So technically it's changed seasons since our last update, but here in Arizona it definately feels like summer with temps in the 100°s over the weekend still. It's cooling off in the morning and evenings which makes it a perfect time in the desert. (Welcome offer stands open to anyone who wants to visit, especially as we move into the winter time - we have a crib!)
The kids have been really busy with school activities, Mallory has joined her Theatre Speech and Debate club at Desert Vista and it basically consumes all of her time. I didn't have any idea what this was all about until I got to see first hand at a practice tournament this weekend. There are about 5 categories of competion, from traditional debate, to poetry performances, to comedic interactions. Some of these kids prepare debate on serious topics within 30 minutes before presenting. The fact that they can gather key reference facts in such a short window of time is amazing to me. Also, the prepared features they did were really eye-opening. Mallory competes with a partner for a staged bit that is mostly comedy. She cannot look at her partner when performing and the event is timed. It becomes clear that you have to go 'all in' with these performances or you won't score very high, that's for sure. The ability to not care what anyone thinks is a hard thing for a high school kid, but they manage to pull it off. Her performance also includes a charactor with a Russian accent. One of the parents came up to her afterwards to let her know that her accent was great! I had no idea she had a Russian accent in her repertoire, but she does have a flair for the dramatic.
Nick is still doing golf, it's his number 1 activity. He's biding his time really until he can join the high school golf team. In the meantime we need to hook him up with some more tournaments now that the weather is nicer. In the Spring he'll sign up for track so he keeps telling me that he needs to be conditioning now. There is nothing stopping him from taking some laps outside and around the neighborhood. I'll time him, that can be my job. :)
Over the last few weekends, I've been able to take a few trips, one to see my family in PA over the labor day weekend and then a weekend to Austin, Texas for a bacherlorette party. It was fun seeing Kriste and the other girls, we had a great time. Austin is a fun city, we managed to hit Dirty 6th and West 6th for some fun! I'm very glad I got to be a part of the celebration and we can't wait for the wedding in San Diego this coming March!
Mal's also gone to her first homecoming dance. We had made arrangements to be out of town when at the last minute she decided she wanted to go, typical Mal. So, we ran around to find a dress, shoes and since she would be with her dad that weekend, make arrangements to have her hair and makeup done. As it turned out, I had to work so we cancelled plans to go North to the cabin and I got to take her instead. She went with a group of girls and met lots more there. She's thinking next year it would be fun to go with a date. Oh my. A date.