For a few weeks Jess couldn't seem to charge his phone very easily.  To get a good connection from the charger to the phone was very trying and if you got it in the right position and could keep it there, the chances of it holding were slim.  Jess and I started complaining about the fact that the phone quality should be better than that.  It should not have a problem with the charger connection until you've had it for five years, not two.

Then last night Jess looked inside the charging socket.  He then proceeded to take a toothpick and remove a pinky fingernail sized bit of lint from it.  The charger connection is working great now.  We aren't complaining about phone quality anymore.  In fact, we were impressed that you could actually get a connection sometimes with the amount of lint that was in there. We will be checking for lint on a regular basis from here on out.


July likes to fly by

July always speeds along quickly with much goings on here and there with nary a chance to take a breath, but boy, is it fun!

Now I know today is 27 July, but my last few days of July I've got a trip and I don't foresee me sitting down to post until around 10 August when I'll be spouting on about how I can't believe it's August already!  And how school starts on the 19th. But I digress. 

July! What a time we've had! Beginning with cousins from back east coming to visit. We had lots of fun going to the zoo, enjoying the classic BBQ, Grandpa and Grandma's new pool, and lazy evenings out on the porch swing. Summer + porch swing = ahhhh. The Fourth of July was as great as ever, full of parade wonder and clever comments all the way to water balloons and fireworks. 

At the zoo watching the spraying dinos
Get Uncle Jess!
Sparkler lighting

Then girls camp came and went. I was able to catch a little more than half of the fun and it was a good time. I slept so well, ate even better, and played Catch Phrase round after round. The girls were top notch and hopefully it's clear to them that I think so. 

{no photos here due to the no electronics rule}

Bring on family reunion 2015! We had a splendid time playing at the beach, visiting the San Luis Rey mission, going to Legoland, and singing and dancing. I boogie boarded to my heart's content and so did Jess (although he could always do more). Our kids couldn't get enough of the beach. Plus, we learned Ansel loves cacti and Oliver loves drawing (we had to make an emergency run to buy crayons!). 

Ollie gives boogie boarding a try
Ansel on a California evening
Pointing out the cactus spines
My first ever viewing of a lime tree
The mission steps
Oliver loved this Legoland globe, we got a photo of each quarter of the world
On the pier one evening
We could hardly get the kids to sit still for this photo, they were having such a fun time with cousins

Add that to the splash park visits, the swimming pool, and friend outings, and July (and summer) has been a good time indeed!


Observing good

Today I saw a UPS delivery guy bring a  resident's recycling bin in from the curb as he dropped off a package. 

Such good. 



Ansel climbed up a couple of shelves in the pantry, grabbed the candy jar, and ate all of its contents - 3 fun size almond Snickers. Needless to say, he did not want lunch. 

After I couldn't buy lemonade from some kids in the neighborhood because I didn't have any cash, Oliver told me if he had a lemonade stand he would sell a cup for $0.01. Jess commented that we may need to teach Oliver about profit margin. 

I pruned our dogwood bushes for some hours this morning. It was surprisingly rewarding. 


Lost tooth

Oliver has had a loose tooth for about a month. This morning it was hanging by a thread. As Jess left for work this morning he gave Ollie a fun ultimatum, "Ollie, when I get home, I want that tooth to be out."  Ollie got nervous. Was it possible? 

This afternoon as we were eating our lunch at the park, Ollie bit into his PB&J and stopped suddenly. The tooth had fallen out and boy was he excited. "Dad's going to be so glad." I was glad too. His adult tooth had been visible behind the baby tooth for a few weeks. We called him shark boy and I knew that baby tooth needed to come out stat. 

When we got home Ollie shined the tooth by giving it a good solid brush. It's now glistening and safe in his tooth holder. He and I are currently plotting how he will tell his Dad that the tooth is gone. 

Wow, I've got a kid with a lost tooth. Time sure keeps on tickin'. 


Making sense of it all, 2 and 6 years old

Ansel and his 2 year old and 4 month self is talking lots.  He speaks very clearly and thoughtfully.  But sometimes things get mixed up.  Like say,
Gorilla becomes Granola,
Big Bird becomes Bird Tird,
Escalator becomes Excavator,
and my favorite Ansel quote yet, when looking for something that he clearly wants but isn't quite sure what it is: "Where's my mines?"  This kid is clearly in the MY stage.  He loves to sing, and hearing him come up with the words is the sweetest. And lately when we're driving, he always yells, "Go Mama!" when we stop. Jess and I wonder: if this is what he is like at two, picture his driving comments to us when he's a teen. Oliver did this same thing, so when they are 13 and 17, just picture the back seat driving. Haha!

As for Oliver, he's trying to get the concept of money, but it is still abstract.  Try explaining a credit card to your 6 year old.  I don't do a very good job of it.  The other day Ollie thought I could buy a credit card and then we could buy anything and everything we wanted (sounds like a dude I went on a date with in college).  Yes, I've got some clarifications to go over.  But he's getting it and for his birthday he wanted a specific something.  It was on the expensive side.  "I know mom, we could use the money in my money jar to start to pay for it.  Then, we could enter a video into America's Funniest Videos and win the $10,000 prize and pay for the rest of it!"  Good thinking Ollie!  What's more, when I'm searching Google or Amazon for something we may need he strongly suggests, "Remember to type in CHEAP, Mom." Good thinking once again Ollie.

These guys are my favorite. 


signs that you are getting older

1. You go to your child's school office and check him or her out.
2. You start having conversations about your lawn, e.g. "Have you turned your sprinklers on yet?"
3. You ask kids what grade they are in at school.
4. You mistakenly call a 18 year-old neighbor his 15 year-old brother's name.
5. You now have several reasons to frequent Home Depot.

I think I swore to myself that I would never do anything like number 3 or 4, but just this last week, I was guilty of both.  And back when I was in college I really had no idea why there were so many Home Depot commercials on television.  Who is doing all that home maintenance/remodel stuff? I thought to myself.  Now I know.


Easter 2015

Extremely grateful for these people. 



This quote from Amelia Earhart resonated with me when I saw it at the kids' museum yesterday. 

The most difficult thing is the decision to act, the rest is merely tenacity. You can do anything you decide to do. 

You can act to change and control your life; and the procedure, the process is its own reward. 

p.s. whilst in college, a group of friends came to call me Amelia saying I looked like her. My first thought was, "Amelia? I look like Amelia? Why couldn't it be some other beauty?" Quickly, I snapped out of that and remembered the goodness of Amelia. I embraced the nickname - short hair, tenacity (which I am still working on) and all. 


April fool's day

What kind of stuff should we do to fool mom?

Oliver is really into doing some fooling of his own this year. We worked on a sign to surprise dad. He ran through it right as Jess came in the room. Good way to start the day. 

Then he asked Jess to help him with a few tricks. The first, telling mom he didn't have school today. Classic. The second was even more classic.  This is how it panned out. 

Dad, what's another joke we can do to mom?

Get a piece of candy and take the candy out. Then re-wrap it so it looks like a piece of candy is really in there. Then ask mom if she'd like a piece of candy. 

Ollie runs in the kitchen and asks, Hey mom, can I have a candy wrapper?

And, of course, I appeared totally fooled when he gave me that same wrapper wrapped around a rubber ball and looking like a chocolate Bon Bon. 

And in other news, Ansel likes that spring has sprung around here. Our front and backyards have become an extension of the play room.