Sunday, September 30, 2012

Guess Who's Two!

Little Anna turned two today! What a sweet blessing she has been to our family! She and Mia are getting along better and better each day. We caught them holding hands this morning while Mia was watching T.V.

Anna soon bored of that since she doesn't even watch T.V.!

Bill, Dawn and Wade came over for a little family party in the afternoon. Anna loves Elmo!

She has learned how to smile for pictures!

This cake was as good as it looks and Dan made homemade ice cream to go with it!

Happy Birthday to our little cuddle bug!

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Wedding Week Saturday

There are only a few days in your life when you get to wake up and say, "My child is getting married today!" Last Saturday was one of those. Now it was Dan's turn to watch the littles as I went to spend some time with the bride to be and Matron of Honor getting our hair and makeup done.

I got to Beth's room at 10:00 and her hair was already in rollers. I think that's the first time I thought, this is really happening! I was just so happy for her!

Next Lauren got a cute little do.

I was next but I forgot to have someone take a picture of me!

The hair stylist was so funny and friendly. He thought it was great that we had a football game on in the room, pretty unusual for the bride's room! But it was a UCLA game and we had two UCLA grads there.

The makeup artist did a great job on all of us.

After lunch I had Dan bring the precious flower girl to the room to get her hair done.

Beth's jewelry was beautiful and old-fashioned, just like the wedding.

She gave Mia a matching bracelet.

Soon soon soon!

Guess who made it at 2:30, in time for a little make up? Becky! It took a lot of sisterly love and dedication to fly 1000 miles just 5 days after giving birth!

After hair and make up we went back to our room to wait for family picture time.

During that time, Beth and Greg had a "First Look" picture time. They decided not to have Greg see her for the first time at the wedding. That way they didn't have to do pictures after the ceremony and could have fun and attend their own happy hour! And I can't tell you how many weddings we have been to where the pictures end up taking several hours and all the guests are kept waiting for the reception to start.

I made a poor decision to not give Mia a nap that might mess her hair up during this time. She had been traveling and living in hotels all week and was beyond tired. I sure regretted it later.

Mia and Anna made their own fun while waiting to get dressed.

At 4:30 we had family pictures and then tried to keep a very tired preschooler happy until the wedding at 6:00. I had a babysitter for Anna and Avery come at 5:00. Roberta and I were doing a reading at the wedding and I knew Anna would start making a commotion if she saw me up in front.

After Mia's fifth tantrum or so, the wedding began! I had tears in my eyes as Becky and Lauren walked in, knowing what sacrifice Becky made to be there and knowing the great friendship of Beth and Lauren. Mia was next and she tried to walk down the side aisle first! Dan redirected her and she did a great job carrying her sign that said, Here Comes the Bride. Dan and Beth were last. She looked so beautiful! I felt so happy that Greg and her were finally going to get to start their life together.

Their vows were a poem that was a little quirky and funny. We all had to project our voices as the speakers went out right before the ceremony. And then they were Mr. and Mrs. Martin! I don't have any pictures of the ceremony, as we left that to a professional! And BTW, we fed Mia a constant supply of Cocoa Puffs to keep her still and quiet in the front row. You gotta do what you gotta do!

After the ceremony, we all walked downstairs for cocktail hour. I went and got Anna and she stayed through dinner and one dance before getting tired. Towards the end of cocktail hour it was time to say goodbye to Becky so she could make her 9:15 flight. Mia was running around the bar area like a maniac. She does that when she's tired, trying to keep herself awake she gets more and more hyper. I asked her if she would like to watch a video with the babysitter and eat her dinner in the room and she said, "Yes." Good thing, because she was going anyway!

Happy Hour was just that, one hour! And then we went back up to the transformed room. It was stunning. The florist did a great job with the vintage look.

Joey was the MC and did a great job introducing the wedding party. Beth and Greg had their first dance next. They look so right for each other. The banner was added to the picture by Beth's friend who took this picture.

Dinner was delicious. After dinner there were three speeches. Lauren talked about how her best friend, Beth, was "better than yours". John, the best man, talked about how perfect Greg and Beth were for each other. Dan gave a welcome speech and talked a little about our family. All three were great! There was a bet going around. Everyone put in a dollar and made a guess as to when Dan would cry. Who won? Dan, he lasted longer than anyone thought possible (5 minutes+).

Beth and Greg decided that they didn't want cake so we opted for a pie bar! It was unique and fun with lots of vintage pie plates.

The band was amazing and there was a full dance floor until midnight. For a party favor, they gave tickets for a famous Seattle hot dog cart. After 10:30, guests could go outside and get their hot dogs. There were a lot of hot dogs floating around the room!

If the marriage turns out to be as good as the wedding, we are all in for a treat!

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Wedding Week Friday

We woke up so excited today! The day of the rehearsal and cocktail party! But what to do with two little ones during the day? Dan went golfing with Greg and a few others.

First we had breakfast and then we went on a walk with Beth and Lauren. It was Seattle Street Art Day or something like that. I can't remember the actual name. But I do remember thinking there was a lot of construction going on in weird places. But then we passed some wooden structures with yarn being looped around them and a young lady asked Mia if she would like to help make the "art". Mia had a lot of fun wrapping the yarn around the pegs.

Yes, I know that this is another picture of the back of her head, but I would have to stand out in the street to get her face!

Later I took the girls to lunch and to a local toy store and got some new toys for the evening with the babysitter. I got a call around 2:00 from one of the babysitters scheduled for the night saying that she had food poisoning. We scheduled two babysitters since we would be gone from 5:00 to midnight and there would be Mia, Anna and Avery, all three and under. Our babysitting service (the same service I use in Denver has an office in Seattle) scrambled to get another. I also called a local service. No one was ever able to get a replacement, but the one sitter came and seemed to have no problems with the three kids. The one with food poisoning was also our sitter for Anna and Avery for Saturday's ceremony and for all the kids as they got tired during the reception. The local service was able to provide me with a replacement.

At 4:00 we went downstairs for the rehearsal which went pretty well. Mia really didn't really want to do her flower girl part as she really wanted to play with the new toys upstairs! After regrouping, we went over everything with the babysitter and left for the rehearsal dinner around 5:30.

The dinner was in a room at Escala, a condo complex where Greg's mom Roberta owns a place. The room is very cool and intimate. The dinner was for the wedding party only. We could not possibly have fit any more in.

The table was beautiful...

Ready to begin their life together...

Greg's dad, Ken, gave a speech reflecting on his memories of Greg growing up and Beth and Greg's romance. Some of it was quite funny and revealing! Like the fact that Greg had been knocked unconscious when he was four and Ken had never told Roberta! I wonder what Dan is hiding from me?

The dinner was delicious and it was great to hear the stories of Greg's family. Right afterward, Ken and Roberta generously hosted a cocktail party for all the wedding guests in a large room (originally supposed to be a restaurant) at Escala. It was a great meet and greet as almost everyone coming to the wedding was traveling from California or Eastern Washington.

The decorations were personalized wine bottles personalized with photos of the bride and groom!

Roberta and I have become friends and now family!

A great time was had by all, talking with old friends and relatives and meeting new ones.

The man is the center is the wedding officiant, Greg's Uncle Alan.

Two of Beth's friends from San Francisco, Vanessa and Alyssa.

There was a great fireplace outside where people gathered to chat.

The bride and her mom, grandma, and aunts.

Some of the pictures aren't the best quality, but you get the picture. Haha. Tomorrow...the wedding!!

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Wedding Week Thursday

Thursday morning we didn't have to leave for the airport until 11:00 so Mia and I went to the nail salon! Mia got a manicure and I got a pedicure.

Usually Mia can't sit very still, but in new situations she can be somewhat cautious and quiet (I did say somewhat) and even a little still!

Here's the final product! Can you tell she picked out her own color? :)

After Mia was finished, I still had a ways to go so I asked them to put some cartoons on the T.V. Mia's manicurist said they didn't have that station, but she let Mia watch Tinkerbelle on her personal ipad. How sweet is that!

Once we got home we went to the airport and boarded a plane for Seattle! We weren't sure how Anna would do as she is much more comfortable with us now and doesn't watch movies or understand the ipad. But she did pretty good eating a lot of snacks!

None of my family was there on Thursday night so I offered to watch the littles while Dan visited with his family. I finally called him home at midnight. We are not spring chickens any more and we had two more late nights ahead of us!

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Wedding Week Wednesday

On Tuesday Dan called to reserve the motorhome. They said he could only pick it up between 1:00 and 4:00 on any day. Going Thursday would not give them enough time to drive to Seattle and make it to the rehearsal on Friday. So Dan booked it for Wednesday and made himself an A.M. flight. We had no idea where we would park it Wednesday night.

Wednesday morning he was at the airport waiting to board the plane when I got a call from Becky. Little Max had jaundice and had lost weight. The pediatrician was not okay at all with him traveling. I was able to get ahold of Dan before he actually boarded the plane. They looked for his luggage for some time, but finally gave up and so his luggage went to L.A. They then routed it back to Denver and held it for us until we got to the airport on Thursday for our trip to Seattle!

Becky said she might want to do a turn around flight alone on Saturday if Max was doing okay so I booked her some flights just in case. We spent the rest of the day packing, cleaning for a showing of our house, going to swimming lessons and getting excited for the wedding!

Monday, September 24, 2012

Wedding Week Tuesday

In case you are wondering, the wedding was FABULOUS! But I'm still behind in blogging. So back to Tuesday.

We didn't get back to our hotel until 10:00 PM Tuesday night. Mia then woke up at 5:00 AM. I knew it wouldn't be a good day, especially with no time for a nap, if I let her get up, so I insisted she stay in bed. It took her an hour to fall back asleep but then she slept until 9:00. After that, we headed over to the hospital. We spent about an hour with Arek, Becky and Max. They were having a hard time getting Max to wake up for his feedings so Becky was having to supplement. We talked about the wedding and if Becky could attend or not. We had a great (kind of crazy) idea that we would rent a motorhome and Dan and Arek would drive from LA to Seattle. We knew the baby couldn't fly for two weeks. Dan thought the idea left a lot of room for problems, but he agreed to do it if the the doctors gave the okay. Becky really wanted to go and she was one of only two attendants for the wedding. We really wanted to make Beth's wedding as perfect as could be.

After visiting we headed to the grocery store and bought some needed things for them as well as ingredients for two dinners. At Becky and Arek's apartment I made the dinners while Mia watched cartoons. Arek's mom was coming in later to clean.

We left the apartment around 2:15 and headed back to the hospital. After missing a freeway interchange we go there around 3:00. We visited for awhile and then headed to the airport. We had to get back to get ready for the wedding trip!

The ipad was low on battery power so we hooked it up to a station at the gate. Here is Mia sitting with all the other business people. Too cute!

We got home at 11:15 PM. It was a very long day for me and a really really long day for a three year old!

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Wedding Week Monday

Like I said in the last post, this has been a crazy week. I am sitting in a hotel room in Seattle trying to get two toddlers to go to sleep. It is exciting to be here for the wedding! But first, let me explain about Crazy Week!

On Monday morning at 3:00 AM Dan woke me up to say he heard my cell phone ringing in the kitchen. I got out there and saw I had a missed call from Arek. I thought, there can only be one reason for Arek to call me at 3:00 in the morning!

I listened to his message telling me that Becky's water had broke... three weeks early! So I called him back and then went back to talk to Dan. Of course he said go back to sleep and we'll talk later. ?????? Really???? Has he not been married to me for over thirty years????

While he slept I went over and over the possibilities. Dan was off work this week so we could all go out there. Or he could stay and take Anna to her developmental evaluation and I would just take Mia with me. Or Mia could stay home and I would just take Anna so she wouldn't develop a mistrust of me after leaving her for the showers already four weeks ago. But then
Mia had a hard time with the three of us in China and not her. Or maybe I should just go by myself to be the most help to Becky. These things went through my mind until it was 5:00 and I just decided to get up and take a shower. Dan was still sleeping!!

In the end, I decided to take Mia and spend some one on one time with her and thought she would like helping get things ready for Baby Max.

We left at 3:30 that afternoon and arrived just after the baby was born. I got to hold him first after Mommy and Daddy. He is a cutie pie. He looks just like Arek.

Arek's siblings and mom were there and Mia had a great time taking pictures of everyone. We got to our hotel around 9:30. I was exhausted and went right to sleep as did Mia.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Life Unscripted!

The last two days have been CRAZY! There is a lot going on and a lot we still need to take care of before the wedding. I have no time to blog, but thought I would just share this...

More to come when I have time!

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Heritage Square

Yesterday it was ULA day at Heritage Square, a small amusement park in Golden. I had never heard of it before. It was a cute little Western-themed place. We went on the carousel first.

Then we went over to the ULA barbecue. Our first stop was the balloon animal makers. They each got a cute little monkey climbing a tree. By the time we left the park the monkeys and the trees had either popped (including by being stepped on, on purpose, by a little boy) or unraveled. :(

The barbecue was delicious.

We spent the last few hours going on rides.

Deirdre and Mia were partners on this one.

We left too early according to Mia. Of course, when the parked closed would have been too early for her!

Friday, September 14, 2012

Apple Pickin'

Today we went apple picking! This is something I have enjoyed since childhood. When I was a child we used to got to Oak Glen in California. We didn't really get to pick much ourselves, but we got to buy them and have a chicken dinner in a basket. I loved it. So did about 1000 other people every weekend in the fall. It got more and more busy as they added antique shops. What do you expect when there are 20 million people in the greater L.A. area?

Step forward 20, okay 30, okay 40 years. Dan took me apple picking for my birthday two years ago because he knew I had such fond memories of it as a child. What a difference here! It's not commercial at all. There are several small orchards in a town called Penrose, about an hour and fifteen minutes from our house. We were the only ones there on a Friday. (Dan gets every other Friday off work. Love it.) We tried to go again last year, but the apple crop was ruined due to a freeze. So we definitely put it on the calendar for this year. I think Dan likes it more than I do! He hated Oak Glen, seriously.

We left mid morning and stopped for lunch in Colorado Springs. (I wish I remembered about the cute little restaurant, Blackberry Patch Farm, right near the orchard. We'll go there next year!)

Mia took these pictures...

From there we drove to the orchard.

They have wagons which you can use to carry your apples, pumpkins and kiddos.

At first they were both excited to pick the apples off the trees. Many braches were just their height. The orchard was loaded. They said it was their best year in 20 years.

After awhile Anna was content to just sit in the wagon and eat the apples.

Daddy lifted Mia on his shoulders so she could get to some of the higher branches.

They had lots of pumpkins too! They were the orangest healthiest looking pumpkins I've ever seen.

Here's our stash!

No trip to Third Street Farm is complete without a ride on the tractor!

We stopped for ice cream on the way home at a place I had read about on someone's blog, Josh and Johns. They churn the ice cream right there in the window. Unfortunately, they weren't churning any while we were there. :( But, we still got to eat some!

Without naps, they are both sound asleep at 7:00. Dan and I are going to watch The Hunger Games.