School Viking

How cute is the little kid who chose this beanie to wear to school, on this cold day.

Car Washers

I almost fell over when Scout told me he wanted to wash my car today.  I grew up washing cars on Saturday, so I was excited he was joining the club.  And when Navy heard his plan, she begged to help.  WOW!  Who knew I had kids who loved work so much.
They spent almost an hour on my car, and they did an awesome job.  Navy did the wheels, and they were sparkling by the time she finished.
By the time they were finishing with my car, it looked so good, people were stopping and commenting.
And I wasn’t surprised at all when they got another customer!


When I thought Dash was helping clean the garage, he was actually stamping up his face.
But according to him, he found the stamp in the garage, so he was cleaning.

Dr. Pips

When Pippi is in the car with me to drop off Dash at school, she begs, “Let’s go to Goldi and Sturdy’s house”.  About once a week, I turn my car towards Laguna Beach where the twips spend a few hours playing.  I love that Britni is always game for surprise visitors.  But I will admit, that I’m not totally sure if the twins love our surprise visits.  Those poor kids watch as Pippi takes over all of their toys.  Not because she is being stinky, but because their toys are like a whole new batch of props in her make-believe world.

Colored Pumpkin

Grandma took Dash and Navy to the pumpkin patch yesterday, and Dash picked out a white pumpkin.  He wanted to decorate it last night, but it was too late.  So bright and early, he was up this morning decorating.
Apparently, he heard an idea from NayNay about coloring the pumpkin with crayons, and then blow drying it so it melts down the sides.  So he was coloring away!
He never got to the blow drying part…and can I say that I am kind of glad.

Scout’s Eye

Scout took my camera, and went out into the world (or around our house), and used his creative eye to capture magic.
Scout, I love the juxtaposition of this.
And I love that you can see the beauty in these still-color-coordinated shelves.
I love the blurry effect you caught as you were partially dabbing.
I am not sure that I love how you went to forbidden places, like your sister’s piano lesson.
And now I am POSITIVE that I don’t like you in forbidden places — like above the pool in a balancing act with my good camera.
Maybe you should stick to karate chopping all of your siblings, as your great talent.

Navy & NayNay at Disneyland

Unbeknownst to me, NayNay has been calling Navy up for months, and talking about going to Disneyland.  Meanwhile, Navy has had a little purse, where she has been saving money and had saved over seven dollars.  So when NayNay just came into town, they started plotting.
They approached me with the idea, and I shot it down.
They approached me again with their story, and I shot it down again because she has school and can’t miss it.
Then they approached me a third time, and I shot it down, but told them I would talk with Micah.
When I talked to Micah — knowing he would shoot it down too, he said, “She is only in second grade.  Let her go.”
I relented, but still made Navy got to the first few hours of school.
I think at least one little girl in our family, has her dad wrapped around her finger!
I kept getting these picture while they were there, and I have to admit….I was really happy she got to go!
NayNay, you are the funnest cousin ever!

Pomegranate Shrapnel

Navy came over to show me her tedious work on a pomegranate this afternoon.
I was kind of impressed.
And then cracked up when I saw the spray from the little seeds, all over her face.

Little Critters

Nothing is more endearing, than when Pippi uses her imagination with her Little Critters.  She becomes their mommy, and rocks them, sings to them, and plays house with them.  She is so stinking cute, it is unbelievable.
And when she gets the Little Critter’s Nonnie involved, that’s pretty endearing too.

Albuquerque Ballon Festival

Many months ago, when the tickets were very cheap, I got our family round-trip flights to Albuquerque for their annual balloon festival.  This was all done without our kid’s knowledge, so I told them that we were taking dad to the airport.  When we got there, they all finally asked him where he was going, and he told them the balloon festival.  I put up an act, that we should all get to go, and the kids chimed in.  Then I brought out their very own backpacks that were filled with airplane snacks, sweatshirts, beanies, and games.
They were all pretty shocked and excited!
I love this scene, where the kids are all pumped up to write their names and information for each of their own backpacks!
I also love Pippi’s mini backpack.
(Thanks Bella.)
We boarded…and so our trip began.
After very little sleep, and a very late arrival the night before, our trip started off with a few timeouts.  But everything got turned around pretty quickly, and our kids were very good the rest of the trip — especially considering that they were getting basically no sleep!
(Actually — Scout had one storm off that was a little out of control, but other than that — they were perfect.)
Our first day consisted of a marathon walk to Old Town.
We think we walked about 3.5 miles, so I insisted on an Uber for our way back.
That night we hit up the “Glowdeo”, where these mammoth sized balloons, of very cool shapes are blown up and illuminated.  They were awesome, and HUGE.  And the best part was that each balloon handed out trading cards, which our kids loved collecting.  The one bad thing about this was how pitch black it was when the balloons went down.  It was frighteningly dark, so we held onto our little kids like we were glued to them.
Unfortunately, we didn’t hang onto Scout as well, and he turned up at the police trailer.
The police man was very impressed with him, because he said that Scout did everything right.
He immediately found a policeman, and he knew both parent’s phone numbers memorized.
Good thing, because as I was writing my kid’s phone numbers on their arms, Scout insisted he didn’t need them written.
Meanwhile, Navy had asked Micah to go on a hunt after the crowd left for money.
He thought it was a ridiculous quest, but when she turned up finding $5, he retracted his thinking!
Of course our little treasure hunter would be successful.
The next day, we headed to the zoo/aquarium/bio park for a great afternoon.  Who knew that Albuquerque would have such great places.  Our kids especially loved the butterfly encasement, the fountain (I didn’t know about), and the hippos.  We could have spent many more hours here, because it was really cool.
We made it back, just in time to make the bus back to the balloons.
Our little Pips was pooped, and took a little catnap each evening to get her through the long days.
Good thing too, because we got home from this night’s Glowdeo at around 11 pm, and the next morning we were up for the mass ascension by 5am.
This morning was chilly!
Micah brought our inflatable couch, and all of the kids cuddled with Micah to keep warm.
But then they started seeing the balloons fill up, and they up and raring to go.
While the balloons were getting prepared, the kids ran from car to car to get trading cards.
And then we all laid back to watch the balloons ascend.
Some people “dabbed” to pay their respects!
Dash was really excited to get a picture with Yoda and Darth.
We finally made it back to the hotel with trading cards in hand, and a nap in our sights.
And about 10 hours later, we were waiting for our luggage at LAX.
It was a very quick trip, that was stuffed full of activities.  But how can you go wrong with two full days of family time and hot air balloons.  The answer is…you can’t.