Wednesday, June 25, 2008

It's Concert Time Again: Worthy of Honor

Lots of music to stir your patriotic soul in this one: America the Beautiful, Battle Hymn of the Republic, Salute to the Armed Forces, You're a Grand Old Flag, The Star-Spangled Banner, God Bless America, and more. And there is even free watermelon after the performance is over ;)

The orchestra practiced with the choir for the first time tonight, and then we performed three pieces during the evening program for the MEF Bible Conference that is being held at Village 7 Pres this week. We did well, but I know I would have felt more comfortable with it if the orchestra had had a chance to rehearse together beforehand. There was lots of other wonderful music this evening we got to hear too: Joseph Martin, The Burchfield Brothers, and Huw Priday among others. World-class music right here in our own backyard- can't beat that!

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Cousins and Toadily Sweet: 2 new layouts

I've been avoiding some things I needed to do and didn't want to this week by scrapping :P

credits: Bursting Forth by Dianne Rigdon at; Square Matties by Corina Nielsen at; fonts: CK Becky

credits: Toadily Summer by Corina Nielsen and Marcie Reckinger at; Date It! Bead by Kim Jensen at; Smarties Template by Teresa Ferguson; fonts: CK Becky

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Monday, June 23, 2008

New LO: Race to Read

I finally got to scrapping these pics from the drag races at Bandimere Speedway last month.
credits: Evilicious and Garage Daze Green alpha by Flergs at scrapbookgraphics; Checked Acrylic Alpha by Amy Hutchinson at Ah!Designs; wheel and headlights from Roadtrip by Dani Mogstad at sweetshoppedesigns; acrylic shadow style by Traci Reed; Great Grids template by Melinda Staley at (coming soon); fonts: Typewriter


Sunday, June 22, 2008

It was a fun little vacation right here at home

My sister, Megan, and her two children were here for a visit. We had lots of fun right here in our own backyard. I decide to get all of the pictures scrapped before posting on the blog, as I just had so many that it would have been a REALLY long post to just put up my favorite pictures, and this one is going to be long as it is.

They arrived on June 12, and we were out the next morning for lots of fun. We headed up into the mountains to Cripple Creek. (click the layouts to see them larger)
journaling: We spent the first day of the Rodeffer’s visit to Colorado in Cripple Creek learning about gold mining, riding the narrow guage railroad and walking the Florrisant Fossil Beds National Monument.
credits: What Dreams May Come by Flergs and mgl Scraps at; LO template by Yin; staple from Staple Stash by Maya at scrapbookgraphics; fonts: Typewriter

A town made famous for its gold mines in the past, and now also for the casinos that are there. We took a tour of the Mollie Kathleen Gold Mine- going down 1000 feet to the bottom of the mine where they give you a history lesson on gold mining showing you how it was done when the gold was first discovered and the improvements in technology over the years. We even got to bring home a small chunk of gold ore. The gold is bound in a compound called sylvanite and it actually has a silver look to it. One of the richest veins in the mine produced 40 to 60 ounces of gold per ton of rock.

After the mine tour, we ate lunch at a local restaurant (no fast food in this tiny town) and then we took a 45 minute steam train ride on the Cripple Creek Victor Narrow Guage railroad. The train takes you up the valley towards Victor and you get to see the slag piles and head frame remains scattered along the way. You go over a bridge supported by a rock pile that is estimated to have a million dollars worth of gold in it, it would just take two million dollars to process it and remove the gold. Megan and I just had to laugh when we saw this poor little shack go by on the train ride- any one want to move to Cripple Creek? there's a home waiting for you for a good price LOL!
It is amazing how the whole landscape is changed by mining. You can't escape that fact in Cripple Creek as evidence of it is everywhere you turn. There is still a large open-pit gold mine near where the train ride ended. Our guide said that they remove $2 million dollars of gold and silver ore a day from it currently.

After the train ride we visited the Pikes Peak Heritage Center, a beautiful new visitor center where you can learn more about the town, gold mining, and the local wildlife. And then finally we finished off the day by driving to the Florrisant Fossil Beds National Monument and hiking one of the trails there. The kids all earned Junior Park Ranger badges. The neatest thing we saw was a woodpecker banging away on a pine tree- he was so busy hunting the bugs in the poor infested tree we were able to get really close to him. Look for the picture of Molly and the woodpecker in the layout above! I got some nice pictures of Brenna there, and I scrapped a couple of them with this really pretty new collab kit, Breezy, by Chere Kaye and Amy Wolffe.
journaling: Brenna, we are coming up on the beginning of Kindergarten for you finally. You can hardly wait until you can say that you are going to school now too, just like the big kids. I want you to enjoy every minute, learn lots of new things, and make new friends. I want you to soar! to be and do even more than you and your dad and I ever thought you could be and do. I know you can do it!
credits: Breezy by Amy Wolffe and Chere Kaye at The-LilyPad; date stamps by Amber Clegg at Scrapartist; fonts: CK Script and Typewriter

We had a 'kid swap' Friday night and the twins went to my moms house with Molly to spend the night and Brandt stayed at our house. Brandt of course loved to do things with Bryce, but he also got on quite well with Brenna and would do things with her too.

On the 14th, we took it easy in the morning and then we all met at the zoo. It had been a while since the Rodeffers had visited us here and they hadn't seen the African Rift Valley exhibit yet or the new Rocky Mountain Wild exhibit which just opened up.
journaling: We spent a really hot afternoon at the zoo. It had been a while since we had taken the Rodeffers, and they hadnt seen the African Rift Valley or Rocky Mountain Wild exhibits. We started with feeding the giraffes, and there was a new baby giraffe too. We visited the wallabies, and saw another baby getting his lunch. Grandmama bought all of the kids a seed stick to feed the budgies. The river otters entertained us in the Rocky Mountain exhibit, and Sarah thought watching the goats eat grass was fascinating.
credits: Exotic Adventure by Christina Renee, Nancy Comelab, Emily Merritt, and Tiff Brady; grass from Easter Chipboard by Christina Renee; twig bundle from Wintry by Jessica Bolton; leaves from Gumnut Gully by Flergs; LO template by Yin; fonts: Typewriter

I forgot my camera (oh for shame!), so I just borrowed my mom's camera for the afternoon. Megan had hers too, so between the two of us we got plenty of good pictures- and hey, look! I'm even in one of them :D

Sunday the 15th, we attended morning services at the church where my mom is playing the organ now. And then we spent the afternoon and evening relaxing (ie napping) and just enjoying each others company. The kids all had a blast together.

On the 16th we took the kids up to the Visitor Center at Focus on the Family. The basement is a kids wonderland. The whole floor is decorated to look like places in the Adventures in Odyssey stories- it is amazing. They have continued to work on this during the years we have lived here and now every nook and cranny has something special to see and do. There is even one room where you can walk through the wardrobe into another room that looks like Narnia. The biggest hit was of course the A-Bend-A-Go slide, which is a 4 and half story tube slide. Brenna was just big enough this year to go down it and she loved it!
journaling: We spent the morning at the Visitor Center of Focus on the Family enjoying the many kids activities in Whit’s End, the replica of the Adventures in Odyssey town in the basement. Secret Tunnels, videos to watch, pages to color, books to read, puppet shows to perform and stages to dance on. The best part for the kids is always the slides. Brenna was just big enough to go down the Abend-A-Go slide, a 4 and a half story tall tube slide, this visit. Brandt went down it 20 times (so he informed us) and I’m sure Brenna went down a few times more.
credits: by Flergs at scrapbookgraphics: Denim Blues,Gumnut Gully, Grasshopper Kisses, Sugar & Spice; LO template by Yin; fonts: TXT Antique Poster and Typewriter

After a stop for lunch at my mom's house, we then went to see the movie Horton Hears a Who and spent the evening hanging out at our house.

The last day of their visit my mom treated us all to a showing of Kung Fu Panda. Cute movie, good story and the animation is amazing! We had lunch at our house and then headed out again. We made a fairly quick stop at the Current Factory Outlet store, and then since the weather was holding we went to play in Uncle Wilbur's Fountain downtown. It was a bit cool to make it really enjoyable, but the kids had fun and since they had been talking about this particular activity for days it was a nice way to end the trip.
journaling: We went to see Kung Fu Panda at the movie theater in the morning & when it looked like the weather would hold for a few more hours after lunch, we headed downtown to let the kids enjoy running and splashing in the Uncle Wilbur fountain in Acacia Park. Sarah wouldn’t venture into the fountain by herself, but with help and encouragement from Molly she finally got wet. Brandt was cold after a little while and chose to spend the rest of our time there watching from a towel on the warm cement with Brenna joining him most of the time. Beth and Carissa danced in circles around the fountain to the music, and Bryce practiced his kung fu skills on the fountain jets.
credits: Silly Starbursts Pastels, Duo Tones glitter, glue & glitter glue blobs, tag and tape from Fancy Pants by Flergs at scrapbookgraphics; Hipster Plumes by Anna Aspnes at designerdigitals; Canvas Stamped alpha by Laura Lively; LO template by Yin; acrylic shadow by Traci Reed; fonts: Typewriter

It was a really nice visit- I hope we don't have to wait as long next time to see them again.

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Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Places I've traveled

Saw this on Robin and Holly's blogs. I've done something similar at my facebook account where you can actually list the cities you've been to, but cool that I can post it here too.

Where I've traveled in the US
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Now, I included states I've traveled through by car in this list, though we haven't necessarily done more than drive through a few of them to get to other places. There are just a couple of 'pockets' of states that I haven't been to yet. I always wanted to go up to Maine and other NE states when we lived in PA, but it just never worked out time wise with school, work and the kids. One of DH's coworkers when we lived in Germany was from Vermont and always raved about the fall colors there. We got a bit of a taste of it in PA, but I understand it is even more spectacular farther north where they have lots of maple trees.

Where I've traveled in Europe
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We did a lot of traveling around Germany itself during the years we lived in Worms, and I can say I've seen a lot of that one European country- east and west. We tried planning a trip to Spain for our first anniversary, but due to a rail strike ended up in Italy instead- turned out to be one of my favorite vacations! I loved Prague too- we went there twice during our years in Germany. I'd love to go to Great Britain again and see more than London, and especially visit the areas where Dale and Grandad Al were stationed there during WWII. Ireland, Scotland, Greece and Spain have been on our travel wish list for a long time- maybe once the kids are grown.....

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Sunday, June 08, 2008

Supreme nerd here

and proud of it! LOL

I am nerdier than 92% of all people. Are you a nerd? Click here to find out!

and I think my DH would score even higher on the 'nerdiness' scale. Bryce is well on his way to joining us too as his final report card for the 6th grade year is posted on our refrigerator with all A's....
We're training our kids right too, as we spent today up at the Science and Nature Museum in Denver learning about gold, other minerals and gems that are mined in Colorado, some of the local and world wildlife, dinosaurs and playing with the space exhibits. yep, we're a family of nerds ;)

and because it seems that I have nothing better to do this evening, I took the nerd test version 2.0 and I earned the title of "Uber Cool Nerd Queen" :P says I'm an Uber Cool Nerd Queen.  What are you?  Click here!


Thursday, June 05, 2008

80s Flashback - 2008 dance recital night

I made a Mix Tape with a few of the 80s songs I heard at the dress rehearsal last night. Enjoy listening while you check out a few of the pics I was able to take. It's definitely a different perspective watching the girls dance from back stage instead of in the audience.
Getting 'glittered up' in the downstairs dressing room. The second stage mom is a hairdresser and she brought all sorts of glitter to put in the girls' hair and on their arms and chest.

having fun together while waiting for our class to be called to go upstairs to the stage.

It's finally time to go through their dance on the big stage. Love this shot! Carissa isn't totally in focus, but she is right in the spotlight.
Carissa is the first dancer you can see fully on the right, and Beth is the fourth one in from the right.
Beth's favorite part of the dance- twirling in place with her skirt spinning around her.

This is the Jazz 3 class opening pose- love the silhouettes against the bright background. They danced to a Pat Benatar song.
Finally the twins' ballet class is up. They are next to last in the first half of the program. My duties as stage mom were over since the tap class had danced near the beginning of the program, so I got to watch this one from the audience. I don't know if I will get to see their ballet dance tomorrow night, as we have to stay downstairs with all of the kids until intermission. Maybe I can sneak upstairs to see them, I'll have to wait and see how things work out.

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