Blog Ian

Wednesday, October 07, 2009

The Online Art Gallery of Ian, Fine Artiste

Ian has continued to develop his artistic skills. So, we've decided to create an online art gallery for him, which will be updated on an ongoing basis, as quickly as I can fire up the scanner.

If you have an RSS reader, you can even subscribe to the album and receive updates as new images are added.

Here's a sample of some recent additions:

“My family go to the SMR.” Ian's family inside two submarines . Stairsteps go up to periscopes . Large propeller on back. Squiggly line indicates water line. Long line on left connects a little ship with an anchor.

Our house -- with a chimney in brown on the left and smoke ascending. The object on the left is our garbage can, with its lid and wheels. The front door has a knocker at the top. Me: “Why are there threes on it?” Ian: “Because that's how much it costs.”

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Ian's Family Portraits

Ian's been quite busy at his new school (Matthews Elementary) -- learning more about letters and numbers and how to survive lunch in a cafeteria.

He's also made great strides in his drawing skills. Here are the first family portraits he has ever drawn. The top row contains Mommy and Ian and the bottom is Daddy and Babcia (his grandmother Galbraith).

His second family portrait sticks with the nuclear family: Mommy (left), Daddy (right) and Ian (below). As he explains, Daddy is very happy, as can be seen by his huge smile. He is not wearing his glasses because this drawing is from before he needed them.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Ian's First Day of Kindergarten

11 August 2009 marked the beginning of Ian's formal schooling. Having graduated from preschool last may (see the entry for 10 May 2009), Ian continued to hang on at the Child Development Research Center Children's Program throughout the summer. As July came to an end, however, so did his time with them and with his much loved teachers, Ms. Alison and Ms. Gale. They did a great job preparing him for "big kids" school.

And so, on that fateful Tuesday, he put on his new backpack (with matching lunch box inside) and he, his mommy and his daddy headed off to Matthews Elementary School. He was so ready to go!

There was a bit of a traffic jam that morning as all the new kids figured out how to get there. Fortunately we made it inside before the "tardy bell" rang. (Yes, we have now entered a world of tardy bells. Sweet Jesus! At the Children's Program we could saunter in any old time. No longer!)

Ms. Owens, Ian's teacher, had all the kindergarten kids line up in the hallway as we waited for everyone to arrive. Ian was very patient and sat waiting and talking to a new friend next to him. When Ms. Owens called them in, he was one of the first to hop up and, without so much as a look back at his misty-eyed mom and dad, he was into his new classroom and sitting at his desk.

We'd gone to an open house the day before so he knew just where to sit.

Later, Marysia picked him up and his teacher's report (filed in his backpack everyday) showed a smiley face for a job well done! :) One can also receive frown faces :( or non-plussed faces :| so we were quite proud of our young scholar.

Unfortunately, he came down with a fever and headache Wednesday night so we had to keep him home on Thursday. He quickly recovered, however, and was back at school Friday. Of course, Marysia had to write (our first ever!) absence-excuse note! I guess we truly are parents of a school kid now. Oh, and Ian had homework -- homework in kindergarten -- to do over the weekend.

There ain't no going back.

It feels very odd to make this transition from a school environment based on learning through play to kindergarten, where learning can still be fun, but it also can just be work.

I'm sure that there's going to be a lot of learning for both Ian and his parents in the years to come.

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Ian's New School in the News

Ian's school and his teacher have been featured in two recent Tuscaloosa News stories. The first, an article about the Tuscaloosa County School System's financial squeeze, features a photograph of Ian's kindergarten teacher, Ms. Rebekah Owens, in their classroom at Matthews Elementary School!

And the second article describes how University of Alabama students spruced up Matthews' halls with new murals:

Ian has had an excellent first week, with Ms. Owens rewarding him with a smiley face for his work. (Each week the students either get a smiley face, a frown face, or a face with a straight line -- to indicate their progress that week.) More on the first day, with photos, to follow.

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Sunday, May 10, 2009


Here's the diploma. It's official now!

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Ian Graduates from Pre-School

Last Friday Ian went through his first "graduation" -- from a program at his pre-school called "Kindergarten Connection." It's a program to help the pre-schoolers adjust to actual kindergarten, which Ian starts in just three months!

I put together a little slideshow of the event...

If you have trouble seeing the video above, you can find it at:

Sunday, February 08, 2009

Ian Says Good-bye to His Stroller

The time has come.

Ian has gotten too big for the stroller that he has used from birth. It'd seen some hard travelin' and was getting mildewed. We didn't feel we could rightly hand it down to someone else.

And so, with heavy heart, Ian rolled it down to the curb today, to be claimed by tomorrow's trash pick-up (or perhaps by a passing scavenger in need of a well-used stroller).

To commemorate the event, we've made a photo montage and posted it to YouTube. It should be embedded below, or you can go directly to YouTube:

Good-bye, old friend.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Ian Butler, Scientist

Last night, Ian asked if he can play with food coloring. I decided, "why not?" After adding colors to water for a while, it was bath time. Ian was still absorbed in his color experiments, so I suggested he continue them in the bath. Here is the result.

I expect it will wear off before school on Monday.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Non-competitive Soccer

Ian played in a non-competitive soccer league in the fall of 2008, on the Bears.

The league has a policy of cheering all goals that are scored. And everybody plays. I like that.

Ian excelled at wandering around and falling down without provocation. I understand the latter is a valuable skill in professional soccer--all the better to draw penalty flags.