Friday, August 22, 2008

I'm Ariel

Chardell had a fun link at her blog for a quiz to determine which Disney Princess I am. Feel free to click here to take the quiz.

You Are Ariel!
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Headstrong and fiesty. You have a mind of your own that's full of romantic dreams about the world around you. Exploring exotic places is your ultimate dream, and although you can be a little naive you'll realize that there is something to be gained from your family's wisdom.

Which Disney Princess Are You?

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Thinking about a change

I am thinking about switching to another blog hosting site. I want one that lets me monitor if anyone is reading this other than my mother, who has to read because she loves me.

So, check out this other site, and let me know what you think.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Boy + Stick = Emergency Room

Does this really come as any surprise? I have to admit I'm not. Although M is a pretty cautious boy, when a boy starts playing with sticks, good things are not bound to happen.

This evening, we were all in the back yard playing. M has some kind of project going with sticks. I'm not exactly clear what, but I do know it's involved a small saw and his pocket knife. He was trying to snap a stick in half, when suddenly he shrieked and came running toward me with a hand covering his eye. I was moderately concerned because he sounded more upset than he usually is when hurt.

He gets to me, and I ask him to show me. I see nothing but blood covering the entire right side of his face. Hmmm, this isn't good. On the positive side, it's definitely not the eyeball itself. Thank goodness!

We go inside and I clean him up a bit. I realize that he's cut himself both above and below his eyeball. I suspect it was a near miss for that beautiful blue eye. He also was already developing a shiner. He's bleeding pretty badly, as face wounds are wont to do, and the cuts while small, are very, very deep.

I took him to the IHC Layton Kids' Care Clinic, my favorite place for all after hours accidents. They got us in right away. The nurse immediately set to numbing up the two cuts so it wouldn't hurt when they fixed him up.

After waiting 15 minutes for the numbing solution to kick him, they cleaned it up really well, getting some dirt out of the cuts. They then used a fancy super glue to glue the cuts shut. I was told this glue has a special polymer in it to keep it pliable, even after it dries.

I need to keep it dry for about 5 days, and then he should be good as new. Poor kid.


Well, I knew they were useful, but....

Yesterday, S came up to me and told me that when she grew up and got boobs, she'd be able to fly with them. I know breasts could do all kinds of great things, and imbued their owner with great power (particularly over men), but I had no idea they could make someone fly. Interesting.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Embracing my inner hippie

I bought some reusable bags a couple months ago from Costco. I loved the idea of not using plastic bags. However, my Costco bags were HUGE! I can fit an entire shopping trip in one or two. That is just not good when you've got fragile stuff. Not to mention it gets very heavy and awkward.

I have to admit I got pretty lazy, and reverted back to my plastic grocery bag hoarding ways. Two days ago, however, a friend gave me THIS link. It gives some really difficult facts about plastic grocery bags. For example, they can take up to 1000 years to degrade. It also had some really heart wrenching photos of animals entrapped in the bags, and landfills full of bags. It had a pretty strong effect on me.

So, lookie at the fruits of my latest grocery shopping trip!

Please, please look at the link I referenced above, and either buy or make some reusable bags. It really is disturbing how much damage the plastic bags are doing to the environment.


My garden has begun to bear fruit (veggies)!!!!! I am so excited!

Here's the first of what we pulled out of the garden.

We've since picked quite a few more cucumbers, a lot more crookneck squash, and several tomatoes. We will soon have tomatoes and jalepenos coming out of our ears. We also have several eggplants coming along, and two watermelon that grow exponentially each day. Unfortunately, we lost our pumpkins and zucchinis to bugs. Once they were eaten, I gave up on an organic garden and sprayed with insecticide. I know there's earth friendly insecticides out there, but they have to be reapplied often, and I don't even remember to water very often.

This is the craziest cucumber I've ever seen in real life, and it came out of *MY* garden.

Surprise Date

My mom called me a couple days ago, wanting to come up and buy $1 box cookies from the Lofthouse Outlet. Always happy to see her and get cookies, I agreed.

When we got home from the cookies, J announced that we were leaving, and my mom was babysitting so we could go on a date. A real live date! Without kids! Doing non-kid related things! Apparently, he had talked to her several days ago and got the whole thing planned out. He wanted to surprise me. (everybody together: "Awwwwwwww")

So we took off to iFly. iFly is basically an indoor skydiving place. All the fun of skydiving, none of the training or risk. Wheee!!! This is a video of one of their employees playing in the wind tunnel. I was too cheap/vain to pay $15 for a dvd. We are considering doing this again as a family activity, and I'll definitely buy a dvd then.

It was an absolute blast. I now want to do it frequently. I did not look as impressive as the guy in the video, but I sure do want to learn how to do that.

After iFly, we went to dinner at GoodWood BBQ, and had a nice dinner.

We came home to find the kids fed, dishes done, and everyone playing downstairs. It was a really fun evening.

Friday, August 15, 2008


This morning, S came running into my room sobbing (and waking Z up in his room in the process). I asked her what was wrong. She replied, "I dreamed that we were at the store and somebody taked me. It was scary."

I have to admit I was a little surprised. She's had the occasional random dream about monsters, which seems normal, but I didn't realize that she really understood dreams, or kidnapping.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Last day of the cruise

Our cabin was equipped with two fold down beds that were about 5' off the ground, and then a queen sized beds against the one wall. We put Z on the one bunk, but even with a roll guard, I was terrified he would roll off the bed. So each night, we would take the blankets off the bunk, and make a little bed for him on the floor.

The last morning, we wake up. J looks over the edge of the bed to check on Z. Says, "Where is Z?" I respond with a, "WHAT?! What do you mean, 'Where is Z'?" I look in his bed (because it would be SO easy to not notice a kid in his bed -not-), and sure enough, he's gone. Our cabin is tiny. He is nowhere to be seen. I am a light enough sleeper that I know I would wake up if the door opened. I look under the bed, and sure enough, there is he. He has crawled to the opposite end of the room, and is curled up in a little ball, wedged in the corner. I attempted to get a picture.

Luckily for me, the flash woke him up, and he crawled out. I seriously have no idea how we we would've gotten him out of there if he hadn't crawled out on his own steam.

Overall, we had a wonderful time on the cruise. Although the children's program was great, and I loved the caregivers, the cruise was not very child friendly. There were two swimming pools, both on the same deck. One of the pools was closed and empty the majority of the time we were there, leaving a scary, big hole with some netting tossed over it. The pool deck was incredibly crowded, which was bad enough. But the majority of the people there were falling over drunk. It was not someplace I wanted my kids to be. So even though my kids were really excited to swim, they didn't get to swim on the vacation, which was a little disappointing to them. Apparently this particular cruise is a known "party cruise" or "booze cruise". Alcohol was strongly pushed, even at 8am. I didn't think I was particularly uncomfortable being around alcohol. I still think I'm fine being around alcohol, I just don't like being around drunks. Next time, I think we'll choose a cruise that lasts a little longer, and has a more sedate reputation. If I had been in a different stage in life, this cruise would've been a ball. As it was, I did have a wonderful time.

I know this didn't happen on the final day of the cruise, but I am going to talk about it here anyway. The night before, we were sitting in the Windjammer Cafe', waiting for the buffet to open so the kids could eat dinner before going off to the Pirate Night at the kid adventure area. we were looking out the window, and saw this:

We were really excited at first, because it looked like three huge great white sharks. As we watched though, they didn't seem to move like sharks. After doing some research when we got home, we have come to the conclusion that they were giant ocean sunfish, or "Mola Mola" fish.

The kids did not want to leave the boat, and seem anxious to go on another cruise. We really did have a wonderful time.

Day 3 continued

While there were an amazing assortment of fisher price toys to be played with by the babies on board, Z preferred a faster toy:

S singing and showing off the beautiful face painting she received in the kid adventure section.

M showing signs of too much fun and too little sleep:

He recovered nicely in time for Pirate Night, along with the treasure hunt:

Day 3 of the cruise- rock climbing

Day 3 of the cruise was spent drifting at sea. M and S opted to spend the majority of the day with the kids' program again. J, K and I decided to try rock climbing at the top of the boat.

J entered a speed climbing contest. While not the fastest, he was about 5th place out of a good 15 guys, and he was 9 seconds faster than the quickest of a dozen girls.

Day 2 of the Cruise

When we woke up Saturday morning, we were in Ensenada, Mexico.

M and S chose to stay on the boat and play with the other kids in the kids' program. That was a pretty nice feature of the cruise. We could drop them off at 9am, and they were occupied til 5pm. Then we could drop them off again at 6pm, and they were occupied til 10pm. We could have opted to keep them there til 2am, but 1- ARE THEY INSANE?!!!!! and 2- it was $5 per hour, per child to do that. As long as the child was potty trained, they were good to go. We were given a pager for S. I gave that to my mom because she had opted to stay on board.

We had originally wanted to go to La Bufadora, but discovered that all tours were sold out. At $21 for adults and $14 for kids, we weren't too disappointed. We decided to just walk around Ensenada instead, and see the local sites. We discovered this sushi restaurant. We thought the name was hysterical, and J probably would've eaten there, but they were closed.
There were a ton of street vendors, who were all shocked when the blond gringo started negotiating with them in spanish. We ended up buying a couple of luchadora masks for M and S, a neat backpack for K, and a hammock for the family. We discovered if we wanted to go to La Bufadora, we could've booked a tour with any one of a dozen cab drivers who were happy to do it for $10 a person or less. We chose not to, and had a great time walking around with my dad, and my new BIL's sister and her husband.

Our Cruise Vacation

We arrived in Long Beach, California early Thursday afternoon. We were thrilled with our hotel room. We stayed at the Doubletree Inn, and got adjoining rooms with gorgeous views of the harbor. Here's the view out of our window:

We heard there was an aquarium very close to the hotel, as well as the beach. Both were only a couple blocks away. They were even filming a movie as we walked by (The Mentalist). We were told by the shuttle driver that they're constantly filming movies there, as well as scenes from CSI Miami. Sure enough, they were filming another movie the next day.

The aquarium was pretty small, but we had a good time. They had jellyfish, which are one of my favorite things to watch. They also had these really cool slugs called Iodinea. I loved them.
Here's the big kids pretending to be fish.

Next, we went to the beach. The kids thought it was incredible. I think we could've stayed at this hotel the whole week and let the kids play on the beach and they wouldn't have complained.
The next morning, we took a walk along the marina, and saw a lot of crabs, small fish, and even a couple of sting rays. The rays were very small, about the size of a salad plate, but we were still impressed.

Then, it was time to board. We met up with my family. My sister was getting married on the cruise, so my parents, both sisters, sister's best friend, my grandmother and uncle were all there, as well as my future BIL's family.

The kids were absolutely entranced with the boat and the water. M was really interested in the engineering side of the boat. We sat on the back deck of the boat and watched it pull away from shore.

We had a chance to eat lunch, and attend the wedding ceremony for my sister. It was a beautiful ceremony, and I posted a couple pictures from it on my photo blog.

I think the kids looked fantastic in their finery:

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

So Excited!

We are off!!

My sister is getting married on 08/08/08 (isn't that COOL?!) on a cruise ship. We get to board the ship a little early, and then watch her and Mike get married. Soon after, the ship takes off for Ensenada, Mexico. We will arrive back at LA in 8/11, which is me and J's 13th anniversary, and my parents' 35th anniversary.

This is our first cruise. I think it will be so much fun. We get into LA tomorrow, and will spend the night in a local hotel.

I am very excited about the outfits the kids will be wearing. Z is going to wear a tux to the wedding. I originally bought the tux for M to wear to Jill's wedding. That wedding never happened, and I was always a little sad it didn't get worn. How convenient that she waited until I had another little boy who was just the right size?!

The girls are going to be wearing complementary dresses. M will be wearing a nice suit.

I shall take a lot of pictures of them in their fancy duds, and of the wedding, and of all the fabulous times we shall have.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Some pictures off my cell phone

I decided to pull some of the pictures I've taken on my cell phone. Enjoy.

Z playing with a coaster at a restaurant.

Art by M.

S trying her hand at driving.

Ice Skating with the cub scouts in June.

At the 4th of July Parade.

Our gigantic crookneck squash.

A fun idea from Chardell

1. As a comment on my blog, leave one memory that you and I had together. It doesn't matter if you knew me a little or a lot, anything you remember!

2. Next, re-post these instructions on your blog and see how many people leave a memory about you. It's actually pretty funny to see the responses. If you leave a memory about me, I'll assume you're playing the game and I'll come to your blog and leave one about you.


I woke up this morning with no voice. I hate it when this happens. Unfortunately, it happens a few times a year. It kind of drives my kids crazy because they talk all day long, and they expect responses from me so they know I'm listening. So they suspect I am ignoring them now.

The one funny part is that when I whisper to them, they all whisper back. I've told them they can talk normally, but they seem unable to when I'm whispering at them.

It's been a quiet morning.