Friday, November 26, 2010

Advent Calendar

This year we wanted an advent calendar to count the days till Christmas. We have seen a couple different ideas from different I just started making with some scrapes that we had laying around.
I used 4 different types of red paper and cut out circles, used black vinyl to cut out the letters...
...and a big bag from Fossil for the brown, faux wood squares. We had some twine left over from our Christmas tree project, so I strung that across the wall in our dining room.
We bought some snowflake clips last year after Christmas on clearance...they work perfectly to hang the numbers!
Here comes Christmas!!!

Book Review - The Barbarian Way

Last week, I finished reading The Barbarian Way by Erwin Raphael McManus, and I really enjoyed this book. This was a quick read with 146 pages, I was able to get through it in less than a week.
The back cover describes the book like this: "Two thousand years later the call to follow Christ has been repackaged to be smooth and trouble-free, filled with opportunity and promise but lacking risk, passion and sacrifice. Is this really what Jesus died for? If He chose the way of the cross, where would he hesitate leading us? Is it possible that to follow Jesus is to choose the barbarian way? Jesus never made a pristine call to a proper or safe religion. Jesus beckons His followers to a path that is far from the easy road. It is a path filled with adventure, uncertainty, and unlimited possibilities - the only path that can fulfill the deepest longings and desires of your heart. This is the barbarian way: to give your heart to the only One who can make you fully alive. To love Him with simplicity and intensity. To unleash the untamed faith within. To be consumed by the presence of a passionate and compassionate God. To go where He sends you, no matter the cost."
Erwin starts off the book with the story of Jephthah the Gileadite, he was a mighty man of valor, a warrior that was kicked out of his homeland, but then brought back to be their commander and fight against the people of Ammon (Judges 11:1-11). It is a great way to start off the book, he goes on to unpack this barbarian way and we are not called to stay on the path of least resistance. He also unpacks John the Baptist and, in a way, how crazy he was. Wearing clothes made of animal and eating locust...not your average prophet! Through all of his stories and biblical references, he continually ties it into how we are living our lives today. He challenges me to look deeper at the choices I make on a daily basis and to really listen to where God is calling me to go.
He also reminds Christians that we were not baptised by a passive spirit, but by the fire of the holy spirit and that shouldn't be taken lightly. There is a fire burning within us, the fire of Jesus, just waiting to run wild!
All in all, I thought this was a great book, it challenged my thinking and I would recommend it to anyone.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving!

There is so much to be thankful for this year, so many ways the Lord has blessed us. Just to name a few; I am very thankful for my wife, family, friends, jobs, vacations and laughter...the list could go on and on.

In fact, one thing Heather and I are doing this year is creating a list of 100 things we are thankful for. I think it will be a great way to reflect and really "look at" all the gift God has given us. I would suggest you try it too, grab some paper and number off to 100...

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Christmas Mantel

Heather and I have caught the early Christmas bug, so we have started decorating! Each year, we change how the mantel looks and this year is no different. Heather thought of the idea of using a big mirror. I have seen several different blogs explaining how to make the mercury glass look on regular glass, so I wanted to try that look. We headed over to the local Goodwill and found these two frames for only $15, what a deal!

For this project, all you really need is some water in a spray bottle and mirror or chrome spray paint. I had chrome spray paint, so that is what I used.

First, I took the glass out of the frame and cleaned it. The I sprayed water on it followed by two coats of my chrome spray paint. One coat didn't cover as well as I wanted, so I did apply two coats. I did spray the glass with water before each coat and allowed the paint to dry before the second coat.

I then painted the frame using Divine White. Two coats were needed and then I took some sandpaper to the frame to give it a "distressed" look.

Here is the "new" mirror/frame on the mantel.

Heather did a great job with the garland and the candles and we made two square wreaths and a circle wreath to hang.

I really like the way the mirror/frame turned out and it was a lot easier than I thought it would be!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Lighting of the Tree - Jordan Creek

This past Friday, Jordan Creek Town Center, hosted their annual Night with Santa and Christmas tree lighting. The event started at 6:30 with a concert by The Blenders, followed by Santa lighting the 40 foot Christmas tree and fireworks. Heather and I headed that way for a date night and Christmas cheer!

As we were standing by the lake next to the amphitheater, none other than Santa Clause and his entourage came by headed to light the tree. I love the expression on the little boys face to the right of's priceless!

Heather and I were just as excited to see that jolly fellow!

...and just like that, the tree was lit up with lights and the fireworks began!

We walked around the pond to get a closer look at the giant tree...the fireworks were wonderful!

...and there's the big Christmas tree!

This is a great family event put on by the mall and lite 104.1 radio station, I would highly recommend it to anyone as a great way to start the Christmas season!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Christmas Craft - Trees and Raindeer

A few weeks ago, we got together with some friends for a Christmas Craft day! The gals wanted to make some trees, here is their inspiration photo that we found from The Thrifty Crafter

...and we gathered all the supplied we needed, foam cone, jute twine, hot glue and craft glue.
The guys were tasked with making reindeer out of sticks, our inspiration came from these metals sculptures from Pottery Barn.
The gals busy at work, wrapping the trees!
...and the guys successfully made a herd of reindeer!
All different shapes and sizes!
Hudson even decided to help with the crafts, making himself an ornament!
Here are the finished trees that Heather and I made, we used two different sizes of rope/twine and I think they turned out great!
We had a ton of fun crafting for the day and it really got us into the Christmas spirit!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

2010 Nygaard Pentathlon

This past Thursday, the SCRC (serious coin running club) descended upon the Valley High School track for the 16th Anniversary of the Nygaard Pentathlon. The format: 400m run, standing broad jump, shot put (12 lbs), bench press (One minute: 115 lbs), 1500m run. It was a prefect day for the pentathlon, overcast with temperatures in the 40's. We got to the track at noon and Ryan, the course official for the day set up the long jump.
Ryan, Eric and Scott are ready to roll.
After a quick warm up we got ready for the 1st event: 400m run. Last year, we had roughly 25 competitors...this year we had 7. I was reminded by Ryan that the very first year of competition saw 5 compete, so in a way we were getting back to the heart of the competition!

We did split the 400 up into 2 heats...
The starter explains that it will be a 2 command start, "Runner's set, and then the gun (clap)"

Eric brought home the gold in the 400m, coming in at 59 seconds!
After the 400m we reported our results to the official score keeper and prepared for the standing broad jump.
Ryan, taking upon multiple duties, served as the official score keeper as well, giving us up to the minute results!
Chris takes flight in the broad jump!
Paul nails his landing...
Ryan takes to the air
Here I am stretching out for every inch I can get.
Eric shows up proper long jump form
Joe leaps into the air
Scott stretches out for maximum distance
After the broad jump, it was on to the shot put. Joe tosses the 12 lb shot.
Paul launches the shot put into the air
Chris is next, following shot put form, he gives a loud grunt as he throw the shot!
Ryan tosses the weight into the air
Scott launches the shot put
Eric lets it fly
I take my turn throwing the weight
Then is it onto the bench press (big thanks to Aspen Athletic Club in West Glen for hosting us for the bench press portion of the competition!) Joe, wanting to get this out of the way goes first.
Chris is up next, proudly wearing his SCRC jersey!
and then it's Paul's turn.
Ryan, also wearing his SCRC colors, throws up the weight.
Scott focused on the task at hand throws up the 115 pounds
Lastly, Eric made us all look bad getting 62 reps in the minute time frame!
I didn't get any pictures of the 1500m run, we ran it in one heat, so there wasn't anyone around to take race photos.
After the completion of the pentathlon, we held an exhibition 4x100m dash. We didn't have enough people to fill 2 teams, lucky for us two guys showed up at the track wanting to get a workout in...Scott recruited them for the 4x100!
The second exchange zone!
...and the last hand off!
Ryan "pulled" something in his rear causing team 2 to fall behind, so Eric took the opportunity to celebrate his Nygaard Pentathlon victory (two years running)!
As the day draws to a close, we get a competitors photo...
Joe snapped another pic, so I could be in the photo!
Another year down and another successful running of the Nygaard Pentathlon! Big thanks to the SCRC for presenting the event, thanks to Aspen for hosting the bench press and to Valley track for hosting the other events. It was a day filled with the human drama of athletic competition, the thrill of victory and the agony of defeat.
Official Results:
Name: 400m (sec) - Shot (inches) - Jump (inches) - Bench (reps) - 1500m (min. sec): Total Score
Eric Weiford: 59 - 472 - 114 - 62 - 5.10 : 908 points
Scott Patterson: 62 - 345 - 86 - 34 - 4.54 : 672
Chris Harms: 60 - 372 - 80 - 27 - 5.06 : 649
Seth Comfort: 61 - 352 - 94 - 16 - 4.59 : 637
Paul Kolsrud: 62 - 334 - 87 - 18 - 5.15 : 598
Jow Aulwes: 60 - 284 - 82 - 11 - 4.20 : 587
Ryan Elsbernd: 69 - 300 - 80.5 - 20 - 5.07 : 541