Xabi 's Visit

Monday, September 27, 2010

Even though July was two months ago Xabi's visit was too much fun not to post about.
He was an exchange student from Spain and we had so much fun with him.

Xabi plays numerous instruments VERY well! He actually doesn't play the accordion at home but an instrument that is similar, called the trikitixa. He was able to play some tunes by ear though, even though the fingering was different.

Though a little later in the week, here is Micaiah accompanying Xabi's piano playing on the drums.
Sorry the lighting is so bad.
Practicing music to play at the homeless shelter. I think Jack is going to be a drummer like his grandpa. He watches so intently when they are played.

Afterward we enjoyed some of the Millers wonderful hospitality...

...and went to the waterfire in Providence. It was a beautiful warm night for it with music floating over the water, gondoliers rowing by, and people lining both sides of the water enjoying the fire and the beauty of the evening.

The fire!

Slushed ice: a special splurge of the night.
Joshua kept leaning over when he wanted more.

Welcome to Boston!

While we waited to tour the USS Constitution we saw this family behind us with each member on a different electronic devise.

Ready.... aim... FIRE!!!

Each cannon had it's own name. The "Yankee Protection" was my favorite.

The Murray's and their exchange student, also from Spain, Inigo

Enough of the formal pictures... let's pretend we work on the ship! (Yeah... it probably took five guys to steer it. It IS a big ship you know!)
No worries here... Pa's ready for this cruise!

We started heading to the Bunker Hill Monument and everyone we talked to on the way in asking for direction to get there by foot from thee USS Constitution said it was closed for repairs. Pa kept saying we'd see it anyway. When we got there it was open! Mom and us kids walked up the 294 steps to a beautiful view out all four sides at the top.

I've heard it said copying is the greatest form of flattery

Micaiah and the white wall art

The moms and their temporary "sons"

The kids

Trying to beat Inigo at connect four... after playing repeated games I realized it probably wouldn't be happening anytime soon.

I love all the history that still stands amidst all the modern happenings

The boys dream car... Ok, I wouldn't mind having it either

We shared how we ran through these before Jordan and Melissa's wedding and Inigo wanted to do it, so Mom and Matthew joined him

It proved irresistible to the rest

A visit to the Rhode Island State house

Someday I'd love a library that looks like this... reminds me of the one in Beauty and the Beast.

That picture of Washington is an original Gilbert Stuart

Where Senate meetings take place

We really wanted to go to the dome and as we passed this guy Mom asked him if it was possible to get a tour there. He said no (especially for a non RI resident), but he could show us a few other non-toured places. He brought us into the basement of the statehouse and showed us this room with this ramp going to a lower level that has a ramp to an even lower level. He said it was where the horses were kept when the senators would meet years ago. Hay was kept at the top and was thrown down the ramps. The second place he took us was on a terrace which is only opened to those who attend meetings

The third place was to do with his specific job. The media side of things. He showed us how they film the meetings and one of the tapes of him on tv. Quite an unexpected blessing!

Lots of important decisions are made in those chairs.

And thus ends your history lesson of the RI state house :-)

Xabi taught us this really fun card game called Mus, which originates from where he lives. Most of our free time the rest of the week was playing mus (accompanied by a refreshing glass of kombucha, as you can see)

Beach art

As we played scrabble one night we got on the topic of figures of speech in the English language. Above are a few of the ones that came up. As we explained the meanings it became pretty funny. Have you ever stopped and thought about the way some common American phrases are worded? We didn't realize we used so many and had many laughs throughout the night.

In between placing a word for scrabble we played mus

Our favorite picture tree in Newport

When the water gets too cold to jump waves mus is a great alternative (We would even play it as we drove places)

A super ninja

Xabi's first non-backyard baseball game... that turned out to be the most slow, boring games we've seen. No great loss when you have a fun family to be entertained by at the slow parts

The last night we stayed up looking through pictures of the week... and playing more mus

Before going to the airport we spent the day in Boston where we met one of the best sales people I've ever seen. This guy was super smooth and convincing. After Micaiah made his purchase he asked to get a picture with him
You can't really tell from this picture, but it was pouring out and we were thoroughly drenched. You'd think after all these years of living in New England we would use umbrellas, but they always seem to be forgotten on the days it rains.... and getting wet makes it more memorable

Our final picture before departure.

We are so glad you could come, Xabi!

♫ MASQUERADE! ♪♫ ~With a Contesty Spin

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Hey, thanks for stopping by! As usual there about 150,000 pictures for every 2 minutes of "free time" we have. But hey, pictures are being posted. Better some then none, right? Your smiling, right? & just bouncing up and down in your seat waiting to see the pictures we posted, right? Oh! With such a cheerful attitude of course I'll move on to the actual post!

Last week we went to an Amazing Masquerade. At the same exact time there was an online masquerade contest going on at www.amandabethonline.blogspot.com. What an AmazinG coinkidink! Shocking how things like that happen...

So to make a non-long story short, we decided to put a few pics up of us in our Masquerade attire. (by-the-weigh, this is Matthew posting)

Thanks to an extension making today the deadline, we decided to wait (procrastinate?) until the very last moment to post. "Fashionably late as usual...."

The oldest 3 Thomas kids left at home. Or are we? I love masks... you have NO idea who's who. We're so sneaky...

The Things
~ These masks were made out of plaster wrap, sanded down, & painted. The music notes were stamped/embosed on vintage looking paper then glued on. It was finished with a decorate puff paint type paint design. ... Many hours including 2 2am+ nights went into them, powered by plenty of maple-syrup, ice cubed coffee (Thing 1's first ever). I think that 80% of the time was in trying to figure out how to make it & practising what we were going to do.

At one point we (Micaiah, Marscel, & Matthew) needed materials from Joann Fabrics. We noted the humor of such a manly scene as us three guys strode in, walking in a sort of triangular fashion. I don't know if any Joanns has ever scene such depth from male brains as ours has... *I say, draw it humble!* oops, sorry. Ok, moving on...

Micaiah & Jacob Flynn. (I know, Jacob doesn't have a mask on... his face is just too good to cover)

Marscel's mask. You can't see it very well here, but he powdered the right side of his hair white to keep the Black & White theme. (Can you guess what color his socks were?)

Me & my mask.

I'm probably breaking all the rules of online contests by posting this picture of someone outside our family, but it is too amazing not to post! The notes on his mask play the theme to Pirates of the Caribbean!!! Wow, talent. Skilz. (we made our masks together with him & his brother, at our house... so that shouldn't totally disQ us. :p)

Zoro & his ESFP

The Fam

What one does for a picture...

Memories of the past...

& with that I conclude. Hope you enjoyed it!

P.S. A Shout out to my Sister Melanie for such an amazing blog look! I'm lovin it.