Sunday, January 22, 2012

January Update

January has flown by. We are doing more of the same, but we are happy, busy, and healthy. Here is a short update on the family.

Ashley - Ashley is diligently working on her piano. She practices an hour every day and her progress is impressive. She has passed me. I can't even sight read her performance pieces. She gets to compete in two competitions this year and she is working hard to perfect her technique. I am proud of her and I love hearing her play. She is also working hard at gymnastics and is hoping to make the Eagles team in the spring. She goes 4 1/2 hours a week and has made a lot of progress. She has overcome a lot of her fear of beam and can do a great vertical handstand and dismount. She is closer to her kip and can do a round off back handspring. She continues to excel at school and came home this week with a perfect report card. Her teacher likes to tell me that if every student were like Ashley her job would be easy. She loves advanced math. She still doesn't know what she wants to be when she grows up, but I'm pushing for her to be a dentist. She loves stuffed animals and spends a lot of her time designing rooms, games, and other activities for her animals. She is a great big sister and all three look up to her. I love having her around.

Katelyn - Katelyn is excited to get her tonsils out in February right after her birthday. They have tortured her for years and she is finally ready to do it. She is preparing for her baptism in March and is extremely excited for her Amazin' hamster birthday party we are having in a few weeks. She is full of energy and joy. She does everything with a skip in her step and I find her upside down on her bed reading at night. She is excelling at gymnastics and has been promised a move-up to the level 5 competition team in the spring. She will practice 12-15 hours a week and seems happy about it. She can do the whole bar and beam routines and is working hard on vault and floor. She is fun to watch. She came home with a perfect report card, but is suffering from boredom at school. She never wants to go and complains often about how boring it is there. We are discussing, again, a jump to 3rd grade. It's not what I think is best socially, but her teacher is pushing for it. We will see what happens. She gets her social at the gym, so it may work out. I love this girl. She loves games of all types and has the gift of winning. She is a great sister and is the planner of the bunch.

Justin - Justin is a lot of fun right now. He loves playing basketball, kinect, games, and doing whatever his sisters are doing. He is up for whatever game they have planned, even if that means he is the prince. He is so great with Mia and is very sweet with her. He is so social and needs people around him at all times. He is into swimming right now and is getting braver in the water. He earned a date swimming with dad yesterday and was so nice to invite Mia along. He is working hard in school. His teacher called me in to tell me that he was the only kid in all of her kindergarten classes to score perfectly on the dibbles testing. While I have a lot of faith in Justin, I was extremely surprised. He struggles more in school then the others and we have been doing school for at least 30 minutes everyday. I was very proud of him and in the last couple of weeks he has made incredible improvement. He is reading fairly well and I now find him on his bed reading himself books....the first time I saw it I almost cried, since I was thinking he was going to struggle with school forever. Phew. I'm relieved.

Mia - Mia quit ballet so she could start gymnastics. She is already excelling and has her sights set on team like her sisters. She loves school and I am trying to figure out what to do with her next year. She misses the kindergarten deadline by 1 week and is so so ready to go. I may end up sending her to a longer pre-school to fill that school need. I wish she could just start kindergarten. She is a lot of fun. She is the girly girl of the family. She still only wears skirts and is into frilly things. She needs lip gloss on and sparkles sprayed in her hair. She loves her bitty baby and she and Justin spend hours making rides and games for this baby. I love having them both home with me in the morning. Mia loves me. She still cries when I leave her places and tells me that she just loves me so so much. Everyone needs a Mia around.

Hans is busy with work and scheming for the future, as usual. He started a basketball league at Lifetime and is loving it. He is still busy with Elders Quorum stuff and does a great job serving those in our ward and neighborhood. He still manages to find time to spend time with me, volunteer at the school, and take the kids on dates. I love him. He was nice enough to ride his bike next to me while I ran this week.

I am so so busy right now, but I like it this way. It seems like I am either restless or over scheduled. I am in the middle of marathon training, which is tiring. I ran 15 miles yesterday and felt every step of it. I am excited to run in Boston, but all this training is a bit much. I am still teaching my yoga classes at Lifetime and having a great time with it. January at the gym is always packed and I love teaching to an over crowded room. I also started working at the Endoscopy lab and have been training there 20 hours a week. It dropped to 10 hours last week, but goes back up the next few weeks while I finish the training. I love that I'm using my education and it's been a challenging experience to try and remember how to be an RN again. Luckily it's all coming back and the people I work with are extremely friendly and helpful. In the midst of all this I decided to change our house. We repainted the girls' room and re-decorated. They love it and so do I. Since I liked the change of the paint so much I decided to paint the rest of the house. It's been stressing me out. I think it's just poor timing on my part. Despite the schedule we still get time to spend as a family and it's this time that I love. I love being busy enough that I appreciate the time we do have.

The end.


The girl cousins skiing with Grandpa. He is very brave, but these girls are great skiers. We had perfect weather for skiing. It was over 40 degrees.
All packed up and ready for the long drive back to Colorado. The kids are great travelers. I wouldn't want to be stuck in a minivan with any other children. We made great time. It took me 7 hours and 55 minutes with no speeding tickets.
Justin and I skied together. He is a beginner, but he is improving. He worked so hard and I learned that snowplowing backwards down the mountain is extremely tiring.
Hans' favorite gift was this golf club.
Cute Mia.
Katelyn is so expressive and I love the joy that radiates from her body.
Cute girls. They love each other and are so good to one another.
Santa brought Justin a basketball hoop. It was a great gift. It's gotten a lot of use.
This is what Santa came up with for Mia's request of a triangle top and a mermaid tail. She was thrilled.
Justin loves getting things.
Ashley was pleased with Christmas.
Christmas morning anticipation. Justin woke up at 4 am.
Justin and his remote controlled helicopter. He loved it.

Justin gave Mia a bitty baby. He is a great brother to her.
Christmas Eve. The kids were anxious to open a present.
We had a Christmas party for Ashley and two of her friends. They made bracelets, decorated and ate sugar cookies, and watched Tangled.

We had a great Christmas this year. We had a lot of time together as a family, which seems is happening less and less the older the kids get. We did a lot of fun things. We went skating at skate city. This was great fun. Hans decided to impress the kids and I by skating backwards in the backwards skate. He was one of 3 or 4 on the rink and fell hard on his first corner around the rink. It was very funny, but he is still sore from it. We also went sledding since we got so much snow this year. Some nice people let us borrow their sled they weren't using so we could all get down together. It is a steep hill and a lot of work to get up, but we had a great time. My favorite part was watching Katelyn do somersaults up the hill. I could tell she hadn't been to gymnastics for a week. Mia started gymnastics during the season as well. She got promoted after 1 class to their advanced class and can already do 5 pull-ups, a pull over, and a bridge kick over. She told her coaches that she is going all the way to the top. They love her. They told me that she will be my best gymnast since she is so short. We will see. Now I am driving to the gym 7 different times a week. We also went and saw Alvin and the Chipmunks, which the kids loved, and was okay for me since I had a big tub of popcorn on my lap.

Christmas Eve we did a live nativity. The kids did a great job. Ashley directed the whole program. We opened one present and spent the majority of the day at home. We shared dinner at a friend's house and played games. I'm pretty sure the kids understood the true meaning of Christmas and for that I feel successful.

Christmas Day we enjoyed opening presents and eating waffles. I was grateful we were able to go to church and listen to beautiful music. I then, in all my craziness, took down Christmas and packed to drive to Utah the next day. The drive was uneventful and we had a great time visiting grandparents and cousins. The kids love being there. We skied at Brighton. I checked Justin into ski school where he learned how to snow plow and the girls skied with Grandpa and Melanie. We met Mindy up there as well. The weather was fantastic, which made up for the lack of snow, and we went home happy. We also went tubing at Soldier Hollow, which is always a highlight. Grandma Heath took all of the kids shopping to spend their Christmas money from her. We met up with Egberts at Chick fil a for lunch. We had a New Year's Eve party. Mainly the highlight of visiting Utah is letting the kids play endlessly with their cousins and running with Melanie. She was nice enough to run 8 of my 12 miles with me one Saturday. I wish I lived a 4 hour drive away at most so we could visit more often. I am hoping we will get visited this year. Overall it was a great Christmas Season.