Thursday, June 30, 2011

A Little of This and a Little of That

Gosh, it's been a busy week and therefore you'd like to think the week has flown by, but instead it's been long. I've gone through a tank of gas and then some with all of that to and fro to camps and appointments, as well as getting Brayden up to Traig's so that he and Andrew could participate in a mid school event put on by Michele's church to take them all to "Sky High" - a trampoline paradise near Portland.

Currently, I'm sitting in Mark and Amy's kitchen - where I've been hanging out since the afternoon. Amy went to pick up all three of the boys this morning (Traig's opted to come to our house a day before his family came), but we are still hanging out as the boys have yet to separate from each other. Today is Andrew's thirteenth birthday and his ongoing request has to been to be able to continue hanging with Traig and Brayden. I can't say enough how great these three are together, it is something we as parents are all so incredibly thankful for.
Of course I'm not complaining about hanging out here either... I got to test out the Meyers' new hot tub, purchased to alleviate and provide therapy for Amy's daily neck pain, and I find myself covering. :). I also got to partake in the special Chinese food dinner Andrew asked for as well as the homemade lemon meringue pie Amy made while we chatted and caught up. Good times with GREAT friends on these splendid summer nights. Love it!

A couple of other tidbits:

I tried Zumba for the first time this week. I only tried it because Michele had confessed she went to one her sister in law led, and of course, "Anything Michele can do, I can do...." - especially when it comes to rhythm and dancing. So, it was fun, a lot of Latin music and a lot of shaking...which I can't say I'm especially skilled at. But, I think I like it enough to commit to the once a week class at our gym just to (literally) shake up my exercise routine a bit. :)

Here's some pictures of Mikayla at the two volleyball camps she attended Monday through Thursday over the last two weeks. The first one was at Northwest Christian University and she got to participate in that one with Kenady and Brailey.

The second camp was at South Eugene High School and she got to participate in that camp with Ellie. All three of these girls are so sweet and were all on her volleyball team last year, so it was pretty much ideal that she got special time in both camps with special friends.

(On the way home from camp, I took Kenady and Mikayla to Dairy Queen and then had to stop at the store...they were hilarious trying to fit into this car-cart)

(On Wednesday of this camp, I took Ellie and Mikayla to Yogurt Extreme and couldn't resist making them pose in front of the wildflowers)

Tomorrow is the give-away! Last chance to add some comments to the blog post!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Approaching the Crest of the Roller Coaster

A little reminder, check out the paragraph on the left to link to the "Leave a Comment Gift Card Give-Away". I'll do the drawing this Friday and would love to get to know as many of you readers as I can!

I woke up this morning to the sound of rain - steady rain. They predicted it, but it still came as a surprise. It makes me very happy to know that 1) I mowed my lawn last night 2) I put more "seed" on the back yard (to help offset the sod-laying seems) and 3) the rain is happening now instead of next week.

It's good timing for me, as this week is the "get it done" week before we start free-falling into the roller coaster thrills that is pretty much the month of July for me. This is the week to drop a few pounds, cuz it sure aint gonna happen in July. This is the week to get Mikayla to her dentist appointment yesterday (sealant), my doctor's appt today (let's see if we can't get a new idea to solve this headache issue), and Mikayla's orthodontist appt. this afternoon (we're hoping the next visit will be to take all that metal off!). It's the second week in a row of M-Th volleyball morning camp for Mikayla - and Brayden still attending Monday and Tuesday football conditioning.

So, if there's not much exciting that I'm posting about this week, (and you really do want to read about fun things are family's up to) - do not despair - beginning this Saturday, we will have reached that peak of the roller coaster - and there'll be lots of posts about the "Weeeeehs" along the way down!

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Ladies Day Out on the Lake

A little reminder, check out the paragraph on the left to link to the "Leave a Comment Gift Card Give-Away". I'll do the drawing this Friday and would love to get to know as many of you readers as I can!

The forecast for yesterday (Saturday) was for low 70's (at best) and cloudy throughout much of the day. However, God had much better in mind, as by the time we reached the lake, the temps were in the mid-70's and the sky was brilliant blue. Even more remarkable, the lake was practically deserted giving us the set-up for a perfect day on the boat.

The only real disappointment I have for the day was the fact that not everyone in our group was able to attend. We missed Kimmie, Suzie, and Elaina, but totally understand that scheduling something on a Saturday with this group makes it virtually impossible to have everyone in attendance. As it was, the group that was able to make it, didn't even completely overlap each other, so, for instance, Kaela and Courtney never actually got to see Heather and Kelli (our honorary group member who lives in Portland). It was a bummer, but actually our boat capacity was pretty much at its max all day long, so it worked out to be pretty ideal in that we never had to leave anyone on the shore. In fact, just as folks had to return to the dock to leave, it was less than a 15 minute wait to pick up the next group as they arrived. Couldn't have planned it better if I'd tried (and believe me, I stressed a little bit in my attempts to "try"!)

Kaela was behind the camera during her duration on the lake - we gave her a pass from getting on the board "this time"....but she better be ready next time! I didn't give her too hard of a time myself knowing just how treasured all the photography she was taking is.

A couple pics of us ladies - Steph, Courtney, myself and Mikayla (and the next pic proving Kaela was in attendance!)

Glad we got a pic proving John was on the boat as well - since he didn't board or get in the tube, he wasn't photographed much.

Brayden spent the night before at Andrew's house and asked him to come with him. I'm SO GLAD he did - it gave Brayden a person to hang with amidst all of our female estrogen! (Plus, Brayden was in a goofy mood, so Andrew diffused it for us!)

A little example of that "goofiness" - Brayden showing off his hip action to the song, "Fireworks".

Courtney took on the roll of "flag girl". No one was in a hurry to get in the water, so I went ahead and volunteered to go first. I'm kind of savvy to the knowledge that that means a dry wet suit and dry life jacket...(even though I was the only wimp to use a wetsuit....what can I say, I don't like being cold!). I had a lot of fun on my runs - particularly the one I took at the end of the day. On that last run the water was super choppy, but way, way ahead I saw a smooth patch and hung on until I got there and relished in the glassy water. I really love wakeboarding even though I'm too lame to try any impressive tricks. I was definitely in my "happy place".

Courtney was willing, but reluctant to try. She'd never made it up on the board before, so naturally she was worried she'd let herself and all of us down. That silly girl - not only did she pull herself up on the first try, she actually switched lead feet as soon as she got going (she didn't do it on purpose, but that's tricky to pull off...way to impress us!). She cruised along the lake for quite a ways before succumbing to muscle fatigue!

I also know better to go out on the wakeboard (especially with folks that are new to our boat) before this guy goes out, because after his runs, everyone else looks pretty lame. Way to go Travis, clearly, your "time off" because of trying to take care of your neck has not impaired your skills one bit!

After Travis did his run, we were able to pick up Christi at the dock - her last client canceled so she was able to come out earlier. For being the girl that doesn't like camping, she surprised us with her non-stop smile of being out on the boat and in the water. She NEVER stopped smiling - and she brought yummy snacks....we love Christi!

Christi was eager to give the tube a try, however, Courtney made it clear she was a little concerned. The contrast in these girls' expressions absolutely cracked us up.

Happy smiles on both of these beautiful ladies after the run...

Finally, it was the boys' turn....they made it clear they weren't concerned at all.

John gave them a reason to hold on, though - they definitely caught some air!

After the boys, we dropped Courtney and Kaela off, and within a half hour, Kelli and Heather arrived. I love seeing these girls together - there's just so much "happy" coming from both of them....

There were so many pictures of both of these girls - they both got ejected at one point - but this picture shows Heather remaining solo - and if you look carefully, you can see Kelli's body through the water on the left.

Mikayla asked for a much slower ride - and Christi volunteered to have her sit in her lap so that the weight disbursement was a little more even.

With that blond hair flying, I think most would assume Mikayla was Christi's daughter and not mine.

After that tame ride, Christi asked Heather to join her in the tube for more of a "challenge". Travis took over the driving at that point, John took the camera - and he (and previously I) quickly determined why it is Kaela gets sea sick as soon as the tube comes out. Trying to track the motion of the tube through the camera while the boat is whipping violently back and forth is not easy!

Proof that all of us girls on the tube survived.... We ended up dropping off Travis and Stephanie at the dock after this as they had other evening plans.

Now, onto the board for Kelli. She first got up last year on our board and to her delight, she got straight up on the first pull. She was so happy and looked great, and by the end of the day was even crossing the wake!

And, here's Christi - smiling again, of course. I chose to put the first picture of her as being vertical - but check out the next one of her inches above a full body face-plant into the water. Crazy, huh? (She didn't get hurt...she was smiling by the time we pulled around to give her another pull). Christi had the one arm hold looking pretty good on her run...

Our time on the lake ended with the kids begging for John to do the "boat twisties" - Mikayla's name for him jerking the boat around and spraying water along the sides. These were taken with my little point and click, so the quality is lesser, but I love the expressions on Heather and Kelli's face pointing to Brayden who got soaked - which was his desire as he insisted on sitting back there.

Andrew and Mikayla took the front of the boat seats.

Our day on the lake ended with a quick stop-off at Dairy Queen with Heather, Kelli, and Christi. What a WONDERFUL all worked out practically perfect!