Sunday, June 17, 2018

Father's Day Weekend

Today we celebrated Father's Day and my parents' 46th Anniversary!  Big day!  On the way to church this morning, I asked the kids a few questions about their Dad and here are their answers.

What do you like the most about your dad: 

Reina:  How he takes us camping. 

Will:  I like when Dad takes me out to eat. 

What is your favorite thing to do with Dad: 

Reina;  Go camping with him (there's definitely a theme here.)  Reina is sitting next to me right now and she also wants me to add that she likes it when she and dad roughhouse.

Will:  I like to go hunting with him. 

What is your favorite memory of Dad:

Reina;  I can see him at my wedding in the future.  (So she can see the future)

Will:  When I shot my first rabbit.  He also says when he hit his first home run but I questioned how that was a memory of dad and not just a way to mention his home run on the blog. 

Is there anything else you want to say about your dad?

Reina:  He is handsome, he also tries hard.   I also appreciate how when we goes hunting, he usually gets meat or something for us and even when he doesn't get anything, he says he had a good time.

Will:  He's my dad.  I'm glad he's alive.  (Side note, when Will signed his dad's Father's Day card at bedtime last night, he lovingly scrawled "happy birthday Dad."  So we have some to work to do in the holiday recognition department. 
Will, Uncle Glenn and Baby Cousin watching Will play video games.  
It rained buckets while we were at the movies on Saturday and these two bing-bongs ignored the dry deck or their cozy doghouse and instead got soaked in the backyard.  The house still smells un-lovely.  

Sunday, June 10, 2018

I took Reina on a work trip

Last week, the day after the last day of school (more on that next time!), I had to travel to Riverton which is about four hours away for a work conference.  My duties at the conference were pretty light so it seemed like a good opportunity to bring along a kid or two.  The oldest kid opted out so he could stay home and practice baseball which also means hanging out on the couch and enjoying some quiet time.  So Reina and I packed up the car with work stuff and a swimming suit and headed west.  

We listened to music and a book on tape as we drove through central Wyoming.  Reina was a great co-pilot and it was fun to see that country through her eyes.  

Reina passing the time with my camera phone and captions.  
The first night, we had dinner with all of my colleagues who were also attending the conference.  Reina was amazingly patient during the 2+ hours it took for us to order, get our food and eat it.  We were at an old fashioned steakhouse, along with half of the county apparently.  

Posing in Hudson, WY

A mural outside of the restaurant.  Reina wanted to pretend that we were on vacation. 

"Mom take a picture of the restaurant and my teenager face!" 
 The next day, she was patient while I attended meetings and such.  That night, we walked to a pizza place with more co-workers.  The wait wasn't as long this time and the pizza was delicious. 
Pizza with eyes electronically added.  

Swimming after pizza 
 On Friday morning, I attended a few more meetings, we packed up the car and headed back home.  On the way back, we stopped at a site along the Oregon Trail.  Reina will be studying Wyoming history next year, plus I always stop for historic sites, if time allows. 
"Mom, are there rattlesnakes here?"  

Summer kicks off in full swing tomorrow with some day camps, more sports stuff and hot weather.  I'm glad my summer got off to a fun start with a cute traveling partner and a chance to show her more of Wyoming. 

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

My trip to Oregon

Last week, I left the house at 4:30 a.m. on Monday to travel to Hood River, Oregon for a work conference.  I don't like being away from Glenn and the monsters for too long but I do enjoy seeing new places and let's face it, it's nice to eat dinner and not be responsible for making it, getting people to eat it and clean it up afterwards. I was in Oregon until 6:00 a.m. Thursday when I flew back and was greeted with affection by everyone, including Coco.  Glenn does a terrific job of holding down the fort when I'm gone but I know that everything tends to run more smoothly when both of us are home.  I had a work trips every week during the month of May and I'm sure glad to have this month almost behind us.  Between school projects, field trips, sports practices, dance and piano, our calendar is full and we are all ready for summer vacation.  

Here are some camera shots from my trip.  
My hotel was right along the Columbia River.  Oregon seems to be overrun with friendly dogs and I met quite a few as I walked and jogged this path every day.  

As part of the conference, we took a quick tour of agricultural operations in the area and saw lots of fruit orchards, vineyards and Mt Hood in the background.  

On my last night, I headed back up to Portland and walked all over downtown and then drove to an amazing rose garden.  It made me anxious to get home and plant our garden.  Look at all of those colors!  
This lovely rose probably couldn't survive our short growing season but I loved the two buds.  
So I was back home in time for the Memorial Day Weekend.  We had a quiet few days filled with lots of hanging out, yard work, house work, movie watching, gardening and other seasonally appropriate activities.  Will was battling a double ear infection (what is with this time of year?!) but it was a good excuse to relax and watch baseball.  The kids have 4 1/2 days of school left and we are ready to officially kick off Summer 2018. 

Sunday, May 20, 2018

Our weekend in a nutshell

What a whirlwind of a weekend!  Reina had three (3!) dance recitals, we had a bunch of rain that put a damper (ha!) on gardening and baseball activities, some of us watched the Royal Wedding so some of us also napped and then we had the last day of Sunday School, a classmate's birthday party and so many chores.  So let's recap quickly.  

It's a TRADITION for Vicky and I to watch royal weddings together so I hauled myself out of bed at 4:45 a.m., popped from frozen scones in the oven and waited for the guests to arrive.  It was strictly a pajama affair, although we had big dreams of making our own fascinators.  I did wake Reina up right before the ceremony started so that she could see the dress.  She was glad I did even though she asleep within the hour again.  Dancers need their rest!  

Coco was incredibly unimpressed with the getting up out of bed early and preschool guests arriving in the pre-dawn hours.  That's right, Preschool Cousin joined in on the wedding adventure too!  
 Reina and I got a few more hours of sleep and then launched into the second day of dance extravaganzas.  Reina took Ballet 3 and Jazz 1 this year.  Ballet 3 performed in a Friday and Saturday night performance and Jazz was during Saturday afternoon.  It was a lot of dancing but a lot of fun too.  I think my bun talents improved with each show. 

Reina and her Jazz 1 class. They danced to a song from Mary Poppins - they were chimney sweeps!  

Look at that ballerina!  Her ballet class danced to the theme from "Up."  Yep, I got a little teary-eyed.  It's a pretty piece of music and the dancers were balloons floating through the air.  It was really well done.  

I could watch her dance all day.  
 Today the sun came out during the afternoon and while the temperature wasn't warm enough to garden, we did get to spend some time outside.  Our lilacs in the backyard have gone crazy this year. 
Purple!  Green!  Allergies! 

Gratuitous shot of chicken girls.  
We only have a few more weeks of school to muddle through and then it's officially summer time. We are ready! 

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

A few things that made me smile on Mother's Day

On Mother's Day, I didn't wake up to breakfast in bed, I woke up to chickens shrieking to be let out of their coop at pre 6:00 a.m.  By the time I did get out of bed, I had to hustle to get my run in before it was time to leave for church.  Sunday mornings can be ridiculously hectic sometimes.  While I was tying my shoes, I was showered with cards and a giant box of chocolates. 

Reina's hand drawn card. That's the two of us.  Yah, I got a little teary.  

A close-up of all of our amazing-ness.  I'm on the right.  

 Actual text of the letter for posterity's sake:

Dear Mom,

Thank you so much for putting food on my plate.  Also for washing my clothes.  Without you I would be smelly and scatry (editor's note, still haven't asked her what this means but I'm thinking something along the lines of her version of 'hangry')  If you weren't there Coco would not be happy anymore.  Thank you so much for everything.  Though now that is almost mother's day I think that I should bake cookies with you and play with your hair.  Thank you for bringing me to Mexico with you it was very fun.  Also thank you for letting me do dance. So for letting me do dance, I will let you do your leaps (I always threaten to ballet leap across the street when we are walking to dance class. I guess know I'm free to do it!).  So thank you, thank you, thank you so much. 

I LOVE YOU!  Love, Reina


A lovely card from Will in which he points out it should've been a cat card.  

From Glenn 
It was a lovely Mother's Day. 

Monday, May 14, 2018

Will's Track Meet or a Bunch of Pictures of Will Looking Serious

Last week, on a gorgeous sunny Tuesday, Will had his school track meet.  Last year's meet was one of those days were it started off sunny and then got colder quickly and I was woefully under dressed and unprepared.  This year, I packed everything from hats to windbreakers to sunscreen and it actually got a little toasty.  But enough about my comfort.  Let's talk about our track kid. 

Will did three events again this year - a relay, hurdles and the long jump.  His relay was up first.  

Will was the first leg of the relay and here he's getting ready to run.  

Still getting ready to run....

Totally waiting for the starting gun.  Will ran a great leg and his team got second place.  It was very exciting!  
Next up was the hurdles.  This is my least favorite event to watch because of all of the jumping and chances of tripping and bonking beautiful faces and heads on the track.  So there are no action shots here either.  Just Will looking pensive and ready to hurdle stuff. 

The boys ran in heats and Will's was up third.  

Waiting for the starting gun.  Will won his heat and finished seventh overall!  
The last event was the long jump.  Will was looking forward to this event - he'd been practicing it a lot at school. I'm just amazed that a descendant of mine can jump - either forward or high.  He wasn't happy with his score - he ended up 7th.  His first jump was his best but he had better scores during practice. I think this will be one event that he'll be itching to try again next year. 
Waiting in line and getting ready to glare at me and send a silent message of 'stop taking my picture Mom.'  
It was a great way to spend a Tuesday. I love watching my kids have fun and compete - even when their competitiveness is even more than I can handle.  Net year, I'll get to watch both of them in track.  I'm already looking forward to it! 

Monday, May 7, 2018

May Stuff

It's May - the last month of school (except for a few days in June), Spring weather (mostly), a bunch of sports, gardening (kinda) and so many other things going on.  And we are hanging in there!  Will has his school track meet tomorrow and then it's all about baseball season.  Reina has started softball practice, is still working on piano and has her dance recital in two weeks.  Both kids have 4-H shooting sports and field trips and fun projects at school.  Glenn has turkey hunting and work stuff and I have more work travel this month than I usually do. This was supposed to be a blog post about our busy month but now I feel like it's just one big whine.  There are also plenty of sweet moments so far. 

Will and I played catch in the street tonight and he caught most of my pop flies and threw it so hard that I probably have a bruise on my ummm chest area. 

Reina drew a picture of our pastor during church yesterday that was sweet and also a realistic portrayal of his ummm bald head.  He laughed when she handed it to him and we appreciate her dedication to realism in her craft. 

Every time we check for chicken eggs, Glenn and I giggle about our lack of detective skills and the fact that Trigger was eating all of those eggs for months.  The chickens love the warmer weather and perch outside the kitchen dinner and shriek at us until we bring them some snacks. 

We started on the garden for the summer but stuck to cold hardy plants and seeds for now.  We know it'll snow at least one more time before summer actually starts.

Coco sits in her tent in the front yard and lets us know if another cat is anywhere within a 2 block radius.  Her yowls sound like a cross between "no no no no no no no" and a fire truck.  She's not a fan of other felines. 

I mowed the lawn while Glenn was turkey hunting and didn't break the lawnmower like I did last summer.  Success!