Saturday, June 29, 2013

Paige's Summer Dance Recital

Tonight Paige had her summer dance recital.  The theme was "Dancing Through America" and Paige's class represented Nevada with a song called "Lucky Girl".  Their costumes were pretty much as cute as can be and they danced with these giant fuzzy dice.  Adorable!

They really did a fabulous job with their dance.  In fact, I think they were one of the most prepared classes in the entire performance.  And my shy little Paige was all smiles up there and did a fabulous job!

Aunt Nancy and Uncle Fred joined our family to watch the performance.  It's so special that they were able to watch and encourage Paige!

After the show I chatted with Paige's teacher Miss Alyssa.  She admitted that Paige's class is her FAVORITE class because all the girls listen so well and do what they're told.  That was evident on stage as they were very prepared for the show.  And Paige was tickled to receive pink roses from Steve and Uncle Fred.

Friday, June 21, 2013

A quick trip to SoCal

With the realization that we were moving out of California soon, it seemed like a good idea to make a trip to Southern California to see the grandparents one more time.  We also thought it might be nice to take the kids to Knott's Berry Farm.  So last week we packed up the mini-van and hit the road.  For our first night, we got a deal staying at the Knott's Berry Farm Hotel.  It ended up being the perfect place to stay... right beside the theme park and it had a fabulous pool and water spray ground for the kids.  So after we arrived and got our rooms we relaxed poolside after walking around the shopping area and eating ice cream!  Here's a few pictures from my camera phone that day enjoying some ice cream and gummy sharks!

We all had a decent night's sleep, and enjoyed a fabulous breakfast at the hotel before packing up and heading to the park.  First we headed to the replica of Independence Hall that is located directly across from Knott's Berry Farm.  Steve and I were amazed by the amazing architecture of the building.  The kids however were more interested in watching the turtles and ducklings in the adjacent pond . After that we went to the theme park, in time to walk in as the gates opened!

The kids were SO EXCITED to jump on their first ride, but as you can tell in the top photo below, the twins weren't as thrilled once it started moving.  But halfway through the ride they seemed to think it was pretty fun after all.

Then we picked up the pace and hit ride after ride.  I have to give them credit... as the day went on they got braver and braver.  And by the end Molly was taking on some pretty major rides!

As they started to wear down a bit, we took in some more mellow rides like the train and the horse-drawn coach.  We had a funny thing happen on the coach ride, when our horse team decided they were too tired to finish pulling us up a hill.  So they simply stopped halfway through.  It took about eight people to literally push that carriage full of people and cajole those horses for about 15 minutes to get us off that ride!  Thankfully I was inside the coach with Molly, but poor Steve and the twins were riding it on top and were baking in the sun the entire time!

Mid-afternoon it got up into the 80's, so we decided to cool down with some water rides.  Steve took Molly and Garrett on the log ride (Paige was exhausted by that point) and I took Molly on the tube ride (the twins weren't tall enough).  The tube ride was the highlight of my day... it was so much fun!

And then of course there were more rides and attractions!

Around dinner time everyone  started to get pretty tired (including Mommy).  So we got some pizza and went to watch the Stuntman Show.  I went to Knott's Berry Farm when I was a child, and the stunt show was one of the only things that I remember from that trip.  So it must have been entertaining, right?  It was indeed... and the kids really enjoyed it too.

As the sun started to set, of course I enjoyed taking some Golden Hour photos in the park!  Let me tell you, it is NOT easy to shoot those roller coasters traveling as fast as they do!  We arrived at the park at 9:30 a.m. and left at 9:30 p.m.  We had driven about one block from the park when I looked back and saw that all three kids were asleep.  I was so proud of all of them because there was hardly any meltdowns and they were just so happy the entire time.

The next morning, despite our late arrival to Grandpa Belknap's house, we got the kids out of the house and met our friends Kirk and Marianne for breakfast.  They were heading out of town for Father's Day and it was our only opportunity to meet the newest addition to their family... Clara!  She was as cute as can be and it was so nice to get caught up with old friends!

That afternoon we enjoyed lunch with Steve's cousins, Don and Barbara.  Then the evening was spent sacking out on the couch with Grandpa watching Looney Tunes.

The next day we took the kids out to a local farm to pick blueberries.  Grandpa was still pretty worn out so he stayed home.  But the kids had a great time, and were more than happy to help me bake a blueberry pie that afternoon with all the amazing berries!

Some people got more berries than others, but the kids still enjoyed themselves.  There was also some chickens and pigs at the farm which was fun for them!

It also happened to be Father's Day, and the kids celebrated Daddy by dousing him in the backyard in a huge water gun fight.  Daddy said that the most tenacious fighter was Paige, as he could shoot her over and over point-blank in the face and she still wouldn't leave him alone!

We finished out the day over at the park.  Here's Daddy enjoying his Father's Day with his little munchkins.

Unfortunately, we were unable to visit with the other grandparents on the way home because of some doctor's appointments that came up for them.  So the next day after getting packed up, it was back in the mini-van for the trip home.  The kids did so great and I am always amazed by how well they do on these road trips.  And thank God for having a DVD player in the van!

Saturday, June 1, 2013

We're moving!

Well... I mentioned in a previous post that Steve has been gone several weekends in a row up in Portland.  The primary reason is that he's been interviewing for a new job.  He had interview with four different companies (on multiple occasions) until he accepted a job from Jacobs Engineering.  It's a senior level engineering position and it sounds like a fabulous fit for him.

So what does that mean?  Well... it means that we're moving to Beaverton, Oregon!  Six years ago we purchased a home up there with the thought that "one day" it would be nice to move up there to be closer to family.  We had been renting it out, but their lease was up so the timing to right.  So we are VERY excited to finally move into a house that we've owned for six years and never lived in!  And if you can believe it, we actually purchased it without ever stepping foot in it (based on photos, videos and recommendations from Steve's sister).  Here it is!

It's 1000 square feet bigger than we have now and it's about five minutes away from Steve's sister and family!  It's such a great move for us although the idea of packing up our life is a little daunting.  But on July 20th we will be loading up and heading out!  Please keep this transition in your prayers!