Wednesday, November 21, 2012


Todd and I finally threw in the towel on the adult parties for Elodie's birthday and had a big "kid bash" for the 4th anniversary of the best thing that has ever happened to us...
The party was held in conjunction with Elodie's buddy, Jamison, whose birthday is just 3 days before her special day.  We had 20 kids, pizza, cake, and a monster-sized bouncy house in the "gladiator" style.  How much fun can a kid have? How much easier could a birthday party of that size be? Close the doors and let the kids loose.  I could do that for EVERY party.
 Elodie's birthday crown

 Elodie and Jamison blowing out their candles. The little boy on the left is Bodie-Elodie's best friend.
 The bouncy house...
 I am trying to regulate how many kids pile into the bouncy at the same time! Herding cats...
 On the actual day of Elodie's birthday, we made cupcakes-Elodie's choice, decorated by the birthday girl herself!
The favorite presents: a baby dragon named Spike (in the swing) and a convertible baby swing-highchair, carseat...

Friday, October 5, 2012

Mommy-Elodie mountain biking trip

We have special days together called Daddy-Elodie day: Wednesdays, and Mommy-Elodie day(s): Saturdays and Sundays.  We always try to do something special on these days, although it is not always possible.  My girlfriend Angie and I were able to plan a camping/mountain biking trip out west in the Fruita/Grand Junction area. Elodie and I packed up everything we could fit in the Suby (thank God for car-camping...) and it the road.  We were able to get to Grand Junction just in time to see a bit of the airshow.  A fighter jet was in flight when we arrived. How amazing to see the jet fly so fast and up-side down! The pilot also put the jet into "dive" mode and pulled up at the last second.  One of the "tricks" that he also pulled was a "wheelie" type that looked a lot like a bike being wheelied down the street. Then, just before he finished, he buzzed the town just above where we were sitting and it was so loud car alarms started going off! We sure had an hysterical laugh at that while sitting on the hood of our car.  
Then, it was off to the mountain bike trails for us!
For me as a woman truly in love with mountain biking, it is my dream that Elodie will love to ride as much as I, and of course, Todd.  Riding with Elodie on these trails was one of the most fun, most ground-breaking things I have done in my entire life!

We camped at Highline Lake State Park with one of my girlfriends and her 10 year old daughter and her daughter's friend.  Elodie had the time of her life hanging and playing with the "big girls."  I bought her her very own head lamp to fit in, too!


Thursday, October 4, 2012

 I have been thinking a lot about our new home (OURS!) and what we have in store for us with the location and the stability of owning in the area.  Friends are closer for all of us!  Opportunities for us to share precious moments like this are abundant.  This particular picture is from last weekend when Elodie and I met some friends at a place 5 minutes from our house called Sapphire Point.  The chipmunks and squirrels will eat sunflower seeds right from your hand!

Jamison and Elodie are the closest thing to brother and sister as could be without actually being brother and sister: playing, arguing, button-pushing, and goofing around.  They are days apart in age, and we are actually planning a birthday party for the 2 together.  "Superman" and the "Razberry Princess."

Wednesday, October 3, 2012


We have been renting this cute cabin for the last year.  It is across the street from a World-class ski resort, Keystone, and we can ride right out of our house to some of the best mountain biking in Colorado.  It only seemed right to accept an offer we couldn't refuse in order to purchase the home.  As of yesterday at 11:30am (10/3 Tuesday), we are the proud new owners of this beautiful place!!!

A couple weekends ago, Aimee DesRochers and I took the kids to see Thomas when he was in Golden (Denver area).  What a fun afternoon! He was visiting the railroad museum, so we were able to see quite a few different trains besides the star of the show: Thomas.  They had a Thomas tattoo station, a tent with a bunch of tables set up with Thomas railroad tracks, a petting zoo (big hit with Max and Elodie-we  were there twice!), and finally we got to ride in Thomas' RR car.  We finished off the afternoon with a delicious sherbert "ice cream" cone!

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

We have been wanting all summer to get Elodie out camping in a tent- she has "camped" in our camper a number of times. Since we do not use our camper anymore, tent-camping it is!
Last night, we finally took the plunge and had an absolutely wonderful time.  Our neighbors camp quite a bit and we stayed with them at the coolest camp site.  
Elevation: 10,000 ft.                  Morning Temp: 35 degrees

Elodie helping gather firewood

 Our hearty group

 Staying warm and keeping Caleb away from our dinner :)


Tuesday, August 21, 2012

 Last week, the Olsen clan journeyed to NJ to see family and friends, swim, and relax.  Sue, Todd's mom, set us up with a stay at the most amazing boat house on Lake Hopatcong.  WOW!

 Elodie and Grandma Ruth (her middle name-sake) had breakfast together in the morning while Mom and Dad slept in...

 Patience in a 3 year old is a rarity... but it sure pays off! (don't worry- we threw this little guy back!)

The boathouse we stayed in, owned by Carol and Lloyd Kitchin, came equipped with kayaks, boat, swimming, life jackets, food, drinks, a roof to jump off into the lake, and lots of love! Thank you, Carol!!!

 My coffee spot every morning! It was hard to leave...
 Here is little Elodie doing what she does best... scaring people and then making them smile bigger than they ever thought possible! That's my girl. (look at Grandma's expression!)
At the end of the day... do we all look like this when we finally fall asleep?

 New things to do... feeding the ducks and fish in Keystone Village off a paddle boat.  What a wonderful place to live and easy to find fun, creative, outdoor things for kids in need of constant stimulation! Elodie and her buddy Jamison (otherwise known as Jamo) are feeding the gigantic flock of ducks that are not pictured, that are following the boat so closely, they can eat off the back of the paddle boat!  The most amazing thing is the shear size and number of the trout that are ganging up on us and are ready to attack if we do not keep the duck food coming. Ugh!

Monday, July 16, 2012

Last week, we went to a science night and did a few very cool experiments. The kids had to wear "safety goggles."  This particular experiment was called "elephant toothpaste.  It was a reaction between high-grade peroxide, dishsoap, food coloring, and yeast.  Poured the yeast into the peroxide mixture and out it came... purple elephant toothpaste!

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Todd, Elodie, and I have been working on a system that will allow us all to be able to do the things we love.  Although it is far from being refined, it seems to work well.  One of us gets up at the "butt crack", goes for a cool bike ride somewhere, and then arrives home when the others are just getting up.  Elodie hasn't been able to wake up early enough to take her day, so Todd and I use her days... heehee!  Most of the time these early morning rides take place in a wonderful place called "The High Alpine" and are really the most beautiful places anytime of day, but you should see the  mornings.  This was my morning:

Thank you, Goat family, for being able to see you this morning.  It was good to see you again. Your family has grown!

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

life is not so bad... we just miss Todd!

Elodie and I have been doing lots of things to brighten our days while Todd is away at "Big Person School." Skiing, swimming, crafts, movies, and games taking up most of that space (besides the usual work and school!)

The other night, we made "crowns" out of pipe cleaners...

Elodie asked me if we could make happy face cookies for her to take to class. I made the cookies, Elodie decorated them-complete with eyes, mouth, and cheeks! :)

I have put Elodie on a very strict training program to prepare her for the upcoming bike season...

I think that, besides skiing with her friend Asher, she likes wrestling the best!
Yes, I have told her to be careful while wrestling with skis on!

I even have a chance to enjoy myself (shock of shocks, hey??) and go for a few runs over my lunch and also when Elodie goes to ski school on Saturdays. We have gotten some pretty good snow (amount and quality) in the last few days. I took a few extra runs today and came back to work late! oops! (They are lucky I came back at all! HA!) Dad (Grampa Phil)-
you need to get out here asap!

Friday, February 10, 2012

Ahhhhh... Hawaii, beaches, surfing, sand!

Sandcastles were one of things that we did most on the beach. We went to Costco and got this super rad sandcastle-building set of tools. So cool! When Elodie wasn't building things, she was rolling in the sand. We found sand in places that sand was never meant to be...

Todd has been working at his paddle-boarding skills. He is getting pretty good... it is very difficult to stand on a board, balance with the rolling of the water, steer the board so you do not get clobbered by a wave cross-wise, and then to finally "catch" and surf a wave... But he gave me some pointers that he thought would help and sent me on my way. Wow! I should have counted the times I fell over back wards. Picture slipping on the ice and going down hard on your butt. That was me. Elodie stuck with sitting on the paddle board and lying on the boogie board. She loved it!

Sunday, February 5, 2012

rocks and whales!

We wanted to take Elodie out to see the whales, and were obviously hoping to have a good show, but I never imagined the whales would be swimming right next to the 40' raft we were riding! We saw a whale breech almost immediately, and Elodie saw it! That really set the tone for the rest of the trip. She was so excited and looked along with the rest of the group on the raft for the next sighting of these amazing, graceful creatures.

Our captain was able to spot and follow a "pod" of about 10 whales swimming, competing, etc. What a show! At one point, one swam under the boat, and the rest swam right next to the boat. By the very end of the trip, the boat had rocked Elodie fast asleep...

lose their attraction! On our way to La Perouse bay to see if we could spot any dolphins, we went for a walk thru a giant lava field.
It was a 3 year old's dream come true! All the rocks she could carry, plus ones that we were asked to carry... and then, we had to throw them into the "sea." I love the whole rock thing!