Saturday, April 28, 2012

Countdown to the Birthday Wake-up

T-minus 9 hours and counting...

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Thursday, April 19, 2012

Three on Thursday, Week 16: Sunny Day at Neskowin Beach

Last Sunday was such a perfect spring day that we all packed up the car to head to the beach. Spring brings about so many outside chores in the garden, that we were really happy that we even convinced Peter to come away with us.

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It was a perfect day, relaxing in the sun. Pushing the limits of whether or not someone is going to get absolutely drenched (and yes, he did.)

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We even had the foresight to pack all sorts of sand castle building tools.

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Welcome sunshine, we've missed you!

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Spring Break 2012: First stop, Las Vegas

We had such a terrific trip for Spring Break this year. It was made all the better because our friends Sarah, Jeremy and Elliot joined us. Heading to Grand Canyon, we all flew into Las Vegas and took in a few kid-friendly sites before jumping in the swagger wagon.

The Luxor was having a big show of Titanic artifacts.

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Both Soren and Elliot had been to Vegas before, and really wanted to see "The Spanx". While we were checking that out, they took some time playing on the other ancient Egyptian "ruins."

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Of course, pretending to be dead...

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We balanced all that death with a trip to M&M World.

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Seeing all these flavors (mint?! raspberry?! coconut?!) was too much to resist...

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So we enjoyed a little snack to fortify us for our site-seeing.

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Thursday, April 12, 2012

Three on Thursday, Week 15: Eggs & Germs

We were invited to a really fun Easter Egg Hunt on Saturday.

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Soren takes the possibilities of unlimited, free candy very seriously. He was focused in his hunting, and ended up with more than 50 eggs!

Peter and I went out Saturday night and had a babysitter (our awesome babysitter who went away to college this year was home for the weekend!) He picked her some flowers and gave her some of his Easter candy. That truly speaks to the abundance when he was willing to give some away.

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Sadly, he came down with the flu on Tuesday night. His eyes really speak volumes when he's sick, poor guy. This picture actually shows him looking much better. Last night he looked so out of it, I was too distracted to even photograph it. Peter took him to the doctor today because his labored breathing (Croup, old friend, we really haven't missed you.) He got some medicine for that and hopefully tonight will pass more uneventfully than our frequent outside trips allowed us last night. The cool night air really is a magical elixir.

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Wednesday, April 11, 2012

The Joy of Good Books

We've read to Soren since he was a teeny, tiny baby. And while there was a lot of fun in some of those picture books,  I must admit that I so looked forward to the day when I could read him real books. Books that go on night after night, books that have good guys, bad guys and funny, sad plots.

I'm so glad that time has finally arrived. Here are a few we've read recently:

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Where the Mountain Meets the Moon, Grace Lin. Loved this book! It feels like an ancient Chinese story even though it is actually contemporary (at least as far as I know.) It is a story of a girl on a quest to change her family's poor fortune. Great adventure and lots of meaningful lessons.

Island of the Blue Dolphins, Scott O'Dell. We both also really enjoyed this one, but when we were getting into it I have to say that I doubted the selection because it had some heavy themes (a girl is accidently abandoned on and island and her brother is killed by wild dogs.) But we perservered through the heavier parts and looked forward to the adventure each night. Probably would have been better to wait until he was a few years older.

Brighty of Grand Canyon, Marguerite Henry. We picked this book up in preparation for our trip to the Grand Canyon and I was really happy how it brought the canyon and its creatures to life for us. The story starts with a murder of a really kind man, so again kind of a heavy theme some times. But it mostly followed Brighty's adventures in the canyon. Soren probably enjoyed this one more than I did.

Because of Winn-Dixie, and Tale of Depereaux (not pictured), by Kate DiCamillo. Soren liked both of these quite a lot, but I really didn't care for Despereaux. I hate stories that spend much time with people being petty, mean or jealous. And that book had a lot of those kinds of characters.

Superfudge, Judy Blume. Oh how Soren loves this book. I think we could start it over again immediately after finishing it and he'd be thrilled. Burping, farting and other bodily noises feature prominently much to his never-ending delight.

Mr. Popper's Penguins, Richard Atwater. We both enjoyed this fun book. It used a lot of British English which I changed as I read just so not to have to answer what's that? through the whole book!

We have a huge stack of books that I've been collecting just for this special bedtime reading period. It is one of our best times every day.

Friday, April 06, 2012

Three on Thursday, Week 13: International Festival Preparations

Soren's school has their biggest event of the year, The International Festival, coming up soon. In preparation for it, the kids stay after school and even come in on weekends to make sure everything is ready.

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Weekend sessions are particularly nice because it gives me a chance to spend some time there with them, a luxury I don't always have during the week.

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It is so great to watch the kids get tips and lessons in creating their masterpieces, in this case Australian Aboriginal painting styles.

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So they can create their own Aboriginal-style masterpiece.

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