Saturday, December 26, 2009

Rudolph song

Here are a few other pictures from Christmas-time. Don't miss the video at the end.

Ryan's Christmas preschool party.

Another of Alison at the kitchen table, drawing. It is her new favorite thing, unfortunately.

Friends in our ward dropped by snowmen donuts and hats the other evening for a Christmas treat.

The shepherds were a bit wild at the family nativity. They did a great job of being "sore afraid".

Some of the craziness on Christmas eve.

Jacob and Ryan before bed on Christmas eve.

The video is of Ryan's school singing Rudolph at a preschool Christmas party with other classes. Yes, that is Ryan doing the solos. He and Jacob just learned those parts the other week. I did not start recording at the beginning of the song because I was behind a wall of eager parents and couldn't really see. When I realized what Ryan was doing, I ran over with the camera but still had to shoot between two parents faces.

Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas everyone! As Christmas miracle, I am actually going to post some pictures from our family from the last few months. It has been busy here but the hardest part in posting is that the computer resides in Alison's room so I can't work on the blog late at night because she is sleeping. She is taking in a nap in my room now so while everyone else is in the Christmas haze, I will post.
Halloween: We borrowed costumes from a friend and she had enough that each boy had several costumes. On Halloween night, Ryan was a lion but he had also been an alien. Jacob was a baseball player but he had been a skunk. Alison is a ballerina bee. She loved Halloween and ate candy through the wrappers as we trick or treated.

Ryan at the slide near his preschool. He loves preschool but is so excited for kindergarten.

At a goodbye party for mom and dad in front of the ol' homestead.

Here we are a ColdStone, one of the last nights for Grandpa in Fremont.

At the zoo with Grandma during the time she stayed with us before moving. It was cold but fun.

Apple pie from Thanksgiving. John loved this pie and made me take a picture of it. Can't you just taste the flaky crust and the juicy apples. This was the favorite part of our meal. Arnold and Denise came over and it was a nice afternoon.

It is the time of year for Dungeness crab here in the Bay Area and during a sale at Safeway, we picked some up and had a crab feast. John and the boys watched a youtube video on how to eat whole crabs and then we cracked them open and ate! I was surprised that Jacob and Ryan were so willing to eat the crab. They did great. Maybe we have a new family tradition. Now they want to try lobster...I told them when we visit where Luke and Zachary live, we can try lobster.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

0 points for creativity

Ryan came to me crying just now (not an unusual occurence) and when I asked him why, through the sobbing he told me, "'Cause I don't want my middle name to be Joseph!!"

"O.K." I said, "What do you want your middle name to be?"

"I don't know...maybe Snoopy or something."

I just love these kids.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Ode to Summer, Part Three

Ode to Friends and Fun

The last part of the end of summer Ode is for the friends we were able to see and the fun we had. I should have more pictures of friends and fun but I am not good about taking my camera places. I should have at least one picture of us at the new Aqua Adventure WaterPark at Lake Elizabeth since we had season passes and went there about once/week. Maybe in a future post.

Sommer and her kids (who are EXACTLY the same age and sex as our kids) came to visit!! They moved away several years ago and it was great to see them. It was a fun but quick afternoon.

Ashley and Mike and family also came back to Fremont this summer. It was fun to visit with them and go to the beach! Jacob and Ryan were sad not to see them more. It was nice to have several friends who have moved away come back and visit. I miss them!

A trip to the Oakland zoo with our zoo pals, the Cheethiralas. We love going to the zoo with them!
The joys of camping... At least the weather was warm for this trip. We went camping at the beach on Memorial Day and nearly froze (the parents, that is. The kids could've cared less about the cold. They had a great time with friends)

A final watermelon-face of summer. sigh.

Monday, August 31, 2009

Ode to Summer, Installment Two

Installment Two: Ode to Katy

Katy is gone back to Utah but this summer she did everything for us. She babysat, painted rooms, washed walls, cooked, cleaned, taught piano lessons, helped Ryan ride his two wheeler, tried to teach Alison to walk (she is almost there...) and was a naturalist. We definitely miss her but know that she will have an exciting year as she works toward her goal of becoming an RD. Here are our pictures for her of some summer events although I think she has more that she needs to send me....

Jacob's kindergarten graduation

Katy and Alison at a water park

Alison and her birthday cupcake

Jacob and Ryan before we painted their wall blue

Ryan riding his two wheeler

Ode to Summer, the three-part series

With school starting on Wednesday, I felt it was time to finally get some pictures up from our summer vacation. I am breaking up the end of summer blog into three parts, a trilogy, you might say.

Installment 1: Ode to Cousin Visits
We enjoyed visits from many cousins this summer. These were a highlight of our summer. Our kids wish that cousins could visit every day. With G & G S moving soon, our yearly flow of cousins may dry up. Hence, the ode to cousins blog. Enjoy the pictures.

*** Note: Boy on far left is not a cousin, just a friend.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

A new twist on the company picnic

Today we are going to my company picnic at Coyote Ranch. On hearing the word ranch Ryan asked, "Will there be cows there?" When I told him no he said, "I want to see cow pies." I asked him if this was because they are big and he replied, "No because they are stinky. Cow pies are my favorite kind of poo and my poo is my second favorite."
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Thursday, August 20, 2009

A couple recent quotes

Upon learning two teenagers he knows are now dating Jacob said, "I bet they are going to get married. " I replied I didn't think so. Jacob thought about it and then asked, "Is it because he has glasses?"

Tonight I was watching TV when a commercial for the Octomom special came on. Ryan walked through and astutely observed, "That's toooo many babies. "
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Sunday, August 16, 2009

Blogging from Stake conference: a new low for John.

So I'm out in the car with a sleeping baby for the last ten minutes of stake conference and thought I'd share a funny story from this morning.

While I was getting ready this morning I heard yelling and crying from the general direction of the boys. Apparently they had been wrestling and one of Ryan's toe nails scraped off a thin line of skin on one of Jacob's toes. No perceptible blood.
So this has Jacob totally immobilized and whining during the ritual pre-church scramble. After Suzy had had enough, she told Jacob to go show me his toe. After finally getting a look at the laceration behind all the drama, I couldn't help but laugh and ask Jacob what he wanted me to do about it (thinking nothing needed to be done). He replied in a very dramatic voice, "I don't KNOW!!!" To this I responded, "I guess I'll just have to cut it off."
To which Jacob yelled, "NOOO! I want to LIVE!!!"
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Monday, July 27, 2009

"'s like the king of meat."

Jacob's comment to his cousins at Alison's first birthday.
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Sunday, July 19, 2009

Sweaty Music

On the way home from lunch with Grandma, Grandpa, and Katy Alison was being fussy so we put on some classical music. Ryan didn't like this because we had been listening to a children's book on tape. He complained a few times and seeing that his complaints were not as persuasive as he intended he tried a new tack with, "This music makes me SWEATY."
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Thursday, July 16, 2009

Another email update

This time from the crackberry.

Jacob lost his first tooth during Sunday dinner at the Stovalls. In an indirect commentary on his table manners/eating habits, he swallowed it without knowing. His immediate concern was the terms and conditions surrounding transactions with the tooth fairy. I informed him the tooth fairy will pay a discounted rate for a poop tooth but you have to fish it out of the toilet. Suzy then clarified that a note was sufficient to secure payment.

Last Saturday we went to Fairyland at Lake Merritt and had a great time. I had never been there. Toward the end of the day, I told the kids we would be going somewhere awesome for dinner. Jacob immediately tried to guess the locale of culinary awesomeness by asking, "TACO BELL?" We never go to Taco Bell so Suzy and I laughed pretty hard at the randomness. We were kind enough not to inform anyone at Fenton's of their inferiority to "The Border".
Our first family trip to Fenton's was a bust. Despite all the hoopla, we were immediately disappointed to discover they don't have high chairs (only booster seats). So we wrestled Alison the whole time. Suzy tried to keep Ally away from the water glasses but ended up spilling one herself. While I can understand the motive, I was pretty offended by this not so subtle prejudice against families with babies. Fenton's fails.
Anyway, Ryan slept through the whole meal and started running a fever. He hardly ate anything but horked it all back up on the drive home. Having been parents for awhile now, we were "ready" when it came. Let's just say the A's probably never intended their promo bucket hat to be used so literally.

Sorry for all the bodily functions in this post. I'm guessing if you've had little boys you understand the world we live in.

This is far more than I ever want to type on a Blackberry again.
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Friday, June 19, 2009

Checking email posting with a little update

Jacob finished Kindergarten on Wednesday.  Now he is very excited about summer home school (whatever that is).


Ryan is done with his first year of preschool and is a surprisingly good reader.  Jacob and he check out all the magic tree house books and pour over them.  Ryan reads a lot of words but is still working on sounding out words he doesn’t know.  He wouldn’t be as far along if he didn’t read with Jacob.


Allison is not as far along with the walking idea as the boys were at this age.  She makes up for it in her screaming development.  She is farther along than either of the boys is even today.  The girl screams/squeals all day for any reason as well as no reason at all.


Suzy is sinking money into a garden that perplexes her.  The Square Foot Garden is not living up to the hype.  Each square foot cost us about $7.50 so needless to say I’m expecting either a truckload of produce or the most luscious tomatoes corn etc known to man.  It keeps Suzy sane so it’s worth the money.


I’m working.  Job is better than the old one but more like herding cats.  Investments (other than the house) are doing well.  I’m eyeballing the rental property game.  On the advice of Tony Hawk on twitter, I’m trying to be more “present”.


Enjoy this post…who knows when the next will be.


Saturday, April 25, 2009

Young kids on Easter

Here are a few pictures of the kids on Easter. They were a little disappointed with the small amount of candy the Easter Bunny left for them. My friend's kids had the same experience with their Easter goodies. As parents, all we could do was shrug our shoulders and tell them, "It must be because of the recession".

A few recent events

It is Friday night and as I sit down to write a blog I realize that I have nothing to say. I think I had something to say but by Friday evenings I tend to not be able to access at least half of my brain. I guess that goes along with the "half" things around here: half-done dishes, partially-put-away laundry, picked-up rooms except for the few piles here and there, the garden waiting to be planted, half-baked sharing time, and a work project that I have thought about doing but have not yet started. I realize no one looks at our blog for the written content so I will just get to the pictures and then go do something productive like watch TV.

Ryan had a birthday over a month ago. He turned 4 years old and had a fun birthday with his Young cousins. I made the birthday cake which had a "dinosaur on land and sea" theme. Ryan liked it so that was all the mattered. Of course, it had to be chocolate. He is definitely my child. Now that Ryan is 4, he has started acting like he is 14. He wonders why parents are so bossy. He gets mad when we tell him what to do. He tells us that he can't wait to be an adult so he can be bossy and eat candy for breakfast and not healthy food for dinner. We have power struggles. I thought that was part of being 3 but apparently we are having a resurgence. Ryan also likes to tell us how much he loves us and even gives random hugs and kisses. I am pretty sure he is trying to manipulate me when he does this, but I am trying to accept it as a sweet act with honest intent. Here is a picture.

Ryan got to go on a field trip to Raley's with his Tiny Tot class. Now for the rest of the pictures. This next one is of Alison's first ride in the bike trailer. It was a very short family bike ride but Grandpa S. even came along for the occasion. We rode to a park less than 1 mile from our house but Alison still cried all the way home. We have not gone out on a bike ride since.
Alison is going from baby to toddler right before our eyes. She loves to play with toys and interact with her brothers. She crawls everywhere and is the human vacuum cleaner. I can put her on the ground and she can spot a small clear something and I have to race her for it. Sometimes, I don't win. I think she is getting into the "I only want mommy" phase which is not my favorite. She got her first top tooth today.

Last week was spring break and I took the kids to one of our favorite stomping grounds, the Oakland zoo. Here is a picture of my monkeys at the zoo.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Jacob's Talent show

Here is a poor video of Jacob's first stand up comedy.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

3 pictures

Jacob, Ryan, Alison and I are sitting at the computer this afternoon (in the same chair, mind you - lots of fun) and we are inspired that my sister Donna is back at her blog so we decided to post a picture of each child to try and get back to the blogging world as well.
Ryan and Santa. He told me that he was nervous and that is the reason for the plastic man face.

Jacob with Nicki and Mia (his Stovall cousins that also started kindergarten this year). I think we will need to re-create this one in 12 years at HS graduation.

Here is one of the pictures from Alison's first trip to the photo studio. It was taken at 6 months. (We copied this from the studio website so the quality is probably not great. )