Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Home Sweet Home

While I had a great time with my family at the beach, I am so glad to be home! All the sand, salt, and mosquitoes were starting to get to me. No matter how many times you shower, there is still that film on your skin that you can't get off due to the yellow, stinky water that comes out of the faucet...And the beach is a lot of work with a 2 and 5 year old! By the time we lugged all our junk out onto the beach, it was time for Ms. M to go potty...or it was lunch time...or, well you get the picture.

OK, enough complaining about our virtually free vacation at the beach! (thanks mom and dad!) We really did have a great time! We were blessed to spend some quality time with my whole family, even grandma! And, Kelly and I were even able to sneak off alone a couple of times for some boogie-boarding and a quiet lunch thanks to the many hands that were there willing to take care of the girls. The girls (obviously) enjoyed themselves. What kid wouldn't. They did most of their playing in the sand building castles and walking the shore looking for shells, although Ms. M had a blast in the water with my dad, pretending to save him from the waves. We ate TONS of junk food and drank lots of beer. (we are trying to get back on track now after our feeding frenzy!)I am also halfway through Eclipse (the 3rd book in the Twilight series) and Kelly finished The Shack. There is nothing better that sitting on the sun deck with a beer and book in hand with the sound of the waves crashing in your ear. It was exactly what I needed after the past few months of the emotional roller coaster we've been riding.

The weather was perfect. The first two days there were almost cool. However, cool to me is different than cool to some others. I didn't get in the water until the third day. I have to be burning hot to get in the water...I am such a wimp. Surfside itself seemed to be in OK shape considering Hurricane Ike that almost destroyed Galveston. There were a lot of repairs being done on the homes and the house we usually rent wasn't available. But the most notable change for us was the beach, or lack there of. Normally, we are able to set up "camp" close to the water and the cars on the beach drive behind us. This time, the water and the sand dunes were so close together that there was no other choice for cars but to drive right in between us and the water. This poses a slight problem when preschoolers are involved. Imagine how difficult it is for an excited child, bucket in hand running for the water, to stop and look both ways before crossing the "street." Anyway, we managed and towards the end they were really good about it.

Below are a few of my favorite pictures from the trip. First is Papa with the girls.

Then Papa and Daddy with Ms. M.

Ms. K playing in the sand.

Ms. M playing in the sand.

The girls hamming it up.

Daddy Land's "sexy" face.

A very, tired Ms. K cuddling with daddy.

Papa with my sister's "pet" wild baby dove...funny story.

My sister's pug, Chucky. She just graduated as an engineer, but she should have been a vet. He reminds me of the little old Italian ladies that would pere down from their windows when we lived there.

And that's all I've got. Great trip...

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Annual Beach House Vacation

Just a quick not to say that we are going to the beach this week. Every year my parents rent a house in Surfside, Texas for the whole family to enjoy. This year is a little different in that this is the first time we will be there since Hurricane Ike last year. I will let you know what I find. We will return next Saturday. Yay!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Great Outdoors

Yesterday was great. The entire weekend was great! Our little family experienced our very first camping trip to Guadalupe River State Park for Mother's Day weekend. I have years of wonderful memories of doing this growing up and I hope my girls look back at this trip and smile like I do. There is one major difference though. We went for ONE night. I remember going for a week with my family and honestly...I don't know how they did it. Because frankly, it is A LOT of work! Luckily, we went with another family and that spread out the work load. Our kids are also the same ages and that kept them busy.

We were off to a rocky start when we arrived at 2pm in the Texas heat. We set up camp at the hottest part of the day. Ms. M set to the task of helping Daddy Land set up the tent.

While Ms. K played with a bucket.

And the pups were hot.

Really hot.

And it was not long before we had our first boo boo...the first of many.

But before long we were settled in at our camp and our friends had arrived. Time to kick back to relax.

Then it was time to head down to the river. Here is Ms. K and our friends' son. Ms. M was long gone. Too quick for mommy to get a pic.

Then it was time to get back to camp. The kids enjoyed hot dogs and the bigger kids ate yummy fajitas. And beer of course. (no that is not Ms. M's beer on the table. I meant grown-ups)

After dinner, it was time for the kids to settle down and go to bed. Someone isn't a happy camper...sorry, couldn't resist.

However, that did not happen for another 2 hours or so...go figure. I guess they were having too much fun! Time for some adult/drinking-around-the-fire time.

That is pretty much were the pictures stopped for the night!

Our night in the tent was...pretty much sleepless. At least mine was. At first I was too hot and dirty-feeling (that is a word, right?). Then I couldn't sleep because of the teenagers in the campsite near us (after commenting about this to my husband, he called me something along the lines of an old lady). Then I was too cold. Then Katie was crying. Then I was worried that the kids were too cold. The list could go on and on...

The morning came way too quickly. The kids were offered breakfast tacos like the rest of us, but they had something else in mind...the breakfast of champions: Pringles and Cheez-its. Oh, what the heck, we're camping.

It was then time for Daddy Land to make the mommies some Mother's Day coffee in our very cool new percolator.

Then there was a dance party in the tent to the song, I Like To Move It Move It from the Madagascar soundtrack.

Unfortunately, it was time to pack up the gear. Was it that time already? It really went by quickly. The kids entertained themselves with the water faucet while we cleaned up.

What a wonderful Mother's Day weekend! I am still recovering and I still don't know how my parents did it. But it was certainly worth it! In the beginning, I had my doubts that we would survive. Ms. K hates bugs, trips alot (because she is 2), and doesn't like to get dirty. I wasn't as worried about Ms. M since her best friends are rolly-pollies. But in the end, they were filthy, brused, barefoot and...HAPPY. We can't wait to do it again!
After we were all showered, fed, and unpacked, my girls and guy surprised me with a lovely Mother's Day song last night.

What a lucky mama...

Monday, May 4, 2009

Wildflower Center

I took the girls to the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center today. It was pretty eventful for a Monday morning! Next weekend we are going camping with another family and this gave me some insight as to how the girls are going to react to all the creepy crawly things that lurk in the woods! We saw a lot of birds, butterflies, wildflowers, one BIG black beetle, something else BIG that ran away from us through the bushes, and a grand total of 6 snakes (one of which was enormous...I am glad we weren't close!)

Here is Ms. M's reaction:

Here is a sweet picture of the girls on our "nature hike."

Here is another one of them sitting in the wildflowers.

Checkin out the tadpoles.

"Look mom! A rock!" (OMG, I can't believe there is a rock out here!)

Here is Ms. M scaring me to death...again.

And finally, I caught one of those snakes poking it's head up behind a rock. Can you see it? Yuck! do I explain to my girly girls that this is just a warm up to tent camping?