Friday, December 23, 2016

Fun in Arizona

Last month, James, Gemma and I went to ARIZONA to visit Uncle Joe and Auntie Steph!!

My brother Joe married Stephanie last year in Durango CO (that such a fun trip!) and moved to Arizona.  They have just bought their first house and James, Gemma, and I were so happy to go visit.

(We are starting to split up trips because it's just not practical to travel with 8 people all the time.  :o)  I knew I could take 2 kids and we would still all fit in Steph's car.  I'll probably take a trip with Bunny and/or Mariposa soon, or I'll send them somewhere, just the two of them.)

Kids snack packs on the airplane (love those
Wikki Stix!)
Our first outing: hiking the Papagos area near their home

Breakfast the next morning
morning chores: watering the new citrus trees
searching for "treasures" under the mesquite tree
 I love Joe and Steph's Scottsdale home!  It is so clean and spacious, and the location is great.  Can you believe they have a Dutch Bros down the street?  (Joe says it's ALWAYS busy.) They have a master bedroom, two additional bedrooms, a large main bathroom, and two living rooms along with the kitchen, of course.  The backyard is great!!  It is completely fenced in (perfect for a dog...or kids) and it is currently a blank slate for them to landscape however they want.  I can see many more visits in my future....

Big news for our first full day there:  Joe and Steph bought
passes to Legoland!!!

We ended this adventure with a trip to a local Polish restaurant for pierogi and potato pancakes.  BAM! What a great start to our trip!!!

Friday, December 9, 2016

Cellie's birthday party

Celeste celebrated her 2nd birthday with a whole BUNCH of family and friends!!

Uncle Jeff came for the party at grammae and papa's house.
Grammae made a BIG pot of soup.
The soup got a thumbs-up from everyone.  :o)

Birthday-girl had fun taking selfies with my phone.
lots of cousins
more selfie fun

Aunt Cecelia is a favorite with all of my kids
but especially the little ones.  :o)
Gemma fell asleep on Fr. Juan--seems like
one of my kids does this at every family event.
awake now!
James held court with the visiting golfers at the men's table.  ;o)

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

World of SPEED!

I am the official unofficial field-trip coordinator for my homeschool group.  ;o)

I don't want to be "official" because then I would have to take suggestions from everyone, and I don't work well in a democracy.

I'd rather just be Field-trip Queen, so that's what I am.  I have set up one field trip per month to places that I want to take my kids...and if others want to tag along, great!

Our latest field trip was to the a-MAH-zing auto museum, "World of Speed."  The staff was awesome and split our group of about 30 students into 2 separate groups for a more intimate experience.  The tour guides were car nuts who really love what they do.  I was one of a few moms who needed to stay in the playroom with the littles, which wasn't that bad since the playroom was AWESOME!  After the tours concluded, the older kids came through and had a spectacular hands-on interactive engineering/physics workshop.  WOS even let us have lunch at the facility!  It was a great experience and I can't wait to visit again soon.

stuck in the playroom during the tours (could've been worse!)
This is what the main hall looked like.
older kids done with their tour, coming through
to the workshop portion

After lunch, I got to take a quick walk-around with all the kids
before heading home.
Great experience!
(had to get our pic with Big Boy before going home) :o)