A Group Of Stahrs

Our Family Life…All Together

Archive for the category “Adventures”

Pennsylvania

Since yesterday marked one week until school starts, I figured it was high time to share our summer memories.  So I’ll begin with our trip to visit family in Pennsylvania at the beginning of June.  We went in and out of Pittsburg so we could celebrate my favorite niece’s third birthday.  She was so happy to see the kids!  They all hid from her so that she had to find them when she got home from school. 

After she found each of the kids and hugged them, we had a little celebration of the family band.  Even Pop Pop got involved…Then we headed out to Chuck E. Cheese and the kids were in heaven.  While Chloe made sure the mouse himself stayed a good distance away, they all had fun with the games and the celebration…

This girl is serious about her ice cream!  The next day we joined Chloe for her official birthday party.  The kids played happily in the yard like they hadn’t been apart for six months!  We all had a great time.  Even Jeremiah and I were able to get into the pictures…

Then we all sang to Chloe once again and she opened her gifts…

She’s a ham, isn’t she?  But she’s cute anyway!

We then made the drive to Pop Pop’s house to visit the rest of the fam.  At Pop Pop’s house we made homemade ice cream and relaxed…

We also ventured to the park and met up with new cousins!

There was some lettin’ loose too.  Jacob is always the entertainer…We also visited Stahr Mam where she put the kids to work…working out or working in the yard…

So there you have it…our trip to Pennsylvania.  It was a fun trip!

Landsharks

Landsharks started just after Spring Break and all three kids wanted to sign up.  Their first meet was April 22.  Jacob ran the 400 meter at 2 minutes 53 seconds.  Jamie ran 800 meters at 4 minutes 31 seconds.  Mazie ran the mile at 9 minutes and 8 seconds.  They were presented with ribbons after their races.  In fact, because Jacob wasn’t first he thought he wasn’t supposed to take one.  We went back over to his coach and she explained the every finisher gets a ribbon and that he didn’t have to be first.  He was pretty pleased with that…And since it was such a nice afternoon, they decided to relax outside…Meet number 2 was on April 29 and was their sprint night.  They ran two sprints each.  Jacob ran the 50 meter and the 200 meter.  While running the 50 meter, he put his hands out behind him as he was running.  He told me later that it was helping him go faster like he was Super Man.  It was pretty funny.  He did the 200 meter in 1 minute 13 seconds.  Jamie also ran the 50 meter and 200 meter.  She did the 200 in 53 seconds!  Mazie did the 100 meter and the 400 meter.  She ran the 400 in 1 minute 55 seconds.  I was impressed with all of them!  They were given ribbons again after their last sprint…Their final meet was on May 6.  This meet was a repeat of the first meet.  So Jacob ran 400 meters and he did so in 2 minutes 45 seconds.  Jamie did 800 meters in 4 minutes 41 seconds.  Mazie did the mile again and did it in 9 minutes 13 seconds.  Mazie was a little upset that she didn’t beat her first week’s time.  I asked what her goal was for each race and she said that it was to not be last (which was the goal for all three of them for all three meets).  During all three meets, none of them finished last.  At the end of this meet, the kids received medals…

I have to say I was greatly impressed with all the kids.  Jamie had done this last Spring but she challenged herself by running the 800 meter instead of the 400 meter.  Mazie had never showed interest before.  She wanted to try it and instead of trying the 800 meter run, she opted for the full mile.  And, then there’s Jacob.  I’m pretty sure he only wanted to do it because the girls were but when he was practicing and running the meets it was clear that he was truly having a good time.  They all ran each meet.  There was no walking.  They met their goals and didn’t give up.  And they had fun.

Today, after school, the coach had a practice party.  There were treats and games.  The coach gave out certificates and charms…The kids were pretty happy with themselves and their certificates.  And I am one proud mama!

Disneyland

Well, here we are almost a month after our big trip to Disneyland and I’ve only just finished editing the photos.  It’s been rough but they are done and now ready to post!  So bear with me…it’s gonna be a big one.  I’m starting with seeing our friends first.   First we visited at the Laughrey’s where the Shertzers, Pikes, and (at least a few of them) Bolanders joined us.  It was great aside from the crazy rain storm.

I’m always amazed at how the kids just kind of pick up where they left off when we see each other.  Like there weren’t years in between visits, just a days.  They all had a blast and it was great to see everyone in one place.  After a day at Valley park in Hermosa beach,we ended our week at the Shertzer’s house and tagged along to the beach…

While Amy did her thing, the girls, well, I’m not sure what they were doing but I’m sure Amy made them look great!

We headed back to Amy’s house where we joined by the Laughrey girls for a yummy dinner (and for those of you who know Amy and how well she cooks, you know that yummy is an understatement!).

When we planned this trip, we decided to stay at the Disneyland Hotel so that we could stay longer at the parks.  We were able to see the fireworks and water shows.  Which was worth the extra cash for the resort! Plus the parks were within walking distance.One morning we went to Goofy’s Kitchen for breakfastand characters joined us throughout our meal to say “Hi” or mess with Jamie’s hair…The wait staff brought Jacob a birthday treat which was a huge surprise to him…We headed to Disneyland where we celebrated Jacob’s birthday at The Carnation Inn.  Pat E. Cake hosted the party by singing and dancing while the guests decorated their very own cakes.  Jacob then joined a parade of birthday kids that ended with meeting Micky and Minnie.

Jacob said it was the “best birthday ever” and is already making plans for next year.  Here is the rest of our visit at Disneyland and California Adventure in pictures…

So there you have it.  Our Spring break trip.  We had so much fun and enjoyed every minute of it!

Mothers’ Tea

Jacob’s preschool held a Mothers’ Tea this morning for all the mamas.  It was similar to the Dinner with Dads that Jeremiah was invited to in January.

When I arrived, there was a note to take a seat and wait for the class to arrive.  So I took a snap of my place at the table…First I have to say that I love the foot butterfly.  I remember Jacob coming home from school saying they had painted his feet for a project and then said that I wasn’t really supposed to hear that.  I never expected this!  And on the back of the paper laying at my place setting was an interview of what Jacob thinks of me.My Mom…My mom is 15 years old.  Her favorite food is lettuce, I mean salad.  Mommy’s favorite store is the market.  My mommy’s job is to bake stuff.  When mommy has some free time, she likes to rest on the couch.  I love it when mommy makes spaghetti for dinner.  I love it when mommy plays the twister track with me.  I make my mommy laugh when I tell her jokes.  I love my mommy more than my favorite toys.

Now to clarify on those interesting facts from my stinker of a five-year old.  I am not 15 (but thanks, buddy!).  I do eat a lot of salad, so I can see where he thinks this.  I am not sure what “market” he is talking about for my favorite store.  I do “bake stuff”.  I guess reading isn’t something I do in my free time since I apparently rest on the couch.  He does like spaghetti.  He did get a new hot wheels double dare snare track that is pretty cool.  I think I played with it one time.  Although Jacob does like to tell jokes, they are typically not very funny.  He makes me laugh with his quirkiness.  I am honored that he loves me more than his favorite toys!

The class sang a few songs that were just amazing.  I know kids at this age can’t carry a tune (much like this mama) but I can’t help but love kids singing.  It’s just so happy and they are so proud to be doing it.  It’s really one of my favorite things ever.Especially when there are moves…After the kids performed their songs, we had a little feast of muffins, fruit, cookies, and mini quiche.  It was a lovely morning.  I’m glad I was able to spend it with my favorite 5-year-old boy.

Ten On Tuesday

1.  Jacob turned 5 last week and it’s time to I post about it.

2.  While we were in California for his birthday (I will be posting about that another day), we did come home to have a little family celebration and for him to have his star cake…3.  He was pretty happy to have his chocolate cake with chocolate icing…and us singing…4.  Then it was time to dive into the presents…5.  Being 5 means you get a big bike…6.  He even obliged me by letting me snap a few of his fiveness…

7.  Also turning 5 means you start the “annual date”.  I was so excited about it.  The girls have so much fun with Dad when they go out and I wanted that so badly with Jacob.  I apparently made him nervous about it.  Oops!  He recovered and got excited too.  He made Jeremiah take him to Costco to pick out some flowers, washed the car, and knocked on the door so I had to answer and let him in.  He was a true gentleman…8.  He told me I looked nice as we walked out to the car.  He even held my hand.  When we got to Zio’s (his choice), he asked me to open the door and then he held it open for me.  We were seated and he decided what he wanted to eat.  We ordered and then played a couple of games of tic tac toe while we waited.  While we were eating, we talked about chickens and roosters, desserts, his presents, and the rain to name a few things.  We ordered dessert and chatted a bit more.  When we left he opened and held the door for me and a couple of other customers.  He was so sweet.  I think he had a lot of fun.  I know I did.

9.  I am pretty sure that date meant more to me than it did to him in all of his fiveness.  But I still have a few years, right?

10.  When we got home, Jacob allowed Jeremiah to take a couple of pictures of us together.  This is my favorite…

Happy Tuesday!

Bowling for Buzzards

We went to Academy Lanes to go bowling.  We had never been bowling before with the kids.  In fact, it’s been too long to count since Jeremiah and I had even been bowling.  To say it was an adventure is a huge understatement!

The girls were awesome.  Mazie had a great form…

Jamie even got a strike!

Jacob was pretty good at being patient, since when he would roll the ball it would take 30 minutes to get to the pins… 

But he was very happy that he did manage to knock down some pins…It was fun.  The kids had a grand time and it was nice to do something together as a family.  Here, if you are interested, are the scores of our two games.Yes, Mazie did beat me in the first game.

You don’t have to look at Jeremiah’s score.  We were using the bumpers.  I was holding back since we were playing the kids.  That’s my story and I’m sticking to it!

Christmas Programs

To put a little Christmas cheer out there for you, I’ve decided to blog about the kids’ Christmas programs.  First up Jacob’s preschool program.His class was made up of angels and shepherds and Jacob was a shepherd.  Doesn’t he look like Linus from the Peanuts Gang?Jacob’s program lasted about 15 minutes but it was so wonderful.  The kids told the story of  baby Jesus being born, sang some Christmas songs, and “Happy Birthday” to Jesus.  Jacob was so excited to be a shepherd.  He was told to keep it a secret and, anyone out there who knows Jacob, knows that that was very difficult for him.  But he did it and the program was fantastic.  I love kids singing!

Next up, the girls’ choir program…Since Pop Pop was here to join us for this program, we had to do the obligatory photos beforehand…I mean, he is their #1 fan (after mom and dad, of course)…First we started with Ursa Minor.  I love how the music teacher used both science and music for the names of the choirs.  It just fit the school and the kids.  The second and third grade choir members were Ursa Minor (Jamie’s on the far right of the picture, in the front)…Jamie even had a speaking part.  Can you believe it?  Neither could I when she told us that she had a special part a day or two before the program.  Yep, that’s right, she didn’t want us to make a big deal about the fact that she would be speaking in front of all these people and end up getting her nervous, so she didn’t even tell us!  I have to say that I was so excited about it though.  She told the punch line to a joke.  What did the one snowman say to the other?  Do you smell carrots?The choir also signed a song while singing.  It was pretty impressive!Then they took a brief intermission so Ursa Minor could exit the stage and Ursa Major (fourth and fifth grade students) get ready.  There was some pretty sharp moves…and kazoos…Mazie was in a smaller group that sang a song that was just simply lovely…When Ursa Major was finished with all their songs, Ursa Minor joined them on stage to sing a couple more songs together.  One song was It’s Snow Fun/It’s No Fun.  The Major sang about hating snow (gasp, I know) and the Minor sang about how fun the snow is.  It kind of reminded me of Frosty Returns when the adults are complaining about shoveling and the kids and excited about the snow.The girls had a great time and the choir sounded awesome.  But don’t just take my word for it.  You can see Jacob was completely enthralled with the singing…Again, I love kids singing.  It’s just about the best sound, in my opinion.  It’s right up there with the sound of kids laughing!

Thanksgiving 2011

Ok so before we really head into Christmas it’s time I post about our Thanksgiving.  First it was fabulous.  Period.  We were fortunate enough to have some guests this year.  My brother, sister-in-law, and sweet little niece came all the way from the Pittsburgh area and it was fun.  Chloe jumped right into playing with the kids…

We had tea parties and pretend play galore.  Jacob didn’t even mind that he was completely outnumbered since Chloe was so cute.Then it was onto our feast.  Jamie and Mazie did the wishbone this year with Jacob watching closely.  He vowed that next year he gets a turn.Jamie won, in case you needed to know.  And she didn’t tell us what she wished for.  We also got a few group photos…

and some silly faces…We played some instruments…

and played some mad ring around they rosy…We also went to the zoo.

and to the Air Force Academy.  We saw all kinds of “airpanes” but no “ornch” ones.

But, we pretty much just kind of hung around and had a good time with each other…I love this little family…It was so fun to have a little girl in the house for a few days.  You know, since my two aren’t little anymore and have sassy mouths and attitudes.  It was nice to have a little girl laugh and think we were fun.However, I see the attitude and sassy mouth in her future. With her strong will, her parents will have their hands full sooner than they want, I’m sure.Thanks for a wonderful weekend.  We had fun and it was so great having you here!

The Pumpkin Patch

We went to the Colorado Pumpkin Patch last weekend.  We’ve been there three times.  This year they downsized a little but it was still fun!First, my corny kids…

Then we hit the slides…

There was the corn box…and a hay ride…There were some pretty cool scarecrows…

There were animals to pet and pumpkins to pick too.  In fact, it took the kids almost as long to pick their perfect pumpkins as it did for us to do all the rest!

We took the pumpkins home and the kids went to work preparing their pumpkins with their faces…After Dad cut the tops, the kids dug into the “guts” and cleaned out the pumpkins…

While the seeds were roasting, Dad carved out the faces that the kids drew.  The kids watched closely to make sure he did it right.  And they were pleased with his mad carving skills…

The pumpkins even looked great at night…

The BIG Minnesota Post

We’ve been home for almost two weeks and it’s taken me that long to edit pictures from our wonderful trip to post on the blog.  That on top of dealing with a cold I picked up from the cutest 3 1/2-year-old little boy ever.  It’s ok Fisher.  I’ll still visit you, even if you do give me the plague!  And I do need to get a cold every so often or I would think I was Wonder Woman.  So thanks for putting me back in my place! 😉

Seriously, how can you ever get mad at this sweet face… Don’t you just want to smooch on those sweet cheeks?  But I’m almost 100% and I’m going to post about our entire weekend in one post.  So sit back and enjoy the reading!

JJ’s been posting about our weekend together, saying how they really do it up right in Minnesota for friends.  I can attest that our family was happy with what we did and still had the best weekend ever!  The kids are all still talking about it and that’s saying something.

Our first adventure was Alla’s big soccer game.  It was pretty cool to see her in action…But the real excitement was after the game which was what Fisher couldn’t wait for.  Touch-A-Truck Day!  He was so excited.  He and Jacob lead the way to the trucks, chatting the whole time about all the things they were going to see and do, like old friends do.This was just a perfect outing.  The kids got to climb into all kinds of trucks and emergency vehicles and see what they are really like on the inside.  Jacob even was on the loud-speaker of the S.W.A.T. truck yelling, “Major Rock Star” like Alvin does on the Alvin and Chipmunks movie.  The kids were in heaven…

Jacob decided to beg for mercy when he was in the back of the police car…After the kids were finished checking out every.single.vehicle, we ventured over to the park to play for a little which was equally fantastic.  Our kids love checking out parks all overHowever, this one may be etched in our memories forever.  I mean, really what kind of parents encourage their children to ride down a giant tongue for fun?Apparently Minnesota parents…Ok, maybe some Colorado parents, too, but in our defense it was the only slide. 😉 After going home for lunch, we went to the local fire station for tour of the station and a ride in an actual firetruck.  No photos because I didn’t take my camera but you can check out what JJ’s take on that adventure was like here.

On another day, we got to see some of Minnesota’s beautiful Fall colors when we drove to the Mississippi River to check out the lock and dam.

I had never seen a lock and dam and, quite honestly, didn’t know what it was until we saw one in action.  It was pretty cool and the kids watched in amazement!

After watching the lock and dam in action, we walked down some rickety old steps to the river’s edge.

The kids thought that part was pretty cool too.  That was it for our out-of-the house adventures.  Now onto the around-the-house adventures…

It had to be the windiest day ever recorded in the history of the weather being recorded the day we landed in Minnesota.  Seriously, we almost didn’t land in one piece.  The plane tipped side to side making this mama ready to swear off flying forever!  But the good thing about all that wind was the fact that there were Fall leaves to be raked in the Killins’ back yard.  Leaves from area yards that they wouldn’t have had otherwise.  So the kids went to work…

Because everyone knows that a good piles of leaves means a good bit of jumping…

And then they would rake them back on to the “biggest pile ever” and do it all over again.  This is one of my favorite photos from the entire weekend.  First my two favorite boys are working together and just so darn cute doing it too…Second, Jeremiah, Mazie, and Alla are in the background finding a safe spot for a caterpillar she found while raking.  They needed to keep that little guy safe.  And third, Jamie sitting on the little riding bike is pretty funny to me.  It played a little song when you rode it and she thought that toddler toy was fantastic! But then there is this one and I can’t stop smiling looking at each child and knowing how difficult it was to even get all five to lay in the leaves for just one.  But they did it and I’m grateful I have one of all of them together…These two boys were peas in a pod the whole weekend.  They enjoyed watching Fisher’s shows, even though every other second Fisher would say, “oh this is my favorite part”.Jacob enjoyed playing with Fisher.period.  Not only because he had toys that were new to him but because Fisher was another boy.  I loved that they carried on conversations about trucks and how their little stories would play out.Then there was bedtime.  The kids got stories every night and extra kisses and hugs.

In fact, one night I was giving Jacob his kiss and hug and he said, “You hug just like the mom of this house” (meaning JJ).  I took it as a complement since JJ is the best hugger.  And then there was the time Jacob referred to Ron and JJ as the bosses of the house.  We were talking about something and he said that I had to ask “one of the two bosses of this house” because he just couldn’t remember their names right off the tip of his tongue.  But one time Alla came done the stairs and she said, “Megan, JJ would like to know if you and Jeremiah would like to have some coffee”.  Without laughing in her face, I answered her and then waited until she was out of earshot to tell Jeremiah that she had a smirk on her face the whole time like she was getting away with calling her mama “JJ” instead of “mom”!  Just some silliness from the trip I don’t want to forget.

The adults had time to catch up after the kids went to bed.  Actually it was more like while the girls were in their room messing around and have a grand ol’ time and we were listening to every single word on the monitor.  There were some silly things said at night between those three!  But they did eventually go to sleep and we did catch up.  We played games…I never won but it was fun.  I just wish I would have had the ninja card just once!

But that was basically our weekend in 32 pictures.  You should be happy I didn’t put all 200+ that I actually took!  We had just a great weekend.  But I will leave you with this last picture.  It’s how I feel that we live so far away from such great people…I call this one “Pout Pout Fisher”.  And when he was in a not-so-great mood, this is what happened.  So it was fitting to end with it.

Thanks for letting the five of us invade your house for a few days.  We love you!

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