Archive for the ‘Emily’ Category.

New Braces

Today was the day that Emily got her braces put in. She was definitely apprehensive about getting braces put in in the first place. She thinks she looks funny. The thing is, most of the girls in her class at school and at church have braces too. I think she looks really cute in her new braces and I hope that she will brush and take care of her teeth so they will look good when the braces finally come out.

This is when the technician was showing Emily the proper way to floss with braces
I had Emily give me a big smile as we were leaving the orthodontist

Science Fair

We finally finished up both Emily and Anne’s science fair projects tonight. Anne did all her researcch and experimentation a few weeks ago and made her display a couple of days ago so she wasn’t rushed at the end. I forced Emily to change projects relatively late in the game so she needed every last day to finish her report and display. That being said, she has been working on the research for the last couple of weeks now so putting the final report and display together tonight wasn’t too big of a project.

Anne’s project was the same old paper towel project that we’ve done for the past two years. After the third year in a row of that project I put my foot down and said that nobody can do paper towels again. No surprising results in this project. While it probably won’t win an award it is certainly worth a good grade.

Anne’s Display

Emily’s project was “Effects of Soft Water on a Seed”. I was actually interested in doing this project with Emily to determine if watering seeds with soft water would hurt them. Emily’s project produced surprising results in that the seeds watered with soft water sprouted faster and grew faster than the hard water seeds. We were expecting soft water seeds to do worse because soft water is reputedly bad for plants due to the high salt content.

Emily’s Display

One thing that might have produced unexpected results was that the water temperature of soft water is warmer than that of hard water. This is due to the fact that soft water goes through the indoor water softener first while hard water comes in directly from outside. I think I’ll try the experiment again when I start my garden seedlings in a month or two and see if better controlling the water temperature produces a different outcome.

Overall I thought the girls both did a good job on their projects and I’m glad that we’re done for this year. Next year Emily will be in Middle School where science fair isn’t a requirement and Texas will be in 3rd grade where it is also not a requirement. Thus, we’ll only have Anne’s project next year…


Houston, We Have A Young Woman

Emily’s really looked forward to her 12th birthday because she finally would graduate from Primary and join the Young Women’s organization. It’s been quite interesting thinking about her being in Young Women’s. She definitely isn’t a little girl any more. She had her interview with the Bishop and worked on Faith in God tasks right up until the last minute but was able to complete everything in time. I’m a bit disappointed in the Faith in God program for Primary girls – not the program itself but the fact that there really is no award at the end. Just a signature by the Bishop and Primary President in the back of the booklet – not even a certificate or anything else to hang on the wall. The cub scouts get beads and badges and I even had that cool looking torch where you could stick a little button on each article of faith you memorized. But the girls get nothing. Just an “atta girl” and that’s all. Nancy thinks chapels should be built with a Priesthood Room because they all have Relief Society rooms. I think primary girls should get some type of little trinket or something when they complete their Faith in God.


Emily’s birthday party was just a low-key family affair and with the YW presidency coming over to visit, and meeith with the Bishop, and getting ready for Young Women’s, I don’t think Emily minded a bit that she didn’t have a friend party. Happy Birthday to Emily and here’s hoping that the soon-to-be-upon-us teenage years can go relatively smoothly.

Blee’s first sewing project

I have been helping Emily finish her faith in God award for Primary. One of the things she had to do was to make something and display it. So I helped her make an apron for her first ever foray into sewing. She did a great job for her first try.


Guess Who’s Twelve?

I have always told my girls that they had to wait until they are twelve before they could get their ears pierced. Even though Emily won’t be twelve for a few more days, Saturday is the best day to go because there is no school and Anne can stay home and babysit. Earlier in the week I searched on the internet for places to get your ears pierced. I was definitely not going to go to a shady place in SLC so I decided on a store in the mall. So we were off to Claire’s, but what I didn’t realize was that it would be really busy because of all the Christmas shoppers. There was only one clerk in the store so we had to wait a little while until another showed up. Finally the time came to get it done. Emily was slightly nervous, but she did a great job,she only flinched a little bit when the earrings went in.

Emily is happy but nervous

Emily is happy and grateful it’s over.

Piano Recital

Emily and Anne had their piano recital this evening. One thing I like about this teacher is that she makes the kids memorize the pieces and she makes them bow. Both Emily and Anne did a pretty good job (a few mistakes here and there). I think they’re progressing fairly well. Now if I can only get Caroline to make progress.

Anne playing “Jericho”

NOTE: This is the first time I’ve uploaded video to the internet so we’ll see how it goes. I’m using YouTube for now so that their bandwidth is consumed and not my own; however, Nancy is fussing over the fact that the video is on YouTube – she has some fear that people will use it for nefarious purposes. We’ll see how it goes…

NOTE 2: The knocking sound is an artifact of when I transferred the video from the camera to the computer. I’ll have to mess with my video transfer settings and figure out why that is occuring.

Emily playing a sonatina

In past recitals, Grandma or Grandpa has been there and have taken the kids out for a treat afterwards. I didn’t really want to go out for a treat this time but I was the only one (I could tell Nancy was campaigning to not have to go home and make dinner) so I got outvoted. Nancy chose the place: Iceberg Drive Inn. (Yes, it’s really spelled that way). Not my favorite place but Nancy sure likes it.


I think her favorite thing about Iceberg is the the shakes. The big shake in the picture is called a “mini-shake”. I would hate to see what the large size looks like…


Emily’s Birthday

Emily turned eleven on Tuesday December 12th. We celebrated by going to Leatherby’s for dinner and ice cream. The kids had lots of fun and made a big mess of themselves. Afterwards we went home and Emily opened her presents. She was happy to finally get a tomagachi like her sister Anne. Now they both can play with those little electronic pets to their hearts content. Emily also got the game of LIFE and a couple of barbie dolls.




What Would NASA Do Without Me?

Emily had trouble answering one of her homework questions for math class: “What is more accurate: a measurement given in centimeters or a measurement given in millimeters?”

The author of this question made the classic mistake of confusing precision and accuracy. Precision is about being well defined while accuracy is about correctness. The unit in which a measurement is given has nothing to do with its accuracy (unless the unit is incorrect of course).

Take, for example, the question “What is the value of pi?” An answer of “2.78495718397583711985” would be very precise but not accurate. An answer of “3.14” would be accurate but not necessarily precise. The amount of precision needed depends upon who’s asking the question. If your math teacher asks you “What is the value of pi?” then the answer “3.14” would be accurate and precise enough for the situation. However, if a NASA engineer is calculating orbits for the space shuttle and asks you for the value of pi, “3.14” is probably not going to cut it. Space shuttle orbits require significantly more precision, say, 3.14159265358979323846264338327950288419716939937510

What? NASA engineers aren’t regularly asking you for the value of pi? Well, it must just be you, buddy, because I’ve got NASA engineers calling me night and day wanting to know the value of pi. It’s a good thing I know all about precision and accuracy.

So, in answer to the question “What is more accurate: a measurement given in centimeters or a measurement given in millimeters?”, I had Emily write the following:

“Neither. A measurement given in millimeters may be more precise but not necessarily more accurate.”

I then wrote a little explanatory paragraph below her answer:

“Emily’s Dad thinks this is a poor question because it confuses the concepts of precision and accuracy”.

Who knows, maybe Emily’s teacher is a former NASA engineer and will appreciate an answer like that? Now, if we can just get Emily through fractions we’ll be making good progress…

Ward Christmas Party

This is the second year in a row that we went to our Ward Christmas Party. I’m generally not the sociable type so I pretty much avoid ward activities when I can but Emily’s primary group was putting on a little play so I didn’t mind going.


The play was short on dialog and long on lots of little girls fluttering around like angels. They also showed a couple of scenes from a movie about Jesus’ life. I wasn’t really focusing that much on the script because I was trying to keep the camera trained on Emily. She is sixth from the right in the picture above.


After the play I snuck back to the dressing room and got Emily to pose for a picture in her little angel costume. I think she had fun participating and, heck, it’s the least I can do to go see Emily at the Ward Christmas Party.

I’ll probably be attending more ward activities in the future because I lost my dream calling (playing the piano in Primary) and am now the Elder’s Quorum secretary. Thus, I’ll feel more of an obligation to go and socialize than I would if I was still the primary pianist. Oh well, it’s better than being the Sunday School President – I hated that calling.