Friday, May 30, 2008

Walking the Keen Eye Trail in Soldotna

Kaarin and I took our kiddos to walk the Keen Eye trail (funny name, huh?) at the Wildlife Refuge place in Soldotna. I'd been there once before with Ammon and his kindergarten class, but this was quite a different experience in warm weather. We put the babies in strollers, the toddler walked and the other kids ran on a very nice and easy trail. The trail ended on a nice balcony type of thing that practically sits on a beautiful lake. We sprawled out a picnic blanket and enjoyed a nice lunch of PB&J and apples. I can't even express how much I'm enjoying being outside with my kids. We've been on bike rides, we've played at the park and now we've done this little hike/walk. The icing on the cake was that my kids took a three hour nap when we got home. It was wonderful!
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My budding photographer friend Gina captured this sweet moment. Ziya was getting ready to kiss her good friend Raquel. I couldn't help but post it!

Monday, May 19, 2008

Families Can Be Together Forever

The purpose of our visit to Idaho was to be at the temple when my sister Colomba was sealed to her husband Carlos and son Diego. What a special experience this was. It was wonderful to have the entire family (minus Jacob and my boys :( there to spend time together, hang out, get acquainted or reacquainted with cousins, and simply enjoy being together. The temple of course was a special highlight. Colomba was beaming the entire time. Little Diego was a champion and Carlos's smile stretched from ear to ear. Families are supposed to be together forever, so for them to take this step felt like the most natural and beautiful thing. I'm thankful that I was able to be a part of it.

Idaho Candids

As much as I love Alaska, I FINALLY GOT TO LEAVE!!! Ziya and I flew to Spokane and spent a week with my family in Rathdrum and Coeur d' Alene, Idaho. Fun times were had; but where was my camera the entire time??? We went on some really fun bike rides, ate tons of awesome food at my sister Colomba's cafe, watched my nieces play soccer and hung out at my mom and dad's house (with more food, of course!). The pictures I did manage to get are of us at the park with Isaiah and Asher, my nephews... we absolutely LOVED the 80+ degree weather. We also got to visit with our friends, the Staudingers, and then just hang out some more. What a blessing! The trip helped me to confirm even more (even though my mind is already made up) that we need to take care of our business in Alaska and then hurry up and move/live closer to family.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

End of Indoor Soccer...(hooray!)

I keep having to remind myself that my boys are crazy about soccer, that it's helping them build confidence, that it gives us something constructive to do, that it teaches them about health and fitness, that they love the snacks, etc., etc. Why is this all not at the forefront of my crazy head? Because this was the first time they had to play on different teams. And what does this mean, exactly? It means that on our craziest week, we had four games and one practice to attend. Ai, ai, aieeeee!

They really do love it, though. Ammon, at 5 1/2 years old, really understands the game now. His coach did a good job of teaching him about different positions and the responsibilities that go with them. Although he still needs some improvement and practice in coordination, his confidence sky-r0cketed. It's fun to watch him play.

Abraham turned four on the last possible day to still make the deadline. His team was still very much into the "everybody just run wherever the ball goes" mentality. He loves to look into the stands for parent support whenever he kicks the ball. What a cutie.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Kindergarten Field Trip

I joined Ammon on his very exciting kindergarten field trip to Bishop's Beach in Homer (off Kachemak Bay). What fun times. I left behind a sick little baby (Leaca, you truly are an angel!), so I started out the day kind of stressed, but then I couldn't help but have a wonderful time with my little boy, Ammon. We went on a low tide day, so we got to comb the beach for many cool creatures. We got to see and touch lots of sea anenomes, huge sea stars, crabs, tiny lobster, and lots of other cool stuff. Ammon was totally in his element. It was fun for me to watch him interact with his classmates. I definitely want to return with the entire family.
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Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Best of Friends

Kaarin and I bundled up our little princesses and went for a walk. These girls were just too cute. Somewhere in the middle of the trek, they both fell asleep and ended up linking arms.

Eagles in Our "Front Yard"

One of the things I love about living downstairs is that we now have an exterior door with a direct view out to the bluff (overlooking the point where the Kenai River and the Cook Inlet meet). We see a lot more of the neighborhood happenings because of this... including the bald eagle action. On this beautiful sunny morning, one of our tenants alerted us that we just couldn't miss this "grandfather of an eagle" sitting out on the bluff. We sneaked up on him and took some pictures. I have to admit, I was a bit nervous and I did make a mental escape plan in case he came and tried to swoop away my little Ziya (I've heard some crazy big eagle stories). Anyway, he sure was beautiful. I wish I knew how to post videos from my other camera because there is amazing footage of the eagle compared to other "normal sized" birds. He was HUGE!
Amazingly enough, the very same day, we watched as a humongous baby eagle landed on a trash can just across the way at the little Hansen Scout Park. We also watched him for a while. What amazing creatures. I still haven't done it, but watching these two incredible birds for a while, really made me want to do a bit of research and learn more about them.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Goofy Abe...

This boy keeps me on my toes... and he keeps me laughing all at the same time! Here, I went to check on him and see what was taking so long. He quickly explained that as he innocently sat on the toilet, invisible people came and unrolled the toilet paper. As if this vivid imagination wasn't enough, he was absolutely dead serious. He didn't even crack a smile. There really were invisible people who came and made this bad choice. He could do nothing to stop them!

On this particular night, Abe decided he didn't want to sleep. Instead, he dressed up, grabbed a pile of his favorite books, and literally read until about midnight. Hey, at least he likes books!
Dressing up is one of his favorite pastimes. Notice some of the details: the Fantastic Four after-Halloween clearance costume with glowing stripes, Batman knee pads, mittens with chopped off fingers weight lifting gloves over them, a cape and a hood. I don't remember what he calls this one.