Sophia had the opportunity to play piano at Glensheen Mansion’s Halloween Spooktacular last night.  It was opening night of the event and several music students played solo and group pieces in the carriage house as guests made their way through the grounds of the estate and viewed hundreds of jack-o-lanterns.  Sophia was excited to play one of her favorite songs “Little Grey Owl” and also to see Spooktacular again this year.  It didn’t hurt that there was hot chocolate, popcorn and s’mores available along the way.

All Dressed Up
Solo – Little Grey Owl

Here’s the video of her performance on YouTube.

We saw jack-o-lanterns of all shapes and sizes with no two designs the same.

Jack-O-Lantern Stream

Sophia did a great job playing her piece without missing a note and we enjoyed a wonderful fall evening walking the grounds of a beautiful estate.

Catching Up

Mike and Sophia went to a Father-Daughter event at the end of January.  They had a double date with friends of ours and had a wonderful evening of dancing, laughter and fun.  Here they are right before they left for their big date.

Night Out
Sophia & Her Friend Enjoying Kiddie Cocktails

The weather continues to be below average making it less than desirable for outdoor activities.

Arctic Air

We hosted the annual Super Bowl Party at our house.  We got a little creative with an old tablecloth to add to the football theme.

Football Field By Mike & Sophia

Sophia made sure we didn’t forget what day it was by marking it on our daily board.

Super Bowl Sunday

Sophia made Seahawks and Broncos Rainbow Loom bracelets and sold them for $0.50 each. I forgot to take of photo of them, but trust me, they were super cute and sold fast! Daphne was exhausted the next day.

All Tuckered Out

Sebastian had his first of two band concerts of the school year.  The concert included performances by the 6th, 7th & 8th grades.  They all did a great job.

7th Grade Band – iPhone Photo

Sophia had her own musical performance this week.  She played two pieces of music at a piano festival in front of judges.  The festival was at a nearby college.  I wasn’t able to be in the room with her when she played, but she said it went very well.  She will find out the results later this week.

Festival At The College of St. Scholastica – iPhone Photos

We enjoyed my work of art…this giant cookie after dinner on Saturday.  I think I finally have it perfected.  Homemade cookie dough (my secret recipe) baked in a 9 inch springform pan. Crispy, chewy and delicious!

Cookie Perfection

I tried to find inspiration outdoors for a few photos, but came up somewhat empty-handed.

Winter Branch
Birch Bark
Swirly Sky
More Empty Branches

The week ahead looks busy with school conferences, a piano lesson, gymnastics, basketball practices and a tournament.  We may try to fit in some skiing on Sunday if the weather permits.  We are enjoying the longer days and are looking forward to warmer temperatures in the long, long range forecast.

The Pianist

Sophia’s winter piano recital was on Sunday.  She played “Trumpet Tune with O Come All Ye Faithful”.  She also played a song that she composed in October named “Halloween Song”. Her recital was held at Weber Music Hall on the UMD campus.  She really enjoyed playing on the Steinway grand piano.  After playing on such a nice piano, she pointed out that our upright piano at home really needs to be tuned.

Grand Piano
Piano Player

Here is the short YouTube video.  She pauses only for a second or two before she plays the song that she composed (at 54 seconds).  We are really proud of how well she has done with less than a year of piano lessons.  Keep practicing Sophia!