Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Dress Code

(sarcasm font engaged)

I'm not sure where Abby got her idea of individualism, but I wish she'd choose outfits that looked like all the other kids.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Bedtime Reading

One of my favorite things to see is Caleb and Abby reading. Both enjoy reading and both their teachers require it. Both kids have rigged up a night light and timers to read while in bed this year to accept their teachers' challenge of minutes read.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Last boat day of the year

Saturday was probably the last really warm day of the year and I was determined to get on the boat. Despite Mon having to work, Abby having a soccer game, and Caleb having baseball practice, we still got a couple hours of the lake before the sun went down. Since it was just the kids and me, the day also was the first time that Caleb drove the boat while I surfed. He did an awesome job. He's driven the boat a ton, but not while pulling a skier and was very proud of his success (I guess success would be defined as not killing a family member or sinking the boat). It's been a fantastic summer on the boat... But I'm already getting excited for some snow boarding!

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Quiet home with first day of school

Today is the first day of the school year. It got quiet and lonely around here very quickly. I've had to turn to talk-radio and podcasts for some back ground noise.
Mon is back teaching part-time in 3rd grade and is enjoying her first first-day of school in 6 years.
Abby started 2nd grade and was quite nervous this morning about who she's gonna walk into the school with today. Which is funny since Abby has the ability to make friends at any time and any place.
Caleb woke up a little grumpy. He's more difficult to read than Abby. He wanted no part of wearing the nice clothes that Monica had set out. It was a chore to talk him into at least wearing some pants instead of athletic shorts. He's headed to a class with a teacher that he's heard is strict with her students. In my opinion, the more strict the teacher, the better Caleb has done. Maybe he's nervous for that or maybe he's nervous for his first baseball practice tonight with a new pony league team. Ether way, I'm very confident that he'll be happy tonight and excited for tomorrow. Both our kids are extremely well-rounded and thus far have been terrific in every challenge they've faced.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Kids First Backpacking Trip

I took the kids up to Roman Nose Lakes in northern Idaho for their first overnight backpacking trip. They had a blast and I'm looking forward to next summer to do it some more. Here's my journal entry that I wrote during our trip.

Day one got off to a rough start. Abby was whinning from getting up early, at 9:00!! We got on the road around 10:00 and as ususl on long trips in the Accord, the kids started fights over the middle seat. Caleb won the fight and Abby cried.
Despite three different directions to the trailhead, we got lost. I felt better when I asked directions from a local and he read all three directions and said they were all wrong. It wasn't just me! He gave me the correct directions and we were on our way... Wait, the kids asked that the radio stay on in the car and 10 minutes later the car battery was dead. Ugh! I asked the first customer I saw at the gas station if he had jumper cables and a few minutes later we were on our way. A few miles down the road we see our first sign guiding us to Roman Nose lakes. And right after the sign a logging truck had tipped over and a crane was picking up all the logs blocking traffic both ways for the next 25 minutes.
Once back moving the kids and I stated to get very excited. The dirt road rose high into the mountains and had some amazing views. We arrived to the trailhead and the kids could hardly contain themselves. The excitement lasted for about 5 minutes until the kids started realizing that they had to carry their backpacks for a distance. Abby's backpack doesn't weigh more than 6 lbs and maybe 15 lbs for Caleb's. We took our time and I gave the kids both several breaks with their packs and carried both mine and one of theirs. A couple wrong turns and a few friendly hikers later we found our destination about an hour later. We met a Medinite (like Amish) lady on the way up that was picking huckleberries. She pointed out that this area was jam packed with huckleberries and the kids were hooked. Caleb and Abby both collected berries on the way up and by the time we reached camp, their fingers and lips were bright purple.
Never thought I'd see a ranger up here, but it turns out that a fellow hiker was in disguise while chatting with us on the trail. As the sun was going down he took off his jacket, revealed his badge, put on his holster, and mentioned that he saw the kids fishing and asked if I had my fishing license. I wasn't fishing, but I learned that idaho's law states that kids need to be with a licensed adult. We promised not to fish anymore and he let me with a warning.
Day two:
Not much sleep was to be had with the three of us tossing and turning all night. It was a little windy, but not too cold. The kids have inherited my sleep-in-motion habits so we bounced off each other most of the night. We hiked a few of the trails to take in some more views. I love the granite rock contrast with evergreens up here. For lunch we had some top roman and the kids were in heaven. I feel asleep reading in the tent to only be woken up by the kids crawling over me to take a nap themselves. I don't recall both the kids admitting they needed a nap... ever.
We took another hike around the lake in search of the snow run-off waterfall. It was beautiful. We found some snow and attempted to make some snowballs, a rarity for
Sept 1st.
Due to the rough night of sleep, I opted to head home before dark. The kids were fine with the idea after I mentioned McDonald's on the way home. Caleb has collected about a 1/2 gallon of huckleberries. He's also probably eaten a 1/2 gallon. Both kids passed out as soon as we got on the road. I feel I've succeeded if my kids have needed two naps in one day!