Friday, June 16, 2017

We're all out of bubblegum

It's mid-June and I've barely blogged about our summer.  That's mostly because I've been at the ballfield watching Reina or Will.  This is Reina's first year playing softball and some days she loves it and some days she's not so sure.  Her first game was in mid-May and we've had a few rainouts but her season is starting to wind down.  We've really enjoyed watching her play.  She's on a great time and they were "undefeatable" (according to Reina) until Monday.  Reina can hit the ball and she's tagged a few girls out in the infield.  I don't want to pressure her, but I hope she'll want to try it again next summer.  She's made some great progress.  

Looking serious at first base

Getting ready to hit 

Getting ready to race home!  
I've thought for a while that Reina was not a big sports kid because she's not very competitive.  She definitely likes it when the team wins.  When we watch baseball on tv, she'll be sad for the (opposing) player who strikes out.  During football season, she'll often root for both teams.  But I've discovered during softball that there is a competitive streak alive in that kid and she gets stressed if she thinks her team isn't going to win.  Last Friday we were talking before her game and she nonchalantly told me "All we do is kick butt and chew bubblegum.  And guess what?  We're all out of bubblegum."

Thursday, May 25, 2017

That time that Coco snared herself

A few weeks ago, Reina called me as I was I pulling into the garage.  She had just beaten me home and couldn't find Coco.  Coco was in a (now ended) phase of finding my knitting projects and carrying them around the house trailing yarn behind her.  It was cute the first few times and then we started to wonder if she was trying to trip us down the stairs by entwining yarn in and out of the bannisters.  So I'd locked up all my unused yarn and tried to remember to put my current project - a scarf - in a cat-proofed spot at the end of each day.

But I hadn't put my project away enough.  Reina followed a trail of yarn to the basement and found Coco laying in the basement with her hind leg snared to a table leg with a generous portion of yarn.  From what we could tell, Coco had been carrying the yarn and somehow wrapped the yarn around her leg and the table leg and then pulled it tight in her struggle to get out.  Reina used some quick thinking and ran upstairs for a pair of scissors and cut the yarn as I came into the house.  Coco followed her up the stairs and we tried to check out Coco's foot.  She didn't put a lot of weight on her leg and sat down and made the most pitiful 'meow' in the history of meow's.  Then she hobbled up the stairs and hid under Will's bed.

Reina wiggled under the bed to get her out while I called the vet.  It was late in the afternoon but luckily they told me to bring Coco over as soon as I could.  I kept the cat/vet box from her last trip so I put her in there along with Reina's favorite blanket and off we went.  Glenn had come home to take Reina to piano and I tearfully asked him if he thought a cat could live with three legs. I was convinced she's broken hers and I was worried that she damaged the circulation by laying there for so long.  I'm not always my most rational whilst driving pets to the vet.

We had to wait a few minutes to see the vet and there was a waiting room full of dogs waiting for their vaccinations so needless to say, Coco was having a rough day.

Waiting to see the doctor.  Coco's expression speaks volumes.
After a few x-rays and a visit with the doctor, we left with no broken bones and a couple of pain pills and an anti-inflammatory.  The doctor cautioned us to keep Coco quiet and confine her activity as much as possible.  They also asked if I had a strategy for getting her to take a pill.  I had no plan besides jamming it down her little throat.  

The damaged leg on the left.  
Keeping her quiet and confined on Will's bed.  
Her leg stayed swollen for a few days but she bounced back pretty quickly. I solved the problem of the pill taking by waiting until she was pretty hungry and then she'd gobble it right down.  It helped that the pill was some sort of meat flavored.  As the doctor recommended, Coco is banned indefinitely from yarn and yarn-related projects and not surprisingly, she hasn't been super interested in it since the fateful day.  I'm so glad Reina found her when she did.

Feeling better and checking out chickens on the back deck.  

"Just let me outside.  I want to eat that chicken so bad."  

Monday, May 22, 2017

Piano Girl

Yesterday, Reina had her first piano recital.  She's been taking lessons for a little over a year now and it's so exciting to see how much she's learned. She seems to have a knack for it and (no pressure kid!) we hope that she keeps playing for a while.  She can read both treble clef and bass clef and she's playing with two hands.  She's doing so great!  Back to the performance - I don't know who was more nervous for her recital - her or me.  Probably me.  She was poised.  Reina's had her song memorized for a few months which means that the rest of us could probably play the song also.  Her song was called "Most of All, I Like Rainbows." I'm humming it right now.   The recital took place at the library and there was even a little stage.   

Walking on the stage for the pre-song bow.  

Next year, I'm standing on the other side of the room for a better angle.  Except she probably wouldn't have been happy with me.  She nailed her song - no mistakes and she kept a lively tempo.  

Post performance group photo shoot.  Too serious for smiles?  

There's one!  
Reina's taking a break from piano for the summer but she's going to keep practicing and start it back up in the fall.  We love watching her play!

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Will's Orchestra Concert

Our end of the school year recital/program tour continues with Will's first (and possibly only) Orchestra Concert.  Will has been learning the violin this year and I'm really impressed to see how far he's come.  We can actually recognize the songs!  Will's probably going to read this and he should know that I'm mostly joking and I'm really proud of him for giving the violin a try. 

The weekend before the concert, Will and I were running errands between soccer and baseball practice.  I asked him if he was excited about the orchestra concert and if he wanted to keep playing an instrument and maybe take lessons this summer?  He answered with a quick 'no' and then paused and said, "Mom, can I tell you something without you getting mad at me?"  Well that's a tough question to answer right?  I said 'yes' and Will told me that sometimes he just plays whatever note he wants during the song.  I tried to hide my giggles but I couldn't.  So that sums up Will's short but entertaining musical career.  For now.  And at least I don't have to worry about a drum set in the basement.  
Getting ready to play "French Folk Song." 

Some serious violin-ing going on.  

Hmmmmmm, everyone else appears to be playing a note while Will's free-styling?  Taking a break?  Waiting for a solo?  

Friday, May 19, 2017

Pictures of Reina Dancing

Reina's ballet recital was last Friday.  This year, she was enrolled in Ballet 2.  2!  She had a small class and a really nice teacher and she had a good year. The teacher encouraged them to work on their flexibility and posture.  Reina flips cartwheels in the living room and can do the splits way better than I ever could and she's really starting to dance like a ballerina.  

That's our girl on the left.  Look how graceful she looks!  

She got to dance a little solo during the middle of the performance.  

Someone takes her ballet pretty seriously.  
Post-performance with the grandparents and daddy.  
Reina's favorite part of the recital - flowers from her dad!  
Reina's taking a dance camp later in the summer to help her decide what she wants to do next.  Jazz?  Modern?  Ballet 3?  Stay tuned!

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Pictures of Will looking serious at his first track meet

For the last three weeks, Will has been participating on the elementary school track team. It's his first chance to be on a school sponsored sports team.  The weather hasn't been exactly helpful for track events but when it snowed, the coaches moved practice inside and the kids kept working.  Will participated in a city-wide (well eight other schools were there) track meet on Monday and had a great time!  I took part of the day off and packed a bag full of sunscreen and cold drinks and I almost froze to death.  Okay, that's a little dramatic but it was cold!  After dropping the kids off at school, I made a u-turn back to the house and grabbed long pants and a light jacket before I headed to the track meet. I should've grabbed my ski jacket and a blanket but I'll remember that for next year.  

Back to the track meet.  Will was participating in three events:  long jump, shuttle relay and hurdles.  The long jump was up first.  It took Glenn and I one lap around the stadium before we realized that the long jump was actually outside of the stadium so we missed his first jump.  

Getting ready for jump #2.  

Stretching and looking serious.  

He's ready to go!  

And there he goes!  
At this point, I should have a picture of him landing in the long jump pit but honestly I haven't mastered the art of taking pictures and cheering at the same time and therefore that picture does not exist.  We watched his second and third jumps and thought he was doing pretty well.  Turns out, he placed 6th out of 30-something 4th grade boys.  Sixth place was good enough for a ribbon!

Next up was the relay.
There's a smile!  

Getting ready for the baton.  
The relay was a lot of fun to watch but at this point, I was getting pretty cold.  Glenn had to go back to work so I was able to snag his jacket. After the relay, Will came and sat by me (awww!) and we watched the rest of the events before Will's hurdles.  For the hurdles, there were at least 4 heats of 8 boys each.  Will's heat was towards the end.  
Getting ready to hurdle something. 

No action shots here either because I was nervous!  I had no idea how fast Will was compared to the other kids and given the fact that I can trip over a tiny crack in a sidewalk, I didn't know how much jumping ability he had inherited from either side of the family.  Long story short?  Will finished second in his heat!   I was so impressed!  We had to wait for one more heat to see if he made the finals.  He did!  More hurdling!  The final heat included two of his friends from not only school, but his class.
The Jaguars lined up for the final heat.  
It was another great race and Will grabbed another ribbon by finishing 6th.  Pretty amazing for his first track meet!

Sunday, April 30, 2017

UW Spring Game

Last weekend, Will's Saturday soccer game was canceled because the field had too much snow on it but by mid-day, the sun was shining and the temperatures were warming up so we headed over to Laramie for the UW Football Spring Game.  For once, the weather was possibly nicer in Laramie and we had a terrific time.  We hadn't been to the Spring Game before so we weren't sure what to expect.  We arrived a little early and Reina spied the pony mascot - Cowboy Joe.  

Pony and handlers obliged us with a picture.  Future Cowboy Joe handler right there?  
Once inside the stadium, we snagged some seats on the 50-yd line and watched the offense and defense battle it out.  It was fun to watch the action that close up, even though it wasn't a real game situation. It was a defensive battle and the final score was 3-0 but we had fun watching the action.  
Dangit, I can't figure out how to rotate this picture.  Rotate your head instead?  

The highlight of the afternoon was that after the game, the fans were invited on to the field to get autographs and take pictures with the players.  I can't imagine this happens at some of the bigger schools but what a thrill for my football fan...okay and for me and Glenn, too.  Even Reina seemed to enjoy it.  

The kiddos and the UW quarterback Josh Allen.  He's the rumored first round draft pick for the NFL next year.  True story!  
Reina and the back-up quarterback.  

Will and some defensive players.  
We spent a little while getting autographs - Will was even giving some gloves by #58.  He was pretty excited about that. The autographs and the gloves are currently being framed at a craft shop to be added to Will's sports' shrine.

We are in the midst of football, baseball, softball and track season.  But it is time for football yet?