Love Day 2013

We thought we needed to celebrate Valentine’s Day a day early because Jim had young men basketball the night of. So we went to Five Guys, JD’s request because they have cool drinks and I think he really likes hamburgers, and then went to Dairy Queen for some ice cream. It was a great night with my little family. It turns out that we were actually able to spend Valentine’s together anyway. Yay for family nights.

I wanted to be one of those fun moms and make heart shaped pancakes for breakfast but I was rushing to finish the kids valentines for their friends before school. Instead they had poptarts and a glass of milk. I even bought little valentine mailboxes for the morning but forgot to put those out too.

We made it to preschool and so I took the opportunity to go get a couple heart balloons from the dollar store and ran home to clean the kitchen and set up a valentine surprise for the kids when we got home. I even had time to cut vinyl for the mailboxes. Go me! They absolutely loved their surprise and Holly even said thank you again to me today. Thank you dollar section of Target!

After preschool JD wanted me to take a picture so we jumped, no pun intended, at the chance. JD has had a hard time leaving me to go to preschool so I’m pretty sure he’s jumping for joy to see me. He does enjoy himself when he’s there though. He’s a mama’s boy for sure!

We spent some time at the park with our dear friends and the kids exchanged valentines with each other. They were so excited to give and get their little treats! No pictures though.

It was such a nice day that we went to yet another park later in the day and played some more!

And Valentine’s day wouldn’t be complete without some heart shaped sugar cookies. We made them on Saturday. Holly was persistent in asking so while JD napped we made them. He woke up in time to decorate and eat!

I found this printable yesterday and wished I would’ve found it sooner. Great valentine for a few of my friends!

I’m loving this quote right now too! Thank you Elder Holland for being so wise.

 xo Happy Valentine’s Day! xo

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Summer Is Over

We had so much fun this summer! Everyday we had something fun to do and someone to share it with. And when our friends were away we had fun creating memories just me and the kids. Daddy even took some time off work to do some fun things with us too.

And in no particular order, mostly because I don’t remember when things happened, this was our summer…

Grandma took the kids and I to the Dean Lesher center in downtown Walnut Creek for a Chevron Family fun day. The theme was princesses and pirates, which was perfect for Holly and JD. We made sock puppets, got free stuff, and saw a puppet show. The highlight for Holly was trying on the Tinkerbell costume, where she decided this is what she wants to be for Halloween, and JD couldn’t leave without a real eye patch. They still talk about it and how they want to go back. Til next summer.

We visited the park a lot this summer. They became expert climbers, swingers and sliders. One day we walked to the park from our house and all they wanted to do was lay on the bench and eat grapes. Funny kids.

Holly and JD love going on adventures with Grandma and this time was no exception. This time we went up to the Berkeley hills to do lots of fun things at Tilden park. We rode the little steam train, which is always a favorite, and then headed further in the park to feed the animals on the farm. We brought celery to feed the goats who were practically reaching for a bite through the fence. It was a beautiful day to be outside, enjoying nature and being with Grandma and Uncle Johnny. Our next stop was the carousel where we enjoyed some cotton candy and Fenton’s ice cream. We played at the park for a little bit before we left. All the fun tuckered the kids out and they took nice long naps! Thanks for the fun Grandma!


1. We spent a lot of time swimming at the March’s pool, taking walks, and having play dates. The summer would not have been the same without our best buddies Parker and Emily.

2. The new splash pad in Concord was perfect for hot days and plus it was FREE! Holly and her friend Kennedy enjoyed hanging out under the water drop bucket. They have matching swimsuits too! We went almost once a week to cool off and run around!

3. Our first trip to Contra Loma was so much fun with our friends and Uncle Johnny. We celebrated Grandma Hopkins birthday with some yummy cheesecake. Holly and JD were right there to help blow out the candles. And the perfect end to a summer day, popcorn!

4. Our last trip to Contra Loma with our best buds. Rebecca and I are always too busy playing and refereeing the kids that we never get a picture together. This time we did. Life wouldn’t be the same without her. Glad we are friends!

5. When Holly and JD aren’t fighting they really do love each other. And here is some proof! Holly sporting her new haircut and her princess dress. The first thing Holly and JD do when we get to church is run up to Grandma’s lap. Grandma took JD on a Costco run one day and he came home with this 31″ Batman. He was on guard while the kids bathed. And mostly we wanted to scare daddy when he got home from work. I think it worked.

6. One night this summer Daddy came with us to swim and the kids had so much fun. They learned all of Daddy’s swimming skills and thought he was the coolest when he dove and back flipped into the pool. Holly showed off her jumping and JD had fun hanging out. Holly thought it was especially fun when Daddy threw her in the air.

In July, Jim’s aunts and uncles had a high school reunion in Half Moon Bay and we were lucky enough to spend some time with them and catch up. It was so fun to be together and listen to them reminisce and share stories. Holly and JD have only seen some a few times when they were real little and had never met Aunt Laurie and Uncle Jim. It took a little while to warm up, Holly fell asleep so she wouldn’t have to talk to them the first night and then wouldn’t open her eye for a while, silly girl. We spent a couple days in Half Moon Bay and didn’t leave without walking along the beach.

That next week in July after family went home, Jim took a week long work trip to New York and Boston. I really wanted to go with him, and I probably should have. But because I didn’t the kids and I took a little trip of our own to visit our best friends in Monterey. We don’t get to see Sadie enough and so we made a two day trip out of it. The kids were so excited to see Boone and Stella and didn’t want to leave when it was time. The kids had talked about going to the aquarium for weeks so we did that first thing. It is so amazing every time we go. Heavenly Father really made some amazing creatures! Catching up with Sadie was just what I needed. The kids really loved having a sleep over too. The second day Sadie took us to Dennis the Menace park where Holly had a little accident so had to spend most of the time in a diaper and JD’s swim trunks. The slides were the most fun! Before we headed home we went to the beach and played in the sand. This was definitely a highlight of our summer!

When the summer nights were beautiful we rode bikes. Mostly in the church parking lot right next to us, but when it is busy, which is not very often, we go to our church. They have really gotten so good at riding that I busted out the bike I have to ride with them.

We enjoyed $1 Jamba smoothies with our friends one morning. Each of us got our own and there was not a drop left!

One of my favorite things to do is make cupcakes so when Jim asked if I’d make some for a work BBQ I was more than excited to do it. They were trumped by some homemade pies but were still a hit!

Jim took the day off one Friday and took us to Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk. The last time we went was when the kids were two months old! We of course had to ride the carousel a couple times. JD even tried throwing the rings into the clown’s mouth. Holly had more fun riding on the rides that went up and down than JD did. I made the mistake of telling him, as he was sitting in a helicopter ride, that it went up and down. I’ve never seen that boy move so fast. He wasn’t having it. We calmed him down and then got him back in the helicopter only for Daddy to say the same thing as me and he booked it. Holly rode with a little girl and had a ball. JD enjoyed watching her and laughed and smiled the whole time. The highlight of the day for me was the log ride. Oh it was so fun. The kids didn’t seem to think so and when JD talks about Santa Cruz all he says is he doesn’t want to go on the log ride. Before we left we played on the beach and then got our giant waffle cone sundaes to go. Yum! It was the perfect family day.

Our friends Travis and Jen had their third baby, a little boy – Robert Jay, and I was the lucky one to take pictures of him. I was able to be their right after he was born to capture those first moments too. Seriously, it’s the most beautiful thing to see those first moments! Little RJ was so calm and the best little model. This past Sunday we went to his blessing and we showed up 10 minutes early for church. When we walked into the chapel, Travis asked if I could play the organ. I thought he was joking but he wasn’t so I played. I just might not show up early for church anymore!

Growing up we would go to my grandparents cabin in Wisconsin. It was on a lake where we’d paddle boat and swim. When I heard about the Lafayette Reservoir and how you can rent paddle boats I thought it would be fun to do. It was a beautiful Saturday and spur of the moment we decided to go. It was so fun and brought back some fun childhood memories. Holly and JD had fun and even had their turn and pedaling. The guys decided to use the row boat instead. Not sure they enjoyed either boat.

My van gets really dirty and usually we go through the car wash. One afternoon it was hot so I decided it would be fun to wash the van with the kids. They loved spraying the van with the hose and using their soapy rags to wash. When we were done I took the hose and made a rainbow so they could run under the water. They’d run around the yard and I tried to reach them with the water. I turn around at one point to turn off the water and when I turned back around I see JD making a rainbow of his own. “Holly, run under my rainbow” he said. I was laughing so hard. That boy has quite the arch and distance! Seriously I can’t stop laughing when I look at this picture.

One last summer adventure for me was running in the Color Me Rad fun in San Jose. I ran it with my friends Teri and Norma. A bunch of my other friends ran a similar race in San Francisco earlier this summer and I so wished I would’ve. When I saw this run I didn’t want to pass it up. Thankfully I had some friends to run it with. There really is no point except to get all color-fied and have a blast of a time. Plus you get a cool t-shirt out of it.

We had such a great summer but I am so excited for routine and structure again. The kids are taking a dance class with their little friends, our little preschool starts again this week and I am teaching piano lessons almost every afternoon. It’s gonna be a good year!

Way to go you made it to the end of my post! Leave a comment and I might just make you a cupcake.


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Our Trip To Tildon Farm

I love taking pictures. I keep my camera handy on the desk and in my purse just in case the kids do something cute. Everywhere we go I pull the camera out to document our outing, if it happens to be a fun one.

So you can only imagine that when we went with our friends to feed the animals at Tildon Farm I was right there to snap away as Holly was feeding the goats. She was the bravest one of the bunch and kept asking for more lettuce to give the little guy. She was getting brave enough to let the goat chomp away until she was barely holding anything. She was grinning from ear to ear each time she fed him.

And the camera came out again when we went to the little museum. A place to see ‘stuffed’ animals, but mostly to run around and climb on this guy. We dubbed this outing our first mommy school field trip. It was a success.

We found a playground to jump and climb on and then made our way to the train. Holly and JD held on to their tickets tightly. We all rode in the little red caboose and enjoyed the scenery.


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Slip, Slip, Slip and Slide

Another fun day in the sun! What’s a warm, sunny day without a little splashing in the water. We set up the pool and Tammy brought her slip and slide for the kids to play in. The kiddos were a little unsure at first. Tammy and refused to demonstrate in our clothes so we pulled them along the slide into the pool of water at the end. After a few go arounds, they all got the idea.

Sophie was a pro and probably got the highest splashes for sure. Vi was content to stand in the distance while watching her sister.

JD  really loved running down the slip and slide and making big splashes in the air, while Holly preferred to run and sit as smoothly as she could.

After a while, Holly discovered drinking the water was more fun than running in it. You can see Vi right behind her doing the same thing. Or maybe she was washing her peach. And while Holly is drinking JD was busy picking peaches off the tree and that became our before lunch snack. I think they each had two or three, they’re pretty small but quite tasty. We ate a delicious lunch, watched Rapunzel and played on the swings. Our next visit together will be at the pool watching Sophie swim from one end of the pool to the other! Can’t wait!


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