Thursday, April 30, 2009

Welcome Home!

Well...some how...I survived 15 hours in a mini-van.
I'm currently buried under a mountain sized pile of sandy laundry.
I will return tomorrow.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Beautiful "Ocean Beach"

It has been years since I have been to the beach. I realized today (again) how much I absolutely love it.
There is something so calming about standing on the edge of the water and allowing the cold water to bite at your feet. I stood really still, with my eyes closed and took it all in. I love the sound of the surf crashing on the sand and the smell of the salt water. I love the cool breeze and the feel of the sand between my toes.
There is something spiritual about watching your footprints be washed away in the tide. It's almost a metaphor for life - that if you let things go, that you can't control - they will be taken care of. It would be wonderful if all of life's tears, grief, anguish and stress could be so easily wiped away. Wiped away so perfectly, that you cannot even tell that they were once there.

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Pres and Gavin hung out in the baby tent. It protected them from the breeze and the sand. Mostly. :)
Little Miss Presley in her sand seat.
Ryleigh loving the ocean. She was the first one to run and jump in.
Bailey and Avery eventually jumped in the water, too. However, Luke wants nothing to do with cold water and he was content building sand castles and finding shells on the beach.
My silly Avery.
I think that he was just excited that he was allowed to "make a mess".
This picture could not have turned out more perfect. Ryleigh cartwheels everywhere.
I love that they got to experience this.
My baby girl is growing up too fast.
Well, our vacation is coming to an end. Tomorrow morning we leave for home and we are looking at about a 14 hour drive. I'm sad to see it end. It was wonderful to have this time with the kids and see them experience so many new things.
We are taking home so many fantastic memories.

Five Months

I can't believe how time flies. Little Presley is now five months old. She weighs in at a "hefty" 10 lbs 8 oz and is 23 inches long. She's still my teeny bean...but I wouldn't want her any other way!






Monday, April 27, 2009

Packing In The Fun

I absolutely love our hotel room. It is a kid's suite, so it has a "master" room with a king bed and then through the sliding doors is the kids' room. (Except that we slide Pres's bassinet into our room.)
They get bunk beds, desk, chair and their own TV. We put them to bed at night, with the Disney channel on, and they are never heard from again.


Today, we spent most of the day at Sea World. The look on the kids' faces was priceless.
"It's okay, Pres. I'm with you."
Waiting for the dolphin show to start.


Shamu

I saw this sign, during a time that the kids were being a little rambunctious. I have no idea what this actually means...but I laughed over the thought that I could swap my kids for some calmer ones.
The poor boy fell asleep after the dolphin and whale shows, and playing on the playground. He missed most of the rest of the activities.
Pres slept much of the day, too.

Playing in the tide pool.
This is a Mommy who has had too much spinning...I thought I was going to puke!

Jaws, anyone?

Even exhausted as we all were, we had promised the kids some time in the pool. Pres actually really liked it.
My cute, happy, tired, slightly "sun-kissed", kids!

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Change Of Plans

If you plan a vacation with eleven adults and twelve kids (all under the age of 8) and think that it’s going to go off without a hitch…you are going to be very, very wrong.

We pulled into Las Vegas last night and Mom wasn’t feeling well. She just couldn’t catch her breath and no amount of oxygen was helping. It was so bad that her and Dad decided that it would just be smarter for them to rent a car and return home, so she could get in touch with her doctors. They have been discussing another treatment option with Mom’s doc and with the way she was feeling, she just knew that the best thing would be to get home and start it immediately.

It has put a bit of a damper on the trip, because we know how badly she really wanted to be with the grandkids when they played in the ocean and saw the aquatic life at Sea World. However, we know that she wouldn’t go unless she really needed to, so we just hope that she starts feeling better soon. (I’m writing this as we head on to San Diego and will post it tonight, when we get to the hotel and Internet access.)

The kids had a lot of fun at the hotel. They played in the pool for a while (which was FREEZING!) and then we just ordered pizza for dinner. After that was devoured and showers were done, the kids snuggled down with a movie and except for Avery, were asleep rather quickly. Avery finally settled and we had a great night sleep.

Morning came and after dealing with rental car issues for Mom and Dad, we were on our way. The amount of traffic leaving Vegas, heading to California, is like nothing I’ve ever seen. It was completely jam-packed and chaotic. A trip that Yahoo said should take about five hours, took closer to eight.

But, we finally arrived and our room is PERFECT! I'll post some pics of it tomorrow, but here is some pics from yesterday and today's drive.

I didn't dare put her in the pool because it was too cold...this was just with her toes in it!Kids will be kids and they didn't let the cold bother them!
Luke was pretty sure there were sharks in the pool and he wouldn't have anything to do with it. :)
My silly boy in the car.
Pres is getting so big. She entertained herself with a spoon.It's easy to entertain a little boy in a hotel room. He thought the shower cap was pretty cool!
It's hard to be the one sitting in the middle. :)

Traveling Lesson 101

Things I have learned, while traveling in a mini-van full of children:

- Letting the children stay up as late as they wanted to the night before, so that they would sleep part of the way…failed. Miserably. It just resulted in short-tempered, angry, AWAKE, little people.

- Hearing “The Climb” by Miley Cyrus over and over and over, can make a person wish they were deaf.

- Watching chips, Gatorade and gummy bears be spilled all over the newly clean mini-van can make a person wish they were blind.

- If one child gets car sickness, all the other children will develop sympathy pains.

- After hearing “Mommy!”, “Mom!”, “Momma!” and “Look at this!” more times than I can count and turning around to address the child, my head is now permanently facing backwards.

- When you make sure that all the children have used the restroom, but forget to use it yourself, it makes for a very uncomfortable 75 miles, till the next stop.

- When a child asks how much longer and you reply “an hour and a half”, and they ask again 30 seconds later, they truly believe that you are going to give them a different answer.

- You can never, ever, EVER pack too many baby wipes.

- Screaming, “AAAAHHHH! I saw a spider!” at the top of your lungs comes in handy when trying to cover up a swear word in a song, when you realize that you downloaded the unclean version to your Ipod.

-Even if every child uses the restroom and you feel confident that you will be able to drive uninterrupted for a while...one child will then decided that they need to go #2.

- If you pass other mini-vans, you and the other parents will exchange a similar “What were we thinking? Please save us.” look.

Friday, April 24, 2009

I've GOT To Be Crazy

Well, the semester is over. I'm waiting for my final math grade to be posted and I'm incredibly nervous. I hope he posts it soon and I can heal and move on. :)
We are long overdue for a family vacation. So, tomorrow morning we are leaving on a road trip. We'll see Vegas, we'll see San Diego, we'll see the Pacific Ocean and we'll see Mesquite.
We'll also see how many, "Mommy, are we there yet?" questions and "Mommy, I have to go potty!" whines, will make me go insane.
I can't wait for Bailey to see the dolphins at Sea World. I can't wait to see the kids build a sand castle on the beach. I can't wait to see Presley in the pool for the first time.
We've been looking forward to this trip for months and it's finally here! I can't wait to get going!
But first...I have to pack.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

This Warms My Heart

~ Malia - 2.5 months ~ Presley - 4.5 months ~ Carson - 3 weeks ~

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

I Love That She's Colorblind

Avery: "Mommy, my skin is white."
Me: "Yes, it is."
Avery: "Some people have black skin."
Me: "Yes, they do. Why do you think God made us in different colors?"
Avery: "Cause it's pretty."

Diversity. Uniqueness. Tolerance. Love. Understanding.
Yup, I love that kid.

Thanks For Nothing

I had a great day yesterday.
I got out of the house with no kids and got shopping done for our vacation.
I actually found a swimming suit that fits good AND it is a size smaller than what I thought I'd need.
It was a beautifully warm, sun-shiny day.
Everything was perfect.
Until...
the cop that pulled me over handed me a speeding ticket, and says with a smile, "Try to have a better day!"
Mean, mean, mean cop.
I was having a good day already.
He should have said, "Sorry I ruined your day."
Poopy head.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Sunny Summer Sunday

It was such a beautiful day yesterday, that we just couldn't resist getting the kids out of the house. This was our first trip to the park since last fall and they sure had a lot of fun jumping, running and playing! There is nothing like the sun shining and the sound of children's laughter, to brighten your day.



Presley sure had fun hanging out!
This is just one of "those" pictures that you look at and you just know that it belongs in the dictionary next to "happy childhood."
It's so nice just to spend time as a family and away from the stress of school and work. Watching these little people play and joining in on their fun, are the kind of memories that I'm glad I'll always have.