Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Police Academy Here I Come!!!

Just a year ago it was actually "Police Academy Here He Comes", as Brian was in the Police Academy last year this time. Fortunately my academy doesn't require me to live 2 hours away for 4 months.

I have enrolled in the Scappoose Police Department Citizens Academy. It's a 10-week program, meeting one evening a week, that familiarizes people in the community with the Police Department, their polices and procedures, their training exercises, etc.

I chose to attend the Citizens Academy mainly because I wanted to see some of what Brian had been through when he was gone, some of the things he was taught, some of the experiences he has had. I understand only what he's told me about the academy and this is my chance to get some experience of my own to relate with what he's said.

Tonight was our first class and it was a lot of history and background information on policing and the department. Things will pick up in the coming weeks when we talk about juvenile law, criminal law (my hunky hubby will be teaching this segment!!!), traffic stops, etc. Then the real fun begins and I get to shoot all the departments weapons, including the fully automatic weapons (I've never shot anything except our Glock), drive the police cars fast around the airport, go through test scenarios, see someone tazed, etc. I'm looking forward to it all!

Monday, April 21, 2008

Congrats Tristan!!!

This kid LOVES his Tae Kwon Do and gets so excited for the upcoming tournaments. Saturday was his 2nd tournament and he was just as excited as can be. We decided to make it even more special for Tristan by sending the other two kids to stay the night at my Dad's house. That way Brian and I could focus our attention just on Tristan. It's not often that the kids get such undivided time with us and the three of us all really enjoyed it.

His first event was breaking. He was breaking 1" boards with his feet. He had practiced this at TKD (we've gone through about 20 of these boards in the past month ... we had to pay for each one too. OUCH!). He said he had practiced without pads on, as they don't allow pads at the tournament. However when he broke his first board it hurt quite a bit (see him breaking his first ... a nice roundhouse kick! And Brian got to hold his boards for him too.). Because it hurt he took it easy on his 2nd kick and didn't break it in the 3 tries allowed (this is very common ... many did not break all boards). His 3rd kick was a front kick and he broke the board on the 1st try. He did great and was awarded a bronze medal!

His 2nd event was forms. This was his first time competing in forms and he had just learned the forms completely and correctly two weeks before. While he did the form correctly, he didn't score high enough to medal in this event. He wasn't discouraged though and was excited about his final event.

Last off was sparring. I will admit that I got no photos at all of his first match, simply because I didn't have time! He won the match 7-0 in less than 30seconds!!! WOW!!! His second match was quite a bit harder and he lost 4-10 to the boy who eventually went on to win gold. However his good performance earned him a bronze medal in sparring.

Tristan was just thrilled with his day. He's so stinking proud of those medals that it's ridiculous. He paraded around all day with them around his neck, even in the car and while eating lunch. It was so cute.

Thank goodness, he has only one more tournament this year. I say thank goodness only because of the sheer amount of money involved in competing. Each tournament costs us over $125. OUCH! And 3 within 3 months is just a bit too much to ask. We'll be glad for a break from competing until the fall tournament.

But we are SOOOOO PROUD of Tristan and his accomplishments. Most of all, we're glad he found something that he truly loves.

Friday, April 11, 2008

My Month(s)

So I just had to share my excitement about the upcoming months. I will have at least one layout in every major scrapbook publication in the May and June issues. I'm so excited!!!

I just got my first copy of one today, the May issue of Creating Keepsakes and my first layout in a regular issue of that magazine.

Anyways, if you're in a book or scrapbook store take a look at the magazines and there's a good chance I'm in them. Here's a full list of where my layouts in May and June issues can be found:

Scrapbook Trends Vacation Idea Book – June 2008

Memory Makers – June 2008

Scrapbooks, Etc. - May/June 2008

Creating Keepsakes – May 2008

Scrapbook Trends – May 2008

Memory Makers “Oh Baby!” Idea Book – May 2008

Sunday, April 06, 2008

Height Check ...

I knew it would happen eventually -- today just happened to be the day. Twice a year we mark the kids heights and ages on our piece of wood kept especially for this purpose.

The last several years Tristan has been steadily gaining inches on Chase, coming closer and closer to Chase's height. Today was the day when he surpassed his brothers height. Take a look at the closeup of the stick.

Tristan, at age 9 1/2, just barely edged out Chase, age 11 1/2.

While Chase knew it was coming, he is not exactly thrilled at the prospect of being smaller than his "little" brother. He, understandably, does not think this is fair. We've had some very frank discussions the last few months about the fact that Tristan is going to be bigger. He has Brian's "big" gene and is going to be a tall and brawny guy like his Dad. Chase on the other hand got a lot of my genes and will probably be a more average height.

Tristan is thrilled to be bigger than Chase and has done a good job of not trying to rub it in. He's such a kind kid!

I am of two opinions on this. I'm happy for Tristan, happy that's he's growing taller and that his body is leaning out (he's outweighed Chase for the last 2 years) and happy that he's going to be a handsome big guy like his Daddy. But I'm sort of sad for Chase. Sad that he feels badly about being smaller, sad that he is now worried about being seen as the "little brother" because Tristan is physically larger. More than anything I'm sad that they are both growing up so quickly. But I know this is just the way life works. Now, if people would just quit asking me if they are twins!

Saturday, April 05, 2008

Spelling Bee Take 2

Ah yes, it's that time again... the spelling bee. Chase is always excited about it, as he's an excellent speller. 4th grade is the first time they do spelling bees here and last year he represented his class in the school spelling bee. He didn't win, but he loved doing it.

This year he is, once again, the top speller in his class and will be reprenting the Sauvie Island 5th graders in the district spelling bee. Good luck buddy!!!