Tuesday, June 30, 2009

The Great Southwest

Five Reasons to visit Tucson, Arizona

1. The Lovely Desert

2. Mexican Food

3. Sunsets

5. These Folks

Thursday, June 25, 2009

I'm Outta Here!

This is probably a totally unnecessary notice since I will be seeing the majority of people that read my blog while I am on vacation. For those readers that I'm not actually related to - I'll be back next week.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Fire and Football

It's time to start gearing up for football season. I realize that football is a fall sport, but that just means that you spend the summer getting ready to play it. The first thing you do is the non-contact football camps, then you move on to conditioning camp, then you start practicing with your team, and by then it's time for the actual season to start. Dane is spending this week at a non-contact camp working on basic skills and getting back into good football habits. There was some excitement at camp today when they had to cut the day short because the hill across from the field was on fire. The air was so smokey you could barely breathe, I don't think anyone minded going home early.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

My Precious

This is how I feel about my new Kindle

It arrived about a week ago, and it's my new love and constant companion. You may remember when I told you about my feelings for my iPhone, my feelings for the Kindle are almost as strong. It's everything I expected it to be; portable, convenient, totally cool etc... but it's also more than I expected. I've already read several books on it and I have no complaints. There is no way to hold it and not be amazed by it. The screen looks like a traditional book, the pages turn in the blink of an eye, and it's not uncomfortable to hold, you can snuggle up with it just like you would with any book. Quite simply, I love it. I'm glad Steve made my buy it.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

He Blinded Me With Science

One of the reasons Steve is such a great dad? He likes to hang out with his offspring. Steve loves all things related to science and nature, and so do his kids. The obvious place for them to spend Father's Day? The California Academy of Sciences. We were not the only ones who thought it was a good Father's Day outing, so did half of the Bay Area, but crowds or no, it was simply amazing. Steve's Dad came with us, so Steve got to spend Father's Day with his own dad, and Dagny and Dane got to spend it with their father and their grandfather. The perfect way to celebrate Father's Day.

hanging out in the coral reef

on the living roof

father and son

Steve and his third child, who didn't get to go
on the outing but still needed his picture included

Friday, June 19, 2009

Change We Can Believe In

Dane is notorious for finding and keeping spare change. If he sees coins laying on the counter, he'll pocket them. (don't worry, he only does it at home) If you give him money to pay for something, he'll keep the change. This practice paid off for him in a big way. He and his dad took all the change he has collected to the Coinstar machine to sort it and count it. (they had to put it in a backpack to get it all there, it was so heavy Dane couldn't even lift it) He had so many coins it took about half an hour to cycle all of them through. When all was said and done (and the Coinstar machine took it's percentage) Dane walked away with $280.

Mr. Moneybags

There are 2 morals to this story;
  1. keep your change because it adds up
  2. crime does pay
Guess which one Dane learned?

Wednesday, June 17, 2009


Remember when Gavin was gone for the weekend? He was hanging out, having fun and winning the big prize at Woofstock. Not only did Gavin win, but his handler won for best costume. Groovy, man.

Monday, June 15, 2009


Dagny's birthday this year had something extra special about it, she turned 14 on the 14th. I think we should celebrate with 14 years of birthday memories.

She literally planned her own first birthday party. She told us what color her decorations should be, what she was going to wear... The best part was everything matched.

Celebration at Gymboree, easiest party ever.

When she was 3 she was obsessed with the Little Mermaid, so her party went Under The Sea. There was a special face painter who could paint any Little Mermaid character for you.

She had her first luau when she was 4.

When she turned 5 she hosted the Dagny Olympic Games.

I can't remember why she was so interested in Mexico when she was 6, but that led to a Fiesta.

The Art Party, every kind of art project you can imagine.

She had just started dancing Hula, and we had just gotten back from Hawaii, so of course she had a luau when she turned 8, complete with hula lessons.

The funnest Pajama Party ever. We kept the bounce house overnight.

Pool party, we gave every kid an underwater camera, the pictures are awesome.

Celebrated turning 11 at the beach. Windy and cold but so much fun.

Started out at the pool, then make-overs and an all night dance party. As party favors everyone got matching pajamas, they wore them when they went out to breakfast the next morning.

Invited her best friend to go to San Francisco and see Hairspray.

This is what 14 looks like

Saturday, June 13, 2009

It's A Sign

Danville has a cute small-town tradition that I really like, when it's someone's birthday you mark the occasion by making a sign and putting it on the Old Oak Tree downtown. The tree is usually full of birthday wishes, it's fun to drive by and read them. I'm all for traditions and birthday recognition, so you bet that when it's my kids birthday there will be a sign. It's one thing to make the sign, it's a whole other thing to run across traffic to the tree and then put the thing up. Big thanks to Steve for always doing the dirty work.

I think she'll like it, I can't wait for her to see it tomorrow.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Practically A National Holiday

This girl

has a birthday coming up

Birthday's are kind of a big deal around here. Basically, if it's your birthday the entire world revolves around you. Gifts, parties, whatever you want, it's all about you. The celebration also tends to not just be on the actual day of your birth, it spills over onto the surrounding days. Sometimes it turns into an entire week of birthday fun. When I say fun I mean for the birthday child, for the mom fun mostly means work. It's going to be a long weekend.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

It's The Little Things

Is this from a 4-star hotel?

No, it's in my house. We got a new cleaning lady and she left this lovely and delightful decoration in all our bathrooms. I now think that everyone should have toilet paper origami in their lives to make them feel special.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

What A Stud

Guess who's going to be a father?

A few weeks ago Gavin went to the veterinarian's to make some puppies. French Bulldogs don't breed the traditional way, it's all done in a vet's office after careful planning and preparation. (Doesn't sound like very much fun for the dogs, does it?) It was a success, Gavin is going to be a dad. The mother of Gavin's puppies is named Olive, you can see her and the rest of Gavin's family here. (that's Gavin on the front page)  We are excited that Gavin will be a daddy, can you just imagine how cute those puppies are going to be?

Monday, June 8, 2009

Taking The Plunge

This was Steve's comment on my Kindle post;

I enjoy that you don't buy things on impulse, but come on. This is the perfect thing for you, hi-tech gizmo + unlimited supply of books. Just buy one already.

He knows me so well, I'm ordering it right now.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Just Not The Same

Gavin is with his breeder at a dog show this weekend, it's lonely around here without him. We are really missing him, the house is so quiet without his snorting. Dane has tried a couple of different things to make up for Gavin's absence; 

He made a valiant effort to fit himself into the dog crate, 
and while it was hilarious it didn't make us miss Gavin less. 

The stuffed dog in the crate was a sweet idea but it just made us sad.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Jammie Time

I love pajamas.  I wish I was Hugh Hefner and could just walk around in my pj's all day. I especially like flannel pajamas, the ones with pants and button up shirt. I fully realize that they are not sexy, but boy are they warm and comfy. (there's a time for sexy and a time for comfy, I know the difference)  I have quite a collection of whimsical pj's, they have things on them like flying pigs, or clouds, the ones covered in Sock Monkeys are the favorite. For some reason I am delighted by the whimsy, just try not to smile when you look at the Sock Monkey pants. Sadly, I can't wear them all year long, it's just too hot. Every fall I look forward to getting out my beloved jammies, (and buying more!) and I hate putting them away in the spring. All summer long I miss their fuzzy comfort. Of course I have summer jammies, (they're pretty cute too) but honestly it's just not the same. This year I found some summer Sock Monkey jammies, I was pretty excited. The Sock Monkeys are hanging out on the beach and surfing, I am totally taking them to Hawaii with me.  When my kids were little I loved buying them matching jammies, what's cuter in Christmas pictures than matching pj's? They are a tradition, but as the kids have gotten older it's harder to accomplish matching sleep-wear, yet somehow I manage it. I like to share the jammie love.  

Thursday, June 4, 2009


I am on the fence about whether or not I should buy a Kindle.  I've done the research, it's amazing, but still I can't commit.  It's impossibly cool (you know how I love gadgets) and I can picture myself carrying it around and loving the convenience of it.  What I'm unsure about is if I'm ready to give up traditional books.  I love books, and I love owning books.  When I read a book that I love I want to own it and have it on my bookshelf. I want to walk past it and see the cover and remember reading it. With the Kindle you only have the digital version of a book.  I'm not sure if I'm ready to make that leap, but man, am I tempted. 

I could carry around all these books at once  
(okay, not these actual books, but better books of my choosing)

this could be me

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Totally Lost

For the most part, network TV is a vast wasteland. An exception is the show LOST.  I have watched it from the beginning, and  I think it's one of the best shows that has ever been on television.  The show works for me because I enjoy an intelligent mystery, I like how all the pieces of a puzzle come together and eventually interconnect. Steve is not big on TV, but he has listened to me talk about LOST for the last 5 years and apparantly I have intrigued him. He went out and bought all the DVD's  so we could watch LOST together.  His plan is that we would watch the first 5 seasons on DVD so he would be all caught up and we would be able to watch season 6 together when it starts next year. What he didn't anticipate is that the kids would want to watch with us. When I started watching LOST my kids were obviously too young for it, so I've never thought about it being a show they could watch. Apparently they've grown up in the last 5 years and now they are totally into it. Watching, and talking, about LOST has become a family activity.   We have been watching it everyday for weeks, Steve and the kids are a little obsessed.  If they're not watching it, they're talking about it.  I don't want to ruin the suspense for them so I literally have to bite my tongue when they discuss all their different theories. My biggest frustration is that they get to watch the episodes back to back, they don't have to wait a week, or a month, or a year, to find out what happens next, they get instant gratification.  I kind of hate that.  I had to wait to find out the secrets, so should they. I've lobbied for them to take a break but they're not having it.  I don't think they could handle the suspense.