Thursday, October 16, 2014

Driving for Pumpkins

Kids are on fall break.

Justin got a 2 day break that he had to spend studying.

So I planned a day in "The World Pumpkin Capital" aka Half Moon Bay for the kids and me.

On the way up, Drew was literally in tears that I was making them drive 2 hours for a pumpkin patch.


It reminded me of the time Justin was so bugged that I made us drive 2 hours from Pensacola to Biloxi to visit a casino that had awesome bathrooms and an amazing buffet.

Both trips were worth it to me.

And Justin is still bugged about that casino trip.

However, Drew may have gained some trust in me.

We stopped at the first patch we saw as we came into town for a bathroom break.

The kids all chose pumpkins right away, but I wasn't impressed with their pumpkins thrown around a field like they were grown there.

So we moved on. And we passed probably 5 more pumpkin patches before we ended up at Farmer John's pumpkins. Farmer John grows his own pumpkins and also happens to be the mayor of HMB. He prides himself on not having bouncy houses and petting zoos. Which I'm great with. But we wanted a corn maze!

The patch was so cute and I was in picture taking heaven.

The day before our trip, they had held the weigh-in for the giant pumpkin contest. The winner was a 2,058 pound pumpkin. I was dying to see that thing, but it had been hidden away from pumpkin vandalizers so it'd still be good for the festival this weekend. When we passed that gigantic pumpkin on the side of the rode, I seriously thought for a minute that might be it. Nope.

My cousin Cherisse recommended her favorite beach there: the one behind the Ritz Carlton.

It was a super windy day, but that meant we had the beach to ourselves.
Somehow that fluffy beach frond made it home with us and is still shedding.

That beach was straight out of a fairy tale. A windy fairy tale.

After that we were hungry. Since I had chosen what we did up til then, I let the kids choose dinner. I asked if they wanted fast food or somewhere you sit down. Drew said, "Sit down! Like Burger King!"

We met in the middle and had Pizza My Heart in Santa Cruz. We have this place in Monterey, it's just good.

The last stop of the day was Glaum Egg Ranch in Aptos, where we got 23 cage-free eggs and a dancing chicken show for 4 crisp one-dollar bills.
 This flat of eggs was dispensed out of their egg vending machine while we watched the show.

When we got home, Drew rated the drive a 0 and everything else a 10.

So basically, I was right and he better not whine tomorrow when I drag him somewhere else.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Words of the Prophets

 August threw something at our TV and broke it the week before conference.
Which meant we watched conference via laptop this time around.

Somehow I decided conference Sunday would be a good time to start potty training.
Maybe not my wisest choice.
Between that and loud kids it was pretty hard to concentrate.

So I was thankful when President Monson spoke at the end of the Sunday AM session.
My house got so quiet and everyone listened, even August.
 (obviously those underwear didn't last long)

Then Sally showed me her notes.
I had told whichever kid that took notes, or drew pictures of what the speaker was talking about,
I would do their chores for the day.

Sally and Owen took me up on the offer.

I especially liked Sally's notes.

They weren't really what the speaker was talking about, but I love what she wrote.
"I know that Jesus loves me and others too. Not just me. Others."

Translated to:
"Of God's plan are the best plan's ever."
Then a picture of her next to Jesus with, "I love Him." And He's saying, "I love you, too."
And at the bottom: "When I started to draw I felt good inside and outside."

Her sweet little notes and President Monson totally saved conference over here.

My favorite talk was by Tad R. Callister: "Parents: The Prime Gospel Teachers of Their Children"

Sunday, October 05, 2014

Butterfly Parade


Drew and his fellow 3rd graders were beach bums for the butterfly parade this year.

Sally and the 1st graders were jellyfish.

I love this parade and teared up as the monarch butterfly kindergarteners kicked it off.

This was the parades 76th year!

Kind of a big deal over here.

Owen opted out of it this time around, but would've been a patriot.

Probably smart of was HOT and he didn't have an hour of conference to make up.

There's a carnival right after and it would've been fun to stay for if we weren't melting.

Was proud of my butterfly themed cupcakes for the bake sale and hope that frosting didn't melt.

Thursday, October 02, 2014

All Things Ball

This is the saddest excuse for a group of birthday pictures.

But August turned 2.

For his birthday, he got to help with a beach cleanup service project, go to McDonald's with the boys, take a nap, go to Drew's baseball game, then come home for his ball-themed party with the Laflans and Wades.

He was happy with the extra attention, a new supply of balls, and balloons everywhere.

I cooked pretty much all day long. I got so carried away with ball-themed food ideas for his party, that I was a little stressed. At least he didn't notice any different.

The party was fun, though. And he perfectly blew out his candle right away. Then wanted it re-lit over and over.

For his main present he got a baseball tee. He & Owen got up before everyone and discovered it without us. I heard him getting so excited from my room. Then when I showed him the balloons hanging from the ceiling he said, "Whoooah!" It was cute.

Monterey Bay Saturday


We got the Hollobaughs for one more day after Crystal's wedding.

We spent it:

- at Pavel's eating the best pastries (apricot peach danish for me).

- Walking down to Lover's Point just in time to see some people finish the triathlon that was going on. Such a fun energy at the finish line. Made me wish (once again) I liked running.

- Kayaking at Stillwater Cove. 

- Clam chowder sampling + dinner on the wharf. Old Fisherman's Grotto is my favorite still. Too bad they don't like kids.