Saturday, December 24, 2011

Winterfest!

On December 13th Caitlin's gymnastics studio had its annual Winterfest. Winterfest is when all the kids perform their routines that they've been working so very hard on for the last few months. Caitlin's is below. She was so proud of herself for working hard and getting her routine right! She was so proud that Daddy worked from home that day so he could go! I was so proud of her for tucking her chin under before doing her tumbling! It was a good day, enjoyed by all!


video

Monday, December 19, 2011

Glasses!

Somebody got glasses!!!

Doesn't she look thrilled?

Tomorrow we're getting a haircut!



Thursday, December 08, 2011

What It's Like

Yesterday I spend a lot of time on the couch. A lot of time holding my boy. A lot of time wiping away tears and talking in a soothing voice. Why? Because he's a sensitive child.

I'm sure there's some sort of official diagnosis of a highly sensitive child and I'm sure that Brandon wouldn't fit in. Any sort of clinical terminology would included being sensitive to clothing, textures, or temperature. Or having anxiety or fits. Brandon isn't like that at all. He's an introvert, but he loves to socialize as long as it's on his terms. Maybe highly emotional, at least about himself, is a better explanation. He's got the highly emotional brain, and it lacks its own "calm down" mechanism.

We usually play at the school for half an hour or so after it gets out. It's cold here right now, but the school is right in the sun. It's fun for the kids, and gets out a lot of energy. With these cold days getting darker earlier, getting out the extra is a necessity! At some point after school yesterday there was an altercation at the tether ball pole between Brandon and J, on of our neighbors. Neither one of them fully understands the rules of the game, and both were playing their own version, causing distress and misunderstandings. After we got home we noticed that part of the snow fort in our front yard had fallen down. The boys had worked hard on this all weekend. Whether it was knocked down or melted I don't know. The sun was intense yesterday, so I'm guessing it just melted on its own. But it didn't matter to Brandon, the cascade of tears started. It never got better, either. Caitlin went over to our next door neighbor's house for a while, and Brandon couldn't get a grip.

The rest of the afternoon and early evening were like this. There were tears over homework, tears over the fort, tears over tether ball, tears over not wanting to do the extra credit project (which we're not doing), and tears over his AWANA memorization homework. He opened up about school work and home work, and there were tears over the fact that he feels like he can't keep up. There were tears over friends. When J came over (at 5:10!) to play, there were tears that he was here and tears that he left. Brandon wasn't kind when J came over, so I'm not surprised he left! Every time I turned around yesterday something was wrong.

There are so many tears! Over every little thing! I'm glad Brandon opens up to me and will tell me what's wrong. But I hate the fact that he has to get all worked up over it all. We could never let him "cry it out" as a baby because he'd get himself so worked up. It's no different now. Once the cascade starts, it's up to me or Brian to calm him down. To quell the rising storm. And nothing we say is ever right. When Brandon was little, around 1, I realized I couldn't go to the park every day. Or have a friend over. We needed to be alone several days out of the week. I tried very hard not to schedule something more than every other day, with a maximum schedule of 2 days on, 1 day off (at home). He is still that same child and I operate in a similar way, but now he has to go to school every day. And he has homework. Toss AWANA and/or after school sports in there, and the mix become volatile sometimes.

Brandon's emotional meltdowns don't happen every day. Sometimes they don't happen for weeks! We see emotions almost daily, but the last week and half has been hard. As the parent, I can usually see the signs. I see his tired face after school. I can hear the emotional distress in his voice. I hear the crying when something has gone wrong. If I don't get to him soon enough, the build up begins to tear him down. And it doesn't stop. Once he gets over emotional, anything and everything can set him off. He needs time alone, but doesn't really know how to ask for it. When I suggest it, he thinks I'm punishing him. Occasionally I find him up in his room reading, and that's just find with me. He craves routine, and when routines change he gets emotional. People and outside activities drain him, but he can't put words to those feelings. I tell him he doesn't have to go out and play, and I mean it. I'm lucky that this usually only happens at home, and I'm lucky it's not every day. But it's exhausting.

I limit his after-school activities to AWANA on Wednesday nights and usually one after school sport each semester so as not to overwhelm him. The end of the day and the end of week are both tiring for him. His teachers have talked about how smart and helpful he is in class, and that he's a model student. Then he cries over his homework. He's in the TAG (talented and gifted) program at school, but I recently pulled him out of the writing part of it because the TAG advisor thought it was a bit emotionally exhausting for him. His emotional state can be such a roller coaster sometimes! Brandon is always super helpful when we're around younger children and loves babies. He has this high-pitched maternal voice that he uses when talking with children under 2. It's very cute! He loves cats, but is skeptical about dogs. He fell in love with my sister's dogs during their visit over Thanksgiving, which surprised even him! He cried for days after the dogs left. The world wears him out. He loves being alone, or with just his family. We're lucky our child still finds us fun!

It's an emotional roller coaster. The ups and downs. Happy and sad. Joy and tears. Turning down activities and groups. Getting up earlier or leaving early so as not to rush him. Dealing with the funny looks because we aren't going to join you. Explaining to him what's going one, or when and why our routine is changing to avoid the storm that can arise when he isn't prepared. Always trying to be one step ahead with food, a plan B, something to say to calm the upcoming melt down. I understand this, but more than that, I'm the one who deals with most of his emotional outbursts. They're habitual and consistent, but not daily. I'm looking forward to our upcoming two week break, and the fact that we're not traveling for Christmas. I love him dearly, but I need a break, too. This is what it's like.

**One a lighter note, he was thrilled later on in the evening that he's successfully said his AWANA verse. It was long, and he'd gotten all worked up about not being able to memorize it. He was pretty happy on the way home, and bed time was easy.

Tuesday, December 06, 2011

Snow Dayz!

It's been cold here, with lows just below zero, and highs ranging from 10 to 35. Doesn't seem to matter, though, as the kids bundle up and head out to play! It snowed twice last week, and the cold temps have kept that snow around for a while. I hear it's suppose to get up to 40 on Saturday! Woo hoo! It might melt the snow, but I'm okay with that. I love having a real winter!




Brandon and his beloved snow fort. All the neighborhood kids helped build it.


Thursday, December 01, 2011

Thankful for a Garage

Woke up to 4 or 5 inches of snow this morning. I knew it was coming, but yet it seems strange. Probably because it was 60 degrees yesterday! Our neighbor takes her son and Brandon to school in the mornings, and we got down there just as they had started clearing the snow of their cars. It's days like this that make me glad we park in the garage. I'm glad that Brian and I have managed to pare down our things, and install shelves and hooks in the garage, all in order to park two cars there. It's a tight squeeze, and we still have way too much stuff, but both cars fit! If I worked a little harder at it, I'm sure I could get rid of more. Between icy cold and snow in the winter, and hail storms in the summer, garage parking is a must in the Colorado suburbs!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Keeping My Name!

Caitlin has been telling us that when she gets married she's not going to change her last name. And she doesn't want to be called "Mrs.". I don't really care if she changes her last name or not - but why is she so concerned with this at the ripe old age of 5 and a half?

Saturday, November 05, 2011

A Little of This... A Little of That....

What did we do in September? You know, on top of our regularly scheduled life? Here's a look:

In September, Brandon played soccer. Games were on Friday nights instead of Saturday mornings (yay!). This all ended a few weeks ago in mid-October, right before it got really cold (another yay!).



We rented a condo up in Winter Park over Labor Day weekend, and had a fun time with our little family. Our condo was near a train track (which I did not hear at all at night! Great windows!). It was a coal and freight train from the nearby mountain mines. We explored the train tracks, and found many squished coins on the rails. We rode on the Alpine Slide at the Winter Park ski resort- multiple times!


Brandon also joined a Sunday afternoon baseball league. There we no weekly practices, just a small practice and a game on Sunday afternoon. He's really been into baseball this last year, and has expressed some interest in doing little league in the spring. We thought it might be good for him to actually play a few real games before joining. Little league and Brandon's beloved spring soccer run concurrently, so who knows if he'll be doing little league at all this coming spring. We'll just have to see.


Brandon turned 8 in September. On his actual birthday we went to a Rockies vs Giant's game. It was fan appreciation night, so we were treated to a spectacular fireworks display after the game. The next day we had his birthday party. The day after that Brandon went to another baseball game for his friend's birthday. That was an exhausting weekend!








Caitlin attended a taekwondo class with her friend Sam (pictured in front of Caitlin). She loved it! I just wish it wasn't so far away! It would be challenging to get to it twice a week with any regularity. It was also on the same night as Brandon's soccer practice, so it wouldn't have worked out in September. Right now Caitlin is happy with her gymnastics class. We'll reevaluate where we are during Christmas break, and see what we can fit in next spring.

Thursday, November 03, 2011

Halloween 2011

Yes, I know that Halloween was a few days ago. You're getting these pictures today because I had to take them after Halloween. In another great moment in parenting, I did not take a single picture of my children in costume, ready to go trick-or-treating on Halloween Day. Nothing. Not one. I didn't even realized that I hadn't taken any pictures until after the kids were snug in their beds, sleeping off their sugar high and trick-or-treating buzz. Luckily, they humored me the next day and agreed to dress up in costume, after school only (their request), and let me take a few pictures.




Caitlin was a rubber ducky, and Brandon was Darth Vader. He wants you to all know that he did *not* smile for these pictures because he did not have to.

Caitlin's costume took a little research to put together, but Brandon's was a quick buy at the local store! Yes! I had to do another costume for Caitlin's Nursery Rhyme festival at school, which took place on the 31st as well. Three costumes. I was glad that one was really easy!

Caitlin's rhyme to memorize for her Nursery Rhyme Festival was "Hickory Dickory Dock". Both my kids are good at memorizing, so that one was a breeze for Caitlin. She memorized it weeks before and would say it loudly and proudly at home, but barely whispered it in her class. For all her antics and drama moments, an audience can throw her sometimes. Here she is in her cute costume. It was so much easier to come up with an idea for this one (unlike Brandon's costume for his Nursery Rhyme Festival).



Caitlin and her class in their costumes


Brandon had a class party, too. He wanted me to stop by. I was one of only a few parents who came by (and most of them were volunteers running the party!). Maybe third grade is when the parents stop attending school functions. Here is hanging out at his desk.

Funny Peculiar

Am I the only one who finds it funny that this store put the Halloween candy on the same aisle as the weight management products?



Thursday, October 27, 2011

Cash for Candy?

I got this e-mail last night from our local school:

Bring your extra and unwanted Halloween candy to school Nov. 1 - 4.

The candy will be sent to our troops serving overseas and our PTA will receive $1 for every pound of candy we collect! Last year we earned over $300!!! Let's see if we can top that total this year. The school with the biggest turnout gets a $1000 donation!

Dear school:

for one, if my kids give you their candy, they will want the money. They don't really care about the PTA or the school getting it.

Secondly, with all the e-mails we get per day/per week from the PTA, I should also get extra money to compensate for the headache caused from all the clutter in my in-box.

The conclusion of this story is ..... I don't think my kids will go for this one! Sorry PTA! I think it's going to be up to us parents to regulate the candy this time!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Wacky

Welcome to another week of wacky Colorado weather. Good think I found the snowboots over the weekend, and that I haven't packed up the sandals!

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Classy!

Last week, after many agonizing weeks of Brandon crying during his homework time, I made behavior/chore charts for the kids. Along with things like "put clothes in your hamper," I had "homework without tears" for Brandon, and "no whining or fits" for Caitlin. Brandon has only shown a passing interest in doing anything on the charts, even though there's a prize at the end. Caitlin, on the other had, has shown GREAT interest in the charts, driving me to distraction with her endless cleaning and asking about stars on the chart. Obviously, getting a gold star is a love language with her.

Today she asked me if we could change up the categories for next week. She suggested the following:

No picking your nose
No laughing at your farts

Gots me one classy girl, I do!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Anybody Out There?

Hellooooo...........

Hello out there......

I'm dusting off this blog! I didn't make a single blog entry in September!! Shame on me! I didn't update you on Brandon's party, or our trip to Winter Park over Labor Day. Or my trip to Las Vegas. Or anything. Needless to say, I have not adjusted well to my new schedule. Caitlin having kindergarten 2 and a half hours a day is not really enough time for me to get to most of things that I've traditionally done during my kid-free time. Maybe by December I'll have it down. That's how I felt about kindergarten and first grade with Brandon.

I have to write to day. I have a milestone to celebrate! Four years ago today we moved into our current house. Four years! This is the longest I've ever lived in the same house in my entire life! I wrote about what I thought was the longest time I'd ever lived in the same house, but was later corrected. I guess we lived in another place/house for 3 years and 10 months. But now, at 4 years, this is the one. And.... I have the urge to move. I don't want to move (it's such a hassle), but I feel the urge to purge the closets and rooms. Kind of like what one has to do when one moves.

So, here's to milestones. To four years. To getting back to the blog.

I'll update you on the last 6 weeks pretty soon. This month. I promise!

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Wise Words

I noticed large white blobs floating around in the bathtub when I went in to wash Caitlin's hair. After a few minutes (and after seeing a gnarled, squeezed tube) I realized that she'd opened up my hair conditioner and squeezed it in the bathtub. The following conversation ensued:

Me: Caitlin, did you get into my conditioner and squeeze it all over the bathtub?
C: I just wanted to see what it would do!
Me: You need to leave my stuff alone. (A common lament of mine)
C: Come on Mom! Why don't you just put your stuff up so I can't get it?

Wise words, Caitlin. Wise words.... Unfortunately, I've tried that and I hasn't worked. You still find my stuff and still get into it!!!! I've found lip gloss in her bed, my shirts in her closet, and my shoes in her backpack. Where on earth am I going to put my hair conditioner if I can't leave it in my own bathroom? Thanks girl, for being wise and driving me to the end of my rope constantly.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Photos

I finally put up our photos from vacation (cue collective gasp!) Yes, I know it's been a while since I've posted new photos, but if you click on the "Photos" link on the right hand side of this blog, you'll go to our Picasa site. I'm sure I still need to edit them down and add some captions, but that'll have to wait. My eyes need a break from the screen. But they're up!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Gymnastics!

Just over a year ago, Caitlin announced that she wanted to play soccer. Her older brother loved it, and she wanted to join in on the fun. The trouble is that it wasn't fun for her at all. She liked the concept, but not the actual games. It was all fine and good as long as the sun was up and the day was warm. But if we had weather issues (major or minor), Caitlin was not at all in the game! Most of the time it was a chore to make her play. She wouldn't run after the ball after about 10 minutes. The whole idea of playing soccer just wore her out.

After much hemming and hawing from us (and sniveling and crying from her), and me swearing up and down that I was *never* ever going to enroll her in soccer again, we had her choose another activity that she wanted to do. And she chose gymnastics. I enrolled her in a gym close to home, and our first day was today! Yay! She woke up at 7:00 am and got dressed, she was so excited. It didn't start until 10:30, so she very impatiently waited around until it was time to go . She had a great time! I'm so excited she liked it!



The only bad thing about the day... the train. Right after leaving the class, we were stopped at a rail road crossing by a 100 car coal train. We had absolutely no options to go elsewhere, and just had to sit there. For 11 minutes (which is an eternity when you don't have a lot of time). Have I gone off yet about the "joys" of living on the edge of a rural area? 'Cause I can! Really! Coal trains are one of those "joys" ..... long, slow, and completely unpredictable. Luckily Caitlin's teacher was talking to a concerned parent and the door was still open, otherwise we would have been tardy on the 4th day of kindergarten through no fault of our own. Caitlin has agreed to run out of the studio right after class, and change in the car in the parking lot at school in order to avoid the train again. Have I mentioned how much I love our tinted windows? Can't see a thing!

Monday, August 22, 2011

First Week of School

Now that school's been in session around here for *over* a week, I should get a blog post up. Or some pictures. Or something. Getting a woozy head cold was not part of the plan. Or unexpectedly falling asleep on the couch in the middle of the day for an hour. Or having the A/C go out in Brian's car last week (still under warranty, thankfully!) in the middle of a hot summer. Or being overly bombarded by stressed-out MOPS coordinator about new members and welcome packet information. Besides getting the kids off to school and the necessary stuff done, I'm a little behind.

Brandon started school on Monday, August 15th, at 7:54 am. Really, now, we didn't need to start any earlier than last year. I seriously think the school board has it in for us. We start earlier, and get out at 2:00 on Thursday. Really? 2:30 is a little early to be out of school, but 2:00? Getting out the door in the early morning is not quite the struggle that it use to be, but a little extra sleep for the kids would be nice.




Caitlin didn't start school officially until Thursday, the 18th. Talk about a long drawn out process for the kindergartners. Monday and Tuesday were assessments for the incoming kids (80 in all). On Wednesday, half the kindergartners went to class. On Thursday the other half went to class without the first half (Caitlin fell into this category). And then, on Friday, they finally all went in together! Amazing. It was agonizing for Caitlin, and for me. I haven't played this many games of Candyland in long time! To pass the time during the week we:

Went to Sweet Tomatoes (Caitlin's choice for her "day before kindergarten" lunch).


Went to Target (where Caitlin achieved her goal of standing on one of the big balls outside).


And, finally, she went to school!!!! (Cue the hallelujah chorus!) Caitlin even woke up before 7:00 to go. Unfortunately for her, it didn't start until 11:30. It was a v.e.r.y. long morning.
She looked a little nervous in line to enter the kindergarten room, or maybe she was just squinting in the oh-so-bright Colorado sun, but was otherwise fine. She's only been waiting for this most of her life (or, since she was 19 months old!). Finally! Finally, she's at the same school as her brother! Not in preschool! She's a happy camper!
At some point in the near future Mommy will start enjoying her time without children. I have already gone grocery shopping alone, and not at night. Even though Caitlin's in school every day now, and school is just down the road, my time alone is the same as I had when she was in preschool 3 days a week (and less per day, since the hours are spread over 5 days instead of 3). Although it's nothing to complain about, I'm still not use to the schedule. It'll take a while. I'm use to Caitlin being gone in the morning, when I'm most productive. Not the case this year. Half day kindergarten makes everything feel very rushed (at least it did during Brandon's kindergarten year). But school is a good thing. Now if I could just ditch this head cold, I'd be fine!

Saturday, August 06, 2011

How I've Spent Most of My Summer

Crazy as it sounds, I'm starting to think my summer involved mostly water and children. Wonder where I got that idea?








Thursday, July 21, 2011

Repeat

Pete & Repeat go into a store. Pete leaves. Who is left?"
"Repeat."
"Pete & Repeat go into a store. Pete leaves. Who is left?"
"Repeat."
"Pete and Repeat go into ...... "


Welcome to my life of 3rd grade boy jokes! Brandon's got tons of them, and is humored endlessly by them. Oy!

Thursday, July 07, 2011

Home

We've returned. Returned from vacation, from the beach, from family and friends. Back to our home in Colorado. I took a lot of pictures, and I'll get those up at some point. Right now I'm enjoying the cool of the morning. I'm trying to enjoy it as Colorado is rarely cool in the summer. At least, not when you compare it to living near the coast! I'd rather be sleeping, but the constant, bright sun woke me up early, as did the barking dogs. I miss the ocean noises and cool breezes. One thing I dislike about our neighbors, about suburbia in general, is their dogs! I don't dislike dogs, I just hate that these neighbor dogs are frequently outside during my sleeping hours, and that they bark constantly! The tag line around here is "if the dogs aren't barking, they're not outside." It's gotten better, but they're outside all.the.time. Sleeping here is not easy for me, and those dang dogs are no help at all! I wish they were inside more.

The post-vacation recovery is going as expected. I've cleaned out the old food from the refrigerator and stocked it with new foods. I've become increasing worried by the ingredients in supermarket foods, so I'm trying to be better. That's not hard to do in this part of Colorado, but it did require lots of shopping right after returning. The kids have been intrigued again by their toys, especially the Lego's. I guess absence does make the heart grow fonder. As does LegoLand. I'm intrigued by my closet. We travel fairly light for a family of 4, which makes my closet seem all more wonderful when I return. Woo hoo - I have more than 4 things to wear! Mt. Laundry has been tackled and conquered (although some has remained in dryer wonderland. Guess I should go get that ..... ). Brian has returned to work. The kids keep asking where he is when they wake up. They got use to having him around! Once again the neighborhood kids are showing up at our doorstep. It's funny how Brandon likes to play with them, but does it whenever they show up. He rarely seeks them out. He's a lot like his mom. I love to be with people, but I'm bad at asking. We've gone swimming (Caitlin's favorite thing to do), and have our first kindergarten playgroup this morning with other afternooners. The mail has been sorted (or, getting there), and now I'm figuring out what errands I need to run tomorrow morning before Brian disappears for yet another week-long business trip. My kids, Caitlin especially, have never been good in stores, so I prefer to head out without them. That's hard to do in the summer.

So, I'm enjoying the morning cool. Right now I'm enjoying the chirping birds, too. I'm not their biggest fan at 4:30, when they begin the day with an hour or so of frenzied chirping! I can hear the lawnmowers starting up, which is going to ruin the quiet. Thursday is the day the town mows the walking path behind the house. That, plus the cacophony of other lawnmowers (a constant here over the summer) means the day is starting. I should wake the kids so we can enjoy a leisurely morning before heading to the school to meet the other kids. Such is a day in the life in suburbia!

Friday, June 17, 2011

VBS

This week was VBS at Caitlin's preschool's church. We were pretty excited it was this week because we were unable to attend VBS last summer due to travel. Last year all the VBS's took place on the same week in June - which was the week we were gone! This year it's much the same. Most of the places holding a VBS this summer are holding them during our vacation. But this year we had an exception. The kids were happy they could attend (can you see Caitlin there on the left? She's the one at the far end).

I volunteered to work in the crafts room this year, being that it's the first time both kids have been able to attend. With Brian gone all week, I'm not really sure what I was thinking. 3 non-stop hours of children was a bit grueling (there were 110 in attendance, with about half under the age of 5). I kept telling myself "it's only 3 hours", but I'm wiped out! I'm not sure I'd make it as a preschool teacher! With the feet and leg problems I now have, my legs get really stiff at the end of the day when I'm on them for an extended period of time. In all reality, I don't know what I would have done with all that time to myself, but one day would have been nice! Live and learn, I guess.

I was amazed at the church volunteers, too. Most of the VBS staff was made up of church attenders and the preschool teachers. The parent volunteers probably made up about a quarter of the staff. The church skews older, so I'm sure the kids felt like they were hanging out with their grandparents. In the middle of the week I overheard one of the volunteers say "I keep waiting for that second wind to kick in, and it never does!" That phrase kept reverberating in my head for the rest of the week. I haven't been this truly exhausted in a long time. The birds waking me daily around 4:30-5:00 weren't much help, either. I tried to bribe the kids into going out to lunch yesterday, but they were so tired they just wanted to go home. When has your kid ever turned down eating out?

We all had a good time, though. Along with VBS, we've done two play dates, soccer, and a afternoon at the pool. I'm tired! They're tired! But they loved it. They even asked if it was going to happen again this year. Maybe after vacation? Ha ha! They don't want to wait!


Monday, June 13, 2011

A Milestone of Sorts

In the busyness of the last few months, I forgot to mention something. We've lived in our house for over 3 1/2 years. Our move in date was October 12th or 13th, and we passed the 3 years and six months mark in April of this year. It's now June. We've been here 3 years and 8 months! This is no big deal to most people, but it does mark the longest time I have ever lived in the same house. In my whole life. In all my 41 years. The last time I even got close to this amount of time in one house was when we lived near Santa Cruz in junior high - which was around 3 years and 4 months. We were almost at 3 years in our last house in California, with no aspects of moving around in the bay area anytime soon. Until, you know, we decided to move to another state.

I've been going through my closets lately. Kind of strange because I did a big purge a few months ago - mostly outgrown kids toys, outgrown kids clothes and things I no longer love. The MOPS garage sale made a lot off of me! I brought out the kids summer clothes and stored the winter things to keep. I thought I'd done a good job, but then again, not so much. This whole 3 years and 8 months thing - it's the longest I've ever gone without a move of some sort! I feel so disorganized and overwhelmed with the amount of stuff we have, and the upkeep required to make our house clean. Of course, if the kids would just take care of their own stuff..... I do keep stumbling across items, wondering how they made it all the way out to Colorado. Right now I'm deeply in touch with the side of me that can let go of stuff. I'm trying to do as much as I can before I temporarily lose touch with her again. Or get to busy. You never know when either one of those scenarios will happen!


***I've been corrected by my mom. I guess I lived in another house in Big Sur for 3 years, 10 months. I guess I've forgot a little about my life as a 6-10 year old!

A Boy and His Boat

Somehow, Brandon managed to spot his remote control boat waaayyyy up in his closet a few weeks ago. I thought I hid it well behind his little suitcase, but his questions told me the my hiding skills were sorely lacking. After failing to remember to buy a 9 volt battery on about 10 shopping trips, I finally remembered! The heavens opened up, angels sang, and mommy and daddy and the kids headed to the great outdoors (otherwise known as Boulder) for a remote control adventure!

The inlet Brian had found near his office was clogged with cottonwood dander. A couple of days earlier it had been fine, but Saturday it was debris ridden. We stayed there for a little while, but the boat wasn't working all that well and Brian had to constantly clean out the cottonwood and algae from the propeller. Caitlin was not very entertained by the boat experience (then again, she never got to hold the remote), so she entertained herself by blowing bubbles and hanging with mommy.






After a while, Caitlin and I headed out on a better water scouting expedition. We found a place that looked like it had clearer water and relatively easy water access, but we had to drive there. Oddly enough, the nice clear water was behind the Waste Management headquarters. There were lots of garbage trucks and other vehicles going in and out. Dump day, maybe? We parked and went behind the administrative offices. There were many, many, many Canadian geese there. Unlike the rude Californian Canadian geese by our old house that take over your space and charge towards you if you get too close, these Coloradan Canadian geese were not happy with our presence and kindly all went for a swim. We had the water all to ourselves! The water was cleaner and clearer and not clogged with debris. There was a little spillway near our second destination that could have taken the boat, but Brandon managed to keep it away from that area. Although the front range didn't get much snow, the mountains had well over 200% of normal. Many rivers and streams are cresting and flooding, but not here. We had a nice remote control boat afternoon after all.