Saturday, March 21, 2009

Happy Birthday Alex

Today is the end of another very busy but very exciting week. So many things happened this week that I scarcely know where to begin. This week was spring break for most of the Universities. Alycia came down but had to go back early because she is coaching a High School Lacrosse team in Salt Lake. That was a bummer but that is what you do when you have a job. She went back Wednesday. Brandon had spring break also but apparently in law school, spring break is just and opportunity to assign a major project. He knew he was going to very busy all week long so we figured there was no reason Serene and Sydney couldn't have a break so we invited them down and left Brandon to work with no distractions.

Alex had a birthday a little while back but between sports and other activities we were only able to celebrate this week. Over the years some of our kids have developed some unusual requests for birthday cakes. Do you like Alex's cake? He got some very nice presents too. We had the family dinner and presents on Monday while Alycia, Serene and Sydney were here but we decided to throw him a party for his friends. In the spring of 1999 Lisa volunteered to be on the "Grad Night" committee at Kira's high school. She figured she would learn what she could so she'd be ready for the next year when Kira graduated. Most of the years since then she has been the grad night committee and every time she has been the entertainment chair. She has a budget of well over $10,000 that she uses to hire all kinds of entertainment for the night. Over the years she has developed a very good relationship with some of the companies so when she called them up and asked what they would charge us for an Astro Jump for Alex's party they were quite willing to give it to her for free. Not only did they give it to her for free but they gave us the "Jumbo" sized one. I was afraid it wouldn't fit in our yard. They told me that it was the largest Astro Jump in California. I believe it. We spent some time to figure the best place to put it in our yard and then when I turned on the blower it nearly dwarfed our house. I'm sure this thing was bigger than most of the houses in some countries. It just got larger and larger and larger. In addition to the jump we also had the X-Box (couple of kids played the "Lips" game), Alex's basket ball toss game and the ping pong table we got for Christmas. We then built a fire to go along with it all. We didn't have as many kids show up as we thought we might but we still probably had more than thirty all told. It was a bit of a strange party though. On the invites we had said that it would go until midnight but by 11:00 most of them were gone and the last straggler left at 11:15. Most of Alex's friends are into sports and there were a lot of things going on the next day so they all left in time to get a good nights sleep. The other funny thing is that Sarah is good friends with about half of Alex's friends. It really weirded Alex out at first when his friends all started saying hi to Sarah as they pass in the halls at school. He's used to it now and they all call her "Little Leavitt".

Heather Wilcox and Caitlan McConnell playing the basketball toss game.

Everybody singing Happy Birthday to Alex.

Alex blowing out his candles. Lisa put an illegal sparkler on it. The sparkler was smuggled in from Canada since they are illegal in California.

Sarah and some friends around the fire.

Alex pretty much dominates in Ping Pong.

Some of the guys just hanging out on the deck that looks out over our canyon.

Alex figured the jump was big enough it could be his dance floor. It looks like they all just tuckered out and layed down.

The next mornning I had to put that darned jump back in the truck. They used a fork lift to get it in and Alex and I managed to get it on a little dolly and maneuver it into the back yard. Getting back in the truck wasn't as easy. Between Alex, Sarah and myself we did finally manage but my back is killing me and Alex's groin is hurting. Hopefully we'll heal. Before we packed up the jump however I dragged Lisa, Serene and Sydney into it. Alex and Sarah required no coaxing. Sydney is not so sure she likes the jump.

Sarah looks like a bug splattered onto the wall.

Alex doing a somersault.

Sarah can looks like she can fly.

This is about the only trick I could manage.

After we got the jump all packed up Alex headed off to do his reffing for the day and the rest of us head for Sarah's track meet. This was an invitational meet where you had to actually qualify to go. Sarah really surprised herself this year. She had about given up on being good at anything. Last year she did the 300m hurdles and the mile (or was it the 2 mile?) but as you may know, if you know, if you try and be good at too many things you end up not being good at anything. This year she decided to focus on the 300m hurdles. Much to her surprise she ended up making the varsity team (and she is still a Sophomore). In her very first race she came in third but she was the first Westview girl to come in. She won her second race and then they had her run the 100m hurdles and she came in third on that one. Based on her time she qualified for this invitational meet and so she was competing with the best. She didn't quite make her personal best but she did end up getting third place and so you see her here showing off her medal. She is quite happy and I guess if I were to be honest, so am I.

We then rushed home from the meet and quickly got ready to head to Valley Center and watch Mackenzie compete for Miss Valley Center. She did beautifully and in my mind it came down to two girls. I still figured Mackenzie was better than the other girl but I admitted that I may be somewhat biased so I conceded that the other girl had a chance. You can imagine my excitement when in the end the other girl got first runner up. At this point I knew that Mackenzie had it. Much to my dismay they gave it to this other girl who wasn't as pretty as Mackenzie, she didn't have th grace and poise that Mackenzie had, her dress was ugly and her answer to the impromptu question was dumb. I figure the other girl won the simpathy vote because she was a fetal alcohol syndrome baby. Oh well, we all know who should have won.

Doesn't Mackenzie look absolutely beautiful? She definitely should have won.

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