Monday, July 29, 2013


Good morning, it is Monday.

A glimpse at our family calendar would tell you that this last weekend was the busiest of all the weekends in the summer.  But we made it...with lots of help.  And by skipping things.  I really just wish July had more weekends!  I love July.  I could live in July Seattle.  I don't think I ever want to vacation in July if it means leaving the PNW.  Winter months?  I'm OK with leaving.  Back to my blog.  I took Hansen to Bownanza, the biggest archery tournament of the year for our archery club!  Preston went to Oregon with his soccer team.  Lillie got to spend the weekend at Nana's house while parting at the lake with relatives for a graduation party.  Maren got to hold down the fort.  I would have loved to be in Oregon for the soccer, at the lake for the graduation party, at the pickleball tournament that I have played in for the last three years, or even hanging out at home.  But since you can't be at more than one place at a time, I got to have a great weekend at Bownanza with Hansen.  Picture time...and there may be a lot (they are not all archery, so don't give up hope...sadly no soccer though):
Bownanza!  Saturday we had 40 targets, Sunday 30.  This one was one of the most fun, and the most risky!  If you hit the apple cutout on the zombie's head, double points.  If you missed, you hit the metal surround and it was a broken arrow for sure!  Hansen hit the apple on day one, broke an arrow on day two.  You could hear the "ping" of the metal target follow by groans from all over course A.  It would have been great fun just to sit there and watch archers attempt the shot.
A close up look at this target, along with a pile of broken arrows.  And arrows aren't cheap mind you.  I took the bail out shot on day one and didn't shoot this target on day two due to breaking my bow.
This is a guy and his son we shot with both days.  And a spinning zombie target.  Most of the targets were 3D animal targets, but I liked the creative ones the most.  And the dinosaurs.  
Tons of folks for the award ceremony.  Plenty of folks camp here for the weekend, but we live close enough to come home each night.  There were so many door prizes!  Must have been giving away door prizes for an hour straight.  I won a hat!  Hansen won a hat, flashlight, and some dampeners for a bow.  Not to mention our prizes for awesome shooting.
Hansen is sitting if front of his bow.  Hanging on his bow is his first place medal.  And yes, he probably is texting his friends to tell them about his winnings.  Hansen did shoot very well this weekend scoring the best score of anyone in any of the 12-14 age categories.
My first place belt buckle!  I am embarrassed to have won this.  Why?  I am horrible.  I only won because I was the only entrant in a category no one wants to be in.  Long story short:  My recurve bow broke last week.  I tried Hansen's old bow.  It doesn't fit me and I can't stand all the sights and things to help make one good.  In frustration I took all the aids off the bow.  And ended up all alone in a category for folks with compound bows without any aids whatsoever.  On day two I broke the rest on Hansen's old bow.  Luckily when accepting my award, they made up a ridiculous score of like 7,750 for me.  In real life Hansen beat me by over 400 points when the max you can score was around 600.  Ouch.  Where's the golf course!?!

Next topic.  Lillie!  Lillie got to spend Friday through Sunday with Carol and John.  She wanted do some sewing, boating, and partying.  And she did!
Here Lillie is being flanked by Jack and Avery while being pulled behind Mel and Court's boat at Lake Tapps.  Go Lillie!  They were there for Rudy's graduation party.  Rudy is the son of one of Maren's cousins.  They always have a great time at Lake Tapps!
Check out Lillie's new dress!  From what I understand, Lillie made this dress herself over the weekend with Carol's help.  How cool is that?
Our art table now has Lillie's sewing machine all set up on it.  There is also a bag of fabric on the ground next to the table.  Who knows what Lillie's next project will be.
Saturday evening was the Seafair Torchlight Parade.  We were not home in time [from archery] to go there in person, so we watched on TV.  The TV station was running its twitter feed below as they sometimes do.  For fun I tweeted this little blurb, and sure enough we made it on TV!  Just having fun with social media.

Preston's team had a mixed tournament overall...some good and some bad.  They lost a couple of games, and won a couple of games.  They didn't get to move to the playoffs because only one team moved up, and it was one of the teams that beat them.  Preston reports that he made a couple of amazing goals in game three.  Preston will probably sleep till the afternoon today as he didn't get much sleep in Oregon due to his roommate being on concussion watch all Saturday night.  One of his teammates went down so hard (in game two) that he separated/sprained his shoulder and got a concussion.  Teams and doctors take concussions very seriously, his teammate/roommate spent some time in the hospital, then once released had to be woken up every two hours through out the night to make sure he was doing well.  Preston reports that his teammate is recovering nicely.

That's enough for one blog post.  See you tomorrow.

Thursday, July 25, 2013


Good evening, it is Thursday.

Today I went golfing for the first time in a few weeks.  Played OK.  Afterwards I changed up some of my golf clubs (different driver, put the 3-iron back in the bag) and am waiting to golf again.  Afterward I was just relaxing.  Relaxing on an 80 degree days is good.  Napping in the backyard is good too.  Kind of napping.  How much napping can you do when you're watching the bunny bounce around and the neighbor kid is trying to spray you with the hose?  At least I had a great view:
Yup, blue sky and leaves.  Yesterday I had a different view.  I spent the whole day at Wild Waves with Hansen, Olivia, Lillie and Lauren.  I watched them ride rides for a while, then I found a spot in the shade near the corner of the wave pool and read a book.  Maren would be very jealous...I read like a whole book!  Luckily I had a book, you should see some of the weirdos at Wild Waves.  Can I say that?  Haha...that is probably what they all think of some 40 something hanging out reading a book:)
From the left:  Lauren, Lillie, Olivia, and Hansen.  The park wasn't too crowded when we showed up.
The kids are on the last car.  Later in the day Lillie and Lauren rode the Timber Hawk like 10 times.  They even waited in line perfectly so they could be in the very first car.  Cool.  I did enjoy the classic rock being piped throughout the park.
I think this is how the kids relax.  Or video games.

See you tomorrow.

Monday, July 22, 2013


Good evening, it is Monday.

Today Lillie and I were just hanging out trying to decide if we should do anything this evening.  Hansen was glued to the x-box, Preston out playing soccer with friends, and Maren was home from work and reading on the couch.  I suggested going for a bike ride, fully expecting to go to the pool.  But Lillie asked me to teach her how to ride a unicycle!  Luckily I do have two unicycles.  A 24 in. one that is set up for me, and a 20 in. one set up for Preston from 5 years ago.  I got them down from the rafters, pumped up the tires, and we were off.
For Lillie's first time ever even trying to sit on an unicycle, I though this was a very good start for her first day.
I was kind of shaky at first.
But I quickly got the hang of it.
Just like riding a bike...with one wheel!  Who knows if Lillie will follow through and take the time required to learn the unicycle.  I think it would probably take a good week of trying and trying.  I learned on an old thriftshop unicycle with a solid tire and horrible seat when I was probably about her age.  Once I proved I could ride around a figure eight track that my dad and I decided on, he bought me a real unicycle.  I rode it all over the place for a couple of years.  I could even ride an 8 foot unicycle that a friend down the block owned.  It was very fun to break out the unicycles and ride today.  Good luck Lillie!

See you tomorrow.

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Coyote Meadows

Good evening, it is Sunday.  Post number two.

Today was a ton of fun!  After church and a fun lunch with John and Carol, it was off to Susan and Mick's house for a BBQ and some golfing fun.  Golfing fun you say?  At a friend's house you say?  Yes!  Mick has a few acres dedicated to a very awesome golf course.  Not just a little backyard course mind you, but the complete package.  It comes with a scorecard and specific rules and regulations.  The course has wonderful hazards that are pieces of art.  Yes, literally art, as in wonderful sculptures that Mick has made pose as hazards on this creative layout.  And they all have wonderful names.  If I was thinking I would have taken pictures of all the art rather than all the people.  No and yes.  The people we got to hang out with are awesome and lots of fun was had by all.  And I can't forget to mention the food.  Excellent BBQ with all the trimmings.  Larry kept his reputation solidly in place as the best dessert maker on the planet with a few crazy good s'mores pizza pies!  Now for some pictures:
Hansen, Preston, myself, and Larry pose with the Coyote Meadows sign before our outing.
Preston chipping to one of the holes.  Mick has come up with a great hole out system for his golf course.  He has tires filled with water for holes.  You hole out when your ball hits the tire then comes to rest within a club length of the tire.  You can get bonus points (minus points as this is golf) for having your ball come to rest in the water if you are bold enough to try that route.  In this picture you can see one of the pieces of art.  I believe this piece is titled, "Wheel of Fortune"!
This is Mick.  Both the artist and architect of Coyote Meadows.  And a pretty decent golfer too.  Preston really enjoyed talking soccer with Mick.  Mick is a true soccer fan and knows of all the players from the different leagues and such as does Preston.
Larry getting ready to tee off.  The course is perfect because it only requires one club.  Who needs 14 clubs to enjoy golf?  Not me.  The longest hole is probably around 70 yards.  One of the most fun ideas of this course is the fact that while you have designated tee boxes, the actual hole you are playing to is decided by the golfer whose turn it is to choose the hole.  The layout is such that different hazards have very different characteristics depending the angle you are hitting.
Preston getting ready to play.  Yup, a lefty!  Just like Phil Mickelson, who won the British Open this morning.  I woke up and turned on the TV just in time to see Phil drain the putt on the 18th hole to seal the deal.  Wow, great tournament, congrats Phil Mickelson!
Julie getting ready for her tee shot.  Julie was the only girl daring enough to join us boys for golf.  She did great!  OK, not great...but she didn't suck too bad:)  Like always, Julie is tons of fun to hang out with.
Julie's boyfriend Kevin.  Kevin started off with a string of great shots to be sure.  Luckily my game came around and I was just able to eek out a win.  Lots of pressure when you're titled as "the ex golf professional".  I don't have pictures of Hansen or Jacob, but they were golfing too.
After dinner Lillie decided to take a shot at golf.  But in all fairness, Lillie was not too focused on golfing because:
Chickens!  Yup, the chicken coup is amazing.  And it is a good thing too, the name Coyote Meadows is not just a clever name, there are Coyote in these parts.  Thanks to Coco Chanel we are not looking at chicken this summer, but Lillie says she still would love to have chickens some day.  Hmm.
Jenga!  I did bring my Giant Jenga game, but it didn't get much use.  I think Maren and Judy were the lone Jenga players.  It's all good, I mean who needs Jenga when you have everything above?  Exactly.

See you tomorrow.

Who Loves a Parade?

Good evening, it is Sunday.

Yesterday morning I woke up early and walked to the Covington parade all by myself.  Why?  I love a parade!  And Lillie was walking in it.  Maren and the boys slept in, can't really blame them...who schedules a parade for 9:30 am on a Saturday?
Lillie spent the night with some of her friends who are Girl Scouts.  So she got to pretend to be a Girl Scout and march in the parade.  You can see from the photo that this parade was a bit early for everyone.  The first part of the parade had not many folks watching.  Lillie says that around the corner there were plenty more people.
Hi Lillie!
Yup, a monster truck!
And a marching band.  This is some of the kids from Preston's school marching to a little Devo.
Another one of Preston's friends who got up early for the parade.  Yeah, they let 16 year old drive the driving school cars.  Was I really safe on the sidewalk?
Tractors!  This parade didn't have the parade of cool cars, but it did have tractors!

See you tomorrow...actually in just a few minutes.

Friday, July 19, 2013

The Beatles in Covington!

Good evening, it is Friday.

Maren and I just got back from a fun little concert in the Real Life Church park in Covington.  No, it wasn't the real Beatles, it was a cover band called British Export.  They were good.  Tonight in Seattle Sir Paul McCartney is actually playing.  The British Export guys did joke that us concert goers were either not able to get tickets to Sir Paul, or...just big British Export fans!  I'm now a British Export fan.  The concert was very low key and lasted for an hour and a half.  A perfect concert for me.
Our view from where we sat in the grass.  I did get a closer look, these guys even look like the Beatles.
Most folks, including Maren and I, just sat in the grass on blankets or in fold up chairs while swaying a little or singing a little.  This couple near us got up and danced to one song.  They kind of reminded me of my parents.  I know my mom would have enjoyed this concert.
While Maren and I were out concerting, Preston was at home with some friends.  Yup, a FIFA soccer tournament on the x-box.  I am starting to regret what may be just around the corner.  Both X-box and Play Station are just coming out with new game systems.  And these are not $500.00.  Hoping the old x-box is good enough for a bit longer.  Yes, Hansen is now at the controls of the X-box playing Live with his friends.
I took Lillie and her friend Emma to Wild Waves yesterday.  I was just floored that the girls just went straight to the biggest rides!  Crazy.  And nope, I didn't ride with them, someone has to watch the stuff right?
They went on this ride twice.
They got off this ride in a full sprint to get back in line again.  Three times on this ride.
Out to the van for lunch then to the water park side of things.  And yes, they went to the biggest water slides too.  I guess they really are the perfect age for this park.  Next week will go again.

See you tomorrow.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Wild Waves!

Good morning, it is Wednesday.

Yesterday Lillie got to go to Wild Waves!  We didn't go once last year, which was fine with me, but not with Lillie and Hansen.  Personally I have found it hard to be at Wild Waves with kids under the age of like 10.  There are just too many people and too many places to go.  Yesterday was different.  Lillie's all grown up!  Of course I invited both Preston and Hansen, but they decided that they would rather stay home.  So it was just a dad and Lillie many other excursions this summer.  Actually, it seems to be a dad and Lillie summer, intermingled with soccer tournaments and archery outings.

Lillie was so excited to be going.  I don't think her back even touched the seat back in the van the last part of the drive.  Then we were in the park:
 Where to begin?  We went on an innertube ride, then the bumper cars.
From there Lillie went into the activity pool.  This is just one of the places she never could have gone two years ago.  Now she just swims like a fish and loves these slides.  She is halfway down the slide in this picture.
Lillie also wanted to hang out in the wave pool and the kiddie activity center.  Yup, she can do all the big kid rides and the little kid rides, excellent.  I decided to go check out this BMX show while Lillie was in the wave pool.  In this picture one of the riders is jumping straight over a volunteer from the audience!
Then it was off to the big rides.  Lillie skipped the mellow inner tube rides for this one.  I was surprised to say the least.  We already have plans to do Wild Waves again and again.  In fact, tomorrow we will be back with one of Lillie's schoolmates, and then next week Hansen and Lillie have an outing planned with their friends too.  Yay for season passes from Santa.

Speaking of Santa.  Did you know that Christmas in July is a marketer's dream slogan?  Right now the DVR is filled with sappy Hallmark Christmas in July movies.  These are actually the reruns from last Christmas season.  Maren and Lillie enjoy these movies.  I have to leave the room for the middle of the movies, but I don't mind seeing the endings.  It's like the old Leave It To Beaver knew Beaver would do something dumb, that was the whole thing.  But it worked out in the end.  Blah.

See you tomorrow.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Go Rapids! Robin Hood, Coco, and Baldy...

Good morning, it is Monday.

Sometimes I start to write my blog and I think to myself that I am just writing the same thing over and over again.  So while I continue to write about soccer, archery, and bunnies I remind myself that the story continues to evolve and change.  Yesterday I was glancing through one of the books Maren put together of this blog from three years ago.  It was soccer and rebuilding the deck.  Phew, glad that deck project went well!
Preston's new soccer team played his last season's team in the highest bracket of the 2013 Nike Crossfire Challenge over the weekend.  Preston and his team played an absolutely fabulous game.  Arguably the best game I've seen in a very long time.  And the Rapids beat PacNW 3-2!  I'm hoping to get a copy of the game that Preston's friend Kevin's dad videoed so we can see the amazing 50 yard run where Preston ran through and around 5 guys to score the tying goal along with the rest of a well played game by both teams.  Yes, this picture is of Preston and Auntie Stef after the game.
Check out Hansen and his Robin Hood arrow!  Kids are not supposed to be this good at archery so soon after starting.  You can see here that he hit the back of an arrow that was in the bullseye of the target so perfectly that the second arrow split and stuck into the back of the first arrow.  Crazy.  They do make more expensive arrows (yes, archery can be very expensive...imagine that) that are narrower with different knocks that are designed to not have this happen.  Maybe his next set will be like that.  An old guy we were shooting with last week was joking with Hansen telling him that if he wanted his arrows to last longer, don't hit the bullseye.
Here is Lillie with Coco Chanel.  We try to let Coco out of her cage for an extended time each day.  Lillie will sit in the back and hang out with Coco for sometimes up to an hour at a time.  Coco runs around the back yard nibbling on weeds and sniffing around.  Once she flops on the ground we know it is time to try to get her back into her cage.  Not so easy!  Sometimes Coco even "thumps" the ground when she wants us to just let her be.  Here Lillie is petting Coco's ears down so she looks like an otter!

I don't have pictures from the pool yesterday with the cousins.  Jack and Avery now have their own tennis racquets!  Sure they look like 30 year old racquetball racquets, but they are perfect for whacking tennis balls.  Avery has her first loose tooth and I've been teasing her just a bit that I would be happy to pull it out for her.  And once out, I would pay her more for it than what she may actually get from the tooth fairy!  We will see how it goes, I think I've been getting a bit of a bad name here.  For clarification here:  I don't want to make the tooth loose...that would be mean.  I just pull it out when it is super duper loose.  The twins seem to be getting just a little help coming up with witty comebacks for my teasing.  Jack called me baldy!  Yeah...can you believe it?  Baldy?  OK, while accurate, ouch.  I had to remind him that I do have another nephew:)

See you tomorrow.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Sock Monkey Snow Globe.

Good morning, it is Friday.

As you know, yesterday was 7/11/13.  Yup, 7-11.  As in FREE SLURPEE DAY!  Preston will have been sad to miss free Slurpee day as he is in Canada (maybe he had a free Slurpee?) but Lillie was happy to go.  I told the kids we were off on a field trip but I wouldn't say where.  Hansen said, "we are not going to Northwest Trek are we?"  Nope.  Then he figured it out...Slurpee day!  And then, he chose to stay home saying the free Slurpees were too small to even go.  Ba humbug.  Lillie was happy to go, so her and I ventured out to the crowed world which was 7-11 for this:
Not too small!  I think this is probably the 10th year we have gotten free slurpees on 7-11.
Check out these snickerdoodles.  Lillie made them last night.  Lillie is becoming quite a confident little human.  She can honestly do anything she decides to do.  She even beat me in a ultra competitive game of Giant Jenga yesterday much to Maren's surprise.  So we Slane's don't like to loose.  It's all good.
This morning Lillie had a dentist appointment at like 8:00 am.  Once home Lillie and I went on a garage sale bicycle ride.  Her bike has like 21 gears..."crazy and confusing" is how Lillie explains bicycle gears.  I may adjust her bike so the gears just stay put, in one gear.  But look what we found at the garage sale!  Four cute snow globes and the whole Little House book set.  Best $2.00 spent ever!

See you tomorrow.