Saturday, October 27, 2012

Champs Again!

Ahhh!  Time...where are you going?  I meant to write this up on Monday, and now it's Saturday.  Well, all the more time to savor the fun of this in my mind!

Last Sunday was the girls' big cheer competition of the year!  This year was a bit different than others.  Their routine came together much later than any year I've coached.  A little too late for comfort, but it came together.  The girls had so much fun learning this routine, and they performed it with JOY!  It was so much fun to watch.  There was some very tough competition, and all the rumors were abounding that it was between us and one other team.  When the final decision came down?  It was US!  Woo-Hoo!  They have now won 4 of the last 5 years!  Wowzers!  Love these girls so much, and so proud of the way they worked as a team and pushed themselves!

waiting for the judges results!
happy girls!
my sweet them so much!
showing off their prize!
our sweet fans!
matching hair: cuteness on top of cuteness!
Congratulations to a hard-working, joyful bunch of Bears!

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Running #4

Oh, my blog.  I have missed spending any time here.  Life has thrown some extra measures of crazy lately, sucking up any free time or energy to put sensible thoughts together.  But I must get back on track.  The moments I want to document are piling up, and at this rate I'll forget them before I write them.  So here we go:

First up is a recap of my sweet little runner's accomplishments.

Miss Brenna has wowed herself and her coach with her running wonders!  Her season has been great from the start, and her times have been steadily improving.  And this last week was the big League Championship meet.  She ran with the varsity girls as runner #8 on her team.  By the end of the race, little miss speedy was runner #4 on her team!  She flew through the course, setting a personal record and scoring points for her team!  (Cross country is a confusing sport to me.  Certain running placements score points for the team while other placers displace runners from other teams, ultimately giving more points to the other team in a sport where less points is better.  Clearly I do not understand it.  I'm sure that's not even remotely close.)  All I know is Brenna ran fast enough to score for her team, qualifying them to move on to the District Meet this weekend!  So it was basically a fantastic run.  Her coach was pretty thrilled.

Off and running, pony tail flyin"!
First mile - 6.19!
Entering the finish lane.
Love this picture - both feet off the ground!
Finishing her 5K in 20.55!
 Sweet running friends.  A special treat:  the girl to Brenna's left is the daughter of her pre-school teacher!
The girls of the 2012 Cross Country Team!
Coach giving a congratulation huddle after their 3rd place announcement!
And I must end with this picture:
This lady was leaning so hard into the tape that she almost pulled the stake right out of the ground!  Can you say "boundary pusher"?  Sheesh! 

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Pictures of the Pictures and Microwave Caramel Corn

We had a fun time this weekend watching Alex get his senior pictures taken.  And family pictures.  It was a typical family picture day:  kids bickering while they got ready, rushing out the door at the last minute, then lots of laughs once we got there.

My beautiful friend Shannon did the deed, and it was so relaxed and casual and fun.  I think we got some great pictures of my little boy!

Here's the behind the scenes shots:

While this scene was playing out, Beth had a scene of her own going on:  in true Beth-form, she found all sorts of creatures to keep her busy.  At one point, she had 14 fuzzy-woolies. 

We got a couple with just the old folks and young man in our Oly Blue:
He makes Brad look short! 

And these two just warm my heart:

As does this sweet one, who toted around 2 grasshoppers:

My beautiful girls...

After all was done and Brad headed back to work, we went out to lunch at Dairy Queen.  Just a simple, sweet, fun day.  On the way home, I got all teary-eyed, just enjoying them so much and realizing how quickly these days are passing.  Alex said, "Why are you going to cry?"  I told him I was just going to miss this.  He then said, "Miss what??  Going to lunch at Dairy Queen?  How often do we really go to lunch at Dairy Queen anyway??  There's really not much to miss about that!"  Tender moment squelched.  Thanks, son.

Anyway, time for a recipe that is perfect for the calendar turning to October!  I have loved making this caramel corn for years and years.  It is so very easy, tastes so very yummy, and is so very perfect for the arriving Fall weather!  Caramel Corn made in the microwave?  Yep, it's true.  And it's buttery and fabulous!

Microwave Caramel Corn

1 bag microwave popcorn, popped and all the unpopped kernels removed
3/4 cup dry roasted peanuts (I use unsalted)
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup butter (no substitutes)
2 TBSP light corn syrup
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1/4 tsp. baking soda

Place popcorn and peanuts in large, microwave safe bowl.  In a smaller microwave safe bowl, combine butter, brown sugar, corn syrup and salt.  Cover and microwave for 1 minute; stir.  Microwave for an additional 2 minutes.  Stir in vanilla and baking soda, mix well.  Pour over popcorn/peanut mixture; stir to coat.

Microwave, uncovered, for 3 minutes, stirring a couple times.  Spread onto a large cookie sheet to cool.  Break apart and store in an air-tight container, if there is anything left to store after you start munching.