Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Maui Family Trip Days 2 & 3

It's busy, it's beautiful and it's something these kids (and parents) will never forget.  We're getting in a good rhythm and figuring out how to make days full and smooth.  We start at the beach!

There is a lot of quality time with our little nieces and nephews.  We brought soccer balls, baseballs and gloves, frisbee, music speakers and bring beer and coffee to the beach!  You're not a "Little" if you don't like coffee!  Auntie Coco with her namesake!

The three kids on the right are Teddy, Jett and Amelia.  Better known as the Get Along Gang!

These two girls are funny.  Take note of their expressions!  These two are known as the Caboose Group!

Uncle Christian boogie boarding with Jbird on his back!  J loved it!!

Jeremy and I have never been kayaking so we went today with Ryan!

So we went mostly to find whales and whales we found!!!!  We saw a ton of whales from afar but then all of a sudden 2 of them came to the surface about 30 ft away!  I mean, I have to admit that I freaked out a little inside.  SOOOOO close.  J loved it.  

Next, we move to pool for the rest of the afternoon!  Amelia loves the little kid pool!!!

 Cuddles in the water!

Jeremy has still not gotten sick of the water slide!!!

Love these eyes!

 At sunset we hang out outside the poolside rooms while we feed kids dinner, drink wine/beer and watch the sunset and enjoy the weather.  The first night the guy blew the conch shell and lit the tiki torches by our room.  A few of our kiddos got to help but there were only 3 so Amelia got really sad when she couldn't!  Tonight...she and Mabel got to help and were thrilled!  

Crystal and the kids (missing Kira)!

Last night we left all the kids with Crystal and went to a delicious sushi dinner.  Tonight Oma and Opa went to dinner and then the boys headed out for some male bonding.  Tomorrow night is a ladies night so I will be looking forward to that!

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Aloha!!! Maui Family Trip 2012

Well, we made it here!  A classic meeting at the airport had heads turning but in typical "Little" fashion, we could care less.  We love all these nieces and nephews, aunts and uncles and we wanted to hug every one of them.  
The plane ride went great.  It was musical seats, trading games, toys, coloring books, one spilled OJ on J's lap, one short nap for Benny and Mabel, two bags of trash, one scared Cece on take off and landing and we arrived with "we're in Hawaii"!!!!!!
Here is our mode of transportation....yup, a 15 passenger van that still doesn't fit all of us.  

A blurry picture but we're the group that keeps on going and going.

Ah, but it was all worth it!!!!

Checking things out.  The kids were spread out and going every which way within seconds.  I think half of the adults got the welcome drinks and the other half were chasing kids down the stairs, across the bridge and around the lobby.  My kids found this.

and a fish pond!

J taking it all in

We spent the day by the pool (which was chaotic at first with kids going all over the place) but eventually all settled down and the little ones hung out in the kiddie pool, J went down the water slide at least 30 times, we ordered lunch, about 30 beers and then headed to the beach.  Unreal!  No pics because I was trying to make my kids didnt drown but I'll d better today!
Dinner, a beautiful sunset and then bed!

It's now 5:30am on day #2 and the kids have been up since 4 am!  Gotta love the time change!  Off to make some breakfast in our little kitchen and wait for the sun to come up to start the day!

Monday, January 23, 2012

Just because

Some updates and fun pics!  
I love candid pictures and our neighbor just sent us a few of these from our Xmas Eve shore fishing day!  Love when I actually get pics of myself with the kids because it RARELY happens!
Have I mentioned how much I love this boy?!?!  Ugh, can't deal.

For as difficult an age that Amelia is, there are amazing moments of "big sister-ness" that melts my heart!  They're lucky to have each other.

This girl is a daddy's girl!!!!  

Mabel wants to be just like her big sister these days.  She even wants her hair to be the same.  I love it so I do it! :)

I love weekend mornings to chill out and not rush out the door by 7:30am!!!!  Pillow pet time!

Family hug!  Ryan is under there, you just can't see him!!!!

Oh yeah, Mabel is back in diapers!  When I would ask her if she had to go pee, it was as if she looked at me and said, "F you" and then would pee in her pants!  So I asked her if she wanted to be a baby in diapers or a big girl in underwear.  She chose baby. So, baby she is.  I'm secretly thrilled because I wasn't ready to do the whole potty training thing before Hawaii.  She still asks to go in the potty but I remind her that SHE CHOSE baby!  We'll see when she chooses to be a big girl!  Until then, I am taking a break from asking, "Mabel, you have to go potty?"  Thank god!!!!!!

Oh yeah, she is now off the wait list at Emerson (Teacher Kathy) so we started today and she remembered all the songs, etc from when she went with me to Amelia's class.  It didn't even phase her when I left her on the playground.  Well done #3!!!  I guess that what being a third child is all about!  Here she is starting her 1st real school experience! Lunch and all :(

Monday, January 16, 2012

Potty Training update....

Miss Mabel is doing SO well!!!  She has gone a few days with no accidents!!!  She has woken up a couple mornings with a #2 so I keep telling her to hold it and tell us.  Yeah right :)  She did her first Daddy outing (I've been putting Pull-ups on her so he doesn't have to worry about it) to the beach today and went almost 3 hours without going potty.  Needless to say when she got home, I stripped her out of her clothes in the back yard (so they wouldn't get sand on the clean floors) and she ran over to the grass and "drained her tank" for what felt like minutes.  Poor girl!  But, good girl too for holding her pee all morning!  Almost there....

Holiday Weekend

"Hand me downs" are amazing!  They are also my nagging chore!  I think there is a bag of clothes at least once every couple weeks on my porch from various people (and suitcases from Auntie Courtney) so I throw them in the girl's closet until they start to fall out every time I open the door.  Once every few months, I finally concede to hunker down for a couple days and get it done.  I go through the girls drawers and throw all clothes too small into the hallway.  I throw good will clothes into the bathroom (if you know my house then you know that it's a straight throw from the dresser to both locations).  I literally dump ALL bags of clothes on the floor and again, clothes I don't want go either to the hallway or bathroom and clothes we do want go into the drawers.  Clothes still too big go into plastic bins that now say, 4 year and 5 year clothes.  Don't forget the "life" bins (newspaper from the day they were born, home from hospital outfits, cute artwork, sweet cards, mementos of each girl) that also get any clothes they've grown out of that they loved.  Think Barefoot dreams jacket, favorite onesies, etc.  It's an ordeal and the kids love it!!!!!!  See below!

Sunday we took the kids (those included in that would be Jack and Annie) and Luna to Solstice Canyon in Malibu.  A little "hike", more like a walk, to an old burned down house and waterfalls.  I had a bit of an anxiety attack when Ryan and I decided to only take the back pack.  What?!?!!?  That means Amelia would have to walk the whole time.  It was a fun time but who are we kidding, I ended up carrying her almost the whole way back from the waterfalls and Mabel made it 1/2 way there before she wanted to be in the back pack!  Good times!

I convinced Ryan to take the kids shore fishing with him today (he went with David George, kids and the same neighbors who went on Xmas Eve day) so I could get stuff done!  It's AMAZING what I can get done now with not a lot of time.  Here's what I accomplished today....
1. Ran to Bristol Farms with Luna to get coffee and get her out for a walk
2.  Dusted, cleaned bathroom, kitchen and rest of house and did the mopping on all 4's!!!!!  
3.  5 loads of laundry, folded, put away
4.  Did I mention that I also took kitchen chairs outside for a scrub down
5.  Showered
6.  Bathed kids once they were home
7. Painted trim on 3 windows (Ryan replaced the windows about 2 years ago but has yet to paint them)
8.  Painted an accent wall in kitchen (that was a last minute, "I'm feeling motivated" project that I started at 2pm!
Before...with paint tape


A couple people have mentioned painting the left and right walls as well.  Thoughts?
9.  Made dinner
10.  Got kids ready for bed and put them to bed at 6:45
I was on the couch by 7 pm to get my computer "to do list" done!!!
I'm beat!  Hope you all had a great holiday weekend!!!! 

Friday, January 06, 2012


We went over to Auntie Louise's yesterday afternoon and about 1/2 way into our play date, she whips out this toy called The Bubble Thing!!!  Don't ask, just get it!  It's the coolest toy ever!!!!  You mix a big old bucket of dish soap, water, baking soda and corn starch (it seems like a lot but it took minutes or you can buy a mix online but it's $11) and dip the bubble wand in and follow some simple instructions and boom, you have the biggest bubbles EVER!!!

So Louise and I were following the instructions...move the rope together, dip, slowly open rope and then move against the wind.  Louise was getting some huge bubbles but couldn't close it off to save her life.  The kids loved it and even J did a good job getting huge bubbles.  We took a break to let the kids have their turn and next thing we know, Emily is creating the biggest bubbles and cutting them off so they flew into the air.  No strategy, no instructions, just dipped and walked around.

 Even Mabel got in on the action...briefly.  How cool is this bubble Jbird got going!

Here is Louise's biggest bubble and we didn't photo Emily's bubbles.  It was so fun...Louise and I wanted to do it all day!!!

Oh, and your kids smell good afterwards because of the dish soap.  Now, put your computer away (or don't if you want to get it online) and go get it!!!!  The best!

Wednesday, January 04, 2012


2012 has already proven to be a year of change!  Hmmm...where do I start?  
Miss Mabel hates wearing diapers and asks to wear underwear instead.  I'm reluctantly going with it and I let her wear underwear around the house and short trips in the car if she's gone pee before we leave.  She has made it to Oma and Opa's house in underwear and has a much bigger bladder then her sister.  She has done a few #2's and tons of #1's on the potty and wears pull ups .  So, I guess I can say that we're POTTY TRAINING my baby!  Where has the time gone?!!?
Look how big she is.  Not a great picture but I like it. Almost 1/2 of me :(
On to Amelia's milestone....NO MORE NAPS!  I am pulling her naps.  I'm doing this for a couple of reasons;
1.  She still asks to nap but when she does, she will stay awake reading/playing in her bed until 9pm sometimes.  That's fine because she doesn't bother us but then she's up earlier because she's not as tired because she's napped the day before.  But then she's asking for a nap because she was up early.  Terrible cycle.  So...with the cousins here and distracting her, we've pulled them.  She may nap every once in a while but for now, QUIET time it is.
2.  I want to get the pack n play out of J's room and that's where Mabel is napping now instead of her bed because Amelia naps in that room.
On a side note....Amelia is LOVING gymnastics and every coach she has comments on how strong she is, how coordinated she is and how well she listens.  I've even watched and I've noticed that when the coach gives her something to do while she's working with the other girls, Amelia always does it EXACTLY how she was told.  They have mats with hand/feet outlines on them and if Amelia is supposed to put her feet on the "feet" mat, she lines them up perfectly.  It's pretty funny!  Here she is two heads smaller than everyone else!

Jeremy's milestone came out of the blue.  Ryan decided we were going to take his training wheels off.  He took them off, we took J and the girls to LMU for wide open spaces of grass to start and Ryan pushed him and off he went.  I mean, seriously, he just kept going.  AMAZING!  This was about 10 minutes after we got there!