Wednesday, July 29, 2009


It's 102 degrees in Seattle, and while that was pretty much expected in Pullman, everyone here is melting. Nobody has air conditioning in their homes. I'll have to say that it's a lot cooler in our basement apartment than in our old place with only a swamp cooler.

To beat the heat, I'm sitting at the pool with Kyrie and Isaiah and their neighbor friend who always likes to tag along with us. Swim lessons are paying off. Kyrie has a lot less fear and trepidation than Isaiah still, but he's coming along. Still doesn't want to dive for the toy, but he jumps in without a death grip and counts my fingers underwater and will actually float by himself for a few seconds.

Kyrie had Vacation Bible School again yesterday, and she had a blast! They got to go to Point Defiance Zoo and Aquarium(lucky duck)! Their bus got a flat tire, so they didn't get back until 6. We were planning on taking the kids to Pizza Hut because they got a personal pan pizza for their summer reading prize. We thought the restaurant was a sit down style, so we were a little surprised to get inside and find no tables. We took our pizza to the church parking lot and found a shady spot to eat while we waited for Kyrie. After she got back, we took all the kids(neighbor kid included) to a nice shady park. One would have thought that after all the activities of the day, they would have fallen asleep quickly, but such was not the case.

I guess that's summer for ya!

Monday, July 27, 2009

1st Day of Swim Lessons

It's 81 degrees now at 1:00. We're supposed to reach a high of 91 today. Pretty warm for the Seattle area! I've been amazed by the warm weather and lack of rain we've been having.

It's a good thing that it's been nice and warm as Isaiah started his first swim lesson today and Kyrie went off to have fun at Vacation Bible School this morning. They get to go to Seahurst Park later this afternoon and play in the water. I sent her off with a Bento lunch. I haven't made one in a while. She really likes the shaped boiled eggs.

I knew that Isaiah was going to be really timid at the lesson. I tried bribing him by taking him to the Dollar Tree to pick a prize for doing a good job in his lesson. We got to the pool, and they wanted him to jump in to them, and he half-jumped, while maintaining a death grip on my fingers. The other kids in his class were 3 and 4 years old, and they were a lot less fearful than him. I'm thinking we waited too long before starting lessons. Of course, Isaiah has always been a pretty shy and reserved kid.

They got him to do a few bobs(though he didn't completely put the top of his head under). After that, they helped them float on their backs and stomachs. At least he put his face under water when they asked him to. They helped the kids go down and pick up the little toy discs on the bottom of the pool, but Isaiah would have NONE of that! I think he clawed the poor teacher's neck because she came back wincing and grabbing her neck in pain. They did some kicking across the pool with kickboards and the teachers were having the kids jump into them. Again, Isaiah didn't want to- unless the teacher held his hand. They came back across to the shallow end and worked on kicking while holding on to the wall. Isaiah is fairly good at kicking, but he kicks with his knees bent- although, all the kids were doing this, so he wasn't alone there.
They played a game of who could hold their breath the longest, but Isaiah didn't even want to try.

End of lessons. I think we'll be going to the pool a lot this week to work on some of these skills with him. Fortunately, it's supposed to be warm and sunny all week!

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Reluctant Little Fish

Another trip to the pool yesterday. Things went a little differently than our past trips. Normally, Kyrie has been very timid and afraid of doing anything besides hanging on to the pool noodle and the wall in the shallow end of the pool. I told Kyrie that since we were starting swimming lessons next week, she should practice jumping in to me. That was the last thing she wanted to do. Reluctantly, she jumped into me, but only if I was holding her hands. I started to think that the $50 investment for her to take lessons might not be such a great idea. After a while, I decided to play a game with her of counting our fingers underwater because we had goggles on. At first, she didn't want to stick her face in the water because she didn't want water up her nose or in her ears, but after a while, she became more daring. So I took it a little further by having her come underwater with me to make funny faces. She was enjoying that.

Soon she became really comfortable in the water, so I told her that if she could put her face in the water, it would help her swim. Goodbye, pool noodle! Soon she was doing the doggie paddle on her own! A little 5 year old girl came up and started showing off for Kyrie, and peer pressure worked! She was jumping off the side of the pool all by herself! Next thing I know, her friend is teaching her cannonballs!

I wish I had my video camera with me. My heart was beaming as she grew in this new milestone! I'm thinking of investing in a disposable underwater camera. Kyrie was so cute with her underwater antics.

Isaiah, who has been the bold one in the water in past trips, suddenly regressed and spent most of his time on the lounge chairs complaining how cold he was. I hope he does okay at swim lessons! Maybe it will be better to have someone besides mom as the teacher.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Goodbye First Tooth

Kyrie was eating her snack of apples and peanut butter this afternoon and bit down on something hard, so she spit it out. She felt a space in her mouth with her tongue where a previously wiggly central incisor had once resided.

She was very enthusiastic! So was Mommy! I was very glad that it fell out instead of me having to convince her to let me pull it. This morning she was complaining about it hurting, so I told her that we could pull it quick and make it stop hurting. She clasped her hands over her mouth and shook her head vigorously. No go.

BTW, these pictures were taken with my camcorder, and I am pleased at the way these ones turned out- especially the first one.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Welcome to the Pool!

Notice there's some Poo in it. Let's not keep it that way!

Yeah, so we took the kids to the pool today and we were there for about 20 minutes before we had to clear out because they found poop(in the deep end, nonetheless). Ah well.

On another note, the kids are going to start swim lessons next week. We'll see how well that goes over. Kyrie has a two day Vacation Bible School that will be going all day on Monday and Tuesday, so she'll miss the first couple of classes, but they said it wouldn't be a problem.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Jayden's Favorite Commercial

I have no idea what a two year old finds so fascinating about this commercial, but everytime it comes on, he starts squealing happily and stops whatever he's doing to watch it. Mark says it's a little disturbing because the little cereal square is basically practicing cannibalism, lol.
It's the Cinnamon Toast Crunch commercial for those who don't want to watch the clip.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

My Day Off

Back in Pullman, I went to my friend's house every Saturday and we hung out and did scrapbooking and other things together. It was nice taking the day off and not having to worry about the kids for a while. Mark has made it a point to make sure that I continue the tradition of fueling my social life on Saturdays. Today I got to hang out with my wonderful sister(technically, in-law, but she's more like a real sister, so for future references, the in-law tag will be left off).

Today was the opening of Seattle's light rail. Kim and I thought it would be fun to meet down-town and ride it on opening day. Kim suggested that I take the bus from Burien to meet her to avoid traffic and parking complications. It's about time that I take the next step to surviving big city life. The bus ride was an experience. You see all sorts of different people on the bus. It was fine until it started getting crowded, people standing in the aisles, the smell of cigarettes and body odor gave me a small headache. I got off the bus in the International District and Kim and I enjoyed a Dim Sum lunch at the Jade Garden. Afterwards, she showed me the Uwajimaya- a shopping center that sells mostly Asian food with an emphasis on Japanese. I think I might like to go back there sometime when I'm really in the mood to make some Japanese cuisine. It was interesting to see all the different fruits and vegetables that I haven't seen before. After that, we embarked for the nearest light rail station.
photo credit
Seattle has been waiting a long time for this. There are supposed to be more stations opening at later dates- including one at the SeaTac airport. That's a lot closer to me than the other stations. I look forward to riding again in the future. By the way, this makes three big city rail systems I have been on. I've also ridden BART in San Francisco and the NYC Subway.

We got off in Westlake, looking forward to the promise of entertainment, but there wasn't much. A few street corner musicians and some other interesting people to watch. We had a fun time walking through this little waterfall/fountain thing:

Yep, that's me. The water fell on both sides of this little bridge. I did manage to get a bit wet, but it was fun. We continued into the Westlake Mall and browsed the Daiso store(a Japanese dollar store- though most things were $1.50 and on other things, the prices went up to 2,3,4,5, or 6 dollars.

After a bit more wandering around, I realized that we were on Pike Street, so I asked if we were close to Pike St. Market. We were, indeed, so we headed on over. Even though I'm living in the Seattle area, I still feel a lot like a tourist, and today was no exception. I had to take pictures:

Excuse the poor quality. My camcorder can produce disappointing shots sometimes.

I was hoping to see them toss fish, but they weren't doing it at the time we were there. Browsing all the different wares was fulfilling, though. I got to taste some dark chocolate linguine at one stand that sold pasta. It was interesting- chocolate flavored pasta.

There was a pretty nice view of Mt. Rainer from the park outside of the Marketplace:

I hadn't really planned my return trip on the bus line, so Kim and I took the bus to her apartment and she decided to show me what was about since we passed by some people handing out brochures and she told them she was already a member. I learned that zipcar is a car-sharing program. The member gets to pick the car they want to drive. The closest available car to us was a Honda Element. The cars are parked all over the city, you reserve your car on-line. It unlocks as you swipe your membership card over a little thing on the windshield. The cost of the car includes gas and insurance coverage. It was a fun little experience. I had to take pictures to document it, of course:

Kim was jumping up in the air, but my digital camera has to much of a drag time, so I didn't capture it right. This picture is pretty funny, though.

Notice the license plate. Oh yeah, each car also has a name. I forget the name of this car, though. I guess when you are getting close to the time to return the car, you can get a text message to your phone that says "so and so needs to come back home soon," or something like that.

Thanks for the ride, sis! It was a lot of fun!

I got back a bit early, so I made a trip to the library and headed over to Seahurst Park. This was my first time at the park by myself. I parked my car in a shady spot and took a little nap. Then I made the short walk down to the beach. I took my shoes and socks off so I could cool off my feet. That didn't last long. The rocks hurt my feet. Next time, bring the water shoes!

I watched some guys catching crabs. They were about waist deep, and walking through the water. At first I thought they were feeling around for the crabs with their feet, but they could actually see in the water. They caught about 6. I finished up my time by going on a little walk and enjoying the scenery. I really do love the Sound! Such a beautiful area!

All-in-all, a pretty great day!

Summer Fun!

Today as we were driving to the pool, my husband made the observation that we hadn't taken the kids swimming a single time last summer, and that we seemed to be making up for lost time this summer. One of the perks I can say that I enjoy about living here is the opportunity we have to use the Rainer Golf and Country Club pool because my mother-in-law has a membership and can get us in for free. It helps that we've pretty much had beautiful weather this summer. Not too hot, and hardly any rain(now that I've said that, the showers are going to start and never end ;)). I think it's funny that people in Seattle melt in 85 degree temperatures.

The pictures I am about to share are from a prior trip to the pool because I didn't have Jayden with me then, so I was free to take pictures of the kids without worrying about chasing a two year old around the pool. He enjoys the pool for a little while, but he would much rather run around the perimeter- picking up items and throwing them in. He also likes to point out the different numbers they have to measure the depths of the pool, and to identify all the letters that are on the "No Diving" tiles. Since he didn't have a nap today, he lasted for about half an hour before I picked him up, dropped his pool toys and goggles(he LOVES to wear goggles) in the bin and carried him out the gate(where he immediately stopped crying). I figured I would spare the rest of the pool patrons from having to listen to his screeches. Mark's aunt assured me that he would soon be three and things would be better, lol. Fortunately, we took two cars so the older kids got to stay and play while Jayden got his much needed nap.

Kyrie likes looking underwater with her goggles on!

Isaiah tries to keep warm under the towel!

I'll peek out long enough for a picture if you really want me to.

The pool noodles really help give the kids the confidence they need to "swim."

Grandma likes to sit and read her finance magazines(although, she did get in the pool today).

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Happy Birthday, America!

I wish I could add some pictures from my day, but unfortunately, I didn't have my digital camera charged, so all pictures were taken on my film camera. In fact, most of my pictures I have taken lately are on the film camera, so I'm going to have to wait a while to share some, but we've been having a blast! Love living close to lakes and nice parks on the beach!

Since a picture is worth a thousand words, this blog post might be a bit wordy as I have no pictures. ;)

Jayden decided that he wanted to have an early start to the celebrations of the day, so he awoke at about 4:30 this morning. I brought him out in the living room, turned on the t.v. and gave him some dry Cheerios to munch on. He snuggled up next to me on the floor and fell back asleep for a very brief amount of time. He woke me up again at 6:30. Not a great start to the day.

Jayden started getting fussy again, so I put him down for a morning nap, and tried to get some more sleep in myself. I woke up around 10:00 to Mark and the kids playing around, so I thought I should take the opportunity to do some grocery shopping.

At 2:30, we walked down to the parade route and I hiked around with Jayden on my back while we waited for the parade to start. Jayden doesn't like being in one spot for very long. I guess that's good for me- an excuse to get some exercise. The kids enjoyed catching candy and seeing the different parade entries. Watching the parade made me miss our tradition of driving to the little town of Johnson where people from all over the Palouse come and cram into the teeny town in the Palouse where the Americana spirit shines through. Then everyone drives over to another neighboring town for another parade and a community luncheon/picnic. And then it's back to Pullman for the big fireworks display at Sunnyside Park.

We walked home after the parade and got dinner ready. I managed to get Jayden to sleep for about half an hour before we had to leave to a dessert party a little further down the lake from us. Mark and the kids got to go out on the little barge that they had, but Jayden didn't want to go out at first. He was having a rather rough time settling into the new surroundings, and I was worried that I might have to leave with him. Eventually, he started warming up a bit. Mark and I took him for a little ride on the paddle boat before they closed the lake up to other watercraft so they could get ready for the fireworks. At first, he seemed to have a good time, but he started losing it when we were going to go back, so I got off with him and the other kids got on with Mark, and Jayden really started wailing! He wanted to go back out! He was trying to get me to put his lifejacket back on, but it was almost time for the lake to close. Mark and the kids ended up getting stuck on the lake, so someone went to help them back. In the meantime, I was going to go take Jayden for a walk, and the hostess suggested I take him inside and see if he would do better without all the extra stimulation from the fireworks going off and many people. He DID do better for a while. Actually, he liked opening and closing the sliding glass door. This is his favorite game when we go to houses that have these doors.

Eventually, the fireworks show started from the barge on the lake. It was a really nice one! I would venture to say that it was better than the ones I've seen in Pullman. I like the ones that form into shapes like hearts and flowers the best. To my surprise, Jayden really liked the fireworks! He kept saying,"Ooooh!" in his cute little 2 year old voice.

When the show ended, we headed back home. One of the neighbors had their own little fireworks show, and we caught the tail end as we pulled into the driveway. Even as I type this at 12:30, I can still hear them going off. The 4th of July is always a hard night to go to sleep, but the kids didn't have too hard of a time. They had quite the eventful day!

Thursday, July 2, 2009

SEI giveaway

If you are a scrapbooker, you might love SEI as much as I do. They are celebrating their 100th post on their blog with this giveaway

And yes, I'm posting at 1:30 a.m. That's what I get for watching(or starting to watch) a show called "Eaten Alive" which is about parasites and other icky stuff. I sure hope I don't have nightmares tonight!