Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Kindergarten Sing

Our school has the best music teacher EVER, hands down.  The kids love him, the parents love him, and the kids learn soooo much.  On Friday, the kindergarten was able to show the parents all that they have learned this year, and they had a great time doing it!  Here they are in action...

Evan's Kindergarten program 009 from Sarah Nosek on Vimeo.

Evan's Kindergarten program 010 from Sarah Nosek on Vimeo.

Evan's Kindergarten program 014 from Sarah Nosek on Vimeo.

Our favorite Kindergarteners (Evan and Connor, of course) and our favorite Pre-Kindergartener (Michael) after the performance.  Good job, boys!

Monday, February 25, 2013

Skiing with the Scouts

When I was 13, I went skiing for the first time, and I loved it.  When the opportunity arose for Henry and Seth to go skiing with their Boy Scout troop, we jumped at the chance.  To be able to share this adventure with the boys who are now about the same age as I was when I first skied was pretty cool.

We left bright and early with some of our best friends to travel to the Wisconsin Ski Resort, and made it to our lessons on the bunny hills by 10:00.  We had kind of a rocky start because Henry wasn't feeling well at first, but he quickly recovered.  Thank God!  He would have been so disappointed if he would have missed out.
We were all pretty awkward on our skis at first, and there was some serious frustration, but soon caught on.  On the bunny hills, we polished our starts, stops, turns, and getting back up after a fall.  Because they took a lesson and spent the day skiing, the boys earned their skiing merit badge.  That was Seth's first merit badge, and what a great one to start with!
We headed back to the lodge for a group picture with the scouts...
and lunch to fuel our bodies for the many hours of skiing that lay ahead of us.

After lunch, we moved from the bunny hills to the green hills.  The boys and their friends got to ride ski lifts!

After Henry and his friend Alex became accustomed to the green hill, their friends Grant and Matt took them to another hill.  It was labeled a black diamond hill, but it wasn't that hard.  The boys did very well, and even tried some jumps!
Here's Henry at the top of the black diamond hill.  He loved how fast it was, and managed to stay on his feet most of the time.
It was such an adventure and thrill to share with my boys.  We can't wait to go again!
I love these smiles!
Here are the boys in action!  Henry is first,

skiing 003 from Sarah Nosek on Vimeo.

and then Seth.

skiing 004 from Sarah Nosek on Vimeo.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Taking care of Sarah

For the past two years I have led a healthier lifestyle than I had for most of my adult life.  I followed Tosca Reno's Eat Clean Diet completely for the first 6 months.  Through the diet and exercise, I lost 40 pounds.  After that first 6 months, I was not as strict with the diet, but I have maintained that weight for two years now.

That part is good.  However, for the past 6 months I have not been as regular with my exercise. I'll start running, and do well for 4 or 5 days, or maybe up to a couple of weeks, but then I fall out of it again.  I tell myself that I have too much to do, or I am too tired at night to fit in a run, or whatever.  Excuses.  I seem to do better when I don't allow myself to miss even one day, because once I do, it turns into a week.

That same idea holds true for my diet too.  When I follow the diet completely, I don't crave sweets and salty food.  I feel good about staying true to it, and that encourages me to continue.  As soon as I say to myself that a couple of cookies or one dessert at a party won't make that much of a difference, I want more.  Even just a little makes me feel guilty, especially if I don't stop at just two cookies.

I have gotten a little lazy with making my meals, relying too much on frozen vegetables, and not enough fresh.  I don't make enough variety.  I am kind of bored.

So I have been processing all of this lately, and thinking of how easily I could fall out of this healthy lifestyle.  While so far my small exceptions to my diet and lack of consistent exercise has not made a huge difference, I worry that little exceptions could turn into big or regular exceptions.  I don't feel as good as I think I could.  I don't feel as good as I have earlier in this journey.  I am not as proud of myself.  I don't feel as confident.  I am also more anxious and tend to get more down about things.  While that is kind of a natural part of my personality, I know that diet and exercise can help with stress.  So, what I am trying to say is that there is probably some correlation there.

The scale still reads the same.  I always fall in the same range of 4 pounds. So that's good.

And I am healthy.  My sister suggested that I schedule all of my doctor appointments for one month of the year.  I like that advice because it is making me get it all done, and I have not always been so good about regular health care in the past.  So February is my month.  So far I have had 2 appointments, and only have my dermatologist appointment left.  (I have to have my skin checked for skin cancer once a year.)  My regular doctor's appointment went very well.  I hadn't seen him since I lost the weight, and he said I was like a totally different person. 

I was glad to hear that what I am doing has made a difference, but I still don't feel one hundred percent.  (Interestingly enough, all of this could possibly correlate with my lack of consistency on my blog too.)

So, anyways, tomorrow is a new day.  I am recommitting myself to eating completely clean.  (I am actually going to re-read Tosca's book.) I am going to run.  And I am going to be consistent.  I am starting at a pretty good place, but want to take myself back to when I felt my best.

(As a side note, I am also scheduling a hair appointment, and am trying a new skin care line.  I got some new glasses, and am trying to wear my contacts again.  I am hoping this makes me feel better too.)

I hope that I don't sound too self-absorbed in this post...I just want to feel good, and strong, and energetic and confident, and know that feeling that way makes me a better wife and mother too. 

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

I read to you, you read to me

There's a whole lot of reading going on around here.  I read to Evan...

 Evan reads to me...

Actually, Evan reads to all of us...

including Moxie...

who has a sixth sense about when it's time to go upstairs to read in Mom and Dad's bed.  :)

I think Evan loves his audience!

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Dear Seth,

Dear Seth,
We’ve watched you grow from a cute, little Kindergartener to a smart, capable, and funny fifth grader. It is a bittersweet time to say good-bye to grade school, but we can’t wait to see what is in store for you in middle school! We couldn’t be more proud of the fine young man, excellent student, loyal friend, caring family member, and dog spoiler you are!
Mom and Dad

(All fifth grade parents get the chance to write a special letter to their child that will be included in the yearbook. This is ours to Seth. The pictures above were ones that I took of him when he was five.)

Monday, February 18, 2013

Feed My Starving Children

Today, Caroline and her Brownie troop helped a very worthwhile cause.  They spent the afternoon at Feed My Starving Children.  As stated on their website, "Feed My Starving Children is a non-profit Christian organization committed to feeding God’s children hungry in body and spirit. The approach is simple: children and adults hand-pack meals specifically formulated for malnourished children, and we ship the meals to nearly 70 countries around the world.  A single meal costs only 22 cents to produce, and 92 percent of total donations goes directly toward the food program."  Guess what?  All of our girls hard work paid off.  They were able to package up enough food to feed 58 children for one year!!
We're proud of you, girls!  Good job!

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Our brand new Boy Scout!!

Seth crossed over from Cub Scouts to Boy Scouts tonight at the Blue and Gold Banquet!  It's been 5 years of all kinds of fun experiences with some of his very best friends...

and now we're looking forward to lots of new adventures in the years ahead with his Boy Scout troop!  A funny story from his cross-over...When the American Legion representative was announcing Seth's name for his Arrow of Light award, he mispronounced it, calling him "Sheth Noah".  When it was time for Seth to cross over the bridge into Boy Scouts, big brother Henry and his friend Alex had told all the rest of the scouts in attendance to say, "Congratulations, Sheth Noah!" one after the other when they shook his hand!  Seth was totally laughing!  :)

Then the troop leaders congratulated him, this time calling him by his real name, lol.  I love this picture, and am so happy that Seth has such amazing role models in his dad and the troop leaders.

Seth and his den earned all 20 Webelos activity badges, which earned them the Super Achiever award!  They were the only den in our troop to do that!

Here's some close-ups of Seth's awards...his Arrow of Light Award as well as his Arrow of Light badge, which is the only badge from Cub Scouts that he can wear on his Boy Scout uniform.

This is Seth's Webelos Super Achiever Award as well as some of his badges.

This is the award from the American Legion, recognizing his Arrow of Light achievement.  Right by it is Seth's 5th Year Service Star, which he earned by (you guessed it) serving in Cub Scouts for 5 years.

Seth was so happy and honored that his Grandma and Grandpa Nosek

and his Grandma and Grandpa Orton were able to come to his Arrow of Light Ceremony!

We are all so very proud of you, Seth, and look forward to all of the scouting to come!  We love you!

Friday, February 15, 2013

Dance Party in the Bathroom

Evan and I follow a routine nearly every day.  First we do school work together, play with Moxie, have a snack and watch Word World or Max and Ruby, do more school work, have lunch, shower, get dressed, and then...

evan dance 001 from Sarah Nosek on Vimeo.

Yup, everyday.  Dance party in the bathroom.  This boy has got some moves, lol.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013


Tonight, after completing homework, religious education class, and dinner, we needed to blow off a little steam.  So when the kids decided they wanted to play Twister, we were game!

Evan started out as the "spinner", which meant that he got to tell his brother and sister where on the game board to put their various appendages. 

I'd say he kind of got a kick out of his job!

Then, it was Caroline's turn to spin, and two brothers competed.

Evan started talking smack to me, so of course I had to challenge him.

I won't say who lost, because I wouldn't want to embarrass him.  (Just kidding...I was on the losing end!)

This boy is like a rubberband...

as is this one...

and our daughter too!  I think if I challenge them to Twister in the future, I'll have to start stretching now!

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

What to do?

When you've already played Avengers, Nerf guns, and foosball...
And your Wii is broken so you can't play Lego Star Wars...
And your friend doesn't want to play Legos or playdough...
What are two 6 year old friends to do??
Stratego!!  I couldn't believe when these two pulled this game out and excitedly started setting it up, talking about what their older brothers and dads taught them.  And if they actually started playing, my jaw was going to be on the floor.
After a few minutes, they decided that they couldn't remember enough, so they pulled out another game.  Sorry was definitely more up their alley.  I was so impressed because they were able to play the game for the most part on their own, with just a little bit of advice from me as far as strategy.
If you have ever played this game, you know that it can last forEVER.  They stuck with it, which just floored me too!  They had a great time, and Cash said that he wants to play this game again when he comes back to our house.  :)

So Cash and Evan's first play date went really well.  I'm kind of glad that our Wii wasn't working, although I am crossing my fingers that its not permanently broken!

Monday, February 11, 2013

Good dog, Moxie!

She takes care of us when we are sick.

She is an eager playmate.

And she always keeps me company at night when I'm reading.

Good dog, Moxie!

Sunday, February 10, 2013

The rest of the weekend!

The laundry room/mud room/pantry continues to be the bane of my existence.  We had remodeled it a while back, and while that helped we still have had trouble keeping it consistently organized.  Dave knew how much it bugged me (or he got tired of hearing me complain about it), so last week he tackled organizing the pantry.  That is love.  :)

Then...this weekend he made a new set of hooks for the kids to hang their snow pants and coats on.  We put the boot trays underneath the hooks, and voila, we have a manageable winter system. 

Now we have more room for all of the rest of their stuff on the other side of the laundry room.

See the coats on the far right of this picture?  Dave hung some more hooks for his and my coats there.

After all of this work in the laundry room, Evan and Caroline made laundry basket LaZboys, and we all relaxed watching Swiss Family Robinson.  What a fun movie!  The kids loved it.

On Sunday we spent the day cleaning and getting ready for our very special guests, Denny and Dolly.  Denny was like a second father to me when I was growing up...teaching me how to drive, tutoring me in my math classes, helping me edit and print all of my papers, mentoring me on science projects.  Our families spent holidays together and vacationed together too!  He lived just a couple of doors down from my parents' house, and was one of our closest family friends.  It was such a treat to have him and his wife, Dolly, over for dinner and a nice visit!
It was a wonderfully full and happy weekend!  :)