Monday, February 08, 2016

Happy Birthday to Clara! Happy 1/2 Birthday to D!

Today is Clara's 7th birthday. She is a pretty special dog, and it's hard to imagine our lives without her. She enjoyed a couple new toys, some dog treats, and lots of extra belly rubs today.

It's also Danielle's 1/2 birthday. She is 6 months shy of officially being a teenager. She loves all things pig, so I bought a pig cake pan to make her cake. I think the pan itself was cuter than the finished product, but that's probably because I was in a hurry. The first cake I made fell apart because I rushed it. I quickly made another after I got off work and she got home from school. It didn't fall apart, but I did a terrible job icing it. Oh well. 1/2 birthdays don't really count anyway. They're really just an excuse to light candles and eat cake. :)

Sunday, February 07, 2016

More of the Same

It's just been more of the same around here this week, with a similar forecast for the coming week. School, work, homework, various sports practices. I wouldn't mind a random snow day, but otherwise, routine is probably pretty good.

Danielle had a really good game in her Friday night hitting/pitching league. It still takes me a second to get used to her standing on the other side of the plate.

She had two basketball games this weekend. Today was our last home game of the season. Next week we have a tournament for the weekly league we've been playing in. In a couple weeks the girls are going to finish up with a final tournament out of state. This will be the last time the girls all play together. After this they will play school ball. Some of them might not play, some might not make the team, the coach will be different. The tournament will be a nice way to end a fun few years of basketball.


Sunday, January 31, 2016

Catching Up

Here are the other things we've been up to this month.

There have been several basketball games. We only have 2 weeks left, which is good because it's starting to interfere with softball and volleyball. This will be the last year Danielle can play travel basketball. If she plays next year, it will be school ball. She has learned a lot from this coach and with these girls. Overall it has been a good experience and I'm glad she got the chance to play on this team the past 3 years.

Danielle is playing in a hitting/pitching league for 6 weeks. She made the switch to be a lefty hitter after the season ended this summer. She has been taking weekly hitting lessons since September. We thought it would be good practice for her to hit against a live pitcher (vs a pitching machine at her lessons), so she signed up to play.Teams in this league are made up of 4 players. It's played inside in a batting cage. Points are awarded for bunts, grounders, and hits that go certain distances. The pitcher and catcher can make or lose points, too. They play 7 innings and all 4 girls bat each inning. It's interesting.  It conflicts with basketball practice most weeks, so that has been a little difficult. She is really enjoying it, though.

We enjoyed ice cream out after eye doctor appointments. Thankfully Tyler's prescription didn't change and Danielle is still glasses free.

Danielle's school had their awards ceremony for the 2nd 9 weeks. Once again Danielle got several awards, including awards for being top in her class in math and science (and maybe social studies? I don't remember). She has basketball practice 3 nights a week, volleyball practice 2 nights a week, a hitting lesson once a week, and 2 or 3 basketball games over the weekend. This is every week. And somehow she manages to not only get straight As but to get the top scores in her class in most subjects. She is a very hard worker.

We went to see Kung Fu Panda 3 for Ron's birthday. We made the mistake of going to the 9:30pm showing Friday night because our weekend was full. Friday night movies are filled with noisy teenagers on dates. Of course, afternoon movies are filled with noisy toddlers, so I'm not sure which is better. Regardless, we enjoyed the movie and had a nice late night out.

Danielle skipped one of her 2 basketball games on Saturday to play softball with her team in their last indoor league game. She had to miss the other games due to basketball, so she was really excited to get to play. She made a huge difference on the team. She made the first defensive play of the game to get things off to a great start. She had a couple other good plays, too. She did great batting and cheering her teammates on. They ended up winning 11-4, which is the best they've ever done.

Tracking a pop-fly. She caught it after it bounced off the ceiling.

We've been busy planning our vacation. With Danielle's sports schedule and Tyler's camps and diving trip, we aren't going to be able to fit a week's vacation in this summer. We decided to vacation over spring break instead. This will be one of our stops.

Our Clara. She's such a good dog. She brought me all her toys one a time to put in her toy box today. That's better than the kids! We subscribed to a monthly Bark Box for her back in November. It has different toys and treats in it. She loves it almost as much as we do. This month's box had a 70s theme.


Sometimes the kids will offer to help me with dinner. I absolutely love those times. Danielle was helping me this evening, but Tyler helps more than she does. He doesn't like for me to take his picture, though. He has quite a lot to say as he's dicing the onions or browning the beef, so I don't mind skipping the selfie.

And with that, I think we're all caught up and ready for February.

Saturday, January 30, 2016

A Busy Weekend

I got sick around MLK day and am finally feeling better. For a good week and a half I was in bed as soon as the kids were in bed, and I missed 2 days of work...which is very unusual for me! I just finished an antibiotic for a sinus infection, but whatever this was totally wiped me out this time. That is why I haven't posted anything in a couple weeks. So now it's time to get caught up.

We had a busy MLK day weekend. Danielle's basketball team played in an out of town 2 day tournament, her softball team played a game in their indoor league, and her volleyball team played in an out of town scrimmage tournament. We couldn't fit everything in, but we tried. She ended up missing the softball game, playing in all but one of the basketball games during the 2 day tournament, and played in half of the volleyball scrimmage. Danielle and Ron stayed in a hotel near the venue for the basketball tournament and I drove back and forth so Tyler could stay home. It was a lot of driving and was a busy weekend, but it was fun. Danielle played hard no matter what sport it was, and it's always fun to watch her. I didn't get any good basketball pictures, but here are some volleyball pictures from that weekend.

I thought it was funny now much taller these girls were than Danielle.

Danielle's coach is having her play all the way around this year. That means she never rotates out. She only played the back row last year, so she's learning new positions. There's a bit of a learning curve, but she's picking it up.

This was after we got home Sunday night. She was wiped out.

Friday, January 15, 2016

Snow Day Fun

We had 2 snow days this week. One day the snow was coming down at just the right time to make the roads bad when people would have been traveling to school, so it was cancelled. The next day there was drifting and black ice on the county roads in our district so we were closed that day, too. We made perfect use of our first snow day. The kids got up in good time and spent a couple hours outside playing in the snow. Even Tyler went out. It was really nice. The second day it was below zero with the wind chills, so we all stayed in our pjs in the warm house. That was a good use of a snow day, too. Here are a few pictures from our first snow day.

Danielle and her BFF and BFF's sister built a wall to block the wind.
I love the friendship these girls have.

Tyler offered to shovel.

He really wanted to nail Danielle, but since she is much more accurate with her throws, he decided to just make a giant snowball so we could watch it melt as it got warmer. The last of it melted away this afternoon. The only snow we have left is a pile from Danielle's snow wall.

The birds were active while it was snowing.

The heated bird bath might be a little too inviting.

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Today's Pic

Danielle and Clara were playing hide & seek. Clara found her. :)

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Today's Pic

This is a hairy woodpecker. Usually I have the similar looking (but smaller) downy woodpeckers visit. I had 2 hairy woodpeckers visit today and this one stuck around most of the afternoon. That was a nice treat.