Thursday, May 30, 2013

Another Season of Soccer....Still Loving It, but Keeping Options Open

Miss A has completed her fourth straight year of soccer; eight seasons.  She started playing when she turned five while she was in her red shirt year of preschool and has played each fall and spring since.  This year as a U8 player, she's adjusted to having an actual goalie in the box and some fierce competition on the field.  Unlike past seasons when our team went undefeated, we even lost a game or two this spring.  Of course, the biggest problem with the season this year was the WEATHER.  Seriously, I think the beginning of the season had more cancelled games than actual games.  Every Thursday and Saturday it rained (or snowed) no kidding.

Our Shock team has been together for two years, but things are about to change.  Third Grade is the beginning of Select Soccer and about half of our team is heading up to the more competitive league.  Miss A is not.  She has decided that while she loves Soccer, she also loves Basketball, Softball and wants to try Volleyball this Fall meaning select soccer is out, but recreational soccer is "in" for us.

I remember when Mr C was about 8 or 9 and playing both basketball and baseball, a coach at a summer baseball camp recommended that it was time to specialize in only one sport and play that sport all year long.  Mr C loved baseball, but he also loved basketball and golf.  He especially loved those teams that his friends were on allowing him to play and socialize at the same time.  We decided that for Mr C playing all the sports he wanted was the best decision for him and we think the same is true for Miss A.  She loves the sport and the competition, but she loves being with her friends just as much and trying new things.

For now we are going to keep on trying them all, there is plenty of time to specialize!

Monday, May 27, 2013

Where did this School Year Go? Hello Summer!

It's hard to believe that another school year has come and gone.  In fact, I still feel like it's only March or early April (the weather doesn't help my delusion) and my projects that I had planned out in September are still undone.  However, I know that weather or not I'm done with the list, the kids will be home for the summer and I want to cherish these moments with them more than anything.  I wish I had a picture of everyone on their last day this year, but sadly it was raining in the morning and the roofers were are our house bright an early to put on a new roof.  Let's just say our front porch was "unsafe" for a photo opportunity!

Mr C is now half way done with his High School career.  He will be a Junior next fall.  Be still my beating heart as I can't even imagine how quickly these last two years are going to go.  I'm so proud of the young man he is becoming that I can't wish him to stop growing up, but oh it's hard.  C really bloomed in 10th grade; trying out a new sport (tennis) and lettering in golf.  His grades are stellar and he's really giving his all in everything he does.  This summer we plan to look at at least one college prospect and are beginning the process of figuring out what's best for C's future.

Miss M is about to start her 8th Grade year and we are beginning the process of looking at her high school options.  She loved school this year and had some excellent teachers that not only taught her well, but loved her too.  Her favorite reading teacher is leaving the school, but has promised M that she will be in touch and expects to hear great things about her in the future.  This summer Miss M is trying out a few new activities; golf, volunteering with special needs kids at a camp and looking into acting in the fall.  It will be fun to watch M spread her wings a little bit and venture out of her comfort zone.

Miss A loved second grade, but is very excited about third grade as she hears the math is challenging and they get to play on the big kid playground at recess. Of course, she told me this week that she still thinks of herself as a 2nd grader and can't imagine how she could be so big as to be in 3rd grade and only two years from moving up to the Middle School.  If  you think she's amazed, you should see her mother!  Miss A continues to have fun with her friends, cause her parents and friends to giggle, and add so much joy to daily life.

All in all it was a fantastic school year full of knowledge, growth and opportunities to expand our horizons. My goal this summer is to just enjoy being with my kids spending time creating new memories, trying ouot a few new things and places, and finding time to relax and unwind from the hustle of the school year.  It's a blessing to have this opportunity to be with my kids and I intend to soak in all these moments!

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Giving Back: A Girl Scout Field Trip

Our Brownie troop had just finished working on the Philanthropy Badge and wanted to put some of what we'd learned about non profits giving back and serving others into action.  We decided as a troop to expereince in person two area organizations that help families and children by offering them some supplies to fill their pantry and closets.  In addition to the girls' each bringing items to share, our troop gave each organization a portion of our Cookie Sale profits in Target Gift Cards.

The first stop on the field trip was at Teddy Bear Hollow which is a place for families and children who are dealing with the death of a loved one.  TBH exists to mend the hearts of grieving children and families through support groups, camps, and other activities.  The Brownies did a great job listening to the Director who gave them a tour, showed them a movie about the programs (which got all the mothers in the room teary), and discussed how to help friends in grief.  Miss A was thrilled when she learned that the craft supplies she brought along would be used to make Memory Photo Frames and Christmas Ornaments.

Our second stop on the Field Trip was to the Rainbow House which is a great organization that provides free accommodations for families who have a child under going care at Children's Hospital. Our family had the privilege of serving lunch there on Christmas so I was so excited to show this off to the girls. We were excited to learn that Rainbow House is in the process of building an even bigger and better "home away from home for families" as the need is so big that on the day that we toured the House, it was filled to capacity.

The girls thought the Rainbow House was such a nice place and fell in love with the idea of helping out so we signed up to bring dinner in June for the Guests.  It was a lightbulb moment for these girls to see families who are spending time away from all the things and people they know to care for a child in the hospital.  I could see their hearts begin to swell with pride thinking they might be able to help just a little bit.  What a great moment to see the girls realize that they could be difference makers!

Monday, May 20, 2013

Field Day Fun

Today was Miss A's Field Day at school and you couldn't have asked for better weather or more excited children.  After volunteering for the events for ten years straight, I finally got the easy job of passing out Popsicles and supervising the rest and bathroom break.  Guess it helps when one of your friends is in charge of the event.  I did complain however that it was a little chilly for these old fingers to stand in shade and put my hands in a cooler of ice cubes and cut open the Popsicles.  By mid morning, I might have lost feeling in my fingers; but I will take this job over some of the more challenging parts of Field Day.

Miss A had a fabulous day.  Second grade had the morning time for Field Day meaning she barely had time to sit as her desk before it was time to go out and play tug of war, jump hurdles, run around the track and eat a Popsicle.  The school also had their annual BBQ Picnic with Grilled Hamburgers and all the sides.  Of course, our Food Snob Miss A does not eat ground meat so no Hamburger for her! She's a steak person all the way.  Thankfully, I planned ahead and had packed a picnic for Miss A and my husband and I.

There is something about Field Day at the Elementary School that just makes you feel all nostaglic and realize what a rite of passage these kind of days are in life. Miss A had just a fabulous day and the smile and her face and the sound of her giggling with her friends just makes you feel joyful.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Essay Win Gets Miss M One Step Ahead on College Trail.

Miss M won a State Essay Contest and a $1000 Scholarship for an Essay on "Why I Want to Go to College." She was chosen as the 2nd Place Winner from among 1500 entries and as a result was given a College Saving Bond.  Her essay talked about her desire to go to college and become a Pediatric Oncology Nurse and how her dream can best be achieved by attending College.  

We are so proud of Miss M and were thrilled with the State Treasurer's Office called on her birthday to inform her that she was the 2nd place winner.  What a great day to find out!  

As part of the award package, she was given tickets to a nearby Minor League Baseball Game and presented with her award on the field before the first pitch.  Amazingly, the tickets for a Sunday Afternoon in May were actually on a day that we had nothing our family calendar except for poor Mr C who needed to stay home and study for finals.  

To add to the festivities, it was also Mascot Day at the Ballpark and we got autographs from some pretty cool looking mascots and were able to give out a few hugs and high fives.  Both Miss M and Miss A were laughing at the Tyson Chicken Mascot who's floppy arms made it next to impossible to sign the autograph sheet and my dear husband found it hilarious to "mock" a Mascot from an opposing High School.  The Mascot was very friendly until he read my husband's hat which was from Mr C's school!

Moments before the game started, Miss M's name was announced over the intercom system in the stadium and she was handed her award from the Treasurer.  I tried to get a great picture from the front row, but the nasty "net" was in the way.  Guess that fans who sit there probably like the net though when there is a foul ball. 

Finally, it was time to "play some ball!"  Our seats were great and we were really enjoying the game and the snacks when the heavens opened up and the rain and thunder started.  We watched while the grounds crew laid out the tarp on the field and decided maybe we should seek some shelter.  After about 40 minutes, we decided to call it a day with the promise that we'd see more baseball this summer; maybe even an afternoon of sitting on the "Burm" as a family and having a ballpark hot dog!

Congratulations Miss M on your first College Scholarship and your excellent essay.  We know that God has big plans for your future. We are so proud of you!  By the way, Miss M has already received some college recruitment letters so guess that good news travel fast!

Friday, May 17, 2013

Last Day of Bible Study: A Pinterest Project

I really can't believe how quickly this school year has flown by.  It seems like just yesterday we were starting out with new backpacks and supplies.  I'm still wrapping my head around the fact that Miss M will start her last year of Junior High in the fall, Mr C will be a HS Junior, and Miss A will be in 3rd grade.  What happened!

One of my favorite parts of the school year routine is my Mom's Bible Study group every other Friday morning. I really love these ladies.  My dream of having a group of women from our elementary school join me in a Bible study started when Mr C was in 1st Grade and it's still alive. What a refreshing way to connect with other Christian Moms and build a community within our school community.  It's been a wild ride with these women.  There have been challenges that some of these women have faced with such strong faith that I can be nothing but amazed at their courage.  Life can be hard but knowing that we are covered with prayer, grace and friendship has made some of these journeys a little easier, I hope.

I loved that as some women have had to move on or out God has given us new women to fill their shoes.  He really is amazing in that way!

Long ago we decided that our group would take the summer off from official study and just try a few Mom/Kid fun events.  So as a way to get our "game faces on" for a summer with our kids, we had our last meeting at Mimi's Cafe.  I really wanted to give the ladies a gift, but couldn't come up with something that was both meaningful and easy until I went to Pinterest.  Now I must admit I try to avoid looking at people's pins because it can cause me angst seeing all the fabulousness that some people create, make and wear! I figure if I don't know about it I can't feel the pressure to live up to the standard.

However, this time, I not only found the perfect project: Scripture Memory Cards but I was able to make them without any stress (which in May is amazing) and I loved how they turned out.  I think this could be a great gift for lots of situations and I plan on having a few on hand for those last minute gifts. The creator of the cards allows you download the page so all I needed to do was print it off, use the paper cutter to cut them out and then attach them to some fun tags and bind off with ribbon.  Perfect.

I loved our Bible Study Brunch and I'm already excited for our Fall Kickoff Party with a great new bible study planned.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Tip Toe Through The Tulips

After a wonderful morning of Church and lunch with the Family, our family of five decided to go to a local Botanical Garden to walk around in the beautiful spring weather (a rare treat) and take in their Lego Exhibit.  It was a perfect afternoon and while the flowers were not in full bloom and the crowd was large, we really enjoyed our time together in the sunshine.

We are fully in those days that you dream of when your children are toddlers and babies.  Those days that you can spend an entire afternoon "out and about" not worrying about diaper bags, nap time or sippy cups. Of course with a teenage boy in the family, we do have to fit in meal and snack time to keep him happy!  I love afternoons like this when our plans are fluid and there is no need to rush and there is time for the kids to just roam and P and I to walk together and chat.

The Lego Exhibit was amazing.  More than once I looked at something thinking it was a live plant or animal only to look closer and see it was a Lego creation.  Mr C got a kick out of the Lawn Mower and tried to convince me that he could handle mowing this way every week.  I don't recall him smiling that much with our own Toro.

While Miss M was off taking close up pictures for some postcards she's hoping to create, Miss A and I enjoyed the Lego Lilly pad and Fish.  We both admitted that there was no way we had the patience or talent to make such detailed creations out of Legos.  Miss A currently loves her Lego Friends Creations, but is thankful for the most part that the Soccer Field, Stage and Watercraft were easily assembled.

All in all, a wonderful way to spend Mother's Day with the family.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Math Facts Mastered: Frozen Yogurt Consumed

I am not a Math person.  I live with Math People, but I don't claim to be one of them.  Miss A is a math person.  She gets math and thinks its a fun challenge to learn to do the next thing mathematically.   In second grade, you take "Time Tests" on Math Facts twice a week.  It is 100 questions in five minutes.  Serious Stuff.  The goal is for you to progress through five sets of tests in a year; addition,subtraction, multiplication, division, and finally mixed review.  Miss A's class took the test each Tuesday and Thursday and once you mastered a test with a 95% percent correct you could move on to the next test.

Five minutes is not very long and the pressure and stress to get them all right can be a little hard to handle, but Miss A was breezing right along the first few months and by January she was nearly done with all the tests with just mixed review standing in her way of total success.  In early February, she finished all the tests and was waiting to collect her prize: a trip to TCBY with the teacher.

Could there be any better treat than going out for frozen yogurt with the teacher?  Miss A's teacher smartly waits until there is a group of three that can go before arranging the trip and for Miss A's trip the date was Wednesday May 1st.  Of course, this was the day that the weather decided to "go south" and we had winter like conditions (and snow later that night), but that didn't stop a group of 2nd graders from having a blast with their teacher at TCBY.

Miss A said the Rainbow Sherbet was well worth all the effort!

Golf Season Finally,,,

It has been an interesting spring in terms of weather; snow late in the season, rain in the midst of a drought and of course temperatures that are nearly thirty degrees below normal with winds in the double digits.  As a golf team member, the weather has been the greatest obstacle to play.  Tournaments cancelled, courses closed, and winds that made the driving range hazardous have been more the norm than the exception.

 April Tournament with a Frost Delay...

According to Mr C, this season when he's been on "his game" more than ever before they have had more photo shoots for team pictures and promotion than they have had practice rounds and tournaments.  It got to the point that you hated to watch the weather forecast because you knew if a tournament was scheduled that the weatherman would be talking about snow, rain, or unseasonable conditions.  We started to call this the "golf season that wasn't a season."  In fact, Mr C might have suggested that maybe we should move or he should be allowed to play in the fall with the girls team because they have better weather.

Last Day of April tournament was at my Parent's Course; girls had day off so we watched from the deck. Snacks for the golfers were a hit.

Thankfully, Mr C did get a few fun tournaments under his belt this year and even had the opportunity to go to the District Tournament.  I was thrilled that I got to catch up with him on a few holes and capture a few photos; the only rule was that I could not talk to him between holes and that I needed to contain my enthusiasm.  It's hard to not cheer for a guy Rocking the Red Pants, but I tried my best to golf clap and quietly cheer!

District Golf: Finally Nice Weather and Very Challenging Course

This summer, Mr C plans to continue honing his Golfing Skills and is playing in a Junior Golf Tour around the state to get a little more experience in tournament play.  Hopefully, the weather will be a little more golf friendly in the months ahead.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Second Grade Field Trip: A Shopper's Delight

When Miss A came home from school a few weeks ago with a permission slip for an upcoming Field Trip, I almost thought it was a joke.  The Field Trip was scheduled for a local Apple Store and a nearby Sporting Goods Store including a ride on their indoor Ferris Wheel.  I wondered what the point was of taking a bunch of 8 year old to a shopping center during a school day.  That didn't stop me from signing the form and volunteering to chaperone.  I'm all up for adventure.

By the end of the day, I was pretty impressed about just how beneficial and educational our morning was.  At the Sporting Goods store we learned about shipping/ receiving, displaying items for sale, and how items are priced.  We took a tour of the amazing "underground" to see where all the mannequins "live" before hitting the floor and gawked at just how many different items there are waiting to go out on show floor.  We then had to spend a pretend $50 in the camping area and use our math skills to determine how many different items we could purchase without going over and then try again and again to get the most out of $50.  I loved that one of the little boys in my group decided each time to find the one item at 49.99 to buy so not to walk around too much looking for items!  Miss A found items we could use on our canoe trip this summer in Colorado and is already planning on going back for a few Father's Day gifts.  She has got it figured out down to the last penny.  Guess I'll be responsible for the "taxes."

The Ferris Wheel, of course, was pure fun.  I enjoyed the opportunity to sit on the sidelines and take pictures as I'm not really a ride person.  As expected, most of my pictures turned out blurry as they kept going around and around (which I suppose is the goal of a Ferris wheel, but makes picture taking a challenge), but I'll never forget hearing all the girls yell "Hi Miss Jill" each time they went around!

At the Apple Store, I realized just how old I am.  I know nothing about Apple Computers.  I'm a PC Girl all the way.  I had to confess to the Miss A's teacher that I would be little to no help on making the PowerPoint Presentation (It's not even called a PowerPoint on MAC's, but I can't remember the real name) and I was useless.  My role quickly became to find the Apple Store Employee and point them in the right direction to help the kids.  I couldn't believe how many people come into an Apple Store in the middle of a Thursday morning either.  The Genius Bar always seemed like such a mystical place to me before this morning with a group of 2nd Graders that seemed almost like mini genius in their elements making presentations on ipads and imacs.

I can honestly say that after spending about two and half hours with a bunch of second graders at the shopping center and learning about retail, money and computers, I walked away exhausted.  Something about the energy these kids have this late in the school year, the fact that I was totally out of my element in the computer store, and that it seemed like February outside with the chilly temps and snow on the walkways made it all a little surreal.  I have even more respect for school teachers and how you have to be "on" all day long.

Miss A thought it was a fabulous morning and loved every minute.  The bus ride back and forth to school was an added bonus.  I'm just grateful that I get these small opportunities to experience life with Miss A and her friends while getting a glimpse into her world.  What a blessing it is to be able to tag along on these moments of her childhood that she will long remember.  It's not everyday that you get to ride a Ferris Wheel in the middle of the school day with your best friends.

Oh, what a life.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

A Day of Honors

We should probably have named May 1st as " Mr C's Day of Honors."  He was honored not only at the Downtown Rotary Luncheon with the Better Business Bureau's Student Service Excellence Award, but also had Honor's Night at his school that night.  Of course, his sisters would have balked at renaming the day just for him as they think he just needs to walk into a room and someone will clap and give him a certificate.

Mr C was a Rotary Honor Roll Student in 8th Grade and thus eligible as a Sophomore for the Service Excellence Award in which the BBB gives a check for $200 to the charity of C's choice.  He chose a food bank that he and has grandparents have served at nearly once a month for the past year.  We are thrilled to think of all the food that gift will allow the food bank to purchase.  I was thrilled that I could be Mr C's date to the luncheon and watch him walk across the stage to receive the award.  Mr C didn't mind that this luncheon meant skipping out of school for a few hours and a free lunch. He did complain however that the lunch was a little skimpy and we needed to stop off for some beef jerky before returning to school! Guess at an All Boys High School he is used to more than just a chicken breast and rice for lunch!

Later that night, we went to Mr. C's high school honors night where we were amazed to find out that he had been awarded the Academic All State Award for Golf.  This is a state award given out by the Athletic Association for Schools for being both a difference maker on the team and maintaining at least a 3.8 GPA during the season.  Amazing.  It is such a blessing to watch your children excel in life and take on a challenge, push themselves, and achieve their goals.  Mr C was determined last spring that he wanted to make Varsity Golf this year and spent the better part of last summer, fall, and winter making that dream true by shear will, practice, practice and more practice.  His dream of making Varsity was achieved and his efforts to help the team were acknowledged.  It doesn't get better than this.

Probably the most amazing part of "honor's day" was that as we sat in the gym it would begin to snow outside and pile up on the roads.  It was May 1st.  Really. Snow that made the normally 15 minute ride back home into a knuckle holding drive of 30 minutes.  As we were leaving the event, the Head of School told us to drive carefully and reminded us all that at last years' event the weather outside was 90 degrees.  Gotta love our hometown; the weather is fickle.

Friday, May 10, 2013

Eagle Scout Ceremony:: Great Prep for the Future

I would say that planning an Eagle Scout Court of Honor Ceremony and Party is pretty much a dry run for a big Graduation Party.  Let's just say that I now understand why Senior Parents look so exhausted in May.  All worth the effort for a day to remember for years to come; but boy that was some work!  I kept thinking I should be getting my own Eagle Scout Award.  Well I kinda did; the mother's pin.  That word alone makes me chuckle because that was the only part of the party I didn't really run through in my head before hand and it's where the funniest part of the day happened.
Now before I pull out all the gushy parts about the pride I felt that day or the joy it was to see this first big milestone happen in my son's life, here are few of the "outtakes" of the day and the planning.  The small details I don't want to forget.  I'll gush and awe later..

My Top Five Eagle Scout Memories:
  1. The Video.  I am not a video producer.  I barely know how to edit my photos on Picasa, but for some reason I was sure I could create the movie of the boys scouting years.   I gathered all the photos I could from Tiger Cubs on up and put them all on Picasa, uploaded Mr J's photos, and then tried to mesh the two into something looking like a video.  Good Start.  Hours of work. However, when it came to adding music, I just couldn't get it to work.  After three straight days of working on the video with no luck, I casually said to Mr C that it would just be without music.  He went on my computer and in ten minutes had uploaded everything to Windows Movie Maker and had two song synced perfectly.  Ten minutes max.  At that moment, I wondered if he would live to see the video at the party, because I wanted to kill him.  Where had he been for the past week?

  2. Centerpieces.  I originally had big plans to make centerpieces with flags and Eagle Scout emblems in mason jars. Pinterst Quality of course.  Then my friend S who was my co party planner and mother of Mr J found a bunch of already made items that we could use for the centerpieces. Parts from various parties in the past that had been stored away with all the Troop Materials.  S asked me if I was willing to just use what we had.  You betcha!  Isn't that what scouting and sanity are all about; using what is already available.  I loved working with Ms S on this party because not only were we both willing to do what it took to make this a nice event, we weren't crazy about making it over the top elaborate.

  3. Family and Friends.  We were so blessed that both my and my husband's family were able to join us for the celebration of this accomplishment.  P's folks and brother came all the way from Chicago for the weekend.  As Mr C said, "this was so far one of his biggest events in his life; a goal he set for himself years ago was realized and sharing that with your family really is priceless."  I was so touched that so many of the dear friends and neighbors who have been a part of making C the young man he is were there to celebrate.  We had about 60 people from just our "side" come out to support him. Wish I could have invited everybody who has been a part of C's life; but the catering budget was only so big.  Totally Amazing.

  4. Ceremony Itself.  There really is no way to tell yourself to sit back and relax and enjoy the show at one of these "life events," but that is exactly what I told myself all day I wanted to do.  I wanted to be involved enough in what was happening to be excited, but also to observe and soak it all in.  I wanted to be like Mary and "ponder" the day.  I did.  I really enjoyed seeing the Scouts do all the parts of the Court of Honor and watch my son and Mr J recite the oath and promise.  It's really a big deal, the accumulation of a lot of work and a great honor.  In many ways, the event was very sacred.  So thrilled that our pastor was able to come and pray blessing over the boys.

  5. The "Pinning."  Now this is when the funniest part of the day occurred.  Mr C had asked me to wear a sweater or a jacket or a blazer, but the dress I found included none of the above.  It was in fact a silky dress with a high boat neck collar, but I promised him that it would be ok to just bend the collar over and insert the pin; modesty in tact.  However, I did not anticipate that he did not know how to unpin and pin.  He fumbled and fumbled and then make the comment that we hadn't practiced this part of the ceremony and there was no Scout Badge for pinning.  It was lighthearted and fun and finally Mr C was able to pin it on.  Thankfully, the father pin went much smoother.
All in all the Eagle Scout ceremony and party was exactly what we'd dreamed for the event; a time to honor Mr C and to be with important people in his life.

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Courtside Seats at the Globetrotters: Doesn't Get Better than This!

According to my husband, my youngest daughter had the "night of her life" court side at the Harlem Globetrotters.  Totally her love language.  Miss A was thrilled when Dad offered her a night on the town, just with him, to see the Harlem Globetrotters.  Basketball Season had just finished a few weeks ago and Miss A was in between "seasons" with soccer and softball still in the future so she was still in a basketball state of mind.

The event almost didn't happen.  Dad was returning from San Francisco when his plane was delayed due to mechanical issues with no ETA in site.  Finally, they announced boarding and Dad made it home with 10 minutes to spare.  Enough time to change clothes and grab the tickets.  God is good.

A few years ago Miss A had the Globetrotters " Big Easy and Flight Time" as her Amazing Race team and fell in love with the idea of a basketball team that was about fun.  Ever since, we've been on the lookout for a chance to see them in person and so this evening was a dream come true for Miss A.   Big Easy was even on the court that night.  Amazing.

One of the best parts of the night was the chance to get autographs from the players. Of course, you had to purchase a $35 Official Harlem Globetrotters Basketball to get the chance, but sometimes these moments can't be judged by money.  At least that's what my thrifty husband was thinking and from the look on Miss A's face she agreed.

According to Miss A, the Basketball Game was so fun to watch: they even did one play in slow motion and reverse which was totally amazing. I'd say of all our kids Miss A is the one that gets the most out of going to sporting events.  She really gets into the experience.  If you throw in the snacks and maybe a souvenier, she really gets into the event!

Miss A is already planning her next big date with Dad and hopes that it might include another sporting event and some famous players' autographs.  I hear the Senior Golf Tour has a tournament near by this summer so maybe some golf clapping, lemonade in the stands, and a warm walk through the course will be in their future.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Happy 13th Birthday to my Favorite Oldest Daughter

Today is Miss M's Thirteenth Birthday.  For a birthday loving girl, it seems like this birthday has taken FOREVER to get here as if the past few months have been traveling at slow speed.  Maybe that's what has been causing us the crazy weather; slow speed days.

Miss M has always been a breath of fresh air in our family.  She's part drama queen, ballerina, and deep thinker.  If you want to know what is happening in our family or around the world, you just need to ask Miss M.  She knows.  The little girl with the crazy Blondy curls has been the young lady with crazy big dreams and even bigger heart for people.  She wears her heart on her sleeve which can be hard in the harsh world of junior high, but she's learned to guard her heart as a result and wait for God's perfect timing with life.  In a world that is trying to get girls to grow up too fast, I'm thrilled that M is just being a thirteen year old girl for awhile; that bridge between childhood and adulthood can be a slow journey and we are going to enjoy every minute.

For now, Miss M is thrilled that she is no longer the only 7th grader in all the world without a cell phone.  On Friday, we took Miss M out for an early birthday dinner at a fun Tex Mex Restaurant (wherein Miss M had a Hamburger, she has her own mind) and P had arranged for the waitress to play along with a little surprise.  P slipped our waitress the phone when she brought the bill and then C strategically dialed the number and the waitress picked it up.  She said "oh, you want the birthday girl?  here she is" and handed the phone to Miss M who was shocked.  So much fun!!

Our plans to celebrate today include M's favorite foods; Grilled out Hamburgers, New Potatoes, Fresh Green Beans and of course Birthday Cake.  Thankfully, she's a girl after her mother's heart and likes White Cake with Butter cream Frosting (aka Wedding Cake)  Of course, there will be presents too; but P and I already know that one of the sweetest presents we've ever gotten happened 13 years ago when we first laid eyes on MGB.

Happy birthday to my Favorite Older Daughter!

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Happy May Day! A List to Catch Up

I'm behind. I hate it.  This blog is suppose to be a record of our "life and times," but lately there has been too much life and too little time.  I have intentions of getting posts out on a timely basis, including ones on the Eagle Scout Ceremony that happened almost two weeks ago, the start of soccer and softball season for Miss A, and the fact that in a week we'll be a household of two teenagers.

I just need life to slow down a little.  So for now; until my calendar clears up a little I'll post a list of the top ten things floating through my head on this first day of May.

1.  My furnace and fireplace are currently on in my home.  It's May 1st.  Rumor has it that we might see snow tonight.  As confirmation, around town today I saw a snowplow.  Crazy weather we've been having. One day it's 85 degrees and the next it's freezing.  Try dressing your children for school.

2. It's very hard to send a child off to school one day in shorts and no coat, and the next day to convince them that pants and a coat are a necessity.  In the wise words of Miss A; "this Spring is a rip off!"

3.  Mr C has had two big golf tournaments in the past week (thank you Jesus for nice weather once in awhile) and we got to sit on Nana and Papa's back deck and watch his team on the 2nd hole.  The girls had Monday off school and they loved being golf spectators. They have mastered the "golf clap."

4.  Miss A has a sleepover this Friday with some of her fabulous friends.  It's a brave (or loony) mother who is hosting this crazy mix of giggly girls.  Mr C is spending the night at school as he has a golf tournament on Saturday out of town and leaves at 8:30.   Which leaves my husband and I along with Miss M for the evening. I'm thinking we will have a three person date to a nice restaurant to celebrate someone turning 13 next week.

5. I've decided that I spend more time in my car on average than I spend anywhere else.  On Friday, I spent nearly 5 hours driving to and from places and I never left town.  My neighbors are starting to wonder about my constant trips in and out of the garage.  Good thing I have my hidden stash of books, magazines and a money for Sonic Ice Tea stashed in the glove box.

6.  Miss A were going to try out a new Chic Fil A we'd seen advertised in town.  It was right in my driving path on Friday and would be perfect for lunch since she was out of school.  Only problem is that it's not a full fledged restaurant; no nuggets, no grilled sandwiches, no fries, no ice tea or lemonade.  Once we figured it out, we left.  Miss A and I both agreed that you can't go around pretending you are something you are not; this was no Chic Fil A.

7.  Miss M and Mr C have started playing some rounds of golf together.  On Saturday, they were playing an executive par 3 and par 4 course and Mr C nearly got an Eagle on a hole.

8.  Miss A and I had a mother daughter Saturday afternoon while the big kids were at golf and my husband was out of town so we built a fort in the family room, watched Wreck It Ralph and enjoyed the peace and quiet.  Miss A said she's misses times like this, like she used to have when she was  a "little kid."

9. In the past few weeks, I've read over six books.  At first, I couldn't figure out where I'm finding the time, then I remembered #5. I'm spending a lot of my time in my car waiting on people.  Prime reading opportunity.

10.  I miss blogging regularly.  Looking back over the past few months, I know I've forgotten a lot of the funny moments in our family and since I'm documenting in past tense, I don't have them written down.  These kids are really funny, and while I'm complaining that the days are long, I know too that the years are short.  They really are slipping away.

Maybe May will be the month that I catch up on the personal side; where I spend more time blogging and capturing the moments.  A lot happens this month and I want to remember it all in the years ahead.  This is my last month of 2nd, 7th and 10th grader and these are precious moments.

Now to go back in time and catch this blog up a bit! Make sure to scroll back a few entries in the days ahead I really do have some fun memories to write down.