Monday, August 30, 2010

The End-ish of Summer/The Fair

Oh, 'deer'! I forgot to tell you about the fair! My friend, Abagail, has thoroughly and completely convinced me that its time for fall with this post here.  After reading that, I'm rearing to go!

But not before I show you these:

Elliott loves the fair!  So do I.  My favorite part is paying $6 for a photo strip with my kids in the photo booth.  And free icecream from Clover.  And the fair smells--fried food, warm summer grass and hay, animals.  Dave was really impressed with the Sonoma County Fair, having only ever attending the OC Fair that is held on asphalt every year.  He was telling me as we walked around, "This is like a real fair.  There's like, grass and stuff!"  Yep, there sure is.

I was so impressed, last year, that the petting zoo had a fawn.  But this year, I was totally oblivious to the fact that they had a real live kangaroo in the petting zoo!  I totally missed it!  Dave and Elliott told me afterward...  Little boogers.

Caiden was just the right height for all goats to nibble her hair.  She wasn't too happy about it.

And Dave had this little fella that wanted to come home with him.  Look at him, he just wants to be part of the family.  Dave let him hang out while he took some pictures.  Father syndrome.

Caiden let us take her on this one ride and loved it!  But every other ride she screamed if we tried to get her on.  And then she screamed because she didn't get to ride.  Oh, women.

Elliott had a blast riding a few rides and then requested lemonade.  Now if we only had some livestock to enter...

Fairs are fun.  The end.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Honey, I'm Home.

Old news, but... we're back!  The kids and I had a wonderful time at the beach for a whole week!  The weather was warm (which was a first for the summer), the company was grand, and Elliott and I got to read the adventures of Peter Pan every night. (Which I only noticed after the fact that we read the abridged version! Ggggrrr... Now I'm on the hunt for the original.)

I just realized this year, looking back, that we seem to have a tradition going here.  We have vacationed every year at Carpinteria since Elliott was in the womb.  Which means we've been doing this for six years now.  Both of the kids have been taking semi-annual trips to Carpinteria since birth, which is so exciting to me, since I think about everything like I'm in a movie.  I love the idea of extended family gatherings every year and I finally realized, we have one!

{My beautiful sister-in-law, Allison posted a few more pictures of the trip on her blog, so wander on over to see a tad more...}

Its good to be home!

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Carpinteria--Take 512.

We weren't going to go this year, but after all the sickness lately, we decided it might be a good idea to take part in the annual tradition of beach camping with David's side of the family. 

Carpinteria is to my kids what Disneyland is for most children.  Pretty much anyone who knows my kids has heard of "Carpinteria" more times than they can count, even if they have no idea who, what, or where this fabled "Carpinteria" is.  It happens to be the tiniest of tiny beach towns (only 2 stoplights in the whole town, I think) right off the 101 near Santa Barbara.

Sadly, we have to leave David at home. He has to be all responsible and stuff.  We'll be making the seven hour drive down early Sunday morning.

So, we're off! You probably won't find us here in this space for a good week or so. 

We'll be leaving this:

{This was photographed just 2 weeks ago}
And this:

For this:

And this:

Be back soon! x's and o's,

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Who Says So? (Joys of Parenting)

Who says that after you have kids you can't have any fun or do what you want to do? Outrageous! Being a parent is plenty of fun...

Photo credit: David Escalante

Take yesterday, for example: I needed to find a swimming suit, so I dragged my kids out of the house after first spending 30-40 minutes getting everybody ready. I then was able to spend a wonderful 10 minutes trying to avoiding tripping and bumping heads on car doors while buckling everybody into their five point harness systems.  After that, we got to listen to some rockin' tunes sung by preteens until finally unloading at our destination. Caiden was as happy as a lark--skipping, jumping, and singing--while Elliott was still grumbling about how boring this would be.  After avoiding no less than 15 near death experiences by sudden sprints into traffic, falling into potholes, and the like, we arrived at the door of the intended establishment. At which point Caiden mysteriously tripped and then beyond all odds, hit her head that was only 2 inches from the ground so hard that you could hear the loud, "crack!" Hysterical as she was, I scooped her up to comfort her and between sobs I felt something warm and then a barely coherent wail from Caiden, "I'm peeing!!!!"

I set her down, but it was too late. I was completely soaked and so was she. We made it as far as the glass-paned front of the store.  This is true window shopping, my friends.  How fun is that? We were then blessed to repeat steps 1-4 before arriving safely home.

It doesn't get any better than this, folks.  And that is reason 1017 why I personally love being a parent. And that's beside the fact that there are so many interesting stories to tell.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Take a T-O

We're coming into a period here of slowing down, slowing way down.  I've had a few little "pricks" from the Holy Spirit, lately, in this regard.

For instance, as I've mentioned, we've been dealing with about 2 months of varying sicknesses and injuries.  At the end of it all, my general feeling is this: I am so weary of wiping butts! One of the "varying sicknesses" included enduring long weeks of diarrhea for both of my children. This was a small trial for me. It was like they were on an alternating schedule. Practically every half hour, I could be found in the bathroom wiping one or the other child's rear end and/or rinsing out soiled clothes, sheets, etc. And washing my hands.

So, my patience, I'm noticing, has been worn very thin and I have allowed myself a very short, impatient fuse. Apparently I need the Lord to do a work of renewing my mind. I realized this after I snapped at my 2 year old when I found her trying with all her little might to wipe herself and holding a very soiled wad of toilet paper in her fingers and trying to shove it back down the front. "Caiden! Sick!" I cried. She jumped a little and hurriedly pushed the offensive object into the toilet bowl and that's when I knew. My poor baby, just trying to be a big girl and she finds herself feeling ashamed. Lord, forgive me.

That's just one instance. Another one is just taking the time to talk and answer questions with my older boy.  Not only these things, but also the Lord has been removing outside responsibilities from my life as well. So, I think I'm starting to get the picture. Slow down. Relax.

While putting the kids in bed tonight, I realized how much I've been rushing them off to bed and getting frustrated that they just keep needing stuff.  So, instead of doing that, I just sprawled flat on my back in between my two kids' beds and relaxed while letting Caiden take 2 or 3 turns to pray and rattle on and on and on.  It was nice once I was able to slow way down.

So, I think I'm going to make a few changes.

1) Prayerfully conquer this impatient spirit

2) Start the kids' bed routine earlier like at 7 instead of 8 so that they have plenty of time whatever it is that they do for an hour while I'm trying to get them in bed.

Uh, mainly just those two things for now, I guess. I was hoping to make a list, but that will have to do for now. Two conscious changes and I think it will be huge.

Moral: never get so set on a track or course of action that it causes detriment to the really important things in life, the things you  really ought to be doing. Stop and smell the roses.

"I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God,
that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God,
which is your reasonable service.
And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind,
that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God."
Romans 12:1,2