Tuesday, March 24, 2015

What's up in our house lately?

Life has become a whirlwind.  Spring sports have started and my children decided to pick up something new.  Samuel, instead of going out for Track and definitely earning that varsity letter as a freshman, decided instead that he would try out for soccer.  Um, What??  The last time he played soccer was when he was 12 (I thought it was 9, but he insists he played when he was 12, too.)  He was the redheaded step-child  at try-outs, with hand me down cleats from a friend (Emma's feet never got that big) and Emma's socks and shin guards.  The first day he went without shin guards or soccer socks. I was amazed he made the team, as this is Europe and these guys play year round soccer, but he is extremely fast and extremely athletic.  He only made JV and he isn't a starter, but he plays a fair amount of time and actually does really well.

The first day of try-outs, they all met at the main field and then walked away together.  The track coaches saw him start to walk away and yelled at him to come back.  He was supposed to be their hurdler!   Well instead we sent one of our other family members to try out hurdles.  Emma decided to run track this year.  She wanted nothing to do with the soccer team here, despite them begging for players this year.  I think they really burned some bridges when they allowed 9 captains to choose who would be on their team last year.  Emma is not the only one who refuses to go out for the team again.  She was originally going to try shot-put, but she said that all the fatties went there and so instead she is trying to run hurdles.  She still doesn't have the timing down.  She is able to get over the 300 meter ones now, but stumbles and stutters a lot.  I told her to concentrate on 100 and 200 and try to get on a relay team, but she really wants to get those hurdles.
Besides sports (the little boys still haven't started), we had senior portraits done and are working on graduation announcements,

planning our spring break and end of year trips and getting ready for girls camp.  Yep, Emma is going for one more year and so is Mom.  I was called as the assistant camp director.  Sometimes, I  really like not being in charge!  Do what I'm told and do it well and not worry about anything else!
I am trying to finish up Emma's quilt before she graduates.  It's a queen, so it really won't work on her bed at College.  It was meant for her bed here.  The fact that I decided to try and hand sew it, is what is taking me so long.  Now that it has been half hand sewn, I can't change and use the machine!   I just have to buckle down and do it.
The other day Emma told me about all the times she has cried in public this year.  Most of them involved in public speaking.  She was fine with Model United Nations, but she can't tell about a board that she made about herself to her class.  She said, "people scare me when they are all looking at me.  I need to come with a note that says Emma shouldn't be made to speak for more than a minute in front of people."  I told her I would pin it to her blouse when she leaves for college and to make sure that her new bishop gets it.  Mostly I just try not to think about that time.
I have also been working a lot.  It seems that no one has a substitute nurse and so I am getting calls from almost every school now.  I do enjoy the school nursing.  Last time I worked for a whole week.  I brought my 5 pound weights and my pad and every 30 minutes or so I would go lift weights for a few minutes.  I couldn't do it for long or I would start to sweat.  Some days were crazier than other, however and I couldn't hardly get any weights in.  It's a lot like the ER that way.
Rob has been busy with work and being sick.
Max got glasses (he is far-sighted, like his Daddy) and has been sick as well.

Now mom is sick.  I think we are all on the mend now.
Joe, of course, never got sick.  I told him that he has the constitution of a rock- rock's never get sick either!  But he did stay home one day with me.  We watched the solar eclipse together and then I took him to get a ride to the Merit Badge University.  He earned a badge for climbing and for rifle.  He said he almost got the badge on his first try.  He was supposed to get 5 shots in one quadrant and he got 4.  He got it on his second try after readjusting the sites!

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Why Emma was Grumbling

So there was kind of a reason for Emma to grumble.  Not really, but kind of.  She had a ball to get to that night. 

She didn't need the whole day to get ready, as we all know.  I once got ready for a Prom in a half hour- of course I don't think I took a shower after work (gross) and I threw my hair up on top of my head and didn't wear make-up.  I never was a girly girl.  It didn't turn out to be the best Prom- go figure!
Emma was going to the JROTC ball as a representative of the Yearbook staff.  Her date was the Yearbook teacher who also brought her husband and a couple other representatives along.  She had lots of dates.
  One guy did ask her if she could be sort of his date when he found out she was going, just so he didn't have to sit with his unit- everyone that was anyone had a date, so the only people still sitting at the unit table were freshmen.  She told him that if he paid the teacher back, she would be his date.  He didn't, but he still got out of sitting with the freshmen.  She even was nice enough to take a picture with him.

Let's just say, she is a really nice girl and I hope she doesn't get taken advantage of at college!  Love her!

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Basketball Max!

We all went- on my insistence (with lots of grumbling from Emma) to Max's final Basketball game.  

The poor kid has missed half of his games- 2 from sickness and one when we all went up to Ramstein to see Sam wrestle.  He did well in his last game and even scored a couple points.  Surprisingly he is one of the shorter kids on his team.  It's not because, like the rest of our children, Max is short, it's just that we had a really tall team.  

One kid was so big that he just stood under the basket and caught his balls over and over until he would make the shot.  He wasn't that great of a player, but he was way taller than anyone else!  The short guys were mixed in with the taller guys and everyone got to play exactly half a game.  The coach was wonderful.  We remained undefeated! 

Good job Thunder!

And the End of that Story is...

So at the end of that story- getting a wild card to European, not getting it, getting it, not getting it is...They didn't give Sam a Varsity letter.  The kid went to sectionals and came very close to going to Europeans, but still didn't get a varsity letter out of the deal.  They are making this whole getting a varsity letter thing really hard to do!

But he did get another coaches award.  They said he was a pleasure to coach.  He was always polite and did exactly what they would scream for him to do when they were coaching from the sidelines.  That is his second coaches award.  Good job buddy!  I'm glad they recognize him for all his hard work and heart!

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Presidents Weekend

During winter season for sports, Sam has wrestled.

He turned out to be not half bad at it, claiming second place for his weight group on the team even though he has never wrestled before.  He was expected to go to the European championships, both because of who he would face at sectionals and because of his record of wins and losses.  Therefore, we planned nothing.  The week before Sectionals, he decided it was time to take on his dad and his dad, being the man that he is, decided not to go to easy on him.  Development: strained back and neck muscles, Result: he actually lost to the opponent that he had always beat before.  Now there were some extra problems in this match.  The scoring was not the best and when the coach went up to complain, the ref reviewed the scores written down and said, yes, there should have been a tie between the two and they should have gone to overtime, but he already declared the other guy the winner and he was moving on.  Also, when they replayed the match, the ref had forgotten to give Sam one point, therefore, Sam should have actually won.  Either way, he was given a good chance at a wild card, because of his record.  He came home a couple days later and said they had given him the wild card, but then decided that they had too many wild cards and cut two of them, him being one.  The next day he came home late.  He said at the beginning of the day they told him that one guy dropped out and so he was back in.  When he showed up for practice, they told him the guy was back in and Sam was out, again.  The poor kid- in, out, in, out!  It was horrible!  Needless to say, he stayed out and didn't get to go, but the team brought home the big win for the year!  European Champions!

Instead we had our sick Brother in law come down and have fun with us at Heidelberg Castle.

 They had an old Pharmacy museum in the castle as well- this is an Enema
 This is a mold for suppositories.

 Big wine barrel
 The biggest wine barrel- this is how the town paid it's taxes.

 Part of the turret fallen down.

On a beautiful walk to find the 7 old mills.
 We only had time for 2.

And to a Fasching parade.  
It got so cold we couldn't feel our toes by the end of this very long and very witch heavy parade.

They did all kinds of tricks like taking the laces out of people's shoes, taking their shoes, stealing the kids and carting them away- that happened to one of our group,  (They finally let them go about 2 or 3 blocks away (he was 7!)) and throwing lots of confetti.  Every once in a while they threw candy too.  There wasn't as much candy as I remember.  We left a little early and headed towards the car, which was along the parade, so we ended up seeing the whole thing.  We also bought some of the special Fasching  donut, the Faschingskrapfen.  It tasted like a 3 day old rectangular donut- which is very well might have been and why it was on super sale!  Overall a fun Presidents day weekend.

Monday, January 26, 2015

Klondike Derby Time

One of the most fun things this ward does is participate in the Klondike derby in Kandersteg,

Lots of families come down with the scouts and we all hang out while the scouts participate in all kinds of snow, survival and scouting exercises.  The boys took second this year.

We ended up in 2 different houses, because there just wasn't room enough for everyone that wanted to come.  We did all have dinner together and play games together at least once, however.  Every night we had kind of a potluck.  At least we ended up sharing our food with lots of scouts- as we were in the house with the scouts.  Luckily, I brought tons, since I figured that might happen.

When we pulled into town the first night, we were a little depressed.  There wasn't any snow!  It ended up snowing that night and the entire next day.  The scouts had 3 teams and 3 sleds that they used throughout the day.

We went out and watched for a little while.  We watched them have to find a baby in the snow and treat it's injuries.  The group before them had the baby all wrapped up in an emergency blanket and someone had taken off their coat and wrapped it around it.  Our boys, used a scarf to tie the baby to a shovel- as a backboard- and didn't do anything else in the way of hypothermia.  They ended up getting the same points.  Hmmm.  When the other group was done, they placed the baby back where it belonged.  Ours threw the baby with the shovel.

We also went walking downtown.  We had a wonderful talk with a lady all about languages and the festival that started that weekend.  They went around in old fashioned clothing and used old fashioned skates and sleds during the festival.
Sunday, we had a nice devotional and then went with a bunch of other to the ski hill to sled.  European sledding is crazy- steep, long with some hairpin turns.  Wipe outs are normal.  They recommend you wear a helmet.  We declined. You take the gondola up to the top of the hill and then you walk and sled and walk and sled until you get to the steep part that takes you all the way to the bottom.

Because of the new fallen snow, the powder showered us like crazy as we went down on the first run, freezing us to death.  We got some more gear and wrapped up tighter for the next run.  Just as we hit the steep hill part, there was a big back up of scouts in a tour group.  Some of them obviously weren't used to how steep it would be and somehow someone stopped in the middle of one of the steepest parts.  How you do that, I will never know.  But it caused our group to pile up on top of him.  One of the runners was up and I slammed right into it with my left leg.  That hurt a lot.  I ended up getting back on to my sled and made it to the bottom.  By then it was time for lunch, so we walked to our van and sat down to eat.  I decided to look at the leg.  Rob said, "no, don't look at it!"  I did anyways.  As soon as I pulled up my ski pants, I saw the blood seeping through.  Sure enough- I needed stitches.

We taped it together as well as we could.  I was determined to do more runs.  Sledding is just as expensive as skiing there, since you use the same lift.  But as soon as I got up, I almost fainted.  I tried several times to sit and then get up again and each time I almost fainted or threw up.  Finally, I let them take me back to the cabin.  We stopped at the scout hut and the doctor- one of the Laundstuhl doctors took a look.  He told me that I needed 4 stitches or if I didn't mind a scar- steri strips.  He was just leaving for a scout outing and wouldn't be back until 4:30 pm, so I chose the steri strips.  He gave me the supplies and I did it myself.  After that, I had to lie down for a good hour.  Joseph stopped sledding the same time as me.  He had gone off the side of a cliff once and over the sides of hills a couple of times.  Max and Sam quit soon after.  Sam never dresses warm enough, no matter how much we try to get him to.

Emma was the only one that got the whole 6 runs in with Rob.  It takes about an hour to complete each run, so you really can only get 6 done in a day.
We also celebrated Emma's and my birthday while we were there.  Emma is 19-1.

On the way home we stopped in Zurich for some fresh Lindt chocolate at the chocolate factory.

We enjoyed our trip, despite the injuries and cold.

Switzerland is a beautiful place!  We enjoyed our adopted son for the weekend, too.