Thursday, December 4, 2014

Monterey Bay Aquarium!

The 3 of us went to California to visit Dad and Cory in October. I was surprised to think that this was my first time back to Cali all year! We always love going to Pop and Grammy's because it's relaxing and fun. AJ played in the garden, fed the turtles a HUGE zucchini that Cory had grown, ran around with chickens and played with the neighbor kids Hudson and Mackenzie. 

On Sunday we split up, left AJ with Pop and Grammy and all headed up north to the Monterey Bay Aquarium. Pop and Grammy wanted to take AJ there and Jason and I wanted to go too! So all day Sunday, Jason and I got some adult time; we went wine tasting, went into the super cute shops and had a nice dinner on the pier. Pop, Grammy and AJ went to a really cool park and went to Bubba Gump's for dinner. 

The next morning we all met up for breakfast and then headed to the aquarium. This place so neat! We watched a shark feeding, checked out the jellyfish and walked around the whole place. It really was a great experience for everyone. 

Pop and AJ with HUGE zucchini for the turtles

Walking with the chickens- this picture always makes me laugh


We found out that AJ LOVES Clam Chowder- who knew?


Jason had been talking with AJ about playing flag football over the summer and when it became available, we signed him up. AJ is not the most physical kid. He isn't really into wrestling or rough housing so I wasn't sure how he would do. 

We signed him up with his friend, Andrew. They had practice and a game once a week. There were kids on his team who obviously had been playing before, but also those who were just starting out. His coach was really good, taught them how to stretch and they learned a few plays. AJ really seemed to enjoy himself. He would try to get the flags of the other players, but many times he did that after the play was over :) Twice he got the ball and took it the wrong direction :) It was so cute to watch him with the other boys. They played around, laughed and learned some football. 

Go Red Wolves!

He's a First Grader!

It's been a while since I've blogged. I was having problems getting pictures to load on here and then it became really overwhelming with months of things to catch up on. But here goes.

School started for AJ back in August. We weren't quite ready for the summer to end. We had a wet summer and would have loved a few more pool days. AJ was lucky enough to have his same teacher from last year, Mrs. Hayden, which made the first day so much easier. AJ walked in and was happy to be there. There was another boy in the class that was crying and did not want his dad to leave and AJ befriended him right away. It's so nice to see him be such a kind-hearted person. 

First grade certainly is a lot different than Kindergarten. The work is harder, the rules are more strict and homework is not optional anymore. AJ has math and spelling homework almost everyday. He doesn't love to do it, but it isn't usually a big challenge. 

First day of 1st Grade!

Monday, July 21, 2014

Buena Vista Camping Adventure

This weekend, we ventured out to Buena Vista (2.5 hours away) for a camping trip with some new friends of ours. AJ and Andrew went to Castle Academy together for pre-school and ended up both going to ACS for Kindergarten, though they weren't in the same class. We found out not too long ago that they also live around the corner from us. The boys have had a few play dates together and get along really well. Andrew is a super nice kid and his parents are great too! Valerie and Dan invited us on this adventure that was supposed to include a few other people but it ended up just being our two families. It was awesome!
The plan was to camp at the KOA campgrounds Friday and Saturday nights and on Saturday have a fun filled day of rafting and horseback riding. It sounded so fun to me! I was a bit worried though about how AJ would handle it all. He's been dealing with some fears lately and I worried he would he afraid. Well, he wasn't! He had a BLAST!
On Friday, Andrew came over for a few hours to play before we left. Then he rode up with us. Let me tell you- these boys are really good, but I am not used to 2 kids in the car together that long! Who knew that when playing the "silent game" they would say "pause game" 100 times and talk. It was funny..and not silent!
Headed out to go camping!

We arrived at the KOA campground. It was super fun!

The kids headed straight to this park. It was great because our site was close enough to watch them.

This was also at the campsite- they made breakfast on the weekends. YUM!

On Saturday, we were up early and headed out to go rafting. AJ was a little hesitant when the guide was giving us instructions. What to do if someone falls out, what if the boat flips over, etc.. I tried distract him, but also listen in case I needed the info. I will also admit, I was a little scared myself. I ha never done it before and in the back of my mind was remembering a few moms who asked me "You're really taking AJ rafting?" haha!

Listening to the guide give us instructions

Getting our gear on!

At the river- just about to get on the boat!

When we got on the boat, we had about 4 miles to go before we hit any rapids. I was nervous.. I guess I assumed it would be non stop rapids. But that wasn't the case at all. We took this time to learn to paddle and chat with our guide, Pat. He was super nice and made sure we were comfortable and safe. The boys paddled some too- but then once we hit the rapids, Pat took their paddles away so they could hold on. I had AJ hold onto the boat and to my life jacket. Since he was behind me, I couldn't see him, but I could feel him holding on.
After the first rapid, which Pat told us was the biggest, I relaxed. It wasn't nearly as big or scary as I'd thought. It was SO FUN! The boys were cracking up and loving it!

We got REALLY wet! But Jason and Dan were in front so they got pounded the entire time!

How cute are the boys? Laughing and having a blast!

The water was cold.. but we had on wetsuits and splash jackets. It wasn't bad at all.
We stopped at "Jump Rock" and we all got out of our boats. Those who wanted to jump, climbed up and did. I stood for a while wondering if I should do it or not. It's not something I've ever done. But I really wanted to. I was also really scared. It was only about 15 feet. I asked AJ if I should do it- he said yes. So, I did!
After our 3 hour rafting trip, we headed to the stables for horseback riding! Again, AJ was SO brave! He loved it! Though, later he told me it was boring compared to rafting! hah
AJ and Miss Cash

We rode for 2 hours and it was really fun. We did a tiny bit of trotting, but mainly walked. We went through a river a few times and up and down the mountain. It was gorgeous! AJ did great, though 2 times I think he almost fell off! Both times we were going down a steep hill and his horse was a bit stubborn and wanted to do it her way- not the way the wrangler wanted. Valerie and Dan were ahead of me and both ahead of them. She told me at one point, it was good I wasn't close enough to see how far his butt was off the seat! Thankfully, all was well and AJ steered his horse the right direction. Phew!
We had SUCH a wonderful time. We're definitely adding this place to our list of camp sites each year. The KOA was awesome, the town is super cute and I see a lot more rafting in our future! I did tell AJ that it was kinda funny that we all like very expensive sports!

Summer Fun!

We have had a very fun filled summer! Once again, it's non-stop fun! We've gone camping a few times, went to the Renaissance Festival, gone to some parties, parks, white water rafting and horseback riding. It's all been a blast! Here are a bunch of pictures...

AJ and his buddy, Xander at the water park

And then getting ice cream!

White trash family...

4th of July at Mueller State Park

Renaissance Festival with Daxie and Skylar

Crossbow time!

We rode on an Elephant!

AJ is SIX!!

How is it possible that my baby is 6? Once again, it seems like just yesterday that I was pregnant with him and now we’re celebrating his sixth birthday!

We sure had a fun time celebrating too! The weekend before, my mom flew out from California, picked up AJ and took him back to California with her. She had wanted to do this for a while, and we finally made it happen. To be honest, I was nervous. I wasn’t sure how he would do being away from us for 4 nights and I wasn’t sure how I’d handle such a quiet house! The night we dropped them off I was a complete wreck. I think maybe I was just in a sad, emotional mood anyway, but it was tough. I cried the entire way to the airport! AJ didn’t have any issues tho- he was ready to go.
On the way to the airport! Headed to Cali!

At the airport, enjoying some ice cream!

Grandma Time!

It turned out to be a great time for everyone. My mom and AJ had such a wonderful time. It seemed like they never stopped! They went to the beach for hours, the park, rode bikes to Matt’s, went to Disneyland and played in our friend Dianna’s pool. Back in Colorado, Jason and I really enjoyed ourselves too. We went to a movie, went to dinner, and talked about how clean the house stayed- hah! We missed him a lot, but I think it was good for all of us.

My mom brought him back to Colorado the day before his birthday. Then she stayed until Sunday. On his birthday, AJ wanted to go to Chili’s for dinner (his new favorite place) and then we opened presents. My mom had gotten him a 20” bike for him to keep in California, and Jason and I got him one for home. He loved them! And he’s great at riding them too! Late that night, my Dad and Cory flew in to spend the weekend with us. We were so fortunate to have family there again for AJ’s birthday. My mom has been to every party and Dad and Cory have been to many of them. It’s so wonderful when they are here!

The birthday boy!!

This is a SUPER cool book from Aunt Connie

His new bike!!!

Saturday was AJ’s birthday party. We decided to have a shark themed party and rented a blow up shark water slide. Let me tell you- this was the best idea! The kids loved it and it was so easy! I think this was the easiest party we’ve had yet! Someone came and set it up and later that day, then took it down. We had sandwiches, chips and drinks and Jason made the cake again. It really was a great day! He had many friends from Kindergarten and our neighborhood and even his teacher came!

The slide! SO fun!

Grammy Cory made this! She is a rock star!!

And then, it became a hat!


Love them!
Love this shot of Grammy Cory and AJ. They have so much fun together!

Happy guy!

Love for Grandma.... so sweet

Cake time! All the kids wanted to eat the shark!

Daddy did such a good job, once again!

Playing War with Pop


After the party, we relaxed a bit and AJ opened his gifts with family. Then, we went to Rockyard for a little Graduation party for me! In June, I finally finished my Masters in Adult Education and Training. My parents and Jason threw me a nice party and so many people showed up! I was truly amazed at how many of our friends spend virtually the entire day with us – coming to both parties. It really showed me how many people love and support us. I am so thankful.

Party Time!


It was a really awesome day for everyone. I was so happy to have my family there to celebrate at both parties!