Thursday, October 24, 2013

Fall Break

After spending a few wet cold hours in the rain during the race...and sitting some more during Seth's soccer game...we took some warm showers...rested up a little...packed our van and headed to Ouabache State Park (in Bluffton) to go camping.  Mom and dad had gone the past few days..and left thier camper there for us when they came home for the race.  By this time, it had cleared up and as a beautiful fall day.

It just happened to be a fall festival that weekend.  Grant was pretty excited to try out his Darth Vader Costume...he had a blast trick or treating around the campground.  (Seth chose NOT to trick or treat...I think he was so cold and tired when we were packing he didn't want to pack his costume....some of the campers still gave him candy though!)
 They also had fun passing out some candy after we were done...it's a smaller campground than Chain O Lakes where we usually go...but it was a nice little "intro" into Halloween!
 Since we had our van too...we drove into town and had Pizza at Pizza King.  Andy and I both love Pizza King and rarely have it...unfortunately...this Pizza King wasn't as good as the one in Ft. Wayne or Portland...kinda disappointing.

We got back to the campground and the boys and I took a walk to look at the few campsites that were decorated.  We went to the lodge and got in on some free kettle corn.   We also were able to sign up for a hayride.  We went back to the campsite to pick up Andy (who was keeping his knee up from running on it that morning)  We waited a little more than boarded the haywagon and took a good 30 minute ride all around the campground and state park.  The moon was beautiful...it was  a great night!  

Back to the camper and jumped into bed and we ALL were asleep quickly...it had been a long day!

We slept in a little and had cinnamon rolls for breakfast.  We rode our bike to the bison area and walked the mile hike around the bison. For some strange reason, Grant chose to carry big rocks?

 Then we went over to the fire tower...Andy watched (bad knee remember) while the boys and I climbed the 107 steps to the top.   It was a beautiful view...but my legs were screaming after my big run the day before.

 Spent some time on a nearby playground and explored the lake that had been drained!  Evidently there was a carp problem and the lake wasn't healthy..so they drained it all.  
 We went back to the campsite and had some lunch.  The boys played...we relaxed a little...boys took bike rides and then the boys and I decided to take a hike.  Andy has been having problems with his knee for about a month or so.  He had been training for the 5k and really wanted to do that..but that caused a lot of swelling and pain.  He stayed back and elevated his knee while the boys and I explored.




Rock piles are always guaranteed fun!

We found ourselves back at the bison range again...


which also meant we were close to the tower...so we climbed that again!  By this time my legs were JELLO!

At this point...one of the boys wanted to hike around the lake and one wanted to go back.  Since the lake was dried up...we chose to walk 1/2 and cut back through the middle!  We had been out in it during the morning...but evidently we found a lower, muddier spot!  I had a little problem with my shoe...both in fact!   It was deceptively soft..and I just keep sinking, and I tried running faster and I lost 1 shoe...going back to get it I lost the other one! UGHGH!  I was a muddy mess!

Back to the campsite, with very muddy socks, jeans, legs and shoes!   I took a shower while the boys checked out other campsites for leftover firewood.  We took a bike ride around the campground and then built a fire and cooked hotdogs.   Grant discovered a new way to cook his where  the smoke doesn't get in your eyes!

By this time...Andy's leg was really swollen and he could hardly walk.    We knew he needed to see a doctor and since he had the next day off (Monday) we made the decision to pack up and come home early so we could make sure he could see a doctor.   It was a hard decision and caused some tears...but it was totally the right thing to do...Andy was in so much pain...he couldn't even enjoy the camping. 

We got home around 8:20..and bribed Seth by telling him he could stay up and watch the entire Broncos/Colts game!

Andy got an appt Monday morning where they drained a bunch of fluid off his knee and gave him a cortisone shot!  We're hoping that does the trick and surgery can be avoided!

so..even though we packed up a few hours early...we had great weather and were able to enjoy 30 or so great hours in the outdoors!  We knew we were going camping again the following weekend...so that helped too! But most importantly, we were glad to get daddy home...his knee iced and elevated and a good night sleep!

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Bookin' It For Kate's Kart

The 2nd annual Bookin' It For Kate's Kart was on a cold, rainy Saturday morning (Oct. 19)  I was SO bummed when it was such yucky weather...cause the preregistration had been pretty good and had it been a great day...I know we would have had a TON of people come out!


But...it was still a great day.  The Garrison Group does an amazing job getting sponsors and presenting this race.  I am completely humbled that they chose us to do this for!     We found out that morning that just in sponsors alone, they got over $6,000, not including the race registrations.  

Trent, the head of the group, dropped off our shirts on Thursday...I loved them...especially the little tribute to Kate on the sleeve.
 We had a Kids Fun Run before the race...due to the weather there weren't a ton of kids...but the ones who were there had a great time!   Seth's buddy Elijah and his sister (Grant's buddy) came out to show their support.
 First we had a 100 meter run for the little ones...so cute!  Grant was off and running before the "go!"
 Then....it was time for the 400m run...everyone was lined up and ready to run..even Grant who ran again!

 It was then time for the big run...I had been training. I started the couch to 5K about 8 weeks ago.   I had gotten up to running a mile...and then another 1/2 mile after a walk.  Wasn't sure how I was going to do during the "race!"

Here is Andy coming in at just under 32 minutes...not bad at all for a bum knee...but bless his heart, he stopped just before the finish line and came back to find me!
 Me...well...I ran!  I ran all but .5 miles..which meant I ran 2.6 miles!  I've never run that far before in my life!  I wasn't fast...in fact I was the last "runner" to come in...but I ran.  Looking back, I wish I would have found a partner to push me a little more (maybe so I could have run the whole thing).  I was honored Andy came back to find me.   So...even in the cold and rain I did it...in honor of my little girl!  Next year...I'll be a little faster!

 I did it...never would I ever thought I would have run that much...ever!

Fall Party...Candy Wars


When Seth showed me the binder at school registration...and the line for "room mom" was still open and he asked if I would do it...I HAD TO SAY YES!  How long will he want me around...joining in on all his festivities at school?   So...here I am...room mom for 3rd grade.

The 1st party was at the start of fall break...I had an awesome group of parents who stepped up to the plate and donated lots of snacks.   Being the perfectionist (did I just say that?) that I am...I wanted it to be just right...fun but "cool"!    
I came up with the idea of "CANDY WARS" ....since the best thing about Halloween is the CANDY!  I wish I would have taken more pictures...but alas...I was too busy running around the classroom.

The class was divided up into 5 teams...with 4 or 5 kids per team:   The games included:

1.  M&M Sort...the kids had to sort a bunch of M&Ms by color, into separate bowls...one at a time...going around the circle, taking turns while using 1 hand.
2.  Name that Candy...I had made a powerpoint of cross sections of candy bars...as a team they had to guess the candybar
3.  Smartie Stack...Using Smartie candies..they had to build the tallest tower.
4.  Find The Gummy Bear...One person had to find the 5 hidden gummie bears...hidden under a pile of whip cream, not using their hands!
5.  Licorice Sip...Without using their hands...they had to suck up a piece of licorice rope into thier mouth.
6.  Candy Corn Art...As a team they had to create a masterpiece from just candy corn
7.  Corny Straw ...Using only a straw, they had to move candy corn from one bowl to another by sucking the candy corn.
8.  Lifesaver Pass...Using a wooden kabob...they had to  pass a lifesaver down the row and back again. 

Each team got points for the place they came in for each game...the team with the most points got to pick out their prize first!





Then for snack...the parents all brought in various goodies...and the kids were able to make their own snack mix!   Each snack had a fun, Halloweenie name:
Monster Scabs:  Cinnamon Toast Crunch Cereal
Bat Brains:  Popcorn
Ghost Poop:  White chocolate chips
Witches Warts:  chocolate chips
Candied Spider Eggs:  gum drops
Owl Eyes:  cheeseballs
Snake Eyes:   red hots
Witches fingernails:  bugles
Bloated Ants:  Raisins
Toasted Spider Webs:  pretzels
Ghost Guts:   mini marshmallows
Vulture Toenails:  candy corn
Goblin Belly Button Lint Balls:  M&M's


 I froze plastic spiders in the ice cubes (they loved this).
We also served doughnut holes and cider, green Hawaiian punch and chocolate milk!
(Note to self...3rd graders don't like cider...I think mine was the only one who chose cider!)

Seth said it was a lot of fun (although he was bummed that his team didn't win).   Now...to plan something fun for Christmas!


Lightning Mile

On October 11, Seth had his final cross country meet.  It was another big one...this time at Carroll Middle School.   I'm always amazed how many people are at these things...it was another gorgeous night for running.
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Warming up...doing some exercises!

All the 3rd graders...ready to go!

 And they are off..
 And he's almost to the finish line...GO SETH GO!
So proud of our little runner!

Pumpkin Patch

On October 8th, Grant's class went to Kurtz's Pumpkin Patch for Pumpkin School. Last year, he missed it because he was sick that day...so he was really excited to be going.  It was a BEAUTIFUL day...you couldn't have asked for a more perfect fall day.

First...they all go to Pumpkin School where they learn about pumpkins, different kinds of seeds and how a pumpkin grows.  They make it really interesting for the kids.
 Then...they board a haywagon to ride out to the field to pick out their very own pumpkin.

So many to choose from....


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He found it...



 Good friend from church...Amelia!  Aren't they just the cutest?

 Back on the wagon to go back to the farm...holding tight to the pumpkin!
 The whole class...each with their very own pumpkin...the simple joys!


The tradition continues

We took our final last dip in the pool on September 28 (just a few days early since the weather report for the 29th was really poor).    It was a great year at the pool...but we are glad to have daddy home every evening...at least until May!  

Soccer Star

It was an exciting fall for Grant...he was FINALLY old enough to play organized soccer.   He had been waiting SO long...going to game and game watching Seth.  He wanted to play SO BADLY.   

We signed him up for Upward through our church.    His practices started way back the first week of August.   He was so excited to go to his first practice.  He even got new shin guards and soccer socks!

The season went pretty good...he played with pre-k through kindergartners...so some of the kids had a little more experience,  but each and every week he was out there chasing down the ball.

He was all over the field...and was constantly in motion...so cute to watch!

The 1st time both boys had a game on the same morning...tag team parenting has begun!


 And note to self..don't wait until the last game...thinking you will get lots of great shots then...cause it will be a cold-rainy day (the only one of the whole 8 games...go figure!)



But...on that last cold rainy morning...he MADE A GOAL!  The excitement on his face was priceless...and I was so sad that Andy missed it (cause he was at Seth's game that was at the same time).

And...the best part...he FINALLY has a trophy to put on his shelf...just like Seth!