Sunday, August 20, 2017

Summer Break: Week 9 and the Most Inefficient Way to School Shop

Well, not a whole lot to report this week.  Paul was off this week so he got to do some fun stuff with the girls. Monday they went shopping for all of their soccer gear, one day they were running around trying to find eclipse glasses and ended up visting his work since they were in the area, they went to lunch at Chick-fil-a for the first time (we've had it for a few years but it's not super close so they've never been.  It's close to my work so I was able to go once and frankly, I can take or leave it), they checked out the humane society for a dog but didn't find one, and Friday they went to Northwest Trek Wildlife Park.  They mainly wanted to try the zip line that we didn't do the last time we were there, but I guess they weren't too impressed with the one that they were able to do (there is a bigger one for people 18 and over).  They still had fun, though, and got to see lots of cool animals.

Then, over the weekend, I took the girls school shopping.  A few years ago I decided that it would be much easier to take the girl shopping for school clothes one at a time and still shop for supplies together, or preferably, just me without them.  But of course, they want to pick out everything.  So we did that the last few years and it worked out ok, but this year for some reason it was crazy.  Last weekend, Paul took Olivia somewhere, and while they were gone Kayley and I sat down and shopped for clothes online at Old Navy.  We found a bunch of stuff she liked, which was great because up until a few weeks ago she would shop nowhere but Justice.  Now all of a sudden she doesn't like Justice anymore but she also doesn't like Target, Children's Place, Macy's or Kohl's so I didn't know what I was going to do but she agreed to look at Old Navy and she actually liked a bunch of stuff.  We'll see when it gets here if she still likes it.

Anyway, so she was mostly done (yay!), and then yesterday Paul took her hiking with some friends and I took Olivia shopping for her clothes (Justice, Target and the Gap outlet.  Oh, and Claire's for earrings).  It would have been nice to buy supplies at the same time, but Kayley wasn't with us and I want to get everything all at once.  Then, today Kayley really wanted to go shopping with me.  I thought I was done with her, at least for now until the weather gets colder, but no, she still wanted to go shopping because I took Olivia yesterday.  So today I took her to all the same places I took Olivia yesterday, almost.  Target (more for stuff for her room), Gap (just a sweatshirt) and Claire's (and a few other places at the outlet mall but didn't find what she wanted).  And now tomorrow (I took the day off to take them to the neighbors eclipse viewing party), I will take them both shopping for supplies.  Grrrr.  That's ok, though, because it was so crazy at Target today, shopping for supplies there tomorrow will be much better.

Sunday, August 13, 2017

Summer Break: Week 8

I was family-less last week!  Paul was on PTO and is again this week, and I'm not, so he took the girls (and at the last minute, their friend) to Crescent Bar.  I was really looking forward to having some alone time to work on all the projects I never have time for.  Unfortunately, between working, errands and chores like watering plants, cleaning the litter box, etc, I STILL didn't have much time for anything else.  I managed a blog post on Monday, and some consignment sale  prep on Tuesday but that's about it.  I really wanted to do some scrapbooking and some organizing but it just didn't happen.  But it was nice having the house to myself all week, and having it still be clean when I got home from work everyday!

Friday after work I packed up and joined them at Crescent Bar.

Some other friends went over on Thursday and stayed until today at the campground across the street.  We all went in together to rent a pontoon boat for the afternoon.  We went the "the Dune", a big sandbar that is a popular hangout spot for Crescent Bar vacationers.  Then we did some tubing.  Really fun.

Today we came home and now we're watching the first Seahawk pre-season game, which they are winning, 41-17 at the moment.  Whoo-hoo!

Monday, August 7, 2017

Summer Break: Week 7

Last week was very uneventful.  It was our nanny's last week with us before heading back to school.  She took them swimming a few times and out to frozen yogurt.

Te Sunday before last we went out to dinner with our friends John and Laura and their daughter Lindsay, who is a year and a half older than the girls.  We hatched a genius plan for this last weekend and it was executed brilliantly.

On Saturday we met on Mercer Island to watch the Blue Angels (part of Seattle's annual Seafair festival).  Then we brought Lindsay home with us for a sleepover, allowing John and Laura to have a date night.  They were going to camp out in the back yard in a tent, but after Paul going through the trouble of putting it up, they decided not to after all!

Then, on Sunday, John and Laura came to get all 3 and take them home for a sleepover at their place, allowing Paul and I to have a date night as well.  Win-win!

For our date, Paul and I went to the movie Dunkirk.  We had heard great things about it but it was just ehhh for us.  But that was the second movie we've seen in theaters in less than 3 months!  That's a record (since the girls were born).  Then we went to dinner at Agave on their outdoor patio.  Paul is off the next two weeks, so them having a sleepover on a Sunday was ok since he was home today and could go pick them up.  Then he was taking them to Crescent Bar for the week but they ended up taking Lindsay too.  I have to work this week so I will join them on Friday night, but in the meantime I have the house to myself for 4 nights!  I can do whatever I want once I'm home from work every day!  Too bad I have to work.  It would be awesome to have a few full days to work on all my projects I never have time for, but oh well, I'll take what I can get.

The Blue Angels thing used to be a tradition for us and John/Laura/Lindsay before I was working and could go on Friday when it's less crowded (although I'm not sure if it really is less crowded or not).  But this was the first time I've been since I started working.  Instead I can sometimes watch from the rooftop of my office building but it's not a very good view.





This is the I-90 floating bridge between Mercer Island and Seattle that they close down for the show.  It's pretty to cool to walk out on a big freeway to watch the show.

So now we are in week 8, and only have 23 days until school starts.  It goes so fast!

Sunday, July 30, 2017

Summer Break: Week 6

This week was just getting back in the groove after our vacation.  It was so hard going back to work on Monday!  And I just finally got caught up on laundry this weekend.

Dayna, our awesome nanny, did some fun stuff with the girls.  They went to Starbucks for breakfast on Monday, since the housekeeper was coming and they needed to get out of the house.  Then another day they went out for Thai food for lunch, and yesterday she took them to Michael's for craft supplies.  They ended up getting a tie-dye kit and some plain white t-shirts and then on Friday they dyed them.

Thursday night our neighbor took his girls and ours to the outdoor movie in the park and then Friday night they went to a birthday party at the pottery painting place and then a sleep over at the birthday girl's house (same neighbors/friends that they went to the movie with).

Saturday was the first weekend day in forever with no plans.  I was finally able to work on some of my projects, in particular getting some items ready for the upcoming consignment sale.  I also spent some relaxing time on a lawn chair outside reading a book, and maybe taking a short nap :)

Sunday we went to church and then the girls went to a friend's for a playdate.  While they were there some friends that we went on the cruise with called and wanted to meet up for dinner so we did, and then stopped for free ice cream at the brand new Bartell Drugs in our neighborhood.

Friday, July 28, 2017

Caribbean Cruise! (Summer Break: Week 5)

So, after a little over a year of waiting and anticipating, our big Caribbean Cruise was last week.  It was so fun!

We flew to Ft. Lauderdale on Friday, the 14th, spent the night and took a shuttle to the cruise terminal on Saturday.  We met up with all our friends who had flown in on various days, boarded the ship and we were off!

A view from the ship before leaving Miami

Sunday and Monday were both days at sea, so we spent most of our time by the pool and exploring the ship.

One of the two pools

The H20 deck, with movie screen, bar, 2 hot tubs and a cool cave-like water feature

One of the water slides

A giant chess board

Ropes course

Cave-like water feature

We went to a few shows during the week.  One was a comedy/juggling show, one was a regular comedian, and one was a dinner show with a singing group.

The girls and friends at the juggling show

Meeting the juggler, Scott Cavanaugh or something like that, after the show

Tuesday we were in St. Thomas.

The girls' friend, Lindsay, in the middle

We went on a snorkeling excursion.  We rode on a catamaran to St. John, to a place called Honeymoon Beach.  We snorkeled for an hour or so and then rode back.  They were serving rum punch and champagne, but I didn't have either because I forgot to take my Dramamine and was feeling a little seasick.  Plus, I don't like rum or champagne.  I prefer vodka and wine, or margaritas.  Although, I did have a Bahama Mama one day poolside and that became my drink of choice for the rest of the cruise.

Wednesday we were in Tortola.  We went on an excursion to a place called the Baths, on the island of Virgin Gourda.  Absolutely stunning.  You hike though all these caves and rock formations and it's really beautiful.

L-R: Family friend Calvin, Paul's sister Cheryl, Olivia, Me and friend Lindsay

I took this with my water-proof camera and all of them turned out blurry but I thought it was cute anyway

Blurry again

Thursday was another day at sea, and then Friday we were in Nassau, Bahamas.  The girls got their hair braided, then we went on an excursion to swim with dolphins.  So fun.  They don't let you take pictures, and since we had just done it in Mexico last year we didn't buy any of the photos so I have nothing to post of that adventure.

Saturday morning we arrived back in Miami and went on an excursion to the Everglades.  We rode around in an airboat but didn't see much, then they have a little show with some alligators and some reptiles on display.  The girls got to hold Snappy, a baby alligator.  So cute.

That tour included transportation to the airport, but we were about 5 hours early for our flight, because Alaska only has one flight per day out of Ft. Lauderdale and it was at 6:50 or something.  But we just read and the girls had their iPads and we had an early dinner and it was finally time to board and head home.

Long wait at the airport

There were 19 people in our group all total, including Paul's parents and sisters and a bunch of friends.  It was so fun.  We all did our own thing during the day but we did do a lot of the same excursions, and we were usually with at least a few other people from our group most of the time, and then we would all met up for dinner most nights.  It was great and I'm dying to go on another one.

Trying out the mojito bar

Wine Tasting