Collin's First Run

Wow! I should have taken a picture because it was a fantastic sight! Collin and I hit the trails for his first run yesterday at 10 a.m. in the brisk 32 degree air, sunshine highlighting the path! It was gorgeous!! Plus, Collin wore his running shorts and sweatshirt with a pair of monkey pajama pants for long johns - excellent!

So we started out at the swim area of Lake Padden. I told Collin we'd aim to run one mile since the furthest he'd run consecutively in the past was only 1/2 a mile (at the All Comers Track Meets over the summer). We took off and chatted and settled into a nice pace. Totally relaxing and so super chill! He thought it was neat that everyone said hi to him and wished us good morning. I thought it was neat to watch the other runners and walkers - they LOVED seeing him on the trail! I loved seeing him too - he was calm yet focused, happy and talkative, and looked cute and sporty. Plus, he was running strong at only 6 years old!

After half a mile, I asked how he was doing, and he voted that we keep going to the play area. We quacked at the birds, talked about the books he's reading, enjoyed the warm sun and the chilly air. It was really awesome to run with my kiddo!

The play area marked 3/4 mile, and we turned and headed back. He finished the full mile and a half without even losing his breath, and we had a great time! When it was over, he "fainted" in the muddy grass!! *I, of course, gasped and choked out a "COLLIN!" Ick. All I could think was that he'd created more laundry, was going to get the car muddy, etc. Then I laughed and apologized for my first reaction. And he said:

Mom! I have to get muddy sometimes! It's a kid thing.

So true! Shame on my adult reaction! ; ) Now that you mention it, I think I'm due a mud bath, so count me in next time!

To see his pace and path, click Collin's First Run.

*Collin's stunt reminded me of a game day (I was maybe 8?) when the soccer field was especially water logged and muddy. We chased the ball around the field, slushing through the murk and kicking up grass and mud with each step. The ball hardly rolled ... it kind of skipped along. When the game was over, we were absolutely covered in cold, wet, mud. It must have been a mother's "clean car nightmare!" Then - to seal the deal - my whole team went "slip sliding" in the mud!! SO MUCH FUN!!! A whole group of us piled in the back of our Suburban afterwards, and my dad shuttled us home - muddy as could be. I have no idea if we won or lost that soccer game, but that afternoon is one of the best of my childhood memories!

I'll have to tuck that away for the boys this fall ... ; )


Getting Back in the Game

This is such an exciting time for me! Eli is 6 months old, and I'm working hard to get back in the game! I gained the most weight with Eli of all my kids: 40, 41, 42, and 50+ (I quit tracking). But I'm super proud to say that I'm down to nearly my pre-Eli weight (7 pounds to go, give or take 3 on any random day or moment!).

So now that I'm over the big hurdle (baby weight), it's time to get this bod back in shape! Thankfully, I have a supportive team and family! So I'm off! P90X workouts, Insanity workouts, twice a week distance runs (ok, short distance so far, but they'll get longer). I have been sore for nearly three weeks straight, but I have loved every second of it!

Tomorrow Kevin and I have lined up a sitter, and we're hitting the mountain on our bikes! I can hardly wait! I've been up twice (the last two weekends) in the last 18 months +, and I haven't ridden with Kevin in at least a year and a half - maybe two. I can't wait! His skill level, his athletic ability, his joy in the sport have all increased tenfold since we last rode together, and it should make for an amazing afternoon tomorrow!

I have a few events this year lined up (*and a few I'd like to line up and **one I'm dreaming of being able to line up!) to keep me motivated and focused:
Running O' the Green - March 12 (Bellingham)
Mt. Si Relay - April 10 (Snoqualmie)
*San Juan Half Marathon - June 5 (San Juan Island)
Warrior Dash - July 16 (North Bend)
Waterfront 15K -September 10 (Bellingham)
*Bellingham Traverse - September 17 (Bellingham)
**Bellingham Marathon?? - September 25 (Bellingham)

***Dad, I'm counting on you for the Running O' the Green! We'll just do the 2-mile stint because Collin's going to be joining us ... and we can't let him beat us! ; )

Here's to a great event season and to getting back in the game!


Sneak Peeks

1.24.11 - On the way to school today Collin asked:
  • "Can you please schedule a "stay at home day" for just me and you - so we can snuggle on the couch and read our chapter books in peace and quiet?"
  • Me: "Sure. I'll try. Sounds good!"
  • Collin: "Then we can pick Kate up later, Mom."
*Collin is now already halfway through book three of the Magic Tree House series. ; )

1.22.11 - We played Pictionary on Saturday with GGG, Grandma and Grandpa Y, Chrissy, Tracey, Girls, Jared and Janae. Owen was up at the easel.
  • Everyone's Guesses: "Fish," "Shark attack," "Shark bite," "Tiger Fish"
  • Owen: "No, its a shark eating a person!"
  • Collin checks the card: "HE WAS SUPPOSE TO DRAW AN OWL!!"

Two weeks ago I picked the kids up early from school.
  • Collin: "Why'd you pick us up early, Mom? Thanks!"
  • Owen: "Kate has a fever so it's a stay at home day!"
  • Collin: "Thanks, Kate!!"


PB: Birthday Traditions

Do you have any special birthday traditions for your children?

I'd love to think so, but I'm not convinced that any of the activities are "traditions" yet per se because it varies by the kid and the year and by what else is going on in our lives. In fact, I've considered creating more "traditions," but I'm afraid it would create too much let down if I forgot or life just got too busy (like I had Eli 3 weeks before Collin's 6th birthday, and it was the least planned party he's ever had but lots of fun nonetheless!), but let's see:

1. On the day of their birth, the kids get to pick the day's meal plan - breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks, favorite drink, favorite dessert. *We tweak it if necessary, depending on guests, parties, etc., and sometimes have those meals on the piggybacked days.

2. We, of course, always sing Happy Birthday! *I realized by the end of this post that I often wake my kids up by singing to them - or in Early-Bird Collin's case, he wakes me up, and I sing first thing. ; )

3. I love the party, and I love to do it up right! For their birthday, the kids get to pick the guest list for their parties and vote on the party plan. Collin has always picked a bigger crowd and a more abstract party plan (pirates, space, etc., which is very fun for me, and I get totally into it!), and Owen has picked bowling with a small crowd two years in a row (which is very nice for me, planning-wise). This will be Kate's first year providing input. So far she wants a princess theme and has a cute list of mostly girls! Yes, she's been planning for April 7 since about January 1. She'll be 3. What a diva.

4. On Collin's birth day we traditionally go to the Lynden Fair - not for his birthday necessarily, but it's something totally fun to go do on his special day!

5. We always hand-make a birthday banner/poster/sign for our family room or front porch! Kate painted Owen's this year!

6. The kids get to shop for their siblings birthdays and pick out one gift each (under $10). That results in some pretty good gift giving actually. Makes good sense to me that Collin would know better what Owen wants (or should want based on the trends!) than I!

7. I'm working to add in a photo slide show and a post for the kids birthdays, recapping their year in words or pictures. I recently did Owen's 5th year (he loved the slide show!), a note to Collin at Age 6, and a note to Kate at Age 2 1/2 (for her half-birthday). *Links to the right in "Favorite Moments Past."

What are your favorite birthday traditions?

*I was born at 7:54 a.m., and as a kid, my family celebrated with me every year at 7:54 a.m. They'd sing then; we'd do presents then some years. It was VERY special to me, and I loved that time - just fifteen minutes in the morning and my day was perfect! But then as I got older and my mom's work schedule changed, that tradition slipped away - and I was very sad. I still wish my mom would call every year at 7:54 a.m. (I should tell her. Mom, are you reading this?) Anyway, I'm sort of afraid of birthday "traditions" for this reason. I don't want to start something that I can't (or accidently don't) commit to continue - for all four kids - every year.

Makes me wonder: do my kids think there are traditions already in place? They must! Oh dear. Owen came up to me first thing the day before his birthday (which was the day of his party) and said, "Mom, you didn't wake me up and sing Happy Birthday!!" Great. Now I'll have to call every morning and wake them up on their birthdays for the rest of my life. Their spouses will LOVE me. *BTW - I did end up singing to Owen on the 16th AND on the 17th. ; )


Up on all fours and SO stinkin' cute!

Look who's up on all fours!!! Eli is growing up so quickly all of a sudden! Solid foods, sitting up, and now on all fours! I can't wait to see if he'll rock back and forth for two months like Collin did or jet off crawling lickety-split like Owen or ... ?! But I better not blink because my baby is growing fast!
Here he is cracking up as Kate throws a stuffed animal over his head (you can see that he's scooted over, and I turned the flash off on my camera).
Cracking up at me (Peak-a-boo is great fun!!)
Being Stinkin' Adorable
BTW - he gobbled up the rest of the sweet potatoes tonight! Loved them! Hardly spit any out. It was crazy fun!


Eli's First Solid Foods - Sweet Potatoes

Eli will be 6 months old next weekend. He's a happy, healthy, growing boy of 17 and 1/2 pounds, and he's ready to embark on solid foods. So yesterday, we introduced him to his booster seat. Then, while I was getting everything else ready, he re-introduced himself to his awesome moose boots:
And finally it was time to check out a spoon and sweet potatoes:
What is this stuff?
I'm not so sure I like it:
Yep. Spitting it out. You can put it back in, and I may smack my gums and play with it a bit ... but it's coming back out:
If you like it so much, Mom, maybe you should eat it:
Dad, is this for real?
There. I tried it, and I made a delightful mess of it too. Ha! (I liked that part. I especially enjoyed painting the tray! Now THAT was cool.)


Linking to FB?

Ok. So now I may be taking this over the top a bit, but there has to be a better way for people who WANT to see our pics and hear our stories to know when I've added new ramblings, etc. I think I've found a better way for Facebook Users at least. I've added a Tepker Moments page to Facebook, and I think if you "Like" it that any time I update the blog and post the link to the Tepker Moments FB page, you'll see the update and the link on your Facebook Home page when you peruse the updates. Then you'll never have to check here to see (as long as you're on FB and "Like" Tepker Moments!). We'll see if this works!!

Eli the Clock

Eli can now roll both ways and nearly push himself up on all fours. He can definitely scoot a very small distance if he's after something. But his most common move (once he's rolled to his tummy) now is to spin around, tummy staying pretty much in the same place - just rotating his facing direction, following the movements of his roving siblings! This morning Collin just said: "He's like a clock! Spinning around like the big hand!!)


Owen's Fifth Year

Today (17th - I started this post in draft form on the 16th) is Owen's 5th Birthday! He has had quite the year and grown into quite a boy! His year in pictures tell nearly the whole story! He's athletic and strong, a clown yet shy, and 100% devoted to his family and close friends.

Silly Owen Facts:

  • Loves to collect + trade football cards with his big brother and the Schillingers
  • Shows affection by tackling or climbing on those he loves
  • Enjoys being silly and making others laugh
  • Has unique facial expressions and choreographed dance moves
  • Prefers to have his back scratched before bed each night
  • Never wants to take a shower but could stay under the warm water for an hour

  • Favorite Color: Green
  • Favorite Lunch/Dinner: Hot Dogs
  • Favorite Fruit: Pears, Nectarines, Cherries, Little Cutie Oranges (Can't keep any in the house for long! He gobbles them up!)
  • Favorite Vegetable: Salad (I didn't know this one.)
  • Favorite Breakfast: Breakfast Sandwiches (Eggs + Sausaage, with or without the bread)
  • Favorited Drink: Chocolate Milk, then Rootbeer
  • Favorite Dessert: Chocolate Cake + Chocolate Ice Cream

Here we go:
March 2010 - jumping on my bed in jammies, cowboy hats, bike gear, and sporting six-pack abs.
Tent Camping in the Bedroom
March 15, 2010

Owen LOVES to ride his bike - on the road and on trails. He's known to do stunts, such as pop wheelies and ride with his feet up on the frame.

Spring Soccer - Owen snuck on the team for his second season, a full year younger (minimum) than his teammates and competition, and our team's leading scorer.
Point Defiance Zoo Park - March 31, 2010

At the zoo, Owen rode a camel for the first time and all by himself! He recently took this picture to school for "share day" to tell all his friends all about it!
Owen made Kate this birthday crown for her 2nd birthday, April 7, 2010.

Owen mastered his name and the other 22 letters of the alphabet this year. He also can write his letters (fours upside down) up to at least 48 (that's how many squares on the back of a Yahtzee scorecard). Pic from May 6, 2010
Lake Padden - May 12, 2010

Above + Below -- in our garage on a rainy June 6, 2010
We camped at Moran State Park on Orcas Island June 29 - July 2, 2010
Then we moved over to Lopez Island and camped at Odlin Park July 2-5, 2010

July 18, 2010, Owen competed in his first mountain bike race. He took second place in the 10 and under division.

Owen also participated in All-Comers track over the summer - at 4 and a half - taking first place regularly in hurdles and short distance sprints!
July 23, days after Owen celebrated his half birthday, he became a big brother again.
Boating around Shaw Island August 4, 2010
August 23, 2010 we visited our friends the Sorensons in Yakima, and the boys ate and ate fresh veggies from the garden! They picked so much that we went home with more than of cooler's worth of fresh produce!
Owen was eager to introduce Eli to the game of football.

August 31, 2010
September 16, 2010

Owen loves to help and is constantly calming and entertaining Eli when E needs it!

Fall Soccer - Southside Super Dragons

October 3, 2010
This face shows one of Owen's signature expressions, which he makes especially to evoke a laugh from me!
Owen made a lot of puppets in the fall of 2010.
4 3/4 Years Old

October 16, 2010

October 31, 2010

We made great friends of the Schillingers and Parsons this fall!
November 5, 2010, Collin and Owen sat together working on their print and spelling.
November 24, 2010
Owen enjoyed his second Seahawks game November 28, 2010 against the Kansas City Chiefs (we lost but that didn't razzle the fans!).

December 3, 2010, Owen visited Santa and rode the Westlake Carousel, both annual holiday traditions.

Pic: December 11, 2010
"I am special because my mommy loves me, and I was born to my family." Quote: January 13, 2011
Owen's favorite drink is chocolate milk. His next favorite is rootbeer.
December 18, 2010, we went to our first Solstice Party!
Owen loved the holiday festivities and got very involved in decorating the gingerbread house and making Christmas cookies!

Christmas Eve was lots of fun! Owen got his annual Christmas eve jammies and posed with his favorite people for a holiday pic:

December 24, 2010
Owen's favorite movie is still Cars, but in close second is Toy Story. He also love Curious George, Cat in the Hat, Mickey Mouse, and Scooby Doo.

Owen is a trickster and loves to make people laugh! In this picture, he'd wrapped an empty box for Grandpa to open Christmas Day.
Collin is without a doubt Owen's BEST friend. Then Kate. Then the Schillinger boys.
Remember I said he was always going for the laugh? Here he is tricking out Eli. December 29, 2010
Owen enjoyed his first play at the 5th Avenue Theater December 30, 2010

The boys LOVE to wrestle and play tackle football - indoors and out. December 31, 2010
January 4, 2011
January 8, 2011

January 9, 2011

Corduroy visited, and Owen loved the experience!
January 15, 2011

Last day as a 4 year old - January 16, 2011

January 13, 2011 Quotes:

Things I am good at: playing Wii, running fast, making airplanes, riding my bike fast, playing football, soccer and basketball, being a brother

I was born in the state of: New York? Kansas City? Can you just tell me? (Bellingham, Washington)

Favorite things that did when I was 4: when we went to Uncle Brian's for New Year's, when we went to the Seahawk Game and saw Uncle Jared, any time we played with the Schillingers, when we rode a camel at the zoo, when we camped on Shaw Island

When I grow up I want to be a football player.