Thursday, June 26, 2014

Moving into April. Oh yeah, THIS happened.

April is always an incredibly busy month with spring break, Easter and Jake's birthday. This year was no exception. The first week was filled with 2nd trimester award assemblies and I attended a 3-day long training session to help me better serve students who are struggling with reading. It was both eye-opening and exhausting and by the first Friday of the month, this is what I looked like:

Talk about keeping it real!


But amid all the day-to-day activities, I was so, so, so happy to be able to take the time to see THE Laura Case and family while they were out visiting family. In my book, Laura is the original blogger/internet friend. She is the reason I started my blog and connected with so many other moms from our May 06 birth club, many of whom I have since met in person (remember Vegas??) and talk to on a regular basis.  I am so grateful to her for showing me how to use technology to create a personal/family journal and make it into a yearly keepsake AND for proving to me that my internet friends were even better in real life.

We took them to our favorite place, Joshua Tree National Park, which I knew Laura would love photographing. Their timing could not have been better as the spring wildflowers were in full bloom. Since it was our first hike of the spring, I focused on taking photos of all the beautiful colors of the desert.





I left most of the portrait-taking up to Laura and you can see what she captured here:

But I did get a picture of the kids all together. Her two boys Nate and Alex got along great with Jake and Jadyn. They hadn't seen each other for years but they got along like they were long lost friends:



And of course, it isn't real unless you get a picture of it so here is the shot proving we met up:


While it was a whirlwind afternoon visit, we packed a lot into the time we had. After having boasted about Joshua Tree to Laura on several occasions, it was nice to have our families together exploring our favorite trail and showing them the beauty of the desert.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Puppies, Puppies Everywhere!

While Kuma has always been an integral part of our family, the addition of Bailey at the beginning of the year seemed to put an added emphasis on the 4-legged members of our family.

In February, I puppy-sat for Cruz and Tara's new Great Dane pup Gabby and cuteness definitely ensued, even from our human children:




On any given day, Bailey could be found snuggling up to her big brother who she obviously adores:


And then finally in March when all her shots were done, Bailey had the all clear to start going for walks, hikes and trips to the dog park. She is a social butterfly:



Yes, Bailey certainly seems to fit right in!

Friday, June 20, 2014

Jake's First Track Season

As I have mentioned before, Jake decided not to play baseball this spring. We were well aware of this possibility as he had a rough time last year adjusting to being pitched to by fellow players. He over-thought the process, got extremely nervous and no longer enjoyed playing. Still, it was a little sad to see this chapter close as he had been playing baseball since he was 4 years old. I remember being in the dugout on the last game of the season and snapping this picture of Jake knowing it might be the last time I saw Jake in baseball uniform. I know. I know. I sound overly dramatic but to heck with it. This picture carries a lot of meaning for me.


But I digress......

So no baseball for Jake. He was however, at the grade level where they first allow you to compete in the school district's track program. He was reluctant, but I told him I wanted him to try it this one season and if he really didn't like it, I would never make him do it again.

Sometimes, mother does know best because guess what?  He really, really enjoyed running track.

The first track meet of the season he ran all the events except for the 800 meter and he did well in all the events except for the 400  meter. I still think if he trained for endurance more he would be a decent distance runner but apparently the sprints are his better events. He placed 1st, 2nd or 3rd every time he ran the 50, 100, 200 and 400 meter relay as well as placing in the bean bag toss. He enjoyed training, competing and being part of the team. It was a very successful first season.

Here he is running the last leg of the relay at one of the four meets he competed in:


The track team:


Posing with all his ribbons:


I even managed to get Jake to go for a morning run with me. I am kind of hoping this is something we can do together more often. It was what prompted me to sign us up for the 5K we recently completed in Big Bear.


Not to mention the fact that running better prepares Jake for his favorite sport - soccer. So one chapter closes and another begins. It's all about the silver linings.