Saturday, July 27, 2013

Palo Alto Reunions With Friends & the Fourth of July

One of the best parts about my parents living in Provo (besides having them so close by) is that so many people we know go to Utah during the year and often pass through Provo and SLC!

When we were in Utah a few weeks ago we got to visit with several friends from our Palo Alto single days that have since moved away from Northern California.

Our first day in Utah the Hayes family stopped by to say hi and goodbye as they trekked back to SoCal. We loved getting to meet adorable Graham and the kids all got to play with Jude while we snacked on yummy bagels and diet coke.

I've mentioned this before... but I'll mention it again... I love when my friends marry awesome people. It makes me so happy. 

Jeff and Meredith got married in Newport about three years ago- remember this post about the trip where we forgot Andrew's shoes and then the wedding reception where everyone thought I was Elise? Jeff and Meredith know how to throw a great party.

We love them. It was fun to chat and catch up a bit.

Elise trekked down with her girls so that we could all hang out together. 

Here are all the cute kiddos...

Olivia, Jude, Maddie, Graham, Andrew, Catie, and Ryan (not pictured bc he was napping)

Here's a picture of the cute babies checking each other out.

Later in the week Elise invited us up to her house and hosted a delicious Fourth of July brunch!

Bruce & Christie Edwards (more awesome favorite friends from Palo Alto single days) came over with their two kids- Bodie and Tristan. The Edwards just moved to Utah, so hopefully we'll get to see a lot more of them now!

Caffee girls

We started off the day with playing and lots and lots of food. Elise made this rich and gooey brownie trifle. Yum!

Christie made the most yummy and adorable dessert (flag one below). It was so good that I didn't manage to get a picture before someone had already snagged a piece. Mmm!

The kiddos actually sat for a few minutes and ate and then they got crazy in the backyard with water!

Elise made sure to have plenty of festive snacks on hand too.

Ryan and Tristan are only a few months apart, so it was fun to get them together.

Andrew and Catie and the Caffee girls had a blast with Bodie. He loved the water!!

After lots of good food and splashing, we finally wrapped up the party right before the kiddos started melting down and needing naps.

So excited that Bruce & Christie are somewhere closer now where we'll get to see them regularly! We loved hanging out with them back when they were newly married and dating too. Remember this post about beautiful wedding in Seattle?

Crazy how time flies. I still feel like it was just yesterday when Kevin and I were playing against each other in a mini-lacrosse tournament in Bruce's Palo Alto back yard. 

Can't wait for more get togethers again soon!

San Francisco Adventure with the Balenas! {Sutro Baths & Dolores Park}

There are only a few weeks of summer left and we plan to use every second wisely!

We have several summer adventures we still want to fit in. A week or so ago we headed up to San Francisco with the Balenas to go the Sutro Baths, Dolores Park, and Bi-Rite ice cream.

I'm ready to repeat that trip any time anyone comes to visit. We had a BLAST!

The kids loved Sutro Baths. They had fun climbing around and exploring the cave and hiking a bit.

They are such adorable buddies... so they really could be happy anywhere.

I love how adventurous and active all the kids are. We hiked down pretty far and then climbed back up a really steep incline and all of them did great (other than Catie who lied down once or twice to play with the sand). We didn't have any strollers and I had Ryan in the Bjorn.

At one point I was on my hands and knees climbing up this hill because it got pretty steep and the sand kept slipping and having baby Ryan in the bjorn threw me off a bit. We hadn't realized how steep it was when we started climbing. 

It was cloudy but gorgeous.

I was so proud of Catie and what a good hiker she was! Notice her fleece, jacket, and leggings... it was cold!!

After our Sutro Baths excursion, we headed back into the city to Dolores Park. I wish we lived in this neighborhood. I would be at this park daily. It is AWESOME and exquisite.

We had a little lunch break and then we let the kids loose at the playground.

The slides were huge. The kids mostly went up and down the big slides the whole time we were there.

This one scared me to death and I finally caved and let Catie go down it and she was IN HEAVEN.

Right around the corner from Dolores Park is Bi-Rite Creamery. I've heard a lot about it, but have never been. A midday stop on a weekday is the best time to go because the line isn't outrageous. On Saturdays the line goes around the block.

We ate ice cream and Liz and I got to chat and that was the end of our SF excursion... other than the drive home.

Liz and I were roommates back in Menlo Park before we both got married. We've been exploring the city since we both moved out here over 10 years ago. We used to go on loads of adventures in SF when we were single. It is seriously so cool to go on them now with our combined six kids in tow and have an equally as fun time. I love that our kids love each other.

Can't wait till our next adventure!

On our drive home all of my kids passed out before we got on the Bay Bridge and slept the ENTIRE way home. That has never happened to me before. It was blissful. I wanted to take a nap too since I was exhausted from all the sweating and hiking... but no luck.

What a successful San Francisco adventure!

Friday, July 26, 2013

Ryan at 9 months

Man! I am terrible at keeping up with this blog lately because I have way too many photos and am completely overwhelmed with where to start. This summer has been way too busy!

Ryan is 9 months old tomorrow. Wowzers! I can hardly believe it.

Ryan- 9 months

Here's a look back at the little dude over the past few months...

November- 1 month

December- 2 months

January- 3 months

February- 4 months

March- 5 months

April- 6 months

May- 7 months

June- 8 months

This kid is a keeper.

For a quick comparison... here are the other two kiddos at this age

This year has been a busy and crazy one. Ryan's sweet personality is what has made it a good one. He helped me make it through a few rough months with his cuddles and smiles. Love that kid!

Here is some info about Ryan at 9 months...

- He loves to move. His favorite new places are the both sets of stairs at our house. He is also very quick. He has tumbled down our little 2 steps in the living room twice now because he's been across the room, I've grabbed something in the kitchen, and in those 2 seconds he's raced across the room. Crazy kid. I now know better and have Andrew stand guard at the stairs if I need to leave the room.

- He actually knows his name and responds by looking at me every time I say his name out loud. After he looks at me, he typically goes back to doing exactly what I told him not to do. 

- He sleeps pretty good. Thank goodness! He goes to bed around 7pm, wakes up around 6am for food and then goes back to sleep until 8 or 9am. He does a pretty good job sleeping through the loud sounds that the crazies make. He naps one or two times a day depending on our schedule and whether or not I can stand being at home that much. He doesn't sleep on the go unless the drive is 2 hours+... and then he usually only sleeps for 30 minutes because his sibs can't be quiet in the car for longer than 30 minutes. Poor kid!

- Ryan went on his first road trip- 13 hours to Utah and back. He's not a fan of the car but he survived. His favorite road trips snacks are celery, carrots, pretzel rods, puffs, lil crunchies, pieces of bread, and mum mums.

- Ryan is 20+ lbs and wears size 9-12 month clothes and size 4 diapers.

- Little dude is a total mama's boy. He's only be been babysat a few times and most haven't been really pleasant experiences. He also won't take a bottle. Our goal before he hits 12 months is to get him to take a bottle or sippy... or something... Up until now the longest I've ever left him is 2-3 hours. Good thing he is cute.

- Little dude loves basically any food that the big kids are eating. He's tried just about everything his siblings eat. He's a big fan of things he can chew. He has 4 teeth, two upper and two lower and he loves to use them to BITE! 

- Ryan's been crawling for awhile and just started sitting up on his own this past week. Hooray!

- His favorite toys are balls. He likes to bat them around like he is a little cat and follow them around the house. He also likes to play with (and eat) any small object that his siblings leave on the floor. I am constantly finger swiping his mouth to get things out of it because I can't keep up with all the beads, legos, etc. that his siblings manage to drop on the floor. 

Just thinking about how busy and active this little one is making me tired! I sure do love him!

My favorite part of the day is rocking him in his rocker right before bed in his very own little room. I love the time to just cuddle with him. 

I sure am lucky to be his mom!

Thursday, July 25, 2013

The House and a Possible New Obsession?

We are slowly moving into the remodeled section of our house. I haven't unpacked yet from our 2 week Utah trip (I think I must secretly be wishing we were leaving again or something...)... but at least my room looks tidy every day.

Our new bedroom set arrived the day after we got home. We have tons of things to add still- photos on the wall... lamps on the bedside tables... etc. but this is as far as it is going to go for awhile.

Up until today we had no shutters in our bathroom. So, I've taken maybe 2 showers in there since we finished the remodel (in the darkness). Now I think I'll feel a lot more comfortable using the bathroom... since I won't feel like creepers are watching me from the darkness outside.

I love our new space and feel like we moved into a new house. Now if only I could get all my stuff up there... I need a week all by myself in my house to get things situated. Someday!

Other randoms... I promised Andrew I'd post this picture of the knight he drew for his grandparents. One of the sponsors for this Virtual Book Club Summer Camp I organized for my Toddler Approved blog is Mike the Knight. We didn't know who he was until 5 weeks ago, but now the kids are a bit obsessed. They've been creating Mike the Knight missions and Andrew has been wanting to dress up like a knight and draw knight pictures too.

I am wholeheartedly supporting this behavior since I can only handle Star Wars so much.

Hooray for a possible new obsession.

In other news, Catie asked to dress up like a princess today. That was a first. Then she found a costume for Ryan too. He looks delicious! :)

More posts with loads and loads of pictures coming soon from our summer vacation and SF adventures!