As usual, St. Patrick's Day has fallen during Spring Break for the kids. They were kind of bummed out because Grammie (my mom) tends to come and visit at this time of year and always does something special for the holiday. This year she came about a month earlier. So it was up to me to make it a fun holiday. I decided in the spirit of my mom and St. Pat we would have a picnic, with as much green food and I could find in my house. We had green grapes, green jello cups, snow peas, sour cream and onion pringles and I made us PB&J sandwiches. We packed up and headed to Fountain Hills where they dye the water in the fountain green on this day every year. The kids loved to see the green water shooting up into the air and they fed the ducks and played on the playground.
We were lucky enough to find a shady spot for our picnic and we met some people with a very friendly dog, who the kids were quite taken with. Just a side note, my kids tend to be timid around dogs and not one of them was even alittle bit scared. The dog loves kids and was very gentle with all of them.
We had a great time and the day wrapped up with sleepovers with their cousins. The girls at my house and the older boys at their house. The girls, Jared and I made green cupcakes for dessert to round out the tribute to St. Patrick. All in all fun was had by all, especially Austin. He loved being outside and watching his sister and brothers play.
So, anyone who knows my dad knows that he is quite the storyteller. I was a very gullible child and believed a lot of what my father told me. My daughter, on the other hand, not so much. While my parents were here visiting my dad told my kids a story about me and my brother, I don't remember all of the details but it was quite a tale. Ashleigh and Jordan were pretty interested in what Papa was saying and when it was all done Jordan asked who that happened to. Here is the funny part of the story, Ashleigh's response to Jordan was "You believed that?", then she turned to my dad and said "I'm so glad I'm an adult now". It may not sound funny to read it, but to hear it and see her mannerisms it was hysterical. My parents and I were laughing so hard Michael came in from the other room to see what was so funny. It will be a moment in Ashleigh's life that we will laugh about from years to come.
I can't remember if it was before or after Christmas vacation, but Ashleigh came home from school and said that her seat was in the back of the class and she couldn't read the spelling words on the board. Her teacher moved her to the front of the room and I made and eye appointment. Sure enough, she has her mother's eye sight. Not only does she need glasses to see the board, but she needs them all of the time. She chose her frames all by herself and she did a great job. She looks so grown up in them and she is amazed at how much better she can see things now. She got a neutral color frame, but she still sometime thinks that her clothes need to match the glasses.
All month long we were counting down until my mom and dad arrived for a visit from Vermont. We were all very excited to have them here. It was to be my dad's first time meeting Austin in person and the kids were looking forward to some special time with there grandparents. Austin and Papa hit it off right away. Austin was all smiles for his Papa, it was so fun to watch how excited he would get when my dad would walk into the room. A bond was definitely created between those two. We had a great time with them in the short time that they were here. I was able to get some shopping in and spend a gift card I have had for quite some time. It is so much easier to shop and try things on when you have some extra hands and eyes to watch Jared and Austin. I also was able to put my Amazing Dad to work. He turned a closet into a pantry with built-in shelves and did some work in our bathroom as well. I am so excited and so grateful for his time and great work. Thanks Dad, your the best!!
We let Ashleigh and Jordan take a day off from school to spend some quality time with Grammie and Papa. They were very excited and we had a fun day. We started by hiking the Merkle Trail at Usery Pass Park and then we played at a playground and had a picnic lunch.
We came home and rested for a little while then headed out again, this time to take pictures of the kids. I am now kicking myself that I didn't have my parents jump into the pictures at all. I can't believe I don't have any pictures of all the kids with my parents from this visit.
Later that night was Jordan's first ever Pinewood Derby. He had a lot of fun making his car with the help of his dad and mom, even Papa helped out with it. He did a great job and had lots of fun racing his car. He won half of his races and was a great sport. He congratulated every scout when the race was over, whether he was racing them or not. He won the Best Sportmanship Award and he was very proud of his Ben 10 car. We were all very proud of him.
The next day mom and dad headed home. They were leaving 80 degree temps and headed back to enjoy a Nor'easter headed their way. We loved having them here and were sad to see them go so soon. The visit flew by and we are looking forward to the next time they are here and hope it can be a longer stay next time. We love you Mom and Dad, thanks for the work and memories!
I can't believe it has been a month since my last post. We have had a lot going on and with a little one around I find it hard to do much more than check my email unless I am lucky enough to get him to take a nap longer than 20-30 minutes at a time. Austin is actually awake right now, but Ashleigh is home and always eager to play with him.
For all of you who are not familiar with Arizona in the winter, it is much like autumn in the Northeast, except that it isn't as cold. We had some fun raking the leaves in our yard into a few big piles and before we loaded them into the garbage bin the kids got to jump and play in them. Might I add that we only have palm trees in our yard, the leaves are thanks to our neighbors tree. The kids had a great time and it reminded me of my own childhood.
Michael and I have been married for 14 years and have 4 beautiful children. Ashleigh is 11, Jordan is 9, Jared is 5 and Austin is 2. Michael is a Senior Systems Engineer and I am a stay at home mom by day and a Retail Merchandiser for Hallmark by night. I started blogging to keep in touch with family and friends who are far away and also because I am horrible at keeping a journal and thought this would be a great way for me to keep a journal of our family activities.