Monday, August 23, 2010

Back To School

Cade started 4th grade last Wednesday. When did this happen? When did I become old enough to have kid in 4th grade. It was a beautiful morning, unlike last year. No mutant bugs waiting for us on the car.

Does everyone take this picture? You know, the one in front of the door, all ready to head to school.

This is another obligatory photo. It's our own unique growth chart. That saint seems to be getting smaller and smaller every year.

Best buds.

First day of school mayhem.

The class layout. Check out how not crazy this room looks!

Last year's fourth grade class made this year's class bookmarks with helpful hints on how to succeed in fourth grade. Isn't that awesome. I thought it was very thoughtful of Mrs. Figgs (his new teacher) to have the students do.

It's that time again. Yep. You guessed it. Trash bag sale time. How many do you want? Oh, and this year, we've got super large paper yard/compost/recycling bags.

He survived!

The requisite lunch at the restaurant of Cade's choice. This year it was Cheeburger Cheeburger.

Lydia was begging me to take her picture. Apparently somebody was feeling a bit left out.

Posin' with the stooges.

Monday, August 16, 2010

An Ill-Advised Exercise in Reliving Your Youth

This exercise started innocently enough. It was the wee hours of the morning one drizzly night this past May. Mention of a 'Bump Club' reunion for a last hoo-rah had (some of) us giddy with anticipation. But it wasn't to be just any reunion. Oh no. You see, this club is legendary. Unforgettable. Dare I say, infamous, in our softball tournament playing prowess. And not just any softball tournament. We're talking Texas Style softball, people. Not for the faint of heart or the easily discouraged. Two days of softball during the hottest part of summer at a softball complex that offers little shade and even less toilet paper isn't for your run of the mill softball team. It takes a team with determination. Grit. Mettle. 10 coolers full of ice cold 'beverages'. At least that's all it took 10-15 years ago.

Here's a look back at some of the earlier players. There were only a few of the original founding members of the Bump Club present that year. The club had been around a few years before this and I was fortunate enough to 'marry into' it. As it is/was somewhat exclusive and selective in their membership, I consider myself lucky to still be a somewhat active member, not being a Coors Light drinking, KSU alumni and all. *whew!* But I must say, membership does have it's privileges.

Privilege #1: Witnessing irony at it's best first hand. Those of you who were there understand the humor in this picture. For those of you who weren't, believe me, it puts a whole new meaning to the phrase 'coming unhinged'.

Here are some action shots of the first inning of some game.
Regular softball rules still apply.

MM and his 'major league swing'.
I dunno, DD. I think I'd ask for my money back.

Now we've moved on to the 'bat opposite-handed' inning.

As you can see, the Bump Club is pretty adept and accomplished in this inning.

Relaxing under one of the only 2 pavilions offering shade from the blistering heat.

BC members doing what they do best.

Yes, that is a package of (sort of) frozen peas on her mouth. She was playing 3rd and a ball hit to her took a bad hop right to her mouth. When it happened, I seriously thought she'd be spitting out a chiclet or two. Instead, she comes back from Stat Care looking like she got botox. Lucky.

She got a medical red shirt and some killer drugs, so it's all good.

Dug out shenanigans.
TB? What's your hand doing?

He's so good, his feet don't even touch the ground.

I don't know how our 2 pitchers did it. After nearly 13 games with every other inning of doing this, I'm surprised their arms didn't fall completely off.
What's that? Yes, I did say 13 games. Did I forget to mention that? Oh, silly me. Funny story.
If you're a sadomasochist.

A spectacular play at second!
Duh-nuh-nuh! Duh-nuh-nuh!

Here we are in the run to third base first inning. The Bump Club isn't so adept or accomplished at this one.

Although, once you actually make it to third, the rest of the way is cake.

Defense is just as awkward. But T-Ball does a stellar job at making it look easy.

Ali getting the other 3rd baseperson out. I didn't care for this gal much. (The other gal, not Ali!) She was the type to lick her fingers before every batter and when she was up to bat. That's just gross.

Some more outstanding BCD and BCO.

Unhook the plow!!

Good game, Sir!
(BTW that is the quote of the weekend. Right, Tim? With 'Simmer down, Bacon!' as a close second.)

Posing with Ditka at the Scheme.

The next morning. These people are smiling because 4 of them went straight back to the hotel room after dinner and got some rest. Nobody else was looking as chipper.

Trying to work out the cobwebs.

The Senior class picture.

While some of the players and names have changed, the same spirit that started it all was present during (most of) the weekend. (Save, of course, when the majority of us were not getting 'closure'. But I digress.) And really the only things that have changed are:

1. Recovery time. I'm still walking around like Quasimodo. Anybody else? Although in my defense, I only signed up for the usual 6-8 game round robin. Not the suicidal 13 game 'round robin' that they concocted.
2. The coolers. Sure there were 10 like the good ol' days, but about 4 of them had silly things like food, water bottles, Gatorade, juice pouches (as some of us have spawned), frozen peas, Margarita pops, acetemenophin, ibuprofen and Biofreeze.
3. I do believe they are relaxing the minimum age requirement. That, I refuse to admit it. I can't even bring myself to type it out loud.

4. Some of us* are actually twice the age we* used to be when this whole thing started.

*And by us and we, I mean NOT ME! ;P

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Oh, Deer!

Bring on the jokes about rednecks, hayseeds, hicks, etc. Just in time for back to skool scool skule oh, you know what I mean!

*and yes, I know I used the wrong deer. It's a homophone. I did it on purpose.*

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Annual Topeka Jayhawk Club Pep Rally

It's that time of year again! Football season is just 3 weeks away!! And we can't wait. With a new coach at KU this year and Washburn is ranked 2nd & 3rd or 9th (depends on which poll you choose) we're looking forward to an exciting season. Last Sunday was the annual TJC football pep rally at the Kansas Museum.

Here we go again!

We went inside first to cool off. It was a scorcher out there again.

More of Lydia unplugged.

I love it that Cade still likes to ham it up in front of the camera.

Showing off some mad skillz.

And did you know he is contortionist?

They also had a photo booth for everyone to use.
(Can you tell we've been spending some time near the pool?)

Admiring each other's uniforms.

This was as close as Lydia would get to any of the Jayhawks. It took her a while, but she got up enough nerve to give Baby Jay a quick--we're talking lightning speed, barely long enough to even touch hands--high five.

Not Cade. He was practically chasing Big Jay down to get a photo op.

'Which one of these is not like the others...?'
(Although, if you look at their beaks long's not very nice, now is it?)

Two out of my 3 favorite Jayhawks.

Lydia made a bee line for the Jayhawk bounce house.
Guess she'd waited long enough.

Catching some major air.

Yep, she definitely was owning the bounce house.

Cade getting ready to toss the pigskin around.

He completes the pass!

She'd been waiting all evening for this.

Showing her stuff and cheering and dancing along with the cheer squad.

Coach Gill. Think I like him. He's definitely got more charisma than the last coach, but I still miss Mr. Lunt, er, I mean, Coach Mangino.

Coach Gill signing Cade's poster. Cade said (totally unprompted I might add), 'Good luck this year coach! And we WILL beat Missouri this year!'
I was beaming, I tell you. BEAMING!!!

Then coach said to Cade, 'I like your enthusiasm, son! Thank you!'
Now what more could any parent ask for??

The trip through the museum was hilarious. Lydia took off showing us everything like she'd been here a dozen times before. Pretty sure the last time we were here was at last year's pep rally.

'It's a mud hut, Dad!'

'Eww. Yuck! Buffalo fur. That's gross!'

'Here's a car, Dad!'

'Look at this, Dad!'

'What's that, Dad?'

'Here's the train, Dad!'

Lots of fun again this year. Got us pretty excited for football and looking forward to waving the wheat and singing 'Rock Chalk'.