Thursday, September 20, 2012

Back to School

Okay, I'm pretty much caught up from summer. The boys were SO ready to go back to school. They woke up way before me that morning and were all ready to go by the time I got up at 6:30. Spencer's in 7th, Tyler's in 5th, Dallin is in 3rd (in a 3rd/4th split), Brennan is in kinder, and Levi wanted to make his lunch too.

I was all stressed when school began because I was unhappy about a few things. A new charter school just opened this year, but I didn't want to do it for several reasons. The problem was that many good, strong, involved families sent their kids to it, so I was worried there wouldn't be anyone left at our school. I didn't recognize almost any of the names in their classes. But my boys were just fine with it. They like their teachers and don't want to leave their school, so I'm okay now. Why do I let these things stress me out?

After we got the oldest three boys off to school and before kindergarten started, we went out to breakfast with a few other moms. Brennan got icing all over his clothes, so we had to go home and change his clothes quick before school started. He loves his DC shirt because it looks like spin art.

First day of kindergarten! Brennan was very excited, and he wasn't at all sad to leave me. Of course it helps that he was in transitional kindergarten last year, and there is a set of twin boys from TK in his class again this year. Even though he's one of the oldest in his class (he turns 6 in November), he's still the shortest one there. Poor guy. At least he's the cutest!!

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Which beach do you want to go to today?

We went to the beach a lot last month. It's a great way to get away from the heat, since it's typically 30-40 degrees cooler on the coast during the summer.

What we love about living here is the variety of beach options. First we decide what we're in the mood for. Morro Bay is one of our favorites because there's lots to do there, such as running down sand dunes and visiting the shell shop and eating salt water taffy. Plus it's good for kayaking and riding bikes, if we're feeling ambitious.

Another favorite is Hearst Beach. The weather is often nicer than surrounding beaches because it's more inland. It will be socked in all the way there, and then the fog will clear and we'll arrive at sunny blue skies. No wonder Randolph Hearst chose to build his castle there. Last time we went there we saw a huge herd of wild zebras on the way home. That's always fun.

And it has a natural breaker, so the waves don't get too dangerous. It's not good for surfing, but it's usually perfect for boogie boarding.

I love the sky in this one. That strip of land behind the pier is the natural breaker. It's a nice hike.

 We like to go to the beach whenever family visits. My brother Josh and his family came for a long weekend.

Such cute boys!

Someone usually wants to get buried. 

Chloe is such a good beach baby.

I think this was a pretty cold day at the beach. You never know, so we always pack sweatshirts just in case.

 Some people manage to get sand in every orifice.
I don't usually go to the beach without adult help, especially with a baby. It's just too much work, and I worry I'll lose someone. But we went to Morro Bay after dentist appointments one day and didn't go near the water. We had a picnic lunch at the park and climbed sand dunes. 

This is one of my favorite happy places.

 Pay no attention to the signs that say, "Do not climb."

While we were relaxing and watching the waves from a distance, we saw a tour group. So we listened in and learned a bunch of stuff about Morro Bay and the wildlife that lives on and around the rock. I can't remember anything specific right now, but Spencer got excited about it.

As I look at these pictures, I remember feeling so completely relaxed before school started. Now our afternoons and evenings are busy with homework and scouts and Back-To-School Nights - all important things, but I just loved having my family and our schedule all to ourselves.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Big Bro

Levi is getting so big all of a sudden. This is his favorite shirt. It says "Big Bro" on it. He's all about being BIG.

A few weeks ago he had his very first dentist appointment. I was a tad nervous about how he'd do, because if he doesn't want to do something, he just won't do it. But the boys had talked it up a ton and even played "dentist" with him at home, so he felt thoroughly prepared.  

What a big boy! He did amazingly well.

Yay, prize box. No cavities, but he does need to stop sucking his thumb because it's starting to mess up his bite. I don't see that happening anytime soon.

He's got some pretty sweet dance moves.

We went to Morro Bay one last time before school. I was ready to put him in a full-time preschool because of the way he bugged everyone over the summer.

But now that the big kids are back in school, he is back to being my sweet, helpful Levi. Mostly. So I think I'll keep him around.

 And these are his sweet kung fu moves. 

The biggest thing Levi is doing right now is getting potty-trained. I was really not looking forward to it because 1. I hate potty-training! and 2. I thought he would be hard. Whenever we brought it up, he'd say he didn't want to. But I buckled down and did it last week, and he caught on super fast. He is still having occasional accidents and sometimes throws a fit when I tell him to sit on the potty, but he loves to wear underwear and show me his pee and eat Dum-Dums, so we're all very happy. Hallelujah!

Friday, September 14, 2012

More pool pics

August was the 3rd hottest month on record here, based on the number of days above 100, so we spent a lot of time in our pool.  As you can see, Levi finally warmed up to it by the end of the summer. 

He didn't want to share the picture with Dallin.

We had a lot of issues with the pool. It kept getting cloudy, and it kept losing water - something to do with the filter tubes falling out. But our water bill was getting out of control, so we stopped refilling it. They still managed to have fun though.

I love pictures of water droplets! 

Monday, September 3, 2012

Six Months!

Chloe is 6 months old! These monthly updates sure do sneak up on me, and I can't believe her first year is already halfway over :( 

Dallin took these first few pictures. She was on my tummy, sucking on her toes (she has a lot in common with her cousin Brian), but as soon as he took out the camera, she stopped sucking and just stared at him. She looks so much like baby Brennan in this picture.

This is my favorite one.

I bought some tiny hair clips, and they actually stay in her hair. She still doesn't like to roll over, but she's starting to sit up on her own.

 The boys love, love, love to play with Chloe. They surround her with toys and call it a Chloe party.

Chloe also likes to suck on her tongue and lips. Dallin was surprised she wasn't afraid of the scary shark. She's so brave!

We especially like to dress her up for church. Spencer took these pictures a couple weeks ago. She's wearing another coordinating hair clip - this time a purple butterfly. She's also wearing her gold Cleopatra sandals. Yum! One day as we were getting ready for church, Dallin said, "She's so cute, I almost can't look."

She's so flexible! Sometimes she gets both feet in her mouth at once.

Spencer loves this age because she likes to play with toys. It's fun to watch her having such a grand time chewing and rattling. He took these pictures too.

Now that the boys are back in school, it's just these two at home. I especially like it when I can coordinate their naps and have a couple hours of quiet in the afternoon. But it also means that I lose my live-in babysitter (Spencer) and have to take them shopping with me.