Sunday, May 25, 2014

Spring Guitar Recital

This year has gone by way too fast!  Last Tuesday the kid's had their spring guitar recital.  As always I really look forward to this event.  The kids find time to practice during the year along with doing all their other activities and they work really hard at it. 

Of course their teacher, Kristi Houlton is just amazing.  Not only do I love to listen to her play but she is an amazing teacher.  Both kid's really like her and they have learned so much in such a short period of time. 

Marlie was first up at the recital.  She knew her songs well and I don't think she was nervous at all.  Those of you who follow this blog know she enjoys performing for people!  I love it because that was not my personality growing up and I'm SO glad she's not shy like I was. Wow does the world open up when you have confidence.  It's amazing.  Here she is playing Twinkle, Twinkle and Rocky Mountain High...
The next one was my favorite...partly because the kid's played together so I'm being fair by not picking one of their individual pieces...but honestly it was really good.  They practiced this a lot and just nailed it.  It's hard at this age to play with someone and listen to their music along with yours.  I love that they have the opportunity to play with each other.  Sometimes there are fights along the way but it's all worth it in the end!
And last but not least, Matt! Interesting when he first started guitar he was never nervous at guitar recitals.  But the last 2 he has been really nervous and hasn't performed as well as he practices.  This time he was really nervous (I don't think he looked up or even cracked a smile) but performed so well.  My favorite piece he played is Pendulum Waltz.  He does it beautifully with dynamics (music goes from loud to soft or vice versa) and doesn't stumble through this really long piece. I am really amazed! 
Ms. Kristi has some older students now (4th and 5th graders) and my kids really enjoy watching them play. Especially since they know most of them because they are older brothers/sisters of their friends.  Their favorite performance was by Ty would played and sung Count on Me by Bruno Mars.  I got in trouble for not recording it.  It was so cute...partly because Ty is just adorable and partly because he did so good.  For some reason I wanted to cry during his performance and I don't even know why?? 

The kids were excited when Kristi presented them with certificates and medals! I love this picture that my friend Karrie sent.  Matt & Jackson looking at their medals while their little sisters are excited about theirs too.  What a neat group of kids!
Kristi we can't thank you enough for your patience, kindness and for teaching our kids to play.  We are so lucky to have you in the neighborhood.  And the music you've brought into our school is wonderful too.  You have a special place in our hearts!

Friday, May 16, 2014

Matt's First Communion

We have been working hard for the past 2 years getting prepared for First Communion.  Last Saturday was the big day!

Matt was excited about it and maybe a little nervous too.  The really neat part is that he got to do it with his best friend Caden and his friend Ryan too!  The boys looked so handsome!
Matt said the wine tasted terrible but can't wait to go to church this Sunday since he can take Communion again.  It was wonderful that everyone came into town for the big event.  All our Grandparents and Aunt Dawn (Matt's Godmother) and cousin Lauren! 
 Uncle Jay, Matt's Godfather, came by to wish him luck before heading off to his game. 
Matt I am really proud of you! I know God will take care of you and guide you throughout your life.  I pray that he helps you to be a kind and loving person to those wonderful people around you that he places in your life. AND you look amazing in that suit!  I think you had it off before we even got out of the car but I got plenty of pics! 

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Our First Ski Trip

For the past few years we've been talking about going skiing but weren't sure if the kids were old enough to have a positive experience.  So we decided this year they were ready so we went for spring break!  After some research I learned that Beaver Creek is one of the best family resorts and has a great ski school.  Plus we found great airfare to Denver so off we went!

Doug loves skiing and is a great skier.  I freeze when it's 70 degrees out and am not near as good as he is.  Who decided to strap sticks on their feet at the top of a tall mountain? So as you can imagine Doug was crazy excited. He studied the trail map for hours before we even got on the plane.  I was nervous...about the cold, about the kids, about getting off the lifts, about my ski gear, you name it.  How in the world was I going to help my kids ski when it takes every muscle in my body to keep myself upright?

So we decided to enroll the kids in ski school for the first few days.  Matt got lucky and ended up being the only kid his age who was a beginner so he got a private lesson all day from his new favorite person, Coach Ramiro! Ramiro was from Argentina and was so good with Matt. It wasn't long before they were off the gondola and on the chair lifts headed to the top of the mountain.  I ran into them twice and was completely amazed at how well he was skiing on his first day!  The next day of ski school as the kids and instructors gathered to see who was going to ski with who, Matt stood right next to Ramiro and didn't leave his side.  Matt wasn't going to ski with anyone else and I was glad that when they tried to assign Matt to a different coach that Ramiro said "no he's with me". 
Marlie got to ski with Ms. Kelly and man was she good too!  She had 4 little beginners all day and she was so patient, kind and would get crazy excited when they did the smallest thing. She taught them how to be independent so Marlie could put on and take off her skis on her own.  She got to ski with Ms. Kelly the entire time she was in ski school and that was great too! 
Doug and I got to ski on our own the first day which was nice.  The last time I skied I was 10 weeks pregnant with Matt so I wasn't sure if I'd remember.  After being completely nervous for the first 5 minutes, it all came back, thank goodness!  Doug even got me on a blue run right away and I managed to make it down fairly well.  But at the end of the day everything hurt!  So Marlie and I rested on day 2.  Matt couldn't wait to ski again so he and Doug went and had a blast! It was colder that day and snowing but that didn't stop them.  Doug was beyond excited that on only day 2 he had a ski partner that loved it as much as he did. They spent the day skiing blues!
Day 3 the Wellmann's arrived and Matt was so excited!   
The adults got to ski for a bit which was really nice.  We finally all met up to ski together on Day 5.  However, it was impossible to keep up with the boys.  They were crazy fast and always wanting to go through trees and on little jumps.  Marlie held her own too.  So we never got a group picture together which makes me sad.  But we did get a couple of our little tribe...
I love this video of the kids skiing down like they've been doing it for weeks!  I must say that you should be proud of me for skiing while videoing! 
Melissa planned a sleigh ride and dinner at a nearby ranch and we somehow had enough energy to enjoy it.  The food was great, the kids loved requesting songs from the guitar player, we loved the sleigh ride and most of all I think we loved making smores by the fire pit!
The last day I was toast.  If I would have skied I'm sure I would have broken something.  But the kids both wanted to ski one last time.  Marlie loves to be lazy with me so I tried to convince her to lay in bed with me and watch movies all day but she said no.  So Doug and Matt skied together in the morning while Marlie and I did some shopping.  We met for lunch and then Matt and I went ice skating while Marlie and Dad skied.  The ice skates seemed different than what we've used before so it took us awhile to get used to it, but eventually Matt got it and then didn't want to stop. 
I'd say it was definitely a successful trip.  Relaxing, no, but the kids loved it.  Doug was their ski instructor the last couple of days and he had Marlie going down blues and Matt tried a black! So my hope of at least having someone to ski with me down greens is gone!  I'm glad they loved it and now they'll have something fun to do with Daddy!