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28 March 2014

St Patrick's Day Photo Shoot

Last year when I did my daily photos on Instagram, I never missed a day.  I'm not doing so hot with my project this year which was to do a mini photo shoot once a week.  I'm maybe averaging once a month.  As my dad would say, What it is, what it is!

Sweet Sydney girl's allergies were bothering her, so pretty much every picture I tried to take was of her with puffy eyes and a runny nose.  She wasn't feeling the photo shoot, so I eventually gave up and just focused on Olivia.  She's turning into quite the little model.

St. Patrick's Day Fun

It should be totally obvious that I love a theme.  I love dressing my girls in theme and doing crafts/activities that revolve around a theme.  So, even though St. Patrick's Day was the day after we came home from our trip, I still had a stack of fun activities ready to go for the girls {and their neighbor friend}.

➹ I sent the girls on a little scavenger hunt.  The treasure at the end was a shamrock cookie and rainbow Gobstoppers. The girls loved it so much that we have done it at least ten times since! ➹

➹ I bought a box of Lucky Charms and the big girls did a cute graphing activity with it.  ➹

➹ In between activities, the girls colored lots of pictures. ➹

➹ I'm convinced the girls ate more Froot Loops than they put on the rainbow, but hey, what are you going to do?  ➹

➹ We finished the day with green spaghetti! ➹

Seriously, my girls are the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.  I love them so much and am so happy that I'm able to stay home with them and do all of these fun things with them. 

Less Than A Day in San Diego

My parents left Manhattan Beach a day before we did, so we spent our last full day there driving around and looking for famous people in Beverly Hills.   We didn't see anyone, sadly, so we stopped by a park for the girls to play for a bit.

On Saturday, we headed down to San Diego to meet up with one of my favorite people in the whole world.  My friend, Diann, who I used to teach with in Indianapolis, and her daughter Kelsey were taking a little weekend vacation in San Diego and we just couldn't resist meeting up with them.

We tried our best to wear the kids out before the restaurant and, thankfully, they were pretty good while we were there.  I really appreciated David sort of taking responsibility for entertaining them so I could catch up with my girls.

The plan was for us to put the girls down to bed at the hotel with David and then for me to meet up with the ladies afterwards for a nightcap.  By the time we got the girls to sleep, Diann and Kelsey were already in bed watching E! so we didn't get that drink.  :(

It was fun catching up with them for a little while and was a nice close to our week away.

Disneyland/California Adventure

Apologies in advance for this post being picture heavy, but I think they tell the story of the day much better than I do!

We left Nana and Poppy at home the Thursday of our trip and took Uncle Rhino and the girls for a one-day cram session of Disneyland and California Adventure.  I hope I express how lucky I feel that we have been able to take our girls to The Happiest Place on Earth so many times.  Seriously, the girls are little pros at navigating their way around.  We also know how lucky we are to have gone when the park is less crowded.  This trip, the place wasn't horribly crowded, but it was definitely more packed.  We still managed to do almost everything we wanted to do.

One of my favorite things about meeting the characters is watching the interaction between them and the girls, especially Olivia since she knows so much about each of them.  Before we met the fairies, we talked a little bit about what she might ask them when she met them.  When she stood with Tinker Bell, she asked her what kind of fairy Tinkerbell thought she would be if she wee a fairy.  Tinkerbell asked her what she liked to do and she said that she liked to sing.  And, so Tinkerbell said, "Well, I bet you would be a music fairy!"  Olivia looked at me and said, "MOM, I'm a music fairy!"

➹ Sydney gave Mickey and hug and then got scared and came running back to me sobbing!  

Thanks, Disneyland, for another great day!

26 March 2014

The Big Kahuna

Oh my mercy, you guys.  I'm so behind.  I feel like we just got back from vacation, but as I scrolled through my countdown app on my phone {to show Olivia that we only have 22 days until she turns FIVE}, I see that it's already been 15 days since we celebrated my brother's birthday.  I'm leaving for Chicago tomorrow morning and I know if I don't start throwing these pictures up on the ol' blog, it's going to be another week before they get up here.  So, here we go!

My brother wanted to have his birthday dinner at Duke's in Malibu since he is obsessed with all things Hawaii, and really who can argue with eating dinner oceanside all the while knowing Hula Pie is coming your way for dessert?!

Some of my brother's friends made it to dinner, and those who couldn't sent cards, notes and messages.  I think he had over 50 cards and letters to open up.

➹ Debby Knox!!! ➹

Our dear family friend, Michael, was able to make it to the restaurant too.  I've known this sweet boy since the day he was born.  I haven't seen him since my wedding and he'd only seen a million pictures of my girls, but never met them.  {His words, not mine!}  So, it was a huge thrill to catch up with him and to watch Olivia fall head over heels for him.

The next day, my parents watched both girls for us so we could spend the day at Universal Studios with Ryan.  We had a lot of fun, but I swear I am just not cut out to ride roller coasters anymore...or have people dressed as zombies & ghosts jump out at me in the dark.  

My parents did a great job watching the girls and keeping them busy.  They hit up a playground and the beach and kept me posted about there goings on all through the day.

Stay tuned for a Disneyland post.  You know we can't be in the LA area and not take a trip to the Happiest Place on Earth!

24 March 2014

This Modern Family

For my brother's birthday, his friend hooked him {and me! and Hala!} up with a visit to the Modern Family set at Fox Studios.  The morning started off a bit rocky with the girls throwing a major scream-fit when I tried to leave, but it was well worth it!

I was SO nervous driving to the set.  It was really cool though.  We met a production assistant who walked us to the sound stage.  We got a copy of the script for the episode they were filming and then were given a set of headphones so we could hear them doing their multiple takes of each scene.  It was seriously surreal.  They did SO many takes.

We were seated right across from Craft Services {which looked like a gourmet kitchen} and so we were able to see some of the actors/actresses from the show.  We met Ed O'Neill {!!!!} and I even made him laugh.  We met Rico {Manny}, we saw the little girl who plays Lilly and we saw Sofia Vergara and got a smile from her as she ate her salad while walking away from the kitchen.  Seriously, the highlight of my day was meeting Ed O'Neill.  I'm sill kicking myself in the butt for not asking him for a picture.  

The entire crew broke for an hour lunch break and so we got to walk through the sets and take some pictures.  It was really cool to see the set -- they have so many little realistic details!  Unfortunately, the lights were out so some of the pictures didn't turn out so great.  

Thank you, Ryan, for letting your little sister tag along to such a fun experience!