Saturday, July 30, 2016


Uh-oh! Hannah bumped someone's car in the parking lot. We left a note but they still haven't called. 

This morning we went to Costco, got gas and then she went on a double date with Braydon and Harley. Her date was Raymond. They had fun. Braydon and Han are friends and it was his first date so she was his wingman:)
Rob finished his first whale. It's awesome. Who knew!

Tonight we had a bit of a tragedy. Grace and I were watching Harry Potter and the half blood prince and we realized that the new book was coming out and so we looked for a midnight release. Our local Barnes & Noble had one. I asked the girls if they wanted to go and then we went to the garage and told Rob. Everyone wanted to go but Ethan so we grabbed wands and washed faces and got there a little before 9. They only had 200 copies and we were the 201 people in line:( no book for us. The girls were really upset, we also couldn't do the activities:( 

Then there was an incident and misunderstanding and sadness and sorrow that ended with H crying and G comforting and R garaging. Families can be complicated. 

Grace instagramed in the following way, which I thought was super funny.
It was a rough day.

Friday, July 29, 2016


Hannah and I went to the gym and did zumba.  She was really good at it, I was super uncoordinated but it was fun.
We're going back tomorrow for yoga.

Then we all headed over to the Abramson's grandparents.  They invited all the YW and families to go swimming.  Even though we have our own pool we are always happy to swim with others and enjoy socializing.  They made home made ice cream and had water balloons and made sno cones.  It was a lot of fun.

When we came home Grace went next door and picked some of the neighbor's fruit (she asked first).  She wants to make pom/peach jam.

The missionaries came over for dinner tonight and after they left we went to the movies to see the new Bourne film.  I didn't enjoy it.  That girl had a horrible American accent and the rest of the movie was just 1000 cars been crashed and people being shot.  Very thin on plot.

Thursday, July 28, 2016


We unpacked from the kid's trip and heard all the stories of their adventures. 
Grace made these darling shrinky dinks. I was so impressed with them! 
Hannah's friend Bekah came over and spent the day. The girls baked and hung out in Hannah's room talking.
Grace had all the animal cages to clean and care for. That took awhile. 
We also played games, ate a yummy dinner, went to Home Depot with dad after work and took a trip to "frost rock", what the fam calls coldstone.

This evening we got some very sad news, one of Hannah's friends from MD died in a car wreck this morning. We  have lost far too many friends in auto accidents. It's so sad.

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

They are home!!!!

Yesterday we went to pick up the kids.  I wanted to leave at 2:30, 3 hrs before they were supposed to land.  I like to get there a little early and LAX is always a nightmare.  Rob wanted to come and to leave at 3:30.  Foolishly I agreed.

So we got caught in traffic.  Then the plane landed early.  Then security was a nightmare....and we were late! Urgh! I hate that.  It was super stressful and I was mad.  The kids were fine.  Delta had a nice room with games and snacks and nice chairs and two super nice ladies who sat with them but still. 
I was super happy to see the little chickens and we hugged and hugged. In face the ladies asked "how long have they been gone?" and when we told them one of them, a sweet older black woman said "oh Loooordy, I thought they had been gone for months!"  LOL
hole in the wall burger
The traffic after was stil awful.  It was rush hour so we decided to stay and eat and pass some time.  Rob works at the temple every thursday and some of his co workers told him about an awesome burger place.

We went and it was pretty good but not awesome and also very $$$.

It was fun to talk and eat together though and we sat at a nice little outside table and the air was cool and the beach nearby so it wasn't all bad.

After dinner we went to the temple to walk around a little bit.  The girls were happy to go.  Ethan wanted to get home. We walked around and looked at the beautiful flowers and then spent some pleasant time in the visitors center talking with the sister missionaries.

It was 9 when we left and the traffic was still surprisingly heavy.  I don't know why.

Obviously I've pretty much returned to my old weight.  I guess I need to work on that again.  (sigh)

It's awesome to have everyone back!!

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

almost home

Today I went visiting teaching and also paid some bills.  While the kids have been gone I have been working on some projects but since the recipients haven't received them yet I can't blog any details.

Years ago we inherited stamps, I use them and from time to time send off a cool one.  Clark pest control got a nice panel today.
inherited stamps
Talked with the kids.  They are having an awesome time and are not ready to come home :)  I don't know how the grands feel but the kids  are still enjoying their stay.

Rob's been in Ft Worth working the last couple of days and he will be home tonight.  Tomorrow the kids come home and then it's back to normal.  I have had enough peace and quiet so I will be happy to have them back!

Sunday, July 24, 2016


We got home just in time to go to church.  It was a long drive. There is a huge fire in Santa Clarita so we left one smokey sky for another. It's not looking good for either fire right now:(
Our animals were very happy to see us. Ziva always goes crazy when we see her. She can't even contain her excitement as she jumps and licks and wiggles with joy!
The surprise was Percy. We greeted him and gave him a pet but that was not enough....

He followed me to the bathroom and meowed outside the door and stuck his paws under trying to get in.
He followed me to the kitchen, begged to be held, and gave tons of kisses!
My arm isn't long enough for a three person selfie but now I have two happy pets chillin on the couch with me.

Saturday, July 23, 2016


Today's plan was to visit 3 national parks close to Monterrey. There are many along the 1 so I read about them and picked two that I thought we'd enjoy. The third got on the list yesterday when Isaiah, the whale expert, enthusiastically recommended it to us. We left right after breakfast.
Our first stop was the Julia Pfiffer Burns park, it was the farthest away and then we'd work our way back. 

Unfortunately the day before a camper accidentally set a forest fire with his cooking fire.  The fire was out of control and burning across the top of the mountain range, we drove through lots of smoke and we could see the fire burning as well as the firefighters who were there to put it out. It was a terrible sight to see so much destruction.
The Mcway waterfall is the highlight of the Julia Pfeiffer Burns Park. It was only a short hike until we saw it and it was definitely worth the drive!
After that we went to Big Sur. The trees were beautiful, we took the trail by the river and enjoyed it very much. Rob made a little fishing pole and actually caught a fish. While he was fishing I sat with my feet in the water and read, and thought, and looked at the beauty. I read the parable of the olive tree and then we talked about it while we walked back to the car. How to be good fruit? How to help others become good fruit? These are the questions that keep one up at night.
Our last stop was Point Lobos. It was both of our favorite stop. Everything is so breathtaking and beautiful. There are no words to describe it, and the photos barely do it justice. They don't capture the light dancing on the top of the water, or the sound of the waves crashing, or the smell of salt and pine and a certain dryness that is so California. You can't hear the sea lions barking or the gulls crying overhead. You don't see the shadows dancing or feel the cold air on your skin or catch, out of the side of your eye, the glimpse of a branch or rock or stump that for a second looks like a frog or a dragon or a fairy!
We saw lots of beautiful birds: today's list included several types of sea gulls and two different kinds of plovers, hummingbirds, quail, a blue jay, a lot of loons and a cute little brown bird whose name I don't know and a black oystercatcher with his bright red beak. It was so fun!
It was a super nice day. Peaceful and beautiful. We stayed out hiking from place to place until our stomachs insisted we stop for dinner (lunch was forgotten).
I can't wait for the kids to get home, although Hannah says they are having a great time and aren't ready yet, but I am also really glad we had these few days alone to enjoy each other's company and this beautiful world.

One thing that has surprised me is how many different languages we have heard spoken on this trip. From Hearst Castle to the boat to the breakfast room or trail we have heard more of foreign tongues than our own. 

Friday, July 22, 2016

Whale watching

We went whale watching this morning. We saw a lot of whales. First a fin whale, then many humpbacks and finally a blue.
It was super choppy and really cold out on the water, and foggy. Still it was awesome to see these magnificent creatures!
We've seen lots of sea lions and sea otters as well!
A lot of people got sick on the trip, they were feeding the fish and were pretty green. We always stay on top and in the wind, this helps and we didn't feel sick!
The on board naturalist was really knowledgable and interesting.
After the trip we ate fish and chips then walked down to the aquarium. My favorite part was the squid and octopi exhibit.

We topped off the night with a trip to see Star Trek Beyond! Excellent! Very funny! And a