Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Oh baby!

We had a baby this weekend.
And he is a cutie!
 It all started with a parade, and a family reunion. The annual get together at my aunt and uncle's house was this past weekend. I managed to make it to the little town parade too. I got to see some college friends in the parade, which was a cool highlight for me!
 And instead of just candy, one group handed out Otter Pops - score! on such a hot day!
 Aunts and uncles cousins and far flung relatives along with friends (and plenty of people who I am related to but I don't know) were at the get-together.
The dessert contest once again honored my girls' hand at cake-decorating:
And there was plenty of time for games and some football throwing. It's always nice to see the older two actually getting along.
 
 And then we took the young un's home. The house was fairly baby-proofed, but thankfully I have some great older kids who are terrific babysitters. (Plug here - anyone need a sitter? Call my older kids!)
 Well, Baby only wanted his big cousin though, most of the time; I did manage to get in some baby snuggles and squeezes though when Dash was out of the room.

We also had his big sisters over for the weekend. They aren't quite as babyish or baby-snuggly, but they are full of giggles and fun with my girls. I think all four of them were pretty much exhausted by Monday afternoon.

And since it has been a few years since we've had a baby in the house, I settled in for my own nice nap after baby and his sisters went home.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Hair

There is a lot of hair around our house. 5 females with long hair adds up to: many strands floating or found in various places; plus a lot of emptying of the vacuum canister.
My two older girls have each cut their beautiful long hair once for Locks of Love. And this month it was the third one's turn. She has been asking since March, I think, to get her hair cut. I kept putting her off, until I had to tell her about the wedding. I had grand dreams of her long blonde hair in beautiful long curls. But since I have never really curled her hair much, I didn't realize that curls do.not.stay. in her hair. So she had long wavy hair for the wedding. And she still looked cute.
The week we got back she started really hounding me about getting her hair cut. So I made it happen.
Here we have the before photos:
 so long and wavy
And then after we visited the hair salon:

Isn't she cute!? I said it made her look like Kit from the American Girls series.
She really likes it short.
I really like that she has no more tangles. And I like that she was the one who decided to grow it out and send it in to Locks of Love.
Now I kind of wish we had done it before our San Diego trip.

Sunday, July 6, 2014

A trip

It isn't often that I get to go anywhere without a child or two. And leaving the city we live in without children? Doesn't happen. Well maybe once a year. This time I actually left the state I live in - with only one child along for the ride.
Miss Squiggles and I took a nice airplane ride down to San Diego.Here she is at the airport, waiting. She did a lot of that, waiting. And she was so good about it! Usually she has a lot to say, and a lot of wiggles. But this weekend or ours was mainly grown-ups and plenty of waiting, and she was pretty quiet and patient. She did great!
San Diego was almost like another country for us. It was warm and beautiful on the harbor. The palm trees were cool to look at, so different from the fir and pine around our home. And all the ships! Wow! We saw the USS Midway - that thing is huge! We also saw this cool ship - someone said it was used in the Pirates movie.
 We had a day to explore before we had to be at the rehearsal and dinner. So we went to Coronado beach. It was nice to step in the water and not freeze our toes! It was still cool - we had on sweatshirts for the first part of the morning (and in the evenings.)
 On the beach we found not one, but two, fresh sand-dollars! We had never seen those before. Just the white ones that have been eaten by the birds or bleached by the sun.
 The hotel there was amazing! We went through some of it, and had fun imagining.
 The one thing i didn't care for, all weekend long, were the loud planes and jets constantly overhead. The sound was so loud, that's what bothered me. I didn't mind seeing them; it was just the constant need to plug my ears ...
 We managed to find a few 'kid' things for Squiggles to do - like carousel rides and train rides.
 and lunch with a dear cousin who drove down just for a short visit. We miss her at home, and so it was great to catch up a little.
Here she is waiting again during rehearsal. She was always looking upbeat and interested though.
 The day of the wedding, we had some time in the morning to look around town again. We chose to go to Balboa Park. That place is amazing! It is so big and full of places to explore, it would take a week for me to go through it. And we only had a few hours. We saw this huge-mongous outdoor organ, and someone was practicing on it. Very cool.
 I love the architecture here. I could've spent hours just looking at that too.
 And while I was waiting (once) a little hummingbird appeared in front of my at the flowers, see if you can find him in the picture:
 Here she is, waiting again. I thought she looks so much like me when I was her age.
 I managed to capture a few pre-wedding pictures without getting in the way of the professionals.
I'll leave the wedding photos for the bride and groom to share - it was a gorgeous and wonderful wedding of two gorgeous and wonderful people. My girl did a super job as a flower girl, although I would've enjoyed seeing some pirouettes down the aisle. She smiled and tossed flower petals like a pro.
And then she even got to ride in the limo to the reception:
 where we danced the night away. The bride and groom, my nephew and his new wife, were really great about including the young one in the party. She will have so many great memories from this trip.
And so will I. I have never gone on a trip, let alone a 4 day one, with only one child, since my oldest was a baby. Spending time with my almost-9 year old really helped me get to see her in a new light, and I think she saw that mom isn't just an old lady all the time. (I know she really enjoyed watching my so cool dance moves.)

Adventures of June

Our family adventures this past June were not as dramatic as the previous year, thank you Lord!
We've had enjoyable times as a family, without blood, sweat, or tears!
The day after school finished, I took the 5 minions to the Oregon Coast Aquarium. It was a bit of a splurge for the 6 of us, but I thought it was worth it this time. We got to see the otters and sea lions being fed. That was great! There was a seal there that really liked the spectators attention, and would just linger at the glass for minutes at a time, instead of swimming. Sometimes she just stayed there upside down.
 I think the best part were the sea otters. So much fun to watch!

 We spent most of the day there, looking at all the inside exhibits, and enjoying the 'undersea' experience also, where we saw the sharks. Little K wasn't too thrilled with that part.
But the girls all had a lot of fun being silly whenever possible. Overall a great way to kick off the beginning of summer.
...to be continued...

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Owning a home

Owning a home allows a person to have a great dating life. As long as those dates are to stores like Home Depot.
The Mr. has been working on the upstairs remodel as time and money allow. And we are nearly done with it! The bedrooms are 99% complete and the bathroom is getting there. The countertop and sink and that tile is in. One light is up, but not attached. The shower has taken the longest time. He had to cut the concrete board and get it fitted for the shower. The sheetrock in the bath is nearly all up, and the mudding process will begin soon (I think). Then it will be tile, floor, toilet, and turn everything on!

But then the front deck rotted out, and we've been working on that. Since the plate below the door also is gone, we have to replace the front door; which means we actually have to go down together and pick out a door to order. Which means we have to find time to do this together. Looks like another date night to Home Depot.

Along with all this fun we found another area to work on. Not like we don't have enough. I have slowly been cleaning out areas of the house where we have too much stuff. Last night the Mr decided was a good time to hang the TV that we won onto the wall. We moved the outdated TV stand that was half broken and probably a hazard. As we moved this large piece of furniture that had stood in the same place for possibly 8 or more years, I walked over and noticed a musty smell, and some moldy floorboards and carpet.
 Oh no! After investigation, this is what we discovered - a leaky bathroom fixture. It pretty much popped right off the wall in the Mr's fingers.
Lovely. Add one more major thing to the To-Do list. And another date night.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Summer swim

Swim lessons started this week for my two youngest. Little K was so excited after we bought her a new swimsuit! She and Squiggles were up before 7 am I htink, yesterday morning ,ready to go! Too bad we didnt leave for a few more hours. But it did mean an early sleep time for them last night.
The first lesson for Little K - well, I wasn't sure she was going to make it. It rained on us. It was so cold, and her lips were blue, and she shivered the whole hour. She didn't want her face to get wet; she wouldn't blow her bubbles, or do her bobs. She came out crying at one point, but I was able to calm her down and she got back in.
Thankfully ! today was a much better day. Two of the kids in the class moved up, leaving just two boys and K. I don't know if this was the reason, or just it being the second day, but today K put her face in the water! and blew bubbles. There was only one minor crying episode when the teacher and she went underwater together.
Squiggles on the other hand, is in level 5, and was also excited to go to lessons again. She took right back to it, even though it has been nine months. She hasn't quite got the breathing down yet, but she is still having fun. And we have our favorite teacher back in her level, which makes me happy.
Hopefully by the end of summer, and 4 weeks of lessons, I can tell all of my kids that they swim better than I do. (Which is not at all)

Thursday, June 12, 2014

2 weeks

I told myself I would give it 2 weeks after the marathon until I ran again. I tried earlier than that and my body reminded me of my 2 week plan. The training book I followed suggested that the week after the marathon you should do nothing. Absolutely no exercise. And I kind of followed that, but not really. I went walking with my sister and then walking around the aquarium and then walking around the zoo. And pulled weeds at the farm. And oh, did my legs hurt last night. So as I laid in bed last night trying to sleep  I came up with some ideas of how I would do it differently next time, if there ever is a next time.

1 Don't rush the previous night's dinner. I would savor my pasta and not
wolf it down.
2. (Goes with 1.) Get to town earlier, instead of an hour before bedtime.
3. (Goes with 2.) Stay 2 nights at the hotel instead of one. It felt like a lot to pay to use a hotel room for less than 12 hours, and mainly to sleep.
4. Train more. I tried to follow the plan, but life, having 5 kids, weather, illness, etc, can get in the way.
5. Put sunscreen on before getting dressed. I put on sunscreen when I still had my jacket on, but decided to ditch the jacket before the start, and ended up with burned shoulders.
6. Wear a different shirt. Even wearing a sleeveless shirt I had chafing issues on my arms. I would test run some other sleeveless options.
7. Write a reminder phrase on my arm. By the time I got to mile 17 I was just focused on my pain. If I could have a visual reminder of songs to get me through it, I might have been able to refocus.
8. Bring a camera phone. Taking photos of the event and views might have helped refocus too.
9. Look Up. Once again, by the time I hit the last 10  miles I should have been looking up ahead, instead of down at my feet.
9. Enjoy the last miles of scenery. My Mr. was really good at reminding me of this. I was thinking of the pain and he told me that if this was the only marathon I would do, then wouldn't I want to remember it, and the miles I was taking in, instead of just the pain.
10. (Goes along with number 3.) Stay for the awards fun afterwards. We grabbed some food and left town, I think it would've been a lot more fun to stay around for the awards and raffle.
11. Bring ice packs.
12. Rest completely that week afterwards.