Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Another year of baseball

Another year completed of baseball for Alex.  This year he was on the Oriole’s. 

Alex wasn’t sure he wanted to play baseball this year.  He didn’t know what he wanted to do, but we “made” him play one more year.  This was the first year that he had to “try out” for a team.  He grumbled and moaned and we just kept on encouraging him. It was worth it when he came home from his first few practices and thanked his dad, assistant coach Bob, for having him play baseball again.  He does enjoy it once he’s playing.  It’s just the thought of going to all the practices and missing out on playing with his friends that he doesn’t like.

He ended the season with an award for best “on-base” percentage.  Alex may not have made a ton of hits, but because he’s "low to the ground” he got walked a lot.  :-)  He was great at falling down to avoid being hit by the pitch.  He did that at least once or twice every game!  He should’ve gotten the most dramatic award! 

I hope he plays again next year.  Here’s a few pictures from this years’s season…..

 Random May 2009 118 Alex enjoyed playing catcher.Bob coaching Alex Dad gives some coaching at 1st base.

he's ready for this one Alex is ready for this pitch!

our  baseball playerNice throw from 2nd. Random May 2009 105 What a cute baseball player!Random May 2009 111 No time for dinner before the game, so a hotdog in the dugout!

Random May 2009 112Sarah  picking flowers at Alex’s baseball game.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Goodbye old friend…..Hello New Shiny Friend!

It’s time to say goodbye to our old travel trailer. We bought it in 2004 when we lived in Utah. We’ve driven that baby all over the West. We blew a tire at midnight in the middle of the Virgin River Gorge just after we crossed the state line from Utah into Arizona. We’ve gotten stuck near Spokane in a parking lot that Bob swore we could get out of. Turns out we couldn’t back out, couldn’t turn around or anything. Got stuck. Cried. Stomped our feet. Then finally maneuvered it around and got out. Only to lose two bikes on I90 just minutes later. We’ve been to Bryce Canyon, Arches National Park, Disneyland, Oregon Coast, Yellowstone, and multiple spots in Washington. We busted the stairs, the awning, and the refrigerator. When Bob lost his job after we first moved here, we joked (mostly) about how we could always live in it if he didn’t find another job quickly. We’ve camped with friends, neighbors and family members and have made tons of memories. But now it is time to say goodbye…..

……and Hello to shiny new trailer!

View Shiny New Trailer (Photos taken with slide out not put out. ooops. I was just too excited!)

Basically it’s the same as our old trailer, but with quad bunk beds and an 18 inch slide out. We are looking forward to making just as many wonderful, happy memories and seeing much more of the country!

Our first big trip in our new travel trailer will be our drive to the Midwest to see family in Indianapolis and Cincinnati! We leave July 5th and hope to arrive in Indianapolis on July 8th. Then we head back home on July 26 with a stop to see Uncle Chuck in New Mexico. We are looking forward to trying out our new home on wheels. :-)

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Girl Scout Bridging Ceremony

On June 10th, my little girl scouts had their bridging ceremony.  They “graduated” from Daisy Scouts to official Brownie Scouts!  Yay!

 Group Shot 2

It’s been a great two years of being these precious little girls’ troop leader.  I’ve enjoyed spending so much time with my own daughter and watching her develop Courage, Confidence and Character!

Lisa and Sarah(Sarah at her Daisy Investiture Ceremony)
Flower Sarah (Sarah at the Bridging Ceremony)

Having a wonderful co-leader in Nicole has been fabulous too.  Not only have I learned what being a scout leader is, I have also found a life long friend.

Nicole and Lisa 2

It’s been a fun-filled 2 years with Rock Climbing, Safeway Grocery Tours, Fire Station and Sherriff’s department tours, SWAP events, Thinking Days, Corn Mazes, selling cookies, and learning the Girl Scout Law and the Girl Scout Promise.  I’m looking forward to next year when we will experience what it’s like to be Brownies!

Good Job Troop 52830!GS Troop 52830 again

Dancing Queen

Sarah dance recital 1 At the beginning of this month, Sarah had her much anticipated dance recital!  Applause Studio puts on it’s yearly recital at the Edmonds Center for the Arts – very fancy!

Sarah’s class performed 2 songs and participated in the finale.  One was a jazz dance number and one was a tap dance number.  The finale was with the whole cast and was a number performed to a song called “Heart of Rock N Roll”.  Original song was by Huey Lewis and the News, but they changed it a bit for the recital. 

Everyone did such a great job!  We are so proud of our little dancing queen!

Sarah and Ms. Allison (Sarah and her dance teacher, Ms. Allison)

Sarah dancing 2 ( Sarah in her jazz outfit.  She is the one in the middle)

Sarah takes a bow (Sarah takes a bow.  She is in her tap outfit.  Cute skirt!)

Sarah looking for her daddy (Sarah looking for her daddy after the finale)

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Europe Part II

Paris!! (see Europe Part I here)

On May 1st we took the overnight train from Munich to Paris. We arrived in Paris the morning of May 2nd.  We headed straight to our hotel, The Hotel Saint Dominique located near Rue Clair.  We had a super cute little room right off the inner courtyard and a view of the Eiffel Tower out the front door of the hotel.

The view outside our hotel in Paris Our hotel room at Hotel Saint Dominique, Paris

Once we checked in, we headed to a local flea market.  This was so much fun!  I guess they only have these on the weekends: http://en.parisinfo.com/professionnals/1729/marche-aux-puces-de-la-porte-de-vanves.  We had a blast just walking through the market, checking out all the stalls selling their wares.  It truly felt like we were among the true Parisians! 

After the market and some lunch, Bob, Sue and I headed to the oldest department store in Paris:  Le Bon Marche.

We got Bob’s mom her souvenir and thank you gift for watching the kids.  It was a beautiful department store and we found a lovely scarf for Marcie.  AND we spotted Andi MacDowell coming down the escalator.  Ooh La La!


Every evening, before dinner, the 4 of us (Rob, Sue, Bob and I) would meet in our lovely courtyard for aperitif’s.  It was wonderful!  One of the most favorite parts of our trip!nightly apertif at seven thirty

We ended our first day in Paris with kissing on a bridge over the Seine River overlooking the Eiffel Tower lit up at night.  Wonderful!

Day 2 found us off to Sacre Couer in Montmartre.  Montmartre is the highest hill in Paris where all the artists used to live and paint.  Today it still has artists who create and sell their paintings in a street vendor atmosphere. At the top of the hill is Sacre Coeur, a beautiful church that was built in the late 1800’s.  The view from here is the best in Paris!  It looks out over the whole of the city.   Lisa, Rob and Sue climb the stairs
(climbing the many steps to Sacre Coeur)

One more last lookHere we are in Paris, baby!

  The church was so beautiful.  But I felt a little bit weird taking a tour while they were having service!  It was Sunday, so the locals (and probably some tourists) were attending service while the tourists walked around the outer edges of the sanctuary admiring the architecture and the paintings.  Kind of weird and maybe a little wrong….but, still, I loved the church!

After that, we headed to the artists square and we bought our first piece of real artwork.

 Lisa was very happy with her purchase

Walking back down from Sacre Coeur, we saw a beautiful carousel and we then we shopped along Montmartre for souvenirs for the kids.

Super cheap scarves 

(shopping for scarves with Sue)

Beautiful double decker carousel

After Sacre Coeur and Montmartre, we headed over to the Luxembourg Gardens and Palace where we saw kids sailing boats on a pond, listened to a brass band, saw a big giant head (?) and just enjoyed the cloudy and cool, but lovely, day in Paris.Luxembourg Palace
(Luxembourg Palace)

Kids sailing boats on the pond (kids sailing boats – this was really cool.  The kids put their sailboats on the pond, pushed them out in the water with a stick, and then ran around the pond following their boat.)

Those silly Americans again(those silly Americans!)

After the gardens, Rob and Sue headed back for nap and Bob and I decided (NO SLEEPING!), so we headed off to the Louvre!

Bob touching the Louvre, sort of

We got there about 2 hours before it closed – on FREE MUSEUM SUNDAY.  It was CRAZY!  Funny story:  Once we got in, we decided to head to the bathrooms and then decide which wing we wanted to see.  We KNEW we would only be able to see just one wing because the museum is so huge!  So, we start heading to what we THINK is the bathrooms.  Little did we know that when the sign said “Sortie”, which means exit, that we would actually be exiting the museum!  We thought that the sign just meant “this way to the exit” not “you are exiting now”.  So, we walked in the Louvre, then we walked right back out!  Luckily, the museum people were nice enough to let us back in without having to stand in line again.  Bob and I joked that we could say “Yes, we were in The Louvre….but we didn’t see anything!”.  :-)  We were pretty loopy at this point from being so tired.

Once we were back in again, we chose the Denon Wing, that houses the Italian and Spanish Paintings, including The Mona Lisa.  At the top of the stairs to this wing is the famous “Winged Victory”

Winged Victory

This is how close we got to The Mona Lisa: Holy Cow, look at the people (that’s her on the back wall. Much smaller than you would think, huh?)

This was as close as we could get

This picture was on the opposite wall of Mona Lisa: This painting was on the opposite wall of the Mona Lisa I was amazed at how close you could get to some of the paintings.  Pretty cool, huh?

We didn’t get to see very much – I pooped out pretty quickly.  But trying to get to the Sortie (for real this time) we saw some beautifully old paintings and even an Easter Island Head.An Easter Island Head   Definitely a place I would love to try and actually spend time at next time.

After our quick tour through the Louvre, we headed back to our hotel for our nightly aperitif and dinner.  We met up with a friend from home, Jon D’hondt, who had been working in Paris for two weeks.  We walked to Rob and Sue’s favorite crepe stand in Rue Claire and enjoyed a nice evening of crepe’s for dinner and crepe’s for dessert.  I have to say, the Nutella and Banana crepe was super yummy!

Whew! Day 2 was a busy day.  I think I’ll stop my blog post here for now, and blog Day 3 (Versailles!) on a different post.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Friday Favorite Five – 6/5/2009

Finally, I can post a FFF this week!

1) The Outlander Series by Diana Gabaladon

  I love this series!  It is about a woman in 1945 who goes back in time to 1743 Scotland.  From Amazon.com: “While on her second honeymoon in the British Isles, Claire touches a boulder that hurls her back in time to the forbidden Castle Leoch with the MacKenzie clan. Not understanding the forces that brought her there, she becomes ensnared in life-threatening situations with a Scots warrior named James Fraser. But it isn't all spies and drudgery that she must endure. For amid her new surroundings and the terrors she faces, she is lured into love and passion like she's never known before.”  Aaaah yes!  Jamie Fraser……James Alexander Malcolm MacKenzie Fraser……my first fictional true love.  Bob knows about Jamie, and my obsession with him!  Ha ha  There are 6 books in the series, I just finished the 2nd one for the 2nd time, and I just found out that book #7 will be published September 2009.  Woo hoo!

2) Hot summer days – Yes, here in the PNW it’s been quite hot this week.  Temperatures in the 90’s!  The kids have had a blast with running through the sprinklers, eating popsicles, and wearing shorts to school.  This doesn’t happen often around here – especially this early in the season.  So we’ve been trying to enjoy every minute of it!  Too bad we don’t have air conditioning though……it’s been quite warm in house during the early evenings!

3) Zumba – I have discovered Zumba and love it!  For those of you who may not know Zumba, it is “A workout that mixes body sculpting movements with dance steps derived from cumbia, merengue, salsa, reggaeton, hip hop, mambo, rumba, flamenco, and calypso and Salsaton. The routines feature aerobic interval training with a combination of fast and slow rhythms. It targets areas such as the glutes, legs, arms, abdominals, and the heart. A Zumba class is typically not formulaic in that instructors often add on their own music choices and choreographies to make their class presentation locally unique.”  Why exercise, when you can ZUMBA!  Woo Hoo!

4) Windows Live Writer – I just discovered this application, thanks to my adorable home-IT support-guy, hubby.  It has changed the way I blog!  Before, my pictures were a nightmare to upload.  No matter where I wanted the pictures to be inserted in my blog, they would automatically get inserted at the top and then I would have to move them to the spot I wanted them in.  Now, I just insert my picture right where my curser is. (those of you who use blogspot know what I’m talking about!)  Anyway, I am so far behind on my blogs that I was dreading trying to catch up.  But since I discovered this Live Writer, I’ve been able to whip them out quickly.  Yay!

5) Spring Gardening – Take note people – you will only see this item on my blog once a year.  11.5 months out of the year I HATE gardening.  I hate the planting, the watering, the weeding – everything except the enjoyment of a nice landscaped yard.  However, once a year I get the bug to pretty up our yard.  This spring has been BEAUTIFUL!  So, a couple of weekends ago Bob and I made multiple trips to the nurseries and planted trees, flowers, bushes and filled some planting pots and wine barrels and even bought a hanging basket.  Our yard is looking pretty good right now and thankfully my gardening bug is gone.  Whew!  Now we can just sit back and enjoy the fruits of our labors.  Next up:  deciding if we want to build a deck or put in a patio!  :-)

Have a great weekend!  I hope you get an opportunity to reflect on your Friday Favorite Five from the week!

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Fairly Odd Pharaoh's

In May, Alex and Sarah participated in a musical at our church called The Fairly Odd Pharaoh's. It told the story of Moses and was super cute. Alex and Sarah did a great job! Alex was Aaron, Moses’ brother, and a slave. Sarah was a ballerina and a slave girl. The kids had a great time and the volunteers who put this musical on should get a gold statue for their patience and all their hard work!

Here are a few pictures from this wonderful show. I hope you enjoy!

Alex shows off his magic snake trickAlex as Moses showing off his magic trick that showed God turning the staff into a snake.

Pretty Sarah Sarah, as a slave girl, after the show with the rose she received.

Moses and Alex as Aaron Moses and Aaron talk to Pharaoh.

Sarah as ballerina Angel Sarah as a dancing ballerina, when Moses is found in the river.

Sarah as slave doing Walk Like an Egyptian Sarah dancing to “Walk Like an Egyptian”.

Alex looked great in his costume The costumes were great! Alex is in the cream robe with red scarf and beard.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

I’m back!

So, my laptop died. I haven’t been able to blog! I finally got a new laptop and Bob is having me try a new blog writer program called Windows Live Writer (free download). So far, both are awesome! (Eve, this has solved my problem with inserting pictures!)

So here is my test blog! Hopefully I’ll be back to blogging my FFF and I have TONS of updates with pictures of the kids to blog about.

According to me (from my friend Raimi’s blog):Lisa looking out the window of our room

When I was a child...my dad and sister sang in a traveling gospel group called The Happy Aires. We would spend our weekends on this tour bus with a dozen other people traveling all over the tri-state area, singing at different churches. This was our only experience with “camping”.

I can't imagine my life without... my family – they are everything to me!

If I could be anywhere, I'd be... sitting on my back patio/deck, sipping a glass of wine, watching the sun set, and have my current favorite book in my hand ready to read. And, oh! Bob would be with me rubbing my feet!

My least favorite chore is... emptying the cat litter box. gross.

If I could be on any TV game or reality show, it would be... The Family Feud! I rock at that game!

If a mystery package arrived on my doorstep, I'd hope it would be... my three BFF’s in CA coming for an unexpected visit. We’d tour Seattle, scrapbook a little, maybe see a concert at the winery, and laugh all night long!

My guilty pleasure is... The Tudors on Showtime! I just love that show about King Henry VII and all his wives! And that Jonathan Rhyes Meyers is a hottie!

I thought I would never... move away from Indiana. Can you believe that? I’ve lived in Ohio, California, Utah and now Washington. I’m a long way from Indiana! And…I like it!

If a genie granted me three wishes, I’d wish for... a patio/deck in my back yard, to lose 10 pounds and no more arm fat, and for my parents to be healed from all their ailments.

Hope you enjoy these! Let me know if you play along and do your own “according to me”.