Monday, July 30, 2012

It's Showtime!

Good morning, it is Monday.

We had quite a busy weekend.  Pickleball, graduation parties, birthday parties, church picnics, shopping, and watching the Olympics.  I enjoyed the opening ceremonies but am amazed that in today's world that NBC censored out the tribute to the London terrorism victims and instead played a dumb interview with Seacrest/Phelps.  If you google it, you can find the 6 minute tribute that was the segue between the opening ceremonies and the walk of nations.  I've put the censored out part on the bottom of this page if you want to see it.  But back to my blog.

Speaking of putting on shows, Lillie and the neighborhood girls have been putting on shows for the neighborhood!  Dancing shows.
Performing their show to some of the parents and grandparents of the neighbors.  And if you're feeling left out because you didn't get the see the show, I did catch one song from a rehearsal show, which may have not as polished as the one with the seating, and it missing the half to the song What Doesn't Kill You Makes You Stronger.  But I will show it to you here (it is cute!):

You may need to double click to get the whole screen?

And here is the part of the opening ceremonies that NBC covered in it's telecast with the Seacrest/Phelps interview:


See you tomorrow.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

A Hansen day?

Good morning, it is Thursday.

Yesterday while Preston was out at soccer camp Lillie was invited to go to the pool with the neighbors.  That left Hansen and myself home alone.  While Hansen would have really wanted to go shopping for a better TV to use on the x-box, we decided to do Hansen things at home.  So the first thing we did was to go for a bike ride into town for an icee, then come home and shoot the air-soft at some targets, and lastly play video games.
This is Hansen out front of AM/PM with our sodas...yeah, Hansen really wanted to try the new Mountain Dew flavor so it wasn't icees after all.  I went with a Pepsi and a lotto ticket.   
I made targets for our air-soft challenge.  My very first shot went through the 100 spot!  Hansen was flabbergasted that I could do this so well...didn't matter how far back or the different tricks, I still hit the target.  Hansen said his lack of kicking my butt on this challenge was due to his high caffeine Mountain Dew:)  I did try one of Hansen's video games for a few minutes, but there was no freaking way I could even come close to keeping up...I mean there are like 15 buttons that are used to make you guy move smoothly and stuff.  Not me, I have to look just to find the X button.  Eventually I had to just watch Hansen play, then take a nap!
This is not Hansen stuff.  This is a sewing machine that Maren probably purchased 15 years ago.  It has not been used ever.  But now that we found it, Lillie and Nana have big plans!  The duo were making doll clothes on Lillie's last visit.

See you tomorrow.


Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Summer reading prizes and extra cash.

Good morning, it is Wednesday.

Preston is off to his second day of college soccer camp.  One of the things I like about his new club (PacNW) is that they have a real focus of helping their players navigate the world of getting into college...and it's not just about college scholarships, it about keeping good grades and figuring out why a college is a good fit and such.  This three day camp is actually being taught by local college soccer coaches as well.  So Preston is having fun and learning about what to be doing for his future.

While Preston has been at college camp, the littles have been trying to earn money at home.  Chores for cash.  I'm not necessarily all for this as I kind of think the kids should do their chores for free, but this new system may just work.  I will only give them cash chores if their regular chores are already done.  Hansen is really the only one really taking advantage of this new system, but Lillie is trying.
It is almost hard to find suitable jobs for Hansen to earn cash.  His last job was to help me replace the fence post that holds up our gate.  For a few years it has been rotted out at the base and the gate has to be lifted to be me moved.  Here is Hansen after removing the gate...now taking off a couple of boards to clear the way to removing the broken post.
 And standing behind the finished project.  Now the gate works perfectly!  We even designed a little rope pull thingy to unlatch the gate from the front.
 Lillie thought about getting into the action.  I gave her a weeding job since she finished cleaning her room (with a little help from her Nana) but this didn't last long.  Too many creepy crawlies in the grass.  She moved into the house to work on counter tops and such.
On the way to her dance class, Lillie and I stopped by the library to turn in her summer reading log.  She read all the required minutes to receive a couple of great prizes!  Check out her fancy light up glasses and her glow in the dark stars for the ceiling of her bedroom.  The King County Library always has great prizes for summer reading.  Lillie is a bit bummed out that she can't sign up for the laptop computer giveaway, but since her mom works for the Library system, she is not eligible.  I say it's all good!

See you tomorrow.  

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Hansen's new glasses. Ichiro traded to Yankees.

Good morning, it is Tuesday.

Hansen and I have been busy fixing the fence/gate around the back yard.  Some of the fence posts have rotted out at the base and the fence as not so solid due to this.  We decided to tackle the gate. So far we have the gate fence post replaced, now I just have to decide weather or not to replace the gate structure and hardware.  Hmmm.

Hansen also picked up his new glasses yesterday:
 John came with us and when I was about to take this picture he made Hansen laugh by reminding him to, "don't smile...Don't Smile...DON'T SMILE!"  These are very cool glasses!
What a baseball day here yesterday!  Ichiro was traded to the Yankees just before the Mariners and  the Yankees were about to play here in Seattle.  Totally crazy!  Then Ichiro suited up as a Yankee and played for the wrong team.  After the shock and timing of the trade, I think this is a good move for both Ichiro and the Mariners as well.  Good luck Ichiro!

See you tomorrow.

Monday, July 23, 2012

An Orondo Vacation.

Good morning, it is Monday.

We are back from a great weekend in Eastern Washington!  We stayed in Mark and Susan's cabin/house in Orondo.  And it was not just us, there were 16 of us.  Preston actually was not there as he spent the weekend in Beaverton Oregon with his old soccer team hanging out with them as they played in a tournament.  The weather was so nice in Orondo, it was in the upper 80's during the day and cooled off some at night.  Right now at home the heater just kicked on at is is like 60 degrees and cloudy...now you see why the upper 80's is such an nice vacation break.
 Once over the mountain pass it doesn't take long for the world to look a bit different.  No trees, just browned hills.  Well, some trees and green where the irrigation brings the water to the orchards.  This picture was taken from the driver's seat of Stef's Acura!  That's right, we traded cars for the drive over so Ben and Abbi could bring friends.  On the way back I was back in my van.  The ride home was like an hour longer...the traffic or the car?  I say both.
 A slanted picture of Kyra and Lillie having a great and silly time throwing things on the roof, gettig them stuck, throwing other things back up there to get the stuck things.  Just goofy summer fun.
 Maren and her cousin Susan.  While there Susan and I ran into some folks we both knew.  Me from from jr. high years and Susan from College years. It was fun to catch up for a bit.
 Six kids slept out on the deck under the stars.  Lillie is still sleeping away in the green sleeping bag. She had the good spot as the grill hid the bright morning sun from waking her up super early.
 The neighborhood where we stayed has a community center and pool.  Hansen loved hanging out at the pool...I mean the pool table.
 Hansen and Tyler hamming it up for the camera.
 Packing up to leave, one last smile for the camera for Lillie and Kyra.
For the drive back we stopped at Cider Works for some slurpee drinks.  Hansen has apple cider while Lillie choose cherry.  We also stopped by a fruit stand to pick up a box of peaches.  Great trip.

See you tomorrow.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Back From Camp Lutherhaven

Good morning, it is Saturday.

As I type this blog I am watching the final time trial and the second last day of the the Tour de France.  I have enjoyed watching this bicycle race for several summers in a row.  Once the Tour ends, summer is nearly half way over.  Looking forward to the Olympics in a short time.

Yesterday morning at 6:30am I met Kelly at church to begin our extremely long drive to pick up the kids from Lutherhaven and bring them home.  It was a very long day as we didn't get home until after 8:30pm!  I had never been to camp Lutherhaven, so it was nice to check it out.  Hansen and a dozen or so of his friends spent the whole week there and had a great time.  The drive home was very fun for all the kids too!  The first part was very stormy, eventually we stopped for a nice dinner at Dairy Queen, and all the while the kids had fun texting back and forth with kids in other cars.
 This is the Lutherhaven sign in the parking lot.
 Hansen made it up this huge climbing wall with the encouragement of his friends!  Once on top the kids had to zip line down.  Good for Hansen and the other campers...I'd been terrified!
A view of lake Coeur d'alene.  The setting of Camp Lutherhaven is amazing.  And it has been there for quite a long time.  Back when Maren camped there as a middle schooler it had been a camp for a long time already!

Check out Lillie's cute new haircut:
See you tomorrow.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Seattle Sounders and a free lunch.

Good morning, it is Thursday.

Yesterday morning I ran a few errands trying to get the tv sound to work correctly.  After trading in a new A/V receiver it is safe to say that the problem wasn't the old one.  I'm not sure what my next step will be, for now it is set up old school with only the tv speaker working...maybe a different brand?  Maybe nothing.  I'm kind of tired of dealing with it.

Once home I took Lillie on a bike ride to the school for lunch.  That's right, our school is one of the many in the Kent School District giving out free lunch to anyone under 18 years of age.  I have heard that over 5,000 lunches are served in this school district alone.  Pretty awesome as for many of these kids this will be their best meal of the day.
Lillie ran into several of her friends.  Lillie is (left) hanging out with her friend for a few minutes.

Preston had an amazing opportunity yesterday.  Through his soccer club he was one of the kids who got to be on the field at the Sounder vs. Chelsea friendly match yesterday.  He said there were probably a couple of hundred kids all together combining to hold flags and such to yesterday's match.
 This picture is taken from a friend's FB page.  Preston is somewhere under the green Sounders flag.  Each kid had big piece of the cardboard puzzle that made the flag.  Preston said it was totally amazing being on the field with 53,000+ fans in the stadium.  He also got to see all the players on the field with him.  And it was the last day for fan favorite Roger Levesque as he is retiring, Sounders will miss him for sure.
 Here is a pic from the Sounders FB page of the whole CenturyLink field.  Preston's group of kids is on the right...not holding the cards over their heads just yet.  This is also the field that the Seattle Seahawks play on.  For this huge match, they actually brought in real grass.  Usually they will then take the grass and give a high school a new field.  Usually this stadium has modern field turf.
And finally a picture from Preston's camera.  Yup, along with a t-shirt, flag, and a hamburger, they gave him a free ticket to see the game!  You didn't think he would get to stay on the field the entire time?  Yes, you are correct...they should have had him on the field playing in the game!  Maybe in a few years.

See you tomorrow.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Kickoff Goal, Baseball, and leaving for Lutherhaven

Good morning, it is Tuesday.

I almost can't believe it is Tuesday, this weekend has flown by.  I'm actually having a hard time remembering back to Saturday which I guess is just fine because I am mainly going to be talking about Sunday and Monday.  Here we go!

Sunday morning Hansen left for Camp Lutherhaven with the middle school youth group from our church.  It was a juggling act as that day Preston had two soccer games, Lillie was hanging with John and Carol, and Maren and I were off to a Tacoma Rainiers baseball games.
 After dropping Preston off at a friend's house who was taking him to his soccer games, I took Hansen out for a quick breakfast on the way to the church.  Double yum!
The middle schoolers getting in the van.  Two states later and they were at camp.  I have heard from a friend that they are having a great time.  Some day I may go on one of these trips with the youth group, but for now I am happy that Hansen gets a well deserved break from his wacky family.

Maren and I got to join friends (ex-co-workers of Maren) to an outing at the Tacoma Rainiers game.  The weather was very sketchy at first, raining while we were in line, but while the sun never shined, the rain stopped and we go to see a very good game that resulted in Tacoma loosing in extra innings.
This pic was taken my me with the tiny little camera on the front of my new i-phone!  Judy, Larry, Mick, Susan, Maren, and a freaky pic of me!  We had a great time, huge thanks to Judy and Larry for hooking us up with the tickets...and the friends.  Some of you may be thinking, new i-phone huh?  The feature that sold me is the "cloud".  All the pictures I take with it's very good camera automatically upload into my pictures folder on my computer the moment I get home.  No wires or transferring images or anything.  How cool is that?

Preston's soccer team made it into the semis and the finals so I got to see two great game yesterday.  The first game Preston scored 2 goals and had a great assist for the 3rd goal of the game for a 3-0 win and a spot in the finals.  The finals put them against the best Crossfire team in their age group for an amazing dual.  This game ended in the last 10 seconds with the Crossfire team getting a goal after the ball bounced back into play from the crossbar and it was crazy.  Bummer way to loose, but a great tournament.  One of Preston's teammates will be leaving the team for the Seattle Sounder's Academy Team...very cool.
 Preston taking a corner kick in the finals.
   Getting their runner up medals for the BU-16 Gold division.  Really amazing soccer folks!  It was also fun to run into an old friend and husband of a Maren co-worker as he was the line judge for Preston's semi-final game.

And not to make this a soccer blog, but I have to attach this grainy video of Preston scoring on the opening kickoff of game 3.  His coach had never seen anyone score on the opening kickoff.  The keeper for the other team stayed on the ready for the rest of the game to be sure.



See you tomorrow.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Stop What?

Good afternoon, it is Saturday.

This morning I was at a meeting so I was not blogging.  But I do have a couple of pictures to share so why not an afternoon post?  While I was chairing my first ever meeting as the new chair of the worship and music committee for our church, Preston was out playing the first game of this weekend's Crossfire Challenge which is a pretty darn big tournament.  His team won 1-0.  He has two more games tomorrow and hopefully a game or two on Monday.
 This picture is the stop sign at one of the local high schools.  I spotted it as I was dropping off Preston as he was watching his old soccer team play.
Once I got home today, Maren and I went out for a garage sale walk.  We actually got to go on our own as Preston was hanging with friends, Hansen at a birthday party, and Lillie got to go watch the new movie Brave with John, Carol, Jack and Avery.  This little purse Maren is showing off is a Bobby Jack monkey purse that we purchased for Lillie.  As I was carrying it around the garage sale the folks were giving me a bad time about the cute purse...I just told them it was to carry my cell phone:)  Actually that is why I purchased it for Lille.  That's right, she now has a cell phone.  I had always told her that once she is the only Slane at her school then she could get a phone.  Hansen is in jr. high so now all three kids have cell phones.  And we have a monthly cell phone bill that is, well, something to be budgeted.  Yikes!

See you tomorrow.

Friday, July 13, 2012

A pea?

Good morning, it is Friday...the 13th.  How cool is that?

Yesterday was a bit more of a summer relaxing day around here.  Were didn't go to the pool or anything until Preston had soccer practice in the evening.  We did have a few errands to run in the morning, we dropped off Lillie's friend Maddie from her overnight, ordered Hansen new glasses, and picked up some ear buds for Hansen's phone/mp3 player.
 While at Fred Meyer's, Lillie came across this stack of foam camping/sleeping pads.  While she would like one for under her loft bed in her room, she was saying how even this stack of foam pads would never ever work for her because if she was on the top and there was a pea under the stack, she just wouldn't be able to sleep.  Princess material for sure!

When Preston was at practice at Starfire last night I brought my bike along so I could go for an hour ride on the Green River Trail.  I had never traveled north of Starfire on the trail and was interested in where it went.  I rode for 30 minutes out and then turned around.
 Right next to the Green river at times.
 Under a cool overpass.
 The upper overpass you see in this picture is actually the light rail train track.  And yes, that is my bicycle.  I actually got off my bike for this picture, the other ones were taken while riding.
Back to Starfire.  Several soccer games and plenty of practices going on.  I got back in time to see Preston's group running stairs in the stadium.  Fun!

See you tomorrow.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Free Slurpee?

Good morning, it is Thursday.

I seemed to take a ton of pictures yesterday as it seems like we did a ton of stuff.  And I guess we kind of did.  I will just start in the morning.  I woke up Hansen very early to take my van into the shop.  It is five years old and needed a free check up to approve the continuation of its lifetime powertrain warranty.  On the phone they said it would take a few hours and since Hansen had a dentist appointment at 11:00, we got on the road early.  Once at the shop I asked the service guy (my first one was a total dork) to finish by 10:40 so we could make the dentist.  He hemmed and hawed and was trying to send me home to try another day.  Luckily a more experienced tech took over and did the job in the half an hour it takes (my van passed and is now covered for another five years).  While waiting Hansen and I took a look at the cars in the showroom:
 I'm not a huge fan of this car, but it is pretty cool.
 I could see myself driving this.
 Or even this.
 Maybe even this.
Now this is more like it...oh wait, that is my van.  OK, I will drive this.  So Hansen and I went from thinking we wouldn't make it to the dentist appointment to having nearly two hours to kill.
So it was off to breakfast at McDonald's.
 Hansen went for a cinnamon thing and a fancy coffee drink.  I took another picture with Hansen looking at me, but his eyes were telling me that me and my picture taking had to stop and I am really just an annoying human.  But I did buy the breakfast, so I must not be all bad.
 With more time to kill we walked around Fairwood.  Here we are at the driving range where we can see the range and the condos that I wish I could live in when I retire.  You know, so I could just walk to the golf course every single day and play or practice.
 Finally in the dentist chair.  His teeth are in very good condition, no cavities and maybe no need or braces either.  My blog could end right here and be a good one, but NO...it isn't even noon in yesterday's time and there was more to do.

Preston and Connor were making plans to hang out at Wild Waves for the day, but at the last minute their ride fell through.  Also Lillie was trying to make plans to hang out at the pool for the day.  So after reading Maren's text to me about it being 7/11 and free Slurpee day, I agree to drive the boys and Lillie under one condition.  The condition is that I take them on a field trip (they don't realize it is free Slurpee day) and the second part is that they let me take a picture once their.  Connor almost won't agree to the picture part.  But in the end it is totally worth a drive to 7-11 for their free Slurpees.
 This is the picture I got of the motley crew.  Hansen is giving us his photo bomb face and it looks Preston is drinking the Slurpee with his nose.  Really the straw is not even close to his nose, but the picture is kind of funny.
Dropping off Lillie the boys all spot a free Foosball table.  They play if for a minute, but no, it did not take the trip to our house.  Well, Lillie did have a fun day at the pool and her friend Maddie ended up spending the night and I am starting to hear them right now.  Preston and Connor had fun at Wild Waves and even rode on the zip line ride.  Hansen and I picked up a charging station for his  X-box remotes.
And this last picture of the day is a strange picture of my new glasses.  I picked them up and wore them for a day and a half and not a single person in the whole world noticed I got new glasses.

See you tomorrow.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Crushed ping pong balls?

Good morning, it is Tuesday.

Yesterday turned into a hang out at home day (except for Maren who had to work).  At least until Preston had soccer practice in the evening.  Lillie and Preston had friends over and Hansen would leave every once in a while and take off on a bike ride.  The road bike that I purchased a few years ago for the two LiveSTRONG rides in Seattle mostly hangs in the garage these days as I ride a different bike to work and prefer a mountain bike for my fun outings.  Hansen has decided that he wants to ride the road bike.  As it turns out, when it is set up for me, it fits Hansen perfectly.  So I moved it to the bike rack and he has full use of it.  It has a speedometer and is set up like a race bike, so yeah, it's fun to ride.  A picture of Hansen with the bike would have been perfect for right now, but that will have to wait.  Instead I have these pictures:
 Preston and Connor made a smoke bomb out of crushed ping pong balls and aluminum foil.  Of course they found this recipe on youtube.  So I had to check it out.
 And it worked very well!  Lots of smoke, no more ping pong ball.
 Most of the day they spent playing soccer in the back yard.  I joined them for a few minutes for a crossbar challenge.  But really, I'm not much of soccer player.  They had the bmx bikes out in the front yard because every time the ball went over the fence, it was hop on the bikes and go get it.  Last I heard they were on trip number eight.
Lillie and Maddie were hanging out most of the day too.  Dolls, phones, snacks, annoy the boys, a movie, and just hanging out.  Today they are going to try to make it to the pool.

See you tomorrow.