Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Pumpkin Carving!

What is Halloween without some pumpkin carving? I think I still have pumpkin guts on the table, chairs, wall... it's everywhere. CED later painstakingly went through and pulled out all the pumpkin seeds. There are a lot of seeds in five pumpkins...

After our destructive windstorm, we brought the pumpkins back into the house temporarily. JEDs pumpkin now has no face, thanks to Desi. Gotta love them dogs. (And yes, I did just use improper grammar. I'm a teacher, dammit, and I can do what I want. So there.)

Monday, October 25, 2010

One Minute It's Here and Then It's Gone

Last night the winds visited us. They were vicious and mean and took every prisoner possible. Our entire Halloween display that K and the kids painstakingly worked on for two weekends is gone. Blown away. Destroyed. Never to be seen again, I'm sure. Not only that, the fence that runs along the southwest side of our yard was blown down. The kids playset was picked up and violently slammed down a few feet away. The backboard of our basketball hoop was sheared off. The stairs to our deck are precariously hanging and banging against the deck. Our garbage and recycling cans were emptied into our neighbors' back yard. And we discovered all this before seven a.m. I love Colorado but I HATE the wind. A neighbor had 3 sections of their fence blown down. Another neighbor's trampoline was picked up, blown across two yards, and broke a second story window and damaged their gutters. Yes, I said second story. This wind was unbelievable. My neighbor and I are guesstimating that the winds were gusting around 70 miles an hour. That's hurricane force wind. I HATE the wind!

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Saturday Soccer Update

Yesterday was our day that was packed full of soccer, soccer, and then some more soccer. CED had two games just south of Denver, so she and I and the two little ones headed up there for the day. Unfortunately, the games didn't turn out so great, but CED is learning how to direct her team and take control of the field. If only her teammates would start to listen... JAD had a BIG game yesterday morning. The other team won on a bogus handball call - they were given a penalty kick for something they clearly did, but the ref called on us. I don't think anyone can speak of it yet without getting really, really angry. JED also had a game and his team won without a problem. We finished up the night by attending the Colorado Rapids v. Real Salt Lake game. It was an exciting night - JAD and CED got to be a part of the pre-game parade and walked around the field with a couple of hundred other kids and coaches. The game was fun to watch (especially since I understand SO much more about soccer now!). The Rapids ended the 90 minutes winning the game. And then Real Salt Lake ended up tying the game in the last minute of extra time. Disappointing! We sat near some very excited RSL fans; they sure are spirited and enjoy supporting their team. I think everyone had a great time - the older kids are all talking that they would like to definitely go again several times next year.

It Keeps Getting Bigger and Bigger...

The graveyard, that is. K has spent the majority of his day adding to the graveyard. We now have a fence at the front of the yard complete with black raven, skulls, and red lights that will cast a glow at night on the yard beyond. A third zombie has joined his friends as well. CED, JAD, CEDs friend, and I spent a good hour spray painting and staining the fence black. Here are some updated pictures of our efforts. Our neighbors (some) are REALLY happy (insert sarcasm here).

Friday, October 22, 2010

A Packed Saturday

Tomorrow I leave the house at 7:45 am and will not return until approximately midnight. Yes, that's right. I will be gone for 16+ hours. AND I have to get up at the crack of dawn. On a Saturday. That sucks. Royally. Hopefully it will be a good day. CED has two games tomorrow - one in Littleton and one in Lakewood. JAD has a game against their biggest rival - it should be awesome! Later in the afternoon JED has a game as well. And if that's not enough fun for you, we are heading to watch the Colorado Rapids (MLS) game which is against their biggest rival: Real Salt Lake. JADs team gets to walk out on the field during opening introductions of the teams. He did this a couple of years ago, right after we moved to Colorado. This time, however, all seven of us are going and I get to sit with some 'girls' who I love dearly. It will be chilly, and I'm sure my little ones will complain dearly, but it should be, overall, a good night had by all. Maybe I should go to bed early. Maybe not. I'm going to be tired regardless, so why waste time sleeping? Updates Sunday about the games - including pictures!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Graveyard Style

This year we decided to decorate a little bit for Halloween. We've never gone to this extent before, but the kids are pretty excited. We now have a graveyard gracing our front yard. Seven tombstones and two zombies coming out of the ground meet and greet you as you drive into our cul-de-sac. K thinks we need one more zombie. I'm sure the new guy will join his friends this weekend - as soon as K has the time to build another. The kids in our neighborhood have deemed it 'creepy' - especially with the blood dripping down the zombies' faces. Halloween night we will add candles (bought at the local Hispanic grocery store) and creepy music to add to the ambiance. I'm sure all the little trick-or-treaters will really enjoy stopping at our house for candy. What do you think?

Here are a couple of pictures of our ghoulish scene (sorry about the poor picture quality - it was dusk and my camera didn't want to do anything in the way of being cooperative):

Monday, October 11, 2010


At JADs soccer game on Saturday morning, JAD apparently took a line drive to the back of his head. He said that he immediately had pain circling his whole head. So, he has had recurring headaches off and on for the last two days. I finally decided today to take him to the doctor just to be safe. He passed all of the major tests and the doctor determined that he has a mild concussion. JADs headaches have been mainly concentrated over his left eye and the doctor said that the front of his brain is what slammed into his skull. Sounds AWESOME, doesn't it? He is on limited physical activity until the headaches subside. Hopefully all will be well by this weekend's game! Not that he would tell us the truth, anyway...

Wednesday, October 6, 2010


In fifth grade the last two days, we have been dissecting owl pellets. I lectured my students on the importance of being safe while doing this project and they had to wear gloves and masks. I walked around, listening to their excited utterances and my name being yelled over and over to come and 'see'. I chose to walk around, observe, and converse, sans mask or gloves as I didn't touch anything. I did sanitize my hands several times, however. My teammate took a very different approach.

The whole project completely creeped her out and she wore the mask and gloves even before the pellets were out of their bags and foil. I got a good kick out of it all and gave her a hard time for an entire day before she even started the dissection. And, of course, I had to grab my phone and snap a picture of her when she walked into my classroom like she was going to perform surgery. Or an autopsy. You choose.


I read a great post by a blogger that I love to read. She wrote about the one thing that mothers, in particular, do incredibly well, yet don't really need to do. And that one thing is worry. Her post has been on my mind a lot today - especially as I have thought about all the things I worry about. I'm trying so hard to balance all the hats in my life - wife, mom, teacher, friend - and I feel like most of the time I am an utter failure. My job demands incredible hours and energy of me and I'm still trying to balance soccer, music conservatory, household things and everything else. I spend hours every day worrying if my kids have gotten themselves up and out for school, if online schooling was really the right decision for JAD, if I'm going to get my kids to their practices on time, if I'll have enough time to have even a 5 minute conversation with K, if I can stay awake long enough to grade some papers and the list goes on and on. And what has all this worry gotten me? Panic/freak out attacks at home and school, an overwhelming sense that I suck, and pretty much nothing else. But what is reality? My kids are actually pretty well-rounded, kind children who have good heads on their shoulders. They are creative, funny, smart, generous people who make this world a better place to be in. Am I going to worry any less? Maybe, but I wouldn't count on it just yet. It's a growing process, after all.

Sunday, October 3, 2010


Keeper! JED has decided, at the ripe ol' age of 7 1/2, that he wants to play goalkeeper. Why anyone in their right mind would want to put their bodies, faces, hands in front of a ball zooming towards you, I have no idea. Just know that if it was me, I'd be cowering in a corner of the goal hunched over like when you practice tornado drills screaming, 'Is it over yet? Dear God, is it over yet?!?!?!' But not JED. He faces those balls head on like it's nothing. Today his team played a U11 girls developmental team. They are TWO years older or MORE than the kids on JED's team. JED faced those girls and their kicks on goal like it was nothing. I guess all that time standing in front of the fence while your brother kicked balls at you all summer paid off. JED was great. I applaud any kid who wants to play keeper, but my little red-head faced off with those big girls like it was nothing. Way to go, buddy! Here's a couple of pics of him in his keeper gear:

And, yes, that is CED in the forefront of the picture. Because the team was playing a U11 team, CED was asked if she would guest play. She made no less than 3 girls cry and another held her arm for a good minute after being pegged in the arm with a ball CED kicked. Unfortunately, one of the girls was on our team and CED's kick hit her smack dab in the face. It's an icky side of soccer, but it happens nonetheless. She really held back the majority of the game (especially after our player was hit), but the old CED surfaced when out slipped a trademark slide tackle at the end of the game. It was a very entertaining game overall!