Month: August 2011

Angel’s day

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Saturday, August 27th was Angel’s forever family day!  As you know we went camping Friday but didn’t really have much planned for the rest of the weekend.

We started off our day by having donuts for breakfast! This is kind of a tradition that we do on special occasions.  The donuts aren’t anything special, just your regular donut holes but the kids think it’s pretty awesome because mama usually makes them eat “healthy” cereal for breakfast.

After my horrible, no good, terrible long run we all sat down and watched Pioneer Women’s debut on the Food Network.  Priorities, right?  After that it was getting close to lunch and we of course allowed Angel to pick where we went.

Except she picked Chuck E. Cheese, which was the last place on earth her daddy wanted to go and so he sweetly convinced her that Pizza Ranch with the games and bouncy house was a much better idea.

Patiently waiting for her little brother to quit messing around and finish his lunch.

Finally it’s play time!

After the bouncy house and play area it was on to the games.  Pat and I had already spent $10 between the two of us. Pat of course started off by shooting things.  I of course won the jackpot on one of the games and won 242 tickets.  Seriously, this place makes me wonder if I have a gambling problem.

We got another $10 worth of games for the kids to play.  As I was helping Angel squash the ground hogs or whatever these little rodents were, I couldn’t find Caleb.

Oh there he is.  Well yes. Yes he did climb up on this motorcycle all by himself.

I think Angel and Caleb played this spider game about 20 times.

I already had about 200 tickets on my card to begin with (hello? frequent players card? gambling problem?) and after all of us cashed in our tickets we ended the day with a little over 900 tickets. Caleb got a big blow up hammer.  Because obviously his parents don’t have a brain between the two of them.  For 500 tickets Angel got a Barbie doll.  I realize that we could have bought four Barbies for how much we paid for all those tickets, but hey, it was memories made, right?

Saturday afternoon we all took a three-hour nap, which hasn’t happened in a very long time. It was glorious.  Saturday night we went to the family movie in the park. The move was The Apple Dumpling Game. At first the kids didn’t really seem interested and I was afraid we’d have to leave but they eventually started watching and thought it was pretty good.

Yahoo for $1 popcorn!

Angel refusing to take her picture with mama. After the 400 pictures I’d taken the past two days I guess I don’t blame her. “MAMA! Quit taking pictures of me!” Ha!

It seems unusual to me that she doesn’t ask alot of questions about her adoption.  We look through her “first book”, as she calls it, alot. We had to explain again this year why we were having a forever family day. (Caleb was mad that he doesn’t get a forever family day!) I don’t know if she’s just too young to articulate her questions or perhaps she just doesn’t have any. I guess as the days and months go on we’ll address it as it comes.

Angel’s forever family day 2011 was alot of fun and hopefully lots of memories were made.  We are so thankful for our girl!

Our first camping adventure

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We’ve talked all summer about going camping. But that’s as far as we’ve gotten, is talking.  Well last week we were trying to think of something fun to do for Angel’s forever family day and since Pat had taken Friday off we decided to go camping.

It’s still camping if we have a cabin, right?

It’s still camping if we don’t spend the night, right?

Well, let’s back up.

We camped at Palisades Park which is about 15 minutes from us. We figured for our first experience we’d better stay local just in case.  We got there about 3:00 pm on Friday afternoon and were so pleasantly surprised at the cabin and the beautiful scenery.

The kids were SO excited and played on the top bunk while Pat and I unloaded and put away all the stuff for our one night adventure that turned into a 7 hour adventure.


Our first activity was to go swimming. Pat was so excited about this, which is weird because he hates to swim. But I guess the river that goes through this park has some pretty shallow parts.  So he took us on a wild goose chase trying to find the right spot.

And finally we did find it. And Pat was right, it was perfect.

This girl LOVES the water. She was in heaven.

This boy does not love the water. In fact for most of our time at the river he was saying, “Go back NOW!”. Finally we got him in the water with Daddy and he relaxed a little.

This guy. He’s weird.

Looking for rocks!

It was so beautiful sitting out there in the river soaking in the sun. But eventually we had to head back and get supper started.  We made, well I have no idea what they are called. Basically we put stew meat, sausage, potatoes, onions, peppers and carrots in tin foil and put it on the camp fire to cook. It was super tasty!

To make it even better we had a special guest! My mom came to town just to join us on our camping trip.  While we waited for supper the kids played and we all just hung out. It was so nice. The dogs were also enjoying themselves and their freedom!

After supper we went on a little hike which turned into a pretty big hike. Which turned into a really gross encounter with spiders.

There was a rocky, hilly part right outside our cabin. And then it turned into a beautiful valley along the river full of flowers.

And after walking through it for about 15 minutes we discovered the spiders.

There were hundreds millions of them! And of course our little bug lover had to stop and inspect every single one.

Eventually we went back into a rocky, hilly area where there were still lots of spiders. We found a nice place to take a family picture.

Except the bug lover was having a little too much spider overload. (There was a huge spider right behind us.)

We headed for the cabin with the anticipation of S’mores and Grandma Susie leading us in campfire songs!

Pat got the fire going quickly but the kids were not too excited about the S’mores. They said they were too messy. Well, ya.  So Mama, Daddy and Grandma enjoyed S’mores while the children enjoyed deconstructed S’mores.

Not the happy S’more face I was expecting!

“No thank you Mama. I’ll just have marshmallows.”

And that she did.  This girl’s got some skill.

Finally, it got dark and we sat around the campfire singing songs. So fun.

But not so much fun that we stayed the night.  At about 9:30 pm we decided to head for home and sleep in our own beds. My mom was planning to stay at our house anyway, I had to get up and run the next morning so we were going to head out pretty early and I’m sorry but going through the valley of the spiders totally freaked me out about sleeping in the wild, er cabin, with spiders.

So we wimped out and went home but we still consider it a successful camping trip and had so much fun!

Down but not out

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As far as training goes, it’s been a discouraging last couple of days.

Monday, August 22nd: biked 30 minutes
Tuesday, August 23rd: 5 miles
Wednesday, August 24th: rest
Thursday, August 25th: 4.5 miles
Friday, August 26th: walked
Saturday, August 27th: 8.5 miles
Sunday, August 28th: rest

As I mentioned, my long run last week was a little tough because after mile 7 my knee started hurting.

On Monday I got new running shoes and my runs on Tuesday and Thursday were great. I could really tell the difference with the new shoes.

My long run on Saturday was not good. Well, it was good, up until mile 7. Then my knee started hurting again. I tried to run through it but had to stop and walk quite a bit for the last mile and 1/2.  So discouraging. I was also frustrated because I thought my route was 9 miles and it turned out to only be 8.5.  My mother scolded me that I’m a control freak and I guess that’s maybe probably true but it’s still frustrating the same.

I’ve been doing some looking on the world wide web and I’m not sure if I have “runner’s knee” or “iliotibial band syndrome”. I’m leaning toward ibs because my pain is more on the side of my knee. But I have alot of symptoms of runner’s knee too.  So as much as it kills me and stresses me out, I decided to not do anything except walking until Thursday this week. I’ve been icing like crazy and doing strength exercises and stretching – which I should have been doing all along.

I think the most frustrating part is that I’m so close to the race.  I’ll for sure still run, but I just might have to walk more than I was hoping too. And I realize that’s ok.

Well, that’s all I’ve got this week. Hopefully next week I’ll have a better report!

Angel. Forever.

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Today is Angel’s Forever Family day!

My mom said to be the other day, “so many dates to remember.”

So I’ll review:

October 24th: her birthday
December 17th: the day she was legally ours to adopt
December 21st: the day she came home
August 27th: the day she legally acquired our last name and became a part of our family forever

We don’t really celebrate December 17th or the 21st, except in our hearts.  But her birthday of course and the day she was final final final ours we do celebrate!

This year we are celebrating with not one, but two trips to a local water park. We are also attempting to go camping for the first time with the little ones. Ok, I can’t lie. We have a cabin.  But that’s close enough to camping for us at this point in our lives.  And then we’re not sure what the rest of the weekend will bring but I will be sure to share photos and great memories with you!

Thanks for loving our Angel.

We love you baby girl. You are our Angel sent from heaven and we cherish each day the Lord gives us with you.