Monday, August 29, 2016

The Olympics: Fencing and Rhythmic Gymnastics

I think it is awesome that the kids were fencing with lightsabers!  My kids were at a disadvantage because they hadn't watched any fencing yet, but they eventually figured out what fencing is supposed to be about.

Even Becky and Brian got in on the fencing action:

Becky ended up being such an energetic fencer that she tripped on the shoe pile and fell over.  Before I could even get up to see if she was alright, the three older kids ran over to treat her:

 They declared themselves the medics for the rest of the indoor events. 

In fact, it got so that the competitors would fall over during their events specifically so that they could receive medical attention.  Even Uncle Brian got in on the act:

Okay, so on to rhythmic gymnastics.....  Becky found her ribbon sticks from the last Olympics, and the kids used those to dance to Brian's extremely eclectic mix of dance music (he said that he put his ipod on random).  It was really fun to watch the kids dance to the Imperial March.  Megan was a big fan of the ribbon dancing; she was able to get the ribbon to do all kinds of interesting things.  She even invented dual ribbon dancing!

Here's the only picture I have of Natalie competing in rhythmic gymnastics.  She's getting carted off by the medics because she has a broken leg (those are splints piled around her leg.)

Here's Noah doing rhythmic gymnastics:

Amelia chose to compete using hoops instead of ribbons:

And of course they had a team rhythmic gymnastics event.  It's difficult to get a photo of all four kids in motion.

Sunday, August 28, 2016

The Olympics - Cycling and Disc Golf

This year, the kids were old enough for a real bicycle race, so we took them over to a bike trail at a nearby park.  Brian rode with the kids, but it would have been better if I could have ridden too, because there was definitely a fast group and a slow group.  Here they all are at the starting line:

And they're off!  Natalie took an early lead.  I am impressed that she can ride while standing up on the pedals!  I also thought it was cute that they made numbers to go on the back of their shirts.

Megan was a good sport about riding, even though she was much much slower than everyone else:

Becky and I walked down the path with Nathaniel and waited for the kids to come back.  Natalie and Amelia were the first to head back, with Natalie far in the lead.  She was going by so fast that I couldn't get a good photo of her:

We were wondering what was keeping Noah, but it turned out that both Noah and Megan had crashed their bikes trying to go down a hill and around a corner too fast.  They both had scrapes on their knees and elbows, but got up and kept cycling.

Megan even kept pedaling most of the way up this hill, which she did (unusually) with no complaining.

Natalie won the bike race quite handily, and then it was time to move on to disc golf.  They took a few practice shots at the first hole.

Then it was time to walk over to the shady holes.

It was really fun to watch them play.  They basically threw the disc, ran to where it had landed, and threw it again immediately.  We figured out about halfway through that they thought it was a race to see who could get the disc in the basket the fastest, not who took the fewest number of throws to get in the basket.  So that explained a lot.

Amelia is celebrating getting the disc in the basket after about six throws.

I had brought two of Ben's real discs, and they threw a lot straighter and more accurately than the cheap free frisbies that the Weidners had.  We took turns using the good discs so that everyone would have a chance with them. 

Nathaniel had his own method of getting the disc in the basket:

I tortured the kids by making them line up so I could take a group photo.  They were thrilled to cooperate, as always.

So I let them do some funny poses afterwards:

I asked Nathaniel to name all the people in this picture, and he could say everyone's names until he got to Natalie.  He looked at her, grunted, and stuck his thumb in his mouth.  I think he doesn't know how to say Natalie's name.  Nathaniel had a great time hanging out with Brian; he really warmed up to Brian quickly and was happy to hold his hand and let Brian carry him around.  Nathaniel doesn't usually warm up to other people very quickly at all, so it was really sweet to see how much he liked Uncle Brian. 

The Olympics: Opening Ceremonies and Sprinting

I took the kids to Becky and Brian's house the second week of August so that we could participate in the Games of the Second Weidner/Johnson Summer Olympiad.  Warning: this is going to be a very long post with lots of photos.

The kids spent the morning making flags for the march of nations, but then they all decided that they wanted to be part of the United States.  So the flags are supposedly flags for different states within the United States.  Amelia's was called AmeliaLand and was shaped like the letter A.  Noah was in a mood about something and declined to participate in the parade.

Then we had the torch relay, which the kids ran awfully quickly.

Next up was the torch lighting ceremony, where Brian actually lit a small fire in the grill:

The first real event was the relay race.  We had to do it four times so that every kid got a chance to start it off and end it.  It was interesting to see how each kid had a different starting position.

The handoffs were really fun to watch.  Usually the running child would come to a complete stop and hand the baton to the next child very very carefully.  I really liked how Natalie handed the baton off to Megan and then kept running with her.

Next up was the run-around-the-house race.  The kids all took their starting positions facing the right direction this time - Natalie's starting position in the Games of the First Weidner/Johnson Olympiad  still makes me laugh!

We had a little false start, when Amelia and Noah didn't realize that Brian's gun-sounding-noise meant that they were supposed to start running.

So we lined everyone up again and restarted the race:

Amelia was the fastest, which since she's the oldest and the tallest, wasn't much of a surprise.

Nathaniel wasn't interested in participating in most events, but he did chase after the big kids when they ran around the house.  I love how he is carrying a sword while he runs.  He's ready for anything!