Monday, October 29, 2012

Another busy soccer season...

I have to say I am a little glad that soccer season is over!  With three boys on three different teams, and Ryan coaching one team it seemed a little crazy.  I know lots of families that seem to have every kid in about three activities-not the life for me!  Scouts is a must around here, and I try to make them pick and choose a few sports a year.  However, here we go has already picked up and swimming is about to start.  Even though I had planned on a little break from team sports when soccer ended,  I figure we might as well do them all now BEFORE Christmas.  I want to leave our schedule AFTER Christmas wide open since the kids are getting season ski passes for Christmas.
These pictures were all taken earlier this month at the boys last games and it already seems a lifetime ago.   The weather has changed from summer/fall to fall/winter.  Burrrrr.....

Luke's Team-
The bad news is that they lost every game.  
The good news?  By far, he was the best player. 
I think he was the only one on the team with some experience, and it seemed most of the kids were younger too.  
More good news?  Luke didn't seem to mind.  

Had to squeeze in a picture of Sophie.  I don't know why she was all dolled up in this dress-up outfit for the game, but she was. 

Michael's Team-
Ryan coached the team this year.  It was really fun because we knew a lot of the kids on the team.  They played great together and had a good season.  When they did lose, it was always close. 

Here Michael is with one of the twins on our circle...I can't tell which one.  (Carter, is that you?)

All these kids are in our ward.  

Had to throw in this picture because of the hot coach in the background.  (He would never let me take a "real" picture of him!)

He spotted me out!

Father and son...

James Team-
James loved playing soccer this year!  Even though he was on a championship football team last year, he decided on his own that it was just not what he wanted to do.  He had a great soccer team and they won most of their games.  It was also a bonus to have about six other boys from our ward on the team!

I couldn't go to the last game so Ryan had to be on camera duty.  He did a pretty good job! This is James and friend Logan, not an action shot, but I just like it. 

Ryan told me that James scored twice in this last game.  He is so much fun to watch play! 

That wraps up Fall Soccer.  We also have Spring Soccer here, but it really should be called Winter-Freeze-your-butt-off Soccer.  Seriously.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Civic Duty

I volunteered to make phone calls to battleground states a few weeks ago.  I finally got called in to make the calls on Thursday.  I thought I was making them on behalf of the Romney campaign.  I  think I guilted my Mom into coming...ensuring her that every call is important and it was her civic duty.  When we arrived they tried to tell us we were really making calls for a "non-partisan" group....what?!  Don't believe it for a bit.  I also think my Mom was completely right, EVERYONE hates someone calling them.  We had to mark if people thought that Obama had helped or hurt the economy.  I think we were secretly finding the undecided voters.  I think it was not a secret that everyone we called hated our guts. That night the "non-partisan" group had decided to pay people $10 an hour to help in the effort so the place was packed with college students and I FELT like a college student.  In college I can count AT LEAST five jobs I did in booths like these, with similar headphones.  

This picture was my favorite.  My Mom was laughing because I was trying to be sly while taking this picture.  Some lady told us that pictures were forbidden on the floor.  (They must have been worried about my blog since it is so famous.)  I am pretty much an undercover political journalist. 

I hate this picture...

We were talking to people in Colorado.  My mom said she had WAY more calls that were Obama supporters.  I told her it was because Democrats are nicer people and would take the call.  Republicans are too busy and have lots to do, so they probably were the people that hung up on her.  (Totally true in my house!)  And so much for the "war on women"....all my calls to women were Romney supporters, and the men were almost all for Obama.  (I know, totally scientific polling.)   Anyway, it was an "experience" for sure and brought back so many memories of jobs in college.  I think if I had to take a job doing outgoing calls again I just might cry.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Some stores are more fun than others...

While in Utah we hit a Monster Truck Jam and my kids were able to ride around in front of a stadium filled with thousands of screaming fans...

I am sure you can tell by the pictures, I am only kidding!  My mom suggested going by Scheels in South Salt Lake with the kids.  It is a sports/hunting/everything-in-the-world-store with lots of fun things for the kids.  Sure beats going to Walmart with Mom. 

Even though this is a little out of focus, I love how excited Annie was!

This full-size Ferris Wheel is smack dab in the middle of the store.

Thank goodness they had fun carts to keep Sophie occupied since we didn't bring a stroller.

Even the too-cool-for-school crowd liked it.  In fact, they REALLY liked it.  They found things they just HAD to have around every corner.  

My favorite part was the fudge.  I know, you are shocked.  Whenever I go to a place that sells fudge like that, it reminds me of my college days working at the "Candy Counter" in the BYU Bookstore.  It was my job to put the fudge out each morning and clean the fudge dishes.  Sometimes I even got to have a "taste".  My favorites?  Chocolate Caramel, and Pralines and Cream.  We got a whole box of the stuff (same kind of fudge as what they sell at BYU) and it was gone by the next morning.  I found James eating it for breakfast.  We are healthy like that. 

Monday, October 15, 2012

This is the Place

While in Park City, one of my "to do's" was to visit This is the Place Heritage Park.  I didn't know much about it, just that it was where Brigham Young and the early pioneers had come through Emmigration Canyon to the Salt Lake Valley in 1847 declaring that "this was the place".  We headed to Salt Lake Tuesday morning and I am so glad we went.  The weather was perfect, the leaves were beautiful, and it was not very busy since it is off season.  Basically, they have re-created what frontier life was like when the pioneers first settled in the Salt Lake Valley.   Many of the buildings and cabins are originals that have been moved and preserved.  The kids enjoyed it all and we spent a good four hours seeing the sights, and then we only left because we were starving.  Next time I would pack a lunch!  

There was a little house where they could do various pioneer crafts.  Here they are making necklaces with arrowheads.  We came back twice.  

Annie checking out the farm animals. 


This picture cracks me up because it looks like Michael is getting a good lick from the ox.  Really, it is not a "true" ox. It is still a steer.  They told me the difference between regular steers and oxen are four years of training.   This steer has almost completed it's fourth year, and so will be an official "oxen" in the Spring.  Who knew?  

I can see why the pioneers really valued their oxen, they are not only huge and strong, they are also gentle and very likable! 

The kids taking in barn life. 

Kids 11 and under were able to take pony rides.  For once, Joshua was bummed to be too old for something. 

Sophie was not scared a bit, she loved it!

The kids are really hoping that Grandpa gets some horses soon, that was Joshua's consolation.

These little pigs were pretty funny too.  

The "train" circles around the entire park and they tell facts about each place you pass.  It was nice to sit down and rest a bit.  

Not the best picture, but I had to include it.  Evidence that I really was on the trip.  

I think this was the kids favorite spot.  They are panning for gold.  The Miner told them they could each collect 10 pieces and as payment for using "his spot" on the river they had to give him two pieces back.  It was great entertainment. 

Joshua decides to cross the river and find a new spot.  
It was a bit messy, but anything is worth some "gold". 

Here they are evening up with the local "Miner".  He was pretty awesome.  He even had a pet squirrel he was feeding.  

Just a little miniature train ride...look at Sophie's face.  She was terrified. 

At the end of the ride, she is still not too sure about it.

The kids could keep their gold, or go to the local bank and trade it in for candy.  They all chose the candy.  It was pretty serious business, he weighed everything and some got more candy than others.

I loved the old school house.  I wish that school rooms were still like this today.  It made me just want to "play" school!  What more do kids need to learn than a chalkboard, chalk and some books.  Forget all these ipads for each child. My kids thought the punishments for forgetting to bring your homework were pretty funny.

Maybe I should try this one at home.

The kids were able to see a glimpse into all the work that the pioneer children had to do.  It was all a novelty to them so they still thought it seemed fun. 

The one thing they agreed would NOT be fun was the whole chamber pot thing. The chamber pot was kept in the house so on winter nights they would not have to drudge to the outhouse in the snow.  The lady told me it was the youngest child's chore to empty the pot each morning.  YUCK!  Can you imagine?
 I wished I would have taken pictures of the little cabins that LARGE families lived in.  Seriously, they were tiny.  And each family had like ten OR SO kids.  I asked where they slept and usually the children slept on the floor or up above in a loft.  I just can't imagine.  The kids would basically have to spend all their spare time outside.  They must think we are so ridiculous today with our fancy houses and our "debating" if we should have two children share a room or not.  It really puts some of our "excess" into perspective.  (And our junk!  Everything they owned had a purpose, was treasured and taken care of!)

As we stood here and looked down into the Salt Valley at all the freeways, and urban sprawl I tried to imagine what it looked like when the pioneers arrived.  I thought how isolating it would feel to have NOTHING and build a community completely from scratch.  I think of what it would be like to wonder what you were going to feed your children each day.  Just not being able to "run" down to grocery store for ANYTHING.  If you didn't plant and grow, you would not eat.  Not to mention childbirth, lack of clothing, Indians, and just the natural elements.  The whole thing would take some serious faith.  Can you imagine their prayers?  Would I and do I have that kind of faith?  Hats off to the settlers of the American West.  I must now go do my Monday morning cleaning.  I guess it doesn't seem so bad with a washer and dryer, a dishwasher, a car, and a vacuum.  Six kids?  That is nothing, in fact, the smallest family I read about in a cabin had seven.  Ya, my life isn't too bad.  :)