Saturday, August 31, 2013

August 31, 2013

This afternoon we went to a BBQ & pool party for Isaac's Primary class.  He's had the same teachers, the Moraffah's, for two years now and they've been really great with Isaac.  The kids have been working on memorizing their Articles of Faith and the party was supposed to be a reward for them.  One of the dads had all of the kids lined up at the edge of the pool to do diving contests.  He would yell out a different kind of dive each time (pencil dive, cannon ball, jack knife, etc) and have them all take turns jumping in.  It was really funny to watch and the kids all had a blast.  (In this photo Isaac is at the far right squatting down.)  It was a fun party until a two year old girl nearly drowned.  She was like 4 feet from me but my back was turned and nobody noticed until she was already motionless under the water.  Luckily her dad pulled her out and she was just fine, but it was still really horrible to witness.

Friday, August 30, 2013

August 30, 2013

We don't really take Cracker on walks anymore.  He is an old grumpy man and he is lazy.  But when we do pull his leash out he goes completely berzerk, jumping and running around, yelping and squealing like it is the best day of his entire life because he gets to go with us when we are leaving.  Then we don't even make it through the parking lot when he runs under the shade of the carport and parks himself.  It has been like 1000 degrees here this week and Cracker refuses to walk in the heat.  Talk about high maintenance.  So I carried him the rest of the way to the car and off we went to Petsmart.

After the drama of having Cracker's nails trimmed, we loaded him back into our cart and went around looking at pets.  Charlie is out of town again, our house is like an oven because we have no A/C, and I haven't been able to go to the gym because Luke is still not feeling well.  We needed to get out and this was the perfect way to kill time in an air conditioned environment.  We looked at fish, frogs, crabs, lizards, snakes, turtles, birds, guinea pigs, hamsters, chinchillas, and cats.  It was like our own little miniature zoo.  If Cracker hadn't been barking at all of the rodents we might have stayed longer.  

Thursday, August 29, 2013

August 29, 2013

Isaac and Luke were invited to a birthday party for our friend Daniel.  It was at one of these new trampoline places called Big Air.  It's like the next generation of bounce house places but with trampolines instead.  They have a jousting area, dodge ball, basketball, rock walls, foam pits, etc.  Isaac ran off and went crazy and I stayed with Luke.  He still wasn't feeling that great and I questioned whether I should take him or not, but I didn't want Isaac to have to miss the party.  Luke was by far the youngest jumper.  The other younger siblings just sat in strollers (see kid on right).  Huh?  I have never had a kid that would sit in a stroller for two hours.  Especially when surrounded by trampolines.

Here's a little video of some of the jumping action.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

August 28, 2013

This morning we had to go to Toys R Us to pick out a present for an upcoming birthday party.  My boys could spend hours at this store just going up and down the aisles and checking out all of the cool toys.  

On the way home I decided that we needed to get In-N-Out for lunch.  I was seriously having major cravings.  Enough to want to wait in this line.  Isaac & Luke?  Not so much.  Longest 25 minutes ever. I decided I deserved a chocolate shake too.  

And then I spent the rest of the day cuddling with Lukey because he had a fever.  He sat and watched an entire full length movie, which is unheard of.  We watched Rio.  He has watched the beginning with the singing & dancing birds a million times, but he doesn't usually make it past the first 10 minutes.  There is a part later in the movie where a bulldog puts on a welding mask and tries to help the birds by cutting their chain off with a table saw.  Luke didn't react at the time but afterwards he reenacted the scene for me and told me that the mask was a monster and it was scary!  

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

August 27, 2013

We have a really nice neighbor named Peter.  He's single and retired and was probably the first person to introduce himself to us when we moved in.  Both of the boys are always excited to see Peter - Luke has recently become kind of obsessed with Peter and is constantly calling random men that we see around town "Peter."  Anyway, the other day he brought over a birthday card for Isaac with a gift card to Baskin Robbins.  Isaac was really excited about the card and about going to get ice cream.  He picked his usual favorite - chocolate ice cream with M&M's and rainbow sprinkles on top.

Monday, August 26, 2013

August 26, 2013

Here is Luke at ICEC with his new OT Ms. Debra.  I have to be honest, I have never been a big fan of OT.  I understand the concepts and how it is supposed to be helpful, but I've just never seen any huge benefits for either of my boys.  My biggest concern (for both of them) is fine motor skills, but the OTs always insist that they need to focus on core strength, proprioceptive input, etc in order to improve fine motor.  Anyway, Luke loves doing this kind of stuff so why not?  Today's routine involved sliding down into the ball pit, then climbing back up the slide (not the ladder), pushing a weighted ball down, sliding down after it, then throwing the weighted ball over the side of the pit and down a ramp to knock over bowling pins.  Then repeat 20 times.  Luke loved the weighted balls.  He's always liked "heavy" stuff.  Most of them were 3 to 5 lbs, but I was pretty impressed to see him hauling around a 9 lb medicine ball the size of a basketball.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

August 25, 2013

My little boy is six years old!  How did he grow up so quickly?  It's not that those years went by all that fast, but it just doesn't seem like it was that long ago that he was turning one, or two, or three...  Anyway, today was Isaac's six birthday and although it was Sunday (he actually burst into tears a few weeks ago when I told him his birthday was going to be on a Sunday), he had a very fun day.  When his grandparents called to wish him a happy birthday this evening he told his grandma on the phone "it is the best day ever!!"  And I'm glad he meant it.  We love you Isaac!

Saturday, August 24, 2013

August 24, 2013

For Isaac's birthday (which is tomorrow) he chose to go to the new Buccaneer Cove water park at Boomer's.  The park is right off of the freeway so Isaac & Luke have been watching it go up for months.  When Luke was doing therapy in Fountain Valley we would pass by this thing several times a week and every time they would both BEG to go on the slides.  It seemed to take forever for them to finally open it, but luckily it is open in time for Isaac's birthday.  And unfortunately there is a height requirement of 36" to go on the slides so Luke couldn't come (Charlie took him to the water slide at the lagoon instead).  After buying our tickets I put my phone and wallet in the car, so all I have is this funny photo of Isaac before we went in.  I'm not sure what the deal is with the raised arm but he often poses this way for photos.  Silly kid.

Friday, August 23, 2013

August 23, 2013

Charlie is home!  Woo hoo!  And all I have to show for today is this lovely shot of Luke & I doing the "warm" as he calls it.  If I sit and hold him in the rocking chair and turn on a movie then I can usually get him to cooperate for about 10 minutes.  His favorite this week has been a new Kidsongs DVD that I had stashed away called "Boats, Trains, and Airplanes."  It is from the 80's which makes it kind of painful to watch, but Luke loves it.  Unfortunately, it's been almost a week since we went to the doctor and the stubborn stye is not budging.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

August 22, 2013

Charlie was supposed to get home around 4:00 today, but his flight out of New York was delayed, causing him to miss his connection in Dallas and so he didn't get home until almost 9:00.  I opted not to make the chicken cordon bleu I was originally planning and save it for a night when Charlie could enjoy it too.  One of Isaac's new favorite meals is pot stickers & edamame, so he ate that, I made some scrambled eggs for Luke, and I had a bowl of yogurt & granola with blueberries.  It is nice to have a break from cooking full dinners when Charlie is gone, but after awhile I do actually start to miss cooking - or at least eating - regular meals.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

August 21, 2013

My friend Jodie lives in Ladera Ranch where they have a lot of community parks and pools, similar to Woodbridge.  She invited us to come and go to their water park this morning and we were excited to go.  Unfortunately, right as I was pulling up she called and told me there was a change of plans.  She had invited some other friends and was unaware that there was a guest limit policy and she couldn't bring so many friends in at once.  I was bummed but the boys didn't know too many details about this "water park" we were supposed to go to, so the splash pad that we headed to next was still plenty of fun for them.

When we got home I was trying to get Luke to sit still for another warm compress on his eye, so I pulled out a new DVD called "Puppy Party" which just shows a lot of puppies running around playing and wrestling.  We did get a few minutes with the compress but then the boys decided that they wanted to wrestle like the puppies.  Of course their stuffed dogs had to be included in this wrestling match too.  So much for sitting quietly!  (Cracker's paw is fine today, by the way.  Such a relief.)

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

August 20, 2013

I think this is the third week in a row we've met up with Sherri and her kids for swimming on Tuesday afternoon.  I'm so glad because we went for kind of a long stretch where our schedules didn't quite match up and we couldn't get together.  Today we went to their pool over in Quail Hill and Isaac got in the hot tub for the first time ever!  Luke did too, but that wasn't as shocking.  Isaac is very sensitive to heat in any form (bath water, outside temperature, food, etc) and has always refused to go anywhere near a hot tub.  I guess all he needed was a friend to coax him in.  Anyway, afterwards we went over to Sharky's to grab dinner since Sherri's husband was at school tonight.  Sherri & I were shocked that people kept coming to sit in the tables next to us with our five crazy kids!  

When we got home Cracker greeted us at the door as usual, but I quickly noticed that he was limping.  Oh my poor lovey dog!  I have no idea what happened but he was not wanting to put any weight on his front left paw.  The thought did cross my mind of running out to an emergency vet, but I decided to wait until tomorrow and see how he's doing.  After the kids were in bed I felt around his paw a little more and figured the pain was mostly in one toe.  By bedtime he was walking a little better so I am hoping he feels better in the morning.    

Monday, August 19, 2013

August 19, 2013

Oh man, we were really going stir crazy today.  We didn't have a lot on the schedule and the boys were bouncing off the walls.  Summer vacation is starting to feel really long.  We rode bikes to the Woodbridge Community Park because it has a huge open field, and then I launched off these crazy balloons for the boys to chase.  We usually do these at home and they make a whistling noise and just circle around the living room.  And then Cracker barks and chases them and tries to bite them.  It was fun to set them off at the park because they can really go up pretty high.  Isaac loved it and could have done this for hours, but Luke got tired of it after the first couple of balloons.  Anyway, it was a fun way to burn off some energy and then we took the long way home on our bikes and got Super Mex take out for dinner.  Five days down, three more to go.  

Sunday, August 18, 2013

August 18, 2013

Sandy & Chris took pity on me and my loneliness and invited us over for dinner tonight.  I honestly don't mind it that much when Charlie travels for work, except for on the weekends.  The days feel really long since we don't have our regular scheduled activities and there are no friends to hang out with since they are doing things with their own families.  And Sundays, since we can't go too many places, feel especially long.  Anyway, it was nice to visit and have dinner and let the kids play.  (They don't normally eat off of a card table, but are waiting on a new table right now.)

Katie was showing off some of her gymnastics skills and Luke thought she was super cool.  He mastered doing somersaults on his own and had me help him do some cartwheels too.  He also found these plastic yellow glasses that he wanted to wear the rest of the night.  Ryan introduced Isaac to Lego Star Wars on the X-Box, and you better believe that was a huge hit.  We are thankful for cousins!

Saturday, August 17, 2013

August 17, 2013

What could be more fun than spending a Saturday morning at the urgent care?  After the gym I packed up some bags of snacks, toys, and a few little surprises for the boys so that we would prepared for any amount of waiting that we'd have to do.  Luke has had a swollen red spot on his bottom eyelid for a few weeks.  I didn't think much of it at first (a scratch maybe?) but it has not gone away and then on Thursday he started rubbing at it more and telling me that his eye hurt.  I googled it and figured it was probably a stye, which I guess typically go away on their own in a week or so.  Well this thing has not budged and after trying warm compresses for the past two days (with not much luck getting him to hold still) I figured we should have it looked it.  And we couldn't get an appointment with our regular doctor during the week.  

So we waited.  And waited.  And waited some more.  I was complimented several times by nurses and doctors on how well prepared we were.  Ha!  I know my boys too well.  This was the only way we could have survived.  The doctor finally came and flipped down Luke's eyelid to reveal this yucky white lump.  She prescribed some antibiotic ointment and directed me to keep putting hot compresses on his eye for 10 minutes five times a day.  Our previous compresses have not lasted much longer than 10 seconds, so this will require some creative thinking on my part.  I also had to have my ear looked at since it was still bothering me after my previous visit a couple of weeks ago.  Anyway, after about two hours we were finally out of there!

We stopped at Sonic on the way home to grab some lunch.  

And then later in the afternoon we headed to the pool.  Is it gross to bring bath toys to the pool?  Well we did.  Luke is still in love with his ducks and their "floaties" so we brought them along today.  The boys always have more fun at the pool when Charlie is there, but since he is in NYC the ducks will have to do for now.  

Friday, August 16, 2013

August 16, 2013

Sandy & her kids were supposed to come over this afternoon to go to the pool and the bike park.  Sandy got caught up doing other things so they showed up about six hours later than planned, but Chris came too (Charlie is out of town).  We skipped the pool and just had dinner and then headed over to the bike park for awhile.  As they were getting ready to leave we were talking about Isaac being almost as tall as Ryan and asked them to stand next to each other.  The other kids hurried and lined up too.  They looked like little stair steps.

Here is Luke at the bike park riding Hailey's Tinkerbell scooter.  He was SO determined to ride it and got it moving pretty good but had a hard time keeping it on the path.  I should probably get him one of his own - one that doesn't have fairies on it.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

August 15, 2013

A few months ago there was a table set up at our gym with sign-ups for an organic produce delivery service.  It's something we've considered doing in the past so I went ahead and signed up.  It is pretty fun to find a box of freshly picked produce sitting on my doorstep in the morning.  But that being said I'll probably cancel after this month because $31 just seems like a lot for what we get - especially since all of the same stuff is at Sprouts for better prices.  I have a feeling they source their organic produce from all of the same farms because it seems that whatever is in our box is also on sale at Sprouts the same week.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

August 14, 2013

Today we got together with some friends that we haven't seen in sooo long.  Jodie & I met at ICEC when Lincoln and Isaac were in a program together.  Lincoln was also in Isaac's karate class for awhile, but they stopped going a few months before we did and I don't think we had seen them since then.  We met up at a park this morning and let the kids run and play while Jodie and I chatted and caught up on life.  

Then later this afternoon we met up with more friends at the lagoon.  Isaac went to Hudson's birthday party last week but before that it had been months since we'd gotten together with these guys.  When Isaac was ready to dry off I wrapped him up and directed him towards a chair but he didn't make it that far.  He opted instead to lay in the warm sand and stayed all rolled up in a ball for quite awhile.  In fact he sat so still that a bird came and landed on his back.  He thought that was hilarious so he called Hudson over to join him.  They decided that they were turtles and tried to hold really still waiting for more birds to come.

Meanwhile, Luke was having fun scooping up buckets of sandy water and watching it pour onto his lap.  Then he would exclaim "dirwy!" and scoop up some more water to wash himself off with.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

August 13, 2013

Today Luke started a program at ICEC.  This is the same center that Isaac attended when he was little.  Luke had been doing so well in his home based program and we felt it was time for him to move on.  It's been just about three years since Isaac graduated from ICEC (on his 3rd birthday), but going back there today felt almost like we had never left.  It was nice to walk in and be greeted with smiles and hugs from so many familiar faces.  Everyone was thrilled to see Isaac and were astonished at how well he is talking (since he still only had one word when he left there).  Because this program involves the parents there is also a sibling program for older kids there.  Isaac will only go with us until school starts next month, but he loved it today.  And Luke had a great time too.  Actually Luke did so well that it made me wonder if we really need to be there... but I do think it will be beneficial for him in a lot of ways so we will stick with it for now.  We told him it was "school" and he was so excited to go and to carry a lunch bag with his snack just like Isaac.  I love this picture of both of them.  I know I am biased but they are both so handsome and adorable!

Later at Trader Joe's when they each took a turn ramming a cart into the back of my ankles I didn't think they were so adorable anymore.  Except really they are.

Monday, August 12, 2013

August 12, 2013

When Charlie and I were first dating he invited me over to his place one night and he made us dinner and we watched a movie.  I think it was Entrapment with Catherine Zeta Jones and Sean Connery.  He made California rolls and I remember being so impressed that he could make sushi!  So California rolls have been a regular on the dinner rotation since we've been married and now I'm the one making them.  Except recently we started thinking about that imitation crab meat that we put in there and decided that it's really gross.  I mean, what is really in that stuff anyway?  So tonight I made the rolls with fresh crab meat.  It was a little tough to pry all the meat out of those shells, but the taste and texture was so much better.  I am sold!  No more pulverized, processed, food colored fish sticks for us.  We ate our rolls with chicken pot stickers and edamame.  Isaac won't touch the sushi but he loves the "slimy tacos" and the edamame.  Luke will eat a little of everything.  

Sunday, August 11, 2013

August 11, 2013

We have been trying for months to convince Isaac to take the training wheels off of his bike.  He always insisted that he needed to keep them on and was not ready yet.  Last week when Charlie bought his new bike he told Isaac that he needed to learn to ride without the training wheels so that we can buy him a new bike too.  He really is getting too big for this one.  So last week Charlie took off one training wheel.  Today we rode over to the elementary school and took off the other.  Isaac did great!  He needs help to get going and is a little unsteady with turns, but he was doing really well riding.  I am so proud of him!  He is not the most motivated child and getting him to try new (hard) things is always a challenge.  Way to go Isaac!

Also, Charlie bought a bike seat for Luke yesterday and installed it on his new bike last night.  He's a little disappointed that his cool new beach cruiser is now a "nerdy dad bike" as he calls it.  But since that was the whole point of him buying the bike - to take the boys on bike rides - I think it works out well.  And Luke absolutely loves it!

Saturday, August 10, 2013

August 10, 2013

As soon as we were all up this morning we hurried and got going to Laguna Beach.  During the summer it gets so crowded there that if you are not at the beach early you will never find a parking spot and will also get stuck in tons of traffic going through Laguna Canyon.  We arrived at Crescent Bay just after 8:00 and were immediately greeted by volunteers from the local Marine Animal rescue center letting us know that they were planning to release two baby sea lions back into the ocean that morning. It was fun to watch the little guys waddle down to the water and swim away.  One disappeared quickly but the other stayed and played in the surf for awhile.  Charlie is convince they will die or be eaten by sharks but I am a little more optimistic for these little fellows.

It was cool and cloudy for the first few hours but we had fun walking up and down the beach and exploring in the rock caves.  Luke was all to eager to run into the water and Charlie & I had to be careful not to let him get too wet so that he wouldn't be freezing cold while waiting for the sun to come out.

Isaac and I built a little city of sand pyramids.

And we can't ever come to this beach without visiting the tide pools.  Charlie helped Isaac harvest muscles from the wet rocks down by the water.  Then they smashed open their shells with a rock and lured the crabs out of their hiding spots with the muscle meat.

Last time we were here Luke got really upset about his water shoes getting wet after a wave splashed him.  This time I made sure to explain to him that the water shoes were supposed to get wet!  And after that he was simply delighted to walk through the shallow water with his water shoes.  "Water shoes!!" he exclaimed over and over as he splashed through every puddle he could find.

By mid morning the sun had finally come out and we all got warmed up.  Charlie of course dove into the ocean, but the water was still way too cold for my liking.  We packed up and headed home right around lunch time.  It was a perfect easy and relaxing beach trip.

Tonight was my cousin Dallin's wedding reception.  He married this cute girl named Angela whom I had never met until tonight.  My aunt Janet & uncle Wayne and their family live in Huntington Beach but we usually only end up seeing them a couple of times a year.  We need to be better about that!  Anyway, it was fun to get together tonight and celebrate the happy couple.

My aunt Kay and my cousins Lyndie & Jandie were in town from Utah for the wedding, so we snapped this picture with all of the girl cousins together.  We were missing my sister Lisa and my cousins Becky & Betsy, but this is still a pretty good group of us.  We should have gotten Angela in the picture but I think she was dancing with her dad at the time.