Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Spelling Bee F-I-N-A-L-S

Emily made it to the Webber Academy spelling bee finals for Div 1 and Div 2. Div 1 had three students from grades 1-3 (two were from grade 1!!) and Div 2 had three students from grades 4-6 (two were from grade 4!!) Here are all the competitors nervously waiting for the finals to begin:

Emily ended up in 2nd place after missing the word "compromise". She spelled it with a "z" instead of an "s". The fourth grade boy won the whole thing on the word "mustache". Who else out there thought it was spelled "moustache"? Anyway, Emily was very proud of herself and so was I. Here she is taking her turn at the microphone:

Cheer Banquet

Madeline and I attended the Stars cheer banquet on Monday evening. It was a nice event for the junior and senior cheer teams. The gym owner and head coach had great things to say about the teams and how hard they worked this year. Each girl got a trophy for dedication and hardwork. They also gave out special awards on each team. Madeline won the "Outstanding All-Around Athlete" award for her ability to play many roles on the team and her willingness to accept last minute changes and take on new challenges. Yea, Maddie!!

Sunday, June 20, 2010


Olivia's friends organized a surprise going-away party for her. They got a bunch of girls together for the evening and then four of them had a sleepover. Two of her friends contacted me about a month ago to check Olivia's calendar. Olivia had suspicions but her two friends Arden and Nadia did a good job of playing is cool and Olivia became convinced that it was just a normal sleepover. Here she is just after the big SURPRISE!!!

They gave her all kinds of Canada paraphenalia - a flag they all signed, a shirt, ball cap, and some coasters that each girl wrote a little message on and they put them together on a little ring. It was a great surprise. Never thought I'd say it but thank goodness for Facebook to keep all these friends connected.

One last performance

The Calgary Stars cheerleading teams had a demonstration and cheered on runners at the Loops for Troops road race this morning. This is Madeline's last performance with them. On Monday she has a cheer banquet but this was her last time in uniform. They had fun but Madeline was a little grossed out about hi-fiving all the sweaty palms coming across the finish line!! Here they are in formation. Madeline is one of the "pretty girls" (as one of the parents called them) sitting in front:

They had at bunch of people out promoting the Calgary Stampede coming up at the beginning of July. The girls had a photo op with the Stampede horse (Madeline is just to the left of the horse):

Goodbye Stars Cheer, Hello Pride Cheer!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Wildcats Win!!

The Webber Wildcats varsity soccer team won the league banner!! The championship game was a very exciting one that ended in regulation as a 1-1 tie. They went directly to penalty kicks. Webber won on their fouth kick which was shot by one of the senior girls. It was nice to have a girl hit the winning shot.

Harriet the Hamburger

All the grade 4 classes at Webber put on a production of Harry/Harriet the Hamburger which follows the hamburger through the digestive system. Emily's class is lead by Mr Sprau who is particularly creative. Her play included an appearance by Elvis, a group dance to "Single Ladies", and Jimmy Buffett's "Cheeseburger in Paradise" as the theme song. The play was very funny with parts like Tiffany Tongue, surfer girl Erin Esophagus, Indiana Duodenum (modeled after Indiana Jones), Peyton Pancreas (in the style of Mission: Impossible), and Gloria Gallbladder (played by a boy!)

Emily got to play the part of Harriet the Hamburger for the 1st half of the play. The part was split to spread out the lines a bit. In the second half she played Betty Bladder, who wasn't on stage for long because she "really had to go!"

Here's Harriet the Hamburger about to enter the mouth and meet all the teeth characters:

Mr Sprau says he will give us a DVD. I'll put it up on YouTube for all to watch!

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Happy Birthday Olivia!

Olivia celebrated her 13th birthday on Friday. All she really wanted to do for her birthday was have her two good Irish dance friends over for a sleepover. It worked out perfectly that they were able to come over after the Irish dance BBQ. They got to hang out for the whole BBQ, come home and hang out some more, have caramel fudge brownies and ice cream, watch a movie and stay up too late.
Here's Olivia with 13 candles - it took a long time to light them all!

Olivia with her favorite friends, Jaydene and Mirabelle. She will miss them alot:

Olivia got her own WebCam for her birthday so if anyone wants to add her on Skype her ID is Olivia.Mount13. She waited to open presents until Sat with Mirabelle and Jaydene but on Friday we celebrated with a meal of her choice. At first she just wanted spaghetti buffet (with choices of sauces and mix-ins) but I told her I would make stromboli if she wanted. This is a Schwarz family favorite that she is always asking me to make but I never do. So, that was a treat!


Finally got that video of Emily's choral speech uploaded to YouTube. The piece is called Who Stole the Cookies from the Cookie Jar and concerns a child who is taking her parents to court for being wrongly accused of theft.

Year End

Everything is slowly coming to an end. While school is not all finished in our house until June 30 the end is in sight. This weekend Olivia's Irish dance school had it's year end BBQ. Every family is required to do a certain number of volunteer hours for the school or forfeit the volunteer deposit, in this case $500! The volunteer deposit is required for many activities like soccer and basketball but it's usually $100. Since I had not fulfilled any hours yet I got stuck organizing the BBQ. Everyone told me it's easy - only about 40 people usually come. Of course, we got RSVP from 80+ people. Luckily it went very smoothly and thankfully the weather was great since moving 80+ people inside was going to be a disaster. No photos because I forgot my camera!

Olivia got to perform her 8-hand that she has been working on (this is an 8 person dance.) They did not get to perform it in competition because one girl injured her arm right before so this was their big debut. Ms Linda, her teacher, made a big deal of this being Olivia's last chance to perform it, which was nice for her to acknowledge Olivia specifically. The funniest part of the afternoon was the special dance presentation. Some of the Dads and older brothers got together with Ms Linda and learned their own "Riverdance". Apparently they only had 6 practice and they never had the whole group in attendance until the day of the show. Pretty impressive!! Too bad Frank couldn't join. Here's a link to the video on YouTube:

And here's some REAL Irish dancing from Olivia's last Feis (I got in trouble for videotaping this!):

And one more, for those of you who haven't seen this one. It's Olivia and Mirabelle dancing at a Chinese New Year party in Feb. Here she wears she class dress which is unique to her school and in the video above she wears her solo dress, only for solo dances at the novice level and higher.

Are you all Irish-danced out now???

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Blast from the past #2

For some reason this year I was determined to celebrate Chinese New Year. Of course we celebrated when we lived in Singapore with parties and school holidays, etc. We were in Dallas for the Feb "Family Day" long weekend so I decided to host a party. I found all my old decorations from Singapore and invited the family and the Schwarzs over for food and a traditional lion dance (put on by Emily, Anna, Marcy and Brian.)

Here is the adult dining area (I even had Tiger beer!)
And here is the kid's dining area. We had pork riblets, egg rolls, bok choy (or something like that, I can't remember), cashew chicken, fried rice, and pork buns. Wowa and I (with help from Mimi, Sarah and Pop Pop) made everything except the pork buns. I bought fancy chop sticks for everyone as a party favor. Everyone enjoyed the food and the mark of a good party, we had just a tiny bit of leftovers.

Emily and Anna watched lion dance videos on YouTube and came up with their own dance with Marcy and Brian as the musicians. At the end the audience fed oranges to the lion which is good luck.
At the end of the night I handed out red envelopes to the kids which I had filled with varying amounts of money. It was a fun night overall and I got the Chinese New Year bug out of my system.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Webber soccer

Madeline plays for the Webber varsity soccer team and they just finished the regular season in 2nd place. They have playoffs this week and have a good chance to win. They are a co-ed team which is not ideal for Madeline. With only 3 girls on the field at a time she doesn't get the ball much and as a sophomore she's low on the totem poll. But, it's a great opportunity to play varsity soccer and makes 12-13 years of playing soccer. Hopefully she can make the team at Hockaday and play all girls soccer again.

Superhero for a day

It was superhero day at Clearwater Academy today so Marcy dressed up as Star Woman - her made up superhero to go with her made up costume. Many kids came in Spiderman, Batman, and Superman costumes (even the girls) but since we have no boys we had to improvise. We found the Wonder Woman shirt at the Gap but the rest came from stuff around the house. She wore Madeline's silver cheer spankies over black leggings and we made a cape out of a red velvet skirt and we made arm bands and a headband out of aluminum foil.

Her cape is flying behind her in this photo because Emily is hiding behind the tree holding it up - very authentic, huh?? She had alot of fun and even went to Kumon dressed as Star Woman. Not sure how they got anything done at school but there are only 2 weeks left so maybe that's not a big concern!

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Blast from the past #1

We didn't really do too much this past week and this weekend is a repeat of previous weeks - soccer games and Irish dancing. Since we did alot before I started this blog I thought those events should not be left out.

One of our favorite events of the year was the Olympics. I don't know if being in the host country just makes the Olympics more present but we really got into it this year. The torch relay was particularly exciting and when it came through Calgary I decided we shouldn't miss the chance to see it. We went out to Canada Olympic Park (site of the ski jump, bobsled, luge, etc in the '88 Olympics) for a pancake breakfast (a favorite for Calgarians) and the running of the torch. The torch came down the bobsled, was run through the park to the ski lift, carried up the ski lift, brought down by a snowboarder in the half-pipe, run through more of the park, carried to the '88 Olympic cauldron where the cauldron was lit again. The whole morning was definitely worth taking the kids out of school for!! Here are some photos from a great, inspirational morning:

The lighting of the cauldron. Cool that the US flag was hanging right over the top. Doesn't make for a good Canadian photo but a great American one!

As we were leaving the park we came upon this guy who was waiting his turn to run the torch for a few hundred yards. He was nice enought to take a photo with us. I would give just about anything for the chance to run the torch someday. I heard so many torchbearers on TV and the radio saying it was one of the greatest moments in their life. So cool!

We enjoyed watching many of the events. We rooted for the Americans but couldn't help pulling for the Canadians as well. Except for Emily who rooted solely for the Canadians in the gold medal hockey game against the US. She is a big Sydney Crosby fan and only became a bigger one after he became Canada's hockey hero. I threatened to turn in her passport but I really think there is something a bit Canadian about that girl!