Sunday, July 28, 2013

Jeremy's First Visit to the Dentist

I can't remember exactly, but I think we took Grace to the dentist when she was 3 (I'm sure it's recorded somewhere on this blog).  We kind of dropped the ball with Jeremy and he just had his first visit a few weeks ago (he's 5).  Jeremy did great- he was calm, cooperated, and wasn't scared at all!  Sadly though, I guess we only have ourselves to blame for the fact that Jeremy has 3 cavities! Yikes!  I didn't have my first cavity until I was 33!!!!  Apparently, since my dentist is not a pediatric dentist, we actually have to take him to see someone else.  Boo...   

14th Anniversary

We celebrated our 14th anniversary on July 24.  It has been quite the journey- earlier in our marriage, we struggled through a lot... Many times, it seemed like it would've been easier to just give up.  Even though that was many years ago, every anniversary that passes holds incredible value to me.  We are so grateful for the people who prayed for us, stuck by us, and continue to support us.  Our marriage grows stronger each year, and I can say with pride that I love what we have.  Our commitment to each other is not something I ever want to take for granted.  So... here's to 14 years!  And many, many more!   
This picture was taken for our wedding invitation.  We look like babies! :)
We went for a special dinner at Trelio to celebrate.

What a Zoo!

We used to go to the Fresno Chaffee Zoo quite often when the kids were younger.  We haven't gone in the past few years!  One of the zoo's newest exhibits, Sea Lion Cove, opened last year and we still hadn't visited to see it (Grace has gone twice; once with her friend, and once with her class).  I finally got a chance to take Jeremy this summer.  We went with Christa and her kids, and Jamie came with Isaiah.  The zoo has made some great improvements- we had such a fun morning!

Friday, July 26, 2013


We went with some friends to the Discovery Center a few weeks ago.  It was our first time, and sadly, probably our last.  There is so much potential with this place, but I wasn't impressed.  It definitely needs to be revamped!!! This is when I think, "If I were to design this place, I would ______"  (I actually think it'd be so fun to do, but anyway...) 
The main reason we came was actually for their "Star Party."  Three telescopes were set up and we got to see the moon, Saturn, and Venus.  We were most impressed with the moon- amazing!  Saturn actually looked fake, as if it were a sticker.  Our kids love learning about space and this was a neat experience!

Paddlesport Camp

As a teacher, I often get random emails from different organizations promoting field trip possibilities. A few weeks before school got out, an email from the San Joaquin River Stewardship program caught my eye- they had a link for a Paddlesport summer camp.  I thought it sounded so cool, but I didn't think Grace would be open to it.  Seeing how she took to the water during our trip to Maui, I finally brought it up to her.  We actually gave her the option of doing a music camp with her friends, or trying out the paddlesport camp.  She didn't even hesitate- we signed her up for the paddlesport camp.
What an awesome week she had!  She learned how to kayak and stand-up paddle board.  The kids also got to go swimming, fishing, did some art projects, and played group games.  She was bummed out every day when we came to pick her up.  She did so well that the instructors let her go on their weekly 8.5 mile river kayaking trip that is usually reserved for the older kids. She was able to kayak 5 miles on her own, but her instructor helped to tow her the remainder of the trip.  We were so impressed that she was able to do even that much!   
Thursday night was Family Night, and so Grace was able to bring her family to come learn how to paddle board and kayak.  I sat on the bank and watched Grace, Jeremy, and Jason on the river.  So fun!

Friday was "Olympics Day" at camp, and the kids got to play games that would use the new skills they learned all week.  Grace won several ribbons for racing, and she was awarded "Camper of the Week." We were sad to see her camp week come to an end... It was such a wonderful experience for her, and we were excited to see her confidence continue to grow, and to see her love for these water sports. We will definitely sign her up again next summer!

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Children's Museum of the Sierra

We're usually gone so much in the summer that I always miss out on all the Moms' Outings throughout the summer.  This year, we've been able to join the moms' group for a few gatherings.  One of them was to visit the Children's Museum of the Sierra in Oakhurst.  It was our first time- Jeremy is at a good age for this particular museum. He had a lot of fun! There is a lot of "role-playing" and tons of hands-on items for young children to play and interact with. 
After our visit, we went with our friends to a nearby park to eat lunch and let our kids run around the playground.  It wasn't too long before Jeremy fell asleep in the car on the way home.  Fun day!

4th of July Get-Together

I love hanging out with friends... I love making special memories like those on holidays... Here are just a few pictures of our 4th of July, spent with some of our closest friends, the Bomar, Co, and Wiens families.

Grace's Rage

 We arrived from Maui in San Jose, and then had to still drive home to Fresno.  By the time we got in, it was about 1:30am.  Grace's Rage team had a tournament in Selma the next morning and she was supposed to be there at 8am.  We decided that after all our travels, it'd be better to sleep in.  We did join up with her team later in the day.  It turned out to be a scorcher- it was 113 degrees for the last two of her games.  We are still so impressed that she didn't complain once about getting out there.  She played again that Sunday, and her team went on to win the tournament.  

Grace had such a wonderful experience playing all-stars this year.  Since it was 8U, it wasn't too bad of a time-commitment.  She learned a lot and we really loved her coaches! 
 For her end-of-season party, Grace and I made these softball cookies for her teammates.
Thank you to everyone who has supported Grace this season!  Your help through purchasing car wash tickets helped our overall costs significantly!

Shave Ice!!!!

Okay, so I'm finished recapping our Maui trip, but I just had to designate one entire post to one of our favorite Hawaiian treats: shave ice!  Locals told us that in Hawaii, it is known as shave ice, not shaved ice.  Ummm, I'm drooling as I recall each shave ice that I got to have.  We must've averaged one a day!  Aside from getting to choose syrups made from Hawaiian cane sugar and fruit juices, a shave ice can also be served with a scoop of ice cream underneath, and topped with a condensed milk mixture known as a "snow cap."  Another authentic addition is to get adzuki beans underneath... That was my favorite combination- lychee, green tea, and coconut shave ice with adzuki beans... YUM!!!

Our bank was having a Customer Appreciation Day a few weeks ago and was giving away free shave ice.  I had been craving it since we left Maui and was so disappointed that the shave ice we had was more like a snow cone.  Wonder if there's anywhere in Fresno that sells shave ice that is truly "shaven?"  If you find a place, make sure you let me know! 

Last Day in Maui

Before heading out the airport, we had enough time to stop off at 'Iao Valley State Park since it was along the way.  We took a short hike to see the 'Iao Needle which is a natural rock pinnacle that stands in a valley and is surrounded by the walls of a crater.  Hawaiians consider this valley to be a very spiritual place. There is also a botanical garden there that highlights plants that are native to the area.
We are so thankful to Jason's mom for blessing our whole family with this trip.  So many wonderful memories were made!

Don't know when we'll get to return to Maui, but ALOHA!  'Til next time...

Maui Day 7

For our last full day in Maui, we decided to head out to do some boogie boarding.  It was suggested that we try a place the locals call, "Grandma's Beach" (its actual name is Papalaua Beach between Lahaina and Kihei).  It was a perfect day that included boogie boarding, swimming, playing in the sand, catching and seeing a crab up close... It was so relaxing, several of us actually fell asleep while we laid on the beach!