Monday, February 21, 2011

KIDS GET CREATIVE WITH PRESENT

Aunt Cissy gave the kids a gift certificate to a local pottery decorating place. The kids loved it. They each picked their own piece.

Brant picked the robot bank.


Laurel picked a heart jewelery box.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

KINGDOM DELIVERS MAGIC, PICTURES DELIVER LATER


Maren decided it would be good to post the pictures of the January family trip to the Magic Kingdom before they head off for the next Disney adventure tomorrow.


The Magic Kingdom was plenty crowded MLK weekend, but the perfect weather combined with Disney crowd control made for a pleasurable experience. A few photo highlights are included below. Bear in mind the camera lens was filthy, hence the foggy pics.


Laney was completely mesmerized by It's a Small World. Despite numerous attempts to get her to look at the camera, she wouldn't take her eyes off of the dancing dolls.

The group separated for the Teacups. Laurel and Mommy were in the fast cup. Brad, Brant and Laney opted to go slower.

Brant was chosen to be on stage with Jack Sparrow and his apprentice. He learned how to fight like a pirate and took home a certificate to prove his accomplishment.

The last ride of the day. Images are deceiving. Brad did not like the rockets. Not one little bit.

Hopefully, the family will fare well tomorrow. Nap time in the stroller for Laney is the hardest obstacle. The weather promises to be beautiful and the crowds will be heavy undoubtedly. At least this time, we'll come armed with granola bars and water bottles.

BOYS GET DIRTY


Brad and Brant attended the annual Father/Son campout this weekend.

According to Brant,

"There was very tall grass at the camping trip."

"I saw a lake that didn't have any sprinkles. I saw a motor on the back of the boat to make the boat go fast. I ate hot dogs, smores, eggs, waffles, white milk, and root beer and cheetos."

"My jobs were to clean up the tent...all the grass out of it, and to help Daddy undo the tent and to help Daddy unpack the stuff out of the car. And that's all I know."

"Coleman, Jason, Jason's new friend, Noah and Conner were there."

"My favorite part was eating Cheetos."

Sunday, February 13, 2011

BIRTHDAY SPANS WEEK


Why is the term birthday instead of birthweek? Brant's activities spanned a few days. One of the cool events was pure coincidence, but awesome for a 5-year-old none-the-less.

Wednesday, he celebrated at school with a special crown, Star Wars cupcakes, and a visit from Mom and Laney. Wednesday night, Brant chose Chuck E. Cheese for his birthday dinner. Thursday night, the family had dinner with some of Daddy's old friends from high school and college. One benefit to living in the greater Orlando metropolitan area is plenty of visitors and family friendly entertainment. The group ate at Rainforest Cafe at Downtown Disney. Diners eat amongst life-size rainforest animals and experience periodic thunderstorms. Afterwards all the kiddos danced in the "street" of Downtown Disney. The Ghiradelli shop handed out free chocolate samples, so everyone had dessert.




Brant's real "party" was Saturday. He invited two pals to the Science Center. With the discount offered that day and some extra birthday money, the Cupits bought annual passes to the 4 story learning and activity museum. The crowds were manageable even on the first day of the Curious George Exhibit. The a/c will be a nice escape in the sweltering summer months. Brant's favorite exhibit was the 3-D flight simulator. Laurel loved the stationary train. Finally the birthday week is over. Brant's a little sad. At least he has a pair of nerf guns to keep him busy until next year!

Saturday, February 5, 2011

BULLIES CHALLENGE CHARACTER

Several readers inquired the cause of Laurel's hospital stay. It was the stomach flu endured by a great portion of every other family in America this holiday season. She healed with a little time and love.

She's now dealing with an illness that doesn't change over time. Laurel's been the victim of bullying. Maren didn't believe it would ever happen to anyone in her family. In Mom's eyes, the frequent bits about bullies on the news, primetime t.v. shows, daytime talk shows, and even soap opera storylines were forms of sensationalism. Media had found another way to squeeze ratings out of a parent's fear. But it's real. It was an issue for Maren in middle school, and now it's a very present issue for Laurel. Fortunately, it's isolated to the bus. The family has an easy, though inconvenient solution. Laurel will probably be a car-rider for the rest of the year.

At first report of trouble on the bus, Maren chose minimal involvement, hoping Laurel would be moved to a new seat and going forward would be able to "handle the situation herself." A first grader cannot "handle" a bully.

The details will remain private. But the situation, the potential outcome, and nauseating guilt will be Maren's foremost thoughts for a long time. Laurel has an assigned seat on the bus as punishment for not staying in her seat. Unfortunately, this means she sits next to two other children also in trouble. So, here's the question: Does a first grader in trouble give up the right to personal safety while facing consequences?

Another question, too: How can you protect your children from bullies? For the record, Laurel attends one of the most well-regarded elementary schools in Central Florida. It would be nice if the school accountability report had a column/factor for number of bully incidents. On second thought, perhaps that would be bad. Principals would have further incentive to cover them up.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

BLOG COMES BACK TO LIFE

It's been seriously neglected. The time has come to re-prioritize. The family still has plenty of adventures to share.

This entry will be a photographic recap of Christmas:

Only a portion of the photos from Christmastime have been delivered to the technical department, so watch for another post with the remainder.

Primary had a service activity to a nursing home to sing to the elderly. The kids sang and the residents seemed to enjoy it....especially the cookies and lemonade.

First annual Cupit holiday party. There were supposed to be over 60 people there. Thank heavens several families didn't show or the place would have been not so jolly.


Brant A.K.A. Santa Claus

Christmas morning villainous visitor: Bobba Fett

Laurel's place of residence the day after Christmas. Fun and games in the ER. She opened two presents Christmas morning and then asked if she could go back to bed. Maybe the US should shift Christmas to the summertime. The Cupit family took a hit with illness this year. NOT FUN!

Feeling a little better at the fancy steak house Mimi and Papa took the family to. We all dined inside a covered wagon amidst a wild frontier atmosphere.