Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Picnic in the Park

Here we are at the end of September and we still have beautiful, warm weather -- good enough for a picnic in the park! The unfortunate part was that it got dark just after 7:00 p.m. That didn't help our volleyball game very much. A glow in the dark volleyball would have been ideal. The Merrills, Hickmans, Smiths, and Holles all came! We had a great time.

The guys weren't too thrilled about posing for a picture, so they just stayed in the background and talked and ate.

Rick and Ken take each other on in horseshoes. They were smart and started playing while it was still light. Rumor has it that they "split" the games one each.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Yeah, I'm TICKED!!!! (They think I'm still a Johnson)

Okay, so I'm a little (a lot) mad right now and I just have to vent. Remember those wonderful stimulus checks that the federal government issued earlier this year? The amounts weren't enough to take the year off, but they were nice for some extra spending money. Well, we didn't get ours when we were supposed to, so I called the hotline and was told the amount we were getting and that we could expect the check in July sometime. July came and went. No check. I called a couple more times after that and just got a recording and was never able to get to a live person. So, yesterday, I finally got to a live person (after being on hold FOR OVER AN HOUR) and IRS representative #6207103 told me that we were "ineligible" to receive a check because my name didn't match up to my social security number! WHAT???? Apparently, I never changed my maiden name to my married name with the social security administration and after 22 years of being a Halverson, they are just NOW catching it??? The explanation I got was that the IRS now has the equipment that is catching mistakes like that -- people even used to claim their pets as dependents, but not any longer. (Why didn't I think of claiming my dog??) Okay, no problem, I think. I'll just go to the social security administration office on Gage and change my name, then we'll get our check, right? Not a chance! We've lost out. AAAARRRRGGGGHHHH! The good news is that when we file our 2008 tax return next year, we can request our check again then (but there's still no guarantee that we'll get it). Isn't the federal government wonderful? Okay, I'm done venting. :-)

Monday, September 22, 2008

The Amazing Annual Scrapbooking Weekend

What can be better than a weekend in the mountains with a GREAT bunch of girls, tons of excellent food, and 48 hours of scrapbooking? NOTHING! This was my third year of the annual scrapbooking weekend in Meacham, Oregon and it was fun, fun, fun! Some of the girls only get 3-4 hours of sleep each night (I slept an average of 7 hours each night) -- I don't know how they do it. Talk about dedication!

Nine of us surrounded this large table. It looks like a mess -- but it's an organized mess!

l to r - Kristy, Leslie H., Theresa, Rochelle, Leslie E., Shelly (missing are Karen, Stefani, and Lynnette)

l to r (back) Theresa, Karen, Lynnette, (front) Leslie H., Kristy, Shelly, Leslie E. (missing are Stefani and Rochelle)

"Extreme Muddy Buddies" -- Leslie H., Shelly, and I all brought up our mountain bikes for a respite from scrapbooking Saturday morning. We rode along a logging road for about 4-5 miles (30 minutes), then turned around. It had rained the night before, so we had quite a few puddles to traverse. You can't see it in this picture, but we're covered in mud spots all over and have a mud stripe down our backs!

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Homecoming -- Isn't She Lovely?

Whitney went to homecoming with a group of her friends Saturday night. (Unfortunately, Theresa wasn't even in town to see her and someone else had to take pictures of her.) The kids had one parent take pictures, another cook them dinner, and another provide transportation -- now, that's the way to do homecoming! Whitney had someone do her hair and makeup and doesn't she look beautiful???

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Hawks' Soccer Rocks!

This picture is from a more recent game, but I loved this action shot of Chase catching an awesome header! A game isn't complete without a header!

Chase loves, loves, loves soccer! His 8th grade team had their first game this week, but unfortunately, lost. Chase still had a great time playing, though. Chase was playing a defender for this game and displayed some awesome footwork, faking out his opponent and sending the ball back down the line! Nice playing, Chase!

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Labor Day Weekend vacation -- Newberry Volcanic National Park

First stop -- Lava River Cave. Inside, we played with Whitney's glow-in-the-dark ball. (We missed having Kendall on this trip, but she just got a new job at Red Robin and wasn't able to get off.)
This was Benham Falls, but it wasn't really a waterfall -- more like a class 5 rapids.
The first night, we went into Bend and played minature golf and the kids drove go-karts. Whitney won the go-kars race. Later, we went to Pizza Hut for dinner, but it gave some of us indigestion.
The next day we hiked all over the Cascade Lakes Loop area. Many of the hikes were along the Deschutes River, like this one.
We went to La Pine State Park and saw "Big Tree" (the state's largest Ponderosa Pine tree). This is McGregor vewpoint.

This is Todd Lake. We hiked around it but hit some pretty squishy mud on the back side of the lake. It was our favorite hike of the weekend.
We were looking forward to Lehman Hot Springs all weekend (because we were so cold -- below freezing for two of three nights), but were disappointed once we got there. Fortunately, the water was as warm as promised, so we spent a little time heating up in the water. We had a great weekend and made some great memories.