Sunday, July 31, 2011

Flip Flops, Band-aids and French Fries

Sister loves to wear my flip flops around the house and Baby does what Sister does... so here she is wearing my flip flops and quite proud of it. She walk around the house in them and it's funny because they are just basically hanging on her feet.

I don't know... maybe Sister thought the table had an owie... ???

We met up with my mom when we went on our Friday yard sale trip and she wanted to treat the kids to hamburgers and fries. I really got a kick out of Baby dipping her french fries and eating them... I know, how exciting is it that she is dipping her french fries... Yay!!!

Friday, July 29, 2011

Fat Tie Dye

Here are some of the things on my mind at this moment... well, maybe the last couple of hours... anyway...

I was talking to someone earlier tonight and she asked how tall someone else was. I replied, "She must be 5'8" or 5'9" because I know she is a little shorter than me."

The response after my statement was this to me, "Ya, but she's really skinny so she looks taller."

Hmmm... let's think about that one for a minute...


Next item:

I was just remembering that while I was in Las Vegas this last week, I had run out of my thyroid medication while I was there. I called my pharmacist (Jim over at Santaquin Pharmacy) and he said that he just happened to be having an intern driving out to Vegas that night and that he would have her deliver it to me in the morning. Wow! Here I am six hours away, and I still get the best service ever from my very own pharmacist! Sweet!

Also while we were on vacation Baby really started talking a lot more. She now sings the entire alphabet and sometimes if I end on a letter she will say the next one, like I sing "L-M-N-O..." And then she smiles and says,"P." She also says, "Ew, stinky," because I say that to her every morning—I know, I'm such a sweet mom. She also says, "Mommy, Daddy, Thank you, Beach," and she counts 1-2-3. I am so excited! I love to hear her sweet, little voice! She also signs "e" because she always watches her sister sign the alphabet so she has been catching on. Sister has actually taught her a lot. And that is really neat too!

I went yard sale-ing this morning... OK, so that is not a real term, but that is what I call going to yard sales and buying stuff... yard sale-ing... not yard sailing—although that could be interesting. Anyway, I got this cool black shirt that was really long but had this lame jewel-things on the collar and one was missing. I got it for 10 cents so I just figured I would take the jewels off and see what I get. Well, when I got home and took the jewels off it had been bleached underneath for whatever reason. So, I got the bright idea to tie-die bleach my new yard sale shirt.

Brother was very excited to pose with me... that is lettuce from his salad that he thought would be funny to have hang out his mouth, and the wet spot on his shirt is from washing off the lettuce for his salad... he's such a good kid.

Oh ya, and when we went on vacation I forgot the kids' picture schedules (stop reading here and let your jaw drop in shock). I realized it after we were already 4 hours from home... uggh. I was so panicked, but I did have my laptop with me so I made a makeshift one that I could show them on the screen. It helped but they certainly didn't like it as much as my velcro pictures on the binder. I am actually even more pleased about how well they did without having picture schedules for all the transitions and activities.

I have a local Fragile X picnic/get-together tomorrow that I am in charge of. I am just keeping it REALLY simple because 1) I was organizing it alone and 2) I didn't want to use too much of the Association's money for this until I get more people on board to help out. So I am hoping that the fact that I reserved a pavilion at a park and that we will just be hanging out eating pizza and drink soda or water is OK. I just really hope that we get some new families that we haven't had before. I love being able to relate and talk to other parents in our situation and I always learn so much. I think that is one of the biggest reasons I have enjoyed blogging so much is because of the other moms I have met through the blogosphere.

My husband is out stacking hay right now. He has also been on call this week. I haven't seen him much. Maybe I should go outside and see how his stacking is coming. I am in my nightgown though, and the neigbors might think I was weird, but I am in my kitchen with the light on and the blinds open, so they have probably already seen my floral pink mumu-type nightgown (ya, nothin' sexy people).

OK, that is enough rambling for now.

No, really, it is.


OK, I really am done...


Thursday, July 28, 2011

Vivaaaaaahhh Las Vegas

The drive from Pismo to Vegas was a long one but the kids really did great. We got into Vegas late so we didn't do much but get settle down to sleep. In the morning we packed up to go check out the strip and find another hotel.

I have NEVER seen so many people walking through so many shops and hotels in all my life. It was astounding to see the swarms of people. People of all sorts, and I do mean all sorts...

These pictures aren't the best because I was trying to take them nonchalant-ly  so I didn't have to give them a tip... tee hee
So we found a hotel that was only a block from the strip so we checked into our room, but the adventure began when we were bringing our luggage up in the elevator and Brother and Sister were fighting over who got to take the orange suitcase with wheels. We convinced Sister to allow Brother to take it once we left the elevator. We all piled out of the elevator on the 3rd floor to start finding our room when I here and echoey, yet, faint whimper.... Brother had been left in the elevator and it was going down. Marc and I stood there in shock and amazement wondering how this had occurred all the while I can her Brother whining, "Mom, I'm scared, mom? Mom!" Marc ran down the stairs to meet him at the bottom and I stayed at the top hoping he'd come up after I had pushed the elevator button 20 times. I can still here him crying but, now I here two other voices in the elevator with him. I was so proud of Brother when the people asked him where his room was and he told them "The third floor." I was so happy he was able to say that and that the people didn't sound like creeps that would try to take my kid. When Brother and the couple got out of the elevator, I hugged and comforted Brother and thanked the sweet couple for not being weirdos... they laughed. Phew! Safe and sound and a great story for Brother to have me tell to people over and over again (and he has—I think I have already told the story 4 times) After we were settled in the room we went right back out walked...

in the blistering...


with three kids...

one block...

to the Vegas Strip...

it felt like one mile...............

It was so hot! And Baby had the cheeks to prove it:

Thank goodness they have moving walkways, escalators, elevators and malls that are air conditioned and span almost an entire block along the strip.

We really did have fun. Las Vegas really has some amazing sights to see.

But, I do understand why it is called Sin City! Whoa!

Don't look down.

Don't look up.

I did have to laugh though when for the bazillionth time some creepazoid approached my husband about some inappropriate lady activies... Hello! He is walking with a baby on his shoulders and two kids lagging behind with a wife happily attached... My husband just laughed at him and the guy realized how stupid he was.

I was glad, too, that my kids didn't seem to notice all the inappropriate advertising cards that were strewn all over the sidewalks. Sister finally noticed them toward the end and looked at me very concerned... I thought for sure she was going to tell me about the pictures and how bad they were... she said, "Ah, mom, someone dropped their cards."

I laughed and said, "Oh, it's OK don't worry about them," trying to brush it off.

Then she asked with an even more concerned look and asked, "Whose are they?"

I kept telling her, "I don't know."

That wasn't good enough for her she kept asking for a good answer.

Finally I said, "They are Satan's cards," a woman passing by us chuckled.

Sister replied, "Oh, yucky."


Anyway, we made it to the M&M store, which is the biggest reason Sister even wanted to be there. She was in heaven. Brother wasn't until he found little Miss M&M...

Then we were able to go see The Castle (Excalibur), which was all that Brother wanted to see.
Notice Sister lost her tooth? Brother took a close-up of it for me...
After the castle Brother found other interests.

He is VERY into Egyptians so when we walked by this magic store in one of the malls and he saw this Mummy display he just had to have a picture taken

We also enjoyed the watershows... one was inside a mall...

and the other favorite was at the Bellagio...

Here's the proof that we were there too...

We were so tired when we got home that we ordered in pizza. The kids thought that was the coolest thing ever. They were so excited to eat pizza on the bed and watch TV.

After our quick dinner we went out to the pool and hot tub. I think we rained on a few of the young people's party with our squealing-with-excitement-overly-stimulated kids... But, hey we had fun. I don't think the 2 guys in the hot tub were too excited about Sister splashing around and pretending to be a pirate ... in fact, usually she'll at least make someone smile... these 2 were not happy.

Anyway, we are home.

When I asked Brother what he liked most about our trip, he told me "The elevators." And he was serious. Go figure. (smile)

Oh and the other funny thing: in the morning when we were leaving our hotel we saw a free shuttle parked outside the lobby... I bet it shuttles to the strip... (sigh)

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

And then there were 9

The five of us were joined on our third day at the beach by Marc's parents and two of our nieces, A and Z.

We started off our day with them by having lunch at a place I've never heard of, but will never forget. We walk up to this little corner cafe just up from the Pismo Beach Pier and waited in a long line for about 30 minutes, then waited in a very crowded cafe for another 30 minutes and then tried some of the most wonderful clam chowder I have ever had. Seriously, Marc and I were just talking about how we should take another trip to Pismo just to try out that clam chowder again.

Wanna know what the place is called? I'll tell you: Splash Cafe. Try it sometime and tell me what you think. People in line kept saying it was worth the wait and it certainly was.

After lunch we headed out to Avila Beach. It was about a 15 minute drive from Pismo and boy was this place a family friendly beach. It was awesome!
Running to the beach when we first got there

Brother's famous pose...

The ocean always makes a great picture

Brother and Z running to and from.. check out the bird... and don't those boats look so cool out there?

Marc and Baby playing her favorite game of "Catch Me"

Bad part was, it was extremely windy. Sitting on the beach wasn't the funnest thing to do. You either needed to be in the water or shielding your eyes and mouth behind a jacket.

Sister didn't last long in wind, not only because she doesn't like the wind but she didn't like eating sand. So I went up with her to the park just above the beachfront. I took some pictures of her just because it was funny to see her out in the sand and sun with a coat on.

I was intently watching my daughter and seeing how the other children around her would interact. I was trying not to be offended as I would see each child she approached to play with looked at her strangely and walked away. She seemed to be oblivious to it all and would just continue to play on her own until she found someone else she thought might be willing to play with her. As I was contemplating the challenges my daughter would continue to face all of a sudden the entire playground emptied... I was thinking, OK I know that my daughter isn't that scary, what just happened? And older man noticed my confusion as I was coming out of my thoughtful daze and he chuckled, "Hurry, they're giving away free ice cream over there!" And pointed to a Target van parked alongside the park area.

Thank goodness everyone left for ice cream and not because of my daughter... (smile)

Target certainly didn't skimp on these frozen treats. Sister got a big rocket popsicle and I got a yummy drumstick... mm mm. I called down to Gary and told him to send the other kids up for ice cream. They got up there real quick.

While I was up at the park Marc took pictures of Baby making sand castles with Grandma Lynne

nice hair dude
After a few hours we said our goodbyes to the family so they could get home in time for swim practice and we went on to San Luis Obispo again.

Funny story about San Luis Obispo... we had accidentally left Sister's favorite blue jacket at the park we had gone too. (Hence the pink coat at Avila). We figured since we were going back there we would try looking for the jacket at the park... we weren't really expecting it to be there, but we hoped. Lo and behold, it was still there, right where she left it, on the park bench. Oh, there are still sweet, honest people out there. Sister was SO happy to have her jacket back.

Anyways, on to San Luis Obispo: we found a free parking spot (which it rare in that town) and walked around some shops. We noticed that there were some streets being blocked off and so we asked a local what was going on. It was the Farmer's Market! There is just something about going to a Farmer's Market in a coastal town. It was an hour away so we decided to just chill out in this really cool toy store we came across. The kids were in heaven... for most of the time.

As we got out to the Farmer's Market crowd you could just see the anxiety flare up a notch on Brother and Sister. So I carried Sister while Marc carried Baby and Brother held on to my arm. We were able to make it up to the end and back again with 3 purchased apples, a picture with a person in a bear costume and the experience of being surrounded by hundreds of people in a Farmer's Market.

It was fun. 

It was stressful. 

But, our kids made it through and didn't even fall apart... 

at least not more than we were able to handle.

(Insert side note here: I don't want to hold my children back from all experiences in life just because they have a disability. I want them to have experiences that help them stretch beyond their comfort zone. We know when they can be pushed and when the shouldn't—sometimes it is a fine line, but I always feel good when at the end of the day they are able to talk about the things we did that were fun and sometimes those things were the toughest.)

Then we went home and got bathed and in bed... we were all completely spent.

Then we were off to Vegas!!! ...

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

What a Beach!

After our visit with family was done we started off on the next part of our road trip and headed out to the beach. And boy, what a beach Pismo Beach is! It was the kind of beach you think of when you think of California—surfers, life guard towers, life guards in red running on the beach with their hair blowing in the ocean breeze... wait, that was "Baywatch"... silly me, but it really did have the lifeguard towers and the lifeguards in red with a cool red truck driving around the shoreline. It even came fully equipped with an awesome pier and awesome beach-side hotels.

Our motel was not beach-side but it was only a 2-minute drive so I can't complain...

Actually I can.

It was a  R E A L L Y   SMALL  hotel room with barely enough room to walk past our beds to get to the bathroom and a small table we could stack our luggage on. It was pretty bad. Clean. But small. And only $56/night for the 3 nights we were there. So I shouldn't complain. (smile)

Anyway, to the good stuff:

We were learning right off the bat with this trip that we were pushing our kids to their limits. It was tough on them with the transitions, new surroundings, people everywhere, new experiences.

As crazy as it may sound, and as crazy as I was feeling at times, the kids LOVED the trip.

Sister would always ask when go back home to our hotel, and she would say "hotel" with a really strong country drawl... it made us laugh every time. She loved taking tubs at the hotel and she LOVED the sand at the beach.

She did NOT like the wind. She is VERY sensitive to wind. In fact on our 3rd beach trip at Avila Beach she wore her coat (yes, coat, not jacket) almost the entire time.

Brother loved the elevators and eating at McDonald's every night for dinner. He also really enjoyed the trains we spotted along our travels.

And Baby, well, she is just happy to be alive. There wasn't a single place we went that someone wouldn't stop and comment on how cute/happy she was.

Brother was like that. Happy all the time. He always smiled at everyone.

Baby, Brother and Marc checkin' out the sand
Sister found a feather to draw in the sand with

I just love Baby's stride—keepin' up with her daddy (And yes, Marc looks this hot all the time.)

Baby loved playing tag with the waves. She lost once and that was the end of her fun...

sandy sisters

This one has got to seriously be one of my most favorite pictures. It's just Our Life all the way. I mean when you have an almost 2-year-old that drools constantly this is what you get when you put her in the sand... and yes there is drool going down her belly too! Tee hee! Makes me laugh every time!

Sister had fun making sand angels. She and Baby had no problems with the feeling of the sand, they were basically rolling in it, hence, the above picture...

Apparently there was a smudge on the camera lense... I laugh that it is right over my smile...guess it tones down my lipstick

Anyway, the second day at Pismo, we went out to Los Osos and then onto Montana del Oro beach. That was one of our funnest family times. We got a great picture by the same tree that we had taken a picture next to 6 years previous. Then we hiked through some black mud (that was not a good day for me to wear white shorts) to get to this tucked away shoreline where the waves crash against the rocks and make for great ambience. That was one of my favorite stops.
Here's the picture by the tree. I just love how Brother is loving on his Sister.

I just like this picture. This is Sister climbing down the sandy cliff side.

Brother and I were having fun looking for shells when the tide would wash in. This is one of the shells he found—a crab shell, he was pretty proud of it.

Here we are checking the tide pools

Marc is giving Sister "Sand Castle Building 101"

I love this picture of me and Baby and then seeing Brother in the background, what a beautiful setting


We went into San Luis Obispo after that and found a park for the kids to run around in. We also walked around the city and just enjoyed the atmosphere, and a really cool bridge we saw. It crossed over train tracks so of course Brother was interested.
They wanted to get a picture on the caboose that was sitting outside the soon-to-be train museum

This is the bridge I decided (along with Brother's help) to walk on


That night we came back to Pismo Beach and walked the pier and enjoyed the last few minutes of some of the vendors selling there wares on the pier. It was pretty cool—and I mean cool in both forms of the word. Let's just say it was not hot during our California stay, and that was totally fine with me.
I thought this picture Marc took was pretty cool

Lifeguard Station #2

The Pismo Beach Pier at sunset

A cool view from the pier

I wanted to take a picture of my Hottie Husband and Brother wanted to make sure to get it on the fun. He sure loves his dad.

The best part about the vendors at the pier was when I bought a carton of strawberries for $5 and the guy threw in a basket of blackberries. Let me tell you, there is nothing like fresh California Strawberries. They almost melt in your melt with sweet, juicy flavor and the blackberries were just as fantastic. Mmmm mmmm!

To be continued...