Saturday, June 30, 2012

Neighborhood Carnival

Every year there is a carnival held at the little park in our neighborhood. Mmmmm, cotton candy. There was also dinner and lots of other treats. Face painting, balloon animals, tractor rides, a fishing pond for the kids ...

Gray was in charge of one of the activities. He got a big piece of plastic for a slip n slide. As there wasn't a slope to let gravity help out, the older boys took turns running up and down the sides holding a bungee cord that the participant held on to. It was a favorite. There was also a dunk tank and some basketball on the new court there.

... and there's always a pie eating contest. Gray was the announcer and Keaton gave it a go (but he didn't win). At least it was better than last year!

Callahan and I were a little late, as he had a  basketball game. Once we got there I didn't get that many pictures. Landon was there but being a typical teenager he avoided my camera. He couldn't participate in the water activities as he had a procedure on his toes and need to keep them clean and dry until they heal. Callahan, Keaton and Cooper all got dunked, but Colton was happy just to throw balls and be the "dunker".  Until next year ...

Friday, June 29, 2012

Elementary Ends

 While the bigger boys have been out of school since the end of May, the younger ones STILL had school through the end of June! There was the final honor roll assembly, and all three boys got the award again. All three also got awards for outstanding attendance, which was a bit ironic for Colton, as he was absent that day (I got his certificate and took his picture at home).  He came down with something and pretty much missed the entire last week of school! Poor Colton ...

 Cooper's Class ... Honor Roll Recipients

 Keaton's Class - Honor Roll Recipients

Keaton also participated in a play ... Snow White and the Seven Habits. He was a habit dwarf and he did great. I do have the entire thing on video, but it was a little long to include here. It was directed by Kristen Rowe, who went to high school with me (she was my Aunt Eller in Oklahoma). 

I am including a video below ... it's snippets of Cooper's 2nd grade program. This was actually performed at the end of May, but I just got around to getting the muvee done. I was glad I got to see him in this. The older boys were just finishing up school, and I have carpool commitments during that time. I was able to get the boys covered and spent the afternoon at Columbia instead. Here's the highlights ...

Now ... school's out for summer!

Monday, June 18, 2012

Westra Weekend

Wow ... it was a WESTRA weekend! The picture above is of the entire Westra clan (missing Shane who was on a business trip, and Alyssa who is on a humanitarian visit to India). I think this was the biggest picture in a while though! The Jensen family doesn't always make it up for the annual Father's Day BBQ at Scott and Amy's house, but they were around this year, as there was a LOT of family stuff going on! Before the get-together on Sunday there was ...

Chris and Kim's wedding Friday night. Gray and I left the boys at home (Colton had his final soccer game, and I left Landon to tend, and once we were leaving two of the boys, we figured we'd just leave them all). They had originally planned on an outdoor ceremony, but it was a bit windy, so they quickly moved everything into the church. The relief society room was packed. We met some of Kim's family and friends at the reception and caught up with relatives we hadn't seen in a while ... but we'd see some of them again just the next day.

This year Mom & Dad have been married 50 years! We had a celebration dinner and Wendy presented the parents with a book she's been working on (a LOT of work!). She had taken all the old photos, slides and negatives and had them converted to digital files. Then she took those files and prepared a really nice book showcasing their life together. Wendy did a post on her own blog (with some pictures and a copy of the dedication) and you can check it out here. I put together a slideshow, a quick (well, it's about 13 minutes long) recap of the past 50 years (and a bit before) ... I've included it below.

... Friday, Saturday, Sunday ... it was a WESTRA weekend!

Sunday, June 17, 2012

The World's Largest Gummy Bear and Other Curiously Awesome Items

A package arrived via UPS the other day ... it was a box full of fun stuff. Grayson had found the Vat19 website and placed an order ... it included the WORLD'S LARGEST GUMMY BEAR ...

It looks like a jello mold, but this is all solid gummy! Cherry, our family favorite! Between the Blackham Bunch, lots of friends, and several days ... the gummy bear is now gone. (You can watch Vat19's video about the gummy bear here ... it's pretty funny). 

Also in the package were some magnetic Scrabble tiles ... 
this now adorns our refrigerator.

There were also these funky strawz ...

... and perhaps the HIT of the order, SPITBALLS ...

There was this little bag of unassuming clear balls. Place them in water and they GROW ... just dipping your hands in the water with the balls in (they were so clear you couldn't really see them, but you'd feel them) was an experience. But the real fun was playing with them. When they had grown a bit, they were bouncy ... when they were at full size, they would break when thrown. You can watch Vat19's funny video about them here ... our boys LOVED them and there were quite a few spitball wars going on (they even attacked ME, can you believe that?) ... I think we'll have to order more of these ... of course the kids also want another gummy bear ... or maybe try the gummy WORM next time ...

Why did Daddy order all this fun stuff? 
Grayson doesn't need a reason!

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Colton and the Red Rockets

Colton LOVES soccer. He's only six years old, but he's now played on six different teams! He played on two this spring ... I signed him up for the rec league at Gene Fullmer, and then he ended up taking Cooper's spot in the WJ League (see Colton and the Green Gators). Like two previous seasons, we had our neighbors Bradley and Randon on the team, and I ended up coaching.

The games were played on Friday evenings, which worked out fine, as Callahan and Keaton had basketball practice (so Gray and I couldn't go out anyway, we tried shifting date nights to Thursdays). It was actually nice, as kindergarten games were the only ones going, so there was lots of parking and uncongested fields. Also, Saturdays are always so busy anyway, I'm sure we would have had conflicts if they had been held then. We had an undefeated season tie game, and a couple close ones ... and several blow outs.

We had practices at the little neighborhood park on Tuesdays. Randon's dad Corbin helped out a lot and even made a couple little goals for us to use. We ended up having a couple pickup games too (added in Blackham brothers, neighborhood friends, other team siblings, etc.)

 Gavin, Bradley, Randon, Ivan, Colton
Brandon, Giana, Mia, Peter, Joey 
(Not pictured: Bryce, Luigi)

As I was usually busy coaching during the games, I didn't get a lot of video. But I did get one game (having Corbin take over the coaching, which he did a couple times). Luckily it was one of our high scoring games, to I had quite a bit of footage to work with. Cute kindergarten kicking! Check it out...

We've signed signed up for the upcoming Fall/Spring League with West Jordan Youth Soccer. The little trio of Colton, Randon and Bradley will join several of the kids from Colton's Green Gators team, the best of both! While both WJ and Gene Fullmer have their pros and cons, the WJ league seemed a better fit for this next year (but I do plan on switching back to GF after that ... if the kids haven't lost interest in soccer by then). So I won't be coaching Colton come fall, but after three seasons, I think I'm ready for the sidelines again.

Friday, June 15, 2012

Solar Stuff

There have been a couple notable items in the atmosphere during the past few weeks. On May 20, 2012, there was a solar eclipse. We were up at Maga's (eating trifle) and no one seemed particularly interested in stepping outside to see if the eclipse could be seen through the cloud cover. Others did, and I borrowed the picture above of what it looked like ...

Others actually traveled miles (outside of Cedar City) to get the best view. A Facebook friend shared this photo taken by her dad, (photo by John Telford). That does look pretty cool! My brother Derek didn't make the trek, but said it was still better than the movie ... (slam on Twilight fans!) *Ü*

Then on June 5th, if people looked to the skies again they would be able to witness the "transit of Venus" ... that little black dot crossing the sun. This picture was taken by my friend's hubby. Photo by Robert Healey.

Although I didn't see either event live, I appreciated these pictures!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Spring Basketball

Just because Junior Jazz is over, doesn't mean BASKETBALL is over! We had a very busy basketball season this Spring. Cooper loves basketball so much, and as he refuses to play soccer anymore, I considered continuing him in basketball over at the rec center. But off-season, the youngest group is 3rd/4th combined, and as Cooper is just in 2nd grade, I thought that might be a little too much. He had to make do with playing at home. This little hoop is actually the one that gets the most action at our house, by Cooper and ALL the boys (it's a favorite with the neighbors too)!  Cooper spent his hard earned money to buy NBA headband and wristbands ... 

Keaton's crew was playing in the 5th/6th division at Gene Fullmer. Half the team is actually 4th graders, a few 5th (Keaton is one of those) and just a couple of 6th graders (our neighbor Jacob was on the team which was a lot of fun). But they did great and had an undefeated season! I went back to jogging the track during the games, but did take one video and made a muvee ... so if you want to see the highlights of game 3, you can check them out HERE

Callahan's team played in the 7th/8th division in Gene Fullmer again - they had one 8th grader on the team, the rest were all in 7th. Most games were easy wins though ... one loss, to Brian's team (again). As with Keaton's team, I only got video of one of the rec games (game 3), you can see it HERE.

Callahan also played in the AAU State Tournament and the Spring Fling with his Copper Hills team. They did ok, some wins, some losses ... some TOUGH teams! I didn't make it to all the games to get video ... and then honestly, even when I did, some of the games there weren't really enough highlights to even make a video (ouch!) but there are a few muvee links there on the Hoop Highlights blog, you can follow the links above to those seasons and game links.

Callahan ALSO played on a Superleague team at Dimple Dell. This was our first foray into SUPERleagues with this team. Mason and Rowland (playing on Brian's Rec team) rejoined us for this. There was an upper and lower division, we decided to try out the lower division to start. It was a great season! Just one loss, then we made our way through the playoffs to go against the #1 team in the championships ... and the boys WON it! I did get ALL these games on video and made muvees of the highlights. You can see the season HERE. (Stockton and Rowland missed the final game and aren't in the photo).

So, onto SUMMER ... Callahan will be playing in two leagues again (GF Rec and the Dimple Dell Superleague), Keaton will be playing GF Rec again. Cooper is still a little young, but I plan on letting him try basketball this fall when he's officially a 3rd grader!

Monday, June 4, 2012

The Birds Are Back

I've been meaning to post about THE BIRDS for a while now. They're Back ... last year I did a post about the starlings who made a nest in the cinder block pillar in the backyard (Noisy Birds). They did it again this year. I don't think we even peeked in on them this year, but we can hear them and see the mommy bird flit in and out. Walking to church one day, I also came across a mama duck and 11 little babies ... but although we've looked every time we cross the canal, we haven't seen them since. We were hoping to have another "ducky" summer like last year (For The Birds), we'll have to see if they still show ...

But there are plenty of birds around. The other day, Landon was outside playing basketball when he heard a "chirp, chirp, chirp" ... it continued so long, that he investigated, and found this little bird. Out of the nest, but unable to fly. I remember I found a baby bird a year or two ago and a little research found that this is a natural stage of their life, to leave them where you found them, that mother bird is probably around somewhere. It does seem such a fragile stage, so open to danger, it is a wonder that any baby birds survive!

More chirping lead to second baby bird. Landon did leave the bird close to where he found it ... one of them kept wandering out into the road though! Other kids found the birds as well and carried them around much of the day. We know for sure that one did not survive ... perhaps squeezed a bit by one of the smaller children. Last I knew, the other was still ok ... good luck little baby bird!

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Year Books

So ... School's OUT for the oldest two Blackham Boys. Landon wrapped up his sophomore year at Herriman High School, and Callahan is no longer a "sevie" at West Hills Middle School. They got their year books and it was fun to glance through them and remember when I received mine ... it doesn't seem all that long ago really.

Just for fun, I went through one of the boxes in storage and pulled out the year books I had ... I just had one from Junior High (my 7th, Gray's 8th), but we actually have duplicates from Cottonwood ( both Grayson and I went to the same school for Junior High and High School ... although we didn't know each other then. I did know Kolby quite well, he wrote "glad to get to know you" ... little did he know that I'd marry his brother a few years later.) The kids did have fun looking up Mom and Dad and laughing at the hairstyles and such. 

Keaton did ask "Were your yearbooks even in color way back then" and I laughed and said yes ... but then thought about that ... only a FEW (very few, usually 10 or so) were in color, the rest WAS in black and white. The boys are growing up, I wonder if someday Landon and Callahan will pull out their yearbooks and compare them to the ones their kids receive ... or will it all be digital by then ...  "Dad, were YOUR yearbooks actually printed on paper?"

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Colton and the Green Gators

Once upon a time, Cooper was a little soccer player. He LOVED it. He played a few seasons, then last spring, he fell and broke his arm during a game. I knew that was the end of that season, I didn't realize that was the END of soccer for Cooper. I went ahead and signed him up with his friends again (for the upcoming Fall2011/Spring2012) ... he did NOT want to play Fall, and I hoped that as spring season rolled around he might be ready to give it a try. He was not. 

I hated just throwing away the money (this would be the THIRD season in a row wasted) when I realized ... I still had a little boy who LOVES soccer ... Colton. My original plan was just to have Colton take Cooper's place on the U8 team, but the league said he was too young (although he actually wasn't the smallest). They agreed to put him on a U6 team though (with several younger siblings from Cooper's team). I almost didn't do it (as he was already signed up with soccer with Gene Fullmer on Friday nights), but as it actually fit in with no scheduling conflicts (Saturday mornings were totally open this spring) we did it and it was a fun little season. Colton did great.

I made a couple videos ... the first is of the first game's highlights, the second, is the remaining six games (pretty much just the goals, although I SHOULD have also featured Colton's FALLS, as he had many spectacular ones ... all much worse than the small one that broke Cooper's arm.) And with his tongue sticking out SO much of the time, we're lucky he didn't bite it off! 

Colton DID dominate goals ... but really, he is NOT a ball hog. He never takes the ball away from his own teammates. He knows to allow space (therefore he is often ready for a fast break when the ball gets kicked free). We're actually going to stay on this team for next season, bringing on a couple of our friends from the Gene Fullmer team (I'll post about the RED ROCKETS when that season is done).

Love little kicking kindergartners! 

Friday, June 1, 2012

National Donut Day

Mmmmmm ... it's National Donut Day. We Blackhams feel the NEED to support this holiday (I think we missed it last year, but I posted about it the year before HERE).  It's Callahan's first day of "summer" (his last day of school was yesterday, Landon had his last day on Wednesday, not officiall, but ...) so they were both home.The little boys still had school, so Landon and I made a run to Dunfords (I made Landon drive, still working on getting his hours in) and got back before they left. Callahan was sleeping in though, and wasn't here for the group shot ...
... but he still got his maple bar 
(had to get two, one for Landon, one for Callahan).

Grayson sent an email from work, reminding me of the "holiday". There are a few deluxe donut shops there in Davis County where he works, and I'm sure he'll end up stopping and picking up some too. Mmmmm, donuts!
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