Saturday, February 27, 2010

Beggers Can't Be Choosers

A few weeks ago, this display presented itself on the desk in the family office:

In case it's not legible, the sign says:
"Donations! I only accept $1, $5, $10 or more. If you donate, you can play the iTouch."

It seems a tween in the house was saving money to buy an iTouch, but was getting impatient with how long it was taking to save up for such a large purchase. She even tried her hand on eBay, without success. At one point she was really excited to find an auction with bidding at only $20, only to discover that it wasn't an iTouch... it was an iTouch protective cover. Close call.

Public Service Announcement: Read eBay auction info carefully. Sometimes it's easy to miss the details of what you are bidding on, even if it may be obvious to other people. For example, Rob C. likes to post unusual stuff on eBay that capture some people off guard... like his Kindling (the Wireless Wooden Reading Device), his 36 1/2" Flat Screen and many others. He has lots of entertaining stuff on his website, FWIW.

Now back to the topic at hand...

After two days of this solicitation sitting on the desk, Mikayla inquired as to whether anyone had noticed it.

We simply replied: "Yep. We noticed it."

The display remained. Empty.

Then, one day:

It seems someone graciously donated some cold hard cash... directly from the games of Life and Junior Monopoly.

Mikayla was only slightly amused and the display disappeared shortly thereafter.


PS: She did eventually reach her goal and is now enjoying her new purchase.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

The Whack-Bonk

Believe it or not, other stuff goes on around here that doesn't involve pets, gymnastics, basketball or hiking. This is one of those things.

No, no, no... don't go calling CPS just yet. Give me a minute to explain.

A number of years ago someone in the house had the bright idea to fill an old (clean) sock with uncooked instant rice. A whole big box of rice.

We did that... and tied a knot in the end to keep the rice inside.
The rice kept falling out through the fabric, so we added a second sock to the outside and it seemed to do the trick.

Why would we do this? More importantly, why would I want to put this in the blog?

Well, the reason for doing this is that when you stick this thing in the microwave for one minute it heats up nice and hot. Then, it's perfect for wrapping around your shoulders or putting on your back or other sore muscles. The dry rice retains the heat for a really long time and helps to relax away your stress.

Yes, it's reusable. We used ours for years.

There are a couple side effects that you should be warned about.

First, every time you heat it up, it smells like steamed rice.

Second, you'll frequently crave teriyaki.

Third, every time you look at it you'll probably think "I wonder if I should have filled it with beans, like Garfield's Bean-Filled-Whack-Bonk?"

We don't actually whack or bonk anything with it (very often), but we still call it the Whack-Bonk anyway.

If we just called it the 'sock full of rice' people might think we're odd or something.

By now you are surely contemplating whether or not you are actually going to try to make your own whack-bonk, because if the Rolfs do it, then it must be a great idea.

To help you visualize what you are contemplating, here is the only picture of our Whack-Bonk that I could find.

Do not be alarmed by the discoloration on our Whack-Bonk. That only happened because someone put in one too many 0's when typing in the 1:00 on the microwave keypad.

It took a couple minutes for the smoke to clear but the fire department never even knew about it.

Maybe our next Whack-Bonk will actually have beans in it. Stay tuned...


Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Something For Everyone

It was a busy weekend for all of us.

The weekend started a few hours early when I ditched work to go attend MIkayla's gymnastics meet down in Kirkland.

Much to our surprise, there were a billion kids in this meet. Much different from the last meet which had like... six kids. Here are some of them:

Regardless, they rotated the gymnasts in groups through the various events and the whole thing was done within two hours or so.

Mikayla performed quite well and seemed to have a good time.

Alexia, on the other hand, was growing weary of all this waiting around. Maybe she was feeling a bit left out. Maybe.

On Saturday, Alexia had another basketball game while Mikayla had to attend the Choir contest in Bellingham.

Here is Alexia showing off some of her skills in a pre-game warmup.

Here is Mikayla (& Mikaela) singing Let It Be (again) in Bellingham. It's a long video because I also captured the judges comments.

We aren't sure why they keep calling this a contest because it seems there are no scores or winners or losers. Don't ask me... I'm just the reporter.

Sunday involved a typical morning at church. Well, actually it wasn't all that typical. "Typical" would generally mean that we taught Sunday School to the 6 & 7 year olds. This particular Sunday we did that... plus we were ushers and greeters. How did we manage? I have no idea. ;)

After Church, Alexia and I grabbed our backpacks and went in search of a good hike. We first attempted to hike at Tenant Lake near Ferndale, WA. After climbing a tower (61 steps) and then embarking on the boardwalk we were turned around when the boardwalk became submerged.

We turned around and hiked over to Hovander Park where we searched for bird nests, fed some turkeys, fed some geese, climbed another tower (41 steps) and found a playground. And got rained on, a little.

Not satisfied, we made our way back to the car and made our way to Lake Samish Park where we hiked up the Powerline Hill to her favorite Big Rock, taking waterfall pictures, dodging snake holes and avoiding blackberry bushes along the way.

While we were out braving the elements, M & T ventured out to the mall for M to do a little window shopping with friends while T embarked on a serious deal shopping extravaganza.

We all met back at home for a nice dinner and to kick back to enjoy the evening together.


Thursday, February 4, 2010

Level 3 Gymnastics

Last Saturday Mikayla participated in her first gymnastics meet. She seems to really enjoy it and is looking forward to a second competition on Friday, Feb. 5, 2010.

Here is a video compilation of her four routines. You can watch it in less than 3 minutes and 30 seconds, but it took me four hours to watch it in real life.

Good luck to you on the 5th Mikayla!

On Saturday Mikayla will be performing at a choir concert up in Bellingham.

Alexia has moved up to a higher class in gymnastics as well, but won't be doing any meets this year (as far as I know).

That's all for now.