Sunday, March 26, 2017

Battle of the Books

At Ivan's school they do "Battle of the Books." The 3rd and 4th graders split into groups of about 4 kids and they have a list of about 20 books to read between them all and then they go against each other answering questions about the books. I wasn't going to sign Ivan up, assuming from all the complaining he does about all activities other than play, he wouldn't want to. Luckily his teacher was good at persuading the kids to do it so he came home one day and told me to sign him up. 

I wasn't sure how it would go. I was 1/2 helicopter parent during the occasion, because instead of switching out his own books during recess like all the other responsible kids, I would do it for him on the days I volunteered. Then when March came and they started holding battle practices during lunch he didn't show up to the first couple, cuz he didn't want to miss recess,  but then I was at the school for one and was surprised when his hand would shoot up to answer questions. They had to know the title and the author and he knew them all. The ball kept rolling from there and the day of the final battle his group took first.

Way to go Ivan!

They had the first and second highest teams battle each other to see who could go on to district. Unfortunately they missed a question and the other team won.   It was so fun to watch. Ivan did great. I was really impressed with how much he knew.

Kate LaVer Balle ~1 week

LucyBloom Photography- Lindsey Jensen

Saturday, March 25, 2017


It's a rainy, rainy day today. Seems perfect to document our Oregon trip.

Mike's nephew has two little kids who our kiddo's love to play with. They moved to Oregon about a year ago (is that right Malori?) to do his residency. We got to go out and visit them in March.

We stopped 1/2 way (Idaho) and stayed a night with Steve and Jen. 
(Mikes brother)

Then we drove a very long 8 hrs the next day. I hope we don't get turned in from this picture. There was a stretch of very little traffic and open road so kids got to spread out for a bit. And made a fort.

When they were living in Utah the kids got really into a show called PJ Masks. So when we got there we gave them all PJ Mask pajamas. I didn't even get a picture of them all? 
(if you did malori will you send it to me) But here's Jack and Dawson in theirs.

and it happened to be Emery's bday while we were there so they gave her the owlette doll. Thank you.

We stayed one night on the coast. 
These tide pools were pretty cool. We saw some big star fish and other little things. 

and walked up to the light house

We walked through the little touristy town and ate at a yummy Mexican place 
(Mal, if you have a picture of that send it too)

Then we went back to our room which was a pretty cool place. The kids enjoyed this little office room.

The view was awesome

It was FREEZING on the beach so we only stayed a little bit. 
Kristian and Ivan sword fighting

I wanted to get some beach picture of my kids doin their thang. My niece Malori took them and did awesome. My poor kids, it was stinking cold!

Too cold for baby Kate, but I'm happy she snapped this dang cute picture just before we left

Other than that, we just sort of played around and did things for the kids, like yogurt, bounce houses, swimming and just being together.

Ate an artichoke in honor of grandpa Balle.
Here's Kristian amazing the kids as he cuts into the artichoke heart

We stayed up and played cards and monopoly and visited and just had a grand ol time. Thank you for hosting us. We want to come again.

All the kids just before we said our goodbye's.

 We stayed another night at Steve and Jens on the way home and then when we got home we went to Brad and Jan's to hear where Brett is going on his mission. 
Texas Baby!