Sunday, May 29, 2011

Preschool Graduation

Dean graduated from Children’s Garden Preschool on Friday evening. The graduation program, with a Superheroes Theme, was held in the Ballroom at the Wailea Mariott. The ceremony started with all of the children entering the ballroom wearing their home-made Superhero capes with the Superman theme music playing! (Dean’s cape was blue with red pom-pom fringe, a black felt jewel-outlined “shield” with his name on it and a star underneath - it was so cute!). Once they reached the stage, each child walked across and did a slow turn at the front before taking a seat. They sang a song in Japanese, then a Superhero-themed song with a “hip-hop” type of dance. Next, each child came to the front and told how they thought they could be a hero and make the world a better place - Dean said “My name is Dean and I will help people that are sick”. The class then sang “Maui: Hawaiian Super Man” by Isreal Kamakawiwo’ole while dancing hula. Then (my favorite), they sang “With My Own Two Hands” by Jack Johnson and Ben Harper. After their performance, the children went out of the room to change out of their capes and into the most adorable little caps and gowns. They then walked onto the stage again in a formal processional, this time to Pomp and Circumstance, and received a “diploma” and maile lei. After graduation, many of the children exchanged congratulatory lei and we had a few lei for Dean as well, as is tradition in Hawaii. It was so cute to see Dean loaded down with lei, so proud of himself! He made plenty shakas for the camera!! We are so proud of him and can’t believe he will be heading to kindergarten in August! Where does the time go!? Here are a few photos from the evening as well as a movie of several video clips "clipped" together (sorry for the shaky camera work. Remember, if you're reading this post in an e-mail update, you'll need to go to the actual blog HERE to watch the video. You can thank Joel for that. Also, it was dark in the ballroom and we were far away from the stage. You'll just have to pick Dean out of all those kids. He's the blond one in the light blue shirt and khaki pants (yes!! long PANTS!! That was quite the big deal for him!). Notice in the video when they start to sing With My Own Two Hands that Dean and his friend Mason reach over at the same time and hold hands - SO cute! It was a struggle to control the lump in my throat for sure! I just can't believe Dean is already done with preschool. It doesn't seem possible. And he is becoming such a sweet and caring little man. He's a handful for sure, but he has such a kind spirit. We love him so much and are so proud of him!

Dean's cape:
Dean and his friend Mason waiting patiently for instructions from their teachers before the ceremony began:
The Dolphin Class entering the ballroom to the theme song from Superman, hands on their hips and looking very hero-ish:
After the program, entering for the actual graduation ceremony:

And, the video:

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Easter 2011

I'm finally getting around to posting pics from Easter. I had intended to get this done right away and then I ended up really sick by the end of the day on Easter Sunday, the kind of sick that left me in bed with a fever and body aches and just feeling like crap for about 3 days. I missed most of the following week of work and was then just behind on everything and so the blog just got pushed to the back burner. So here I am.

We dyed Easter Eggs the Friday before Easter. Dean thoroughly enjoyed this activity and we managed to produce the World's Ugliest Easter Eggs this year.

Easter morning Dean woke up bright and early, even earlier than usual, excited to see what the Easter Bunny brought him. And man, did the Easter Bunny bring him a lot of crap! He got some candy (although the Easter Bunny was smart this year and remembered that since he seems to always leave a ton of candy for Dean at TuTu's house, he didn't need to leave him all that much at our house), some toys, a stuffed bunny that he had a complete meltdown about at Borders earlier in the week when he said he really REALLY needed that bunny but I wouldn't let him buy it (because somehow I was pretty sure the Easter Bunny had already bought it for him), a space-themed kickball, and 3 new Space Books. I'm pretty sure the Easter Bunny must have shopped at our local Borders which is going out of business and scored some awesome deals on those Space Books! Anyway, you can watch 2 videos (about 10 minutes worth) of Dean digging through all of his Easter goods at the end of this post. Remember, as always, if you get the e-mail updates, you'll have to go to the actual blog HERE to watch the videos - just scroll down to the bottom of the post from May 11 (or 12?) and click play on the videos to watch them. (and please excuse all the coughing and snorting and sniffling that Dean and I are doing - He was getting over a cold and I was just starting to feel like crap!).

Dean's basket is the large one in the middle (which is overflowing onto the floor with the ball and Space books. Joel and I each got a small little basket with some candy and a little cheap stuffed animal which Dean promptly gave to his kitty).

After Dean was done going through all of his Easter loot, he noticed that the Easter Bunny had hid a bunch of Easter Eggs in the backyard. He was pretty excited to go on an Easter Egg Hunt!

After the egg hunt, Joel and Dean headed over to my Mom's so Joel could get started cooking Easter Dinner. I stayed home to rest, hoping I'd start to feel better (didn't happen), then headed over myself just in time for lunch and to eat Joel's delicious pineapple ham and all the fixin's.

My brother Jeremy was in town for a few weeks along with 3 of his friends from Montana so they were able to join us for the Harper Family Easter Festivities. Jayci and her friend Drew came over as well. As you know Dean LOVES Jayci and as usual he wouldn't leave her alone the entire day. He INSISTED on sitting by Jayci at the big table, pulling up a stool for himself.

After lunch, my Mom hosted her semi-annual Adult Easter Egg Hunt. In case you're not familiar with this Harper Family tradition, this exciting even ONLY happens if both my brother and I are in attendance - so only every few years. This is a special Easter Egg Hunt for my Mom's Adult Children and son-in-law and any grown-up friends who might be invited over for the festivities. My Mom hides plastic Easter Eggs that are filled with money (money totaling several hundred dollars!!!) - there are $1s, 5s, 10s, 20s and there's one $50 egg. Each adult "child" has to carry his/her own Easter Basket and when my Mom yells "go", it's a free-for-all as we run around like crazy people searching for money eggs! My Mom just sits back and laughs hysterically. It's lots of fun and she swears it's the best money she spends all year and worth every penny! (and for those of you who are curious, Joel and I found about $60 each this year! Woo Hoo!). None of the pictures or videos my Mom took of the egg hunt turned out very good - I think she was laughing too hard she couldn't hold the camera still - you can't see anything! The funniest part though was Dean yelling the whole time "Go Jayci Go, Go Jayci Go" over and over. He does love his Jayci!

It was a pretty fun Easter. Dean had a good time and is still enjoying his goodies and reading his books! Here are a few final photos, then the videos (remember, go to the blog HERE to watch the videos if you're reading this in an e-mail update). The videos might be kind of boring for anyone who's not a grandparent. But the grandparents will love them! So, you're welcome.