Friday, October 31, 2008

Video Game System Envy

My boys have the video game envy...not me. They would love to have a wii & xbox 360. Billy & Ricky are currently pinching pennies trying to save enough to buy themselves a system.
There are so many neat games out there. I hear about Super Smash Bros Brawl from Billy. Ricky is really interested in Guitar Hero. They went to their friend Levi's birthday party & there we found out about the Christian version of Guitar Hero called Guitar Praise, pretty cool stuff.
However I really want them to buy this themselves. Its a big investment & they really want it. They will pay for it & take care of it in turn. Well that is the plan anyway. Of course when even their grandparents have a wii it causes me to have to swim up stream on the whole issue!

California Trippin'

Okay so I have this corky part of my personality. Yeah, yeah I can hear the jokes already. Anyway! I have a notebook separated by counties of California. Why? I make notes as we are traveling. I take flyers, I listen to what people say, I read magazines, books etc.. all to gain a little more knowledge about our state. I suppose I could sell it....really. I have hikes, camps, national, state & regional parks. I have family fun activities. I have all kinds of stuff. When I get new info I bring it home & throw it in a shoebox. Eventually I have time to check things out in more detail. When I do, I add those entries to my notebook. Insane? Yeah, maybe. But you know what they say, insanity runs in my family, well it gallops really.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Fun times with Garage Band

Billy & Ricky were part of a group who took a class at the Apple store in Fashion Fair. They were taught how to use the program Garage Band. They received a certificate of participation, a tee shirt & a CD of the music they created. The best part is that it was all free. Go Apple! I'm sure you can guess that this program is going to be used quit a bit in this household now!

Busy days

The boys have been more busy than me. I have been cherishing some longed for time alone. I just wish I could have the time & not be sick. I certainly would be able to enjoy it more!!

Billy sorted & bagged beans while Ricky loaded & carried boxes of food items to crates at the Fresno Food Bank. They were both on a team of teens helping to design a teeshirt for the Fresno Rescue Missions new Teen Volunteer Program.

Both Boys have been taking Contra Dance lesson in preparation for the Civil War Ball this spring. Billy has been taking a series of classes at the Fresno School of Missions (an African praise & worship drumming class dealing with the book of Psalms)

Ricky has been playing Flag Football & Soccer at CHEFA's Sports Saturdays.

Although I like my peaceful lonesome time. It is great that we have kids that still want to be with us. Jeff & I both know we don't get to have them for too many more years. So we like to do something special just the four of us from time to time. Recently we went to the Corn Field Maze & out to dinner at Applebees afterward. We laughed a lot & had a really great time.

Believe it or not we actually canceled a lot of events this month due to sickness. We have never been this sick as a family. We are FINALLY feeling sooo much better! Heres to better health in November.

Today I had the Boys get out their travel book/memory book, oh whatever you want to call it! We haven't spent much time on these books lately. We were able to update them, well the written part anyway. I need to print a bunch of photos for each boy & then we will be caught up. hmmm, well until the next event away!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008


Okay so we decided to try this activity. Each of us wrote what we first thought of, for each letter of the alphabet. Its supposed to represent who you are. We tested our friends to see if they could figure it out. Here are our results. How well do you know us?

B-Bungee Jumping
C-Chin Ups
J-Jeremiah was a Bullfrog....
K-Kite Surfing
L-Loco (as in the crazy chicken)
M-Martial Arts
N-Never Give Up
O-"Oh My Gosh, Becky"
P-Push Ups
R-Rhode Island
S-Sweet Tea
T-Tap Out

A-All In
C-Charity Anne
D-Down by the Bay....
F-Fun Times
G-Gone on a Trip
J-Jesus (With hands Raised)
K-King of Kings
L-Lassen Volcano Park
M-Martial Arts
O-Ocean Breeze
P-Penobscot Bay
Q-Queen of my Heart
W-Window Licker
X-X Throw

B-Blazing Skies
C-Colorful Scenery
E-Everyday Wonders
F-Flap Jacks
G-Georgia Sweet Tea
H-Have at Thee!
J-Just Hangin'
N-New England
O-Oceanic Currents
Q-Quagmire (Old English Swamp)
R-Rio Grande
X-X Marks the Spot
Z-Zephyr Cove

C-Casa de Fruita Coffee & Chocolate
D-Dancing in the Rain
H-Hey, That's my Chicken .......
I-International Pajama Day- Go Ceci!
M-Mexican Food
N-Next Stop?
O-Oh Give Me a Home Where the Buffalo Roam.......
P-Periwinkle & Belly Button
S-Snowflakes aggghh Serenity
T-Traveling with Teens
U-Up Up Under the Umbrella its Starting to Rain...........
W-Wandering in the Woods
X-Xavier Aldo Rufus
Y-Yellow Flowers
Z-Zoom (the cereal not the show)

love expands

Sweeter than Sugar
My little baby, little boy blue,
Is as sweet as sugar and cinnamon too;
Isn't this precious darling of ours
Sweeter than dates and cinnamon flowers?
-Author unknown

Welcome to the family baby cousin, Joshua Collin.

....and day 4

Jeff & I tiptoed out real early to watch the sunrise while the boys slept. Then it was eat, tear down, pack up & leave.
We stopped at Hoover Dam. We took a picture of each boy standing on the Nevada /Arizona border.
Then we drove to Las Vegas & cruised the strip. The boys wanted to know about the wedding chapels everywhere. They loved all the architecture. They recognized many of the buildings from movie scenes.
We dropped CJ off at 10:30 & were home by 12:30 in bed by 1:00.
"Thank goodness I was never sent to school, 

it would have rubbed off some of the originality"

-Beatrix Potter

Day 3

Today was our hard core hike day! We got up, ate, packed & went. Our 1st & only ranger led hike was to a marine fossil site behind Bright Angel Lodge (very cool). We continued hiking up that side of the rim as far as we could ( the road was closed do to construction).
Then we went to the other part of the South Rim and hiked a very strenuous "trail".
We then got in the car for some sit down time & drove to the East Rim. We visited Indian Ruins, The Look out Tower, & Many Vista Points. We saw a coyote who was stopping traffic.
In the car we went, back to the South Rim. We hiked a ways down into the canyon. We ate our dinner there, watching the sunset. Then it was back to camp for cocoa & smores (do they ever tire of these?)

Day 2

We tried to sleep in, but had a crew of ravens flying over our tents. So we got up, made coffee, cocoa & oatmeal. I packed lunches & lots of water. We cleaned up & we didn't see our campsite again until evening.
We explored the middle section of the South Rim today. Lots of window shopping took place also. Billy & Ricky got metal badges for their hiking sticks. They collect one from each National Park we hike in. CJ found his treasure at the last store we went to, it was a Christian store, so we were glad to support them.
Our first view of the Canyon was absolutely incredible. No photo we took did justice in showing the Canyons color, width or depth. Even the boys were frozen in awe. It is truly a contemplative place.
We took advantage of the free shuttle bus to take us to each new area we wanted to explore. Because we got to the park too late for the entry booth to be open we weren't given a map. We just went where our fancy led. We had a relaxing day-really. We walked a lot, but it wasn't hard.
We listened, shortly, to a free concert. We toured historic buildings, art galleries & museums.
The really wacked out, completely strange thing that happened was the weather! It was humid & muggy-hot & yucky!! That is, except for one spot. We could see this black rain cloud from a long way off. It didn't move, the way clouds seem to as you draw close to them. The closer we got, the closer we were, period. As we finally reached the cloud we realized it was hailing. Big , hard hail balls! We could see all around us. Outside of the clouds cover the dirt was dry. The rocks were dry. The sidewalk was dry. As surely as it stayed put before our arrival, it did the same as we departed. We turned around in absolute confusion. We starred in utter disbelief at the scene before us.
We went back to our camp & we were greeted by a family of Elk. mama's, babies & even daddy-o. They were all very willing to participate in a photo shoot. We grabbed dinner, smores & cocoa as we watched the stars come out over the canyon.

Grand Canyon Road Trip day 1

We started out the door at 6:00 in the morning. So you know that means Jeff & I were up at 5:00. Basically the boys hit the bathroom & went back to a zombie state in the car. I had packed breakfast & lunch for everyone the night before. As each boy came to, I gave him breakfast. They were numbed out watching movies until around noon. Jeff & I enjoyed watching the sunrise.
We stopped at Calico Ghost Town . We used this spot to have a picnic lunch. We took a tour of the Maggie Gold Mine. We did the hike around the town & up into the outskirt hillsides. The kids did some window shopping as well.
When we got back in the car it was school time! Jenny sent what she wanted CJ to do. Billy & Ricky had their assignments as well.
We stopped in Baker for Gas, drinks etc. The biggest reason for this stop was to get a picture of the worlds largest thermometer. At one stop CJ & Ricky found Scorpion lolypops. I really thought Ricky would buy one, but he didn't.
We saw the most beautiful rainbow just before sunset. It was a double rainbow! We saw it stretch before us, the whole bow. It beheld the most brilliant color scheme. Each of the colors of the spectrum were more vividly displayed then any of us had ever seen!!
We made a quick stop in the historical "route 66" town of Williams Arizona. The boys got a kick out of all the neon lights & crazy designs. As a matter of fact we talked about architecture from that era all through out the day. The interesting pendulum of the stone age & the space age in simultaneous existence.
We arrived to our beautiful wooded campsite at around 8:30 that evening. We quickly set up tents, made a fire, made & ate dinner....& smores & we were off to bed.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

"I have never let my schooling interfere with my


-Mark Twain

Friday, October 10, 2008

etc... etc... etc...

I have finally (I'm a bad person) sent Melissa (my sister-who asked me over a month ago) the answers to the questions for her magazine on decorating.

Melissa if you read this blog, its in print. I'm sorry.

If you look at the dates on this blog,you'll see two things.
#1 I wasn't here much last month.
#2 I have been trying to play catch up.

Our month was crazy!
-We started off with really bad colds-all 4 of us. Yes I mean we started the school year-the 1st week of school sick.
-We were waiting on Billy's stinkin' math curriculum to show up, which by the way, was ordered in plenty of time to be here before school started. Due to a lazy staff, terrible company service & an unsatisfactory product we have been fighting with that situation all month long. So he is now a month behind in math.
-We have been house training a puppy.
-Ricky has wounded every part of his body (just kidding) But he has had a sprained thumb, some how managed to get cuts on his feet, hands, arms & legs (not all at the same time-but like a constant trickle). He had a huge scratch from an industrial strength tape dispenser right across his face-don't bother asking....
-Ricky's sprain caused us to lose some school work time. He wasn't writing anything for two weeks. He did read ahead over a month in his reading assignments, so that should help some. But writing is physically hard for him-this has been a challenge.
-For some wacky reason we decided to take a vacation to the Grand Canyon (more on that later) in the middle of all this drama.
-We have been surrounded by sorrowful news of marriages ending & little children in hospitals. Bad news seems to come in waves. When it rolls around, I get to the point that I don't want to answer the phone or read my email.

All this while trying to establish ourselves in our new school year. Ricky new to Jr. High & Billy new to High School.

I had my melt down this last weekend & now I'm doing much better. I have just pressed send on my responses to Melissa's questions. My house looks like someone cares. I have exhaled.