Sunday, July 27, 2008

Packing/San Diego/Grasshoppers

This is a picture of the girls sneaking into my suitcase as stow-aways. I'm packing to go to AVID Summer Institute in San Diego, and they decided they'd hitch a ride. Now, as I write this, they're loading each other into the rolling suitcases and giving each other rides down the hallway, saying, "Man, I packed a lot of stuff!"

AVID Summer Institute is so much fun. There are ten of us going down this year, all women from my school. We have class during the morning, lunch on our own, site team stuff in the afternoon, and then we're free during the evening. We go to all of the fun San Diego spots: Old Town, the Gaslamp, Pacific Beach, Fashion Valley, etc. Good times!

And now for the grasshopper story....

Jeff rescued a million dying plants from Lowes. He basically got almost $1,000.00 worth of greenery (trees, plants, etc.) for $15.00. The man has a green thumb! He composted a few plants that were too dead to save, and the rest were resurrected. We have plum trees, boysenberry bushes, tropical, flowering plants, bougainvillea, etc. ANYWAY, the girls and I were helping Jeff pull weeds on one of our hills when we found a GIANT grasshopper. The gals immediately went to get their bug house, and put the grasshopper in it. They kept him there all day while our family worked in the yard.

Later that evening, as we were cleaning up, I told the girls that I felt sorry for Mr. Grasshopper, and they should let him go. They agreed, and went out to the back yard to do so. Suddenly, Jeff and I heard squealing and belly laughs from our back yard that lasted quite a while. When the girls came in, they were laughing so hard they could barely tell us what happened. Apparently, they opened the bug house to let Mr. Grasshopper out, and he hopped out right onto Olivia's head. Just imagining little Livvy pug with a giant grasshopper on her head had our whole family cracking up again. My new nickname for Olivia is "Young Grasshopper."


Thursday, July 24, 2008

Beetles Have Feelings Too

The Eagle

Mrs. Hawk
The Bob Cat Hissed at Us!

The kids were so proud to keep the shirts secret!

We went camping in Arrowhead with our friends The Byuns and the Woods. What a fun trip! I've said it before, but one of my favorite things about Murrieta is that we can be at the beach in an hour, the mountains in a hour, Disneyland in an hour, the desert in an hour...the list goes on.

On our camping trip we were able to visit a wildlife refuge. This organization takes in animals who have been "adopted" by people (yes, people think they can adopt baby bears!) injured, found, etc. and they rehabilitate them. We saw owls, coyotes, bears, eagles, hawks, bobcats, mule deer...all kinds of animals native to the San Bernardino mountains. They were doing an educational tour through a UCLA-run summer camp, and we got in with the tour. It was very interesting. I plan to send Emma there for an internship when she gets a bit older. Hee hee hee.

Back to our camping trip: We road our bikes, told stories by the campfire, visited a lake with a waterslide, went out for pizza (yes...while we were camping...but Arrowhead Village is so CUTE!) and ate really, really well. (Don't we always?)

The highlight of the trip was the big "Beatles Have Feelings Too" reveal. The background: Years ago we camped with the same two families in Big Bear. The campground we were staying in was being bombarded with these giant, whiskery, aggressive beetles. They would dive-bomb our food, our hair, our drinks, and our kids. Finally, we'd had enough, and when a beetle landed nearby, one of our friends speared it with a wire hanger used for roasting marshmallows. He then held the flailing beetle over the fire as it crackled and squirmed. Our other friend, Chistine, who is more earth friendly on a bad day than me on my best day, was irrate! "Beetles have feelings too!" she cried, and stormed off.

Our goal ever since is to make "Beetles Have Feelings Too" shirts to surprise Christine on our next camping adventure. We unveiled the shirts at our pizza outing; even Christine's 9 month old daughter Kathleen got a shirt. All of the kids AND the adults proudly uncovered our shirts when Christine was inside the restaurant. We were all cracking up about our silly inside joke when she came out, but we tried to keep straight faced. It took her just a minute to notice, and then like a good sport she went inside and put her shirt on too. Then we all went for ice cream wearing our crazy shirts like we were in some strange Beetle Lover's Club or something. :)

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Husband Survey

Got these questions from someone's bulletin on MySpace. Of course, I had to blog them because my answers are so dang long. :)

1. How did you meet your husband and how old were you?
I was 16 and he was 17. His mom moved to Bishop and he was new at my school. He says he saw me first semester and I didn't notice him. I don't remember. Second semester our classes changed and I sat across from and one desk behind him in history. I had a giant crush on him immediately.
2. Was it love at first sight? Apparently not, since I didn't notice him for an entire semester. It was, however, at major crush status by second semester.

Everyone knows the rest of the story. He moved away, and we lost touch for almost four years. He "found" me by calling my house in Bishop and getting my # from my sister- and the best part was that I had just moved from the Central Coast to Southern California and was living about 3 miles from his house.
3.How did you know you were supposed to marry him?I just KNEW. I called Danielle after our first date (after he "found" me) and said "I'm going to marry this boy!"
4. What was the first date like?In high school, it was me trying to teach him to drive in my old Subaru, eating quesadillas with him at his house at lunch (open campus) and getting in trouble for being out past curfew to hang out with him.

Our first REAL date was after he'd "found" me. He came to my cousin's house (where I was staying until I found a place with my roomate) and I was SO nervous. My cousin was trying to get me to wear her shoes instead of my Doc Martins. I just remember being horrified because the shoes she wanted me to wear had BOWS on them. I wanted to wear my tights and my skirt and my big ugly boots. He picked me up and we went to dinner and then to play pool. He kept remembering things from high school (my favorite song, stuff I used to say) and I was amazed that we had both kept each other in our thoughts after so many years. Of course I had yet to tell him that I had searched for him and written poems about him...too stalkerish. :) hee hee
5. Where did your first kiss take place? In high school on the couch in my living room.
6. Dating... local or long distance? Local, but years of long distance romanticizing. :)
7. Do you know everything there is to know about your husband? Yikes- I think so. His patience still surprises me (like when I recently crushed my truck's bumper by backing into our trailer...I swear, nothing rattles him.) 8. Were your parents supportive of you when you started dating?In high school, NO. He was sort of a bad kid back then....They only met him once when he bussed our table at Firehouse Grill
Later on, they really liked him. I think they were relieved that I found someone who was so patient and kind and who would put up with my shenanigans.
9. OK...erasing this question. Too personal! :)

10.How long was it till you got engaged after you started dating?
Let's see...
  • We met in January of 1989 (if you count my version of the story- second semester during our junior year of high school.)

  • We kissed on the couch (hee hee) in April.

  • He moved away in June (1989) and we didn't see each other or talk again until July 14th, 1993 (15 years ago.)

  • We got engaged in June of 1994. :) As romantic as our "lost soul mate" story is, our engagement story was basically me telling him he needed to set a date and buy a ring or that was it. I don't know why I was in such a hurry, but I wanted a commitment from that boy! (Maybe because my sister was going to get married and I was older and thought I would do all of that first...)
11. Long or short engagement? Short. We were engaged in June of 1994 and married on January 14th, 1995.
12. Did you write your own vows? No.
13. What was one of the things that attracted you to your husband? In high school it was probably that rebellious side to him. He was shy with a bad streak. As a 16 year old girl, that fascinated me.
14. Do you believe he is your soulmate? Yes!
15. Are you happy that you married him? Duh...yes!

1.Place your husband was born and date? This seems a little too "steal your credit" sort of a question.
2.Favorite movie? He rarely watches movies. He falls asleep. He likes The Outsiders, Stand By Me, and The Sandlot.
3.Occupation? Sales/Garden and Awesome Daddy
4. What is one of his favorite things to do on the weekends? Four Wheel Drive or Body Board.
5. What was his first thought of you when you first met? I just asked him and he is blundering at answering this question. :) He said, "All I know is that I saw you, I liked you, and now we're married."
I told him he failed that question. Now he's making stuff up about his "life flashing before his eyes" and moonlit walks on the beach.

Geez. :)
6.Does he snore at night while sleeping? Definitely and randomly, yes.
7. What about farting in his sleep? Ewwww....
8. If you could go one place with him anywhere in the world where would that be? I would love to tour the United States with him and camp along the way.
9.Once again, I deleted this ? due to inappropriate content for the eyes of nieces and former students.
10. Is he the best thing that ever happend to you? I feel like God giving me this man and my beautiful daughers (AND a bonus son) is the best and most wonderful gift.

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Disneyland Rocks (Title By Grace)

By Ian, Emma, and Grace
Us on Space Mountain- Check Out Ian's Hair and Emma and Grace's Serious Faces

The Hippo at the Jungle Cruise

Pluto's Bed

Ariel Was Way Up High!

Dude...Feed Us!

Yum...We Ate at the Rainforest Cafe

Mickey's Garden

Mickey's House

Speed Racer

The Parade...Getting sorta tired...

Trying on Silly Stuff

Where's Grace?

The Gas in ToonTown is Better than Regular Gas and Probably Less $$$$

Indiana Jones Talked to Our Mama

Grace: First when we got to Disneyland...

Ian: When we parked in Disneyland's parking, right next to us there was people, and I said that the tram was FUN, and the strange boy next to us was trying to make fun of me, like, "Fun? Yes! Fun! Very fun!" and we thought it was a little weird. The rest of the day, we were like, "FUN! FUN!" in weird voices.

Grace: I'm not finished! First when we got to Disneyland we went on Space Mountain and it was really fun and Splash Mountain was my favorite. Since Matt was in the front, he got soaked! I liked when we went to where Micky Mouse lives because we got to go in Minnie and Mickey's house. Mickey's house was big. We got to go in his garden and we relaxed on his dog bed. It was fun. At Minnie's house, the refrigerator opened and you could see the dishwasher where you could see the dishes getting washed and an oven where you could see a cake getting baked. In Mickey's house there was a washing machine and we got to see the clothes getting washed. EMMA, YOUR TURN!

Emma: We went on Space Mountain twice, Splash Mountain twice, Matterhorn twice, and Thunder Mountain once. We watched the parade. We saw Cinderella and Winnie the Pooh and Tigger. We saw the Queen of Hearts from Alice in Wonderland and we saw two cards that had hearts on them. We saw two guys with stilts. We saw Ariel and we saw the crab from Ariel. We went on a couple of trains. We went on Indiana Jones, Roger Rabbit, and Pirates of the Caribbean. We went on Star Tours and Buzz Lightyear. We went on the Haunted House and it was very, very, very fun!

Ian: My favorite ride was Space Mountain. It was our last day with Matt. We had FUN.

Grace: We saw the parade and when we saw Ariel, Ariel was way up on a thing. We saw Sleeping Beauty and Cinderella and Belle.

Emma: I had a lot of fun, but I got ready to go home because I was a little bit tired but I wanted to stay because I wanted to go on more rides but I would get too tired. I wanted to stay so bad that I can spend the night there.

We were the tiredest kids in the world after being at Disneyland for 14 hours and riding EVERYTHING!