Monday, May 31, 2010

Memorial Day Weekend

I waited until Friday to tell Ava we were going to the beach.
She gets WAY TOO EXCITED about this sort of stuff.
If you tell her too early she will not let the subject go,
"Are we leaving now??? What about NOW??"
The minute I did tell her she ran into her room,
took her jammies off and put her coat on.
She came running back announcing,
"I'm ready to go!!"

Here she is, naked, except for her coat, clearly ready to go.
3 hours later we left : )

To stall her I sent her to pack her bag,
to her credit she did much better then last time.

This time she included about 4 pairs of jammies and 4 coats.
No diapers.
Hummmm. I will have to think on that one.

John got a work-related phone call on the way to the beach
& needed to do some emailing, Mom's beach house still has no
internet access so we headed over to McDonalds to utilize
their free internet.

I haven't stepped inside a McDonalds in about 20 years
but I was pretty excited to let Ava try out their play equipment.
I even decided to let her have a happy meal.
I figured every child should have at least one in their life, right?

The play structure said you had to be at least 3 and about 4 ft tall.
She is neither of these things but I figured she could try it out.
The thing looked pretty huge and over-whelming.
I decided to go in with her to get her used to it.

She LOVED it.
She climbed to the very top by herself
and went down the slide about 600 times.

I was so happy she wanted to do it herself.
I hated climbing in there.
It was so uncomfortable and claustrophobic!

Next we headed back to the house.
We invited our favorite beach family over to play.

Here is Tyler & all his cute:

She's not so bad either ; )
But seriously? THAT FACE!!
Rhi with her hands full, a glimpse into her future:
She even "taught" Ava Ring Around the Rosie.
It was so cute. Tyler kept running to get both their hands
and when they would fall down he would run away laughing.
Then he was right back to do it again.

The Updenkelder's stayed through dinner and games
& we had a wonderful time with them, as we always do.

Next to arrive was Auntie Jessica.
When Ava saw auntie's jammie pants she asked her,
"Auntie, what color are those pants?"
They ran, they laughed, they snuggled.
Saturday afternoon our good friends Katharina, Travis, Camden &
Morgan joined us. This was their first time at the beach house.
I was really excited to have them come,
I hope now they will make it a regular thing.

We played on the beach right away.

This is Morgan:
Me and Katharina:
My love:
Love this family shot!
Right afterward poor Morgan fell in the water
and a wave splashed right over her head.
She was pretty traumatized.
Katharina got her all dried and changed,
she spent most of the rest of the beach experience
clinging to momma.
My handsome husband and our poor dog.
Lily was so jealous of all the other dogs that get to run free.
I tried to explain to her how THEY COME BACK...

Camden found this starfish.
He spent much of his time trying to convince us it was still alive
& then saving it from all the seagulls that kept trying to eat it.
He got pretty worked up about those darn seagulls.

Ava was just so happy to play in the sand.
She built and destroyed a whole sand town.

Jessica got to cuddle with Morgan
When we got back to the house the girls decided to
sneak out and hit the outlet mall.
I bought Ava many more dresses she doesn't really need.
I have such a hard time justifying my obsession that I have
started buying them in the next size up for next year.

Isn't that practical of me?

When we got home we found our children covered in Doritos.

We washed them up and let them try on their new hats.
$2.45 each. Yes, I may be addicted to buying her things
but at least I stick to the deals : )

My mom, step-dad, brother Jeff & his girlfriend Fernanda all
joined us in time for dinner.
My sister and I made this fantastic meal together:
The main dish was chicken marinated in balsamic,
then grilled with feta cheese on top, served over a bed of
spinach with a delicious roasted red pepper sauce on top.
The side dish was an AMAZING mushroom risotto.
My sister made it from scratch, it was SO good!

I will definitely be making this dinner again.

After dinner we played with the kids.
Here are Camden & Morgan modeling sunglasses for us:

The next day Katharina & Travis decided it was imperative
that we go back to the beach for 2 reasons.

The first being that it is so fun to play down there,
the second and most important reason?
To try to un-traumatize both their kids.

Remember this?
Well, it was all the kids were talking about.
Camden had traumatic stories of how his sister almost drowned
and Morgan was sure she never wanted to go back to the beach.
No more ocean for her.
She was done.

So mission Have So Much Fun They Forget About Yesterday begun.

We played soccer:
and marveled over what a cute couple Jeff & Fernanda are:

Yes, she is pushing him.
I have never seen such an aggressive soccer style.
Any reason to keep their hands on each other : )

We laughed:
At one point Travis decided to take Lily for a run.
I was watching him and feeling really embarrased at how poorly Lily was doing.
I could see her in the distance biting the leash as he tried to run her.
She was totally in control, he was totally not.
When he returned he said,
"Lily is quite possibly the worst dog ever."

I couldn't help but defend her. Sort of.
The dog is wearing a freakin choke chain.
She shouldn't be hard to manage.
I explained to him he was giving her WAY too much slack.
If he choked up on her leash she would of done just fine.

Like the good wife that she is,
Katharina decided to prove her dear husband wrong.

It may be hard to tell in the photo
but Lily instantly turned into a show dog.
Watch out! We are going to be rich!

This time the kids played in this water,
it was much safer.
They jumped in it, ran back and forth & made a
toy boat out of a shoe to float down the river.

Here are the two kids ready to get de-sanded.
Combined trauma banished.
But they are kids so they may choose to play it up later,
only time will tell.

Ava was so exhausted that she fell asleep in the bean bag chair.
She was down for about 2 hours.
Boy was she grumpy when she woke up.
I guess naps really don't agree with her.

She climbed up to cuddle with Papa John

I couldn't stop taking pictures of these two.
They are almost as cute as Ava.


This morning Ava crawled under the bean bag chair and
announced "Look! I am a turtle!!"

Seriously? How cute is that???

I loved how people kept phasing in and out of our weekend.
It made things ever changing and so much fun.
It also helped to make it feel longer.
I have to say, at least for now,

Best. Weekend. Ever.