Sunday, January 26, 2014

Winter Park Ski School - Week 3

Friday marked week three of Winter Park ski school.  The boys were fired up to ski, even if the ride on the luggage cart appeared to be less than exciting.  It just goes to show, photos can't capture everything.  The hoopin' and hollerin' was wall to wall and tree top tall.
The next morning, Kristi and Keith went to get the boys ski equipment while I herded the four boys to their lesson.  You can't pass the musical interments without playing a ditty.
Oliver, Cole, Kellan and Owen making morning music.
Owen, Kellan, Cole and Oliver ready to ride!
Ride in a wagon, maybe.
Oliver and Owen tried to pull Kellan and Cole.  I quickly heard that this was a job for an adult.  I believe that adult was me, since I was the only one in sight that they knew.
Once the kids were dropped off, we were ready to hit the slopes on another blue sky day.  We are still wondering how we lucked out with three blue sky Saturdays in a row.  Kristi was loving it so much that she peeled her coat off while we were getting ready to hit the lift.
Shortly after our first run began, Kristi took a spill when her boot came out of her binding.
Yes, Kristi had a full yard sale BECAUSE her boot came out of her binding.  Neither event are normal.
Kristi just bought brand new boots which were fitted to her skis and apparently, not very well.  Fortunately, there was an engineer in the house and a screw driver at the top of the lift.
If you want the key to being a life long friend with Kristi, fix-it skills are required.  She may have been heard saying that Keith would be a life long friend with binding fixing skills like these.

Once Kristi's skis were back up and running, we were off and riding the white and blue yonder.

This was one of my favorite moments of the day, ski tips over the cornice.
Granted, it's not a HUGE cornice, but it was a fun photo op that happened to inspire others to have the same photo op.  What Fun!
I have no idea what's going on with the speckled sky on the camera.  There wasn't a snow flake or cloud to be found.
After a few fun photos, it was zip-zip-zip off the edge and down the slope.
IT - WAS - SO - FUN!!!
What a gorgeous day!!
Before picking up the kids, we had some sunny sky apres skiing.
Carrie and Keith loving the sunshine and Vitamin D!
Patrick arrived in the afternoon to ski with the kids.  He has been buried in work so it was great to see him out and about.
When we picked up the boys, they were fired up to ski.  Oliver had been talking about going up the Prospector lift for a whole week!  He and Owen had skied all over this area during the day, but this is the highest Kellan had ever been.  Cole opted not to ski anymore, but Oliver, Owen and Kellan were ready to rocket down the slopes and rocket they did!  Kellan did GREAT and he's really coming along.  Granted, he's nowhere near ready to ski independent of the harness from top to bottom, but he did it with his Mama and he loved it!  Owen and Oliver were true rocket ships and they FLEW down the hill.  Kristi and Keith had to keep their ski's and board in high gear to keep up.  We are so very impressed at how well all of the boys are doing!
After skiing, we went to visit friends in their condo before heading back home.
I caught these two cutie pies sipping their drink boxes and queuing up some Turbo on the iPad.
Before long, all of the kids were bellied up for Turbo on the iPad.  Who says kids these days need big screens when they are all small enough to snuggle around one iPad.
Once again, we had a tremendous day at ski school with high-fives and fist-bumps given to the day by each and every one of us.

Until next week... I'll leave you with this parting video (that I may or may not save for an opportune time in their teen years).

The Gate to the Super Bowl

Here we are, one game away from THE BIG GAME!  We've been down the road and now we are only one gate away from the Super Bowl.  We were on pins and needles; excited for the final playoff game and nervous for the outcome.  We are optimistic fans, but also realistic that things can change unexpectedly when you're too arrogant.  It's important to keep your head in the game, even as a fan.
We invited a few friends over to watch the game.  The Heinemans, Wells and Martins.  The Martin's didn't show up until half time.  Feel free to tease them for being second half fans, we did :)  

We had plenty of football snacks (good thing the healthy eating diet is Monday through Friday) and a great day to watch the game.

Jennie, Eric, Keith, Marion and Jeff
The Christmas Bronco gnome was looking on to bring us good luck.
He hasn't found his permanent home in our yard yet, so he was up for the task.
The big boys had to get outside at half time to burn off some energy and a game of football only seemed appropriate.

Oliver, Owen and Owen

This is the tackle move that made this Mama go inside for the flags.  Flag football always seems like a much better option than tackle.
A bit blurry since the action was high and the flash was off (amateur move, I know)
The Boys celebrating the Broncos win over the Patriots.
The Broncos are going to the SUPER BOWL!!!  WAHOO!!!!

Owen, Owen, Kellan, Cole and Oliver
The Mamas and their new hats.
Jennie brought Carrie and Kristi a surprise, new Broncos colored hats and WE LOVE THEM!
Go Broncos!!

Carrie, Jennie and Kristi

Make note, down below I'm wearing capris and flip flops.  That's just what you do when it's 60 degrees in Denver in January.  Thank You Mother Nature!

The Mamas and their boys with celebratory otter pops.
(The Real story: Kellan accidentally closed the bathroom door on Coles hand so ice was in order.  However, the ice had all been used in the Mamas and Papas drink glasses, so, the next best thing was an Otter Pop to hold.  As an added bonus, popsicles always make you feel better and forget about the pain.)

Carrie, Jennie, Kristi
Cole, Kellan, Oliver, Owen Owen
These boys love football.  They were highly focused on the next game, the Seahawks and the 49ers.  The big question to answer was who were the Broncos going to play against in the Super Bowl?

Plus, who doesn't like a front row seat to the National Anthem?
As the crowd was dwindling, the Heinemans hung around to make sure that Kellan learned a few new tricks.
Anyone up for an Olive?

Eric was game, even if Kellan was a tad hesitant.

Not too hesitant though.
Oh whew!!  He came out with all five fingers!! :)
That night, we settled in to finish watching the Seahawks and 49ers game.  Everyone was happy to relax.
After the boys were in their PJ's, they got snuggly to find out that the Broncos would be playing the Seahawks in the big game.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Winter Park Ski School - Week 2

In less than a week, Kellan went from not wanting to ski again to saying he loved skiing and he couldn't wait to get back on the slopes (whew!).  Oliver had been on fire with excitement to get back out there all week.  It was awesome to see their enthusiasm.

On Friday, Patrick had a late flight in for work so Kristi and I took the boys up to Winter Park so that we could get them settled in at a decent time.  Keith and Patrick followed up several hours later.  Thankfully, Kristi has a very handy third row so that our grand plan would work out.  It was so fun hearing the boys have conversation amongst themselves.  Owen and Oliver solved six year old world problems in the back while Kellan and Cole solved three year old world problems in the middle.
The tunnels going up the canyon were a big hit for Kellan and Cole.  
They waved their hands in the air 
and yelled like they just don't care.

Meanwhile, it was nothing but serious chatter in the third row.  Kind of how their Dad's role.
Once at the condo, Kristi whipped up some dinner that she had prepared in advance and the boys enjoyed it while they watched the classic Jungle Book.  It was a crowd pleaser for all six of us.
After dinner, Oliver assumed the man pose once he discovered the lounge chair.
After the movie, it was PJ time.
Oliver, Owen, Cole and Kellan.
I can't believe how big these four are getting.
I'll spare you of the photos where they thought I should take images of their cutie pie bottoms.  It was a bit much.  I dread the teen years and gross habits with all boys around.  It's a good thing that I grew up with brothers and uncles all around.  I know what I'm in for.
Ok, so we had to bribe them to take the photo so that they could have dessert after the photo op.
Oliver, Owen and Nilla wafers.
Cole and Kellan with their Nilla wafers.
The boys were super excited to share a 2 bedroom condo so that they could have a sleepover in the living room.
Oliver and Owen pretending to be sleeping.
Cole and Kellan getting ready to sleep.
For the record, they lasted in the same bed for about 20 minutes before Kellan decided that he wanted to sleep in Mommy and Daddy's room.  Someday, they'll pass out in sleeping bags like their big brothers did.  Until then, three year old silliness got the best of them.
The next morning, we were up and at 'em bright and early and the boys were marching down the hallway to head to ski lessons.
There was a bit of a march to the slopes, but the boys were so excited that they clomp, clomp, clomped the whole way there.
Just to give the blog crowd an idea of the sea of ski school, here it is.
Eventually, Oliver and Owen's class came down to get in the lift line.
Owen on the left in Orange, Oliver on the right in green with a black helmet.
It was fun to listen to their instructor, Jordan, talk to the class.
He was explaining to them that skiing is the game of "hurry up and wait" and they hurried to get in line and then had to wait their turn.  The boys really like Jordan and they have a great time with him.  
Kristi and Patrick stayed in the lodge with Jeff and Marion to work (yes... they all had their laptops out and working) while Keith and I hit the slopes.
We headed over to Mary Jane where this sign claimed that we were at 10,700 feet.
We headed out on our first run, which had big warning signs that it was long, steep run of bumps.  Well, we decided to tackle it since it was going to get us to where we wanted to go.
There it is... long, steep and lots of bumps.
Later in the day, we found some great runs and views at the top of this peak.

We promised the boys that we would take them up for a run after lessons this day.  So, we rounded them up and headed for the lift.
Ham Fam in the ski lift line all together for the first time ever.
Oliver, Keith, Kellan and Carrie
Ham Fam on the lift for the first time ever!
Oliver, Keith, Kellan and Carrie.
Kellan LOVED his first lift ride and wanted to ride it a few more times.  Lucky for him, we squeezed in two runs before we were the last ride on the lift at the end of the day.
At the top, we had to suit up and get ready to go.
Oliver was SO excited to have us on the runs that he had been on the past two weeks.  His job was to lead the way down the slopes.
Finally, we were shuffling off to the top of the run.
We saddled Kellan up in the same harness that Oliver wore when I taught him to ski.  The difference was that Kellan liked hanging out, which meant that he would bend his knees (good) but he wouldn't hold his own weight.  See below.  I suspect those bent knees were about the time that I was telling him to use his legs.  He did so great though.  I could tell that he had been learning balance and how to control his skis.  I was so happy to show him what the goal was  by watching Oliver and giving him the feel under his feet.
There we go!!
Mommy and Kellan on the left and Oliver jetting down on the right.

We were so impressed with Oliver too.  He has really taken off this season, literally.  He was FAST!!  Not only was he fast, but he had very controlled turns and stops.  The most impressive is that he skis, bends down, picks up snow, eats it and never misses a beat.  Ic an't say that we are impressed that he's eating snow, but the fact that he does all of the without slowing down, the boyz got skillz!  Going forward, he has requested steeper runs and more chair lifts.
Here we come!
Oliver in the lead with Mommy and Kellan bringing up the rear.

Up until this point, Oliver has said that he wanted to play football for the Broncos when he grows up.  Now, he is saying that he doesn't want to play football but he wants to be a professional skier. I think this is definitely a goal that I could get behind.  Can you say Winter Olympics 2026?

As you would expect, on the way home the boys fell asleep.  It was funny hearing the dueling snoring.  As we approached home, they woke up in time to get home and have dinner.  What a truly great day!!!  It was a gorgeous day to be in the mountains.  Keith and I loved having a date day on the slopes together, but the four of us agreed that our favorite run of the day was the one that we did (ok... it was two runs) as a family of four.  We can't wait to do it again next week!
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