Anyone is welcome to take part in  the plays and the director split up the grades into two groups,1st-6th and 7th-12th.  She even does little one week summer plays every summer.  The younger kid’s plays happen in the fall, and the older grades do their plays in the late winter early spring.  Sometimes we will do standard plays like The Three Musketeers and The Phantom of the Opera.  Other times the director writes originals.  This year she wrote an original scrip called Aged to Perfection.  It is a kind of silly and fun play about vikings on an uncharted island off the coast of Canada.  This island, called Yuland, is way behind  the times and their young queen is having a hard time running the kingdom.  It is a fun story about troubled times, betrayal, adventure, and Shakespeare.  All of my friends are in it with me, and we always have a good time.  The opening night of our play is on April Fools Day this year.  That ought to be interesting.  This week is filled with dress rehearsals.  I had my first one on Monday.  It did not feel like we got much done, and it was a pretty rough first run through on the stage.  But I think it is really coming together, and by Friday we will definitely be ready.  It is always really sad on the last day, but it just gives me something to look forward to next year.

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Books

One of the books that I just read was about a person who only had a few weeks left to live.  It was very moving and of course I cried when I read the sad parts.  I usually like to read comedies or mysteries; I did not realize this particular book was going to be sad when I read it.  Ultimately it was a really good story, and I am glad I read it, but it got me thinking about what I would do if I had but weeks to live.  I probably would not know what to do with myself.  Maybe I would not tell anybody that I was about to die.  I would want my last few weeks to be fun, and if everyone knew that I was about to die they would probably just be sad.  Well, maybe I would tell one person (I am really bad at keeping secrets).  They would have to be someone who did not cry and would help make my last few weeks the best.  Maybe in my last few weeks I would want to see all of my friends and family one more time.  Not to say good-bye, but just to sort of know that everyone remembers me and is all right for the time being.  And anyone who I could not see, I would write a letter to or call on the phone.  I would also want to fix any broken relationships because I would prefer it if people said nice things at my funeral.  Now this probably all sounds pretty boring, but I really am not the type of person who wants to go out and do something crazy before I die. Though I always thought it would be cool if someone found a letter that I wrote after I died.  It would have to say something really epic though.  I will start thinking about it later. Maybe someone will find this blog after I die.  That would be kind of funny too.  I am not sure that I would want to know if I were about to die.  But I guess if I knew if I only had a few weeks left to live, I would drive myself crazy making sure that I was ready.  Of course, being so young, it is hard to even imagine what my reaction would be and how I would really feel.  It makes me wonder how authors make up such good stories and write so well about things that haven’t happened to them.  And most authors don’t just write one book, they write a bunch of books!  I don’t know how they do it.  Well I guess it’s just lucky for me that they do because I enjoy reading them.  Well, some of them anyway.

My Big Family

I come from a very big family.  I have three brothers and a little sister.  I have always found it nice though. It can definitely be very frustrating at times, but over all it is fun.  My older brother can be very weird sometimes, but he is good for help with my homework and stuff.  We hang out and get along pretty well, and have some friends in common.  My other two brothers are younger than me, and they can be very annoying.  They are about five years apart, and you look at them one minute and they are best friends,  then you turn around for two seconds and they are fighting again.  But they are always willing to play a game or watch a movie with you.  I finally got my younger sister after eleven years of being the only girl.  Most of the time she is cute, but she can be a tattle tale and is kind of spoiled.  She loves to read books with me and play school and she loves to play with my old dolls and she really looks up to me.  So that’s kind of nice.  Basically  there is somebody around all the time to hang out with or play a game with or even just someone to complain to.  A neighbor of ours is an only child and he comes over every day to play.   I guess I don’t have to worry about being bored or lonely with so many siblings.

Now that is just my immediate family.  My mom has two sisters, and my dad has two brothers, and each of them are married with two or three kids each.   My cousins are all very cool.  My one cousin and I are really close, but unfortunately she lives in North Carolina and we do not see each other as often as we would like.  You can probably imagine what that twelve-hour car ride is like when we do visit.  Let’s just say we are all pretty happy when that’s over!  My dads two brothers live in Washington State, so we do not get to see them that often either.  I do still have one aunt in the area though, but her kids are all grown up.

As for grandparents I have a grandma in Florida,and a grandfather and two more grandmothers here in New York.  Family reunions do not happen very often in my family.  It would be impossible to find a time when even half of my family can come.  But I get to see the whole family in pieces at a time at least once or twice a year.  I really look forward to the visits.  So although it is big and crazy, I love being in a big family.

Money Sketches

Luck

    St. Patrick’s Day is coming up.  It is a really fun holiday for some people.  It is mostly an Irish holiday, but it is celebrated here in America too.  In Ireland it is more of a religious holiday, a day for spiritual renewal.  It is in honor of St. Patrick who helped bring the Catholic religion to Ireland and supposedly chased away all of the snakes and serpents that were worshipped in some pagan religions.  In Ireland, most businesses are closed on St. Patrick’s Day. In America it is often just used as an excuse to go out and drink green beer.  Some people have big parties while others just have small celebrations, and others just wear green and gold.  I think a lot of people do not even know what it is about or why they celebrate it at all. A lot of people relate it to leprechauns.  To some people it is all about luck.  Four leaf clovers, horseshoes, coins, rainbows with pots of gold; these are all lucky charms.  No, not the cereal, but the kind that people carry around for luck.  Some people have different things that are lucky, whatever they think brings them luck. It could be a bracelet, or a necklace, or even a lucky pair of underwear. So maybe St. Patrick’s Day is all about the luck of the Irish. The shamrock is the national flower of Ireland because St. Patrick referred to it when talking about the Holy Trinity. March 17 is thought to be the day that St. Patrick died and that is why we celebrate it on that day. I think that most people just like to have fun on this holiday. Eat Irish foods like corned beef and potatoes, maybe go to an Irish festival, or go to the bar with some friends. I usually just dress up in green and go about my normal routine. My family has never really celebrated it before. It is usually just a “Happy St. Patrick’s Day!” and that is it. I do like St. Patrick’s Day though. I have never been to the big parade in Syracuse, usually because it tends to be freezing/raining/snowing on the day of the parade (which is not really very lucky). It is interesting to think about how St. Patrick’s Day started out and what it was intended for, compared to how it is celebrated today. I guess one could say that about all the holidays though. Certainly Christmas and Easter and even Halloween are much different today than when they first originated.