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Category Archives: Childhood

Moments {Vol. 9}

chasing-bubbles

We found a bubble wand at Target this week that makes a phenomenal amount of bubbles in one go.
chasing-bubbles

The girls were having a blast chasing them while Daddy was cooking dinner at the BBQ.

tiny-dancer

We’re back at ballet after a couple months hiatus. She’s still in love.
tiny-dancers

They had a substitute teacher this week and she was very enthusiastic. ūüôā {She’s wearing my old leotard and shoes now.}

planting-seeds

I’m trying to grow a small cut flower garden in the corner of the yard this year, so Evey helped me throw down some seeds during Lucie’s nap time one morning.

soccer-star

I think we have another soccer fan on our hands. She was born during the World Cup last year, after all.

adventuring-off

She ventured off the cement into the unknown the other day. It was funny watching her little, wobbly steps as she gained freedom into the rest of the yard.

little-garden-helper

Lucie’s idea of helping in the garden is plucking the flowers off the plants one by one. We’ll just call her Babyzilla.

storm-clouds-california

This weekend has brought some crazy, stormy weather. The thunderclouds rolled in on Friday night with some awesome lightening. {The last time we had one there was a tree between those two tall ones at the end of the road that got zapped and split in half!}

rain-reflections

Enough rain came down that there was still standing water in the morning. What a blessing for California!

Sunday-morning-treat

A sweet Sunday morning treat at one of our favorite breakfast spots in Folsom.

peek-a-boo

Lucie is always happy to be outside and adventuring!

pretzel-at-the-fat-rabbit-folsom-california

We also stopped in to an authentic London pub in Old Folsom for a beer and pretzel.

tickles

Lucie got some tickles….

kissesAnd mama got some kisses. ūüôā

Moments ~ {Vol. 8}

outdoor play

Lots of time outside during these beautiful Spring days. Evelyn draws, Lucie observes.

rosebuds

We have a single rosebush on our backyard fence. It is very stingy with the roses. It produced twice as much this year and this is half of them.

static hair on the slide

Her hair is the perfect length for the static look after coming down the twirly slide at the park. ūüėČ

coldstone

Summer-like weather one day had us out searching for the biggest ice cream treat. Success.

picnic lunch

Picnic weather!

strawberries!

Need to work on that “talking with our mouth full of food” thing…. ūüėČ

whipped cream!

My daughter possibly loves strawberries more than I do. Is that even possible?!?!

inspecting her hands

“What is this strange stuff on my hands??”

stamping

Fantastic thrift store find. She’s all about stamps right now.

winnie the pooh puzzle

And puzzles. She sits for hours most days working on them.

new york puzzle

Her taxi one we picked up in New York. So proud!

watching the rowers

My youngest brother participated in the Southwest Regional Rowing Championships this past weekend. We enjoyed watching and wading in the warm water.

beach babe

Those rocks were great for sifting through her fingers. Over and over and over….

bean bag love

She had never encountered a bean bag chair before but we happened upon this one at the used kids’ clothing store in town. She carried it over to me and said, “There’s something in here, mom,” very concerned look on her face. I had to explain that it was like a big pillow and it was filled with things to make it soft for sitting on. Next thing I know, I come around the corner and find her like this. She understood. ūüôā
fun with friends

We celebrated a good friend’s birthday this week with a gathering of¬†wonderful faces that we love to see.

 

 

happy birthday matt

His wife made a delicious ice cream cake with funfetti cake and butterfinger ice cream per his request. It was a great combo!

 

blowing out the candles

Happy birthday, Matt!

They Are People Too

traveling by plane

Traveling across country with two children this past weekend was an eye-opening experience. Not because of the difficulties inherent in the process {we were anticipating those}, but because of the imposed stigma of society as we dared to travel with our young children.

Apparently, it’s not something our culture really¬†approves of.

An article published this morning by Verily addresses this issue of the disgust many in society aim at parents and their progeny as they integrate themselves in the normal routines of daily life.

“Simple things like parents with young children being allowed to board a plane first so that their babies don‚Äôt have meltdowns in long queues are not signs that society is valuing parents more highly than anyone else, it‚Äôs just an acknowledgment that parents have different needs and that children are worthy of participating in society.”

We actually weren’t allowed to board first. We asked; it didn’t happen. Those needs weren’t acknowledged, or at best, were brushed aside.¬†The elderly and handicapped were allowed to board first, but then those who had¬†paid¬†extra¬†{about half the plane} were allowed on before we could go through the gate.

It seems common sense to me to let young children and their guardians board early as it takes more time for us to move through the process.¬†Isn’t that why they allow elderly and handicapped through first too? Truly, I’m expecting¬†them to be brushed aside as well.

Making money will become the ultimate motivator, not quality service for those they serve. Not seeing to the best for every customer based on his or her individual needs. That will be subsumed by the wants of the whole and only be allowed if they agree to it. Those who will be first will be the ones who paid for it because money can buy happiness if it comes in the form of boarding a plane five minutes earlier than everyone else.

I won’t even go into the sideways glances we received while attempting to bring babies onto the plane. The¬†How dare you impose your child’s noise on me? looks. I’m sorry, I don’t appreciate your loud snoring as you rest either but that doesn’t disqualify you from riding on a plane.

There were also many sideways glances as we walked down busy city streets. Many comments that implied, Why would you subject yourselves to such an endeavor? 

Perhaps because we are hoping to instill a love of travel in them just as we do. Perhaps because we love to spend time with them and want to do so whenever possible. Perhaps because we want them to be able to delight in the joy of meeting new people, adventuring in new places.

The baby spent most awake moments in her stroller squealing with delight as we passed people on the sidewalk, trying to capture their attention. She likes people. She likes to be outside. Sure, walking is slower with a stroller. It takes longer to get places. It is often more cumbersome. But should I deprive them of the joy of the journey because it is more difficult?

The toddler was beside herself meeting the REAL Winnie the Pooh, her favorite character on the planet. She beamed from ear-to-ear as her daddy held her and read her whatever books she chose off the seemingly endless rows of books in the massive library collection. {MUCH larger than anything we have at home.}

We couldn’t make it to as many things as we would have on our own but we¬†delighted in the few things that we could.

 

The reason we were traveling was to attend the¬†wedding of¬†friends. I arrived early with the girls to find a good spot near the side¬†toward¬†the back so I could make a quick getaway to the vestibule if needed. But as we were sitting there, the priest officiating came up to me and said, “Babies cry. Don’t feel ashamed if your baby is crying. You don’t need to leave.” He joked, too, saying, “Please do find out what is wrong if the baby is crying because that is why the child cries is to let you know something is wrong. But don’t ever feel ashamed that your child is crying because that is what babies do.”

And you know what? Despite my littlest trying to sing along every time the choir broke into song, I didn’t feel the need to leave because he made me feel like my child being there was just as important as every person there.

I pray the tides turn and more people come to realize that our little persons are important people too.

My Favorite Childhood Books {7QT}

{I am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.}

I’ve been working through Modern Mrs. Darcy’s 2015 Reading Challenge. She recently gave some great ideas for the category — “a book from your childhood”, so I thought I would share a few of my own.

I’m not sure when I get to it whether I will choose one I have already read and enjoyed or pick one that I meant to read as a child but never got around to it.

Here are the top 7 books from my childhood:

little women

Little Women by Louisa May Alcott – Perhaps it was a lack of sisters that drew me to this book, but I always loved the stories of these lovely ladies relating to and leaning on one another. Beth was always my favorite. I even got to play the part of her in a short excerpt from the play I did in an acting workshop. Definitely a highlight of my childhood.

sideways stories from wayside school

Sideways Stories from Wayside School by Louis Sachar – These¬†silly stories were so entertaining for someone who didn’t spend much time inside the walls of a school (I was homeschooled). Perhaps it was the imagining of the somewhat unknown in this way that made it all the more fun.

TheBFG

The BFG by Roald Dahl – The character for whom this book is named seemed the giant who would defeat all the scary monsters of my imagination. And it is good to have one of these.

hailstones and halibut bones

Hailstones and Halibut Bones by Mary O’Neill – I’ve never been one who was too hot on poetry but this one stuck by my side throughout childhood. I think it was the lyrical poems paired with the beautiful color drawings that captured my attention. I even attempted some of my own poem/drawing pairings inspired by this book.

Beezus_and_Ramona

Beezus and Ramona by Beverly Cleary – I’m not really sure why, but I always identified with Ramona from this book. Although I was the older sister and probably would have been a better fit with Beezus, I liked her antics and sassiness.

linnea in monet's garden

Linnea in Monet’s Garden by Christina Bjork and Lena Anderson – This book sparked my love for Monet and his paintings from a young age. I still love to look through this book and admire his waterlily paintings. It was a huge lifelong dream when I got to see many of his works at the Orangerie in Paris while I was studying there. Someday, I hope to go to his home and see his garden.

From-the-Mixed-Up-Files

From the Mixed Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler by E. L. Koningsburg – Was this a favorite because it took place in the MET? I don’t know. ūüėČ There seems to be a common theme of art here in many of my favorites. I love the adventure she went on with her brother there and I secretly hoped to do something as adventurous in life.

 

I also had a serious thing for the “Choose Your Own Adventure” series. I usually ended up going back to the beginning several times, trying out all the different options. But I don’t think I will be revisiting those at this time. ūüėČ

 

What are some of your childhood favorites?

 

Linking up with Kelly from This Ain’t the Lyceum for Seven Quick Takes Friday.

 

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Moments {Vol. 7}

swinging at the park

Always enjoy swinging together. “Stisters” – as Evey likes to say.

milkshakes at the park

Picnic in the park per Evey’s request, complete with milkshakes.¬†

strolling at the park

Not too thrilled that she’s missing out on the milkshake.

resting

Sleeping off all that awful illness and allergies that just won’t quit.

St. Francis hug

Hugging her friend, St. Francis, when she spotted him at the nursery.

standing at the bookcaseShe’s pulling up on EVERYTHING¬†{and unloading EVERYTHING}.

mixing up waffles

My little helper in the kitchen mixing up Sunday morning waffles.

cousins meeting Jed

Cousins meeting Gram and Pumpkin’s newest addition – Jed, the puppy. {He almost disappears in this pic!}

hanging with Jed

Not sure who wins the cute contest here¬†{but the grumpy face may disqualify you, Lucie}. ūüėČ

bone for Jed

Evey picked out a little, rubber bone for Jed at the store and was excited to bring it to him at the puppy shower.

Jed's puppy shower cake

Puppy shower kibble cake made by my uber-talented SIL, Nancy.

exercise attempts

Trying SO HARD to get back into an exercise routine {but mostly failing miserably}. Although, these cute leggings from Nell at Whole Parenting Goods help me find some joy in the endeavor.

Easter crafting

Easter crafting it up. {Never finished our project, though. Story of life right now….}

Easter bunny

This is what it means to have an older sister. She sure is a cute bunny, though.

visiting great grandma

Visiting Great-Grandma’s grave on the 2nd anniversary of her death, which happened to fall on Good Friday this year.

flowers for great grandma

Helping Grandma put flowers at the gravestone.

sponge painting

Artful Tot at the Crocker this week. We thoroughly enjoyed stamping with the finger paint. {But preferred not to get our fingers messy.}

glue blobs

The glue was also a hit. She just sat there squeezing it for 15 minutes straight, into a little pile on her paper. She was fascinated.

le chat noir

Skipped {literally} through the Toulouse-Latrec exhibit at the Crocker, where our favorite {of course} was the black cat {although we misnamed it the “white cat”}. Perhaps for what it lacked?

old soul tea break

Intense rain storm called for a warming treat at a local coffee shop where they know how to do latte art right. Evey and I read while Lucie napped in her carseat. A huge thunderstorm blew in while we were enjoying our treat and we watched it hail for a few minutes, and heard the thunder which drew rather close. It was special, peaceful, wonderful moment I shared with my lovely Evelyn. <3

library explorations

Waiting for Daddy to finish work, we killed time in the library and let Lucie burn off some steam after being cooped up the stroller and carseat most of the day. She was most interested in munching on the back of chairs. {And I wonder why we’ve been sick most the winter…..}

Obedience as an Act of Love

sharing

We are entering into the years where we begin expecting obedience from our toddler. Obviously, it is not that easy — even if she understands what I’m asking her to do, she doesn’t jump to it right away. It is a process that is ongoing and difficult and growing {for both of us}.

Even for the most docile of children, obedience is not automatic. Even for the children that like to please their parents, it is not a given. These are helpful, but I’m finding that what is even more important is what¬†I GIVE.

 

I recently started the Popcaks’ book,¬†Parenting With Grace. Within the first few pages, I stumbled across something that really struck a chord with me: inspiring obedience through an example of loving service. The goal isn’t to instill obedience out of fear ‚Ästof what might happen if they don’t obey, but rather instill obedience¬†out of love¬†‚Ästand what might happen if they DO.

I’ve always loved St. John Paul the Great’s¬†Theology of the Body. One of the things he emphasizes over and over in it is the fact that¬†the body is made to communicate the person and that¬†the body speaks the language of self-donation or¬†gift. Our bodies make us capable of giving of ourselves. They make us able to serve others.¬†Through our bodies we are capable of committing acts of love.

As parents {and in any other capacity where we expect obedience from others}, we must first give example through loving service. We must give of ourselves in order to inspire others to do so in return.

This teaches an obedience based on friendship rather than fear.  We want to teach our children an obedience that anticipates and fulfills the needs of another, so that, in turn, they may learn to do this for others themselves.

Seen in this light, obedience is really another form of intimacy where one person attentively seeks out the needs of the other and lovingly fulfills them, often without being asked, certainly without being asked twice. (Popcak, p.25)

We want to inspire our children to be obedient through an example of loving service. If we are generous and loving with our children, in turn, they will want (hopefully!) to be generous and loving with us.

 

Christ gave us this example on the Cross. He gave a complete and total gift of Himself when He died on Good Friday. Christ sought to inspire obedience in us through His loving example.  We love Christ because He loved us first. Through His generous gift of self, we are inspired to do the same for Him.

 

Through acts of love, may we obey Christ and inspire our children to return the love in obedience to us.

bislinkup

 

Linking up with Blessed is She‘s #bissisterhood on the topic of “obedience”.

Ten Fun Toys for Entertaining Toddlers on a Plane

{I am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.}

flying with E

We’re headed to New York City next month for a few days which will require a¬†long cross-country flight with our girls. We’ve done a flight that long with Evey before when she was about 7 months, and she did fairly well. {Probably better than we did, actually. ;)} But we’ve got two this time — both at very active ages — so I’m filling up my bag o’ tricks in the hopes that things will go smoothly with a steady stream of entertainment for the flight.

L & friends

Here are a few things I’ll be adding to our travel bag:

Madeline Magnet Characters –¬†I used to love these and felt boards when I was little. The possibilities for storytelling and imagination are endless. {I also have a small copy of Madeline I can tuck into my bag as well so we can read the story along with acting it out on the board.} And don’t miss this company’s fridge magnets of different varieties — they have ABCs, Numbers,¬†Fruits¬†and Vegetables, Farm animals, Babar, Andy Warhol, Eric Carle, and many others. We have the ABCs and we LOVE them!

Flash Cards РMudpuppy makes a great variety of themed flash cards all attached with a ring to keep them together. I really like their Counting Fruits and Veggies and Animal ABCs.

Animal ABCs Mark Place Mats – This silicone place mat comes with wipeable markers so we can color the picture again and again. Because we like that sort of thing. ūüėČ

Tegu Magnetic Blocks – These little blocks come in their own sealable pouch so they can be contained when not in use. And major plus on their magnetism! This will, hopefully, keep them from tumbling off whatever surface we are working on whenever their is turbulence.

Our Lady of Fatima Shining Light Doll – The girls both love to play with our Shining Light dolls which are a perfect size for slipping into backpacks for on-the-go. It’s a great way to introduce them to our heavenly friends.

Classic Wooden Vehicle Lacing Beads – Lacing beads are a favorite pastime for little fingers around here. These ones and others by this company are great because the shapes can be played with separately too.

Toy Camera – Evelyn likes to “take pictures” on our travels too. This fun, wooden camera is perfect for doing just that.

Story Box Circus – The box this comes in doubles as a stage for the circus characters. Another great win for imaginative play on-the-go!

Winnie the Pooh character toys – I know these are listed as bath toys but ours have never seen water. They are tons of fun for entertaining and chewing on for teethers.

Travel Magna-doodle – If you take nothing else, this is a must. Evelyn has had hers for about a year now and it has saved us numerous times on long car trips, during mama’s shower time, and when she’s just in a plain, bad mood.

Any other recommendations for good travel toys to bring for little ones?

holding giraffe

This post contains¬†affiliate links. Please click through to help support our blog! ¬†Thank you! ūüôā

Lucie at 8 months ~ Evelyn at 2 years, 4 months

smiles

We’ve had a wonderfully, adventurous month with Lucie.

in a basket

She’s in that stage of exploring EVERYTHING. Nothing is safe!

rollin' rollin'

I think I missed a 7 month update, but she’s been crawling for about a month now.¬†Faster every day. She started moving across the floor with a quick roll-over trick, rivaling that of her Uncle Ethan who did the same, moved to a modified army crawl, then up onto the hands and knees over the course of several weeks. She definitely wants to keep up with her older sister.

pulling up

Oh, and did I mention she’s pulling up on things? That didn’t take long.

Her favorite place to get¬†up is on the edge of Evelyn’s bed. It’s the perfect height for her to stand.

gleeLucie joins a family of music-lovers. One of her favorite activities is bobbing her head along to the tune. Up and down, side-to-side…against a wall. Yeah, we’re trying to stop that one.

doorstop music

She’s a music-maker herself, having found the delightful instrument, otherwise known as the doorstop. Evelyn likes to participate in this too. I’m not sure whether I prefer this or loud banging on the same note of the xylophone repeatedly. Too soon for piano lessons?

Lucie is a bit of a thumb-chewer. Although, not to comfort herself to sleep, much to my chagrin. She also likes to pinch those cheerios and get them into our mouth. Peas too. She’s looking to be a lefty like her daddy.

toy in the mouth

We joke that she’s our puppy because she likes to lick toes and legs, chew on furniture and the carpet, grab with both her hands and legs when she’s on her back, carry around toys in her mouth, and likes a good tummy rub. That’s good because I don’t have the stamina to deal with a pet right now too. ūüėČ

She’s inherited the tall genes in the family. Already in 12 months clothes and moving swiftly to the next. I’m never sure what size to get her for the following season!

yummy yogurt

We finally got a hang of eating solids. She was having difficulty swallowing — kept pushing food back out with her tongue. But the night she did, it was like a lightbulb moment, and she wanted to eat ALL OF THE YOGURT in the house. It has made a small change¬†for the good in her sleeping abilities. She’s been easier to get down at night. Although, she is still waking up multiple times throughout the night, but now we’ve got more teeth coming in so that is likely the culprit.


 

Evelyn

Evelyn is both very serious and a complete jokester. She hangs onto bad things that have happened to her and revisits them frequently. We try to reassure her that she’s okay and the event is done, but she still wants to talk about it. She’s convinced that any noise outside is “people on the roof” but she’s quick to be reassured that it is just a car door slamming or someone driving by with loud music. It’s slightly¬†funny.

On the other hand, she loves to play tricks on us when we least expect it!¬†And laughs and laughs! She likes to pretend she’s going to hand you something and as soon as you go to grab it, she pulls it away. And if anyone is changing or lacking a piece of clothing, that bare skin deserves a tickling which she takes care of promptly with a little devilish¬†squeal of glee.

love to laugh!She’s the sweetest girl. She’s constantly telling us that she loves us, which just about melts my mama heart. She wraps her little arms around my neck and gives me squeezes, softly saying it into my ear.

Screen Shot 2015-03-02 at 7.58.23 AM

Ever by her side: her good friend, Winnie the Pooh.

reading with Meg

She loves to “read” and be read to. She’ll sit for an hour or more, pouring through books.

E painting She’s also really into coloring pictures and painting. We keep her activity table covered with a piece of butcher paper that she can draw on at any time.

creating

I love to see what combo of colors and shapes she comes up with. She’s beginning to pretend that she’s writing ABCs with little squiggles. Too cute! I love to see her creativity.

forts

She’s a big fan of forts. Making them with Daddy is the best! She tries to make them with Lucie by throwing a blanket over their heads, which Lucie puts up with for about 3.4 seconds and then is off again.

choo choo rides

Her obsession with trains is still going strong. Her favorite mornings are ones where we take Daddy to the choo-choo. {Never mind that we have to be up by 5:45 to do so!} Real, live ones are the best! When we pick him up in the evening, she’ll talk about how the train has to put on his jammies, brush his teeth, and get into bed. Anthropomorphism in trains may have come watching a few too many episodes of Chuggington. ūüėČ

with daddy

One of her favorite moments of the day is when Daddy comes home and she gets to sit on his tummy and “talk.” She tells him all about her day. It’s fun to see what she considers highlights of her day. It usually involves trains and treats, and the fact that “Jesus loves me”. <3

gardening

She loves to help out at the grocery, loading the cart with me and handing the checker as many items as she can out of it. She also loves to “garden”. She digs and digs, planting “corn” {sometimes with “sparkles”} while I’m outside working. She’s become rather angry with me f0r pulling out weeds at times, as she believes it is her “corn.”

jump!

She really loves to jump. That includes off of dangerous, unstable surfaces — upturned baskets, her rocking horse, piles of pillows. Her bed is probably the safest spot for her, but not so for her sister who is usually sitting or standing right at the bottom. #sisterproblems

twirling

Ballet classes are still a highlight of the week for her. She’s got most of the basic moves down pat so we might be moving onto more structured lessons soon. It’s been wonderful to see her blossom into more of a leader in the class over the past month or so. We practice all the dances frequently at home. ūüôā


 

photo 5 (7)

I love watching these two grow together. They love each other dearly.

swinging sisters

We caught Lucie feeding Evey Cheerios at breakfast this morning, and it was just about the sweetest thing to witness.

hugs

They giggle and wrestle together all the time.

drumming together

Evelyn seems to read her sister’s cries better than I can, and Lucie cheers Evey when she’s having a rough time. I hope they stay best friends for life.

Monterey Bay : Homeschool-Style

school of fish

Our trip to the Monterey Bay Aquarium is turning into an annual tradition. My mother, the savvy homeschooler of 25 years and counting, knows the ins-and-outs of just about every field trip offered in California and set us up for a visit again this year. The Aquarium offers a series of homeschool days where admission is free {a HUGE steal when tickets are normally in the $30-$40 range}, but you have to reserve tickets months in advance. We settled on the beginning of January back, I think, in September, hoping for the best, that nothing pressing would pop up and derail our trip. My girls barely made it after fighting a horrible cold for the two weeks prior.

We extended our trip an extra day this year, arriving two days before so we could settle in and explore more things. It just makes sense when you’re driving 3 hours+ to make the most of it.

wading Raphy

We stayed in the quaint town of Carmel {my favorite place on earth}. We were sad to find our favorite breakfast place still on holiday so we settled on Friar Tucks for a quick bite to eat. Lucie had her first experience with a Bumbo seat. I believe these things are supposed to be secure in holding children inside but she kept attempting to test the limits.

L in bumbo

We attended Mass at the Carmel Mission from the very last pew in the church. Evelyn switched between relatives’ laps every 5.6 seconds and asked to see the fountains outside which she could easily spot from any seat. Lucie didn’t try too hard to sing with the choir which was fortunate as the acoustics were quite wonderful. We toured the grounds after Mass, making sure to stop at each fountain for a viewing.

at the fountain

fountains!

Carmel facade

from the fountain

cross at Carmel

details at Carmel

courtyard at Carmel

succulents

Bl Junipero Serra

{Sidenote: Did you hear this guy ^^ is going to be a saint come September?? So exciting!!}

The afternoon was spent resting and the evening with college friends of mine who live in Pacific Grove. I, sadly, didn’t capture any photos while we were there but the girls had a blast playing with their girls and the children of another family that was over. The adults were definitely outnumbered. ūüôā

On Aquarium day, we headed to Monterey early to meet Aunt Teresa and the girls’ cousins at Dennis the Menace Park. If you are ever in town with children, this place is a must. I still have very fond memories of exploring it as a child. {Although, they closed down one of the main attractions — an old locomotive for exploring — due to safety issues. Sometimes these mandated safety regulations are just over the top. Let kids be kids.}

swinging at Dennis the Menace

flying high

lulu

green slides

sand play

more sand play

over the arch

sliding with Uncle Raphy

Teresa and Rosie sliding

kisses at the bottom

racing to the top

cousin love

Owen climbs

train at Dennis the Menace

After grabbing a quick bite for lunch, we showed up on time for our 12:30 entrance to the Aquarium. We got there just in time for feeding time with the divers. They were hand feeding squid to some of the larger fish in the tank. {Made me squirm — I don’t like slimy cephalopods.} The kelp forest was captivating.

underwater

feeding time

Aaaand I definitely got photo-bombed by a shark.

shark photo bomb

Highlights of the day included a wetlands viewing, petting mantarays, standing inside of the ocean waves, a visit to the ocean depths, and watching the sea otters receive their dinner.

sea anemones

sanddollar forest

starfish

 

wetlands viewing

underwater

L and mama at the bay

We finished off the day indulging in chocolate treats at Ghirardelli just down the road.

ice cream!

so big

Our day of departure dawned sunny and bright. We planned on a quick trip to the beach which turned into several hours. But how could you not with a day so gorgeous and DOLPHINS entertaining us with the jumps and flips?? Plus, Lucie had to get in some exercise. ūüėČ

at Carmel beach

digging in the sand

push ups!

wading Raphy

Look carefully at the waves in the next three shots. You can spot dolphins “surfing” the waves! {Sorry for the half-naked man in these shots — he and the surfer were out there with their go-pros trying to catch a few great pics. ;)}

dolphins!

dolphins!

dolphins!

dolphins!

A few more souvenirs in the bag {including some expensive diapers because mama can’t count well when packing} and we were off to Mission San Juan Bautista so Uncle Raphy could get in a viewing for a school paper he is supposed to write. We captured the gorgeous sunset there.

San Juan Bautista sunset

Mission San Juan Bautista at dusk

gang at San Juan Bautista

An alternative route up I-5 was necessary so we could stop at Pea Soup Andersens for supper. {If you’re not a fan of split pea soup, this place will make you change your mind.}

pea soup

Somehow, we made it home before ten and quickly, sleepily all crawled into bed. And I wish I could say slept soundly through the night, but certain ones of us haven’t mastered that skill yet. ūüėČ

Lucie at 6 Months

going for a walk

This past month Lucie has been both the biggest delight and the meanest ogre. Smiles for day, unless one of those horrible teeth is attempting to pop through. Then, it would be screams for days…and nights.

L and mama

She’s slightly mobile having figured out her uncle, Ethan’s, trick of rolling across the floor to get to things. She’s quite the pro and can go across the living room in about 5 seconds flat! {Watch out for those computer cords!} She’s currently rolled herself over to the bookcase and is attempting to teeth on the side of it since tugging the large coffee table books off the shelf wasn’t working out too well for her.

L roll

She gets up on her hands and knees quite well but nearly always ends up on her face or scooted backwards under some piece of furniture.

under the bed

She’s nearly mastered the side sit from a crawl before the full upright sit. Maybe they’ll come together simultaneously. She is sitting pretty well with the Boppy.

Boppy sit

Her feature move is the tippy-toe plank which rivals those of the greatest gym rats.

L planks

She knows who “mamamama” and “dadadada” are and uses those words to turn on the charm at 3 o’clock in the morning when she is ready to party.

L and dada

Her favorite time is bath time where she would like me to leave her all day, despite the fact her skin may dry out and shrivel up like a prune. We’ve started to, cautiously, place the two girls in the tub together which results in double the splashes and giggles. Lucie doesn’t mind having her face completely soaked.

bathtime with E and L

She’s sprouted 4 teeth — two lower, two upper. They made her inconsolable each day/night they came through, but the raging fire of a temper died down with their emergence.

monster baby

She goes from zero to 60 at the drop of a hat, but will just as swiftly calm down. But watch out(!!) when that temper flares.

so mad

We’ve tried a few solids — bananas {not a fan}, avocado {yum!}, applesauce {mama’s gotta warm it up!} — but she’s still having trouble swallowing without choking on it.

skeptical of solids

spoon tricks

Her favorite toy is the wooden box with spiral beads. She’ll sit for a good half hour playing with it. Everything else tends to get pushed so far away that she ends up frustrated.

L and toysBut, then, there is always “the baby in the mirror.”

baby in the mirror

The only other thing that really captures her attention is a soccer ball. She likes to sit in Boppy while I toss a small, soft one into her lap. She’s not too bad at catching and tossing herself. The interest is no surprise as she has a daddy and uncles who are thoroughly obsessed. And she was born in the midst of the World Cup. It was all we watched the first ten days of her life.

L soccer game

The girls are becoming fast friends and it is so fun to watch them interact. I’m so happy they have each other.

DSC_0391

Our late visit to the doctor yesterday revealed a healthy 17 lbs, 12 oz girl of 27.5 inches.

Stanford baby

We’re almost at the 7 month mark so I better hit publish quick!

out for a walk

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