Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Costa Rica

Oh Costa Rica, you are a beautiful place. We have been planning this trip for a long time. I have been to Mexico, which I know is technically a foreign country, but in a lot of ways this felt like my first real foreign travel trip. We were supposed to have 6 couples go, but 2 had to drop out for miscellaneous reasons and then Kim went and got knocked up so the possibility of Zika took her out as well. So sad :<( We had a blast with the Thompsons and McDowells however! We left super early Tuesday morning, and after 5 uneventful hours on a plane we landed in Liberia. We got to the hotel close to 5, and spent a kick back evening exploring the hotel and eating ridiculous quantities of food. The next morning after breakfast, Kyra and I went to a yoga class. I was thinking the whole time, "I'M DOING YOGA IN FREAKING COSTA RICA!!! THIS IS AMAZING!!!"
 
The first couple days we just hung around the resort. We enjoyed the beach, and did some kayaking.

We spent a lot of time lounging by the pool, and reading books while people brought us delicious fruity drinks.

We reserved the hot tub by the spa several times
We played volleyball in the pool and on the beach. We made friends with other people who saw how much fun we were having and wanted to join in! Victor was getting a little close to Niki lol.
We saw iguanas EVERYWHERE. They move surprisingly fast!
 Friday we did the Pure Adrenaline excursion. We rode horses through the tropical forest to a little river... 
where we went tubing. Seriously it was so much fun! The rapids were way more intense than I expected, and we had a blast.
After that we did zip lining, rapelling, and rock climbing. Such a fun day!
We finished a little early, so our guides took us to Liberia to explore for a bit. There are iguanas everywhere!
 September 15th is Costa Rica's independence day, so it was fun to see everyone out and about celebrating.
We spent a lot of time looking for monkeys. We had heard that they hung out on a little road down from the hotel, but the first 2 times we went we had no luck. We still found the giant tree and had fun traipsing through the forest!
 For our second excursion, we went a little farther away to the rainforest. We stopped at a little bakery in a little town, it was cool to get a taste of the real Costa Rica. 
This tour was nice because there were only 4 people aside from us, we went on a 4 mile hike through the rainforest. It was beautiful!
 
 We saw some really pretty waterfalls. There was a nearby volcanic eruption in June which apparently changed the water chemistry, this water used to be bright blue. It was still pretty though!

We stopped our shuttle several times to see wildlife, and we finally saw some monkeys. Way far away, but we saw them!
I can't even say how many batida de cocos and Miami Vices we consumed. A ridiculous quantity. They were all virgin, until we got the one that wasn't. Niki asked if her drink tasted funny, so I took a sip, and it tasted gross like cough syrup. How do people drink that stuff???
 
We didn't find the milkshake place until  few days before we left, so we made up for lost time! Our typical evening routine was this:
-4 course dinner at one of the specialty restaurants
-more dessert at the buffet
-milkshakes at the coffee place
-watch an episode of the Man in the High Castle in our room with everyone and sometimes order room service. Yeah, we were out of control!
 We saw some beautiful sunsets, and some crazy rainstorms!
Rich and I went on a couple of runs. Holy moly it is hot and humid there. Less than a mile in we would be dripping in sweat. So pretty though!
The last morning, Rich and I decided to try to look for the monkeys one more time. We got close to the spot, and saw some off in the trees. We had brought some bananas and fruit, so we started waving it around wildly I couldn't believe it when several of the monkeys came right on over to us. It was so cool! One of my favorite parts of the trip.
 
This little guy was a hoot to watch.
SUCH A GREAT WEEK!!! We missed our kids a ton though, it was nice to get back to them.


Monday, September 11, 2017

The Twins are 7!

Since it is a non-party year, I asked the girls what they wanted to do for their birthday. Whitney said bowling, and Sabrina said roller skating. They invited a few friends, and off we went! First was the bowling alley.
 We had the lane for a couple hours, the girls had fun but were way more entertained by the arcade area off to the side (which I couldn't see, so I kept telling them to come back. It was like herding cats lol).
 Next we headed to the roller rink. This was an odd choice to me, because Sabrina has only been skating once before and it was horrible. She fell a million times and hated it. They asked for skates for their birthday though, so we gave them to the girls a little early in preparation. It still wasn't pretty, but they started to get the hang of it a bit by the end!

 Once the session ended we went to get dinner at the requested Del Taco. They all picked something that cost a dollar or less so it was super cheap! It was FREEZING in there though. SO much so that Hayden went up to the counter to ask them to turn the air off ha ha. Then we took our freezing selves to Sonic. We hit all the points on their request list, and I was so tired by the time we were done!!!
 We had their cakes on their actual birthday. Sabrina wanted Wonder Woman, and Whitney wanted an emoji cake. Not too complicated, I'll take it :>) Love these 2 girls!!!

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

First Day of School

Brendan
He is in middle school!!!! Holy cow how did this happen. He is now too cool to have the one haircut I know how to do (ha!), so now he has trendy hair. He is in the magnet program for the district, which means he will have all 4 core classes with the same smarty-pant kids, and that makes me feel a WHOLE lot better (cause middle school can be BRUTAL! And there are kids there who try to be way more grown up than they are!). He is also still playing the trumpet. We wiggled our way into a GREAT carpool group with some fun boys from the ward which makes this mama super happy as well :>) I asked him how he felt about starting a new school, he said he was "excurvous." I asked what the heck that meant, and he said, "You know, excited and nervous!" If there's not a word for what you are feeling then I guess you just make one up :>)
 This kid wears his fleece-lined hoody ALL THE TIME. Even when it's triple digits outside. He insists that he really is cold, I don't know about that but it makes me hot just looking at him!
 I didn't get many pictures of him because his ride got there a few minutes early. He did come home from school saying his day was great. He also said, "I got used to middle school a lot faster than I thought I would." HA! Here is his annual questionnaire:
1. What is your favorite food? Ice cream
2. What is your favorite sport? baseball
3. What is your favorite tv show? Mighty Med
4. Who is the coolest person on earth? Rob Gronkowski
5. What is your favorite thing about school? science and math
6. If I could go anywhere in the world I would go to: Russia
7. What is your favorite color? green
8. When I grow up I want to be a: software engineer and astronomer
9. What is your favorite song? Let it Flow (Star Wars parody)
10. What is your favorite book? Fablehaven series
11. What food do you NOT like? broccoli
12. Who is your best friend? Maxx and Hunter
13. What is your favorite holiday? Easter
14. What is your favorite game? Star Wars Monopoly
15. What is your favorite toy? video games
16. What is your favorite breakfast? pancakes and pop tarts
17. If I had one wish, it would be: fast like the Flash
18. What do you do best? play video games
19. When I was little I used to: poop my pants
20. What is your favorite memory? cliff jumping in Havasu
21. What is your favorite movie? Star Wars
height: 5'3"
weight: 105 lbs
shoe size: 8
 Carson
This kid! His moods swing like a pendulum, I get nervous for his teenage years lol. He LOVES anything related to sports, and can tell you all about every Dodger player. He's had his braces on for a few months now, and his eyes still cross all over the place when he takes his glasses off. He got into the GATE program this year, which he is really excited about!

 He has a few friends he really likes in his class, and said his teacher seems really nice and he had a great first day! Here are his questions:
1. What is your favorite food? pizookies
2. What is your favorite sport? Dodgers baseball
3. What is your favorite tv show? Mighty Med
4. Who is the coolest person on earth? Dad
5. What is your favorite thing about school? science
6. If I could go anywhere in the world I would go to: LEGOLAND Hotel
7. What is your favorite color? blue
8. When I grow up I want to be a: paleontologist or marine biologist 
9. What is your favorite song? Centuries or U Can't Touch This
10. What is your favorite book? Percy Jackson series
11. What food do you NOT like? tomatoes
12. Who is your best friend? Andres, Brennen and Nathan
13. What is your favorite holiday? Christmas
14. What is your favorite game? Star Wars Monopoly
15. What is your favorite toy? Legos
16. What is your favorite breakfast? cinnamon rolls
17. If I had one wish, it would be: to have a magic wand so I can make many wishes
18. What do you do best? sports
19. When I was little I used to: play with cars
20. What is your favorite memory? when I slid into home under someone's legs
21. What is your favorite movie? Jurassic Park series
height: 4'6 1/2"
weight: 66 lbs
shoe size: 2
 Sabrina
The twins started first grade! Which means I have all the kids in school ALL DAY!!! They are ready. Sabrina is a sweet girl. She loves her friends, and is super affectionate. She LOVES to give hugs. She has the funniest little giggle with her missing teeth and it's pretty adorable! She is reading easy chapter books and excited to learn.


 They are in the same class this year, and she came home all excited about the new friends she made and her teacher. Here are her questions:
1. What is your favorite food? Fish sticks and ice cream
2. What is your favorite sport? dancing
3. What is your favorite tv show? Liv and Maddie
4. Who is the coolest person on earth? Mommy
5. What is your favorite thing about school? reading
6. If I could go anywhere in the world I would go to: Hawaii
7. What is your favorite color? teal
8. When I grow up I want to be a: actress
9. What is your favorite song? Prty in the USA
10. What is your favorite book? Magic Ponies
11. What food do you NOT like? celery
12. Who is your best friend? Mommy
13. What is your favorite holiday? Christmas
14. What is your favorite game? croquet
15. What is your favorite toy? my white doggie
16. What is your favorite breakfast? eggs and sausage
17. If I had one wish, it would be: that I could have every American Girl doll in the world.
18. What do you do best? reading
19. When I was little I used to: crawl around
20. What is your favorite memory? going to Magic Mountain
21. What is your favorite movie? the Descendants
height: 4'3"
weight: 55 lbs
shoe size: 2

Whitney
She is a spunky one for sure! Whitney tends to boss people around. A lot. Usually Sabrina goes with it, but sometimes she snaps and then the tears come. And keep coming :>) She is doing great in school! She started doing speech towards the end of kinder, so hopefully that will help her be easier to understand! She came home from her first day and said, "It was ok." This one is not easily impressed :>)
 

Here are her questions:
1. What is your favorite food? ice cream
2. What is your favorite sport? basketball
3. What is your favorite tv show? Sofia the First
4. Who is the coolest person on earth? Mom and Dad
5. What is your favorite thing about school? recess
6. If I could go anywhere in the world I would go to: Utah in the snow
7. What is your favorite color? pink 
8. When I grow up I want to be a: baker
9. What is your favorite song? Jack Johnson music
10. What is your favorite book? The Teeny Tiny Witches
11. What food do you NOT like? onions
12. Who is your best friend? Hayden
13. What is your favorite holiday? Christmas
14. What is your favorite game? Star Wars monopoly
15. What is your favorite toy? my robot dog
16. What is your favorite breakfast? pancakes and waffles
17. If I had one wish, it would be: that my kitchen toys were real and would never run out of stuff.
18. What do you do best? playing Phase 10
19. When I was little I used to: drink milk
20. What is your favorite memory? Disneyland Hotel
21. What is your favorite movie? High School Musical 2
height: 4' 1 1/2"
weight: 55 lbs
shoe size: 1
Love these kids!

Monday, August 14, 2017

Water day

The kids wanted to get the slip'n'slide out, so Rich set it up. At the bottom of the slide of course :>) We couldn't even use it last year with the drought restrictions, so the kids were super excited! 



 Of course water and the trampoline needed to be involved too. Love when the kids entertain themselves outside, playing with each other with no electronics. Makes my mama heart happy!!!