Crazy hair day

Posted in Leah, Molly, School on July 4th, 2018 by c-had – Be the first to comment

Jen did a fantastic job for Crazy Hair Day at school with these cat ears.

Crazy hair day

Silly one

During 5th grade spirit week, they had another day for crazy hair (or hat). Jen outdid herself with this unicorn hairstyle.

Unicorn hair

Unicorn hair

Angry unicorn

Art at the mall

Posted in Leah, Molly, School on July 4th, 2018 by c-had – Be the first to comment

Our school system had an art exhibit at the mall, displaying artwork chosen from local schools. Both Molly and Leah had artwork chosen. Here’s Molly with her alicorn.

Art exhibit

Leah had several pieces of artwork chosen. First, this design. It’s her name written by her in cursive mirrored.

Leah number 1

Leah’s second piece chosen was more abstract.

Leah number 2

For her third piece - a sunflower.

Leah number 3

Roller Coaster project

Posted in Molly, School on July 2nd, 2018 by c-had – Be the first to comment

Molly and her friend Grace formed a team for the Maryland Engineering Challenges 2018 Theme Park Challenge. I served as their coach as they designed and build a roller coaster to compete against teams from across the state.

They cut their track out of cardboard using box cutters.

Cutting out the track

There was lots of planning and experimentation.

Experimenting and planning

They built their cart out of cardboard, pencils, and fidget spinner bearings.

Cart building

The track was held up by wooden supports. I cut wooden slats to their requested size, then helped them screw them onto the base.

Adding supports

Attaching supports

We went to the Baltimore Museum of Industry to present our roller coaster to the judges. And the ride worked! (There was a time that I wasn’t sure we’d get the ride working.) Our ride was Green Eggs and Ham themed, and our team name was Green Eggs and Girls.

Green Eggs and Girls

Whole team

Battle of the Books

Posted in Molly, School on July 1st, 2018 by c-had – Be the first to comment

As a 5th grader, Molly was able to participate in Battle of the Books. Her team, The Little Librarians, read 13 books over 5 months. During the “battle” teams were asked detailed questions about the books, including quotes, plot details, and illustrations.

The Little Librarians

Molly the Librarian

The competition was held at a county high school, where teams from lots of elementary schools answered incredibly detailed questions on the books they'd read. They began by parading into the gym.

Parading into the gym

Here are all the teams. They each had an adult coach, and each coach served as a monitor for a team (not their own team, in the interest of fairness).

All the students

Seated on the mat, ready to go!

Half-time. This competition was many hours long in a hot gym. Molly was exhausted.

Half-time smiles

Our principal was even a guest runner (carrying answers to the judges table).

Guest runner

Times up, hold up your answer sheet. Molly was the official scribe for the team.

Official scribe

Working together

Yes, correct answer!

Nice job to all the teams!

Krispy Kreme

Posted in Food, Leah, Molly on July 1st, 2018 by c-had – Be the first to comment

We have a Krispy Kreme near us! Krispy Kreme doughnuts are not found much around us (unlike Dunkin’ Donuts, which are everywhere). But we’ve got one now. It opened in Catonsville (a neighboring town) the same day that G’Mom and Grampa were flying home. So, Jen dropped them off at the airport super early (like 6), then got in line to get some opening day doughnuts for us. The girls approved.

Krispy Kreme

For their first doughnuts from our new Krispy Kreme, Molly went for a chocolate iced cream filled, while Leah chose the strawberry iced with sprinkles.

First doughnuts



Posted in Molly, School on June 30th, 2018 by c-had – Be the first to comment

I got to speak at STEAM Day (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math) to all the fifth graders about software and my job. I spoke last year to both of the girls’ grades (though it was just STEM last year), so I had to do something even better this year.


We did some live coding to give them a feel of coding.

Live coding

We also programmed a scene in QLab (both audio and lights) live.

Live QLab

The kids seemed to really enjoy it. It can be tough to get kids excited about programming in a talk, but it helps when you’ve got a fun application (sound, video, and light effects).

Easter and more birthday

Posted in Celebrations, Leah, Molly on June 29th, 2018 by c-had – Be the first to comment

Back in April, we had a lovely Easter. The girls put out baskets for the Easter Bunny. Leah decided she needed to leave a note for the Easter Bunny with a very specific request. I think it was too specific, as the Easter Bunny did not grant it.

Easter Bunny note

Their Easter baskets may not have had a narwhal squishy, but they both did get squishes (and lots of other goodies).

Easter morning

Leah’s gotten into string tricks, and loved this book and string to learn more.

String tricks

After church, we went over to Grams’s house for some family time. This included the whole Sellers side, as well as G’Mom and Grampa who had come in town for Molly’s birthday. It was a beautiful day, so the girls and I headed outside for a little fun on a flat road.

Leah has had her Heelys for months, but struggled to use them and stopped trying soon after getting them. However, now that Molly had some too, Leah was determined to master the skill. She got it in no time, and the two of them rolled all over the place.

Sister skating

Molly praised the Lord for her new Heelys when she got to use them on Easter. At the end of Grams’s street, there’s a quiet, flat circle that was perfect for rolling around.

Hallelujah for Heelys

Leah warmed up enough to take off her jacket.

Leah rolling

The girls were excited to wear the new dresses that Jen made them for Easter.

Heely sisters

Tongue out balancing

Not only did we celebrate Easter, we celebrated Molly’s birthday again. This began with presents.


Happy birthday girl

No birthday celebration would be complete with a cupcake and an evil grin.


Also, Grams got a new dog. Her name is Roxanne.


And here’s the Sellers family.

Sellers family Easter photo

And the Batson family.

Batson family Easter photo

Molly’s actual birthday

Posted in Celebrations, Molly on June 28th, 2018 by c-had – Be the first to comment

The past few months have been very busy, and I’ve failed to post anything to our blog. So, now I’m going to catch up. Over the next couple weeks I’ll catch you guys up on everything we’ve had going on with hopefully a couple of posts per day. So, let’s pretend it’s April, and pick up from Molly’s birthday party.

Molly’s actual birthday was the week after her party, and she was very excited to be 11 (and to receive a bunch of awesome presents).

Actual birthday

Molly’s gotten very into drawing, and was happy to get a sketchbook and some nice colored pencils.


After her Harry Potter party, these Harry Potter earrings were a hit.

Harry Potter Earrings

Leah got Heelys for her birthday back in September, and Molly’s wanted some ever since. Thanks to G’Mom and Grampa, she’s now got some too.


After presents, we went out for lunch to Eggspectation. She was excited about this delicious birthday dessert.

Birthday lunch

Final Sinfonia concert

Posted in Extracurriculars, Molly, Music on May 8th, 2018 by c-had – 1 Comment

Molly had her second (and final) concert with the county-wide Elementary School GT Sinfonia on Saturday. They were outstanding. We're so glad she was picked to participate in this elite group.

Apologies for the video in the first song. I thought I'd have an angle to get a close-up on her, but other kids shifted as they were about to play.

Yeah Molly! We’re so proud of you.

All-out Hogwarts Party

Posted in Celebrations, Molly on April 3rd, 2018 by c-had – Be the first to comment

In case you haven’t picked up on it, we’re huge Harry Potter fans in this house. This year Molly turned 11, which is a major milestone in the wizarding world as it is the age at which a witch or wizard goes off to school (Hogwarts). So, Molly was very excited to have a Hogwarts birthday party. Jen always puts on fantastic parties, but this year I joined in the creation to make the biggest party we’ve ever done.

In future posts I’ll go into some of the creation of this party, but this post will take you through all the fun from start to finish. It may be more than you have time to read/watch, but it was so awesome I can’t leave any of it out. I highly recommend watching the videos, as you’ll miss out on a lot if you don’t.

The guests arrived and were ushered into our dining room by the front door. Each of them had their mug shot taken. (All other mug shots available on Flickr.)

Azkaban wanted poster

Jen created a Harry Potter themed Would You Rather? Jenga for the girls to play until everyone was there. We kept them there, shielded from the back of the house, so they wouldn't see anything until the proper time.

Would you rather? Jenga

Once everyone arrived, they were ushered through a brick wall (more on that later) into Diagon Alley of Maryland (set up in our den). There they found my wand shop for the party. Jen made boxes from poster board with her Silhouette Cameo. I wrote the labels to make sure the girls knew what they were getting. The extra wand to the right was given to Aunt Caroline for her to use throughout the party (and keep).

Wand shop
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