Saturday, November 14, 2009

Mitchell's football party

Mitchell-my full-back and corner back! He has definitely found his sport. He has always been one that gives it his all, never gives up, and never complains. He is a coaches dream..does exactly what he is told. As a mom of a 3rd grade tackle football player, I have to say that it was very hard to see my sweet, mild-mannered boy come home covered in bruises. I mean WELTS! I would force him to put some ice on a few of them just in case we had to go see a doctor or something. I didn't want to be written up as an abuser.

He would never complain, jump in the car when I said it was time to go to practice (which was 3 days a week).

I can't say enough about his coaches. His head coach played football for West Point and has a philosophy of fun, learning the game of football, and if we happen to win a few games that's just a bonus. He teaches the kids that, like in life, in football you will be knocked down. He teaches them to get back up and persevere. And persevere he does. He gives it his all every day.

One week we had some players down with illnesses and Mitch had to play the entire game--every play without a break. It was a very hot day in Denver, and he played his heart out.


Here he is thanking his coaches and parents.

We love his team and their parents. We look forward to many more years together, watching our boys grow as a team, in their friendships and ours. Thanks for making our first year GREAT!

Saturday, November 7, 2009

A Day in Denver

I took a field trip with Mitchell's class to Denver. We walked down 16th St. Mall, visiting historic landmarks and beautiful buildings.
We started at Union Station where we checked out the Amtrak trains. Sorry, not a lot of pics--my camera died after 2 pictures.
Next we went to the Oxford Hotel:

This is the 'Oxford Hotel'. One of the oldest hotels in Denver. It is beautiful inside, very expensive to stay there, and supposedly haunted.
From here we walked to the old Clock Tower, the City Bell, then out to lunch at 'Rock Bottom'. It was almost 80 degrees, so we ate outside and got a little sun.

One of the parents worked at this building, which is the tallest building in Denver, and gave us a tour.
Here is Cole and Mitch on top of the tallest building in Denver. I couldn't get any closer than this. :)
It was a great day, full of history and VERY active boys. I think the girls groups saw us coming and took off as fast as possible. Us Moms were very concerned that one of the boys were going to get hit by a bus. have their energy...
Our last stop was to the 'Brown Palace'. A very historic, gorgeous hotel. When we arrived it was high tea time, where there were patrons and their very fancy dressed little girls having tea and cakes. Needless to say, our stay was limited---6, 8yr. old boys, just didn't get it. So, we took them to City Park and let them play tag, wrestle, and pretend to shoot each other among the numerous homeless that called the park 'home'.

November Moon

So bright and beautiful, it lights up the night
Animals that lay low during day
Come alive under this glowing night light

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Fall in Colorado

Our hike at Kenosha Pass.

Ashley did not want her picture taken.

Beautiful Aspens.

Taking a rest and overlooking South Park.

South Park--can you believe how flat it is?

Tuesday, November 3, 2009


Yes, it's been months--over half a year, actually. I can't believe how they have flown by. A lot has happened, it'll take me half a year to post about it.

Fear--I'm consumed by it lately. Just typing the word brings up so much emotion that I don't know how I'll get through this post. I'm hoping this will help release some of it...and maybe get my family to snap me out of it! C'mon girls...I need you.

I'm afraid. Afraid I'm not going to learn to love it here.

Afraid that I won't be 'in tune' to my kids when they need me most.

Afraid for our financial future.

Afraid of not being able to afford health care.

Afraid that my family won't know how much I miss and love them because I don't call them often.

Afraid to move forward because I'm consumed by the past.

But what I'm most afraid of? Not really LIVING due to all this fear! I'm missing out on so much and I'm just starting to see it. I get so mad at myself because I have SO much to be thankful for...why can't I keep that first and foremost in my mind? Is it because it's easier? Easier to keep living this way rather than change? I hate it!

I'm on a mission of change. From here on I'm determined to focus on the title of my blog...the Joys of my life. There's a lot of them...and I'm recommitted to finding them.

Monday, March 23, 2009

A weeks worth...

I'm putting a hold on any more house news. It seems to be changing every day, so I'm not going to post about it until it's all settled. Just patiently waiting until things fall into place, that will tell me where we are supposed to be. I've decided to stop obsessing about our next house, and picturing us in each house we see. I do love to daydream about where I'd put our furniture, which bedrooms would belong to each kid, but I find now that I can't get to sleep 'cause I lay in bed THINKING!! So, I'm letting it go. What will be, will be.

We joined our church last Sunday, with a reception afterwards. What a great group of people. Our pastor just has a way of speaking to my heart. Maybe it's because he's close to my age and speaks like he's talking to a group of friends, but it's great, and I've never felt this way before about a church. It's exciting.

Last Sunday was a beautiful spring day, and we headed to the high school for a 2 hr. lacrosse scrimmage. Tanner scored 3 points, so he was excited. He's really getting the hang of the game. We just need to work on his stamina....mine, too. :) I can't imaging running ONCE down that field, let alone 2 hrs. worth of running back and forth.

During the scrimmage, the girls finished up their last performance of 'Beauty and the Beast'. I'll be getting a CD of pictures, and will post a few then.

Afterward, we grabbed the boys and headed back to church for pizza and cards. We taught the kids how to play 'Spades'...and ourselves, too. It was so much fun. I knew Mitch would enjoy it, as he loves playing any and every game. It is now his fav.

We wrapped up the night and prayed for rain/snow overnight. We didn't get a flake or a drop! We need it soooo bad. We are in extreme fire danger right now.


Well, that was all LAST weekend. Our week flew by with school and work. On Thursday morning it finally started to snow! School was called off, and we were officially in spring break. The kids were, obviously, ecstatic! It was great to have a snow day. Even Chuck got to stay home. Yay! We ended up with over 18 inches of snow that day. Three days later it was melted, but it was a fun 3 days!

So, my plan was to take the kids somewhere different every day. We were going to head to Colorado Springs to check out some 'touristy' things there, but the weather isn't cooperating. I don't want to do outdoor things while there's snow on the ground. I can hear the girls now....brrrr....yes, they're such wimps. Honestly, I don't like the cold air either. My other 'cool' idea was to head to Glenwood Springs and soak (me)/play (boys) in the hot springs. But, you guessed it, Vail pass was closed yesterday, and the weather hasn't been the best for traveling in the mountains--with a mini-van, that is. We'll try it at the end of the week. Allison is back to work and has been need the van every day in the evening. She's off Thurs. and Friday, so we're going to pack everything into those two days.

Today, we're heading to Denver to Plato's Closet to sell some of the girls' clothes. They have so many that they don't wear. I'll let you know how much we get for them. I have a feeling it won't last long in their pockets, though.

So...over this past weekend Ashley was asked to prom. She's only 15 (freshman) so Chuck and I were quite leery about letting her go. We haven't given her the final o.k. We're still talking about the 'rules' no driving alone in a car together, must be in a group, Allison's the chaperon...stuff like that. :) We'll see how this pans out. Alli is going to prom here and back in MN. She's paying for her own trip to MN..hence the new job. Hopefully she doesn't purchase a one way ticket and never comes back!...maybe I shouldn't have said that.....

Alli has been working on a quilt for Phil's (her boyfriend) graduation. It will be beautiful when it's done. I can't post pics 'cause Phil reads this...sorry Phil. He knows she's making one, so I didn't just ruin the surprise, he just doesn't know what it will look like/ or what colors she's using. She's been cutting every day for over a week. She's now onto sewing. I'm so proud of her. I'm dying to help her...which she doesn't I have to leave the room when she's working on it. I haven't tackled a quilt before, and watching her makes me want to go out and buy fabric to make my own. It looks so tedious, but the outcome is so pretty...Can't wait to show you all.

Yesterday, I started a little spring cleaning. I just can't bring myself to decorate for spring yet, mainly because we'll be (hopefully) moving in the next month or two. We're so cramped here that I just want to put all un-needed stuff in boxes. Believe me, Chuck feels the same...less to clean. So, I started by vacuuming all the cobwebs off the wood beams and ceilings. You would not BELIEVE the cobwebs/spiders in this state! I was shocked. I shudder right now thinking about it...I swear I was covered by them!....ick.....I packed up all my dusty yarns just sitting there waiting for me to play with them. I really need to find a project...and some money for more yarn. :) Chuck's allergies have been TERRIBLE in the last week or so!! I feel so bad for him. Spring has sprung down in Denver and the pollen is VERY high and the atmosphere is very dry, so he's miserable. I have to keep the windows closed now so it doesn't get in the house, and I'm getting rid of everything that is a dust magnet---which is almost everything. We put a new filter in the furnace, too, so hopefully that will help a little. Poor guy....meds aren't doing the trick either. :(

Chuck and I have been budgeting. We've been pretty good about it, too. Our weakness?...eating out. It's the one thing that we went over at the start of the year. This past month has been so much better, thank you very much. We're still working out the kinks, and trying to figure out what works best to keep us both on budget. The kids will be getting an allowance starting next month, so that they can start budgeting their own money, too. Another thing we've been talking/thinking about is a 'Plan B'. With the economy the way it is, people have been saying that everyone should have a 'plan B' just in case they lose their jobs--which is a very high possibility these days. It's not fun to talk about, and makes me very anxious, but it's smart. We have a family at our church that I think about daily. He was a financial planner in CA until his company let him go. He hasn't found a job yet, and him and his wife and two kids had to move here to CO to live with her parents. Nobody is hiring right now in the financial world, and they're just in limbo. There are so many stories like that out there, it's terrifying. So, a 'plan B' is in order.

I need to go make breakfast for the kids. Hope all is going well with everyone. :)

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Saturday lacrosse, soccer and further house hunting...

It's me again! Yes, I'm going to try to be better at this now. Today, we were out of the house by 8:00 a.m. ON A SATURDAY!!! Not my favorite thing to do, but it was for a good reason...Tanner's lacrosse game. We headed down the hill towards Denver and ended up at this beautiful lacrosse field at the edge of the foothills. The weather was the 60's. I could have stayed there all day. Sad to say, Tanner's team lost, but they played a tough game.

After his game, we headed back up the hill for Mitchell's soccer game--after a quick bite at McD's. Up here it's about 10 degrees cooler than in Denver, but it was still nice enough not to need a coat. After being in the sun for 6+ hours, I was ready to head home and veg. Chuck was not having it--he likes to pack in as much as he can on the weekends. Usually I like to do whatever he suggests, especially if the weather's nice. :)

In my last post I mentioned that we found a house. We really like this house, but there was one house out there that we hadn't looked at yet. We've seen this house online for over a year, but the pictures just didn't look that great. Anyway, we thought we should go look at it, since it is in our price range, and we didn't want to regret not looking at it. So, right after the game we went to check it out. Boy, are we glad we did!! It was awesome! It was clean, updated (mostly), a great size (five bedrooms) and on a perfect lot. It is actually cheaper than the other house, too. So, we ran home, grabbed the kids, and brought them back to show them. They all loved it, and picked this one over the original one. The boys loved the tarred driveway (the other was granite chips), it already had a basketball hoop, and the road to the house is quiet and paved (the other was gravel) so that was a plus for Chuck--and my floor. So, we have to re-think things a little. I'll keep you updated. I lay in bed at night just visualizing these houses..and us in them. Now, I'll have to think about 2! I'll never get sleep now....

So, tomorrow we join our church! The girls are finishing up the last weekend of the musical, and tomorrow is their last performance. It should be another busy day. After church they are having a reception for the new members, then it's off to the musical, then there's a BBQ at the pastor's house. It's all fun stuff, and should be a great day!

Last night we had Tanner's lacrosse team party. They had the party at a boy's dreamland...a place that has every game console you can think of--Wii, Rockband, Playstation, etc. You pay a fee and the kids can play til their hearts content. They have large screen t.v.s, balconies where the kids sit and the t.v. screen is on the wall in front of them, so it looks like they are in the game. It was very cool. Of course, no one wanted to leave when the time was up. Maybe that's why they were a little sluggish this morning for their game....hmmmm...
The parents were very nice. It'll be fun getting to know them.

The girls just got home, changed their clothes, and are off to the cast party. We've hardly seen them these last two weeks, but it's so fun to see them having fun.

For us, it's jammy time....