Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Beach Day!

 Every summer I hear friends talking about heading to one of the beaches of Lake Washington.  I've never stopped to think "WE should go to a beach on Lake Washington.  It's close.  There is sand.  There is water.  It would be fun."  This year I finally got whacked over the head with the idea to go to the beach.  Guess what?  Lake Washington is warm and wonderful.  Especially during an amazingly warm summer like we just had.  There are several beaches to choose from and they are all pretty kid friendly.  The one closest to us has a lot of sand.  The one a little farther away has a deeper swimming area (this is a big deal to Nora who is part fish).  They both have roped off swimming areas and life guards.  They both have docks to jump off of (if you pass the swim test) and play structures on the beach for the kids to play on.  I can't believe it has taken me so long to get to either of these beaches.  I feel that I have wasted a lot of time! 
 One evening when it was upper 90s outside and lower 90s inside we headed out to have a picnic dinner on the grass and then spent as much time in the water as we could.  It felt heavenly.  The kids were just recovering from round one of hand-foot-mouth disease at this time and were so happy to be leaving the house.

 The sunset that evening was beyond what words or pictures can describe.  After it came out the bottom of those clouds it looked like blood.  The wild fires on the east side of the state always make for beautiful sunsets over here. 
The week before school started back up we met a bunch of friends for a beach day.

 Henry sat in his chair getting a tan and texting friends.
 We have some seriously cute friends.

 May they always be this sweet and pure!
 This particular day Ezra was very sad because he had stitches on his knee and was not allowed to go swimming.  He thought he would be bored and sad all day as he watched his friends frolic in the water.  Turns out they didn't want to swim as much as they wanted to be sand engineers.  Four hours after we arrived he still had not complained of boredom a single time.
From now on--I plan to be spending some serious time at these beaches in the summer.  Next year will probably rain for all of June, July and August--but that's okay--I think Nora would still get in the water and swim.  She really is part fish.

Monday, October 6, 2014

 On the first day of summer vacation the kids and I made a list of all the things they wanted to do over the 2 1/2 months they had off.  Visiting the Point Defiance Zoo in Tacoma was high on the list.  Visiting Grandpa and Grandma Tractor in Gig Harbor was also high on the list.  The kids were able to earn enough money to pay for a trip to the zoo from their bake sale--yeah!  We especially had fun in the aquarium exhibits.  There were divers in the shark tank, which was kind of cool to watch. 
 The pot belly sea horses were fun to look at.

 It was a blue Friday--still a pre-season game, though.  And a Mariner's game that night as well--back when we still thought the play offs might be a possibility.  Sigh.
 I think it's pretty easy to tell that they are brothers.
 At the end of our time at the zoo the kids realized they still had a little bake sale money left over--so we bought some delicious ice cream to cool down with.  Nora had an appropriate shirt for our little treat.

 We spent a lot of time watching the giant walrus under water.  I was trying to get a picture of the kids with the walrus coming up behind them, but he kept teasing me and veering off to the side of where the kids were whenever I had my camera ready.
 He's the large blob there on the left.
 Back home the kids remembered why we call him "Grandpa Tractor". Henry became a riding lawn mower addict right off the bat.  As soon as the mower was turned off and parked he would go over, climb on it and start rocking back and forth to try to make it go. 

 Daddy came to Gig Harbor to join us for the weekend.

 Ole Flower Face.
 Ezra got a quick driving lesson...
 and then took over on his own.  So sad, wasn't it just yesterday that he was taking his first ride with Grandpa on the mower and making up the name "Grandpa Tractor"????

 We're all scared of the day when she becomes a driver!

 Aunt Lynne and her family came over for part of the weekend.  It was fun to see them all.  Her daughter Erin came and brought her dogs as well, much to the delight of our kids.

 "Planking is easy, Mom!  I don't know what everyone is complaining about"  says the boy with incorrect form : ) 
We were glad that we could fit in these fun activities from our list of thing we wanted to do over the summer!

Thursday, October 2, 2014

The First Day of School Was a Month Ago!

 Yep--it's been a whole month since the first day of school.  I did take the pictures on the actual first day, I promise.  We were a little bit late because of it, in fact. 
 The weather cooperated with Caroline's desires for that first day and cooled down a bit--allowing her to wear her new vest.  After that it heated back up until it was mid-90s for a few days. 
 Even though I am terribly behind in my blog life, I am making small attempts to stay up to date in real life.  For instance, Nora and I got the peaches canned/frozen before it was too late and there were no more peaches available.  I never would have gotten it done without her help--and I'm not even trying to be nice about it.  Her help was necessary--she is a pro at peeling the blanched peaches!

 I'm hoping that some day I will be back to the point in life where I'll look back on these pictures and be exceedingly embarrassed about the state of my kitchen/house.  Right now I'm too tired to care.
 Henry helped out by climbing into the fridge and teething on the shelves.
 Some of the other ways we fill our days whilst the kids are off getting smarter include....
 Pacifier stacking...
 Making giant messes (more on that soon)...
 chowing down on crayons....
 Dumping out all of Nora's pre-school work....
And eating more crayons.  Once again--it's a real good thing he's so doggone cute!  A few times Nora and I have even actually worked on some of that pre-school stuff.  She wants to do school every day.  I try my best to fit it in two or three times a week.  Key word:  try.