Sunday, June 29, 2008

Our Little "Highway Princesses"

One of the girl's favorite things to do with Bop is definitely going on Harley rides! They love when they hear that familiar "roar" in the driveway that means Bop has arrived This always means a ride around the block! Life is good with the wind in your hair!

Happy Birthday Kate!

Kate is officially 6 years old! For some reason or another, Kate's birthday always lands on another family event, such as a funeral or a wedding, and so we've never had a "real" party. To make up for it, this year we set out to make her birthday special. It turned into somewhat of a week long extravaganza!

Dad had to travel to Moab last week, and was so sad to miss Kate's Wednesday birthday. Kate decided to open presents Sunday evening before he left so he could be there. Emmy fell asleep before we got started, but Ryenne did a great job of wrapping and decorating each of Kate's gifts! Kate was thrilled with her Little Pet Shop figures and "Go Fish" game!

June 25 was the official big day! Kate requested cornflakes for breakfast! Ryenne woke up extra early to work on Kate's present. She gathered up a few of her things that she thought Kate would enjoy and wrapped them up for her in a blanket and ribbon so she could have something to open on her big day. Kate loved it.That afternoon, we headed to swimming lessons with Aunt Kerri, and then up to Mantua Reservoir to hang out at the beach for the evening. The girls and I had a great time swimming, and even saw lots of little fish! (Emmy wasn't so sure about that!) Grandma and Grandpa Croney met us there later on and brought some yummy dinner and a pie to celebrate the special day. Thanks Grandma & Bop! The highlight of the day was Grandma & Bop's present for Kate (Bop took special care picking out this gift!) Kate was ecstatic to open her very own Harley Davison helmet to wear on her rides with Bop. Nothing could have made this Harley girl happier!
Kate planned quite a party for Friday night when Dad got home. She and Ryenne made invitations to send to all of the cousins for a fun water party in our backyard. It turned out to be perfect weather, and the kids had a great time! They had a ball with the kiddie pool, sprinklers, and of course, water guns and balloons! To top it all off, Kate wanted to roast s'mores instead of having a birthday cake! What a fun night! We love Kate and are so happy she's part of our family. We couldn't imagine life without our Katerbugs!

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Just a note to fellow bloggers. . .You may have heard about the website already. This site can publish your blog into a book, so you have it for your family to keep. I just did my first book, and we were so happy with how it turned out. I'm thinking I'll do it about every 6 months. It turned out to be an easy, inexpensive way to scrapbook! (I'm about 5 years behind on scrapbooking, so this is easier for me to do since I basically use my blog to document our family activities.) I ordered a paperback book for each of my kids to have later on. It took me a little while to figure out picture sizes, etc., but I thought it worked out great!

Battle at Midway

Last weekend we headed to Midway for a fun weekend of races and a family getaway. Courtney competed in the Battle at Midway (BAM) triathlon on Saturday morning, and the girls ran the 3/4 mile kids fun run on Friday night. And Mom? She provided technical support and cheer leading! It turned out to be a great weekend together! The girls did great! Our family philosophy is "as long as you have fun and do your best, you're a winner!" (Last year, Ryenne ran a race at school. I was there cheering her on, and noticed she was at the back of the pack with a few other girls. I had to laugh when she ran by with a gigantic smile on her face and hollered to me, "Hi Mom! I just told my friend, "It's okay. Last the best of all the game!") This race was fun because they got to run in Soldier Hollow, where the cross-country skiing at the 2002 Winter Olympics was held. It was beautiful! Even better, they received a bag with a hat and shirt. At the finish, they were awarded a finishers medal and treats. They were thrilled!

Saturday morning, we woke up bright and early to go see Dad's race. The girls woke up at 5:00 am in order to get on the shuttle in time to see Dad start the swim. It was only about 40 degrees when we got to the swim transition, so they were quite the little troopers! The venue for the race was absolutely beautiful, and it is always fun to watch all of the athletes come in and out of the transitions. It 's pretty exciting! Courtney did awesome, and ended up placing 3rd in his division. It was a hard race, too! It was an Olympic distance, which means it is a 1 mile swim, 25 mile bike, and 6 mile run. This was the longest lake swim he has done so far, so we were pretty proud of him! He doesn't get much time to train, so I admire him for pushing himself. He has a lot of fun competing, and we have a lot of fun cheering him on!
Courtney and his girls before the swim start. . .One last, "good luck, Dad!"

Here's Court, asking us if his feet are still there! (It was so cold that morning that on the bike ride, every one's hands and feet went numb! Everyone that came into the transition was having a hard time getting their hands and feet to work. The girls thought it was so funny when one of the athletes was moaning and throwing a fit because he couldn't get his helmet off. He ended up having a spectator next to us help him undo the strap. Pretty funny!) Courtney said he couldn't feel his feet for the first mile of the run!

After the race, we went back to the hotel for a relaxing afternoon of swimming. The girls also loved riding the carousel that was at the hotel. That evening, we headed out for pizza. Emmy and Kate were so tired that they fell asleep before our pizza arrived! What a big day!

We were sad to go home when the weekend was over. (Kate was especially reluctant- when we were loading up, she held onto the door of the hotel and refused to come!) It's always good to get away together with our little family. We had a fantastic time!
Ryenne rubs her eyes after a long, busy weekend!

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Evening at the Lake

The other night we headed up to Mantua so Courtney could practice an open water swim for an upcoming triathlon. The girls and I had a great time playing on the beach while we waited. The water isn't too warm yet, but the sun was shining, making it a perfect summer night. The girls had fun splashing in the water and looking for rocks on the beach as the sun went down. And me? I loved sitting back and watching the girls just be kids for a little while. It was one of those times I wondered why we don't take the opportunity to create moments like these more often. . .

Fun Times at George Creek

Last weekend we made our annual trek out to George Creek to go camping with Grandma & Grandpa Jones and the cousins. George Creek is way out west in the middle of nowhere! The girls love it there because they can explore and roam with their cousins to their hearts content!

This year goes down on record as the coldest George Creek camping excursion yet! Boy, was it chilly! The days stayed in the mid-40's the whole time! (So much for the 74 degree forecast.) Although everyone had their fair share of four wheeler rides, exploring, and fishing, much of the time was spent surrounding the fire, trying to get warm!

We'll never forget our night in the tent. BRRRR! Courtney and I had an air mattress to sleep on, but we soon discovered that all of our heat was excaping through the bottom of the mattress. After a while of turning from one side to the other to unthaw, we conjured up an idea. We thought we could be selfish parents and wake up one of the kids to sleep with us. This way we could put their sleeping bag underneath us to help trap some of the heat in! We finally decided on Ryenne, as she wiggles the least when she sleeps! (Nice parents, eh?) Turns out, she was freezing too! The added sleeping bag helped quite a bit with the cold. However, we were on a bit of a hill, with me on the upper end, and Ryenne at the bottom of the mattress. As hard as I tried, I couldn't keep from sliding down toward Courtney and Ryenne! Pretty soon, Emmy started coughing, so we quickly added her into our little nest, between Courtney & I. Because of our slightly downhill situation, the four of us were squished together on about 2/3 of the mattress. I think Emmy was sandwiched tight enough that for once, she didn't move for the rest of the night! Except for Kate, who sleeps like a little heater, I don't think any of us got a wink of sleep, but we stayed warm! Instead, we laid there and giggled about our predicament and waited for the sun to come up! We made ourselves feel better by telling ourselves that in years to come, that miserable night was what we would remember the most!

Emmy, Jaycee, and Megan going for a ride with Grandpa.

Ryenne and Jacob, off exploring! I loved it when Ashlyn, Jacob, & Ryenne took dandelions and smeared "war paint" onto their faces with them! This is some serious adventuring!
Kate & Grandma try to stay warm!

S'more time! This is why we go camping, isn't it?

All in all, it was another great year at George Creek! These are the days to remember!