Sunday, February 10, 2008

A Day in the Snow!!!

Well, us Californians have to drive to get to the snow!! And it is considered fun to go "play" in the snow. So we spent many hours and many dollars gearing up for this fun day to play. We made sure everyone was equipped with snow boots, snow pants, snow gloves, snow jackets, thermals, hats, scarves, sleds, tubes, food, water & blankets and off we went! Part way up tire chains were required, that was Craig's first experience with chains. How funny he grew up in Eastern Idaho. We fumbled around a little but between the two of us got it figured out and made it all the way with only one minor mishap. Once there we started layering on our winter gear and an hour later we were ready to hit the slopes. I wasn't sure how Tyler was going to do so we got our little area set up with food, water and chairs and we each grabbed a tube or sled and headed up the hill. Sari headed down having a blast but Ashlie wasn't so sure. Her first trip down she crash landed halfway and so I wasn't sure she would be coming back up the hill. Craig put Tyler on his sled and they headed down. I watched eagerly for Tyler's reaction only to see him land at the bottom and get up to walk back up the hill. He was hooked!!! Ashlie decided to give it one more try before calling it quits. This time as she was getting on her tube she slipped and landed in her tube going down the hill. She didn't have much time to panic before she landed safely at the bottom and determined that it wasn't so bad after all!!! From there on we couldn't stop any of the kids from wanting more. So they spent the next couple of hours marching up the hill and sliding down. Fortunately for us, Tyler wanted to do most of his own walking through the snow, it took a while to get where we were going but that was half of the fun for Tyler. Part way through we walked back out to the parking area and met up with our ward from church for chili dogs and hot chocolate. Then back in we went and did another couple of hours of sledding. I made the last run of the day and decided to try the round disk sled we had brought. By this point in the day the course we were going down was pretty worn and slick so you were able to get quite a bit of speed. At the bottom there was a little hill that if you hit with the right speed and angle you could actually catch some air. So up I went to try it one more time. I certainly had some speed and hit the hill at the bottom just right and caught some air. As I was flying over I realized I was headed straight for where Tyler and Ashlie were playing in the snow so when I hit the ground I just started rolling so I wouldn't crash into them. If you notice in the last picture there really isn't a focus point. That's because it is Tyler & Ash playing and me rolling into them. All in all we had a great time playing. Craig and I came home a little red, we remembered the sun screen for the kids, just forgot ourselves. It was a lot of fun and we plan on going back soon since the kids all enjoyed it so much.

Ashlie Ready for School

Over the years I've learned many things from my children. The fact that Mr. Clean Eraser does not remove permanent marker from doors, drinking glasses can indeed be broken into millions of pieces and snotty kisses linger longer than clean kisses!! However, one of the greatest lessons I've learned is that they each have their own individuality, and who am I to tell them otherwise. Our darling Ashlie is the one who first helped this hit home with me. If you've ever spent much time with Ashlie at all you will know that she most definitely has her own sense of style!!! I often reflect on the time when she was about 2 and we went to the hospital to visit my mom who had had surgery. Her outer attire was very appropriate for the rainy January day that it was. Long winter coat buttoned all the way with rain boots, it was when she took off the jacket once inside and was wearing her swimming suit with nothing else that her fashion statement truly took hold!! I'm sure her idea on it was, swimming suits are for getting wet in, why not wear them in the rain!! She was quite the talk of the hospital that day, and for that matter has been the talk of many other conversations since. Just the other day she came into my room ready for school and this is what she had picked out. Who was I to tell her that none of the colors matched!! She did however inform me that her teachers favorite colors are orange and green, since he had been gone the day before she wanted to make him happy and wear his favorite colors. How could I argue with that. So off she went!! In the past before I came to fully understand this lesson being taught, I would have argued and pushed for her to change clothes. She would have gotten upset, crying & screaming, we both would have lost our tempers and neither of us would have been happy. I'm thankful that I've learned that this is just not that important to fight over. I pick and choose my battles and this is not one I will pick!!!

Sari is a Millionariare!!!

Sari has become a millioniare!!! Well, at least in reading. At her school to promote reading they have The Millioniares Club. After the kids read a book they have to take a little quiz on the computer. They have to get 70% or better on the quiz. Each book is worth a certain number of points depending on the difficulty of it, so the computer keeps track of how many points they've earned as well as how many words are in each book. Once they have read the books and passed quizes for a total of 1,000,000 words they become millionaires!! The younger grades don't have to read so many words to join the club, Ashlie in 2nd grade only has to read 250,000 words, still quite a job considering most books being read by her class only have 1000-3000 words. However, in 5th & 6th grade you have to read the full 1,000,000!!! And she did it!!! She received a new t-shirt that says she is a millionaire, a trophy and a gift card to Borders to buy more books!!! We are very proud of her. This is a big accomplishment!!! This is a picture of her holding her trophy (shirt was in the laundry)!!!