Friday, January 30, 2015

Lil' Kickers Soccer

Just in case I've never made this clear, Whitley is a VERY BUSY little girl.  She's a little bit like a lab puppy.  If you don't get her active and going, expiring some of that energy, you are probably going to regret it by the end of the day.  She likes to move and go.  In light of this, when I saw a flier at Kick City that indicated they have classes for soccer for kiddos as young as Whitley, I asked Travis and Stephanie if they would like to sign her up.  After assuring them that I would welcome a class to help exert some of that energy, they went ahead and signed her up for a class on Friday mornings.  The first class was set to begin on a day that Mikayla didn't have school, so I was thrilled when I realized for the first lesson that Mikayla could stand in as the "parent" required to participate.  Then, it got even better when I asked Heather if she'd be available to participate - and she was able to as well!  How awesome is this!

She couldn't wait to get out on the indoor field and start kicking and playing.  

There are actually only two little ones signed up for this particular class, which is great, but puts it at risk for it being canceled.  (So if you know any 2 and 1/2 year olds, sign them up!).  But, it sure was a great ratio of kids to adults in this particular session!

Playing "Red Light, Green Light".  

After the class, we swung by Sonic and enjoyed a post-workout treat/lunch - and then bid Heather farewell until we'd see her again at Kaela's wedding.  I suspect this next week, Whitley is going to have a major let-down when she realizes "My Heather" isn't going to be in attendance at every soccer class she attends....just Aunt Stephie.  :(   Sigh, I'll be missing her too, Whitley. 

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Red Robin and Southtowne Lanes

Red Robin again?  Yup, three times in one week counting the previous night we went out with Leona that we didn't get a picture of.  What can I say?  John loves this place!  And, after trying their new hot doughnuts served on the onion ring pole with hot fruit compote and hot fudge...oh yes, I am not complaining about Red Robin myself!  

I'm so tickled this "reunion" all worked itself out.  When I realized the timing of Heather's return to Oregon (for Kaela's wedding), I thought, "I should act on this, and see if we can't make the 'old times' happen again with 'the gang'".  This time, we didn't even try and make the surprise work...too many variables and I can't imagine how we'd successfully pull that off three years in a row without a lot of outright lying!  Sure enough, Heather was more than game and, what do you know, but the one night we could make it work was the same night that the Harris Family, Whites Family, Cully, Michael, Kenjon and Heather could all be in attendance.  How blessed are we?  I find myself liking the fact John has a birthday in January now more and more, as it was SUCH a fun night and this is rare opportunity to bring us all together.  

I teased with Christi and Tyler that we were seated at the "Kiddy Table" as we were a little outside of the conversation down at the end.  I was fine with that, though - and I think they were too.  Elsie and Whitley were fine as well, though neither one of them are content to sit for very long and be still at a restaurant.  We were pulling out all the stops.  Kindles, cell phones, Goldfish crackers, and of course, the meals to keep them entertained. 

I like how Elsie waited for the prime opportunity when Whitley was distracted by food to come in for the swipe of the cell phone she was playing with.

Down at the other end, Brayden was imitating Kenjon's SnapChat Stories (somewhat inappropriately), and I'm sure Heather was getting ruthlessly picked on.

After dinner, we headed over to Strike City, but the place was already packed out with bowlers, so we proceeded across town to Southtowne Lanes where we squeaked in at just the right moment before that place got packed out as well.  (They turned away customers after us).    Elsie couldn't wait to get at it!

All the guys (plus Heather) played on one lane (she had a vendetta to prove), and then we took our time with the little girls on the lane adjacent.

"My Heather"...

You want these little ones to experience bowling, but they also have to get it moving fast enough to reach the pins...always a bit tricky...

I love this pic!

Well, this one too.  (I snuck homemade chocolate chip and oatmeal raisin cookies in for us to have for dessert). 

There's a pic like this in almost every encounter we have with Kenjon.  =)  He looks so intimidated by her, right?!

I know it was a bittersweet thing for Heather to have gotten such quality time with the little girls and made bonding connections with them, only to know she might not see them again until August.  She used her time wisely with that in mind...

Brayden was a hoot all night.  How could he not be, totally in his "otter" element.  He was actually bowling really well - he beat my score....

Oh Brayden....

Christi, at 21 weeks, is now finally starting to look pregnant.  She found out she is having another girl which she is thrilled about.  As the two will only be 18 months apart, it will be awesome for them to be such close sisters in age... not to mention, while they are living in their smaller "starter" house, it is a lot easier for them to share space with two girls.  Now, if Christi and Tyler could only agree upon a name.  ;)

We kind of just "take over" the space"...

This sequence is hilarious.  Mikayla ends up blocking the camera's full view of what went down, but suffice it to say, Elsie felt the need to follow the ball down the lane.  Then, when Christi went to get her, it was realized just how uber slick those lanes are.  And then she fell down.  No worries in that it wasn't a scary fall regarding her pregnancy - just really funny. 

Heather was trying so hard to beat Kenjon this round.  She came up about 10 points short.  One day, Heather, one day...

Look at this she not impressive.  Baby in the Ergo, baby in her belly, and still determined to bowl...


This precious.  Ever since Sunriver, Brayden's made a noticeable effort to do less "picking on" Whitley and more just "loving on her".  They definitely bonded here as he took this turn to help her out.

He put this pic on Instagram and I think every friend that's a girl he knows kind of melted a little... :)

As I was the only one taking pictures, I figured I better take at lease one selfie (well, two, counting the one with Elsie) to prove I was there.

Then, Mikayla actually took my phone and shot a couple of my turn helping Whitley.

It was about 8:30 at this point and both girls were wearing out.

This sequence makes MY heart melt.  Steph spent a huge chunk of the time at the bowling alley at the back wall keeping Whitley entertained between turns.  (You can actually see them in the previous pic too).   Steph's lower back is an issue, so she opted out of participating in throwing any balls herself.  I love these shots of Whitley playing "Peek-a-Boo" with Mommy.  She is SO into Mommy mode right now, it is beyond precious. 

And, the "preciousness" just keeps coming. 

No idea what was going on here - I'm sure it had something to do with who was coolest...

Brayden was actually taking a reflective pic of them using the glass from the game in front of them.  Way to stoop to Brayden's level, Michael.... =)

Given the day started with trips to Get Air and Papa's - the collage for this particular Wednesday on Instagram was a little overwhelming!

LOVE, LOVE, LOVE these people and the gift they all are in our lives... I'm hoping this tradition lives on indefinitely!