Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Austin’s Track & Field Day

Monday was Austin’s track and field day.  It was a beautiful morning to spend outside cheering on my favorite first grader! 

Austin was able to choose 3 events he wanted to participate in, and then each class competes against each other in a tug-of-war.  Austin decided on the 50 yard hurdles, the ball-toss, and the tire roll.

First up was the ball-toss.


I don’t think he was feeling this.  He gets very nervous when he has to stand up in front of any sort of group.  He did fine, but the kid next to him threw it almost past that baseball diamond in the background.  I think Austin came in 4th.  Everyone gets a yellow wrist band for participating and then blue goes to first, red to second, and green to third.  It didn’t take long for the kids to figure out what all the colors meant and Austin was pretty bummed he didn’t have blue, red, or green.  But he was happy he got to keep this wristband (my little hoarder).

His next event was hurdles.  He wasn’t quite ready for the start but made up for it along the way.  I was so busy cheering him on I didn’t snap a picture of this event, but he got second.  Hurray!  Now that his fear of not getting a placing wristband were over, he enjoyed the rest of his day a lot more.

His next event was the tire roll.  He signed up for this because ‘it was easy’.  However, they practiced the tire roll on their nice smooth gym floor, not grass.  But he had a good attitude and finished with a smile.

I’ve sat through a couple track and field days for Maddie and Jake (their school is very close to our house so it’s easy to walk over for a bit) so I knew that the Tug-of-War at the end was going to be my favorite part.  All of the parents seem to be a bit more into it by this time and the cheering gets loud.


Man those kids were pulling with everything they had!  And some of the battles were extremely close and went on for quite awhile!  In the above picture Austin is 3rd from the back (4th I guess…didn’t see that anchor almost on the ground), and his teacher is right beside him cheering them on.  And…..


VICTORY!!!  They played each class once and went undefeated.  It was a nail biter!  My parents left right before the tug-of-war for that very reason.  It’s too nerve wracking for my mom!


His class got the first grade tug-of-war trophy!


And Austin was excited to go home with 4 new wristbands!

Monday, May 21, 2012

Nothing but Parties

Ellie is on the home stretch with preschool.  Last Friday she went to a YMCA day camp for school, today she went to the YMCA splash pad at school, and on Wednesday she has her last day, graduation, and ice cream social!  She is very ready for kindergarten but has had a wonderful time at preschool!

I was able to go along with her to the day camp on Friday which was a lot of fun!  Ellie and I got paired up with Emerson as our “buddy”.  Emerson and Ellie will both be going to the same kindergarten next year so there’s a chance they will be in the same class.


The girls wanted to sit in the very back of the bus and those two sang “The Wheels on the Bus” at full force, by themselves, for the whole ride.  Luckily, Camp Kici Yapi is very close to the preschool.

Once we got to the camp we all warmed up with some camp songs and then we were split into groups.  Our group went to Archery first.  I helped Ellie set up her bow and arrow and coached her through it and she is very proud that her first arrow made it all the way to the target.  She was the only one in our group to accomplish that so she was quite proud.  Back in my Indian Princess days we shot arrows at a giant plywood wall covered with balloons.  Ellie had a much smaller target so I was impressed too!

After Archery we hiked to the lake for a rowboat ride.  The Y counselor asked for a parent volunteer to go out on the row boat with the kids.  My hands were firmly glued to my sides as being out on a lake with a rowboat full of preschoolers is NOT my idea of fun.  Luckily, Bree’s grandma was up for the task:


After the rowboat it was time for arts and crafts.  The kids all got to paint a rock.


This reminded me to start saving our egg cartons for upcoming summer painting projects.

This kids all did a great job and had a blast.  For any families in the area, Camp Kici Yapi in Prior Lake has “Family Days” the first Thursday of June, July, and August from 6-8pm.  It’s free and you can all go try your hand at day camp activities.  I know we’ll be back!

Friday, May 18, 2012

Lunch Notes

When it comes to school lunch, Austin definitely does not take after me.  I tried a handful of school lunches when I was forced to, or when my mom was volunteering in the school cafeteria and I wanted to go through the line to see her.  But, the rest of my school years I brought my lunch from home.  Except in 5th and 6th grade when we all of the sudden were granted the freedom to purchase a la carte items and then I had a Nutty Bar and  Chocolate Shake almost every day for lunch.  I’m not sure my parents knew that.

Anyway, not only does Austin eat school lunch most days, he actually enjoys quite a few of them.  One of my favorite parts of bringing my lunch from home was that my mom always wrote me a note.  It made the good days great and brightened up the bad days.  Since Austin doesn’t bring home lunch I don’t have many opportunities to pass on this little tradition to him. 

This week he took his lunch twice so here are my notes:



I guess it was theme week.  I was wishing Rob was around because then he could draw Yoda.  Except two home lunches in one week was already an anomaly so Yoda can wait for next time!

Quick Quip

I’m sure I think my kids are more clever than most people think they are, but I found this pretty funny this morning.

The kids are running around pretending they are babies.  Complete with baby talk.  Ellie is the mommy and just discovered her babies can sing:

Ellie:  This is fantastic.  We need to think of a name for you guys.

Austin:  Lets be named “Baby Goo Goo”.  Get it mommy?  Lady Ga Ga….Baby Goo Goo!”

Friday, May 11, 2012

Rub Some Dirt in It!

My kids have always been a little bit dramatic with minor injuries.  Skipping naps for days in a row only exacerbates the experience.

Fast forward to yesterday at the park.  We met one of Ellie’s preschool friends there for a little playtime on a beautiful day.  Riley woke up on Thursday morning pretty much needing a nap so I knew I was potentially setting myself up for a disastrous time but hoping the magic of a picnic and playtime at a park would get us through without incident.

They played really well for the first hour and then Riley started to get a bit clingy and whiny.  I gave her some snuggles and sent back out to the playground for another round of fun.  Then I heard the wail and my ears perked because I knew that cry was coming from my kid.  I found Riley and she was crying, but she was crying like an overly tired kid, not like a kid who was horribly hurt, or even minorly hurt.  She sat in my lap for a little bit and then I urged her to “get back in there” as we would be leaving in 10 minutes anyway.  She went…reluctantly.

It wasn’t until we got home from the park that I noticed her nose was a little red.  Huh.  I guess she did smack it pretty good.  This morning it looks like this:


I’m no photographer so what I didn’t capture was the little bit of black and blue under her eyes too. 

I’m feeling a little bit guilty for blowing the incident off assuming it was her dramatic side coming through.  But, she seems no worse for wear so I’ll shake it off and get back in there too.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Pre-Mother’s Day Tea party

Ellie has a wonderful preschool!  I thought Austin’s was okay too, but I feel like Ellie’s just has so much more energy to it and that the staff just seems to go the extra mile.

Today she and her classmates hosted a Mother’s Day Tea  Party.  Riley and I showed up for the last half hour of class and the preschool kids sang us a few short songs, they each gave us mom’s a hand-made gift, and then we had juice and cupcakes for a treat.  Ellie was insistent that she “serve” me.  Can’t argue with that!  Train ‘em young!

I was teaching swimming lessons during their Valentine’s Day party so I missed her singing at that time but I had countless parents come up to me afterwards to tell me what a hoot Ellie was during the singing.  So, this time I decided to film the whole thing.  It’s probably 4 or 5 shorts songs and only 5 minutes long.  Ellie is front and center and really put her heart into these tunes.  She was quite a ham.  Only, she wasn’t hamming it up…it’s truly just how she is.  Such a sweetie!

Ellie Sings Mother’s Day Songs

Just like on Valentine’s Day, quite a few of the other mom’s commented on how cute/funny Ellie was singing and how their kids are always talking about “Ellie Runchey” (There are 3 Ellie’s in her class, so they have to be specific).  Hopefully she’s not being too goofy during school time to be leaving such a mark in the kids’ minds.  But, I’m pretty sure I’d know by now (I’d hope!) if that were the case, she’s just being Ellie and this happy mom thinks she’s perfect!

Saturday, May 5, 2012

May the 4th

Yesterday was National Star Wars Day……”May the 4th be with you”.

I heard it on the radio in the morning and shared it with Austin before he left for school.  He thought I was really clever.  I hesitated, enjoying his appreciation of me, but then owned up to the fact that I am the last person who would make such a connection.

I also told Rob who immediately declared a celebration was in order so last night we had a pizza party and watched “A New Hope”.


I’m not sure how this is different from every other Pizza Party we have, but the kids and Rob enjoyed it.  I enjoyed the pizza and the time with my family, but as usual, (not so) secretly read my Nook instead of watching the movie.

The 4th just isn’t with me.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Our Little Soccer Star

Ellie is finally old enough to play some sort of organized sport for Shakopee’s Park and Rec.  I offered her a couple different choices and she decided on soccer.  She has really been looking forward to this starting and Tuesday was the night!

For the last week she has requested we go outside to practice a little bit each day.  I set up little cones in the yard and she dribbles the ball around the cones.  Then we practice throwing the ball into play, kicking goals, stopping goals, and then I tell her I have exhausted my knowledge of soccer and she’s on her own.  Usually by then she’s done anyway.  But, to be honest, she’s not too bad.  She keeps the ball under pretty good control for a 4 year old (I think….I really have nothing to compare to).

Tonight was her first practice and she had a smile on her face the whole time!  Her coach is awesome.  He’s the dad of one of the kids on the team and he said it’s his third kid to go through the program.  He was fantastic with the kids.  The first order of business was picking a team name.  Her team toggled between “the Whales” and “the Sharks”, but in the end the “Sharks” won out.  They played a couple games to learn ball control, and worked on passing and stopping the ball.  It is just a 45 minute practice but the time flew by.  I forgot I had my camera in my purse until almost the end so I just snapped one picture.


She loves wearing those shin guards around (they have pink stripes!) and constantly tells me to kick her in the shins when she has them on.  Then reminds me every time “it doesn’t hurt!!!”

I was most proud of Ellie for her sportsmanship.  She was constantly cheering on her team mates and helping kids up if they fell down.  She’s a soccer sweetie!

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

May Day!

Maybe May Day is an old school holiday that is on it’s last leg, but we did our best to celebrate here today.  Well, maybe it wasn’t our “best” effort, but we did what we could with the time we had.

The kids kind of questioned my recount of what happens on May Day, but the idea of leaving cones of candy on their friends’ doorsteps, and getting to ring doorbells and run away was appealing to them no matter what day it is.  They thought the cones I made were ugly (they were), but it was 5:30 pm before I told them about May Day and we still needed to eat dinner before Ellie’s soccer practice so “cute” wasn’t high on my list of priorities.

I told them they were suppose to be sneaky so the neighbors didn’t know who left the treats.


They ran across the street yelling at each other to look both ways, screaming and giggling.  Inconspicuous isn’t in their vocabulary yet.

During dinner the doorbell rang and the kids sprinted for the front door (again, screaming).  It was a roofing contractor who saw our ugly roof and stopped to try to drum up some business.  I bet he’s never been received with such glee before.

Happy May Day!