January, 2010

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Happy Birthday Shae

Thursday, January 28th, 2010

Today was Shae’s 30th birthday. The kiddos thought they should make her day extra special. Here’s the email I received from her this morning:

Well, our first nap attempt is not going well. First, Jack took off all his clothes, including his shirt. Then he took off his diaper and threw poop everywhere. Then, he peed all over the floor again. He is gross. This was followed by Ella falling out of her crib again. This time there was no help from brother.

Well, at least her day wasn’t boring.  Happy birthday babe! Welcome to your 30’s.

Christmas in Texas

Sunday, January 24th, 2010

After Christmas in La Mesa, it was time to pack our bags and head to Texas for another fun and exciting Christmas.  On the 26th my dad got up early with us so he could drop us off at the airport.  The drop off spot was actually pretty empty and we were able to check our bags pretty quick.  Things were looking pretty good.  If you have ever flown out of the San Diego Airport, you know you have to walk upstairs to go through all the security stuff.  One of the things you never really think about until you have to push a stroller around, is where the elevators are.  We were able to locate the elevator pretty quickly and head upstairs.  That is where our good luck ended.  As soon as we get out of the elevator, we see the line for security.  The line was all the way across the covered pedestrian bridge and almost to the parking lot!  Now, keep in mind, the bridge is part of the outside, so we had to stand in the freezing cold weather with two tired, cranky babies.  Not fun.  Despite being super long, we were able to get into the warm part somewhat quickly.  As soon as we were inside, it felt like we were in line at Disneyland, but without the fun ride at the end.  When we finally got up to the place where the TSA agents check our licences and boarding passes, the guy who was checking our line was also checking the first class line, so it took FOREVER!  After we got through, we had to deal with the actual security part.  Normally this is pretty easy, you take off your shoes, and put all your crap in the grey bins, walk through, and then collect your crap.  It’s not that easy when you are traveling with two toddlers.  Since I had a bunch of milk and food and stuff like that, I had to go in the “special” line after we walked through the detectors.  They had to check every single item with a special light.  For as long as this took, Pat took longer.  Apparently he “had too many electronics” in his bag so they took the bag, emptied it, and checked everything.  I think it was the baby monitor that made it “too many.”  OK, so about an hour after we got to the airport, we were finally headed to our gate.  Thank God our gate was the first one, because when we got there, they were boarding the last section!  When we got on the plane, you could almost see the dread in everyone’s eyes as we walked on with our two cranky toddlers.  We found our seats and had to do some shuffling because we weren’t allowed to have the both babies in the same row.  It was time for take off!

The kiddos were actually pretty good for the first half of the 3 hour flight.  For the most part, they just slept on our chests and everyone was as happy as could be.  Things started going down hill after the drink cart came by.  I don’t know if the cart hit Ella or if it was the noise, but whatever it was, she woke up.  In an effort to get Ella some milk, I jarred Jack enough to wake him up too.  Queue the crying and whining.  I had enough snacks and milk to keep them somewhat satisfied and they calmed down.  I was also fortunate enough to have an empty seat next to me so I could put Jack down for a little bit and give my arms a break.  We took turns putting Jack and Ella in the empty seat and it worked out pretty well.  When we were landing You could tell that Jack’s ears were starting to hurt and he started crying.  We made it out of the air and onto the ground and the kiddos were pretty happy again.  Tom picked us up at the airport and we headed to Brian and Dorothy’s house in Houston.

When we got to the house, our first priority was getting the kiddos fed!  They made sure we knew how hungry they were.  After a yummy lunch we let them meet their great aunts and uncles and their great grandma.  After all the oohing and ahhing, we let the kiddos play for a few minutes and then it was nap time for them.  Around the time they went down for their nap, their cousin Liam was waking up from his nap.  Liam is just 12 days younger than our munchkins and looks just like Jack!  We were kind of bummed that their nap schedules were so different, but it all worked out.  Eventually our kids woke up and their other cousins, Oskar and Maya showed up.  Oskar is 18 months old and Maya Just turned two.  They all had a great time playing together.  We decided to walk over to the neighborhood park for a little bit to let them burn off some extra energy.  they all had a great time playing on the swings, slides, and rocking things.  After we got back, we opened all our presents.  We got some great stuff and the babies got a bunch of new toys!  After the excitement of opening all our new stuff, we fed the kiddos and put them down for the night.  We had an awesome dinner shortly after and spend the rest of the evening hanging out with family.

The rest of the week was pretty mellow.  There were more walks to the park and more playing with babies.  It was so much fun watching all the cousins play together.  It is amazing how different they all are, and how much they look alike.

Our week finally came to an end and it was time to pack up and head home.  As much as we love visiting with our family, we both wanted to get home and free Lunchbox from the kennel.  We headed to the airport nice and early in anticipation of another security hell.  Well, we were through the security line and to the gate in just 20 minutes.  This time they didn’t have to analyze every little thing in our bags and we just walked on through.  You know what’s not fun?  Being at the airport an hour early with two tired, hungry toddlers.  We ended up finding an empty gate and just let them run around a little bit.  We were finally able to board the plane.  Once again, we had to do some seat switching so we weren’t all in the same row.  There were actually quit a few babies on this flight.  Ours were by far the loudest!  Once we got in the air Jack fell asleep pretty fast, while Ella was just screaming!  She finally fell asleep and it was all good for about an hour.  When they woke up, all hell broke loose.  Jack was sitting in my lap and he didn’t want to be there.  He was so squirmy and loud!  Yup, we were those people.  Jack kept hitting and scratching me and kicking the girl sitting next to me.  Pat was holding Ella and she was even louder!  I guess she kept pinching Pat and squirming around.  The flight seemed to take FOREVER!  As soon as we finally landed, the people around us jumped up as fast as they could.

Chris and Patty picked us up at the airport and we headed home!  While we were gone, a Christmas miracle occurred, our house seemed to clean itself!  Thanks parents!!!  Pat picked up Lunchbox and it was nice to finally be home.


Saturday, January 9th, 2010

It was pretty crazy around here, but we made it through another Christmas with the kiddos.  Since we’ve been so bad about updating lately, I guess I’m going to have to cram all of our Christmas happenings into one post.  Here are the highlights of Jackson and Ella’s 2nd Christmas.

The Babies Meet Santa
A few weeks before Christmas Shae’s mom group had a Christmas party, complete with Santa Claus.  The munchkins were having a great time playing with other kids, at least until Mr. Claus showed up.  The combination of nap time and all of the other kids crying at Santa set of Ella and Jack.  Shae made sure to get a picture of them with Santa, but it looks like something straight out of “A Christmas Story”.

Choppin’ Wood
After waiting for the weather to turn rainy, it was time for us to go find and cut down our Christmas tree (seriously, I’m starting to think it’s impossible for us to get a tree unless it’s raining on us).  To make things even more fun, Ella was sick and cranky.  We found our perfect tree pretty quickly, but of course we had to check the rest of the lot just to make sure.  Once Shae was sure our tree was the best one, we relocated it (no easy task) and I got to work sawing.  Jack tried to help me, but he was much better and running around in the mud than actually cutting down the tree.

Christmas Time
Once we had our tree, things were pretty uneventful until the parents (Shae’s parents and my mom) came into town.  We had a pretty nice time with the ‘rents.  We got some Christmas shopping in, and Shae and I were able to get out of the house and go see Avatar one night.  We were both so impressed by the movie that our parents went to see it the next night.  They loved it, too. Other than that, things were pretty slow.

Christmas Eve with the kids was a lot of fun.  It was nice that they could actually sit at the table with us during dinner.  They really liked the ham and potatoes (almost as much as Lunchbox loved all the bites they threw on the ground).  After dinner, we put out some cookies for Santa (yum), read “The Night Before Christmas”, and then we put the munchkins down so Santa could bring them their presents.

Christmas morning was interesting this year.  The kids were really into the wrapping paper and packaging, but they aren’t quite old enough to really get into the present craziness.  They were excited by all of the new goodies, but the boxes are still their favorite.

After the present opening excitement, a nap for the kiddos, and some crepes for breakfast we headed over to Mission Trails Park to go on a Christmas hike.  It was a Christmas present for Mr. Box and a good reason for Shae to use her new camera.  It was a beautiful day in San Diego, and we had a great stroll.

About halfway through the walk, we decided to let Jack and Ella get out of the stroller and stretch their legs.  They both had some fun toddling around, until another walker went by.  As soon as Ella saw this random guy go past us, she got excited and started “running” after him (as close as she can get to a run).  We had to chase her down and catch her or who knows how far she would have run.  Something tells me we’re going to have to teach her all about “Stranger Danger” pretty soon.

We spent Christmas night packing for our trip to Texas and getting ready for our plane ride with two toddlers.  More about that trip (and LB’s trip to the kennel) in our next post (hopefully tomorrow).  Until then, here are some pictures.