Friday, October 30, 2015

"Let me win. But If I Cannot Win, Let Me Be Brave in the Attempt"

Beth took part in the Special Olympics bowling tournament last weekend. She looks forward to it every year. Generally the girls bowl in the morning and the guys bowl in the afternoon.

Every year it seems like there are a thousand people packed into that bowling alley!

And this was before the afternoon teams arrived!

We all got settled, the bowlers got their name tags and bowling assignments and all the computers lit up. (Thankfully the alley had put the names in ahead of time!) Of course, we got there early to be sure we'd get a seat. Beth was ready and waiting for everything to begin. 

Her team is the Mukilteo Pinbusters

We sang the National Anthem and said the Special Olympics creed.

Let the games begin! 

 During practice earlier in the year, they take the average of each bowler and then for the tournament, they place them with other bowlers in the district with similar scores. So you don't have someone who bowls an 80, competing with someone who bowls a 140. Each member of the team bowls about the same.

Checkin' her score

 Unfortunately Chuck had to work and Sharaya had another commitment so it was just me and Diana there cheering her on. (You can see Beth over Diana's left shoulder.)

We waited for everyone to finish bowling and then they had the award ceremonies. They have each team stand up and hand the medals out right there. There's no real fanfare. In fact, they didn't even use a microphone this year so I never actually heard them say her name.  

 "And the gold goes to... Elizabeth Anderson!!"

Yep, she won the gold this year! I think this is her first time! In years past she's won the bronze and silver, and one time got the 4th place ribbon, but this year... the gold!!

We're so proud of her! Way to go Beth!


Saturday, October 24, 2015

Her Favorite

Every year on their birthdays, we ask the girls where they want to eat. And for the last few years Sharaya wants to go to the Rainforest Cafe. I aways think, 'Okay, we can go there' and I completely forget how amazing this place is until we get there!

Unfortunately I couldn't get the camera on my phone to work so I borrowed some pics from Google Images. This place is truly an adventure.

It really is like eating in the middle of a rain forest, but without all the bugs! The night sky changes from black to sunrise red to dusk orange. There are life size elephants and gorillas. Larger than life butterflies, lizards and birds. And about every 20 minutes, everything comes to life!

We had a great time. The food is so good and of course being with family is always the best! Great choice Sharaya!!

(These were their faces after about the 5th time of trying to get my flash to work!)

Standing in front of the elephants.
You can just barely see Allie at the bottom of the picture.

Taken with Sharaya's phone.

(These are from Google/Images) 


If you've never been there, I highly recommend it!

Friday, October 16, 2015

We Finally Got to Meet... HIM!

For the first time in her life, Beth had a birthday party with her friends.

In years past, we've invited friends from the neighborhood, or family or even long time friends of the family. But except for Beth's friend Miranda, there hasn't been an exclusive party with just Beth's friends. She just didn't have any. Well, that all changed Wednesday night.

Beth gave out 5 invitations to her friends on her bowling league and in her art class. We also gave a couple to friends at church and including family there were 15 people that showed up to Red Robin to celebrate Beth! One of those people was Beth's new boyfriend.

I was sitting next to Beth when HE arrived and as he placed his jacket on a chair opposite Beth, I asked Beth if she wanted me to switch with him. She got very embarrassed, smiled really big and said, "Yes!" So I got Ns attention and asked if he would like to sit next to Beth instead and he said, "Now that's a great idea!"

It worked out much better for me too cause then I was across the table and able to take pictures. :) We all ordered our food and then I hollered across to Chuck - he was next to N and down a few seats from me, "Should we have Beth open..." and before I could finish, all her friends began chanting, "Presents! Presents! Presents!"

N was warm and friendly to everyone and was such a gentleman to Beth. You may have seen this picture on facebook. It was like he was instantly one of the family! Sharaya and Diana came after work and were at the other end of the table. They loved watching these two interact!

It was a fun, loud, happy experience for all of us! Everyone kept talking about how Beth is always so polite and honest and she always obeys the rules. The day after the party I talked to a couple of family friends who were there (who are also friends with Beth, they text and talk when they see each other...) and they all mentioned that they're still in a high over what occurred the night before! Oh what a night it was!!



Friday, October 9, 2015

Thirty One Years

Thirty one. Where on earth did the time go?


October 10, 1984.
She's been reminding us for months. :)
Earlier today we were singing 'Tomorrow' From Annie -

Tomorrow, tomorrow.
Your birthday's tomorrow.
It's only a day away!
Happy Birthday Beth!

Saturday, October 3, 2015


Raya. That's what we called her when she was a toddler. Her cousin couldn't say her full name and his nickname for her stuck. The whole family called her that until she started Kindergarten.

We had walked up to the school to see where her classroom would be and that's when she told Chuck and I that she wanted to be called Shara. We thought, "Who is Shara?" But Shara is what we called her. Friends, family, everyone called her Shara. (Some still do!)

In high school she decided to go by her full name, Sharaya. Shuh-ray-uh. And she still goes by Sharaya today. We originally planned to name her Sarah but then we heard the name Sharaya on an album by Amy Grant. We both loved it!

What a joy she's been to Chuck and I, and the perfect sister for Beth and Diana. She's calm, patient, faithful, creative. She was the easiest of my kids to raise! She's happy and so funny! She has the most amazing sense of humor!

October 6, 1986 is when she came into this world. God truly blessed us when he gave her to us.

We love you Sharaya!
Happy Birthday!