Thursday, September 29, 2011

Fieldtrip Time

lunch by Buddha Beach

This week we have a total of 3 field trips.
School field trips.
(Not including family field trips.)

Max and his preschool class took the public bus
to the local library for some playing
and reading fun.
He loved it.

Max and I got to join Noah and his Kindergarten class
for a super fun hike down in Sedona.
We marched for about 1 mile discussing wildlife and nature,
picnicked in the shade by the creek,
had a blast playing in the water and on rocks,
and then marched back to the cars.
It was fantastic!
What a treat for the kids.
Great memories and class bonding!
Have I mentioned that I love Noah's teacher???

Max will hopefully be joining his friends
on a little hike to the park close to his preschool.
As I was typing this, he just threw up in his bed!
It is now all cleaned up and I hope
he/we will sleep well and be fit come morning.
Maybe just a little too much creek water in his belly...

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Late Summer Afternoon

The weather here in Flagstaff is absolutely perfect right now! Temps in the mid-70s and very little rain. (When it does rain, it usually stops after an hour or so, and then we are treated to beautiful rainbows!) Knowing that it is going to get cold very soon, we wanted to take advantage of the warmth and drive down the canyon to play in the creek. We packed up the bags, changed into our swimsuits, and jumped into the car full of anticipation of a fun family adventure.

Pulling out of our parking lot, it hit us! We totally forgot! We are not supposed to drive our Subaru more than 5 miles right now. Ugh! It's been having issues since our trip to Vegas and we are waiting for some parts (radiator+thermostat) to replace the old ones. (Just what we need. A $500 car bill!) Being grumpy and frustrated does not help a thing, so we quickly came up with Plan B:

Hike/bike some beautiful trails that I have been meaning to show to my family for a while. Then go to the Bear Paw Pool to cool off and relax. Max did not like that plan one bit! Surprise! He was not interested in any sort of hiking and wanted to go to the pool right away. He made sure we did not happen to forget his opinion by screaming and crying to no end. Knowing that 3-year-olds can change their mind rather quickly, we just kept calm and carried on. Sure enough: Eventually we found a great single-track trail going up a long, gradual hill and Max decided to have fun. We ran/biked up and down the hill more than a couple of times and were glad we had not given in to our little tyrant earlier.

Time for some water play!

It was a great afternoon
and we all enjoyed ourselves very much.

PS: We have all been sick with the cold since then (9 days and counting...) but I don't blame the pool. Who knows where we caught it.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Grand Canyon Adventures

What a view!
Of course, we had to show Oma and Opa this natural wonder!
They were pretty excited:

What do you do at the Grand Canyon?
You look and you hike.
So we did lots of looking and even more hiking.

The boys were not happy with just walking along the rim.
They wanted to hike down. A bit.
So off we went:

We actually made it further down than expected
and all the way back up.
Nice job, guys!

Sometimes Noah and oftentimes Max
got a little
and grouchy.

So we gave them food.

Provided distractions.

And bribed with ice cream.

Sometimes it worked.
Sometimes it did not.

We did do a few things besides hiking.
The boys are able to find big mud puddles
even in the desert.

Lots of dirt for off-road biking.

Getting creative...

One evening we found a nice spot at the rim
and settled down to watch an amazing sunset.

We shared the view with about 200 other tourists.

Quote of the trip provided by Noah:

"There are too many Germans here."

Thank you, Oma and Opa, for a great trip!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

We are ready!

"Mama! We are ready for school!
You are not?
Fine. I guess we'll play animals
and read a book."

Since Max is our alarm clock that goes off anytime between 6 and 6:30 we usually have plenty of time to get ready for school.
Thanks, Max!

Afternoon activity:

Building and painting a house
for all their beloved stuffed animals.
With Papa, of course.
I am the designated pretend-player.
Karl and I are a good team.

(You've got to love the sky up here in Flagstaff. It is beautiful!)

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Under Water Fun

These two pictures are not quite under water
but I still think they are fun!
Notice that in each picture the other kid
is warming up in the sun on the towel.

Good thing the pool water was quite a bit warmer.
We love the public outdoor pool in Sedona.
Nothing fancy but
fun and clean and sunny!

While staying at a hotel in Vegas last weekend,
we got to enjoy their hot tub and pool.
Mostly hot tub because the pool was a little cold
and the hot tub just nice and warm.
We had a fantastic time!

Looks like my kids might have inherited
my genes for bad swimming form.
Sorry, guys!

But, hey, I am just happy that they love
playing in and under the water
as much as I do.
We will worry about a proper stroke later.
My sister and I basically lived in the water
all growing up whether swimming or just playing.
I want to pass that passion on.

Karl is not quite as at home in the water.
But that is ok.
He just feels more comfortable
running through the woods
collecting bugs.


Maybe I should mention though
that neither of my kids can actually swim.
They both think they can
but ... well, they can't.
Not more than a few feet at a time.
But Noah is getting there.

I love the following little video because

- Max is such a dare devil
- Noah is always eager to help Max
- Max is a pretty grateful kid

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Back to Normal

I am back. It's been a while.
After focusing on my race in Vegas so much
for the last several weeks,
life is back to (our) normal.

I was actually at home this morning
when the kids woke up and we snuggled in bed.
I don't feel like I have neglected them
but it is nice to take the pressure off and feel free!

Thank you, Karl, Noah, and Max
for hanging in there with me!
I love my family!

Next up:
Some fun under-water pictures with our new camera!

Monday, September 5, 2011

One in Kindergarten!

The first day of Kindergarten was also the day our camera died. Not good timing. We managed to take these 2 pictures before its death. Noah looks different than usual. Not sure why. He did get a hair cut since because we were both tired of the morning-brush-issues. Believe it or not: I did brush his hair that particular morning (same with Max) but longer hair + bike helmet + sweat = a mess. Not that I care. Just explaining myself.

We can honestly say that Noah likes Kindergarten! Phew. I was not so much worried that he would not like it but that all-day would be an issue. All public Kindergartens here in Arizona are full-day. 8:40-3:10 seems pretty long for these little guys. Well. He has not complained yet! There are a whole bunch of crazy and wild boys in his class and I am pretty sure they are having a ton of fun together. Especially during recess. They go outside 3 or 4 times during the day.

His teacher, Miss Chris, is fantastic! She is young, energetic, funny, beautiful, and knows how much energy these kids have. I swim with her at NAU and she has two young boys of her own. Score! So grateful for her.

The last few weeks, while I have been in heavy training, Karl has brought both kids to school on MWF. By bike, of course. On the days where they are ready early, they all start out on their bikes together. The kids enjoy it very much. But, of course, we are prepared with the Chariot in case Max gets tired on the very hill route.

(Here, Noah is walking because his bike is locked up a little further down the road.)

Off to school! See ya later!

I am so glad they are both (well, all 3 actually) enjoying school and making lots of new friends. I definitely don't have as much time to myself as I thought I would. 2.5 hours is really just enough to squeeze in a workout. Showers are still a problem. But I am not complaining! Glad I still have one little guy around to keep me busy and entertained most of the day.

Noah has a day of cooking, the open-house, and even a field trip to Sedona coming up. Fun times! He has really been growing up a lot lately and changed quite a bit. He picks up some pretty funny (and some not-so-funny) stuff from his classmates and is acting more and more like a teenager! Help!

Here is to a fun year in Kindergarten! Love you, Noah!

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Who knew...?

... that Grandma and Grandpa went snorkeling
while visiting Aunt Brenda and family in Fiji?

This picture absolutely cracks me up!
I have had it on my desktop for a couple of days now
and I keep looking at it and laughing.
I love it!

I knew Karl's dad wears a long-sleeve
button-down white shirt for
church, gardening, hiking, and exercising.
But I would've never guessed he was going
to wear one for snorkeling as well!

I love my in-laws!
We can't wait to see them in less than a week!