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From the Studio

January 16, 2014

Bronn_0042 Bronn_0044 Art lessons– I think the kids are teaching me far more than I am teaching them.  Isn’t that the way it normally goes, though?  I guess I just get to be present to cheer them on and capture their smiles along the way.

This week we have started a mural, and they are so enthusiastic about it that it will probably be finished today.  Raymond found a projector, and I found some great silhouetted photos of elephants and giraffes, and we traced them onto the wall.  It kind of makes me want to watch the Lion King now.

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I have learned a lot about their musical tastes.  Let’s see: Dolly Parton, Don Williams, Kenny Rogers, 50 Cent, Justin Timberlake, Chris Brown, Hillsong, Phil Collins, Celine Dion… it is the most interesting mixture of music I’ve ever heard.  And SO completely liberating to sing all my cheesiest favorites with them, the ones I get shamed for back home, and they love it.  And it is the most adorable thing in the entire world to see teenage boys singing Celine Dion’s “The Power of Love” or “I Will Always Love You” by Dolly Parton.  Slay me.

We have had a few dance parties, which are wonderful, and no one seems to care that my dance moves look more like something you’d see in an aerobics class than in a club.   I still need to edit my footage, but I promise it’s coming soon 🙂

On Wednesdays, the Mamas come in and teach lessons.  Mama Joshua teaches sewing, and the girls are working on a purse together.  Mama Tayta (I probably spelled that wrong, it’s just how it sounds to me) is teaching the kids how to make paper beads.  After much struggle, I got the hang of it myself yesterday!

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I’ve been working with the kids on their photography a bit, mostly just teaching them about posing and getting closer to their subjects.  The little ones, especially Queenie, is always a willing model, and her eyes photograph so nicely.  Today, I’ll go through their memory cards and see what they’ve gotten this week.

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Life here is good.  A few random tidbits: it is perfectly warm, sometimes a bit too hot.  Sundresses in January inspire no complaints from me though, and hopefully I’ll get just a bit of sun as well.  The mangos, bananas, and pineapple are quite amazing, as well as the doughnuts I’ve discovered at the Korean bakery down the road.  A few people were worried that I’d come home all skinny, but I’ll probably just be huge from all the doughnuts.  They are as good as Northside Kitchen in Avon, no kidding!  I am not able to watch Hulu or Netflix, and have already exhausted my very limited library of movies on my computer.  Audible is my BFF in the evenings right now, and I have finished the Divergent series. I am currently almost halfway through 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea.  On the Kindle app I’m reading “Enna Burning”, “Art and Fear”, “Les Miserables”, and “We Wish to Inform You that Tomorrow We Will be Killed with Our Families” (a book about the Rwandan genocide).  Yes, I love multitasking with books, it’s more fun that way.  In the past few years, I’ve not been much of a dog person, but the dogs at Linda’s house are just sweethearts.  Milkshake and Coco, the guard dogs, can be put off their guard by scratching behind the ears or having some fried potatoes.  Just saying.

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But enough of me. Here’s a few more shenanigans from the kids:

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