Thursday, November 27, 2014

Happy Thanksgiving from Hannah!

Preparing banana bread
 I really love preparing for Thanksgiving. This morning we got up really early to play finish playing piano and violin. Then we started cleaning the house. We all had different jobs. I dusted the furniture, and Michael and I vacuumed. Sarah swept and washed the floors. Miriam cleaned the bathroom, and Michael did the laundry. We also had to clean up our own rooms. Once the house was cleaned, we got to bake.

We have twins! 
Sarah and I made banana bread, while Michael and Miriam made pumpkin bread. We worked on opposite sides of the table. Sarah and I worked on one end, and Miriam and Michael worked on the other side. Sarah helped me crack the eggs, she did one and I did one. Miriam and Michael also had some eggs to crack for their pumpkin bread.When Miriam was cracking one of the eggs she had twins! There were two yolks in one egg. Then she let Michael have a turn to crack but when he cracked his egg it was just a regular egg. Now it was our turn to crack our eggs. I let Sarah go first, and when she cracked it we also saw twins. When I cracked my egg I noticed it was just one big yolk. To make banana bread, we also had to add the flour, sugar, butter,bananas, and the best part was lots of chocolate chips.The pumpkin bread had flour, sugar, oil, pumpkin puree, spices, and of course lots of chocolate chips.  After we mixed all the ingredients, we put the batter on a greased pan, and set it in the oven to bake for one hour. The kitchen smelled delicious while the breads baked.  




Mashing up the bananas

Michael and Miriam making pumpkin bread

 pouring the batter
adding chocolate chips
All done! Banana and pumpkin bread fresh out of the oven


While we were making the banana bread and pumpkin bread, my dad and grandma were preparing the turkey. They had to clean it, stuff it with fruits and vegetables, season it, and put it in the oven to bake for 5 hours. 



cleaning the turkey

stuffing the turkey

 After baking, we had to put all the ingredients in the right place, wash the dishes and clean the table. Then we are ready to make stuffing. We had four cutting boards. Michael and I cut celery, Sarah cut carrots, and Miriam cut onions.  The onions made Miriam and Sarah cry because Sarah was sitting right next to her. Then Miriam sauteed all the vegetables, and we combined it with the stuffing crumbs and chicken broth.  It all went in the oven to bake.


chopping celerey

peeling carrots

chopping onions and celerey 

sauteing  vegetables 

mixing all the stuffing together

Finally, It was time for cranberry sauce. To make cranberry sauce, we used one bag of cranberries, one cup of orange juice, and one cup of sugar.  It all cooked in a pot until the cranberries popped and thickened into a sauce. It tasted a little sour and sweet at the same time.


making cranberry sauce





Now we have to wait for dinner, and our whole family is coming over. We are going to have aunts, uncles, cousins and grandparents all come over to celebrate Thanksgiving.

What did you do to prepare for Thanksgiving? How are you going to celebrate?




Monday, November 24, 2014

2014 Edublog Nominations


I am very excited to be part of the Edublog nomination process.  I have been blogging for 3 years and have made many friends from all around the world.

Here is my list of blogs that I nominated:

Best Student Blog

Miriam's Magical Moments

One of my favorite student bloggers is my older sister, Miriam. She was the event finalist one year for the best student blog. She has been blogging for four and a half years and has taught me many things about blogging. She has a new and interesting post up at least once a month and always responds to all her comments.

 

Best Class Blog

Mrs Yollis’ Classroom Blog

Mrs. Yollis helps make her classroom interesting through blogging. She has a new interesting post up almost every week and supports her student bloggers by leaving comments on their blogs.  She also comments back to many of her readers on her blog.

Best Group Blog


Mrs. Yollis 365 Project 



I love the 365 blog because it has really encouraged me to take pictures.  It has grown and expanded so much that people from around the world contribute to it.  I now carry my camera everywhere I go thanks to Mrs. Yollis.

 

Library/Librarian Blog

The Bulldog Readers By: Mrs Hembree

Mrs. Hembree is a great librarian who inspires children everywhere to read. She has interesting posts about  books I can read. I also really like her Summer reading contest, where she asks us to submit photos of us reading in  interesting places and ways. 


Check out these great blogs!



Sunday, November 16, 2014

Piano Performances


Over the weekend, Hannah, Michael and I recorded our recently learned piano pieces. 

Sarah
I played Sonata no 6 by Mozart and Album Leaf by Grieg. Mozart was an Austrian composer, and is considered to be the most creative composers of all times. Together with Haydn, he was the leading composer of the classical style of the late 1700's. Mozart started playing at age 4, composing at age 5, and at age 6 he played for the Austrian empress at her court in Vienna! Leopold, Wolfgang's father, took Wolfgang on concert tours through much of Europe, and Wolfgang gave many public performances in front of a large crowd. He also met many famous musicians, and played the organ in many churches. The piece I played was a fast, rowdy piece with numerous sudden changes in dynamics (e.g. louds and quiets). I had to play with strong fingers throughout the piece, as it had many fast notes. I worked very hard to learn the piece by memory, and to play the rhythm evenly. 

The second piece I played was Album Leaf by Grieg. Grieg was a very famous Norwegian composer that composed music for the piano, chorus and orchestra, and numbers for small instrumental groups during the Romantic period. Most of his music was written in the style of Norwegian folk songs and folk dances. Griegs most famous music includes Album Leaf, the song that I recorded, and Wedding Day at Troldhaugen, a song that I am learning to play now. Album Leaf is a very repetitive song, and at the beginning, it has a steady beat in the left hand, and a melody in the right hand. In the middle, however, it changes up, as the right hand has a steady beat, while the left hand has the melody. The hand with the melody needs to play louder than the hand with the rhythm. which was a bit challenging at first. I hope you enjoy listening to these pieces. 





Hannah


This week my mom recorded me playing two pieces, Sonatina 3 by Clementi and Sweet Dreams by Tchaikovsky.  Clementi started playing in a church at the age of 9 and when he was 14 he was invited to England to study music. Clementi composed during the classical period and was considered the best pianist of his time. He composed over 100 Sonatas! He died at age 80 in the English countryside. The sonata is very fast, and I had to have strong fingers to play this piece. It also had many dynamics, such as louds and quiets. The second piece I learned was Sweet Dreams by Tchaikovsky. Tchaikovsky was a Russian composer in the Romantic period, and his pieces had a lot of melody and emotion. He was known for composing many symphonies, operas, and concertos. Sweet Dreams is part of his Children Album, and it is dedicated to his favorite nephew, Vladimir Davydov. This piece was very slow, and is played with the pedal. I hope you enjoy listening to me play!     






Michael 

I recently recorded a piece called Clowns by Kabalevsky. Kabalevsky was a Russian composer that created music for young people, like me.  He wrote pieces for the orchestra, operas, and many instruments. He also composed pieces for children’s choruses. Dmitry Kabalevsky was born in St. Petersberg on December 30th 1904 and died on February 10th, 1987. One of the most important things that he did was try to teach children to like music. He wrote pieces that children would like and set up music programs in schools. The song I played is a fast piece that  has many staccatos. It took a lot of time and practice to learn it because  it was very fast.

Saturday, September 27, 2014

A day at the Dead Sea



Our former neighbors and best friends.
 During our trip to Israel, we visited numerous friends and family members. One of the days, we went to visit family that live in Beer Sheva.This city is considered the capital of the Negev, which is the desert in southern Israel. The family gave us a warm welcome with a large lunch and dinner. We also visited friends that live near Tel-Aviv, which is the second most populous city in Israel. They had two girls close to our age, and we taught them a few popular American games such as Uno. We also painted, and played other entertaining card games. Finally, most of the time we spent, was with our former neighbors who moved to Israel five years ago. Together we spent time at the beach, played tag, and just reunited together. They taught us many Israeli games and Hebrew words and phrases. We were really happy to see them again, and hope that we will see them again soon.


Spending time with friends in Beer Sheva

Playing Uno





My dad, sister, and I floating in the Dead Sea
Another place we went to in Israel was the Dead Sea.  It was a 3 hour drive from where we were staying in Netanya. While driving we saw numerous wild camels roaming the Negev desert. When we finally arrived at the Dead Sea, it was over a hundred degrees! Since it was so hot, we decided to get a day pass at a hotel to hide from the heat.  The hotel had a swimming pool, spa's, and the Dead Sea was just across the street. The swimming pool was very refreshing, as it was blazing hot outside. We would go to the Dead Sea, and float for a while, and then once our body was overheated, we would run back to the pool, shower off the salt, and then jump in the pool. The Dead Sea is 9.6 times as salty as the ocean! Not only is it salty, but it is also very oily, and before we were allowed to go into the pool, we had to shower. The Dead Sea is the saltiest body of water, and since it contains so much salt, it makes you float. Since there is so much salt, no animals can live there, which is why it is called the Dead Sea. What was really amazing was that there was so much salt, that salt crystals developed on the sand.  The downside, is that the salt also stings all of our cuts and bruises. However, after a while, the body gets used to it, and it no longer stings. We had to wear shoes when we went in because the sea floor bed was rocky and hurt our feet. If one of our shoes floated off, that was not a problem, because it would just float up, and we would find it right away.

Taken from the car as we where driving to the Dead Sea
At about 6 o'clock, we started our drive back to Netanya. About one hour into our drive, our front left tire popped, and completely disintegrated. We quickly pulled over to the side of the road to examine the damage. We could feel the hot air on our faces as the cars and trucks zoomed by. We were in the middle of the desert, with no gas station or people in sight. We were very lucky that we had a spare tire, and a very handy dad that new how to change a tire. While my dad was putting in a new tire, we took out a blanket, and waited away from the freeway near a field. Soon we were on our way, and glad to have arrived home safely.
 




Refreshing Pool