Monday, December 13, 2010

Birthday Celebrations

On December 6th we got to celebrate 2 special birthdays. Michael, and my Grandpa Barker. We started out the night by heading over to my parents house for dinner and cake to celebrate Michael's 14th birthday. The kids were so excited to help him celebrate. We had a yummy "breakfast for dinner" and then watched him open up his presents.

He liked the shirt we got him =)

After that we hurried over to the rehabilitation center that my Grandpa has been to surprise him. We met some of my aunts, uncles and cousins there and then my grandpa's wife Emmy wheeled him out. He was so surprised and touched to see us. A few times throughout the night he would start to cry and say how surprised and happy he was. Emmy bought the two birthday boys some festive Christmas hats to wear.

As we sang happy birthday to the two of them, my grandpa grabbed and held Michal's hand. It was so sweet.

Grandpa let Michael blow out the candles =)

I was so grateful that we were able to spend this night with my grandpa. He has been quite sick over the past month. When I had one to see him the week before when he was at the hospital, he wasn't doing too well. It was really hard to see him like that, so I was so glad that he was feeling so much better now and on the road to recovery. I love my grandpa so much, and am grateful to have been able to spend this special evening with him.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Levi the Wrestler

For the past little while we have been trying to find a sport to put Levi in. Everything that we mentioned, Levi would show no interest in. One day, Brandon brought up the idea of wrestling, and Levi loved that idea! That very day he found out about a junior wrestling team at Columbine High School. He got a hold of the director, and found out that it was starting that same day! So Levi started wrestling that night and hasn't looked back. He absolutely loves it, and never complains about going to practice. He practices two nights a week at the high school in the wrestling room. Brandon has been able to assist in coaching, and he is having a blast doing that. This past weekend was Levi's first wrestling tournament. It was at a high school in Cherry Creek, and around 600 other wrestlers participated. Here is Brandon helping Levi put on his wrestling shoes. Here is Levi doing his wrestling stance. This cracks me up! He always gets so serious and puts on his "mean face"

Levi's friend Nicholas from school is on his wrestling team. Here they both are before the tournament.

Each wrestler had two matches. They match them up with another wrestler of their same weight and ability. Levi won his first match! It was so fun to watch him. I was worried about watching him, and I thought I would be upset seeing him fight, but it actually was so cute! haha. For the second match he was matched up with a different wrestler that had also won their first match. He pinned the other boy within the first 10 seconds and won that match too! Since he won both matches he got a first place medal. Here he is walking back with his medal after the second match.

Here is Levi with one of his teammates who also won first place in an older age group.

Here he is showing off his medal =)
This new adventure has been so fun for Levi, and especially for Brandon! Brandon is one proud daddy, and will talk for hours about it. I video taped Levi's matches and Brandon has watched them over and over analyzing each move. It is so funny! Brandon was a wrestler in high school, so it is so fun for him to teach Levi.
Here is a video of part of the first match that Levi was in.
For some reason I cant get any of the other videos to load, but I am still working on it.

This has been such a fun new adventure for Levi. We just have to remind him, that he can't wrestle his sisters!

Friday, December 3, 2010

Getting ready for Christmas

I love Christmas time. It such a fun time of year! My kids were so excited to set up the tree and decorate the house, so last Sunday after church,I passed on my normal Sunday nap and dug out all of the Christmas storage boxes from the shed. Our kids favorite part is going through the ornaments and separating them into piles of whose is whose. While they did this Brandon set up the tree, I attempted to fluff it, Brandon fixed my fluffing job, and put on the lights. After that the kids went to town putting all of the ornaments on. I tend to be a little controlling about where the ornaments are placed, but the past few years I have learned to just sit back and enjoy watching them have so much fun putting the ornaments on (I fix them later =) ).

Levi was in such a silly mood, and I was so glad I caught this picture of him. These poses are very common for him, but he rarely will show anyone but us =)

The kids take turns every year, putting the angel on the top. They look forward to this so much and never forget whose turn it is. This year it was Alexis's turn.

Now Brandon just has to put our lights on the outside of our house and we will be set! I have them in the entry way in a big green box so it can remind him. But to tell you the truth, I think it is just becoming more of an eye sore for me, having to stare at that big green bin every day! He promised he will put them up tomorrow =)
Every year December goes by so fast, and before I know it Christmas is over. I always try and do something with the kids to remind them of the true meaning of Christmas. I will always spend hours making some elaborate thing for us to do every day and then after a few days we never do it becaue it is too elaborate. I really wanted to do something this year, but keep it simple. I have a block in my kitchen that says SIMPLIFY, and I have really learned this past year that simple is always better and more effective. So I was excited when I saw this cute activity in the friend.
Each night there is a question about the story of Jesus's birth. There is a page of ornaments with scriptures written on them that go with that days question. After reading the scripture and answering the question you then glue the ornament on the tree that they provide in the magazine. It is so simple yet so effective, and my kids have loved it so far. The questions are really simple. It starts at the beginning, asking "Who visited Mary and told her she was going to have a baby?" I just thought I would pass the link along, in case anyone struggles like me with things like that =)
I am so excited for Christmas!! =)

Medevil Day

Alexis has been learning about medieval times at school, and the culmination of the unit was medieval day. I took someones advice this year and shopped the Halloween costume sales to find costumes we would need throughout the year for different days like this one . Brandon actually spotted this one for Alexis for Medieval day. It was perfect, and she looked so cute. She was a little unsure about the hoop at the bottom of the dress, but once she put it one she loved it. She had a blast playing the part of medieval royalty. Her favorite part was the feast they had for lunch that they got to eat with no utensils!

By the time I signed up to help, they didn't need any more volunteers, but I did stop by to see her at lunch. The teachers did a great job at making this day fun for the kids. We will definitely be keeping this costume on hand for when Tori has medieval day =)