Saturday, August 30, 2014

First Day of School!

Good morning, it is Saturday.

Welp, we survived the first two days of school.  Luckily for us there is now a three day weekend to recover...
Here they are on the first day of school.  Lillie a 6th grader, Preston a 12th grader, and Hansen and 9th grader.
Lillie is in her last year of elementary school, and quite possibly her last year on a school bus.  We live too close for a bus at middle school, and when she starts high school Hansen will be a senior and driving her to school for sure.  Just as Preston is driving Hansen this year.
This was in my box at school waiting for me on my first day back.  My five years of service pin.  This is actually the start of my 7th year, but school calendars are wacky.
Wednesday (the day before school started) I decided to finally get to my big summer project!  New sinks in the bathrooms and new faucet and plumbing for the utility sink.
No more rust!  There are just a couple of bugs to work out, but the three turned out quite nice.  Of course I was working until about 9:00pm the night before the first day of school.  Procrastinate much?  No worries, about the time I was done Hansen decided to finally empty out his back pack from last year!

Here's to a great school year!

See you tomorrow.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Into the Sunset.

Good morning, it is Tuesday.

Is this the forth post for today?  Yes, I think it is.

Sunday was a beautiful day around here.  As August winds down, it is important to enjoy every nice day you can because six months of rain is right around the corner.  I decided to take Preston to Elk Run for some golfing.  While I've known Elk Run is scheduled to close at the end of October, it didn't really hit me until Sunday.  When we walked in the pro-shop, it was completely empty of merchandise.  Empty!  And Sad. As in I was sad the first few holes as I know this may be the very last time I golf Elk Run.  Elk Run was my first golf job and really the people there were like family.  I know all the in's and out's of the course.  I could probably play it with my eyes closed.  Closing the course is fine, and probably good in the long run.  It will be the sight of the new Tahoma High School.
While the building is empty, the course is being maintained very well.
A perfect drive in the smack middle of the fairway on hole five.  Preston took the lead after hole two, which spurred me on to a very impressive four hole run of excellent golfing.  I've still got this golf thing working for me.
Preston hitting his drive into a beautiful sunset on hole seven.  I will miss this golf course.
On the back nine we picked up a cart and joined neighbors and long time golf friends Jay and Brenda.  I gave Brenda golf lessons when she first started the game fifteen years ago.  Sunday she had a great round of golf, winning all the money!  One day, probably twenty years ago, a small air plane landed on this green in a failed attempt to make the local airport.  Crazy huh?  I'm guessing this section of the course will become houses.  There is a chance I play Elk Run one more time, but if not, this was a great day!

See you tomorrow.

Chicken Dinner.

Good morning, it is Tuesday.

Blog post number three for today!  As summer comes to a close, so does the rush to finish up any assigned homework for the summer.  Such is the case for Hansen.  He was assigned to read a couple of books and to write reports on such books.  Maren found one at the library, but the other, Night by Elie Wiesel has had a very long hold list.  After looking online and checking out Libraries, we decided to try a last ditch try at Value Village.  After all, it was half price books day on Sunday.
While the kids shopped for whatever, Maren and I looked through the books.  It is a good thing that Maren didn't trust that I looked through my shelves perfectly because she found the book on the second to last row of books that I had already "looked through".  Winner, winner, Chicken Dinner!  Can you believe it?  And yes, Maren did find plenty of other books to buy as well.  I mean, it was half price books and every 5th one was free!  I think we left with twenty books...  That's why I haven't been blogging, I've been reading.  Hahahaha.  That is so no the reason...like I read, snort.  OK, I do, but not like super reader Maren.  The kids are all super readers as well.  As of yesterday Hansen had already finished his book and his report.  Good thing too, because he started cross country for Kentlake high school yesterday.  He was leading the first lap of warm-ups when I left, which I gathered to mean that I'd be scraping his worn out self off the track after practice.  He was pretty worn out.  Day two is today.

See you tomorrow.

JOAD Champ!

Good morning, it is Tuesday.

Blog post number two for today.  Over the weekend I took Hansen to a large archery tournament for kids.  The WA state JOAD.  Most the tournaments he shoots in are for all ages.  This one the parents just sat around all day and watched.  While it was fun to sit around and watch all day, I am glad I have a bow and can shoot in the others.
Warming up before the event starts.  Most the kids in this competition use recurve bows, but some use compounds.
Hansen and Emily were on the same target.  A big part of archery is the scoring.  You can see in this picture just how accurate excellent archers can be.
After the last target of the day was scored.  These two both won their classifications.  If I'm not mistaken, Emily beat Hansen for the first time this day.  She had just got back from winning the National Fields and the World Field tournaments in South Dakota and is quickly becoming one of the best female archers in her age group anywhere.
Goofing off afterwards with some archery friends.
Picking up his award!  Great shooting Hansen!

See you tomorrow.

She's Squidward!

Good morning, it is Tuesday.

Yesterday it came it the mail!  Lillie has been waiting for this to arrive for two years!  She is finally old enough to get to play an instrument at school!  No more suspense:
Her purple clarinet in all its brand new glory!  Lillie went back and forth between a trumpet and the clarinet.  At the end of the day it was her brother that helped make this decision.
Yup, Preston has played the clarinet for quite some time.  This will be his eighth year in a school band playing the clarinet.  Yes, this is Lillie's first lesson.  We did purchase this clarinet rather than rent.  With Preston's we rented from a music store for four years, at the end of four years we owned it.  Over that time/payments we could have purchased a few clarinets.  Who knew?  And Lillie got purple.

Now we have two Squidwards in the house!
 See you tomorrow.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Let It Go!

Good morning, it is Monday.

Last night was a very fun event at our church.  The Frozen sing-a-long.  Preston went an hour early to help set up.  Set up included scooping ice-cream and setting out a topping buffet!
Here Lillie is admiring the toppings.  Hmm...  what combo looks the best?  I think Preston helped scoop over 50 bowls of ice-cream, and they may have run out and scooped more.
Before ice-cream and the movie, it was snow-globes.
Preston and I helped with the whipped toppings.
Movie time.  Half the fun was watching all the littles (many dressed up like Elsa) singing to all the popular music pieces.  You could tell a few of the adults wished they could go up front and belt out some Frozen tracks too.  Many of the littlest viewers left after the Let It Go song in the movie, but many stayed till the end.
Lillie did a reading and Preston helped set up.  As a gift they received this Frozen Poster.  We went out and purchased a poster frame and now it is hanging in our purple room.

See you tomorrow.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Sporty Stuff.

Good evening, it is Sunday.

The other day I got a call from a friend who I've not seen in many years.  Like over ten.  Back in the day I sold him a set of golf clubs that were custom fit made for me back when I was a golf professional. I gave him a very good deal, but asked that if he ever was to get rid of them, that he offer them to me first.  And the call was to offer my clubs back.
 Here they are in my golf bag.  Perfect conditioned Ping ISIs with my name engraved on the hosel.  While I was happy to get these clubs back, it is very bitter sweet.  My friend has MS and hasn't been able to golf for some time.  We did have a nice visit and I'm sure I will visit him again soon.
Hansen had his first actual paid archery lesson the other day.  He learned some great tips that will surely help him over the long run.  This new bow of his has been a bit temperamental of late, and it is good to know it is not the shooter this time around.  I will be doing some tuning and cutting some better matching arrows soon.  Hansen should be shooting better than ever soon.
Preston played in a soccer tournament over the weekend.  Actually, just Saturday.  Two games.  The event was Friday through today, but Preston was just a guest player.  And a great addition to the team he was.  He scored the goal in last night's game that put the team into the playoffs.  I know the team won the semi finals this morning, no word on how they did in the finals.  This picture is a cool panoramic.  The row of trees on both ends of the photo are the same row of trees.  On the right side are mini cities of RVs.  On the left are booths selling both food and merchandise.  In the background was a huge tent playing music.  Amazing area for a tournament for sure.

Maren and Lillie sports you ask?  Lillie is signed up for a dance class in the fall.  And Maren is out front petting the neighbor's little kitten that likes to visit our house.  Does that count?  Sure.

See you tomorrow.

Friday, August 15, 2014

Senior Pictures.

Good morning, it is Friday.

Yesterday was the first of many.  The first of many senior things.  By the time Lillie is a senior in high school all these firsts will just be old hat.  Preston gets to be our navigator here, well, Maren and I were once seniors in high school too, but maybe that was a different time right?  Yesterday I took Preston for senior pictures.  We did order a package of pictures worth a car payment or two, but they were well worth it, the pictures are great!
Preston liked this idea of a professional studio doing the pictures.  Quickly.  At one time.  Some folks these days are taking a photographer out on the road to fields of grass and abandoned train tracks and such.  Those turn out great, but Preston was more inclined to just get it done.  They offered up to three changes of outfits, Preston brought two.  The best part?  Well, that's the next picture.  The second best part was at the end.  Believe it or not, the picture both Preston and I thought was the best one, the one that will be in his year book an on the wall, was the very first picture taken.
After the first set of photos, I spied the Blue's Clues Thinking Chair.  Preston loved Blue's Clues as a little guy and many years ago we had pictures taken in this exact chair.  The photographer let me take this picture with my phone.  I have to say that this one picture (taken on my phone) was worth the whole cost of the photo shoot for me.

Now for a little nostalgia:
This is Preston and Hansen in the exact same thinking chair!  This picture is from Valentines Day 2000.  Hansen was just over a month old and Preston was three and a half.
 And a for his 3rd bithday with Blue!  I've got the music from Blue's Clues dancing around in my head right now...dat dat da da da Blue's Clues...

See you tomorrow.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Shoot the Moon.

Good morning, it is Wednesday.

This may be a longish blog with plenty of photos.  For the last few days I've been fighting with my photostream, which means loading pictures from my phone has not been going well.  Last night I uninstalled everything and reinstalled everything and for this moment, it's working again.  Phew.  Thanks to Maren for helping troubleshoot:)
Saturday and Sunday Hansen competed in the Washington State FITA Field Championship.  He is your Champion!  Congrats Hansen!
Not knowing how big this tournament would be, I decided not to compete and just walk with Hansen the first day.  The fellow on Hansen's left is from Oregon and had just returned from a tournament in Texas.  Of course, not all archers take it so serious as these two...
Yeah, here are the other two from the group.  At the end of the day I couldn't tell if the guy on the right disliked liberals, or was actually one himself and a really horrible archer.  Hmm...
Anyhow, the second day I brought my bow, and I'm really glad I did.
Hansen got to shoot with a couple of his archery friends.  And he really didn't need me following the group around.  So I didn't.  I used Hansen's old bow and shot really well with a nice group of guys.

Sunday evening I was so tired.  But I did remember that Maren wanted to walk down to the end of the block and check out the super moon.  Haha, lots of good jokes waiting right there.  But I digress.
Yup, that's the super moon behind us.  Preston is taking this photo.  And we had to be quick because we were in the middle of the road and cars kept driving bye.
Preston is actually holding the super moon and taking a selfie of Lillie and himself.  That's talent my friends.  I could spell "talent" with two l's all day long.  Thanks spell check!

Monday ended up being the hottest day of the year.  In fact I think it was the hottest day in several years.  Maren sent me this photo on her drive home:
Yeah, 101 degrees.  Luckily we were headed to the movie theater.
 Maren purchased us sneak preview red carpet tickets to see the opening of The Giver.  This is a wonderful book that we've all read.  Jeff Bridges purchased the movie rights to this book 18 years ago with the hope his dad would play the part of the giver.  18 years later and he is in that role.  This was truly a bittersweet event for us and for everyone.  Just before the red carpet the world found out about the death of Robin Williams.  Jeff Bridges and Robin Williams were great friends and it was with tears and a heavy heart that Jeff did his job.  Very Sad.  The movie on the other hand is absolutely wonderful.  They did great by the book and even had Lois Lowry (the author) on set and at the premier.

A day later and the 100 degree weather is gone.  It is now 70 degrees and raining.
Last night I took Preston to his soccer game.  It rained the whole time and was very dark at the end.  Preston scored two great goals on the way to a victory for the team!
Lastly, but certainly not leastly, Lillie has Girls Scouts camp this week.  All week we get to see Lillie in orange.  Yesterday she learned about pocket knives and carving.  Oh My.  I'm happy to report that Lillie was not one of the girls injured by a pocket knife.  Yay!  As a matter in fact, it's time to sign off and bring Lillie to camp.

Nanu Nanu

Friday, August 08, 2014

Piano Time.

Good evening, it is Friday.

What a nice week we've had.  Great weather and fun times.  I can't even say that we have even done much, but relax.  Relaxing means hammock, archery, golf, reading, video games, walks, and shopping too.  That's right, we did some school shopping today.  Lillie is ready for school to begin for sure.  But her summer is not over yet!  One of the things happening in our house lately that I've enjoyed a lot is Preston playing the piano.  He finds the music to popular songs and learns to play.  I took a couple of videos of him playing.  He may want you to know that he is still learning these songs, but I think they sound great!
 This is part of John Legend's All Of Me.  Nice huh?
This is Let It Go from the movie Frozen.  Lillie and I enjoy making up Weird Al style lyrics for Let It Go.  Our best song so far is Yellow Snow.  Ha!

I also learned today that I should hold my camera horizontally for taking videos.  These had to be rotated, and doing so with video is not as easy as a picture.  Enjoy!

See you tomorrow.

Wednesday, August 06, 2014

It was fun until I needed to golf! -Lillie

Good morning, it is Wednesday.

Yesterday around noon Preston wanted to know if I wanted to go golfing.  I think I said "no", followed by something in the line of, "unless you can get Lillie to be your caddie."  Within about 20 seconds he had somehow convinced Lillie that golfing was what she wanted to be doing.  Maybe it was the box of candy?  Hmm.  As it turned out, Lillie was not interested in being a caddie, she wanted to golf.  So I pulled down her old golf clubs, which were her size last summer, and now are way too small...then put together a new set of clubs for her to use from my vast inventory of golf clubs and we were off.
On the first tee I snapped this picture.  Everyone was happy to be golfing!  I figured this happy mood may not last beyond the first few holes.
Team scramble.  Preston and Lillie vs. Hansen and myself.  Lillie did great the first few holes.  Then it was survival mode for Slurpees.
Hansen's form is looking good.  His ball flight may not always follow.  But it's getting there.  Up near the green we were all ducking as his ball decided to hit a sign and fly back at us at full speed.  Ducking, and laughing.
This shot put team Preston/Lillie in the lead for a bit.  A 223 yard bullet with a 4 iron that climbed with just hint of draw and gently dropped about 4 feet from the hole.  Seriously one of the best golf shots I've ever witnessed.  In real life I've only seen four other people hit shots as quality as this shot.  They are Fred Couples, Ernie Els, Payne Stewart, and Koll Farman.  I have never had the talent to hit such a shot.  I had just missed the green short right from about the same spot with my 4-wood.
How many more holes do we have to golf?  Maybe next time she can ride in a cart and read a book?  That was Maren's suggestion on how to enjoy golf:)

See you tomorrow.

Tuesday, August 05, 2014

Summer in a day.

Good morning, it is Tuesday.

What have we not done yet this summer?  Not a whole bunch, but with all of our schedules and such, we really have not all BBQ'd or had a fire pit with the whole fam.  Last night we were all able to hang out for a bit.  Nice.
Hansen's happy to get the fire started.
YUM!
Later we even got the fire pit going.
Preston told us a great campfire story.  About a coffin.  Following you.  Through the woods.  Shudder.  Really, a cough drop to stop the coffin?  Great!
Earlier in the day Lillie got to visit the dentist and the orthodontist.  Later in the week we have another visit or two.  Lots of indecision on the braces front.  Remember back in the day when she was this little:
Way back then she hurt her front two teeth on a school yard bar.  Welp, today, as much the orthodontist would like to have Lillie in braces, the well being of these front two teeth are still front and center in such decisions.  But enough on teeth, how about a puppy instead?
Not our puppy.  Phew.  But this cute little puppy did keep the kids entertained at the church picnic the other day.
Many of the kids from Preston's mission trip were there answering questions and such about their trip.  Great group of kids for sure.
See you tomorrow.