Sunday, May 31, 2009

Yellow Belts!

Today we had our awards and advancement ceremony for the kids' TaeKwonDo class. Yay! They are ALL three yellow belts now! This is such a self-esteem booster for them. Joseph because he spent a year in TKD, previously, with NO advancement at all. Libby because it is really the first successful completion that she has had of anything and Caroline because it would really suck if your brother and sister advanced and you didn't.;)
First, each belt level did a demonstration of the skills they had learned.
Here are our White Belts doing their kicking drills.




After the group demonstration, the instructor picked a child out of the spectators to choose three white belts randomly to demonstrate the choke and grab release. Two of the three chosen were our girls.




After all of the belt levels did their demonstrations, the black belts broke a stack of concrete slabs.


Then it was time for awards!
Caroline receives her perfect attendance medal and her yellow belt.

Joseph's name is called (Look how excited he is!) and you can see Caroline in the background showing her stuff to Daddy. He also gets a perfect attendance medal and a yellow belt.


Libby's turn! Another Perfect Attendance Medal and a Yellow Belt!


Group shot!

And here are our new Yellow Belts

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Camping the Girl Scout Way

The kids and I went camping Wednesday and Thursday with our Brownie Troop. It was supposed to only be one day, but we were all having so much fun that we stayed an extra night (well, that and there was the aversion to taking down all of the camp stuff 18 hours after we put it up.)The kids all had so much fun (even the brothers!)
My camera died a few hours after we got there, but I got a few of the kids in the river on the first day.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Pop-Up House

Joseph really really really likes pop-up cards and books. He is fascinated by the elaborate pop-up books at the bookstore. He frequently will make a pop-up card for someone when he is thinking about them. Today, he made a pop-up house.
This is what it looks like folded up.

This is the interior. Notice the pole for support. The yellow on the right are stairs to the roof.

This is the outside of the house....with a roll out sidewalk and a door that opens and closes.

Another shot of the interior. You can see the table with things on top of it and a wall of cabinets.

Not shown: The roof of the house with a lawnchair and a frisbee.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Belt Testing

The kids had belt testing on Friday night for their Tae Kwon Do class. This was a huge accomplishment for them. Joseph had a very frustrating year in TKD previously. He was in class twice a week for an entire year but never got a stripe for his belt, much less a new belt. It was very disheartening for him and we ultimately took him out of the class. At the time, he could verbally tell you what he should do but his moves weren't sharp enough or exaggerated enough for the instructor.
This instructor is very different.
Joseph started the semester immediately saying that he would do the class but he was NOT belt testing. I was a little anxious about him on Friday night, but he hadn't mentioned that he wouldn't do it in a couple of months. He did great! Just getting through the actual test without stressing so severely that he fell apart was big by itself, but he actually did well and stayed focused the entire time.
Libby, of course, has her task completion issue. ;) This is the first class that she has taken that she has actually completed without bribery, cajoling or threats. :D I think this is directly linked to her year at Scottish Rite.
The test started at 6 pm and went for a couple of hours, so that had me a little concerned also, but all three of them hung in there and were exhausted at the end.
We will find out next Sunday how they did. I hope that no matter how it turned out they all did similarly. :p

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Girl Scouts and Interfaith Housing Coalition

The girls had a field trip today to Interfaith Housing Coalition to deliver about 30 birthday boxes (These are boxes that we put together in March in celebration of Girl Scouts birthday. The girls put in everything needed to have a party into a girl scout cookie case and then it is wrapped in birthday paper) and several cases of girl scout cookies.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

San Antonio Trip

Here are the pictures from our San Antonio trip last week. Ken and the kids went to Sea World on Friday and the Alamo on Saturday while I worked at the homeschool conference. We had so much fun!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Libby is the perfect Lab Rat!

That is the word that I got today from her teacher at Scottish Rite....translation: She is doing fabulously! :D
I was so happy. We get very little feedback over the school year and what we did get came in the mail in the form of a marked checklist. On each of those, she got "average" scores. But, I developed a sneaking suspicion over the course of the year that those forms were to fulfill a requirement that schools have to monitor the kids that they release to Scottish Rite's program. Since Libby is not in school, the form came to our house. But, we didn't really need a rationalization to keep her in the program. ;)

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

The end of JoeFest

Last night marked the end of the almost two week long Festival of Joe. ;) It started with Joseph receiving an early birthday present before our Oklahoma City trip (his Green Bean camera) and ended last night with a trip to Main Event with his BFF Cameron. It was a great evening of all boy fun (Joseph, Cameron and two daddies). Ken took pictures with his phone. I was shocked to see Joseph on the ropes course!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Breaking the Board

Today was our last day of Tae Kwon Do before belt testing. The instructor allowed two of the kids to try and break the "board" with a kick. Libby was one of those chosen and she broke it on the first try! :D
She was very proud of herself, especially since she got a tape on her belt that signifies that she broke the board.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Yellow Cake Cake and Happy Birthday Joseph!

Today is Joseph's NINTH birthday. I can't believe it has been nine years since my sister passed out in the delivery room and went into vagal spasms and had to be taken to the ER right as Joseph was born. ;)
We had a giggle last night telling Joseph that story and the other amusing story about his birth. Joseph was born at 3 am on May 9th. At midnight, I had been laying there timing contractions and I knew that it was almost time. I realized then that I had never gotten gas the day before and my gas tank was empty, so I woke Ken up and told him to go get gas in the car. He got up, dressed, got the keys and went to the gas station without ANY questions. He was halfway through pumping gas when he realized that he was up in the middle of the night at the gas station and why in the world would I want him to do that.....OOOOOOOHHHHHH! We joke that I could wake him up in the middle of the night and tell him to rob a bank and he would do it, no questions asked. ;)
So my 9 year old son a YEAR ago told me he wanted a "Yellow Cake Cake" for his birthday. This came about because we had gone to see Get Smart, the movie. In the movie, Maxwell Smart goes to a bakery which is a front for uranium manufacturing. There is a running gag in the movie about "yellow cake cake" and Joseph is ALL about puns. So, here is the yellow cake cake.
I had a really difficult time trying to figure out what a yellow cake cake LOOKS like besides being yellow cake. I ultimately came up with a yellow hazard barrel with a nuclear reactive symbol on it. \
Many thanks to my very good natured baker/cake decorator jenniferagy for humoring us on this one.
Get Smart,Yellow Cake Cake Uranium

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

American Girl

Today was our long awaited Daisy/Brownie lunch date at the American Girl Bistro.

The girls had a blast! It's not often that 5-7 year old girls will enjoy a 3 hour lunch. :p We all enjoyed a two course lunch and then, of course, dessert!

Here are a few pictures from the big day. (Joseph is camping with Nanny and Hoppy...perfect timing for him. ;))
Caroline and Nellie

Libby and Samantha

Look at these sweet sisters!

Checking out the view

mmm....chocolate fondue!


Quick Update

I haven't updated in a while! Joseph and I went to Oklahoma City last weekend to the homeschool conference and had a really good time. Our good friends, Holly and Cameron joined us and that made it extra fun for us. Joseph got to eat bbq, fondue and Cracker Barrel...what else could a guy want?!
We were exhausted at the end of each day, but the boys did great and kept themselves entertained for 10+ hours during the conference for two days in a row.
Joseph and I drove back after the convention was over on Saturday and didn't get in until about midnight (after sitting in park on I35 for 45 minutes for a PUDDLE!), so I guess I am slow at getting back into the swing of things.