Thursday, December 31, 2009

You'll shoot your eye out!

Who hasn't seen the classic, A Christmas Story? We watch it every year, once on Thanksgiving and then all day on Christmas Eve. We just have it running in the back ground. I remember the first time I saw it, I was at my aunt and uncle's house for our annual Christmas Dinner and I thought it was so funny. I think I was 10 or 12??? Anyways, for the last umpteen years, it has been a tradition in our home.

As you may know Ralphie wants a Red Ryder carbine-action, two hundred shot Range Model air rifle with a compass in the stock and a thing which tells time. Well guess what? That exact gun does not exist (according to Wikipedia) but Wal-Mart has something VERY similar. It IS a Red Rider and it WILL shoot your eye out if you're not careful. Good thing we are careful in the HomerHouse because both boys got their very own Red Rider. Thanks mom and Dad ;)
It's hard to tell who was more excited, the kids or the adults. Now I am seriously afraid of our kids having guns, in fact, they weren't allowed to even have water guns for years. That all changed when they went to a friends house to play and they first thing they did was run to the toy gun bin. We figured a better way would be to teach them about gun safety instead.

So when Gran and Grandfather came in the door with the Christmas gift of lore, Kevin ran to grab some cans for us (yeah, I said US ;)) to shoot at. He was first up, he took his turn and missed all 5 times. Jared got all lined up and took his shots, missing all 5 times. Next up, Grandfather-"let me show them how to do it". Hit on the first shot. Nice. Now it was my turn. I snuck in my shots before Rick could get out with his shoes on. I missed, not quite sure why..I used to be a great shot. Rick comes out, I think he hits the mark and then we all start over again. Gran and Ryan we safe inside and Rob wasn't up at the lake yet. Yay, less people in the rotation= more turns for us! :) Kevin missed again but Jared got a hit, look at his face!

Then I decided to shoot lefty, and guess what? That did the trick! BINGO, Tracey 3- coke can 0. We had fun until it got dark and the weather got dreary.

Kevin did manage to hit the cans, a few times. I had a picture but Jared got in the way he was jumping around so much. The next couple days the boys continued practicing their shooting. They have to have an adult cock the gun (my rule) and they have to go one at a time.
They can't wait to get back up to the lake to have another go round!

Uncle Ricky showing Kevin how to load the BB Gun

Friday, December 25, 2009

Christmas Day

Merry Christmas from the HomerHouse!

Time to open stockings! We asked the kids to wait until 6:30 am Christmas morning, and we heard footsteps at 6:29 am. Of course they snuck down to see the tree, but they did come get us up before they opened anything. I was so thankful to have another year of shopping at the toy store. Before I know it, I'll be looking for things at the electronics store, the clothes and the latest gadget retailer. At least they were still "little" for me this year. :)

I love this shot! Ryan was jumping on the couch, oh so excited, she can't wait for everyone to get in the room to open gifts!

Jared asked for Mexican Jumping Beans this year...interesting choice ;)

Kevin finally got his drums. Too bad we put them in the basement....who knew Kevin was still afraid to go down there alone? ;)

Ryan got stuff for her American Girls, a "pink 'toothpick' guitar" and all the digs for her Zhu Zhu's. What an awesome day!!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Christmas Time in the Suburbs...

Annual Homer Kids Holiday Photo=disaster. It all started when I forgot to get the picture after church on Sunday. One night I looked up at the calendar and realized that I needed to get on the ball if we wanted Christmas cards instead of New Year's Cards. I had the kids run upstairs and throw on something nice on top of their school clothes. Ryan was in her PJ's but made a quick wardrobe change. It ended up ok, but not what I had planned on.

We also decided to try and have the cats in the picture this year. We finally got a system using treats and choke holds. This obviously didn't work but I thought you might enjoy the pictures! The outtakes make me giggle :) This picture was close, but if you know Kevy, this is his grunt face...

Outtake 1: Jared getting a whack in the face

Outtake 2: Kevin getting clawed and Jared getting kicked...Haley looking at all the action. perfect.

Gingerbread 101, make sure the kids have lunch first. They were all grumpy and had to be seperated before the roof was completed. Each child got a section to work on in "private" and then they ate the house. Not quite what my dreams are made of but they had fun...I think ;)

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Jingle Bell 2009

YAY it's Jingle Bell time! This is one of our favorite meets. Maybe because it was our first meet ever, or that the kids get tons of candy canes, but probably because the awards are easier to get. This meet gives awards by ages which means that even though Ryan swims the 8 and Unders, she got awards based on 7 and unders. Ribbons and medals found their way to the HomerHouse after this meet, we had some awesome swims and even a STATE CUT!!! Jared has been working SO hard to get a State final time. We are now official to go to Savannah in February for Jared to compete in the 50 Breast. He is working on the 100 Free, 50 Free and 50 Back as well. We shall see. Here are some pics of the day. This is a hard pool to get shots of because parents are not allowed on the deck.

getting ready to hit the deck

waiting with Daddy

on the blocks for the 100 Free

cool shot with Jared in the water and Anthony on the blocks

Ryan after her 25 breast

Jared on the blocks for his 50 Breast

"I DID IT!!!"
This picture makes me cry. I ran down to the deck and got the biggest, wettest hug of my life. He was SO happy!! Way to go Jared!

Here's the recap:

50 Fr 5th place (ribbon) 14 points
25 Back 9th place 9 points 1 second
25 Fly 4th place (ribbon) 15 points
25 Breast 2nd place (Medal) 17 points
100 IM 6th (ribbon) 13 points

She got a total of 68 points for her team! Way to go Pinkie :) No best times but 3 ribbons and a medal, AWESOME!

100 Free 12th place 5 points
50 Back 13th place 4 points
50 Breast 2nd place 17 points STATE CUT :):)
50 Free 10th place 7 points
100 IM 9th place for 9 points

He shaved time off his personal best in EVERY event, fantastic! He got 42 points for the team and a medal for his 50 breast. Oh, and did I mention a state cut for that event as well??? Can you tell we are super excited?! :)

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Better late then never...

Kevin's birthday at the Tellus Museum was awesome! We had our kids, Kevin's buddy Jackson, and the Solano boys join us for an afternoon of learning, mining and celebration. I even made Kevin's cake. Well, Rob made it, I iced it :) Enjoy! :)

Outside the museum: Jackson, Jared, Anthony, Ryan and Andrew, Kevy Bu

playing in the mineral museum part of Tellus

deep concentration ;)

LOVED the planetarium show, it was about the science behind the Christmas Star

watching sound waves

"I get to keep all my gems!"

ARRRGGGH, cute "Disney Face"


Saturday, December 5, 2009

Chalker Blockers are going REGIONALS!!!

pep talk from Mrs. Taylor---their fearless leader :)

Last Fall Jared came to us and asked to join an after school group called Chalker Blockers. It's a Lego Robotic club where they work together as a team and program a Mindstorm NXT robot. Our schedules were packed so we said no. Big mistake. This kid has "the knack" and we know it. So when they had a Spring league we let him join. In fact, Kevin joined too but decided it wasn't for him. This Fall we couldn't wait for sign ups.

Teams are also asked to decided on a problem to solve based on the theme of the competition. Jared is the lead programmer for his group and they decided on Yellowstone National park. The issue is animals walking across the street and getting hit by cars. Their solution was two 180 degree cameras, one on each side of the road. If an animal is spotted in the one camera a cross bar comes down to stop traffic. When the animal is seen in the other camera (safely across the street) the arm will go back up allowing traffic to pass. Great idea, great skit and great presentation to the judges. They have a second category, Technical. This is where they take the robots to the "table" and get interviewed by the judges. They have to talk about team work, their captain, the computer programs etc. Team #739 got all but two excellents in this category. Third group is Team Work, aka Gracious Professionalism-apparently they did well here also. Fourth, and final, is the table. The teams get three chances to "run the table". They score points based on what they knock down, what they leave up and what they end with. For example, they want to knock down the walls but keep the access markers all standing. They want to knock the truck down the ramp or cross the bridge. It's very complicated programming and it's actually a nail biter to watch.

Team #739 was once of the youngest teams there today and they did awesome. They scored 20 points on the first run and 60 on the second. The final run they got 135 points landing them into the finals at 5th overall. WAY TO GO!! As parents and teachers, we have no clue how the standings are and when our team was called in 5th we went nuts. It was so great to see the kids so excited! What a long but awesome day!

Regionals Bound-Chalker team #739

Monday, November 30, 2009

Week 47 - “We ♥ Tooshies” Photo Challenge

I love this week. I wish we could do more weeks like this one, I know the site is I Faces, but I L.O.V.E shots from the back-side. When I saw the topic this week I knew exactly which picture I was going to mom and my little girl on her first day without training wheels. Ryan got the hang of it quick and before long she didn't need anyone holding her steady...I'm glad I got this shot when I had the chance! Head on over to I Faces to see other Tooshies!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009


Happy 9th Birthday BU!!

We Love you,
Mom, Dad, Jared and RyRy

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Happy Halloween!

Happy Halloween to everyone!

Be safe and have fun!

Monday, October 19, 2009

Uncle Shucks

The HomerHouse has started the tradition of going to the corn maze every Fall. We try a different one each year and we LOVE them. The day we chose to go was after a swim meet and we were so tired but the weather was SO beautiful. Since I am actually blogging this in December, and it snowed this morning, I am longing for those gorgeous Fall days!

Last year I had a shot where Ryan looked 80 feet tall, this year Kevin is in the shot with her. I think they look HUGE in this picture.

My rotten little monkey urchins

Kevin taking aim. He would do well with a red rider...

Ryan thinks guns are icky. Look at her face!

Aim a bit lower Jared ;)

What cute kids! :)

On the hunt, here we go!

Found it!

Taking a break half way through. This is my favorite one.

On the hayride, more group pictures--Smile kids! "Hey look kids, Corn!"

Can it get much sweeter then this I tell ya? What a great day!