Saturday, July 26, 2008

A Perfect Day

Since the girls are gone, Zeb and I took advantage of some time before I start back to work and headed for Estes Park.
It was one of the best days I've had in a long time. It was great to have some uninterrupted time with my husband and get to do some kid-free activities. Don't get me wrong, I miss the girls but absence does make the heart grow fonder.

While Zeb took most of the day off, he still had one conference call to be on so I dropped him off at McDonald's (where there is wireless access) and I headed out to the fairgrounds. They were having a hunter/jumper show there and I knew I could easily pass some time watching the riders while I waited for Zeb.

Oh gosh, did it bring back memories! The smell, the horses, the arena, the rain in the middle of the show...I loved being back here. Showing in the horse show in Estes Park each year was a highlight of my summer. I loved every minute of it. I remember winning some and losing some. I remember Tiger breaking free and running around the place as we chased him. I remember trying so hard to be one of the cool riders. And I remember trying to sell turd birds to raise funds for our horse club (not so cool by the way). Most of all I remember my horse, Tiger, who shared my childhood with me and who I still miss each day.

After Zeb was done with his call, we walked up and down the streets of Estes Park window shopping. We took some time to sit and rest and I pulled out a book and read while the sights and sound of the river provided my backdrop.

We ate a little Italian place out on the patio and listened to some great live music. I can't even tell you the last time I listened to live music but we stayed as long as he played.

We then did a little more walking and found another band playing outside. It was a christian music band and we stopped and listened to them as well. They were a good reminder for me that all the happiness I have was given to me by God and I'm blessed.

Since we left the dogs home alone, we made our way back to Parker in time to hit the hay.

It really was a perfect day.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

The Girls are Gone

Well, it is that special time of year when the girls get to go to visit their Grandparents in Walsh, Colorado. It has been a highlight for Keara the past few summers and this year Kailei is joining her. We packed them off and shipped them off Thursday and they will spend a wonderful (yet hot) week with Grandma and Grandpa.

I can remember when I was a little girl and spending time with Grandma and Papa T in Florida. It was the best and I cherish those memories still today. As much as I miss having the girls around, I also know how special this is for them.

Life in Walsh moves at a different pace and I think it is great that they get the opportunity to go.

Thanks Grandpa and Grandma for having them down there. Enjoy your time together.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

More Pictures

Just some a link to more pictures from the mother/daughter weekend.

Monday, July 21, 2008


Kailei woke up in my bed today, looked at me in the eyes and said, "Touche' Pussycat!" (LOL)

I think she is watching too many cartoons. :)

An Early Birthday for Kailei and Sydney

Continuing the sappy moments of yesterday, I find myself grateful once again. Grateful that I have such wonderful parents and siblings. Grateful that many are close by and we can share special moments and not so special moments with them. And although we all have our quirky ways, love is the foundation for it all.

So yesterday, after our mother/daughter weekend, we came home and the family came over to celebrate Kailei and Sydney's birthday. Yes, it is a month early but Dad and Mom are heading out of town and Mom had no intention of missing the girls birthday. So, with food, cake and decorations in hand she headed over here (where we have air conditioning) and we had ourselves an early birthday party. The girls were too cute dressed in their princess outfits, playing with their new stuffed animals and dancing around the house to their new princess dance dvd. It is always great to be with everyone. I love them all (and miss having Kevin's family around).

Thanks for making Kailei's birthday special Mom and Dad. Have a safe trip.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Our Last Day

Sunday we woke and went to the park….again. We managed to get our photos in and the mom’s plotted a weekend getaway for the dads and their daughters. The girls played great together this morning so we wrapped it up by going to out to lunch and then headed down the mountain (with sleepy children in tow).

As I drove down the mountain today, I started to get teary eyed. Yes, I’m a sap but I never thought I would ever have such a great groups of moms to hang out with. I never thought being a part of the mwcc group would mean so much to my children and me. I never thought I would have the opportunity to experience the highs and lows of parenthood with other moms and learn so much from all of them. I never thought I would love these women and their children so much. It is hard to describe but I’m grateful.

Girls and their Moms

Saturday we woke and made our way to the park. It was a nice park by a lake with lots of equipment for the girls to play on. We were there for a short time and soon snack time became the priority so we all sat down and ate (we do that a lot). Shortly after that we headed to the pool for a little fun. The girls just love swimming. It really isn’t my favorite thing to do (ok, maybe it is the whole bathing suit thing) but you just can’t deny those smiling faces.

After a good nap, we went swimming again (apparently you can never get enough) and then the highlight of the mother/daughter weekend began….the slumber party. I’m sure you have never seen or experienced such craziness. We first used some fabric paint and the kids designed a tote bag to use for many of their mwcc outings. Once that room was in shambles we went to another room and set up stations for the girls to go through. We had hairdo station, nail painting station, tattoo station and red dye hair spray station. There were girls everywhere and all tasks were completed in record time. We then sat down for a Chinese dinner and before we got the phone call to “please quiet down” we took the girls outside and let them ride bikes. Once again, you would not want to be one the road with any of these kiddos but they had a great time (give or take a meltdown or two). We wrapped up the evening with a few of the girls who stay up a little later watching a movie and eating popcorn.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Kicking Off MWCC Mother/Daughter Weekend

Friday kicked off our annual mwcc mother/daughter weekend. This year Sheryl set us up on Avon, Colorado which is just outside of Vail. Keara, Kailei and I got a head start on everyone and found our way to Lake Dillon around lunch time. The weather was beautiful and we had a great time walking around the lake, throwing rocks in the water, playing in the park and simply enjoying the beautiful scenery. We often take the mountains for granted living here in Colorado but I am reminding and awed at their beauty each time I get up here. And just being here with the girls made this day so very special.

We met the whole gang around dinner time in Avon. We are in a great hotel but quickly found our way to the park so the girls can burn some more energy. We shared a picnic pizza dinner and it could not have been better.

It really is wonderful to have these mom’s in my life and for the girls to have such special friends. Not a bad way to start a weekend I say.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Swimming Party

Spent Sunday afternoon with the Merwin-Olks and the Suter-Troutman's who invited us to their pool. The pool is always so relaxing and when someone else cooks dinner, life is even better. Can't think of a nicer way to end the weekend. Thanks Lynn and Paul for inviting us.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

An Irish Kind Of Day

Today was the Irish Festival and we try hard to make sure we go as it is a day that Keara feels special. Trying to balance the Chinese and Irish traditions is sometimes crazy but we do the best we can.

Mark plays hurling and gaelic football and his team always plays at this festival so we packed a picnic and headed out. The rest of the Archer and Wenzel clan attended as well so that made it a family affair.

We watched three of Mark's games, walked around the festival and then all went out to dinner (which only happens a few times a year).

Everyone had a nice time because the weather was just perfect (not too hot or cold) and all the Irish eyes were smilin' as the day ended.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Family Day Adventures

So every year when Family Day pops up (which is often some random day in early July) we venture out to do something fun together. Mind you that we often do things together but having a day with a title just makes it more special.

This year we rode the Georgetown loop train. It is about an hour train ride that goes up to Silver Plume and back. When the weather is nice, the train cars are open and the scenery beautiful. It was very relaxing (so much so that Kailei took a nap). We all really enjoyed the ride.

After the train ride, we grabbed some ice cream in Historic Georgetown and walked around the shops. Kailei and Keara were on a mission to spend their money but were unable to find exactly what they wanted. Keara ended up wanting to go back to the visitor center and purchased a necklace which has a columbine flower on it. She has now decided she wants to collect necklaces from places she goes. Kailei didn't find anything here so we took off before traffic got too bad.

To top off the day, we went to the White Fence Farm for dinner which is a great place for kids. Lots to do and lovely grounds to walk on. Another great family day.

Family Day

Today is Family Day. It is technically the day that Kailei was put in our arms and completed our family. So today we celebrate.

We celebrate our health. We celebrate the love we have for each other. We celebrate all the blessings that God has graced us with. We celebrate the struggles in life which help us grow. We celebrate the smiles and giggles that make each day brighter. We celebrate family and friendships. We celebrate life.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Christmas in July

Took some time to visit the North Pole on Thursday. It is an amusement park located in Colorado Springs and has a Christmas theme to it. I like it because it is in the foothills, has lots of shade, is never very crowded and has lots of rides for little ones. Sydney, Nic and Grammy joined us. The kids had a blast. I'm afraid Kailei is an adrenaline junkie but that should come as no surprise. I'm sure we will be down there again before summer is up because it is just too much fun.

Mom Came to Visit

Did you ever have someone growing up that you considered a "second mom"? I was lucky enough to have that special someone in my life. We met while doing the musical "Anything Goes" put on by the town of Parker. We hit it off and it was great to have someone to turn to when my parents just weren't cutting it, to have someone to talk to about anything and everything, to have someone who thought I was just great and supported me as much as my parents did. I had that special someone in Mary (and still do). I hope my girls find that someone as they grow older and perhaps one day some teenage girl will see me as someone to turn to and I can pay it forward.

Anyway, Mary was in town this past week and we squeezed in some time to do breakfast and I showed her around the new house. It has been a while since we have seen each other but she is never far from my thoughts and prayers. So glad we could visit. Love ya Mary!

Saturday, July 5, 2008

July 4th

Well, July 4th did not turn out quite as planned but we managed to have a good time anyway. We decided to kick off our 4th by going to the pool. Our friends the Wymans joined us and it was a perfect day to hang out in water because it was toasty around here. The girls had a good time but I'm afraid we tapped all of Keara's energy.

Of course we were a little clueless and thought Keara just needed a nap so we decided to head on over to Four Mile Historic Park with Mom since she having a less than stellar 4th of July with Dad sick. We basically got there and Keara was just too tired to walk around so she went home with Zeb leaving Kailei, Mom and I to tour the place. It is basically an old fashioned 4th of July celebration and my Mom just loves it. She pretty much wants to attend every year. It is always hot however and Kailei is not much for the heat so we traveled from one shaded area to another. Kailei panned for gold, wrote with quill and ink and ate a root beer float. We enjoyed the atmosphere but sure could stand it to be about 20 degrees cooler.

The last portion of the day included Zeb's brother Mitch and his family. They came over to watch the Parker fireworks and the cousins had a great time. Anika is getting cuter each day and Khiem will actually acknowledge "Aunt Chris" even if I don't have a ball in my hand. He had Kailei were a riot together.

Because Keara was just too worn down we watched the fireworks from our bedroom window while the rest of the Davison's went into town to see the fireworks live. They were of course beautiful but both Keara and I faded quickly and could be found asleep by 9:45pm.

All in all it was a nice day. Good friends and family to celebrate with. Can't ask for more.


After watching Keara throw up this week, Kailei could be quoted as saying...."Nobody should have to see that."

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Poor Keara

Nothing worse than being sick on summer vacation and our cutie patootie Keara has been down and out. What started as a cold merged with the flu and life has not been pleasant for Keara. She has basically been sleeping on the couch most of the week. Things got slightly better on Thursday but she is still not herself. In the mean time, we are using lots of Lysol and germ killer around here. So far so good for the rest of us.

Not so good for the Archers and Wenzels however since I heard my Dad was feeling sick, my niece got sick and passed it on to Tracie. The lastest word is that the whole Wenzel family is down and out. Yikes!

Don't 'cha just hate cooties!

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Our First Family Camping Trip

Never underestimate the power of persuasive mom's. Earlier this year a camping trip was proposed by one of the mwcc mom's and next thing you know I'm packing a tent. Now I haven't been camping in about 13 years but peer pressure permeated the air and alas I caved. The girls were thrilled needless to say.

We camped at Golden Gate State Park which was just beautiful. I feel like I had to pack the kitchen sink to prepare for the trip and despite the many forgotten articles, we managed to survive. And fortunately there were some camping pro's on the trip which saved this novice family.

We arrived late afternoon Friday night and promptly kicked things off with 'smores (my kind of camping). The kids slept well but Zeb and I had a rough night.

Sunday we packed up and headed over to a scenic overlook nearby. The weather was beautiful as we were leaving which just figures.

Overall it was a great time. Nobody laughed to hard at us and most importantly the girls had a blast.

Thank you to....
  • Sheryl for getting the ball rolling
  • Britt for finding the camp site
  • Beth and Lynn for organizing the food and packing lists
  • Gary for loaning us his tent and additional camp gear
  • Jeanne for sharing hot water so we could have hot chocolate
  • Lily and Sam for sharing their bikes
  • Zeb for making this as painless as possible for me
  • Keara and Kailei for their laughter and smiles
  • Everyone for reminding me how much fun camping can be