National Donut Day

It may seem like a consumer holiday, but ask Asher and he’s a fan!  National donut day was right up there with Christmas for this kid, lover of all things ‘donut’!  

It’s funny, as a parent, the biggest joy comes from watching my kids experience something wholeheartedly that brings them great joy.  I guess you could say Donut day was one of those things!   He even knew the exact donut store he wanted – he’s something of a Donut connoisseur – and you can tell from the pics that it was worthy of finger-licking!  

Please excuse his mouth open eating (I think I automatically say “close your mouth” maybe three thousand times a week), by I couldn’t fail to catch his enthusiasm with a short video:

Happy National Donut Day, all!

Memorial Beach Day

We’re not even done with the weekend but I had to post a few videos of the beach day yesterday.  Our kids are having so much more fun at the beach lately, which in turn makes it that much more fun for us too.  Asher finally will play in the waves (ok, ‘in the waves’ is even being generous…he’ll touch his toes in the water at least)…it only took him 4 years to warm up to it (who’s kid is this?!).  But no matter, at least we were diligent 😂.  Here’s yesterday (he decided no pants was the way to go):
What a great view! 😉

The remainder of the weekend was no less fun – BBQ & backyard s’mores with friends, then water park at Lake Casitas to finish it off!

I love summer!  And it’s just the beginning! (More to come soon – this was a start of an old post!)


Couldn’t think of a better way to spend Valentine’s Day then to have all three of mine pick me up from work (play on some construction equipment of course), dinner/dessert downtown, then home in bed by 7 snuggling and reading in bed (Captain Underpants, courtesy of Selah’s Valentine to Daddy).

When I put Asher to bed tonight, he really summed it up for me:

Me: Ashy, how’d I get so lucky having God give me you guys as family?

Asher: I don’t know. (Pause).  Whoa, Mom!

Me: What?!

Asher:  Oh!  I thought you were an alien for a second.  But aliens don’t talk, so then I knew.

Well, that clears up that question, in case anyone was wondering!  ❤️ ha!  I love my most random little boy, and his sister and Dad to go along with him.  Still don’t know how I got so lucky, but at least I’m not an alien, so I guess I’m still winning.  😉

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Date Night 

Nothing like our favorite night of the year to make me post finally!  I have to go back and recap basically from summer of last year to now, but first, the annual Daddy Daughter Dance!

Who can resist, right?  The cutest couple there is around! It literally is Selah’s favorite night of the year, which was scientifically proven when she got home from school and asked to shower to get ready for it!  It was so sweet.
And Daddy was no less excited then Selah, and played the part of the prince very well, flowers and all.  I mean, the look at these faces here when he brought home a perfect bouquet for his princess…Their looks show it all in every picture, so of course I went overboard and am having trouble narrowing it down so am doing a classic over posting!  

And, shhh, don’t tell, but it’s one of my favorite nights because I get my own handsome prince to hang out with.  Tonight, we chose pancakes for dinner, bath time with a new Pokémon figure, topped off with two games of Monopoly with Superman.     Good times were had by all, and although I haven’t posted in quite awhile, one thing remains the same:  we’re sure blessed to get to be parents of these two growing babies of ours!

Fiesta 2016

Confession: we aren’t very good at fiesta since having kids.  Since we spend most of our time avoiding crowds and germs, it goes against the norm.  However, my fatal flaw this year was accidentally driving by the fair at Mercado Del Norte on our way to swimming – so the kids knew the rides were there and wore us down with continual asking, which we really couldn’t come up with a great plausible excuse not to go.  

Our best plan was to go right when it opened (read:  not scorching hot) and during the children’s parade (read: less people), and all in all it turned out great and the kids had a blast.  It was also fun that daddy’s knee is recovering and so he could join us! In fact, picture credits go all to dad on this post!

Also captured a short video montage of the day – not super exciting but family might enjoy it:
Viva la fiesta!  

4th of July Celebrations

I’m going to work backwards from here, going back to key events since I left off blogging a few months back, in hopes of filling in holes for my ‘scrapbook’ of memories for the kids, along with faraway family.

First up – 4th of July weekend, block party & parade! 

I love our neighbors and neighborhood.  There are tons of kids and families, a good mix of a slightly older generation (which I love for our kiddos), and it’s what I would consider safe.  For the holiday, one of my motivated neighbors took it upon herself to organize a big shindig at the park between the two circles of houses.  This was no ordinary block party either – it was complete with a taco truck, fresh horchata, bounce house, DJ, limbo, and bike parade.  So fun for the kids – and us!  

Good times in Montecito.  If my kiddos only knew how blessed they are!   (We are working on conversations about privilege…but sometimes the concepts come slow & I try a number of ways to get the point across before one just ‘sticks’).  

Next up, 4th of July parade!  

Jesse’s knee has been really bugging him lately (seems logical, 4 months without walking would do it to anyone – and he literally NEVER complains, so you know it’s actually hurting now!) – so I took the kids solo to the downtown Montecito celebration to represent Cold Spring School in the parade and friendly competition after between Selah’s school and Montecito Union.  

They were the sweetest, all decked out.  We made our way to our spot then waited a good hour riding around with friends and climbing trees before the parade started. I walked with a few other moms with a banner and the kids zoomed through the crowd in the street.  I even lost Asher in the surrounding neighborhood at the end of it – innocent mistake for his first ride and my horror of not being able to run as fast he rides that bike of his!  I took it as a good opportunity to remind him how to tell a fireman his mommy’s name and find the man with the microphone! 😆

And of course what 4th celebration is complete without terribly unhealthy, mediocre tasting sweets with artificial food dye and flavor?!?   Isn’t that the American way?! 

The kids had a great time, as did I – and although it was exhausting, it was 100% worth it to see those moments of sibling love and pure joy amidst my own personal moments of panic when losing one of them in the crowd (Selah is quite the social butterfly and since it was the school rivalry – the Montecito Cup – she was off enjoying friends while I tried to keep tabs on Asher and hoped she could find me when necessary!).

We also miraculously made it to fireworks with Daddy so he could share in the day, and set up our own cooling pool in the backyard to combat the heat.  Perfect day to celebrate America!

Daddy Daughter Dance

This is the best tradition ever.  Selah’s favorite night of the year.  And I’d venture to say right up there for Daddy too.   

 I’ve even hesitated to post these pre-dance pictures because I cannot narrow them down to which are my favorites.   

   Selah and I picked her out a new dress and heels (?!) at her request, and the princess was definitely feeling beautiful for her ball.   
 I cannot get enough of her in her element.  It’s just one of those things only a picture can try to capture – words don’t do it justice.  

Some pre-dance practice with the prince himself:

   All the work Jesse put into the deck – I mean, dance floor – sure got a little use here!  This sweet couple made me tear up as they drove away:
   But lucky for me I had my own little (pant less?) prince to hang with! 😉

Sidewalk Chalk and Valentines

I feel just a teeny tiny bit guilty enjoying this beautiful summery weather in a winter of drought when we could use a huge rainstorm instead a a beach day.  But someone has got to do it, so it might as well be me. 😉  

 (photo from yesterday on a quick hike up an open space near us before I grabbed the kids from school and headed to the beach for a sunset dinner with friends and waited for Jesse to get off work – Santa Barbara is not rough to enjoy).

Tonight when I got off work, Asher was napping so Selah and I christened the new driveway with sidewalk chalk.  We thought it’d be a great idea to lay on the warm concrete while the sun went down and take silly pictures of us and our artwork.   

   Saving the best for last, how lucky am I to be loved by her?!
  My budding photographer wanted to take one of me beside her work as well:  
  Not the most flattering, but if I look hard enough, my mind can hear the wild parrots squawking, smell the faint smell of BBQ, and feel the warmth of the ground as the air turns cool when the sun sneaks behind the mountains.  It’s one of those evenings I’m reminded why I don’t count the cost of living here because the reward is priceless.  

After I pulled together a makeshift homemade cheese pizza and spinach salad dinner (Jesse was gone tonight so I didn’t get fancy, and just did something to satisfy the natives), I switched to Valentine duty in preparation for school parties tomorrow.  About 25 for each of them means 50 of those bad boys between the two kids.  I think it turned out relatively cute for a simple project:

Thank goodness for image search on Google which gave me the idea.  I have a love/hate relationship with kid crafts, but likely not for reasons you’d expect.  I actually love crafts and art projects, but hate that I am usually pulling things together at the last minute…and wish my kids were a little more into it so that I could do it with them rather than try to entertain them while I finish.  I’m sure these things change with age, and for now my little tootsie pop cards will be it for tomorrow’s school festivities! ❤️

More Colorado Video

These belong on the first snow day, but I forgot to post links…
Selah’s first sledding run with Emeree:

Asher tells me about the snowmobile:

And Jesse had some pretty sweet pictures of the first day on his phone to add:

   The kids getting a special cockpit your from the pilot on the way there:
Snow angels!!

  For not being snow kids, they were pretty comfortable: 
This was within minutes of going outside – their first attempts at snow angels. 


And Selah (with direction from Hannah):

And a gorgeous sunset to end the day:

  Oh, and proof Jesse and I were there too – enjoying (yes, I mean it!) the cold!

Day 2

  Having your personal travel guides each day of our trip was pretty amazing – were lucky they didn’t give up on our tired kids and cranky adults…or is that tired adults and cranky kids?  Either way, day two was spent running around Colorado Springs which is pretty awesome too.

We took the kids and walked/drove a bit around Garden of the Gods – which was gorgeous.  An attempt to take a family picture with everyone looking in the same general direction with a relatively normal smile resulted in about two dozen ‘almost good’ pictures.  Here’s the best of the bunch:

(At least the scenery is nice!).  The kids had fun, and attempted to ‘sled’ in any little patch of snow we ran across (indicating the success experienced the first snow day!). 

 It was also our last day with Hannah, which for Selah was so bittersweet.  She’s been looking forward to that trip for months – not caring much about snow or Colorado – but pining to see her favorite friend.  Luckily they slipped in a sweet little ‘date’ with Magic Town (a sort of ‘seek & find’ art gallery/museum-ish place) and some Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory dessert.





 Just like every day there, couldn’t have asked for a more perfect day or people to spend it with.  I’ll sound like a broken record, but we’re so thankful and don’t take a single blessing for granted.   



 More snow coming up!