Andrew’s First Cross Country Meet

In a week full of school supply shopping, open houses, and first practices, we kicked things off with Andrew’s first cross country meet. He has been training since July with the cross country team and really enjoying it. He looked good in his race and was happy to meet his goal of finishing in under 20 minutes. 

pre-race huddle
Andrew being coached along the way
coming around the bend

Andrew’s 14th Birthday

Today we celebrated Andrew’s 14th birthday. This morning he opened our present, a new camera. He has been excited about taking pictures on our trip and we found a nice point & shoot camera for him to use. 

In the afternoon we went to Trees a Mystery, a big-tree park about 30 minutes south of where we are staying. Andrew was really torn between that and bowling. I think he made the right choice. 

For dinner we had Skyline. That was followed by a carmel-explosion cake that he and Susan concocted. It was really good. 

Andrew at 14 continues to be a pleasant, positive presence in our lives. He is enthusiastic about life and embraces new opportunities openly. His hobbies and interests remain largely the same: music, sports, games, reading. On the trip he has been maintaining his own blog, which is interesting and I think has him thinking about things a little differently. 

Favorite song: heavydirtysoul by Twenty-One Pilots
Favorite color: Orange
Favorite food: Skyline
Favorite band:Twenty-One Pilots
Favorite book: Harry Potter 7
Favorite sport: Soccer
Favorite movie: Jurassic Park

Playing at the Beach

Today we went back into town to get our car sticker and to play at the beach. Andrew and I had the chance to reenact some honeymoon photos. One of the best things about being in Seaside is that I have such fond memories of being here on our honeymoon, even though we were only here for a short time. 

At the beach, the older kids watched Rose while Susan and I went for a run. Then we all worked on a sand castle until we went hunting for sand dollars.

Left: October 2017. Right: June 2004.
Rob & Andrew swinging
Run Break
Sand Castle
Sand Dollar
Filling the watering can

Andrew’s Orchestra Concert

Andrew had his final orchestra concert of the year tonight. Just like Mari’s band concert 3 weeks ago, I couldn’t make it because I am in Cincinnati for work. Susan tells me it was a good show.

Dinner at Gateway Market, where kids eat free on Tuesdays.
Andrew & Will, ready for the show.

Moving up in the (music) world

This year Andrew and Mari both started playing new instruments – Tuba for Mari and Cello for Andrew. In recent weeks they have both progressed beyond the entry-level classes that they were in. Mari started playing with the full fifth grade orchestra a couple of weeks ago and yesterday in class she was particularly proud of being called out for her skills. She was asked to come to the front of the class to play a solo of Jingle Bells. 

Andrew will join the full seventh grade orchestra at Indian Hills Junior High next week. His friend Will is already in this group and Andrew is excited for some more complex work.

Single Track

This afternoon Andrew, Mari, Elliot and I went for our first and last single track bikeride of the year. It was a beautiful afternoon and the kids did a great job carving up the trails. I imagine it has been a few years since we have been out there and it felt good.

The kids after the first run.
The kids after the first run.
The kids at the finish line
The kids at the finish line, 5 years ago.