Sunday, November 30, 2008

Putting up the Tree

We put up the Christmas tree on Sunday afternoon. Ava was really, really excited about it. Eric and I set up the tree and put on the lights and then Ava helped hang the ornaments. She did a great job placing them on the tree and wasn't offended when we would move them around. She didn't want to go to bed. She loves the tree and she immediately asked about it this morning when she woke up. I think Christmas is going to be really fun with her around.

Hours later and she is still rearranging ornaments.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving!

This year we had a rainy Thanksgiving in California which helped it seem more like winter and a bit more festive. The Suman parents hosted the dinner and everyone pitched in with food, prep, and clean up. Karen made the turkey and PLENTY of mashed potatoes! It was strange to just have one turkey this year since in AZ there are typically five. We had 15 adults which is basically like a Sunday dinner for our family. The Smiths, Adrian, her friend Michelle, and Meredith were in town which is always fun. It's funny that Meredith and Adrian are the "college kids" now. We're all getting old. It was nice to have a low-key day. We had donuts for breakfast, Big Gulps for lunch, turkey dinner, and pie.

The little girls had so much fun playing in the big puddles in the backyard - jumping and riding bikes in the water. They also played with chalk and liked how you could write in the water and then wash it away.

Ava woke up really early and only took a few minutes nap in the car so by the end of the evening she was getting a little crazy. She was drinking milk and watching a show by herself when Karen went out into the playroom and announced that she was asleep on the couch. Awe. So sweet. It didn't last too long though.

Later in the evening we played a lot of games and ate plenty of pie. I was happy to talk to my parents in Florida too. It was a fun day but we definitely missed the rest of the 50 people and look forward the big day in Arizona next year.

The 27th also marked the year anniversary of Granner passing. We watched the photo slide show from her 80th birthday. It was fun for everyone to relive the memories through all the old pictures.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Willards Birthday Dinner

Dana and Casey's birthdays are less than a week apart so we got to celebrate both big days with family dinner this past Sunday. Happy Birthday!

Dinner was so yummy that even after everyone was done cleaning up, I wanted seconds. So I sat alone at the big table and ate. Dana thought it was pretty funny looking and snapped this pic.

Later that night we had a little dance party to some Yo Gabba tunes.
The kids loved it!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

South Coast Tree Lighting

Tonight we went to the South Coast Tree Lighting. We've never been before but it was super fun and it will totally will be on our yearly to-do list. They gave out Santa hats to everyone and little gift bags with a candy cane and a coupon book. They served hot cider and cookies. There were so many people there. It's a little early for Christmas celebrating but it was a really fun night and got us into the holiday spirit.

The Orange County High School of the Arts put on a show of singing and dancing with Santa, Rudolph, and Frosty. It was actually pretty good and Ava was so into it! I loved to watch her clap at the end of each song.

At the end of the show they lit the huge 96 ft Christmas tree and it was big colorful lights.
Ava tried to touch every light. She loved it!

We tried to get pictures with Ava but all we got was this cheesy smile face out of her. It's still cute though. She is looking really old to me in these pictures. She's getting big. Afterward we went to Al's New York Cafe in Costa Mesa. Seriously, I can't get over how good the pizza is. Yum, yum. Also, I know it's kind of ridiculous that we're wearing winter coats but sometimes it's fun to pretend that it's really cold outside.

Sunshine Generation

Ava only has one more little Sunshine Generation singing class left. Today she was having so much fun so I decided to take a couple of pictures. She was dancing with tape balancing on her head. I think that is pretty talented.

One of her favorite parts is marching and drumming.

I was so impressed today because she actually crawled through the tunnels. I previously mentioned that she had a new found fear of tunnels or enclosed thing but she did it today so maybe she is getting over it.

Her other favorite part of the class is parachute time.

Here is a video of her helping to shake the balls off the parachute and dancing.


A short conversation with Bill...

I was talking to my brother, Bill, online today and he was playing with his iPhone. He sent me a picture and Ava was so excited to "see" him and was saying "Hi Bill". So he sent me a voice clip of him saying "Hi Ava". I took a video of her cute reaction. So here is their short conversation from Utah to California and back again. Pretty cute.


Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Nap Time

Just a couple of funny shots of Ava pretending to sleep with Brobee.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Last Week

Rachael and her kids were in town last week so we hung out a ton and did a lot! I was a bad picture taker but since Rachael posted, I was able to steal some pics in order to do a quick recap from last week's fun.

Sunday dinner, Karen's birthday.

With the strange hot mid-November weather we had a couple beach days.
Carter and Ava found a hole to play in.

Ava and Savanna had fun running to the water and then
running out when the waves would chase them.

We love Tuesday park days with all our little friends.
Here are some of the kids playing with sidewalk chalk.

We celebrated Karen's birthday at Pei Wei.
A girls trip plus five kids!

We went to South Coast Plaza for some shopping.
All the Christmas decor is up and the carousel had the deer out instead of horses,
which was too cute to resist a ride.

We ended the week with a little date night (minus Brennan) to El Torito Grill and Golden Spoon. Thanks to the grandparents for watching all the kids so we could actually talk to each other!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Santa Monica

This afternoon we went on a drive up to the Santa Monica Pier. I don't think I've ever actually walked down it before although we've been by several times. So it was a nice drive and walk (not to mention entertaining). Maybe another time we'll have to go back to ride the ferris wheel and play mini golf. Ava was happy to take a picture with me but not as happy to take a picture with Eric. She has been sick the last few days and very into mommy. It's kind of cute and also kind of really annoying...especially for dad.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Pretend You're Asleep!

The Lucas family had us, the Bates, and the Holmes over for dinner tonight which was fun and yummy, thanks guys. All the kids played hard together which can be expected when there are three 3 year olds and three almost 2 year olds playing in one room. At one point Rachael found Carter and Ava pretending to sleep in Chase's bed together. They were even pretending to snore. Chase jumped in with them while I got my camera and then Savanna joined in the fun too.

Ava and Spike

The other morning things were too quiet in the family room so Eric went in to check it out. He came back and said that I had to come look at Ava and Spike. They were sharing Ava's little chair and Ava was petting him (slash she was poking him in the eye). Good ole Spike just takes the abuse without retaliation...thankfully.

Friday, November 07, 2008

23 Months...

Still going to the beach on November 8!

Wow. Ava will be two next month and I am starting to freak out about it! Our little "baby" is getting old. But, today it's about being 23 months. Here are some random things about her.
She is making more and more sentences.
She loves to count and is starting to recognize more letters and saying them out loud. The other day she saw AUX1 on the TV at Aunt Karen's house and said exactly that, A-U-X-1. I was so proud! We'll be working on letters more and more now.
She still has this urge or tendency to dump out water onto the floor if it's in a cup like during nursery snack or just a random cup on Gram's table. So if you're around Ava, keep your drinks in your hand!
She has stopped trying to go through the garbage can and it has resumed its home on the floor instead of up on the counter.
She is becoming so helpful. We can ask her to complete little tasks for us. Like - can you throw this away for me or can you get your juice out of the fridge?
She constantly is saying "hey mom" or "mom" or "mama"...constantly...and she won't say what she wants to say until you say "Yes, Ava?" - she must be recognized.
She is still struggling with nursery, she loves it but wants us in there with her. I hope this is just a long phase.
She loves to play on our bed - she knows whose side is whose.
She is in a little singing preschool class this time around. She loves to dance and march using the drums and shake the pom poms. She doesn't like crawling through the fabric tunnels. She used to like that but recently has become fearful of them and enclosed slides.
She loves to scare us. It's so funny that we can hear her and sometimes even see her coming and when she gets right up to us she says "boo!"
She is a pretty sweet little girl.
I love her laugh and the rare moments of cuddling in the mornings and the hugs with the courtesy pats on the back. Happy 23 months little Ava June!

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Cozy Friends

Chloe and Ava watching Finding Nemo and eating popcorn.

Pretty cute and cozy.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008


Finally, voting day is here! Eric and I both voted this morning. I enjoyed walking over to the voting booths and making my voice heard. Eric is off to work at our campaign headquarters to make calls to help people remember to go vote and to vote Yes on Prop 8.

Please remember to vote today!

Saturday, November 01, 2008

Around Southern California

Today we traveled all over. We started out going to LA to see some of the Yo Gabba Gabba friends perform at Amoeba Records in Hollywood. Ava started crying when each of the characters came out (seriously, how huge is her mouth). I don't know if she was scared or if she was overwhelmed with happiness (think Beatle mania). Thankfully she quieted down and actually seem to think it was pretty cool and got into it a little. But, then she started crying again when they were done and left. Silly Ava. The Gabba friends sang songs and danced. I thought it was pretty cool too.

Then, Ava got an early birthday present. We got her a slide and we had to pick it up in Laguna Niguel. While we were in Arizona, Ava fell in love with the Bates' slide. So she was thrilled when she saw this slide being put into our car. Her face showed pure happiness and she went on it over and over again.

We're not really sure where this slide is going to stay permanently. It looks much bigger in our apartment than it did in the pictures so it will most likely be staying outside. She even put her bunny, dolls, and some candy down the slide. Oh what fun.

We are ending our day by meeting up with the Mangrums for dinner at BJs on Main Street. It's always so much fun getting together with old friends.