Saturday, September 26, 2009

Our 2nd Mini-Vacation!

A little over a month ago, we headed to Bend for our second mini-vacation. Once again, the weather was hot, hot, hot!

This is our favorite outside spot at my parents house. The chairs are super comfy, it's in the shade most of the day, and the kids entertain themselves shooting rockets into the yard.
The kids even had a few picnic lunches/dinners on the patio.

My mom baked a cake for my 33rd birthday and let the kids decorate it. Sienna got a little excited about using the icing and stuck the whole tip right into the cake!
After the icing was all gone, they moved onto the sprinkles.
I just love this picture of the kids brushing their hands off over the cake! Maybe we should have washed their hands before we let them decorate the cake!
Here is their masterpiece (click to enlarge)!
Luckily, I help blowing my 6 candles out!
The day after my birthday, we headed to Elk Lake for more kayaking.
Grandpa worked really hard pumping up the inflatable kayak, while we sat around and watched. ;)
Brayden supervised Grandpa from the back of their car.
Last time we went kayaking at Sparks Lake, Brayden was really sad that he didn't get to go for a ride. This time we rented life jackets for the kids so they could come with us. Of course, as soon as we got there, Brayden changed his mind and didn't want to get in the kayak. Sienna got right in and we took her for a spin.

Sienna wasn't too sure about the kayak once we got away from the shore and wanted to head back. As you can see, she switched spots in the kayak while we were in the middle of the lake because she wanted to sit closer to me, which made paddling extremely difficult!
Brayden and Grandpa watched us from the platform. Brayden entertained himself looking through binoculars.
When we returned, we were finally able to talk Brayden into at least sitting in the kayak. Have I ever mentioned how much our kids HATE water? Brayden didn't want to get in because he thought he was going to get wet. After a few minutes of sitting in the kayak, he decided he wasn't getting wet, and we were able to talk him into going for a little ride.
And we're off! Brayden had a great time using the binoculars to look at all of the scenery.
While we were in Bend, my parents rented a surrey for us to ride around the park.
The kids sat in the very front and kept yelling for us to go faster!

The view along the bike path!
Dancing with Grandma!
As soon as Sienna saw the camera, Sienna decided to be shy and cover her face with her slippers!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Brayden's 1st Day of Preschool!

Last Tuesday was Brayden's 1st day of preschool! I never had any doubts that he would do great since he had been attending school at the Play Boutique one day a week for the last year. I knew there would probably be a short transition period since he he'd be meeting all new kids, but other than that, I figured it would be smooth sailing! And, luckily, I was right! He went right in on Tuesday without any problems. I think he was mostly excited about bringing his new Spiderman lunchbox to school.

I think Brayden looks so grown up (& tall) in this picture...I can't believe that he's only in the 3 year old class!
When the kids arrive at school, they find their name on a card and place it in the basket. Then they get to draw the first letter of their name in the yellow sand. Brayden can make the perfect B with a pen and pencil, but something about the sand confused him because it definitely did not come out looking like a "B"! However, on Thursday his B looked much better!

Right after signing in, they are encouraged to do one math game, or write in their journal.

I can't believe how big Sienna looks in this picture. I think she's probably the same size as most of the 3 year olds in Brayden's class!
While Brayden was in school on Tuesday, Sienna and I headed to Gymboree for her first gym class! I'm not sure who was more excited to be at gym class...ok, it was probably me! When Brayden started Gymboree at 14 months old, I was almost 4 months pregnant with Sienna. So, not only was this Sienna's first chance to have fun doing whatever she wanted to do, but it was almost my first time with only one child! We ended up going twice last week and she did great both times! She's just like how Brayden used to be at Gymboree...shy! And, just like Brayden, she didn't want to participate in the group activities. The best part is that she's old enough to do almost everything by herself.
Sienna had a blast climbing...
Crawling through tunnels...
And jumping! Her favorite thing was to jump into the big green doughnut.
Sienna loves all tunnels. Every time we drive through one she starts yelling "It's a tunnel"!!!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Movies, Hiding Spots, Bikes & More!

Regal Cinema's Family Film Festival
Last month we met a couple of friends at Bridgeport Village for Regal's Family Film Festival. This was Brayden's 2nd movie (Chris took him to see the movie "UP" a month or so before this) and Sienna's 1st movie. And, it was my very first movie with the kids! I knew Brayden would do great...he's the typical boy when it comes to tv/movies. You practically have to get right in his face and yell at the top of your lungs to break his trance from the screen. On the other hand, Sienna doesn't watch much tv at home or in the car, so I wasn't sure she was going to sit still for an entire movie. Fully expecting to have to supply Sienna with additional forms of entertainment during the movie, I brought all of her favorite snacks: M&Ms, granola bars & fishy crackers!

We had to get there fairly early in order to save enough seats for the whole group...11 seats in all (those free movies get pretty busy). So, by the time the movie started, I was already exhausted! 30 minutes into the movie (with one full hour remaining), I didn't think there was any way that Sienna would still be sitting quietly in her seat when the movie finished. Don't get me wrong, Sienna was actually doing great, much better than I had anticipated. However, I was worn out from feeding her different snacks (she has a very small attention span and after a few bites of something, she'd want to switch to a different snack). But, to my surprise, she was still sitting quietly 30 minutes later. At this point she actually started to sing. What was she singing? I have no idea. haha! I kept asking her to whisper because other people were trying to watch the movie. As you probably have already guessed, she wasn't going to listen to me. ;) Although, I didn't feel too bad because there were tons of other noisy kids in the theater...and, it wasn't like anyone had actually paid to see the movie! She eventually got tired of singing and decided to sit on my lap for the last 15 minutes. Did I mention that Brayden didn't make one peep during the whole movie!?!?! I thought for sure when he had finished his M&Ms, he'd ask me for some more snacks. But, to my surprise, he never took his eyes off the screen. Maybe it was because he was sitting 4 seats down from me and figured I was too far away to ask for more food? I was amazed, and a little bit proud that he was the only one who stayed sitting and quiet during the entire movie! He's the best little movie-goer ever! The real kicker was after the movie when I asked him how he liked it (Everyone's Hero)...he said it was boring! LOL! All in all, it was a great first experience to the Regal Family Film Festival and I can't wait to go several times next summer!!!!

Sienna sitting in her booster seat before the movie cute is she?!?!?!
Most of the gang: Michael, Lucas, Anne, Brayden & Taylor

The Best Spot In the House!
Somehow the kids decided that the our hall closet (aka the storage room) was a good spot to play. The would spend hours each day playing by themselves in the closet! It was almost like having the house to was so quiet when they were in the closet!!! Unfortunately, after a couple of weeks, they got tired of playing in the closet are now back to causing chaos in the rest of the house.
Brayden's New Gear
Right after Brayden got his new bike, we were in Bend for a week (without his bike) and when we returned, he was scared to ride his new bike! In hopes of helping him overcome his fear, we bought him gloves and elbow & knee pads so if he did fall, he wouldn't get all scraped up. The new gear helped a lot (he no longer wanted us to hold his elbow while he rode the bike), but he's still scared to go too fast. I guess I should just be thankful that he isn't a big daredevil like so many of his friends are!
Where's Brayden?
Brayden loves to hide...his newest hiding spot is in the corner of the living room, inside his CARS sofa and between the bookcase and the kitty condo. Can you find him??? Oh wait, I found Waldo!!!
Ah, there's Brayden!
Brayden fights us at naps and bedtime, but he loves to pretend to take naps all day long! He loves to make his own bed and curl up under his blankets.
One day, while the kids were watching their post-nap tv show, I found them laying on the floor together, all cozy and wrapped up in their blankets. Of course, as soon as Brayden saw me get the camera, he quickly hid under the blanket.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Sauvie Island Farms

Back in August, we went to Sauvie Island Farms for our 2nd annual berry picking trip! Last year we went to Kruger's Farm, which was fun, but it just doesn't compare to Sauvie Island Farms! Sauvie Island has tons of space for the kids to run around, as well as tractor rides and different types of flowers, fruits & vegetables available for picking. Of course, we don't really go for the berries, we go for the whole berry picking experience!

Despite Sienna's "terrible two's" attitude (just check out the look on her face!), we had a great time!
Beautiful Sauvie Island Farms

Brayden and Wyatt had a blast running up and down the long dirt road.
They loved being able to run wild, and we loved being able to keep an eye on them!
Brayden & Wyatt pretending to be scary monsters!
The boys looked like they were having so much fun that Avery decided to join in!
Off they go...again!
"Wait for me!" Sienna finally decided to join in the fun!
After we had walked for what seemed like miles, we finally made it to the blueberry bushes...just in time for the tractor to drive by. Despite the fact that we still hadn't started picking berries, we knew the kids would love a ride, so we hopped on board!
Brayden looked so grown up hanging out by himself in the back of the trailer!
Our tractor ride ended at the entrance to the farm. Since the kids had already spent most of the morning running around, we decided to grab a couple of wagons to haul the kids around in. After all, we hadn't even started picking berries yet!
It was so much more work pulling the wagon than I thought it would be! The wagon weighed a ton to begin with, and after adding a couple of kids that weigh 80+ pounds (I pulled Brayden and Wyatt back to the blueberries), it was quite the workout! But, we finally made it.
Brayden and Sienna did a great job picking blueberries! This was Sienna's first time picking berries...last year she was stuck in the backpack!

Even though we weren't supposed to eat the berries before we paid for them, Sienna did sample one or two of them!

We had so much fun that I can't wait for our 3rd annual berry picking trip!