Saturday, February 20, 2010

Claire Turns 4!

As any parent knows, time goes way too fast when it comes to your children growing up. I still refer to Claire as "baby." I guess now that she is officially 4 years old and she has a baby brother, I should call her something else. Nah. She is still my baby girl.

We celebrated today with her first big girl birthday party. She invited a few friends from school and Cinderella was the main event. I knew Claire was excited when she woke up and immediately put on the new dress we bought her for the party. The deal was sealed when I saw her face when Cinderella arrived. Yep. I got teary. I wasn't alone. I think Oma, RoRo, and Aunt Lisa all got teary more than once! RoRo lost it during the princess dance. I got teary every time Claire reached out to touch Cinderella telling her she likes her dress, her hair, her headband, her everything. Oma barely made it through the finale when Cinderella told the kids she hoped all of their dreams came true and sang the "Dream is a Dream" song. It was beautiful! Even Zac stopped and was wide eyed to hear Cinderella's beautiful voice. The 4 boys we invited spent the majority of their time playing outside while all of the girls enjoyed princess time. But all in all it was a success!

This video gives you a great insite to the event. Make sure you watch untill the end to see Zac being...Zac.

Happy Birthday to the most unique, creative, kind, caring, smart, and beautiful girl in the world! We love you!

Monday, February 15, 2010

Our Future

Everyone is well aware that California is in pretty bad shape, especially in the area of education. Last Thursday the Superintendent of CUSD (Eric and my employer) made the rounds, informing all teachers of the impending doom.

The optimist in me believes that Eric and I will be exactly where we are next year. But I am also able to run all of the other possibilities through my mind. One of those senerios being that we are both jobless, we sell the house, and move. Yeah, maybe with mom and dad. Wouldn't that be fabulous? ;)

Anyway, just for fun, I came home to the kids and asked them if they would like to move somewhere new?

Me: We would have to leave our school, Oma and Opa, Chad and Lisa, Butch and RoRo, our friends, and our church.

Zac: Awwww. I don't want to leave our church. (pause) But I do hate choir.

Zac: Oh! I do want to live where Andrew lives!! But there are tornadoes. I don't like those!

Later that night during dinner.

Eric: Wouldn't it be fun to move to another country? (Eric and I are beginning to think we may be socialists and should move to Canada, but that's another post.)

Zac: I want to live in AFRICA!!! Oh, but they don't have any food.

Zac: No, I want to live in China 'cause they have really good pasta!

Eric: (spits out his drink)

Claire: I LOVE PASTA!!!!

Our fate will be known in a few short weeks. Cross your fingers...and toes...and well anything you can!

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Henderson Visit

My brother Mark and his family came to visit last Thursday. After all the yucky weather we have had I prayed that it would clear up in time for their arrival and our planned trip to Disneyland. Well, prayers were answered and beautiful it was! It took about 3-5 seconds for the cousins to greet each other then run off to play as if no time had passed. It wasn't long before the big boys, Andrew and Zac, were off creating "mischief of one kind and then another," and Thomas and Claire busied themselves with the amazing ability to take turns and share without any help from others.

We dove right in and whisked everyone off to Disneyland the next morning. We have been waiting for just the right time when everyone was old enough to really enjoy it (aside from Luke of course). Thanks to the advice of my other sister-in-law,Lisa, and fabulous timing, we had a spectacular day! We had front row seats to the most interactive parade I have ever seen! Andrew and Zac attempted a Conga line, Claire and Thomas played a drum and gave hi-fives to every dancer who came close enough. We rode countless rides. Much to our surprise, Claire was fearless and rode EVERYTHING. Yeah, roller coasters! I still can't believe it. Dumbo was a special favorite to my adorable nephew Thomas who isn't a fan of loud and dark and FYI, every Disney ride has loud and dark, except Dumbo of course. Andrew announced at one point that this was the best day of his life. And Zac, who sometimes can't admit how wonderful something is, proclaimed his love for Disney as well! After one roller coaster in particular both Zac and Claire (yes I'm documenting it)shouted "Jesus!" They took the words right out of my mouth!

The next day we wasted no time in getting the Henderson's over to our house for 2 reasons. My kids were dying for them to come and to get away from RoRo who came down with the stomach flu. (Hugest bummer!) I lost track of how many hours the kids played, Mark computered (a new word created just for him), and
Susan and I sat and enjoyed. The boys climbed trees, Thomas and Claire compromised; princesses then monsters. Luke crawled and explored, soaking it all in. No doubt he's anxious to get in on the action!

Sunday we went down town without still sick RoRo and Butch who wasn't feeling well either. We had a yummy lunch and finished with yogurt and some unplanned water play. Sara joined us so we were able to get the "all the grandchildren" picture for RoRo.

Sunday night we grabbed our awesome babysitter and her boyfriend to bravely come to our house and watch 5 kids. (I think her comment when we got home was something about the fact that she really watched 6 kids since her boyfriend was there!) Mark, Susan, Eric, and I enjoyed sushi, beer, and fun storytelling. We have been able to do this the last 2 trips and I think it needs to be tradition. My official declaration!

Our last day together involved a very productive trip to the mall. By productive I mean outfits! We divided and conquered: H&M and Borders, then a meeting at the food court.

Sadly the trip had to end with another family member down (of course it was Claire) and tears had by all.

Great memories were made and I look forward to future adventures! Was that too cheesy?!

Click here for Susan's recount of the trip.