Friday, July 23, 2010


I am not even going to pretend that I will one day catch up with all the pictures and outings that I have yet to blog about. Somehow with the move and summer, life is getting in the way of me blogging about it. Go figure. It just gets to the point where it is so daunting, I don't want to blog at all. But that's no solution.

We had a wonderful time down at the beach and the kids have been in the water so much between the river, the pool, the beach and various splash parks that I can officially declare them fish. One day I will get my butt in gear and get the better pictures posted of our trip.

Until then, I thought I would go with a much smaller topic and therefore post, about a semi-snap decision we made on Wednesday night while at Sam's Club after a lovely family dinner out. Unfortunately when we moved, we were not able to take our swing set as it was in no condition to survive the move. We have debated over exactly what we want to put in the backyard to replace the play structure since the really good quality wood and plastic ones can be pricey. We thought about Joe building one himself with stronger materials but it would have to take a back burner to more pressing projects plus during the extreme heat of summer, the kids are not outside too much unless they are in the pool. The problem with that is we are finding that Yucca Valley has temperatures cooler of at least 10 degrees and the evening breeze creates a perfect environment for outdoor playtime. Anyway, the other option we had been considering was a trampoline with enclosure as both our kids seem to love them whenever the chance to jump around in them presented itself. And so it was at Sam's Club Wednesday night when we saw a great deal on a trampoline set and decided to "jump" on it.

Spare me the lecture on safety, Thursday Joe put up the trampoline without the enclosure and for one day only, the kids were able to jump from the trampoline into the pool. Even though there were a few moments when I thought I would a heart attack watching them, it was well worth the fun they had.

Later after dinner, Joe and our friend Cruz (who you will be hearing a lot about now that he is stationed up here) put the enclosure up and the kids bounced and played to their hearts content.

Although I failed to get a picture capturing the moment, I knew we had made the right decision with the trampoline as dusk descended and the kids laid down on the trampoline exhausted and cuddled with each other as they looked up at the first of the evenings stars and whispered to each other about their plan to escape (they were playing some kind of good guy/bad guy game). It was utterly and absolutely priceless.

Friday, July 9, 2010

We've Only Just Begun

Despite the fact that the stores are packing away all the red, white and blue merchandise left over from the 4th of July weekend and replacing it with back to school supplies, for me it seems that the summer has only really just begun.

Sure we have already finished up All-Star baseball and swim lessons but we only just went to the river for the first time this last week. The kids and I are joining Joe down at Pendleton next week, meaning a one week hiatus for me at the beach in which we are also going to make good use of our season passes to Legoland and visit the Science Center museum in Santa Ana. Once we return, I have aspirations to also visit the more local Children's museum, visit Pump it Up during it's pop and playtime, take the kids to the water park in Palm Springs, the Alpine slide in Big Bear and go to the river as many time as we possibly can. My goal is to have a fun relaxing summer with plenty of pool and playtime right here at home but to strike a balance, I plan to do one camera-worthy activity every week.

And I refuse to let the summer get away from me like last year. I am using the time that is freed up from carting the kids to school and other structured activities to start walking again and boy, does that feel good. It feels really good to live in a neighborhood where I enjoy going for walks and don't fear for my life that I might be attacked by rabid pit bulls. Moreover, after giving the kids a 2 week plus break, we are working out of curriculum books almost daily and Jake has been reading a couple of books to me every day after lunch. Even cuter, is that after he is done reading his books to me, he is "helping" Jadyn learn to read too. Seeing them read together is about the most precious thing ever!

So the stores can go right ahead and start packing away to the sand toys and pool supplies in favor of glue sticks and composition books. For us, the time for back to school shopping will come. It may serve as a reminder that summer will be over before we know it. But I refuse to let it pressure me. For now, I want to live in the moment and enjoy my summer. Because it does seem like we have only just begun.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

The Fourth and a First

That being the 4th of July, of course. And our first river trip of the year, which is quite sad honestly because last year by this time we had already gone multiple times. However with Joe's frequent traveling and the mild spring, we didn't make it out there until the day after the July 4th holiday.

And I should break this up into two posts BUT the way I have been blogging lately (or more accurately not blogging), I am just going to get these two events covered before I blink my eye and a week has gone by.

So my Mom and George's visit coincided with the 4th of July, only this year instead of going to my brother's, we got to host our own shindig in the new house. Our other party guests included the Beyer family, Scottie and Ali and our friend Cruz who just moved duty stations from Pendleton to 29 Palms (in fact, Cruz is the one who is renting our house in 29 Palms, along with his two Great Danes).

We had a lot of fun, ate tons of great food and finished off the night by watching the fireworks show at the high school, which being only 2 blocks down the street, we could see perfectly from our front driveway. Talk about convenient!

Grandma with the kids:

Me and the kids:

Family photo op:

Swimming before dinner:

The girls before fireworks:

Excited for the fireworks. Jadyn asked me, "Mommy, how did you know their would be fireworks tonight?" This looked like a comfortable way to enjoy the show:

But in the end, the four kids decided the top of Joe's Buick would be the best spot for viewing the show:

Scottie and Jadyn (what do you think of her shorter length hair?)

We woke up bright and early the next day and went to the river. The water was P-E-R-F-E-C-T!

But can I just say chocolate bars in 100 degree weather. Not such a good idea.

With the boat successfully launched, we are off!:

As much as he loves it, he still plugs his ears:

Swimming like fish:

And the most random moment of day? When we arrived at our favorite spot and found someone had left a trampoline on the sandbar for every one's enjoyment. Jadyn didn't mind:

I wonder if it will be there when we go next time......