Saturday, August 31, 2013

Kindergarter Lily

Lily has been ready to start Kindergarten at "big girl school" since preschool finished in June. She was pretty convinced she was going to be taught to read and write on day one.

We had fun picking out her first day outfit and of course her backpack and lunch box.
She went for matching Tinker bell backpack and lunch box. I think getting to have lunch at school is maybe the highlight about big girl school for her. 
Gemma doesn't start preschool until next week (don't worry sissy will get a post all her own.) She was not to be left out of the photos so she popped in to pose and needed to get a hand on the sign as well. I have to add that on the second morning of school Lily asked if I was going to take her picture with a second day of Kindergarten sign.
We do not live close enough to school to drive, we are about a 10 minute drive away. We got there in plenty of time and parked (along with 100 other eager parents). We walked up to school and Lily and Gemma were hand in hand. Melt my heart.
We had been to school the afternoon before to find out Lily's teacher, see her classroom and get used to the routine. Before school you get to play on the playground and Gemma was all over that too!
Then at 8:25 the bell rings and the little fresh Kindy's line up. Lily actually has two teachers this year. Mrs. Carr and Mrs. Calle are team teaching. One teaches Monday, Tuesday, the other takes Thursday, Friday and they rotate every other Wednesday.
There are 18 students in her class and they also have a full time teachers aide, Mrs. R. Wow! Three teachers.
The students all found a spot on the rug and all the moms and dads piled around the room like paparazzi. Mrs Carr read a story called the kissing hand. Dear Lord. We knew this story and it is a tear jerker folks!
It is about Chester the raccoon and how he goes off to school and his mom puts a heart on his hand so he can think of his mom and know she loves him all day long.
We were all given a heart sticker to place on our childs hand and then say good bye.  As we left the classroom the teachers also gave the parents this lovely note along with a baggie with tissues, a tea bag, some chocolate hershey hugs and a cotton ball. There was not a mom with a dry eye. Why do they do this to us? Lily was ready to go and gave us hugs goodbye and gave Gemma a big hug and kiss. 
Lily has had the best first week of school. She has so much fun and enthusiasm. She LOVES eating lunch at school and seeing what is in her lunch box every day. We love hearing all the funny snippets that she feels like sharing. The boy who "threw a tantrum" because he wanted cafeteria pizza for lunch and his mom packed him a sandwich and an apple. She has made several friends but can't seem to keep them straight or remember their names. You raise your hand with your fingers crossed if you need to use the potty. You get to pick a prize out of the treasure chest if you have good behavior but your clip has to move up to the top of the chart first? It is so funny to hear all the things she remembers. I expect she will be reading any day now too! Gemma has been a little lost all week home with Mom. She misses Lily dearly and as soon as Lily gets home the two of them run off to play together for hours. 

Last Hurrah of Summer

The last week of summer break we tried to pack in as much fun and sun as we could. Anticipating the new routine with a Kindergartener and Pre-schooler we wanted to soak up the freedom for all it was worth. 
We attended a special back to school story time at the library geared towards students entering Kindergarten. Little did we know the local newspaper would be there!
Both Lily and Gemma made the picture on the front and Lily had her picture and her name on the second page. Watch out Hollywood, the Davis girls have arrived. Next it will be the big screen and a star on the walk of fame!
We decided that since our Disneyland passes are expiring in September we would do one last "blow-out" trip. We went down to Anaheim on Saturday afternoon and checked into our hotel. We stayed at the candy cane inn which was a great choice! The pool was a huge hit and we could walk to the park entrance.
We spent Sunday at California Adventure and Monday at Disneyland (don't tell Daddy's bosses, it was a personal day). It was hot and sunny! We did manage to get pictures with Sofia the first.
And Mike from Monsters U. He couldn't sign the autograph book because his claws were really tired.
Speaking of tired. We went on all the rides we cared about and then in the afternoon we headed back to the hotel for a swim. I think sleeping over and all sharing a room was the highlight for the girls.
Monday we were up at Disney for opening. We ran into Pinocchio. He obliged us for an autograph.
Then he got creepy and looked like he was going to attack Lily with an imaginary knife.
Then settled on doing bunny ears and maintained his creepy stare. Guess it must get pretty boring being Pinocchio and posing all day.
Let's just say we were hot and bothered and it was as humid as Texas! The girls did humor me and pose for a silhouette. I had heard about these a while back but we never took the time to get them done.
It is a little store front on main street and the lady cuts them out right there in about 30 seconds flat! We were intrigued. She has worked there for over 30 years! There are four silhouette artists that share the job. What a cool talent to have!
I think they are a pretty good likeness! Gemma's is especially spot on. I could recognize that curly mullet in a heart beat.
By about 3 PM we were spent. We went back to the hotel to sneak in one more swim before dinner and heading home. It was a great "stay-cation" and send off to our year of Disney. We told the girls to cherish each memory because it is going to be about 5 years before we go back!

The next day was out last day before Lily started Kindergarten! Goppy came over to watch Gemma so I could take Lily out to lunch and get her hair cut. She went for cheesy noodles, always the first choice.

Then it was off to the hair salon. She was very sure she wanted to get it cut above her shoulders. She looks so cute with her little bob.
Next stop...big girl school! I would be lying if I didn't say we would really have liked a few more weeks of summer. I know lots of moms whoop and cheer when school goes back but so far we LOVE summer break and always have time for one more beach day!

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Cousin Play Date

In preparation for our play day with Ben we decided to wash all the windows. Not exactly. Who washes their windows when a 9 month old crawling machine is coming over. I guess I do. It needed to be done, so I decided to be "fun mom" and let the girls color on the windows first. They are special crayons made for windows. 
They went a little crazy! Luckily it washes off really easily.
My favorite view, sitting inside while they get to work!
It was more graffiti than art I tell you. Now I just need to get them to do all the washing of the windows too.
The next day was Benji day! His daycare lady had surgery so we got to play all day.
Our lazy girl was still in her PJ's.
We got out all our "boy" toys and went to town.
I think Ben was pretty impressed.
Lily was also on baby gate duty. Since Ben is all over the place and we don't have gates she had to block him from crawling away to lick our shoes.
Neither one was very impressed with the situation.
This is actually a hug, even though it looks suspiciously like a choke hold.
That's a little safer. What a cute boy!

Monday, August 5, 2013


Road Trip!!! We have been so excited to go visit our friends up in Vacaville. Now that they have their new home and are settled in we needed to visit before Lily and Charlotte start Kindergarten. I piled the girls in the car last Monday and off we went. It is a 6 1/2 hour drive and they did beautifully.
We wasted no time making ourselves at home. We promptly wrecked their clean play room and by the next morning you would have thought we were at home. 
 Tuesday we took the kids to the local German bakery and then to the park. We wanted to wear them out so they would take a good nap (Gemma and Elias). Nate was so kind as to take the afternoon off work to watch the kids so Kristen and I could head to Napa for some R&R and dinner.
 It was bliss! We of course made a stop at Bouchon for pastries!
 We had a lovely assortment out on the sunny patio. The weather was amazing.
We couldn't go to Napa and not taste a little wine. Stepping stone has a tasting room in Yountville so we shared a tasting. It was really good. Kristen almost joined the wine club but thought it best to let Nate have a say. After wine, we headed to Bottega for dinner. It is a Michael Chiarello restaurant. It was worth every bite, calorie, and dollar.
The next morning we were all bright eyed and bushy tailed for the Jelly Belly factory tour. It is just in the next town of Fairfield. The best part is the tour is free and you get to taste jelly beans! Win-win!
 You aren't supposed to take photos in the actual factory but since I am pretty sure we are not going to steal any secrets I snapped a few.
They had low windows for the kids to peak down at the factory floor. Surprisingly, none of them have changed their future professional goals to factory worker. 
 Once home again, we put the littles down to nap and the big girls hit the slip and slide. They did pretty good figuring it out. They did prefer to slide on their knees, and I can't say I blame them.
 Charlotte did give it a go on her belly with the cushion.
 On Wednesday evening we went to the Davis farmers market for dinner and dancing. They have live music and we brought a picnic. The kids were not interested in eating, there were too many activities to keep them occupied.
 Lily gave the rock wall a try. She has never done one before and while she was a little scared she did pretty well.
 Charlotte has been at this a while! She got about half way this time, a new record.
 Gemma rode the carousel, a little more her speed.
 Elias is an old pro at this one, he always chooses the caterpillar.
 On Thursday we decided to head up to Sacramento for some culture. We stopped on the way for a Dutch Bros coffee. They have them in Portland and I never got a chance to give them a try. The mommas needed some caffeine to keep up with the littles. It was really good.  
We headed to Sacramento for the railroad museum but seeing as we were a few blocks from the State Capitol we had to swing by for a picture. Gov. Jerry Brown did not come out to greet us unfortunately. (Yes, I had to google who the Governor is)
 My crazy kids did not like the sun in their eyes. Lily and Charlotte are 6 months apart, can you guess who is older? Lily has some growing to do.
 Gemma humored me with a pic.
We also perused the memorial for fallen police officers. Lily was having a melt down moment over something or it was time to move on to the train museum.
 The museum is really impressive. There are tons of real trains old and new.
 You can go inside some of them and they simulate a moving train. This one was the dining car. How creepy are the manequins?
 I'm not getting on a train with these two at the engine.
 Upstairs is a room full of train tables. Heaven.
 They also have model trains on display that are running. Makes me want to get one, almost.
We had a great visit and even survived the drive home, although the girls were slightly less enthusiastic on the way back. We can't wait to go back soon!