TSU Has Him Now

This weekend was another exciting weekend for us. Miles has been accepted into a transportation engineering camp at Tennessee State University and this weekend was drop-off weekend. The camp lasts the entire month of June and he’ll be living on campus. The camp is for rising 10-12th graders and only has about 20 participants. We learned today that participants come from around the country, not just Nashville, so that was a pleasant surprise. See this blog post from last year to get an understanding of what the kids will be doing.

Yesterday, we dropped Miles off for camp.

luggage in hand
on the hall
Q and Kaleya will miss him!
view from his window
in front of engineering school

This is going to be a great opportunity for Miles given his interests in pursuing engineering. Enjoy Miles!

Then, after we dropped him off, we went to Sweet CeCe’s. It was my first time there, but Kalonji has taken Kaleya before. Of course, it was good. :-)

Sweet CeCe's
yes, the ice cream is good

As we were leaving though, I had a moment of shame. It took me forever to understand the significance of the anchor in this football game ad.

the anchor signifies the commodore - captain of the sea!

I should be ashamed too; as much as I like the Vanderbilt history and everything related to the Commodore!

A Crazy Seven Days

It’s been a hectic week this past week for us.  This was the last week of school and then we had a busy Memorial Day Weekend.

Kaleya at school luau
Kaleya w/ 1st grade teacher

On Saturday, I took a quick trip up north of Nashville to visit a genealogy friend. On Sunday, I met up with a group visiting the states from Spain to help one member of the group search for her family. On Monday I rested most of the day, but did various household tasks. We did however, take a quick trip out to Radnor Lake. I’d not been there before, so it was nice to just walk around some.

whoa! a deer!
beautiful Lake Radnor

Busy, busy, busy!

Saturday Outing: The Symphony & Cheekwood

Today, we did another Nashville first – our first visit to the Nashville Symphony.  For this I need to greatly thank my co-worker Frances who used her ticket credits to purchase the tickets for us to go see the Pied Piper.

inside the Symphony Hall

…but I have a confession to make – I actually did not know the full story of the Pied Piper, only knew bits and pieces.  So I didn’t know what to expect. But it was great! The conductor began the show by describing the plot, then having the orchestra play music representative of the different characters in the story so that we’d know when the characters were involved during the musical performance. I think our favorite “character” was the music for the rats; it was very appropriate.  On top of that, they had a performance group on stage acting out the story and the conductor continued to provide explanation.  I think all the kids and adults alike enjoyed it – I know our family did! :-)

Kaleya poses outside after the show is over

After the symphony, we then headed out to Cheekwood Botanical Garden and Museum of Art. This was my second visit there, my first one having been back in September.  This time, our visit was free as Kaleya’s school was having a Family Fun Day and we could enter at no charge.

When I went in the fall, it was Kaleya and I, so I’d been wanting to take the boys to visit – this was the perfect opportunity.  We arrived at about 1:30 and spent the next couple of hours walking the grounds, playing around the ponds, and going through the museum.

by the pond
turtle peeks his head out
Miles and Jihad exploring the pond
the kids in front of the house
Miles did not really drink the water!

The exhibits in the museum changed since my last visit and one I particularly enjoyed was the Red Grooms exhibit. We have some of his artwork displayed in the library where I work – the Eskind Biomedical Library at Vanderbilt University Medical Center. My favorite piece was cool, and I didn’t even get the name of it. You can see it at about 1:20 into the video below about Red Grooms and his wife.  Red is a Nashville native so I really should make more of an effort to learn about his artwork.

In all, we had a great day today! Tomorrow, I look forward to staying in and relaxing though. :)

Learning to Latch Hook

I am so tickled! Today, I taught Kaleya how to do latch hook.  Latch hooking was the origin of my craftiness – I learned how to do it when I was about her age and would do it for about 10 years.  My sister gave Kaleya an old rug that she’d  made, so when I saw it, I realized Kaleya was about the right age.

Kaleya holds her new latch hook kits
working the latch hook
more hook work

She got a little bored with it, but hopefully, as we make it an activity we do together, she will become more interested.

Kaleya's first WIP picture.

Great job Kaleya!

A Night of Education

Earlier this week, Kalonji and I attended an informative lecture at Vanderbilt’s Black Cultural Center. We’d only learned about it after my sister sent me the link, but we were so glad we were able to catch it! The lecture was given by Dr. Khalil Gibran Muhammad, the Director of the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture.  The Schomburg Center is the premier place of research of African-American life and Kalonji and I are quite hopeful that we get to visit one day.

Dr. Muhammad’s talk was titled “Partners in Crime: Statistics and The Logic of Post-racialism” and was educational and interesting. His discussion started with the 1890 census, so you know my genealogical ears perked right on up! There were so many aspects to his talk that I couldn’t begin to do him justice here, but he has a book published “The Condemnation of Blackness: Race, Crime, and the Making of Modern Urban America” so we plan to pick that up so we can read more.

Generally speaking, Dr. Muhammad talked from a sociological-historical perspective on how statistics have been used to argue viewpoints on crime statistics of blacks and how it is important to look beyond the numbers in search of the background context. After the lecture, we had a chance to speak to Dr. Muhammad and even Jihad got a picture!

Now, despite having been at Vanderbilt for close to 12 years now, I’ve never been over to the Black Cultural Center. Guess there’s a first for everything. :-) It is a nice building and I enjoyed the current art displays – art was by Tamara Madden.

We had an overall great night! Thanks Dr. Muhammad for the talk. Oh, did I mention that he is also a great-grandson of Elijah Muhammad? Kalonji got the biggest kick out of that!

A Childhood Dream Realized

Bone Thugs-N-Harmony is one of my favorite rap groups. When Thugggish Ruggish Bone came out, I bought the EP and listened to that song over and over and over again in my college dorm room for 3 hours straight. Good times :-)  Along the way in my fandom, I passed the love onto my sister and she too is an avid Bone fan. Last night, she was able to go see two of the members, Krayzie & Wish, perform in downtown Nashville at 12th & Porter.  Kelli was SO excited and had a great time!

Krazyie, Kelli & Wish
BTNH T-Shirt w/ Krazyie & Wish signatures

To hear Kelli tell it, it was great music and great fun! I sent a Tweet to Krayzie to let him know she’d enjoyed it, and then Krazyie tweeted me back! How cool is that???

and he tweeted me back :-)

Maybe next time they come through I’ll be able to go. :-)

Museum Night

Kaleya’s school hosts a “museum night” four times a year and they are cool events. Last week, they held their third one of the year. The themes vary by grades and on Kaleya’s floor the theme was “Rainforests.”  Here are some pictures of the evening.

The Lorax - preserving trees is what it's all about
the water cycle
the kids and family friend in the Rainforest hall
love this pic! show me your leopard face Kaleya!
three well-placed eggs balance these textbooks