Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Wild Turkeys

Oh, baby, baby, it's a wild world. A wild turkey world anyway. This rafter of turkeys was the last thing I expected to see when I opened my front door. I actually let out a guffaw when I caught sight of them! We had a turkey perched on either side of the porch railing, and a few more were scattered all around. Sammy was just as surprised and impressed as I. Also impressive was the enormous amount of excrement they left behind. Whoowee! My guess is that they had been roosting on our porch for quite some time. Well, they are welcome any day. I hope they return again soon!

Below is the link to the My Life as a Turkey documentary I watched on PBS this fall. Brings new appreciation to the life of a wild turkey.

http://www.pbs.org/wnet/nature/episodes/my-life-as-a-turkey/full-episode/7378/















Saturday, August 25, 2012

Soccer Girl Annabel


Here's Annabel the morning of her very first soccer game this season. She was excited. She is a great defender. You tell her what she needs to do and she'll get it done, elbows and all. :) I think she had a fabulous season with Team Butterflies (2). It will be fun to see her learn more and more about the game as time goes on. I think she'll stick with it, mostly for the post-game snacks, but also for the growing love of the game.









Wednesday, August 22, 2012

First Day of Elementary School

The girls started at a new school this year, first grade for Annabel and third grade for Lucy. There was a lot of excitement the first day; there were a lot of jitters about being in a new setting, too. We love the girls' new teachers and are beyond happy with their new school. Most certainly we all are pleased to have a caring, helpful environment for the girls. It means the world.










Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Last Beach Trip of Summer



We spent one of the last days of summer at the beach this year. Best way to end the summer! I think this should be a tradition for us at the end of each summer before the excitement of a new school year begins. Our beach of choice is New Brighton in Capitola. It's calm and gorgeous, with friendly kids who jump in to help each other build sand castles and play in the sea.






Friday, August 10, 2012

Big Basin Camping Trip

This August we went on our second annual Big Basin camping trip with two other families we've been friends with for years and years. It was a great time yet again! This year we went in August instead of September, which worked much better, as it was before the start of school for most of us. I goofed a little on reserving the campsites because they added a very sunny campsite at the end of the loop that didn't exist last year, so I booked the last two on the loop not realizing the last one wasn't what I thought it was. It didn't actually matter because we all easily fit on the other huge campsite under the shady redwood trees, so all was fine even with the minor scrambling of campsites. (I have noted the correct site numbers for next year!) It's a great group of easygoing people with a lot of patience for camping and kids. Our families meshed so well, even with kids of all different ages and temperaments. So nice to have that!

The sun was warm and the creek was inviting, so we spent a lot of time exploring the water right next to the campsites and keeping cool down there. The guys even took all the kids down for an afternoon, letting us ladies relax and enjoy a quiet couple hours back at camp. What a great afternoon just chatting and relaxing under the redwoods, while the menfolk enjoyed a beer and the kids had a blast in the water (we brought extra clothes this time for all the creek wading that went on that afternoon). On the last night, the kids put on what is becoming the traditional camp play, which this year again was appropriately dramatic, somewhat improvisational and perhaps a little chaotic, too. Love the budding thespians in all of them!

I am already looking forward to another camping trip next August. We might even try a new camping spot, but if not, Big Basin is tried and true. What a whole lot of fun for all!

































































Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Summer Reading Game

All three kids did the public library's reading game this summer, and all three completed it! The girls each read more than one hundred books and received medals, Annabel's first and Lucy's third. Sammy and I read many books together for his little bear game and he picked an orange bear as a reward. The reading game is quite the undertaking, with a minimum of one library visit a week for us because we were away for a couple of weeks. Toward the end we went twice a week to check in just so we would complete it by the final day. Whew! It was down to the wire, but we did it! I am very proud of all of them for keeping up their reading skills during the otherwise non-academic summer months.

In September the medal-wearing girls shook the hand of the mayor of Livermore, John Marchand, as well as all the city council members. It was a big night for them, and they even got to see themselves on public access TV once at home. We saw many friends in the line to shake hands and even posed for a picture with one of Lucy's best friends, Mikayla, as well as Mikayla's brother.