Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Viva Las Vegas

It's time for the annual Vegas trip where we tag along with Jason while he works and enjoy a free hotel suite and lots of fun with family and friends. Usually on car trips I stock the kids up with DVD's then go to sleep, but this time I decided to go the extra mile and plan some activities. Every hour they got to open a present with a new activity. They thought it was great, except that Jayden started asking for the next present five minutes later and it would continue for the full 55 minutes. If he wasn't whining about that he was whining about being carsick from doing the activities. Besides that, they had fun and it made the trip go faster. Their favorites were the picture frame dry erase boards that I would switch out with different dot-to-dots, mazes, etc. and the modeling clay. Once we got there we had no problem finding things to fill our time. We hung out with cousins at the pool, going to the movies and lunch and playing at their house. Dinner with the Youngs, then the boys took the kids to Circus Circus to spend a fortune on winning stuffed animals (a definite favorite for the kids). We met up with friends to watch Toy Story 3, went to a fun water park and hung out at their house (they have the cutest twin boys and Jayden was in double the fun heaven playing legos with them, thanks Tara!), then more swimming and a BBQ with friends (thanks Gublers!). We had fun just doing our own thing going bowling (where Jayden refused to smile because he lost and Maddox cried most of the time because he couldn't play with the bowling balls or the camera), spending the evening at Jason's childhood park (where the kids thought we were the meanest parents since we wouldn't let them take home the free kittens that were there), going to dinner when Jason would get off work, playing in the hotel while Maddox napped and going to Town Square to play in the splash pad and park. As always, it was such a fun getaway and we can't wait to do it again next year!

Sunday, June 27, 2010

My little Munchkin


Kylie was so excited when she was cast as a munchkin in the community theater's Wizard of Oz performance and she has been working so hard these last couple of months to get ready for the big night. All the crazy carpools and 4 hour practices paid off when we got to see her perform in her first play. Of course we thought she was the cutest one there and it was another proud parent moment for the books. The evening was perfect until we went to pick her up and mentioned to the director that she would miss the last performance because we were leaving out of town. Considering she is only one out of 60 munchkins and her part lasts 12 minutes out of the 3 hour play, we didn't think it would be that big of a deal. Apparently that was not the case and she went psycho on us, yelling, crying and freaking out because she wouldn't be there and her partner wouldn't have anyone to dance with. I was speechless, Jason was not, which may have added fuel to the fire and ended with her saying that Kylie may not ever be able to try out for a play again. I was so upset that she was punishing Kylie when it was clearly not her fault. I was so upset that she was ruining Kylie's big night. I was so upset that Kylie was so upset about it and instead of going home to celebrate she went home in tears. She really wants to do more plays so we'll see if things die down in a year or so and maybe we'll give it another try. Enough of that, it's making me mad just thinking about it. I just need to think about how cute she was and how much fun she had doing her first, and possibly last play. errrrggh.

video

We also had some fun guests this weekend when my brother Tyson and his wife Dawn came down to check out a dental school here. My kids love having visitors, Kylie becomes their shadow, Jayden jumps all over them and Maddox is his typical cute Maddox. Tyson was gone most of the time so lucky Dawn got to hang out with us at the pool, doing crafts (all. afternoon. long. poor girl.), going on a girl's shopping trip, then doing some swimming and bbq-ing with the boys. They were so nice to watch Maddox while we went to Kylie's play and hopefully things will work out with the school so that they can be our neighbor one day!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

"C" week


Chalk (homemade: 1 C plaster paris-they carry it at Wal-mart or any craft store and it's cheap-, 1/2 C cool water, 2 Tbs tempra paint--mix then pour into toilet paper roll with one end covered in foil then let dry until hard, about an hour)...drew pictures, played four square, hopscotch, traced shadows...

Chefs (easy chef hats ), they couldn't decide on Cookies or Cupcakes so we did both. Kylie wanted to pretend like we were pastry chefs in Paris so we talked in accents until Jayden informed us that we were giving him the creeps. He doesn't do cheesy.)
Crayon rocks --so easy, cheap and totally cool. The kids loved it so much they were begging to do it again when their friends came over the next day. They decided to give their rocks to dad for father's day so that he could use them to decorate the garden.Cards--they made candygram cards for Jason for Father's day then we made these personalized notepads for Father's day (Kinkos will make it for about $7 for a 108 page notepad). The kids were so excited to give it to him and it was fun to have a cute personalized gift that he can actually use. (I love Jayden's picture: "work. work is not fun.")

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Eleven years

After 11 years of marriage, I love that I am the only one who really knows Jason. Sure everyone knows he's Chinese, they know he likes snowboarding and some may even know that he lives an exciting life as an IT auditor, but I love that there are certain things that only I know about him. Like I know that his leg twitches after he falls asleep, I know the only thing he drinks when he flys is V8 juice, I know he can't leave the house without a pack of gum, I know that he has an extreme aversion to second hand smoke and will cross to the opposite side of the street to avoid it, I know he refuses to ever own a pair of plaid pajama pants, I know he uses Q-tips religiously...oh there are so many other things I know about this man, but what's the fun if I'm not the only one who knows all his secrets?? Thanks for a wonderful 11 years and I can't wait to get to know you even better :). Happy anniversary!!

Friday, June 18, 2010

Stray Cat Strut


video

After last year's fiasco at Kylie's dance recital, I wised up and got a baby-sitter this year. It was nice to just sit back and actually enjoy the show. Kylie was adorable as always with her sassy moves (she's in the far left garbage can). I wanted to stay and watch the rest of the show but was out voted by all the dads so we took off after their dance and invaded the local chic-fil-a. The girls were beyond hyper and we just let them loose in the kiddie area. It was a fun night and Kylie sure made us proud! (but just so we're clear, I'm still sad I missed the last half of the recital and next year I'm holding my ground!)

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

New York

When we went to New York 6 years ago we had a precisely planned agenda filled with all the traditional touristy stuff, but this time I was in charge of planning it which means we had absolutely nothing planned and I loved it. We walked wherever our little feet decided to go, ate at whatever greasy NY pizza place that we wanted to (I seriously couldn't get enough, I had to have it atleast once a day) and just had the best time exploring the city. The first day we hit a flea market and Canal street and after that I was so done with shopping, it was the same cheap crap on every corner but the kids were thrilled with that same cheap crap that we brought home for them. We roamed through Little Italy and Chinatown and I think the highlight of the trip for Jason was when we discovered a restraunt in Chinatown that served shaved noodles. It's these noodles they have in Taiwaan that he's talked about for the past 13 years since his mission. They were actually really good and because I loved seeing him so excited, I was a nice wife to go all the way back to Chinatown the next day so that we could eat there again. We walked around Battery park, saw Lady Liberty from a distance (we did the boat thing out to the island last time and once is good enough for me), visited the WTC site (I'm amazed at how little has changed since the last time we were there--this statue was in the lobby at the time the towers went down) and took a little nap because our feet were killing us. We headed up to Greenwich Village then Union Square where there were quite the entertaining street performers. We wanted to wait to do Time Square at night because it is so alive and magical (if you ignore the shoulder to shoulder crowds and people screaming obscenities at each other). American Eagle has a huge billboard there and if you buy something from their store they'll put your picture up there and Kylie for reals thinks we're famous now. We then headed back to our hotel where we were slumming it in Queens. Instead of admitting that we were cheap I like to think of it more along the lines of experiencing the culture. It was a Marriott so the hotel itself wasn't too bad, it was just the barred up windows and grafiti on the walk from the subway to our hotel (we decided to use the hotel shuttle at night :) and the very passionately vocal people that woke us up at 6 AM--ewwww! The next day we went to church, which was really cool. You expect the ward to be different because it's in the middle of Manhattan (they meet in one of the floors of the temple), but once you get inside it's just the same. I like that. We had to go to church so that we wouldn't feel so guilty about going to the Yankee's game after that. Jason's always been a Yankee fan since he was little and we also wanted to see the new stadium so we hopped on the subway headed to the Bronx. It was a fun game, especially when Posada hit a grand slam but we left after it started raining.
When we got back to Times Square the place was trashed and there were a million people (3 million to be exact), apparently we just missed the Puerto Rico Day Parade. Darn. We walked around some more to Grand Central station, the Rockefellar center, down to the Chelsea district and decided we had enough of the rain and the crowds so called it an early evening and went back to chill at the hotel. The last day we decided to rent bikes and rode around Central Park, then all the way along the Hudson River down to Battery park then over the Manhattan Bridge, around Brooklyn then back over the Brooklyn Bridge. It was a 4 1/2 hour bike ride. My quads were on fire. It was so cool seeing the city that way but I could barely walk that night. Then we were back at the airport headed to Vegas where Jason stayed to work and I hopped on a plane back to Phoenix the next day. New York is such an amazing city, it is nothing like our little Gilbert bubble, you really see it all there. I loved walking around and seeing TV shows or movies being filmed on street corners, we saw a couple different model shots, some skateboard video, a trapeze school, people practicing movie scripts in a restraunt (I really thought I was overhearing a murder confession until I realized it was a script), people throwing up on the sidewalk, so many interesting subway performers (these were my favorite-their band was such an odd mix of people but they were actually pretty good, they were there all day every day) people getting on the subway begging for money after their sob story about being homeless with AIDS, so many openly gay couples, so many openly aggressive couples, a couple confrontations that I was worried would turn into gang fights...I felt very sheltered and niave. Jason kept telling me to stop staring, but I couldn't help it. There are so many interesting people there and it's interesting to be in a place where everyone is so accepted. You would see the strangest things on the subway and nobody would bat an eye. Such a different experience and I'm so glad I got to experience it with Jason. Thank you, babe for an amazing trip and thank you to Jenz and Julene who were so nice to come play mommy to my kids for a week. Happy anniversary!