The 4th

Written by Pat on July 10th, 2009

Last weekend marked our first 4th of July with Jack and Ella.  As much as I hate travelling on holiday weekends, I somehow got sucked into heading up to King City/Lockwood at the last minute.  There was a lot of driving, but the babies were big hits, and it was pretty fun.  Here’s a recap:

After the longest 3-day work-week I can imagine, I got to top it off with a 380-mile drive after work on Wednesday (with the stylish top-carrier strapped to the roof, of course). The traffic was pretty light considering the upcoming holiday, but a brush fire on the Grapevine slowed us down a lot and the trip ended up taking over seven hours. The fire was about five miles from Smokey Bear Rd., and I couldn’t help but think that maybe Smokey should stop telling us to prevent forest fires and take care of his own backyard. Oh well, what can you do? Eventually we got to Lockwood, dealt with upset babies (Ella did not like being moved into the Pack-N-Play in the middle of the night), and got a couple of hours of sleep.

Thursday was pretty quiet. We spent most of the day recovering from Wednesday’s drive and trying to get some sleep. Shae had a (paying) photo shoot in the morning, so she left the kids with me and went to take some pics. Luckily, I was able to pawn the kiddos off on Grandma Grace and Kat (Grace’s 17-year-old cousin who was visiting Lockwood and hitched a ride back to SD with us) and get in a nice, long nap. Outside of Shae sneaking in her own three hour nap later, not much else happened on Thursday.

Friday, however, was not quite as lazy. We decided to take the babies and Mr. Box down to Cayucos to go to the beach. Shae, myself, the babies, the Box, Shae’s parents, my mom, and Kat piled into two vehicles and headed down to play in the sand. It was a beautiful day down in Cayucos, and everyone had an awesome time…especially Lunchbox. In fact, I think I should turn things over to LB to recap his day.

Oh, my God! The beach was awesome! The humans told me that I would be able to run free, but of course once we got there they pointed to some stupid sign with a dog on a leash and said I was on lockdown. What a crock! Oh well, I was so happy to be able to get to go with everyone that I didn’t really care I had to walk the humans all day. Eventually we got the human babies (and all their crap…seriously, I have a leash and a collar, why do the babies need so much stuff?) out of the car and headed over to the beach. Daddy had a lot of trouble pushing the giant stroller through the sand, and he was taking forever to get close to the water. It wouldn’t have been that bad, but the sand was HOT. I mean really hot. My feet were burning up, and eventually Mom had to take me up to the cooler sand because someone finally noticed me “suggesting” we hurry (as in move quickly, not pee).

This seems like a good time to make sure everyone reading this understands how awesome sand is (the cool stuff, not that super hot crap…that SUCKS). I hadn’t been to the beach before and couldn’t believe it was full of soft dirt perfect for digging. How come the humans hid this from me for so long? We live in frickin’ San Diego! I’ve said it before, but my human parents are lame.

Anyway, my grandmas picked out the best spot on the beach, and then the humans set up blankets and towels for the babies and ate some food (I didn’t get any of course, although I asked very nicely). While they were eating, I noticed a lot of other dogs running around the beach without leashes. One dog was actually carrying his own leash in his mouth (Mom and Dad told me that’s not what the sign meant when it said dogs had to be on a leash, but the other dog didn’t seem to care). I pointed all of this out to my human parents, but they just ignored me (as usual). Once Dad was done eating, he and Grandma Jane took me on a walk down the beach. That’s when the fun really started.

Dad took me over to the ocean and let me play in the water. I just want to let everyone know you shouldn’t drink the ocean water. It’s gross, just trust me on this one. After a few minutes of playing in the water, I guess Dad and Grandma decided we were far enough from other people because I got let off my leash. AWESOME! The first thing I did was run up and say “hi” to a jogger. She didn’t mind, but Dad wasn’t too happy so I decided to behave before I got put back on my leash. To any dogs out there: stop reading right now and get to a beach. I got to play in the water (it’s fun to chase…way better than a lake where the water barely moves), chase after birds, run all over the cool, soft, wet sand, and even play with another dog for a little bit. I could barely contain myself. Eventually it was time to head back, so I had to go back on leash (but not before Mommy came over and got some pics of me playing). Oh well, it was fun while it lasted.

Back at “camp” (AKA three blankets and an umbrella), I decided if I couldn’t play in the water I’d do the next best thing: dig a giant hole. I got in trouble for kicking sand all over the babies, so I had to go away from camp and dig. Beach sand might just be the best digging sand ever. I dug, and dug (Kat helped me a little), and eventually had the perfect hole. Then, just for fun, I peed in it. Back to digging. A few minutes later I had a perfect hole again and it was time to take a break. The beach was exhausting, and I was pooped (not literally, and not in my hole…that would be gross). I can’t wait to go back to a beach, I hope the humans read this and take me sometime soon. Like tomorrow.


Wow…I guess LB had a lot to say about the beach. We’ll have to take him to one of the SD dog beaches sometime soon since he was so good at Cayucos.  The babies seemed to have fun (well, they got lots of sand all over so I’m assuming they had fun), and didn’t get burned (more than I can say for Shae, myself, and my mom). I’m not a huge beach guy, but it was a lot of fun.

Saturday (the 4th)
After our day at the beach, it was time for the babies to have their first 4th of July. It took us a while, but eventually we got packed up and moved the party into King City. After unpacking at my mom’s house, we headed over to San Lorenzo Park for Heritage Days (basically, the annual 4th of July car show/festival). The babies were dressed in some very patriotic outfits, and they got lots of attention. We did some visiting, had some Swiss sausage, and then went home so the munchkins could get some naps.

Saturday evening, we headed out to Vicki and Ed’s for some dinner (more Swiss sausage). Jack and Ella were quite the hit, especially Ella. She was sitting in the middle of the room “singing” and swinging her arms like the conductor of an orchestra. The ladies thought she was the cutest thing ever, while the guys sat in the other room and chatted. Jack was cute too, but Ella was the attention hog on Saturday. At one point, she crawled over to Shae and actually begged for some of Shae’s dessert. Seriously, she begged just like a dog (complete with puppy dog eyes). I was appalled when Shae actually gave her a taste of her dessert. We don’t reward LB for begging for food, why does Ella get a treat (Jack got some too, but I didn’t catch that one).

Sunday was another quiet day. Shae wanted to get a picture of Ella in some leg warmers for some photography/prop contest and got it in her head that the train tracks were the perfect place for the shot. My mom stood guard over LB and Jack, while I tried to keep Ella in one spot and limit the amount of railroad-track-rocks that made it into her mouth (I did better at keeping her in one spot than keeping rocks out of her mouth).

The rest of the day was pretty quiet. The babies took a couple of really good naps, and I actually completely forgot about them for a few hours. That was kind of nice. A few people stopped by to see the kids, but mostly it was a very laid back day.

After Ella and Jackson were down for the night, Shae and I snuck out to catch a movie. Just a slight rant here, but why do people think it’s OK to bring babies to R-rated movies (or any movie for that matter)? If I wanted to hear a baby cry, I could have stayed home and startled Jack. I really don’t understand why they allow parents to bring babies into theaters, but I really wish it would stop. Any theater that comes out with a policy that no babies/toddlers are allowed into movie showings (except for the “Mommy Movie” showings, and maybe the G-rated flicks) will have 100% of my movie business (assuming they actually play the movies I want to see). Either that, or make it more expensive to take a kid to a movie than to hire a baby-sitter. That would probably fix the problem too. OK, done with that rant.

Another travel day. After getting everything packed up, we loaded up the car (with extra cargo since we were giving Kat a ride back to SD), wedged Shae in between the babies, and hit the road. I somehow forgot we were driving on a Monday instead of a Sunday and timed our departure completely wrong (causing us to end up in LA at 4:00…great timing), but we got lucky and hit minimal traffic (all things considered). When got home, we discovered the house hadn’t cleaned itself up like we had hoped, but we were just happy to be back so we weren’t too hard on it.

That’s about it for our weekend. We’re still working on getting all of our pictures uploaded, but here’s some pics of our day at the beach. We’ll throw some more on this post in the next couple of days, and you can always check out our photo page.

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