Tuesday, July 29, 2008

A few words from Luke

Conversation around the dinner table on Sunday:

Me: What would you guys like to do before summer is over?
Josh: Go to Ross Park! (A big water park)
Syd: Go to Lagoon!
Luke: I want to go, too.
Me: Where do you want to go, Luke?
Luke: Ummmm, to Grandpa's!

So there you have it. Luke thinks both his grandpas are the greatest and would rather go to their houses than anywhere else!


Luke: Those are Nydee's.
Me: These are Nydee's?
Luke: No, they're Nydee's.
Me: Oh, these are Sydney's?
Luke: Yep.

We Did It!!

We survived the spudman!! OK, I survived the spudman and Brek enjoyed the spudman. He did awesome, as usual. (Oh, by the way. For those of you who are wondering what on earth I am talking about, the spudman is a triathlon. You swim a mile, bike 24 miles, and run 6 miles. The great thing about the spudman is that you swim in the Snake River, which has a current to help you along!)

Brek finished in 2 hours 20 minutes and I finished in 2 hours 43 minutes. I was thrilled, because I was hoping to finish in 3 hours. He felt great afterwards, and I was exhausted!! The run just about killed me. I had to force myself to keep running. But....I finished!

The best part of the race was the finish. OK, that is a given, but it really was THE BEST! Brek was standing on the other side of the finish line waiting for me. He threw his arms around me, scooped me off the ground, and spun me around. He was so proud of me! I love that man!!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Five days before the Spudman? You have got to be kidding me!

It happened.

The one thing I dreaded happening....well, it happened.

When Brek brought a shiny new bike home for me a couple of months ago, I was excited, but also a little bit scared. OK, I was a lot scared! Shoes that clip into the pedals? I mean, come on. That is just asking for trouble!

But, I survived the first ride, with Brek as my guide. I followed him, listened to his instructions, and actually found it to be not all that scary.

The weeks went by. I got braver and braver. I ventured out on my own. I felt more and more at ease. I enjoyed biking way more than running. And then it happened.


I wish I could tell you I crashed in some glorious manner, but sadly.....that is not to be. How did I crash? I am embarrassed to tell you, but here it is. I ran right into Brek! Way to go Emily!

So, why am I smiling in the picture? Because I am HOME! I felt some serious nausea after crashing, and was very relieved that it passed long enough for me to ride home. My kids, and several neighbor kids were all playing in the driveway, and now I am some sort of super mom who crashed on my bike and lived to tell about it!

Go Mom.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

King of the Mountain

Tonight we went to a mountain lake with Grandma and Grandpa Pilling to do a little hiking and fishing. Josh, being a true fisherman at heart, headed straight to the lake. The girls, however, began climbing the mountain. They climbed and climbed and climbed, higher and higher and higher. I finally decided to go up and help them, knowing it was easier to go up than come down. When I finally caught them, I discovered they were both climbing in bare feet (they had stashed their flip flops somewhere along the way).

A few comments I overheard as we were climbing:

Maddy: Whoa Syd. Where are you going? I wouldn't climb up there if I were you. OK Syd, you are freaking me out. (pause....sigh) Oh well, (climbing up after Syd) I don't want you to be king of the mountain!

Later, as we were coming down, I was holding Maddy's hand, helping her.

Maddy: (Letting go of my hand) It's OK mom, I can do it. You be careful. You're the only mom I've got.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Vacation a la Montana

Here is the reason for my absence from the blog world as of late: a week-long camping trip to Glacier National Park in northern Montana.

If you asked me two weeks ago about this trip, I might have groaned. Because in all honesty, a week of camping was not my idea of the ideal vacation! I knew my husband and kids would love it, so I agreed to go. Not only were we gone for a week, but it takes a good couple of days to prepare, and a good couple of days to recoup.

But, having said thus, let me now say that I was wrong about the trip. We had a great time! It is so beautiful there....beautiful forests, rivers, streams, lakes. We only saw a few bears, none of which were near our camp--thank heavens!! I became proficient at cooking on a propane stove, and even started a fire on my own one morning when Ben and I were the first ones up.

AND, I gained greater appreciation for my kitchen sink, stove, dishwasher, and washer and dryer!!

We enjoyed boating (loved surfing behind the boat!), hiking, fishing, river rafting, biking, ice cream, campfires, etc. Brek's brother Wade and his family came, as well as one of their friends. We had a great time with them.

Sorry for all the pictures, but you have no idea what a hard time I had narrowing it down to this many. I took hundreds of pictures! So, here is quick recap of our trip in pictures.

Josh lost one of his shoes while trying to rinse it off in the water. The water was moving fast, but Scott saved the day. He took off running down the bank of the stream, and when he saw the shoe he dove in, saving it just in the nick of time! I only wish I would have gotten a picture of the dive....it was great!

Jumping in freezing cold water!!

Ben's favorite part of nature....the rocks.

Driving up Logan's Pass, stopping to enjoy beauties along the way.

The top of Logan's Pass was covered in snow! The kids had a great time sliding down glaciers and having snowball fights....in flip-flops!

The penguin slide....a Scott and Josh trick!

Fun at Echo Lake.

Hiking to Avalanche Lake....beautiful!! Waterfalls everywhere!

I took good care of my poor, exhausted baby....

and Brek took good care of his baby!!

Water skiing in the early morning hours. Thank heavens for dry suits!

And last but not least, the boys hiked into a remote area for some great fishing. However, they spotted two grizzlies along the way! Thank heavens they all returned home safe!!

Monday, July 14, 2008

And so, we say goodbye to baseball for one more year

Tonight I will be fixing dinner for my family. And what is so special about that, you may ask? Well, this is one of the first nights this summer that we are not at the baseball field, or gone on a vacation. Baseball finally came to an end. Scott's team didn't win this year, but he has won his fair share of baseball tournaments. He got to pitch this year and did a great job! Who would have know he was such a good little pitcher

Syd's team did great this year, thanks to the excellent coaching staff! Ha-ha....Just kidding. I only say that, because I just so happened to be a member of the coaching staff! Lana and I decided to coach our girls this year, and our friend Trista coached with us. We had fun with the girls. They did a great job! They ended up taking first place in the tournament! Go Kodiak! I don't know what they were more excited about....winning, getting a trophy, or going out for snow cones after! Sydney is such a great little player! Not to be outdone by her brothers, she hit a home run or two, and played a mean pitcher and first base.

The best part of the championship game: Last inning, we were up by 6, they had last bats. There was one out, and somebody hit the ball to our shortstop (Hallie Cook). Hallie looked around to assess the situation, but by the time she could have gotten anybody out, they were safe on their bases. However, the girl who was on third decided to head for home. At any other time, she would have easily made it home. (Most girls in this league can't catch.) Hallie, seeing the girl heading for home, took off after her. Keep in mind that Hallie is about a foot taller than most girls this age. The poor little girl heading for home was no match for Hallie and her long legs. Hallie caught her just before she touched home! Way to go Hallie!!

Josh also had a great year. He is a great first baseman! And he can bat right or left-handed. He and his friend Davis, who played catcher, were quite the team. They ended up taking 2nd place. They have taken 2nd place for the last 3 years, and I knew Josh would be disappointed if he lost. Last year, he was so upset when they lost the championship game. But, this year was different. Even though he was sad to lose, he was such a great sport. In fact, he went around cheering up his teammates who were upset. I was so proud of him. Way to go Josh!

Maddy and Luke did lots of running around, playing in the dirt, eating treats, etc. Whenever there was an empty field, they loved to go run around and have pretend games.

And then there's Ben (and Carly--Lana's baby). They did lots of sitting in the stroller! They were such good babies....thank heavens!!

Sunday, July 13, 2008

I love campfires, but I hate dust!

The Burtenshaw family reunion has once again come and gone. We went camping/four wheeling/swimming, etc. Trav was the leader of the expedition, taking us to a prime spot....or so we thought.

Upon arrival, we found that Trav had led us to a very pretty spot of land....a pretty spot of land used for ranching cows! So, finding a flat spot of land that wasn't covered in cow pies was a bit tricky. Yes, cow pies! Gross. However, after much searching, we found a spot that would accommodate tents for 4 families, and two camper trailer thing-a-ma-jigs. (Obviously, I am not well versed in the correct camping lingo for trailers and such. Is it a trailer, a camper, a 5th wheel??? Who knows!)

One of those trailers (a 5th wheel, I think?) was driven by none other than my dad. First of all, let me say that my dad's idea of camping is going to the Marriott! Not only did he get to go camping, but he got to pull a great big huge 5th wheel (?), which he swore he would never do! It was hilarious to see him pulling that gigantic house on wheels. But we were sure grateful he did, since we were doing the primitive type of camping with no running water and NO bathrooms.

However, when all was said and done, we had a great time. The kids loved riding four wheelers, exploring around, and of course, roasting marshmallows. They were SO filthy!!! We went swimming at Lava Hot Springs, which was way fun, and floated down a river, which was not so fun. Let me just say we are very grateful that nobody was drowned, lost, or seriously hurt....nobody except for Jared, who is now getting surgery on his ankle! And when I say grateful, I really, really mean it! I think the Lord was watching out for us...truly.