Sunday, July 20, 2014

California- Part 3

I feel like this blog post is one long promotion for San Diego. In my unbiased opinion, I would recommend that everyone have Grandparents in San Diego. It is a great place for a vacation! We have had a fabulous last 2 weeks including "surf" time with Uncle Matt and Aunt Karina. . .

. . . a patriotic 4th of July

 . . . a seaplane ride taking off and landing in the harbor (thanks Aunt Christy and Grandpa!)

  . . .  Padres game

  . . . .San Diego Zoo and Wild Animal Park

  . . . . lots of Mexican food
  . . . .a visit from our friends Billy and Katherine (and little Talia)

  . . . .  VBS at Grandma and Grandpa's church. This is "Crazy Hair Day"
 . . .  and bike riding with Uncle Mikey

Reflecting on our time I'm so thankful for the quality time we got to spend with so many loved ones during our time down here. We love you! Thanks for everything!

Friday, July 11, 2014

California Part II- Idyllwild with the Paine Family

After the climax of Angela's wedding people slowly started leaving Arroyo Grande. We went from 30 people in the house, to a quiet 16 people, down to 11, until we knew it was time to hop on a train and move on. We rode the train from Grover Beach to Fullerton and enjoyed following the coast most of the way. The kids were free to move around which was great for Josiah and Annette, but challenging with Annabelle. 

 We even took some trips to the front to keep the Engineer company. He was very patient with Josiah's endless curiosity.
 From Fullerton Grandma drove us up to a cabin in Idyllwild where we enjoyed 5 days of sweet smelling pine air with all of Jason's family. It was a great house with lots of fun things to do and conducive for spending quality time together.

 Brothers watching the world cup

 The fish weren't biting but the kids still made great memories with Grandpa

 We loved getting to meet our new nephew Sawyer Elijah. The dads even played one- armed Ladder Ball while balancing their babies

It amazes me how naturally our kids transition between the Chinese and American cultures. The world must really be getting smaller. They have been been awed by some "new" novelties such as 

- garages and garage door openers
- self service gas stations
- dish washers
- different toilet flushes, light switches and paper towel dispensers
- gum ball machines
- drive throughs
-ice cream trucks
- garage sales
- milk in gallon jugs

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Califronia- Part 1

 We are having an amazing time in California. The flight went as smoothly as possible and although I got a lot of "you've got your hands full" comments, the kids did great. Jet lag was another story, but we are all sleeping now. I can't tell you how wonderful it has been to be at my parents' house. The first Sunday I was back at the church where my dad has been the pastor for 25 years, my parents sang a song in the choir called "In My Father's House." And it was Father's Day. I couldn't hold back the tears. This is the house I grew up in, the small town Jason and I fell in love in, and truly one of my favorite spots in the world (plus there is no humidity, mosquitoes, sweating and tons of sunshine!)

Our family of 6 is now 18- here is our whole motley crew. 
 The cousins had SO much fun together. Which worked out well since I totally ignored our kids in the process of helping with wedding details and hosting tons of extended family in town.

 Can you guess what they are karaoking? Let's just say there were a lot of renditions of "Let it Go"
 Here are some shots form Friday's rehearsal and rehearsal dinner

 And the BIG DAY!! I only have a couple of photos but Angela was BEAUTIFUL!!! It was such a meaningful, fun, lovely day and nothing could have made me more happy than to celebrate my seester and her wonderful man.

A very serious family shot

Here is the couple the next afternoon during the gift opening
 And then some more chillaxin' with family
This is my brother Ryan wearing his new baby Emery

 And of course we had to jump in the dunes with the cousins

 Papa came out for the wedding. Doesn't he look great at 91?

Jason ran up to the tree where we went on our first date 17 years ago and added Annabelle's name to "our" tree. Later that day we all went out to see his work. He said there's room for more names, but maybe we should consider shorter names. . .