Friday, July 27, 2012

Summer So Far

This post is a bit of a photo dump (mostly with photos from my iphone), but I wanted to record a few of the things that we've been doing this summer.

Isaac's last day of pre-school was June 21st.  His teacher, Miss Abbey, hosted a graduation ceremony for their class and the parents were invited to come watch and have a little party afterwards.  Since Isaac has a late birthday, we are going to have him wait one more year before he starts kindergarten.  For the coming year he's going to do a Pre-K program in a mainstream class.

Isaac with his bus driver Ms Jackie.  He will really miss riding the bus next year. 
It was nice having an open schedule for the last part of June.  We had play dates, went to the pool, the park, and the Lagoon.  Last year during Isaac's summer break, Luke was just a couple of weeks old so I wasn't very good about getting us out of the house.  This summer has been the quite the opposite so far.  Isaac has a pretty busy schedule for a 4 year old.  He is attending a "summer camp" for the month of July, so he goes to that in the mornings.  In the afternoons we have swimming lessons, speech therapy, and karate.

Aunt Wendy, cousin Ryan, and Isaac at the Lagoon

Isaac learning to play Mario Cart on the Wii with his cousin Ryan.  On the way home Isaac declared "Mom, we need that!"

Swimming lessons 

One of many library books we've read this summer, "All About Tanks"

Isaac wearing sparring gear at his karate class
Isaac had his first dentist appointment at the beginning of July.  I know I probably should have taken him much earlier, but just thinking about it filled me with dread.  Brushing his teeth everyday is kind of a nightmare.  He screams and cries and throws a fit because I am "hurting him."  So anyway, I went ahead and booked the appointment and tried my best to prep him for it by explaining what the dentist would do.  Then I crossed my fingers, held my breath, and said a little prayer.  And guess what?

He did awesome!  Not an ounce of whining and not a single tear shed.  I was completely shocked and so incredibly proud of him.  Oh yes, and no cavities!  

The big news for Luke so far this summer is that he has started walking!  He started taking steps at almost exactly 13 months old.  We were at Isaac's karate studio waiting for him to finish class when Luke first worked up the courage to take off on his own.  

He was pretty excited about this new skill at first, but then he kind of lost interest.  So the bad news is, it's been almost three weeks and he is just a little further along than in this video.  He is perfectly capable of walking but prefers to crawl.  It's quicker that way I guess.  But I keep encouraging him to practice those wobbly little steps and give him lots of big cheers when he does.  Isaac enjoys helping him out too.  

I only wish that Luke was as hesitant about climbing.  I think it started with Cracker's dog stairs a couple of months ago.  He figured out that he could reach new heights and it is oh so much fun to bounce around on the big couch like a wild little indian.  After that he started climbing just about everything else in the house that he could reach.  Beds, chairs, tables, toys, shelves, and my personal favorite - the oven.  

Lovely, right?  Once he has reached the limit of his ascent, he lets me know that he'd like to come down now by hollering "Ma! Maaaa! Ma!"  Of course I rush to his aid, only to have him turn around and climb up again in the very next second.  "Ma" (he pronounces it with a very short a - think "ma" like in magic, or sometimes "muh" - rather than the more drawn out "maw" sound) happens to be one of his only words right now and I am quite flattered.  He also says "da" for dog.  So we have a ways to go in the language department.  

Luke keeps busy by crawling around the house and finding things to explore, pull apart, and put in his mouth.  He is driving me crazy lately crawling in and out of the dog door.  Whenever I do laundry he always pulls apart the piles searching for his blankets.  I used these flannel receiving blankets as burp cloths when he was a little baby, and they have since turned into his loveys that he carries around and sleeps with. If he sees one high up out of his reach, sticking out of my bag, or buried in a pile of laundry, he goes crazy until he has it in his grasp.  The laundry thing is a little gross, but overall I think it's adorable that he loves them so much.  He likes to burry his face into them and roll around on them.

Luke gnawing on a red potato from the pantry
Enjoying his first popsicle

Luke was so excited to get to play trains with the big boys at his cousins' house

A few weeks ago we had a fun family night out.  We went to Boomer's and let Isaac drive the go carts. Charlie took him out on the big track and then Isaac had a couple of turns driving by himself on the little track.  Luke watched intently from the other side of the fence.  He kept gripping the bars and hollering but I couldn't tell if he was mad that he wasn't riding, or just letting us know that he thought they were really cool.

After dinner we had hamburgers at Mick's Karma Bar.  Gourmet burger bars are all the rage right now and we've been to a few of them.  I thought the burgers were fantastic, but I especially loved the fact that the seating was outdoors and surrounded by water fountains and large metal sculptures where the boys could go play.  It is in a business district so it's pretty empty there at dinner time.  

It's been a fun and busy summer so far.  We had some family visiting last weekend and did a lot of fun stuff while they were here, so I need to post about that next.  Isaac starts his new school year on August 6th, but that certainly won't be the end of summer fun for us.  

Monday, July 16, 2012

4th of July

The 4th of July has always been one of my favorite holidays and this year did not disappoint.  The Woodbridge community hosts several activities for the 4th, so we don't even have to go far to enjoy plenty of fun.

Charlie and I have run the 10k for the past several years (though I skipped out last year since I had given birth less than a month earlier and two years ago we were in Las Cruces).  This year I had a goal to set a new PR for myself.  Last time I did the Woodbridge run my time was 1 hour and 29 seconds (but that included about 14 stops to give Isaac snacks, drinks, and toys, and pick up things he'd thrown).  This year I really wanted to do it in under 50 minutes, though I felt it might be an overly ambitious goal.  One of the only nice things about running on a treadmill at the gym instead of outside on the trail, is that I've gotten quite a bit faster.  To keep things interesting I like to play with the speed & incline settings and I also just want to get my miles done faster so that I can get off!

For the race we borrowed another jogging stroller from a friend, and I got to push Luke while Charlie pushed Isaac.   I didn't feel too bad about giving Charlie the heavier, less patient, child since I have pushed him in all of the years past!* Charlie told me he wasn't going to worry about his time and just take it slow, but once the race started he quickly passed me up and we leap frogged each other the whole way.  In the end I beat him by about 30 seconds, but I have a suspicion that he let me beat him because he knew I had been working hard for a faster time.  I finished at 50:28 and though I know that was a fantastic time for me, I'm still kicking myself a bit that I was just 30 seconds shy of breaking that 50 minute mark.  Next year!

*Update - Charlie just read this post and informed that I am wrong!  He did stop and wait for me at the 3 mile mark one year and took Isaac for the last half of the race.  I don't know why I forgot about that.  Thanks Charlie!

Following the race there is a bike parade where all of the children can decorate their bikes, wagons, scooters, etc.  Some people throw out candy, and there is a band and a color guard, and I think one float.  It is pretty simple but Isaac thinks it is a lot of fun.

We had planned to spend the afternoon at the pool, but the weather turned out to be unseasonably cloudy and cool all day long.  So we just hung out at home and then went to Happy Hour at Sonic to get diet cherry limeades.  For dinner we made fried chicken, macaroni & cheese, corn, and watermelon.  I decided not to make homemade ice cream since Charlie doesn't really care for it and I didn't want to have to eat it all myself, but by the time evening rolled around I was really kicking myself for not making it!  It was a tradition in my family growing up and one of my favorite things about the 4th.  So I'll add that to the list for next year too.

After dinner we went outside to do "fireworks."  We are pretty limited here in Southern CA, but we did pick up a few packages of poppers for Isaac to play with.  We had the kind where you pull the string and all of the streamers pop out, and then the little snap-pop things that you throw on the ground.

The 4th of July may be Cracker's least favorite day of the entire year.  He is absolutely terrified of fireworks.  Even the little poppers that you throw on the ground.  Also, I forced him to take photos wearing a silly patriotic hat, because I am a nerd like that.  Charlie was a party pooper and didn't wear the appropriate colors for the day, so he got to be the photographer.

Woodbridge does a firework show over the lake, which is just 1/4 mile from our house.  So we kept the boys up a little late and walked down the street to watch the show.  Isaac was excited to turn the lights on his light-up necklace that Charlie had bought for him a few days earlier.

We had about a 15 minute wait before the show started and you would have thought little Luke had ants in his pants.  He could not hold still for one second (though that was not unique to this occasion).  Isaac learned the song "You're a Grand Old Flag" in Primary this year, and has been singing it non-stop.  So we kept busy by singing "You're a Grand Old Baby" while flying Luke around in the air and Isaac took dozens of crazy pictures with my phone.

I wasn't sure how Luke would react to the fireworks, but once they started he held perfectly still in my lap (I was shocked) and watched the entire show.

We had a great day!  I think I've said this before, but if anyone ever wants to come visit us for the 4th of July - Woodbridge is a great place to spend the holiday and we'd love to have company!