Friday, February 4, 2011

Christmas....a lifetime ago but really only last month!

Wow, it seems like Christmas was so long ago but really only a little over a month ago! I love Christmas, it is a magical time of year. I love feeling like the world is connected in a common love and jolly sense of giving. I especially love Christmas now that I have my own kids and can see them all aglow with Christmas glee and anticipation. This last Christmas of 2010 was great, the kids are at a really great age and I made a special effort to give more meaningful and heartfelt gifts this year. Yet.....this was also one of the most craziest Christmas seasons ever. It all started in September....that's right September! Kevin's youngest brother informed us he was going to bring up his girlfriend to visit and planned on proposing to her while here. We were excited to meet her for the first time and for the upcoming wedding and all the fun with planning. She said yes and so the planning began. Amazingly enough due to some crazy logistics the wedding was planned for December 29th. Since they would have little time for a honeymoon before they had to get back to Rexburg for their next semester at BYU-I that meant no reception up here. The wedding would take place in the L.A. temple and reception at her hometown of Valencia. So my bright idea was to have an engagement party for them before the wedding. The only time we could do it was Thanksgiving weekend. Meanwhile, Kevin's parents were in the beginnings of a full kitchen remodel and since the party would be at their house that put the pressure on full gear for them to get it done quick. To give you a running timeline here is how those few months played out.

End of September - Proposal and engagement pictures
October - Halloween and Primary Program (I'm in the presidency)
November - my 30th birthday, Heather's birthday, finish kitchen day before Thanksgiving, Thanksgiving, Friday prep for party, Engagement party
December - Conner's birthday party with friends on the 17th (he ends up throwing up after going to bed and thus begins the family all coming down with the stomach flu (except me) all right around his birthday, my mom's birthday, Christmas Eve (a slight break in throwing up) Christmas Day, Addison's birthday partyon the 27th, leave for L.A. on the 28th, wedding on the 29th and reception (Katie woke up that morning with croup and an ear infection thank you for the on-call doctor at the hotel for the antibiotics!) Disneyland and California Adventure the 30th and 31st, Legoland on the 1st then drive home on the 2nd. As we were driving home on the 2nd we were greeted with a full on snowstorm on the Grapevine, we were the only ones out of the rest of our family who was able to get over the Grapevine before they shut it down, everyone else had to stay another day. Whew!
And in between all that, I volunteer in Conner's class 1-2 times a week for an hour each, lead a music playgroup for kids Katie's age at church, Secretary for Primary, plus CEO of house and home. I'm not sure how we survived but we did and despite the craziness, the sickness and everything else it was all wonderful.
We had a great time with family, became even closer to great friends, made wonderful memories with our family at Disneyland and most of all welcomed wonderful Lauren into our crazy family! Welcome to the family. By the way did I mention that I made the wedding cake for the engagement party and also helped make all the food? Yeah, that's right, I'm Wonder Woman! Here is some picture highlights from this amazing yet crazy end of 2010!

Monday, October 25, 2010

Conner's Kindergarten Field Trip to Smith Family Farm

I had my first official experience as a parent chaperone on a field trip last Friday. All the kindergarten classes went to Smith Family Farms here in Brentwood for a fall experience. The kids got to go through Hay mazes, see farm animals, play amongst giant pumpkins, jump in the hay bales and sing fun songs. We got to have a snack, then best of all we went on a hay ride to go pick out our pumpkins. Conner had a blast and Katie feels like she is part of the class. If only it actually felt like fall, it was a warm 68 degrees out and everyone was giving me their sweaters to carry. Last year when we went with his preschool it was one of the coldest days of my life. Go figure!

Friday, October 15, 2010

SF Zoo meet the Thayer Zoo

One of our favorite things to do is go to the zoo. Maybe its because we feel so at home there! This zoo trip was especially fun because we got to go with our cousins Owen and baby Leah. Nana and auntie Brooke came too of course. Now you may be wondering why we are bundled up, isn't this suppossed to be a summer trip? Yes it is, however everyone in the Bay Area knows, that summer in San Francisco means sweatshirts and fog. Some of the coldest winter days are a summer in San Francisco.

Thursday, October 14, 2010


When we bought our house it had no landscaping whatsoever. We quickly put in a cement patio and grass in the backyard, planter boxes and completed the front yard. However there was just dirt on both sides of the house. This made for a very expensive vet visit when Copper got a sticker weed that went through his paw and got infected. So we decided to stop dragging our feet and cement the side next to the garage door. Kevin, Brian and our friend Mike set out on the hottest day of the summer to pour cement. Of course Conner needed to help out when possible.

Minature Golf

I had the bright idea that we should take the kids miniture golfing one afternoon. The closest place was a little tiny place in Antioch. Growing up our activity of choice for my mom and I was miniture golf, I loved it, I have great memories of our times playing miniture golf. In my mind we would experience the same thing with our kids. Yeah right. It was fun, but mostly crazy. Conner didn't want to wait for everyone to have their turn, Katie was more interested in throwing the ball or hitting things with her club (including us) and I'm pretty sure Kevin was cheating. :) Here are some of the highlights, most of which were taken in the first few seconds.

Summer 2010 what excuse do I have for being terrible at keeping up on my blog? None, you all know them because I'm sure it is the same in your family too. Kids, house, church callings, life....etc. I would love to say that I am going to be better at blogging, do it every day, shoot even at least once a week but I can't promise anything. So here in a nutshell is what we did during our short summer.

Here in Brentwood we have modified year-round school. What does this mean you ask? Kids get out the first week of June, have six weeks of summer then start school the last week of JULY! Yes that is right, school started July 26th this year. Of course we didn't think about that earlier in the year so we planned our family reunion for that week. But that is getting ahead of myself.

Preschool graduation then what?

First we had some fun with our friends Kobe and Dakota coming over and playing on the slip and slide, good way to cool down during those hot Brentwood summer days.

Next we had exciting news, my sister-in-law Brooke had her baby girl a month early. Leah came into the world on June 4th, and boy was she fast! Brooke barely made it to the hospital, but everything worked out great and now they have a beautiful little girl, Leah Grace.

Summer was spent playing at the park, visiting the Marina by Grandma Kirk's house, and feeding our friend's horses.

Towards the end of June we had a family reunion with my dad's side of the family. The O'Brien, Clymo, Ponti, Sarin family reunion. It was great to see everyone and catch up. Best of all I had everyone bring pictures from the old days, days of us growing up and we all got to walk down memory lane. That was so special to see the relationships that have tied us together throughout the years.

So that is in a nutshell what we did in June. I'll catch you up on the rest of summer later, now I've got to finish dinner before the kids start eating the dog.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Conner's preschool graduation

Who pushed the fast forward button on my life? Where did the time go? Just yesterday Conner was a little baby so cute and rolly polly. Now he is graduated from preschool and getting taller and lankier by the day. In just five weeks he will start kindergarten and it will be the beginning of my little boy's school life. Conner's preschool was great, his teachers were wonderful and the friends he made are precious. Conner is a born schmoozer, he makes friends so easily and all the kids in his class seemed to love being with him. Oh how time flies!