Wednesday, August 19, 2015

First day of school 2015

It’s official.  Summer is over and we are back in school.  It was quite the crazy morning.  Halle’s bus comes at 7:32 which is WAY earlier than we are used to being ready for school.  We were rushing like mad to pull everything together and were running down the street to catch the bus.  We barely made it!  There was no time for tender goodbyes and before I blinked she was on the bus and and pulling away.  She is so ready for Middle School and I am so excited for her.  What a fun year it’s going to be!
Halle 6th grade
Blake and Josh had a little more time to get ready, which is good.  Josh came down wearing a size 5 shirt, and we noticed a big rip in Blake’s shorts right before we were heading out the door.  Good grief.  Who takes care of those ragamuffins? Winking smile As per tradition Dad walked with us to school on the first day.  Both kids eagerly rushed into their classrooms. 
Josh 3rd GradeBlake 1st grade
I had mixed feelings about today.  Part of me is so ready to have some time to myself.  After summer, my to do list is 20 miles long. I’m excited to focus on me a little more.  Develop some more hobbies, find ways to be involved and serve in my community.  Put most of me is really sad.  It’s the ending of an era.  An era filled with little feet running around the house. Of tiny people who require so much love and attention.  Little sticky hands and mounds of dumped out toys. Gymnastics classes, soccer, trips to the zoo, playdates, and always having a buddy at my side to “help” with all my errands.  I think I’m going to be pretty lonely!  But, I’m so proud of the strong, independent, resourceful kids they are becoming and I know this next chapter will bring on its own set of joys and its own set of challenges.  Bring it on!  We are ready!
Last night we had our annual Back to School dinner.  Our family theme for this year is taken from the new Cinderella movie.  “Have Courage and Be Kind.”  We talked about how we can develop these character traits in ourselves and why they are important.  Each year I make the kids a key chain to put on their backpack.  This year the lion charm was to remind them to Have Courage.  The Be Kind charm is self explanatory Winking smile Then they each got a charm in the shape of the state of Colorado with a heart in the middle to remind them no matter where their dreams take them they always have a home full of love to return to. 
Each child wrote 3 words that they want to be this school year.  It was so cute to see what they wrote.  Blake’s reads: Smart, Faithful, and couraging. 
We ended the night with Father’s Blessings.  These kids are full of so many talents and I am so blessed they are mine!
I know they are going to be amazing this year.
back to school dinner

Back to School Bash III

Every year it’s bigger and better.  This year we used 71 ice blocks and 108 donuts.  It was so fun to see the kids slipping and sliding down the hill.  For some reason, Blake was adamant that he was not going to participate this year.  I coaxed him down the hill a few times, but he stayed pretty true to his word, preferring the tire swing instead.  On the other hand, Halle outlasted every kid at the party.  She was the first one on the hill, and the last one to be done.  I love this tradition.  It’s the perfect way to end our summer of fun.


Every year the Moms take over the hill for a few runs.  It’s hilarious to see the roll reversal.  All the moms on ice blocks and all the kids at the bottom of the hill with cameras out.


back to school bash

Sunday, August 9, 2015

Some more summer adventures

Casa Bonita.  A Colorado institution we can now check off our bucket list.  Forever. 

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We love celebrating the 3rd of July with the Rowberry family at the annual Vista Ridge fireworks.  And no, that’s not a typo.  Our neighborhood always celebrates on the 3rd.

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We got to celebrate Ezra’s baptism

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And check out construction on the Ft. Collins temple!

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The boys had a blast at the Valmont Bike Park

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We roasted smores.  Lots and lots of smores.

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Halle and Sadie made these cute kitty cats out of socks!

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We continue to make piles of money selling lemonade at the Farmer’s market.

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Reading with Dad is the favorite part of our day.

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Swimming at the beautifully scenic Eldorado Pool

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We are so glad to have cousins nearby!  Kami and Brett moved to Colorado Springs in July and we couldn’t be more thrilled.

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Rusty and I hiked Arapaho Peak.  8 miles and about 13,500 feet tall.

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Carlie and Gwen came for a visit and we rode the Plattriver Trolley.

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Our annual Mighty Kids Triathlon!

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Paddleboarding at the Aurora Reservoir.  Both Halle and Josh could stand up and paddle by themselves!

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Sunday, August 2, 2015


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I got home from the airport late Sunday night.  We slept in and had a lazy morning and then in the afternoon we packed up to head down to Fairview.  I was so excited to take the kids to our family cabin.  The last time we went down there Josh was just a baby.  Halle had a few vague memories but nothing concrete. 

The kids loved running around and exploring.  They were thrilled to set up their beds upstairs and make everything nice and cozy.  After everyone had settled in my mom got out stuff to make tye dye t-shirts.  The kids just love doing this.  They made their shirts so colorful and fun.  It was agony to wait till the next morning to rinse them out and wear them. 
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It’s a tradition at the cabin to have a treasure hunt.  The clues have been the same ever since I can remember.  Dad told the kids a story about pirates who had come and hidden treasure at Fairview. They were eating it up.  They loved hunting for the clues and were very excited to find their treasure. Gwen got a little tea set from the dollar store in her sack and you would have thought it was bars of gold.  She was jumping up and down and saying, “Mom!  How did the pirates know that I would just love to have a tea set??”  We were all in stitches laughing at her. 
treasure hunt

Landon pulled out the 4 wheeler and all the kids were clamoring for turns riding up and down the road.  I don’t think Blake had ever been on a 4 wheeler before and he thought it was great fun.
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The evening ended with roasting hot dogs and smores.  Mom had found these giant smore marshmallows.  And they were GIANT.  It was funny to watch everyone try to eat them.  Josh begged and begged to watch Star Wars before bed, so that’s exactly what we did!


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The next morning, after a pancake breakfast, we went on a hike to the fossil pile.  As one might guess, Blake and Josh were less than enthused.  But, once they started discovering fossils along the way they perked up considerably.
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We were also on the lookout for a rock to paint.  Another tradition of the cabin is to paint a rock and put everyone’s name on it to display.  Halle had the genius idea to find a square and triangle rock and make the cabin. That’s exactly what we did and it turned out so cute!
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Our adventure concluded with a traditional milkshake at tee-cee’s.  I was so glad to get to share these fun memories with my kids.  I loved telling them stories about my Grandma and about my childhood summer memories at the cabin.  What a gift Grandpa and Grandma Cornell gave to us all with this cabin!