Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Whistler Trip 2016

Today was our last day skiing at Whistler.  We started by heading up the mountain on one of their gondolas.  We got up and started skiing down a green easy run which was a trail.  It was icy and narrow, so Simon and Sam got tired rather quickly.  When we got to the bottom, we decided to split up, so Jeff took Daniel and Sam up to the top to go on the Peak to Peak gondola, and Simon and I took a little break.

After lunch we skied one time down the Magic Chair to get our confidence back.  After that, we decided we would ride the gondola up to the top of the mountain.  We weren't sure if we would ski, but we did want to look around at the beautiful views.  When we got to the top, it was gorgeous.  We decided to ski down one run and then took a chair back up to the top.  After a little break in the lodge, we took the gondola back down the mountain.  I knew that it would be too much for Simon to ski down, it's a long way back down.

Then we headed back to our hotel.  I know it sounds like we didn't ski that much, but the rides today we took were much longer and the runs were a lot longer too.  I wanted to make sure I didn't wear him out and I really wanted him to enjoy the day, so we took it easy.  He did really well skiing too and is beginning to make turns while going down the mountain.  I'm so proud of all 3 boys as they have really learned how to ski.

Simon and I skiing down "Ego Bowl" with the beautiful view behind us.

Whistler Trip 2016

Day 2 at Whistler was another great day skiing.  The weather was sunny and warm.  And the boys did great again.  Daniel and Sam were ready to go up the chair lift, so I took them up their first.  Simon did a run with Jeff on the "magic carpet".  Then he felt ready to come over to the chair lift run.  We did that a couple of times.  The boys just continued to do well and gain more confidence.  Soon Simon was going down the hill all by himself.  He couldn't do that on Day 1.

After lunch we decided we wanted to ski over to the Whistler side.  So we took the chair lift up and skied down the other side.  We rode a gondola that took us up to another easy lift/run on Whistler.  We did that a few times and then headed back to our lodge.  On our way back, the boys had to go down a blue square to get down the mountain.  This was their first time.  We've stayed on green circles/easy runs up to this point.  Daniel did good coming down, but Sam and Simon needed a little help.  But we made it!

Sam and I

Simon and Jeff on the Magic Carpet


On the Gondola

All the Boys

Monday, March 28, 2016

Whistler Trip 2016

We are in Whistler, BC, Canada on our second week of spring break.  We are here to teach the boys how to snow ski.  We arrived yesterday, driving up from Portland.  We got here in the early afternoon and were able to walk around and look at the village before checking into our hotel.

The weather is just perfect, it's sunny and almost a little too warm.  This morning we got up and headed out.  We had to first go rent our skis and then it was off to the bunny hill!  We set our expectations low, not knowing how the boys would do.  But for their first day, I'd say they did really well and I am very proud of them.  Daniel was able to get the hang of it first.  He is now able to go down a green run by himself.  Sam can do the green run too, but he seems to fall a bit more.  Simon still needs help going down the green run, but he's getting there.  All 3 boys had a lot of fun, and we are excited about the next 2 days we have here to get better at skiing.  I'm glad they had fun, so we can hopefully build on this experience.

We also had fun in the pool afterwards and enjoying yummy snacks/treats and hot chocolate.

Here's a look back at day 1:

On Our Way to Get Our Gear

Sam, starting out

Daniel, starting out

Simon, starting out

Daniel and I on the Chair Lift

Sam, Going Down his First Green Run

Simon, on the Chair Lift

Friday, March 25, 2016

Shamrock 2016

This year, I signed up to run the Shamrock Half Marathon in downtown Portland.  This was my 4th year running in this race and my 2nd time running the Half Marathon which they just started last year.    It's a challenging run with a few hills that really push my limits of running.

The morning started out cool and drizzly.  I knew it was going to rain, I just didn't know how much it would rain.  I took MAX down to the start line.  I got there about an hour early.  There was really no place to stay dry, so as the rain continued to fall lightly, I got a little damp just waiting for the race to start.

The race started, and the rain kept falling.  I was hoping that it would let up, but it never got any lighter.  In fact, by around the second half of the race, it started raining harder.  By this point I was completely soaked.  It wasn't so bad running in the rain.  I stayed warm by the running.  But as soon as I stopped, I was cold and of course very wet.  The temperatures were in the 40's, so it was very cold outside.  My hands were numb and I could hardly move my arms.  I had to walk a ways to pick up my coat from the coat check tent.  Then I had to get on MAX and head home.  The entire time I was so cold, I started to shake a little.  Then I got in the car (which was also cold) and drove home.  The minute I got in the house, I took a long hot shower and started to unthaw.

Sometimes I wonder why I still do this race every year.  It almost always rains.  I think I like the challenge of this run.  And it comes at a good time of year in the spring when I am training for the Hippie Chick race in May.  And overall, although the weather conditions were not pleasant, I am proud to say I had a personal best for this run.  I ran 1 minute faster than I did a year ago doing the same run.

I don't have any pictures of this race.  I was even too cold to take a selfie.

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

School Stuff

Recently at school, Simon's class was in charge of Chapel.  One of the things you do when your class is responsible for Chapel is help lead out in song service.  So here are some pics of Simon helping his class with the song service.

An "action" Song

A Hand From His Teacher

The Kindergarten classes eat their lunch in the cafeteria, so when other classes come through for hot lunch, we get to see them.  On this particular day, Sam came through line for hot lunch.

Sam in the Hot Lunch Line

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Daniel and Basketball

Daniel played basketball again on the 3rd and 4th grade team this year.  The season started right after Christmas and went until Spring Break.  They played games against other 3rd and 4th graders at local schools in the area.  I could see a lot of improvement from him since last year.  He even made a few baskets this year.  I was very proud of him.  He seems to really enjoy it too which is great.  Here's a look:

Monday, March 21, 2016

Bike Riding Simon!

We are trying to get Simon to learn how to ride a bike without training wheels.  But first, he needs to get the hang of things with the training wheels.  While we haven't had a lot of nice weather this spring, when we do get a nice day, we try to get out and have him do more practicing.  Here's a look at his progress!

Sunday, March 20, 2016

Basement Fix

In February, we finally had our basement fixed for the flood problems we had back in December.  A crew came in and worked on it.  The first thing they did was rip off all of the drywall from the walls.  Then they dug up the concrete around the perimeter of the rooms.  Next, they installed this product that looks like bubblewrap for the walls which is intended to drain any water from the walls down to the floor.  On the floor, they install a gutter type system which collects the water and sends it to the crawl space of our house where there is a sump pump to get rid of all of the excess water.  Next, they put the concrete back over the gutter system.  Now we are left with bare walls and hanging electrical wires and 2 by 4's.  So we will be having a contractor come in and get the room looking more livable again.  It has been a big process, but we are glad to know that now we shouldn't have any more flooding.  Here's a look back.

Getting Ready to Start

After Taking off the Drywall and the Concrete

After Putting on the Bubble Wrap

The "Bubble Wrap"

After they are Finished

Saturday, March 19, 2016

Heartbreaker Half

We are on Spring Break!  Yeah!  How nice to have some time off.  I have been so busy lately, I haven't had time much to blog.  So my goal in the next two weeks is to catch up on my blog writing.  So if you're interested, here's the first installment!

I'm going to back up and recap some of what we've been doing.  January we didn't do too much but work and school.  Then February came around.  And one of the things I did for February is sign up for a race at the last minute.  I have never done this race before, so it was a new race for me.  One of my friends was running it and suggested I run the race too (thanks Renee!).  It was called the Heartbreaker Half.  There is a Half Marathon and a 10K.  And it just happened to fall on Valentine's Day this year.  So Sunday morning I got up and ran the race.  It was rainy and cool, but it was still fun.  I did the 10K.  I've been training for the Shamrock Half, but at the time I wasn't ready for a half marathon.  I'm not sure if I would do it again, since the weather will probably always be bad, but it was fun to try something new and run a race in February.

Here are some pics:

Renee and myself

Travis and Donald ran too!