Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Another Day at Leonis Adobe

This visit to the Adobe was with Christopher, Catherine and Elizabeth.  As always, a fun time was had by all!

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Afternoon with Cole, Eden and Emlyn

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Monday, July 26, 2010

Swim Lessons

We have begun week two of swim lessons this summer. Both girls are enamored with the water, whether, tub, pool or sea. Our access to a pool has been limited to summertime swim lessons (a week or two) and an occasional pool party/visit here and there. They may get taken under, but come back up asking for more. While in Oceanside, the girls had two afternoons spending time at the resort pool. Hannah happily jumped from the side of the pool to the steps, often without her noodle. Alyssa would constantly shoo us away saying, "Let go of me!" and promptly sink under when we did. Swim lessons were a must upon our return.

This year we went the route of private lessons. The cousin of Matthew and Eric Wong's Daddy (and schoolmate of Ryan and his brothers), was available this summer and so a whole group of Hannah and Alyssa's friends were going to have Jeremy teach them how to swim properly.

Mommy worked with Alyssa while Hannah had one-on-one time with Jeremy. Hannah started off asking, "But how deep is it?" before even attempting to swim into the deeper water with Jeremy. By the end of the first week she was diving into that same water from 3 feet above without hesitation! She can do freestyle, elementary backstroke, breast stroke and float on her back, too. And she is pretty fast when she gets herself going.

In addition to becoming more confident with going underwater, kicking with Little Mermaid legs and paddling wit her hand at the same time as kicking with her feet, Alyssa has learned to make sure an adult is available and paying attention to her before she jumps in the pool at them:

"Mommy! I'm ready!" (Sometimes I make her do this three or four times before I turn to her... and she'll even say, "Mommy look away!" if I don't look away right away)

"OK, Alyssa!" I'll say as I turn to look at her.

"One, two... three!" In she goes and she'll tell you if she didn't make it under the water, because it's important to her that she does.

This has been the best swim lesson experience ever!

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Saturday, July 24, 2010

Meet "Lizzie"

Hannah loves to name every little critter that she meets.  Daddy found it while weeding the newly planted squash plants.  Mommy believes that this is the same baby lizard that she shooed out of the house earlier that morning.  Mommy is glad that it isn't in the house anymore.  It was amazing to see this nervous little creature staying so calm and still in Hannah's hands.

Our Garden Girls

Our garden continues to grow almost as fast as our two garden beauties! Alyssa is patiently waiting for the beans on her little green bean plant to be big enough to pick. We have our first summer squash and green pepper. Ryan continues to care for the garden, weeding, watering, moving plants to better locations... he has moved squash plants along the driveway and front planter (next to two strawberry plants) to give them more room to grow... I think there are 16 in all!

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Alyssa Turns Three

We celebrated in Oceanside with just our little family on her actual birthday, but when we returned home, she had a blast at The Little Gym with all her 3 year old friends, and big sister, Hannah too! Following that we had a pizza dinner with family.

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Saturday, July 17, 2010

The Trolls of Oceanside

We went on a family vacation to Oceanside.  During the week we were there we did a number of things, went to Uncle Eric's birthday party, the beach, the pool, Legoland and Sea World.  We also were visited by the trolls that live under the bridge.  We never did see them, but there was evidence... first there was the missing glass from the kitchen in our condo... then Hannah's bowl of ice cream disappeared (returned spot clean a little bit later) and Alyssa's sausage dinner was gone, simply gone!  We decided that the Trolls only came to steal food and they only came into the condo when the patio door was left open.  What a fun-filled week we had!  For the first half of the week we heard Alyssa ask to go back home, but by the time our week was over, she wanted to stay... we all did! 

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Dead Sea Scrolls

On our way to Oceanside, we stopped in at APU for the Dead Sea Scroll exhibit there.  It was really neat, but not so much for the girls. Hannah did much better than Alyssa, but then daddy pulled out his i-phone and the Tinkerbell game! 

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Thursday, July 08, 2010

Stop Signs

We were all in our car one night driving home and the conversation was about how much we love each other...  "to the moon" and "to the moon and back" and "to the sun" and "to the sun and back", etc.  These little sayings have evolved from our nighttime routine.  Hannah suddenly called out saying, "Mommy, I love you to the stop sign... (momma was thinking that she was being silly as she paused slightly at this point)... of my life."  How beautifully poetic!  How wonderfully sweet!

Emma Jeffreys Turns One

Emma lives in Vacaville with her parents, Debbie and Jeremy.  Her grandma lives in West Covina, not too far from where we live.  Emma's cousins were visiting from Michigan to celebrate her birthday with her.  After meeting Emma's cousin Camille, Hannah decided that she wanted to visit her in Michigan.  Alyssa now calls her baby doll Emma (once was Alex's baby, then Baby Sammy).

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Tuesday, July 06, 2010

Leonis Adobe in Calabasas

Another summer at Leonis Adobe in Calabasas and once again we spent the morning there with Cole and Eden. Every year the kiddos enjoy it more and more and they are able to experience more freedom to wander on their own. Hannah discovered the pulleys there... there was a single pulley and a double pulley set up with a big heavy box to lift. Hannah quickly found out what the difference between the two are!  Eden and Cole had fun lassoing a "cow".

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Sunday, July 04, 2010

Happy Independence Day!

Our holiday festivities started with a pool party at Tim Celano's house Saturday afternoon.  Tim is a friend of Ryan's from his college days and lives 5 minutes away from us.  The girls had a blast playing in the pool and making new friends.  They especially like Sydney.  There were also sparklers and fireworks when it got dark.  Sunday after church (Gramma and Grampop surprised us at church!) was the annual pool party and bbq at the Martinez house... more swimming and more food!  Then after a quick stop at home, we headed to Library park in Monrovia for fireworks.  We got there around 5 - 5:30 and got a
pretty good spot.  Hannah's friend, Laura was there and the girls had fun hanging out at the fountain, playing with the dogs, blowing bubbles.  Alyssa fell asleep... she hadn't napped... and slept through the fireworks!  Our friend, Raymond Virzi joined us (along with 8,000 others) to view a spectacular fireworks show that almost didn't happen because of the wind.  Firemen were on the roof of the library hosing down the roof and trees before and during the fireworks.   Our evening ended with more fireworks as we drove home... and Alyssa getting sick as we turned onto our street... as we cleaned her up, she kept saying, "disgusting... disgusting..."  She's feeling much better now!  Happy 4th!

Saturday, July 03, 2010

Eaton Canyon with Daddy

It was a risk going to Eaton Canyon on the weekend. We turned into the the road that led to the parking lot and saw cars parked along the street and hoped the parking lot was not full. As we drove past groups of people and no empty spots, we saw the Wolterbeek family. After greeting the,m daddy suggested that the girls get out of the car to let daddy turn round and find parking... but then daddy saw someone pulling out from a spot not too far from the start of the trail... what timing! So off to the tadpoles we went with Catherine, Elizabeth, their parents, aunt, uncle, cousins and grandma! And much to our delight, we were the only group going to see the tadpoles and frogs! Hannah was all about collecting as many frogs as she could hold in her little hands... Alyssa cried a lot about not being able to catch any tadpoles. The water level had dropped since Tuesday and there were puddles of water with new tadpoles that were stuck. Ryan saved some of them, but such is life in the wild! More bugs and dragonfly babies were found as well. A fun morning of discovery with a fun group of people!

Friday, July 02, 2010

Love Notes

I remember reading a story about a little girl who knew she was going to die.  She wrote little notes and hid them all over the house and after she died her family started finding them.  Such a sweet story.... what a sweet little girl...   My Hannah, she too loves to leave notes for mommy to find.  When I came home from my weekend in PA, I found several pictures and notes tucked away between the pile of pillows on my bed.  Most of the notes are hand delivered though, like this one.  She gave this to me at breakfast.

Thursday, July 01, 2010

Green Beans Anyone?

Our garden is growing! Green beans and peppers are the first to appear.

Birds at Breakfast

Daddy bought a bird feeder.  It's been up since the weekend, but the birds have only just discovered it.  They are also starting to get comfortable with the noises that come from inside the house and don't fly away so quickly.