Saturday, May 23, 2009

Competitions, Camps & Concerts

Jesse's team made it to the National Clogging Competition at Lagoon, so we went down to that week-end before last. I took Joseph, Jesse, Mary, Libby and friends Kalli and Kailee (yes- it was a tongue-twister) down to Utah for the weekend. Joseph, Jesse and Kalli heading into Lagoon - wahoo!
The beautiful Utah mountains are the perfect backdrop for the rides, including the old "white" roller-coaster (that they are slowly turning into natural wood) that you can see at the bottom of this picture.Jesse and Kalli had a ball hanging around with Joseph and all their other friends that were there. We're gonna have to make bigger sticks for these two.And these cuties, Libby, Kailee and Mary are watching Jesse's competition. videoThis is Jesse competing - doing a Solo Line Dance. She is the second from the right. Way to go Jesse! It's so fun to watch her dance.

At Lagoon, while the older kids went on rides with their friends, Libby and I had a day from heaven! Besides getting to Jesse's dances, my whole goal in the day was to have fun with Libby. And did we ever! She was just tall enough to ride some of the more fun rides, but not old enough to want to go on wild ride after wild ride, which, to my 41+ year old body, was just fine. With just a few breaks in between, she and I went at those rides full force all day long. She wanted to go on the train ride twice, "to see the land that Great-Grandpa owned". I had explained earlier that my Great-great grandfather Ezra T. Clark owned the property that Lagoon was later built on. Late in the evening, most of the young children were gone, so Libby literally ran from one little kids ride to the next, having the time of her life. We laughed and giggled and said, "Wahoo, this is fun!" all day long. I just kept thinking, "I wish every human being on earth could have the pleasure of spending a day at an amusement park with a daughter like Libby." Unforgettable!

We got to meet up with my niece, Lindsey, for a few minutes outside the Bountiful Temple. What a beautiful spot! It was SO FUN to see her and her friend Tyler, even for a few minutes. She is a doll. (And she also reads this blog - Hi Lindsey!!)

We stayed in Utah with Shauna, my dear friend from college. What fun, not only for me to see Shauna's beautiful home and catch up on her life, but to meet her children and have our kids get to know each other and have fun. They had a lot in common, and ended up playing soccer every spare second (including at midnight out in the front yard). Thank you so much for your hospitality!

In the meantime, Bruce, Josh and Peter were at our ward's Father & Sons outing. (Joseph chose Lagoon over Father & Sons)Peter took his rocket, and Sat morning, they tried to get it to launch,with everybody standing around in anticipation.But to no avail! Something was wrong with it! So, it was onto the Obstacle Course.They had different races for all the age groups. Here is Peter on the swinging rope,
and then Josh.After the rope swing they had to roll down a hill and then climb under a truck.And here is Wild Hair Man's race:The word was that Bruce, being the manly man that he is, won the 40 and over age category for the obstacle course that was set up. Overall, he came in 3rd behind "Ironman" Ralf (a champion Ironman triathlete), and Brady, a 21 year phenom athlete. And then Bruce, my manly man husband!! Thanks to Clark for taking all the pictures!

But the bragging doesn't end there - they also won the contest where you had to build something out of twine (provided) and whatever they found in the woods, to transport ten young boys across a ~30 yard course in the fastest time. Josh had the idea to do a stretcher, and Bruce expanded it to a double stretcher,so they found some logs and built a sort of webbing between the logs that would carry weight. Far from comfortable, it still carried ten yelling boys across the 30 yards,for the win, in much less time than anyone else's! This did not surprise me at all, considering that I've seen what Bruce can do with twine and knots in the years I've been married to him. He can do anything! I'm serious. If you doubt me, come on a pack trip with us, and you'll see what I mean.

Have I given you the impression that I think my husband is Superman? Well, in our ward that's his nickname, and it holds up pretty well. :) I think he is THE MAN!!! But you don't have to be around me very long to figure that out.

Libby's 1st grade class did a unit on Famous Landmarks and Libby's was the Gateway Arch in St. Louis. She knows famous landmarks from all over the world!

On Tuesday evening, Josh's acapella group - The MAD Boys (short for boys from Madrigals) - had a special concert for the families of the boys. It was as delightful an evening as I've ever had. At the beginning, people were mingling around, waiting for the show to start. I saw a Hymn Book open on the piano, so naturally I sat down and started to play a hymn. It was an arrangement for men, and within a few measures, I was surrounded by male voices singing in beautiful harmony. GOOSEBUMPS!! To hear the boys sing up close was heavenly. These boys love to sing!Braiden, Jancen and Connor.Vinnie, Josh and Sterling.
While videotaping their songs, I looked over and saw this row of younger sisters watching their brother's sing! How cute is that!
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Here are the boys singing part of "Duke of Earl" (before the memory card ran out).

Today the boys are going to a recording studio to record a CD!! More about that to come!

Josh also sang later in the week with his High School Madrigal choir. It was awesome! We were privileged on Saturday morning to have a visit from Bruce's nephew Josh and his fiancee Rachel! They were passing through on their way to Oregon, and sat down and had breakfast with us. What a delightful occasion, to meet Rachel and see how happy they are together. Joshua Wayne has made one good decision after another in his life, and Rachel is no exception. We're excited to have her in the family!!

The high school Show Choir, of which Josh is a part, had a "Show Choir Music Camp" last weekend, and Mary participated in that. They learned a dance and then performed it at the Show Choir Concert on Sat night.

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Mary was so cute - she learned the dance really well!

Josh did a great job also in his performance, and had the honor of singing "Can't Help Falling in Love With You" as Elvis.
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Fun, huh? And how about Josh's voice!

I'm glad it turned out, because I was literally nauseated at the thought of coming up with an Elvis costume for Josh. I know some people think this is fun, but I really HATE costumes - I do. With only three days left, and getting desperate, I went to the local Costume store to see what they had, only to see an empty building where it had been. Yikes! Not knowing what else to do, I went inside the local Goodwill store, which was just down the street from the former costume shop. After saying a prayer, I found an old suit that I thought would look OK. And then the next day, my friend Tracie - bless her soul - hooked me up with the people that bought that costume shop, and I went at ten o'clock on Thursday night and got the wig and glasses from a lady in her home. Prayers are heard, and Heavenly Father saw fit to grant me my wishes on this prayer.

I'll have to post about Memorial day later.

Whew, you can all heave a sigh of relief. Ha ha!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Flashback

Five years ago (June 2004), this is what our family looked like. The thing that gets me in this picture is Libby's toes, and Peter's toes - sticking up because their legs are too short to bend over the couch. No one even going to Mutual yet.

And now, we have FOUR children that will be going to Mutual on Wednesday nights, because Mary has turned 12!!
Yes! Mary Berry Cherry (what we affectionately call her) has become a Young Woman, and is ready to join her three older siblings in "the big kid" stage of life.

I used to call her "Mary Berry" all the time, and then one day, when she was about three, she corrected me, "No, Mom, it's 'Mary Berry Cherry". And so it has stuck.

When she was little, about 9 months and older, she would go to anyone and everyone. We'd be holding her in the hall at Church or at the grocery store, and she would just reach her arms out to whoever was there, and want to be held by them. And I mean everyone, including men, which was so surprising to them. They would take her and say, "She wants to come to me?" She made more than one person smile in amazement.

That sociability has continued to be central to her existence. Anything that comes between her and her plans to play with her friends is excruciating for her. This trait is so obviously from her Mother that it is laughable. Until it's her Mother that gets in the way - then it's not so laughable. Ha ha Needless to say, Mary is a very loyal friend and sister.

Here are ten things about Mary that everyone should know:

1. Affectionate
2. Determined
3. Loyal
4. Smart
5. Pretty
6. Great soccer player
7. Talented piano player
8. Friendly
9. Reserve Grand Champion in the 2007 County Fair
10. Faithful

Happy Birthday Mary! We love you!

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Ruling the Roost

After our nice Mother's Day Breakfast last Sunday, this is what happened on the couch in the Family Room.





(Uh - no, Joseph was not beheaded.)Josh still rules the roost.

I'm headed down to Lagoon for Jesse's clogging competition, and Bruce is headed to the mountains for our ward Father-and-Sons outing. Fun weekend ahead!

Happy trails to you!

PS - Josh, after this post, you may have to really fight to rule the roost! :)