Sunday, April 29, 2012

Birthday Boy - the Big 7

Wah! My boy is 7 and I'm kinda freaking out about it. Where has the time gone? His special day started off like any other day. But once he was off to school, and after taking Berlin to tumbling, dance, and the neighborhood play group I finally got the chance to decorate his room with balloons and streamers for when he came home.

I also took donuts up to his classroom for his special birthday treat. For dinner he choose Spaghetti Factory, then we came home for birthday cake (lemon jello bundt cake) and presents.


 YAY for SEVEN!!!



This year was an "off" year for a party, but he really wanted to do something, so we invited his 3 buddies over for some pizza and a movie with popcorn and candy. They played, ate, played, watched part of the movie, played, ate, watched some more movie, played some more, then finished the movie. They had such a blast. We had a hard time getting them wrangled up in the car to take them home cause they just wanted to keep playing. Sorry parents that it ended up being such a late night :)

Just a few things I've loved about Finley this past year:

1. Watching him read to Berlin. Not only is he a good reader, but he is such a good big brother. 
2. He's become quite a little fish. This is a big change from years past. He loves to swim and be in the water.
3. Finley is a rule follower when it comes to school. He is so polite and kind at school. I hope that continues to be the case.
4. He writes the funniest comic book strips. Some day I will sneak the book out of his room and take some pictures. They are awesome.
5. He is getting more confident on the soccer field and is blossoming into a great little player. 
6. He is a good helper at home. He will make his bed and Berlin's bed. He helps with the dishes and is getting better and keeping his room cleaned up and putting his laundry away. 
7. Salmon and shrimp have been added to meat as his favorite foods. He's funny this way. If it's meat he'll eat it without questioning it (duck, chicken hearts, he tries and loves it all). Vegetables are the total opposite. He hates all vegetables no matter how they are cooked, seasoned, or covered. However, he knows he has to eat them at dinner, even if it takes all night (and sometimes it does). 
8. He is goofy. So very goofy.
9. My favorite thing is when he comes and snuggles with me on the couch in the morning before school when we have a few minutes to spare. I love it. I will hold onto these moments because I know it won't always last.
10. Knock-knock jokes. He loves to make them up and share them with us at the dinner table. Most of the time there is no punch-line, but that's what makes them so great.

I have been blessed with many things, but I really do count the kids as my greatest blessing of all. Finley is such a joy in our home and I am so glad happy that he is ours. I just love this guy so much. 
Happy Birthday Buddy!

Friday, April 27, 2012

Spring Soccer - Girl Power

Berlin started her first season of soccer last week. She has been waiting for this moment to arrive forever. We held off putting her in because she is so small and because of the not-so-fun experience we had with Finley when he started soccer at 3. So we waited with Berlin until she was 5 and it was a great decision. No tears or crying on her part, and no bribing on our part. She loves it! Here she is at her first game (she is # 6 on the yellow team) with her sparkly new pink/purple soccer ball. She did great!
(warning - this post has lots of pics)

Pre-game warm-up.

Their two-minute stretch was the funniest thing to watch. Just look at all the funny things going on in the next few pics.

Bend down, touch your toes...

Which one of these is not like the other? Apparently she had enough of that. Looks like all the blood rushed to her head and then she got tipsy when she stood up. Love it!

Jump up! Jump down! Love the little gal on the right  - apparently too much jumping on a full bladder. And our cute little friend & neighbor Spencer to the left of Berlin was jumping his shorts right off! Ha! 

The kid on the far right end is doing a mid-air potty squat.

Game Time Kick-off.

The other little blonde gal on Berlin's team is a soccer prodigy. She scored like 8 goals that game and just ran away with the ball every chance she got. See how Berlin and the other kids are just letting her do her thing. That's team support at it's best right there.


Shin guard show & tell. Berlin and Spencer couldn't stop comparing their uniforms & gear at random times in the game.

Berlin & Spencer reminding each other which goal is their's.

Seriously, is there anything better than watching 4 and 5 year old's playing soccer? I think not. It's just hilarious!

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Race Day - SLC Half Marathon 2012

I signed up for the 2012 half marathon last year after having run the 2011 one. But, life has been pretty crazy lately and I hadn't trained as religiously as I did for the 2011 one. But my awesome younger sister called me two weeks ago and said, yes, we were going to do it. Even if our only goal was to just finish. So, with that attitude I decided to do it. Last year I was a basket case, being my first half marathon ever, but still did pretty good (2hrs, 31 min, 55 secs). Just over my goal of 2 1/2 hours. This year however, I wasn't stressed or worried about my time. I just knew it would be what it would be. I think that made a big difference for me. I felt great the first part of the race. And up until about mile 9 I was feeling awesome. After that, it got harder, but I still felt good. I even finished FASTER than I did last year!!! Maybe it was because I was less stressed, maybe it was because my training was more well- rounded and not just running (I have been doing weights, strength training, step, zumba, and body combat classes in the mornings along with running), maybe it's because I had 15lbs less of body weight pounding the pavement. Whatever it was, I had a great time running it this year despite the warmer temps. So glad my amazingly awesome sister talked me into it. She is great! Here are pics from our day...

Here we are at 6:15am waiting for the trax to take us to the start line. Gettin' pumped up to rock the road! Thanks to Ryan for dropping us off. It was an early morning for him too!


Yes, that's me with my granny phanny running belt. I didn't wear it last year, but am so glad I did this year.

Here we are after the match - what hotties we are. After these photos we headed over to the massage booth so Val could partake of some healing hands. Me? No thanks, I don't like people touching me. I hate massages. 

Val's final time: 02:26:55       My final time: 02:27:45

Here's to running in 2013. Third times a charm right?

After the race we headed up to Finley's soccer game. Here are some fun pics of him in action. They had a very good game today which made playing in the heat of the day worth it.

After the soccer game we had to rush home, shower, and head out to Chuck-a-rama for a family lunch with my dad's family. My parents came up from California for the weekend (My mom is awesome. All pics from the race, soccer game, and lunch are from her camera) and my grandparents, aunts & uncles, cousins, all came too which made for a fun mini-reunion. 

My sweet grandparents and totally awesome sister!

Today was just a wonderful day. This is what it's all about.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Easter Sunday

The kids were up late Saturday night so I thought for sure that they would sleep in Easter morning. No such luck.  Berlin was up at the crack of dawn. Literally. And after going in and waking Finley up like 5 times, he finally trudged out of bed. They both came upstairs to see if the Easter Bunny paid a visit. But they didn't find baskets awaiting them. Just baskets for Ryan and I. But they did find a clue on the half empty tray of veggies left out for the EB as to where their baskets were hidden.

Finley wrote a note for the EB asking him to please remember something for Bentley. It was so sweet and of course the EB delivered some bone treats for him.

Finley really wanted to prove that the EB is real. I told him we could leave out some veggies for him to eat and if they were gone that meant he was real. Uh, no. Apparently I am the lamest mom around. Finley stated that would not work and would prove nothing. Ok then. I asked him what would prove the EB existed. Finley  stated very emphatically that a Spy Cam would. We just needed to get one. Uh Yeah. We told him that they were very expensive and where would we get one the night before Easter? He said why not use the video recorder? I told him it only had 2 hours of filming time. What if he came after the filming had stopped? He was  trying so hard to figure something out. Luckily after bedtime routine, he forgot about it. So I opted for my original suggestion and I put out a tray of veggies. The Easter bunny ate about half of them ... he MUST be real!

Mine and Ryan's baskets. I don't like Chocolate Bunnies ... the EB must have remembered that so I was happy to see a "Good n Plenty" bunny instead. The EB rules doesn't she :)

They had to figure out a bunch of riddles to get from one clue to the other (the 1st clue was left on the half eaten veggie tray). This led them on a great hunt through the entire house. It was so fun. The EB started this tradition last year and we love it so we are glad he continued it this year.

Here are all the hidden clues ...



Apparently I forgot to get a picture of #4 ... it was hidden in the fridge!
 Here are the kids finding and reading the clues. They made a great team. 

The last clue took them to our bedroom...the room where we read our scriptures together at night. This is where they found their baskets.

I forgot to get pics of the kids in their new clothes, but here they are laid out for them to find in the morning. They looked so handsome in them. I definitely need to get pictures of them all decked out this week.


I put together some Resurrection Eggs, but we ran out of hours in the day to find them. Note to self, do that FIRST, before all the other stuff. We will definitely do them next year, or maybe for an April FHE - that would work too. They also got a Lamb in their basket. It was a great way to start the discussion of us being lambs and Jesus our Shepherd.

Sacrament was really good and it touched in a way I haven't been touched spiritually in a while. Sometimes I feel like it's all I can do to just get through 3 hours of church. Not being in Primary in Sunday each week has been hard on me. I was used to doing things & moving about during those 2 hours in Primary, so getting used to sitting for 3 hours has not only been rough on the derriere and lower back, but on my attention span. But this Sunday I had no problem listening to the speakers and feeling the spirit. There were even tears in my eyes as I truly felt an outpouring of love for my Savior. It was beautiful. And, at the last minute I was asked to help out in the Sunbeam/CTR 4 class. I love those kids!

That night we had my family over for dinner. My sister Val, Emily & Janweb, and Ben & Karen. It is always so nice to get together and hang out with those we love.

And how cute is this picture by Berlin? It's Jesus Christ praying & atoning for our sins in the Garden of Gethsemane. I love it. It's so sweet and tender and will be a keeper for her art file. I am always amazed at how well the kids remember the things they learn in church, the stuff we read in the scriptures, etc.