Saturday, February 25, 2012

How About Some Mini-Golf?

We had a great time after lunch today doing 36 holes of mini-golf. It has been a long time since we have done mini-golf and I had forgotten how fun it is. Part of it is the fact that all our kids can do it themselves and take care of their own balls now.

We were all a little rusty at first (except Eric), but we were definitely warmed up by the second round and were getting lots of 2's! One hole, all 6 of us each got it in two shots! Alex, Jarem, and Jesikah even scored a hole in one. The weather was beautiful and they had island music playing all around the course. It was very pleasant.

Poor Jarem had a couple of falls. One time he was running back to tell us that he got a hole-in-one and he tripped and fell right as he was saying it. He got pretty good at hitting the ball though.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Swimming & The Beach

Here are a few swimming and beach pictures from today. They are in very random order since I am posting them from my phone. I will add more description later.

I thought it was funny when I got the picture of Eric on his phone while in the water. It just proves how hard it is to get away from our electronic toys.

Also, Jarem discovered that he could capture an air bubble in his swim shirt. It was pretty funny. His poor shirt ended up so stretched out though.

It was a bit chilly at the beach, but it didn't stop Tessa from getting in her swimsuit. And Jesikah said she actually liked when it was cold at the beach. Let's face it, the beach is inviting all times of the year.

Breakfast at Stacks

Here we are having breakfast at Stack's. We got the cozy window table. I decided to try the signature creme brûlée French toast. We all tried each others. It was delicious. We voted it was better than IHOP.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Oh, the Drama!

Jesikah made it as an understudy for a part in the play that the middle school was putting on. They started practicing way back in September and have been practicing twice a week since then. Finally...they performed it.

It was a very dramatic (no pun intended) experience for Jesikah. She was promised all along that she was going to get to be in one performance. Then 2 weeks before the performances, the other girl that played her character threw a fit and threatened to quit if she didn't get BOTH performances. She said her dad could only make it to one and her grandparents the other. Jesikah was pressured into giving up her performance so the other girl wouldn't quit.

Jesikah was devastated. Long story short...the grandparents didn't show up after all, but Jesikah still ended up being the gopher girl. They gave her a costume, makeup, super high heels, and lots of job titles to try and compensate for the mistake they made.

It was a very frustrating experience to see my daughter go through. We try to teach our kids that throwing fits WILL NOT get you your way. And Jesikah even said, "I feel like people take advantage of me because I am nice. "

Regardless of the situation, we tried to celebrate her effort and endurance in sticking with it even when things didn't go as planned. We were proud of her for all her effort. Here is a couple of pics of her where she was handing out programs.

Valentines Day

Here's some Godiva chocolates that I got for Valentine's Day from my sweet husband.

Also...on Valentine's day, as room mom for Tessa's class, I put together a fondue party. I made caramel, chocolate, and cheese fondue. I had never made any of these before so I researched online and got the caramel recipe from my Washington friend, Johanna. They all turned out so yummy! All the parents pitched in and brought things to dip. It turned out to be a great party! My favorites were apples with caramel, blanched broccoli or chips with the cheese, and strawberries with chocolate. We had some leftovers and our family enjoyed some too. (picture is the caramel dip just as I finished cooking it). The caramel was the biggest hit!

Saturday, February 18, 2012

The Secret

As you may remember, Jarem got a bike for Christmas with training wheels.  He had been begging for a two-wheel bike for some time.  All our other kids learned how to ride a bike in Kindergarten and he is in first grade, so we figured it was time. But, we were waiting until the weather warmed up.  Unbeknownst to us, Tessa and her friend, Divya, decided to "secretly" teach Jarem to ride his bike without training wheels. 

This is how it happened.  I noticed they had been spending a lot of time outside with Jarem playing, but I didn't think much of it.  I DID notice that his bike no longer had the training wheels, but I thought maybe Eric had taken them off.  Later, when I asked Eric, he said he hadn't taken them off.  Something was a little fishy.

Then one day, they were out in the driveway playing when I went out in the garage to get something and the garage was open. They all three kind of froze with panicked looks on their faces and waited until I went back in. As soon as  I went back in,  I heard them close the garage door. That was enough to get me really curious.  So I went and looked out the front windows to see what they were doing. I got enough of a glimpse to figure it out before Tessa came in and closed both front blinds. I had to kind of laugh to myself as she headed back outside thinking she had covered everything.  That was what they were up to...they were teaching Jarem how to ride his bike and they wanted it to be a surprise.  It was SO cute and sweet that it warmed my heart!

I didn't want to ruin their surprise, so I have played along and pretended not to know.  But yesterday, I caught a glimpse of Jarem riding alone through the window.  They have succeeded!  I thought he might burst while waiting for Tessa to get home to share the news.  I just had to sneak this video of him through the window. (link below)

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Jesikah Made it to All County!

Band try-outs for All County were a little over a week ago.  Jesikah plays the clarinet and decided to try-out.  It was a lot to learn and prepare.  She had to learn a song called, "Chanson Op 35" by R Gliere.  It was a bit difficult for her.  In addition, she had to memorize all the scales.  During the audition, first they played their piece, then the judge could ask them to play any scales and they had to be able to do it. Lastly, they had to sightread up to 3 pieces. 

Jesikah was very nervous and she made a couple of mistakes, but I thought she did well regardless.  She didn't think she made it because she made those mistakes, but that night, w
e found out that she MADE IT!  She was ranked #6 out of 12.  I was very proud of her!  First, for making the decision to try-out.  Second, for working hard to learn everything.  And, third, for making all-county band.  This coming Friday and Saturday, she gets to go practice with the All-County band and do a concert on Saturday.

I really like the middle school band teacher.  Jesikah has never had a clarinet lesson and is doing very well for only her second year in band.  She and I are preparing a piano and clarinet piece to play in church.  It has been fun.  It has made me want to have a family band.  I want Tessa to start flute next year in band because it would go well with piano and clarinet.  Jarem wants to learn the violin, but I am not sure if he would be made fun of for it because some people consider it a "girly" instrument.  I want Jarem to learn the trumpet too and then move to french horn.  But I do want a violin player as well.

Here is the link for Jesikah playing Chanson before try-outs that morning.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Polka-dotted Devils Cake

Above is the picture that my brother, James, gave us for Christmas.  I love it and was so happy to find a place for it right above our family home evening board.  This family home evening board has been working out great, and everyone loves having turns doing everything.  As you can see, Jesikah was the treat this past Monday, which is what this post is really about. :)

Jesikah didn't have a lot of time to make a treat because of after-school activities, but she LOVES to bake (especially desserts).  I told her she needed to do something quick, but she decided this cake was quick enough.  It wasn't,  is what we figured out part way through.  Regardless though, I was trying to help her get it made quickly and adding ingredients into the mixing bowl.  She started freaking out because I hadn't sifted the flour and I didn't mix the dry ingredients in a separate bowl.  She is very much a perfectionist and I was helping to move this along quickly.  Well, about this time, I told her I was not going to get yelled at for helping so she could finish alone and I went upstairs.

Later, after it was baked, she wanted my help putting the layers together.  While I was transferring the top layer to the cake, a chunk fell off!  You can't imagine her dismay!  I quickly repaired it and started frosting hoping to get it done before she saw it, but it was not quickly enough.  Again, she starting freaking out and was blaming me for everything that was going wrong.   Again, I left and let her finish.  She ended up with a two-layer cake that was more waterfall style.  I thought it turned out pretty, but I guess it was my fault that part of the back fell off and the layers had to be tiered.  Anyway, let's just say, this cake was a source of contention not only between us, but between everyone because Jesikah couldn't take her turns in the game we were playing because she kept having to leave to work on the cake.

When it was all said and done, Eric said something like, "We should have known better than to make a devil's cake for family home evening."  Everyone laughed at the irony!  The devil is the father of contention, and contention was what we had a lot of all during the process.  So we determined, we would not have anymore devil's cakes for family night! :)


This past Sunday there was a new ward created in Clarksville.  Clarksville 2nd and 3rd wards were split to create a new ward, which is 5th ward.  This is exciting to see the church growing so much in this area.  That makes 5 wards in Clarksville.  We are part of the new 5th ward, but we are with most of the previous 3rd ward members.  Our ward didn't have a lot of change, but we did lose about 10-12 families and got a new bishopric.  Below is a picture of the 3 new bishoprics that were created due to the split.  This is a picture that will be going in the paper.  Eric is third from the right.  He is the 1st counselor in the new bishopric.  He is happy to do whatever calling he is asked, but was thinking he was going to get released with the change and have more free time. :)  He did get released from the 2nd counselor to the bishop in 3rd ward and put in the 5th ward as the first counselor.  He is excited to be working with the young men and young women now instead of the primary.  Primary is a lot of work and he really enjoys the teenagers more.  He will also be working with a new bishop and 2nd counselor, so he is excited to learn from them.

Funny thing is, because it is a new ward, everyone was released from their callings in their previous wards and they are starting out with a fresh palette.  I hope I get my calling back as the ward music leader because I have LOVED that calling and only had it a few months.  It is a lot of fun to create music and help others use their talents as well.