Monthly Archives: May 2015

Learning to Fly

Doesn’t it feel like with your first child, you’re always just a little bit behind the curve?  Everything that happens is brand new, and we have to write those chapters as we go.  When the younger ones get to that age, we think, “Oh, yeah.  We’ve been here – we know what this is…” but with the oldest kid, we’re constantly guessing and wondering and thinking and hoping.

One thing that we constantly bump up against with Jacob is the idea of nurturing his passions.  When he was little, his passions were pirates, and then Thomas, and then Star Wars… easy.  Now that he’s going on 14, his passions are fewer, more private, and harder to facilitate.  But one that we recently discovered was flying.  Our local middle school hosts an extracurricular flying program.  You have to apply to get in, be in academically good standing, and be willing to devote an afternoon every week for 12 or so weeks.  There is book learning, lectures, and few field trips, all culminating in “Flight Day”.

Jacob started out interested in the science of flying, and was unsure if he’d even be all that crazy about flying an actual plane, but as his knowledge increased, he got more and more excited about the idea of going up.  Flight Day happened a few weeks ago… students flew with a certified instructor in groups of two.  The pilot takes off and lands, but the students did all the in-between flying.  They went from our tiny local airport to another tiny local airport about 40 miles away, flying over the middle school in between.  After landing, they switched students so that the other one could fly back home.  I, of course, was there with camera in hand!


Pre-flight… slightly nervous smile.


At the controls.




Coming in for the landing!


So proud of himself!

Jacob’s first words upon exiting the plane and hugging his very relieved mother were, “I want to take private lessons.”  So – we’ve found another passion that we can start to nurture and see where it goes.  I don’t think it necessarily means that he’ll end up being a pilot any more than I thought his love of Thomas would drive him to be a train conductor, but we’re excited to support him and see where it goes.  Jacob is signed up for a week-long intermediate flying camp this summer, and we’ll be looking into private lessons after that if he’s still enamored.  We can’t wait to see where his next passion goes… up, up and away!



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Spring – Step Two

Spring has already sprung around here, so I’m wicked late with my Spring – Step Two post.  But I didn’t think it would be fair to skip directly to Summer – Step One (upcoming!) without touching on my favorite Spring ritual, the Smith College Bulb Show.  It’s always a beautiful experience – just when you’re feeling like you can’t take even another second of winter (and this year was a doozy), along comes the Bulb Show to give you a taste of the possibilities to come in just a few short weeks.

This year’s show was spectacular.  The theme was “A French Impression,” and it was set up to mimic Claude Monet’s gardens (in real life and in his paintings).  I don’t think I’ve ever actually gasped when walking through the bulb show – smiled, sighed, breathed deeply… yes, all of those.  But gasped at the beauty?  Not until this year.  They really outdid themselves.  Here are just a couple of shots of the 100 or so I took.  I also printing a framed a couple and sold them at our elementary school’s charity auction.



Stay tuned for Summer – Step One… the garden is going in!!


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