Thursday, September 30, 2010


It is raining today.  Complete with thunder and lightning.  We like that around here!  
A funny thing, picking up kids at an elementary school during an unexpected rainstorm in San Diego.

You'd think aliens were landing.

 This picture is from July...during the last rain 
from our summer that never was. 
It may not be my best but it is one of my favorites.
Have I mentioned that we love rainy days?

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

First Grade Conference

Today, Keith and I met with Sam's first grade teacher.  This is the goal setting conference for the year.  We were happy to confirm that Sam is a fantastic student and he is loving first grade.  As long as he holds back on his policeman like tendencies with his classmates I think we are headed for a very good year.  His teacher is confident that he has been better about only reporting things that concern him directly.  She seems genuinely happy to have him in her class.  I walked away from the conference feeling like a superior parent doing an amazing job raising an intelligent, sweet and well adjusted little boy.  Then we came home and tried to work on homework. Homework with a tired perfectionist is a true test of patience.  I was quickly thrown back into reality and my parenting skills were challenged and I was reminded that much of the time I really don't know what I am doing.  Can I really take credit for the sweet amazing boy we talked about today if I don't take the blame for the total meltdown we experienced while trying to write down this week's spelling list?  I'll blame it on the camping trip. That is all it is...we are all a little off our routine from the camping trip.  Time to step away from the homework and we will try again tomorrow...   

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Indian Guides

Sam and Keith are gone this weekend. They are on their first Indian Guides camping trip!  The girls are home alone for two nights.  We miss our boys but Elise was excited to learn that she would get to sleep in my bed all weekend.

Sam went camping when he was about 10 months old.  Obviously he doesn't remember that so this is really his first official camping trip.  I have to preface this next little story by letting you know that Sam likes to watch Survivorman and Man vs. Wild and Dual Survivor on the Discovery Channel.

Keith and Sam are accompanied by our friends Max and Eric.  Eric and Keith work together and Sam and Max go to school together.  On Thursday, Eric and Keith were sharing stories about their sons nervous inquiries about the camping trip.  Max was concerned about sleeping away from his mom for two nights in a row.  Sam also voiced some concerns to Keith.  He asked if they might see a specific type of brown spider.  He asked if they might see a rattle snake.  He wondered if there would be rabbits, bats, bugs, and other critters.  Keith was answering thoughtfully as he thought these questions were fear based and did not want to create any extra anxiety for our boy.  Then Sam asked if they would be using/making bows and arrows and if they would build a fire.  When Keith told him no on the weapons making...Sam asked, "But how are we going to hunt and cook the snakes and rabbits?"  Sam was counting on some serious survival skills needed for this camping trip.  I hope he is not disappointed when he learns that they will be watching movies, devouring ice-cream sundaes and chowing down on grilled tri-tip rather than preparing their taste buds for bbq'd rattle snake and slimy grubs.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

August Reunion

Mila is staring at me while sitting on the sofa.  I can't resist taking a picture of those big brown eyes. 
 In August, we had the pleasure of her company along with her daddy, Uncle D and Uncle Lam too.  Mara and family stayed with Papa and Curly.  Aunt Lene and Uncle Jack were banished to a hotel after what happened the last time they came for a visit. ;-)  Even our cousin Mike joined the party for a few days!  I am ashamed to  say I don't have many pictures from the week.  Uncle Lam has a fancy camera so I let him take most of the pictures.  Now I need to hunt him down before he goes back to Vietnam so I can have some copies.

This is our nephew Maxwell.  This was the first time we met.  He just turned 1 so we had cupcakes together.
Look at that face...Oh my...he is beyond cute.

Cole is Maxwell's big brother.
(Why did I just type that?  Do I think we'll forget how we are all related to eachother? is a picture of your first son Cole...he is Maxwell's big brother, did you know that?)
We all took the train to old town. Taking a train with a big group all meeting at the train station can be a bit tricky.  Cory almost missed the train on the way down. He used his super human speed to run across the tracks with a stroller and a baby at the last minute and just made the train.

On the train ride back this Irish gentleman we know almost started a brawl while trying to get off the train and I had to use my super human strength to hold the train door open so Uncle Jack could jump off before getting stuck on the train to LA.  I love a feisty Irish man who stands up for himself!

Aunt Mara treated the kids to some personalized license plates...Old Town had everyone's name...impressive.

Here is my Rock Star brother in law looking tough while blowing bubbles.  He is currently playing a few shows in Boulder with Colin Robison.  He also is hangin' with my current favorite singer/songwriter Gregory Alan Isokov.  Seriously, he is hangin' with him, like staying at his house and everything.  If you have access to iTunes, go download his album This Empty Northern Hemisphere and play it on a Sunday morning over a cup of coffee.  You can thank me later.  OK...back to the reunion.

While in Old Town, Keith's parents took us to the Mormon Battalion.  They have an interactive talk about some of the Mormon History and how they fought for our country.  It was very well done and impressive.  Sam really got into it but was disappointed to find out we were not really going camping with was just pretend.  I had no idea my son would be so quick to sign up to fight for his country.  Nice but I hope that is never, ever, never the case.  The kids also had a chance to pan for gold.  Really fun and not heavy on talk about religion so it really is enjoyable for all to go to.  The entire experience is free and it was the highlight of the Old Town trip.  (Except for maybe the pitchers of Margaritas Aunt Lene, Keith and I managed to put down at the restaurant.)

Here are the kids on our favorite Hike in Torrey Pines...they are looking for dinosaur bones in the sandy cliffs.

Elise thought is was pretty hysterical that she decided to run through the waves with all her clothes on.  She didn't care that it meant riding home cold and naked. She thought it was definitely worth it. 

We had so much fun with the fam!  Papa and Curly worked their butts off feeding this crew. 
 Thanks Papa and Curly for all your hard work pulling this reunion off!