Saturday, October 29, 2016

Hitting the Big Time Honky Tonk

Gina's Beauty Parlor just hit the big time honky tonk!  Ok, only Pam will get that joke.  This was back 20 years ago, before the age of DVR's.  I was watching Coal Miner's Daughter (one of my favorite movies) and talking to Pam.  Then, I suddenly exclaimed with urgency, "I have to go Loretta's about to hit the big time honky tonk!"  Pam just laughed at me.

Anyway, last week at a yard sale, I found what I've been looking for years.  I pulled up and kind of did a once over at the yard sale thinking this place will have nothing I want or need.  And then it was like the heavens opened up and a song was sung and a light shown down on this perfect stool.  I practically ran to it prepared to elbow anybody who got in the way of me and my stool.  It was perfect.  It moved up and down, had a foot rest and swiveled around.  The chair I had been using was about 2 feet tall and had fabric on the seat.  It was a tiny bathroom vanity stool.  I was hunched over and when I'd cut Emily's hair, she had to stand the entire time or I'd be sitting on the floor cutting her hair.  Anyway, the stool was perfect.  It needed a little cleaning up because the guy used it in his garage, but I didn't even haggle over the $5 price tag.  I paid the man and this little beauty was mine!  All mine!  I gave it a whirl today and it is a dream.  

We went to a friend's Halloween party last night.  The kids are Batgirl, Black Panther and Batman.  All Super kids, which is appropriate since they are all super.

I bought these costumes for David and I probably 5 years ago on clearance at Kmart.  They've sat in our closet all this time.  We had to dust off the shoulders when we put them on.  I'm a french maid and David is dracula.  It was the only clearance costumes left, unless I wanted to be mustard.  And I hate mustard. I put some make up on him and we were good to go.  David told me that we had never dressed up for Halloween.  What?  We've been together for 14 years, but I think he's right.  

We had a fun night!  We should dress up more often, just for fun!  HA! 
Plus, my husband looks hot as Dracula!

They had a mummy wrapping contest.  This is Ben.  He won!  David did a good job wrapping him.

And Aunt Pam sent the kids these adorable cake pops.  They are so cute.  The frankenstein, mummy and pumpkin are already gone.  But, they are so cute!  Adorable and yummy!  Thanks, Aunt Pam!

Oh and the BEST news!  I had to take Ben to his eye Dr. appointment in Phoenix on Thursday.  This was his 3 month follow up since the Dr. was concerned with his eye drifting out.  He put him in a stronger prescription and he was hoping that would fix it.  If not, surgery would happen.  Ben was so worried as we all were.  But, everything is good for now!  Yea!  He doesn't want to see Ben until his scheduled annual appt. in July.  Whew.  We are so thankful.  

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Super Star's

Rio has made the transition from outdoor cat to indoor cat very nicely. He doesn't meow at the doors to go out. Well, he likes to go roam the garage, so sometimes he meows out those. But, other than that, he shows zero interest in wanting to outside. Well, there was that one time that he was in the window watching birds and I had the window open, but it has a screen on it. He pounced to get the bird and fell right through the screen and landed outside. Luckily, Emily I got him back inside quickly with a piece of yarn. Seriously, that cat gets in a trance when he sees yarn.

Anyway, he likes to climb up in my closet to the top shelf and hang out on the suitcases. He's silly.
Ok, now on to the super star kids. It's always an adjustment the beginning of the year and getting used to a new teacher and their expectations.  Ben has been doing great and got all A's on his report card.  He also got perfect attendance.  Go Ben! 
Noah got almost all O's with an S in handwriting.  He can get lazy sometimes.  He's in 2nd grade, but he is the youngest kid in his class and I felt he needed to start pushing himself with reading.  He was still reading easy reader type books.  He needed chapter books. So, I had him start the Magic Tree House series, which Ben loved.  And he read the first book in less than 24 hours.  They are like 70 pages long, so I was super happy and proud.  But, I wasn't sure how he'd do with the quiz they take at school on the books they read.  Did he comprehend enough?  Yep!  He passed the quiz.  Then, this week, he started the second book, finished it in two days and took the quiz today and got 100%!  Yea! 
And Miss Emily had a huge adjustment this year.  In her other school, honors just meant that you got pulled to do some fun projects, like solar cars and stuff like that.  But, in Jr. High, she has all honors classes, meaning she has advanced curriculum and it's taught at a faster pace. It's been an adjustment.  She honestly had never needed to really study for a test before.  She's been working on all that and helping her study and she got Principal's List! Plus, David and I are learning a whole bunch of stuff we forgot when we help her study.  Ask me about the Earth's core or the Magna Carta.  I'm full of knowledge again!  It's awesome!  :)
She got one B, but because they are honors classes they count as higher, so it's still above a 4.0 gpa.  I'm so happy for her.  Look at that....a 90 in College Prep Pre Algebra!  Holy moly, she is awesome.   
Of course he 2 highest scores were Art and PE.  That's my girl!   

Monday, October 24, 2016

Around Our House

When we sold the swingset this summer, we told the kids, we'd make a little outdoor firepit area where the swingset was.  We finally got it done this weekend.  We need to get more chairs, but we are waiting for a good find at a yard sale or something on a wrought iron set.  Anything wood or with material just rots in our hot dry Arizona sun.  So, we just pull chairs from our patio set around it when we need to.  We put the pit on pavers and David got all the rock smoothed out.  We used to have a sandbox there, so it was some effort to get everything looking good again.

Then, we got to try it out and have Smores since my Dad and Suzy came up for the night. It was nice and I can see many a marshmallow being roasted out there.
When I clean the bathrooms now, we have pitch in.  Emily cleans her bathroom.  Noah cleans the little bathroom. And since my bathroom is always the dirtiest since everyone likes to use that one the most, I have Ben clean David's side and I clean my side.  It all works out well.  Until I find Noah standing in the sink to reach the top of the mirror.  Thank goodness he's only 45 pounds.
And I've been meaning to share these videos of the jetpack.  So fun!

Friday, October 14, 2016

Vacation, Last Fun Day

I can't believe it was our last full fun day of vacation.  It's always over much too soon.  Yet, this one seems like it's been a long vacation, so that's good.  It seems like we were at my Aunt's a few weeks ago, not 7 days.

David and I started the day with another nice walk along the boardwalk.  We went out to the pier and saw some seals.

It was pretty overcast this morning, with some fog; which is how it usually is in California.  

We got ready and headed to the beach.  We found this dead bird and Noah's first response was "Can we help him?".  No, buddy, he's as dead as a doornail.  Noah has a kind heart.

When it's cooler out, you go for several walks to stay warm.  David and Emily were leading the way.  Ben usually didn't join us as he was doing his own thing of running around the beach.  I'm not even kidding.  He didn't sit or stop for 6 hours.  I don't know what goes on in his little head.  At one point, he came over and said, "Mom, what town are we in?"  "Newport Beach, Ben."  And off he went to work on his story.

The kids love these little birds that hang out at the shore.

Here's Emily at the pier.  It usually takes about 20 pictures to get a few good ones.

Noah is a total goof ball.

He got this turtle and named him Squirt.

Since there isn't a lifeguard on duty, I had the kids climb up to get a picture.

This one makes me laugh because they all have their eyes closed.

This one is better.

Then, she had to do a handstand.

And they all jumped.

I went out boogie boarding and had David take a few pics to prove I was in the water.  David's cousin Amy would be proud because I got my hair wet...twice in one day!  She always makes me dunk in the ocean.  Well, she doesn't make me, but she kind of does.  :)

I love her wild crazy hair.

And there is Ben....doing his thing.

Noah kept making David rub his armpit.

I was trying to get Emily to pose for me, but she would semi pose and then goof off.

Then, I wanted one of her and Alanah, which meant more goofing around before I got a good one.  It's a good thing I can take 20 pictures to get that one good one.  Both girls had to get one pieces at Target the other day because their bellies were getting rashed from the boogie boards.

David took a nap.

This seagull was on our boogie boards.  Then, a pigeon pooped on my beach blanket!  And there is Ben in the background doing his thing.

Ben really liked this!

For some reason, Ben and Emily were more sad about leaving California this time.  I'm not sure what it was.  David thinks that they are getting older and realize how lovely vacations are...getting a break from homework and the hum drum life of Prescott Valley, seeing family, spending time with friends, doing things out of the norm, doing absolutely nothing at all.  It's all lovely.  

Ben was on our balcony watching the sunset.  

So, him and I walked down to the beach.  I don't know how I took this picture, but I liked the houses, so I kept it.

Ben and I and one last sunset selfie.

Then, we went for ice cream.  They were huge Thrifty cones and so yummy!  I didn't mean to take this picture either, but I like it.  

And, I usually try to get 10,000 steps a day.  That's my goal.  I'm there about 5 days a week, the other days, I'm about 6,000.  I'd say that I need to learn to relax more on vacation.  But, those strolls on the beach are just too good to pass up!  And the donut shop is 3/10 of a mile away.  :)

Tomorrow, we have the long 7 hour drive home.  It's always boring and uneventful, and that's just how I hope it goes tomorrow.  Then, it's back to the real world.  Boo.  

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Vacation, Legoland

After 6 years, we decided to go back to Legoland.  You can refresh with that blog here.  The kids were so little.  Legoland is fun, but it's not mine or David's favorite.  We'd take Disney or Universal any day.  But, the boys are huge Lego fans and Noah obviously doesn't remember ever going since he was only 1.  So, we decided to go one last time. It's really for kids about 8 and under.

We got there on the most beautiful day so far.  A beach day today would've been ideal, but it is what it is.

Ben was so excited.  He couldn't stop running here and there and checking everything out.

Emily liked this spinning thing.
We rode a few rides.  The lines were fairly short, about 15 minutes.

Then, we did this crazy ride.  I have video of me and Emily, but I'll get it to youtube later.  It was so fun.  This is Ben going with some random girl.  You get to choose if you want gentle or extreme.  Ben went for extreme, level 5.  Emily and I did the middle one.  It was so fun. I think Ben went upside down like 10 times or something.

More rides...

This was one of those shoot 'em up rides, but you used your arms like a ninja to throw things.  It was cool.

Emily liked these lego turtles.

Here's NYC out of Legos.

Legoland is known for their apple fries.  David and Emily loved them.  Me, I'm not a fan of cooked fruit.  Pie, jellies, jam, anything cooked, I'll pass.

Then, they went on this giant jungle gym.  They could've spent all day there.

And wouldn't you know it, I ran into another friend from Prescott Valley.  She works at the kids' school.  Her daughter and Em are in the same grade and her other daughter and Ben are in the same grade.  Noah actually spotted Ms. Christina.

Then, Emily finally got her caraciture down.  So, here's the story.  6 years ago, we went on vacation.  I always tell the kids they get to pick out one souvenir.  We went to Sea World first and within 5 minutes, Emily has a giant Shamu that she must have.  David and I told her no that it will end up in the corner of the closet and then in a Goodwill bag within a few months.  And we were right, it did.  But, she wouldn't listen.  She went on and on about that darn Shamu, so that was her one souvenir.  Then, we get to Legoland and Ben wants his souvenir to be a caraciture.  And, she wants one too.  Nope, that's not how it works.  So,I dug my heels in and wouldn't let her have it.  She still remembers it to this day.  She doesn't remember a single thing about that trip, but she remembers that she wanted a caraciture and I wouldn't let her have it.  

So, this time, she got it done.

It looks so cute!  The artist even nailed her dimple!  

We got back and had time for a stroll on the beach.  And for Ben, stroll means run.

Emily is said that tomorrow is our last day here.  We all are.  I keep telling them to do good in school and make lots of money and they can buy a house here.  And I will visit all the time!  :)

Tag on the beach happens like 20 times a day around here.