Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Happy Rosh Hashanah

Good morning, it is Tuesday.

We received a nice Rosh Hashanah card from my grandparents. Thanks, and have a nice Rosh Hashanah.

Now that I am working a M-F work week, the weekdays seem to hold much more in common with each other than ever before. This is really no problem, and I am enjoying my job, but I am finding it hard to come up with original stuff to write about each day. Yesterday my day was about normal, the only difference was that me and the kids walked to school rather than riding bikes or driving. When the weather is poor, I usually drive and park behind the school. The walk ends up being about 20 minutes with the littles, just a little too long to be in the cold and rain before school. We rode our bikes for the first week of school (with Lillie in the trailer) but with me staying at school for the day, there is no good place to put my bicycle due to the trailer, plus it is really not much shorter than walking because we have to walk the bikes on the school grounds and take the long way. Today we will walk as well as the weather will be nice.

The other strange thing yesterday was that the 700 billion bailout plan failed. I sure was not expecting it to fail as McCain seemed to change the world to get it done...only he could not even convince half the republicans to vote for it. And then the republicans blame a speech by the speaker who said this bailout was necessary due to the policies of their leadership, so they don't vote for it...hmm. I guess I will turn on the news again tonight and see what is up. I figure most of the folks reading this blog lost more $$$ yesterday than the bailout plan would have cost them. My only hope is that more level heads will think up a better plan over the next week or so that will lead to a better future than the failed plan would have created.

See you tomorrow.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Busy weekend, Lillie is Memory champ!

Good morning, it is Monday.

Busy weekend! Saturday was two soccer games, team pictures, and dance class. Both teams lost by just one goal, both boys played great. Hansen had great awareness of the game and made a great assist, Preston also played very well and made a very cool goal by kneeing the ball as it was going over another player's head as they were sliding for the ball or something. Lillie is learning more with her walk with attitude and tap. Yesterday after church, I took the boys to the driving range while I taught a golf lesson.

Lillie has become the undisputed champion in our family for the game Memory. She has beat me, she has beat Maren, She beat Shannon (who claimed to be master of the game Memory), and the boys are scared to take her on. Actually Hansen won in a three person game of with me and Lillie, so he thinks he is too cool for memory. Anyhow, she is just this cute little curly haired 5 year old girl who somehow just knows where all the pieces are and makes matches when I don't even remember seeing the cards ever turned over. Maren says that Lillie plays like Stef did when she was a kid...I guess Stef was a memory master as well.

Last night Shannon came over (not just to be beat in Memory by Lillie) to watch the Amazing Race with Maren and us. They [Maren and Shannon] are Amazing Race junkies. I personally don't like the show as I just get anxious watching it. Anyhow, it was a fun evening, and Shannon is driving a very cool brand new Ford Mustang as her little Chevy is in the shop from a slow speed run in with a Ram Truck. Shannon likes to brag about how her little Chevy actually did leave a mark on the Ram Truck (the accident was the Ram Truck's fault).

Today is back to work for everyone, and soccer for Preston.

See you tomorrow.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Open house at GL

Good morning, it is Friday.

Last night was open house or curriculum night at Grass Lake. Lillie did not want to come, Maren was good either way (as long as one of us was going...Preston has the same teacher as he did last year and we are happy with everything), and Hansen was on the fence. Right when it was time to go Hansen was not going to go, then at the last second he decided to come along. We went to Preston's class for the presentation, then Hansen and I went in search for Mrs. Behrens, Hansen's teacher for Kindergarten and 2nd grade. We first got to run into Hansen's old friend Anessa and they kind of said "hi" to each other, but were both glad to see each other. Then we walked into Mrs. Behren's class and even though it was full of parents waiting to talk to her, when she saw Hansen she walked over to him and "Hi Hansen, it is great to see you, how about a hug!". Well, if David Letterman was to do a top 10 on the Top 10 ways to embarrass Hansen, the number one way would would sound something like "And the number one way to embarrass Hansen is to, da da da, stop talking to the room of adults and say "Hi Hansen, come give me a hug!". It was very nice and it was nice to see Mrs. Behrens if only for a minute. Hansen froze solid about three steps into the room and Mrs. Behrens never got a Hansen hug, but is was all good. It will be interesting to see if this visit to Grass Lake makes Hansen wish he could go back to Grass Lake, or if it will be a little closure for him and he will be more settled at Cedar Valley.

Today is Friday and we have no evening plans. I think Maren is going to pick up a pizza and then we will have pizza and watch the Presidential Debate. Will it take place? Will it not? Would anyone believe anything G.W. Bush said ever, and should anyone believe him now? Will there be a $700,000,000,000.00 bail out for the banks and will that some how find buyers for all the houses for sale in our neighborhood? And if so, is that all it would take to restore an entire economy? And if the bail out does not work, what kind of economy would the kids inherit? Interesting news times, maybe the Northwest United States will be sold to Canada before the 2010 Winter Olympics and we wont need passports to check out the show. Anyhow, have a good Friday.

See you tomorrow.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

My little sister is very old.

Good morning, it is Wednesday.

Yesterday in one of my word study classes the kids pointed out to me that I had not changed the date to 9-23-08 yet. As I changed the date I told them that it was my little sister's birthday. One boy said, "Wow, you have a little sister?!, she must be really old...how old is she, like 19 or 20 years old?" Then a little girl piped in saying, "my mom is REALLY old, she just turned 26 or 27 years old!?". I told them that my little sister was turning 32 years old and she is 6 years younger than me. They started to get really loud about how old we are, as if no human had ever been older...I shut them right up with a spelling test.

Hansen had a good soccer practice. We (I am like the unofficial assistant coach) spent the time going over positions and where those players were allowed to go on the field. With any luck the next game will have a couple of kids staying in position, rather than 6 kids mobbing the ball the entire game.

Today we are just on schedule. School and work, then Preston has soccer practice.

See you tomorrow.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Monday, filling.

Good morning, it is Tuesday.

Yesterday was the first Monday I have worked in nearly 20 years or something. My Golf Professional jobs always gave me Sunday and Monday off, and my stay-at-home Dad job gave me even more days off. Yesterday was just a fine day at work. In fact, much better than last week. I used a seating chart, had a bigger table, and did not use glue that could explode and go everywhere.

Yesterday I got a filling filled. It was kind of weird, I had a filling fall out, and I did not even know it. The great thing was that they just needed to refill the hole, but because I was not sensitive under the filling, I did not need any medication or numbing stuff. I was fully alert for all the grinding as the teeth had to be able to fit back together, but I did not puke on anyone, but it was not something I would choose as a hobby.

Today Hansen has soccer.

See you tomorrow.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Preston's family birthday.

Good morning, it is Monday.

Yesterday was Preston's family birthday party at the Ostergard's house. He got a ton of his two favorite things: Candy and Money. He also got a personal blender set for making beverages. He made us Orange Julius's last night. This is one time where he does not know exactly what he want to buy. He does not need or even want another gaming system. He kind of wants a hybrid golf club, but he really does not need one, nor does he really want to spend all his money on a golf club (I would not let him either) as he has already learned the some clubs work well and others not so well, getting the perfect club is sometimes just luck. I think in a month or two when Qwest quits the cell phone business and we switch to either Verizon or Att (I don't know which one is better so if you have any thoughts, let me know) he will be offering up some cash to get the phone he wants rather than the phone we would buy him. Yup upgrading what the folks would normally buy him, I will not be surprised it he offers up a little money to upgrade running shoes for track season as well.

We got to visit with Jack and Avery, along with Mel, Court,Stef, John and Carol. I only put Jack and Avery first because they are the big draw. As I learned 12 years ago, the parents become a side draw to the kids pretty darn quick...not really, but yes really. Jack and Avery are doing great, they both enjoyed our kids talking to them and stuff. Avery would let me hold her no problem and had fun with me, Jack on the other hand only enjoyed me if someone a little more trusting (like Maren) was holding him.

Looks like a rainy week ahead of us, and it is Monday. I am not used to Monday's being the start of the work week. Groan.

See you tomorrow.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Preston's birthday day.

Good morning, it is Saturday.

Preston had a very fun birthday day. Maren and I woke him up a couple minutes early to sing Happy Birthday to him. He is now 12 and would not want to let on to enjoying that, but he did, afterall, who would not want to be woke up to happy birthday songs? He did have to suffer through 12 spankings and a pinch, to grow an inch. He brought zinger type cakes for everyone in his class. One of his friends gave him a totally goofy happy birthday hat that I am sure he wore most of the day. After school he really just wanted to open his presents, so why not...he had a bunch of card and a couple of gifts. His next party is on Sunday. He got Rock Band On Tour from us and a cool Rock Band shirt from Amber, so he had a totally rocking birthday. To keep on theme, we went to The Rock for dinner. The Rock is a Rock and Roll Pizza place that cooks pizza in a big rock stove and has cool rock and roll themed everything. Hansen and Lillie had a great time as the kids were given some uncooked pizza dough (the bakers make the dough and throw it where you can watch) and they made lots of things from miniture bowling to marbles with the pizza dough. Our origional plan (as in yesterday's blog) was to go to Which Wich for a private opening party. Corey called me in the morning and told us that the plans had changed and it was a opening for anyone walking by and the lines would be crazy long and it was no place to bring the kids if they wanted to visit and stuff. So we changed to Preston's second choice of The Rock. In the evening we had a couple neighbor kids over for cake and icecream. Good Day for Preston.

Today brings soccer games (in the rain) for both Hansen and Preston. And Lillie has dance class. Of course all three of these activities are at the same time, so Preston will go with his coach, I will take Hansen, and Maren will take Lillie. Maren maybe wants to go to the Puyallup Fair today figuring it is so rainy that it will not be too crowded. We will see where the day takes us.

Yesterday I finished my first half week of work. I have planning for the last couple of hours on Fridays, and I spent the time re configuring my teaching room. I had a single table to teach 7 kids, and that was just not working out for me. They were all too close, I could not even use name plates on the tables as they were so close. Yesterday the kids won, a glue bottle broke and glue was all over the table. Luckily the lesson was about over when the winner was selected, so maybe it was a tie...but I have learned enought in my first couple of days to do things a little differently next week. Overall I like my new job just fine, and Lillie enjoys saying "hi" to me in the halls, which goes a long way to why the job is so perfect.

See you tomorrow.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Happy Birthday Preston.

Happy Birthday Preston!!!

Preston is 12. Wednesday he got a birthday round of golf, today he gets to choose anywhere he wants for dinner. I think he has chosen Which Witch, Uncle Corey's dad and brother's restaurant which is opening tomorrow in the U-district, but is having a special opening for friends and family this evening. Then on Sunday he has the family birthday party/BBQ at the Ostergards. Not a bad birthday season for the kid. Today he is also bringing cake snacks to all his classmates at school.

Last night we went to an opening of a friend's art exhibit in down town Tacoma. It was very cool, he had combinations of wooden an metal sculptors along with very cool glass bowl/vase pieces, and some work that dated back nearly 20 years. There was a little snack area with drinks and crackers that the kids enjoyed. I think the kids really enjoyed the art and the experience, I know Maren and I did. Preston is just beginning his teenager "leaning on everything rather than standing up straight" phase so I had to keep reminding him that leaning on the pillars that hold the glass sculptures costing $7,000.00 each was not really a good idea. Yikes.

See you tomorrow.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

first day on the job, Preston's birthday round of golf.

Good morning, it is Thursday.

What a busy day yesterday was. My first day on the new job was just fine. I met a lot teachers and paras and got right into the schedule of things. I have two pull out classes of my own where I take 6 to 8 kids to my teaching area and work on reading skills for about a half an hour. The rest of the time I am shuffled between teacher's classrooms to help in their classes. I have a little bit of a learning curve to deal with for my pull out classes with the curriculum and stuff, but it seems this should be a fun job. It was funny in the staff lunch room yesterday, I was invited to sit with a couple of Preston's old teachers which was nice. Many of the teachers had very nice lunches consisting of fancy salads on nice plates brought from home with nice little side and stuff. I had just made a 4th lunch for me when making the kid lunches, so it was just the same as the kids...and I used Preston's old tattered lunch box from the last couple of years. When I plopped my lunch box down and took out my peanut butter sandwich and cheese stick, one of the teachers said, "now that looks like a kids lunch if I have ever seen one." Maybe I will add jelly to my peanut butter sandwich today!

After school I hurried over to GL to pick up Preston and his friend Josh to take them golfing for Preston's birthday present. We had early release yesterday and we figured to have enough time to play 18 holes. I had been telling Preston for a few days that I had a surprise for him, but it was nothing of a material nature. He was perplexed trying to think of the surprise. When we got to the course, unloaded our clubs and headed over to the putting green, I pointed to a guy putting on the far side of the green and said to Preston, "Who is that ugly guy putting over there?" It took Preston a second to figure it out, then he was like "Uncle Corey! Yeah!". It was great having Corey join us...Corey's birthday is a week later than Preston's, so this was his birthday present as well. Preston golfed crazy good. He and his friend Josh (a buddy from school and soccer, who is a beginning golfer) played a tee box up from Corey and I, and Preston spent the day out driving us and stuff. Preston shot a 45 on the front 9 at Elk Run. He nearly got a 2 on hole number 5 as his second shot missed the hole by inches, then rolled 4 feet past. He made the putt no problem for his first ever birdie. After 6 holes Preston and Corey were tied, but Corey pulled away on the final three holes to beat Preston by a few strokes. Since neither Preston or Josh had ever played 18 holes and we were walking, we changed the format on the back 9. Me and Josh took on Preston and Corey in a two person scramble format. Me and Josh were able to beat them by one stroke, but it was a good match. I don't usually use my driver but for a couple of holes at Elk Run (I tend to be a bit conservative on the golf course-I absolutely hate penalty strokes), but Corey was hitting his driver crazy far! Corey hit a few drives that were as long as any drives I have seen in a long time, on hole 6 he hit one perfectly that went about 300 yards, the kids were totally amazed.

Today is another very busy day. See you tomorrow.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

1st day on job, Preston flips.

video

Good morning, it is Wednesday.

First day on the new job today. Yesterday I went and and did fingerprinting and name badge and all that stuff. I was so excited about the new job, the schedule, and the extra money, that I had not given much thought to benefits. I work 25 hours per week, which means I get benefits! I have never had benefits working as a golf professional, I have always been on Maren's plans. Having benefits is like getting a $400.00 per month raise before I even start working. Very nice.

Last night was curriculum night at CV and we went to presentations in both Hansen and Lillie's classrooms. Both teachers had very good presentations, and we are quite happy with all the kid's teachers. We made Preston come so he could see his old teachers...Ms. Hickey took offense to that statement "old teacher", so we had to change it to "former teacher". Preston enjoys being doted on, even if he wished he could have stayed at home.

The video clip above is of Preston doing flips on the trampoline at our neighbor's house. We have a loose no trampoline rule at our house...as in we will never get a trampoline and if you are one one, please be jumping one at a time. Lillie and Hansen have a hard time with the whole one at a time thing, but at least they know to think safety.

Tonight I am taking Preston and his friend Josh out golfing after school for Preston's birthday present. I have not told Preston, but Uncle Corey is scheduled to join us. Preston will really enjoy having Corey there. Corey's birthday is in a week, so I guess this is his birthday present as well.

In other job news, Maren had her job reorganized. She now works for the Outreach Department rather than the Public Services Department. Her job does not seem like it will change, but she did get a new boss and a new department. Normally Maren would freak out about this type of change, but this seems like a logical change that she is pleased with.

See you tomorrow.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

New job, dentist.

Good morning, it is Tuesday.

Yesterday I was offered the Paraeducator job at Cedar Valley! Woo Hoo! I have to go in today and fill out new hire stuff for the Kent School district, then I actually start working on Wednesday. Job stuff for me could not have worked out better. Hansen and Lillie are at CV and the school day is from 8:40am to 2:48pm (they are both very excited to have me working at their school). My work shift will be from 9:00am to 2:30pm. Feels good to be employed again, I have not had an actual work shift (other than jr. golf camps) since before Lillie was born.

Yesterday was also the dentist for me and the kids. Every six months we take over the dentist office for an hour and all get our teeth done at the same time. Still perfect, the kids have zero cavities (Hansen is on warning, he needs to brush more, and lay off the coffee and candy a bit) and my teeth are good as well. I actually have to go back today and have a new filling put in my back left molar. I guess the filling fell out sometime in the last 6 months and I never knew. No pain or anything, but there is a big hole in that tooth that I never even noticed. They said it will only be a 15 minute appointment as there is no need for drilling or pain kills, just a new filling put in where the old one was for strength reasons...I don't really want my tooth to split.

Tonight is curriculum night at CV. We have stuff going on every night this week!

See you tomorrow.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

No fair, soccer games, dance class, pictures.

Good morning, it is Sunday.

Nope, we did not go to the fair yesterday...Phew! Instead we stayed at home for the most part. I ended up taking the kids and Connor to the dollar store to buy candy (Preston earned a box of candy by scoring a goal in the game) which was a popular choice. Lillie really wants to go to the fair, but the boys were fine not going, infact Hansen really does not want to go...he is scared of the cows. And you can't blame him, a few years a go while we were in the cow barn, a very large cow freaked out, jumped over and out of his pen and came right inbetween us on his way to freedom. It was rather freaky and Hansen does not want to relive that fun. Besides, Preston got home a little later than expected from his soccer game, so it worked to say home.

Preston scored the first goal of his soccer game, and our neighbor Connor had a header goal on a corner kick. They lost 2-3 on a couple of bummer calls. One goal called against them never had the ball cross the plane of the box, but the goalie fell into the box, and the line judge did not know the rule very well and called it a goal. Also the other team earned a PK on a very suspect call. Anyhow, I understand it was a good game.

Hansen's team did not do as well. I was the coach this week, which meant this team full of kids that don't know soccer were being coached by me, who only knows soccer by watching Preston's teams over the years. I showed up for the game 30 minutes early with Hansen. When we arrived the other team was already there, doing fancy drills, setting up their porta bench and stuff. My team showed up slowly over the next 25 minutes. Anyhow, the other team were all older for the age group and had been together for a few seasons, and as you can guess, our team got beat. But Hansen left happy as did most of the team, I let the kids play positions they wanted to play, so they had fun. The actual score was like 5-0, but Hansen thought the other team only scored twice, and his teammates probably did not really pay any better attention either.

Lillie really enjoyed her new Hip hop/ Tap class. There were only four girls in her class. One was a new friend in her Kindergarten class, another was friend from last years classes, and the third was a new girl. She learned to "walk with attitude", just what she needs! It was like, step with flair, step with flair, step with flair, brush the shoulder, brush the shoulder, hand on hip, slide to the side, make a pose. I can tell you I have never taught this stuff at Golf Camp. Actually they were walking with attitude to learn being on beat for both tap and hip hop, it was very cute.

Here are some unrelated pictures:

Maren and Lillie snuggling on the couch.
The kids before school. L to R, Preston, Hansen, Lillie, and Julia (who comes to our house before school everyday for about an hour). They wish they could stay under blankets and watch TV all day!
Hansen and his new favorite shirt.
We brought down some Halloween stuff from the attic. Here Lillie is a fairy princess with a Friday the 13th Jason hockey mask on. Very scarry!

See you tomorrow.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

tired kids, CV interview, busy day.

Good morning, it is Saturday.

Yesterday was the end of week two of school for the kids. And they were a tired lot by the end of the day. Not only has going to school been a big change for them, but the weather has been great during the days and after school they are playing non stop out side. There were no activities for any of the kids and all the neighbor kids were just out hanging out as well. After watching Hoodwinked, it was all we could do to drag their tired bums up stairs and into bed.

My interview at Cedar Valley was much smoother than the interview at the high school. I could not believe it, I showed up about 10 minutes early, and they gave me a copy of the questions they were going to ask me. I went over my answers for 10 minutes, then into the interview, and sure enough, they just read the same questions. It was shocking to me the differences in the way the two interviews were set up and conducted within the same school district...from the phone call to interview (the high school called me on a Sunday morning to schedule the interview), to the flyers (the high school had incorrect information on its flyer, advertising knowledge of elementary students...no wonder I was not fully prepared to multiply complex fractions), to the asking of questions. Anyhow, I would like either job, I am keeping my fingers crossed.

Today I am coaching Hansen's soccer team, our game is in a couple of hours. Preston will be off with his coach and Connor to Lacey for his soccer game at noon. And Lillie gets to start her Hip Hop/Tap class today. Once Preston gets home from soccer, we may head out to the Puyallup Fair. The weather will be perfect and the place will be a total mob scene, so we may change our mind. The kids have been really wanting to go to the fair, and their school sent them home with free tickets (for themselves). I am sure it will still cost us well over $100.00 for a family of 5 for a day at the fair by the time it is all over, I just hope it is not so crowded that it is not fun. Preston thinks he will spend the day riding roller coasters, Lillie thinks she will spend the day petting goats and chickens, Hansen thinks he will spend the day eating cotton candy, ice cream, playing arcade games and finding money, Maren thinks she will spend the day watching amazing displays of the latest knives and mixers and other cooking coolness, and I am thinking that we are going to spend an hour on the off ramp only to find full parking lots, loose at least one kid, have crazy cows jump the barriers and moo at us, listen to the boys complain at the petting zoo, listen to Lillie complain at the rides, tell Hansen no on an advance of his allowance one hundred and forty seven times, and be one of the first 100 people to be able to get a free orange juicer if I buy the latest Magic Ginsu Knives...along with 4 free steak knives! (but I would have to act NOW...oh the pressure!) How could I even consider passing on such a fun time...guess I had better just take a few deep breaths and loosen up just a bit huh?

See you tomorrow.

Friday, September 12, 2008

another interview, coached H's soccer.

Good morning, it is Friday.

I have not heard back from the high school about the math paraeducator job. Maybe the HR department is slow, maybe they actually want a candidate who is good at math. I don't know, but I have not been given that job as of yet. I do have another interview today. Today's interview is at Cedar Valley Elementary school being a paraeducator to kids who are mainstreamed, but still struggle. Cedar Valley is much closer to home and this job may actually be a better fit. I was getting a bit enamored with the idea of working in the high school and maybe helping with the golf team some day and stuff, but things seem to work out the way they should. Maybe I will not get either job and will end up just juggling golf balls in the pro shop all winter, and that would be fine too.

Yesterday I coached Hansen's soccer team as the regular coach is out of town. I had Preston help me, and we did a very good job. I did not need to yell nearly as much as the regular coach, nor did I make the kids run quite as much...at least for punishment. I did have one kid that would not cooperate, so I let him know that if he could not participate in practice, he could explain to his parents why he would not be starting in the next game. He knows he is a good player, but I am coaching the next game and he will not be starting. That worked for a while, next his mom just had to take him home. He really wanted to cooperate once his mom stepped in, but thankfully she took him home. Maybe next season I will just coach Hansen's team. One of the big differences between community rec soccer and Select Soccer (as Preston is playing) is the quality and professionalism of the coaches. You just don't make it to the select ranks if you are not a decent coach, anyone can be a coach at the rec level, and if you are just a clown, folks kind of look the other way and figure it will all be over in a couple of months anyhow. Parents are much more vocal and knowledgeable of the coaches in the select ranks.

See you tomorrow.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

First job interview in over 12 years.

Good morning, it is Wednesday.

Yesterday I had my first job interview since before Preston was born. I interviewed for a 4 hour per day Paraeducator job at Kentlake High School. Paraeducators are like a teacher's helper and duties usually include small group instruction, preparing materials, correcting papers and stuff like that. Turns out this job is working in the math department. Some of you may have no trouble imagining me teaching math at high school, others of you may be thinking, hmm. One of the staff doing the interview was a guy I knew from back when I was a kid. Who knows if that helped or not. I think I did well, but I did kind of botch a multiplication part of a fraction problem I was to explain. If they offered me the job, I would take it, it sounded fun to me...we shall see.

Maren took Hansen to soccer practice yesterday while I had my interview. She told the kids I was interviewing for a job and could not be there. Preston said he likes me being a stay-at-home-dad, and does not want me to get a job. Of course this is why I am looking at the part-time school district jobs. At dinner Lillie explained that I should really get a job at McDonald's since I worked there for a summer [back in high school] before she and her brothers were even "twinks" in my eye.

See you tomorrow.

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

the horoscopes are true.

Good morning, it is Tuesday.

Last night Maren was reading her tabloid magazine OK and she started laughing. I figured it was because Dr. Phil is getting a divorce and paying his wife like 200 million to be quiet, I read that on the cover of the enquirer while buying milk yesterday. I asked her why she was laughing, and it was because of the horoscopes. The horoscope for her was that she wanted to quit her job, buy a new house and start a new profession. After yesterday's blog, you know that was spot on for her. If that is not strange enough, my horoscope in the OK mag was about how I was going to be watching and taking care of extra animals. This is totally true as I am watching the neighbor's cat (the cat is old and dying, and my neighbor actually gave me permission to take the cat to the vet and have it put down if I deem necessary!!! I think the little guy can make it another week and a half.) and yesterday another neighbor came over to see if I would let their dog out after school as their daughters are now doing after school actives. Who knew that the horoscope section of OK magazine would be spot on!

Maren did have a better day at work yesterday and taught a class where the people in the class actually liked her, I think she will enjoy her job again some day.

See you tomorrow.

PS. Maren had hoped I would change the name of OK magazine to something with maybe a little more substance, and a little less smut. If you want you can re-read the first paragraph of my blog and substitute OK magazine with Reader's Digest, or even The Economist if you want to...you can decide the level of sophistication at which Maren reads during her free minutes.

Monday, September 08, 2008

From soccer to Rally Sunday, a full weekend.

Good morning, it is Monday.

We had a very busy weekend. Saturday started with Maren going to a full day workshop she was teaching while Preston got a ride to his soccer game and I took Lillie with me to Hansen's soccer jamboree and pictures. I was to get home from Hansen's game, meet Carol at my house and then fly up to Carnation for the Marta Connell Golf Tournament. The timing just worked. Preston had no problem with his game, in fact his team won 2-0 and Preston scored both goals. He was very excited about his game, apparently he did some very cool slide kick thing to get his second goal. Hansen played very tough in his game, he just missed a goal or two, but his strength was defender. I don't think the other team scored a goal while he was defender. Lillie enjoyed playing in the dirt at the baseball fields while Hansen played soccer.

Maren did get to work on time, but she had one problem after another. First was the alarm that would not turn off, next was the screen from the projector breaking in a heap on the floor, and the last straw was an incident where lady attending the class vehemently accused Maren of trying to "fry her brains" when the laser bar code scanner accidentally flashed her while checking out library materials. You just can't make this stuff up. Not surprisingly Maren is going through a "I hate my job and want to quit working and just drive to Mexico, but my passport is out of date" phase. I am sure things will turn around for her soon, just not today.

The Marta Connell Golf Tournament went very smoothly. This year we did tee times rather than a shotgun start. Not as many folks stayed for the end, but most did. Tee times were much easier for all the volunteers and for me as a helper in scoring. Steve and I partnered well, and we would have been in contention if it was not for an 8 on hole #10. Yup, the 300 yard par 4 that is usually a 5-iron off the tee and a SW into the green found us both hitting two balls out of bounds trying to drive the green. There is a very real reason neither of us are playing in the PGA FedEx playoffs...yup, we lack talent. Actually I did win a Closest to the pin contest and we almost made up the extra strokes with a good birdie run. It was a good tournament and plenty of money was raised for Primary Pulmary Hypertension research.

Yesterday I took the kids to church by myself as Maren had volunteer work to do. Lillie asked if she could bring her new kitty stuffed animal that she had gotten from a garage sale the day before, and Hansen wanted to bring his Lego/Bionicle catalogs to read. I said sure on both of these requests. At church, the little girl sitting in the pew just in front of us was a friend of Lillie from preschool, and she had a kitty stuffed animal that was identical to Lillie's. The two kitties were able to say hi to each other and stuff quietly through out church. And if that was not strange enough, the boy Hansen sat next to in our row had three lego/bionicle catalogs just as Hansen did. They spent the entire service comparing and drooling over lego/bionicle stuff...they were a bit loud and had to be shushed at times, but they sure had a good time. After church was rally Sunday to get ready for Sunday School classes to begin next Sunday so we all had hot dogs and chips. Lillie got her face painted with flower on her cheek. The kids also got to play on a bouncy obstacle course and have snow cones.

After church Maren's friend Judy visited and brought a few bags of clothes for Lillie handed down from another Maren friend Jo. Lillie spent the afternoon organizing clothes and trying on clothes. I took Preston golfing at Elk Run. He played well and had a couple of pars.

Today is back to school and soccer.

See you tomorrow.

Saturday, September 06, 2008

making friends, allowance.

Good morning, it is Saturday.

Last night at dinner we were asking the kids what they thought of their first week of school and if they had made any friends and stuff. Hansen said he had a very good week and there are one or two kids that he is in the process of becoming friends with. I asked him what he means by "in the process" of making friends, and he said that they hang out and talk a lot about this or that and seem to get along well, so they were "in the process" of becoming friends. Next we asked Lillie the same question, and she said she already had lots of friends and hung out with lots of people and had a very good week. Hansen asked her how she makes friends so fast, and her answer was: "I just look at them, and we are friends." So there you have it. The introvert vs. the extrovert. I would have to say that Maren would side with Hansen on this one, while I would probably side with Lillie. Preston would put himself in the middle of this debate being able to adopt either roll depending on how he is feeling. Preston had a great first week of school as well.

Last night was allowance day, so Hansen has a bunch of new Yugioh game card, Preston has a couple of new soccer balls and some candy, and Lillie has new fuzzy slippers and a cute little fairy toy. I am glad to have lost my headache! Since I only have a second this morning due to two soccer games and a golf tournament, I will just tell you that Hansen took a very long time deciding what Starwars figures he was going to buy, only to get to the front of the store where the Yugioh cards were and completely loose his mind! I was far more patient with him than his siblings were, as I actually thought Yugioh cards were a better use of his money than more Starwars action figures.

See you tomorrow.

Friday, September 05, 2008

drawing a blank.

Good morning, it is Friday.

This morning I am drawing a blank about what to write about. I could write about picking up the kids from school on my bicycle with the trailer on it. And how Lillie has saved 1/2 of her sandwich from lunch every day and been so happy to eat it while riding in the trailer on the way home from school. Or how ever since I started riding the bicycle to school and allowing Hansen to ride his bicycle to school with us, that his buddy Kole now rides his bike to school and will be waiting for us outside the house when time to leave. Or I could tell you how after I drop the littles off at CV and wait outside until the bell rings, then I get on my bicycle and ride down the hill of doom (so named by Hansen and Preston...but not much of a hill) to see if Preston's bus has left yet, that I can make that run faster than any car due to not being stuck in the same traffic, one mom has to do that run in her car (from CV to the GL bus stop) and her traffic is horrible. Preston said he likes having me drive down the hill and see them as he is bored with all the younger kids at his bus stop.

I could tell you that yesterday while the kids were in school I did a handful of chores, surfed the Internet, then went to Jade Green GC. I picked up 4 dozen Wilson Zip golf balls that the Sales Rep had left for me, and hit some range balls. I then did some betting with Steve Dubsky on the putting green for about an hour. We would play 6 holes for a quarter, neither of us could leave until someone won a dollar. I have his dollar in my pocket, but I am not supposed to tell anyone because he is known as the King of the putting green. When Maren reads that my days are spent surfing, cleaning, and hanging out at the golf course, there had better be some real evidence of chores being done or she will have steam shooting from her ears! Does not help that her week at work has been rough. I still have a few applications in for jobs, but nothing has panned out yet.

I will tell you that Today I will teach a golf lesson, my student is Mick. It will be great to catch up with Mick. He has some cool artwork called Carved Timber Sculpture going on display at an art gallery called Fulcrum in Tacoma in just over a week. I may also have lunch with Steve Dubsky, and do some errands. The waste mobile is coming to Covington and I have a bunch of florescent light bulbs and some old car oil that I need to get rid of.

Off to start the day, see you tomorrow.

Thursday, September 04, 2008

School, soccer, busy.

Good morning, it is Thursday.

We are getting into a school routine. I am sure it will be a challenge to wake up the kids this morning for school.

Lillie has been very tired at the end of the day thanks to a full day of school. The first day of school she said that she was just starving to death before lunch, so I am working on her to eat a little better breakfast. Also, a funny Lillie thing is that she was a bit mad at her teacher after the first day of school because she [the teacher] expected Lillie to leave her school supplies at school. I guess I never thought to tell Lillie the the school supplies that we put in her backpack were to stay at school! That was the very first thing she said to me after her first day...actually I think it was something like, "Yes, I had a good day, but they made me leave my school supplies at school!?!" Once she realized that that was how it was with her brothers and everyone, she was OK with it. Besides, we do have a whole art supply closet next to the art table in our house.

Today Hansen has soccer practice. His team is doing two practices per week for a few weeks as the group of kids the coach has are having a tough time learning how to play soccer, and their first game is on Saturday. I have been recruited to help with the team in practices. Preston also has two practices per week. P's are Mon and Wed, while H's are Tue and Thurs. Friday is a day off. We still seem less busy than last year so far. Lillie starts Dance class next Saturday. Saturdays will become our busy days...for now. Eventually soccer will be replaced with volleyball and track and math club and who knows what else.

Maren has been working like crazy at work the last couple of days. She has a full day class to teach on Saturday that she is preparing for, as well as a huge kid reach shipment has to go out today, but the person who does this job is out sick for the week...so guess who has to pick up the tons of extra work.

Off to pack school lunches, see you tomorrow.

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Last day of summer, first day of school.

Good evening, it is Tuesday.

For the last couple of days my computer has been acting strange, and I have not been able to log onto blogger, or even view blogger. I deleted all cookies and cleaned up the drives and stuff, and now it is working. Yay.

On Monday, the day before school started, we spent the last hurrah of summer at Wild Waves. This time we brought Maren as Preston wanted to go on the scary rides with his mom. The rest of us just watched in horror. Below are a bunch of pictures from Wild Waves, We actually ran into several people we know. I guess we were not the only ones living it up on the last day of summer.

Today was the first day of school. School went great for all the kids. Lillie was so nervous, but she had a great day. Hansen had a great day at CV, he has really embraced the change and really enjoyed his teacher and not having to ride the bus and stuff. And Preston had a great day after getting to school almost late due to the KSD bus department not having ever run dry runs and the buses getting lost and stuff. Totally embarrassing for the KSD. Preston's bus was not the only KSD bus to get lost. I mean really. Anyhow, all the kids had a great day, and Maren was SO relieved when Lillie had a good day. Lillie started so nervous that Maren was feeling sad as well, you know her little baby girl is now in school all day!

Maren and Preston going upside down on the Wild Thing.
Maren and Lillie on the Kanga Bounce.
Hansen going solo on the Kanga Bounce.
Maren, Preston, and Lillie (back of the car) on the Kiddie Coaster. Lillie started yelling "I WANT TO GET OFF, I WANT TO GET OFF!!!!!!" just after the roller coaster started. Maren was laughing so hard that she was crying by the time the ride ended.
Hansen, Lillie and Preston (L to R) on the back deck this morning before school.
Hansen and Lillie in front of the CV sign.
Maren and Lillie, this is dropping Lillie off in her classroom. Lillie looks very calm in this photo, but she was a ball of nerves.
Maren and I went out to a nice lunch at Zepher Bar and Grill at the Kent Station while the kids were in school. I am still full!
See you tomorrow.