Thursday, January 23, 2014

Smarty Pants!

We are grateful that (so far) our kids love school and do really well in their studies.  This spring both Morgan and Trevor were recognized for their efforts.

Trevor participated in Grade 13 where he did research and wrote and essay on what he would like to be when he grew up.  He wrote on becoming an engineer because he loves math, science, and inventing things.  He loved to figure out WHY something works.  It is really fun to listen to him as he explains his discoveries.  He was selected as one of the winners and won $100 in scholarship money.

With his teacher, Mrs. Olsen

We were also really proud of Morgan who was inducted into the National Junior Honor Society.  She had to go through an application process where she was evaluated by her grades, school involvement and community service.  We were pleased to see so many of her friends have that recognition as well.

When we were leaving the school there was a little cloudburst passing over.  The light and the rainbow it produced was incredible.  I couldn't resist a few more pictures! :)

2nd Annual Mountain Biking in Moab

I love that Ken has some good friends to go mountain biking with!  He loves it so much!  Even more now that he has some nice equipment.  A bunch of guys including, Craig Muncy, Justin McFadden, Skylar Cox, Doug Lindhardt  and Ken went to Moab for a guys weekend of biking.  He had a blast.  I'm so glad he got to go!

Sense and Sensibility

To celebrate Shannon's birthday, she wanted to go to the theater.  I am always up for seeing a show!  Shannon, Kris, Erica and I attended the new musical of Jane Austen's Sense and Sensibility in Denver.  I think the show is being tweaked in the effort to get to Broadway.  We all loved the show.  My favorite was the song, Awkward, while each of the characters were singing what they were really thinking but while doing the necessary small talk.  It was great!

Afterward, we hit the famous D Bar for dinner and dessert.  Seriously.  Best sweet potato fries ever.  It was a great night with great friends! 


I thought it was fantastic when Morgan came home saying she wanted to audition for the school musical!  We were all over the moon when we found out she had be cast in the role of the villain, Jafar.  At first the role was double cast, but when the other Jafar decided to go out for the track team, Ms. Bowes and Mr. Romig decided to keep Morgan as the only Jafar.  Morgan loved every minute of the rehearsal process, running her lines at home, and working on her solo.

It was so fun to see how much she was enjoying being part of the show and making tons of new friends in the process. (It was fun for me to volunteer as a vocal coach.  I got to work with some of the leads as they prepared for their songs in the show.)  When the performances came around, I could see she had found her niche.  She really lit up the stage and we couldn't have been more proud of her!

With Misha, the magic carpet

With Madi as Jasmine and Calvin as Aladdin

So sad I wasn't able to get a big cast picture!

The Rave Run

My lovely friend Erica wanted to do something special for her birthday.  She wanted to have her friends run "The Rave Run" with her.  I was hesitant at first (me run?!?) but, I quickly got swept up in the party aspect of it.  We got to wear flashy bright colors and do the race wearing neon tutus.  How could you possible go wrong?!? There ended up being about 15 there to celebrate Erica.  We went to dinner at this yummy place in Denver to "carb load". :) 

We all knew Erica had something up her sleeve because she wanted each of us to bring her the shirt that we were going to run the race in.  As we waited for our food, she made the big reveal.  She made a little presentation about how much we meant to her and she had thought of a word that she felt represented us and why she loved us.  She had then printed that word out (each with a beautifully appropriate font) and ironed it on our shirt.  She took the time for each person and explained why she had chosen that descriptive word and how much cared for them before giving them their shirt.  She gave me the word bodacious. :)  She then had "these ladies color my world" on her shirt.  It was beautiful and emotional.  Many of us were tearing up.  It was a really thoughtful and generous thing to do.  Erica turned her birthday into a celebration of her friends. 
Erica, the birthday girl.  How I love her!
 After dinner, we took some fun pictures and made our way to the park to run the 5K.  Okay, who am I kidding, I mostly walked it, but I had some great friends who also wanted to walk and we had a BLAST chatting the entire time.  I was so glad that Erica had such a clever, fun, and caring idea.  That is one birthday celebration I will never forget!

Gettin' it done

You know THOSE projects?  The ones that won't take very long to do and you have done them a million times in your head, but despite all of your best intentions and brain power, they remain undone.  I have far too many of those to count.  So at the end of April, I enlisted my mom's aid to help me get some of those projects done.  When she comes to visit, I put aside the time, so it seems like it is easier to get things done.

First of all, we dejunked everywhere.  It is so helpful to have another set of eyes and someone to ask, "do you really need or use that?"  We did a lot of shopping, especially at Hobby Lobby.  We bought fabric and make cute organizing boxes for my closet and for Morgan's room.  We made an "art gallery" that makes it really easy to switch out kids art and certificates. We redecorated over my bed and on my dresser. We hung stuff up.  And we did a TON of it!  That may not seem to be a big deal, but it is nice to walk into a room and have it feel finished. 

At the end of the four days we really felt we had accomplished a lot of smaller tasks that had been hanging over me.  Not to mention we got to spend lots of time together and the kids LOVED having grandma around.  She also got to see the dress rehearsal of Morgan's play.  I'm so grateful that my mom would come and be my motivator for a few days!  I love her so much!

Above Morgan's bed. The very sad, before.

Very fun, after.  They are prints of a bunch of her favorite Harry Potter quotes.

My bed.  The after.

Hung up lots in Trev's room.  We were pretty excited to find a way to display all the karate belts he had earned!

Oldies but Goodies

I got to have a bit of a reunion at the end of April.  Shannon was hosting our friend from middle school, Becca and her family.  I hadn't seen her since 7th grade, but we used to be really good friends, so I wanted to make sure to see her while they were in town.  It was a blast!  Her husband and kids were fantastic and it was great to catch up.  To add to the reunion, we even skyped with Kerri, one of our other 7th grade friends.  It was such a fun night and I'm so glad Shannon got us all together!

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Twice as Nice (More DC)

After visiting Gettysburg on Saturday, we headed got in the car and headed back down to Washington DC.  I was so excited because we arranged for my wonderful friend Celia to come down to DC while we were there AND she was coming with her new boyfriend, Travis.  I was really looking forward to meeting him and spending some time with my dear friend.  We arrived in the city and checked into our hotel.  While I arranged to meet Celia and Travis, Ken returned the rental car.  I walked the few blocks down to the Lafayette Park just north of the White House drinking in the beautiful evening. Celia and Travis had gotten to town earlier that day and had spent the day taking in some of the sights and I was to meet them there.

It was so great to see Celia again and Travis is super nice!  We took pics in front of the White House waiting for Ken.  He was able to meet us shortly afterward.  We decided to wander up to Georgetown for dinner and some people watching.  It was so fun wandering the streets while we decided on a place to eat.  We ended up at the delicious Italian restaurant that Ken had taken me to the last time I accompanied him to DC.  We chatted the night away over yummy food.  It was such a treat getting to know Travis.  After dinner we walked a bit more and came up with a plan for the following day before saying goodnight and heading back to our hotels.

That Sunday Celia and Travis opted to visit The Smithsonian while Ken and I wanted to visit the Archives.  Maybe I'm just a silly girl, but it I LOVE visiting the Archives.  I have such a reverence for our founding documents and to see them in person is thrilling to me.  I have to say that I got a little teary-eyed while seeing/reading the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution.  I have such a love for our country and seeing the documents that were created in the founders quest for a "more perfect union" was very emotional for me.  My heart was filled with so much gratitude! 

We arranged to meet for lunch at the Old Post Office Tower and then tour the tower.  Luckily the weather was much clearer than the first time we went up and we were able to see the city much better.  After the tower, we were running out of time before our flight so we parted ways as Celia and Travis were renting some bicycles to tour the mall.  It was hard, as always, to say goodbye to my friend.

We walked around the city a bit more as we wandered back to our hotel to pick up our bags before heading to the airport.  Our flight was easy breezy and we stopped off for a quick bite of dinner on the way home.  We didn't want our get-away to end just quite yet.  We were so thankful to our wonderful friend, the Briggs, for watching our kiddos while we got to spend time together.  It was great to have that time with Ken and we felt refreshed coming home.  Can't wait for our next trip together!