1. From my neighbor and friend, who's also a pediatrician: A recent study from Sweden suggests kids with attentional difficulties may focus better in the presence of white noise. Now that's counterintuitive. Do we need a fish tank? Or should we study at the food court at the mall?
2. We spent the morning with Stefani and her three delightful boys at the Austin Nature and Science Center. Somehow, that giant Dino Digging pit never loses its charm. Even better, the ANSC has a trading counter, staffed by a naturalist, where kids can bring the treasures they find in the wild or posters they've made and earn points, which they use to "purchase" other folks' treasures. Caroline brought in two large chunks of calcite, thanks to some help from her big brother. Never one to let a windfall burn a hole in her pocket, she promptly spent her points on ten vertebrae. The naturalist also gave the kids a mini lesson about the Mexican plums they found on the ground. Love this place.
3. We just finished listening to Peter and the Starcatchers, Dave Barry and Ridley Pearson's prequel to Peter Pan, on CD. It's an absolutely riproaring yarn narrated by a fabulous voice actor, Jim Dale. Find it at the library. We were all on the edge of our seats. And our booster seats.
4. The Texas Book Festival, Laura Bush's baby, is this weekend, and for once we're actually in town for it. We may go. I haven't decided. How can I turn down a giant book festival? If you know me, you know I feel festive about books. On the other hand, I'm not feeling jazzed about any of the authors in particular, and lately our weekends have been soooo busy, almost crazily so. Plus, I told Ian that if he finished the entire Guardians of Ga'hoole series before the movie left the theaters, I'd take him on a date to see it. This is a huge treat. The movie will probably disappoint after the books, but we all have to learn that tough life lesson sooner or later.
Have a wonderful autumn weekend!